Monday, November 26, 2012

meet the owls

i have a few more of summer's birthday posts before we move on to our california trip.

first up, the owls.

so bryan was back in london for the week and a half leading up to summer's birthday, which left me with more than a handful of late nights to spend dorking around on craft blogs (i'm saving a post for later on how pinterest is going to single-handedly bring on the zombie apocalypse).

anyway, maybe two or three days before summer's party, the internet filled my brain with the craziness that i needed make a stuffed owl for each of the girls attending her "night owl" sleepover.

so i did.

i designed and drafted my own pattern (a first!), stayed up through the night cutting fabric, sewed pretty much non-stop for forty-eight hours, and pulled off my finishing stitches just a few hours before the little ladies arrived.


totally worth it.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

pictionary and pie

we gave a new tradition a whirl this past turkey day and hosted bryan's coworkers for the first annual "wheeler family pictionary and pie thanksgiving breakfast" on thursday morning.

we enjoyed sampling everyone's sweet, sumptuous desserts and of course, putting our mad drawing skillz to the test.

here's bryan's left-handedness in action:

a rustic apple galette:

and here is the boys' team pulling out all the stops (babes in arms and all) to 
overcome their nine point deficit and totally crush the girls' team for the win:

pictionary and pie: bringing people together one game and one slice (okay, so maybe i had more than one slice) at a time.

snow capped mountains

we went up to steven's pass this weekend to check out the slopes and to give the kiddos their first taste of the snowy season. caleb, aka "adventure baby," was totally diggin it and definitely looked ready to jump on a board and shred something.

anyway, it is bryan's purest, truest wish for us to become a "ski family," so we're looking into lessons for summer and afton, who are both thrilled to give it a try.

and also lessons for momma, who hates exercising, hates being cold, hates going fast, double-hates heights and things like "ski lifts," and who has never skied a day in her life. BUT who is going to learn to ski anyway (down that bunny hill at least once or twice) because it is her husband's purest, truest wish.

winter 2012: you've been warned.

Friday, November 23, 2012


for him and her and her and him.

i've mentioned before that on thanksgiving day 2003, bryan proposed marriage to me.

he got down on both knees in his grandmother's living room and popped la question (sometime between our morning tday hike and heading out to his aunt's house for the turkey feast) with my ring attached to his keychain because he didn't want to lose it.

and every thanksgiving since then, he's brought me flowers to commemorate that blessed occasion (spoiler alert: i said yes), all that we have to be grateful for (those three little people we've made together come to mind), and sort of to pay penance for not at least adding some mood lighting to such a significant, romantic, i've-dreamed-my-whole-life-about-this, was-it-really-all-of-thirty-seconds? moment.

still so grateful everyday that i said yes.

Saturday, November 17, 2012


the stars finally aligned this year, and for my birthday back in july, bryan gifted me tickets to see wicked at the paramount. huzzah!

it has come to seattle twice before, but through various circumstances (read: pregnancies/newborns), we have not been able to go until now. in the meantime, i've tried to keep myself a clean and pure wicked virgin and have refused to read any reviews of the show or listen to the music.

the first time wicked and i would be together, we would be together live.

and i'm pleased to report that elphaba and glinda definitely did not disappoint. as an added bonus, bryan only fell asleep once during the show (later, he would insist that he was just "resting his eyes." i vehemently informed him that one does not pay x number of dollars to see one of the greatest musicals of all time and then "rest ones eyes.")

special thanks to anna (and danton) for watching baby caleb so bryan and i could have our first solo night out in seven months.

it was awesome. wicked awesome.

Friday, November 16, 2012


he crawls.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

on turning five

november 6, 2012, our disney princess:

it's so hard to believe that summer began life as this little baby here. i mean, she came out the womb so furious and hard to please and with such a high-pitched loud screamed which she used ALL the time. 

the first year of motherhood was quite difficult on summer and me. we fought a lot. we cried a lot. and we both slept very little.

how was i to know that one of the sweetest, kindest, coolest kids on the block was trapped inside that tiny angry baby?

some things we've learned about summer since then:

first and foremost, summer loves. bryan and i consider this summer's most salient God-given gift. she loves people. above all people, she loves her family. and above all family, she loves her sister afton. every week, when summer gets a gummy bear from gymnastics, she bites it in half and gives half to her sister. on the plane, when it was summer's turn to sit by the window, and her little sister just couldn't handle sitting in the middle, she switched back at her own insistence. summer never leaves afton out and makes sure no one else does, either.  

summer wants to help animals find their moms. she wants to stop and give lifts to tween girls riding bikes up steep, dangerous hills. and this halloween, when we ran out of candy at the door and had to turn some kids away, without hesitation, summer reached in to her own candy bag and started passing it out. that's just summer.

(insert caveat: summer thinks boys are gross and mean, and she scowls whenever one is near. so not a lot of love for that particular demographic at the moment. however, she does somehow remain fairly adamant about marrying kian one day).

summer is happy and responsible. she's easily distracted and loves pretty things. and shiny things. and tiny things.  summer wants to be like katy perry when she grows up and cut off all her hair and fight in a war (see here). she loves surprises and presents and barbies and barbies and barbie accessories. she is obedient and helpful and desirous to please. summer is guileless. she remembers everything. she has a MAJOR sweet tooth and would stuff her face with cotton candy all day if we'd let her. her favorite holiday is christmas, and her favorite season is (can you guess it?) summer. 

i love her. i love getting to know her. i love the bright spot she is in the world and the goodness that fills her up and shines out those big, big, brown, brown eyes.

happy fifth, baby girl.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

picture preview

wheeler family reunion, 2012:

we're back from the OC and a fun-filled visit with grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins galore (as well as various favorite princesses, fairies, and certain cartoon mice).

thank you so much to grandpa mike and grandma janna for such an awesome trip!

blog readers beware: barrage of bright and sunny pics to come.

Friday, November 02, 2012

dance party usa

life is so much better when it glows in the dark and is engulfed in a rockin' kelly clarkson girl-power ballad, dontcha think?

more on summer's fifth birthday party to come, but first i just had to thank these awesome girlies for coming.

we had a blast.

Thursday, November 01, 2012

tricks and treats

"*where* is the rebel base?"

"into the garbage chute, flyboy!"

"i find your lack of faith...disturbing."

"always in motion is the future."

happy halloween, from the wheelers!