Archive for the ‘our life’ Category

5 months!

It’s been 5 months since I’ve blogged and that’s got me feeling panicked about trying to recapture all that has happened in the last 5 months.  Fact is that I’m really bad at capturing moments in pictures and then actually writing about them.  Since I don’t keep actual photo albums, I worry that someday my kids will grow up and I’ll have nothing to hand them except for a hard drive and tell them to “go get whatever you want”.  Such is the risk of the digital age, I guess!

So…to recap the last 5 months:

  • Finn started Kindergarten at a private school called Trinity Classical Academy.  He goes 2 days/week and we homeschool the rest (using their curriculum and lesson plans).
  • He recently got tested and it’s been determined that he needs glasses and has a vision disorder.  We expect to start vision therapy in 2018.
  • He and I went to visit my sister & her family in South Carolina for a few days in October.  We got rained out at the beach, but had a wonderful time!
  • He learned to ride a bike without training wheels.
  • Stephen started preschool 3 mornings/week at Little Lamb preschool.  He loves it and sings songs from there all the time.
  • Stephen turned 4 years old.  Which he was obsessed about and told me every day what he wanted “for my next birthday”.  Everyday it was a new list.  Frequent items included a cupholder and a robot that will help him do a handstand without leaning against the wall.
  • Stephen had his Christmas program for preschool and actually sang!  He did great!
  • Both Finn and Stephen are in Cubbies this year and loving it.
  • Sam & Ben are home with me all week.  Both have had a language explosion over the last few months.
  • I continue to be a stay-at-home and Jeff continues to work at Union Pacific, having made it through a big layoff this past Fall.
  • Jeff has been working hard on our deck.  The coating put on by the previous owners was flaking off, so he’s been sanding it off.  It’s taken several weekends and only the “floor” of the deck is left.  We’ll tackle that in Spring.
  • We still don’t have a family picture of all 6 of us!  At least not a decent one.  I hope to fix that this Spring when the weather is nice and we can do an outdoor photo shoot.



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Easter 2017

I kind of forgot that it’s a thing to buy Easter clothes.  So I didn’t.  But I did manage to put them all in jeans.  That’s gotta count for something, right?  Probably not.  Ain’t no shame in my game though.

Here are my boys though!


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How I know he loves me

Being Valentine’s Day and all (Happy Valentine’s Day by the way!), I thought I’d document how I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that my husband, Jeff, loves me.

  • It isn’t the fact that he proposed.
  • It isn’t that he said “I Do” 6 1/2 years ago.
  • It isn’t that he gave me 4 sons.  (4!  All boys!  Inconceivable!)
  • It isn’t that he’s supportive of me staying at home instead of working.

I know he loves me because of the house we live in.  

I’ve written before about the house we’re in. My husband and I were not looking to move.  We had been married almost 5 years and had already moved 3 times, thinking we were in the house we’d live in until our kids were grown and gone.  I had a 2 month old.  And a 1 1/2 year old.  And a 3 year old.

And the fort that’s in our backyard.

See, all last summer – for SEVERAL weekends, he built me a fort.  A gigantic one.  The platform is 7 feet in the air.  The roof is 7 feet above that, so that a grown man can stand up in it with no problem.  The platform is “L” shaped – the longest side is 12 feet long and the shortest side is 6 feet.  It’s LONG and TALL.

We have plans to add onto it in the future – a bucket and pulley system.  A climbing rock wall maybe.  But the bulk of it is done.

This isn’t the case where my husband is a builder by day and thus, had to build on the weekends too.  Oh no. He’s an Electrical Engineer by training (now in management).  This was not in his wheel house.  This is not something he would’ve chosen to do.  He enlisted help from his father, but he easily spent 100+ hours building this thing.  And way more money than we thought!

And it’s because he loves me that he did this.  If it was just love for his kids, he would’ve just bought a swingset (and saved lots of time and money!).  But because he loves me, Jayme, he built this.  The custom fort that I wanted.  The fort that I hope our children love for years.  The fort that they’ve already eaten lunch in many, many days last summer and fall. The fort that they can play board games on when they’re in Elementary school.  The fort that I hope they have sleepovers on when they’re in Jr. High. It’s just awesome and I love it.  And I love him!




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I’m reconfirming my choice to stay at home.  Here’s how it all went down:

Mid-December, I got an email from a company:

“Dear Jayme…in looking at your profile on LinkedIn, you seem really cool with mad skillz that we’d like to have at our company.  Do we have what it takes to make you look at us?”

My reply:

“Dear company…you seem cool.  I’ve heard good things about you.  And you’re right – I am awesomeness.  The total package.  But I love my life and would only want to work part-time.  Thanks for thinking of me.”

Their reply:

“Hey, part-time could work.  We’d do whatever it takes to make you love us.  Come on in.”

So I did.  Did an interview.  They loved me.  A couple of weeks later, they asked for another interview, with the owners of the company (it’s a small company).  So I went. It went down like this:

Them: “Hey Jayme…you ARE awesome.  We could totally make part-time work.  But I don’t think you’d accept the position that we had posted, amiright?”

 Me: “Yeah, you’re right. You’re a great company.  It’s a good position.  It’s just not where I want to go.”

Them: “We have many needs. Would you rather do position A?  Or position B?  Or position C?  How about we set you up with an interview of some others that work here so you can see how cool we really are?”

Me: “Okay, those jobs sound cool.”

Them: “By the way, how much are you looking to make?”

Me: [tells them what I used to make, clarifying that I had been full-time]

Them: “Great.  Well, expect an email from us!”

