Friday, July 28, 2017


i love getting the bags of small avocados from trader joes.  they are the perfect size and come in a bag of 6.  usually they are rock  hard, but i have found the perfect way to ripen them.  when i get home i place them in my fruit bowl for 2 days.  at this point they are still firm but have some give to them.  then i put them in the fridge for up to a week and they stay perfectly ripe and firm.  

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

the beast has arrived!

the hot tub was delivered today and we have the perfect spot for it!  it looks like it should have always been there!  i am looking forward to getting it set up and putting it to good use this fall and winter! 

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

hot tub!!!

my best "gift" on my local buy nothing group is this hot tub!!!!  this beast will be delivered to our home this week!  we have always wanted a hot tub and unfortunately the owner could not take this hot tub to their new home.  jarad checked out the condition of it and we will be paying a company to haul it to our home and then we will need an electrician (or possibly my very handy husband) to do some electrical work to complete the set up!  i'll send a pic when it arrives!

Monday, July 24, 2017

this view...

she is hugging my legs and also begging me to pick her up.  this view never gets old. 

pin wheels...

bowie loves the pin wheels in the garden.  i was out shopping the other day and picked up a new one.  she immediately found it in the garden!

Sunday, July 23, 2017

family walk...

sunday afternoon was the perfect time for a walk on soos creek.  bowie even enjoyed doing a lot of walking on her own. 

Saturday, July 22, 2017


someone is loving pb&j just like their mommy.  especially if it is an uncrustable!  i seriously could live off these things, oh yah sometimes i do!

pool party!

my brother in law has family that lives not too far from us!  they were so kind to include us in their annual summertime pool party/BBQ!  we had a great visit but always feels weird seeing them without jamie and ryan!  they are awesome and we love spending time with them and getting to know them better! 

Friday, July 21, 2017

16 months...

16 months is such a fun yet challenging stage of toddlerhood.  bowie is wanting to be very independent and testing boundaries.  she is becoming very vocal and also using some signs to communicate more and more everyday.  she is a sponge soaking in everything around her and often times imitating what she sees.  she is very observant and has no fear.  she is also very sensitive and affectionate.  she loves her family, other kids, animals and being outside.  this not so little one is pure love, light and joy!

bowie milestones...

~weighs about 30 pounds
~size 5 diaper, size 24 month to 2 T pants, size 3 T shirts
~says "daddy," "mommy," "happy," "baby," "cheese," and said "grandma" a few times while she visiting (but we have yet to hear it again).  she also says a lot of words when looking at pics or sees something she recognizes, but they are not necessarily words she repeats daily.  for example; "doggy" or "socks"
~loves putting her shoes on to go outside
~loves picking the cherry tomatoes and eating them
~picky eater!  no meat!
~has 12 teeth and more coming in!
~hair is light golden brown and dark hazel eyes
~loves music and dancing.  particularly kings of leon, the lumineers and jarad would say she also likes tool
~points to her ear any time she hears something loud or unsual and every time she hears a plane
~still takes 2 naps a day but they may be starting to change
~is not big on TV shows, but will occasionaly show an interest in elmo and the movie moanna
~still loves playing with her pretend food, but also likes puzzles and the shape sorter.  she still loves her 100 words book and can identify a lot of the pictures
~uses baby sign language to communicate "more," "all done," "up," "help me"
~loves to wash her hands, brush her teeth and play with her tooth brush and my hair brushes
~very affectionate.  she comes up to you and will put her head on you for a quick snuggle.  when i change her diaper she will grab my arm and put it to her head for a snuggle.  they are short, but so so so sweet
~loves to having free reign of the downstairs
~blows kisses and comes in for a kiss and makes the "mmmmmm" sound
~will hold her glass up to "cheers"
~enjoys her sippy cup with ice and loves to shake it
~does not enjoy being in the car as much as she used to
~throws her binky and thinks it is funny, until she loses it at night time
~loves dipping her binky in my morning coffee and taking a sip

