Category Archives: the boys

Regan turns six

Regan Maui turned 6 today.  Only a few months ago, we were supposed to call him Arlo, after his favorite dinosaur…but now, it’s Maui- a very loud and crazy character from his newly discovered favorite movie- Moana.  When I look at Regan, I’m just in awe of how much LIFE he brings to this world, to our family especially.  He freely gives kisses and encouragement and laughter, yet also doles out plenty of tears and righteous indignation (which I don’t know if that’s the word I’m looking for but, oh well).  He is seriously the life of the party, the life in every. single. day.  He wakes up before everyone else, always.  There is a twinkle in his eye so often, I just can’t help but stare at him…so in awe that this beautiful boy is my son.

This week he started kindergarten and a form came home that I was supposed to fill out for his teacher to better understand him.  My favorite question to answer was the one that started with ‘my child is good at:’ because I figured I should write something academic, but I didn’t.  I wrote that he is good at smiling, encouraging, loudness, sweetness, dancing and singing, imagining…that he protects, he listens, he’s kind.  I would have kept going, but the blank space came to end.  This boy is sooo special.

In the spring, when he’d transferred preschools after we moved to California, one of his new teachers raved about him.  She couldn’t believe how thoughtful he had been that day- when his little friend had gotten hurt- he wouldn’t leave her side and kept comforting her.  His teacher said that this is the same girl he often protects against the bigger boys in class, by literally standing between and telling them to stop.  I’ve seen him plenty of times be this way with his little sister, but it melted my heart to hear that it was bigger than that- it’s a part of who God has made him, inside and outside of our home.

I love how God has made Regan so hilarious, even when he doesn’t mean to be.  I love the way he bounces around…carrying his latest toy obsession or ripped paper that has been taped together to represent his latest toy obsession.  I love the way he gets so excited about food- specifically any kind of protein- bacon, eggs, chicken…not sure why i felt the need to list out protein.  Moving on…we were practicing his letters a few weeks ago, a little refresh before school started and he was struggling with the letter “e”.  He’s so dramatic in his struggles that after not completing the letter many times he sobbed ‘i’m never gonna be a good ‘e’ maker’.  I die.  He hates to fail, but he’s slowly figuring out that it’s all a process.  He hates to wait.  In fact, yet again this summer we changed his birthday…he got to celebrate a full month early.  We’re not helping- ha!

His dancing skills make me cry laughing and he loves to be seen.  He loves all theatrics and bold declarations.  This is the best day ever, this is the cutest little ice cream ever, this is the worst day ever, this is the most amazing thing in the world… I love him.  He still snores like a sailor, sports a gray tooth right up front…loves Reeses peanut butter cups and would do anything for a prize.  He really wants to see Jesus and I’m guessing he won’t stop asking until it happens.

Passionate is such a good word that encompasses my son.  He’s passionate about people and snacks, Jesus and movies, fairness and not doing things he doesn’t want to do.  Regan  Ocean literally means: a royal force…and quite literally that is exactly who he is.  Obviously he’s still working out the kinks, (aren’t we all?) but I can’t wait to see what he does in life with all this passion God has given him.  He truly is one. of. a. kind.  It is one of my greatest joys to be his mom.

Happy birthday my dearest Regan…am I ever glad God gave us you!!  You’re the BEST!

Love, mommy


my son is buying kindle books and can’t read.

It’s almost 11pm right now, and as I type I am simultaneously waiting for amazon chat to issue refunds for 3 kindle books I apparently downloaded tonight while I wasn’t even near a device to do so.  I got an email telling me that one of the books At Home in the World: Reflections on Belonging While Wandering the Globe and successfully arrived and did a double take.  I couldn’t for the life of me remember wanting that book, let alone buying it.  And then I remembered we let our sweet middle child get a turn in our bed to fall asleep (our boys are not good room sharers, as in they don’t fall asleep very well together).  Usually it’s Josiah in our room until Regan falls asleep but we thought we’d switch it up for an evening.

Sometimes I forget the curiosity of one regan ocean…that little rascal.  So first I thought to myself ‘that’s lame- but it’s $8 and i’m tired’ but thankfully I checked my amazon orders instead of chalking one up to crazy reegs.  Turns out he bought two other books tonight- both at high prices- one entitled Radical Candor: Be a Kick-A$$ Boss Without Losing Your Humanity and it was at that moment I became thankful that he can’t actually read yet.  Phew!  The last chosen book The Light We Lost looked to be a romantical tale…not my cup of tea either…geez.  He was a busy little bee tonight.

