Monday, May 28, 2012


Another favorites list. Tell me when you get sick of hearing things I love and I'll stop.

Zappos. I've been on the hunt for white sandals. I searched all over-- went to every store in the mall and couldn't find what I wanted for the price I wanted to pay. And then Zappos came along. Huge selection, free shipping. Awesome.

Nestle Upside down milkshake. Do any of you have a Nestle Cookie store at your mall??! If you do- go the mall right now and get a chocolate upside down milkshake. It's the best thing ever.

Laquered nails. I never get my nails done- but when I was in Michigan a couple weeks ago I noticed how cute my mom's nails were. She had them lacquered (since she's off work for a while and her arm was in a cast she got hers done). So I went and got mine done too. So awesome. They are grown out now- but no chips- and isn't that the worst part of having painted nails-- when it chips off?? 

Modern Family. Please tell me that you watch this show. It's hilarious. Gloria is my favorite person ever. Or maybe Phil. Or maybe the mom since she reminds me of me-- only she's WAY prettier- just the uptight side of her reminds me of me. Here is a little taste of Gloria.

Pei Wei. Where has it been all my life? So so good. 

Texas. Seriously you guyses-- this place is awesome. Come visit and I'll show you :)

Memorial day

10 years ago on memorial day I was kissed by the cutest boy I'd ever met. He's still the cutest boy I've ever met. Thanks Dave, for giving me the kiss that changed my life.

Sunday, May 27, 2012


My ward put on a 5k run. It was super fun. Dave was sweet enough to watch the kiddos so I could run- even though he wanted to run too. And probably would have done awesome. 
Here are all the runners. There was a 10k too- but we all started together. The 10kers just ran two more loops. There I am all the way on the left- thanks for not cutting me all the way out Dave :)
 The cutest little cheerleader I could ask for.
 Here I am after my first loop. I'm sorry to blind you all with my white legs.
Woo hoo! I finished!! I've been running lately, but not very far. I wasn't very sure if I'd be able to finish the whole thing without stopping to walk. But I did it!! 9 minute miles-- so not super speedy, but I was happy!! Plus I came in 4th overall. Not too shabby for my first 5k in like 10 years :)

Saturday, May 26, 2012

family affair

Checking the mail at our house has become a family activity. Our mailbox is down the street, so after bath we take a hike down to the mailbox. It's a hoot.
I love watching this little boy walk/run. He's the cutest. He usually laughs/grunts the whole time he's running. And last night he wanted to bring this bear. On our way he told me that his bear liked to give him lots of kisses. I don't blame that bear. Not one bit.
Checking the mail!! Who knew it could be so much fun??!

splash pad

 We went to the coolest splash pad ever this week. It had two big water areas, plus this big sand area with a pebble creek around it. It was awesome. I didn't carry my camera around with me since we were getting splashed, but here a couple pictures from on the way out.

And one picture I got of Quinn while we were packing up. She wanted a wipe to clean her hands and then I saw her wiping her arm pits. (She said they were sticky... ha)

Friday, May 25, 2012

Dear Quinn

Dear Quinn,

Where has the time gone? It seems like just yesterday you were a tiny (literally) baby in my arms. And here you are- still tiny- but not a baby! And about to start kindergarten!! Crazy!

I know this move has been hard on you. It breaks my heart to see you struggle. You have always been sweet and quiet- and the move has made normal things even harder for you. It makes me sad when I see a cute little girl run up to you at the park and say: "Hi! My name's Whitney." And instead of saying "hi," you immediately turn your back to her and run to me as fast as you can and hug my legs. Then you refuse to leave my side the rest of the time we are at the park-- just in case that little girl comes up to you again. Which she probably won't  :(

It also makes me sad to see you struggle with pre-kindergarten things. Twice now you have chosen to not take the pre-kinder evaluation. It's not supposed to be scary. And honestly, you could answer all those questions with your eyes closed and arms behind your back. You are so smart! You did so well in preschool, and I have confidence that if you would give kindergarten a chance, you will love that as well.

But I fear for the next few months. I am trying SO HARD to help you. I have been having more play dates than ever. I'm inviting girls over that are your age so when you go to church or school you will see familiar faces. I am trying to patiently encourage you to participate in things that I know as for your own good. (And sorry for when my patience has run out. I know you have dealt with some consequences lately because you refused to do what I expected of you). I wish there was a way to put you in smaller school, but I'm afraid it's just too late for something like that. I'm reading books to help you with your self esteem and confidence. But what else can I do?

I feel like I tried to everything right when you were a baby. Encouraged your autonomy. Read you countless books all day long. Nursed you forever. Loved you and doted on you as any mother would. Yet maybe deep down this is kinda my fault. I should have helped you have more play mates around when you were really little. I was such a freak about germs that I shied away from stuff. I was so worried about you picking up some bad habit from other kids that I sheltered you from people who weren't just like us. I am nervous about schedules and safety, and it has made you nervous-- and to the extreme. Sorry for the damage. ;)

If you remember anything from this time in your life, I hope that you remember that your mommy loves you. And there is nothing I want more than for you to succeed and be happy and not have the stress and anxiety that you've been feeling lately. I hope you make a good friend that will help you not feel alone in that gigantic new school of yours. And a friend that needs you as much as you need her (or him) :)


Thursday, May 24, 2012


 mmm... spaghetti. It's kinda tricky for little baby fingers to grab and make it all into her mouth.
Good thing she has cute little legs for the noodles to land on :)

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Sunday moments

A Sunday memory that I don't want to forget:

The typical Sunday morning. Trying to get my kids to eat lunch at 10 am so they can nap at 10:30 so we can make it to 12 o'clock church. Crazy? Yes. Does it ever really work out? Not really. But crazy-scheduler-amber tries anyway.

