Friday, September 18, 2009

Palmer 8 days old pictures

thanks Jeff and Maren for awesome pictures!

Sunday, September 06, 2009

Palmer Joseph Brandt has arrived

It's been over a week an high time I put it on my blog. My number 3 boy, Palmer Joseph Brandt, was born Friday August 28th at 7:59 am via scheduled c-section. He was 8 lbs. 20 inches long. This was by far the best experience of the 3. I was much healthier this pregnancy and was able to be very active throughout. In fact, the day before we had the inspector come so Rob and I were out nailing side rails and brackets onto our back steps that morning so they would pass inspection. I can confidently tell all those men in my ward that I knew what I was doing shoveling compost out of trucks at 5 and 6 months pregnant. My body just doesn't go into labor on it's own, period. I might pull a muscle or two, but not a single contraction will occur. Anyway, I was very relieved when Palmer first emerged and let out a healthy cry. My other two were promptly wisked away to special care for breathing problems and I didn't get to hold or feed them for several hours after. This time, I was able to hold him in my arms as they wheeled me out of surgery to recovery. What a blessing to have that experience for the first time. I also didn't throw up at all after surgery when I typically endure several hours of relentless vomiting. So I was perky as a peacock all that day! Of course when you start taking care of baby and nursing around the clock, you're not so perky and lack of sleep catches up to you. We had bit of a rough go at nursing in the beginning but are doing great now. He is such a precious little guy! His two brothers love him so much and can't get enough. Especially Adam. He'll just stare at him and say, "Ooooohh! He's sooooo cute!" I can't describe the feelings of love and gratitude I feel being a Mommy again. There's nothing quite as hard, nothing quite as special.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

First lost tooth

Adam finally lost his first tooth a few days ago. All of his friends his age have been losing teeth left and right. He was beginning to feel pretty left out. He was very excited to have a visit from the tooth fairy. (Although the tooth fairy and his assistant had a bit of a disagreement on how much money to leave under the pillow. His assistant, thought a dollar would be more than generous. Mr. Fairy suggested five dollars with the argument of inflation! After his assistant choked a bit on her water, she reminded him that he would have to give 5 dollars every time he lost a tooth. The assistant won.) I overheard Adam saying this to his dad, " Dad, I believe the tooth fairy is real but you know it's not really real so you put the dollar under my pillow." He is such a smart kid. So imaginative yet such a realist. I remember pointing to the sky one time and saying, "look Adam! I see a bunny rabbit!" Adam's response, "Mom, that's a cloud." No use arguing. Seems like just yesterday that he was getting that very tooth in!

Birthday Boy!

Today was Adam's birthday. I can't believe my baby is 6 years old! Time really has flown. I love this kid so much it hurts! Happy birthday Son! I'm so proud you're mine and I love you! Here are a few pictures of him opening his presents from us and Grandma and Grandpa Brandt.
P.S. Grandma and Grandpa Brandt, Adam has been playing Clue Jr. non-stop for the past 45 min. I guess it's a hit! Thanks so much for making his birthday special!

Monday, August 03, 2009

My Golfers

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Stressed but still smiling

things are pretty stressful around here these days. I'm 4 weeks out from having baby number 3. We're trying to buy the house we live in hoping that we have a place to live right after baby. Rob's trying to finish his dissertation so that he gets his pay raise in September. And many other things that I could list but it would take too long. Don't get me wrong, these are all wonderful things, just so much is hanging in the balance and it takes alot out of you to muster the faith that things will work out in the end. Remember, faith without works is dead, and we have been working really hard! Since I'm practically on the verge of a nervous breakdown every day, I've decided that I need to focus on the things that make me smile in order to relieve stress.

Things that made me smile today...

1. Adam said to Rob, "When Mom kisses me it's like she's giving me the stamp of love!"

2. Walking into the boys room and catching them lip singing and jammin' to the Tabernacle Choir Christmas CD.

3. Walking in the door from a late grocery trip to see that my husband had been a white tornado cleaning the house while I was gone.

