Friday, December 28, 2012

Merry Christmas!!

What a Christmas this was!  The kids were up bright and early and absolutely could not wait to tear into their gifts...  They were amazed that Santa actually knew what they wanted, and our house looked like we had hosted a gang war before long.  Utter chaos and pure joy!

Reindeer Food!

We're certainly not above bribing Santa to ensure we get what we asked for...  So the kids put together a special treat for Santa's reindeer, including carrots and some rice crispies with glitter!  They were so excited on Christmas morning when nothing was left but scraps.  Since they all got what they asked for, we're assuming the bribery worked!  It's the little life lessons that count.

Vegas Baby!

Mia has heard about Mommy & Daddy going to Vegas a number of times, and so she began looking at pictures online.  As soon as she saw the fountains, volcanoes & Eiffel Tower she was certain she had to go! So who is Daddy to not grant her wish?!  The weekend before Christmas Daddy & Mia took a trip to Vegas.  We went ice skating in front of the Venetian, saw the volcano erupt, the fountains dance, and partied all weekend long...  The highlight of our trip was seeing David Copperfield perform on Saturday.  Mia was absolutely mesmerized by his magic.  It was such an incredible experience to be able to spend quality time together running up and down the strip while holding hands and playing!  The highlight of Daddy's year for sure!!

First Limo Ride!

Mia insisted that she get to ride in her own limousine during our Vegas trip!  After a few days of limo rides we hopped in a Town Car and she was truly distraught that she couldn't run up and down aisle...  Talk about setting her up for false expectations!  Nothing is too good for this perfect little child. She deserves anything & everything!

Thursday, December 20, 2012


Today we took the kids to our annual Teddy Bear Tea at the Ritz.  They got to meet Mrs. Claus & see a puppet show, but they could hardly wait to meet Santa!  Here they are shortly before sharing their lists with Mr. Claus... Brandon still can't stop talking about the puppet show!

Hanging Holiday Lights!

That's right, we're claiming all the holidays as ours, Hanukkah & Christmas!  Mia decided that it wasn't fair for Daddy to climb two stories up and hang holiday lights alone...  So here she is on the roof!  One would have expected the neighbors to be concerned, but after years of Daddy wandering the neighborhood in his boxers and doing burn outs in his cars to entertain the neighborhood kids, nobody blinked an eye!  I'm happy to report the lights have been strung and the midget was not harmed. Note that Mia insisted she wear a helmet!

Happy Hanukkah 2012

We had an amazing Hanukkah 2012! This was the first year that all three kids were old enough not only to know what was going on, but also to have expectations as to what gifts they wanted...  Each night after tubby time, the kids would line up their chairs and Mia would light the Menorah, and lead the family in the Hanukkah prayer.  It was so sweet to see their excitement each night!




Thursday, December 6, 2012

Another ER Visit!

Aubrey, aka our little clutz, had yet another visit to the ER this week!  While doing acrobatics on the back of the couch, she decided to flip off backwards and display absolutely none of her cat like tendencies...  Meaning she landed flat on the back of her head.  The noise was sickening.  After cleaning up the blood and putting an ice pack on her, we decided that with head wounds it's better to be safe than sorry.  So Daddy spent a few hours at the ER, even riding into a brain scan machine and enduring the radiation, to ensure our little angel was calm & safe.  Momma thankfully showed up after Mia's holiday concert to coddle & love her. And non too soon, cause Aubs had already had about about enough doctoring and Daddy time. Thankfully she checked out just fine, other than a headache.  As you can see, by the next morning she had donned her antlers and was back in action!  The joys...

Snow Play!

This past weekend we took the kids to Shamrock Farms, the largest milk dairy farm in the SW. The kids got to see over 10,000 cows and learn all about milking.  Afterwards, the farm trucked in a few tons of snow for the kids to play with!  Yes, it's true, Valley of the Sun citizens are pathetically relegated to playing on a snow pile in the parking lot for winter fun...  Hey, the kids didn't know any better, they loved it!  Although, as evidenced above, Brandon & Aubrey didn't realize you had to wear pants with your snow coats!!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Nothing but love on Thanksgiving! Big Boy sure has turned out to be a Momma's boy!  He just can't leave her side, and I'm pretty sure she loves it...  Here they were enjoying a fun moment on Thanksgiving.  For the holiday we all went down to Tucson for a visit to Grammy & Papa's, and enjoyed quality time with the whole fam!

Golf Cart Safety!

One of the joys of visiting Grammy & Papa in Tucson is the golf cart rides!  The only down side is that all the kids are getting bigger, and insist on going at the same time...  So what's the solution? Strap em on like a bag of clubs, and let 14 year old Alec drive!  Safety first.

Thanksgiving Fun With The Cali Cousins!

