Sunday, August 31, 2008



That's what I have to say to the fish who curse us.

Shanna had singing practice tonight. Tyler surprised me later by saying "Let's Go Fishing." Those words should not be said in our house.

They are cursed.

It got windy as soon as we got out of our car. We paid $10 to see the sun set and hear me yell at Kaci to stop climbing so high on the rocks.

Tyler's fishing line got in a big #$%&* knot.

We caught exactly zero fish

We spent some quality family time in the car together though... and the nice police man just flashed his brights at us as we sped past him trying to get there fast. Now if the fish really placed a curse on us, he would have pulled us over... right?

Since we like to inflict pain on ourselves, we will be trying again tomorrow.


Saturday, August 30, 2008

The fish have cursed us

Today was strike two for fishing. Tyler was teased earlier this week when he caught lots of Big Bass fish, but couldn't keep them because it was a private pond.

So, last night we were going to go at the reservoir.... Until his car got hit in a parking lot. The person left, so we spent a bunch of time with dealing with that. They were able to get a license plate number off the security tape, and the damage was small, but it was still a bummer.

We decided we'd sleep in this morning and go tonight. Literally 10 minutes before we planned to leave, it started to storm. It was nice the rest of the day though, and we live in a DESERT!

Luckily it's a long weekend so maybe we'll still get to go. And if we do, watch out fish, the Swensons are on a mission to get you!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

My secret

I just got back from a secret parking lot meeting with my friend Sherry. We were exchanging the "goods" and I laugh everytime I admit I like them.

Yes, I now have in my hands book 2 of the Twlight (vampire) series. If you feel like teasing me, read the book first! You'll be hooked too.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

This morning, I had an unexpected battle. I caught Shanna in the laundry room, pulling something out of the sink.

I asked her what she was doing, and she said that she was looking for socks (Are you scratching your head yet??) I looked in there and saw several wet dirty washcloths and towels, and then she victoriously pulled out a sock. I must have been so shocked that I didn't say anything, because then she started digging for the match.

She was actually surprised and disappointed when I told her that she couldn't wear dirty socks! She said that they were so comfortable yesterday that she wanted to wear them again!! (I have to say that she had lots of nice clean, folded socks in her drawer and even though I hate laundry, my kids always have clean clothes to choose from!)

In the end, I won and she went to school with clean socks, but her expression looked just like Alexander from the book "Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day."

Monday, August 25, 2008

The Mom Of The Year Award...

....Does not go to me.

Dang it! I thought I must have been getting close to getting it... until I failed to realize that school got out at 1:15 today instead of 3:30. Oops. I better go make brownies or something to redeem myself.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

A Love Story

Tyler's parents celebrated their 40th Anniversary this weekend!

Jim & Argina, You have taught me by example what a successful marriage looks like. You always treat each other with respect, kindness and love. I'm sure that not every day has been roses, but you make marriage and commitment look easy. You inspire me to be a better wife and person each day. I love you both!

Click to play A Love Story
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How Stuff Works

The girls had fun learning how a hair dryer works by tearing an old one apart today. You can tell who is the scientist and who is the side kick! Shanna was really interested and intrigued with what she found inside the hair dryer. Kaci makes just about everything an adventure!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Hi Birdie!

Sara's personality is so much fun! We bought her this toy gym, and you can see how much she loves it. She has been laughing and smiling and cooing!

Morning Harvest

Here's what we brought in from the garden this morning!

Bye Bye Baby

Here is my 2nd child, formerly known as my baby. She seems so grown up now that she goes to preschool. Wouldn't it break your heart if you had to walk behind her like this to her first day of school??

Click to play Preschool
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The Storm

So, I am a little behind in posting pictures, but here are some of the storm that fried our modem. Yes, Tyler was out there shooting away with his metal tripod! He got some really cool shots of the lightening though.

Friday, August 22, 2008

I didn't say that... really

When I picked up Kaci from preschool today, I asked her teacher how Kaci was doing. She said that she was doing great and that she was really sharp! Then she kind of hesitated and said...

