Thursday, December 18, 2014


Are there even words? This sister of mine has been my best friend since we were little. I adore this picture because the love we have for each other is so apparent. I'm looking to this powerful woman who has birthed 5 beautiful boys herself. She is caring for me as only a woman can during the most intense part of birth.

Ashlee surprised me by driving up from Vegas to be there for this sacred event. When I answered the door (finally in active labor), tears were streaming down her face. She cried "I just couldn't miss it." We both embraced and bawled. She also stayed a few days to care for me and my family like only Ashlee can. This woman means the world to me. My words can't really describe what I'm trying to express, but I think this image does.

I adore you sister. You will never know how much your sacrifice to be here meant to me.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Welcoming Seth Lorenzo Hoopes November 6th 2014!

Seth Lorenzo Hoopes, 7 pounds 14 ounces, 22 inches long. Born in water at our home early this morning at 2am surrounded by my loving sisters and adoring husband. Truly the most remarkable birth I could ever imagine. The love for me and my baby filled the walls of our home. Tears, joy, and gratitude fill the deepest part of my soul. So grateful for our miracle baby! I feel like I'm going to burst! #homebirth #midwives# sethlorenzo #sisters #love

Here is what Megan wrote sharing my status:

Seth Lorenzo Hoopes, 7 lbs 14 oz born in the water at home by the most beautiful rock star birther in the world Bri Phillips Hoopes! We celebrated all day and into the night awaiting his arrival. It was a party. Our sister Ashlee Merback drove fast and furious from Vegas to surprise Bri to attend her birth. Bri was SO surprised and happy. We painted nails, laughed, cried joyful tears, and celebrated the blessing of womanhood. It was an honor to be part of a glorious sacred birth of one of the people I love the most. You were a goddess! Love you.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Caleb's Primary Talk

I tried to record his talk during primary, but I was too far back so you couldn't hear him. He did such a great job, and was able to do much of it on his own. Here is a recreation of the talk. He's a bit more distracted, but the message is the same!

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Pooping In Pants...

Our bossy, hilarious, adorable 2 year old. She kills me with her cuteness! I'm happy to report our sweet girl is back! She went through a rough patch when we moved. It was HARD! There were far too many changes for this little diva. She is now adjusted, and as sweet AND sassy as ever!

Our Year In Issaquah!

I just found these pictures on my SIL's blog about our year in Issaquah. Looking through the pictures makes me ache for our Issaquah family. I am so so so grateful Dan matched in Seattle for his fellowship. Already strong friendships became stronger, and my kids ADORE these cousins. Dan absolutely loved the training he got in Seattle. It has started his career in a way that will be forever beneficial, but I am grateful he matched in Seattle for these people below! I didn't realize how much I would miss them when we left. They were always family, but by time we left, they were FAMILY! 

It's a BOY!!!

When the US tech was looking between baby's legs, I knew in that moment we had a son coming. I was disappointed for the first 5 minutes after finding out, but that disappointment changed into relief and gratitude that all seemed well with our little miracle baby! 

Immediately Dan got onto google to look up the boys name we were considering...Seth. 

Seth (HebrewשֵׁתֿStandard ŠetTiberian ŠēṯArabicشيث‎ Shith or Shiyth or Sheeth; placed; appointed"), in JudaismChristianity and Islam, was the third son of Adam and Eve and brother of Cain and Abel, who were the only other of their children mentioned by name. According to Genesis 4:25, Seth was born after Abel's murder, and Eve believed God had appointed him as a replacement for Abel.

When we read this, we were sure this was our guys name. He has been a gift in every way. Out of 7 pregnancies, this was the first that required no intervention! He is a gift, and in a special way, a replacement for all the losses we experienced. We can't wait to meet this little guy! 

Friday, June 13, 2014

Codi is TWO!

Codi, oh Codi. I can't believe she's 2! Although the terrible twos have hit with a serious vengeance. This girl is a strong broad. She can throw a great tantrum, something Caleb never did at that age, and she KNOWS what she wants. Codi is giving us a run for our money, yet she redeems herself because she is HILARIOUS! She is also incredibly sweet and loving...thankfully. Otherwise we would be pulling our hair out with this lady. 

