June 23, 2017

Friday - Garden Update

This week we had more sun and that was intermixed with a little splash of rain.  Honestly folks this is perfect garden weather.  If things continue we might have our best summer ever.  Do I dare to say that so early in the season?
Here is a view of the entire garden, expansion included, from the deck.  In the expansion area you can start to see the beet and carrot seeds coming up.  Our biggest change in the garden this week was I gave in and went to the greenhouse and bought three new zucchini plants last weekend.  Ours just didn't make it through that cold spell and summer wouldn't be summer without zucchini.   

Projects this week:  the weeds.  As much as the vegetables are growing so are the weeds.  I really need time without Zachary to not only weed but also fertilize the main body of the garden.  The greenhouse I can do easily with him but the outdoor area is a little harder to maneuver.  
The weather has also been lovely enough that this week we moved the lettuce boxes out of the greenhouse and onto the deck.  Yeah for easy access for summer dinners.  We have already had a BLT night and all loved the taste of our own garden lettuce.
The new rhubarb planter box is also doing well.  Takes a little more work to get the watering can out there but Zachary and I do it each day and the rhubarb is thankful.  It is growing so well after having its roots torn apart just a month or so ago.  The small strawberries planted between the rhubarb is also doing ok.  Not flourishing but not dying either.  Progress!

June 22, 2017

What A Celebration of Zachary

The lovely ladies at my church planned a baby shower for baby Zachary.  Way back in the spring when everyone was looking at the calendar there was so much going on, and I always have babies that come late, that June 10th sounded like a good day.  Well, our little Zachary decided to come June 8th instead and we have concluded it must be because he is not one to miss a party, especially one for him.
 Josh seriously helped us check out of the hospital the morning of June 10th and drove us to our baby shower.  One of the ladies helped me cut off all of my hospital ID bands upon arrival, ha ha.
 The entire party was story book themed and it was so perfect and fun.  Books on the tables, books on the fire place mantle, books hanging on ribbons made banners around the room.
And the food was all connected to books too:
The giant cabbage book was with coleslaw
The tale of peter rabbit was with veggie sticks
Red Fish, Blue Fish was with a bowl of colored gold fish crackers
Green Eggs And Ham were with deviled eggs dyed green
The three little pigs was with pigs in a blanket
The Little Red Hen was with a loaf of bread
Winnie the Pooh was with a jar of honey
Blueberries for Sal was with blueberry jam
The hungry, hungry caterpillar was with cupcakes and green tortillas and cream cheese all rolled and cut into the shape of a caterpillar.
And then on top of all the gifts he was given, Zachary was loved, kissed, hugged and adored at just shy of two days old.  We were all so thankful that we made it to the party, and that we then got the chance to go home and be tucked into our bed for time to rest after all the love we had been given.  What a way to celebrate our little man's arrival into this world.

June 19, 2017

Summer Days

Summer days and loving life with a newborn!

June 16, 2017

Friday Garden Update

Recently there was been a lot of sun and heat in Fairbanks with a good mix of rainy days.  The perfect recipe for garden growth.
 The garden expansion area was planted just days before Zachary was born.  It is full of small carrot and beet seeds that are all popping up and bringing us delight as well as the pea and bean starts.  For some reason I didn't take a picture of the whole expansion area but will do that for next Friday.  It looks great.
 The sunshine has our greenhouse pushing 100 or more degrees everyday and the plants are loving it. Baby cucumbers are in our future.
 And little Zachary and I use our wakeful night hours to go out and pick the suckers off of our tomato plants.  You have to love living in the land of the midnight sun where you can garden with a newborn at 2 in the morning.
Besides our zucchini, which suffered from the cold at the beginning of the month and still haven't rallied, everything is growing strong.  If I am up for going out and about one of these days I will go get a few zucchini replacement plants and we should be back on track.
A little picture of me and my gardening buddy.  

June 15, 2017

Heavenly Gifts To Celebrate 36 Years

Today I celebrate my birthday.  What a busy month June has become in our house.  As I think about all of adventures and experiences life has given me for the past 36 years I find such joy in my five greatest gifts from God.
 My little mother, planner, motivator and petite spinning girl.
 My adventure seeking, always moving, super loving and hugging red haired boy.
 My strong, helpful, cuddly, and focused little blue eyed girl.
 My 9 lbs of snuggles, three chinned, long haired and breath taking little boy.
All added to my best friend who keeps me stable, loves me, encourages me, dreams of the future with me and celebrates me today.  Today I celebrate 36 years of life and I sit back and wonder how was I so lucky to be blessed so abundantly.  