"On the first day of school, Kaci said you were so excited that school was starting because she is ALWAYS naughty!"

Yikes... What else does she say that the teacher doesn't want to repeat? Honestly, I didn't say that to her...

Maybe I should tell the teacher about the stories Kaci makes up about school! Like the one about a real princess being at their school who hides behind the curtains (there are no curtains at the school) when the parents come!

I just laughed it off, but for the next few weeks, I'm going to wonder what the teacher thinks of me. Remember my "Seasoned Mom" post? Maybe I should train her to say something nice about me at school on Monday!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

The Calm After The Storm

I feel at peace today. I think with the girls being back into their school routine, paired with my body feeling healed, and my energy back, life is seeming easier and more organized this week.

Of course if I let my mind wander for even a second, I would think of all the projects that need attending to. The laundry, the bills, the paperwork, the organizing, the cleaning...

But, in my mind, things feel easier! I have been able to cook every night, have great lunches for Shanna to take to school, I have been exercising almost every day, the girls are getting along well since they aren't together all day, I have had some sweet baby time with Sara...

Life is Good!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Big Girl

Sara had her 2 month check up today, she is 9 lbs, 15 oz and 23" long.

She got 3 owie pokes in her legs and one yucky medicine in her mouth.

She is now sleeping peacefully in my arrms, happy her morning is over!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Preschool Girl

Miss Kaci started preschool today. She was NOT nervous at all. She told us the same thing Shanna did on her first day of preschool:

"Can I walk in all by myself?"

Not only did she want to walk into her school by herself, she wanted us to stay in the car!

We compromised and walked in behind her.

Talk about having your heart ripped out - She didn't even tell us good bye! She marched in, threw her bag down and acted like she had been there a million times!

She had such a fun time. She was full of smiles and stories when I picked her up.

She has been chattering all afternoon. At one point, she said "Do you want me to say that again?"

I guess it was obvious even to her that I wasn't listening!! She wanted to know if I knew why she comes into our room at night. The answer? "Because of monsters." After I told her that monsters weren't real, she said "I know, and you weren't listening to me, huh?!" Busted!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Confessions of a "Seasoned Mom"

Kaci will start preschool tomorrow, the beginning of her school journey.

I have been there before with Shanna. (Has it really been 5 years?)

I was telling Robyn the other day that I feel like a "Seasoned Mom" this time around. I have learned from my experiences with Shanna and feel like I have a little bit of insider knowledge for Kaci.

I remember how nervous I was when Shanna was starting school. Being my first baby, she was still an extension of me. Saying I had a hard time letting go would be a big understatement.

One time Shanna bit another little girl, and I felt anguish and guilt like I had been the one doing the biting!

I was so worried about what I hadn't taught her... would she remember how to write her name, would she be nice to the other kids, respectful to her teacher, etc. I would be mortified if she had a potty accident or if I didn't remember that it was Silly Sock Day and she only wore white socks!

Guess what? I am now "seasoned" because of her. The poor kid did have a potty accident, wore NO socks at all on Silly Sock Day, struggled through friend problems and learned to follow the rules of her teacher.

Both of us must have done some things right because she is a happy, smart 8 year old who does well in school and has lots of friends.


Is it wrong for a Seasoned Mom to get a tear in her eye thinking about dropping her baby off at the door to school in the morning?

Should I feel guilty for thinking about teaching her a phrase in French like "May I please be excused to the bathroom" to totally impress the teacher? (No, I didn't really..)

Am I worried she'll have a potty accident and be embarrassed? Yes.

Do I worry about her having problems fitting in, even though kids make friends with everyone in their class by the end of the year? Yes.

If I packed an extra snack for her to share to make a new friend, would that be bad?

I think that even though this Seasoned Mom knows that I love my child more than anyone else could, I still want everyone to like her.

As a Seasoned Mom, I know the day will soon come when she comes home with a tear stained face and says that someone was mean to her.

I know that there will be teachers who won't understand her like I do. I know there will be homework assignments that neither one of us wants to do.

I have learned that if she writes every letter and number backwards, some day she'll figure out which way is right.

