Sunday, April 23, 2017

finally, a birthday post for bryan

amidst all our fun and games last week, this guy got older:

bryan lives his life like a love letter to his wife and children. 

he drives an hour each way to work every day so that we can live in the house and in the community that we love. he comes home to bathe his sons and read them their favorite books and then quietly and patiently absorbs all the emotional drama in the lives of his girls (mama included). he cooks dinner on the weekends to ease the relentlessness of household duties. he does, and this is not an exaggeration, whatever i ask him to do. 

there is no one i've ever met in the history of ever who loves to work as much as bryan does. and his work ethic permeates our family with peace and constancy. he's like a giant galapagos tortoise who carries us surely and steadily on his back: giving his children confidence to take risks and courage when they're afraid and a safe place to which they can always come back. never giving us a reason to doubt that something strong and steadfast and solid is underneath our feet.

so here's to you, my giant galapagos! thirty-seven years down, one-hundred-thirty-three to go!

Friday, April 21, 2017


our kids super love these confetti-filled eggs from mexico (though it seems their geographical history is, in fact, asia --> italy --> spain --> mexico). 

they look forward each year to the opportunity to gently tap them on each other's heads (seriously, it can take them a bit too long to crack these suckers open; we're going to have to start instigating some aggression training around here!) and watch the confetti explode like magic.

having un cascarĂ³n cracked over your head is said to bring good luck.

and also the very best faces.

getting dad! is always the perennial favorite.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

egg hunt

first off, i am not entirely sure how i ended up with so many photos from our easter weekend activities. my hunch is it has something to do with two camera phones, good weather, and having adorable children. but consider this fair warning: a slew of pics to follow.

on saturday: the egg hunt! in which we saw the sun! 

(hint: it had been awhile.)

(side note: caleb wore that same sweater to egg hunt duvall 2015 here.)

caleb, unfortunately, did not feel as if his egg hunt performance this year was the best he had to offer. we rallied, strategized, and vowed to come back stronger than ever in the pursuit of glory next year. so stay tuned.

in the meantime, dallin shared some of his candy spoils.

the end.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

He Is Risen As He Said

"'Let the mountains shout for joy, and all ye valleys cry aloud; and all ye seas and dry lands tell the wonders of your Eternal King! And ye rivers, and brooks, and rills, flow down with gladness. Let the woods and all the trees of the field praise the Lord; and ye solid rocks weep for joy! And let the sun, moon, and the morning stars sing together, and let all the sons of God shout for joy! And let the eternal creations declare his name forever and ever! And again I say, how glorious is the voice we hear from heaven, proclaiming in our ears, glory, and salvation, and honor, and immortality, and eternal life; kingdoms, principalities, and powers!' (Doctrine & Covenants 128:23).

Whenever the cold hand of death strikes, there shines through the gloom and the darkness of that hour the triumphant figure of the Lord Jesus Christ, He, the Son of God, who by his matchless and eternal power overcame death. He is the Redeemer of the world. He gave His life for each of us. He took it up again and became the firstfruits of them that slept. He, as King of Kings, stands triumphant above all other kings. He, as the Omnipotent One, stands above all rulers. He is our comfort, our only true comfort, when the dark shroud of earthly night closes about us as the spirit departs the human form.

Towering above all mankind stands Jesus the Christ, the King of glory, the unblemished Messiah, the Lord Emmanuel. In the hour of deepest sorrow we draw hope and peace and certitude from the words of the angel that Easter morning, “He is not here: for he is risen, as he said” (Matt. 28:6). We draw strength from the words of Paul, “As in Adam all die, even so in Christ … all [are] made alive” (1 Cor. 15:22). [...]

He is our King, our Lord, our Master, the living Christ, who stands on the right hand of His Father. He lives! He lives, resplendent and wonderful, the living Son of the living God."

President Gordon B. Hinckley, April 1996

Friday, April 14, 2017

spring break swim crew 2017

back at the beginning with just four of them here.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

high FIVE!

michael caleb wheeler is five years old today.

as first order of business, he requested breakfast at top pot doughnuts in his pajamas. as second order of business, he requested maximum allotment of playing star wars video games and dragonwood all day.

and that's pretty much caleb in a nutshell: sweet treats, games, and comfy clothes.

happiest of birthdays to our big little man who very much enjoys life's simple pleasures!

