Wednesday, November 30, 2016

If you are chilly....

[scroll to the bottom for pattern/yarn info]

Every time we go on a long drive I think I'll have all the time in the world to knit and crochet. We spent 48+ hours in the car over the last 10 days and I got about 6 hours of knitting in. I guess that's the way it goes when you have 6 kids! I should know that I won't have as much time as I think, but I always bring yarn for 3-4 projects and I'm lucky if I get to finish one. I don't mind too much because not knitting meant watching movies with my kids, singing songs, searching maps as Michael drove, make time-lapse videos of our drive, eating snacks, helping cranky kids to get happy, and lots of conversation with my hubby boy. Now THAT'S a treat! We aren't often able to have an uninterrupted conversation but all that time in the car meant lots of talking and listening for us.

I'm not even sad that I only got one project done because, look how cute it is! The pattern is knit in one piece and very simple; perfect for a beginner. Because it was so basic, I was afraid it wouldn't be flattering and that I wouldn't love the final result. Happily, it turned out so cute and it's so squishy and cozy; she's extra huggable in this little sweater, if that's even possible!  I actually really love how plain and simple the sweater is. Sometimes simplicity is as lovely as intricacy.

Pattern: One Piece Baby Pullover
Yarn: Swish DK by Knit Picks in Dove Heather*

*The pattern calls for worsted weight yarn. I used dk by accident and, as a result, the sweater is a tad smaller than I would have liked.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

An afternoon at the Floyd House

We made a video of our afternoon today. I think it's kind of cute.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Be Prepared to Be Scared

 Popcorn balls from Grandma!

Six kids listening to daddy tell a spooky story.

On our big shopping day down in the Big City.

We love this finger-sucking baby.

Hanging out at Zach and Rachel's

A tiger and his daddy.

A bear and her grandpa.

 Halloween treats.

A pretty sunset.

Halloween bingo in kindergarten.

I delivered some spooky snacks to school for this cute doctor and kitty.

I love her.

We are so lucky to live just a few hours from grandpa Christensen. We spent the weekend at his house and had a lovely time being with our family. I didn't get any of it on the video, but we gathered at his house with my Uncle Michael and Aunt Susan, Zach and Rachel, grandma and grandpa Howe, and cousins Kellie and Nathan. Michael and Susan have been remodeling and needed a cleanup crew! So everyone pitched in to help. Well, I wasn't much help, but everyone else was great! On Saturday we went to a Trunk or Treat at Michael and Susan's church and it was so fun. The kids loved going around and seeing the spooky decorated trunks, we met a CUTE bulldog named Hank, and Kellie made homemade rootbeer, or Witch's Blood, as Nathan called it. We LOVE our family and it was so fun to be with them. Michael and Susan just moved back to the Pasadena area (from Sacramento) and we're so happy that they live somewhat close to us now! It's been so fun to see them every time we go to grandpa and Cecil's. Speaking of grandpa and Cecil! They are coming home from their 6 month temple mission in Palmyra this week! We can't wait to have them back!

We came home from our lovely weekend to Uncle Andrew and Aunt Nicole! We're so excited that they will be just up the street from us for the next couple of months! And the best part is that their sweet baby girl is due at the end of the month! Hooray for aunts, uncles, and new baby cousins!

The kids had a great Halloween, even though it seemed like we were missing half their costumes by time the actual day rolled in. I love my little cuties and I'm so glad they don't want to be anything (too) scary yet.

Last night I was wrapping up my vlog for the week on my front porch with the intention of getting our cute halloween pumpkin in the shot but I heard some seriously spooky noises that sent me hightailing it into the house! I can't even describe what I heard and of course it couldn't be heard on the video, but it was like rattling and whizzing and right next to me in the yard! Scary Halloween stuff.

As much fun as Halloween is, I am always relieved when it's over! I feel like I spend the whole month searching for missing costume pieces as the kids change their minds a hundred times about what they want to be, sending me on new searches for new items. It makes me feel so stressed out! But the parties, the decorations, the costumes (once they are complete and actually on their bodies), the candy, and the fun are all so great, it makes it worth the effort!

Now we are on to Thanksgiving and Christmas. My berry wreath is already hanging up:) I love this time of year.

BUT WAIT! There's more! Disclaimer: I no longer care whether my pictures are pretty enough to be blog or Pinterest worthy and I don't care if there's clutter and my house looks messy. My kids took most of these and I think they're wonderful!

Don't forget to watch our video at the bottom of the post!

Me in my natural element.

Mallory in her natural element!

