Monday, October 29, 2012

fall festivities

This past weekend was one event after another for me and I'm still recovering. Friday night we scooped up the kiddos and went to a friend's birthday party, which happened to be just down the street. Then we woke up earlier than usual for a Saturday morning and headed out to pick up some cupcakes we had ordered from The Sassy Cupcake for their latest fundraiser.

Our next stop was the pumpkin patch, but it was raining and had been for quite some time. Unfortunately we had told Malakai about going to get a pumpkin so we didn't have much of a choice. As true Oregonians we headed out in the rain. Sadly, the horse ride out to the patch wasn't free this year, but Kai was fine checking out all the pumpkins lined up at the storefront. He and Des picked out their pumpkins and we sloshed around in the muck before piling back into the car, all cold and soggy.

Once we got home we changed out of our muddy clothes and the boys went to work coloring their pumpkins. I even gave Kai the choice of carving his if he wanted, but he preferred to draw a few faces with crayons and then try carrying it around. Desmond even colored on his a bit, but then become more interested in trying to sit on it.

Next I headed out to meet my friend Carina and her sister-in-law, Michelle, for Carina's 1st bridal fitting. She lives in Portland but had found her wedding dress down her a few months ago. It was lovely to see her in it again. Then the three of us headed out to lunch at an old favorite, Sweet Basil Thai. 
{my lovely friend, Carina and some amazing pumpkin curry}

We made a stop at the mall to look for bridal party accessories and chat about what we'll each wear and what style she's going for. I also grabbed a last minute detail for my Halloween costume. 

I got home late that afternoon and spent some time snuggling my boys before getting ready to head out again. Ben and I were going to a costume party, on our way out the door we realized it was the first time we've ever dressed up together. 

{We went as Where's Waldo + Carmen Sandiego. The lovely bird is my friend Liz, and the hostess of the most fabulous parties}

We had such a good time hanging out with adults late into the night without our children. We haven't stayed out that late since before we had Malakai! It surely made me feel young again...until the next morning that is. 

Sunday was work/church and then I had a movie date during the boys' nap time with my mom and sister to finally see The Help. I went straight there to my in-laws where Ben had brought Des and Kai for us to have dinner. 

Then this morning was flu shots, groceries, errands and gymastics. Can you see how I'm a bit exhausted? Still, we had so much fun!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012


If you follow me on Instagram you may be familiar with the gigantic maple tree in our teeny front yard. It is gorgeous this time of year as it drops bright golden leaves all over our yard (and the neighbors, hehe). While Ben isn't a big fan because of the time it takes to clean up, not only do I find it lovely to look at but it's useful too.

Who needs fancy toys or tv when you have endless leaves (and sticks...and dirt...) to play with?!

Surprisingly Desmond just played with the leaves and didn't attempt to eat them. Malakai wanted to whack everything with a giant stick, so I let him play in the pile of dirt we have leftover from March's yard redo...we should really do something about that. 

{Malakai showing Desmond how it's done}

It's a bit chilly out, but warm enough and dry enough to play outside some. I'm hoping we get more days like this to wear out my boys. 

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Desmond's 1st Birthday, a Barnyard Bash!

 The last few weeks I have been overwhelmed with blessings. Ttere have been hardships, as usual, but even through them- blessings have flowed. A couple weeks ago the boys came down with a virus and we had the worst night sleep (aka no sleep). We were showered with offers to bring meals, dessert, and coffee. I was shocked at the outpouring of kindness.

Yesterday we threw Desmond his 1st birthday party. We were once again, so blessed by the entire event. So many friends and family came to wish Des well and they really showered him with gifts. The party was at our friends' home, in their actual barn, complete with authentic sheep poo! Truly, Mark + Liz have a gorgeous place and it was so generous of them to not only let us have the party there but to help us decorate, set up, and clean up. We are so blessed.

 Des was all smiles just about the entire time. You know how most kiddos have a tantrum at their 1st birthday party, well he only whined a bit when his little boots started to hurt his feet. That was all, what a champ! Sadly, Kai made a grand entrance, complete with melt-down. Which is what happens when he doesn't get his nap and then we put him into a social situation. He warmed up once we brought out the Stomp-Rocket, something I got with his birthday money and waited to pull out at the party.

