Sunday, July 31, 2011

What We've Been Doin'

We've been busy doing this and that lately. Seems like blogging time, even in the evening, doesn't come easily!!

*We've been on walks.. I am thankful we live around lots of walking paths and schools with big grassy fields!

Who says you can't go for a walk in a tutu?

She was so excited to find 3 feathers on one of our walks

Looking for airplanes on our walk. The kids is obsessed with them.. he hears the slightest sound of a plane engine and his head is looking up until he finds it!

*We've been in trouble... well, one of us, anyway!

Matthew has been showing his onery side lately. Throwing, hitting.. toddler/boy stuff. Stuff that Evelyn really didn't do much of. We say "no" WAY more with him it seems. New learning curve for both Doug and I for sure!

But its SO hard to get mad at this sweet face!! He knows it too! (This was taken right after he threw his raisins and cheerios all over the floor. Ugh..)

*We've enjoyed time at Grandma's

My nephew turned 5 and we had a party at my mom's. I didn't get many pictures but we had a fun time!

Cooling off by playing in the water!

The cousins gathered around the water bucket!

My pretty girl!

*We've purchased/installed a new furnace and heat pump

Our 20+ year old furnace has been on the fritz for the last 3 years. We (ok.. Doug and the nice furnace repair man) have milked it along so we could save money to get a new one. We got a heat pump, too.. so now we have a cool house for the summer. It has been at least 20+ years since either of us lived in a house with air conditioning. It became our anniversary gift to each other.. in a way.. since we got it the week after our anniversary!

Isn't she a beauty? HaHa!

Yes.. it is THAT big! We plan to plant something on one side and build a fence on another to block the view of this monster.

*We've played.

Evelyn came up with this "princess wedding veil" all by herself. She was so proud!! She LOVES to play anything pretend and anything princess or wedding or mommy/baby. She has the best imagination, too. Love it!

Daddy took the kids to a car show at a church down the street from us. They had a super time. Matthew's favorite sound to make is the "hot rod" sound.. and he can do it well, too! Like father, like son!

*We got new towels!

The above picture is of one of the towels we registered for when we married. These great towels Meier and Frank have stood the test of time and have worn well. They are tired, tattered and ready to be replaced. Doug got a bonus at work, so he got a new drill, I got towels. Fair enough!

Above are our new ones.. a pretty dark gray (looks green in this pic, tho) and an off white. They were on a smokin' deal.. saved almost $250 off the regular price of all I got. Crazy. AND I learned a ton about towel care. Did you know that you should NOT dry your towels with a fabric softener sheet like Bounce? They actually LOSE softness and absorbency when you do. Who knew?

That's about all I 've got time for... happy day, y'all!!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

A Walk Around the Block

With Matthew still not feeling well and with the pouring rain that fell today (don't even get me started...), we laid low and had a lazy day. The sun came out during dinner and Matthew actually ate something which gave him a little more energy (he hasn't eaten hardly a thing since Friday morning). We felt like a (small) walk would maybe do all of us good after being inside all day. Both the kids were so excited, although all it takes is saying the word "outside" and Matthew is at the door pounding on it, ready to go.. whether he is sick or not! Around the block we went!


Evie Joy:

My Three Loves

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Ten Years...

July 14, 2001, I became Mrs. Doug Morris. The best day of my life. Hands down. I could do a whole blog series on my wedding preparations and wedding day (don't hold your breath, tho..heehee). It was simply a dream come true to be marrying such a wonderful man and having it be such a perfect day.

July 14th, 2011. Our TEN year anniversary. Man.. how did THAT happen? We were excited to celebrate this special day.. and turned it into an (almost) 3 day affair!

Our anniversary was on Thursday. Doug took the day off (as well as Friday). My mom and her husband graciously offered to watch the kids so we could go to dinner.