**forgive me this month, but with all the chaos going on with us and the miscarriage these pictures were all taken a couple days before and after her 16 month bday**

Thursday, July 20, 2017

spring mix trick...

i love a good spring mix salad, but the large containers seem to go bad before i even get to enjoy them!  my girlfriend swears by this trick, so i am giving it a try.  hope it works as well as she says!

put a paper towel in your salad container and store upside down in the fridge.  the excess water will go to the paper towel instead of making the lettuce go bad.  then change out the paper towel when it is damp.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

story time...

our community has an exceptional library system and each year they put on story time at lake wilderness for the month of july.  we went every week this year and one time they even had a hot dog lunch for the families.  it is on wednesday at noon and my mom even got to enjoy it with us one week!

Monday, July 17, 2017

water wow!

went to the park with my girlfriend and her 2 kids.  she brought along her back of tricks for squirmy kids and this was in it.  i had never seen it before, but it is from one of my favorite toy companies (melissa and doug).  it is called "water wow" and it is a reusable coloring book.  you add water to the special pen and "color" the pages.  it is painting without the mess and it is great for car rides and restaurants!  i bought a 3 pack on amazon for under $13!!!

Sunday, July 16, 2017

toddler dishes...

i have a slight obsession when it comes to buying all things related to toddler meal time!  everything from sippy cups, insulated thermos, silicone place mats, make your own snack pouches, etc.  my new find at target was dishes and utensils made out of recycled milk containers.  i previously wrote how about i love the brand "green toys" that makes toys from recycled milk containers, so this has the same look and feel as that brand.  they are dishwasher safe and very sturdy.  i got a set of 3 plates for $5.99 and the utensils (4 forks 4 spoons) for $3.99

Saturday, July 15, 2017

chimichurri sauce...

we had a friend in town as well as my mom.  my easy go to meal is always a pork tenderloin roast.  it is one of those recipes that i feel i have perfected.  but i wanted to try something different from my normal raspberry jalapeno sauce.  i decided to go with a chimichurri sauce.  i have never made one before and i read several different recipes.  i rarely follow a recipe and i never measure (except for baking).  i also forgot to take a pic of the final product, but i promise you this emerald green goodness will make any meat or veggie extra special.

here is approximately what i did.  you don't want to make a huge batch.  any left overs will only be good for a few days in the fridge.

1 cup finely chopped parseley
1/2 cup finely chopped basil
1/4 cup finely chopped mint
2 cloves finely chopped garlic
juice of 1/2 lemon
salt to taste
1/2 t red pepper flakes
1/2 cup of olive oil or until it thoroughly coats all the herbs and enough to make a sauce

**most recipes call for red wine vinegar as the acid, but i didn't have any, so i improvised and the lemon tasted great**

Friday, July 14, 2017

update (weeks 11 & 12)

this is a hard post to write, but i am choosing to do so to honor the life we created and also acknowledge our feelings of joy, excitement, disappointment and loss.   here is the email we sent out to our family this morning, so this should explain what has been going on with us for the last 3 months and where we are at now.

dear family,
hope this email finds you well and believe us when we say we wish we had better news to deliver.  yesterday at our 12 week ultrasound appointment the technician was unable to find the baby's heartbeat and commented on how small the baby was.  it was later confirmed by the doctor that the baby had passed at about 9 weeks and 3 days old.  obviously this came as a big shock to us since we had a perfect check up at 9 weeks and i still look and feel pregnant and have had NO physical miscarriage symptoms. i experienced what is called a "missed miscarriage."  this is when you lose the fetus, but your body continues to believe it is pregnant. 
it's been a lot to take in and we will hear from the doctor today to confirm my surgery to remove the pregnancy tissue (most likely on monday).  while sad and disappointed we know how lucky we are to have one another and our beautiful Bowie. 
with love,
erin, jarad & bowie

as i did with my pregnancy with bowie, i had started to document each progressing week.  so i will post those as well.  here are the last photos i took of my baby bump at 11 weeks.