Just in case you’re wondering, you can get refunds on digital orders.  I was nervous they wouldn’t, because well…if I was some genius who reads fast, I guess I could have downed at least one of those books in 2 hours.  But never fear, amazon chat to the rescue- my favorite form of customer service by far- the chat window.  God bless em.  I wish medical offices would offer those.  Oh, I just saw a message that her return requests came through…so my $ is on the way home- hooray!

Anyway- now that I’ve basically finished a post, I guess I can fill in some gaps…this week is the official start to summer.  Last week Josiah had a little school and then we started potty training (I saw we meaning: Josiah, Regan and I as the teachers…Maya the student) because they were super helpful and great.  She was rocking it all for several days and I was feeling so good- my apathy had paid off…until I made the mistake of adding undies to the mix… accident city.  So, we headed back to commando land but I realized I can’t be quarantined for much longer without losing my sanity.  Tomorrow starts hardcore underwear training…whatever that means.

We have a babysitter now- hallelujah!!  She is starting tomorrow and coming to my rescue once a week for 4 hours…glorious!  I also got things rolling for the boys to attend Bethel’s children’s choir camp since I keep striking out on VBS dates all over town.  It starts in a few weeks, right after I get home from my sister getaway in Bend, Oregon.  Bend is exactly 5 hours for both of us to drive, so we’re meeting in the middle.  I can’t wait!

Okay, I’m seriously just rambling.  so boring.  My bed is calling.


josiah is 7.

*Seven is significant.  I can just feel it.  This year is gonna be big for you buddy.*

Happy 7th Birthday Josiah Henry!  Today we celebrate you with rainbows, trolls and butterflies…as you requested around January 3.  You are always one to look ahead, yet you are the same one who gets lost in the moment over and over again.  This year was definitely one of big changes and growth- and you took each challenge in stride.

We moved across the country and you accepted all of it with such grace.  You are doing your best at sharing a bedroom with your looney bro- it’s a good thing you’re so patient.  You jumped right into a brand new first grade class with excitement…declaring you are friends with almost everyone- you don’t claim favorites.  But you do in other things…like colors.  I love that your favorite colors are still pink and red.  I love that you tried choosing pink and purple glasses just this week, after your leopard print ones bit the dust.  Sadly, you had to settle for cool honey colored (as you call them) ones instead.  If I let you pick out your own clothes, you often try for monochromatic outfits…one day is red, one day is blue…you’d probably try that all the time if I wasn’t so picky.  Ha!

I love that you’ve become more confident in hearing God’s voice.  Your heart is so tender towards the Lord and He is so proud of you.  You are confident in His love and who He has made you…it’s amazing to watch you trust Him.  It seems so natural, so effortless and I pray that it will be this way all of your days.  I love watching you learn about God and discover more of who He is.  Your curiosity and fear of the Lord are both gifts I want to emulate.  I’m so thankful for your tenderness…you are so humble and kind.

You are still such a wonderful big brother.  You give and give and give.  You encourage and serve…rarely saying no when asked to help.  I love watching you teach your siblings, most often just simply by example.  You are so peaceful, even when you’re crazy.  You’ve mastered bathroom cleaning (the best!) and chapter books and sleeping in.  Your sense of humor is maturing, and it’s fun to see you understand my jokes and weirdness.  You have the best poses for pictures and dancing is a daily ritual for you.  This year you’ve discovered legos and I’ve finally given in…but I love that you only want the rainbow colored ones.  You are unique and special and so so colorful.  You, my son, are a priceless treasure.  I am so grateful that I get to spend my days with you…even if you won’t let me kill a spider because it’s God’s creature.

Happy 7th birthday my dearest, handsome, wonderfullest son,

Love your co- wheel-a-fortune gamer, mommy


these three.

I haven’t written about my kiddos specifically in awhile, so I thought…why not?


inspecting her belly button.  and jos is wearing a mermaid tail if you’re wondering.

I recently discovered, even though I think I’ve subconsciously known this all along- Regan can wear anything and make it look cool.  It’s bizarre how two boys who share all the same clothes now, can still look so uniquely different in the same shirt.  The other day I was reminded of this fact when I threw on Josiah’s ghetto old school shoes (that were for his uniform- not a shoe I would normally choose) onto Regan and he totally rocked them.  They actually look good on him.  It’s kinda hilarious.