Thursday, October 27, 2016

About a Baby

Three months. How is it that three months can seem like so small an amount of time, yet somehow like a lifetime? This little baby was so familiar to me from the moment she was born. It was like I'd known her all my life and longer and I'd just been waiting to meet her again. At the same time, the memories of finding out we were expecting her, waiting for her to make her entrance, and physically bringing her into the world are still so new and fresh; I'm still completely enchanted by her presence, her chubby baby body, her coos, her sweet little gummy smiles, her hiccups, the way she clasps her hands together right in front of her face and just stares at them. These things never get old; they're all so new and precious, innocent, wonderful, and pure. It's as if she's been here for always, yet she's astonishingly new.

Somewhere deep inside of my soul I know that the connection I feel is eternal. I know her because I knew her.  I do not doubt that we existed together before our earthly life. With all my heart I believe that, in spirit form, she has been close to me my entire life and that is the reason she is so familiar to me. I know her because my spirit recognizes hers. She is a part of me and has been all along.

This precious girl is three months old. That means that one year ago she was just beginning her earthly existence. ONE YEAR ago this happy, chubby, sweet, smiling, beautiful child was no bigger than the period at the end of this sentence. ONE YEAR ago she was without her hands, her mind, even her heart beat. She was nothing and yet she was already everything. All she'd ever need to grow into a baby, a little girl, a woman, a mother... was all there.

It seems like such a miraculous transformation should not be physically possible, yet with God, all things are possible. She came to me from His presence, as all babies do. Nothing so magnificent and wonderful and lovely could have come from anything or anyone but a God in Heaven. I think that the reason we are so enamored with these tiny beings is because they come to Earth with His love and leftover bits of heaven; they are divine creatures and their heavenly spirits can't be contained by their tiny little bodies; the feeling of heaven radiates around them.

What a lovely, perfect, most wonderful and blessed gift from God. May we never take such a miracle for granted. May we remember our own divine natures and honor God by showing appreciation for the beings He has entrusted the world with. May we ever nurture them, love them, and stand to shield and protect them from any harm that may come their way. We knew them before any of us ever came to this earth, they have been waiting to join us, may we welcome them with open hearts and arms, love them, and show them how wonderful this place can be.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Mosquitos and termite mounds

Today we continued our study of arthropods (we are using the Jenny Phillips science curriculum). I set up one station each for mosquitos, fireflies, termites, and silk worms. We hate learning about mosquitos (we watched several youtube videos on them a few months ago) because it makes us all squeamish and the termite video was a little difficult to watch, only because of the scene where the dreadful things are ambushed my a colony of ants (we're a bunch of girly girls). Despite the terror of the unfortunate scene, learning about termites was fascinating! Did you know that the queens can live for 15-25 years, mate for life, and get absolutely morbidly HUGE?! Here is an entertaining article about Her Majesty the Termite Queen.

Learning about fireflies was fun and made us very excited to see some next summer at our family reunion back east! We also enjoyed learning about silkworms but we were sad to learn that the moths are killed in the process of silk-making.

Here are the girls and their termite mounds crafted out of clay. Today was the best kind of homeschool day.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Family Journal- Week 1

We sold our house in Idaho and last Thursday, Michael took Lily and Kaylee with him to get our belongings in Idaho. It was strange not to have my big girls around! They are homeschooled so I'm used to having them with me all day. Mallory and Riley go to school so for 4 days I spent several hours with only Matthew and Ella. It was quiet, Matthew was lonely, and I think we were more than ready for them to be home by day two. We kept busy by doing things like playing with blocks and puzzles, reading books, and going to the park, but it wasn't enough to fill the void. They came home on Tuesday and we were sooooo happy!

They came home with a brand new trailer (Michael is so happy to finally have a trailer of his own!) and a TON of stuff. I was elated to find all the journals that I've kept for each of the kids since they were babies; I shed some serious tears reading over some of those entries and I'm so excited to pick up where I left off in each of them. I feel bad that there is a 2 year lapse in them but hopefully I can make up for it.

Along with the journals, they brought so much STUFF. It's crowding our living room and it seems like our amount of laundry has been tripled. I am feeling overwhelmed with all there is to clean, sort, out away, and give away. I'm trying to remember that it takes one step at a time to accomplish these sorts of things and that I WILL get it all sorted out if I just keep going.

Wednesday was full of driving, shopping, and a doctor appointment. Ella had her 2 month check up (though she's nearly 3 months old) and she's a healthy, happy, normal baby. I can't ask for anything more than that! After her appointment we shopped for much needed new clothes; we have a hard time finding jeans that fit these girls properly. What a treat for them! We VERY rarely go clothes shopping so they were extremely excited to be allowed to pick out a few new items of clothing.