One of my favorite things she does is when she is being bugged, she will say "go away Anna." Anyone who has seen "Frozen" knows how funny that is. It cracks me up every time. 

When she gets in trouble (which is often), she will frequently SHHHH us. She will put her finger to her mouth and SHHH us as we are talking to her. It makes me laugh EVERY time. 

While this girl is naughty, she is also sweet as honey. The primary kids got up to sing on mothers day. When they were done singing, as Caleb was walking down the isle, Codi got away from us yelling who knows what. She ran down the isle and fell into brother's arms as if they had been apart for years. It was the cutest thing I've ever seen. Our ward LOVED it! She is like a dog that way. We can go out to get the mail, and she will greet us with much excitement as we walk back in the house. I love this about her. The girl definitely does not lack enthusiasm. 

Codi ADORES her daddy. When Dan is home, she will snuggle him several times throughout the evening and say "Daddy's home!" She has Dan wrapped around her finger.

Codi is an absolute chatter box. She can parrot anything we ask her to say. I love it. There was a woman who came into the gym talking to one of the workers in the daycare, she said "Como estas". Codi looked at her and perfectly said "Como estas" back. I love her little voice other than when she screams. She still has the awful high pitched scream! I sure hope she grows out of that. 

Codi is fearless when it comes to people. She has such confidence in the world around her. She will sometimes pretend she is shy, but it is all a part of her game. She knows how to work a person to fall for her. I love that she loves people. 

We are continually filled with gratitude that this little girl, our rainbow baby finally made her way to our family. Her life is an absolute miracle, and she has added so much to our family. There is no one like her. She is so dang lovable most the time, and continually has us laughing. I adore this girl, and pray I can raise this powerful woman into what she was sent here to be. She has such a presence in this world. I think she is going to be a world changer! Love you baby girl!!!!!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Kiddos Wrestling!

I know this is boring to most, but had to post it. I love their relationship. Caleb is so patient with Codi (most the time). Love my littles!

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Living in a Hand, Foot, & Mouth Hell...

On Monday night Codi came down with a 102 fever (the highest either of my kids have ever had). It was a long night. The next morning she woke up with spots all over her face. Well, they got a ton worse the next day and started to show on her feet and hands, poor thing. It was a disaster. Usually when kids are sick, they sleep. She did not sleep.

On Wednesday night Dan was at the hospital until midnight. Codi was still freaking out, and I was losing my mind (after 2 nights of little to no sleep). When he got home close to 1, he could tell I was a mess. I don't do well without sleep. Honestly, Heavenly Father knows that in order for us to keep having children, he needed to send me good sleepers. Thankfully my kids are usually good sleepers even while sick, but not with this brutal bug...ugh. Dan took over, and I was able to go to bed. I woke up around 9am, and felt like a new woman! Dan stayed in Codi's room sleeping with her the whole night. Bless that man. I sent him a text the next day about how I felt he saved me...ha. I'm not cut out for all nighters. Good thing I'm not the doctor. 

This was taken when her face was a ton better. It was so bad! 

We were hoping Caleb wouldn't get it because we were sure he had previously had HFMD. Well, come to find out, you can get different strains. On Thursday when I got Caleb from the bus, I could tell something was wrong. He was burning up. Poor dude had a temp of 103, the new high for our family. He came home and fell asleep on this chair. He has been miserable.

Now I know why Codi has been such a pain. He has been able to voice the pain she was feeling poor thing. I am so ready for this to be over. We have been house bound since Tuesday. The kids have had WAY too much screen time (which Caleb loves), and we've been eating "kids food" which is rare in this house. Whoever gave us the virus deserves a round house kick to the face!

This makes me so grateful for our health. My kids get colds, but generally don't get hit with illness. I am also so grateful for sleep, and a husband that was able to step up (he usually isn't able to) when I needed him most.

Sadly we will be missing family/cousin time with grandparents coming into town this weekend. We have to keep our kiddos quarantined. Crappy timing. Just glad we are at least on the upswing!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Little Miss Sassy Pants

This girl, this girl. I know I shouldn't think this is funny, but she cracks us up. She can be SO SWEET yet SOOOO SASSY! We've watched this video several times, and Codi cracks up every time thinking it is so hilarious. It won't be very funny when she does this in 14 years...


