Annual ALS Walk-a-thon

Donning our old walk t-shirts from 2009 and anything red or blue for the kids, we took off for our annual walk to support ALS. Ever since Blake was born, we have tried to skip the formal shotgun start and look forward to a relaxing stroll around the park. We anxiously look for Grandma’s picture along the path. We run and skip and dance. The “In Memory Of” placard is usually passed around from one back to another. We remember her.

It’s a fun, inspirational day that I always want to share with my kids.

Did you know? Between 5-10% of ALS cases are inherited.


Twins: 17 Months Old

For some reason, we don’t see my Dad as much as I thought I would, especially having three kids now. But, the times we do get together are always some of the best.

A week ago, the girls and I drove out to spend some time with him. It was great! We made a mess of his always perfectly clean house. We snacked. We drank unsweetened iced tea (one of my favorite drinks). Well, I did. We talked about how big the girls are now, walking around and saying “uh-oh” a lot. He shared that he thought the girls might be afraid of him–but they weren’t (they might not remember your face, but they remember love). We played with the dogs and laughed when one of the girls wanted a dog toy over one of their own toys scattered across the floor. And knew it was time to leave when both girls were sprawled on the ground staring up at us. We couldn’t stop laughing!

It’s amazing how life can be so surprisingly wonderful. As the twins turn 17 months today, I’m forever grateful for this family of mine. Thanks Grandpa for a fun day!

Our Beloved Beatrice

After searching and searching for a picture of this amazing woman, I still can’t find a single one. I guess that’s why she was so special. Not really interested in getting in pictures and all that attention.

She was so sweet. So kind. So overly generous with her willing to help others.

Today, we learned she passed away from ovarian cancer.

She gave all she had to take care of Mike’s mom.

She took care of me when I had a miscarriage. She taught me how to change Blake’s diaper the right way. She was there, blanket under Blakey’s armpits, teaching him how to walk. She taught me how to sew again (and I still have one of her sewing machines). She bought me a wooden tortilla maker from Mexico when I said I wanted to learn how to make her amazing tortillas.

And, most recently, she was in our thoughts when we were talking about getting a nanny for the girls. She embodied everything I wanted, to be with our kids, and with us.

She was amazing.

As Blake said, “She’s with Grandma Jeanne up in the sky?” :)

We Made a Wish Today

Early this morning, while snuggled in bed, I found an eyelash on Blake’s cheek. I told him, “Eyelashes are special and when you find one you get to make a wish.” He didn’t fully understand but we agreed that our wish was for healthy brothers or sisters. So, I took it from his cheek, we said our wish out loud, and blew the eyelash off of my finger. Funny how he really loves little moments like that. A minute later, he was asking if I could find another eyelash. :)

I recently read a blog post about bringing another child (or children) into this world when you just have one. And that God has chosen THIS child to be an older sibling. To teach the younger one(s). To be able to handle maybe a little less attention than before. To be a good role model. It’s making me feel better that Blake is taking on this special big brother role… in just a few days. He’s going to be great!


Goal for the Week

I have a special goal for this week. Wait…How is it already Wednesday?

My goal is to write and send my Grandpa Baker a letter. He has been living in Arizona for years now so I don’t get to see him as often as I’d like. He’s a kind man who loves his grand (and great grand) kids. I have such fond memories of him as a child: Growing aloe plants in the backyard to use on our scraped knees and driving a classic Ford pick up truck, that he still owns.

Recently, he was diagnosed with throat cancer. Maybe my Goal for the Week (for every week) should be to write him a letter.

What’s your goal?

Steppin’ Out

…of our comfort zone.

Last September (2011), we moved to a little, picturesque community in South Orange County called Ladera Ranch. Minivans, block parties, 3.2 children… Cue the opening song for Weeds. It’s about 30 minutes from where we used to live, where we both grew up, where our friends and family are… We definitely took a chance in order for Blakey to grow up in a place where holidays are celebrated and neighbors come over to hang out.

Anyways, you know that feeling when you’re new? Like the new student in school? Or just starting a new job? Yeah, I’m feeling it. Where can I get some sushi? Where’s the public library (yes, I used to go to the library in YL)? Where is my group of girlfriends who all have kids and want to go shopping and out for a glass of wine? Lol. I know, I know, I might be asking for too much.

I know years from now I’ll look back at this and think, how silly. I just wonder how long this adjustment period is going to take.

And, by the way, I don’t ever plan on driving a minivan.

A Post-riffic Mother’s Day

I’ve had a lot of things on my mind lately. The best thing to get over a brain full of awfulness? Blake. :)

Mother’s Day was definitely something I was looking forward to. We decided to spend a day at Blakey’s favorite place–Disneyland. (Surprised? I know. We are becoming regulars… Good thing is, I’m trying to fill-in-the-blanks for those days..or um..years I skipped adding things to the blog…way before Mickey Mouse was in the picture.) Anyway, here are a few shots of us enjoying another fun day. This time I was treated to a new “Tink” shirt and a yummy cookie in the shape of Mic himself (that thing B is holding that resembles a character minus the eyes). His pants were tasty.

Exhausted at 2pm, we decided to leave and stop by the place where Mike’s Mom is buried. It’s always a bittersweet day for us. She encompassed everything I want to be for Blake: patient, sweet, and always there for her child–no matter what. Blakey brought tears to our eyes when he rolled up his hand painted card, put it in her flower holder, and gave her a kiss. In true form though, he then started kissing everyone’s plaque. Mike said, “Oh I’m sure Grandma Jeanne’s neighbors sure like those kisses!” He’s such a love.

M + B, thanks for a very special day. I’m so thankful to be a mom.