Happy 3rd Birthday, Lillian Grace!

Last month we celebrated Lillian’s 3rd birthday. When asked what she wanted to do for her birthday she said, “Let’s go to Kodiak Island!” After we nicely shut that idea down, she suggested that we go camping instead. On the weekend of her birthday we headed to a beautiful campground on the Kenai Peninsula. To make the weekend extra special we packed a cake, some fun birthday snacks (this was a hit with the girls), and loaded our toy hauler full of presents so she would have things to open all weekend long.

On the morning of her birthday she was so excited to wake up and be three. We started the day off with birthday pancakes and then played at the campground playground, hung out by the lake, and went canoeing. We ended the day with cake, presents, and s’mores. It was a good day and she loved every minute of it.








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Since Lillian is getting pretty good at communicating, I thought it’d be fun to do a birthday interview with her this year. I’d say most of her answers are pretty accurate. Here it is:

How old are you? Three.
What is your favorite color? Green.
What is your favorite animal? A cow.
What is your favorite book? The giraffe book. 
What is your favorite tv show? Mickey Mouse.
What is your favorite movie? Minions. 
What is your favorite song? Hunting, Fishing, Loving Every Day.
What is your favorite food? Carrots, corn, and ham, cheese, moose.
What is your favorite drink? A popsicle drink.
What is your favorite snack? Popcorn.
What is your favorite outfit? A dress. My tutu. 
What is your favorite game? Play chase with my friends.
What is your favorite toy? Old McDonald Had a Farm switch toy.
Who is your best friend? Umm, you’re my best friend.
What is your favorite thing to do? Play with you, Mom.
What is your favorite thing to do outside? Running. Playing with sand. 
What is your favorite holiday? Have snow. Make a snowball. 
Where is your favorite place to go? A camping trip.
Where would you like to go on vacation? To Mexico to swim on the beach. 
What makes you happy? Umm, you make me happy.
What makes you sad? Nothing, just nothing makes me sad. 
What is your favorite thing to do with Mom? Dance with you. Lay with you. Sing with you. 
What is your favorite thing to do with Dad? Rake the grass. See animals. See some moose. Dad takes me to the airport. 
What is your favorite thing to do with Hazel? Feed her a bottle. Play with her. Play toys with my little baby. 
What do you want to be when you grow up? Hazie can grow up like me.
What did you do this year on your birthday? Umm, have a birthday cake and party hats, lots of party hats. Open presents.

IMG_0836Life with Lillian is an adventure. She’s such an outgoing, funny, smart, stubborn, and active little girl. She is constantly testing the limits and our patience, but is sure to follow everything up with an “I love you, Mom” or “Dad, you’re my best friend” to be sure she stays out of trouble. Did I mention she’s manipulative? ;)

Happy 3rd birthday, Lillian Grace!! Love you wild, our wild, wild child. ♥

Happy 1st Birthday, Hazel Mae

Last month was Hazel’s 1st birthday. On the day of her birthday the girls and I met Blake for lunch at a little sandwich shop in Anchorage. She had a PB&J to celebrate, her favorite. After lunch we headed home and spent the rest of the day playing, napping, eating mac & cheese, and watching endless episodes of The Lion Guard.


On Super Bowl Sunday (the reason we’re all dressed in Viking gear, Blake’s request) we had a small party for her. We did a Minnie Mouse theme for the birthday decorations and dessert table. The Oreo ear cupcakes were my favorite. My mom made the cake and I frosted it. So stressful, but it turned out great.


In typical Hazel fashion, she didn’t show much emotion when we sang to her. All she cared about was sticking her little fingers in the frosting. We did get some smiles out of her once she tasted the cake. Together the girls had a great time destroying it. We could not keep Lillian out of the pictures. You’ll notice her hand in almost every one.

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This past year with Hazel has been the best one yet. It’s been a wild ride, but we wouldn’t change it for the world. She keeps us on our toes and fills our hearts with so much love. She’s the perfect little addition to our family.

Happy 1st birthday, Hazie Girl. Love you so much! ♥



Happy 2nd Birthday Lillian Grace!

Last week was Lillian’s 2nd birthday. We had a small celebration at home, much different from what we did last year, but just as special.

The girls had their 2 year and 4 month checkups that morning. They’re doing great and growing like weeds. They’ve both been tall since birth, always in the 90th (or higher) percentile, but this visit the doctor said they didn’t fall into a percentile and that they are “off the charts” for height. Oooook?! Whatever that means…


“Hazie so big!”