Whatever happens, I know I'm blessed with a beautiful family that brings me joy beyond words!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Smart Mom

A message Adam's primary teacher sent me today on facebook. Totally made my day! I sure love this kid!

"So in Primary today we were talking about how parents help teach their children about the gospel. We were asking the kids in general what their parents teach them and Adam said "My mom teaches me everything in the whole world!" Throughout the course of the lesson he and Elli were arguing about that even being possible and then Adam looked over at me really sad and said "Ellie doesnt believe that my mom taught me everything in the whole world!" It was SO cute! I told him "Well, its not really possible to know everything in the whole world, but Ill bet your mom teaches you everything she knows and that is a lot of stuff because she is pretty smart." He just looked at me and said "ok"... didn't seem overly convinced but at least wasn't still upset at Elli :)
It was really sweet tho that he was so upset that someone didn't believe that you knew everything in the whole world and taught it all to him. Just thought I would share :)"

I'm so glad Adam has such amazing teachers! Thanks Tiffany for being so patient with him!

Monday, July 06, 2009


Despite a nasty cold this weekend, I managed to sew the crib bedding for the baby room. I think my nesting instinct is stronger than my desire to lay down and sleep. Actually, I find that these types of creative outlets are meditative for me. I enjoy just zoning out and hearing the whir of the machine. Sometimes I'll listen to conference talks or something. Anyway, I enjoyed my weekend of therapy and thoroughly love the result! The subtle theme is turtles.

Saturday, May 30, 2009


Okay everyone! I need to take a poll. Hopefully this will help convince my husband to name our baby what I want! So, after hours and hours of scouring name lists, I finally got that special feeling. Are you ready? I want to name our new baby boy Palmer Allan Brandt. Rob is not a fan but I'm sure I can convince him if the rest of the world is on my side! I want honest opinions here. And if you don't like it, feel free to share your brilliant ideas! Because we are at a standstill!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009


When I was little I remember a motivation technique the was used often. Whoever was in charge would motivate us to be somewhere or do something by saying, "Last one to the car is a rotten egg!" or, "Last one to get ready for church is a rotten egg!". You get the picture. Anyway, I started using that one day with my boys because I was getting desperate to get them to listen. I thought I would make it fun but I think they got a little confused. You see, my boys LIKE to be rotten. I figured this out early on and instead of saying, "LAST one" I say "FIRST one to get dressed is a rotten egg!". When I say it that way, they both clamor to be the first one. Usually Adam wins because he's the oldest, biggest, and fastest of the two. He'll gain victory and shout, "I'm rotten!" Then Lincoln will droop his head and cry, "Oh man! I wanted to be rotten!" He gets really upset so I have to say ," the next one is rotten too!" This usually makes him happy and then he'll run and do whatever it was I asked of him. Well, today I was trying to get the boys to come down for dinner. They wouldn't come, and wouldn't come. So I yelled up the stairs, "First one to the table is a rotten egg!" Of course, Adam has to win so he comes bounding down the stairs. Lincoln on the other hand was not responding to my motivation technique this time. Because Adam is the oldest, he feels it's his job to make sure everyone else is doing what they are supposed to do. He was getting very frustrated that Lincoln would not come down. I overheard him yelling up to Lincoln, "Lincoln! Don't you WANT to be rotten?" No answer. I guess not!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

A Tribute to My Mothers

I have been so blessed to have the most wonderful mothers in my life. I want to thank my own mother, who bore 13 children into this world, baked thousands upon thousands of loaves of bread, used old-fashioned cloth diapers for ALL 13 children, and did countless other things to care for her children, for always believing in me. Mom, you have always been my biggest fan in everything I've endeavored to accomplish. Thanks to you, I have inherited your love for music and hopefully can instill that in my children. Thanks to you, I pretty much believe I can do anything I put my mind to. Thanks to you, I am a better mother as I remember and utilize the things you taught me. Thanks to you, I have the gospel in my life and am sealed to you for all eternity. Thanks to you I truly have a testimony of our Savior Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father's plan for us. I love you Mom!

