Saturday, December 31, 2011

Living in the Moment

So, I have to start by confessing...I didn't really get ANY pictures of our Christmas Eve...or Christmas Day! I know, last year I had a billion and one pictures...this year...about 5...maybe! Here is the reason why, instead of being so focused on making sure that I got perfect pictures of everything, made sure that Landry was posed just right, documenting every mintue, thinking about the blog post every step of the way...I threw that all out the window and just enjoyed the moment. Yup, instead of worrying about what was going to happen or what I was going to do with the pictures, I decided to soak in the amazing love and happiness that I was surrounded by. I lived in the moment. And I LOVED it! So, I apologize for the lack of photos...but oh well! :o)

Christmas Eve was spent at Chad's aunt and uncle's house. Gary and Mary are always such gracious hosts. Mary is an amazing cook and always has tons of yummy food and Gary LOVES our little man. Everytime we go over Gary has some kind of toy for Landry...and Landry ends up falling in love with them each time. We enjoyed the evening with the Lofgrens, Tighs, and was so much fun!

Christmas morning we woke up and I was so excited for Landry to open up his first stocking. Have I menioned that my child is an EXCELLENT sleeper? I mean, he really is amazing...I know we won't be that lucky when baby #2 comes along...which isn't going to be any time soon...back to the point. Landry slept in until about 9:30! I was dying. I almost went in and woke him up. Let me also say that Chad...well really just me because Chad had nothing to do with the stocking...or Landry's gifts at all...that I win the award for giving my child the most boring stocking in the history of the world! Yup, boring. Why? Because let's be real...he is not going to remember this stocking at I didn't really think he would understand the whole idea of Santa bringing him gifts...but I was wrong! When he finally woke up, he walked into the living room and immediately went for his stocking. I didn't direct him, I have never even told him that it was his, nothing! He noticed that it was sitting in front of the fireplace instwad of hanging up, and he dug in. Inside he found a coupls of packs of fruit snacks, goldfish crackers, animal crackers, a new toothbrush, and two new sippy cups. He immediately fell in love with the toothbrush...and insisted on digging into the fruit snacks. He ate all four packs!!! I really think that h understood that Santa brought him his stocking goodies because everytime he eats his fruit snacks now, he goes and points to his picture with Santa. Oh, I can't wait for next year! :o)

Christmas Day we spent at my parent's house with my family and Chad's parents. We talked, ate, talked, ate some more, and eventually got to opening presents. I think that Landry has gotten way too used to having me around all day long because he was very clingy all day long...which also was a reason why there were very little pictures taken. :o)

Landry was really into the gift opening this year. It was so much fun to see him get excited about the bags, paper, and tissue...which were of course his favorite parts! Every time he opened something up he would say, "OOOOHHH!" Too funny! He even liked to watch me open my gifts...and then he would grab them and run away.

Here he has stolen my highly coveted caramel corn that my Aunt Judy makes. He knows already that you have to grab your bag and hide it...if not...someone else will eat it! :o)
Popcorn is very serious business as you can see!

Landry also loves the way things feels against his skin. Here he is with a pair of new pajamas from Nawnie and Papa...and of course he is saying, "Cheese!"

G.G. and Poppie got him an adorable hat that will be perfect for his first trip to the snow...which will hopefully be this year! :o)
 No, I couldn't get him to turn around and face me...little stinker!

You all know his love of Nawnie and Papa got him a new pair! You also know that he has his "own" way of wearing them. Here he is...glasses, smirk, and all!
 This is the only shot I got of the three of us. As you can see...not the best shot...and someone is so not happy to be taking a picture. Oh well!
 After a fun filled day and night, everyone kind of hung low the next day. Chad's parents were going back to Redding on Tuesday, so we had them over to our house on Monday night. Here are two cute pictures I got of Landry and Todd...a.k.a. Poppie (Chad's dad) playing with the kitchen sink faucet!