Then there’s my daughter…who just doesn’t like clothes in general.  Most days she’s naked with a blanket wrapped somehow around her- or if she’s feeling princessie at the moment, then a tattered and worn tulle/satin combo will be falling off of her.  I won’t even buy more clothes for her right now, even when I see adorable things bc I know she’d rarely wear them.  We did discover she grew out of her tennis shoes and ordered some new ones- bubble gum pink…which she declared her princess shoes and literally wore them to bed last night.  So- that’s a win.

Now Josiah…he likes the monochromatic look…which we rarely actually let him out of the house in- lol.  However, if he were to dress himself he would literally choose one color for everything.  I started taking pictures because he did it three days in a row- and he’s so proud of himself too.  He also loves the rainbow look and would wear his rainbow socks every day if he could.  His leopard print glasses are going strong, though pretty loose so they are falling down his nose like his last pair…giving him a sort of grandpa look to him.  It’s awesome.

In other news…both boys are LOVING school.  It’s adorable to hear them talk about their days in the evening- Jos already has a “bff” which a little girl dubbed him as- and Regan cries when he has to leave each day.  Josiah says this school is more work but he doesn’t mind too much (yet!) and Regan is begging for hot lunch- because of the juice.

I feel like the whole move across country has bonded them together, but also highlighted their individual needs for space.  They are each different in how they want alone time…but they definitely all like it.  (just like me!)  I love that all three of our kiddos have somewhat of an independent spirit, yet they still enjoy people and love to be around them.  The boys are sharing a room in this house and both still admit that they’d rather have their own…but I think it’s mostly just Josiah that would love it.  He’s such an imaginative soul- he needs space to create his other worlds.  Regan is getting there though, definitely pretending more than ever… it’s one of my favorite parts of kids.

Last night I pulled Maya out of her room at 10pm because I heard her dancing around and snuggled her into my bed.  I started telling her a tale about a princess who was lost and had her rapt attention for longer than I’ve seen her sit still in forever.   It reminded me that while imagination is definitely in kid’s natures, it also doesn’t hurt to nurture it along.  I need to do more of that with Maya.  I also need to potty train her.  Even though I think it’ll probably be the easiest thing ever, I’m too scared to pull the trigger- lest it be way too hard.  Ha.

Ok. I’ve been working on this for days…so I need to just publish.


we found dory

OMG.  I figured it would be fun to write a follow-up post to describe how awesome last night was.  Josiah might have asked when Brielle (our babysitter) was coming, about 50 times yesterday so needless to say we were very ready to go at 6pm when she rolled in to watch Maya for the evening.

As we parked, the boys asked if this was a movie theatre…the great part is that the one we chose is under construction so there were only 4 movies showing and only a small crowd to weave through.  After spending too much on popcorn (and the boys in awe of the snack bar) we headed in to theatre two, only to be surprised that it had already been redone and we scored the sweet recliner seats!!

It was the cutest, from the moment we walked in 15 minutes early… the boys were enamored with the giant screen and kept looking at us and each other in amazement.  So fun.  I handed out their treat bags and popcorn and the trailers began.  This is the only part that was annoying…who thinks Ghost Busters and Finding Dory compare?!  I mean, seriously?  Poor Jos literally turned his head and closed his eyes through the whole thing and I distracted Regan for most of that preview.  Lame.

But from then on…it was awesome.  Regan squealed with sheer delight the first time he saw Dory on screen and Josiah couldn’t ever take his eyes off the screen, for almost the entire movie.  And the movie is SO GOOD.  As in, laugh-out-loud, sweet, great story line, clean, adorable AMAZING.  The new characters are awesome…I had gotten a few of them in stuffed animal versions for the boys last week, so they were excited to see them “in real life”. Ha.

When the credits rolled, I told Bart we had to wait because there was probably a little show at the end, but wasn’t sure since the credits took a long time…so we thought we’d just go but that’s when Regan bursts into tears.  “I. don’t. want. to. go” he exclaimed very loudly and I didn’t exactly blame him.  It was an epic night…who would want that to end?  So we stayed a little longer because he really wanted to keep watching.  And sure enough, at the very very very end the old characters from Finding Nemo show up- it was quick but cute.  And then he reluctantly but willingly stood up and we walked out.

I’m so glad we waited to take the boys to their first movie until this one.  It was perfect.  They are at great ages (4 and 6) to really appreciate the experience as a special incredible adventure…and the bonus was that I really enjoyed the movie just as much as the kiddos.  Of course, I loved the way their eyes sparkled at the excitement of it all and that definitely made it a memory we’ll never forget.

Ok. I’m going a little over the top now.  But if you knew how much our kids have been obsessed with Finding Nemo then you’d know- over the top is the only way we’d be with it’s sequel.

