November 17, 2016


So I may still be in a tiny bit of a post partum funk...because Halloween, my "favorite Holiday", came and went and I barely acknowledged it. Not a single decoration was laid out, not a single Halloween movie was watched. We didn't make any Halloween candy houses or caramel apples. We didn't visit the witches at Gardner Village. We are lucky we even made it to the pumpkin patch a week before the big day (and by then most of the good pumpkins were gone). We even put off carving pumpkins until the night before Halloween.

I did figure out a costume theme for Kendrick, the twins, Layla and myself in advance. But Tay and E did their own thing and when all was said and done, I didn't even spend a dime on E's costume. He seriously made it up himself out of things he already had in his closet. I'm lame and I feel bad. But he looked cute.

Since we now live in a neighborhood chalk full of young kids-we felt like we had to actually pass out candy. Fun fact about me: I don't like passing out candy. I would much rather be out with the kids, collecting candy. But all the big kids were excited to go trick or treating with their friends so Kendrick and I stayed home with the baby. It was depressing. And I'll be honest, I let it ruin my night. I will probably always look back and regret my lack of effort for Layla's first Halloween, but I simply did not have it in me this year. Here are the pictures we did take. The kids look happy enough in them, so I feel very confident that all the traditions and things I listed above are more for my benefit than theirs.

One of Kendrick's clients invinted this cool pumpkin "carving" kit. You essentially just put cookie cutter shapes against your pumpkin and then use a mallot to punch them in. I loved that it was easy and quick. But Kendrick and the boys got WAY too intricite with their deisgns so they had a harder time.

I didn't help in any class Halloween parties, In fact, I think only Myles had one. But Kendrick and I did go to the Halloween parade in the morning. We tried to get a picture of Easton in his Indiana Jones getup but he refused to stop for a picture.

Kendrick's office manager brought in some of her puppies for the office potluck and I took Layla to see everyone at daddy's work. She was sort of an accessory to his costume after all.

She looks like a deflated football being that she doesn't have a very big belly to fill out her costume. But I find that quite fitting-a Patriots fan with a DEFLATED football...

November 14, 2016

5 mo old

 Layla Campbell turned 5 months on October 30th

Layla turned 5 months old on October 30th and it made me sad. It doesn't feel like it's been 5 months. It feels like it's been maybe 3 months. Where has the time gone? At 5 months old she is in love with her toes. Like, pretty sure she prefers them to any toy she owns. She is finally starting to roll. Although she gets irritated by it. She has to be "in the mood" to roll. She is a laugher! And just about everything her brothers and Taylor do is hysterical to her. She is now eating baby food. So far everything is her obviously her favorite. Girlfriend just likes to eat! I gave her yogurt last week and she was in heaven! We went to Park City in October and it messed with her sleep schedule. So since then we have been on a funky sleep schedule. Sone nights she does 3 hour stretches and some nights she does 10. I never know how many hours of sleep I am going to get these days. But she's worth it. You can't be mad when even in the middle of the night she wakes up smiling at you.

4 mo old

                                           Layla Campbell turned 4 months on September 30th

Layla turned 4 mo old on the twins' Birthday. And that marked the one year "anniversary" of when I found out I was pregnant with her. I remember that day vividly. I actually remember the evening before and all I did leading up to taking that pregnancy test and then the roller coaster ride of emotions I had for weeks after I took the test. This little girl is my angel. If you had asked me 2 or 3 years ago if I wanted another baby I would have said, "Sure! If I can guarantee it will be a boy!" I was thinking I wanted another little Easton. Because for 7 years he was the perfect baby to our family and I couldn't even imagine anything else. Let alone another girl. But I stand corrected, Layla is THE PERFECT baby for our family. Even Easton will agree-she was meant to be our youngest. At 4 months old Layla was still sleeping like a champ (10-12 hours each night) and refused to roll. She was learning to splash in the tub and was becoming A LOT more vocal. She was so fun on the day we took her 4 month pictures.

The twins 10th

Jack and Myles turned 10 on September 30th! That means I have had the honor of being the mom to what could possibly be the world's most charming set of identical twin boys on this planet. Because even on days when they leave me exhausted and bewildered by their antics-I still think to myself how amazing they are. Maybe I put them on a pedestal just a tiny bit, but that's because they really have been such fun and easy boys to raise.

