Saturday, February 9, 2013

New Blog

From now on I'll be posting our little family updates on a new blog:

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Prayers are answered.

Before I jump into about a million posts about our month long vacation to Arizona and Connecticut, I have to write down the seemingly small miracles that happened on our journey back to England.

The kids and I flew back on a flight leaving at 8 pm and arriving 8 am in England. I was pretty nervous flying 7 hours through the night by myself. After checking our bags onto the airplane, the kids and I headed to security.

From baggage check on until I pick up my checked bags I had the double stroller, both kids, my (new) camera bag, a large back pack and Jude's car seat (what he slept in on the airplane).

Before I even got to the security line a guard saw me and called over to a fellow security worker and told him to take care of me. He ushered me to the front of the line, played peek-a-boo with Jude, folded up my stroller and put everything I had on the conveyor belt.

Because everyone had been so helpful and I had to wait in zero lines we arrived at our gate approximately 2.5 hours before we took off...after pushing the kids around the little airport store loop a couple times and looking at the sparkling MnMs shop display we found an empty gate and camped out.

Livvy played on her (our) new iPad mini (thank you parentals!) and Jude ran around. Right as Jude was getting stir crazy and ready to bolt a lady security guard came up and started playing with him.

Finally it was time to board and we made it on the (maybe half full) plane with little difficulty. The first half of the flight was a little rough (Jude was super tired and Livvy decided she wanted to play and not watch the movies), but the second half was smooth.

We landed and took our time waking Jude up and getting off the plane. As I'm struggling to get the kids in the stroller and the car seat hung on the back, the crew gets off the plane. Everyone just looked at me and kept walking, except the first pilot.

He stopped offered to help me carry the car seat. I told him I was fine and I could manage. He insisted and said no I could not and took it from me. Picture a 50+  pilot all dressed to the nines with his pilot uniform on, captain name tag, and one sleek carry on bag, carrying Jude's car seat.

He then proceeded to walk me all the way to customs where there was a line that extended far back into the room and would take me 2 or more hours to get through.

This angel pilot looked at the line and said follow me. He took me to the front of the line and said that he was helping me and winked at the lady at the stand. She didn't even hesitate to grab our passports and push us along.

At this point I'm about in tears with gratitude for this stranger.

He continued to walk me all the way to baggage claim (where his one bag was already waiting), he then waited with me and gathered up all of my checked luggage and pushed my luggage through to the arrivals area where Lincoln was waiting.

I have no idea how I would have made it to Lincoln without the help of this stranger. I thought Lincoln could meet me at baggage claim, but he couldn't. Beyond that getting through all of the lines and knowing where to go after not sleeping all night would have been impossible. People kept looking at me and my escort, bewildered. I'm sure they were wondering why I was getting this VIP treatment. I know I was.

Earlier that day my mom said a prayer with us  and asked that there would be people along my way to help me. I am so thankful people, especially the pilot , saw my need and helped without a second thought.

I didn't get the captain's name, all I know is that he flew our airplane, was from Scotland, had three kids and was an answer to prayers.


P.S. Since coming home I have emailed British Airways and hopefully he will get a note soon expressing my gratitude.

Monday, December 17, 2012

A look back

This video was taken almost one year ago. I can't believe how much Livvy has grown up! She is such a sweet, loving little girl.

The other night I was putting her to bed and she literally could not stop talking. She was telling me about how she liked princesses and fairies. She was telling me how "Ronnie" was her friend at school and he held her hand. She was telling me about how much she loved her "squishy baby Jude". I started reading her bedtime book and she just kept talking over me. I have no idea where she gets her gift of gab ;).

I love my little Livvy girl.

Monday, December 3, 2012

London Science Museum

On Saturday we spent the day at the London Science Museum with my Uncle Jon!

Right when we got off the tube station we spotted the new Hyde Park church building and visitor center, so we stopped in for a peak. 

Jude really loved Uncle Jon immediately! 

The science museum was a blast. The kids were in heaven with all of the fun exhibits.

Livvy loved looking (and talking) to the two Livvys. 

The favorite by far was the water table. Jude went crazy and might as well not have worn an apron. By the end he was drenched from head to toe!

I love Jude's little tongue sticking out.

Livvy's favorite new friend, Clarice the reindeer went everywhere with us. 

Keeping Jude occupied for the hour train ride back was tough. I told Lincoln imagine 11 hours of this in three weeks! Let the fun begin!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Cherry on top.

As if our Christmas could get any better what with going to Arizona to see our family and being in the United States of America after 1 year of being gone, we're adding another element of awesomeness.

We have my 20 week ultrasound coming up on December 10th and rather than find out then, we're going to save it for Christmas morning!!!

