My inspiration for this record of my days:

“The biggest mistake I made [as a parent] is the one that most of us make. . . . I did not live in the moment enough. This is particularly clear now that the moment is gone, captured only in photographs. There is one picture of [my three children] sitting in the grass on a quilt in the shadow of the swing set on a summer day, ages six, four, and one. And I wish I could remember what we ate, and what we talked about, and how they sounded, and how they looked when they slept that night. I wish I had not been in such a hurry to get on to the next thing: dinner, bath, book, bed. I wish I had treasured the doing a little more and the getting it done a little less” -Anna Quindlen

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas 2012

We had such a good plan.  We planned to spend Christmas up at the cabin in the snow.  No electricity, no running water, just good old-fashioned snow and cozy family time.

Preparations occupied a large percentage of my time and energy during the month.  I had visited multiple thrift stores, making sure we had all the right snow gear in all the right sizes.  I had gathered up games, puzzles and other entertainment for the little ones who would be mostly inside the whole time.  I prepared all of our meals, and froze them in disposable cookware so we wouldn’t have to worry about washing any dishes.

We had everything packed and piled in “the packing spot” the day before, and had even gotten the house all clean. 

And then… one of the kids started throwing up.  Violently and repeatedly.  I was prepared to overlook the sore throats and coughs that several kids were already showing signs of.  But the stomach flu?  That was just too much.  Despite a few tears and protests, we decided to cancel our trip.

Luckily, we had borrowed Uncle Doug’s quad for the snow, so the kids had lots of fun riding it around our back yard.  We ended up having a lovely Christmas.  Just us at home.

Here is what we did on Christmas Eve:

2012-12-24 002


2012-12-24 004

2012-12-24 001



Our traditional fancy dinner of ham, mashed potatoes, rolls and sparkling cider.


Our traditional Nativity play.  During the day we had watched all of our nativities from years past, and it was fun to see the family grow right before our eyes.


Then we opened ornaments, read the Christmas story, and set out stockings and cookies for Santa.  The kids all like to sleep in the same room, which is getting to be a pretty tight squeeze!

Jeff and I always watch “It’s a Wonderful Life” while the kids are going to sleep, but this year I couldn’t make it all the way through.  I had to go to bed early because I wasn’t feeling well.  I’m glad we decided to stay home for Christmas, but now I’m itching to get up to the cabin!  Our bags are still packed!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Christmas Cards

Davis 2012 Christmas Card

I love receiving Christmas cards every year.  Especially from the friends that live far away.  It makes me feel loved and connected to have pictures of friends displayed on the Christmas card wall.  Now I know it’s a bit hypocritical, but I have absolutely no interest in sending cards.

I have always just felt like that is one more thing to do in an already hectic month.  Apparently Savannah does not feel the same way.  Every year she begs me to do Christmas cards, and I’m usually successful at putting her off until it’s too late.

This year I turned it over to her.  My sister in law, who is single-handedly responsible for making sure we get family pictures done occasionally, took these great pictures for us.  I just rounded up the best of whatever kids had in their drawers, and Leah worked her magic!

With the pictures done, I told Savannah I was willing to commit to 20 Christmas cards.  No more.  If she would do all the work and send the card to be printed, I would pick them up from Costco.  Well… she did it.  I think she did a great job!  And I already addressed my 20 cards, plus a few that Savannah wanted to hand out to friends.

Please don’t feel bad if you don’t get a Christmas card.  I only sent them to the friends who live far away, and whose addresses I happened to have sitting on my desk.  It may take me a few years to work up to it but eventually I hope to be able to include all of the people I love and think of at Christmas time!



Today was not all peaches and cream… I’m not gonna lie.  But there were several moments in the day when I felt a deep, peaceful joy as I noticed the little details of my life.

1.  Getting the best parking spot at Walmart first thing in the morning.  I tell my kids that’s a good omen.

2. Josh’s face during his basketball game.  He just beams with happiness the whole time he’s playing.

3.  My clean kitchen windowsill – yesterday’s project.

4.  Watching Jonah teach Simon how to play four square out back – just past the yellow pecan tree.

5. Discovering a beehive in one of our peach trees.  It’s fascinating!  And I’m not sure why, but somehow it makes me feel connected to nature.  (It’s not like I’m actually doing any of the work!)

6.  Making a big pot of potato broccoli cheese soup.  It hit the spot tonight, and I even made a double batch so I could freeze some for later. (patting myself on the back)

7.  Putting new superhero pajamas on little boys fresh out of the bathtub.

8.  Reading “Frosty the Snowman” to the kids.  It has been a tradition to read a Christmas book every night in December, but as the kids get older and busier, it gets harder and harder to squeeze in.

9.  Hearing the hum of the dishwasher (which is actually kind of loud and annoying) after everyone is tucked in bed.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

International Night–Korea


Jeff came up with a great idea for our Sunday dinners.  Whenever we can remember in time to pull it together, we plan to do international nights.  The plan is to let each person take a turn to choose a country and plan the meal accordingly. Each of us will learn a new fact about that country to present at the dinner table.


Our first country was Korea, since Jeff had been craving some Chop Chae, Kimchi and Bool gogi.  (I have no idea how to spell any of those things!)


We ate with chopsticks and everything.  Simon dove right in and never needed a fork!  You should have seen the floor around him when he was done with that rice!



I’d say it was a pretty big success!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

New England

About two years ago Jeff and I planned ahead for our 15th wedding anniversary trip.  We got our airline tickets about a year ahead of time to make sure we could use our sky miles.  We planned a trip to New England in the fall, so we could be there for all the beautiful colors.  It’s a trip I have dreamed of taking forever.

A few months after we made the reservations, we found out that I was expecting another baby.  Due the exact week of our scheduled trip!  Needless to say, it was postponed.