While I was putting up decorations it began to rain, but it let up and stayed clear the rest of the day. It was so humid though, that even paper things under cover felt a bit soggy. I had a few activities planned that we could do under cover because of the rain; pin the tail on Bulls-Eye and bean bag toss. With no rain, kids were content to run in the field and climb on the tractor, so we never needed the games.

{aunt Kristi played solo}

{our little family, Des with G'Pa, and sweet cousin Delia on the tractor}

Kids and adults alike were entertained by the cider-press. Mark built it himself in college and it was really fun to watch, and the cider was delicious! 

We got the party rolling pretty quickly and started with gifts for a few people who had to leave early. Des received so many gifts, all of them so nice! The boys will be entertained all winter long and then some! 

Shortly after we brought out Desmond's birthday cake and sang to him. My talented mother, who the boys know as Mima, baked a cow cake per my request. Growing up she has made a lot of cakes like this one, and not only are they delicious, but incredibly adorable!

I made Des a banana cake for him to dig into. While we were singing the wind blew out his candle. I nearly attempted to relight it, but knew it was too windy and he wasn't going to be blowing it out anyway. Then he dug in...

Friends and family alike showed up dressed to theme, it made for an even more authentic feel for the whole event. Although, technically, I don't consider my dad as being in costume since this is pretty much his regular attire...

Once our guests were gone and we cleaned our stuff out of the barn, we moved over to the BBQ area and had a little after-party with the immediate family. I had BBQ chicken in the crockpot and Liz provided us with some corn straight from the garden. We had dinner, then moved again to the fire pit to relax and have a few s'mores.

 We couldn't have asked for a more beautiful day or a happier birthday boy! Thanks to all who came, and Happy 1st Birthday Des!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Dear Desmond Lee

Dear Sweet "Little" Desmond,
This past year has been a wild ride. It has gone by faster than any time in my entire life and it shows no signs of slowing down, neither do you. It's hard to imagine that 12 months have already passed since I went into labor. Daddy still teases me for all the chores I did before I would go to the hospital. I know that all that work helped you get here faster and we got to spend more time with you once you were home because there were no chores to bug us, not that we would have let them.

You started out very colicky and it was rough for all of us those 1st three weeks, but nothing compared to your recent virus that kept us up all night worrying about you and trying to help you sleep. Thankfully you are strong and healthy again, just in time for your birthday. As a newborn you had an ear infection at just a couple weeks old and it broke our hearts, we also struggled through other illnesses together those first few months but we've made  it out stronger.

You progressed through life so quickly, doing everything early. You even gained weight by your 2-day appointment (when most babies are still working to get back to birth weight by 2 weeks). You sat up, crawled, and walked earlier than most. I think you were trying to catch up to your big brother.

You and your brother Malakai have grown into such special friends. Before you were born he was jealous of any other baby or child that I held. The day you were born and he met you, all that changed and then he wouldn't let anyone hold you but me. You were "mama's baby". He was protective of you until you learned to crawl, then he realized you were a playmate and the wrestling began. It has only recently become a two-sided affair. Still, the two of you love to chase each other and dance together, although you can be found dancing at even the hint of music, it takes a bit more to get your brother to join in these days.

Your look has changed quite a bit since you were born and it seems you've slowly morphed into looking like your daddy and brother. Mama finds you all to be so handsome that she's perfectly fine with losing her "look alike".

Lately you are repeating words and sounds and pointing at what or who you want. Pointing at noses and saying "nuh" or things you get excited about like dogs and saying "whoah!". You also seem to be experiencing a tad of separation anxiety as you always want me to be nearby. Thankfully it hasn't inhibited you enough to keep you from enjoying yourself in the church nursery where you play hard and have won the hearts of many volunteers.

You are very stubborn and grunt when you want something that is being taken or blocked. Like when you insist on climbing inside the lid drawer and someone tries to take you back out again. We've decided that you enjoy being "containerized". You love to "read" the Elmo Peek-a-Boo book that you got last Christmas and play with blocks or your shaker eggs.

Our little family is so much better because you are in it. We can't wait to see what the years ahead bring for you.

{traditional birthday breakfast at OPH}

Happy 1st Birthday Desmond Lee!
Love, Mama

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