Monday, November 30, 2009

Getting the Tree with no snow...

It was a bit odd tramping through the grass to cut down our Christmas tree. But I have to say it was much easier for the boys, especially Emmitt, to walk without the snow tripping them up. We headed out to Saunders tree farm Saturday morning.
We all took off to find our tree...we were all alone at the tree farm. In years past we have gone after work, in the dark, and with tons of snow and crabby kids. This year it was actually wonderful.
He is actually whistling O Christmas Tree to the wilderness.
If you can see how much the tree towers over us, you can probably guess that it didn't fit in the house without some major trimming.
Daddy and the boys cutting the tree down.The boys were in such awe that daddy just picked up the whole tree and drug it out of the woods. Parker thought we were going to leave it on the side of the road.Emmitt had given it up after awhile and just simply gave up on walking without assistance.He kept laying in the ditch and giggling when daddy would pick him up by his coat and help him to his feet. They made a game out of it.All done getting the tree and heading home to put it up and decorate it.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

I Heart Turkey

My crazy sister in law bought and then doctored up these I heart Turkey shirts. We wore them while we cooked the Thanksgiving meal for our in-laws. I don't think I have ever had a more fun cooking day. Ever. We shopped for all the food on Wednesday and spent just as much money at the grocery store as we did at the liquor store. Our plan was to keep it simple, drink wine, serve the meal @ noon, drink wine and have fun. And we did all of the above.
Our father in law has always referred to me as the queen. When I gave birth to both boys, he came into the hospital room and said "you're still the queen". Well now I get to (happily) share my throne with Casey. She had to add the Queen Cooks to the back of our shirts. The family all had a great time, we hung out all day. Napped, ate left overs, played games and enjoyed a wonderful day together.

Monday, November 23, 2009

4th Birthday

Parker Anthony. I cannot believe you are four years old! You were so excited for your birthday party. You had these crazy ideas that everything was going to change when you turned four. In a way many things did change, but not overnight, very gradually over the year. You set your mind to being "dry" at night (thanks to buddies Max and Nate) when you were four. I am not kidding-the night of your birthday you demanded to wear underwear and were appalled when I put the "mat" under you at bedtime. By golly-you woke up dry! Almost 2 years ago you potty trained with little difficulty and you wait until now to quit peeing at bedtime! Unreal. You owe me $408 in pull-up money by the way.
The most significant changes have occurred since February when you had your surgery. You have gained 8 pounds in 9 months! Even though we don't see a huge improvement in your eating habits, you obviously are eating more. You are still pretty little-hanging around 35 pounds. You are definitely taller. Your 3T pants officially became floods in a matter of weeks. Your speech has dramatically improved. With the help of the tubes and school you are hearing words properly and saying them correctly. We had the speech therapist watch you at school and the only things you struggle with are the "k" and "ga" sounds. She gave us some tips on how to work with you in a fun way. Otherwise you are doing what other 4 year olds are doing.Your birthday party with the family was a blast. I enjoyed this party the most. I love that we only do cake and ice cream for the party goers. I have never felt like I need to feed them and they don't expect it. This year I got my cousin Summer to take pics for me so I could actually be at the party as a mom and host and nothing else.
The table was perfect for all the kids to gather around and watch as we sang Happy Birthday.