A few days before their Birthday we had a combined family Birthday dinner for all the September boy Birthdays (the twins, my brother and my dad). So on that day they got their Birthday cakes.

Their actual Birthday was low key. They both chose to go to school because they made goals this year to not miss a singe day. So they went to school and then I checked them out to have lunch with Kendrick and I. They chose Outback (I was thrilled to get a break from "Chuck a gramma"). Then that evening we did gifts and went roller skating at Classic. I hate that place. But I think they had a good time. Maybe not as good as their dad (who was reliving his glory days on roller skates) but they seemed happy and satisfied with their Birthday.

I am so grateful that I get to be their mom forever! We love you Jack and Myles!

Our beautiful baby

I am so in love with this baby. I am feeling so incredibly guilty and bewildered over my reaction to finding out I was pregnant with her last year. I forgot how much I love having a baby in the house. She is just the best part of everyone's day and I feel like Kendrick and I have hit the parenting jackpot after having 5 beautiful, healthy, happy and sleep loving babies.

We take way more pictures of this cutie than we probably should but that's how it goes for the youngest, right? So I thought I'd share some of our favorite photos of one of our favorite baby girls...

September 6, 2016

Back to School

School started for all of our kids on August 22nd. I do believe this was the first year that we have ever had school start on a Monday. It was kind of weird. I felt like it made our weekend feel shorter and more restricted.

Tay restarted Junior High. So far I love her knew Junior High. If you ask her, she will tell you that she doesn't love it and that it's not as nice as her last Junior High. But the truth is: she has been a thousand times happier since school started! She is always up and at 'em and to the bus on time without any prompting from me and she usually comes home in a good mood. So I feel fairly confident that she is not as scarred for life as she'd have everyone believe over having to switch schools.

Jack had some self inflicted "rough" first few days of school. He was put on a table of all girls and one of them chose to show her affection towards him by picking on him. He let it bother him way more than he should have. And if you ask him now he will tell you that that girl is actually really nice and she doesn't bother him at all anymore. I don't know what it is about Jack, but he is hands down the most sensitive kid I have EVER known. Which can be both a blessing and a curse I suppose...

Myles pretty much counted down the days until school started all summer long and has loved every day that he has been back. He once again made the goal to not miss a single day of school this year and he seems determined to reach it. I have no idea where he gets his love of school and learning from. Kendrick and I never loved school that much.

Easton is funny about school. He is a smart boy and a good student but he threatens me nearly every night by telling me that he's not going to school the next day. Usually it's over something silly like his brother taking the Lego he wanted, or me not letting him play video games long enough. I swear it feels like his goal is to make his brothers as late as possible for school at least 3 days a week (FYI-we have late start school and the boys have not been marked tardy once). He is a really good reader but he pitches a fit about reading any longer than 10 minutes each day. And he is the kind of kid that can't seem to focus on his homework the night before it's due and will stew over 3 problems for an hour, acting like he doesn't know what he's looking at. But then if you hand him his homework and a pencil 20 minutes before school starts all of a sudden he is a freaking genius who can bust out a homework sheet in less than 5 minutes and get every problem right. I love him to death but this kid's approach to learning and schoolwork stresses me out.

Mom and Dad will miss the long summer nights, sleeping in, and no homework. But other than that-school starting has been such a blessing. I am enjoying having my mornings free to go walk the trail with Layla, getting the house all the way clean, meeting friends for hikes or lunch, and Kendrick is pretty much always happy as long as I'm happy...
He's perfect that way!

