Sunday, May 31, 2009

berry fun

one thing that i love about summertime is FRUIT! the fruit is so yummy! my mouth is watering just thinking about their sweet, juicy goodness!


one thing i especially love is B.E.R.R.I.E.S!

lala berries focus

in oregon we were able to go out and pick our own berries at a fraction of the price that you'd pay in the stores. unfortunately, we don't have that luxury here in the high desert, but we can still enjoy the sweet, succulent store bought berries.


on saturday i went to costco and came home with strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries, all of which were NOT on my list, but they were calling my name and saying, "take me home!" so i did! we've already eaten half of the berries in our cereal and our salads and just by the handful!


berries aren't only good for eating, but apparently, as my girls demonstrated this afternoon, they are also fun to play with!

lala focus

i grew up doing this with olives, but never raspberries! raspberries work just as well and they look much prettier and taste much better!


nani, our budding photographer, wanted to take pictures of her sisters. so, after capturing the above images, i handed her the dslr and let her have at it! i was so proud of her! she set this picture up all on her own! she told them where to stand and how she wanted their hands! as you can see by the smiles on their faces, they were having a great time, too:


so, to all my berry pickin' friends back in oregon, pick some extra berries for us this year and think of us eating our store bought, over priced berries while you enjoy your freshly picked, very inexpensive berries!


and to all of you,

 have a berry yummy summer!

(i feel like i just read that out of a strawberry shortcake book!)



Thursday, May 28, 2009

i could get used to this....

tuesday was our first official day of summer break .


this is what i woke up to:




breakfast in bed at, you saw it, 10:27 am!


it doesn't stop there! After i finished my breakfast i walked past the girls bedroom and saw this:


bed made without even being asked!


then i saw this:

nani reading

i love that nani can read books to her sisters!


i was a bit worried about having all 4 of the girls home all day everyday, but i think i could get used to this!! couldn't you??


happy summer!

Monday, May 25, 2009

i'm proud to be an american


earlier this week i put my patriotic music player on my blog to get us in the spirit for memorial day. it has been such a blessing for us in our home. the girls listen to the songs over and over.


one day i was cleaning the bathrooms in the back of the house. when i was finished i walked to the front of the house to hear "i'm proud to be an american" blaring, and i mean loud, from the computer. i walked into the room and saw three of our daughters dancing and singing along. i watched silently. when the song was over they quickly ran to the computer to start the song over and they began singing and dancing, again!


i've thought about this scene many times this week and it makes me smile and reflect. the image of our girls singing:

"i'm proud to be an american, where at least i know i'm free.

and i won't forget the men who died, who gave that right to me.

and i gladly stand up, next to you and defend her still today

cause' there ain't no doubt i love this land, God bless the USA!"

...brings joy to my heart.

joy to know that my girls are free to sing about freedom.

joy to know that we are blessed to live in the promised land.

joy to see the smiles and the happiness that our girls know.

joy to know that we are free to worship as we please.

joy to know that we are free from oppression.

joy to know that we live in peace.

joy to know that we can choose for ourselves.

joy to know that i can hug and kiss my girls each night before they go to bed.

joy to know that i will see their smiling faces when i wake up in the morning.



my joy is full!


i know that nani has been thinking a lot this week about our freedom and how it came to be that we are free. and i know that it is because of the patriotic music that we have had playing in our home every day that she is thinking about our freedom.


saturday night, nani and i had the opportunity to attend a special activity day dinner together. on our way there she said, "mommie, i'm sad for the kids whose daddy's are gone to war. and i'm sad for the kids whose daddy's and the mom's whose husbands were killed while fighting." she understands the cost of our freedom. she knows that it wasn't free!


so, this memorial day, let's remember those who fought for our freedom and those who continue to fight to preserve it! and let's thank God that we have it!


Sunday, May 24, 2009

never a dull moment


this third child of ours is really quite something! and when i say "quite something" i mean sometimes i just don't know what to do with her! half the time i want to be mad at her and the other half i can't help but roll my eyes and laugh!


let me just give you some examples of what this little 2 1/2 year old is up to these days:



let's start with today at church! she provided great entertainment value during sacrament meeting. first, about half way through the meeting she informed us, "me don't want mine dress on!" of course we tell her that she needs to keep it on because she can't be naked at church. but she insists, "but me don't want mine dress on!" next thing i know she has taken her arms out of the sleeves and the neck of the dress is down around her chest. mitch and i roll our eyes at each other with a grin and help her back into her dress.


i guess she got bored again because several minutes later. she left our pew and prostrated her cute little self on the floor in the middle of the aisle. she wasn't disturbing anyone so i just watched her out of the corner of my eye. next thing i know, she is making "snow angels" in the middle of the aisle. again, i chuckle to myself and decide that because she is being quiet i'll just let her be. then she lifts her cute little feet above her head flashing her princess panties to everyone. that is where i drew the line! i tried to grab her, without making a scene (not possible) and she starts screaming! mitch exits the chapel with her! if anyone was bored by the speaker, at least kawena was there to provide some comic relief!


