Our Family

Our Family

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Playground in our own Backyard

For the longest time I have wanted a swing set. Every week I would scour the flyers to see which ones were on sale and where. Cameron loves slides and he loves going to the park. Tommy enjoys the swings. And with my Parental anxieties I just didn't know how I was going to get around going to the park and let Cameron run around doing his own thing because I need to stay with Tommy. Right now while school is in and it's just the beginning of the season it's not so bad. But come July, when the parks are packed and you can't tell one child from the next, my poor heart and mind could just not handle it. So I tried to save up, took on a few odd jobs, and watched for the sales and brought the park to us. This way I can push Tommy in the swing while Cameron goes up and down the slide to his hearts content.

Cameron is so very proud of it. Whenever he looks into the yard he says "there's my new swing set, it's for me and Tommy" followed by "me and Daddy built it together".

So far it has been worth every penny!It came with the "humungous slide" as Cameron calls it, 2 swings and a trapeze. We replaced on of the swings with a baby swing and so far Tommy enjoys it and without fail has fallen asleep in it. Cameron likes to do flips on the trapeze but lets go a bit to early and then lands on all fours. He calls it his Spider man flip. He also likes me to spin his swing while hes on it. Yesterday he kept saying "again" until again was too much (it was at least 7 or 8  times) and he felt "tummy sick". That didn't stop him from asking for it again today.

My boys are so cute! It's been fun too, because Kim and Joseph have come over almost everyday. It's fun to see the cousins play together! I'm really excited for the summer!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Gratitude challenge

It's incredibly easy to get caught up in life and focus on the trials, tribulations and what's lacking and lose sight of what we do have. I read a Quote on Pinterest that said "What if you only had today what you thanked God for yesterday". If that were the case I would only have Michael, Cameron and Tommy and sometimes my mom and my sister. It's not hat I'm an ingrate, I just find it painfully easy to focus on the things that I don't have or the things I'm in want or in need of. I am so richly blessed in every aspect of my life. So then why, day after day is it so hard to recognize those blessings? I would be absolutely devastated and crushed if all of it were suddenly taken from me.
I'm trying to be better at being more grateful. Last December in our Church's Ensign Magazine there was an article by President Henry B. Eyering that spoke to me. I encourage all to read it!

It is our choice to be grateful! We can choose happiness or misery. So why do we choose misery? At the end of this article is a gratitude challenge, which I tried and loved and recently I decided to retake the challenge and I'm pretty sure that every now and then I will go back and do it again.

Here's the challenge for all those who wish to participate....
I've added my answers for an inside look of my life....

Take a Gratitude Challenge

By John Hilton III and Anthony Sweat
Let’s not just talk about counting our blessings—let’s do it! Write a list of 100 things you are thankful for. If that sounds like it is too many, try this:

Write 10 physical abilities you are grateful for.
Reading, Writing,Seeing. Cooking, Baking, Teaching, Walking, Exercising and stretching, Smelling, Hearing, Cleaning, touching and feeling, emotions, Healthy body, able to bear children, playing with my children, The use of all my limbs,

Write 10 material possessions you are grateful for.
T.V., Van, Computer, Wii, DVD player, DVD's, Dishwasher, Microwave, Toys, Books, Couches, Table and chair, Glider, Beds,

Write 10 living people you are grateful for.
Michael, Cameron, Tommy, Mama, Papa, Kim, (all my family really)Jesus Christ, Grandma, Judith and Howard (Because they gave birth to Michael), Thomas Monson, (and all the general Authorities) Pres. & Sis. Apel, Pres. And Sis. Manwaring, all my companions and Friends I made on my mission, Briana, Alita, Heather and all those who have made a difference in my life (too many to count)

Write 10 deceased people you are grateful for.
Ur Omi, Ur Ur Omi (Paesch), Joseph Smith, Gordon B. Hinckley (and all deceased prophets both ancient and modern), Grandpa Bolokoski, Grandma and Grandpa Schow, Grandma and Grandpa Koski,(I guess all the family that has gone before me), the pioneers, Niblet, 

