Tuesday, December 30, 2008

We got ourselves a teenager!

Since Terrill moved out(we miss you Terrill) we had an empty room just sitting there waiting to be filled. Felicity was so kind as to fill the vacancy. She moved in over two weeks ago and turns out she's an excellent roomie. Here she is with Johanna. Thomas had left some of his work clothes in her closet and told her if she ever needed to borrow some to just help herself. How we love these girls!

It turns out...

he wasn't buckled into the high chair. (No that isn't blood)

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Quirks-Yep I've Got A Few

My wonderful friend Sarah Simmons tagged me and now I must share six of my quirks.

1) It is extremely difficult for me to sit through an entire movie. I don't know what it is...if there is anything left undone in the house I find myself getting up and say sweeping the floor. A little weird and certainly something Thomas will probably never understand. He loves a good movie or two or three.
2)Instead of just wiping my kids hands and face after they eat I send them up to take a shower. It may waste water but it's so much easier. My kids learn to love the shower at a very young age.
3)I'm a hugger. I hug pretty much everyone I know, sometimes even people I don't. I fear some people think me a bit odd but I am what I am.
4)I can spot a spider from 100 yards away. OK maybe not quite that far but I am constantly scanning the room, ceiling and floor for unwanted guests and I can spot the smallest intruder in seconds flat!
5)I brush my teeth a lot! I'm a big fan of good oral hygiene.
6)I really do kind of like pain. I LOVE that sore feeling you get the day after a hard workout. I've had all my babies naturally...very painful. It's kind of like proof to myself that I can accomplish difficult things. It makes me feel good. I'm weird I know.

I was having a hard time thinking of my quirks. I began to feel a little sad thinking that perhaps I was not quirky after all. I turned to my sweet Thomas and he had no trouble listing at least four without a moments hesitation. Thanks honey for affirming my quirkyness.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

A Regency Recital

We have a friend named Genne Allen. She is Marley and Townsend's piano teacher. She also teaches some fantastic home school classes. The kids take a writing class and a history class from her once a week. She does so many fun and creative things with the kids.

Just after Thanksgiving she hosted a Regency Period Recital. All the kids dressed up in Jane Austin style dresses(and in Townsend's case breeches). It was so cool. I had so much fun making Marley's dress. And thanks go to my mom who threw Townsend's costume together on Thanksgiving day. They drank (herbal) tea and ate scones. It was all so very cute. I LOVE old fashioned clothing. I wish we could all dress up all the time.
Marley played "Come Thou Fount Of Every Blessing". I love this hymn so very much. She did beautifully.

Townsend played "Sextet Allegro" by Beethoven. He also played exceptionally well. He was the only boy in attendance. He of course didn't want to admit it but he thought it was a pretty fun time. He let it slip that he thought it was the best recital ever!
I am so thankful for Genne and the wonderful teacher she is. I love the personal interest she takes in each child. My kids consider her a friend. I think it is wonderful. They can learn so much from her.
Just yesterday their history class put on a play based on the Egyptian myth of Isis and Osiris. Townsend played a scribe and Marley was the goddess Isis. Pure AWESOMENESS! That's the only way to describe it. Unfortunately we don't have a video camera.
Thank you Genne for being you. You're the best.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Here's More

I forgot how incredibly difficult it is to get five kids and a husband to cooperate and take some family pictures. I didn't hold out much hope for many good shots because the kids......well were being kids. But turns out Amberlyn is the awesomest miracle worker around. There were so many cool pictures, it's hard to pick my favorites!

Aislyn LOVES her daddy. He just might LOVE her a little bit too!

Bronwyn loves her man! Seriously I have really been loving this guy lately. I mean I always love him but lately I just love everything about him.

Townsend=silly face. I think 99% of the pictures of him had some rendition of his "cross-eyed, monster teeth" expression. So this one looks real nice.

"Oh man, she's smothering me....again!"

Monday, November 24, 2008

Real Smile

A few months ago I mentioned my quest to capture Thomas' real smile in a picture. I have still not been able to achieve this goal, but his super-awesome neice Amberlyn was. She offered to come and take some pics of our family. There were so many great ones that I'll have to post later. I just wanted show the world before I forgot. I especially love that you can see right up my nose in this one.
I love this guy. I love his smile. I love that he makes me laugh every day. I love that our kids call him "silly daddy."

