Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Memorial Day Weekend in Boise!

This past weekend we loaded up our kiddo's, sold various items so we could pay for gas (I kid, I kid....but seriously, our gas prices are ridiculous...a *good* deal is $4.15/gal), and headed east to the land of Boise, Idaho. It's about a 7 hour drive but then with various stop, it turns into pretty much an all day affair.

The drive out there was a piece of cake really. I was pretty stocked with toys, snacks, activities, etc. I borrowed a DVD player from a friend and true to fashion, my daughter watched about 15 minutes of it the entire drive there and back. Her favorite activity in the car with this $1 bead necklace kit that I bought at Jo-Ann's. It kept her busy forever, making and remaking the necklace. We listened to lots of music, sang songs, played I was a lot of fun. Ems didn't sleep a wink on the drive out until we got off the freeway to my BFF's house so she got about a 3 minute nap. Everett did great though and didn't make a peep the entire drive out there, with the exception of some squeals and giggles whenever his sister made him laugh.

Our time in Boise was so fun. It was great to hang out with Tiffany and her family. We were in town for her oldest's 4th birthday too which was super fun at Chuck E. Cheese. Her youngest is 18 months (Aiden) and then she's about 5 months pregnant with a baby girl (Elise). While we were there we found fabric for Elise's nursery that I am going to help make. Time to get out the sewing machine and figure out what the heck I am doing! :)

Our kiddos played outside, inside, we went to their church, went to lunch at one of our FAVORITE places that used to be in Hillsboro but now is no where to be found in Oregon (Costa Vida), and Tiffany and I even got to get away for a pedicure. I drank my first iced soy coffee (don't judge...I know there is a debate about soy but I don't want to hear about it!). It was great. Yesterday we headed out of Boise later in the morning but went and did a little exploring downtown first. What a beautiful town!! We LOVED it and had fun playing at a park and enjoying the beautiful day! We had lunch one last time at Costa Vida and then headed home. There were some definite disadvantages to traveling later in the day, mainly with Everett. He wasn't as quiet as he was on the drive out. ;) It wasn't horrible though, but I could tell he was just DONE being in the car after awhile.

I'm so thankful to have gotten to spend time with my BFF. For some reason, whenever I say goodbye to her now I get super emotional. It's strange....I don't usually even cry when my parents leave town anymore. But Brett pointed out that it is because I usually know when I'll get to see them again and I almost never know when I'll get to see Tiffany again. It's so fun being in the trenches of motherhood with her but I wish she were closer by so that we could escape for more pedicures and coffee dates together. I'm not great at staying in touch long distance at times but I do want to be better at it.

I took her a bunch of clothes that were Emersyn's and can't wait to see Elise in them. I'm so happy that she's having a little girl and I'm honored to get to help with her nursery.

Thanks so much for having us Auntie Lou and Uncle Travis!!!! XOXO

Wednesday, May 23, 2012


This past month Emersyn got to sing on stage at church TWICE. She now thinks this is going to be a regular thing. Little does she know, she won't be back on stage until Christmas time but let's keep that between us, okay?

Ems sang on Mother's Day which was very special and then she sang at our church's kids music night this past week. The music ministry at my church is incredible. I grew up singing in the kids choir and performing in the spring musicals and they are still doing them. First the preschooler's sing and then there's a 40 minute musical that the kids, ages first through fifth grade, perform. It's so sweet and the kids are all so proud and excited.

Before we headed to the music night, Brett took a few pictures of the kids and of Ems getting ready for her big night.

"check check check....1, 2....1, 2..." It's important do a sound check before a big performance you know!  

Ems is totally into having her nails painted now and I LOVE it. I think they look so cute on little girls. I always paint her nails right before I dry her hair so they can dry during that time. I love pampering my girl!!

I didn't get any pics from the actual performance because I actually helped escort the choir on the stage but I assure you, they were darling! Ems sang great....she could hardly contain herself too, she was semi dancing the entire time. :)

Friday, May 18, 2012

Girl Time!