Write 10 things about nature you are grateful for.
Vegetable Garden, Trees with blossoms in the springtime, Flowers, smell of newly mowed lawn, pumpkin patches, Mountains, the Beach, Frosted Lanscape after it has snowed, Freshly fallen snow untouched, Animals,Butterflies, Gardens, The different colours, Spring, Summer and Fall,

Write 10 things about today you are grateful for.
Waking up, a good night's sleep, My Family waking up, My home, Food to eat, Michael working, bills being paid, My Family, clothing, My Foot, Kim helping out by providing work, My Body, internet

Write 10 places on earth you are grateful for.
Magrath, Bremen, Frankfurt, Mainz-Kastel, Koln, Darmstadt, Disneyland,Cardston, Nobleford, Calgary,Columbia, Anaheim,

Write 10 modern inventions you are grateful for.
Television., Movies and Movie theatres, Dishwasher, Vehicles, Baby Monitors, Airplanes, Video Games, Car Seats, Refrigerater, Oven and Stove, Microwave, Electric Lawn Mower, Swing Sets, Phones and Cell phones, iPhone/iPod, Electricity, indoor heating, indoor plumbing,

Write 10 foods you are grateful for.
Blueberries, Raspberries, Cherries, Apples, Watermelon, Canteloupe, Mandarines, Grapes, Fruit Salad, Chicken, Beef, Peas, Carrots, Celery, Cheese, Bacon, Baked goods,(Cookies, Brownies, Squares, Cake, Muffins, Fruit Crisps) Whip Cream, Ice Cream, Hamburger and Fries, Pizza, Turkey Dinner, Rotkohl, Klosse, Rouladen, Cucumber salad, Candy, Chocolate, chips, Potatoes and Gravy, Pancake Breakfast, Juice, Rootbeer, Salad,

Write 10 things about the gospel you are grateful for.
Jesus Christ, Heavenly Father, Holy Ghost, Chapel, Temple, Prophets, Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, Pearl of Great Price, Bible, Prayer, Ward, Families are Forever, The Atonement, Ward activities, Standards, Repentance, Hope, Church Programs, callings,

When we make a list like this, we discover that a list of 100 doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface of all the things God has given us.

Saturday, June 2, 2012


I love being a mom, especially a mom of boys. My boys are handsome, precious, smart, funny, crazy and full of personality. When Tommy was born, Cameron loved him from the moment he saw him. He came into the bedroom saw us on the bed and got a huge smile on his face and said "he came out your Tummy". He was so gentle with him, constantly hugging him and kissing him and stroking his head while smiling. Tommy loves Cameron right back, he gets a huge grin on his face whenever Cameron comes close to him. He loves it when Cameron plays with him and laughs whole heartily when Cameron does something he likes. Having them and seeing them together warms and melts my heart. It makes all the "other" moments worth it.
Cameron has become a little less gentle and likes to play a bit rough by tackling and pulling and wrestling his brother. It concerns me a bit, but I guess that's what brothers do.

New Brothers


Playing Together
Tommy's Blessing



St. Patrick's Day

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Happy Birthday Daddy!

Today is Michael's Birthday. His gift was a 3 in 1 with our Anniversary and Father's Day. Michael would like to be a writer so I bought him a mini laptop. For today I thought for when he came home it would be nice to come home to a really clean home (which I'll be honest normally isn't and he ends up having to help me tidy after the boys are in bed....Not Today), We'll be having Pizza for Supper which is his  second Favourite (first being Lasagne, but I've made that every year for the past 7 years, so I thought I'd change it up)  and Black Forest cake for Dessert , which too is a favourite. I decided to shower, do my hair and make up and put on a dress to greet him when he gets home from work instead of my ponytail and sweats. And tonight I've hired a babysitter (something I don't do) to surprise him and take him to the Avengers.

With the boys we made him a Candy gram

Why we love Daddy

*Because you are "SMARTIES"
*Because you make us "SNICKERS"
*Because you "CARAMILK" about us
*Because you teach us to stay on the straight and N' "AERO" path
*Because of all the "BOUNTY" you provide
*Because of how you treat your "SWEETTART" aka. our Mommy

You are "WUNDERBAR" and we "SKOR"'D big having you as a Daddy
Happy Birthday, Love your "RUNTS" Cameron and Tommy

Daddy, We wish you a Very Happy Birthday!We Love you! Thank you for all the the things you do for us. Today is your day off. Let us Take Care of you!

