Monday, August 27, 2007


we went camping over the weekend with our friends, Julia and Jonathan Wade. We had lots of fun...and leah had lots of fun being a stinker (as shown by picture below).
no, she was actually really good! after a dousing of OFF! spray, we were free from the mosquitos and able to enjoy the beautiful weather and surroundings of a redwood forest in the santa cruz mountains. we made tin foil (aka 'hobo') dinners, desserts and breakfasts. yum! we played cards, talked and just relaxed. it was a lot of fun!

julia and jona by the campfire

ryan and leah by a big redwood

ryan's patriotic carving
(no worries - it was pretty tiny)

...and it doesn't matter because we created our names from carvings that were already there!!

maren and leah...all smiles.
laytons and wades on the way out

the laytons

we tried giving leah peas and's a no go. but, she does like bananas and her binky. phew!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

one half

today leah is six months old...or 'one half'...or '0.5' we like to call it. we can't believe it's already been half of a year. what a little cutie we have on our hands.
she rolls, eats, babbles and kicks like a fiend and she is so interested in discovering the world around her. we are so glad we get to discover it with her.
(p.s. julia, the popped collar in the top right is for you...)

Monday, August 20, 2007

baby love, my baby love...

we love, love, love the new tricks our little leah is learning...

she puts her makeup on and does her hair with mom in the morning...then checks out her results in the shiny faucet: (thanks for the great idea, danielle!)

she has play dates (this is leah's new friend, lucy, who is about 7 weeks younger than her):

she rolls to come soon.

and she eats rice cereal! i'm not sure we'll ever clean all of the cereal out of her neck!!we gave her some for the first time on saturday. at first, she wasn't quite sure why we were shoving a spoon in her mouth, but a few minutes later, she was craning her neck to reach the spoon for more...see for yourself!

upcoming events: six month photo shoot and camping!!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

night owl

rollin' with the homies

that's right, folks, leah finally did it. i understand she will be 6 months next week and had yet to roll in either direction, but she did it yesterday! AND I MISSED IT!! she was playing on her back while i scrapbooked. i went in the other room to grab something and came back seriously 5 seconds later and she was on her tummy. she wasn't quite sure what all the excitement was about, but she gave me a courtesy smile anyway.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

beach babe

i love baby feet. i have no other words.

first tube ride?

not quite. this was definitely just a photo shoot. no worries - rach and I wouldn't really put our babies in a tube and ride all over a lake without life jackets. we're not that delinquent. but, it was fun to play for a bit. leah was more interested in the yellow rubber than she was the experience and, as always, annie was all smiles. what a cutie.

hike to the waterfall

So, for years i've been hearing about this amazing waterfall at my cabin. It's quite the hike and, in the many years i've been going, i have never made the trek up there. So, this year, when my cousin, Beckie, heard i hadn't been up there, she made sure that I would do it this time. We put the babies to sleep and Mike, Beckie, me and Beckie's 5-year-old son, Cole, started off. The hike follows the stream/river from where it hits the lake just by our cabin all the way to the top, so you basicaly just have to hike around the water and follow it all the way up. We were pretty skilled at picking the WRONG sides of the trails both on the way up and back. That, combined with no tread on my tennis shoes resulted in a very wet and bruised maren. Mike was good to lift and pull us out of tough spots and he and beckie seriously carried Cole through a ton of it. i even participated in the rock slide in the freezing cold water. There is a reason lake Merwin isn't the warmest lake in the world...and this waterfall is the reason. It really was pretty, though and even though it took us nearly three hours, i'm glad i went. Thanks beck, mike and coley!

Monday, August 13, 2007

fun in the sun...

well, at least while the sun lasted. we had about three hours of it in the week we were there, but we sitll had fun!
leah had a blast in the little kiddie pool on the dock with annie and i had a blast sculpting her hair into a fauxhawk with the sunscreen.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

lake merwin

leah and i spent the last week in woodland, washington at a family cabin that sits on lake merwin, also known as 'heaven' because i'm quite sure that's what heaven will be like. the weather wasn't the best. leah and i brought the rain and clouds with us. so, even though we only got a few hours of sunshine the entire week we were there, we still had a lot of fun playing with our cousins. a big thanks to gary and denise for letting us come and crash their party. i'll post a few pictures every day, but here are some from last sunday when we arrived.

we went on walks every day up to the "white house." it's a good little walk and leah had a great time looking at all of the nature every day...and usually ended up fallling asleep. this is us in front of the cabin and then with my cousin rachel, her husband mike and their little cutie, anna, who is 10 months old.

leah also went on her first boat ride. she wasn't so much a fan of the life jacket she had to wear, but she liked the boat ride because she ended up falling asleep she was so calm.

copy cat

leah likes to copy facial expressions that she sees. i thought this was funny.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

i need your help

i'm framing two pictures of leah for her room and i need to know which ones to frame! you choose.
and ryan, you HAVE to vote. it's not an option. then you have to leave a comment saying which two you like best.

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don't you worry about the distance...

we miss ryan. we don't like when he goes out of town and we can't wait until he comes home.

right now ryan is just south of chicago for some training for his work at duff and phelps. he's having a good time in classes and playing frisbee golf in his spare time while his co-workers get a little tipsy. leah says, "ma ma ma" (in baby talk, that means, "I miss dad").
i'm beginning to be reminded about the last two summers when he was REALLY out of town...glad we're not doing that again. i decided to write a song for him while he's gone*: "Hey there Ryan, Don't you worry about the distance, I'm right there if you get lonely, Give this song another listen, Close your eyes...Listen to my voice it's my disguise...I'm by your side."
Leah wrote him a song too*: "I'm so glad when daddy comes home, glad as I can be. I clap my hands and shout for joy, then climb up on his knee. Put my arms around his neck, hug him tight like this. Pat his cheeks and give him what? A great big kiss!"
we are very talented. (*note: a special thanks to plain white t's and the children's hymnbook for their help in writing these songs.)

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

rinconada pool

today leah and i went to a local children's pool in palo alto with some other moms and kids in our ward. it was a lot of fun. leah loved the water splashing over her legs and was content to sit in the water for more than an hour while she softly kicked and splashed. merwin here we come!!after about an hour, she decided she had had enough, so i put her on my shoulder and she fell asleep. she hasn't done that in a few months! it just about melted my heart. i think she was dreaming about her daddy and how much she misses him while he's out of town.