Emersyn is a big fan of girl time, what girl isn't? When Everett is napping and Emersyn is awake, I try to make the most of our time together but sometimes life gets in the way of quality time moments. So I decided that Ems and I needed a girls date away from the house while Everett was at Nana and Papa's. I put this date on the calendar and reserved a pass to the Children's Museum from the library (FREE versus $18 for the two of us). Ems has been talking about it for weeks and I was just as excited! 

We both straightened our hair for girls day. :) 

I told Emersyn that I thank God every day that He gave me a little girl. Ems has been talking about growing up a lot and she always says "Mom....I HAVE to get big....but we can STILL be best friends." I make her promise that she'll honor this promise even as a teenager and she assures me that she will. :) 

The grocery store is Emersyn's favorite part. It would have been my favorite part too as a little girl.  

We played with clay! 

We enjoyed the outdoor maze and the Oregon sunshine! 

After the children's museum I needed to do some shopping so I decided to extend our girls date. I am going to a lingerie shower tomorrow night so we went shopping for that first to get it out of the way. Ems was puzzled by the lingerie and concluded, "that's just for mommy's to wear". ;) 

Then we headed to Gymboree where Ems tried on clearance shoes while I spent a reward certificate and got Auntie Lou's baby a cute onsie ($2...score), Everett a sweater vest for next Spring, and a few other things. I got Ems some yoga pants. I asked her if she wanted some yoga pants and she said, "no....but I'd like some frozen yogurt pants". I decided she needed the best of both worlds so she got the yoga pants and frozen yogurt. 

Then we had a tea party at her favorite store in the mall, Pottery Barn Kids. 

On our way out we decided to do one last girly thing.....get some make up done. We went to our favorite make up counter and told them that we were on a fun girls date and Emersyn needed to get fancied up.  

 Before. Totally beautiful to begin with but make up is just too fun. :) 

The initial consultation. 

The final look, gorgeous!!! :) 

We had such a fun day. I am so thankful for a special boy and a special girl in my life. My heart could just burst when I think about how blessed I am to be Emersyn and Everett's mama. I'm excited to take my little boy out too someday. 

Happy weekend everyone!! 

Monday, May 14, 2012

Miscellany Monday

{1} I had the BEST Mother's Day!!! I started off the day by getting myself ready alone (a gift in and of itself) and heading to church early to sing on the worship team. Brett got both the kids ready and came later. Ems sang with her preschool choir (SO cute). Brett grilled me the BEST flat iron steak I have ever eaten, along with grilled asparagus and zucchini. My brother came over to hang out and gave me a sweet card. I got sweet cards from my kids and Brett and I saw a picture of a necklace that they bought me (that is set to arrive today). We ended the night by taking the kids to see "The Lorax" at a cheap theater in Portland. Both the kids did so great and we had a blast. A perfect family day.

{2} I just registered for my first 5K! It's "The Color Run" in Portland and I'm jazzed. My friend Vanessa is heading up a team and the race is on her birthday, how fun right? You start out the walk/run in a completely white shirt and then throughout the race you are sprayed with colors and at the end you have this ridiculously colored shirt (and body). I am so happy that Vanessa set up a team and this will give me a good reason to *train* throughout the summer. I would like to be able to run some of it!

{3} Emersyn is hard core into imaginative play. Her newest favorite thing is to play church. She pretends that she works at the nursery and asks me to drop Everett off. She then asks me lots of questions about him and tells me that she'll take good care of him. Then she brings her babies to me and asked me to take care of them too. She also likes to hide in the closet under our stairs and pretends it's the choir room. She walks from the closet to the fireplace hearth (like the choir walks in on Sunday mornings) and sings like she's in choir. It's so funny and cute.

{4} Everett has a really bad diaper rash. Emersyn never had a single diaper rash. She would occasionally get red but never anything bad and never anything that looked painful. I wish I could say the same for Everett. I don't think the heat we are having is helping either. He woke up this morning and his little back was all broken out in a heat rash. Breaks my heart!!

