Category Archives: Our Little Man

Ezra Turns THREE!

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I can’t believe that our baby boy is THREE!

Ezra is such a little sweet heart.

He is joyful.

He loves people.

He is compassionate.

These are just a few of the qualities that I love about him….and it’s these qualities that I am intentional about encouraging and fostering, daily.

This past week as we were riding bikes he shouted “I PROMISE, MOM.”
I replied….”you promise, what?” And in the sweetest voice he said “I promise to take care of you, mommy.”

I melted. Right then and there.

The verse we prayed over Ezra this past year was Isaiah 55:12. As I dug deeper into the verse this year, I believe this is a life verse for him. This verse tells of the future that God has for Ezra. God is planning for Ezra to be happy forever. He is planning for him to live in peace forever. And He is planning that good and beautiful things in His creation be preserved for his exhilaration forever and ever. How beautiful is this?! Ezra’s love for the outdoors and nature will be eternal. Not just something in this life here on earth, but in Eternity.

“For you will go out with joy And be led forth with peace; The mountains and the hills will break fourth into shouts of joy before you, And all the trees of the field will clap their hands.” –Isaiah 55:12

Happy Birthday, sweet Ezra. You are loved and honored, always.
xoxo,
momma & daddy

Outdoor Adventure Birthday Party/ / / / / / / / the process & details

We celebrated Ezra at my in-laws home with a few close family and friends. The hardest part about this years party planning was keeping it small. And sticking to it. With all that we had going on this summer- it was tempting to not do any parties at all, but my saving grace was allowing myself to not over-do-it and to keep things small.

My goal this year was to keep it simple. Of course I allowed myself to dream a few detail ideas, but nothing overboard. I wanted to enjoy the process and more importantly, enjoy the day.

Last years theme was Little Explorer and this year was Outdoor Adventure. He’s such a boy, wild at heart and loves to be outdoors, playing. So…thats what we did!

We set up three stations: Finger Painting, Fishing & Splashing [kiddie pool and water balloons]. This kept the kids busy between dinner, cupcakes and presents. The wooden arrows were from Target and I just hand painted the words of each play station and hung to the fence.

The painting station also served as a party gift for each little one to take home with them. I bought small square canvases [from Michaels] and with a black sharpie marker….I drew a teepee on the front, by hand. The kids painted the teepees……and the mommas got to take home a little piece of art for the wall!

The menu was simple: Hot Dogs [Montana raised Bison & Beef], Homemade Potato Salad, BBQ Chips & Fresh Berries. Im forever thankful to my dear friend Hollie who always saves the day with the most amazing yet simple recipes.

**more photos from our little mans party can also be found on 100 Layer Cake-let! Thanks for the feature!

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THREE

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Happy 3rd Birthday, Ezra!

Today we kicked off your big day with breakfast at your favorite place, Buffalo Cafe.

I say this every year….and Im pretty sure that I’ll continue to say it each every year forward. I can’t believe my baby is THREE! In some ways it seems like yesterday that I help him in my arms for the very first time. I remember so clearly the way he stared into my eyes the morning after he was born. I remember thinking “Hi sweet baby…..Im your momma.” Its like we knew each other and didn’t….all at the same time. So surreal.

What a true blessing this little man of ours is to us. His joyful spirit encourages me and brings a smile to my face, daily. His unconditional love constantly reminds me of the Lords amazing grace.

Ezra love music. He loves to sing……and loves “singing to Jesus” all throughout the day. It’s really incredible how a little human being can wreck our hearts to the core in such a powerful way. When he begins to sing a song…whether it be “Fight For Honor” or “Fall Afresh”…..my heart is ministered to. I hear the lyrics that he is singing….they are so clear…..and those raspy words pierce my soul like none other. I’ve heard it said over and over how much children impact lives…..and I’m a believer. It’s true. It’s so very true.

I love that Ezra is eager in learning about Jesus….and even more that his heart is cracked wide open…..responding so sweetly to topics such as Heaven and thankfulness. He loves to pray over our meals and is constantly thanking Jesus for all the little things in his life.

My prayer over his life is that God would keep Ezra’s spirit soft to everything He wants him to see and hear.

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Ezra, you are a joy to daddy and I. Having you in our lives is one of our biggest blessings. It’s an honor to be your mom….its a privilege to spend each and every day with you. The Creator of the universe has His eye on you. You are unique. You are valuable. You are important. You are a leader. You have a voice that will be used greatly in your days. We love you with all our hearts….and we celebrate your life today….and always. Love you, sweet son.  xoxo

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California Trip // Santa Barbara

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We spent last week in sunny Southern California…..just the three of us.

This was Reed and I’s 10 year anniversary trip, but also a special week of laid back family time [& some friend time here and there, which is always refreshing to the soul].