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


I promise we provide adequate food, shelter, clothing, and even blankets. But somehow swaddling herslelf in newspaper makes naptime a little more appealing. Oh how we love our Aisy J.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

I'm Back!

Late Sunday night I began feeling the tell-tale signs of yet another trecherous breast infection coming on. Sure enough within just a few hours I lay shivering in my bed with a 103 fever and every inch of my body aching like....well something agonizingly painful. And of course just to give you some really great imagery my breast was redder than......well the reddest thing you can think of. I kept having strange half awake/half asleep dreams of my death and being so mad that I knew Thomas would have to get married again because let's face it, who could take care of five kids all by themselves. And of course to top it all off Thomas is out of town for two weeks in Washington DC. So it was just me and the kids.
Anyway as I lay there shivering/crying/fitfully sleeping for three days I realized how many wonderful people I have in my life. And I was filled with gratitude. First my sweet Marley Mae was ever attentive to me and the four younger kids. She did an amazing job of keeping everything going. Then wonderful Sarah went and got my prescription filled, without which I'd probably still be in bed. Then Barry and Tim came and gave me a blessing, again without which I'd probably still be in bed. Glorious Jessica brought the most delicious tomato soup, the only thing I could even begin to think of eating. Marianne came and took Aislyn to play with her girls and even took Marley and Townsend to make a little movie, so they didn't go stir crazy. And then my angel mama came all the way down from Gold Bar to help me for a day. She's a miracle worker. I swear within 15 minutes of being in the house she had everyone happy, the house clean, laundry going, and the kids fed. I am so thankful for all the kindness. I hope to be better at chosing the better part and helping whenever and wherever I'm needed. Thank you so much everyone who showed me so much love. I am very blessed.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Halloween AKA Silver Spray Paint on Everything

No, he's not dancing the robot he's just trying to retrieve his funnel!
Here we have our bunny, our angel, our tin man/robot, and our fifties girl.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Handsome the Spider

Anyone who knows me at all will be EXTREMELY surprised to see photos of spiders on my blog. You see spiders are the single most frightening, disgusting thing on the planet(in my humble opinion). However over the last couple of weeks my kids have grown rather attached to one particular spider. He took up residence outside the window on our staircase about two weeks ago. The fact that he chose to keep double paned glass between he and I is the reason he is still alive. A very wise spider indeed.

We've been able to witness nature at it's finest. We've seen artful web building. We've been awed by the capture of japanese beetles, watching them become wrapped in a cocoon of death and then having their guts sucked out.
Just a few days ago Aislyn asked me what his name was. I said he didn't have one and that she could name him. She said," I think his name is Handsome because he is a such a nice spider." So Handsome it is. Not a word I've ever associated with a spider, but I'm growing.

So today this punk kid spider comes and tries to kick Handsome out of his prime real estate. We were all huddled on the stairs for almost 45 minutes watching the drama unfold as this little spider keeps trying to attack our guy. He kept biting Handsome and hitting him with his icky spider legs. It was crazy. Marley and Townsend went outside and tried to throw rocks at the attacker but to no avail. I think she was almost crying......over a spider!
Finally "Killer"(as we called him) gave up and left. We were scared that Handsome was done for, he was all curled up like a dead spider does. But much to my children's joy Handsome is now spread out in his web eating some dinner.
Just looking at these pictures still make me a little nauseus.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Popsicles and Cupcakes

Jairus James turned a whopping three years old while we were gone. As requested he got popsicles and cupcakes and a big number three candle to go on top.What would we do without Jairus? He is my snuggly, lovey little guy. So very tender and easily heartbroken. There's nothing better than his little voice saying,"I wuv you mom". Just recently he become an amazing prayer. He would literally pray for ten minutes if you let him. He'll go through an entire days' worth of events, thanking heavenly Father for everything imaginable and then proceed to ask for a few necessities like keeping the monkeys away so they won't bite him while he's sleeping. I don't know where it came from but he has an crippling fear of monkeys. Slightly unusual, kindof amusing, and very serious stuff for a three year old.

