Rubyisms | HAPPY 5th BIRTHDAY!

IMG_0965Ruby Dawn (aka RubyDoo, The Rubester, Rubykins, Snicklefritz) is 5 years old. She loves sparkles and princess dresses as much as digging in the dirt or collecting bugs. She’s never met a person who she didn’t want to be friends with and will talk to anyone with a pair of ears. I love seeing her interests develop and especially enjoy her growing appreciation for true artists like Shel Silverstein and Jimmy FallonIMG_1626

To celebrate her birthday Ryan and I told her she could have a “yes” day at the zoo. Basically that meant she could ride the carousel, get her face painted, and eat Dippin’ Dots, which are all things we typically say “no” to. She absolutely LOVED her “yes” day. She took full advantage of the situation and added a $7 Camel Ride to her requests. ha!photo-99

Clara LOVED getting her face painted too.


Ruby spends time each afternoon being “quiet and alone” while Charlie and Clara take their naps. Her “quiet and alone” time took a turn for the worst a few weeks ago when I found her in the bathroom trying to wash hot pink marker off of her arms. She thought she could get it off before I knew what had happened… but she was wrong. One thing is for sure, she is very thorough… and very right-handed.


The night before Ruby’s last day of preschool she asked me to make her a checklist so she wouldn’t forget to say goodbye to anyone in her class. She loved preschool and is ridiculously excited to be a kindergartener in the fall! IMG_1514

I can’t post this update without mentioning that Ruby is friends with all the monkeys at our zoo. They seem to think she is one of them. Most days we are there at least one monkey will come sit by her or look at her or interact with her in some way. Its hilarious. Here are a few examples from recent weeks:IMG_0841IMG_0080 IMG_0279 IMG_0727 And of course, the most recent Rubyisms for your (and my) enjoyment.

  • “Ugh! All of this noise is destroying me!”
  • Proof that commercials work: “Mom, we should get Clorox. It really really really works! Even for muddy socks! It just gets out the stains! Isn’t that awesome?!?”
  • “I just won’t forget because I’ll use my brain as a thinking cap and it will just pop into my head but I can’t feel it when it pops into my head.”
  • Driving distances are typically measured by how many “Dora The Explorer” shows it will take to get where we are going. “But how much looooonger until we get there?!?!?” “Only 2 and a half more Dora the Explorers, Ruby.”
  • “I love you mom, I love you so bad!!”
  • When Ryan gets home from work Ruby often asks him, “Did you have any good cases today daddy?”
  • “Mom, I’m going over here if you please.”
  • “I have a hundred and forty five two germs. How much is that?”
  • When we go to new places where Ruby hasn’t been before she often wonders who will be there, specifically teenagers. “But mom, will there be teens there?”
  • “Thanks mom! You’re such a good cooker.” (I defrost Chicken Nuggets like a pro!)
  • “Mom, when we move to our new house are we gonna love it …or list it?” (I obviously watch too much HGTV during the kids nap times. ha!)
  • “Can horses have spots? Stripes? Pentagons? Squaragons?”
  • Ryan loves teaching her specific things that specific organs do. If you ask her what the liver does she responds, “It metabolizes drugs, makes clotting factors and makes bile.”
  • This afternoon she said to me, “Mommy, you look sooooo nice with your dress on. Isn’t that a nice thing to say?” Yes Ruby. That’s a nice thing to say.
  • “This is God’s Holy Marble. It’s what makes Gods Holy Wind. It makes Gods wind cold and snow cold.”
  • “Mom, lets talk about something.”
  • “I love pink and every single body who loves me.”
  • “Mommy, you’re just destroying my fun!”
  • “I’m drawing a blue-horned cat.”
  • “That’s the town of Potbelly’s!!” (sometimes we go to Potbelly’s after church on Sunday’s and the girls always dance and talk to Darby, the girl who plays her guitar and sings.)IMG_0061
  • “I think my brother is sad because he doesn’t really have any friends.”
  • “I can’t go hiking today because it makes me so homesick!”
  • What started as “I’m blazin’ hot!” has been applied in many other circumstances including “It’s blazin’ rain!”
  • “I was like losing my mind when daddy took me to the Disney Store. I like lost my mind.” Ryan verified that yes, she did indeed nearly lose her mind in the Disney Store.
  • “Daddy, is Charlie old enough to eat Salmon?”
  • “Don’t worry Clara, tooth fairys are like soooo quiet. They’re like quieter than ever. You don’t even notice when they get your tooth.”

