Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Inspire Me

A few months ago I picked up an old picture frame at goodwill that hit my fancy, and the makings of a chalkboard took shape in my mind.  For a while now I have wanted to have a place I could write quotes on that inspire me, or make me laugh, or make me want to do better, and in a place I would see it all day.  I wanted my children to read these quotes, or scripture or whatever I chose to write on it, knowing that if I had it up long enough they might just memorize it.  So I turned this picture frame into my chalk board and put it up in my kitchen just about a week or so before I had Kylie.
That week, I wrote one of my favorite sayings  "you can do hard things.  Do something HARD this week!"  That week I had my baby.  I think I accomplished that one!!
Then, I changed it to "Keep Calm, and Carry On!" in the weeks following the birth of our 4th child and mark's absence from our lives during harvest, by far one of the most challenging experiences of my life to do a new baby, start school for Madi,  and lose my husband's help for 2 months!!  My next quote was by Dr. Latham in his book Christlike Parenting, "Act the way you want to be, and soon you will be the way you act".  Then there was, Make life harder in order to make it better".  Last week it was this:

I LOVE that!  This week my inspiration came from this  talk by Henry B Eyring  called "Choose this day"

So that is what is on my chalk board this week.  Anybody have any quotes that inspire them or make them laugh "I dearly love to laugh" (what fictional character said that, anyone know???), I would love to hear, I am always looking for new ideas!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Madi's first Day of School!

Well, it happened, Madi had her first day of school.  She was beyond excited, I was beyond terrified.  How did she grow up so fast?  And how is it that I have 4 children??  
 It felt like a big day, we were all a little excited and nervous.  It was a beautiful day.
 Driving her to school I couldn't help but get a little teary eyed.  When I took these pictures my eyes were watering a little (she is obviously having no problems with this transition)
 At this picture my throat started to get tight
 I had tears running down my cheeks when I took this picture and said goodbye in her classroom.

When I got to the car I was sobbing.  I ran into my sister Carly dropping her kids off for the first day and she  reassured me that it got better with each child.  I do not have a picture of myself leaning over the steering wheel of my car sobbing, although my mother -in-law caught me at this point and said she would take of picture so Madi could always remember how much her mother missed her on her first day of school!  I declined the offer, but now I wish I had taken her up on it.  Keep in mind, I did just have a baby, I think that may have played a role in the sob fest.

When I picked her up after school this is the conversation we had
me: madi!!  how was your first day of school?!!

madi: It was the awesomest day of my life!

Yeah, she obviously didn't have the same reaction I did to her first day of school.  Afterwords i took the kids to Ted and Jean Christensen's little kid pools for the afternoon with some homemade chocolate chip cookies.  It would have been un-american not to have chocolate chip cookies on the first day of school.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

She's Here!!

Kylie Camille Christensen
Born 8-14-12
weight 8lbs
height 19 inches
 We are so excited she is here!

Madi loves having another sister and is becoming the "little mother" asking to change her, feed her, whatever she needs madi wants to do it.  So far, we let her hold her and she feles pretty satisfied with that...for now!

Hali is SUPER helpful as you can see.  She wonders how we ever had any children without her help and constant attention!!  I need to get a picture with tyce and kylie but he is surprisingly infatuated with her!  He thinks she is so cute and wants to hole her as much as the girls do, though not for as long!  We are doing well, and loving the new member to our family!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

A new Ending

It is so interesting to be pregnant.  This is my 4th well, actually 5th if you count a miscarriage, time being pregnant and although most of the beginning and middle parts of this pregnancy have been predictable according to my previous ones, this last little while has been foreign to me.  I am in uncharted territory.  I am about 38.5 weeks pregnant and find myself unsure of how my body will react to impending labor.  First off, I have never made it this far before (not that I am complaining..since when do pregnant, exhausted, hot, huge swollen women complain??), I have delivered at 38 weeks, 36 weeks, and 37.5 weeks.  So this is what it's like to wait for a baby come, fun.  I am usually surprised and caught unprepared.  Secondly, I am nauseous all over again, every.day.  I am a little bitter about the last one, i feel I paid my dues the first 5 months of this pregnancy.  Third, I am actually prepared.  I have all the projects done I was hoping to finish, burp rags, blankets, baby clothes washed and put away.  I have also been nesting something awful and would like to brag publicly if you don't mind!
Went through ALL of the kids clothes bins and sorted, reorganized, threw out.
went through all the kids toys and "                                                                  "
Picked up a few new baby projects like a nursing cover I am halfway finished
Reorganized my closet
Reorganized hali's closet
Reorganized madi and tyce's closet
Reorganized craft space
Reorganized laundry room
made freezer meals (which I am slowly been using because I feel no desire to cook in the heat)
Finished getting Madi ready for kindergarten (clothes, shoes, backpack)
Made some hair bows
 Yeah, I have been nesting a little.  So here I wait, while contractions have been my friend every evening for 2 1/2 weeks now ( tricky little suckers), and nausea and all around crummy feelings.  I really don't mind going to my due date or past, I just wish my body would stop practicing labor and just wait for it you know?  Did all your pregnancies go the same?  Has anyone experienced a varying off the straight and narrow???

