Bethany Speier » Blog



About a week ago I asked friends on Facebook whether they liked or disliked audiobooks. Like most things everyone has their preference – enjoyable on a long roadtrip aka a commute or at home while performing menial tasks. Still some prefer the “old fashioned books” with real pages or their new shiny e-book device. The reason I asked is because about a week prior, I had my first experience with the Overdrive app on my iPhone. If you like listening to audiobooks for FREE, it is perfect for you. Well, as long as your library and Overdrive are friends. Essentially, the app connects with the Tacoma Library database of audiobooks and allows you to download an entire book to the app (for FREE!) and listen for 21 days.

Now don’t get me wrong, I love old fashioned books. I am 500 pages into Les Mis that I started last summer laying under the sunshine in our backyard. I have another book that I checked out from the library that is no longer in publication about Jonathan Edwards’ wife and family.

But audiobooks are so nice. And I’ve decided that most of the books that I will be listening to are not books that I’d pick up and pour over for a month or two, gleaning every tidbit of insight possible. These are books that honestly, “just caught my attention.” And in less than two weeks, I’ve listened to two. All while washing dishes, working on the computer, cutting baby wipes, walking the dogs and even making dinner. I like the idea of being exposed to different authors and a variety of subjects.

1) Heaven is For Real by Todd Burpo – We recently saw the movie “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty” and one of the previews was for the film based on this book. I had never read it and was honestly skeptical and expected it to be super cheesey and “Christiany.” And whether everything actually happened or not, the boy’s experience was definitely intriguing and I think I will see the movie… when it comes to Redbox.

2) Farm City: The Education of an Urban Farmer by Novella Carpenter – I felt like I was becoming Novella’s friend while I “read”/listened to her memoir in which she shared the adventures in the garden she created on a squatted plot of land behind her rented apartment, the honey and the bees she raised and lost, the chickens, geese and ducks… the bunnies and her nightly trips with Bill to the dumpsters collecting delectable slop for her pigs. I remember telling Ryan that I “couldn’t wait” to listen again and see what “my friend” had been up to while I was away. And not so secretly, I wish I could have snuck into Chris’ restaurant and stolen a taste of Novella’s homemade prosciutto (One of my favorite things – ever.)

3) David and Goliath by Malcom Gladwell – I’m going to start book this tonight or tomorrow. Malcom was recently featured at a Socrates in the City Event hosted by Eric Metaxas. I like Eric. I like his friends. So I decided to read one of his books.

4) An Appetite for Wonder: The Making of a Scientist by Richard Dawkins. This one is next in the queue. Not much to say about the book, except for the fact that I am interested in hearing what Richard Dawkins has to say about himself.

Hellebores and Baby Butts

Below image from Hellebore – Wikipedia.


The Hellebore is one of my all time favorite flowers. It’s an evergreen; so the plant looks gorgeous all year long. Last April when my mom and grandma were visiting, my mom bought me a couple that were on sale at the end of the season. The flowers had almost all died by the time I put them into the planter on our front porch. I tried to remember throughout the summer to water them but often ended up wondering if they would survive my neglect. Well, a few weeks ago I noticed that both plants were producing buds! I can’t wait to see them open. They will be a joyful addition to our dreary January days.


I’m pretty sure I started cutting up the flannel sheets for this “baby wipes” project early last fall when we first discovered we were pregnant. Sadly, they lived stuffed in a yellow Forever21 sack for most of the winter. I pulled them out last week and cut up several more pieces while listening to “Heaven is for Real,” the audiobook I checked out from our local library.

After spending the day in front of the computer yesterday working on a website project, I decided to exercise some different creative juices and got out the sewing machine my mom got me last year for my birthday. I did have to make a call to Grandma Beth to ask her advice about my inside out stitching but I proceeded to spend the next several hours in front of the machine. I have to tell you, this baby does NOT appreciate me sitting in front of the computer or the sewing machine. Baby gets so squirmy and kicky begging me to stand up and walk around…


These sheets were our first set of “marriage” sheets from Ryan’s parents. While we were honeymooning in Boston, they sweetly came to our little apartment, bought a bed, our requested mattress and these sheets for us when we returned home. I am so happy I can use them for our baby – something just as special as our marriage!