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

non parlo italiano

so when i got dressed this morning, i totally didn't intend to end up looking like a cartoon venetian gondolier.

but that is definitely, definitely what happened.

ugh. there go my "internationally acclaimed fashion blogger" dreams...

Monday, April 10, 2017

lucky thirteen

celebrating thirteen years since that fateful, windy day in april when bryan and i both showed up at the salt lake temple at around eight o'clock in the morning. he caught my eye, and so i sauntered over to him and said, "hey, are you doing anything this morning?" and he was all, "no, not really, you?" and i was all, "no, not me either... so, uh, you wanna get married?" and him, "yeah, sure."

maybe not as dramatic and exciting as some other love stories out there, but it's ours, and we dig it.

so cheers to the very beginning! cheers to the adventures so far! and cheers to the journey as yet unwritten! (clink! as the kids would say :)

Tuesday, April 04, 2017

Sunday, April 02, 2017

pinewood derby

last thursday, the night after the cub scout pinewood derby, the activity days girls in our ward participated in a pinewood derby of their own.

summer and bryan worked on her car on-and-off for a couple of weeks. after bryan explained some of the basic physics involved in creating the fastest pinewood derby car, summer designed, sanded, painted, and helped weight her own car. the lego figures (meant to represent her and her dad) riding atop her purple glitter creation were the crowning achievement in summer's speedy-car design. 

at the official weigh-in, summer discovered she was a tenth of an ounce short of the optimal 5.0 ounces, so lego dad had to lose his head, and summer and bryan borrowed a quarter from the generous harper family in order to peak out the car's weight at 5.0 exact. 

summer named the car purple quarter. for obvious reasons.

each of the eleven cars raced three times, once in each lane. the top three racers then went on to compete in three more runs to determine the night's winner.

summer came in fourth by two hundredths of a second.

the whole group of racers.

great job, ladies! and many thanks to the organizers! 
root beer floats all around.

Friday, March 31, 2017


if you do not live in the pacific northwest, then you have no idea how much this afternoon meant to all of us.

bless you, sunshine! bless you!

Thursday, March 30, 2017

tickling the ivories

afton and summer at their spring recital with their piano teacher, miss christina.

i'm so jazzed at the talented musicians summer and afton are becoming. they practice with consistent effort (often without complaining), and sweet afton even remarked the other day how the pieces that she finds the most frustrating and difficult to play at first, usually become her favorites (insert mom heart emoji explosion!)

looking forward to many more years of piano recitals to come!

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

girls' night

out to women's conference with my little women.

(our last triple threat selfie, here.)

Wednesday, March 01, 2017

bee B-E-E bee

summer and afton both won their class spelling bees and participated today as two of nineteen students in the school-wide spelling bee. 

sibling rivalry at its finest. 

ha! just kidding. do you even know summer and afton? they have maybe one competitive bone between them. and they, like, share it nicely and stuff.

as an added bonus--and like all spelling bee participants who boldly came before them--they will never, ever forget how to spell the words which eliminated them today. 

so proud of your efforts, girls! after school mcflurries for all!

Thursday, February 23, 2017

that's why her hair is so big's full of secrets.

RIP the day emily discovered the crimper.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017


chillin' out maxin' vaccinatin' all cool.
(and all shootin' some b-ball outside of the school.)

Tuesday, February 07, 2017

weather report

in school until july!

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

free to be three

dallin is three years old!

his birthday was yesterday, actually, but it's being celebrated today as we're in the middle of having every single wall in our house painted and so #fourthchildproblems.

here's to you, dally woo!
the most perfectly toddler toddler that ever there was in the world.

Monday, January 16, 2017


after missing a couple of winters, summer and afton (and bryan) are back on the mountain. expect a full report on their downhill adventures (but so far, so good!) come february.

Sunday, January 08, 2017

a sunbeam!

dallin moved up to sunbeams a wee bit early (his birthday is january 30th), but as he was going to be the only one in nursery for six months and just barely missed the birthday cut-off, the primary decided to give it a shot. (fingers crossed emoji)

moving to nine o'clock church was a "less than smooth transition" (only summer and her father managed not to burst into tears at some point during the morning), so it seems that sundays will be holding all sorts of new and exciting adjustments for the wheelers. wish us luck!

more sunbeams here, here, and here.