We make it to church a little late. But everyone has shoes on and their hair done and the girlies even have matching skirts and toe nail polish on so we aren't doing half bad.
Our new ward is large so we must sit in the gym on the metal chairs. No biggie. A half an hour into the meeting I look around at my darling family:

Hendrix is banging his matchbox cars on the metal chairs. Metal on metal... A nice reverent sound. After hushing Hendrix for the 30th time I look over to see Dave trying his hardest to avoid being bitten by Veda- who is practicing her latest hobby: biting. Meanwhile I look at Quinn who is happily eating her goldfish. Putting one in her mouth, chewing it up, spitting it out into the palm of her hand, making little shapes (balls, whales, snakes, etc), showing me her treasure, and then eating it again.

These are the moments.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

MI wrap-up

Here are the rest of the pictures from my trip. 

Veda and Luna. They were unsure about each other that's for sure. (My sisters dog). This was a rare moment when they seemed to like each other. A little :)
 Aunt Julie and Veda at the park.
 My brothers fixing my mom's fence. It was their mother's day present to her-- aren't they sweet? My parents neighbors have had a saggy fence FOREVER and it shades my mom's garden and drives her crazy. She has asked the neighbors to fix it, but they don't. So my sweet brother's and dad spent some time taking it down and re-cementing the posts.
 These are my dad's siblings. There is one more brother who had already started driving home.
 Me and Aunt Sandy!! She's so awesome. I have so many great memories with her.
 Me and Julie!
 Sisters! Me and my sister- and my mom and her sister.
 This was Veda on our VERY last flight after it landed. We made it!! It is no easy feat flying with a baby!!! And flying by myself brought new challenges. Like sitting down next to a stranger and trying to figure out how I am going to nurse without making them uncomfortable. But in all- it went okay. I am so grateful for such a great baby. She was awesome awesome awesome.
 And this darling sign was waiting for me when I got home. How cute- huh??
I sure missed my kids. We did FaceTime a LOT while I was gone. And it would break my heart because Quinn wouldn't want to hang up the phone. Thank goodness for FaceTime though. It was so nice to see Dave's cute face-- and my kid's faces too :)
And a shout out to Dave who made this all possible. When my mom called to tell me the news about my grandpa, my first reaction was that of course I couldn't go to Michigan. But Dave was very supportive and insisted that I go-- and made it possible by watching the big kids. So thanks Dave-- love you :)

MI pictures-- viewing/luncheon

Is it strange that I took pictures during such an occasion? It's hard not to when I'm surrounded by family that I want to soak up every minute with, and a darling baby. So think what you will- and here are some pictures from the viewing/luncheon.

Veda was given anything she wanted (including cookies for dinner). She was surrounded by doting Aunts, Uncles, and Grandparents. And was the only child under 12 around. 
 What a brave Grandma to hold Veda while she's eating a cookie wearing a pretty white shirt.
Okay-- so I did put the breaks on the cookies after she had two. Veda did not understand why she couldn't have more. And I guarantee if I hadn't of been standing there saying no, someone would have come over and given her one :)
In between viewing sessions all the Stevens' went to Old Country Buffet. I'm sure that's where my Grandpa wanted us to go.
 While we waited for everyone else to eat dinner (she was full on cookies remember?) we wandered around the mall that the restaurant was in.
I am SO SAD I didn't get a picture of me and my siblings together. But this is as good as I got-- at least  Julie, Daine and Fritz are in this one.
 Sweet, sweet Veda so tired and ready to go home after the funeral.
See-- so tired. She was such a trooper though. My brother in law, Daniel was kind enough to spend the funeral in the hall with Veda so I could be there. Funerals aren't really the best place for a loud and antsy 15 month old.

Monday, May 21, 2012


Shall we pause on my Michigan pictures for the day? We should... Because we went to the pool for the first time this morning.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

MI- airport and the mall

Sweet little sleeping baby.
 Waiting at the airport for Uncle Fritz to land.
 Showing Grandma her cute shoes while waiting at the airport :)
 At the mall playing on the breakfast food. We HAD to take a picture of Veda on the eggs just for Dave. For those of you who don't know that Dave well enough-- he has an extreme hate of eggs. He loves eggs jokes, Quinn is even getting kinda good at them. You should tease him about eating eggs. He'd laugh :)
 This was how the whole week was. Veda standing around smiling while everyone stared at her.

 You totally can't tell we're related :)

I'm glad that we had a little time to do some 'fun stuff' before the funeral stuff started. It would have been a shame to travel that far and not do anything else. 

Friday, May 18, 2012

Michigan- the beach!

Before my brothers got to town, us girls headed to Holland State Park. It was a perfect morning. Sunny,  blue skies and a crisp breeze. 

Me and Veda swinging 

 This was at the little Dutch village in Holland. Did I mention it was a perfect morning? My mom and I sat on this bench while I nursed Veda. It was beautiful and quiet and lots of cute ducks.