I want to thank my wonderful Mother-in-law for so many things. I love you like I love my own mother. Thanks to you, I have the most amazing husband a girl could ask for who has given me two (almost 3) beautiful children. A man who takes his patriarchal role very seriously and treats me like a queen even when I'm not. Thanks to you, your son had the gospel in his life and was worthy to take me to the temple. Thanks for listening to the spirit all those years ago when investigating the church. Thanks to you, I know I'm always cared for. I don't know what I would do without you when I have my babies. Thanks to you, my boys have made many memories of playing endless hours of hide-and-go-seek, various make believe games, building forts, etc... I cherish our friendship and feel very fortunate to have you in my life!

Treasure boxes

A few weeks ago, we had a visit from Rob's Great Aunt and Uncle Dorothy and Lyle Feisel. So they would be our boy's Great-great Aunt and Uncle. They live about 1 hr and 30 minutes south of us and it has been such a joy getting to know them. They have become so dear to us and we are so grateful to have such wonderful people in our family. Growing up, my dad always made a huge effort to help his children know the legacy and heritage that we came from. Even to the extent of a 16-18 hr. ride with 9 kids in the back of an S-10 Chevy pickup truck. We spent that trip playing with cousins, visiting gravestones and bonding with the generations that have gone before. I remember sitting at the feet of my Great uncle Paul as he told us stories about my Dad. And listening to my uncle Roger sing us silly songs while playing the guitar. I can't speak for my siblings, but the memories that I still have of those summer vacations/reunions are of the importance of knowing where you come from. Rather than the long miserable car rides throwing up from motion sickness and trying not to kill each other in the process. Since then, I am a sentimental fool when it comes to learning about my ancestors. I want my children to have a strong knowledge of the legacy that they have come from on both sides of the family. With that said, you can imagine my joy when Great Uncle Lyle shows up with the most special gift for my two boys. Lyle is an extremely gifted woodworker. He made a treasure box for each of my boys. In the inside of the box was this picture of Rob's Great Grandfather Clyde Feisel Holding Rob's dad Steve when he was a baby in about 1954. I cried when I read the story below the picture. Here's the story:
About 1935, Clyde Feisel and his family were renting a farm about three miles southwest of Tama, Iowa. It was the depth of the great depression and while farmers were well supplied with food from their own labors, there was no market for crops or livestock so there was no cash available to pay the rent. The farm was owned by the Meskwaki Indian nation and they were very happy to barter for the rent since no one else had any cash, either. They made a deal with Clyde that if he would cut down trees on the farm, have them milled into lumber in a nearby sawmill and then build a barn, they would accept that in lieu of rent. Clyde cut the local hardwoods-elm, ash, cottonwood and hickory-for the barn. At the same time, he cut and had sawn some walnut trees that he didn't use in the barn but instead stacked and dried for later use. As the five feisel boys grew up and went to high school, they all used this walnut lumber for shop projects. A small amount of this lumber still survives and Lyle now uses it for inlays in projects for the descendents of Clyde and Clara.
Clyde Feisel is Adam and Lincoln's Great Great Grandfather.

The diamond in the center of the lid is the remnant of walnut that is spoken of in the story.
Thank you Dorothy and Lyle for sharing this incredible gift with us! We love you guys!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

How does your garden grow?

