Friday, December 7, 2012

Barnes Boys - Where They At!

Life has been particularly busy lately...I feel myself writing that/saying that a lot lately, but the holidays tend to have that effect, which is rather sad - since I feel like the advent season should be one of waiting, instead its doing...all the time...going...everywhere. The year I was pregnant with Bodie was one of the most special Christmas seasons to me. I had the most perfect excuse to not go anywhere...and not do anything. I really connected with the idea of waiting and expectation and what that means in the season of Advent. When he was born on Christmas Eve and I had such amazing people with me that did everything for me and I could just be in the moment and enjoy the season. So I am trying my hardest to find that same peace and present-ness in this season now...even with 3 kids...even with 3 boy kids!  We started doing the Jesse tree again and I am shocked at how much Bodie retained from last year. It has been fun to do something structured with them at night since often our bedtime routine can be a bit haphazard.

Don't let these guys fool you - they are like oil and water right now. Bodie is definitely exerting his authority over little bobby...but don't feel bad for bobby - he can hold his own and we have seen him take Bodie down to the ground even though Bodie has almost 20 pounds on him. bobby is a scrappy little dude! We are working on bodie not taking EVERYTHING from bobby and we are working on bobby not biting bodie. bodie is the only person he bites...but still...our feral child...ugh...

These two like each other a little more at the moment, which is nice. Yesterday after we picked up Bryson from school and put Bobby down for a nap, bodie and bryson played with legos for 2 hours!!! quietly and much so, that i laid down on the couch and i think i fell asleep even! what? miracle, i tell you...i am thankful for them growing up in these moments. 2 hours of peace in my day feels like i am at the spa - no joke. 

Bodie in the Urgent Care - Trip #1 of 2 in the month of November. Bodie had to get some steroids to help with breathing. He had a viral infection that made him wheezy and my sister was worried about his oxygen levels so we took him in. It took 45 minutes to get him to drink the steroids...spitting it out and crying the whole time - if you are ever in this position - GET THE SHOT! holy crow...get the shot! no one tells you steroids taste like motor oil to kids...could you imagine trying to get your 3 year old to drink motor oil? it takes 45 minutes by the way...but - good news, he is much better and started feeling better even that evening, so we are grateful.

Bobby - Trip #2 of 2 to Urgent Care. On Thanksgiving his forehead broke his fall on the corner where two walls meet. it was a perfect hit - which i witnessed - thankfully bryan was there, grabbed him - i threw him a towel and ran and got some butterfly band-aids and a band-aid and we stopped the bleeding fairly soon. And luckily my niece was there and could watch the older boys so we could both take him. And luckily they let my husband hold him down so we didn't have to go to the ER to do it. Besides a somewhat traumatic stitching event (the student nurse helping with the stitches passed out) and beside having his first stitches, it went fairly smooth. The only casualty was my sweet potatoes, which i put in the oven before we left and they  were over-cooked by about 1 1/2 hours. oops. we still ate them. We had some friends over for Thanksgiving, since we were celebrating with family the next day and watched a horrible movie (on purpose) - it ended up being a great day when all was said and done. He is healing quite nicely and hopefully the scar will be as minimal as bryson's twin forehead scar. 

Speaking of Bryson - he is taking a break from golf right now and filling up the time with legos and drawing and painting rocks and sometimes playing the wii - (he was grounded until he was 7, and now enjoying his video game free time) - he seems to be a mini-teenager overnight after turning 7 - i can't handle it! he loves one direction (thank you hope!) and sings it constantly...he has perfected the eye roll...arguing with me is like the most fun thing to do apparently because he disagrees with 95% of what i say...developmentally i know this is all normal - he is searching for boundaries and expressing his voice, but man - do they have to do it so suddenly? its unnerving. he still believes in santa though, apparently - i thought the playground would have killed santa, but he wrote him a letter last night asking for " a D.S. and a soopyr moryo wii game and a babe kitin" his friend asher just got a baby kitten and bryson thinks its the cutest thing ever. 

So that is where we are at. Trying to remind myself every day to be where we are at - not try to be in the past or future. Be present, breathe, embrace.