One year later, which was a couple of weeks ago, we finally made it!  We left the kids with my mom and sisters, and celebrated our 15th anniversary in style.

The trip was all I hoped and dreamed!  We rented a car and spent our days just leisurely driving around, enjoying the beauty of nature. 


Our first night we stayed in this charming old boarding school-turned hotel.


We passed through Salem, and toured this “Witch House” that was built in the 1600s.



We drove up the coast of Maine, and of course had to stop at a lighthouse.  This was one of the few pictures Jeff took without me nudging him in the ribs and handing the camera to him.  He said he was there to spend time with his wife, not to be a photographer.  Apparently the two don’t mix.



We pulled over a couple of times to just walk around and enjoy the scenery.  I wished that I could bring home some of my treasures.


We had tried to rent a Prius to save on gas, but there was a mix-up, and all they had left was this Camaro convertible. Darn!  We were determined to drive with the top down, even though it was freezing!


In Vermont we stopped at the Ben & Jerry’s factory for a tour and some samples.


My pictures don’t really do it justice, but I loved these trees!  The leaves were green in the middle, then a layer of yellow, and red on the tips.  So gorgeous!


Can you believe some people drive by sights like this every day, and think that it’s normal?


Our last day was spent in Boston.  This is Jeff looking studious at Harvard.


One of my favorite stops along the Freedom Trail was the Old North Church, where Paul Revere had two lanterns hung at the beginning of the Revolutionary war.  I love the feeling of being in a place that is so old, and especially one with such significance.


The book that I was reading on the plane on my way to Boston was about the founding of America.  It was perfect timing.  The day we spent in Boston got me feeling so patriotic and grateful for the amazing men who were the founders of our country.


Some of these headstones dated back to the 1600s.


The city reaching up into the clouds was so beautiful.  The locals kept complaining about the weather, but we loved it!  We carried umbrellas all day as we walked, and didn’t miss the sun one bit!

I can’t decide what was my favorite part of the trip. The weather, the maple trees, the leisurely pace, the history?  Actually, I do know.  It was the company!  I loved having Jeff all to myself for a few days, with nothing else to worry about.  I love being married to my best friend!

Now… where to go next?


Here are a couple of quick pics from Josh’s 10 yr. old birthday party.


He is all sweaty after having a super fun air-soft war with his friends.  The girls have a hard time understanding why boys would like to celebrate by inviting people over to shoot each other.  I have stopped trying to relate, and decided to just embrace it!  As long as they don’t ever shoot at me!


He has some great friends, and they seemed to have a really good time.  Even his cousin Alston got to be there!

Some things about Josh at age 10:

His smile lights up his whole face

He never walks anywhere!  He is always running, jumping, or sliding.  Consequently… he stubbs his toes all the time, poor guy.

He likes to give his mom hugs, and misses the days when he was little enough to curl up in my lap.

He LOVES basketball.  He is willing to practice hard, and it has really paid off!  He is a great player, and I love that he has a smile on his face all through every game.

He is thoughtful.  He is aware of others feelings, and tries to make sure everyone feels included.

He goes through books faster than I do, which is really saying something!

I sure love you Josh!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Thousands of words

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then I’m going to save myself the trouble of writing and just post some pictures of what has been going on around here lately.


Eli got a handsome haircut.  He officially looks like a Davis boy with a buzz cut.


Jonah checking to see how much he has grown.


Simon does “boy school” with 3 of his neighborhood friends:  Kade, Mazden and Tigger.  They rotate houses 3 days a week.  Not a lot of “school” happens, but it’s lots of fun!


Simon likes to comb his hair up in the front every day, so it will look “cool like Caleb’s.”


Jeff and his brother Doug took 9 kids to the lake!  Now that is the definition of a real man (I guess I should say real men, plural)  in my book!


Caleb and Connor Payne cooked the burgers, while Jonah waited anxiously.


Playing with Audree and Olivia on the shore.  Good thing I insisted that Jeff let me pack a change of clothes for Simon “just in case his pants happen to get wet.”


Cute 3 year old cousins Grant and Clark.


Riding behind the boat.  Olivia, Audree and Jonah.


Caleb and Josh.  I think Connor was in the middle there…  ?


My cute little Eli.  Just because.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Birthday boy

My little Eli turned 1 last week.
His birthday present was a balloon, which was accidentally popped by his brothers the next day.  But he loved it while it lasted!
He has got to be the most loved baby in the world!  His siblings all adore him, and were so happy to help him celebrate.  He loved all the attention… especially when everyone gathered around to sing to him!
I’ve said it before, but I think babies are such great unifiers in a family.  One of the few things that everyone can agree on, is that Eli is the cutest baby ever.  And we have such a good time sitting around laughing at his antics together.
He didn’t mess around with that cupcake.  It was gone in about 3 bites!
Elijah at one year old:
-Can say “Mama, Dada, Hi and Thank you” but won’t say them on demand.
-Best tricks include waving, clapping, pointing, flexing his muscles
-Likes to play peek-a-boo and this little piggie
-Favorite foods: oatmeal, pb&j, all fruits.  Definitely NOT vegetables
-Wants to be held on my hip all day, doing whatever I’m doing
-He’s a sweet little snuggler
-Everyone comments on what a happy, sweet natured baby he is.
I sure am glad I have my little Elijah.  I can’t imagine our family without him!
Happy Birthday Eli.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Deep Thoughts

Yesterday, as the rain was pouring down, Simon sat at the table eating his lunch.  He looked deep in thought, and I couldn’t resist the urge to ask what was going on in his mind.


“Whatcha thinkin’ about buddy?”

“I’m just watching the rain come down.  And also, do shrink rays float in outer space?”

And nearby was this guy, enjoying his own lunch:


He always has a good time!