Oh how his smile melts my heart!
Again, I apologize for the lack of pictures...but I enjoyed my time with my family and lived in the moment!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Dear Santa,

Dear Santa,

   Well, since I don't really know how to write yet, I am asking Mom to write my letter for me this year...hope you understand. :o) I wanted to start by saying that I really did enjoy meeting you the other day...even if the picture shows something a bit different.
   I can explain. I was excited to see you...I'm sure you heard me saying "Santa, Santa," when we walked into Pamela's studio. But then, Mom just kind of plopped me on your lap and I was afraid you were going to take me with you to the North Pole. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure the North Pole is an amazing place...but I REALLY love my mommy and daddy...and I'm not quite ready to leave them yet. So, I just wanted to say sorry for crying during our picture. Just ask Mommy...everytime I see you or even your hat I call out your name with a big smile. Mommy keeps telling me that you're going to come by our house tonight and leave me some presents in something called a stocking. I have no idea what she is talking about but I am excited about I think it makes her feel better if I respond to things with, "Ohhh." She always smiles and starts laughing when I do I do it a lot. :o)

   Mommy told me, that since I am almost 20 months old...which apparently is "unbelievable" to her...that I should tell you some of the things I like to do now. I mean, I am almost two you know!

   My new favorite thing to do is talk and repeat whatever anyone says. I think that Mommy was worried for awhile because I waited a long time to start talking. You want to know how I know that...well, she talked to every speech therapist she knows...and she knows quite a few...and guess what they all told her? They said that I was going to be okay...but I don't think she really believed them. I have to was kind of fun not saying anything. She would try so hard to get me to say words...but I wouldn't give in. Nope, I would just give her some funny looks...she always knew what I was thinking with my looks...I think everyone knows...I get that "talent" from my mommy!

   Now...I love to talk. Here are all of the words I know and use a lot: momma, daddy, nana, papa, g.g., ka-ka (Auntie Kaitlin,) kitty, dog, fishie, bird, moon, cow, eyes, ears, feet, butt, brain, mouth, chin, cheeks, gunk, truck, mess, ew, hat, glasses, waffle, pancake, water, bottle, up, please, thank you, car, go, ball, book, juice, bathroom, vacuum, bye-bye, hi, cheese, fruit, snacks, pretzels, banana, jacket, shoes, diaper, gorilla, brush, lights, bear, bed, ny-ny (night-night,) candy, popcorn, hot, ca-ca (coffee,) and I think that's it! Oh ya...I also know Santa and tree.

   Now, for the things that I love to do. Well...there is a big clue in my picture...yup, I LOVE to do hair!!!!! Every morning I watch Mommy do her hair and I love to try and help. I have my own hair dryer that I carry around with me. Whenever I can, I ask Mommy to sit on the floor, I grab her brushes, my dryer, maybe even a few curling irons, and I go to work. I love to flip her hair around, dry it for her, "curl" it, and everything.

   When I am not doing Mommy's hair, I love to throw balls and water bottles at Daddy. He keeps trying to show me how to catch them but I'm not really interested in that. I also love to ride around in my wagon. Here is a picture of my friend Amy and I taking turns in my wagon.
   I love to chase the cats around the house, vacuum with my toy vacuum...don't even get me started on the real thing. I love to play outside, wear my sunlasses...or anyone's really, eat any kind of food, make a mess, bang on things, try to fix things like Daddy does, color, dance, read my books, snuggle, love, help clean up, throw things in the trash, dust, sort laundry, and pretty much anything. Mommy and Daddy say that I am a really good helper now.

   Oh, and I also love to take pictures! I like to strike a pose and say, "cheese!" I told mom not to even worry about this next picture because my eyes were closed...but she insisted...and you know there's no use arguing with that. I like to grab the roll of component video cable, put it on my arm...kind of like Mommy does with her purse...then I run around waving and saying, "bye-bye." Mommy tried to get a picture of I stopped and said, "CHEESE!"

   Well, I think that's about it for now. Oh, here are two more pictures for you to see how much I have grown from last year. Mommy says that it is just crazy. I think she is the one that's crazy....crazy about me of course!

                                                       Lots of Love,
                                                                   Landry Tigh Lofgren

Christmas 2010

Christmas 2011

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Pantry Redo

So, if you know me at know that I LOVE to organize! When I say love, I mean like madly, deeply, passionately, LOVE to organize. It brings peace to me and there is nothing better than seeing color coordinating bins, labeled, resting nicely on a shelf.