Thursday, May 1, 2014

Gorgeous Weather

 We have had a blast the last couple of days walking the 2 mile round trip to the lake and back. It is unusually warm and sunny for the PNW this time of year. We had to take advantage. It is so refreshing to get out and play with my kids. I love watching them have fun together and be entertained. What I love most is to watch their fearlessness and toughness. I wont get in the cold water, but that doesn't stop these two!
 Last night we went to cousin Jake's baseball game. Here the kids are playing with Emmy. 
We are sure going to miss our Issaquah cousins. 


Thursday, April 24, 2014

Gracie Girl

We got Gracie shaved for the spring/summer yesterday. I LOVE when she is shaved. She is soft, cute, and doesn't shed. I pet her way more frequently, and just like having her around.

We have trained Gracie to not go upstairs because of her shedding, and I just think it is good to have boundaries. But tonight I called her upstairs to do the bedtime routine, and Gracie was THRILLED and so were the kids. Caleb begged to have Gracie sleep with him tonight, so we caved. How cute are they!? She was thrilled to be allowed on a bed since she isn't allowed on any furniture. It seems we have a great incentive for a positive consequence now! I love seeing a boy and his dog!

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Because of Him, I get to be with these little miracles forever! Happy Easter!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Baby Hoopes #3!

After we had been trying for quite some time for Caleb, it wasn't until my sister Megan left on her mission when we finally saw those two lines. She claims Caleb is hers, and I don't blame her. I know her service is what helped us get him into our family. I've always felt very strongly about that. She offered a blessing the day she went to the MTC that I will never forget. Instead of blessing her mission, and her upcoming life change, she blessed me that my womb would be filled, and that we could finally become parents. That sweet prayer was answered 2 weeks after Megan left on her mission. 

Having my parents leave on a two year mission was difficult for all of us. I made the joke that if we are going to sacrifice my parents for 2 years, I better get a baby out of it. After the heartache of trying to get Codi into our family, the thought of doing that all again seemed so daunting. Little did I know how quickly we would see the blessings of their missionary service.

In the middle of January, I ordered a bunch of ovulation kits/pregnancy tests from the company that I had ordered from a bazillion times with Caleb and Codi. I started testing around the time ovulation should have occurred, but never tested positive. I figured I wasn't ovulating and thought "here we go again." 

A couple weeks later on my birthday I decided I would take a test "just in case." I figured by some SMALL chance I was pregnant, how cool would it be to find out on my birthday. When I saw a very faint second line I couldn't believe it. I ended up taking 4 tests that day. It was seriously the best birthday present ever! It ended up being the sweetest birthday I've ever had. What a gift!

Caleb was able to tell Dan because when I told him I was going to tell Dad at dinner, he was way too sad about it. He wanted to see Dan find out! Dan was SHOCKED and so so so happy! We were giddy little kids for the rest of the night. We still can't believe it. 

With my history, worry set in. The ecstatic honeymoon phase wore off pretty quickly. But I mostly felt hope. It just seemed like such a huge blessing I couldn't imagine it being taken away. How could we have gotten pregnant the first try? That doesn't happen to us! My parents had only been out a week, and we. were. blessed!

Which brings me to the first "meeting." I had my first midwife appointment on Monday and was so nervous. They were darling, and after going through all of my history, and how excited we were for this baby, they were just as excited as I was when we saw baby's HEARTBEAT! I cry just thinking about it. I am filled with such gratitude for this gift we've been given. The ease has been amazing to experience (other than I feel like poo, hence my lack of blogging). This doesn't happen to us, and we feel so grateful we get to experience it this way! Out of 7 pregnancies, this is the first to happen on its own without multiple meds. 

Below is the email I sent to my parents after the appointment. I wanted to post it here to keep record of it. Life is good, and we pray all will continue as it has! 

March 31, 2014

Went to my first midwife appointment today. I was so nervous going in because of the fear of reliving seeing a baby with no hear beat. Well, everything is PERFECT!!! It was amazing seeing that little beating heart. We can't believe how easily this little one has come into our family. We know it is a direct blessing from mom and dad serving in London! 