Our initial trip was to be in Newport Beach for the week, but while I was photographing the O2 Experience tour this past Fall….we spent a few days in Santa Barbara, and needless to say…..I immediately called Reed and said that we must spend a few days of our trip there. We made it happen…..and it was so worth it!

As we were planning for our Santa Barbara accommodations…..Reed suggested the Four Seasons. I’ll be honest, I was hesitant of the idea….only because I was nervous about having a toddler in tow at such a nice hotel resort! As I started to dig around their website…..it was loud and clear that families and kids were welcomed. They even have a complimentary Kids For All Seasons program, professionally organized with activities that give kids their own unique resort experience. Pretty awesome!

When I reached out to the Four Seasons, a unique opportunity came about to collaborate with them. I tell you, our experience at this resort was like none other. They know customer service…..and not as highly paid robots, but they genuinely care about and serve people well. I certainly left inspired in so many ways. From the handwritten welcome / anniversary note left on our bed upon arrival….to the little details that were put together in the crib for Ezra….everything was carefully thought of and executed well. Above and beyond.

There are just a handful of cottages at the Four Seasons, and we got to stay in one of them! AMAZING, right?!? Our cottage was spectacular. The breakfast we had overlooking the beach was so peaceful, especially as Ezra was filling up on the [kids eat free] buffet! The resort grounds were breathtaking….to see such beautiful greenery and flowers everywhere I looked was incredible. Our flower season here in Montana is so short…so it’s in the little things like this that made walking around the resort so much fun.

We spent one full day split between Butterfly Beach and the Resort Jungle Pool. Ezra loved the sand, sunshine and all the water! A dear friend [who just so happens to make the very best cupcakes in the world- who has a little shop in the Santa Barbara Public Market] met up with us as well, so that was so much fun….to catch up face to face and watch our kiddos play together.

Of course a trip to Santa Barbara wouldn’t be complete without an authentic Mexican meal….and so we enjoyed dinner at Los Agaves. Oh my goodness….no words….so good!

Can you tell we had the best time ever in SB?!? We sure did. We only stayed for two nights, but it was the perfect start to our vacation [after this we headed to Newport Beach for the remainder of our trip].

Our must-eat/drink list for Santa Barbara: Bella Vista at Four Seasons [fabulous breakfast & buffet!], Enjoy CupcakesThe French Press & Handlebar Coffee Roasters [tied for best coffee], Los Agaves & Los Arroyos [our absolute favorite Mexican food spots] and Jeannine’s Bakery (for breakfast, lunch &/or dessert)

Between all the splish splashing pool fun, sandy beach hangs…..and just being together as a family….this trip was a special one. So much fun sharing our trip with you! And now…..our vacation in photos!

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Easter 2015

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HAPPY EASTER, FRIENDS!

Easter is such a special weekend for our family…..and it’s such an honor to be part of the amazing events that our church, Fresh Life, puts their heart and soul into. On Good Friday we have a Skull Church event and on Easter Sunday we come together at the Majestic Valley Arena. Hours and hours are put into this very weekend by some incredible staff and volunteers…..so it tends to be a busy one for us, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.

A highlight of our weekend was when one of our baristas from Red Caboose stood up at Pastor Levis invitation to accept Christ. Oh my goodness! Chills and tears! This sight never gets old to me….and when it’s someone that is dear to your heart, it takes it to a whole new level. Im so proud of this girl….and thankful for all the bold invitations that were given to her, year after year, while working for us. God is so faithful….as we continue to trust Him with our lives. This was such an encouragement to my heart as we continue to pray for others near and dear to us who need Jesus desperately.

Ezra, of course looked like a little dapper man…..and so did my husband. I love boys so very much and I have so much to be thankful for.

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Strider Snow Skis

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Oh my goodness. This invention is amazing. I was already a fan of Strider balance bikes, but this snow ski attachment [for the bike we already own] is incredible! Strider sent us this snow attachment to try out, along with an adorable bike jersey….and Im super excited to share this with you.

I had no idea how Ezra would take to the skis. He was a fan of the bike this past summer, but you just never know how kids will respond when you change things up on them. Well, Ezra is a fan. A HUGE fan! He got right up and within a few minutes he actually lifting his feet up, which he wasn’t doing much of previously…..and as he’s gaining speed down the hill. He shouts “I’m Skiing!!!!!!”

This ski attachment was definitely a life saver for me this winter as “stir crazy ” is a real thing around here when the winters tend to linger on. Ezra is not quite old enough for ski school so this outdoor activity arrived on our doorstep in perfect timing. Reed couldn’t wait to get Ezra outside and on the bike and sporty his new jersey. He’s pretty sure that this will help Ezra get up on skis quicker and for sure build his confidence as he explores more activities.

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// This is real life here….and this is why helmets are not an option in our household!

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