Drew Turns Two

Near the start of the year, we celebrated Drew’s second birthday. The kids and I went to a kids museum near our home during the day (John was at work) and that night we all had pizza (Drew’s favorite food) and cake to celebrate. We once again had a lemon cake. Last year, I was sick on his birthday, and all we had at home was a boxed lemon cake mix we had meant to use during the Christmas season to make John’s grandma’s lemon bars. Drew seemed to like the lemon cake the first year, so I decided to make it again. He seemed to once again enjoy it, so perhaps it will become a tradition. The Sunday after his birthday, Melissa, Keri, and Uncle David came over for a birthday celebration.

Facts about two-year-old Drew:

  • Fun, funny, energetic, joyful, silly, playful are all words that describe Drew.
  • I would not be surprised if he ends up being the comedian in our family. He loves to laugh and he loves to make us laugh.
  • Gives lots of hugs (sometimes his siblings do not appreciate this when they’re laying on the floor watching a show, and Drew lays on top of them to give them a hug haha).
  • Has dance moves. We dance to a song every night before bed and Drew really gets into it.
  • Right around the time he turned two, his vocabulary exploded. In the last two months, he’s gone from saying 5-10 words to saying 30+. My favorite right now is when he walks around the kitchen saying “hungry, hungry.” Neither of my older two kids did this.
  • He’s at the top of the growth chart in size.
  • LOVES baby shark.

David is 5!

I’m playing catch up on my blog posts. In the fall, David turned five years old. The Sunday before his birthday we had a fun family celebration with aunts and uncles. His actual birthday was filled with the stuff of five-year-old dreams – new toys, endless movie watching, picking out a toy at Cracker Barrel, and dinner/ice cream at Spelunkers. Brooke was sick on David’s birthday, which probably ended up being nice for David because there wasn’t anyone else wanting to play with his new toys. His actual birthday dinner was a bit sad because it was just me, him, and Drew at Spelunkers, but he didn’t seem to mind because he got ice cream haha.

Facts about five-year-old David:

  • Favorite hobbies are coloring and building wooden train tracks.
  • Likes to wake up early and play with toys in his room.
  • Falls asleep super fast and is a very deep sleeper.
  • Likes to copy phrases he hears other adults say.
  • Loves looking at all catalogs, especially the toy catalog we get each fall from Amazon.
  • He is a people person. When we go to the park he always asks if “friends” will be there. And “friends”could be people we know or people we don’t.
  • Enjoys doing crafts.
  • Favorite show is Curious George.
  • Favorite movies are Frozen, Frozen 2, and Cars 3.

Three-Year-Old Brooke

Brooke has been looking forward to her birthday ever since we celebrated Drew’s birthday in January.

She is a girl with a lot of personality. She loves to laugh and make others laugh. She has the best smile, although it’s almost impossible to get her to smile when I’m trying to take a picture. Below are facts about 3-year-old Brooke.

– She is full of energy. She rarely naps in the afternoon anymore, and even though her bedtime is 7 p.m., she often stays awake in her room until 8:30 p.m. or so.

– She loves all things baby shark.

– Her favorite book series is “Little Blue Truck.”

– Her favorite food is chicken nuggets. She loves pretty much all fruit, especially grapes and berries. She recently discovered she also loves sliced bell peppers.

– She is quick to apologize.

– Purple is her favorite color.

– Adventurous and curious are both accurate descriptions of her.

– She often wants to “help” in the kitchen. When she sees me preparing lunch or dinner, she’ll run and grab a stool to stand on and say “I help you?”

Brooke’s birthday began with donuts and presents. The kids played with her new toys in the morning. I took Brooke and David to get McDonalds for lunch. Then Brooke and I went to get our nails done. When we came home, we popped popcorn and watched Encanto. We then headed to Cracker Barrel for a celebratory dinner and came home to have birthday cake. It was a fun-filled day! On Sunday, we had a birthday dinner party for Brooke and my sister, who’s birthday is three days prior to Brooke’s.

Drew Turns One!

Earlier this month, Drew hit the one-year mark. Even though Drew is my third, it’s still crazy to me how much a baby grows in their first year of life.

