Friday, December 03, 2010

Time to Simplify

The holiday season always, ALWAYS stresses me out.  I get depressed, grumpy and overwhelmed.  It makes me sad, because I really do LOVE the season, the smells, the sentiments and the giving.  I love everything related to Christmas, but every year I get down emotionally.

So now, this year, actually in the last 24 hours, I've decided to make some changes.  Most of you know that every year I send out handmade Christmas cards, with a family letter and picture.  Every year I spend at least 20-30 hours designing and making the cards.  That doesn't include the letter, picture or addressing the envelopes.  Since I've been so busy this year I haven't even started any of that process.  So....I'm not doing it this year.  I'll still send out cards, but it will be a photo card that will take me an hour or two to make the 80 that I usually send out.  There's one load off my shoulders.

I'm also changing the family letter.  I'm not going to do the traditional format.  I haven't quite decided what the new format will be, but it will be quick and easy to do.  No more worrying about the grammar, spelling, etc.  In all honesty, it may just be a list of things from our year.

Now....what will I do with all this extra spare time that I have?  Well, first of all, I'll sleep.  WA-HOO!  I love sleep and it hasn't been around much lately, so I'm going to reacquaint myself with it.  THEN....I'll actually be able to enjoy my children's wonder of the season, rather then stressing about what else I need to get done this year before the holiday gets here.  I'll be able to bake and decorate cookies, take them shopping for each other and their dad, and continue our family traditions while being fully present rather then thinking of something else.  I'm also going to spend some time with my rarely seen husband....doing goofy things like playing Guitar Hero or kicking his butt at Wii Boxing.

This year I'm slowing down rather then speeding up.  I'm going to hold my family close and really enJOY the season.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Christmas Season is Here

I took this picture on Sunday after we had decorated our tree.  The wonder of Christmas has filled my children's hearts and I'm SO happy and proud that they are mine.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

My baby boy is 5!

Can you believe it?  Peder is 5 years old today.  FIVE!  Seriously, how did that happen.  He was snuggling with me this afternoon and overflows all over the place when he sits on my lap.  Was it really 5 years ago that I could hold him in one arm  and he would sit so easily in the crook of my arm.

Look at him now.  Isn't he just an adorable little boy?  My gosh that smile can totally light up my day.  Look at how happy he is with his 24 mini-cupcakes he picked out for his birthday cake (he'll get a fancy Scooby Doo one for his birthday party in a couple weeks).  We were singing happy birthday to him and he just looked at me with that sweet smile of his. 

Here he is with all of his presents from our little family.  He got a cowboy hat and Sheriff badge from me and Jake, a lasso from Mari and a pair of chaps from Emmy.  He is all ready to be a cowboy.

When he was all done opening his gifts he said, "Thank you so much you guys!  I LOVE IT!  Everything is so cute."  That made me tear up.  Oh my gosh!  I am SO proud to be his mommy.  Happy Birthday to my little Sweet P.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Busy-ness, Inspiration and The End is NEAR!

As most of you know, life is chaotic in the Early household.  We are busy, busy people.  Last week all 3 kids started preschool.  (Pictures soon, I promise.)  Peder has pre-k every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.  Emmy and Mari have 3-school every Tuesday and Thursday.  It was an exciting week in our house.  All 3 kids were ready for school to start and this mommy was ready to be in a routine again.  I have to admit, Tuesday and Thursday mornings are oddly quiet with just Peder to hang out with.  I'm not quite sure what I'm going to do next year with all the kids in school several days a week.

Jake and Peder are leaving for a fishing trip on Wednesday night, right after Peder gets done with his first swim lessons class.  They are heading up to Canada with my dad, my grandpa (mom's dad) and my brother-in-law Randy.  I'm sure they are going to have a fantastic adventure and I know Peder is looking forward to hanging out with the guys.  He seems to feel like a very grown up boy with this privilege to go along.  It's cute.

I spent the weekend hanging out with my Mommy.  We went to ScrapFest over at the Mall of America.  I went to a crop by myself on Thursday night and then met my mom for another one on Friday night.  On Saturday we did make n' takes, took 3 classe and did a bunch of shopping.  Sunday we spent the day doing make n' takes.  This is something we try to do every year.  We have so much fun, make a ton of cute projects and get all kinds of inspiration.  I had so much fun hanging out with my mom....I look forward to this weekend every year!

And....THE END IS NEAR!  At least of my quarter at school.  I have a final and a final project due tonight, a final tomorrow and then D-O-N-E!  WA-HOO!  I get a week off in between quarters and the only thing that we have planned is swim lessons, Jake's football game and our annual trip to the corn maze.  I'll finally be able to get the rest that my physical therapist keeps telling me to take.