June 14, 2017


Here is a picture of Zachary's first bath.  Last night my little man's hair was washed under the bathroom faucet.  No full baths allowed yet but my baby with lots of hair was due.  Love that clean baby smell.

June 13, 2017

Love At First Sight

There might not be a lot of words on the blog this week.  My arms are full of baby sweetness.  But I do have plenty of pictures to share.

Josh's mom is here helping us keep this family going this week and we are so thankful.  On the day Zachary was born, she was able to bring the kids in to meet him when he was less than three hours old.  They were all in love!

June 12, 2017

Morning Help

Sometimes I am a little slow in getting downstairs in the morning if one of the kids is in need of extra help picking clothes, making a bed or cleaning up morning time books.
But since the kids love to be helpers, there really is no telling how they will "help" get breakfast ready as I make my way to the kitchen.  Life around here is rarely full of dull moments for sure!!

June 9, 2017

Our Number 4

What a busy and unexpected week we have had.  Tuesday morning at 3am I started to feel "off".  Thursday at 3:42 pm our little baby boy finally arrived.  Who would have ever thought that our number 4 would take so long to arrive.  How ready we were to meet him.
 I will soon take the time to write his birth story but today he deserves his introduction.  

Zachary Davis Klynstra
arrived 6/817 at 3:42pm
9 lb 14 oz
22 inches long
He fits into this crazy little family perfectly.  We are so very happy he is here.

June 8, 2017

Early Morning Favorites

One of my great joys is watching the kids engaged and happy.  Mixing the kids, their personalities, they need for different things at different times and how everyone is feeling makes these special moments seem rare.
But sometimes all we need to smooth out a situation is some crayons and big pieces of paper.
And with those tools three different minds can create three different views on their worlds and express what they see.
Early morning coloring, creating and expressing - a great way to start a day.

June 7, 2017

Cleaning Up

This spring has been a fun and muddy one for the kids.  Fun and MUDDY!  

The other day was a nice and "feels like summer and maybe some dry days ahead" kind of day.  So with a broom I headed down to the kids small playhouse to help remove some of the layers of mud from all of the lovely mud pies, fudge and brownies that the kids have been making from the spring time mud they find.  I quickly realized that the job was going to take a little more then a pregnant mama with a broom.
So with that, the little house was moved to the driveway and the kids were given a bucket of soapy water and rags.  I have found that little else keeps kids happier longer than water and rags with a job at hand.  This is really a chore they love.
Ahh, time for the summer time cleanse.  Since the washing the kids have moved more to making "salads" out of flowers and grass instead of all the mud inspired desserts.  A good shift for sure.
And as the kids scrubbed down in the driveway, I was on the deck doing a little of my own scrubbing.  Baby carseat and pack n' play have been scrubbed down, sun dried and put back together.  One more step closer to being ready for our new little man.

June 6, 2017

How We Celebrated

Last Friday our little girl turned 3 years old.
We spent the entire day celebrating her with all of her favorites.
 Breakfast started us out with her favorite: gooey eggs and sausage accompanied by phone calls and being sung to by family and friends.
 Mid-day saw us in town for a special lunch and time down at the river to feed the local ducks.
 Then off to Pioneer park to ride the horsey-go-round (carousel) and then the train.
 Since pioneer park just had their grand summer opening over Memorial day it was the perfect time to celebrate Naomi on her day.  She had been asking after these much desired rides for months!
 At home she got her special requested dinner of homemade mac n' cheese with cucumbers, salad and grapes.  How this girl loves grapes!
 Opening presents is always fun but the one present your brother and sister pick out for you - always the best one.  Love how this little tradition from my childhood has carried out into the lives of my kids!
 So very happy daddy was on hand for the "some assembly required" gift that I had no idea was going to actually require any assembly, opps.
 And finally getting to present Naomi her much requested Panda bear cake.  Looking back at pictures, I realized that I didn't start the special cakes until Abigail's 4th birthday.  Now each birthday seems to be a game for the kids to "stump mama" with their requests.  But I was pleased with how this little panda bear turned out.
And of course Naomi's favorite stuffed panda, and inspiration for her request in the first place, sat front and center with her as she enjoyed her treat.  Well to be truthful, she licks the frosting off and leaves the cake.  But when it is your birthday you can do just what you want!  What a fun day we had celebrating Naomi and taking note of the special things she loves on her day.