{5} I haven't eaten bread, pasta, crackers, or any kind of white flour/sugar for 3.5 weeks.

{6} Brett is going to register for classes this week!! I am so proud of him. Still praying for direction in regards to his degree but I know that God will provide the right wisdom in His time.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mother's Day

Today on Mother's Day I am thankful both for my own mama but for the little ones that made a mama too. I wish I could celebrate with my mom today but we'll just have to postpone our celebration until she comes out to visit in July.

As I grow older, I realize that I am probably more like my mom then I think. I have a love for hospitality, enjoy providing meals to families that need them, love writing cards of encouragement to friends and people that need them....all things that I remember my mom doing as I grew up. She was always quick to volunteer and loved being a part of a community. I am so grateful that she took us to our church, even before my dad was a Christian. If it weren't for my church, I wouldn't be Mrs. Brett Jensen and Emersyn and Everett's mommy. I am thankful that she made faith a priority even when she had to do it on her own.

I am so thankful for my Emersyn Grace. Even though there are days when she makes me want to tear my hair out, I love her sweet spirit and imagination. She is the best of me and the worst of me. She makes me want to be a better person and a woman worth modeling herself after as she grows up.

I am thankful for my precious Everett David, the best surprise ever. The Lord knew I needed a sweet little boy. Silly me, I thought I was only cut out to be a mom to girls. But Everett David has won my heart and I'm just smitten with him.

 I hope you all have a wonderful Mother's Day weekend!! For those of you that I know want to be mama's, I'm praying that by this time next year, you're cuddling your own precious little one too. :)

Saturday, May 12, 2012

A tribute to my Mama friends

One thing I have learned in life is that it truly *takes a village* when it comes to raising kids. So, in honor of one of my top two love languages, I've decided to write out some words of affirmations for some of the mama's that I know read my blog. I'm so inspired and challenged by each of them in different ways.

Tiffany: How fun to have kids close in age with your BFF? Though she doesn't live nearby, I still feel so connected to her and her kiddos. I'm borderline obsessed with the little girl she's going to be having in September. You know what they say, end of Summer babies are the coolest. That's why I had two of them. (Okay, so maybe nobody really says this...but they should!). Tiffany is a great mom to her two little boys. She's always made it look effortless too. Her oldest has had stomach issues and she's been an amazing advocate for him, always looking outside the box for solutions. She is now making gluten free meals for him and oftentimes for their whole family and it's helped Riley tremendously. I admire her dedication to doing whatever it takes to keep her family healthy. As I was doing Emersyn's hair this morning, I was SO excited for my BFF to have a little girl of her own to pamper.

Emersyn and Riley, Tiffany's oldest son.

Rachelle: I knew Rachelle was going to be a wonderful mother long before she ever got pregnant. I admired her strength and positive attitude going into her c-section once they determined that sweet stubborn Sophia Rose wasn't going to be turning. Some women would have felt sorry for themselves but Rachelle decided to have a good attitude as as a result, she had a great experience. She has been therapeutic for me in letting me pass down Emersyn's clothes to a loving home where they are worn and fully appreciated for their cuteness. She has agreed to let our son marry her daughter so that's one less thing I have to worry about as Everett grows up. She has influenced me with her crafty ways and helped me make Everett's nursery into a custom, hand crafted little boy's room and I love all our *rustic* sewing creations. I'm so proud of how she's balanced serving in ministry, working and being a mama.

Emersyn and Sophia

Caitlin: Caitlin is like a sister{wife} to me. ;) We met in our birthing class and I am so so thankful we did. She is an incredible mom to Emery May and together we are learning to raise these dramatic, whiny, precious, beautiful girls. Our girls fight like sisters but recently that seems to be getting better. Caitlin inspires me to be a better mama every time I am with her. She is so patient and loving and has never judged me or my kids, despite Emersyn taking a swing at her daughter her now and then. I can talk to her about anything and she totally gets me. She has gone through a couple really crappy situations since we've become friends and she has amazing strength. She's never one to feel sorry for herself and always sees the positive in every situation, even when they stink. Caitlin is the mom that you see at the fountain with fifteen containers of fresh cut fruits and vegetables. And after nearly 4 years of friendship, she can always count on me NOT being prepared and so she always brings enough for Ems too.

