Jed's First Tee Ball Season

6.30.2016
^^The Orange Grasshoppers vs. the Red Gators.  Friends and neighbors playing against other friends and neighbors.
Jed, Wyatt, Brennan, Piper, and Ally^^ 

This year, we have officially entered into new territory as parents: the busy shuttle from one extracurricular activity to another.  Thankfully, we're entering in slowly with just one child or when opportunity permits, allowing Levi to do lessons at the same time--like we did all winter with swimming lessons.  It's been a bit of a shock to my routine as a mother.  I'm accepting my new responsibilities like I'm carefully wading into a cold pool.  When the water painfully hits my waist, I know I need to just get it over with and dive in.  In reality, I'm still resisting that last head-first dive into the pool; I'm not quite ready to commit myself to afternoons in the car running from activity to activity.  I'm not sure I want to be that busy!  But I know my days are numbered.  It's happening right under my nose.  I'll admit, however, all these new things that my children are learning to do is kind of exciting.  It's even a little bit fun!

This spring Jed started his first tee ball season!  Jed wound up on the Orange Grasshopper team with two of our neighbors, including his best friend Brennan.  Jed was sooo excited!  The season began with a few practices in May and then turned into games every Tuesday and Thursday evening throughout the month of June.  These little guys, ages five to seven, were often painful to watch.  Spacing out in the outfield picking their noses, tackling the ball, skipping bases--you name it, they did it!  The kids made us cringe and laugh.  However, by the last week, they were starting to understand the game and even managed to make a few good plays!

Third Baby Bumpdate: 18 Weeks

6.22.2016

I figure it's about time for a little pregnancy update.  Though this pregnancy is flying by at lightning speed, I still have lots of thoughts and symptoms and plenty to talk about.  So hang on!

How far along: 18 weeks plus some.  Officially five whole months along.  Helloooo baby bump!

Size of baby: Approximately 5.5 inches and 5 ounces.  However, I like to explain baby's size in more tangible terms for the little boys.  I love my Ovia pregnancy app for this!  This week it says baby is the size of a slingshot or a sweet potato.

Maternity Clothes: Yup!  I've been dipping into my red duffel bag where all my maternity clothes are kept more and more often.  And I've been living in a couple of dresses I splurged on from Pink Blush Maternity.  I cannot believe how fast I "popped" this time.  I mean, I know I stick straight out there during pregnancy, but gee whiz!  I'm actually really enjoying watching this belly grow.  It's crazy how fast a woman's body changes when she's pregnant!

Stretch Marks: No new ones... yet.

Belly Button in or Out: Sticking out!

Weight Gain: About 12 pounds.  Maybe more now that I just stuffed my face with delicious chocolate ice cream all weekend!

Sleep:  Sleeping well with a pillow between my knees, needing at least 9 hours of shut-eye, and having the most vivid and crazy dreams!  I once dreamed that I made out with Leonardo DiCaprio.  Fortunately, Bron is a much better lover.  :)  And in another dream I dressed up in a hot dog costume, bun and all.  I zipped it up like a sleeping bag and waddled around.  So strange.  

Farewell Call! (And Some Thoughts on Parenting)

6.20.2016
^^All six handsome Nelson brothers.  They share a close, unique and special bond and actually enjoy getting together.  I feel so fortunate to have married into this good looking, fun, hard-working, family.^^

These last two weekends have been spent in good 'ol Ririe, Idaho getting Bron's youngest brother, Call, ready to leave on a two year LDS mission to the Albuquerque, New Mexico area.  We're really going to miss Call!  He's everyone's favorite uncle, has an unpretentious sense of humor, and is all around just a good kid.  Ahem, I mean adult now.  He is 18 after all.

Last weekend we rounded up the entire Nelson crew to attend Call's first experience through the Rexburg Temple.  I really cannot describe how special it was to have the entire family there gathered together: parents, brothers, and all their wives.  It was almost like we got a little sneak peek at what heaven might feel like.

Kaui: Part III Waimea Canyon

6.16.2016

Last, but certainly not least, was our last day spent in Kauai.  We finally left the North side of the island and ventured to the South and West.  We wanted to check out Waimea Canyon, also known as the Grand Canyon of the Pacific.  The South side of the island was dryer and reminded me much more of the Hawaii I knew for three years as a kid.  As we climbed to the top of the peaks that overlook the canyon, we were not disappointed!  See for yourself!  I love the colors of the green growing on top of the red rock.  Mix in some steep cliffs and waterfalls and it's eye candy for the soul.  Truly something else.  