If she goes potty in her pants, no one will remember by the next time she goes to school.

Wearing no socks on Silly Sock Day can really be silly.... And that won't be the last time I forget something. We'll both learn how to deal with it.

The girl who made her cry one day will be her best friend the next.

I know that her hair doesn't have to be perfect, and if her clothes have a few wrinkles in them, no one is going to think that I'm a horrible mother. (But, I'll do her hair cute and iron her clothes anyways.)

I know all of this in my head, and I think I will know the answers when problems arise, but in my heart, my baby is growing up and has reached her first major milestone to spreading her wings and flying away.

I also know this will happen all over again when Sara starts school. Yikes. I think I shoud buy some stock in Kleenex.


One big lightening storm + our internet modem = BAD NEWS

For the next week or so I'll be blogging from my phone. Please excuse any errors! It was a cool storm though, and luckily our computers didn't get fried! I even have pictures to share once we get the new modem.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Sweet Sara

This was a happy way to wake up today

My Kaci

Kaci had an open house for her preschool yesterday, and all of the sudden, she seemed so grown up! I wanted to snap a picture of her before we left, but she was feeling silly and not cooperating very well. Looking back at the pictures now, I'm glad she wasn't. I love her, I love her spunk and I know that it won't be long before she'll be smiling for her high school pictures. Here's a slide show of how our photo shoot went.

Click to play Kaci
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Tuesday, August 12, 2008

First Day of School

Shanna started school today!

Click to play 3rd Grade
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We snuck in one last camping trip before school started. I even caught a fish!! I tried to be brave and help clean them... but Tyler ended up doing the dirty work! I did fillet and cook them though!) Here are some pictures from our trip.

Click to play Camping
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Thursday, August 07, 2008


Some of you may know about my breastfeeding frustrations. Maybe it's TMI, so I guess if it is, you don't have to read this.

BUT, last night, something clicked for Sara, and she has been nursing!!!!! I never thought this day would come. Every doctor and lactation nurse even gave up on her nursing successfully. BUT I DIDN'T! Neither did Tyler. It was his idea to try last night.

For the past 9 weeks, I pump every 3-5 hours and then bottle feed her. Sometimes she'd latch on with a nipple shield, but they don't get very much milk that way, so I would still have to pump afterwards. The nights were hard, I would be so tired, she was so hungry, and would lay next to me as I pumped, sucking on her binkie in rhythm with my pump. Then one of us would have to stay awake long enough to feed and burp her.

I have had to plan my outings around pumping, since it's ok to breastfeed in public, but have you ever seen someone pump in public?

Certain things have been nice, of course. First of all, the girls and Tyler love to feed her. The other two girls didn't take a bottle or a binkie, and both are so nice! But, this bond that I feel when I nurse my babies is the most amazing thing ever, and quite simply, it's easy. (Not easy to teach them, but easy to feed them wherever/whenever)

Maybe I should call the lactation nurse and I could be her poster child. And to the mean doctor who told me in the hospital "if babies don't learn to nurse within a week, they never will." Well, Shanna took a few weeks to learn, Kaci took a month, and Sara took 9 weeks. Take that, Mr. High-And-Mighty!

So, it's progressively getting better and easier. Last night, I was able to nurse her on one side, starting with the shield and then taking it away. Then, I fed her a bottle after. She also had a bottle during the night. Today, she has had ONE BOTTLE! I haven't had to use the shield at all for the last 2 feedings!

I am so happy! Thank you, Sara!

Tuesday, August 05, 2008


I haven't been very good about posting pictures lately... here are some random ones from the past week

First, we have Miss Kaci and her Wendy's date. We don't do fast food very often, so it is a HUGE deal when they get a Happy Meal. (Do they even call it that anymore?) What better way to eat it than with sunglasses and no pants on?

On the same day, Kaci and Sara were having a conversation. It was so cute. Kaci would talk, and Sara would move her lips and tongue like she was trying to do what Kaci was doing. She was smiling and cooing... so sweet!

Rock Band has been a huge hit... here's me and my girl, Rockin it!