Saturday, November 10, 2012


So Party #2 of the day was our friendsgiving, or NFTD (new fangled turkey day) - our friends from college would get together every year and do their own interpretation of Thanksgiving...only a little elevated. I am blessed to have friends that like to cook...and its mainly the guys...they love it maybe a little more than the girls. Its especially nice whenever Eric and Julia come over and Julia and I sit and sip Rose while our men cook for hours. Its pretty awesome, not gunna lie. So I had this vision in my head of this fall dinner with all our friends. Since having babies...and now multiple gets harder and harder to spend quality time together...and by quality time i mean time without kiddos :) 
I was able to find a house to rent down the street, which worked out nice, except that no house is mean to house 7 kids under 4. But my friends are pretty awesome and didn't complain and made it work. We had an amazing time - amazing dinner - great conversation - awesome toasts and very full bellies. I was so blown away by the love and respect in the room and this collection of friendships spanning 15 - 20 years - lots of history and lots of love. These people have seen me at my absolute best and my absolute worst (and they all will gladly share stories with you) and I am so grateful that Bryan and I have them in our lives. Even though the weekend was hectic and I ended up making myself sick, I was so uplifted after our time together. 
I think that this is what my 30s is all about - focusing on what is important - nurturing those lifetime friendships and celebrating even the tiniest of things. I am beyond grateful.

Bryson's 7th Olympic Party

Olympic Birthday Sandwich Bar

Bodie demonstrating the paper airplane portion, the Nerf target is in the background

The Hula Hoopla game

The party people

Bodie and his olympic torch cupcake

The only picture of Bryson that was

The gold medal winners

The (very necessary) pinata...I was told it wasn't a party without i filled it with their Halloween candy! ha!

The greedy bunch

(I am pre-dating this since I am a month late - FYI)  Bryson's 7th Birthday party. We had so much fun this year watching the olympics and seeing the amazing athletes. I told Bryson about this idea a while ago and he was all on board...then when I realized I would be having 2 big parties on the same day, both at our house, I was re-thinking my decision...but I put aside the pinterest boards and put aside trying to make it what I wanted...and focused on what would be fun for him. and it truly was. I kept it super simple and I did the majority of the decorations weeks before so I wouldn't be overwhelmed.

There were 6 events: The hula hoopla, Nerf Terf, Putt Putt Challenge, Paper Airplane Long Jump, Paper Plate Discus Throw, and The Ball Bounce. Since we had friends from out of town there with their little ones - i clumped them along with my little ones and split it up into "Jr. Olympics" and "Sr. Olympics" and picked 2 winners in each category. No one seemed to care what they won, as long as they got a gold it worked out for everyone

This was the first real party I threw for Bryson. For the most part it was a drop-off party, but I am so thankful I had so many people there to help me with all the stations. I couldn't have done it by myself! Next time though, I think 1 1/2 - 2 hours is the perfect amount of time. I had it for 3 hours and we were done in 2...oops!

I love home-spun parties like this, but after throwing Bobby's big she-bang and now Bryson's (and you know Bodie is already telling me about his monster truck birthday party he is having) I am thinking next year will be a lot more simple for all take a friend somewhere special, or family party at home...I need a year off :)

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Halloween 2012

Halloween 2012 - this family costume was all bryson's idea...truly...he did his hair for church one morning like alfalfa and said he wanted to be alfalfa for Halloween - that week i happened upon a tuxedo in his (almost) size and boom...on from there. we have been getting the original series on netflix and watching The Little Rascals this whole month to get excited. What i have come to love and appreciate is that the kids all just play together. in a time of severe segregation, here are children playing together and nothing is said (by the children) of their difference in color. I don't know - it really spoke to me. That is how kids are for the most part. We adults place all kinds of silly ideas in their heads don't we?

So Halloween day was actually crazy - and this season was as well. We have had an adult dress up party (where Bryan was Andre 3000 and I was a pirate) a little kid dress up party (where Bryson was dracula, Bodie was a basketball trick guy and Bobby was an Air Force Pilot) a school dress up party for Bryson (again with the dracula) and a school dress up for Bodie (now he got to be the air force guy). I am lucky to have all boys and a big old dress up box that they can pick and choose from. I was kind of surprised that Bryson wanted to be something scary...or maybe i shouldn't but this is really the first time he talked about it.

I have learned a couple things from Halloweens past, which is why I kept their (main) costumes special for Halloween. Also a lot of the other events were during the day, which have been quite warm still. so its good to have a back up in case their costumes are full bodied.