One of Summer's girl Gracie Lyn. Summer and Jon have 2 boys (ages 6 and 4) and then the girl came! Summer is way into shopping for this cutie! A D O R A B L EThis year I got my last Patty Cakes cake...chocolate cake with chocolate butter cream layers with butter cream frosting and fondant. Served with mint-n-chip ice cream! YUMMY.We look too young to have a 4 year old right?Ummm...yeah, every year the frosting turns our mouth a different color. The gifts were of course a huge hit...but Auntie Casey and Uncle Blakes farm set was by far the favorite. It comes with every tractor and piece of farm equipment known to man. Even a couple of horses and goats...Grandma Janet got you a new gun. It came with a Sheriff badge so you had to get your cowboy outfit on and shoot things. So boy.
You are definitely all boy. You love to pull anything on a trailer. You love to hunt and shoot any kind of animal. You are so into pretending. You and your brother are a different animal every day. Your favorite is playing tiger or bears. You still make each member of the family the momma, the daddy, the brother and the baby-tiger, bear, puppy. You build dens out of all the blankets and pillows from the whole house. You love to make forts and spend most of the evening building. Every day when we get home you ask to "be naked" meaning just in your underwear. On the weekends, we don't bother putting clothes on you. You have given up pajamas and sleep in your underwear. You laugh at yourself and tell stories daily. You still have naughty streaks in you. You know how to be polite and kind but can get a little bossy and mean at times. You have learned how to fib and then say "I was just teasing mom". We are working on that one. You are very easy going when we take you somewhere different. You find anybody or anything to play with. Change does not bother you. But sometimes your curiosity is what gets you in trouble. You are very comfortable, almost too comfortable, at places and therefore think you run the show! Places like church, the store, the library. You have been there so much that you forget there are rules to follow that are not your own. You know how to push buttons with your mom and dad. Your biggest struggle is listening. We have to ask you daily to "listen". We love watching you learn and are amazed at what you bring home from school. We are so proud of you and can't wait to see what this next year has in store for us.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

My only sister-in-law

I only have one sister-in-law...Casey...and I love her like another sister. Well that sister is turning 30 on Friday! Tonight the family is coming over for dinner cooked by yours truly. I know she has already left work for the day (she drives from Loman to Bemidji so she won't see this post until tomorrow. But I am totally rubbing in the fact that she is 5 months older than me to the day. Which is totally frightening for whatever reason-that I will be 30 in 5 months! YIKES. I am not really sure what the big deal is about turning 30, but society has me believing that part of me is going to shrivel up into an old lady.
Anyways, I wrapped up 30 little gifts for her. I tried really hard not to get trinkity shit that she doesn't need. She has to open them in order, starting with the card...which when she opens it will sing the "We are Family...I got all my sisters with me" song to her. Finishing it off with the 30 gift which is a bottle of her favorite wine. In between 1-30 are some things like: dark chocolate, a woodwick candle, a nice pen, fancy post-its, a new coffee travel mug, a coffee gift stuff she'll use.
So, I want to know...what did you do on your 30th Birthday?

Sunday, November 15, 2009


Fall. My absolute favorite season. This Fall hasn't been the greatest for weather but after the cold summer we had, I'll take it. The boys have still been able to play outside and it's mid-November. Emmitt wasn't too crazy about the snow we got, but Parker could stay out and play for hours.
It's been a long couple of weeks around our house. Daddy has been out hunting since the opening weekend. Which leaves me and the boys home together 24-7. We've managed to make the most of our time together by doing different, fun projects. And, what would we do without all those new birthday toys? They came at the perfect time! Yesterday seemed to be an off day for us though. We woke up crabby. Emmitt refused to get dressed for church and kept taking his pajamas back out of the laundry and sitting by the lamp/wall. I asked Parker if he would be my big boy helper at church and be extra good since I would probably be holding Emmitt the whole time. He said yep! We finally get to church in our new sweaters and my two sprout horns and tails. Of course we chose to sit way up front (so they can see better) but that just made the walk back down the aisle all the much longer. I literally was hip holding Emmitt and football holding Parker under my arm as I carried him out of church. Emmitt was just busy. Parker was naughty. Coloring on the pew, kicking the pew in front of him, hanging his leg over the side of the pew taunting I'm not gonna fa-all. Over and over. At one point he blurts out I don't want a time out when we get home! So we left. I asked God for patience and it didn't come fast enough. We all trucked into the bathroom and I cried. Emmitt stared at me and Parker still sassed. It was awful! With a swat on the butt and a good talking too we managed to get Emmitt to the nursery and Parker to Sunday School. The boys were great afterwards. But the morning was just "off". After church I let them run around the trees and leaves. I managed to capture some happy and some not so happy moments. The sweaters are absolutely adorable. Once we were home, had something to eat and we all took naps together...I could hear something downstairs...guess who came home early? Daddy! Ahhhh, my whole day improved from that moment on. He even cooked us venison for dinner and did the dishes. The kids were excited to see him and I was thankful God delivered me some patience.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

