Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day

After our party the boys got to open there matching pajamas (I made the pants for them). They got monkey slippers too (Garret didn't want to take them off for bed- I told him he had to so he took them off, crawled in bed, then got out of bed- I was about to tell him to get in bed and go to sleep- then I watched him kiss the monkey slippers and get back in bed).After they got their jammies on we read a new Christmas book we had been saving, did scriptures and prayers and put them to bed. Tyler and I had so much fun getting things ready for Christmas morning. Tyler let me open a present early. He made me a necklace- he spent a lot of time on it and he couldn't wait any longer. I love it!
I could not wait for the kids to wake up in the morning. Finally around 6:15 they woke up. We went and looked at our stocking stuff. Garret kept asking where Santa was becuase we told him Santa was going to come- we had to explain that Santa came and left already. He liked all his little things from Santa- so did Spencer. Then we read the Christmas story from the scriptures. Then one by one we opened up the other gifts (thanks family for all the fun presents). Garret and Spencer loved all of the gifts. Once we had opened them we said to Garret "did we forget one" (he was wearing a bike helmet and holding a horn for his bike) he said "forget bike". Tyler went and brought it up. He was so excited and even though he hasn't figured out all the way he loves it. It was so fun seeing him so happy and excited. I am so glad we got the bike and that we waited til Christmas to give it to him.

Tyler had unwrapped a note telling him to look in the garage (his present had been in there for about a month). He was as excited as Garret was when he saw that I had gotten him a used pottery wheel (Thank you Rick and Cindy!). I told him I really wanted him to clean up the basement before we brought it down there (the basement is looking good- I guess I know how to get a clean house!)

All the gifts were fun. Then we talked to our families. We missed seeing them for the holiday. Then we spent the afternoon at home together. Around 4:30 we went to Lancaster and walked around their downtown. The shop windows have displays from "The Night Before Christmas" there was Christmas music playing and we ran into Santa. Garret was so excited that we saw him, he thanked him for his presents and wished him a Merry Christmas. It was the perfect ending to our day.

My Dad made this little box for us, it is made from wood from our house that fell during the October storm, wood from Kirtland Ohio, wood from Utah, a rare tree from my parents property and wood from My sister's trip to Mexico. I love that he brought so many memories together in one little box!

An "Ugly" Christmas Sweater Party

Check out the sweaters (whose do you like best?)

Tyler's turkey!

Our boys didn't have sweaters- so I made them shirts (if you put them together they say Merry Christmas)

Christmas eve we invited basically anyone we knew that was not going out of town for the holidays. We fit 27 people into our little house. The party was so fun. I made rolls (plain and the traditional orange rolls), Tyler made ham, turkey and stuffing. Everyone brought food over and there ended up being tons of food. So we ate and ate and ate. Then we played a little present game (just a simple pass the present if you have it when the song ends- you open one layer with no hands). It was entertaining. Then people visited, some played guitar hero and then we went and worked on a little Christmas service project. I was nervous about doing a service project at our party because I was not sure how people would react to it. I am so glad we did though. People brought donations, we decorated boxes and filled them and were able to take food, toys and household things to two families in need and three different charities. I am glad we were able to it as a group and with our children. For me it was the best part of the party. We were all having fun and doing something for others (isn't that what Christmas is all about?!)

The Game-The Service-

Monday, December 24, 2007


Spencer got his first real food today! Yummy Mushy oatmeal! He wasn't sure what to think but I guess I understand (oatmeal is an acquired taste).

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Christmas Memories

Christmas is fast approaching. It is going to be such a great Christmas. I will try to record all the excitement later. I decided since I had a moment to record some of my Christmas memories (Perhaps my posterity will want to read them or I will want to read them when I am to old to remember).

