The Number One Grand Prize in All The Universe

September 16, 2014 § Leave a comment

This past weekend we had our family reunion at the farm. As usual, it was awesome. So good to see family and talk about how the kids are growing up fast. This was Kindergarten year for 3 of Hiram’s second cousins, so catching up on that was really good, too.

We always do so many fun things at our reunion. This year, we had a book club discussion, watched the Iowa/Iowa State football game and had a “grilled appetizer contest.” We have some of the most amazing cooks in our family so entering this contest needs to be done with low expectations of winning and mainly for the fun of it. I was thrilled (and surprised) to be awarded third place for my grilled eggplant Baba Ganoush.

A few minutes after the (extremely well-deserving – Jessie send me that recipe) cook-off winner was announced, Hiram climbed into my lap and started to cry.

“What’s the matter?” I asked him.

“I thought yours was the best, mama. You should have won.”

And just like that, third place became the Number One Grand Prize in All The Universe. In Hiram’s eyes, that sloppy mess of mashed eggplant and tahini was the gold standard and benchmark for excellence. It was something made “how mom makes it” and we all know what that means.

I have arrived. I have arrived, indeed.

Kindergarten: Week 3 Recap

September 14, 2014 § Leave a comment

The trend is continuing to head in the right direction with Kindergarten. Hiram is coming home each night with tons of stories and information about things he learned and did and new friends he made during the day. He also loved having Zero the Hero come to his class on his TENTH day — even if it was “just Mr. B” dressed up.

He had the same hair.

And glasses.

Can’t fool Hiram.

We just have the morning drop-off nut left to crack. It’s still a struggle almost every day. But seeing this face when I pick him up after school all last week – I know we’ll get there.


Eldyn: 2 Years + 9 Months

September 14, 2014 § Leave a comment


Along with flying solo at daycare and starting in the preschool room, Eldyn’s been up to all kinds of other tricks this month.

Potty Training? Eldyn seems to be catching on to using a potty chair. So far, we’re still in the part of potty training where things are just messy. But it’s worth it. When Eldyn has success, he stands up with his pants around his ankles, squeals in delight and runs in a crazy-8 pattern around the room. It’s our job to sing the potty song and chase him around with a wet wipe.

Hello Kitty: I would say during 90 percent of Eldyn’s waking hours (and sometimes even in his sleep), he’s acting like a kitty. “Meow. Meow,” he says. If you forget and say something like, “Eldyn, put your coat on,” he will brake character only briefly to clue you in. “I’m a kitty. Meow.”

Oh Baby! Eldyn’s parenting instincts are back in full force this month and his Cabbage Patch Kid is loving it. Actually, his poor Cabbage Patch Kid. Something’s always the matter with him. He needs a band-aid. He’s sick. He has a bad bump. He has an owie coming out of his mouth. Eeek. I’m glad Eldyn’s responsible for that baby. He’s high maintenance!

Eldyn: 1 Year + 9 Months

Eldyn: 9 Months


September 12, 2014 § Leave a comment

While E and I were still lounging around this morning, Hiram came into my room, grinning from ear to ear.

“I did problem solving, mom.”

“You did!?”

“I wish it was still summer so I could wear shorts, but now I can still wear shorts even though it’s cold.”


He is also wearing a tank top over a long-sleeved t-shirt with a built-in short-sleeved T-shirt.

Yes. I sent him to school in this outfit. Problem solving is something I do not want to discourage.

Mora Classic = Complete!

September 11, 2014 § 1 Comment


Remember on February 11, 2013, when I told you that we finished the Mora Classic? The four-race series (canoe, bike, run ski) that took place between May of 2012 and February of 2013? Funny thing about that.

Due to a paperwork error (we registered for each event separately but not the series), we weren’t on the books as official Mora Classic Finishers until just last month.

In what can only be described as poetic perfection, we got word that our medals were in-hand (B’s mom got them for us) just two days after I officially declared my foot “all better.” I hurt my foot halfway through the Mora Classic ski race and stupidly finished anyway. It had been hurting since then.

And so. It took a while, but we can now say that the Mora Classic is officially behind us. We would like to thank H and E for their participation in awarding our medals. And Grandma Barrows for helping us track that elusive hardware down!


Hike’s Dictionary: Omelet

September 10, 2014 § Leave a comment

Omelet – om-lit (noun) A location, usually on a wall, where electricity can be accessed. I wish there was an omelet right here. 

The other night while I was making dinner, Hiram told me he wished he could have an omelet. But, he said, “They’re pretty hard to get and take a lot of work and are expensive.” I was about to disagree and offer to make him one for dinner when he said, “I just need a place to plug this in.”

Oh. You’re right. Omelets are too expensive.

8 Ways Love is a Lovely Paradox with You

September 9, 2014 § Leave a comment


This handsome man is mine all mine! Happy Anniversary Sweet B.

Our lives and schedules all changed this fall, but B has been the constant and that makes me appreciate him more than ever before. I’ve been thinking about how the messy times are actually the cleanest times because you get to really see what you’ve got. Love is a lovely paradox that way.

That’s why, when I was trying to think about an 8-long list I could put together in honor of our 8-short years, I decided on: 8 Ways Love is a Lovely Paradox with You.

  1. Holding your hand makes my heart race and slow down.
  2. Being with you makes time fly and time stop.
  3. You help me see how to soar and stay grounded.
  4. You help me know I am safe and exposed.
  5. You show me why I should laugh when I’m crying
  6. You make me wish time would stop and keep going
  7. You know I know everything. And nothing. And you love me anyway.
  8. Your simple, complicated love is one of life’s greatest gifts.

I love you. I’m the lucky one. Happy 8.


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