Monday, May 28, 2012

my Superhero

Cameron comes to me one morning and says "I'm your super hero Mommy" and I think I'd have to agree.

You don't know what you've got until it's gone.

Lack of sleep I think is one of the worst things in life. I mean real exhaustion and sleep deprivation. I'm a terrible sleeper. My best sleep happens between 5:00 and 8:00 in the morning. And Tommy wakes up at 5:30.
A lack of sleep affects everything. Your Physical state, your mental, social, emotional, and spiritual state. I found myself really burnt out just about a month ago and finding the joy being sucked away and I had zero drive to do anything.I love my boys so I'd still play with them but it was getting really hard. One thing that would kind of bring me back to life despite my exhaustion was working out. In less than two months I had lost 20lbs. I was getting strong and doing so well.
 (This is how I feel. Like this super strong, fit person stuck in a
not so strong and not so fit body.)

So what happens? One morning I decided to Work out to a DVD and my Cameron got under my feet without me seeing and down I go, twisted my food and then landed on it and then landed on Cameron. Luckily Cameron was not hurt except his feelings from his Mommy falling on him. Me on the other hand did not come out quite as lucky. So a broken foot and a cast later. I am left incapable of doing anything for myself or my boys. This is going to be interesting.

So here I was sitting on the couch, If I wanted to go anywhere I had to use my crutches. I was not allowed to bear any weight on my foot. Have you ever tried to carry anything while using crutches? It doesn't work. I was helpless. Everything had to be done for me. I got a lot of help from Michael, my mom and many others. I have to admit the first week wasn't so bad but after that I was ready to start doing things for myself. I learned my lesson after a week, I was missing getting up with Tommy and carrying him. I was missing running around with Cameron. On top of missing  many other things, that just a week earlier seemed to be draining and almost tedious. I was done doing nothing. and I still had at least four weeks to go. 
The Sunday before it happened I watched Soul Surfer. It was providence I think. Very inspiring. If she could recover and live a life minus one arm and not to mention get back on a surf board and go back into the ocean. I could survive 6-8 weeks. I was going to get my foot back. And now I do. I walk on the cast and it feels great to do things for myself again! We really need to be careful not to take our lives for granted!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

I'm back

I really enjoy blogging and it seems that I constantly have posts running through my head. Sadly most of them never make it onto the blog and they get lost in the vortex of my memories. Some because of laziness, some because there are days where I'm running in a hundred different directions and never get the chance to sit and then don't get around to it and then of course we can't forget technical difficulties.

Both my boys are such characters. Each with vibrant personalities. My mom is constantly telling me to write their little moments down. And I think  I will, later or I'll remember it and then I don't. I spend countless moments smiling and laughing out loud whole heartily at my two miracles.

I'm sad that I couldn't log in over the past few months. There are so many things that were missed. Cheesy moments such as celebrating Valentines and St. Patrick's day. Milestones for both my boys (both good and bad, for example Cameron knowing all his letters both upper and lowercase and the sounds they make or Tommy's first smiles and giggles and rolling over and now almost sitting, as opposed to them getting the chicken pox.)

I'd never catch up, if I tried and then I'd get even farther behind. So I'm back and here's to a fresh start.

One thing I do want to post is my Tommy's baby blessing. It took a long time coming. It was pushed back three times, due to circumstances beyond our control one of which was my little 2 month old getting chicken pox.
It finally happened on March 4th, 2012. It was a beautiful day and a beautiful ceremony, celebrated with Family and friends.


They (whoever "they" are) say that what you put out in the universe comes back at you. If that is the case I'd like to know what I have been putting out there, because whatever you want to call it, Karma, the Universe or just plain comeuppance, it has not been that kind to me.

I'm doing my best to improve myself. I've been reading inspirational books, a few of which include, "Heaven is Here" by Stephanie Nielson, "Unlimited" by Jillian Michaels, "Divine Signatures" by Gerald Lund (Which was amazing!) and now I'm reading a book on hope, also by Elder Lund.

It seems this is my time to learn lasting Spiritual/life lessons. Patience, Long suffering, Faith, Hope, and Charity. Not just with others but also with myself.

