Easter

4.29.2011
Jed found a chocolate filled egg

Last Sunday was Jed’s first Easter. I couldn’t let the day pass without making it at least a little bit memorable. We invited some friends over for a lasagna lunch and an easter egg hunt after church that afternoon. Teenage twins, Bobbie and Carissa, helped us hide about two hundred eggs around the yard. Then we let the kids loose! That was my favorite part. It’s so much fun to see them go wild! I kind of wished I was a kid again—but that’s why I am a mother; I get to relive the best (and worst) parts of childhood. Bron helped Jed find some eggs in the grass and Jed inevitably found the chocolate. It was awesome!

It being so close to Jed’s birthday, Jed opened a few more presents. What can I say? We are party animals. It surprises me how much Jed is loved by everyone we know. I think we are just lucky and know some amazing people.

Finally, we ended the evening with a walk around the farm. I forget what a novelty a farm can be to those who don’t live on one! It was a beautiful afternoon. We couldn’t have asked for a better Easter day.

Enjoy the pictures!

P.S. My friend, Gina, is a very talented photographer. Some of these photos are hers. I’m learning so much from her!

My boys

The Easter Bunny wears tennis shoes!

No Easter would be complete without a basket

        
Bron edited the black and white one.  Pretty good, eh?


Having a sad moment

Chocolate mouth.  This boy makes me laugh.

 
Look at all that personality!

Monday morning...
 
On Monday--the day of Jed's first birthday--I hopped out of the shower and this is what I saw:  Jed sleeping face down on the linoleum!  Poor kid didn't feel well. Jed celebrated his birthday with a fever that lasted three days. I think it was his way of saying he had partied enough.

Jed's 1st Birthday

4.27.2011
Jed's Cowboy Cupcake Tower
Yes, those are cow sprinkles.

I am totally a first-time mom. I got so excited for Jed’s first birthday it was ridiculous. But it was so much fun! Since we don’t have family nearby, I invited all our friends over to celebrate with us. After all, a first birthday is just as much for the parents as it is for the baby, isn’t it? We survived our first year! Jed is still alive. Better yet, he is happy, healthy, and loved more than anyone else I know.

We celebrated Jed’s first birthday on Saturday April 23rd, two days before his actual big day. Jed helped me decorate (in blue and gold) and prepare for the party. He was a fan of the balloons! After his nap, we frosted his cupcakes. I shouldn’t have, but I let him lick a beater. It’s fun to spoil him from time to time.

"Hey, Mom!  This stuff is awesome!"
Must. Get. To. The. Middle.

When all our friends arrived, we got the party started with appetizers followed by pizza and veggies. Jed knew exactly how to entertain: he decided to take his first steps in front of the crowd. We baited him with crackers for more!

"Mmm... Cracker!"
Taking some steps.  I like Roxanne and Natasha's faces.

Then Jed opened his pile of gifts. The kid took home a good haul. Once the tractors and animals were opened, however, it was all over—Jed wanted to play with them! I can’t believe all the great stuff our friends gave him. They were all so generous!

I love Jed's tongue sticking out.  It means he likes it!

Next, it was time for cake. Jed dug right in and snarfed that cupcake up in a matter of minutes. He didn’t even get that dirty! Most of it made it to his mouth. That’s my boy!  (I think the pictures speak for themselves.)


Thanks for letting us celebrate your little life, Jed. You make us happy!

One Year

4.25.2011
Jedediah
Born April 25, 2010
9 lbs. 4 oz. and 22 inches

Dear Jed,

Happy first birthday! You are one year old today! I cannot believe I have been your mother for that long. It seems like forever ago, and yet, just yesterday that I brought you home from the hospital. Back then, you sat like a plop on the couch and just watched us with your wide curious eyes. Those were the days I used to cuddle with you on the couch and just stare at you for hours.

Now, only two words can describe you: Busy Body. You can crawl as fast as the wind and have just as many places to see and explore. I love watching your rear-end waddle as you speed away on all fours. You make more messes than I can keep up with and you are hopelessly attracted to wires of all kinds. Your socks are your favorite toys. You pull your socks off to chew on them. Everything, EVERYTHING, goes into your mouth; or you double yourself over to get your mouth on it. That makes me laugh. You know you’re not supposed to play on the stairs, but if the gate is down, you scurry halfway up as fast as your short legs will allow. That’s when you turn around and wait for Dad or me to come get you. And you just smile and squeal in delight! When we read, I like watching your chubby little finger touch your favorite things. You love baths and you love food. However, vegetables have completely lost their appeal these last few weeks as you have discovered the world has better flavors to offer. You are learning to talk and imitate sounds. You can say “dah” for dog, but you also say it for your cow. You love games, especially peekaboo. You love to rough-house in the evenings and enjoy being tickled and chased. On top of all that, I must mention that you know exactly how to smile and flirt with anybody who gives you attention. You are so cute!