If you’d like to read more “Rubyisms” just type “Rubyisms” into the search box in the top right corner of my blog and all the past Rubyism posts will show up.IMG_9053

Happy Birthday Ruby Dawn. Clara, Charlie, Daddy and I love you so much and are so excited to have a front row seat to all the happenings in your life. Your smile makes everyone around you want to smile too and your enthusiasm for EVERYTHING brings so much joy to our family everyday. We love all the hilarious questions you ask and hope you’ll always continue talking to us about everything running through that active mind of yours. If “sparkly” could be used to describe a person, I’d say you’re the most sparkly person I know.

Happy Happy Happy 5th Birthday Sweet Girl.
Love, Mama.


Clara is Three Years Old!

IMG_0983Our Amazing Clara Dawn turned 3 on May 5th. She does all the ridiculously cute things that most toddlers do. We were outside the other day and she spent a good chunk of time trying to kick off her shadow. It was awesome. IMG_1147

Clara is bonkers about Charlie. She just can’t get enough of him. They play together all day – one of her favorite games to play with him is “chase” where she runs toward him then past him as he squeals with delight and crawls after her, then she runs back the other way and he “chases” her again. She told me that Charlie is her best friend. I love how she always says, “Hey Bud” to him and wants to be wherever he is.IMG_1302

She’s 35 lbs, 3 feet tall, and full of fire and ice. She has me scratching my head on a daily basis, searching for answers on how to parent her effectively, tearing through books with titles like, “Raising Your Spirited Child” and sighing with relief as I collapse on the couch at night after getting her tucked into bed for the 12th time each evening. IMG_0702

…but then she comes in to greet me each morning with this face and all is right with the world again.


Clara is becoming a bit of a ham. She loves asking, “Have you seen this face?” then makes a funny face. At her 3-year checkup the pediatrician asked her to stand up straight, so Clara hunched over and chuckled quietly to herself. Then some nurses laughed, so Clara just stayed hunched over with a goofy smile on her face. Eventually she popped up straight enough for the nurse to get her height. I enjoyed seeing her realize she was funny.IMG_0671

I’ve never done anything more difficult that try to teach Clara to blow her nose. I know she will figure it out eventually, but for now, she just constantly sniffs and snuffs and asks “I need a tissue” very regularly. Once I give her the tissue she just wipes it on her nose, eye or cheek then throws it away. I try to get her to blow and basically she does the valsalva maneuver really hard until I think she might hurt herself. I don’t know why this is so frustrating to me, but it keeps me up at night. The good news is she will be really good at snorkeling in the deep water someday because she’ll be a champ at equalizing her ear pressure.

IMG_9766Clara is very particular about what she wears and the only way to get her clothed is if she thinks it was her idea. I can’t tell you the epic battles that have ensued over my desire for her to wear pants during the Polar Vortex and her desire to wear nothing at all. Now that it’s warmer outside, most days I just say,”pick out something to wear. I’m excited to see what you chose.” then I bite my tongue when she comes out of her room with some amazing ensemble. Thankfully, “beautiful princess dresses” are almost always ok with her – so we look like we just got off the pageant bus while we are strolling around Target.

She’s a future foodie. Anything Ryan is eating, Clara says she loves. She will eat anything he gives her including sushi, spicy bbq chips, and anything she can dip in ketchup or ranch. If you ask her, “Do you like that Clara?” she typically responds, “I do. Really much.”IMG_9664

Clara loves her daddy so much. She lights up when Ryan gets home from work each day. She tells him all sorts of stories, sings for him, draws pictures for him, builds and feeds him Lego cakes, shows him her most recent dance moves, tells him jokes, and follows him around the house chatting away. She talks more to Ryan than anyone else. She says more in the hour he gets home than she does the whole rest of the day combined. It’s amazing. I love hearing her bubbly little voice when she talks to him.


Other than when she’s talking to Ryan, these are her most frequent sayings:

  • Don’t say that!
  • Don’t dance by me!
  • Stop doing that!
  • Where’s Charlie?
  • Ruby is not being kind!
  • I need a tissue!
  • Where’s Daddy?