We have a lot to look forward to in the next couple of weeks!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Twins Game a.k.a. My Mom's Great Photography Skills

Mom and Dad getting ready for dinner at The Melting Pot.

We're gonna win Twins!  (And they did!)

Welcome to the Matrix, Mom.

Much better.

Having fun!

She wouldn't put the camera down.

So we decided to ham it up a little bit.

Shocking, I know.

We couldn't believe it!

And they wonder where we get it from....

Me, heading back down the 50 stairs from our seats.

Love you Mom and Dad!

Love you Jake!

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Bad Blogger Update

I have been a very bad blogger lately.  In all honestly, I've been so busy that I end each day with a ton of things that were supposed to get done and didn't.  Every day is a race to see what can get done before bedtime, which keeps getting pushed later and later.  Luckily, in 3 weeks I will be out of school for a 3 week summer break.  This means vacations and time to enjoy my family.

Since I've last updated: we celebrated Mother's Day at the Sculpture Garden and I got a nook (L-O-V-E it), my sister Chanda came to visit with her son Eli (so cute!), I celebrated my 30th birthday, Jake took me on our first date again, and we spent a day in Alexandria for the Pederson side family reunion.

The biggest news is that I will be having surgery on my hip on July 22nd at 7:30a.  After 3 years of pelvis issues and 15 months of specific hip issues, my orthopedist has recommended surgery to repair my hip.  The surgery will last about 2 hours and I will be on crutches for the first 2 weeks after surgery and unable to drive for a week.  The surgery involves removing some of the bone from my hip socket, repairing the cartilage in my hip and then maybe reshaping the ball part of the leg.  The good news is that I should be 90% better within a year and continue to improve slowly after that.  If this surgery is successful, it will be a dream come true for us.

I will try to keep you more posted about the happenings in our life, and related to my surgery.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Let's Go Fly a Kite

We headed out to a local ball field and flew kites tonight.  WAY TOO MUCH FUN!

Peder getting ready to fly his Spiderman kite.

Mari loving her kite.  Look at that smile!  She couldn't stop talking about it afterwards.

Emmy was ecstatic.  I loved all the smiles on the kiddos' faces and the giggles.

This is Mari and me getting her kite out of a tree.  I was SO impressed that I got the kite out without snapping the line or ruining the kite.

Daddy helping the kids get their kites up.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Our Weekend Highs

A summary of our weekend in the great things we experienced!

Friday -
1.  We went to the Minneapolis Camping and Vacation Show and found a camper we want to get when we buy our next camper.

2.  While looking at a camper one of the sales people asked us if the girls are twins.  We, of course, said yes and he talked about his twin boys.  He mentioned that his twins were premature.  I told him that our girls were born at 38 weeks and his response made me soar.  He said, "It's obvious, they both look very healthy."  HOW AWESOME!  I love that people look at my girls and see healthy kids!

Saturday -
1.  I got a ton of studying done!

2.  SLUMBER PARTY!  Peder, Emmy and I had a slumber party in the living room.  We watched a movie, had a special snacks and shared a bowl of popcorn.  I love slumber parties with my kiddos!

Sunday -
1.  A Valentine's Day surprise from Jake!  He doesn't like Valentine's Day, but made today special because I've been struggling with stress level.  Jake and I haven't been able to spend much time together lately.  We got to my parents' house to pick Mari up from her weekend visit and the kids brought me two Valentine's cards.  Jake had asked my parents to watch the kids and we went out on a date.  We went to see "When in Rome," which was really cute and fun.  Then we went to Target, wandered around and got some new clothes (for me) and Valentine candies for Jake.

2.  An awesome TWIN moment between Emmy and Mari.  When we got to my parents' house to pick up Mari, the girls ignored everyone else.  Emmy and Mari yelled each other's names and ran into each other's arms.  They hugged each other and were SO excited to see each other again.  It totally melted my heart.

Friday, January 29, 2010

A Peek at our Night

Tonight we went to run some errands.  We headed over to Woodbury to check out Michael's and I made a trip into Archiver's.  On our way back to Target in West St. Paul, the following scene happened.

Emmy:  Singing at the TOP of her lungs.  And I mean TOP.  She was joyously singing like she often does.

Peder:  Got kind of annoyed with the singing.  Told Emmy to stop.

Emmy:  Kept SINGING!  Sang so loud I couldn't hear Peder talking.

Peder:  Repeatedly:  EMMY STOP!

Me:  Started singing Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star at the top of my lungs.  MUCH louder and more annoying than Emmy was.