Yesterday as I was looking at instagram, I saw a name of a little girl that I just knew was the name of our daughter the second I saw it. I was wrong about sex last time, and I might be wrong again this time, but I really think  this is a girl. If it is, her name will be London Andrea Hoopes. I love the name, but the meaning makes it even more special. Couldn't think of a better name for this miraculous little baby. Now lets hope it really is a girl;-).

Love you all and am so grateful for your love, prayers, and support. It looks like we really will be welcoming a baby come this October/November. We are SO EXCITED!!!!!!

Sunday, March 9, 2014


This girl loves her tubby. Almost every time I change a poopy diaper she says "tubby". Glad Dan got this on video!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Playing Hooky!

The beginning of last week was rough with Caleb. My patience has been extremely short with him, and I am constantly feeling guilty for how I react to him. One particularly rough morning he said "Mom, you don't even play with me anymore." That hurt my heart.

Since Caleb started school, our schedule is the same every day. I run my errands while Caleb is at school, we go to the gym, and do the basic necessary activities that need to be done. Add rainy weather, and we have a recipe for a boring mundane life I suppose. In New Mexico we would frequently go to the zoo, park, playgroup, etc. so when I heard those words, I heard the cry from a little guy that missed his fun mom.

We woke up Friday of last week, and the sun was shining! It was such a beautiful day. I decided there were more important things than school. We played hooky! We quickly ate breakfast, got ready, and headed up the canyon to do the Twin Falls hike (about 3 miles there and back). It. Was. A. BLAST! So gorgeous, we were the only ones there, and my kiddos and dog were in Heaven! The trail was closed at .75 miles due to a land slide which would have been a huge bummer if I followed rules. We climbed over the fence(s) and were able to enjoy the entire gorgeous hike. Caleb hiked it like a champ, and Codi was my little chatter box buddy on my back. Afterward, we decided it was a special occasion to try out an authentic Thai restaurant I've been really wanting to try. Caleb LOVED it!

It was one of those magical days that don't come up very often. I'm so grateful that we as parents can make it up to our kids at times. I often feel like I am not parenting the way I'm supposed to, and it breaks my heart. Sometimes my kids drive me nuts, and the guilt, oh the guilt. But the day we ditched school together was a day that all was right with the world. Hopefully I can continue to break out of our routine here and there to create such beautiful memories with my littles!

I wish the video showed it more clearly, but here is our little Codi flirting with the people sitting near us. She is a CHARACTER! This girl is just TOO MUCH! We adore her! 

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Nature, The BEST Gym!

Saturday always starts with my GRIT class followed by either Yoga or Body Pump...always. I am very anal about my gym time. Sometimes too anal. It is my release, and keeps me happy and healthy. Dan has been taking Caleb to his ski lessons on Saturday morning which has been so helpful. He has been trying to talk me into going up with them, but the thought of chasing around a toddler in the snow for 2 hours and missing my workout did not sound fun.

Last Saturday morning he finally convinced me to skip out on the gym and head up the mountain. There was only one requirement, that we bring the snow shoes! If I would have thought about it before, we would have been doing it EVERY week!

It. was. AWESOME! It was breathtakingly gorgeous, and Codi had a blast! I carried Codi so I could get a good workout, and LOVED having that little chatter box on my back. She is a character. The entire hike we only heard happy sounds from the little lovey. She loved it. Not to mention our Gracie was in absolute Heaven.

I needed that time in nature. It is part of who I am. Since having children and Dan being so busy, I have gotten in a routine that works. Breaking out of my routine can be hard because I am so single focused at times. It was exactly what I needed. Nature is the best gym. You better believe we are going to take advantage of Caleb's last ski lesson on Saturday! Me, Dan, and my lovely lady are going snowshoeing!

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Caleb's Valentine

 Above is a picture of the Valentine's Day card Caleb and his classmates were asked to make for someone they love. I'm sure most kids in the class made theirs for their mom or dad. Maybe a grandma or grandpa. But I had to giggle when I opened Caleb's card to find to whom he loved and made his card for.
Gracie has been with us since Caleb was 2 months old. He will never know life without her until she finishes hers. This card was a reminder of why I put up with the endless shedding that I HATE with a passion. Other than her shedding, she really is such a good girl. We really hit the jackpot with this ugly mutt rescue! Thank you Gracie for loving us. I know you mean a lot to a certain little boy!