We also kept our evening plans loose. The only regret I have is not planning someone to take pictures of us - and during the day. I am thinking about dressing the kids up again and taking better pictures because they were too adorable...and i could get away with it since they aren't too "costumey" and didn't take too long. We ended up trick-or-treating all night long and it was so fun. Bobby was having a blast. It was his first time and so cute, his little "tick or teet" and bodie was fearless - going into the houses that bryson side-stepped and just on a mission...a candy mission. i am hoping to save them a few pieces and then using the rest in a pinata for bryson's birthday party. brilliance - but the parents of the kids who get the rest of the candy may not think so...

I talked with my sister-in-law and her kids are all grown up and past the trick-or-treating phase and it made me so appreciate this short fun to watch their excitement and imaginations and get swept up in the whole holiday craze...speaking of holiday craze...its Nov I allowed to start playing Christmas music yet?

Monday, October 22, 2012

Pumpkin Patch!

My lil' punkins

Goof balls

he looks too big for my lap...which makes me almost want to cry out loud...

he is OBSESSED with zombies...he always wants me to take his picture like this...p.s. boys are gross

look at this imagine he just dumped out all the contents of your purse into the you know my daily struggle

Bodie is not sure about the haunted house

Bobby isnt either

He wont even look at it

They got a little braver and got close for an inspection. Bobby does this a lot lately and i always find it funny

Bodie in time out for whining...did i mention he is THREE?

I wonder how much longer this can happen...

Sorry for the photo bomb...i just couldn't decide which ones to leave not many got left out. B took most all of these photos - just to be clear...he usually does...i just wouldn't want anyone thinking photography is a skill set for me :)

so...i started reading last year's pumpkin patch update - see here - and this is why i love doing this blog - because throughout the whole post i kept saying over and over in my head "that was a year ago?" and i so remember it all clearly. and not a whole heck of a lot has changed...bryson is still thriving in school, bodie is still challenging in this very three year old way and bobby is still as destructive as there you go! actually one thing that was super different - i had written about bodie scowling at strangers...not the case right now - now he goes up to complete strangers (even when i am not around - i am told by his teachers) and tells them his age, or how he likes monster trucks or how his brother is named bobby. its super cute and also super awkward. 

i was going to do a post on the pumpkin patch on the sweet b blog, but changed my mind...since i am not the hugest fan of this patch and really only go for tradition sake (i am a holiday junkie...self admittedly) but the patch itself is usually crowded, terribly over-priced and looks like its all going to come apart any second. they had this ride and the cars looked like bathtubs and it was just super scary, like your wierd uncle threw it together in his hoarder backyard or something. but it is fun to look back on pictures and have a gauge of where you have been...and take pictures that look like the fall...finally! it has cooled down - for which i am grateful, but i think its supposed to be 84 this weekend. whatevs - bryan told me i am not allowed to complain because we live in southern california and it makes me sound spoiled...which i am sure he is correct, but on i go anyway, because i am not too different than my children am i? 

anyway - this was a lovely weekend - bryan and i got to have a little date night to ourselves on saturday and it was fun to hang with him...nice to know we still have so much fun together - he cracks me up...i tell you...still! so now the nice easy breezy parts of fall are it is onto HOLIDAY MADNESS 2012 - my calendar is spotted with all kinds of fun things in the next three weeks or so...i know this is all going to be crazy, so i am soaking up the lazy parts when i can take them! 

Big Boy Bed!

I did it! i am so proud of myself...oh yeah...bobby too...proud of him too - but trust me, this was much harder on me than him...still hard for me since the crib has been sitting in our backyard for a week now (not sure what to do with it since the type of crib was recalled - i can't donate it and don't feel right selling it).

so the crib we have had for near 7 years...that all 3 of my babies slept now gone. it is an acceptance that we are past the baby stage. we are entering a new phase. this parenting phase...continual parenting phase. i know how difficult and exhausting baby phase is...but man...this is something else entirely. and this little guy here. this little guy is our pièce de résistance!  He is going to put us over the edge for sure! bryan and i just kind of stare at each other like, what do we do? i am surviving by holding firm to the notion he is in a phase...i believe in him...

he has been needing to switch to a bed for a while since he can easily climb out of the crib...luckily no accidents happened, but i was kind of waiting for that "thud" for a while. The only thing with him in a bed is that he is as crazy a sleeper as he is awake - i snuck in their room last night and found him on the floor abour 4 feet away from his bed. he will get i said...i believe in him!

