Tuesday, June 4, 2013

My Best Friend FINALLY Came to Sioux Falls! ;-)

L to R: Gage, Zoe, Me, Avery, Shannon, Tori, and Mike - Taken in our backyard.
It finally happened! A few weeks ago we were blessed with a visit from my best friend and her family for the first time since we've lived here in Sioux Falls (6.5 years!).   We enjoyed showing them our town and visiting with them in our new home that we've been in for 7 months now.

Shannon, her sister Amanda, and I met in 1991 which means this is year 22 of our friendship! I can't even tell you how much stuff we have all gone through together.  So many years already and hopefully many many more to come! We really should plan something exciting for 25th year. It'll be here before we know it.

We spent time at The Butterfly House, Sertoma Park, Falls Park, The Tulip Festival in Orange City, IA, we also ate at Buffalo Wild Wings, Fuddruckers, and Johnny Carinos, we introduced them to the wonderfulness of Bagel Boy and of course Coffea.  Shannon insisted we go back there a second time before she left.  Seriously, if nothing else brings her back out here to visit it will be Coffea.  She fell in LOVE.  ;-)

Shannon and Mike have a daughter, Tori (Victoria). She turned 17 months on here visit. She is learning words now and right now her current word for anything she doesn't know a word for is, "Dya" (Pronounced: Die-ya).  Everything is Dya.  So so cute.

My little girls!

Tori, Zoe, and Avery enjoying the Tulips at the Tulip Festival!

One of the few photos we have of our family of four!

I did a little impromptu photo session with Tori one day while she was playing in the backyard.  :-) 

Sneaky Tori!

Sweet little Tori! She looks so much like her mama!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Getting "Settled" Into Our New Home

7 months ago we bought our first home! We had been in California the week before for my best friends' Wedding (which of course, we were all participating in - even Zoe as the flower girl!).  We closed on the same day that we found out we were expecting another little girl.  I was right in the middle of an extremely difficult pregnancy and somehow we found ourselves moving into our very own home.  That month was one of the most stressful, amazing, wonderful months of our lives!

My pregnancy prevented me from being able to really do *anything* that involved walking, standing, even sitting in certain ways... I was couch bound for many months until Avery was born in early February.

Immediately following Avery's birth I went into "operation: make my house look nice" mode where I wanted to unpack, decorate, and organize every inch of this house before my Dad got here in March...when that didn't happen I thought maybe by the time Laurel got here April, then it turned into getting everything done before Shannon got here in May! Granted, I got a LOT done in  the past few months but still, we have about half our things in boxes out in the garage.  Seriously, I just found my pre-pregnancy clothes *last week*.

Now I'm preparing for a vacation that will take me away from the house for a while... which means I likely won't be unpacking again until at least mid-Summer.  My goal now: to be MOSTLY unpacked by the time we've been here a year :-)

Finding Joy in the Winter Months

For our family, this time of year is full of two things: celebrations and a slightly overwhelming sense of cabin fever. Both Gage and I cel...