It seems that whenever I see a glimmer of a light at the end of the proverbial tunnel, there's a new avalanche of rocks which I then need to figure out how to get through. The "funny" thing about trials, tribulations, adversity, whatever you want to call it, is that once we're past it, it kinda, sorta almost makes sense and we can kinda, sorta see what purpose it had in shaping us.

I'd like to get to that point. I'm tired and weary and just need a little respite. A few breaths of fresh air, to clear my head and then if it must be, stick me back in that tunnel.

It's been nearly 4 months and finally our computer let me log in, hence this post. Since then I  have broken my foot, (exercising, that'll teach me), our computer keeps crashing, our van has had nearly three grand of repairs done to it, our BBQ broke, on top of nearly every small appliance that we own and one large, our washer.(and those are just the minor issues or as my brother would call them "first world problems") Work has been scarce. And I'm about to lose my mind.

That being said I am very blessed! Despite all the crap that's been happening I do realize I have great blessings in my life. The Four most important are, First, My God, then Michael, Cameron and Tommy.

I love being a Mother and a wife and if I were to lose everything else in my life I would still be incredibly wealthy because I have my Family!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Pictures of Tommy (as promised)

Here are a few random pictures of our Tommy. Three month photo shoot with Auntie Kim coming soon.....

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Who is Tommy?

I cannot believe that Tommy is already three months old. Time is flying by way too quickly! He's a wonderful baby, full of life and charm. He's already an independent little man and will tell you when he's done being held and just needs some "Tommy Time". However if he's not wanting his own time, he gets mad if I am not paying attention to him or put him down prematurely. He loves having conversations and being sung and read to. He especially likes the songs and quite often he'll sing along. A few of his favourites are "wind my bobbin up", "Pat-a-cake" , and "peek a boo, I see you". He is a very smiley baby and his face lights up every time I look at him. Enough to melt this Mama's heart! He's very active (as much as he can be). He was this way in the womb as well. Kicking and wriggling awake as well as in his sleep. We call him our "squirmy wormy". He loves to go out, whether it be car rides, walks in the stroller or carried in the bjorn. Looking at him you can tell he's studying the world around him, he observes everything that goes on around him. He's started to giggle, which is adorable, it happens when I make random odd noises or when I tickle him. He's very ticklish under his chin.He's a big boy with a big boy appetite. For the past week he as eaten every two hours. I'm hoping this is a growth spurt and not permanent. At three weeks he was already in 3-6 month clothing and now at three months we've started to pull out the 6-9 month clothes. He's going to catch up to his brother in no time if he carries on at this pace. He weighs 13lbs 12oz, a 5lb gain since birth and is 25 inches long. Sadly he hasn't been blessed yet, due to conflicting schedules and then chicken pox it just hasn't worked yet. March 4th. I had to go out and get a new blessing outfit because he outgrew the first. He's a good sleeper once I get him to sleep but he fights it with everything he's got. EVERYTHING. For awhile there the only way to get him to sleep was to swaddle him up tight and swing him in his car seat. That was a workout. Now I just hold him tight until he gives in. He also loves to bath. He's a water baby and turns into an octopus as soon as he's in the water, limbs squirming all over the place. He is precious beyond words adored by all especially his Mamma, Daddy and big brother.

I'm having difficulty loading pictures (like always). So a post of Tommy pictures will be coming soon.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Happy New Year?

I read somewhere that the first twelve days of the year are an indication of how your year is going to be. I sure hope not! We started the year with Cameron having a cough which lead to chicken pox. Once the Chicken pox cleared he got croup which then was followed by the flu. Tommy then caught the flu and now he has the chicken pox.

There is nothing worse than having sick babies and not being able to do anything about it except let it run it's course. This New Year has not been so "Happy". It can only go up from here right?


One very exhausted
(emotionally, mentally and physically)

Saturday, January 7, 2012

To soothe or not to soothe

From the very beginning, Cameron has loved his soother. It was definitely named appropriately. I don't even know how much money went into soothers, thanks to them getting lost or Cameron just sucking the life out of them.