Friday, September 28, 2012

Daddy and Bodie

so cute...these alike in looks and temperament its often scary at times. especially the way BOTH of them can get me un-mad with a sweet smile...they know how to cool my redheaded temper...annoyingly...bryan and i get bodie alone a few days a week while bobby naps and bryson is at school. it is the most alone time we have ever had with him...that is the price of being a middle its been fun to hang out and spend time with him. he is so different from his brothers. he loves to run errands and go to stores with me...he is fine riding his bike 8 miles - he is up for anything. he is a total sweet heart - this bodie owen.

A Video of Bobby Singing...and being Bobby

Monday, September 24, 2012

Turning a Corner

oh i am so going to jinx myself with this post...but it has been on my heart to journal this new bravely...with trepidation...i move forward!

i have been reflecting a bit over the past month and the sense of something being "different"...i dont dare term it as "easier" i know much better now that there is no such thing with mothering...whenever new moms ask me if it gets easier...i tell will get different...because i tend to think that is a truer statement.

where bobby doesn't wake continually through the night...he destroys the entire house in seconds. literally - like seconds...i could record all of his amazing destruction, but while i was taking the time to record something like that he would take that as an opportunity to move on to the next. anyway - this isnt the point. the point is that we are definitely entering a new season in our family. we recently got rid of the double strollers. bobby is even refusing the stroller most times. bodie can get in and out of the carseat himself. bodie can dress himself. bobby tried to go potty for the first time (by himself...all over the bathroom...but still he was trying). i had said before that the crib is pretty useless and i told myself by the end of october we need a bed...

anwyay -i feel as though since bobby was born i have been trying all i can to keep afloat - keep up with things...never mind getting ahead! just trying desperately not to fall too far behind. keep up with my part of the responsibility of our business...keep up with bryson's school work...keeping up with a never ending pile of laundry...keeping up with the messes that pop up continually everywhere...even to keep up with their oral hygiene - all of it is such a struggle and by the end of the day my personal resources are completely depleted. but...recently there has been this shift...the summer allowed us more time to focus on certain goals with the boys - goals in sports - goals in crafting - goals in adventuring. things are getting different.

it has made me rethink my time i have with the boys when i have them. since before kindergarten started our days were filled with playdates and finding new parks and exploring and one day a week would be my day to catch up around the house with laundry and cleaning and such. but now bryson is gone all day - way too long if you ask me. it seems like at the end of the day there is just no time left. he comes home around 3 - has about a half hour of homework (in first grade!!! so dumb) then it is time for me to make dinner and then its time to practice golf and then its time for bed.

so here i am staring at the boys' future. their future of school indoors for 6 hours a day. and i am trying to think about all the things i would love for him to experience and learn - scripture and poetry and music and art and sports and these are all extra-curricular things that really - when will he learn? so this little seed has been planted in my brain of going down the path of home-schooling. i am not sure what it would look like, other than it would have to involve bryan. i have not mentally been able to even explore that option until now - bodie and bobby's ages were all consuming to me...but its something i am praying about and starting to talk about and learn about to see if it would fit for us and if it would be best for bryson. he is all about not having to be indoors all day every day. but he is also doing real in school right now...mainly we are starting the process of thinking about it for second grade.

i am not romanticizing it all either...well...maybe a little i am...but i know and can foresee that bryson and i will butt heads...we are too similar not to. but i think if i can find a style that works for the both of us - if i have help from bryan (and maybe a charter school or something similar once a week would be a good idea)

this has been on my heart for the past couple of weeks...wanted to throw it out there for anyone to offer advice, encouragement or resources.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Our Summer Re-Cap - According to Instagram

we packed a lot in this summer! just looking back through photos - a lot more was done, but here is a nice little re-cap of some of the places we managed to visit on top of sports camp and a seasonal business and the general laziness of not having a schedule! I feel like each one of these deserves its own post, but also know that may never happen...hmmm...instagram is like blogging short hand in a lot of ways, so here you go - our instagram summer re-cap!

Bolsa Chica Wetlands

Lots of Beach Time

Riding the Aqualink

Long Beach Aquarium 
Anniversary Scavenger Hunt

This baby girl entered our lives - Riley Kajsa Guinta

OC Fair

OC Fair

What Bobby won at the fair

San Diego Zoo

Lots of Swimming

Camping at Cachuma

Camping fireside cuddles

Chief Bryson

El Dorado Nature Park

Beautiful Sea Slug

Palos Verdes Botanical Garden

Costa Mesa Skate Park

The most adventurous of all - dinner with all 3 kiddos!

lots of the backyard

lots of this too!