3 mo old

Layla Campbell turned 3 months on August 30th

It's been 3 months of heaven with this little lady! Layla is a talker. She loves to coo and babble and laugh at us every day. She is a stinker when it comes to getting buckled into her car seat. But in her defense-her car seat has like zero padding so I finally had to break down and buy an insert for it. She still is a rockstar sleeper at night and once the kids went back to school I was able to get her into a napping routine too. 
~She LOVES her sleep sack. 
~She LOVES the rain and thunder sounds I have on my phone. Beach sounds-not so much. Rivers and streams-no. But rain and thunder...rain and thunder are her jam! Speaking of jams, her absolute favorite song is "The Wheels on The Bus". She loves the "up and down" part and we are able to get her best giggles out of that portion of the song. 
~She loves any activity that requires us to tote her around in the Baby Bjorn.
~She loves watching Sesame Street. I've tried The Wiggles and Baby Einstein and Cailou but none of those shows hold her attention quite like the hyper, high pitched puppets from the "the street".
~She loves the taste of her hands and often gags on them because she tries to stick both of them down her throat at once. When she isn't gagging on them she is making yummy sounds over them. It kind of makes me want to dip them in chocolate sauce so I can see her reaction.
This girl is just so much fun and we all love her so much. I am really enjoying having her to myself all day long while the big kids are at school. 

August 19, 2016

Summer 2016

I started warning the kids when we first told them that I was pregnant, that this summer would be MUCH different from summers past. I tried to prepare them for the boredom that lied ahead. I tried to prepare them for the potential of having a grumpy, hormonal and sleep deprived mother. We didn't schedule any vacations, we knew we'd have a break from our annual camping trips. They were warned beforehand that water parks and possibly pools would be out of the question. I think it's safe to say that they were not super excited about this summer. Until Layla was born. That baby girl changed everything for them. Not a single child has complained about missing camping. The only comment I have heard about it was from Taylor and she simply said, "I wish we could go to Bear Lake this year...but I know we can't yet because it's hard with a baby." I may have made having a newborn sound a lot worse than it really has been. I was trying to prepare myself for the worse case scenario because I didn't think it was possible that my 5th baby would be just as good as my other 4 babies and be the best sleeper of them all. Had I known beforehand that we would be blessed with such a chill baby, I probably would have booked a fun trip months ago. I feel bad now that we haven't gone anywhere this summer.

The only thing that kept our kids from having the worst summer of their childhood is our new neighborhood. Boredom was rarely an option with all the kids there are to play with here. Our kids have hung out with our next door neighbors EVERY SINGLE day since summer started. Most days they would spend the entire day together and be perfectly content to only come in to use the bathroom and grab a snack. On the days that they didn't spend 8 hours together, they would at least meet in the driveway for just a quick chat, or they'd start an impromptu night game at 9:00 in the evening, or go on a quick run down to the clubhouse grill to share some fries for lunch-our kids always had something to do and someone to hang out with this summer. I am so grateful we moved here when we did. This neighborhood has saved what was left of my sanity.

Even though we stayed in town all summer, we were still able to do some fun things...
We enjoyed some beautiful hikes up AF canyon. We did a good amount of fishing. We had tinfoil dinners and s'more with our neighbors in the canyon. We had some friends over for dinner and fireworks on both the 4th and 24th of July. The boys went on a man camp with Kendrick and Dean. Taylor was able to go to 2 girls camps and a softball camp at BYU. The kids were invited to Birthday parties (another perk of being in a neighborhood FULL of kids), we went to a Bees game, Jack and Kendrick went to a REAL game, the boys took swimming lessons, Tay took a sewing class, Tay and I had a girls night and got pedicures, Kendrick's sister and her family came to town, we had a BBQ with Kendrick's co-workers, Easton and Kendrick enjoyed a few evenings of driving range practice, we took plenty of walks around our gorgeous golf course in the evenings, there were A LOT of late nights with friends, Kendrick, Layla and myself enjoyed weekly date nights, there was a lot of ice cream, and there was plenty of sleeping in and being lazy. We even managed to get the kids to the pool twice! All in all-it was not a bad summer.

The Miller Family visit

Canyon fun (fishing, hiking, dinners...)

Girls night pedicures

Man Camp

The Bees Game

A REAL game

Fishing at the local pond

Driving Range fun

Girls Camp

I am torn between being sad that this summer was so low key AND being grateful that this summer was so low key. It went better than I expected so I feel guilty for being torn about how I feel about it. I know I will never get this summer, my first summer with 5 kids, back. So even though there is only a few days left of summer vacation-I am trying VERY hard to take a deep breath, chill out and just enjoy whatever happens...