June 5, 2017

Happy 6 1/2

Today this very special girl is turning 6 1/2.  1/2 birthdays are something extra special that we like to add to the fun of being a kid.  Specially requested meals will be prepared and no chores are required of her all day long.  To make this day even more special, today starts the week of VBS for her and Ethan.  
Happy 1/2 birthday to my oh so special girl.  I love the age of 6.  May the second half go much slower for us all than the first.

June 2, 2017

Today We Celebrate 3

When a child is born, all new mothers are told the famous line, "don't blink, it goes by too fast."  

I made a mistake and didn't listen well enough.  I have blinked.
 Today we celebrate our Naomi Cecilia as she turns three years old.  Just yesterday this little blue eyed beauty was 2.  Oh, I can tell you all the stories of what have happened in the past 365 days to her, our family and the adventures we have loved but that means first I have to get past the fact that this picture of a little girl on her second birthday is a whole year old.  Why did I blink?
 As I sit up late at night watching you sleep your last night away as a two year old, I think of who you are and just who you are becoming.  You are my shy in public, but oh so bold in private, little girl.  Give you a setting you are comfortable in (home, library, church and children's museum) and you don't stop talking.  You love to tell stories.  And we must note the Levison blood in you.  You my girl talk with your hands.  Big, wide and exaggerated gestures come out.  It is something, that when you really get going - as is often the case at the dinner table, that makes everyone else stop and stare. Your stories and hand motions can stop a crowd!
 Your favorite, and always present, companions are baby Laura and panda bear.  Both are loved to the point of needing baths weekly, if not more often.  They are referred to as part of the family and nobody better dispute that!  Because at the end of the day you are a snuggler.  You are the one that is most often going to climb in my lap and get hugged, as you hug a baby you love.  And as much as you love baby Laura, you adore your soon to be here baby brother.  Every meal you pray for baby Zachary and for all the things you are going to show him and teach him.  You love being the baby of the family right now but being the big sister is a role you are more than ready to step into.
 Books are a major part of each of your days.  Add in puzzles and you are happy.  You love characters that you see.  Dora, minnie mouse, doc McStuffin, and more.  It is amazing to me that for a child who is exposed very little to this world you have soaked it up.  With that, you love to sing.  Of all three of you, you sing the most!  You will often break into song about Dora's backpack, Doc McStuffin's clinic, and more.  In addition you sing I am a little tea pot and more nursery rhyme songs all day long.  You are my only child who likes to be sung to as you fall asleep.
 You are crazy about your brother and sister.  How you love them but on the other hand, won't conform to them.  Abigail loves to be the boss and it is very hard on her because you refused to be bossed around.  Oh, you do love to play Mama, daddy and baby (where you are the baby) but in terms to always following Abigail's lead, as Ethan is inclined to do, you resist.  You are more then happy to go off and play solo rather than be bossed.  But at the end of every day you are heard talking about your "best brother and best sister and how you just love this whole family!"
 This picture is one of my favorites from this past year.  It shows you so well.  You are the smallest but boy do you have the biggest personality.  Upon one of her visits, my mother commented that you are the most likely candidate to influence the attitude of the room.  It is true.  If you are happy, the room is relatively happy.  Yet you have such a strong force that if you are upset, well we all find it hard to get past.  Being two certainly played a part in that but there is no denying it, you are a persistent and strong willed little girl.
 And when it comes to who you love in your world, you daddy pretty much tops the list.  The two of you have a very special bond that I pray will hold true your whole life.  
 This year we confirmed that you have thalessemea, which doesn't change our lives but does help us feel more relaxed at any required iron checks that come back low.  Yesterday you weighed in at 30lbs 13 oz and 2.9 feet tall.  Your growth is perfect.  How thankful we are that you are healthy.   
It takes very little effort for you to make us laugh.  As mentioned earlier, you have a way of telling very tall tales.  They are always your original thoughts as well.  Your imagination is one that I wish I could bottle up and give back to you a little more each year as you grow to realize the world's limitations!  As a third born you are tough and are ready to make your presence known outside of your siblings' shadows.  It has often been remarked over the past year that you seem older than 2.  With two big kids to chase after it is true.  You can count, know colors, letters, sing, assemble puzzles, use scissors, paint and more.  The results have always been that of a two year old but your ability to master these things comes from a lot of exposure to your sister's class work and your brother's play.  
Your second year has brought a lot of challenges as we figure out the role of child to parent and the determination that goes with that.  As we have neared the age of three your tantrums have mellowed and I pray they will continue to dissipate as you grow up this year.  Yet on the other hand I pray for the carefree, imagination, joy and laughter of your childhood holds strong.  I pray for the days ahead, for the girl you are now and the women you will be, for your health, and for you to know that each and everyday of your life - You are loved!