Tuesday, November 14, 2017


October 5th marked six months with Vivien in our arms. How can it be? How have we not had her for forever? It feels like she has always been ours. She is a straight up toddler. Around August she started saying new words all the time. She would repeat words for us, and also she would use words to express what she wanted or needed. Some are easier to understand than others, but I'm always pleasantly pleased when I figure out the hard ones, and she is always happy when I understand her as well. In September I started keeping note of some of her words and phrases. A list: sit down, no, (yes still sounds like "ung"), hands, hug, eyes, head, mouth, nose, ears, teeth. At the beginning of September she said "Hot dog umm yum." And then she opened her mouth. I think this was a sentence, but Brent claims it isn't because it doesn't have a verb. There was of course "cupcake" at Louie's birthday. In Idaho we were bugging her with kisses and she said "Stop!" That one is not my favorite, but I usually just reply with "Can't stop, won't stop." When we first got home from Idaho she started saying thank you when you give her something. It sounds like "do do". It's pretty adorable. She has learned how to express what she wants like: help, chips, apple (applesauce), juice, wah-wah (water), cookie. When she wants food she says food and then she puts her fingers to her mouth. That was a little sign I showed her early on to ask her if she wanted food. She started asking "why", but that has not kept up. On October 3 she was playing with her Minnie doll and she was frustrated with her bow. I didn't want to help her and when she did get it on she said: "Yea, I did it!"

Probably one of my favorite words she says is when we are at the top of the stairs and she wants me to carry her she will say "scoop". Which is what I say when I picked her up. She shimmies at me sideways, says scoop and then I scoop her up. I love it.

She can sit and watch shows now. She really couldn't do that before. She LOVES Minnie Mouse. Like is just crazy about her. She calls her "Min-min."

She has started getting a little sassier the longer she is here. Which means she feels secure and happy at home. She truly loves all of her people. She gets excited to see them and can pretty much say everyone's names. It's probably my favorite thing she does because it just shows how much she loves being a part of this family.

Vivi is sweet. She notices when people need extra love. She is adorable. She mimics everything her sister does. She loves music. She tries to sing to songs she hears often on the radio. She is growing. At six months home she had gained 2.5 pounds and had grown 2 inches. And she can do a pretty mean somersault.

She is a miracle. Everyday I acknowledge that she is a miracle. I get frustrated yes, but I am quick to look at that sweet face and be reminded of where she came from, and where she could be. And most of all I think of the person or maybe people who wish she was with them. I am beyond grateful that she is ours.

On her six month day Stella and Vivi were being extra adorable together. So I got out the good camera and took some pictures. I love these two.


We look forward to our fall Idaho Falls visit every year. This year did not disappoint. We arrived on Thursday night Sept 28th. Wyn had football practice and we headed over to the park and hung out while he practiced. I put Vivi in the swings and she HATED them. Like crazy scared scream. In my infinite wisdom I thought I would just leave her in the swing and she would come around. She did not. What we did get is a good laugh at Cy's video of me taking a video of Vivien while she cried. I look like the mother of the year in that one. It was a really pretty fall night followed by dinner at Mongolian BBQ that was the best one we had ever had.

On Friday Heidi let Catcher and Wyn stay home so they could hang out with Stella. It thought it was pretty funny when they decided to play school. That night we went to a carnival at the elementary school. Heidi had volunteered and as we went around to the different events we kept laughing at the fact that she was over at the three-legged race and her station was the opposite of popular. After walking around to the different events have having Vivi charm us with her athletic abilities (or rather her ability to drop ping pong balls into cans) we headed over to cheer up Heidi.

By then, she had lowered the ticket price and was having a few stragglers. We started competing in some three-legged competitions as well and it was hilarious. We had an amazing time every race, and I really believe that three-legged races have been under appreciated by myself in my life. I had no idea how fun they could be. Stella and did awesome until we fell down and she tried to pull away from me. We were laughing so hard we couldn't break apart. Of course when you put Heidi and I together we were a power couple as per the usual. We smoked those little kids in every race and it felt great.

We had dinner there, I personally had one of the best hamburgers of my life. The sun went down and it got cold fast. We used the last of our tickets on buying way too much cotton candy. Vivi had never had it before, and she was into it.

I could tell at the carnival that poor Vivien was starting to feel bad. She woke up Saturday morning with one of her signature crazy coughs and she coughed all over the place. I was feeling terrible, sure that we were infecting the whole house. Everyone went to Catcher's football game while I stayed home with the sick girl. She pepped up a little during the day so I decided not to sneak home. That night though after going to bed kind of late, she was keeping me up with her crazy breathing. I was worried because Stella had never done anything like that. I woke up Heidi who helped me determine it was from a fever not congestion. So I went to the store at 2AM for more medicine and it helped. I was then awake to see Stella scratch her head like crazy and make me think she might have lice again. When I checked her in the morning I realized she did, and I did, and Vivi did. So we packed up and headed home early. Stella was devastated. Lice cleanup is a pain and I knew we needed to get home and get going with getting rid of those stupid bugs. I felt like we were a plague. I'm lucky we are loved and adored enough that no one was mad at us.

So there you go. Another fall visit in the books. We definitely had a great time. Especially making fun of Stella for loving Arby's and wanting to eat at Arby's all the time. Catcher would tease her and I would tease her and she got so mad and we would just laugh and laugh. Good times.

Monday, November 13, 2017


I can't believe it, but our sassy Porter is three. He, along with his parents hosted a birthday party for us at The Train Shoppe on September 14. It is an absolutly adorable little place, and I can't believe I had never heard of it or been there before. It is decorated like a little town and everything had a home built feel. They had a little train that we could ride again and again and it was hilarious and clever. It even had a little Halloween section at the end. I was so charmed. I especially loved the mine ride. So did Ava and Stella who rode it over and over again. You would use flashlights to set off little sensors and then things would happen in the mine. It was absolutely charming.

Porter was really all over the place, and he had a very good time. Vivi loved all of it as well. It was terribly dark so I got the best pictures I could. It was such a fun night and such a fun party. We all love Porter so much. He is a serious handful, and he is smarter than any other three year old I've ever met. He thinks he knows everything and sometimes I can't blame him even though it is very frustrating. I just love him so much and I will always have a special place in my heart for the little boy that used to make people stop me in the store so they could tell me how beautiful he was.