We look happy, but a lot older and more tired in this picture than the one above, don't we? :)

Both of us lived in Multnomah Village while we were dating. This was one of our favorite restaurants that we certainly kept frequenting after moving out of the area. We haven't been there in years, so we decided to head back. Yay!

We had an amazing meal and super yummy margaritas (we each had two... they were that good!) It was SO nice to just sit and chat (we haven't really been on a date since Matthew was born) and be together. Love, love, love spending one on one time with my husband!

Matthew did very well while we were out, much to our delight. We are hoping to be able to do more date nights if he keeps this up! Thanks, mom and Doug.. it meant the world to us that you took such good care of them!

THEN.... Friday, we left town. Did you read that?.. WE LEFT TOWN!! Without our children!

Okay.. pick yourself off the floor and keep reading...heehee!

My BFF Jody offered to watch the kids so we could get away for the weekend. While I was ready to get away (really, I was), I wasn't quite ready for the entire weekend. So we decided to go away for two full days, staying over one night.

We decided on a "Wine Enthusiast's" package thru the historic Columbia Gorge Hotel in Hood River. The hotel has reopened this past year and we were excited to go visit and go taste some good wine!

Ready to go!!

Okay.. yes. I did cry when I left. A lot. But I really tried to be strong, especially for the kids. Evelyn was excited to spend time with Jody, but Matthew is still dealing with horrible "I only want to be with mommy" syndrome. Jody is the one I knew he would do the best with overnight. He also had been super cranky. He is getting his back molars so I figured the low fever and crankiness he had Friday morning was that. Jody wasn't worried. So we headed out. It was still hard to leave. Once we got going, tho.. I was really excited!

We arrived in Hood River to find lots of sunshine and just a little wind. It was beautiful. At the hotel we were greeted warmly by Donna at the front dest, who wished us a Happy Anniversary and then told us she had complimentary upgraded our room to a river/waterfall view room. WOW!

Look! We're on the reader board!!

Our quaint and lovely room.. so pretty!

A bottle of wine with commemorative glasses were waiting for us in our room as well!

We got checked in and then headed off to taste some wine! We had 5 wineries with free tastings available to us. The Hood River area is full of wineries that were new to both of us. We hit a tasting room (The Pines... highly recommended!) and then went to Mt. Hood Winery, which was out in the beautiful countryside.

After visiting those places, we were a bit tipsy and super hungry! We spent some time relaxing outside at the winery just talking and enjoying the views and the sunshine. We don't relax much these days.. it was so nice! We decided to change our dinner reservation to a bit earlier time and headed back to the hotel. We would do more tasting Saturday.

We got back to our room to find this:

A bottle of champagne from Doug's boss with a thoughtful note. We were so spoiled!

Our package came with a credit toward dinner at the hotels fancy restaurant, Simon's. I would have taken more pictures, but it just didn't seem right in such a nice place! We had an amazing meal.. I mean AMAZING... sitting looking out over the gorge. Our waiter Todd was nice, funny, and attentive.

After dinner, Todd and Laurel (the hostess) brought this to our table:

So.. when we got married, I really wanted lemon poppy seed cake. It was way more money, so we just got one small tier of it. Just for me. Well.. I never got a piece of it... I still am upset about that..heehee! This little cake was.. you guessed it.. lemon poppy seed! Fitting.. and delicious!

After dinner we spent time just walking around the hotel's beautiful grounds. So lovely, so peaceful!

He LOVES having pictures taken, can you tell? :)

There weren't a lot of people around, so as you can see, a lot of "self pics" were taken!

We had planned on getting up Saturday, go to breakfast, then explore Hood River proper a bit before hitting another winery or two and then heading home. Sadly, Matthew had other plans for us!

His fever kept getting higher while we were gone and he was SO sad every time we called. He was just not feeling well. Jody was managing just fine (she is awesome) but we felt like we needed to get home to our sweet boy! So when he wasn't any better in the morning, we just headed home. Both of them were glad to see us.. and we were glad to see them, too!