Peder:  "That's MUCH better!"

And that is a small snippet of our life.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

My Day...

So today was a day.  A REALLY bad day.  I started my third week of classes today.

Here is a summation of my day:

1.  All 3 kids battled me tooth and nail to get Peder to school.

2.  I had to trick the girls into thinking I was leaving the house so they would get ready to go pick up Peder from school.

3.  Nap time was a nightmare.  The girls fought, screamed, cried, learned how to open their bedroom door and in general fought with me every moment of naps.  Peder goofed off, played and got upset when limitations were set.

4.  All 3 kids fell asleep at 3:45p, 15 minutes before we wake them so they go to bed on time.  Imagine how they all were when it was time to get up.

5.  I printed off my assignment for class tonight and then left it at home.  Luckily I had sent the assignment to myself via email and could print it off at the school computer lab.

6.  I forgot my cell phone in the car, which lead to a moment of panic until I realized I still had that email in my account.  I didn't have time to run back to my car, call Jake to email me the paper, go back and print it off and make it to class on time.

7.  I ate Arby's for dinner and it made me REALLY sick about 40 minutes into class and had to leave for about 10 minutes because my stomach was feeling so gross.

8.  On my way home from school the car started to make a weird whirring noise.  I thought it was a belt and told Jake to take it out for a spin.

9.  I was happily eating the cookie dough Jake made for me when he got home from his drive.  He walked in and told me that it was probably the transmission needing to be replaced.  WHOOP-DEE-DOO!

Time for bed and to start tomorrow fresh.

Saturday, January 02, 2010

Year in Review - December 2009

Now the last "Year in Review" post.  To see what happened through our year, scroll down.  It's been quite an adventure!

We took the kids to see Santa.

We decorated a gingerbread house and train....and cookies later in the month.

The kids helped Jake shovel the sidewalks after a big snow fall.

Peder was in his first ever Christmas program at church.

We did our annual trip to the Macy's 8th floor display with Grandpa Warren and Grandma Cindi.  (Mari is on Grandpa's shoulders, Emmy is on Grandma's.)

And then went to the Holidazzle parade.  Peder is giving me some love in this picture.  He's so sweet.

We had a joyous and snowy Christmas celebration.

And we finally got to meet nephew #3, Elias Warren Stevens on December 26th.  He was born November 22nd, 2009.  Here is Emmy giving her newest cousin some love.

Thanks for traveling with us through 2009.  We can't wait to see what 2010 has in store for our family and hope that you can continue on this journey with us.

Year in Review - November 2009

I sold my paper crafts for the first time ever.  It was very successful and I started an etsy shop and have had several custom orders since then.

We did the Walk to End Hunger at the Mall of America on Thanksgiving morning.

We had a WONDERFUL Thanksgiving dinner.

Mari had her first trip to the ER and we dealt with our first set of injury related stitches.  I almost passed out after they were done putting the stitches in.

We picked out our Christmas tree.

We also decorated our tree.  We loved it!

Year in Review - October 2009

Mari decided she wasn't quite ready to be done with her bath, after she was dressed for bed.

Peder turned 4.  (Can you believe it?)

Jake got to do the public tour of the new football stadium at the U of M.  Yes, this was part of our anniversary weekend.  Yes, I'm that good of a wife.  :)

Peder celebrated his 4th birthday at Pump It Up with some friends from preschool and a couple of cousins.

Jake, once again out did himself with the cake he made for Peder.

We carved pumpkins for Halloween.

And the kids got dressed up all cute to go trick or treating.  Mari, the bumblebee, Emmy, the princess and Peder, Woody from Toy Story.  They all picked out their own costumes.

Year in Review - September 2009

Auntie Chanda came to visit from Pennsylvania and we all got to see and touch her baby belly!

My Aunt Debbie and I threw a baby shower for my sister.  This is a picture of some of us cousins:  Alli, me, Chelsea and my sister, Chanda.

Peder started preschool, officially.  He was VERY excited!

We spent a lot of time playing outside.

We did our annual visit to the corn maze.  What a blast!

Year in Review - August 2009

We took our brand spanking new camper up to Hayward for a weekend of camping with Jake's brother and his family.

While we were there Peder made a tie dye t-shirt.

The kids and I went to Marshall with my mom to visit my grandparents.  We hung out with Great Grandpa Earl.

Went to the park with Grandma Cindi, Great Grandma Dorene and Great Aunt Jan.

And Peder went for his first ever tractor ride with Great Uncle Jerry and Great Aunt Jan.

At the end of August we spent a week on our first ever family vacation, just the 5 of us.  We camped in the Black Hills and had an absolute blast!