I love you with all of my heart Clara Dawn. You challenge me to dig deep into motherhood and have expanded my heart in all sorts of ways I didn’t expect. You remind me of your Great Grandma Wandah Beeson in all the best ways. You make me smile and laugh everyday. I’m so thankful I get to be your mommy and I pray that you’ll discover all sorts of wonderful ways to honor God with your determination, drive, and hilarious personality.IMG_9287

10 Month Old Charlie AKA “Mr. Busy Pants”

IMG_9866I’ve carved out a few minutes to quickly update you on my Charlie boy. He is currently contained in his crib, which is the only reason I am able to write this post. Since Charlie became mobile my life has clicked into warp-speed. I took these pictures of A Polar Bear checking him out at the Columbus Zoo the day before he started crawling around. If it had been the next day, he may not have sat there so nicely for me.  IMG_8955

Charlie is into everything he shouldn’t be. Today I saved him from the small space between the couch and the table where he was trying to gnaw through the lamp cord. This morning he explored the bathroom trash can, the pantry, and spent a good amount of time trying to get under the

Everything is interesting. Everything is worth getting to. Nothing could be more amazing than whatever it is that could be hiding behind the

Ryan (my hero) saved Charlie’s life with the Heimlich Maneuver a few weeks ago when he choked on a puff during lunch at COSI. This kid would rather feed himself a burrito than have me spoon-feed him some baby food. The other night after dinner Ruby exclaimed, “Mommy, Charlie is a good helper because he eats everything off of the floor!” Yes Ruby. Yes he does.IMG_0336

Don’t tell the girls, but I’ve thrown away every Polly Pocket outfit that their dolls used to have – because he wants to eat them all. I’ve trained Ruby and Clara to help me know if Charlie has something in his mouth. The good news is that within the past couple of days he is doing less “swallowing” of things and more “carrying things around in his mouth like a dog would.” For example, we usually play on the playground at Ruby’s school after picking her up. It’s covered in bark – he will find a big chunk, put it in his mouth, and happily carry it around the playground for as long as we are there. That same, big, slobbery piece of bark is removed when we leave the park and everyone is happy. There may or may not be bark in his mouth in this pic.  IMG_0029

He’s the loudest of all my children. He happily squeals at a pitch that could break glass. I hope no one is talking to me right now because I am deaf and can’t hear them anyway.

Charlie loves to pull up on everything and thinks its fun to stand by the stairs… until that one time he climbed up to the 2nd step and then dove head-first back to the floor. I put up a baby gate up that afternoon and experienced approximately 1.25 days of peace before he figured out how to open it. He thinks the gate is a fun toy I gave him; a puzzle of sorts.

I did more “house-proofing the babies” than “baby-proofing the house” with Ruby and Clara… but I’ve been changing my tune now that I’ve got a small explorer – inspector – detective on my floors.IMG_0035

At his 9-month appointment (a month ago) he was 17.5 pounds, but my biceps and back are telling me that he’s at least three times heavier than that now.IMG_9001

I know he loves me so much – except for when I’m trying to change his diaper, then he wants to get as far away from me as possible.IMG_0462

Charlie is totally the guy everyone wants to have around. His sisters adore him. He’s fun. He’s happy to do whatever everyone is doing. He doesn’t complain much. All the ladies who volunteer in the nursery at church always want to take him home with them. I’m so happy I’m the one who gets to take him home.


Charlie Boy

IMG_2597Charlie is growing so much! He was 10.5 lbs at his 1 month checkup and continues feeling heavier and looking chubbier every day. He has one chub roll on his thighs – it’s awesome. He’s been cooing back and started smiling last week, which is my favorite thing ever. I love all of his expressions… he’s a Ryan face.




Both Ruby and Clara are utterly enamored by him. Poor little buddy isn’t safe from their hugs and kisses anywhere other than in his crib (where they still try to reach him through the crib slats.)

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Doesn’t this mustachifier from his Great Aunt Becky make him look like such a distinguished gentleman?IMG_2620

IMG_3437People ask me if I’m enjoying having a boy… and all I can say is “YES” …and that he looks super cute in his boy clothes. Speaking of clothes, I had to get the 3-6 month jammies into his drawers because at 6 weeks old he was already too long for the 0-3 month size! Love this kid. He’s such a good eatin’ good sleepin’ sweet little buddy.

Charlie’s First Week


We are doing pretty good having 3 kids… but my mom was here last week and Ryan’s mom has been here this week, so I might have a skewed perspective of reality.  :o) I’ll let you know how things are going next week when I’m alone and outnumbered! Needless to say, Charlie is such a sweetie and the girls absolutely LOVE him! They kiss, hug and sing to him many times a day.IMG_2377IMG_2365

Charlie has been watching the Tour De France with Ryan on a daily basis. The Tour will forever remind me of all three of my children as infants.IMG_2373

Charlie celebrated his 1-week old birthday at the pool with his Grammy and sisters.