Kauai: Part II The Queen's Bath, Secret Beach, and Kayaking

6.12.2016
^^View of Hanalei Bay at sunset on a rainy day^^

The rest of our week in Kauai is a giant blur of exploration, food, and good old fashioned fun. If you know Bron very well, you know he likes to go-go-go!  He wore me out.  After the sun went down, I passed out in our king-sized bed by 9PM every night.  (I blame pregnancy for that too.)

We stayed in a one-room apartment at the Hanalei Bay Resort where there were pools and a hot tub, tennis courts, and a fire pit with a view.  Sooo relaxing!  It was located on the north side of the island where it rains a lot more often, but is other-worldly in its greenery and beauty.  Plus, we kind of fell in love with the quaint little town of Princeville where we shopped and ate most of our meals.  The people were so friendly and it just radiated a vibe that made us want to move there and stay forever!

On Tuesday morning we searched out The Queen's Bath, a natural tide pool made of lava rock.  We knew it would be low-tide and therefore most likely safe for us to swim.  It was just a ten minute hike past some waterfalls and across lava rock... and it didn't disappoint!  The Queen's Bath was so cool!  The tide pool was deep enough to jump into.  And every once in a while a big wave would crash over from the ocean and into the pool.  But the best part was all the little fish we could see and swim around with!    

Kauai: Part I Kalalau

6.10.2016

How do I even begin describing our trip?  It was literally full of rainbows, countless waterfalls, and chickens.    

It all started back around the new year.  Finances had lined up and it just seemed like the right time to book that vacation both Bron and I had been dreaming about and make it into a reality!  In all of Hawaii, Kauai has the reputation as the adventure island: plenty of hiking, kayaking, and places to explore.  It wound up being a perfect fit for the way Bron and I like to vacation!  The island was unpopulated and quaint with cute little shops and local restaurants and beaches with hardly anyone on them!  It was very laid back and stunningly beautiful.

In fact, the very stunningly beautiful Napali coast line is exactly where we began our vacation adventures.  Steep green mountains jut out of the Pacific Ocean creating a primitive eye candy scene like I've never laid eyes on before.  We hiked it, all ll eleven miles in to a gorgeous and historically sacred beach area known as Kalalau that cannot be accessed any other way.  No boats.  No planes.  Only on foot.  (Unless one breaks the law, which we actually saw happen.)  But since we're law-abiding citizens, we procured a permit and began our hike the morning after we flew in.

We flew in on a Saturday night after the sun had set and rented a convertible mustang.  Woohoo!  (Apparently, everyone rents those while in Hawaii.  Haha.)  We couldn't see a thing as we drove along the dark coastal highway, but I could smell the salty ocean and feel the humid breeze.  The blanket of night was such a tease!  I was sooo excited to SEE what was the island had in store for us the next morning.  I wasn't disappointed.  In fact, I was awoken by a rooster's crows just as the sun began to rise.  The whole island is overrun by wild chickens!  Such a funny surprise.        

A Day in the Life 2016

6.07.2016

Welcome to the fourth annual "A Day in the Life" post!  Though it may have been late in the month, I still managed to document a fairly typical day around the Nelson home before May was over and school got out.  Whew!  Pregnancy morning sickness has been kicking my butt, but I knew documenting a day would be worth it.  These yearly posts have come to mean a lot to me because someday I'll forget; someday I'll forget what life was like with just my two little boys when Jed was in kindergarten.  It's been a wonderful school year for sure and I'm anticipating that next year will look completely different!  So please, take a peek at what Wednesday May 25, 2016 looked like here on the home front.

Rub a Dub Dub. Twenty-One Kids in a Chlorinated Tub.

6.06.2016

Summer has officially arrived!  Finally.  That last week of school (okay, maybe almost the entire month of May) was a killer.  Why do schools even bother to stay in session past Memorial Day?  I'm telling you, it's dumb.  The routine.  The homework.  I was ready to throw it all out the window because the sunshine, water, fresh fruit, and popsicles were calling!

I know I wasn't the only one who felt this way because all of us neighborhood moms were on board to the idea of a summer kick-off party on Friday afternoon.  Dani kindly hosted the rumpus in her backyard.  Everyone wore their swimsuits and brought water guns and towels.  There were even some water balloons!  And of course, snacks alongside an endless supply of popsicles.