I thought when he turned two that would be a good time to wean him. Two came way to quickly! And I wasn't ready yet. I heard all sorts of opinions on, he's too big and just cut the nipple etc. I think sometimes the soothers are more for the parents than the child. And in this case it was mutually beneficial. I dreaded the day that I would have to wean him. I rationalized at two that a new baby was coming who would have a soother and Cameron wouldn't understand why Tommy gets one and he doesn't. So I let it be. However since 18months I only let him have it at bedtime. No harm in that right? I didn't think so. But right after Tommy was born, I was too tired to really enforce my own rules and things slipped. Cameron was sucking his soother the better part of the day. He also chewed on them which decreased their lifespan by a lot. So I would have to throw them out. So back to the store to buy more. He was also becoming more whiny and dependent on them. The brand that I bought came in packs of two, one blue one green. For some reason Cameron favoured the blue ones. Two weeks ago we were down to 2 green and 1 blue and he had just chewed his way through the blue one so I had to throw it out. He reluctantly took the green. I guess green is better than no soother. The next night he cried for his blue soother, and refused the green. He fell asleep clutching the green one in his hand. The same the next two nights. And after that it sat on his night stand and the 2 remaining green soothers have been there ever since.

He doesn't ask for them any more and he's actually going to bed better (but that could be because he's decided to give up naps and is dog tired by the time evening rolls around. But that's a whole other story).

We've been soother free for two weeks with no fighting involved. This is what I win/win!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Christmas is my Favourite Holiday! All the different festivities and Traditions! The Food, The Family and Friends but most importantly the Spirit. Cameron soaked up the excitement and loved every minute of it. We enjoyed every moment of the season.

(I apologize for the poor quality of the pictures, sadly my sister doesn't follow me and my family around with her camera. I do not have her talent)

Decorating the tree

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I thought that Cameron had been so good not touching the tree and taking the ornaments off like most toddlers... until we took the tree down. As we're taking the tree apart random toys kept surfacing deep in the branches. Instead of taking away, he was adding to.

Making a Gingerbread house
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Playing in the snow
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shoveling the walk with Daddy
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Making cookies
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This part he was unsure of. Santa was great to read about in books.....
"you want me to sit on his lap....I don't think so"
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And the real reason for the Season, The birth of our Saviour. The greatest gift to Mankind.
All the cousins on my side of the family dressed up to portray that Christmas Night thousands of years ago.

Handsomest Shepherd around!

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My two wonderful boys in their Christmas Pajamas
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Christmas Eve before going to bed.
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Cameron loved setting out the milk and cookies.

Why can't we all believe like the little children!

For family home evening the Monday before Christmas we went to the Nativity at Heritage park. Cameron sat and watched the entire scene in wonder. As we loaded back up into the car he cried "I want to see baby Jesus again!"

As the Saviour said "Behold, your little ones"

The most wonderful Part of our Year

Cameron was a week early so I fully expected Tommy to do the same. No such luck. I was so tired of being pregnant but my little guy was comfortable and not going to come out until he was good and ready despite all the labour inducing activities that I tried. From going to the Gym and doing Zumba classes to drinking some nasty concoction that my midwife had given me, all this did was increase my braxton hicks. I did have a few nights of false labour which made me play horrible mental games. I was just ready and nature was playing tricks on me.

Despite wondering that I may be pregnant forever, It did finally happen nearly a week late on November 10 at 8:39 in the morning, When he did decide to come he came quick. My first contraction was just after 5:00am and less than 3 1/2 hours later he arrived. We had a home birth which I am so grateful for! It was an amazing experience! I would recommend it!
We named our little miracle Thomas Jay, and are calling him Tommy. He was 8lbs and 12oz. A whole pound and a half bigger than Cameron. 20 3/4 inches long. He's just perfect and such a good baby.








When Michael brought Cameron home from being with Omi.
I said "Look who came out of Mommy's Tummy"
His face lit up and said "Tommy" and has loved him ever since.
He constantly wants to look at him, or lay with him, he reads Tommy books,
and constantly wants to hold him. He's also very possessive. This is his baby!

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Cameron wanted to be wrapped up like Tommy.
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Proud big brother and sweet little brother

Our First Family Picture together.


Tommy we welcome you with ALL our hearts and love you to pieces!
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