So, here's the plan. We'll bring in a piece of paper and envelope and have the ultrasound technician write down girl or boy in blue or pink. Then (making sure no one can see into the envelope) we will seal it up.

Christmas morning we're going to wrap it in a box and have Livvy open it up and tell us if it's blue or pink!


The only thing that I'm worried about is us being able to tell on the scan (British word for ultrasound). Jude wasn't shy and both of us could tell right away. Lincoln and I are going to have to commit to not look!

I'm so excited that we get to share this fun moment with our families (mine via computer)! This Christmas is like the Christmases of all Christmases. Seriously people, the happiness is going to be out of control.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Life Lately

Life lately has been pretty relaxed. School, colds, rain, leaves, and prepping for our Christmas trip. 

Oh yeah, and we're having a baby in May. Which seems like old news, but I haven't really talked about the impending baby much. Livvy is very excited and just yesterday I told her we were going to the doctor (midwife) for the baby and she asked "Oh, is the doctor going to get the baby out?" She can't wait to meet her baby sister (yes, she is absolutely set on having a sister and if I tell her "or baby brother" she says "oh, two babies!?!? A baby sister and a baby brother!", sweet girl!)

Jude is in for a rude awakening. That baby (yes, he is still very much a baby) loves to snuggle and is so clingy! He freaks out whenever I have another kid on my lap...luckily we still have 5 more months to work on that. 

Jude (at 15 months!) is starting to walk more and more and the past two days I've been working in the kitchen and he has come walking in all by himself! Big deal for a kid that has been so terrified to let go of my hand and walk by himself! He is a sweet boy and is learning so much right now. He understands more than he can speak, but he is trying to talk all the time. 

Livvy has been home from school, because of a cold and I have loved soaking her in during Jude's naps. She loves to cook/bake with me and very dutifully stirs, grates and pours whatever I need. She has such a sweet little spirit and is always helping me with Jude. They have become the very best of friends and I have loved watching them find ways to make each other laugh and play.

We find out if we're having a boy or a girl on December 10th and the more I think about it, the more I know I will be SO happy either way. Whether I get another spirited girl like Livvy or a mild, cuddly boy like Jude, I will be so blessed to have another baby to love.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

The blog that feeds my family

For the past few years I have been so happy to use one blog for the majority of my dinner ideas. This week I made a recipe of hers for 3 of the 5 week night meals.

Mel's Kitchen Cafe

I love her recipes because
1. they are yummy
2. most of them are quick and I can do them with two little ones circles around my legs
3. my kids like most of the recipes
4. the food is seriously yummy

So I've compiled a list of all the recipes that have tried of hers. Some I rotate in my weekly menu plans, and some I've only made a few times, but all  of them are good. So if you are stumped for dinner go to her recipe index and try out a few!

-Creamy White Chili - I make this a lot and serve it with tortilla chips, super good

-Sweet and Sour Chicken - I think this is one of her most popular recipes, it was easy to throw together and the kids loved it.

-Sticky Coconut Chicken - I bake this in my oven and serve it with coconut rice

-Orange Cashew Rice with Tilapia - love this rice that is packed with flavor and texture

-Skillet Creamy Macaroni and Cheese - Jude ate three/four bowls of this, loved how creamy it came out with no weird textures

-Broccoli beef - as a Chinese food lover I can tell you this is better than take out. Really good and easy.

-Honey lime chicken enchiladas - if you ever need to feed a crowd this is a winner!

-Basil Chicken in Coconut Curry Sauce - sounds funky, but it's super good, a little bit spicy so not the best for the kids

-Chopped Cobb Salad with Blue Cheese - such a good summer salad

Lion House Dinner Rolls
Divine Breadsticks
The Best Chocolate Chip Cookie
Classic Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
Glazed Poppy Seed Bread

The Best Ground Beef Tacos
Sweet and Sour Chicken with Pinapple and Red Onion
Chicken with Mushrooms and Zucchini
Creamy Swiss Cheese Chicken Bake
Hawaiian Haystacks- Chicken Sauce Reinvented
Garlic Chicken Pasta with Spinach
Homemade Spaghetti Sauce
Penne with Roasted Asparagus and Balsamic Butter
Mango and Black Bean Quinoa Salad
Pasta Chicken Salad with Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Spinach and Bacon
Crispy Southwest Chicken Wraps
Shredded Chicken Pitas with Sun Dried Tomato Vinaigrette
Peanut Butter Crunch Snack Balls


This week I tried two new recipes from her site and was blown away both times. Kids loved 'em, hubby loved 'em and I could make them up without Lincoln being home to help with the kids. Dinner time is crazy time for my kids, so having quick recipes that come together pretty fast is super important. 

If you're in a dinner stump try her blog out! It's been a no fail source for me.