Monday, December 21, 2015


I have worked harder in the last 10 years than I have in my entire life. I've passed up more, slept less, cried more, socialized less, and worried more.

Oh, but the laughter. And the love. The hugs and kisses, the snuggles and giggles. The learning, the wonder, and the magic. Those have overflowed in the last ten years, filling up my life with all their goodness, drowning out the bad.

For 10 years I have had the best "job" of my life. I have been Emma's mama.

Hospital1 (4)
December 21, 2005
Tucson, AZ

It hasn't always been sunshine and roses with her. We've had our struggles.

Like when she was nine months old and we couldn't figure out why she had snot coming out of her butt (which we finally realize four years later was because of a gluten intolerance).

a.k.a how we figure out she was gluten intolerant

Or when she was 14 months old and spent an entire flight throwing up only to end up in the hospital with rotavirus for three days while Jared was deployed. 

I had never been so stressed in my life. Thankfully family made it easier to handle, like when Auntie Amber turned Emma's I.V. into friend named Ivy. 

Or the time she busted out a front tooth while we were visiting Auntie Amber in NH.

And the ongoing battle of her perfectionism.  
Ski Day at Showdown- First time skiing (33)
Falling a lot her first time skiing.
Showdown, MT
December 2012

Be we have had so many wonderful times. 

Spending some time in nature at Aqua Caliente Park
Tucson, AZ
September 2007

First ice cream cone at the Dairy Queen we use to go to when I was a kid.
Manchester, NH
May 2007

Spending hours following this toad around in Gramma's yard.
Cresco, IA 

The first time she ever laughed was at our first dog, Icky. She laughed so hard she cried, then fell asleep. 
(photo January 2009)

Mamma and Me Pony Lessons 25Mar10 (13)
Horses! This kid's love for horses has amazed me since day one. 
March 2010

Paper bag puppets with Da while chilling and wearing a cape. 
August 2010

'Wula Hooping' (15)
Learning to "wula hoop," and winning a contest at the farmers market for it. 
Nevada, IA
August 2010

Camera Craziness Apr2011 (34)
Her amazing love for animals
Nevada, Iowa
April 2011

Emma Rock Climbing (25)
The odd and random things she loves to do.
August 2011

Drive to AZ 2011 (2)
Hotel pillow fights
Drive to AZ
December 22, 2011

Bed in the Family Room (4)
Dancing to Taylor Swift
Nevada, Iowa
January 2012

More Bike Riding (16)
Riding bikes
Nevada, IA
March 2012

Sara's Wedding 19May2012 (56)
Being flower girl in Auntie Sara and Uncle Rich's wedding
Cresco, IA 
May 2012

Just being silly together
Nevada, IA
June 2012

Reading State Quaters outside of Subway (9)
Shenanigans all around. 
June 2012

Reading State Quaters outside of Subway (7)
Funny Da!

RAIN- WooHoo (3)
Playing in the rain at Gramma's
Cresco, IA
July 2012

Hiking in Decorah, Nov 2012 (7)
Family hikes
Decorah, IA
November 2012

b. Travel to MT- Day 2- Mt Rushmore (20)
Grand adventures
Mt. Rushmore
November 2012

d. Travel to MT- Day 2- Devils Tower (36)
Devil's Tower
November 2012

Hand Sewing 2- Lambkin (6)
Teaching her new things
Great Falls, MT
February, 2012

Hiking (6)
Getting outside
March 2013

As she get's older, this kiddo of our is more a partner than a responsibility. 

Kitchen Help- Veggie Prep
Food prep partner
Great Falls, MT
February 2013

Walk 5-26-13 (12)
Walking partner
Great Falls, MT
May 2013

Groundworkds Farm 7Jun13 (1)
Farming partner
May 2013

Saige by Emma (3)
Crafting partner
Jun 2013

Library (3)
Reading partner
Great Falls Public Library
June 2013

Morning Glory Muffins (4)
Cooking Partner
Great Falls, MT
June 2013

Question Mark Day 20Dec13 (321)
Jumping partner
Great Falls, MT
December 2013

Rename December (26)
Travel partner
Amtrak train
December 2013

Surprise Visit-Amber and Tucker (84)
My Jiu-Jitsu partner
Great Falls, MT
January 2014

Feeling better (5)
Shoveling partner
Great Falls, MT
January 2014

Partner in goofiness!
Great Falls, MT
December 21, 2015

You get the point.

While I don't expect the next 10 years to be walk in the park (though there will be a lot of walks in parks), I am so excited to see what they bring. I am super proud of the person she already is and I am excited to see who she becomes. 

So, HAPPY TENTH BIRTHDAY to my kind, compassionate, beautiful, thoughtful, funny, smart, silly, happy girl. I love you Emma, and I am so thankful I get to be your mama!


1 comment:

  1. Happy Birthday Emma I will call later today! Love you very much and miss you all!


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