I love being your mother. I have discovered that the more you grow the more fun you become. I enjoy exploring the world through your innocent eyes. Life with you has been hilarious, eye-opening, and rewarding. I cherish every hug and every slobber kiss. I wish I could wrap them up and save them. You are such a good baby boy and always so happy.

Words cannot describe my love for you. This kind of love comes from deep within me and is unconditional. It makes me vulnerable to be hurt, but opens my whole soul to joy! You are my sunshine, Jed. You have changed my life forever. I am so glad you belong to me. Thanks for making us a family.

Love Always,
Mom

April 25, 2011
21 lbs and 31 inches

Needs Constant Supervision

4.20.2011
I want to rename my child.  His name should read: Needs Constant Supervision.  How can someone so small get into EVERYTHING so fast and be so messy?  Well, I suppose if I am going to keep my eye on someone all day, the good news is he is drop dead cute!

I Live and Work on a Dairy Farm

4.18.2011

I live and work on a dairy farm.

If you said that to my teenage self ten years ago, I don’t think I would have believed you. At the time, I lived in San Diego. My biggest concerns were boys, my next lacrosse game, and homework—pretty much in that order.

But life is funny, in a weird way.

It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy, I guess. My favorite animal as a teenager were cows for really no particular reason at all.  Then I married a cowboy. I also never thought I’d ever live in New York again. My dad was in the air force and I was born here. Stranger yet, my first child was born here in New York too. The circle of life; it’s ironic.

Well, I now know more about dairy cows than I ever wanted. Bron and I talk “farming” all the time. My job helps inspire lots of questions.

For instance, my boss was explaining about bloat and what to look for because bloat is a problem on the farm this time of year. She said that I must tap on the calf’s stomach and listen. The calf’s stomach will be firm and sound watery and hollow.

“Like a watermelon?” I asked.

“I don’t know. I’ve never tapped on a watermelon.”

Later, I got to thinking about what a weirdo I am. Who in their right mind asks a question like that? My city girl colors still shine brightly from time to time. They probably just put up with me on the farm because I get the job done and I work weekend nights. That’s right. I work the weekends because we NEED money. Will work for food. And diapers. But I really don’t mind. Because we don’t have extra money, we don’t go out much. My weekdays look much like my weekends. Luckily, we can get together with friends almost any night of the week for a little entertainment. Anyhow, those calves are kinda cute.

But really, in my defense, I CAN ask intelligent questions, like: “Why would too much grain make the calf’s stomach acidic? Is that related to ketosis?”

If you can answer that, I’m impressed. Bron can, in great detail. But that’s what he’s here going to school for. And he’s almost done!  He just passed both his written and oral exams!  Way to go, Handsome!

We’ve lived here in New York for about 22 months now. Now that our stay here is wrapping up, New York is finally starting to feel a little like home. It took me a long time to analyze the idiosyncrasies of the North Country and even longer to accept them. This little corner of the country is a strange place compared with where we’re from, but it’s beautiful in its own right. There are some things I am really going to miss--like the sheer number of trees and how green the world is. I’m going to miss living on the farm and seeing Bron many afternoons for lunch. I’m going to miss my walks with Jed to the barn to see the cows and horses. I’m going to miss our family picnics and swimming at the beach on Lake Champlain. I’m going to miss Creamies and Stewart’s ice cream. I’m going to miss visiting Montreal and all the other amazing places we’ve seen here. But really, I’ll miss a handful of people the most.

There will also be things I won't miss, like the lack of sunshine.  Without exaggeration, we have about ten nice sunny days a month almost every month of the year. I AM DYING WITHOUT SUNSHINE.

I think I’ve learned a lot since we moved here. I feel I’ve gained more confidence and honed new abilities. Bron and I have proved to ourselves that we can make it “on our own”. We are closer now than we were before because we’ve had only ourselves to lean on. We also became a family. That, alone, changed our lives.

I have a feeling that as much as we have resented New York, it will hold a little special spot in our hearts. 

But for now, we don’t know where or what our next move will be, only that it is coming. I think I will just sit back and enjoy my summer living and working here on the dairy farm.

13

4.17.2011
Meet 2080.  Nickname: Princess.
She was born to be a show heifer.

Spring Fever

4.13.2011
Spring has finally arrived!  (Well, mostly.  I am so sick of these overcast skies and rain!)  We've been outside every chance we get.


Isn't that an awesome stroller? My friend gave it to me. I'm so lucky.
Jed looks like a monster next to Karina.

Jed's favorite toys are his cow and this horse. I'm not surprised with all our visits to the farm. 
I'm proud, actually.

Jed is twitterpated with this tiny girl

I babysit this little gal two times a week.  She's eleven weeks old.  Isn't she beautiful?  Jed seems to think so.  He gave her some sweet slobbery kisses.  I've been working with him to be more gentle.  At first I was a little overwhelmed with two babies in the house, but I'm getting better with practice.  It's just BUSY!  However, I must admit, it's super fun to hold such a tiny baby again. 

Note: Maybe someday I will get a life and quite posting so often, but for now, this blog is entertainment and a place to put my many pictures that I will probably never print.  So bear with me.

