Wednesday, November 20, 2013


Sweet Katelyn. She is just a lovely person and my side kick. I was so happy to have her home more after quitting all those hours of gymnastics so we could just soak up time together. She loves to be near me and is quick with a smile. And I love her smile. It really lights up her entire face. Katelyn is in 4th grade now with Mrs. Rogers. She hates school. I think what she doesn't like is being away from me at home, but she claims school is boring. Which it is. I agree with her, but also feel, after much prayer and stress, that school is the best fit for her right now. She excels at everything there and is off the charts bright. (Every mother says this, but it really is true with Katelyn.) She is a whiz at math. She is an excellent reader, but doesn't like it much. She is really into anything artistic and crafty. She spends hours making the coolest things you've ever seen. She creates with every medium - paper, beads, cardboard, tupperware, sticks, duct tape. She has made bags, purses, wallets, skirts, stuffed animals, houses, jungle gyms, beds, nativity scenes, ornaments, etc. She has a gift for it and a love for it. Katelyn has two best friends at school - Hayley and Annalise. They are darling girls and adore Katelyn. Katelyn still prefers to have all play dates at our house and so I've gotten to know these girls well. They come from great families and just adore being here crafting and playing with Katelyn. She loves being outside as well and rides bikes and scooters. She makes swing routines up, jumps on the trampoline, and draws with chalk. She is a busy girl and likes to be doing something always, an inherited trait from me. She really can't sit still well. She is quite the gamer and can legitimately beat me in clue, mastermind, settlers, ticket to ride, and guess who. She is my most willing to try new things and mastered skiing this summer. It won't be long before she is slaloming. She has tried dance, tennis, and now swimming as sports to replace gymnastics. She loved the swim meat because she remembers competing. She decided to see how many pull ups she can do and she can still whip out 25. She was sore for a week. She started piano this year and is doing really well. She loves to practice and I rarely have to remind her to get her practicing in. She is a sweet girl and while I wish she would just go to school without complaining, I admire her ability to speak up for what she wants. She is a fun, loving, and lovely girl. Oh how I love her.

This is Mia's birthday cake Katelyn and I made. I forgot that she went through a baking phase. She has turned into quite the gluten free baker. 

Tuesday, November 12, 2013


Ashley turned 11 on July 6th. She really is the sweetest girl. She has a very empathetic, tender heart and has a strong sense of right and wrong. She is a great help to me with Liam and is very nurturing. She has grown a ton since she turned 11. She wears a size 7 1/2 shoe, which is excitingly close to my size. I can't wait until I can justify shoe purchases to share with her. She cut all her beautiful hair off towards the end of the summer at a real salon. I gave her free reign and she came out with a short, layered hairstyle. She, of course, looks beautiful, but just too grown up. She also got braces this fall. She has a severe, genetic underbite, thanks to her father and gets to wear rubber bands for 2 years and then do full braces for another 2. She was not interested in surgery, which would have been the quicker route. She is still in swim team and while she claims to hate it is doing pretty well. She isn't very competitive, or rather gives up quickly since she convinces herself she shouldn't try if she might lose. She swims with two friends from church and I love that it gives her context when at church. She gets lost in books. I've made a lot of rules over reading books, but she still spends too much time reading and comes out of a book with a cloud over her head. When she swims she comes home happy. I keep trying to point this out to her, but it's met with sighs and eye rolling. Which makes me sigh. She is a fantastic student. She is happy to have made pre-algebra and is every teachers dream. She is an excellent writer and I've challenged her to write a best selling science fiction series (her favorite...another genetic trait from her father). I've told her to work on it while she's swimming laps since she claims it's super boring. She is diligently working on her Father's Challenge from Hans to get scuba diving lessons in the summer. It requires a lot of diligence on her part, but she still refuses to get the easy points of eating fruits and vegetables daily. She can easily go a month without eating a single one. Which, again, makes me sigh. She is an excellent pianist. We started her with a fantastic teacher during the summer and she is moving quickly into a great pianist. She can accompany, perform, and do scales really fast with the metronome. It really is fun to hear her play. I love waking up to her practicing in the morning. She wakes up every morning at 6:20 to practice before school. She still loves art and sketches with oil pastels in her sketchbook. She is not too social with friends at school, but seems well respected and liked. She just would rather do other things she says. She is as pleasant as a tween can be and I love her immensely. My life is so much better and brighter because she is in it. So grateful she is my firstborn.
Beautiful long blonde hair. I think she's crafting?
Shorter hair and braces!
Birthday party fun. We had an art project party and the girls ate cookies.
Ashley is an excellent baker. She makes yummy, yummy cookies.
She participated in a swim a thon where she swam 200 lengths. It took her around 1:40 minutes.

Beautiful in every way...inside and out. Really.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Fun Times

 I love having a playroom in the basement. We bought this swing from Ikea and it's a hit. We also have a slide down there that my dad made many years back and Katelyn's gym mat. Lots of fun.

 The kids love Liam. They love trying to hold him, feed him, give him toys, make him laugh, and just generally be in his space.
 Kneaders opened in Colorado Springs. We got to go to the grand opening since the owner is neighbors with my sister in Utah. Free dinner! And it's delicious and we've been back one too many times for eclairs. Delicious. And gluten free.
 During Fall Break we went to the butterfly pavilion. It is a great place in Denver. We held Rosie, the tarantula, and walked around the outside portion waiting for butterflies to land on us. Great fun.