Jairus is my wonderful big boy. I am so grateful for each one of my children and all their unique traits. They make life interesting, entertaining, and never, ever dull.


On Tuesday we all took the four hour ferry ride all the way to the end of Lake Chelan. A little town unreachable by any roads lies nestled in the trees. It was so very beautiful and made me want to be more appreciative of the beauty all around me.

Ephraim loved being on the top deck and looking over the edge at the water. I swear he learned to do a chin up trying to get a better view. He would have jumped right in if I had let him. I know it might be a smidge gross letting my little guy suck on a railing. But it was just so cute and I just tell myself he is merely developing a strong immune system.
Marley Mae....I caught her staring gloomily into the distance. Oh my sweet preteen girl. She is growing up. She is wonderful.
The end of the lake! I LOVED Lake Chelan. Normally I am terrified of deep water. My heart pounds and I sweat whenever I have to cross the Narrows Bridge. But this lake is clear and beautiful. I fell in love with it all. Oh the heavenly apple orchards with their cheerful red fruit hanging bountifully. I really want fruit trees. You don't even know how I longed to become an orchardist. OK so I'm a little weird. But really I kindof want to move to the country and have fruit trees, a garden, chickens, and bees.
Aislyn my girl loves to fall asleep in the most unlikely of places. I wonder what she thinks to herself."This hard table top looks oh so comfortable, I think I'll lie down and rest awhile."
At any given time Townsend could be found playing a game of UNO or Phase Ten. I only like to play games when I win. I hate loosing but I'm a pretty loud winner. Probably not attractive qualities. It might be why I don't get asked to play games very often.
Vacation was wonderful.
More to tell.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Lake Chelan-Day 1

Last Thursday we got all packed up in the Pilot and drove to Goldbar to pick up grandma, grandpa, and gg(great grandma). It was finally time for our long awaited Lake Chelan vacation!

Day one we got unpacked and spent time dogpiling grandpa. We caught Ephraim gazing longingly out the window at the lake.
Jairus spent his time wrestling GG. He made sure she needed a nap every day.
And then it was on to the lake. Never mind that it is October, Marley got right into her suit and ventured momentarily into the lake. Grandma had promised she would go in no matter how cold it was. I, however am not so daring. No freezing lake swimming for me.
Aislyn's favorite part is the TV since at home ours isn't hooked up. She's a movieaholic.

Vacation is the best! We should do this more often.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

"Yum, cake, it looks delicious!" I just can't seem to avert my gaze.
"But I'm really not sure I actually want to touch the thing myself. How would you feel about just holding it for me while I test it out?"
He finally gave in and decided it was best to hold his own cupcake.

For some reason I decided that I didn't want to use a crappy boxed cake mix and I made the whole thing(including frosting) from scratch. Turns out it's a huge, long process to make a white cake from scratch. I had to beat egg whites to make meringue and then gently fold them into the rest of the batter. I don't think I have accurately grasped the concept of "gently folding" but they still tasted pretty good. I made yummy orange flavored frosting. Marley and I thought it was delicious but Thomas, not so much.
Jairus' birthday is this Friday. I think this time I'll just use the crappy mix.

I keep asking him what he wants for his birthday and every time he says,"I want cake and orange popcycles." Not too hard to please.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008


Ephraim is one year old tomorrow! He is the most wonderful little guy. I love everything about him. He is easy going and doesn't mind being alone but he's always up for some snuggling with mama. He loves to wrestle with his big brother Jairus, actually he loves to wrestle with anyone and everyone. He's got the longest reach and the quickest grab of any baby I've ever met. I think he managed to dump the sacrament water tray in my lap three Sundays in a row.
He loves to eat....tomatoes, grass, dirt, rocks, you name it.
I don't know why but I just never want to be away from him. It makes me so dang meloncholy to think of him growing up and leaving me. I know it will happen someday so I cherish all of his slobbery baby hugs and kisses right now.
He loves his big sister Marley. She was there when he was born and got to be the first person to hold him. They seem to have a very special bond. It is so sweet to see.
We are so blessed to have Ephraim Isaac Judd in our family. We love him so very much.
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Thursday, September 25, 2008

