Friday, August 5, 2011

We're Back!

So it's been awhile, ok, almost 2 years is more than awhile, but I'm ready to get back into the blogging habit as so many of you have inspired me.  We have had a crazy year in 2010 but we have landed on our feet and are enjoying our new adventures.  In a nut shell, over the past 18 months we....
Sold our beloved Molalla home that we built/slaved over the past 3 years...

There are things I miss and don't miss about this home, the one thing I do miss is my beloved kitchen. The one I have now is maybe half the size or less. We have some fond memories here we'll cherish forever.  After our exhausting move of which we never could have done without our extremely generous family and friends who not only pitched in to help us move but also helped a great deal with the finishing projects.  We never could have got it done without them.  Thanks again!!  Since we weren't sure where to go from there but wanted to stay in the area we opted to move in with our wonderful friends the Vests.
We took a great trip to Mexico with fabulous friends...

                         Enjoyed a trip to the zoo with a rare appearance from dad which was fun! Not long after this we found out we were pregnant!
Taylor gave her sister a hair cut because she "wanted to look like her daddy".  It sounds cutter then it looks.  I cried.
Well we have much more to share but baby #3 is calling my name.  To be continued...

Thursday, December 23, 2010

2010 Update

Due to the hustle and bustle of the holidays we were unable to post a 2010 update. Please check back after the new year to see and hear about what and where we've been in 2010 and what we're looking forward to in the new year.

Happy Holidays and lots of love,

Nate, Brooke, Taylor and Jade

Monday, November 9, 2009

Grandma's Zoo trip

A few weeks back we were blessed with a visit from Nate's mom Carla for an entire week. The girls were extremely excited and had a whole list of things they wanted to do with Grandma. Although we didn't get to cross everything off, we did have a lot of fun and as usual she was a great help to us around the house. One of the main attractions was a trip to the zoo. I hadn't been to the Portland zoo in over 10 years and the girls are old enough now to really enjoy it so off we went. We were fortunate that the weather was great, you never know what you are going to get in the fall here in Oregon but it was sunny and warm and the animals seemed to appreciate it too because almost everyone was out enjoying themselves in the sun which to us meant perfect viewing. Even better we went on a week day so there were no lines at all and the kids got to get up close and personal, more often then they liked. This mountain goat had no problem with an audience while he ate his lunch.
We of coarse had to stop and get an elephant ear. Taylor especially liked that.

Jade and this orangutan had a staring contest. I'm pretty sure the monkey won because Jade was a little uneasy about the whole thing.

This was her stiff competition.

The girls loved watching the penguins swim and had to preform their happy feet dance.

The sea lions put on quite a show swimming circles.

This leopard is highly endangered which was sad to read about.

The crocodile was very friendly, a little too much for the kids taste. They wouldn't get near him for the picture.

The zebras were my favorite!

And you have to love the hippos doing what they do best!

The most favorite attraction was the elephants. They really are enormous.

Just outside the elephants there was a little park of animal statues. This was Jade's favorite.
But the hippo had room for two! This is the zoo's latest baby elephant who is a right around a year old now, I think.

All in all we couldn't have asked for a better day at the zoo!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Taylor's Birthday

I know this is a little late but I had to post a few pics of Taylor's birthday. We had a party for her at our house and had our family and some of her friends and their families over for a Italian potluck. The place looked like a mad house with what seemed like a hundred kids running around in every age group but I think everyone, especially the birthday girl had a good time so we consider it a success.
My friend Connor and I made the cake and we were a little impatient with the icing, I don't think it was quite cool when we put it on so it moved a little on us but it was sooo good. Chocolate cake with butter cream almond frosting and we swirled homemade triple berry jam in between the layers. It was our own little invention but I have to say it turned out great.
With all of the celebrating of Taylor's birthday Jade decided she need to have a party of her own that week. Her sister ratted her out that she was playing in mom's make up.
Sometimes those big sister's can be such a pain. She was having a pretty good time.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Fruits of our Labors

This year we decided to dive right on into gardening. I took a small class with my mom and Aunt Vicki and it gave me a good enough starting point. So with some additional pointers from friends off we went. We put in a large raised bed area along the side of our house which turned out to be a great spot because we are in the middle of the harvest right now. This is Taylor with a zucchini we let go a little too long. She thought it was the coolest thing. This is from our first harvest of green beans. The girls are having so much fun picking what they helped plant and yes, they do eat some of it, but we still have some work to do in that department.
This is from just a few nights ago. We got to pick our first corn and Taylor asked to have it for her birthday dinner. It had good flavor but wasn't as crisp as we would have preferred so we are giving it a little more time. When I asked Taylor what else she wanted for dinner she said rice and fish. Nate got to go salmon fishing a couple times this year so we have some salmon in the freezer and a great recipe we got from our friends the Vests. Taylor likes to eat the fish plain with her fingers. Who would have thought! We also have tons of roma tomatoes which is great. I have gotten the canning bug this summer and so I maybe adding diced tomatoes to my pantry soon. I did a bunch of jam with my friend Laura and mom, my other friend Cheri and I picked and canned 200+ pounds of peaches which was quite the adventure and then Laura also taught me how to do dill pickles so I'm excited and on my way!