After the clothes shopping we went to the grocery store and were delighted to find out that the small store we usually shop at had been transformed into a big, beautiful, normal sized store! A big deal when you live in an area like this! I think I'll actually find myself looking forward to my Smart and Final trips, especially now that the carry Tillamook ice cream!

Thursday was a special day because it was the first day of garbage pick up for the Floyd Family. Haha. We've been loading garbage and hauling it to the dump for 2 years! I don't mind the hauling part but the dump is only open for a few hours 2 days a week and if you forget or can't go for some reason (which happens often!) you're out of luck and the trash piles up beside the house. Gross. I was soooooo happy to drag that can out to the street that morning. Ironically, Michael still had to make a dump run because of all the boxes and garbage that his trip to Idaho created.

Friday! Fridays are the best. Matthew and I started the day with a walk to collect a pretty bouquet for grandma. He had told her the day before that he didn't like her and hadn't been a very nice boy so he needed to do apologize and do something kind for her.

Kaylee and Lily sent Michael and I on a date and that was a lot of fun. A little while later we went to grandma's to deliver the bouquet and we jumped on the tramp and played for a while. I love playing with my kids. I get so caught up in all of my housework, paperwork, and adult responsibilities that I forget to play. I'm so thankful that they remind me to by asking and sometimes insisting that I just play with them. When we got home we made some halloween treats for friends in town. We finished them too late and didn't get to deliver them last night, which was a MAJOR disappointment to some of the girls, but it gave us something to look forward to tonight;)

It was a good week. Nothing out of the ordinary or terribly exciting but just as happy as I could ever hope for. We started a weekly video journal (or vlog or whatever you want to call it) if you'd like to check it out. I reeeeeally want to keep doing it week after week so wish me luck and go subscribe to our channel if you'd like to!

Friday, October 21, 2016

We Went on a DATE!

Today Lily and Kaylee collaborated and came up with the idea to send Michael and I on a date... in our very own kitchen/living room!

Lily took me to her room, did my make-up and picked out a dress and shoes for me to wear. Kaylee styled Michael's hair (it took her longer to get him ready than it took Lily to get me ready!) and picked out a tie that went well with my dress. Then they had me make peanut butter/honey/banana sandwiches and cut them into heart shapes.

When I finished the sandwiches, they finally let us see each other. They sat us at the table and served us water and sandwiches by candlelight. They played country music (Michael's favorite!) and took a few photos then switched the music to some beautiful classical piano and led us to the dance floor (living room). We danced for a few minutes and I was amazed at the look of pure happiness on their faces as they watched us. After that, they led us to the recliner chair which they had placed in front of the TV. They had Singing in the Rain all ready to play for us!

This was an eye-opening experience for me. Michael and I get along well with the occasional squabble. We love each other deeply but I suppose the girls don't often see our concern for one another. When we're together we're busy getting from here to there, doing chores, caring for the kids, working on a project, etc. and the children don't get to see us just being together and enjoying one another's company. We're only able to be quiet together when the kids are away from us or in their beds sleeping.

Today our kids got to witness us just being together and I got to witness how important it is to them to see us loving each other; it means so much more to them than I think any of us can understand. It gave me the determination to never argue in front of them and to make sure that they consistently see Michael and I actively loving and serving one another so that they know without any kind of doubt that their parents care for one another. They need to feel the strength in our relationship because it gives them strength. In our love for one another, they are secure.

"Look at the camera!"

"Now look at each other!"

"Now kiss!"

Happily, kids. Happily.

Monday, October 17, 2016


So, we went to Disneyland all the way back in February and I put a video together of our fun time and then I accidentally deleted it! So many tears. I finally got on my computer to make a new one (I made the first one on my phone) and I don't really know what I'm doing, especially when it comes to music and copyright issues and what I'm allowed to do, so it seriously took almost my whole day so far. I think it was time well spent; I know that we will love having this fun memory to look back on.

In case anyone is interested I ended up buying a license for this song ($12) called Bright & Happy from And if anyone has any advice/tips for me I'd love to hear what you have to say:)

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Ella at 1 Month

Here is Ella at one month old. She has brought some serious sunshine to our lives. Her siblings love her so much; sometimes they love her TOO much. Matthew can't even handle how much he loves her. He is very affectionate ("Can I kiss her? Can I hug her? Can I hold her? I just want to kiss her! I love Ella.") and it's just about the cutest thing I've ever seen.

We're so glad this little girl came to our family. She enjoys an abundance of love and fits right in.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Our Ella Mae

These photos and this baby are already one month old. How is it that the months after a baby is born fly right by while the months leading up to birth seem to drag on? 

Our little Ella Mae is a month old today. She has brought so much joy to our family. She's everything we imagined she'd be and more, and more, and more.

Here are her first few moments in this beautiful world.

Photography by my lovely sister Geri.