Tuesday, August 30, 2011

ps - i also turned 33
and decided that that wasn't too old afterall

Photobucket

here it is - the 25+ week belly...i know, i know...it looks more like 35 weeks.
what can i say? once i pop out, i POP OUT!

my mom was 33 years old when she had me,
although i was her last and her oldest was 11 by then.
so i'm a little behind, but catching up.

anyway, just wanted a little shot with my 2.5 kids on my 33rd birthday.
i love atticus' enthusiasm for the belly.
and brooke, you should recognize this outfit, yeah?
Photobucket

darek made me yummy birthday breakfast,
which beckett crawled across the table to eat
Photobucket

atticus' funny face at breakfast
Photobucket

this little man only does his high chair about half the time now

the rest of the time he's pretty much doing this,
crawling from plate to plate eating whatever tickles his fancy
Photobucket

the boys also colored a happy birthday sign for me
which i asked them to hold up for the camera and smile

they only complied once i bribed them with chocolate
Photobucket

oh me, oh my
the yummiest nothing-bundt-cake in all the history of bundt cakes
i think we all pretty much had nothing-bundt-cake for dinner that night
Photobucket

cori and the kids stopped by for a little birthday surprise, brought with love from anthropologie!
favorite people + favorite store! it was a birthday dream come true. the anthro bag just sat on my entry way table all day teasing and singing out to me until present opening time that night. cori picked out this, these, these and little kitchen labels that look like these for me! i was amazed that a few of the items (book and measuring spoons) had been on my wish list for a long time and she simply read my mind and made a special birthday delivery! what a great gal, yeah?
sadly i forgot to get a picture of them delivering the gift,
but i did get a picture of the delivery itself.

anthro bag sitting, teasing, singing to me.
Photobucket

i got a couple other lucky deliveries that day too!

first brooke sent me a box of maternity clothes. (THANK YOU brooke!) she apologized that it wasn't something more exciting but to be honest, it was the best! i hate buying maternity clothes that i'll wear for a minute and then pack away in storage until the next round. darek even got me a few gift cards to buy some maternity clothes (because remember how it's real easy to start hating the ones you're now wearing for your third pregnancy?) i bought a few things but might save the rest of the gift cards for post-baby clothes shopping, cuz sometimes that's more fun, right?

plus, a couple weeks ago i hosted a premiere designs jewelry party and got $500 of free jewelry! which is only the second half of the happy story, because a couple months ago i went to a premiere designs jewelry party and got $500 worth of jewelry for $100! how about them apples, eh? and it's really cute, good quality jewelry too. so anywho, i lucked out and my most recent shipment of jewels arrived right on my birthday. a free little gift to myself. it's tough to find opportunities at this stage in my life to wear much jewelry but let me tell you a little secret about how i feel much cuter when i do. and who says walmart isn't an appropriate venue for jewelry anyway? live it up folks! my friend that does the jewelry parties says that 90% of your wardrobe budget should be spent on accessorie - ie - jewelry, bags and shoes. otherwise it should be made up of basics and favorite pieces that can be all spruced up and varied with accessories. needless to say, this pregnant belly with its five maternity outfits is all about accessorizing...especially for free. huzzah!

my stack of jewelry boxes...
Photobucket

so darek, being the charming fellow that he is, lined up a little babysitting action and took me to a chick flick, since that's all i usually want to do. we saw One Day. i had high hopes but alas was disappointed...perhaps if you've seen it you know what i mean. but it didn't really matter because i was out with my man, wearing a cute shirt from brooke and a necklace that i got for free!
hooray for turning thirty-three!!

and thank you for all the calls, FB posts, texts and emails!
it made my day to hear from all of you!
much love!
.ta.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

our secret getaway

Photobucket

darek and i spent last weekend at our friend's beach house in newport. i call it our secret getaway because we didn't visit any friends or family while we were in CA. we just needed some serious without-kids hang out time. sometimes i kind of forget that we are actually married to each other and had a life before we had kids. some days it feels like we are just partners in raising kids, just tag teaming diaper changes and bedtime routine. needless to say we needed a little time away. it was a month late, but we took a little weekend getaway for our ninth anniversary. it was pretty much heaven on earth! our super sweet, generous friends let us stay in their beach house while they were out of town. the second night we spent at the marriot, where we stayed our wedding night. so fun, right? i can not tell you how much good it did my little soul to spend a few days on the beach. i could use a little (or a LOT) more beach in my life.

the beach shack, those glorious beach cruisers, the brick walkway, the sunflowers
all perfection
Photobucket

fyi - all the rest of the pics we took with our super ghetto camera phones...

so we stayed in that little beach house behind darek, just stepped out onto the bike path, crossed the park...

Photobucket

and arrived at the beach!
to die for, no?

Photobucket

i just wanted to lay on my big belly and sleep in the sun the whole time but little lady was not thrilled about that plan. i finally dug a big belly-hole and read my trashy magazines for as long as she'd allow. not long enough, but it was still nice.

