Wednesday, March 07, 2018

third place finish

ask me how many spelling bees i've been to as a grown up at which i have not cried. go ahead, ask me.

the answer is none.

i have been to *none* spelling bees and not cried. 

the weird part is, i'm not even usually tearing up in response to my own child. i cried maybe five times *total* in my pre-parent life, and now i'm bawling through spelling bees. OVER KIDS THAT ARE NOT EVEN MINE. 

motherhood has jacked me up, man.

but back to this year's bee. 

summer came to me the night before and said that while heretofore, the school bee had been for fun and games, she now wanted to win and go on to the district spelling bee and possibly ascend through the ranks to washington, dc. 

i responded that though i greatly admired her gumption and winner-takes-all attitude (in fact, i had been patiently/impatiently WAITING for it to rear its cutthroat head these past ten years), i was also dubious that fifteen total hours, with most of those spent sleeping, was enough time to get prepped and primed for total domination--especially considering that kids competing at the national level spend upwards of twenty hours a week studying in preparation. 

so she (literally) skipped off to bed and sing-songed, "maybe next year then." 

that's my summer girl.

her enunciation and performance art were on point. she was gracious and poised and well-spoken. her meticulous studying of the word "balloonist" paid off, and she managed to bring home the bronze. 

and like most bronze medalists, she went home happy.

Sunday, March 04, 2018

date night

alexander hamilton edition.

of course, having grown up in the 90s, my first exposure to hamilton and burr was here

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

dallin is four

yesterday, this guy hit the big 0-4. he was sick on his birthday, which is pretty much what january birthdays are about (i'm looking at you, cold and flu season), but he still managed to celebrate inching one-year-closer-to-playing-video-games in style.

first up, the king of all cereals: lucky charms. lucky charms is the preferred birthday breakfast of champions around here, and its magically deliciousness also made a special appearance later in the day on dallin's cake: lucky charms rainbow sprinkles cake. of course.

then, spider-man. spider-man, spider-man, spider-man. everything spider-man. spider-man balloons, spider-man pajamas, spider-man books. heck, even spider-man binoculars. (or in other words: how you know you're way too deep in the catalogue of licensed spider-man paraphernalia.) the only thing dallin likes almost as much as spider-man is rainbows. 

we finally rounded out the day with mac n cheese and hot dogs. his siblings tried to convince him that the birthday dinner bar could be set much higher than mac n cheese and hot dogs, but dallin wasn't budging. we feasted like four-year-old kings. 

now, a little bit about the birthday boy: 

unapologetic by nature, dallin feels all his emotions in extremes. he is the happiest little buddy you ever did meet, oozing delight and sunshine to everyone in his blast radius. and also, uh, the opposite of that.

he lives to be doted on by his two big sisters and to spend his days alpha-male-ing with his big brother. dallin is fully invested in being both the family baby and the person who runs the joint. fun fact: he is doggedly polite. 

the only one of my children for whom the "false dichotomy" has not worked, dallin wants what he wants, and he is *here* for a good negotiation. he's not batting a thousand on sound reasoning yet, but let's just say his tenacity shows promise. 

we love, love, love having dallin pizzazz in our family. he's full of joy and questions and chocolate. 

happy birthday, dally woo! may the four be with you.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Sunday, January 14, 2018

date night

mere birthday edition!
@ ryan hamilton, neptune theater, seattle

Friday, January 12, 2018

twenty-seventeen's final adventure

new year's eve eve saw bryan schlepping his ragtag crew along on an excursion up blewett pass complete with snow hiking, thermos hot chocolate drinking, massive hill sledding, and the very best trip down the mountain that four kids roped to their dad ever did have.

Monday, January 08, 2018

christmas rewind

the decorations have long been packed away, but i love reliving the messy morning hair and matching christmas jammies and homemade gift exchanges that make christmas memories magical.

many, many thanks to our grandparents, great grandparents, and aunts and uncles whose generous gifts of so many fun games and toys and books continue to stoke the imaginations of these little spitfires.

Thursday, January 04, 2018

metal mouth

the most adorable set of braces that you ever did see.

and it was on that january day, sitting in the waiting room at the orthodontist's office while her little girl was fitted with braces, that emily realized she herself was, in actual fact, a grown up.

Tuesday, January 02, 2018


there is definitely some magic amidst the chaos with these two.

Sunday, December 31, 2017

wheelers, 2017

photos by the talented erin dupree photography, cropped for blog

be advised that caleb and dallin absolutely ended this photo shoot rolling around in the mud, to the sheer delight of summer and afton.

la vie est belle.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

in case you missed it

white. christmas.

in video form:

Monday, December 25, 2017

let your heart be light

"There is but one guiding hand in the universe, only one truly infallible light, one unfailing beacon to the world. That light is Jesus Christ, the light and life of the world. [...] 'A light that is endless, that can never be darkened (Mosiah 16:9).'" --Howard W. Hunter, 1992

merry christmas, friends!

Sunday, December 24, 2017

waltz of the snowflakes

summer and afton loved their experience at the awe-inspiring nutcracker last year so much that they begged to go again this year. 

it's a solid toss up whether i most enjoy watching the ballet or watching the girls watch the ballet.

Monday, December 11, 2017

date night

holiday party edition!

wherein bryan tore it up on the dance floor for as long as emily did.
(which is no small feat, my friends!)

Monday, December 04, 2017

it's beginning to look a lot like christmas

out finding the perfect fraser fir last saturday (in the rain!) 

i asked the kids if they wanted to stay in the car while bryan and i went to select the tree, and they were having none of that. i'm always acting like the rain is kind of a big deal, and they're always acting like it's definitely not a big deal, and i forget moments like when they step off a plane in utah and ask why is it so dry? and where are all the trees? and what does this color brown mean?

that these kids are born and bred in the rain.

as indicated in this pic, dallin only had eyes for the saw.

my life with boys who love sharp things.

this year's perfect fraser fir.

Monday, November 06, 2017

celebrating summer

this little lady is ten.

summer makes growing up look easy. she loves life! she loves school! she loves dance! she loves church! she loves friends! she loves family! imma level with you and say she doesn't always love practicing the piano, but hey, in the ledger of life, she's still plus-plus-plus on the loves side.

summer is kindness wrapped up in enthusiasm. she draws her strength from people and interaction. she loves talking and expressing her opinions and sharing knowledge she's gained.

she still walks on her tiptoes and never falls asleep on car rides. she won't hear a word you're saying to her if she's watching tv, and she hates making decisions because she likes too many things.

summer is creative and artistic and musical and smart and beautiful and confident. on her own birthday, she wrapped up gifts for each of her siblings because that's just summer.

born on a dark and rainy night in the pacific northwest, we love watching summer radiate her God-given gifts of sunshine and warmth.

to celebrate! we took the whole fam damily out to breakfast and to ride the great wheel in downtown seattle and then to putz around pike place market. sidenote: summer is actually afraid of heights, BUT the wheel is enclosed, so she dug this one.

we love you, summer girl! happy birthday to my baby.