Lately I've been a bit obsessed with self reliance. I'm the Enrichment counselor in the Relief Society presidency in our ward so have been trying to incorporate activities that will encourage the women to become more self reliant. My current baby is the beginning of a community garden. An awesome family in our ward donated a huge plot for us to use. It has been so exciting to see others buy into my vision of what this garden can do for the families in our ward. I don't have pictures of the garden, but here are some starter plants that my boys and I planted several weeks ago that will be transplanted into the community garden. It's sort of hard to see some of them. This is the first time I've tried to do starters , so we'll see how successful they are. At any rate, it's been fun for the boys to learn and help me watch and care for our "babies". In fact, Adam and I had an awesome conversion that began with an observation he had. He observed that Lincoln's flowers were growing faster than his at first, but then his caught up and seemed to be growing faster now. I mentioned briefly that people are kind of like that. In that we all grow at different speeds depending on our personalities, circumstances, talents, and abilities. Sometimes we forget to "feed" our bodies, minds, and spirits and it halts our growth for the time being and we can even begin to wilt and die. Adam thought for a moment then his eyes brightened. He said, "Yeah! Kind of like when the Lamanites and the Nephites took turns being wicked and righteous!" He understood. It prompted me to ponder about what I am doing to feed my mind, body, and spirit. How is my garden growing?

Thursday, April 16, 2009

My own Dr. Seuss

In homeschool we've been reading alot of poetry by Dr. Seuss and Shel Silverstein. We found books that tell about the authors and how they became writers of children's books. We are also learning about how poetry works and how it has a musical rhythm to it. Anyway, Adam was inspired and wanted to write his own book of silly poems. Here they are! I can't help but giggle when I read through them.

Spooky Tales
A book of silly poems
By Adam Brandt

What Day Will I Be Flat?
What day will I be flat?
Maybe it might be Saturday or Friday.
Or maybe it might be on my birthday.
Maybe on Christmas.
When I get flat, I would like to play the piano.
But when I played the piano, I didn’t want to play it anymore.

I Would love to be a Ghost in the Attic
I would love to be a ghost in the attic.
If I were, I would climb down the stairs to the attic
And go haunt people.
Would you want to be a ghost in the attic?
What’s that you say? You say that today is the day
that I’m going to the attic?
Goodbye, I’m going to the attic.

I Cannot Go to Preschool Today
I cannot go to preschool today.
What? What’s that you say? You say today is Saturday?
Goodbye, I’m going out to play.
4 Men in What Tub?
What tub has 4 men?
Do you know what I like to do best?
Math. If you make a 4 into a 5, you might want to
Write in the word “blim-blim” as in “tub-tub”. Or
If you put a 4 to a 6 then it might end up as the word
“piano”. Did you know that pianos have hair?
That’s a very odd question you say, “why did they have hair?”
Because F, 5, and 4 make the words “pianos have hair”.

What Do Chickens Do at Night?
What do chickens do at night? I know what
Chickens do at night. What’s that you say? You say you want to
Know what chickens do at night? I’ll tell you. They make
words out of music notes or numbers. They might put a 4 and a middle C
to make the words “Lamps and pianos have hair”. Did you know
that computers and lamps and pianos eat cereal and oatmeal?
Well, that’s all of my story. Goodbye, I’m going out to play.
What is in that Spooky Cabin?
What is in that spooky cabin? Are there lamps or spooky ghosts?
I do not know. Go ask your dad. What is in that spooky cabin?
Is there a cat or lanterns? I do not know, go ask your pop.
Maybe there is a mysterious ghost. I do not know, go ask your mom.
Goodbye, I’m going out to play.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Our lovely blissfully happy lot in life!

Well, it seems that our lot in life is destined to remain in the male variety. Yep! That's right! We found out today that we are having boy #3! We are so excited. Picking a name is going to be tricky though. Any ideas?

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Mt. Puanana (Pooh-uh-nah-nah)

This is our latest science project. Adam wanted to make a volcano diorama like his friend Connor. We got on Youtube and found instructions and went to work. At first he was disappointed that it would take several days to complete the project and he had to stop and "rest" a few times because he thought it was SO exhausting! Once it began to take shape though, he was very excited.

Phase 1-Newspaper tower

Phase 2-Plaster
Adam was not too thrilled about the flour and water slop we used to plaster the paper. He'll pick his nose then put his finger in his mouth but he doesn't like to touch flour and water. Go figure!
He thought it very important to go to the draw/erase board and "record" notes about how volcanoes work. A real scientist documents his work.

Phase 3-Painting

Phase 4-Eruption
It was a bit disappointing this first time, so I guess we'll have to practice.