Insta Update + a few fresh pics

I've said it before, and I'll say it again-- I love instagram!
I'm alaska_babyham.  Find me & send a follow request. 
I'd love to have you.
Here are some instagram pics as of late.

Wyatt had his first independent play date.  He was SO excited! Krista said he did really well and I was proud of him for being such a big boy!

Wyatt loves stacking things.  Cars are his specialty.

This was last Sunday morning.
I love when they can play cooperatively & imaginatively.
Especially while I drink my coffee & read.

Wyatt fell asleep one night, sitting upright on the stool by his bed.

Here's a better picture.  He was completely asleep.
Josh scooped him up & put him back in bed.

 So, I have a thing for Orange Koolaid.  We went through the last of it a few weeks ago, and Josh bought me more at the co op.  I love that he gets me.

 The sun came back this weekend!  We spent each day playing out.  Wyatt prefers digging in the dirt to playing at the playground.

This moose hoof is on one of the rock piles just outside our front door.  People give the bones to their dogs so they end up strewn about town. 

 This is a reflection of water from a table outside our window.  It reminds me of my bestie, Julie, whose backyard pool makes the same reflection on the ceiling in her kitchen.  I miss her.  And I miss that kitchen.

Spring in Alaska is a confusing time.  So much sunshine, sweet peas growing on the windowsill, but still the occasional freezing temps & morning visits from Jack Frost. 

These two.
My heart.
I can hardly contain the love.

Piggy back rides are his favorite.
Love this little monkey! 

 I have a thing for pens.
Sorting through them is like choosing my favorite child--

 We have no dishwasher here.  That means when things like this happen, the task feels daunting.  On the other hand, nothing makes me smile like an empty sink!

My dad took this picture on a recent hike & sent it to me.  He said the birch trees always remind him of me.  This is what I posted on Instagram:

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood

And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could

To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair

And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear
Though as for that the passing there

Had worn them really about the same. 

And both that morning equally lay

In leaves no steps had trodden back
Oh, I kept the first for another day
Yet knowing how way leads onto way

I doubted if I should ever come back. 

I shall be telling this with a sigh

Somewhere ages and ages hence
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, and I
I took the one less traveled by

And that has made all the difference. 

-Robert Frost

My dad sent me this picture from a recent hike of his. Birch trees are sort of my thing. I love them. Growing up, we had some in our front yard. I love to peel the "paper" off the trunk, find aphids on the bright green leaves, and catch caterpillars falling out of its top branches in late summer. As an adult they always remind me of this poem by Robert Frost. I feel that we've taken the road less traveled by, and while it's made for a challenging journey, it's also made all the difference.

All bundled up, but outside & happy(!) earlier this week.
His eyes as well as his brothers seem to be changing from the brightest blue to green, 
just like me & Josh.

This is the view from my spot at the kitchen table where we homeschool.  I moved my "Linger" sign to the back window so I could meditate on it during our learning time.  I'm so blessed to be able to homeschool my kids and spend my days lingering with them.

The boys love painting, especially Wyatt.  Last time they painted their chubby fingers and made handprints.  I love them so much!

I have taken up reading with a new vengeance and it makes me so happy.  When I was struggling with anxiety, it was hard for me to stick with a book and enjoy my favorite hobby.  Feeling better and being able to enjoy it again is cause for celebration.

The Paying Guests (Could NOT put it down!)
The Last Letter From Your Lover (It was okay...)
Hands Free Mama (Changing my life!)

Currently Reading:
The Well-Trained Mind (A giant read, 800 pages, but so awesome!)
How To Be a Woman (Just finished yesterday!  It was vulgar, but hilarious!)
One Thousand Gifts (re-reading and loving it even more than before)

To Read:
Orphan Train (I can't wait!)
How To Fall in Love (I adore Cecelia Ahern)


Happy Sunday!


My Journal

I love writing in my journal.  With such easy access to Facebook, Instagram and my blog, it's easy to neglect that sweet little book on my bedside table, but whenever I take a moment to write, like this afternoon while the boys played in the sun, I feel better.  I love to get things off my chest, clear my thoughts & remember certain times in my life.

One of my favorite past times is rereading old journals.  I have nearly 100 (starting when I was 8 years old) and love being able to skim them and jump back into any point in my life.

"Writing is seeing. 
It is paying attention."
-Kate DiCamillo


Easter Egg Hunt


This Week

Loving the new pens I got from my friend Kori!  They write like a dream, and come in every color a girl could dream of.  Best mail I got all week!

Reading How To Be a Woman.  I am cracking up and underlining like crazy.  I finished If I Stay, and I'm sorry, but I hated it. I didn't super love the book, and I thought the ending sucked!

Looking forward to our new bible study by Ann Voskamp.  It's about 1000 Gifts which I read a year and a half ago and constantly refer to.  So excited to fill my soul with inspiration.

Wishing that we had cheese.  We are on week two of no cheese, and it's getting a little hard to be creative in the meal department.  Meatloaf? Check.  Sloppy Joe's? Check.  Golden Mushroom Soup Patties? Check.  And for lunch? PB & J everyday.  We'll be so happy (like, jumping up & down, throwing the good confetti excited) when the cheese Uncle Samuel bought us arrives!

Craving more of the awesome creamer people sent me in their care packages.  I drank through it all and am waiting for more from Amazon. (#becauseihaveaproblem)  In the meantime I am drinking Hazelnut, but only because I'm desperate!  (I prefer vanilla caramel).  I know, #firstworldproblems.  What can I say? I'm a mom, I don't sleep a lot, and a warm cup of coffee makes me a much kinder homeschooler/human being.

Nailing my goals for April!  Not swearing, blogging everyday and working out five days a week! I am killing it! Woot Woot!

Thankful that Jack traded beds with Logan, so he no longer fears mummies under his bed.  That kid and his anxiety can wear me out emotionally.  He's so similar to me, it's eery.  And I am often at a loss as to how to guide him through it.  So Jack's big heart gave me a free pass this week.

Enjoying the apple muffins I made with Wyatt earlier this week.  I took the apple cake recipe my mom gave me, and mixed it with the streusel recipe I found in my Betty Crocker cookbook and made muffins instead of cake with caramel frosting.  The kids like them, and I love them!

Laughing at the boys wanting to snuggle together in Wyatt's bed.  We barely fit, but they loved every second of it!


PS- I will be compiling a post about life in rural Alaska soon, and would love to answer any questions you may have about rural living, homeschooling or our family in particular. As you know, I'm an open book, so please ask away!


Throwback Thursday: Berry Picking

Can I just say I love Josh's kids? (That's what I call his students.)  Each one has a special place in my heart and I especially love how tender they are with my kids.  Any time one of them sees the four of us (out in the village or at the playground) they always say hello to every single one of us. "Hi Shelly! Hi Logan! Hi Jack! Hi Wyatt!"  They say it like we are the highlight of their week, and it never fails to make me smile.

I loved looking back at these pictures of our adventure hiking Mt. Pilcher on a field trip day back in September.  The students were super helpful, assisting the twins in berry picking and encouraging them to try each kind of berry.

I also loved looking back because in these pictures I can really see that I have trimmed down from working out the last four months.  I may not be dropping the pounds, but I am definitely in better shape. Literally!