Wednesday, September 28, 2011


When Jim and I taught primary (the 5 year olds) while we still lived it Utah one of the boys asked Jim what he did. I still remember the boys face when Jim told him that he was a student. "You still go to school," the boy said. "You must not be very smart!" At that point Jim was just finishing up his undergrad. I wonder what that little boy would say now, three years later, as Jim starts yet another year of school!

Here he is, in all of his first day of school glory! I'd like to think that his peace sign really was him saying that he's a 2L (second year law student) and not him saying peace out, stop taking my picture. I'll leave that up to you to decide.

Talmage loves his Daddy a lot, a lot and had a rough time seeing Jim leave (especially since Jim's been traveling a lot these last few weeks. Everytime Jim walks out the door T says, "No Daddy, don't go to da train station. I want you." Talk about major heartbreak.) The morning was sad, but I kept telling T that Daddy was at his first day at a new law school. As soon as Jim came home T ran to him and said, "Daddy, did you have a good first day of waw (law) school?" It was adorable.

As for me and the boys, we are also adjusting to life again. We are learning a new routine and have had a pretty good first couple of days. I'm continuing to learn more about my children and how to handle them. T has been giving me a really rough time about naps lately. He doesn't think he needs one, but by about 2 pm it's apparent in his behavior that he does. I've tried laying down with him, sitting in his room, reading books, singing songs, white noise, rewards, punishments, etc. but nothing has worked. He is my willful child and this was a full blown battle of wills--and the problem is I can't force him to go to sleep. It was causing a contentious spirit in our home and I didn't like it at all. Today I switched my approach and it worked (for today at least...I'll let you know about tomorrow). Instead of nap time we had quiet time. Still in his room. Still on his bed. Still lights out. But he could play with puzzles. "I don't want a nap," he said. "You don't have to take a nap T, it's just quiet time," I said. He seemed shocked that I wasn't trying to force him to sleep. Pleasantly shocked. He thought he had won. Ha! He played quietly with his puzzles and less than 30 minutes later it was totally silent in his room. Yep...he fell asleep! And took a long, peaceful nap. Hallelujah!

This little one, now he's an angel. He has such a mild personality compared to his brother and just makes loving everything about him so easy. And PS--do you see how he fell asleep all by himself? I didn't know babies could even do that before he came into my life! But he does. And he also likes to be snuggled and kissed. A lot. He smiles and coos and flirts like crazy with me, and almost anyone who gives him the time of day. I. Love. Him.

Anyway, here's to another year of law school!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Our last weekend

Last weekend was our last weekend before school, and we took advantage of every last minute. We don't often get Daddy all to ourselves (and as of yesterday he has rekindled his romance with the law library) so we made sure to pack the weekend with fun family activities.

We went on a walk on Friday and ended up in the quad at Stanford. People were playing ultimate frisbee, others were picnicing, and T brought his "treats" to play with. We brought snacks and a blanket. We sat and laughed and cooed at Everett Knight. T and Daddy ran around the lawn until they were both sweaty and tired. We came home and all four of us took a nap. Heaven!

On Saturday we went with our ward on a ferry trip to Alameda. A member of our ward owns a ferry (yeah, you read that right...a GINORMOUS ferry...owns it...crazy) and let the whole ward go for a little spin! T was thrilled to get to go on a boat ride, and loved seeing all of the other boats in the water. It was definitely a San Fran day (chill-y!), but we had a blast.

Only picture I took of our 3+ hours in Alameda. Those two so love each other. Talmage is a rockstar of a big brother and Evie adores everything T does. It's adorable!

Our camera was about to die but we managed to get one picture of the family on the ferry on our way back to San Fran. By this time T was in desparate need of a nap and my hair was out of control, but that's life! The trip was fun. We loved meeting lots of people in our new ward and we loved spending time together.

After church on Sunday we decided to take a stroll around campus. We do this almost every Sunday because it's so beautiful and we love to explore new parts of the university. This last Sunday we were surprised by a little rainstorm. Without a second thought, Talmage started singing, "If all the raindrops..." and opening his mouth to catch the drops. Wow, I love that kid!