after church the nursery leader came up to me and said, "i just have to tell you that i love having your daughter in nursery with us!" to which i say, "well, i'm glad to hear you saying that instead of something else!" then she proceeded to tell me, "today, she didn't seem to want to keep her dress on!"  oh great! she was streaking her naked little body in the nursery!

kawena bubble


kawena is a very picky eater, unfortunately! tonight while mitch was making dinner she told us, "me is starfing!" once the missionaries (we were feeding them tonight) arrived and we were all sitting around the table we dished up her dinner. she looked at it and said, "me don't like that!" after sitting there for about 5 minutes she starts pushing her chair away from the table and announces, "me not hungry!" oh? i thought you was "starfing"!

kawena lolli


so, she is potty trained at night now. you may think this is great. well, yes and no! it's wonderful because she doesn't need diapers! there is a catch though!


she will wake up on her own and go potty, BUT then she seems to think she is done sleeping! we're talking about 2 or 3 in the morning, people! that is so not cool! twice last week she went into her sister's bedroom and woke them up. the first time she couldn't find her bear's "rainbow blankie". so, she woke nani up, who was so sweet to actually get up out of bed at 3  am to help her find it. that same morning after nani went back to bed, kawena didn't! i found her at 5 am asleep on the rug in the hallway outside nani and kale'a's door.


last night mitch was up with her 3 or 4 times. after she went potty, she came into our room and wouldn't go back to her bed. mitch kept telling her that she need to go back to bed and she kept saying, "but me don't take naps!" (we think that she thinks that going to bed at night is taking a nap??? who knows!) the fourth time was because she couldn't find her blankie. so, mitch got up to help her. apparently, earlier she had gone into the girls room again, waken kale'a up this time, and left her blanket in there and that is why she couldn't find it!


and she wonders why she is so tired all day!!? hmmm??



as much as i want to be mad at her, i can't! she is just so stinkin' cute and funny!  the other night mitch said, "kawena, i am really going to miss you when you are older!" it is so true! i am going to miss her cute little 2 1/2 year old voice and all of the funny things she says when she isn't talking like this anymore! i sure hope that when we die and go to heaven that we can replay these moments when our kids are young and watch them over and over again!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

 four time zones


3222 miles


too far away









i'm missing my sister today!


(pictures taken, by mom *thanks*, on her last visit in feb. after mahea was born. these were taken at 1 a.m. the morning she left)

week 19: blurb photo book




"I am submitting this photo into the Blurb Book photo contest. I am granting I ♥ Faces permission to use my photo in a printed version of a book for commercial use and possibly advertising of a photo book on both the Blurb and I ♥ Faces web sites."

Sunday, May 10, 2009

"mother i love you, mother i do....

"Father in heaven has sent me to you

when i am near you i love to hear you

singing so softly that you love me too!

mother i love you i love you i do!"

~children's hymbook



i wish i could be with you so that i could hear you tell me that you love me (although, i am sure i will hear it on the phone when i talk to you later, it would just be nice to hear it while you hug me!)


now that i am the mother of 4, as you are, i understand more fully the challenges of motherhood in a way that i never did before. i am grateful for your example that i now rely upon to raise our children!


as i watch you interact with our daughters i see the qualities that made you such a great mom!



you love to do crafts with our girls and help them to be creative. you see their potential and you encourage them to express what is in their hearts!


tutu's visit_Mar042008_0068

you teach them the importance of good nutrition.


pickin with tutu

you teach them to work for the good things in life.



you comfort them when they are scared or hurt.



you teach them how to bake and cook.


tutus and girls

you laugh with them and let them know that they are funny.



you stimulate their minds and play games with them.



you show them how to be kind and nurture one another.


tutu's visit_Mar052008_0038

you read to them so they will have a love for reading.


tutu's visit_Mar042008_0060

you love them and they love you back.


i see all of these things, and much, much more, that you do for your granddaughters and i know why i turned out the way i did...


because from day one you believed in me and you taught me to reach for the sky, to set my sights on the stars and to believe that i could do anything that i wanted to if i would just believe in myself.  you taught me what i needed to know in order to succeed.


you've given so much so that i can have so much!


but even more than all of this, you shared your testimony of Jesus Christ with me that i might know Him. and because of that, i know that i can accomplish  anything that i set out to  achieve if i just trust in Him.


and that is the greatest gift you could have given me!



(does my head look huge in this picture, or what?! it must be because i am closer to the camera, right??!)


thank you, mom, for continuing to bless my life!


