Privacy please

I guess it's an unspoken rule that when you become a parent personal space and privacy are no longer privileges you'll enjoy for a few years to come.

I posted this picture on Instagram a couple of months ago because I thought it was funny.  Seriously, this is what happens when I close the bathroom door to shower if Denver is awake and I don't put him in the bathroom with me (pardon the scratches on the door, at some point there was a puppy put in the bathroom for a short period of time who did not like being closed in).

To capture the full magic of this scene you have to know that it is accompanied by a soundtrack of loud crying and a sister saying "Denver, Mom needs some privacy!" just before she barges through the door and pulls back the shower curtain (to my shock and surprise EVERY time, you'd think my central nervous system would be prepared for what is coming after three or four months of this) to tell me Denver is crying.

Additionally though this is what happens when I'm drying my hair in the mornings or any time I am sitting...(if Denver sees a lap, he's capitalizing on it)

And this when I am cooking, cleaning, walking, or doing anything in general that consists of standing...

(Let's just ignore the fact that I'm the kind of parent that takes pictures like this when their kid is clearly in dire straights just wanting to be held or near them...I can report though that after each of these I did pick him up because, well, how can you not with that sweet little face?)

I am not going to lie, it is so very exasperating at times to not have any privacy and just get a couple of minutes to myself to practice good hygiene, get dressed, or take a step without tripping or having to pick someone up.  On the flip side though it is also nice to know that there are two little people who like me so much that wherever I am and whatever I'm doing they feel the need to be there too. 

I am confident that in the future I will long for these days when I did not have to ask for hugs, kisses, cuddles, and probably I'll even miss being a human jungle gym.  

That being said I'm pretty sure I'll easily adjust to not having a light heart attack every time I bathe.


Back to school

It's here - the first day of school.  Annie started today at Sangre Ridge Elementary, a school that has 200 more kids in it than my entire school district ever had. Needless to say it was hard to decipher who was more nervous - her or I.

Anxiety faded last night though when we met her teacher and saw her classroom.  I was reassured after getting in the school that in all actuality it was not the size of an aircraft carrier with a complex grid and city within itself that my child would just become a faceless, factionless number in (yes, these are the weird, unrealistic things that formulate in my mind but I'm going to put part of the blame on the fact that I just finished the book Divergent).  Annie on the other hand, had more realistic fears, which thankfully were quickly relieved when she saw there were still centers and toys for her to learn from (it is pre-K after all).  

We also realized that she already knew four of the kids in class so her declaration the day before of "I'm going to cry" turned into "go ahead and go Mom" this morning at drop off. 

So I did, all the while hoping I'll be able to remember the intricate details of student pick-up this afternoon which appear to be similar to airport procedures complete with the name card for your passenger.


Fun Frontier

For grins and giggles we decided to go to Frontier City last week.  

The W's were staying with Nana and Papa so we met them in the city so they could join in on the fun.  

First ride up was the ship and after our group watched it go once Philip and I were only able to convince Willow to join us on it. 

(The blur of this photo totally adds to the authenticity and gives the feel of the rocking motion of the ride, right?)

To motivate the other two we headed for what appeared to be a milder ride in the children's part of the park - spinning espresso cups.   Yes, you read that right, they were not tea cups like at a Disney park and the experience was like the difference between coffee and espresso, much more severe.

The mild appearance of this ride and its location in the kiddie section of the park was very deceptive as the large bruise on my knee and the horrible nausea episode I experienced afterward can attest to. After that I made the executive decision the next ride should be one the kids could go on by themselves.  

The Produce Express (my own inventive name for it - do you see the size of those carrots?) seemed to be a good option. Large vegetables, slow moving train...how exciting.

Needless to say we'd had a mediocre start to our amusement park adventure (seriously I could have walked and beat this train in a race at the pace it was keeping had I not been fighting a now bum knee and the urge to regurgitate my lunch) but we kicked it up a notch and moved on to an impressive magic show.  

That is to say, if you are impressed by a man who turns on a spout & water sprinkles out after he says "Let it rain!"