The next day I thought more about it.  It IS a great company.  The potential positions seemed good.  The timing for my family was just horrible.  I just wasn’t excited. Don’t get me wrong: I was excited about being wanted.  About being told that I got skillz.  That’s really nice.  But, I decided that, if offered, the soonest I’d start would be June.  I wasn’t out looking.  I don’t need to work.  I had been hoping that I wouldn’t really like the position or the pay (so that it’d be an easy decision).  Jeff was supportive of it, but wasn’t excited about it.  The timing was horrible.

But instead of the email for another interview, I got a “Thanks, but no thanks” email.  It flabbergasted me.  I imagine it was about money since things were good until then.  But who knows?  Maybe I’m bad at reading people.

Either way, it was a RELIEF.  I was relieved that I didn’t have to make a Yes/No decision.  I don’t know that I’ll be a Stay At Home Mom forever, but, at least for now, it’s what I want.

Lesson learned.  Decision reconfirmed.

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December 2016

Okay, December 2016 isn’t officially over yet, but let’s pretend that nothing momentous is gonna happen in the next few days and this is a “good enough” recap.  I’m loving “good enough” these days!


  • Ben turned 6 months old!
  • We got our first snow — well, enough snow to play in without being enough snow to make the roads a mess.
  • Finn had his Christmas program at his preschool.
  • We had Christmas!
    • We had my sister’s side of the family over a couple of days before Christmas for a “Cousin Christmas”, having spent the morning at Bounce U and then we ate pizza and opened gifts that night.
    • We went to Jeff’s side of the family for Christmas day.  No snow at all!  Weather was rainy in fact.  Not very cold, but windy.
    • The most fought over gift was Stephen’s new toothbrush.  Who knew?!
    • Big highlights: Finn got a real bike (with training wheels).  Stephen got a balance bike.  All the boys got a bounce house/inflatable.
  • Finn’s diet changes & chiropractor treatments are going really, really well.  More about that later, but I’m very happy with some of the differences we’re seeing.  Definitely not out of the woods yet, but major progress is being made.
  • Almost all of us got a cold or something.  Ben had it the worst; his cough lasted for a couple of weeks and really messed with his sleeping schedule.
  • We spent a lot of time in our pajamas – with sickness, days off school, no places to go.  So nice!
  • Jeff had several days off towards the end of the month.  A full day off here.  A half day off there.  It was nice!  We even got in a couple of afternoon movie dates!
  • We had some financial setbacks:
    • Our clothes washer died.
    • Our furnace got “twitchy” and needed some TLC.
    • The check engine light went on for the van.  $1200 later…

Some pictures:


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When you feel like a novice

6 1/2 years now I’ve been cooking for a husband.  Which means very little cereal for supper.

4 1/2 years now I’ve been cooking for at least 1 kid (well, more like 4 years since Finn didn’t eat solids right at birth).

And yet,this past week, 5 out of 7 of the dinners I’ve prepared have been miserable disasters.  3 times we ran out for fast food, given the time frame we had.  Another time we had cereal.  The fifth time, we ate what we wanted (mostly green beans and watermelon) and left the rest.

Oh boy.  It’s not that I don’t have time.  It’s not that I don’t have skills in the kitchen.  It’s not that I don’t have the desire. It’s that we’re trying new things nutritionally and it has me all in a tizzy.  I’m trying recipes that I’ve never made before.  We’ve removed ingredients from our diet that I realized go into a lot of my recipes (I’m looking at you tomatoes!).

I feel like a doofus.  Luckily, Jeff is understanding about it.  Especially when I have to make 2-3 trips to the grocery store when I realize that I don’t have all the ingredients that I thought I had.  And when lunch consists of nachos.  Not the fancy nachos, but nachos that are essentially chips, cheese and beef.

It’s been a rough week in the kitchen!

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Our October 2016

I’m pretty good at updating facebook.  And sometimes, Instagram with things that we do.  But I’m really bad at updating my blog.  Which is a bummer because it’s an easier platform to search.  So here’s some quick updates on our October 2016, in no particular order:

KC Chiefs game

As we’ve done every year since we’ve been married (I think), Jeff and I went to Kansas City with his family to see a game. We just go for the day, but it’s kind of a big deal to us – getting babysitters (we got 2 this year!) and being able to just be husband & wife for the day.  It’s fun!





#1: The older 3 boys and I had an event at Finn’s preschool which fell right into Ben’s naptime, so Papa Bill babysat him.  I came home to Ben asleep on Papa’s lap, listening to jazz music on his phone.

#2 & #3: We played bed switcheroo as Sam was ready to get out of the crib.  We gave him Stephen’s bed since it has built in guardrails and will eventually be the top bunk to Finn’s bed.  Sam was thrilled!  Stephen, however, was not.

#4: Playing in the dirt!  You’re supposed to grow flowers there, but I grow boys.

#5: That’s how they get dirty.  Stephen looks upset, but he was quite happy.  Not so happy about the bath though.

#6: After a long day playing outside, Stephen just conked out.  So cute!

#7: I’m trying my hand at making my own bread — this was my first loaf!

#8: Tic-Tac-Toe.  Finn’s learned how to play, so we play often.  Most games end in a tie.

#9: You know I’m vacuuming because he’s vacuuming.  As soon as I get out the vacuum, he gets out the toy one.  All boys have done this so far.


#1: On days that I have MOPS, we pack a lunch before MOPS.  Finn’s in charge of putting the ice in the cooler.

#2:Then we eat it in the church foyer as we only have 45 minutes between the end of MOPS and the beginning of pre-school.  Great time saver!  I’ve told the boys it’s a “picnic”.

#3:Breakfast with dad!

#4: Lunch on the fort!

#5: Building with Stephen’s new train set expansion.

#6: My boys!

#7 & #8: Playing with “waffle blocks”, which we call “Roads”.  Sam, in particular, is getting better at not destroying what they’ve created.

#9: Sam eating his first apple crisp!  He loved it – especially the ala mode part.


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