The Day of the Birthday

The "Foreth" birthday parties went great! We went to Patty Cakes and picked up Parker's treats for the day. I let him come in with me and he was so excited to see his cake and cupcakes. The baker is retiring this year and I am sad to see her go. I have alternated with getting cakes from her and doing them myself. Looks like I'm on my own or I need to find another baker. She did a fabulous job with the golf theme!
Parker brought cupcakes to school and to Stephie's. The kids were all covered in green frosting. I can't say that I heard anybody say they loved the golf balls made of fondant. A majority of us hadn't tried it before so when I ordered the cake I asked her to use it.
Don't these four just spell Trouble to you? Let me tell you that they are the best of buds and can conquer the world in one day if they want to. They will make a huge trail of destruction in the meantime but they'll conquer it!The big boy on his Fourth Birthday

More to come...on the family party.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

November 11th, 2005

The excerpt from Parker's Scrapbook...

November 7th is the day that started it all. I thought I was leaking amniotic fluid but just wasn’t sure. Barrett did some research online and figured that I was, but my water certainly hadn’t “broke”. Tuesday we headed out to the shack so Bear could hunt. We hit a deer on the way-that didn’t even send me into labor! While Barrett hunted I stayed back at the shack with Papa Don and Norm. We had walkie talkies to communicate-or so we thought, they ended up not working too well! Norm made his signature dish for lunch-sauerkraut with potatoes. Maybe that’ll get things going?! Nope not yet.

Wednesday, I was convinced that I was still leaking amniotic fluid so I put a call into Dr. Stone’s nurse, she had us go to the clinic for some tests. Is this the beginning or a false alarm? One test said I was the other said I wasn’t. Back home we go, they said to keep our appointment for Thursday (November 10th) and have the non-stress test done on the baby.

Thursday, November 10th around 1 pm. I was watching Days of our Lives and felt a few contractions. Nothing big though. We had our appointment at 3 o’clock so I figured we would wait until then. We get to the clinic and get all hooked up to the non-stress test. Dr. Stone runs some more tests and tells me that my water had definitely broke and that I was dilated to 3 centimeters. Wow! This is it…so he tells us to go home, eat something, grab our bags, and head to the hospital. I still wasn’t feeling much so I was convinced I was going to be sent home until things started to progress more. Nope, we get to the hospital at 5:30 and they admit me. Here we go…we made a few phone calls to let our families know what is going on. I managed to watch Survivor and part of ER. I was too excited to sleep so they gave me a Benadryl. Well that didn’t start working until after midnight and by then I was dilated to 5 cm and feeling the contractions more!

It is now November 11th. Barrett started to get really tired so he slept a little. I rested and labored until 2 am when I reached 6 cm. Then I asked for some pain relief. I was given an injection into my IV to help “take the edge off”. Well it did but it also slowed down the labor. At 4 am I was dilated to 7 cm and begging for the anesthesiologist to give me the Intrathecal. They gave me another IV injection to tide me over until he arrived. I joked with the staff about him having lots of money and living up at the lake and that was what took him so long to get there! Come to find out he did live up at the lake. We decided to call family to tell them to come to the hospitals waiting room. Grandma Audrey arrives just before 6 am along with Dr. Stone. The anesthesiologist finally arrives and gets the spinal in place at 6 am. I was finally able to relax and let my body go the rest of the way. I dilated from 7 cm to 10 cm in one hour. 7 am we had a shift change and Lisa was my nurse. She gave me some pointers on how to push and we begin the delivery. I had my mom and Barrett on each side of me. They took turns counting to ten and helping me breathe. This is it…

After 2 ½ hours of pushing our little Parker Anthony arrived at 9:26 am. They put him on my chest and we all started crying. It was a very emotional time. We couldn’t believe how beautiful he was!

Daddy wheeled you down in the bassinet to see everyone in the waiting room. Then they took you to be weighed and measured. You were 7# 11oz and 20 ½ inches long. You have light brown hair with a little red in it and big eyes! Will they be brown like mommy’s? You have daddy’s nose...