Wow.. that was a long post! What a great way to celebrate 10 years with my amazing husband! Here's to many many more great years ahead!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Jesus Calling

Today I was reading Matthew a book and Evelyn comes running up to me with her play (princess) Ariel cell phone and says, "mom, its for you!".

Me: "I am reading a book to your brother right now, sweetie.. you are interrupting. I can't take a call right now."

Evelyn: "But Moooommmmm... its JESUS!!!"

*thinking quickly on how to handle this.. still don't know if I did the right thing...

Me: "Well, Jesus is the most important, so I will take the call. Hello, Jesus? Yes.. uh huh... right. Well, I know I told you this already this morning, but I just wanted to say thank you again for dying on the cross. That is the most amazing gift. (pause) Oh, sure... she is right here. Evelyn.. He wants to talk to you."

Evelyn then has a lengthy conversation with the Big Guy.. I couldn't understand all of it. Towards the end she exclaimed:

"Really? Oh. My. Stars. (yes, she sounded just like you are probably imagining it..sigh) Ok.. I'll be waiting... "

She gets off the phone and sighs deeply. I ask her what's wrong.

"He says he might not come back for one thousand years. That's a LONG time for me to wait!"

I gave her a hug and told her that we just need to enjoy the life that Jesus gave us and and do what He asks us to do here on earth while we are waiting for Him. And that the Bible says he is coming SOON!

She seemed fine with that answer. Then she ran off to play in her room.

We really don't know the hour.. but she does have a point. 1000 years is a long time! :)

And wouldn't it be cool if Jesus really DID have a cell phone?

Thursday, July 7, 2011

The Picture on the Fridge

August 13th, 2010. 11 months ago. Doug's 40th Birthday. If you remember, I gave him a pretty awesome gift that he really enjoys. However, I also gave him another gift.

And it all started with a picture.

Many of you that know me and/or read my blog know that my weight has weighed on me for some time (pun somewhat intended..heehee). I wore a size 8 when I got married and was 120 pounds. Last summer I was well over 200 pounds, 225-230 I think. That's almost 100 pounds gained since my wedding day. I was tired. In so many ways.

August 2010

As I was looking for a photo of Doug for his birthday party invites, I came across this picture of my from one of my bridal showers. Its one of Doug's favorites of me. I started to cry.

June 2001
(sorry for the bad scan... click to enlarge and see it better!).

I knew I could lose weight if I set me mind to it. I wanted to do it. For me. For my husband. So it became one of his birthday gifts last year. In his card, I told him I was committed to getting healthy and that I was going to do my best to get down to my wedding weight by our 10th anniversary (which is next week, the 14th).

I put that picture of me in a photo holder magnet on the fridge where I could see it and know what I was aiming for. I got started the day after Doug's birthday.

New habits began. No "program" or drinks or pills, just me getting healthy. Slow and steady. My elliptical machine became my nighttime buddy (eventually changing to mornings once I stopped nursing Matthew and he slept later). I usually ate applesauce when I craved something yummy, but never "gave up" sweets. That never worked for me in the past, so I did have the occasional cookies or ice cream, just not every day like I used to. I worked on portion control... something I think made the most difference. Nursing Matthew certainly jumped started my weight loss and got me motivated to keep at it.

Sometimes it was easy and fun, other times no so much. Working out in the evening made for less time with Doug and staying up late to get laundry, etc done. Getting up early, well, is just early. Eating salad instead of a burger got easier as it went along, but sometimes passing up yummy food made me sad. But I would think of or see that picture of me on the refrigerator and was reminded of my goal. It has helped me to make wiser choices. Many times!

Up until last month I have continued to steadily take weight off. With Doug traveling most of June, things were just off. I was off. And I am an emotional eater... who was OUT of applesauce! :) I am struggling with the fact that I have put on a couple of pounds, but I also know I can get it off and more, and I am already on the road to do that. I know I can.