Mia & the Twins had so much fun with their California cousins while at Grammy & Papa's for Thanksgiving!  They literally were singing for days in anticipation of hanging with their older cousins.  They are so sweet with our kids, and we all had a fantastic and relaxing holiday!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

First Harley Ride!!

Mia experienced her first Harley ride this past weekend.  It was a beautiful Sunday afternoon and Mia was the coolest biker in the neighborhood...  She can't wait to learn to ride her very own dirt bike this winter!

Big Kid Bunk Beds!!

The crazy kooks spent their first night in their new bunk beds!  They were so excited they could hardly contain themselves as they were being set up.  Aubrey walked in, took one look at the bunk beds, and exclaimed, "They're amazing!".  It was so fun crawling into bed with them hem and reading books at bedtime...  Even Mia participated!  Thankfully, the twins slept soundly through their first night, and we even had to wake Brandon up 12 hours later!  Big Boy sure can sleep...

Last Night in Cribs!

This week our new bunk beds arrived and so we experienced our final night with cribs in the Lovell home!  Mia was very cognizant of the pending change, and wanted to ensure we marked the event with pictures on the final night...  Here are the sweet angels on their final night as babies!!  Sure goes fast...

The King & Queen!

Our sweet little Aubrey has decided that she is a Princess, and would like to be referred to as such!  Mia, having never been the girlie girl, is happy to oblige.  So recently Mia has begun treating Aubs & Daddy as the King & Queen!  She makes us sit on our thrones, kisses our rings, and then brings us snacks...  It's quite fun for all involved.  And yes, I called her our sweet little Aubrey!!  Much has changed in a short period of time.  Aubrey really has become sweet, gentle and nothing but fun...  Miracles do happen!

Happy Halloween 2012

This year we had our annual Halloween party for all the neighbors, and the kids had an absolute blast!  This was the first year that Mia's focus was on maximum candy collection...  And this was also the first year that the twins really seemed to understand what was this holiday was all about.  We had so much fun watching the joy and excitement in all of the children's eyes!

The Lady Bug Princess!

Aubrey was so sweet wandering house to house and collecting candy in her little wings!  The twins really enjoyed Halloween this year, and especially enjoyed being pulled around the neighborhood in a wagon... 

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Halloween Disney Trip!

This past weekend we did our annual Disney trip for Halloween!  It's always a blast to see the park all decorated for the holiday, but this year it was extra special as the twins came along for the frist time.  Mia was so excited to show her brother and sister the park, and acted as our official tour guide!  Grammy & Papa are always very generous to take us each year, and were absolute troopers in helping us chase around these crazy kids!  Here are the girls dressed up for Friday night trick or treating in the park.  It is certainly a tiring and crazy trip, but so worth the effort to see the joy on their faces when they met Mickey, Minnie, Goofy and the gang.  Can't wait for next year's trip!

Cousin Hadley!

Aunt Caren brought cousin Hadley down for a few days of Disney fun!  Mia and the twins are absolutely in love with Hadley and would actually fight over who got to sit with her and play with her...  Mia definitely looks up to her big cousin and it's always great to get to see them on our Calif trips!

The Ham!

Besides looking like he's eaten too much ham, Big Boy really is a big ham!  Every time he sees a camera he begins a series of goofy poses...  Here we were enjoying a nice italian meal before going back into Disneyland for some serious trick or treating! 

Family Wagon!

It was something else having all three kids at Disneyland for the first time!  Thankfully we had this crazy wagon train of a stroller which drew constant stares and comments.  We may have been a freak show, but it sure made life managable...  Having Grammy & Papa around to help out also ensured our sanity!  Here we were watching one of the nightly parades at closing.  Amazing how big Mia is getting!

Cars Land!!

The new Cars Land at California Adventure is really amazing!  While Aubs went to her Princess lunch, Daddy & Mia got to hang out and run around hitting up lots of rides...  Here's the midget posing with Mater!

Minnie Mouse!

Aubs just couldn't believe that she was actually getting to meet Minnie Mouse in person!  It was such an amazing experience to see the natural, untainted reaction of joy & happiness.  They believed everything they saw...

Monday, October 15, 2012

Halloween Prep!

Here's Mia modeling her new Halloween cape, as she anxiously awaits the big day!  Halloween is a big day in the Lovell household.  In fact, it's become our children's favorite holiday, by far.  It doesn't hurt that Halloween also happens to be when Papa & Grammy take our whole clan to Disneyland for an extended weekend of fun & chaos...  This will be the first year that we take the twins along with us, and big sister Mia can hardly wait to show them around the park.  Gonna be a fun month!!

Double Trouble!

The twins continue to evolve so quickly that it's amazing!  Thankfully they seem to have moved past the trouble of the past few months, and I don't say that lightly...  Aubrey damn near killed us as a family.  Once again she has rebounded into the absolute sweetest of kids.  Big Boy is now becoming quite the handful, but anything seems manageable after Aub's last phase.  They are endlessly sweet & entertaining, even when causing trouble!