He went from this:

To this:

He’s been such a delightful, social, happy baby. My parents visited recently, and my dad commented that he didn’t hear Drew cry once. Drew’s typical demeanor is always happy. Teething has been the thing that’s caused him the most tears (generally in the middle of the night when he wakes up in pain).

We had two celebrations for Drew. The first was on his actual birthday with just our immediate family. His birthday fell on a week day and I was sick. So his actual birthday was pretty low key. I made him a lemon box cake because that was the only thing I had, and I didn’t want to run to the store because I wasn’t sure if I had COVID. Thankfully my COVID test came back negative the next day. The second celebration was this past Sunday with my sister, brother/sister-in-law (and their cute baby Will, Drew’s first cousin), our friend Keri, and John’s uncle David.

Below are facts about one-year-old Drew.

– He is the BEST eater. He is not picky at all. He eats anything I make. His food is generally loaded with vegetables and he eats them like a champ (while my others kids say “it’s yucky”).

– He loves being around people, especially his siblings. Sometimes he will cry at night when we put him down because he wants to keep hanging out.

– He is a speedy crawler.

– He likes to pull himself up and stand.

– He loves bath time. He likes to splash and chew on his bath toys.

– He has seven teeth. Four on top and three on the bottom.

– He likes to hear himself talk.

– He has a hearty laugh when he is tickled.

– He likes to tackle his siblings if they’re laying on the floor.

– He really likes his pacifier, which we’re in the process of weaning him from. He only uses it when he sleeps but the second we put him in his crib, he looks for his pacifier and plops it in his mouth.

We are so grateful for the joy and light he’s brought this past year into our lives!

Four-Year-Old David

In October, David turned four. He is a fun four-year-old with a tender heart who likes trains, trucks, tractors cars, and buses. He loves his wooden train tracks he received for his third birthday and has accumulated more tracks and accessories over the past year. Each day during quiet time, he can be found building his train tracks in his room.

He is a musical child and loves singing the songs he learns in primary (Sunday school for 4- to 11-year-olds) at church. It helps that I’m the primary music leader haha. He has a great memory. Right now, Brooke and David are watching Moana. He’s only seen the movie once, this past summer. The other day in the car, a song from the movie came on and he said, “that’s from Moana.” I was so surprised he remembered the song and the movie. So yesterday when we went to the library, we checked out Moana on DVD. Speaking of the library, David also loves books. We read at least one story every day before quiet time and again before bedtime. David is a child who can sit and look at books for long periods of time, even though he can’t read yet.

David is a people person. Whenever we go to the park, he asks if his “friends” will be there. By “friends” he means any other children, even those he’s never met. Next year, we may enroll him in preschool and he can spend more time with “friends.” With COVID still being a concern this fall, we opted not to enroll him in preschool. He won’t start kindergarten until 2023. His birthday is just a couple weeks after the kindergarten age cutoff, so he will be one of the oldest in his class.

David is a terrific oldest child. He loves to help his younger siblings and he is patient with us as parents as we try out new and different parenting tactics. We’re so grateful this four-year-old is in our family!

Miss Brooke is Two!

Brooke is officially two years old! She is our comic relief in life, and she keeps us on our toes. She makes the funniest faces (scowls) when she gets told no. She has lots of energy and loves being silly. Below are fun facts about Brooke at age two.

– She loves anything Baby Shark and Elmo.

– Her favorite foods are berries, clementines, macaroni and cheese, and chicken nuggets (which she calls “chicken muggets”). Anytime we drive past McDonalds, she says “chicken muggets!”

– She is very active and loves to climb. The playground is a great place for her because she can explore freely.

– A few months ago, she hit and seriously cut her head. She was spinning in David’s room and fell and smacked her head on the molding around David’s door. She still has a red line above her eyebrow from the incident.

– She is very polite. She almost always says “thank you” when I help her with something or give her something.

– After I do her hair in the morning, she stands up and says “cute!”

– She adores her siblings. When she gets up in the morning, she’ll always ask for “Baby Dew.” She likes to stick Drew’s pacifier in his mouth. David is her best friend. She loves playing and laughing with him. She just recently started saying David’s name. She pronounces the “v” like it’s a “w.”

– When she’s done with dinner, she wants to go take a bath immediately and will drop her plate in the floor if we don’t get it from her fast enough (we’re trying to stop that habit haha).