I have always loved Christmas. We did not have Christmas's filled with tons of gifts growing up. They were modest Christmas's but they were filled with family.
I remember pulling taffy (this is something I would like to try and do again someday). I thought this was fun for a number of reasons. I have a sweet tooth so eating any sort of candy is enjoyable, but mostly I loved it because we would do it together.
For many years we made plates filled with all sorts of Christmas goodies. We helped make some and some my Mom spent hours making. Then us kids would go out and doorbell ditch them to people we knew. One year we delivered them to an old man, that we knew from church. We thought it would make his holiday special. He came to church the next day and said that some crazy people left cookies on his door and that he threw them away because they were probably poisoned.
There were other good things about Christmas besides food. My Dad started a tradition when we were a little older. He would give us each a present I think twelve days before Christmas. We got to ask a question and make a guess every day if we guessed it we got to open it and get another one. They were weird silly things but we loved getting to open them. So we went to great lengths to try and figure out what was in them. We would put magnets next to them to see if they were metal, shake them, squeeze them, once I shook mine so hard the gift flew out of the PVC piping it was wrapped in (my Dad thought he was so tricky).
Every year we would go and pick out a tree together, cut it down and bring it home. We would decorate it together, then the next morning it would look different. My Mom loves the tree to be perfect. We tease her about it but I think it's good to care about things, it makes them special.
Christmas eve we always did our dinner and my Grandparents came over. We got out the china and had good food. It was fun to read Christmas stories and just be together. Then off to bed, we didn't usually go to sleep very fast, we would lay awake and listen to what was going on in the rest of the house. When we lived in our little house, Leah and I would look out the window and watch for Santa, we were sure we saw Rudolph's nose (really it was this red light, I think for the airport- it was always there but on Christmas we were sure it was Santa coming). Then the morning would come and it was funny how we all had roles we played. Leah would wake up first and then wake me up. Usually this was around three in the morning. She would jump on all of us but I was usually the only one that would act halfway alive at that time. Then eventually we would all congregate. Anna would refuse to get up unless we begged. (we all had to be up and lined up before we could go see what was waiting for us). We would jump on Anna, plead with Anna, beg her, bribe her and she would always take her sweet time getting out of bed. One year I remember going to Daniel's room and reading the Christmas story with him before we went down. Most years though we were all to busy getting everyone up. We could go down at six. So we would jump up and down on the floor above my parents making sure they were awake, but lets be honest Mom and Dad were as excited as us. They just made us wait so that they could torture us. Then we would go down youngest to oldest. We would open presents one at a time so we could all see what each other got.
Christmas day we would spend eating leftovers, napping, playing with toys and going to the movies. We never went to the movies but we went on Christmas (this tradition started when we were a little older).
My parents are both very talented and we often got homemade gifts. My Dad would make things in the wood shop (these were such special gifts- a cedar chest, book shelf etc). My Mom is talent with a sewing machine. She liked to make matching pajamas for us. One year she made us matching night gowns. They were red and white striped but the stripes were so small and close together that they looked pink. She even made one for Daniel. I wish I had a picture. (I am laughing right now thinking about it!)
One year I got a rabbit (remember I was a major tomboy) I loved my rabbit, until it decided that the best way to stay entertained was to Pee on whoever walked by. I hate to admit it but I was not sad when that rabbits life ended.
A favorite year of mine was when we decided to put together a Christmas gift for some of our cousins that were not going to get a lot for Christmas one year. It was so fun picking out special things for them. As I have gotten older I have come to love the true meaning of Christmas more and more. I hope I can teach my children about the joy of giving.
I have so many wonderful Christmas memories from my childhood.

Since being married and starting my own family, Christmas has continued to be a wonderful time of the year. Tyler makes everything special. He loves to make a big deal out of things. He always makes holidays so fun. We are excited for this year. We will miss our families but this year will be our chance to start some of our own traditions. I will write them down later, but already this Christmas has been special.
Today in church we celebrated the birth of the Savior. I am so thankful for him. I am thankful he came to earth to live and die for us. I know he lives now, I know his message is one of kindness, understanding, love and peace. I hope that all year long and especially during this season that we can create a home where the spirit of Christ and of family and of all that is good can reside.

Glor. .oooo. . .ooo. . .ooo . . . .ooo . . .

Garret loves the song "Angels We Have Heard On High". He walks around singing it. I remember as a kid thinking that the Gloria part went on forever but I never knew it could go on as long as Garret makes it last. He was so excited at church when we sang it. I just love how excited about life he gets. He is so cute whenever he hears a song he knows he says "Mom, Mom (until he gets my attention) it's Holy Jolly (or whatever song it happens to be) me like this one!"

Spencer is doing much better. He slept well last night and seems to be healing quickly. His mouth doesn't look to good but it doesn't seem to be bothering him too much anymore. I keep expecting him to stick it out but he hasn't figured that out yet. I miss his little lizard tongue. He looks different to me- but still just as cute.