Willow's face says it all. #notimpressed

So we pressed forward and hit up the Renegade Rapids because:

1) by definition renegade means rebel and clearly that's what a group that consists of a grandmother, 9 month old, two 30-something's, 5 year-old, and two 4 year-olds is 
2) in all actuality adults could ride with kids and at this point only Willow was brave enough to try anything and if we were going to get our money's worth and let them truly experience the fun of an amusement park we needed to increase the boldness of our other participants.

It worked. They loved it.  I chose a seat that was just nearly dry when I rode with them the first time thinking I would be just that when I got off.  I was wrong.  We were all soaked which made it that much more "AWESOME" to the kids.  

Nana was a good sport & rode twice in a row.

Denver was very limited in his choice of rides because to ride nearly any of them (even in an adult lap) a baby must be able to take three unassisted steps.  Oddly enough he had just the day before taken his first two unassisted steps. However, three was the magic number and don't think you are going to get any leeway with teenagers who are the gatekeepers of these rides.  Fear not America - if the youth working at Frontier City is any indication of our future law and order will certainly abound.

It didn't seem to bother him though.

After the rapids all the kidlets were on board to ride the various amusements and they really began to have fun.

We even found a train that went around the whole park that Denver could enjoy too (no step requirement necessary!).

The highlight for the three oldest appeared to be the mini roller coaster.

For Denver it was his initial taste of lemonade.

Everyone had a good time and surprisingly this group of renegades closed down the park. It was a late evening but one that left us happily exhausted.

Or maybe, as Willow's expression shows, slightly delirious from the excitement and fun of it all...



This summer our littles have been kickin' it old school on a retro metal swingset that would fall into the vintage category in this day and age.  

They must be old souls though because couldn't be happier.



All of the sudden it's August.  How did that happen?

I had all kinds of lofty goals I was going to achieve this summer and the majority of those have become lofty goals I'm going to achieve this fall but then that's pretty much the way things go around here.

We were dealt a good hand and have had a great summer that has included lots of experiences and growth for all.

Annie had a couple of sleepovers - one being two nights in a row in another town after which she proudly declared "I wasn't ever scared and didn't miss you because it was so quick."

I had mixed emotions with this little step of independence (two nights away and I begin to panic about sending her off to college - someone hand me a bag to breathe into!) but am proud she is comfortable being away from us for short periods of time.  She also added some new places to her "where I've been list" and is now constantly pointing out Abraham Lincoln to us.  

Her maturity these last few months has brought some challenges as she's begun to test some boundaries and question why about a lot of things and now requires more of an explanation than "that's just the way it is."  

While Philip and I remain the authority on all things (even if she disagrees with our decision), my sense of fashion and taste in clothes has become increasingly off-the mark.  This should make back-to-school shopping in the next couple of weeks interesting.

Denver is currently "speed crawling" (he can match just about any stride with how fast he's gotten on his hands and knees), cruising, and is thisclose to walking on his own.


Through the summer he has started eating some solids and unlike the refined palette that Annie has developed of loving only chicken nuggets, PBJ, corn dogs, and desserts, he likes just about anything we give him.

He loves to talk and laughs at everything.  His chattering now includes a definite Dadda, a close sounding Momma, and something that we assume means Annie.  He may be little - but he's loud and makes sure we know he's around.

I'm convinced he's trying his hardest to experience a concussion before his first birthday. 

He climbs on everything and may be beginning to think his name is actually "No Denver" because he usually turns around and smiles (see next picture) when he hears that and goes right back to whatever MacGyver move he's doing at the time. 

We've caught him mid-fall more than once this summer and it's not unusual to see him on his tiptoes trying to grab something or hanging off the back of some piece of furniture.

Their lazy summer days have consisted of park playdates, attending the church co-op, story hour at the library, and swimming with friends.

Annie is always watching out for him and loves every last bit of him but now that he's mobile has begun to see what having a little bother is REALLY like. 

She's okay with it. :)

Long holiday weekends, staying up late, vacations, ice cream, swimming, road trips...summer is so fun.

All the beautiful photography in this post (and on the sidebar and heading of the blog) was done by the lovely Leida Schimmer of Leida Schimmer Photography.  She's the best.



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I'm blessed with fun days, happy moments, & precious memories...this is where I store some of them.