Photobucket

brandon and cori kept our little rugrats for us. (THANK!!! YOU!!!) i gotta say, i had me some mixed feelings about leaving those little dudes for the weekend. i was so excited for some break-from-mommy-time but it also took a little breaking of my heart to actually drop them off, kiss them farewell and drive out of town...truth be told, however, my heart broke for about as long as it took to drive to CA and plop down on the sand. i was juuuuuust fine after that. it's so hard to re-program the brain to not always be thinking of where the kids are? have they eaten? do they need a diaper change? are they late for nap? etc. etc. but once i was finally successful at turning off my mommy brain we were all about the beach and sleeping in and eating out and seeing movies and just chilling. it was long overdue. and my kids were in the very best of hands. they had the time of their life and even better, were on their best behavior all weekend. i got happy reports of good eating, good sleeping, good playing and good churching, all of which made the whole weekend all the more glorious! i think i'm giving LV a pretty fair shot, but i've got to admit, i'm still a california girl at heart. nothing beats it. fingers crossed we'll actually live there someday...

newport pier

Photobucket

saturday morning we had breakfast at the newport pier (our friends' house was about five houses down from the pier, on balboa) then headed to the temple. it was awesome. it's been a long time since we've been together instead of just tag teaming and taking turns. anyway, at breakfast saturday morning we took phone pics to send to the kids to let them know that although we were having the time of our lives, we also missed them!

Photobucket

Photobucket

we went to huntington saturday night and brunched and beached in laguna on sunday before driving home. i fretted a little that i hadn't actually busted out my camera to take some decent pictures but really without the kids around there seemed to be very few pictures worth taking. i took a few with the diana but haven't developed them yet. otherwise we just hung out and didn't worry about it. it was so nice not to have a schedule, no where to be, nothing planned. we just did whatever tickled our fancy the whole weekend and it was heaven.

thank you to the LV mccoys and the newport beach shackers for making our incredible weekend possible. thank you sweet husband for making me take a break from mommy life to do what we've always done best - just hang out together. and thank you california for being as glorious as i've always remembered you being. hope to see you soon!
.ta.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

one last shot from idaho

while we all bustled around packing up the cars to leave idaho
beck just took a quiet moment to relax on the porch and have a little chocolate milk,
idaho-style

i thought this was a fitting final idaho shot

Photobucket

and the last few from utah
~
then back at my brother's house i tried to snap a few pictures of his two youngest kids
that they've had since the last time i did a little photo shoot for them

baby mads
Photobucket

this kid was the easiest subject ever
all smiles!

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

then beck came in to check out the scene
he watched me rolling around on the floor trying to get pictures of the baby
and thought it looked real fun...

Photobucket

and so he joined in

Photobucket

and they were so darling together

Photobucket

once again mabel was not super excited about me following her around with my camera
but i still managed to get a couple of the little beauty

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

ok, that really is it for idaho/utah trip pictures
now i can move on with my blogging life!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

saying goodbye to grandma roper

Photobucket

grandma roper's funeral was really nice and as you would expect the whole town
turned out for her viewing and funeral. she really was an influence for good in the lives of
everyone around her. my saddest moments were spent regretting that my children will never know her in this life
and won't hear her sweet laugh and learn from her example.
my laugh isn't nearly as great but i hope that i can try to follow her example
so they can learn from her through me.

beck was looking especially dapper for the occasion
Photobucket

the pallbearers were my brother brandon, cousins justin, brek, jason and strat,
uncles doug and earl and my dad, ted. my brother ryan was unable to make it to the funeral
but otherwise these are all the sons, son-in-law and grandsons on the roper side.

Photobucket

Photobucket

my grandma and grandpa roper have four kids: ted, doug, shauna and lanea
Photobucket

Photobucket

blubbering and making a fool of oneself are genetic traits in the roper family.
as a result all four kids begged my grandma to not make them speak at her funeral.
they reminded her how boring it is to sit through a funeral and hear all the same stories
from all the speakers, who you can't even understand anyway because they're big bawl babies.
they almost had her convinced, but she's a persistent woman and it's hard to say no
to a deathbed request so in the end all four spoke and it truly was amazing!

my aunts were really clever and basically did a stand-up comedy routine together, each standing
at the pulpit sharing funny and touching stories about my grandma. they started by sharing
a box of chocolates and ooo-ing and aaah-ing over their favorites and how much grandma would
love to be eating these chocolates with them. it was really cute and really funny. they had little props
to share that represented my grandma's sewing, cooking, gardening, gospel study/knowledge and service.

speaking of service: my grandma was in and out of lucidity in the final week or so of her life and even suffering little strokes/seizures after which she'd often be only semi-conscious. however one day after having one of these episodes she suddenly became completely lucid and aware of herself and everyone around her and turned to my aunts and said, "don't forget to call and report my visiting teaching for the month. and be sure those last three sisters get taught!" in the final hours of her life she was magnifying her calling! the woman had SEVENTY-FIVE YEARS of 100% visiting teaching! and that doesn't just include visiting the women she taught each month, that means that as a district supervisor she also visited or sent notes to all the women in her district that hadn't been visited that month!! that's 900 months, people! the last three notes to the last three women in her district were sent out the day she died. impressive, no?

