Christmas at our house

It has been a very busy Christmas season for the Bugbee's.  There has been  no lack of excitement coming from the boys too.  They were so excited when our Elf on the Shelf finally came to visit us.  Each morning we are greeted with "have you seen Elf?" instead of "good morning".  
The tree is up, decorated and, much to my surprise, it has not been the source of any contention with Graham. 

 In the midst of trying to prepare for a remodel beginning on the 2nd of January, I have managed to get a few decorations up.  The boys were a huge help.  They even posed for a few photo ops.

We've also managed to decorate a few cookies, in between spoonfuls of frosting being eaten.

Last, but definitely not least, we were lucky enough to have been invited to the MS Santa Breakfast with Grandma B again!  The boys love this event, as do I!  Such a special outing for our family.

  Thank you Grandma B and the Hofmeister's!

Off to wrap some presents and prepare for 3 more days of craziness!


We are so excited...

to announce...

We are having a little, healthy baby

Pink!  Pink?  I am still in shock and the information is still settling in for this little family of 5, soon to be 6... and complete.
The boys aren't quite as excited as their momma.  Tyler's first reaction "Oh, yeah... for mom".  Alex's reaction, "well, we can't have two babies, we will have to get rid of Graham".
I have no doubt the excitement of having a little sister will hit once the little princess arrives.
Until then, watch out Nordstrom, this momma is in the market for some pink!


A Thank-full Thanksgiving

Holding true to our tradition we made the trek down to California to spend Thanksgiving with the Bugbee/Byrne side of the family.  Because this is a post about being thankful I am going to skip over the horrendous flight down here.
Thanksgiving was spent with most of the family.   The boys loved seeing everyone, especially their cousin Maddie.  Alex and she are like two peas in a pod.  They were inseparable the entire visit.  Well, until the end when the time arguing got to be more than the time getting along.  

One of our many feeble attempts to get a picture of all four grandkids.

This year I have been reminded over and over of the precious nature of life.  Despite the many ups and downs we face, I continually am reminding myself of the gifts I have been given...  my three healthy children and a healthy family.

The kids had so much fun and, luckily, the chickens even preformed a few times while we were here.

And what's Thanksgiving without a little post meal football?

Time to feed with Grandpa.

Graham kept his distance from the horses.

And when they did let out a "Nay" came running back to Mama.

Catching a lift with Grandpa back to the barn.

...And this was only day one!

We have so much to be Thankful for!


Graham's Cleft: 1 year later

It still baffles my mind that we have gone from this

 to this

in what seems like a minute.

I still remember the day we found out like it was yesterday.  The pain, the tears, the unknown.  It almost seemed to much to handle at the time.  How were we going to survive this?  How was our little boy going to survive this?  Would he nurse?  Would he eat?  Would he require numerous surgeries?  These were just a few of the questions that played on repeat in my head for months after.  Well, until the day we met this little guy really.
Now, one year later I look back and I thank God for my little cleft baby.  He made me a better mom.  He reminded me of how precious life is.  He taught us strength, unconditional love and acceptance.  He was the best lesson I could have provided for my two older boys.

A few weeks ago we had his one year follow up with his craniofacial surgeon, Dr. H.  Graham has amazed everyone with his success.  The original plan was for him to have a "touch up" surgery at about 4-5 years and then maybe again as a teenager.  Well, the general feeling is that he most likely will not anything more until his teenage years!  Yeah!  That, of course, is separate from all of his dental or orthodontia procedures that he will almost certainly need at some point.  He is missing at least one tooth and a few are coming in sideways.  I'll take it though!
Now we won't be seen with our Cranio docs until 4!  Truth be told, I'm going to miss them.  They brought us through such a stressful time in our lives.
I can't thank the Craniofacial team at Seattle Children's enough!

Mr.  Cheeseball at his appointment.

I am so bummed I didn't think to get a picture of him with his doctor's at this appointment.

Some days...

...Pajamas are acceptable at 3 in the afternoon

There's no rules when you're one.  
Thank goodness.


A slap in the face...