So.. for the past 11 months or so I have been working toward a goal. A gift, actually. I haven't stepped on a scale much since last August. I know now that its not so much about the numbers anymore. But.. if you must know:

I have lost about 70 pounds.
I have more confidence than I have had in a LONG time!
I have more energy to do more fun things with my family.
My husband thinks I look great and tells me so often.

And now....I am now wearing SIZE 10!

Thank you, Jesus. I know you love me for who I am no matter what I weight, but I also know you blessed this endeavor and gave me the strength to carry on.

Here's to being healthy!

Two Things

There are two things I am pretty adamant that my kids learn how to do and do well.

One is swimming. I want my kids to be confident and safe swimmers. They don't have to be a Michael Phelps, but I want them to hold their own in water. As my post from last week talked about, Evelyn loves swimming and is doing well in lessons, which I am thankful for. Matthew and I will start our Mommy/Baby class next month.

The other thing is riding a bike. I don't know why... but I just want my kids to learn how at an early age and be confident on their bikes. I learned pretty early and have SO many fond memories of riding around my neighborhood and going on family bike rides. Its just something I want for my kids to do, too!

Evelyn hasn't been super interested in this activity. She never got on one of those scooter things when she was a little tyke. We got her a trike when she was two, thinking it was time to get her going. She rode it probably less than 10 times. She just wasn't into it. So.. when she started talking about wanting a princess "big girl" bike for Christmas last year, I was leary about doing it. But we did it, in hopes that maybe this would be the year she would want to/learn how to ride.

It has been a slow go.. she has gotten on it but has had trouble pedaling. She just wasn't strong enough. Because of this, she wasn't wanting to try much. On Monday (the 4th) she wasn't feeling well in the morning so we decided to cancel our plans for that night (insert sad face.. sorry, Ruzzi's!). Of course, she took a long nap and woke up feeling "great"! I decided to make the most of the sunshine and encouraged her to get on her bike and try. She reluctantly agreed. It took a bit, but once she figured out how to pedal the right way, she was OFF!

Go Evelyn Go!

She still needs a push on the uphills, but she is doing great! She is excited about "practicing" whenever she can and loves to go "fast like Curtis and Abby" (my niece and nephew, who brought their bikes when they visited last month and rode around the neighborhood)! Since she still hasn't figured out the whole "braking" thing and needs to work on paying attention to where she is going... we are keeping her "fast" to a "not too slow"... if you know what I mean!

So proud of my girl!

Saturday, July 2, 2011


Tonight we went to my mom's for a pre 4th of July get together with my family. It was a crazy and fun night. The cousin's had the most fun of all.

The three big kids all colored/sticker booked on the blanket while Grandpa Doug was grilling up dinner. By the time I got my camera, Cole and Regan had taken off to do something else. It was just my sweet girl.

I think she is pretty much the most beautiful girl ever created!!

My mom got the kids "Drumsticks" for dessert. I loved them as a kid, didn't you? This was my kids' first experience with them. Let's just say they were a HIT! Thanks, mom!

Waiting patiently for their treats!

Regan is excited. Mom put "napkin bibs" on all of them, too. Brilliant!

First bite!

Daddy offering assistance.

Um.. thanks, daddy, but I'm good to go! :)

Ice cream/chocolate bliss!

Doug even opted for one instead of strawberries and pound cake!

Sweet Cole

I think she liked it!

Matthew eats dessert like his daddy, slowly enjoying every bite. He got it pretty much everywhere!

Love this messy boy!

After dessert the kids just romped around in the yard and had a great time in the sunshine!

Cole and Evelyn decided to play hide and seek!


Running to hide...

Hiding under aunt Louise's chair!

Ready or not, hear he comes! He found her pretty quick, too!

Thanks, mom and Doug, for a fun evening at your place. Thankful for family and memories made!!