baby # 2, 4 weeks!!!

this morning (may 17, 2017) i woke up feeling like a zombie.  i was so tired, which was unusual since bowie slept through the night, but i couldn't shake the sleepiness and even coffee didn't help the situation.  all morning long i kept counting down the minutes until it was nap time, because i myself needed one.  i NEVER take a nap in the morning, this is usually my only time to hustle and get things done, but this morning i needed to rest!

i laid in bed, took a nap, watched the news and played on my phone.  i started to wonder if i should be getting my period soon.  i had recently started temping again, although my thermometer needed new batteries and i hadn't been good at remembering to do it everyday.  so my data wasn't all that accurate.  and because of this, the app i use had even changed my ovulation date.

bowie was starting to stir in her crib, so i knew i had about 10 minutes or so to quickly take a shower and get dressed.  but first i thought what the heck, lets take a pregnancy test.  to my surprise it came back positive!!!  OMG!  i was in shock.  i have taken so many pregnancy tests over the years while trying to conceive that when you are trying to get pregnant and you get a positive test, it is somewhat like finding the golden ticket!

still in disbelief, i took a shower, got bowie up and feed and decided to go to kohls to get bowie a big sister shirt.  this would be how i would tell jarad the fun news!  it was around 12:30pm when i found out, so i would have to keep it quiet from him until 5pm when he got home.  it was hard, but i knew it would be a much more exciting way to break the news to him.

when he got home bowie greeted him as usual and walked over to the couch to say hello to him.  he saw her shirt and said "big sister?"  i think at first he must have thought this was a used shirt that she was playing in, but he said it out loud and looked at me and i just smiled back.  that is when he knew this was no mistake.  i took 2 more pregnancy tests that afternoon, so i showed him all 3 tests and we finally got to share the excitement together.

of course this time around i have all new worries.  i am worried i will be tired and not feel well which will be extra hard with a toddler.  and how i will handle 2 at one time.  but i am excited and as jarad says "this is the final step of the berkman master plan!"

stay tuned for weekly updates and belly pics.

not a whole lot to see is the size of a poppyseed.

baby # 2, 5 weeks!!!

whoa, still having a hard time wrapping my head around this news.  since it was so hard for us to conceive the first time around, i had no idea what to expect.  and although we have been trying for several months, it was just a whole lot easier this time.  maybe my body already knows what to do?  maybe i am less stressed?  maybe it's just time for the last piece of the "berkman master plan."  either way i have already taken quite a few pregnancy tests to double and triple confirm!

you can see the line is progressively getting darker, which is good news.  that means my HCG levels are continuing to increase.  i am feeling good, although bowie has a cold and is teething which means she is not sleeping very well at night, which means i don't sleep well at night.  so the last few days i have been overly tired.  and my mind is racing, i am thinking of all the things i want/need to do around the house to get ready for a 2nd baby.  i need to slow down.  i do have a bit of time!  i guess it never really feels real until you share the news.  since it is so new to us, we will wait a few weeks to tell family.  we will be going to california in 3 weeks and i can't wait to see my family and share the excitement!  but i won't have my first doctors appointment until we get home, so that feels like a very long time away!  i just have to trust in my body that everything is progressing on track and is healthy.

baby growth milestones...