Since my new addiction started...a.k.a. Pinterest...I have been wanting to organize everything in my house. What better time to start than during vacation? Just to let you know how crazy I am...a majority of my vacation "to-do" list is organizing different parts of the house. I am two days in...two projects down! :o)

Here is what my pantry looked like before:

Notice the oatmeal boxes on the floor...I had an "assistant" who wanted to help. :o)

Now, even though I love to organize, I hate to spend a lot of money on bins. I am often torn because the OCD in me so desperately wants everything to many times I end up spending more than I want on matching bins. Well, move aside matching bins...I have a new trick up my sleeve! :o)

Here is what I used:

Yup...banker's boxes! I bought a pack of ten for about $13. Then I decided to paint them black so that they all matched and coordinated with my kitchen...with is red, black, and white. I just poured the craft paint...which I already had...onto a paper plate and used a paint roller to paint the four sides of the boxes. This was so quick and easy...seriously, I had six boxes painted AND dry within 30 minutes!!!!

Then I cut vinyl labels with my Silhouette craft cutter. Two boxes fit on each shelf...but it left a gap in the middle. So, I went and grabbed some empty baby wipe boxes that I was saving for a different project. They were a perfect fit! I decided to cover them with a damask print fabric that I had, added a black vinyl label, and voila!
 I am sooooooooo excited with the way it turned out...and so is my "assistant!"

When I went to take the picture my "assistant" came running over, put his hands on his hips, and then said, "cheese!"

Here is another shot...without the cutie!

Oh...and did I mention that my only expense was the set of boxes? Yup, a whole woppin' $13 people! Everything else I already had on hand!!!!

Monday, December 19, 2011

From Our Family to Yours...

HUGE thanks to the super talented Whitney Frank of for capturing our family...and the AMAZING Kristine Schroeder with KDS Designs for creating a beautiful card...just for us!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thankful: Day 3: Friends

Yup, it is official...I have failed the "thankful challenge!" So here I am...two days late...but at least I'm still here...right?!?

I know what you're probably thinking...
here she goes again,
another pity party,

Well guess what?
You're WRONG!

No pity party here!

Today is all about celebrating the amazing friendships in my life!

I am so thankful to have so many amazing people in my life.

Friends that...

stood with us on our wedding day,

 we have celebrated holidays with,
 4th of July
Christmas Tree Lane

and that we have gone on vacations with.

Avila Beach

We have celebrated eachother's weddings,


 Me, 9 months pregnant...Frank, unknown! :o)

and of course birthdays!

Ashley's "Dirty 30"...yes, I am 6 months pregnant!

Frank's 40th birthday cruise!

Most of all, we have been there for one another
in the good times and the bad.

We have shared many laughs, many tears, many frustrations, and overcome so much together.

 All in all, we have done life together. It may not have always been pretty.

We may not have always seen "eye to eye"...but that's what real friendship is all about...being there to love and support one another!

So, to all of the amazing friends that are in my life today...thank you!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Thankful: Day 2: My Job

See, it is only the second day and I am already behind! Now you know why I couldn't handle an entire month of this. :o)

Mrs. Lofgren
If you ask one of the 25 children that I get to spend each day with, they will tell you that is my "fake" name. I say that because each year...and this is my did that happen...anyway...each year one of my students politely asks, "Mrs. Lofgren, what is your 'real' name?"

I always respond, "What do you mean? Mrs. Lofgren is my real name!"

"No," says the student. "You know, like my name is Zach, what is your name?"

Every year I get a little laugh out of it.
Why? Oh so many reasons.
Mainly because I think it is so funny that they think I have some sort of super secret Clark Kent or something.

Yes, I am so thankful for my job.
The place where I can "transform" into Mrs. Lofgren.
The place where I am sure that I spend more waking hours than at my own home.
The place that I get to completely redecorate each year.

But my job is so much more than a place.
So much more than a job.

Each day I get to go somewhere where I am surrounded by people who have the same passion as me.
My job has provided me with so many friendships that I would have totally missed out on.
People who have become my nearest and dearest friends.

Not only do I get to have amazing people as coworkers...

I get to experience a year...or maybe more :o)...of life with families.

Families that become part of my family.

Families that trust me to inspire their children to learn more,
remind them to wash their hands before lunch,
teach them how to read everything in sight,
how to make art out of  everyday objects,
to love them when they are hurt,
to hold them accountable when they make a mistake,
to cheer them on when they finally pass their math facts,
and most of all...
to care for them as if they are my own.

When I say life.
I mean life.

Birthday parties.
Dance recitals.
Church plays.
Hockey games.
Baseball games.
And even...a baby shower!

