***I'm determined to catch up on cataloging our family's events this year. Be ready for outdated posts galore!




the annual lebaron family pumpkin carving - several days prior to halloween.
picking out pumpkins, in costume, at the local corner pumpkin stand.

madison - fancy nancy

grace - pumpkin fairy

porter - leopard

lebaron cousins

title of this picture - 'focused'

madison designed a jack o lantern on starfall.com - a website she loves - and was so excited dan made a real one that matched!

halloween night

it was pretty hilarious. three kids under the age of 2 1/2, two in strollers, the other one wanting to be carried. we trick or treated about ten houses and then headed to our ward's trunk or treat.
whoever invented trunk or treats - i love you.

in comparison: grace age 13 months above and madison age 8 months below.

look at those cheeks. i love them.

{i've decided i'm not a fan of halloween.
the whole dress up and ask for candy thing is overrated if you ask me,
but i'll admit that it is way more fun when you have kids.}


My Nephew


this is a special little boy.

he brings a smile to everyone's face and i experience a happiness that i can't explain. for a long time it made me really sad to think about porter and how he's going through this life without his dad by his side. but it's been wonderfully theraputic to see him just about everyday. he's helping me heal in a way i hadn't expected. having regret is a hard thing and i have found that as much as i've tried to dispell it, it's remained very prevalent. but when i'm with porter, i feel like i'm making it up to dallin and that those things i regret- teasing and not being the sister i should have been and the sister i now wish i had been - are being appeased.

despite my probably typical but inappropriate teenage behavior, dallin and i did became close friends. he was one of my best friends. he called me one day, while kamber and i were both pregnant with porter and grace, concerned about how we were going to make sure our kids knew their cousins since it looked likely the four of us siblings would be spread out. i brushed him off, laughing and teasing him that he was jumping the gun. of course we would make sure our kids were close, is what i was thinking, but surely we didn't need to worry about it then. i am grateful for that conversation {tender mercy} and that now, what dallin wanted, is truly happening.


This And That

~madison's favorite movie right now is Lion King. she's watched it every single day for two weeks and her favorite part is when mufasa dies. or in her own words, "cows run in gorge, chase simba, and his dad dies. then hyenas come again, chase simba. it makes me sad." she says this with the hugest grin on her face! kind of morbid, i know.

~i already find myself missing AZ oranges but we don't move until june and the oranges outside aren't even ripe yet. whats up with that?

~grace is a climbing maniac - refer to last post - from madison's bed and little rocking chair to step stools, our glider, into the tub, and up our food storage shelves. she doesn't walk more than a couple steps at a time but she likes to climb up and over anything.

~i have this thing for hot tamales. i treat myself to them every time dan is on call. so every 5th night, i eat a whole box of them! gross. and unhealthy. but i do it anyway.

~madison's been potty trained for several weeks now but all of a sudden she had an accident this morning on our walk and was quite wet. we were at the farthest point from home and she said she wanted to walk. if you know madison at all than you know stubborn is an understatement for her - so i said she could walk, thinking in a couple minutes she'd get tired and get in the stroller. 45 minutes later we made it home and she walked every step of the way, in flip flops, minus about 10 feet when i tried to make her sit in the stroller.

~my mom is in mexico with mark and his family. i'm going to be honest - i'm jealous. 6 months is too long to go without a trip to mexico. and just a side note - grace went to rocky point 4 times before she was 6 months old. she's practically hispanic.


What Goes Up

and grace hasn't quite figured out the coming down part


Grandma Skinner

i could not ask for a better mother-in-law. her family is the most important thing to her and she is an incredible grandma. she has taught me so much about being confidant and comfortable with who i am and i will ever be grateful for the wonderful son she raised and i married.

happy birthday laura!!!