– She doesn’t like going to bed and will lay on the floor by her door and call out to us until she’s tired enough she climbs into bed to go to sleep. She’s only fallen asleep by the door twice.

– She thinks it’s funny to run away from me when it’s time to change her diaper. She giggles as she runs.

– Her vocabulary is growing everyday. I’m constantly impressed by how many words she knows.

– When she really wants something she says “please” in an exaggerated tone. Although she pronounces it “nease.”

She didn’t want her picture taken on her birthday haha.

David at Age Three

David is officially three years old. Since birth, he has had a happy, sweet demeanor. He gives the best hugs and kisses each night before bedtime. He’s quick to apologize when he realizes he’s made a poor choice (like taking a toy from Brooke). He’s generally a great listener. Below are fun facts about David at three.

  • He loves trains, firetrucks, tractors, and cars.
  • His favorite song to sing at bedtime is “Reverently, Quietly.”
  • His favorite shows are “Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood” and “Sesame Street.”
  • He likes to eat cereal, nuts, and raisins for breakfast. Up until recently, the way he said raisins sounded like the word “citizens.”
  • He loves to listen to the “Mary Poppins Returns” soundtrack and the song “Peace in Christ.” A couple months ago, he always asked to listen to the “Newsies” soundtrack.
  • His favorite food is “Annie’s” white cheddar shells mac n’ cheese.
  • He currently does not like bath time…not sure why? He has always loved it.
  • He is fun to talk with. I can understand most everything he says.
  • He’s a pretty smart negotiator (or at least he thinks so haha). Sometimes when he doesn’t want to do something, he says, “David little” because we’ve told him in the past that Brooke is too little to do something (like kneel for prayer or clean up her dishes). He thinks if he tells us he’s “little” then he can get out of whatever we’ve asked him to do.
  • He officially stopped taking an afternoon nap. He now has “quiet time” every afternoon and plays with toys in his room for a couple of hours. He’s really good about staying in his room. We keep his “special” toys up there that he only plays with during “quiet time.” I am SO thankful he’s been such a good napper and now will play quietly by himself.

David’s 1st Birthday Celebrations

My mom came to town for David’s first birthday. On David’s actual birthday, we did a small celebration after John got home from work. We went up to the park by our house and took a few pictures and then headed to Chick-Fil-A for dinner. We got David grilled nuggets with a cup of fruit and milk. This was his second ever real restaurant meal. He loved it! After Chick-Fil-A, we came home to open presents and then stuck a candle in a Little Debbie’s birthday cake and sang happy birthday.






The Sunday following David’s birthday, my sister, John’s uncle, and the Wagner Family (my aunt, uncle, and cousins) came over for a birthday dinner celebration. We had a taco and chip bar. After dinner, we gave David his birthday “smash cake,” which he didn’t seem to really like. I had a bite of it, and it was very rich! David was a bit of a sad baby on this night because he never took an afternoon nap. He just laid in his crib and cried for over an hour after we got home from church at 2:30 p.m. So, he was ready to call it a night as soon as he “ate” his cake.





We had so much fun celebrating our little boy! Seeing his growth this year has been a neat experience. My heart is so full of love for this little boy.

Baby David: One Year!


Last week, David turned one year old. We are amazed at how much a baby grows in the course of a year. Below are fun facts about David at one year old.