Sure there are days when I would rather stay snuggled up in my bed.
Yes, there have been times when a parent has made assertions about my teaching abilities having never stepped foot in my classroom before.
They have said things that have broken me inside in ways that they will never know.

They have shown the other side of "Character Counts!"

Yes, I know...I could have gotten a degree in some other field.
Made more money...because after all..."those who can't, teach!"

But then I wouldn't have the chance to work the McDonald's drive thru to help earn money for our school.
 I wouldn't be able to dress up like my own fictitious super hero and race a scooter in front of nearly 800 people to celebrate how well our students did at the Jog-A-Thon.
I would never be a cover model for InStyle magazine.
 And more importantly I would never get to share moments like this...
with the students who have touched my life in ways that they will never understand.

So, while I may take papers home on weekly basis, do some grading while I am watching The Real Houswives of Beverly Hills, spend a Saturday here or there hoping that my cheerleaders perform their hearts out, collect other people's garbage for a future art project, get giddy inside at the thought of fresh new crayons, spend most of my vacation time thinking of ways to make my classroom more like a home, and spend more money than I even want to know on sanitizing wipes so that all of my darlings stay healthy...I wouldn't trade it for any other job in the world.

I mean...I do only work 8-3, and get three months off in the summer you know! :o)

Monday, November 21, 2011

Thankful: Day 1: Family!

So, a lot of people have been doing a daily "thankful" post...either on their blog or on Facebook...since the month of November started. I have loved reading everyone's posts and really wanted to join in the fun. Since I am just a little bit Type A...ha...I knew that it would drive me absolutely, totally, completely, unbearably insane if I missed a day. Of course, things always seem to be a bit hectic so I knew that I would miss a day...or I would be up until midnight doing my thankful post...and honestly...I have just needed some time to...breathe!

So, instead of doing the entire month...I decided to do the week leading up to Thanksgiving. I know, if I was going to do a week, I should have started last Thursday...oh steps steps! :o) Here we go...a week, well I guess four days...of thankfulness!

Some families are small.
Some families are huge.
Some are all boys.
Some all girls.
Some are nice mix of both.

Mine...well, mine is just the way I like it.
My little family of three!
This little family of three is what keeps me going each day...
and is often what makes me want to go to bed each night!
Sure, we started out as a family of just two.
Then we decided to add this young man to the group!
Oh this little man.
This little man that is so full of life, fun, love, laughter, curiosity, adventure, hugs, destructon, cries, drool, giggles, energy, determination, and joy!
This little man that will drag out every curling iron so that he can "curl" my hair.
Who pinches his nose and says "P.U." when you take off his shoes.
This little man that will try with all of his might to climb anything he is near.
Who is sure to bring you a goldfish cracker and put it in your mouth for you.
He is a lover of all foods...well...all accept tomatoes.
He will jump in his bed and call to the cats with his sweet little "meow."
He loves to run down the hallway and show you where his diapers are, where he goes "ny-ny," and even where he has hid his shoes.
This little man has taken over a cabinet in the bathroom and turned it into his own safe deposit box...filled with the remote for the t.v., one shoe, my hair brush, ribbon from my craft room, his light up 4th of July toy, a diaper...and who knows what else.
This little man that will come running, full speed, and tackle you with a hug.
He will pull out a blankie, bring it to you, crawl up in your lap and cuddle with you forever.
Oh this little man.

Then of course there is this big man.

This big man that has been my partner in life for almost 10 years now.
The man that loves heavy metal, any kind of sport...except baseball and auto racing... any form of competition, and anything that can get his adrenaline flowing.
The man who will research almost any purchase he makes.
Who thinks things through. A lot.
The man that is pretty quiet in most social situations.
Who does not like to be the center of attention.

The man that can drive me completely crazy sometimes because we do not think a like.
He refuses to show his excitement for anything but...
man is he an amazing husband!
He is strong when I need him to be.
Funny when  I need a laugh.
Stern when I need a bit of a reality check. :o)
Sweet and sentimental when I least expect it.

Oh...and he is the most amazing dad in the world.
His son means the world to him.
And that means the world to me!

So today, on my first day of thanks, I am thankful for my amazing family of three!

*Family photos by Whitney Frank at!
*Wedding photo by Pamela Leeds Photography.