Monday, November 9, 2009

Weekend with Friends

This weekend was spent with friends. We had Jillian and Brooks stay the whole weekend with us. It was 2 sleepover nights! The kids all got along great, no meltdowns or tantrums. Four kids and no meltdowns? You could never have predicted that one. But they truly played with each other non stop. It wasn't just the big kids playing together and the babies playing together, it was all of them switching it up.
Friday night I went to Power of the Purse charity event and got 2 babysitters. The kids were great for the sitters and were all excited to have 2 of them and order pizza. Saturday morning we were up early. Auntie Tammy called and (bless her heart) offered to help me get the kids, the strollers, the snacks, the diapers in the car and head up to Voyageurs National Park for a hike. It took us a full 30 minutes to pull out of the driveway. The 2 double strollers were by far the most difficult part. I can't believe I'm going to say this...but Thank God for Regan's minivan!
The kids all had a great time getting out of the stroller and stretching their legs on the trail. We parked the van and headed up and down all the hills for the 4 mile walk. The kids rode in the strollers for that part of the hike. Boy was my butt burning from the hills, but Tammy and I both only had sore wrists from pushing the strollers!
They were excited to take a hike through the woods and find all sorts of things. We only had to remind them that they couldn't pick up or move things in "Grandma Audrey's Park". They were all excited when we came to this fallen tree on our path that we got to climb over.We had snacks along for the kids to enjoy while sitting on the little bench. Then back to hiking.The boys eating granola in the woods. I have a feeling these two will be in a deer stand eating granola 10 years from now.
Jillian was more than willing to help her little brother up the hill. I had referred to her as Sissy a few times and pretty soon she was calling herself that! It was so precious.
Regan and Derek (and the rest of the family for that matter) got their deer this weekend hunting. Of course they all got bucks! I was so happy to help out so that they could spend a weekend away together, kid free and enjoy the beautiful weekend hunting. I plan on taking Regan up on her offer to "repay me" in a couple of weekends when my whole family attends Grease the Musical in the cities!
These two kids are very special to our family. We all refer to ourselves as Auntie and Uncle. It doesn't matter if we aren't I've said before-you find family in many different ways.


Birthday Checklist:

  • 30 cupcakes? check
  • birthday cake? check
  • ice cream? check
  • golf decorations? check
  • scrapbooks to look at during party? need to put those in order still
  • 4 year old? (sniff, sniff) not quite yet...but in 2 short days he will be turning four.

He has been pretty adamant about not being four yet. We have to put the almost in there. He is totally excited for his birthday and the idea of being four. His parents? Well we are still struggling with the idea that 4 years have gone by since we became first timers...

Monday, November 2, 2009

Captain Hook, Peter Pan and the Crocodile

Captain Hook, Peter Pan and the Crocodile. Oh Halloween, how I love this holiday so. I actually looked at Bear that night and said "what should we do next year?" he responded with wide eyes and a "seriously?" raised eyebrow. I got him when I said they would be on sale right now! But I am going to have to think on it for awhile. I have a 4th Birthday to plan.
Parker was cousin Peter's Peter Pan costume this year. Pete wore it when he was four. Last year, Parker was cousin Derek's lion costume. So far these costumes aren't costing me anything.
He had a blast trick-or-treating. He loved running up to the doors and knocking. He was thoroughly disappointed when the people weren't home.Emmitt was of course the Crocodile who took Captain Hook's hand and is forever trying to finish him (her) off. I was a little surprised at how many people had forgotten the whole Pan story and didn't put our little get ups together.
He didn't love the idea of being in his costume right at first, but over the week leading up to Halloween the kid had it on daily.When I, Captain Hook painted on my styling mustache and goatee Emmitt got totally freaked out of me and wouldn't come near me. He just kept questioning momma? Finally he put the two together and warmed up to the idea. Bear was initially supposed to be Hook and I, Wendy. But a miscommunication on my part-who thought he was staying at the shack-I took his costume and quit looking for a big blue dress for Wendy. So here I am as Hook.
The night of Halloween turned out to not be too cold. The kids survived the 3 block walk. We did have the stroller part of the way and Auntie Tammy AND Daddy came along this year. Each year we have gone out trick-or-treating with Regan and the kids. Each year they get easier.
When it was time to start heading home the kids enjoyed walking in the wet leaves and stomping in the puddles. They each got to have a treat when they got home and hand out candy to the big kids who came around later. They loved handing out the candy more than being out themselves. Go figure...