*terrible photos but we were loving it so much i almost forgot to take any… oh well!

movie 2movie


happy 6th birthday Josiah

I wrote a little book for Josiah on his first birthday entitled “Our First Fishy”.  Don’t be too in awe, it is a tiny little board book that I painted simply and in it contains the story of how he came into our family and his first year of life.  I found it the other day and smiled.  Then I read the back which holds a couple prophecies that he received as a baby.  It reminded me  how true it is that God has created each of us, so beautifully and intricately, and He knew us before we were born.

“Josiah Henry…a little king, one who will rule in the Spirit and in the natural…full of joy and one who stands for truth and righteousness.”

This describes our little first born so well, yet it was spoken over him when he was a tiny chubby drooly sweet baby.  What I love is that even at just 6 years old, I can see Josiah as a little king.  He rules, but in such a subtle and quiet way at times.  He follows when he sees the need, and leads when a leader is necessary.  He serves like a king (true leadership is humility) and his eyes are almost always filled with that spark of joy.

Just a few weeks ago, he came home from school and shared with me that a boy had told him to take a toy from the classroom and lie to his mom by telling me it was from the treasure box.  Josiah told me the whole story and then recalled how he said NO to the little boy.  I can’t even explain the joy that leaped in my heart as my sweet kindergartener shared how he chose truth and righteousness.  Of course, I drove us straight to the ice cream store and probably told him how proud I was about a million times.  But I wasn’t actually surprised…Josiah has been honest from the day he could speak.  He loves to know the right way…he loves boundaries and knowing expectations.  God made him to be a lover of truth.

It’s beautiful to watch another human being, especially when it’s your child, become who God has created him to be.  I cannot begin to imagine what Josiah will become as he gets older, but I can’t wait to see!  That’s not true- ha…because I kinda want him to slow down the growing up a little.  He is at a great age in my opinion- I love this young elementary time.  I love watching him realize he can read almost anything now.  I love being able to trust him with bigger tasks.  I love that he still asks to snuggle all the time and the way his eyes light up with anything special.  I love the way he loves his brother and sister- so patient and kind and creatively.  I love his tenderness and his desire to learn about everything.  I love his air-headedness and his silly ways.  I love his crocodile tears and his love of people.  I love his obsessions- dinosaurs have pretty much taken over at the moment, but before that it was Space and rainbows.  I love that his favorite colors are red and pink.  I love that he wears his glasses on the edge of his nose like an old man.  I love that he loves fuzzy pajamas the best.

Josiah- you are such a great joy to me.  I love being your mommy and being able to learn and grow with you.  Thank you for always forgiving me, always being patient with me, and always encouraging me like Jesus does.  I’m so so so thankful you’re my son.

Happy Birthday!  You’re 6!  The day you’ve been counting down for 5 months is finally here!  IT’S YOUR BIRTHDAY!!!  IT’S YOUR BIRTHDAY!!!  IT’S YOUR BIRTHDAY!!!

not ready to be mom

*Just found this in the archives from last month and realized I’d forgotten to publish.  Thankfully, for the most part my title of mom is gone.  PHEW.  Back to mommy!!!*

Recently, my middle child has taken to calling me “mom”.  I can’t handle it.  It’s too soon, he’s too young.  The title of mom is reserved for more mature days ahead…as in teenage years when my sons can look me straight in the eye or tower over me with their intermittent low and high voices…those are the days of mom.  In fact, “mom” will be their title for me for the rest of their lives…so I’m holding on to mommy with a strong grip.  I can’t let go yet.  I’m not ready to be mom.

Sometimes I fake cry and beg Regan to call me mommy and after a little bit he relents with the cutest alllllrighhhht and I get one or two mommy’s out of him until he goes back to mom.  I shouldn’t take it too personally because he calls Bart dad, Josiah is now Jo and Maya is My.  Perhaps he is realizing there is no need to waste syllables in his little world at the moment.  I hope it doesn’t last long.  And Josiah hates it too.

Admittedly I wrestle with my kid’s changes.  I LOVE when they sleep through the night, but I hate seeing them grow out of those tiny clothes.  I LOVE when they can do stuff independently, but I still love that they need me.  I LOVE when they are potty trained but…um… nope, nothing I miss there.  I LOVE when they can’t talk but then I really love when they start to.  I LOVE when they are big enough to walk about without me, but I miss slinging them on my hip with their head snuggled in.

So for now, I’m hoping “mom” is just a glitch in the matrix…a casualty of pre-k…and one that will disappear until later years.  I wanna hold onto mommy for a little while longer.