 The boys have me at my wits end.  Their fighting, their bickering, the constant tattletaling and crying has nearly caused me to do things I am sure would not win me the mother of the year award on numerous accounts.
But you know what, I'll take it.  Because every night I get into bed ready to blog about my terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day and then I look at this blog and my heart breaks.  I take a deep breath and thank God that I get to hear the noise of chaos coming from my three crazy boys.  It's not fair.  No mother should have to endure the loss of a child.  No mother deserves to feel that pain.  I can't even begin to imagine what it must be like.  I just wish there was something I could say, or something I could do to take the hurt away.  But I can't.  I can't bring her baby back.
What I can do is hold my babies tight.  Be thankful for every moment I have with them.  And cherish the chaos that is my life because it is precious and every day is a gift.  
This is why I can't blog.  Whatever I may have to say about how tough my life is right now pales in comparison to the loss of a child.  



I am stuck in a funk and I can't get out.  Getting my camera out seems like such the chore and actually downloading and editing pictures is painful.  I want out of this funk.  I want to take the perfect pictures all the time.  I want to get them downloaded and blog about them in a timely manner.  
Now if only I could get agreement out of my kids maybe this could actually happen.

The good news is that we have been busy enjoying summer and the beginning of fall to the fullest.   It's not that often we get enjoy a Seattle fall like that.  Can't let it go to waste!


World's most photographed baby

There are not shortage of photos of this guy, that is for sure.
How can I resist though... right?!

At 15.5 months you are a handful!  You are needy beyond belief.  Apparently you did not get the memo that you are the 3rd child and you are supposed to be self sufficient and self entertained.  Nope, you like all the attention you can get ALL DAY LONG.  Oh, and at night too.  Since you think it is ok to be waking 2-3 times a night for snuggles.  I love you bud, but really... really?!

Like your brothers, you are technologically advanced.  Your favorite toys these days are the remote, the phone, my iPhone and the iPad.  I am sure it won't be long until you master the lock button and erase something really important.   I will admit, it's pretty darn cute when press the volume key on the phone to make it ring and then proceed to hold it up to your ear and pretend to talk.

You love the outdoors.  Whenever the whining gets to be too much I know I can always take you out for a walk for some peace and quiet.  Now if only that worked for your brothers.

Yep, see those cute little Tom's you are wearing... well, they're gone.  Yep, you managed to remove them from your feet and chuck them from the stroller without me noticing while strolling through the Village.  I harassed QFC for weeks just hoping they would show up, but nope.  I cry just looking at them.  It's a good thing you are so darn cute otherwise I might just not have been able to let that one go.

To go with your moody ways you have become extremely picky about what you put in your mouth.  Funny enough, the only thing I am sure to get down is baby food.  Finger foods to you are simply treats to feed to the dog.  You do still love your bottles... and so do I.  My favorite time of day are the times we spend rocking in your room before naps and bed.

Sleep, that's a whole other story.  When daddy left we did some serious sleep training.  And by sleep training I mean you cried and mommy slept.  You got the picture pretty quickly and, knock on wood, you have been sleeping well the last 5 days.  Naps are in transition.  Most days you can make it on just one afternoon nap that lasts 2-3 hours.  There are those days, though, that you need that extra morning nap.

You are growing a learning constantly and it is so fun to watch you.  You don't have many words that I can speak of, maybe "bye-bye", "Momma", and "TaTa" but even those are few and far between.  I am pretty sure you yell at Alex by saying "Aaaaaaa" too.  You do love to give kisses with your mouth wide open and you always blow Nana kisses when we leave.

Grahamers you keep me on my toes, you challenge me daily, you make me a better mom.
 I love you soooo much!


Happy Birthday Erin!

A few weeks ago I was privileged enough to get to photograph Alex's girlfriends' birthday party.  She rung in 3 in style with the perfect little ballerina party.  Doesn't hurt that her mom is the party planner extraordinaire.  I learned all I know from her.  

The kids had a blast at the ballet lesson with teacher Charla.  Even G baby joined the fun.

Happy Birthday Erin.
We love you!


{five} boys

This summer was one of traveling, play dates, beach club dinners and family.  Thank goodness we had that beautiful yellow thing in the sky that enabled us to do most of this!  We couldn't have asked for a better summer.

One of our many play dates with the Prim's took us to Golden Garden's.  All 5 boys had fun romping in the sand, throwing rocks in the water and finding crabs.  Strangely enough though, i think the most fun was had at the foot wash.  There are just some things about boys that I may never understand.