~embryo looks like a tadpole
~starting to form major organs
~over the next week the baby is double in size
~neural tube is either completed or in the process of closing, which means the brain and spinal cord can start to develop

weight gain = 0 pounds (in fact, even lost a pound, but i look and feel super bloated!)
baby is the size of an apple seed!

baby # 2, 6 weeks!!!

i am tired, hungry and nauseous!  being pregnant with a toddler is not easy at all!  we are traveling to california for 12 days and have a busy trip planned, i am getting a bit anxious about traveling (as i always do) and being able to keep up with our itinerary.

still feeling very bloated and looking it!  although no weight gain, and have still kept off the small amount of weight i have lost.  a scary thing happened this week.  after bowie's nap i fed her lunch and cleaned her up.  i was about to leave the house to run to costco when all of the sudden i got super dizy and had a "light show" like you do with a migraine.  i started to feel the tunnel vision come on and i sat down and got ahold of jarad to tell him i wasn't feeling well.  he was so sweet to rush home and take care of bowie.  by the time he got home the light show had stopped, but i was still not 100%.  i took a 2.5 hour nap and woke up feeling better.  not sure if i beat a migraine or if it was a weird pregnancy symptom, but either way it was a scare for me.

this week i also had a doctors appointment and got blood work done.  i have been bruising easy and feeling overly tired.  doctor wanted to check for anemia, but it all came back normal, so we can chalk that up to another wonderful side effect of pregnancy.  told our parents this week and will wait a little longer to tell our sibblings.

baby milestones...

~baby is circulating blood
~starting to sprout a nose, eyes, ears, chin and cheeks
~about a 1/4 inch big and will double in size by next week
~size of a sweet pea

baby # 2, 7 weeks!!!

made it to california and to my surprise it was the easiest flight yet!  i am so thankful to have my family to help me with bowie since i have been super tired and not feeling great.  i am not nausous everyday, but at least a few times a week.  and it comes and goes.  i am also super hungry, and the hunger comes out of nowhere!  i can be fine one minute and than ravenous the next!  no real cravings at this point, but i do have some favorites that i want to have while on vacation!

i am finding that when bowie goes down for her afternoon nap, i need one too!  and my bloat has turned into a pooch that has popped out of nowhere!  since i am traveling, i won't be weighing myself so the true test will be when i get home next week!  surprisingly my psoriasis that i got after bowie seems to be doing much better!  i am wondering if the change in hormones is helping it?  i am doing nothing different, in fact i am not using my heavy duty moisturizer since i left it at home.  either way i am happy about that.  but i am getting some sort of rash on my cheeks.  i have had them for a while, but they are not pimples.  but for some reason they got worse this week.

baby milestones...

~tooth buds are forming
~arm and leg buds are growing longer
~pancreas and appendix are developing
~brain and eye lenses are growing
~uterus has already doubled in size
~baby is the size of a blueberry

baby #2, 8 weeks!!!

we made it home from vacation and it sure has taken a lot out of me!  now i need to grocery shop, clean and do laundry and get back into our routine.  since being home i am still needing an afternoon nap and have had some bad nausea.  the weird thing is that i am incredibly nauseous but am also starving at the same time.  the hard thing is that NOTHING sounds good to eat.  i am having quite the dilemma.

to my surprise i did not gain any weight on vacation, in fact even with some indulgences i still managed to keep the weight that i lost off.  at this point i am down about 2 pounds from my pre pregnancy starting weight.  but my baby bump is starting to show!  it is scary to me how quickly your body changes with a 2nd pregnancy! 

of course some of my girlfriends guessed i was pregnant during our visit, but it is still very early and i want to be cautious about spreading the news.  we did tell our siblings and of course everyone is excited!  the verdict so far is that i am having a boy???  that is kind of my gut feeling, maybe because this pregnancy feels so opposite of my pregnancy with bowie.

baby milestones...