  • He loves cars. He loves pushing them around on the floor, ottomans, or couches, and he loves holding them in his hands and studying them. No matter what toys we pull out of the toy closet for him to play with, he always goes straight to the cars.
  • He has loads of energy and is often on the move. He’s constantly exploring. He enjoys playing under the ping pong table in our basement and climbing through the stools that sit at our kitchen island.
  • Bath time is a favorite time of day for him. We recently started putting bubbles in his bath, and he enjoys splashing and eating bubbles.
  • He has two bottom teeth and four teeth up top are coming in. He loves chewing on furniture (especially end tables, which are mouth-height). We’ve had to teach him not to do that haha.
  • He is a champion night sleeper (and we are soooo thankful for that). Bath time is at 6:30 p.m. each night. Bedtime is at 7 p.m. He wakes up between 7:30 and 8 a.m. and will play happily in his crib until I get him out. (Side note: He struggles to sleep in hotels. We learned that the hard way.)
  • He enjoys looking at books in his crib. Sometimes when I put him down for a nap, I can tell he either doesn’t go to sleep or takes a while to fall alseep because he’s looking at books in his crib. We could take the books out of his crib at nap time but it brings him happiness and keeps him quiet, so I don’t see the harm.
  • He does this funny thing where he likes to breathe quickly and heavily through his nose while scrunching his nose. It’s adorable and he likes when people do it back to him.
  • He says lots of words but none that mean anything at this point. He says mama and dada a lot, but he isn’t referring to me or John when he says them yet.
  • When he’s done drinking from his sippy cup at meal time, he drops it on the floor.
  • He recently started spitting, which we’re not fans of 😦  We are trying to teach him not to do that.
  • Since it’s college football season, John has been trying to teach David to put both hands up in the air when John says touchdown. My mom was here visiting last week and helped John in this quest. David will now put both arms up in the air when someone says touchdown and puts both hands up in the air.
  • He’s in the 85th percentile for weight, 64th percentile for height, and 93rd percentile for head circumference. When he was born, he was in the 40th percentile for weight, 70th percentile for height, and 60th percentile for head circumference. His height percentile has really fluctuated over the year, even though they’re almost identical from birth to one year. When he was four months, he was only in the 21st percentile for height, and at 6 months he was in the 35th percentile.

In the coming days, I will write a post on what we did to celebrate his birthday. The pictures below were taken on his actual birthday. We went up to the park in our neighborhood  and snapped a few pictures before heading out to dinner.



John’s 30th Birthday

To celebrate John’s birthday, we headed to DC the night prior to his actual birthday. We met up with John’s cousin and his family, who were vacationing in DC. We ate dinner with them at Shake Shack, a famous DC burger joint.

John and I stayed at the Mayflower Hotel that night. The Mayflower is where we stayed the night we got married, and we enjoy going back every so often. A few days prior, I had asked some of John’s friends and family to text me words that describe John. I wanted to incorporate “30 words” into the birthday decorations to celebrate John’s 30th. I ended up receiving way more than 30 words, and since I loved all of the words that were submitted, I decided not to narrow them down to 30. Prior to arriving at the Mayflower, I wrote down each word on a post-it note so I could easily stick them onto the wall. While John was in the bathroom, I began sticking the post-its onto the wall in the foyer of our hotel room. However, the adhesive wasn’t strong enough, and they kept falling off the wall. John caught me in the act, so I ended up enlisting his help to put tape on the back of all the post-its so they would stick to the wall.



On John’s actual birthday, we slept in and had a relaxing morning. Then we headed to the Library of Congress. After a very quick visit at the Library of Congress, we left to meet my brother Trevor for lunch. It was raining, and John and I had one umbrella between the two of us. We decided to venture out in the rain, and no less than a minute after we left, the rain turned into a torrential downpour. We stopped under a large tree and huddled together under the umbrella. However, the wind was gusting and we both got soaked. I was kicking myself because I actually had a rain jacket in the car. After about 10 minutes, we realized we couldn’t possibly get more wet than we already were so we kept walking to the restaurant. After eating lunch, I decided to walk to the car to get the pants I wore the day prior and switch into flips flops I packed. Thankfully I also had a baseball cap with me so I didn’t have to walk around with hair totally messed up by the rain.

Outside of the Supreme Court.

After lunch my brother took us on a tour of the U.S. Capitol. This summer he’s been an intern in Senator Hatch’s office. The tour was awesome. I loved seeing the different rooms Trevor took us to.


The president pro tempore’s office.



As we left the Capitol, it was once again raining. My flips flops did not have the traction needed to walk down the marble stairs without slipping… I fell… twice. It was funny and sad all at the same time haha.

John and I headed to Matchbox for dinner. We were supposed to attend a Nationals baseball game after that, but it was cancelled because of the rain. So we headed home after dinner and stopped at Sweet Frog for some frozen yogurt. That Sunday we celebrated with my family. They came over for dinner and games. We had a taco bar and then played a fun round of Hoopla. All in all it was a fun and memorable birthday celebration! I am so grateful for this 30-year-old in my life 🙂