These two are pretty excited too! And if you have any gardening pointers I'm definitely open to them. We are also having a fruit fly problem right now so any pointers on how to get rid of these darn things would be appreciated as well.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Fun at the Beach!

This past week some of our friends who had moved to Utah came into town for a quick visit and so we headed to meet them at the beach and have a fun afternoon. Despite living so close we don't get over there often enough and the girls LOVE it! This is Jade's latest lovely habit when you say smile, she gets that closed eyes, wrinkled face, forced smile. Lovely. I guess that is what I get for interrupting their intense sand castle building. This picture just cracked me up. I swear she was carrying more then her own body weight in those two buckets.
She was headed down to the shore to see Taylor, her bestest ever friend Riley, and Riley's cousin Brody.
Once I got close enough the conversation was fabulous. Apparently they were baking something with their sand and they could remember which bucket of sand was the sugar and which was the flour.
This picture was originally just Taylor and Riley but Jade came running down when she saw the girls posing.

And this is the lovely view Lindsey myself and Kacey got all afternoon. Sorry Taylor but you have the "no butt" curse, passed on from the women in my side. Thanks mom!

We had a wonderful afternoon at the beach and visiting with friends. Thanks Bluths and Sheffields. We miss you guys!!!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Summer catch up

Well this summer is flying for us as I'm sure it is for many of you. We have been busy trying to balance work with play and I have once again neglected our blog. I'll do my best to give a summary of the fun things we've been up to.
Mid June we had a joint birthday party for Jade and Nate. Jade's birthday was May 31st and Nate's was June 10th. We had a bunch of friends and family over and had a great time. Thanks to all of those who joined us and made this such a memorable birthday for both Jade and Nate. The pic below is Jade trying to blow her candles out. She get the blowing part, but she kept blowing the air up which wasn't helping out with the candles much.

Despite her trouble blowing the candles out, she had no problem eating the delicious cake Little Linda made for her. She also didn't waste any time putting on the fuzzy jacket Grandma Kelli made for her. Thanks again Kelli for all of the adorable clothes and the time and effort that went into them.
We did have some guests/gifts of honor from our friends Ezra and Tracy, chickens. Apparently they decided since we live in the country, our place just couldn't be complete without a pair of chickens. Meet Henrietta and Rochelle. I just figured Henrietta was a must if you are going to have chickens and Taylor named the other after herself, how original.

The next morning we were greeted with a surprise. This is now one of Taylor's favorite daily chores, collecting the eggs. We typically get 2 eggs per day.
While most of the guests were outside, a few lounged indoors and enjoyed the first Transformers movie. There is Sebastian, the Sprague's exchange student, Connor Vest, Lance Gunter, Michael Gunter, and Jade and her boyfriend Justin Vest. Justin is the son of a family we are great friends with and Jade has taken quite a liking to him. We all call Justin her boyfriend. Where ever he is she climbs up in his lap and snuggles right in. Luckily Justin doesn't mind.This is what happens at our house during summer when the girls play outside all morning and I can't get their lunch ready fast enough before they fall asleep.

For a weekend in June we went camping at Fort Stevens up in Astoria with a bunch of families. One of the days the boys headed out to the dock to fish while us girls played games on the shore. This is Mark Vest and his son Hayden with Nate and the girls.

With much help Taylor did actually catch a fish. I think once Nate got it on he let her real it in. It was quite the highlight for her.

I love this picture because he had her hold up her princess pole like she used it to catch the fish. That pole has never even had a hook on it. I guess she won't have to know that years later when she sees these pictures.

We took a short bus tour around Fort Stevens the last day we were there. This is right before we loaded on the truck.

After we got situated we took this last picture before setting out. The girls only lasted about 10 minutes later when they passed out after 3 days of camping and bike riding.

Although the quality of this picture didn't turn out so well I had to include it. As Jade got more tired she of coarse wanted to sit with Justin. He put his hat on her to help her fall asleep and when he tried to take it off she pulled it right back on. So this is how they sat for the entire hour long ride.

We went to a rodeo that had a fireworks show that Jade wasn't so fond of. She snuggled in close to me until she realized who was standing behind us.

Our friends the Vern and Nicole Peterson came down and spent the 4th of July weekend with us which was a blast. We went to a rodeo which wasn't the the highlight of their weekend because their 3 year old twins weren't as interested in the rodeo as they had hoped so they ended up spending the evening with two dead weights on their laps. We did have a good time at the Molalla 4th of July parade the next morning. This is Vern with his three boys, Chase and Joseph and Nicholas.

We were smart enough to bring some shade since that is the first to go on the parade route. There happened to be a couple of guys sitting in their car keeping cool behind us so they joined our shady spot.

Here is our little family waiting for things to get started.
After the parade and a quick bite to eat we headed over to the train rides. We all had a good time but Vern and Nicole's twins love trains so they especially loved it, so much we had to go twice. And no, we didn't leave Vern with all those kids on one car.

This last picture was a quick shot after one of Alex and I's soccer games. I have played on an outdoor team in between pregnancy's the last few years and now that Alex is done with high school and club ball she got on my team this summer. It's been really fun playing with her. For those of you who don't know my family, from left to right is my mom holding Taylor, me holding Jade, my brother Cody and my sister Alex.