Friday, December 21, 2007

The tongue surgery

The tongue surgery was today, we survived- barely. It is only four in the afternoon and it feels like it has been a long day already. We had to be at the hospital at six. Spencer did not get to eat after eleven so we fed him right before then. He could have clear liquid up until four this morning so we got up and fed him pedialyt. Even with all our efforts he was still hungry this morning. I felt so bad for him. The doctors and nurses were really nice and it went pretty fast. We got home around eleven. Garret went with us and was really good. He just watched cartoons the whole time. Spencer has had a little trouble figuring out what to do with his tongue and how to eat, hopefully he will recover quickly. I hate seeing the little one in any pain. I am glad its over and I am glad they did it now while he was young and before he had speech problems. I will have to post a picture of his more movable tongue soon. (It is swollen and has stitches now so its not too pretty)

Wednesday, December 19, 2007


Today we did a little last minute Christmas shopping. Garret always tells Santa he wants a baseball for Christmas so we picked one up. I didn't want him to see it so I set it in Spencer's carseat with him. Then Spencer got fussy so I decided to take him out to the car while Tyler checked out. Without meaning to I walked out of the store with the baseball. I felt so awful when I saw it there. A really nice lady in the parking lot took it back inside for me. I don't understand how anyone could do that intentionally. The guilt would kill me (I felt bad and it was only an accident and I returned it less than 5 minutes after I got out the door).

Tuesday, December 18, 2007


I put a counter on my blog for a while and I was getting around 30-40 hits a day, I know my Mom probably accounts for several of those but who else is reading this? So, if you read this you should leave me a comment.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

What a weekend!!!

Let's start at the beginning-

It was a super long week, filled with way to much school for Tyler and way to much of our house for me. We were both anxious for the weekend to come. Not that the weekends always bring a lot of relief from everyday life but there was that chance, thus we met our weekend with much anticipation.

Friday John and Angela invited us to dinner. The Kings were there as well. There were a lot of good things about our visit with them. I didn't have to make dinner! Garret had so much fun with Allison and with Ben. I finally got to meet Christian (he is sooo cute). The Daytons are just great people. We had a lot of fun and it was the perfect break. (Ang if you are reading this- thanks again for the invite!)

I came home tired and went to bed. Poor Tyler headed back to school. He was there most of the night. He has been so busy lately, I hope he knows how proud and thankful I am for him. I think I would probably die if I put in the hours he puts in.

Saturday I went shopping with my friend Kandis. For those of you that don't know Kandis and Josh have been our friends forever. They are our neighbors now! It was fun getting out and spending time with Kandis. She is one of those people I can tell anything too (Something I have come to appreciate- although I probably don't say it enough). While we were shopping Garret and Spencer got Tyler a Christmas present. I practiced over and over with Garret what to say if his Dad asked him what was in it. He was going to say "It's a surprise" well the first time Tyler asked Garret said "A Baseball". Oh well, he told me what he got me too.

Since we are talking about Garret stories. The other day Garret pointed to my wedding ring and I told him about it. Then I said "you will probably marry someone someday". He thought for a moment and said "marry huffalump" . It was cute because he came up with it on his own.

This is starting to sound like a travelogue (sorry). Anyway Saturday night we went to our good friends Rick and Cindy's, these people are just good people. Whenever we spend time with them we leave saying, "we want to be like them". Natalie and Thayne were there too. It was fun getting to know them better. We shared an excellent dinner and then Tyler got to try out the wii. He was pretty excited about that. We are both sore today though. Cindy and Rick spoiled our kids (seriously these people are generous and just the best)! Garret loved playing with everyone, he got all worn out. This morning he woke up refreshed and wanted to go back!

Today we woke up and there was hardly any snow. Everyone had been talking about a big storm that was supposed to come. Spencer had been coughing all night so we decided to let him sleep as long as he would so we didn't go to church. The storm did eventually come. We have a lot of snow. Garret and Tyler shoveled and built a snow fort. Garret thought it was hilarious to hide behind it then Tyler would throw a snowball at the door so I would think they were knocking, then they would ambush me.

Friday, December 14, 2007


It snowed most of yesterday and we have a winter storm warning for this weekend. It looks like we will have a white Christmas!
I must admit I am not crazy about snow, if it would only snow from Thanksgiving til Christmas it would be fine but it drags on forever. I will try to get some pretty snow pics up soon!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Stephanie's visit

My sister came to visit and I am so glad she did. She saved me from a weekend of insanity (Tyler was gone a lot). My sister lives in DC area with her husband. He wasn't able to come so we had a girls weekend. We did some Christmas shopping and went to a philharmonic concert and spent lots of time with the little boys. We stayed up way to late every night. I don't think I got to bed before 2 the whole time she was here.