{i may or may not have finally posted this 2 months late.
but hey, the picture was already uploaded - showing my intent was there.}


My Other Family


i take plenty of pictures of the girls and usually tons during trips and for special occasions. what i don't have visually documented are some of our favorite things about living in mesa - living just a couple miles from my in-laws and seeing them usually multiple times a week, g&g lebaron's house on sunday nights with all the cousins, having my sister-in-laws drop by unannounced or stopping in for dinner, and then manly things like watching sports games and going golfing.

my favorite part about mesa is being close to family.

while my immediate family suffered tragedy, heartache, change and more change, my 'other' family has been there supporting me every step of the way. i love them even more because of it. their latest example of generosity and love is this: they said kamber and porter should be invited to everything family. this week that meant fhe at the park, a trip to the zoo, another trip to the park with aunts and cousins, and finally my mother-in-laws birthday party.

i have been an excited but nervous wreck for kamber to finally move down here. i've felt so much pressure (i totally blame myself) because i want to make this adjustment easier for them and help her get established and involved.

but i shouldn't have worried. i had forgotten how incredible of a family i married into; how welcoming and open and accepting they are. this last week i have felt especially blessed and so thankful to have such wonderful in-laws, that they would rally around kamber so readily. it will give me peace of mind when it comes time to move across the country next summer.

kamber may not have immediate family in mesa but i think my 'other' family could become hers too.


Me and G

{i just discovered picnik.com}



Morning Person

we just got home from our walk - grace is looking for crumbs in the seat of the jogging stroller as i type so it's about time for breakfast.

this little girl - quite a morning person

this little girl- definitely not

{pictures taken within 10 seconds of each other}

*sidenote: kamber and porter are on their way to AZ right now and we'll move them in tomorrow!!



{borrowed from the bleazards - facebook}

lol. i love this picture- i don't know if hannah does or not.
we'll see.
it was much better quality before i copied it and i know it catches her right in the middle of laughing but seriously, i love it.
she's looks beautiful and so happy.
love you hannah!

{i wouldn't have the faintest idea on how to curl my hair like that. come teach me!}

Sleeping Beauty

{that was madison's favorite movie for months}

you might have noticed we aren't ANY closer to weaning from the you-know-what.
but i'm ok with it.

and just in case you're wondering if i take any pictures of our second child...

she NEVER sits still.
grace makes a beeline towards the camera, every time, with this face.
{i was laughing so this one's pretty blurring.}


Food For Thought

*madison has been eating "marshmallow Hateys" for breakfast everyday lately -the knockoff lucky charms- and i never thought that i'd buy sugar cereal for my kids {we didn't eat it growing up}. i feel kind of torn about it but for now i guess i'm giving in.

*she always wants "maca-Moni and cheese" for dinner but never eats it very well. {not that i make it every time she asks for it.}

*yesterday morning madison woke up and wanted to put a movie in right away so to distract her we read library books instead. the last one we read was green eggs and ham. what did we have for breakfast? green eggs. madison was pretty impressed.

*i've been trying to get more creative with the girl's food and i saw a cute idea in a book we have: sourdough english muffins, prego, mozzerella cheese, pepperoni (cut in triangles) and olives. madison put together her own little individual pizza and made a face like a jack-o-lantern. she loved it.

*mcdonald's is NOT my first choice of fast food but for some reason, every time i go there, i feel so american. i don't know if it's the whole burger, fries, and shake thing, the happy meal and toy for the kids, or just the fact that i'm clogging my arteries with cholesterol. whatever the reason, i feel more patriotic.
i know.

*when we're done with school/training and are settled, i want a cookbook collection. i LOVE looking through cookbooks to find fun and tasty recipes. they have to have pictures though.

*grace has turned into a scavenger. i sweep our floor just about 3 times a day to keep things off the ground and out of her mouth. but every time we get her out of the high chair, she turns around, stands up, and eats every scrap of food in or around the chair, no matter how full she is. and she's refusing to be fed anything besides yogurt with a spoon {thankfully she'll eat almost any finger food though}.

*oh, and those pumpkins pictured above - i made them. yesterday. not the actual ones in that picture (courtesy of bakerella), but replicas.
they were good.
and cute.
{but not as cute as hers. that's why the picture is borrowed.}