Halloween Fun

 We had a lot of fun for Halloween this year. The kids picked out their own costumes. Ashley and Katelyn made theirs from what we had at home. We decorated the house. We carved pumpkins. They had a trunk or treat at the Church, a party with friends from school, and then Halloween night. We met at the Brintons for some yummy soup and homemade root beer and then got tons of candy. I gave away 40$ worth of candy. For the first year ever I didn't eat too much candy. I'm getting old I just didn't taste very good. I still ate more then I should have, just not so much that I felt sick for a few days. Halloween is such a fun time and I love seeing all the church and neighbor kids dressed up.

Thursday, November 7, 2013


2 weeks after getting home from Lake Powell we flew to Oregon for the first ever Egbert family reunion. We spent a short weekend in a beach house with all the family. Great times. The kids were so excited to be on an airplane and I love how excited they are for every part of the journey. They are so excited to take the bus from the parking lot to the airport. They are excited to take the shuttle in the airport to security and most excited, of course, to board the plane and take off. We then had to rent a car and drive 3 hours to the beach house. On the way there we stopped at a crabbing place and bought some gear and then went to the beach and went crabbing. We caught a couple. I'm so glad we did this because it rained the rest of the trip. We played games, ate a lot of food, took pictures, and visited. It was nice for the kids to meet their cousins.
 These four are excellent travelers and oh so helpful. Soda on the plane is awesome!
 Isn't he the cutest?
 At the beach in Lincoln City, Oregon. 
 The girls with the crabs they caught. We saw sea lions in the ocean as well and Katelyn got in to chase them around. Crazy. It was cold.
 Jake and Hans. Our attempt at leaving the beach house in the rain.
 Family reunion shirts. 
 Love these kids of mine. I love them even more when I'm enjoying sunset by the Ocean.
 Cousins in the hot tub.
Ashley went out with Hans one evening. Good times. Ashley belongs by the Ocean. So do I. 

Lake Powell

In September we went to Lake Powell with the Conleys for a houseboating vacation. It was memorable and fun, and I'm glad we went. I spent a week packing and then we drove most of the way and met the Conleys for the night in a hotel. Then we drove to the marina and loaded our stuff onto the boat. It is a lot of work, this trip, but well worth it. The kids had a blast and it was very peaceful just sitting with no distractions. We brought our motor boat so we had lots of fun tubing, wake boarding, knee boarding, and skiing. No one was hurt, thankfully. Melanie packed a bunch of crafts and we had our portable DVD player with a couple of movies. We had plenty of treats, stuff for fires, and plenty of sand and water toys. Kid heaven. It stormed off and on the first couple of days, which was very exciting. We lost Ashley's pillow and the surf board from a wind storm. The kids slept on the floor in the kitchen of the house boat since it was too wet most nights to sleep up on the top. I slept on the top the last night because I wasn't sleeping well anyway. I'd do the whole trip again, I think. On the way home we got caught in the terrible storms that caused flooding all over Colorado, so we stopped in Glenwood springs for the night. I liked breaking the drive up into 2 days. It made it seem not bad at all. 
Mia and Eden were very helpful taking stuff to the boat. They were so cute and oh so excited.
With all the rain, the houseboat was leaky and a little disgusting. Justin's asthma was terrible there and luckily I was prepared with his nebulizer and a prednisone prescription.
Ashley and Andrew are two peas in a pod. They both can sit and read for hours. They are great friends.
Our view of one of the storms.
Justin spent the majority of his time playing in the sand. Going out on the boat made him nervous. Anna is a good friend to him.
Eden and Mia were in and out of their swimsuits a dozen times a day. They loved going off the water slide.
Hans and I took turns driving the boat around for hours.
So beautiful.
Eden and Mia tubing.
Sweet Ashley giving me a squeeze.
I never see Katelyn on trips like this. She disappears with Elizabeth. They should've been twins.

This is my new phone screen saver. I love that picture of our boat and the Lake Powell landscape. Heaven. I'm so grateful that the boat held up for the entire trip and we really had minimal issues. I prayed a lot.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013


Hans and I flew to Virginia for the BYU football game. We stayed in a great VRBO with Woolleys, Mabeys, and Hardys. We had a great time. It was so nice to have my mom come be with the kids and to get away with Hans. It was extra great because we got to see friends we don't see often. Hans and his friends golfed. We shopped. We ate out. We ate gelato. The BYU game had a rain delay, which made it all very exciting. It also reminded me that there really is a fine line between adventure and ordeal. I decided to leave the game with Liam and couldn't get back to the house because power lines and large trees had fallen on the street to the house. I eventually found a back way to the house, thanks to a kind soul and answer to prayer, only to find I had no way to get in. After more prayer, the owner of the home came to check on us, she let me in, and helped me find flashlights and battery chargers for my phone since the power was out. I begged her to stay and hang out with me since I was alone in a big, scary house and so I got to meet a new friend. Oh...and BYU lost.
Liam is a great airplane traveller. 
The kids had a great time with Grandma. She taught them to embroider, took them bowling, and made their new favorite meal of roast and potatoes.
Virginia is beautiful. I love the green, the humidity, and all the oxygen in the air. Running felt so great.
BYU golfers.
Love these friends.