Sunday, March 9, 2014


I am dying to get caught up on this blog.  It has been hanging over my head for the last several months.  So here is an overview of January and February.  Much of this will be repetitive for those of you who follow me on Instagram, but you don't mind, do you?  I didn't think so.

These photos capture much of what we did for those two months: I lay in bed feeling nauseated, and Noah watched the iPad and occasionally snuggled in beside me for a few quiet moments.  As guilty as it made me feel, Noah looks quite pleased with the arrangement:

Noah does pretty well playing independently, so he did a lot of that, and when I could muster up the energy, we occasionally took brief walks.  We have a favorite path near our house, and we almost always see the same cat frolicking near his home.  Noah named him "Columbus" after one of the characters in his storybooks, and he looks forward to seeing him each time we walk on the path.  

During those months, Noah would often say things out of the blue like, "Oh I'm so tired.  I really need to go lie down for a minute."  (Wonder where he got that from?)  And on a rare outing to visit some friends, he said to me, "Mom, do you think they have a bed that we can lie down on if we need to?"  So sad that a two-year-old would even have that thought, but it is what it is. 

In early January, Noah found himself legitimately stuck in bed when he got sick with a vicious flu bug.  He is allergic to eggs, so he can't get flu shots, and the poor little boy suffered as a result.  I knew he must really not feel good when he fell asleep on the living room floor for two hours one day.  (He NEVER falls asleep outside of his crib.)  He had a 102-103 fever for a week.  It was hard to take care of him when I was sick from pregnancy, but at the same time, since we both felt rotten, we just snuggled and watched movies and made the most of it.  Amazingly, I never got the flu, even though he coughed all over me constantly.  That was either my flu shot or divine intervention at work--thank goodness for both.

Ryan's grandma passed away on January 11, and we attended her lovely memorial service in Utah a few days later.  Ryan's mom gave a beautiful tribute and I learned so much about Grandma Barbara that I hadn't known before.    It was a really special day.  I was grateful to be able to sing at the funeral--I performed "Abide With Me," a hymn that I love.  The final line of the song rang especially true that day: "Death has no sting, the grave no victory; I triumph still if Thou abide with me."  Barbara lived a good life, and she will be greatly missed.

While we were at the memorial service, Katie watched Noah and they had a blast.  She just got a new fancy camera, so she took some darling photos of him eating his favorite--PBJ!  I just love this little boy.

On our way to Salt Lake for the funeral, we made a detour to Logan, Utah for an afternoon to see my sister and her kids.  They were visiting Logan from Denver for the week to see my brother-in-law's family.  Noah got to go sledding with his cousins, and he loved it.  He also didn't seem to mind wearing a 1980s pink snowsuit.  (We hadn't brought his snow gear from home, so we borrowed this from my brother-in-law's family.)  Noah would make a pretty little girl!

Noah and Ryan celebrated their half birthdays during the first week of February.  I made them a half-birthday cake, and it was fun.  (I got this idea from my friend Amy--she is as obsessed with birthdays as I am.) 

Another festive event was Valentines Day, and though I didn't have much energy this year to be an ambitious Secret Cupid, I did schedule a couples massage for me and Dr. Nielson on his day off.  Leaning over the dental chair all day makes his back achy, and I figured a massage could help.  I also figured that he would feel awkward going into a spa by himself, so I booked a double appointment.  Turns out, it was perhaps even more awkward to go in for a "couples massage," and here we are giggling in the waiting room as we sipped our sparkling cider and felt ridiculous.  Fortunately, the massages were delightful, and maybe someday we will get brave and go back.

We had some good snowfall in February, and I had a rare "spontaneous mom" moment when I decided to forego washing the dirty dishes in our sink in favor of going outside with Noah to play.   We were having guests for lunch, so I was tempted to just keep cleaning, but I'm so glad I didn't.  It was pretty magical to see him playing in the snow for the first time.  (He's always been a little too young before this winter.)  Our friends didn't mind a bit that our sink was overflowing with grime when they arrived, and now I have a priceless memory with my son.  Worth it!

And speaking of friends, here are a few pics of some.  Eliza and Stella are two darling sisters who play great with Noah and I get along great with their mom (perfect!).  Their mom Taryn grew up in Pocatello and hung out with some of Ryan's younger siblings in high school, and we connected when they moved to Twin Falls.  It's fun to see this crew play together because the girls love princesses and Noah loves trains and trucks. :)  The other day, we went for a walk in a greenbelt in the canyon, and Noah was hunting for the "spooky wolf" while the girls were looking for "the fairy princess castle."  Hahaha.  Love it.  