Last weekend was it's time to get back to work!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Happy Hollow

With only a few days left before James starts school again, we are trying to make the most of our family time and do lots of fun things. On Tuesday we decided to check out Happy Hollow Park and Zoo in San Jose. For you Sacramento folks, this is like a mixture of the Sacramento Zoo, Fairytale Town and Funderland all wrapped up into one amazing park. We had a blast together and might even get a season pass to this awesome place!

T and me, ready for the adventure to begin!

James and I tell T a story everynight as a part of his bedtime routine. His story is always about Doug the Dragon and the adventure T and Ev go on with him. Well, here is T on the carousel riding none other than Doug the Dragon!

The petting zoo. He was actually really brave with the animals.

By far the best part of the day for T was the car ride. I kid you not, he went on this ride at least 10 times. He really loved being in the fire truck (because of the bells on the fire trucks) but he would settle for the police car too!

The AWESOME park area.

T was oober brave and climbed across the rope bridge. It was incredibly high and he was incredibly adventurous.

The zoo was small, but perfect for a two-year-old. He especially loved to see the monkeys and the macaw's. He tried to speak to them both in their own languages! He really is growing up.

Everett was a saint of a baby. He was either sleeping peacefully in his stroller...

...or he was smiling and being cute. I love that kid an awful lot!

Anyway, Happy Hollow got a perfect 10 in our book. Hopefully we'll be visiting their again sometime soon!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


The jury's still out on this one.

He takes a binkie, but he definitely prefers his thumb.

It's funny because I don't think he understands that his thumb is connected to his body because he'll drop his hand and then sob hysterically because he's lost his thumb. When we put his thumb back up to his face he sucks away as happy as can be.

It's really cute. Too cute probably!

PS--The jury's also still out on his eye color. They are still looking awfully blue. But a really dark, almost gray blue. They are gorgeous!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Memories Made

My mom was 20 when she had me; her mom was 18 when she had her, and I think my great-grandmother was even younger when she had my grammie. When I was starting my family at the ripe old age of 23, I felt old! But in my experience, one of the best parts of being a member of a young family is that there is A LOT of family still around to get to know and love. Our boys not only have a handfull of grandparents, but they have almost two handfulls of great-grandparents and even a few great-greats! T and Ev are lucky to have so many family members that love them, and so many to love in return.

Last week James was traveling so the boys and I decided to head back to Sacramento for some company (reason #2579 why I LOVE living in Palo Alto=so close to home!) We were able to spend time with lots of loved ones, and I wanted to document the memories the boys made so that they will always remember these incredible people.

Noni and Grampa (my dad's parents) were visiting from Washington and met baby Ev for the first time. Noni had the magic touch and was able to put Evie to sleep almost instantly. I loved watching them snuggled so closely together. She thinks Everett is a gorgeous baby...and she also thinks he looks just like my Dad as a baby (though she's not biased at all!) Watching them bond was a beautiful memory made.

She also had an ability to get our baby to coo and smile. This picture is an amazing memory in and of itself. I'm so glad I captured it. So much love and so much happiness.

We were also able to go visit Great Papa (Jim's dad's dad) and spent a wonderful afternoon with him. As soon as I took Evie out of his carseat Papa was sitting and ready to hold him. Fortunately Everett was in a super good mood and sat in his arms for the better part of an hour, smiling and flirting with his great Papa. Watching the joy in Papa and Evie's face was a beautiful memory made.

While I fed Evie in the living room, Papa took T to the family room to watch golf on TV. Their conversation was heart-warming. Papa let Talmage sit in KK's chair. He told him about different golf clubs, and taught him what an aerial view of a golf course was. Talmage loved the attention and I heard him say over and over, "Great Papa, what do you see now?" Within minutes Talmage and Papa migrated to the kitchen table, where they both had a glass of grape juice. When we left the house and were driving away, T said from the backseat, "We had so much fun at Great-Papa's house. I really love him." That afternoon and that comment were beautiful memories made.

