Wednesday, September 30, 2015

September in Review

We read a lot at our house. All the time. I suppose we've set a good example, because Simon is getting an early start.

Ben had been in timeout for a while when Chris and I noticed that he was being a little too quiet... Turns out timeout isn't terribly interesting. Jury is still out on whether or not it's comfortable.

Simon's favorite breakfast is an Eggo waffle, and his favorite place to eat it is on this rug. As soon as he hears the toaster pop up, he'll run from wherever he is and plop straight down on the rug, then look up expectantly.

A neighbor was having a not-so-great week, so we made some peanut butter cookies. Ben determined that it was a waste to just wash the spatula, so he took it upon himself to make the most of the opportunity. He also made sure that Simon had full participation.

Simon has learned the traditional shoulder stand! He is much more excited about it than Ben ever was. He reminds me of Audrey.

One night during this last week, I asked the kids to clean the living room while I made dinner. Instead, Audrey started chanting nonsense rhymes, Megan was spinning as fast as she possible could on the office chair, and Ben was crawling around and dragging his head across the floor. About which I posted on Facebook instead of making dinner.

We decided that it would be better for everyone to just go out for pizza. And we were right.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Not for another 18 years

Have I mentioned yet how glad I am that we moved? I can readily see God's hand in so many things that have come together since we made that seemingly random and abrupt decision only three and a half months ago. One of those blessings is our neighborhood. Never before have I gotten a text that says, "Out with a telescope looking at the eclipse if you all are still awake." Can't pass up an opportunity like that. Chris even grabbed his telescope to join in the fun.

I love that our neighbors will congregate on the sidewalks for things like plum picking and stargazing.

And, you know, I guess the eclipse was pretty cool, too. My attempt at photographing the event, however, led me to focus my creative talents elsewhere.

Chris had better luck.

In other news, Simon has learned to run. His favorite place to do so is across the street, as we have unfortunately learned on more than one occasion. Ahem.

Saturday, September 26, 2015


Taking advantage again of our amazing babysitting setup, Chris and I were able to go out for a lovely anniversary celebratory adventure. Since our date night happened to coincide with Brandon's birthday, we invited him and Heather to join us at The Escape Room.

If you haven't heard of that, it's where you are locked in a room as a group and have to solve a series of puzzles in order to get out in less than 60 minutes. Here is the scenario we were given:

Bob Ford, the man charged with the murder of Jesse James, has found Jesse James' map to some hidden treasure. Before Ford could find the treasure, he was murdered and the map was never seen again. Rumor has it that the map is hidden somewhere inside Ford's home office; however, the building is set to be demolished. You must find the treasure map before the building is destroyed. There is only a small window of time (1 hour) to see it through. Unfortunately, you don’t know the whole plan, but luckily there were clues left for you to find. You will just have to figure it out. Do you have what it takes to find the map before time runs out?

The four of us were joined by two others, who also happened to be celebrating a birthday. Awesome. I am happy to report that Yes! We did make it out in less that 60 minutes. In fact, we had 8 minutes and 41 seconds to spare.

It was really fun. Some of the puzzles we figured out right away, some took a few hints before we finally got it. It was nice, too, that everyone was able to contribute. My favorite was when we were supposed to find four clues to solve a puzzle but we only had three, and I figured out the answer anyway. It was great.

Good times! I want to go back and try the other room sometime.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Through the Years













Happy 9th Anniversary!
love you much

Friday, September 11, 2015

A Dating First

Chris and I have known each other for over 13 years now--dated for a year and a half, corresponded via letters for two years, married for nearly nine years now. In all that time, neither of us really feel like we "dated" in the strictest sense of the term. Our Define the Relationship conversation consisted of me saying I wanted a boyfriend and him saying ok. Our dating relationship spanned over two states, and if we were lucky we saw each other once a month during that time. Once we were married, we were either together all the time anyway and didn't feel a need for a formal going out date, or we had kids and continued to opt for more staying in dates.

Well, that's all about to change!

We have met a family in our new ward that wants to swap babysitting with us. It's something that we've tried to work out for years with various different people and it never seemed to come to fruition. It always fizzled out after only a month or so. Then, we had too many kids. It's hard to swap our four kids with another family that only has one or two. But, HOORAY!, the Dickersons have four kids, too! (The babies are absent from the picture.)

And now, every other Friday, Chris and I get to go on a date. It's amazing.

One thing we have learned in the course of our relationship is that we don't have a ton of things that we both really love doing--I have my things, he has his, and they mostly don't overlap. So, we've decided to try new things. This week's adventure: bowling.

Apparently it's a little tricky to take pictures in a bowling alley. Or something.

Fun, but a bit more expensive than we want to spend all the time. We then decided on a free activity and hiked the trail through the National Petroglyph Monument. The petroglyphs were pretty cool to see, and the conversation was good. Yay for babysitters!

P.S. I may have used too many exclamation points in this post. My apologies to the grammarites out there. I might be just a little excited about actually dating my husband.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Labor Day Goodness

With the exception of the obvious like Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and of course St. Patrick's Day, we tend to be last-minute holiday planners. Valentine's Day? I'll grab a box of "whatever's leftover at Walmart" cards for the kids to take to school. New Year's? We seek out other people who never bothered to make plans. Labor Day? I'm not actually sure why it's a holiday to begin with, let alone what you're supposed to do to celebrate.

But hey, a day off is a day off! So we went to the park.

I didn't know that Ben had graduated up to doing the Fireman's pole.

I also didn't know that Audrey prefers to cross the monkey bars upside-down.

Simon attempted the swing again...still didn't love it, but at least he didn't scream the entire time like he has in the past.

Highlight: Racing Dad around the tree and back.

Side effect: 175 goatheads stuck in Christopher's shoes.

After lunch and a quiet time movie, the kids painted these cardboard letters that I bought ages ago and never let them touch. Turns out Chris and I don't have a lot of patience for paint and the resultant mess.

Thankfully, everyone survived.

Sunday, September 6, 2015


Lisa had her baby!

Lydia Camille Mortensen

September 4, 2015
10:51 pm

7 lbs.
19 in.

The boys and girls are tied again. :)