Bad Bad Parents

We are bad parents.

We were playing Rock Band in the spare room at 11pm. When the song ended, we heard a lot of crying.

3 girls to be exact.

No one knew where we were.

Everyone wanted us.

Could they not hear us rocking out?

Herb Garden

Here's the little herb garden that I started in our kitchen. It was an Amish washing stand, which was a light oak color. 2 cans of black spray paint and a little dirt... and presto chango!

I couldn't find herb plants at the nursery, so I dug up the parsley from my garden in the backyard. I planted some more parsley and basil seeds, and once the parsley in the middle is done, I'll do something else, maybe chives or oregano.

Tuesday checklist


~We rode bikes to the school this morning. Shanna is getting really strong at riding! I pulled the other 2 girls in the bike trailer

~They posted the class lists at the school. Shanna got the teacher she wanted and her good friend is in her class!

~I played taxi driver for swimming lessons. I had to pick between Kaci's new fall dance class and swimming lessons for today. Swimming lessons won

~Sara ate probably half of her body weight of milk this morning. (not really, but she has sure been hungry!)

~I finally got a shower at 2pm (better late than never!)

~Shanna and Kaci are playing with Shanna's friend. They insisted on playing outside even though it is over 110* (I think they just wanted an excuse for the new soda flavored popsicles we bought!) Did I mention that Kaci thinks she needs to wear deodorant? You can always tell when she has been putting it on!

~Shanna starts her new dance classes tonight. She has 2 hours of ballet, tap and jazz. She'll sleep well tonight! It's also her turn to cook. Hmmm. I think we're going to have to switch nights.

~I got my flowers and herb garden planted late last night. I'll post pictures later!

~I have been doing the dreaded laundry. That is probably why I am sitting here writing on my blog instead of folding the two baskets in the kitchen!

Sunday, August 03, 2008

What A Weekend!

Our goal lately is to have fun and get the most out of every day. This weekend, we did just that!

I'll start with our anniversary. We found the BEST new babysitter (Once again, thanks to Robyn) We had a great time, Tyler bought me my first fishing license, (just a coincidence that it was our anniversary) and bike shoes and clips. I have been having a blast riding with my feet clipped in. He is so awesome! I am ready for some real mountain biking now! My favorite date that we went on (besides the drive in movie when he proposed) was mountain biking at Hewlett's Gulch in Colorado. We are both mountain people by nature and feel so peaceful there.

Saturday, Tyler went and rode a trail with a friend early in the morning. Shanna went to a play (High School Musical) and then dinner with one of her friends and had her first sleepover ever. That was a big "letting go" moment for me. But, it was a positive experience for everyone.

We took Kaci to an indoor play place with the inflatable jumping houses. She and Tyler played like crazy people. I laughed harder that I have laughed in a long time. Tyler is the best daddy! He was like a little boy running and jumping and throwing himself down the slides. Kaci just soaked up the attention and had such a fun time! We ran a few more errands and then ended the day fishing at a pond. The personalized attention was so good for Kaci, and letting Shanna have more privileges was good for her. It is hard to differentiate between an 8 year old and a 3 year old sometimes, but this weekend I think we did pretty good.

Sara is a happy sunshine in my life. She has been sleeping through the night and smiling at me during the day. She is so sweet, and I look at her and just soak up her sweetness. It is hard to imagine her someday being a pre-teen with an attitude. It feels like yesterday that Shanna was a sweet little baby who could do no wrong. Parenthood is a crazy journey that comes with no instruction manual. You think you have things figured out, but then in an instant, things change and you have new challenges to overcome.

We got Rockband for our Wii, and it is crazy fun. I still like the Wii Fit better, but I have to admit, my arms are sore from drumming!

Our garden is going pretty good with the heat, but I really have been wanting to grow herbs inside. So today we painted an old fashioned water pitcher stand black to match our kitchen table and I'm going to plant an herb garden for the kitchen. I am so jazzed that it is just the right size and that it turned out so nice!

And (drum roll please....) It's Football time!! Colts on TV tonight... Let the fun begin!