Brutus Beefcake!

Meathead, as Daddy affectionately refers to Brandon, is certainly growing into quite the beefcake.  He has a hard time keeping his shirt on, and just loves to wrestle...  In fact, it's a little challenging keeping meathead from swinging swords at everyone he encounters.  Not the most endearing of traits, but certainly to be expected from a young man coming of age!  Or so we keep telling ourselves... 

Dance Party!

The kids absolutely love having dance parties!  We routinely crank up the stereo and everyone, including Mommy & Daddy, breaks into their best rendition of Disco Fever.  I would imagine it might be frightening for an outsider to watch, but it sure is fun...  Aubrey, being the ham that she is, occasionally breaks into her own solo dance parties, as evidenced above!  Total family craziness.

Papa's Papperia!

On Saturday morning Mia decided to surprise Daddy with her very own restaurant!  She was hostess, server and cook...  Not only did she seat us promptly, and provide a very well written menu, but she created a wonderful fruit bowl as an appetizer.  The best part was that she named the restaurant 'Papa's Papperia'.  Apparently an ode to Papa, who she's smitten with... (Stacy's Dad!)

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The Tooth Fairy's Arrival!!!!!!!!!

Mia noticed her first loose tooth a few weeks back and could not have been more excited!  Each night we wiggled it and guessed when it might come out.  Thankfully, Momma was wise enough to bring home bagels on Saturday morning, which immediately did the trick.  Mia could hardly wait to write a letter to the tooth fairy and put it under her pillow. Mommy & Daddy typed a letter in response, so as to avoid hand writing detection from our super sleuth!  Now it's time to head to the mall and spend her hard earned tooth fairy money... Note, if you click on the picture above, you can blow it up to read better!


This continues to be the absolute toughest year of our lives thus far!  While the twins continue to rain terror upon the Lovell home, their are brief moments of joy & peace...  Today was one of those rare occasions.  The twins spent the morning playing as if they absolutely loved each other and knew nothing but kindness and joy!  It was so sweet to see them skipping around the hosue together and planning their next activity, with loads of giggles and smiles.  Here was one such moment!

Girlie Girl...

Aubrey is certainly a girlie girl...  Where Mia would never want anything to do with nail polish or ear piercings, Aubrey has been begging to get her ears pierced for months now!  While we're not ready to give in on the piercings, she did get her first manicure / pedicure this past week!  Apparently she loved every minute of it, and sat amazingly still for the entire process. When she got home she very proudly showed off her freshly painted nails, and made sure Daddy got a picture of the toes!  Ugghhhh...

Pony Ride!

This past weekend our friends John & Dana, who live in Sedona, had a 1st birthday party for their twins. We were happy to spend a day out of the heat, and what a day it turned out to be! They had pony rides and games along a grass lined creek. The kids had an amazing time, and our handsome little man got to go for a 'nay nay' ride! A wonderful day...

Scary Tiger!

At the Graham's birthday party Mia got some extreme face painting!  She was adamant about becoming a 'scarey tiger' and acting out the Lion King...  Such an imagination!

Happy Gotcha Day!

Here is a picture of Mia making a cake for herself on 'Gotcha Day', the day we commenorate her home coming!  Sept 17th we celebrated her 5th Gotcha Day by having Marc, Lex & the kids over for dinner & cake.  What made this year unique is that Mia finally understands what it all means...  Early in the day she told Stacy that she wanted to be close to her all day, and then asked if her birth Mom missed her!  We spoke often of her journey to our family, and she asked some very deep questions, and seemed very introspective. She didn't seem sad in any way, thankfully, but definitely is really beginning to understand her past.  We are so lucky to have such an amazing little girl in our lives!

Potty Training!

What a picture!!  Unlike when we just had Mia, we tend to fight the fires which are blazing the hottest.  Not a lot of proactive parenting going on at this point...  So we were quite surprised to find that the twins both decided this past week that it's time for potty training!  It must be their desire to emulate their big sister, who they look up to very much.  Aubrey now spends about half of her day sitting on the toilet waiting for some action.  Yep, the simple joys...

10 Year Anniversary!!

Wow, pretty shocking that it's already been 10 whole years since we were wed!!  How amazingly lucky we are to have each other, and 3 wonderful children...  We celebrated with a quick trip to Cabo for the weekend, while Grandma undertook the monumental task of taking care of the kids alone!!  We are very thankful for the break, and happy to be home!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Boys Will Be Boys!

It's truly amazing the genetic differences between boys & girls.  Aubrey is so girlie, and always insists on takig her dolls to dinner or the store.  Conversely, Brandon takes every chance he can to strip all of her dolls naked and line them up in alarming positions...  I guess that provides comfort in counterbalancing his penchant for tap dancing!!