We LOVE flannel sheets. Summer or winter. I’m pretty sure we slept in these long enough to wear them thin and some holes in places.


Yes, I DO have to pull out the manual everytime I thread this sewing machine or have to fill the bobbin!


I counted the number of wipes I finished today and there are about 30. I plan on using them together with some homemade baby booty solution for wiping its little bum. I still have several large sections of fabric left and am wondering if I need to cut some more pieces. I may also use some for burp rags…. I guess we’ll see!

Tiffani PJanuary 16, 2014 - 3:55 pm

You won’t have to wipe the wee babe if its just a pee diaper (pee is sterile) but you will use multiple wipes per poopy diaper – so 30 may be enough for a couple days, but will likely want some more – and if my experience as someone who loves to sew but has an infant is any indication… sewing time is severely limited following baby’s arrival; The more you can make now the better! (and they will be useful as a LOT of other things – like face and hand wipes, throw up rags, kleenex, etc – so better to have more than fewer) ๐Ÿ™‚ just my 2 cents xo

Our Squirmy Little Speier

Yesterday we had our 21 week ultrasound. The last time we saw our little baby was at 10 weeks… She/He has grown SO much since the last time we saw it on screen. This time we saw her/him grabbing their feet and squirming around my belly. We can’t wait to meet this little one!

The Land Before Time

On Saturday morning, Ryan and I left early to watch some horse cutting at an arena a few miles from our home. I’ve been working on a club website for my old boss at Parkland Chevrolet.

I suggested that afterwards we take a trip out to Copper Creek Restaurant, located just outside the entrance to Mt. Rainier, for some blackberry pie and lunch. Although I didn’t take any photos of Mt. Rainier, it was GORGEOUS. Not a cloud in the sky. A beautiful crisp sunny day!

Every time I drive to the mountain, I always want to stop here. It reminds me of the movie The Land Before Time. All of the desolate and lonely tree stumps. I can just imagine Little Foot, Cera, Ducky and Petrie wandering down by the water looking for more tree stars. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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It’s January!

January 3rd, to be exact. The sun is shining and we (Atticus, Charlotte and I) are thrilled! And apparently so are the daffodils! I can’t believe they’re already poking their little heads out of the ground. Ryan says this happened last year, but I keep thinking about the potential cold we could be having in the next couple months!

So, our little spring bean is about 20 weeks along already! I can’t believe how quickly he/she is growing. Lots of people described baby movements like flutters or gas bubbles… but I don’t recall feeling any of those. I have felt her/him move like a cramped little guppy inside my belly. Squirmy little thing! We have also felt the baby from the outside. Sometimes he/she will float to the top of my tummy and we can put our hands around its little booty and head. So sweet! Almost every morning I tell Ryan, “Give me your hand!” and I lay it on my belly where the baby is. Such special memories and moments.

I decided to let the dogs outside to play earlier this afternoon. Recently, we’ve all been mourning the loss of sunshine and remembering all the days we spent in the backyard just a few months ago. Needless to say, they were thrilled! Chased and barked and howled and didn’t play fetch when I threw the ball. (This is normal. They are definitely NOT retrievers). Anyway, it made me happy to make them happy.


(below) I love this one of Atticus barking at Charlotte. It’s a common occurrence when he is playing with other dogs. And she doesn’t really mind the loud noise in her ear. She just keeps on digging.



(below) I love the look on Charlotte’s face here. Something must have caught her attention.


(below) “Who wants a treat?” Right before they went running for the back door.


(below) Someone likes the sunshine. Despite the cozy bed just inches away from him, he prefers to lay in the sun.


Atticus: 1 year 5 mo // Charlotte: 8 mo (Can you believe she’s bigger than Atticus?!)