(mormon note: visiting teaching = in the LDS church each woman is paired with a partner and assigned 2-4 women to visit in their home each month. they often share a spiritual message and offer help, service and support for whatever the women may need. it's an awesome program that allows us to serve one another and foster great friendships as well.)

lanea, shauna, ted and doug
Photobucket

although my aunts where tender and tearful it was the boys that really shed the tears,
and i loved every second of it. both my dad and uncle doug shared sweet stories and memories about their mom. my dad talked about her incredible example of obedience and her life of service and love. it was really sincere and heartfelt and although the tears were present they didn't distract at all, but just added to the love. my cousin strat's wife laura spoke on behalf of the grandchildren. she collected memories from all of us grandchildren and shared several over the pulpit. it was really cool to hear everyone's tender and funny moments with my grandma.

this is the best picture
dad and doug laughing together
that's probably my favorite face that my dad makes, laughing.
Photobucket

our little family with grandma roper
Photobucket

my sister kirstin and her family, john and ali, with grandma roper
Photobucket

Photobucket

sarah and mads
i wanted a picture of brandon's family but couldn't round them all up
Photobucket

especially after ted found this frog
and all the kids were in heaven playing with it
Photobucket

i did catch mabel taking a little breather tho
Photobucket

back at the church, after the burial i tried to get some pictures of the boys all spiffied up
since sundays are usually too busy to do so. but mostly i just got beck running away...

Photobucket

and atticus throwing leaves at me
Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

since we were in idaho for an extra day we didn't have as much time in utah to hang out.
even so my boys were ready to get home! the drive home was mostly ok but for sure there were a few moments that i'd categorize as torture. the final stretch from st. george to LV is always the toughest. i thought maybe we'd hit a new low when beckett tore open the easy mac package we'd given him to shake as a last resort of entertainment...i know, some entertainment, right? but after ripping it open and showering the pasta and powder everywhere he decided to attempt eating the pasta. real crunchy. and messy. but at least it kept him from crying for a few messy minutes.

Photobucket

the real low point of the drive, however, was when atticus realized he had left his blanket at my other grandma's house in st. george. we were ten minutes from home and i actually took a moment to consider driving back that night to get the blankie (two hours one way). i thought all hope was lost at ever getting atticus to sleep or be happy again until we could retrieve his blankie. luckily he was willing to take a substitute for a few days until i could figure out how to get it back. each morning he woke up and asked if we could go to the mailbox to see if grandma had put his blankie in there yet. luckily my friend julia (THANK YOU julia!) and her husband paul (THANK YOU paul!) live in st. george and paul in a firefighter in LV! so within a couple days he had stopped at grandma's a brought the blankie down for his next shift. i mean, serious life saver! atticus spent a few days talking about the firefighter that rescued his blankie!!

the sad blankie-less boy
Photobucket

ok, we're finally winding down on the preston posts...
thanks for tuning in!

Friday, August 12, 2011

the cow in the cemetery

Photobucket

my siblings and i decided to stop at the riverdale cemetery to visit our grandma hart's grave. she passed away last spring (so yes, both grandmas passed away this summer) and we wanted to see her headstone. just as we were driving into the cemetery this cow casually saunters down the hill and strolls right into the cemetery ahead of us. he ended up being the main attraction of the show, especially since once we approached my grandma's grave there was no headstone! it was straight up missing in action. we looked around but no headstone. my mom didn't believe us when we told her. she insisted that she had seen it there last time she was in town. we insisted that it wasn't there when we hunted for it. only a fresh grave, no headstone. my mom went to see for herself the next day. lo and behold, the headstone was in the cemetery but on the wrong grave!! can you believe that?? good thing we checked! those poor souls could have been mis-marked forever.

at first we just watched the cow from afar
Photobucket

as it grazed and grazed and ate flowers off of people's graves
Photobucket

it finally came over to check us out
Photobucket

and we finally went over to check it out
and then it put on a real show for us
Photobucket

and the kids were truly captivated
Photobucket

then darek thought he'd be real funny
Photobucket

but it was john who finally manned up and braved a feeding
Photobucket

all during the cow fiasco, and whilst we searched about for grandma's grave,
the kids just played and played and thought the cemetery was the greatest playground ever
Photobucket

beck loved this little pinwheel grave decor
Photobucket

ruth reading the names on the headstones
Photobucket

while atticus rode them like a horsey
"yee-haw! giddy-up!"
Photobucket

raymond just being cute
Photobucket

atticus taking a little breather on a mini headstone
Photobucket

Photobucket