"i love you forever, i'll like you for always.

as long as i'm living my mommie you'll be!" (and through the eternities!)


happy mother's day!



your eldest daughter

Thursday, May 07, 2009

it's ours!

we are the proud new owners of a 1 acre lot in rio rancho, nm!


we thought long and hard before we decided that this was the location for our next home! rio rancho is where mitch works. right now we live in albuquerque, 22 miles away from work.  the commute is about 30 minutes each way which means we have 1 hour less a day with mitch. we don't like less time with daddy!


we found this property back in august when his job flew us out here for a "land hunting" trip. we knew we loved it the moment we stood on the property and looked at the view. it sits high on a ridge overlooking rio rancho and albuquerque to the east and open prairie to the west (talk about gorgeous sunsets!). the view is about 300 degrees unobstructed! A.W.E.S.O.M.E.!


this is what we will be able to see everyday to the southeast of our home:


i was standing at the back of the property looking toward the street when i took this picture. the green roofed house (the "eye sore") is at the street.


to the west is wide open prairie, at least until people start building there (there are a few house out there already):


i am standing at the back edge of the property looking down from the top of the ridge to the west (we're thinking four wheelers in the future???!)


if the view wasn't enough to sell us on the property, the close proximity to mitch's work was:


the black blob under the arrow is where mitch goes to work 5 days out of the week. it is a 5 minute drive! i can't wait to have lunch with my hubby everyday again, we've missed that! that's rio rancho, albuquerque and the sandia mountains in front of us!


and you should see the twinkling lights at night! quite a sight!


we are getting a topo map done next week of the property and then my dad will get to work on designing our new home! we're so excited!!

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

week 17 "hats"


feelin' kinda yucky the last couple days so i didn't get my camera out to take this weeks photo. i did, however, dig through my archives of photos and found this picture of kawena to enter into this weeks i heart faces contest:




Sunday, May 03, 2009

baptism and blessing

april 11th was a very special day for our family. it was the day that our oldest daughter, nani, was baptized and our youngest daughter, mahealani, was given a name and a blessing. it was a wonderful "family" day. because nani was the only child being baptized from our ward, we were able to combine the baby blessing with the baptism. it was a very unique situation that we had a child old enough to be baptized just as a new member of the family was born!


nani was able to pick all of the speakers and the songs and i made the programs. on the front of the program we had this picture of the two girls:

nani mahea close

and written under it was the fourth article of faith:

"We believe that the first principles and ordinances of the Gospel are: first, Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; second, Repentance; third, Baptism by immersion for the remission of sins; fourth, Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost."


then on the inside of the program we had this picture:

nani mahea

with this scripture from 3 nephi 27:20:

“…I say unto you, ye must repent, and become as a little child, and be baptized in my name…”


my mom and dad flew in from california to share in the special day, as well as mitch's parent's who drove over from arizona. we also had mitch's sister and her family and his grandma, "grandma great" in attendance! many of nani's friends and their families were also there!


nani asked mitch to give a talk on baptism which he did a wonderful job on! because his family was in attendance and none of them are members he talked about the first principles and ordinances of the gospel as found in the fourth article of faith above. he talked about what faith is and why it is important, about repentance and the steps to true repentance and forgiveness. then, he spoke about how Jesus Christ was baptized by immersion as an example for all of us to follow.


next, nani wanted some of her friends and their moms to sing "if the Savior stood beside me".


then, nani was baptized.


after her baptism, nani had asked my dad to give a talk on the holy ghost. my dad is a great speaker and did a perfect job on his talk. when he was preparing it he asked how long he needed to speak. i told him about 5 min. he had timed himself several times and said that he only had 3 minutes. then my mom said, "bert, did you allow time for crying? that will add an extra minute or so!" we all laughed! but sure enough, he did add some extra time for crying and it was the perfect length!


after nani was confirmed a member of the church of Jesus Christ of latter-day saints and given the gift of the Holy Ghost mahealani decided to wake up from her nap...and she was hungry...and, of course it was almost time for her to be blessed. so, i found an empty room and gave her some "fast food" so she wouldn't scream through the baby blessing. it worked!

blessing dress


the blessing was lovely. my favorite part, if we are allowed to have favorite parts of a blessing, was when mitch spoke of her name. he mentioned that the meaning of her first name (night of the full moon) was similar to mine (moon goddess) and as such she was named after me. he blessed her to know that because of this she should strive to develop a strong bond with me and should turn to me for counsel throughout her life. he also spoke of her middle name (surrounded by love) that she may always know of the love that her family has for her.


i am so glad that we were able to have both the baptism and the blessing together. it was such a special time for our family! i am so pleased with nani and her preparations for this day. she truly has demonstrated that she is ready to be baptized and to take upon her the name of Jesus Christ. she has such a sweet and kind spirit about her. she serves her sisters and her friends willingly, she loves the Savior and desires to follow Him in righteousness. she has a testimony and knows that this is Christ's church and is so happy to be a member of it! and i still can't believe that our first baby is old enough to be baptized!


there were a lot of pictures that wished i had gotten, but was to busy to remember to take. i did manage to get my dad to snap a quick family photo...or two:

family laugh

this first photo was a result of this next photo:


we had to do something to get kawena to look at the camera and not pout. apparently, whatever tutu lady did worked!