Ryan’s co-fellow Patrice came over to meet Charlie. She has been such an amazingly wonderful friend to our family while we’ve been in Columbus. I’m so thankful that she’s Ryan’s co-fellow.IMG_2376

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Dr. Clara has given Charlie many “check-ups” and always says “Baby Charlie feels better now. He feels better. So much better.”IMG_2451

January InstaLife

January was full of fun – the year began with Ryan shaving his beard into this amazing 1920’s StrongMan ‘Stache. Thankfully, it only lasted one day at work and then he was back to his wonderful beardless and moustacheless handsomeness.IMG_9231Here are a few more pictures from January:IMG_9257 IMG_9315 IMG_9324 IMG_9334 IMG_9380 IMG_9469 IMG_9478 IMG_9579 IMG_9605 IMG_9674 IMG_9685 IMG_9710 IMG_9729 IMG_9735

Clara is 20 Months Old

Clara is 20 months old, which seems like a good time to do some sort of blog post about her and all the silliness and personality she’s developed in the last few months. As far as her stats go, she is heavy enough that I might throw out my back any second, tall enough to bump her head on the fridge door when it’s open, and has a lot of teeth.

IMG_9202Clara is a singer. She loves music and is often singing while she plays. Pretty much her favorite song is either the ABC’s, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, or Baa Baa Black Sheep, but I have no idea which because she doesn’t sing the words, just the tune and all three of those have the same tune. Ha.

IMG_9019Clara is mischievous, full of shenanigans, loves playing games and hiding things. We lost Baby Jesus out of our nativity for a few weeks. Clara was always carrying him around, so I figured he’d been thrown away (since she also loves “helping” throw trash in the bin.) I found him inside one of my rain boots a couple of days ago. The day I found Jesus was such a great day.  :o)

Clara loves to read to herself, and often does it VERY LOUDLY.  It kinda sounds like she’s yelling in a foreign language. Here’s a video to show you what I mean.

She has a lot of hair, and a lot of lengths of hair. The hair on top of her head and on her sideburns is really long, but the hair on the front and back of her head is short. I use whatever she ate for breakfast as “product” to style her awesome locks. Bananas work awesome, nutella and peanut butter are super sticky but smell wonderful. ha. I think I’ll get her a haircut tomorrow.IMG_9238

Clara loves her mama. She is ridiculously furious when I drop her off at the church nursery or if I am not within arms reach is anyone she doesn’t know is around. She is not at all interested in making friends or meeting Ruby’s friends… which Ruby does not understand since Ruby has never met a stranger.

Clara calls Ruby “Bee Bee” and is always looking for and calling for Bee Bee when Ruby is a preschool.IMG_8923

She thinks its hilarious to do normal tasks with her eyes closed. She tries to pick up food and put it in her mouth with her eyes closed, then claps when she accomplishes it. She’s been walking with her eyes closed and spinning in circles with her eyes closed.

Clara LOVES animals. She is very brave – which makes me want to introduce her to Jungle Jack Hanna sometime while we live in Columbus.IMG_9089

Clara needs “alone time” which I do not understand. I often ask Ryan to help me understand her, because she and Ryan are a lot alike. If we’ve been out to a playgroup or with a bunch of people in the morning, she gets home and wants to just be by herself in her crib. Not to nap, just to be alone. It’s incredible how a little alone time helps her get through the day.


Bath time is not an option at night because Clara is a crazy messy eater. She loves food and will eat pretty much anything we put on her tray. The problem is that once she’s all done, she just starts chucking food everywhere and waving her arms all around to knock all the remaining food off her tray. It’s unbelievable how quickly this happy tirade happens… in the blink of an eye the 6-foot radius around her chair is splattered with food.IMG_9257

She loves baths, especially when Ruby is in there with her, and gets mad if I try to carry her upstairs. She would much rather walk up herself.IMG_8904

She always says “amen” after we say her prayers at night.

Clara loves shoes, putting them on and off, trying on other people’s shoes, and can even walk in high heels. I think her favorite thing about going anywhere is that she gets to put her shoes on. She says “shoes” with a lot of “ooooo” in the middle.

She takes self-portraitsIMG_9154

…and looks a lot like Ryan did when he was 2! IMG_9040

If she thinks a snack is coming, she sits on the floor wherever she is and waits for it to be presented to her.

Clara’s favorite words are “Ow” and “No”. No matter what you ask her, Clara’s answer is always “No”. If I say, do you want to go to the playground? She says “NO!” but really high-pitched and enthusiastically… like she actually means “yes”. It’s very confusing.

IMG_9006Clara is in a hat-wearing frenzy. If she can find a hat, it’s on her head. Any hat, your hat, my hat, the hat she found on the ground in the zoo parking lot…

Clara is a sweetie. She’s buckets of fun these days. I’m so thankful I get to be her mama.