~baby's sex organs whether testes or ovaries will start to form
~baby has upper lip, eye lids and tip of nose
~tongue is growing
~fingers and toes are forming
~uterus is the size of an orange
~baby is the size of a raspberry

baby # 2, 9 weeks!!!

this is an exciting week because we have our first ultrasound!  it's always a bit nerve wracking, you want to make sure there is something in there or the doctor finds a heart beat.  but our baby is looking great!  a strong heart beat of 178 bpm and measuring right on track at about 9 weeks, so this puts our estimated due date around january 23rd!  the doctor was pleased with everything and i will go back in a month!

i am still having good and bad days.  still battling nausea and trying to find things that sound good to eat.  the good thing is that the nausea is not long lasting, at most it will stick around for a few hours.  i have had to switch to a gummy prenatal vitamin because i was having a hard time with swallowing them.  my exercise has dwindled significantly since becoming pregnant since i am so tired or not feeling well.  i exercised a lot up until 2 weeks before labor with bowie and i feel it really contributed to my easy pregnancy.  so i need to make this a priority again!!!

baby # 2, 10 weeks!!!

this has been a hard week for me.  jarad is on vacation for the whole week for 4th of july and has a long list of house and yard projects he wants to complete.  of course i am sure there is riding, flying and family fun on his list as well.  so naturally i want to tackle my own list, but that didn't happen.  i have been feeling so crappy lately.  zero energy, headaches, cramping and nauseous.  my biggest dilemma is being very hungry but nothing sounds appetizing.  i have had to nap at every opportunity and lay low.  i feel so unproductive and defeated.  my pregnancy with bowie was incredibly easy, maybe it was that way since we were dealing with so much other chaos with our move, that my body took it easy on me.  either way, this time around the first trimester has been a challenge and also being pregnant with a toddler is hard.  after a few days of feeling really crappy i finally had a few good days in a row and we took advantage of some hiking, cleaning and fun times with friends.  i am re-evaluating my expectations and am just trying to accomplish one thing a day off my list.

enough of the complaining, this week i have continued to drop in weight.  at most i have lost is between 4-5 pounds.  while the number on the scale is pleasing, my belly is growing!  luckily i have some very comfy summer maternity tops and dresses!  but don't worry i am still eating!  i think part of my weight loss is contributed to my lack of interest in sugar.  at some point after my labor with bowie i developed psoriasis.  i wasn't sure what it was at first and just thought i had severe dry skin, but after much research i discovered what it was.  one of the interesting side effects of my pregnancy is that my psoriasis is much much better!  in some spots almost 75% better.  i just hope it doesn't get worse after this baby.

baby milestones...

~baby has working arm joints, and cartilage and bones are forming
~vital organs are fully developed and starting to function
~fingernails and hair are starting to appear
~baby can swallow and kick

Sunday, July 9, 2017


nothing better than washington sweet red cherries!  they are so good and very abundant in summer time!

we have considered getting a tree to plant since we love them so much!  still debating if we want the extra yard maintenance.  but they are so cheap in the market it may not be worth our effort.  either way they make a great snack or even dessert!

Saturday, July 8, 2017

last days of vacation...

it has been so nice to have jarad home for the week.  and i am already getting sad at the thought of him going back to work on monday.  we tried a new restaurant today and both really liked it, and bowie enjoyed making a mess with the ketchup and i can't help but look at these two and feel so lucky! 

Friday, July 7, 2017

museum of flight...

took us 1.5 years to cross this off our must see list, but we finally made it to the museum of flight!  it was so cool and so much fun we ended up leaving with a membership!  we will be back again soon and can't wait to take visitors there as well! 

Thursday, July 6, 2017

curry sauce...

i have had a craving for indian food, but we don't have any indian restaurants close by.  thank goodness trader joes has a good variety of some indian inspired foods and sauces.  i tried this one the other night and it was really good.  i simmered meat balls in it over rice and it was quick and tasty!  this will become a new pantry staple for us!

Monday, July 3, 2017

my favorite kind of visitor!

anna goat!  she is so sweet and loves to follow jarad around the yard!

Saturday, July 1, 2017


i am thrilled to have jarad home for the whole week, i love having a staycation with my family!

i'd say this was a good start and end to our first day of vacatiton!

papa murphys cinnamon wheel for breakfast!

hanging by fire pit in back yard!