Afterwards, we headed to Turf Time. This is one of Lillian’s favorite places. I always have to laugh when I take her to Turf Time. Instead of playing on the turf with all the toys and other kids, she’d rather run around the track with the adults. Definitely her father’s daughter.





That afternoon she helped me bake and frost her cake with “hot chocolate frosting.” She ate more than I got on the cake and had a great time. When Blake got home from work, we ate cake and opened presents. She was so cute while we sang to her. She got shy and just wanted to keep giving Hazel hugs. Melt my heart.






I can’t believe my baby girl is already 2. I think the 2nd year flew by even faster than the 1st. Lillian is such an active, funny, smart, and feisty little girl. We love watching her learn and grow into the beautiful person she’s meant to be.

Happy 2nd birthday sweet Lillian Grace! Love you so much. ♥

Happy 1st Birthday Lillian Grace!

fair warning: This post contains TONS of birthday photos. Sorry not sorry.

Last week was Lillian’s 1st birthday!! We had friends flying in on her actual birthday, so we tried to keep the day pretty low-key. Blake went to work, Lilly and I did some last minute things around the house and spent some quality time together. When our friends arrived we headed to the lake. We grilled an Alaskan feast and spent the evening relaxing by the lake.

You’ll notice, Lillian only changed outfits 847,196 times that day. Success.

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Good morning BIRTHDAY GIRL!!

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Keeping an eye on her cake.

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Hey Mom, check out these rocks I found!!

Hey Mom, check out the cool rocks I found!!

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On Friday we celebrated Lillian’s birthday and threw a big party for her in our backyard. I drove myself a little crazy preparing for it, but it was worth it!

I decorated the backyard to make it extra festive. Blake made reindeer dogs (beef franks for the kids) on the grill and we did a ‘build your own hot dog bar’ with tons of different toppings to choose from, along with a few side dishes. I made a variety of desserts, including Lillian’s 3 tier cake. It didn’t fall apart before the party so I was happy with it (thanks for all the tips Mom). Our neighbors brought over their bouncy house, and I set out a few toys and games to keep everyone entertained. Later in the evening we had a bonfire and made s’mores.

I think Lillian had a really good time. She had fun playing with the kids and the other guests. There wasn’t a single meltdown. She wasn’t scared of all of the attention or our signing, and she really enjoyed her cake. She even got into opening the presents. I figured she wouldn’t be that interested, but she sat on my lap the entire time and helped open all the gifts. It was pretty cute.
















And just because, here’s one of my favorite pictures on the day she was born.


I once read, “the moment her little self was placed in my outstretched arms, my old heart was replaced with a new one”. For me, this statement could not be more true. Lillian has brought so much joy, love, laughter, and happiness to my heart. This first year with her has easily been the best of my life. We love her more than words can say, and look forward to watching her grow into a beautiful little person. Happy 1st birthday sweet Lillian Grace! ♥


Blaker’s Birthday

On Sunday was Blake’s birthday! I had been asking for weeks how he wanted to celebrate and he kept playing it off like it was no big deal. Still, I wanted to do something special to celebrate his day. Since we are a “more experiences, less stuff” type of family, I decided to round-up some of our closest friends and head to Alyeska Resort for the weekend.

Alyeska is located in the little town of Girdwood. It is just a short drive from Anchorage, along the scenic Seward Highway. The drive is beautiful year-round. This was our first time making the drive in the winter and it did not disappoint!

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When we arrived at Alyeska, a few of us went skiing and the others explored the resort hotel bar. My plan was to stay with Lillian so the birthday boy could hit the slopes. But Blake insisted that I ski and since it was his birthday, I complied.

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We all met up for a late lunch at the top of the mountain. Lillian hammered a huge bowl of seafood chowder and decided to spit out a cracker right as our family photo was taken. Stinker.





After lunch we hit up the pool and hot tub to relax a bit. We went to the Double Musky Inn for Blake’s birthday dinner. It was delicious! I was sneaky and asked the waiter to bring Blake a birthday dessert, candle and all. Everyone in the restaurant joined in to sing Happy Birthday. Lillian was so funny during the singing. She froze and got really shy. Pretty sure she thought we were singing to her. Such a sweetie.

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We had a great weekend at Alyeska. I have been to my fair share of ski resorts and Alyeska is definitely my new favorite. Great location, reasonable prices, nice runs, no lines, and the views are breathtaking! You really can’t beat the mountain and ocean inlet views it has to offer. I also want to mention (for my fellow Alaskans) that the entire area was very family-friendly. We had no problem taking Lillian anywhere… and I mean anywhere. ;)

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Until next time,