A little while ago Bryan and I decided we wanted to start spending our Saturdays hiking with the kids. Problem is, it's been pretty cold recently, so we've been pretty bad about making it happen. We finally made it out today, though, and hiked around Occoneechee State Park.  There aren't really mountains in our part of North Carolina, and it's somewhat less gratifying to have a hike with no end view, so Occoneechee was perfect - a 2 mile hike that wasn't too technical for the kids to be able to walk most of the way themselves, which still afforded us a decent view! We had a great time even though it was a bit cold.

Aspen was not super happy but Kal and Ever tried to cheer her up with their nuggles

Kalin picked up a stick and said "Everlie, today we're going to learn to spin sticks, now watch me, it's like this!"

Everlie refuses to let me take her picture, so when I was trying to snap these she just kept closing her eyes just to drive me crazy! 


Aspen 2 Months

I've really enjoyed this past month with you, Aspen. Things have started to settle in to normal, well, as much as they can, and you've started showing us your personality just a bit more. We had Grammy and Papa visit for the first time, and you spent a lot of time sleeping in the wrap carrier as we toured around with them. You just love being swaddled and carried snugly in the wrap, and your still tiny enough that it's not burdensome. I can tell you're getting even stronger, because you are lifting your head up off my shoulder when I burp you now. Momma got really sick this month, and it was such a joy to see your first real smile at me, right after you finished nursing during the middle of one of my worst days (January 12th). Daddy was gone for the entire day, and I wasn't sure how I was going to make it through, but your smile was a light. You've been a bit fussier this month, but I think it's because you've been a little sick, and because we're still just trying to figure you out. Our holding you has definitely got you spoiled, because you aren't really very happy when we put you down. That was another blessing, on my worst day, when I needed you to be ok being set down, you took one of the longest naps you've had out of our arms on record. First I laid you next to me on a pile of blankets on the floor, and we slept a while that way. Then, eventually, I moved you to the rock and play, you sure do love the rock and play - it's definitely where you sleep best. You smiled good for daddy the next day, January 13th, a big smile. The next week was filled with your sweet newfound grin. You're talking a lot more now, too. I like it that you're starting to find your voice. You're also taking at least a slight interest in your toys, and on January 17th you were found swatting your playmat toys for the first time. Uncle "T" also came to visit, and he loved snuggling you any chance he got. You love to be warm, and in the cold winter months I've been especially glad we have your white bear suit, because you seem to sleep like a rock any time we have you bundled up inside it. You also endured your first snowstorm - from the comfort of our home. You still love being swaddled to sleep, and you're growing so big and strong now! You only had two doctor appointments this month, your one month checkup, and your six week, but I also weighed you once on my own! Here's how you measured up:

January 3rd
Weight 9 lbs 6.4 oz

January 11
9 lbs 9.6 oz and 10 lbs 3.2 oz. (Sometimes it's hard to tell on our home scale)

January 22, 2016
10 lbs
Head 38 cm
Length 21"


Aspen 1 Month

We have all loved having a baby in the house again. Having a newborn always makes life a bit chaotic and clouded I think, but because of the time of year Aspen was born, things have been even crazier than I anticipated! Because of that time seems to fly by much faster than I would like for it to. I wish we could just keep you small forever baby girl.

By the end of your first week you were starting to wake up a bit more. You still get hiccups all the time! It must be something that carried over from before you were born, because I noticed your hiccups when you were in my tummy more than I did with the other kiddos. I'm afraid that we're starting to spoil you already, because we can't put you down, and you definitely prefer to be held when you sleep. Even the first night we brought you home daddy slept with you in the crook of his arm, in your "safety spot". You sleep in our bed almost every night, and I love it.  You took to your binky right away. I was devastated to leave you with grandma while daddy came to help me with a photo shoot just the day after we brought you home, but when we came back she was holding you close and you were going to town on your purple pacifier. I was delighted to see that you liked it so much! And since you have continued to take it well. You found our cry around 2 weeks old. You seem to be pretty strong already, and are starting to hold your head up a bit. You also don't seem quite as upset about being on your tummy as your brother and sister always were! Right at the end of the month you were starting to focus on things and follow our voices around a bit. A few funny things are you are great at burping after eating, and you are the blowout queen of the world! You even pooped all over mom, the nurse, and the exam table at one of your weight checks. We had to take you to several weight checks this month, as the doctors were a little concerned about your size. You are just teeny tiny, none of your clothes seem to fit yet! Each time we took you in here is how you measured up:

Nov 28th
5 lbs 13 oz

Dec 2nd
5 lbs 13 oz
19" long
34 cm head circumference

December 4th
6 lbs 1.5 oz

December 9th
6 lbs 9.5 oz
19.25" long
35 cm head circumference

December 16th (at home scale)
7 lbs 6.4 oz

December 22nd
8 lbs 2 oz
19.5" or 20.5" long depending on who measured
36 cm head circumference

You had your first at home bath on December 18th - I'm sorry it was so long!! Grandma Lolli came to visit, and helped as I tried to take your newborn pictures (numerous times, you were quite a champ!) You also celebrated your first Christmas on the day you turned one month old. You slept through it, a lot, and spent some of the time in the wrap carrier (which you tried for the first time on December 2nd). You also got to "play" baby Jesus in our Christmas nativity! The most important thing from this month, though is just to know that mommy, daddy, and your brother and sister love you SO much!


Sleeping Giant Park's been forever since I last wrote on the blog...clearly :) I'm planning some major changes and hopefully lots more updates so that we can keep everyone informed now that we're living so far away, and I regret that it's taken this long to put things in to action! I think I get overwhelmed by the idea of blogging more than anything, so I thought I'd start with something simple, and we'll work in the big updates as we go.

Bryan had a school "break" about two weeks ago, and while we decided to decline a couple of more fun out of town vacations so he could get caught up on studying (which...I'm pretty sure he still wasn't able to do), we still wanted to plan something fun for the break. We decided to go check out one of the state parks that's only about 20 minutes from where we live - a "mountain" of sorts for this area (being from Utah the size of the mountain is pretty laughable, but still!) It's called Sleeping Giant Park because the shape of the mountain is supposed to be a sleeping giant (kind of reminds me of another sleeping person found on top of a mountain...Timpanogos?) I can't really see either of these shapes, though - guess we'll leave that to the more imaginative!

Anyway, before we set out we stopped at McDonald's to pick up some burgers for the Summit Cheeseburger challenge we were clued in to by Jon. ( The short hike was beautiful, and while we probably should have done it a few weeks earlier for the sake of more beautiful fall leaves, the showing of color was still impressive. Kalin really enjoys riding in the BOB, and so he had a great time as well (especially since he got to eat a good portion of my burger - who knew he liked cheeseburgers?!)

I'm not sure what's on his face here...

Wedding Pictures

I just thought it'd be fun to show some of our bridal and engagement pictures - I don't think all of these have made it up on our photographer's blog, so there might be some different ones; and these ones are MY favorite :) I  really loved our photographer, he did a great job and even though I haven't done much with the photos yet (I hate being so busy!) I can't wait to get some of them framed and hung up.

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I know I look kind of...tired in this one, but I still really like it.
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I thought it would be really cool to incorporate some of my "Jerusalem apparel" in our photo shoot - hence the crazy cool dress.
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This is one of my absolute favorites
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