Who knows how long we will live this close to family, but while we do I am going to soak up every second of their goodness and love. I hope over the next two years we will make many more memories for these two precious little boys.

Monday, September 12, 2011


Jim's Mom and her friend Bruce came to visit us this last week in Palo Alto all the way from Chicago. It was her first time meeting Everett, and it's been over a year since she's seen T so we had lots of catching up to do! We visited the campus, took some day trips, and ate a lot!

Many years ago (but not too many ;)) she was a Stanford student herself. It was fun for her to see the campus again and remember all the good times she had here.

One night we went to PF Changs and Talmage learned how to use chopsticks. For such a little kid, he did an awesome job! I'm hoping he'll take after his momma and serve a mission in Taiwan someday.

James had an interview in San Francisco one day so we ventured to the city. We had lunch with his sister Carolyn (who also works in the city) and spent the remainder of the day walking around Ghiradelli Square and the wharf.

We went to Dunes Beach and T had a blast making sandcastles...for five minutes or so! It's a good thing the beach is only 30 minutes away or I'd be bitter! Also, he is super afraid of the waves. He loves to swim but for some reason the ocean terrifies him (maybe it has something to do with his interpretation of Veggie Tales that a shark ate Jonah in the ocean). The trip ended in tears, sobs rather, when the tide started coming in. Oh bother.

I did get TWO pictures with my honey while we were at the beach though, so I'd say it was a pretty successful venture.

On the last day of her visit, Care and Bryce came down to our home and we spent the day together. We had a BBQ and went to the Stanford bookstore. Carolyn is having our first NIECE in t minus 3 3/4 months and we are thrilled to meet her! Care bought her a Stanford onesie, and I can't wait to see her in it!

I was awful at taking pictures this week, but we did a lot of other things like visiting Los Gatos, lunch at Nordstrom and a trip to Home Depot to buy a new washer/dryer. Woohoo! Thanks for the visit Mom and Bruce!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

The Game, The Pool & The Dish

Last weekend was filled with LOTS of fun. It all started on Saturday when a simple walk turned into a crazy Stanford football adventure. It was Stanford's first home game and we obviously can't go (Ev's not even allowed to go to church yet, let alone to a football game!) but we decided to just walk around the stadium. SUCH a good idea! We had a blast partaking in all the pre-game hype, and left before either child had a melt-down. Touchdown for us!

Talmage had his face painted for the first time. I know that S doesn't look like much, but I was excited. At a street fair in NYC I thought he'd love to have his face painted but after waiting in line for 20 minutes he screamed his head off and refused! Needless to say, this time went much better.

We watched the band, the cheerleaders and T's favorite, the dancing tree. It was SUPER entertaining. Knowing that my father-in-law spent his undergraduate days in the Stanford band made watching them perform that much better.

Daddy and T enjoying the show. That little cutie couldn't take his eyes off of the action and when they finished each song he cheered the loudest. Such a Stanford fan!

I was trying to protect Evie's ears as he slept like, well, like a baby. Sidenote: Ev also had his first blow-out seconds before this picture. Did we have extra clothes? Nope. Did we go home? Heck no. We watched the rest of the performance first! Awesome parenting, huh?

On the way back from the game we saw the swimming pool and realized it was calling our names! We get in free with our student card, and that is a price we're definitely willing to pay.

Talmage LOVES to swim, and he's getting pretty good at his cookie monster arms. He also loves to wear my glasses, and put them on his head. He is so cute and is getting so big.

Me and my boys at the swimming pool. Neither of them look all that excited about being with me, but believe me, they are!

On Monday, we decided to hike the dish--a radio telescope owned by Stanford. The hike was 4 miles, but between the boys crying, screaming, wanting treats (both of them), or being tired it felt like a lot longer. BUT, we made it to the top and a nice lady even took a picture of us together, so that's a plus!

The view was amazing, and the hike was actually really refreshing. Maybe we'll try it again sometime...when the kids are grown up!