Tyson is a little boy who goes to our church, and I hit it off with his mom, Ashley.  We have been doing a "kid swap" where she watches Noah two hours a week while I have some alone time and then I watch Tyson two hours a week while she does the same.  We love it and so do the boys.  They are best friends.

Some of our good friends from Buffalo, the Gardeners, also live in Twin Falls, and their kids get along great with Noah.  They live right by the hospital, so Noah goes over there to play every time I have an OB appointment, and it has been a lifesaver.  I love their mom, Natalie, and I love that she loves Noah. (Is anything more endearing than someone who loves your kid?)  She watched him for me for an entire day when I went to visit my sister's new baby, and she sent me lots of texts about the funny things that Noah was saying and doing.  I'm so grateful for her!  I need to get a photo of Noah with the Gardener kids!

And now for a few fun snapshots from our life:

Noah saying a prayer.  Cutest thing ever.  I seriously want to smooch him and grab him and never let go when I see him fold his little hands like that.  

Family squeeze.  This happens whenever Ryan gets home from work.  I always give him a hug and kiss first thing, and then Noah gets jealous and wants to join in.  "Family squeeeeeeze!" he will say as he squishes us both close.

And last but not least, "Family Home Evening" at the grocery store.  We try to have a religious family night every Monday evening, but lately, it sort of hasn't been happening.  So one night when we were desperate for groceries, I thought we could multitask and do FHE at the store.  As we gathered the produce from our list, we named all of the fruits and vegetables and talked about how God wants us to eat healthy foods and take care of our bodies.  Noah remained unconvinced that this "counted" as FHE and insisted loudly as we wheeled through the store, "This is NOT Family Home Evening!  This is the grocery store!"  Too smart for his own good!

I will admit that in the midst of the gray drabness of January and February, while lying in bed feeling awful, I felt quite down at times.  But it always amazes me when I write these blog posts just how beautiful life actually is when you stop to isolate moments and record the ordinary but wonderful goings-on of family life.  (And this doesn't even include the birth of my new nephew or a family ski trip to Sun Valley, two events that will get their own blog posts in the next couple of days.)  We are mighty, mighty blessed.

And here is my first attempt at a baby bump pic.  Not much bump yet.  This was taken at 16 weeks or so.  I am 19 weeks now and showing a bit more, but not much--just looking really thick around the middle. Gender ultrasound on Wednesday.  Eeeeeeeeeee!

Thanks for reading and for caring.  xoxo


  1. YAY! I can't wait to hear what you're having! You know my prediction. ;) Thank you for posting a bump pic. I've been dying to see you! xoxo

  2. What? We made the famous RachandRy blog!! That makes me happy. :)

  3. The pic of Noah praying is priceless! You look beautiful! I am so happy for you!!!

  4. I love what you said about a beautiful life, we have been feeling quite drab around here with the winter and so that was perfect! And I also loved what you said about leaving the dishes to go make a memory! Great reminder! :)

  5. The picture of Noah on the ipad but also tucked under, what I assume is your bed is awesome. Such a fun creative boy. Hope you get feeling better very soon!!! It is so hard to function when you feel lousy and when you have another little person to take care of it feels impossible. Garret got very good at getting his own food, turning on the TV, and playing alone when I was pregnant with #2. The only thing he needed me for was a diaper change which got pushed until the very last second. Oh and you look absolutely stunning.

  6. So glad you left your dishes in the sink that day :) You have certainly helped to make my (non-pregnant) dreary winter months a little brighter! Can't wait to hear the good news tomorrow!

  7. Rachel! I have been reading through your blog posts and loving them. I have always admired you as a beautiful writer and a beautiful person, and it's been so fun to read through your stories. A few things...

    1. Congratulations on the baby! That is so exciting! I am sure you will be an awesome mom to a little girl. I have two little girlies and find them delightful.

    2. I LOVE reading your mom posts. It's so reassuring/refreshing to read that other people experience motherhood in the same way I do.

    3. You are living in Twin Falls! I have two sets of aunts and uncles who live in Twin Falls, and some of my happiest memories from my childhood are set there. Also, my husband's best friend and his wife live there too. It's a good place! Do you like it?

    4. You are fantastic. I hope all is well!



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