Garret and Spencer loved having her here. Garret calls her his "huffalump". It started as a joke but kind of stuck. He woke up this morning saying "Huffalump, huffalump" he was crushed when he realized she was gone for good.

I love spending time with my family. It is hard being so far away and not seeing them very often. The good thing is that there is something special about family, it doesn't seem to matter how long it has been, when we are together it feels like we have never been apart.

One funny story from the weekend- we went shopping and Steph got super excited about this skirt she found. She said it was the perfect length and price. she was about to try it on when she realized it was not a skirt but a dress and actually really short. (I think you would have had to been there) we realized we are kind of behind them times.

Monday night we made a gingerbread house for family night. Garret was more interested than last year but he still liked eating the candy the best.

As far as kid news goes- Garret is back in diapers. I had a really hard time putting him back in diapers, I felt and still feel like I am giving up, but he came to me and said he was a baby and for several days straight did his business whenever, wherever. I just did not know what to do. It has been so frustrating because I know he has bladder control but I tried EVERYTHING. Hopefully in a couple weeks he will realize being a big boy was better. He has been testing his independence lately as well. He is a normal two year old I guess. He actually is a really good boy, I have to remind myself that he is two and just learning about the world. He is so fun right now too, he is so excited for Christmas. Everyday he wakes up and we take a paper chain off our countdown and he asks if he can please open his presents yet. He loves the decorations and when we drive at night he is so excited about the lights. Its fun because I am so excited now too. Spencer is growing too fast. His temperament has changed so much from when he was first born. He is really pleasant now. He is easy to get to smile and giggle. It is fun to watch the two of them interact.
A little side note- the Santa at the Galleria mall is awful, I don't recommend taking your kids there.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

She didn't run away

Garret finally found a little girl that will run away from him when he gives her hugs and kisses.
We babysat Abygail today and they just kept putting the moves on each other. It was pretty mutual. Every time Garret got close to Abygail she kissed him and when I was reading them a story she started rubbing his back. Garret would chase her and then if he was quick enough to catch her he kissed her. I found it pretty entertaining (as long as this is not a sign of things to come).

I have been trying to get a cute picture of Spencer's new teeth- no luck yet- but he sure it cute!

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Weekend Review

I love weekends when we have fun stuff planned. Here are the highlights- Saturday Tyler was off to school as usual- but first we made a yummy breakfast- biscuits and gravy. Then we bid him farewell and the kids and I attempted to get the house in order, make a salad and other menial tasks. This picked up when we headed off to the Smith Christmas party!!! This is only the second party but already it is an even we look forward to. Everyone brought food, Richard and Erica made ham- We have only attempted a ham once but I think next time I am going to try what they do because it was really good. After tons of good food we did a white elephant gift exchange. I think this is the best game for holidays. Last year we brought a giant hanging lamp, this year our gifts were not quite as good but the "dental play dough" set was a hit! In the end we brought home a used George foreman and an autograph pic of Richard and Erica. It's laminated so I think I could use it as a place mat, other possible uses include; mouse pad, dry erase board, shrine or possibly a snow scraper (I think this gift might be the most useful!). Mostly it was fun to get together with friends.

Garret was so tired he fell asleep on the way home. At 8 this morning I had to wake him up and he just kept saying "more night, night, please". At church he kept saying "all done church, home night night". Apparently he is not a latenighter (we did stay out until just before 9).

We woke up today to snow! Garret was so excited. I told him if he kept his underwear clean he could go play in it later. (He has digressed in his potty training the last few days). He kept them clean though and so here he is building a snowman with his Daddy. The snow made Garret's day and Spencer had a great day, Tyler was tickling him and I think he laughed the hardest he has in his whole life. He gets more fun all the time.

By the way, Tyler's coat does not have lights on it- it looks like it does in this pic and Tyler would probably think that was sweet but to my great relief it is merely reflecting.

This evening we headed off to "Nogfest" - I think Adriann (that might be spelled wrong- it looks wrong) Dayton- coined the term. The Dayton's are involved in Young Womens and Elder's quorum so they invited all the families they work with over. It was so fun getting to know everyone better. It was strange to me that I had the oldest kid there. They are such great people, we love working with all of our friends at church. Now here I sit at home the kids are asleep it is 8 and I think Tyler and I might snuggle on the couch and finish the book we are reading together! Then tomorrow we will bid Tyler goodbye again for the week- He has been pretty busy lately.