Caitlin and our kiddos

Vanessa: I always like to think that Vanessa is the cooler, better looking version of my self. (She's probably so sick of hearing that, ha!) Her sense of humor is unparalleled and every time I hang out with her (which is not NEARLY enough), I always laugh and feel refreshed. She is an amazing mother to Audrey Jo. Having been a single mother since Audrey was 14 months (or so), she has created an incredible life for the two of them. She is a hard worker and throws parties like nobody's business. Audrey is a sassy little fashionista, truly her mama's mini me. Her always perfectly polished phalanges (her words not mine...see, she's so clever) inspire me and now I too am addicted to colorful fingertips. I admire her transparency in life and am believing with her for good things to happen. I also am praying that she find a tall, rich, handsome husband (the rich part is negotiable...tall and handsome are required however) soon so that they can have a destination wedding and that I can be a bridesmaid. ;)

Audrey and Everett

Sarah: I'm not positive that Sarah reads my blog anymore due to her lack of time in life but she deserves a tribute nonetheless. She too has been on the road of overcoming some seriously crappy life issues. But nonetheless, her faith in the Lord triumphs and as a result, she's been an amazing single mama to her two kids who are the same ages as mine. She is a marathon runner and one of those moms who casually posts on FB "ran 18 miles today". She is amazing. My relationship with her has deepened over the past three years that we've had kids together and even more so this past year as devastation overtook her family. Despite all that she has going on in her life, she always takes the time to shoot me encouraging texts and is a big cheerleader for me as I'm in a season of getting healthy. Sarah is one of my heros in life and someday her children are going to be amazed and the incredible woman that raised them.

Sarah and my kiddo's in Central Oregon, Fall of 2011

Melissa: I have known Melissa for a long time. We got married the same year, waaaay back when. :) I have actually gotten to know her better in the past five years since she had her first child and started a blog. Oh the magic of the blog world in getting to know someone better who lives less then a mile from you. :) She has a crazy busy life, much like myself, except she's raising a 5 year old girl and 3 year old twin boys. Her kids and her business keep her on her toes and I wish that our paths collided more. She's super creative and has successfully started and maintained a party business. She's always so sweet and supportive via FB comments and just a positive, upbeat person.

Dara: I met Dara via Melissa's blog. They have been besties forever. Anyways, I figured that since Melissa is cool, Dara probably would be too so naturally I started blog stalking her checked out her blog and became a frequent reader! She too lives nearby but our paths don't collide much. We've had a few playdates and enjoyed them a lot. Though I detest her love for our pathetic cold and rainy Oregon weather as of late, she is still a great mama to her two girls. Her blog posts make me smile and she is such a sweet generous person. She got Everett his first Oregon Ducks gear and provided a meal for my family when he was born.

Kristi: I've known Kristi since elementary school. We grew up in church together and it's been fun watching her become such a great mom to her two kiddos. Her son is almost exactly a year older then Emersyn. She has a blog too which always gives a good glimpse into what daily life is like. She has a baby bow and headband business (Bebe Boutique) that has been very successful and I'm happy that she's making some extra money doing something she loves. She has been a big encouragement to me through my pregnancies and also in transitioning from one to two kids. When Everett was born I had remarked that I had no idea it would be SO hard and she so wisely said that it will never get easier but it will get better. And she was right!

Okay, these are just a few of the mama's that I wanted to give *shout outs* to. There are many more in my life (including my own of course...more on that tomorrow) and I'm so thankful for each and every one of them! I pray that as we and all of our kids grow up that we never lose our sense of community and continue to encourage each other to be the women and moms that God has called us to be.