Husband Tag

I was tagged by my darling friend Sarah. It has really forced me to strain in recalling all the little details. I remember our early days more as a exultant blur of utter of joy, not so much specific details.
What is his name? Thomas Francis Judd II
How long have you been married? Twelve and a half years! Weird.
How long did you date? From first date to wedding date was just shy of four months. When you know, you know.
How old is he? 36. He is five years older than me which works out great. Whenever I start to feel old I just think "He's almost 40" and I feel a little better.
Who eats more sweets? If we're talking about pop, he does. If we're talking about chocolate, there's no question it's me.
Who said I love you first? I'm sure he did. I like to play coy. But really it was kindof just understood that we loved each other from the very beginning.
Who is taller? He is 6'5". I am 5'7". When we hug my nose conveniently reaches his armpit.
Who can sing better? Him. He is actually quite skilled at modeling his voice after professional musicians. Most recently he was singing The Police and sounded exactly like Sting.
Who does the laundry? Until recently I did. Now sweet Marley Mae has taken over at least half of the time. It's wonderful! Laundry is the bain of my existence.
Who pays the bills? I do.
Who sleeps on the right side of the bed? I do. It's closest to the baby's room.
Who mows the lawn? He does. Somehow when I was pregnant with Jairus I developed horrible seasonal allergies. I can not mow the lawn without my eyes swelling shut. Nice picture.
Who drives?He does. I'm not really a fan of driving, especially long distances.
Who is more stubborn? Him, or wait....me. It probably depends on the situation.
Who kissed who first? He kissed me. Again, I like to play coy.
Who asked who out first? We met at a Christmas church dance and were together pretty much every day thereafter. I don't really know that either one of us asked we both just knew we'd be together a lot.
Who proposed? He did, with a box of bordeauxs and an engagement ring inside.
Who has more siblings?I do with 3 sisters and 2 brothers. He has 3 brothers and 1 sister. In the very beginning he said "A family just isn't a family without at least 5 kids in it."
Who wears the pants? At first glance one might say that he does. But secretly I'm really the pants wearer. Although I do enjoy wearing skirts and dresses from time to time.
And now I will ask to hear from Marrianne and Helena. I am very interested to hear your dating stories.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


My mom has a whole bunch of cool old patterns. This is one of the many that I have stolen from her. I think it is from 1952. The pattern peices were so old they were just falling apart in my hands. I had to trace them onto something sturdier.

The dress went together pretty quickly. Since we are on a budget I used some pink gingham that I already had on hand. Luckily Aislyn adores everything pink. I usually like to make my own bias but this dress needed something like eight yards so I decided to just use the premade stuff.
Here she is enjoying the superb spinability of this full cirlce skirt. She has been a very dizzy girl lately.
It turned out to be an excellent bribing tool. I actually got her to willingly brush her hair two days in a row!

Thursday, September 11, 2008


Townsend just finished reading Eragon which is a 730 page book. I am thoroughly impressed. To top it off, it only took him a week to do it. He wasted no time in picking up the sequel Eldest which he is already half through. These books are especially cool because they were written by a 17 year old homeschooled boy. Homeschooling rocks!


That's how many quarts of green beans, tomatoes, and peaches I canned this last week! It has to be some kind of record. Many thanks to Fran Peterson and Ida Simmons. Together we were able to do 205 of those in just one day! Marley and Townsend were excellent peelers and green bean snappers.Thomas even learned to use the pressure canner. I promise there's nothing sexier than a man operating a pressure canner!
Here's the cooling table.
We couldn't keep Ephraim away from the tomatoes. What baby can resist a bright, beautiful, red ball? They tasted good too.
Here's what happens when two little boys are left to play outside all day long. They had so much fun getting absolutely filthy.
A long day of canning wears a girl out. We finally ended up making some dinner at 11pm. Aislyn was so tired she fell asleep in the 30 seconds it took for me to dish up her plate. We woke her up and asked if she wanted to eat. She said yes but she needed a pillow first.

Here's some of our pretty green beans just before they were cut and put into jars. All in all it was a good week. It was a TON of work, but it's the kind that just makes you feel really good when you're all done and looking at what you've accomplished. We definitely have a year supply of at least a few things.
Up next.....make more time for sewing.