Babysitting

4.09.2011
A Mid-morning walk down to the barn
If it looks crazy it's because it was crazy!  I couldn't have survived the day without you, Roxanne.

I've had a very busy week.  It seems that I have become the neighborhood babysitter.  Mind you, I am not a free babysitter--except in special circumstances, which did occur this week.  It made me so very grateful for my own health and the health of my family.  I'm glad I can help, even if it is just a little bit. 

Whilst being surrounded by so many little children this week, I had moments when I thought having multiple children of my own would be fun and other moments when I swore Jed would be an only child forever.  Well, I've compromised with myself and concluded that it will just be quite a while before Jed gets a sibling.  So don't get anxious.

12

4.07.2011
Coronado, CA

The Walker

4.06.2011
It's just a matter of time until Jed walks.
In the meantime, I love watching him push this toy across the room.

11

4.04.2011
Drip Drip Drop
A friend invited us over to see how maple syrup is made on her family's farm.

Our Trip Home: Part 3

4.01.2011
Jed with his Great-Grandparents

Finally, last but certainly not least, the last part of our three week trip!

After spending a memorable week with the Nelson family in Idaho, Bron had to attend a conference in Reno. So while Bron got his head back in the game of reality, Jed and I got to spend another week playing with my family in Utah.

It was a mini family reunion! My mom and little brothers picked us up. My sister and her husband drove 13 hours from Arizona as did my Aunt Becky and cousins. And we all stayed at my Aunt Mari’s home in Saratoga Springs, UT. It was a full house! It was the party house! My family is loud. And we eat. A lot. We had a lot of fun eating dessert for breakfast, staying up late, eating popcorn and candy, playing games, watching movies, and just chatting for hours.

Jed used the same high chair my mother ate in!
Jumping on the trampoline made Jed's little face light up and laugh. 

I didn’t take very many pictures of this leg of the trip. I’m disappointed because I didn’t get one picture of my mom and Jed together. My excuse is that I was as sick as a dog; I just didn’t feel like it. Upon arrival, I felt puny and had a cold. A day later it turned into the flu. Jed had a stuffy nose too and I was up an hour or more with him each night because he couldn’t breathe. That was followed by pink eye for us both! “Will it never end?” I thought. Luckily, Jed got the flu shot this year and didn’t get sick with that. And my mom was a great help with Jed while I just felt like falling apart on the couch. So that’s what happened. As great as it was to see family, I was ready for both Jed and I to be home in our own beds. I learned that three weeks is just too long to be gone. Hopefully we will move closer to family soon.

Anyhow, I did feel okay for a few days and had a ton of fun! We visited my grandparents, of course, supported my cousin Kathleen at her track meet, swam in the hot spring pool, and celebrated my Aunt Mari’s 29th (wink wink) birthday. We watched my aunt and cousins dance in a St. Patrick’s Day parade on Saturday and then went shopping for baby clothes. (Needless to point out, my family has many more girls than Bron’s family.)

On Sunday, my Uncle Russ—who is a master chef—put together an Irish feast. We ate the best corned beef I’ve ever tasted! Sunday was a gorgeous day! It was sunny and warm, so we naturally congregated outside.

That's my sister... pregnant!
Meet Carter Wade Thompson.  His real face is due June 22nd.  I am so excited to meet him!
I am impressed.  Prego lady actually got off the ground.  Haha

Butt war!  I remember doing this for hours as a kid.

My brothers: Michael and Ryan

Jeff and Grady
We are an exceptionally skilled family.  We can play badmitton with broken rackets!

On Monday, my grandma reserved a room for the entire tribe at the Brick Oven in Provo where we all had a delicious lunch and could be our loud normal selves. I also got to see my good friend, Nikki! Then we went shopping all afternoon. It was a very successful shopping trip. My aunt babysat Jed for an hour or so and when I got back, she admitted that Jed had eaten ice cream and had his first taste of soda. He was wired! It was so funny.

My cousin Necia with her baby, Traejan (7 weeks)

My Aunt Mari and Aunt Becky with the babies
Traejan, Jed, and Grady
Obviously, there was something cooler than me to look at.

Tuesday I went shopping again with my mom and sister. I loved that. Poor Lauren.  Feeling as big as a whale resigned her to being our style advisor.  I loved standing in the mirror next to her because for the first time in our lives, I am skinnier than she is! (Man, it’s pathetic to compare myself to a pregnant lady!)

Then came the crème de la crème of activities for the week: Pedicures! We went in groups of four. Rachel, Necia, Lauren, and myself were the last to get our nails done. What an experience. It felt sooo good! The chair massaged my back while someone massaged my feet and made them look pretty. I think pedicures should become a family tradition. I’m still admiring my toes!

Pedicures!
Lauren, Toes that would make anyone jealous, and my cousin Rachel and me

So cheers to three weeks with family! We are so happy we got to spend time at home and make some amazing memories because there is nothing more important. I can’t wait to see you all again this summer!

P.S. To any family that possibly might want copies of any pictures, just let me know and I can email them or something.