Sunday, June 3, 2012


There are moments or milestones in life that take me by surprise and  leave me a  little breathless at how quickly life moves.  This is one of those.  Madi was old enough to play on a soccer team and as I watched her play with the other two kids in tow, I thought how this was the very first game that I sat and watched one of my children play, and how many more games were yet to come.  It made me excited and also  little sad as my little family enters the world of school and sports and other commitments.  I have been flying below the radar, and now will be in full view.  It was so fun for Mark and I to watch her play!  we weren't really sure if she would really interact, or be aggressive at all and were really surprised at how well she did!  She did great!  We have had our suspicions that she might be an athlete with how tall she is, and strong.  In any case, she really enjoyed it, and we enjoyed watching her.

 The very best part about soccer were the treats at the end of the game, that is as predictable and unchanging as the as the rising and setting of the sun,  it's why you play in Madi's opinion.

Easter pictures

Because Easter was so cold and windy, I had to take our easter pictures a few weeks later.  On the way to church we passed a blossoming orchard and stopped to take a few pictures in their easter clothes.  This was the best one which isn't saying much, I know, but I am slowly learning how to take better pictures.  The trick for me is to just keep taking them even if they don't turn our so hot.  I am horrible at this and am determined to improve!!


 We went to an easter egg hunt this year that the kids loved.  They hunted for eggs,
 dyed a few

 took a picture with the easter bunny ( this is as close as Tyce would get, I don't really blame him.)

 Easter morning was cold and windy, but we manages a little easter egg hunt of our own.

 A picture with the cousins and my parents at the easter egg hunt the day before easter.


 There is a song the kids sing in primary about summertime and goes something like "Oh what do you do in the summertime, when all the world is green?"  In the summer, you really don'e have to think about what to do, there are so many things to do outside that it's easy to stay busy and entertained.  The real question, or song should go something like, " Oh what do you do in the winter time, when all the world is, gray, and windy, and cold, and rainy and dead?"  Well, this is what we did, over and over and over again until is was at least mildly acceptable to play outside.  
 Guns, or cowboys.
 Dress up!
 Read books.  At this point I was in the midst my first trimester in this pregnancy and had somewhat lost the desire to live.  I was so sick.
 But somehow we made it through alive.  Madi was a big help with Hali, and a lot of other things I had her doing to help me while I lay in the fetal position on the couch.  In fact, I may have asked too much of her because one day she told me " I am tired of being a mom, I want a break!"

Light Reading

 We are not really potty training Hali yet, but she loves to sit on the potty.  She has obviously been taking notes because she wants a magazine while she does her business.  This picture is for my brother Jeff, who studies business at Wharton.  She obviously shares your love of finance and will be glad to advice you in any investing you care to do in the future!  I also love how her belly hangs over the magazine!!

The Zoo

 My sister and brother in law were doing some work to their house and needed Mark's help with a few projects.  They live near Seattle, so we decided to make a trip out of it (if you want Mark, you have to put up with all of us!).  While the boys were working, my sister and I took the kids to the zoo.
 They loved it and since we don't have anything like it near us, it was a real treat for us.

 They also had a carousel the kids rode.  My country raised kids were in heaven!

I love this picture, but that horse kind of scares me.


 We had an interesting winter, the weather just couldn't make up it's mind.  When we finally did get snow we took advantage and went to a little hill nearby to do some sledding.  Tyce is my cautious child, he took a while to warm up to the idea, and would only go down the hill with mark or I.
 Me, Madi and Hali all squeezed onto one sled and went down together a couple of times.  ON preparing everyone to go out in the snow, I realized I really didn't have any snow gear.  So, I pulled out the jacket I bought in Romania years ago when I was there for a fall semester.  Very, puffy, very interesting fabric, but made to endure a winter in eastern Europe and has held up great all these years!
 Hali had a great time in the snow, and enjoyed it even more once she realized it was edible!
Tyce, after he warmed up to the sledding adventure.  Madi, our daredevil was in heaven flying down the hill again and again and even willing to go off jumps Mark built!  It was a great day!

Christmas 2011

On Christmas eve we have a tradition of giving the kids new pajamas.  There is something I love about kids in pajamas, I don't know exactly what it is, but I am a sucker for pajamas.  Here they are after opening their new pajamas at my mom's house and right before going home and going to bed so mom could finish wrapping presents!  I love the red punch mustaches, it is the sign of a merry evening.
 Christmas morning just before we let them open their presents, they are a little excited, can you tell?
I loved that Christmas was on a Sunday this year, it really puts perspective on things and helps to remember the true meaning of Christmas.  * On a side note:  Madi had a white cardigan that went with this dress but man alive, every time I turned around she had misplaced it or had taken it off.  I can't find a single picture with her wearing it, including our family picture I mentioned above that I didn't send as a Christmas card.
It was a great Christmas, we are so blessed to share it with family and friends.