*para atrás

That means backwards.

This is Edie posing next to her sticker chart - she could put a hello kitty sticker on each morning if she woke up with a dry diaper. Which she did for at least two weeks!  Completely potty trained - I finally didn't even have to ask her anymore if she needed to go.  We have had a couple regressions over the last few months - if I am not paying attention to her diet and she doesn't get enough, you know, fiber.  It  seriously messes her up and this regression has lasted about a week now.  Like going in her pants about 90% of the time.  She will suddenly exclaim that she needs to go, so I whisk her to the bathroom and then she freaks out and says she doesn't need to. Since *sometimes* she actually goes, I feel I have to give her a chance.  This happens 5 times before she finally goes in her pants [which have been pull-ups the last couple days].  Do you know how infuriating this is?  ?!?!!!!  I would say potty-training issues are the absolute hardest thing for me.  For good or bad, I am a person who likes to have control.  I cannot control this and I quickly lose my temper if I'm not careful.  I know God gives us trials to strengthen us and teach us, and I feel so silly that potty-training is the trial I need.  Vera likes to pray that Edie will "go", but I try to tell her that we pray for patience and for kindness.  Because that's what I need!!  Lord, help me and give me true patience with this!!!



- [when she's grumpy] I don't want to go potty and I don't want to watch a show and I don't want to see you ANY MORE and I don't want to see Dadda and I don't like the lamp [or whatever is closest] and I don't want to see addebody and I don't want to do anyfing ANY MORE!!!!
- Heehoc [Eeyore from Winnie the Pooh]
- every night at the table, the same: Dear Jesus, thankyou for is day, thank you Eloise don't like hers cage.
- I don't like baaaaassyball! I only like Mickey Mouse Clubhouse!!
- [licking her snot] mmmmm tastes like cimanim and shuga!
- me: what is your favorite candy? Edie: Dora candy wif a Boots wrapper. Vera's favorite is Cindelella wif a race car wrapper.
- You're in my fanly. I love my fanly!!!  
- gleen, ice cleam, glound
- I have a bottom and DONT TOUCH IT!
- Massachusetts! [she says it perfectly!]
- my brain hurts! [points to her tummy when asked where her brain is]
- she calls out a dozen times after we put her to bed and says the most random things: why are we sleeping? last day remember I go on a little pink airplane wif Puppy - it was sooo tiiiny!
- Daddy come suggle (snuggle) wif me!
- lots of potty talk - toot, stinky, butt!, I see yours bottom!  
.... I'll add more if I think of them.

*vacation week

All schools in Massachusetts have a week off in February.  We made good use of the time and saw some new things...

Wednesday we went to the Museum of Fine Arts. I learned a couple valuable lessons: first, the train parking lot is usually full by 9am. We parked at Ben's office and then walked 15 minutes in the cold wind [I love walking myself, but understand Vera isn't quite as excited and poor Edie just had the wind freezing her little cheeks]. Second, don't always trust your iphone GPS!!!  It led us on foot about 3/4 of a mile in the wrong direction after we'd got off the train.  The girls were troopers, especially as we took a little detour to Panera to get chocolate milk.  Anyway, it was all worth it!  We had a lot of fun with all the special craft activities they had set up for vacation week.

Pouring paint:

"tape tricks"

 Edie thought this statue from Congo looked like Abedibia (Amelia Bedelia :)

Vera recognized having learned about this statue from her class in Nevada!

obviously their favorite exhibit:

cookie break:

Monday we went to the Science museum with the McCoys.  It was enormous with so many interesting exhibits.  I imagine it will be even better as they get older. The view was so pretty:

Thursday we went to our local library for a little craft.  This is the historic wing built by a famous architect [don't ask me who :)]  It is a nice library, but to be honest, I think we had the best in Salt Lake!!

*dorm living

I finally have pictures of our apartment.  It's working fine for now... to be honest we don't know what our next move will be.  I'm thankful for an affordable place to live while we decide what and where we can afford, what kind of job I find, etc.  There are positives and negatives to living here of course. It's nearly impossible to be alone and I miss having outside space.  I also feel a little constricted in the kitchen as it's tiny and I didn't bring many of my favorite gadgets [cuisinart, crockpot, pizza stone...]  On the other hand, it is nice that internet/tv and all utilities except electricity are set up and paid for.  We are living very simply for the time-being and that is something I've always aspired to.  The girls think it's fun to have an elevator and a mailbox with a key.

Girls' room. I just got a cute duvet cover for Edie but have to fix it a bit before I put it on. Their dresser and the one little kitchen hutch from UT is to the left. 

I made this floor pillow with my old feather bed and some echino fabric I got with Christmas money. I'm hoping they embrace their new reading nook!  I *kind of* forced this shot, though she did stay there at least 10 minutes : )

I made our nasty, dark, cramped, dated, fluorescent-lighted kitchen look a little nicer via instagram:

Valentine paper chains and our pretty air plant:

bedroom/living room looking towards kitchen.  That's Eloise's cage in Ben's closet:

my anthropologie towels make the bathroom a lot happier :)

living room/bedroom/tv room

I'm really thankful for this little cupboard space.  Actually our closets are pretty big - more storage than our bedrooms in Salt Lake for sure!

our art wall, started by Edie:


*the blizzard

So we had a nice welcome-to-New-England blizzard last weekend.  There was a lot of hype leading up to it - literally all they were talking about on the news in the days proceeding. Apparently there was a huge blizzard in '78 that caught people off guard and caused a lot of damage and injury. So they were taking no chances with this one.  With all the excitement and school cancellations, executive orders to stay off the roads, I totally thought it would turn out to be nothing. It did, however, meet expectations!!  Friday night was fun and cozy - watching the storm build from inside our warm apartment.  I would have liked to watch the peak of the storm, the true whiteout, but it was in the middle of the night.  I imagined Pa attaching a rope between the house and the barn - the family waiting anxiously for him to come back :)

 The part that wasn't fun was the power outage - I completely didn't anticipate that! I was excited to hunker down the next day, sipping tea and cocoa, making valentines and watching movies - chicken noodle soup for dinner.  The power went out about 10:30 Friday night and turned on about 24 hours later.  So Saturday was quite cold - and still pretty windy and snowy outside.  The girls were actually ok - playing and coloring most the day.  I was totally miserable - cold and tired. I think something was out of whack with my hormones or iron or something because I couldn't keep my eyes open. I tried reading to them and I could barely stay awake. At one point Edie was pretending to put me to bed in hers and I actually had a dream!  All I could think about was coffee or mate - how badly I wanted it.  There's my complaining, I'm done :)  Ben went out some and dug out the car, went over to the student commons where they were serving warm food prepared on the grill.  He also put some of our frozen food outside - some haagen dasz and rotisserie chicken that I'd frozen the day before.  Unfortunately it was later covered by a mountain of snow from the plow and is most definitely lost, haha.   

Anyway, we did finally all get out of the house around 5pm because it was dark inside and the girls were getting restless [Edie was very upset that I couldn't turn the light on!]  I tried calling family members to see if they could google something that was open, but no one answered, so we just drove.  It was kind of eerie with few lights on and just so much snow. Thankfully we came upon a Chinese restaurant that was open and had a nice hot meal.  We went to bed quickly, thankful also for our good down comforters.  When the power went on later that night we could hear rejoicing shouts outside :)

 Anyway, here's some pictures...

friday morning: 
 4ish when the wind started picking up:
 the next morning:

I realize this isn't the most snow ever to fall on the Earth - I mean I've lived in Nevada, Utah and Montana and have experienced big storms before. And of course have several of you readers here from Alaska!  Once I remember a big blizzard while we were in Mammoth - there was even thunder and lightning [we did see a few flashes here this time] and they closed the whole mountain down.  So 30" isn't a lot of snow when you are in Park City or Mammoth, but it is when you are in a city with millions of people and narrow roads and just little place to put all that snow!  It was crazy too watching the news reports of the winds and waves [15'-20'] on the shore.

Ben took this picture looking for parking at the church we tried out on Sunday.  We did make it about 45 minutes late and shivered through the service in 43 degrees!

Anyway, that's my account of the blizzard of 2013 :) 


Ben and Vera have been practicing cartwheels the last couple nights. She goes back and forth cartwheeling and he gives her a score 1-5. She actually has had some really good ones!!

This was tonight - she was so excited about her 8 '5s' that she jumped up and hit her head on the bed, poor thing!   


Just some random pictures from the last weeks...  realizing that I need pictures of Ben and I too!

Posing for a card shot outside our apartment.  Edie was being a stubborn stinker and we finally got her to smile telling her to look at the ketchup I had on my head:

I found this bakery/cafe in the Edible Boston magazine. Such a great publication - knew I could trust it for some good food and good ideas for where to explore.  Here we had raspberry bars and a cupcake and a pizzelle.  Sadly, Quincy doesn't have any outstanding coffee shops of the sort - at least that I know of. This was in Jamaica Plain - about 30 minutes away and a bit of an adventure to find.

lots of artwork at the little table I played at when I was little:

mending a broken leg: 


*tortillas frescas

Last night I was randomly inspired to write on my other little blog project: tortillas frescas.  It feels good to remember, to reflect and to write.


*walking to school

One thing that is really important to me is to be able to walk our kids to school.  The idea of driving every day just goes against my grain.  We did drive the first day because it was raining pretty hard, but the next day I committed to walking no matter how cold. And this morning was cold!!  Not really that much colder than Carson or Utah, but it feels frigid and the wind is icy.  I feel like I'm still thawing.  Anyway, it's only a 10 minute walk.    

 I took a few pictures this morning to show where we live.  The school is right on this marshy area, which I hear is really pretty in Spring and Summer. The classes take little field trips to see birds and collect shells.  This is walking just past the school:

The streets in our neighborhood are small and tree lined with sweet little houses like these.  We most definitely will not be able to afford a house here :(

This is the pond we walk right by:

and this is poor little Edie whose nose was froze:


*la conejita

Eloise arrived on Tuesday evening. It seemed a little crazy [probably because it is] to spend that much to get a pet rabbit out here, but well I guess you do things like that as a parent! She was such a comfort to Vera when we moved from UT to NV and really, we all just love this bunny so much. She is truly the nicest bunny I have ever had. She is super friendly and loves to be held and to just be with us. Yesterday I was typing on my computer and she started running tight little circles around me - like something a little kid would do. It was soo cute!  She also seems to try to tell us when she's hungry or thirsty - scratching or nipping at our legs.  I've had a lot of bunnies, but never one so personable.

Yes it is a little crazy sharing a one bedroom apartment with a bunny whose cage has not arrived yet... but it's working fine.  She sleeps in the bathroom where I set up a little litter box and her food and water. When we are home she hops around wherever.  It's not ideal, but it works and adds a little more excitement to this already exciting and crazy time in our lives!

this was in carson - she started getting really comfortable hopping up on whatever she liked: