Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Christmas 2009

I don't even know where to start. Today was a fabulous day. The anticipation leading up to it was great. The night before was so great. It was really one of those days you treasure and look back on during the crazy days. I'll try to sum it up-

Garret woke up at 4:30. He asked if he could get up yet. We told him no and believe it or not he fell back asleep. They woke up again a little before seven. We stalled for a bit til Adele woke up. Then we let them go in the living room and look at their stockings. We wrap everything and just tell the kids its from us except for what fits in the stockings. The stockings had some pretty fun stuff in them but just little stuff. You would have thought we had given them the world though. Spencer was adorable. He ran to his stocking saw two candy canes hanging over the top. Grabs them and says "Look Candy canes, one for me and one for Mommy". He was ready to sit down and eat them then and there. We had to keep encouraging him to look and see what else there was. He would pull out one more thing get super excited and start playing with it. We were in no big rush but I think if we hadn't encouraged him he would still be going through things. Garret loved it all too. Adele had her first Christmas today. She really was very happy throughout the whole morning. She didn't care too much (obviously) but she always loves watching everyone. She is a great little gift to us!
After the stockings we ate our breakfast of orange rolls. Now that we have done it multiple years we can call it a tradition. I think we will continue it every year. Someday Ill perfect it! This year my rolls raised a little more than I expected but they tasted great.
Then it was time to open gifts. We told Garret to pick one to be opened first. He thought a minute then picked this airplane he made for Spencer. He has not done a very good job of keeping it a secret from Spencer, but Spencer must not have been paying attention to the multiple slip-ups Garret had, or else he fooled us all. He was so excited about it.

Garret had a lot of fun "making" presents for everyone. Here is Tyler with his "necklace/bell/color whenever you want" present. Garret just about burst with pride when he gave it to him. Tyler loved it of course and wore it around the house.

All the present were a big hit for the boys. It was great watching their faces, hearing them thank each other (enthusiastically), and seeing them get so excited about little things. I think the opening presents part is pretty fun, plus we don't like giving the kids a lot of "stuff" for no reason, so when I find a good deal I just put it away (it makes shopping trips hard if they think they get something and it makes days like Christmas more fun if they aren't used to getting tons), so on top of gifts I wrapped up new clothes/shoes, paper, and other things they needed. I thought there was a chance they would moan and grown about those gifts- I was so wrong. Every gift was so exciting. It really was fun!
Tyler spoiled me as well. He got me my first ever heels (it could be interesting- I guess I am all grown up now), new books to read, movies to watch, warm sheets for our bed....but my favorite gift is the one in the picture (If I didn't love the gift I would not include this picture- I don't really like the pic). Anyway he took pictures of us and then sewed them onto a piece of matting. Zoom in to get the full effect. Then he printed "Just another day in Paradise" across the top. When our house feels like the zoo we always start singing that song. I LOVE it!!!!
I had fun shopping for him as well. I got him a bunch of little presents this year- books, movies, flashlight, workout things etc. I also found a toy car that was the year and color of his Grandpas. It was fun giving him that. The boys also made him a picture book with things they loved about him. I think he enjoyed it all.
Here is little Dels with her second ever baby doll (her first is one of my old ones). I am pretty sure she loved it!

We got a couple new games and already have had fun playing them together. Spencer got Garret operation. When I was in the kitchen later on I heard Garret say "Thank you for getting me this game Spencer, it looks really fun". Why can't they always be so sweet.

After Halloween I picked up a couple costumes to add to the dress up box. The boys got these "inja" costumes. They put them on and wore them most of the day. They kept saying "ka-pow" and "Hi-yah". They were a hit. I think they are two pretty cute ninjas.
I could go on and on about the boys fun reactions to presents. Garret had been looking forward to opening one particularly big present. When it was time to open it he was visibly disappointed to find clothes. He just smiled and said "oh clothes, I already have clothes....Thank you Mom and Dad" and politely set it aside. We made it last as long as possible. We had them stop and clean up, stop and call people- it went til after nine. Then we played for a while, took naps and then got ready for our annual Christmas movie. The kids wore some new clothes. Adele's little noggin is finally fitting in the cute hat her Aunt Tia made. She wore it out today and looks just darling.

Spencer wore his hat as well!!! We saw "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs". It was fun going out with the boys and the movie was alright.
Then home again for more playing.
Then the day ended (all to soon). It was a very fun and special day. It felt like the whole day was full of laughter, smiles and special time together. I love Christmas...ours came early this year- and it was wonderful. I hope that every one's Christmas is a wonderful fun filled day. We are off to Colorado on Friday- let's all pray for good weather! Merry Christmas!!!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Christmas Eve

Tonight is our Christmas Eve. We had a wonderful dinner of Ham, potatoes, rolls, veggies- followed by dessert. Our friend Dave joined us. It was nice having company and he even brought a couple gifts that everyone loved. I think the best part might have been the giant box he used to wrap one of the gifts. The boys were anxious to play in it!

Like usual the kids got matching jammies. When Garret opened his he said "Thanks Mom, you are the greatest Mom in the whole world"- I guess he liked them. I think that all three were pretty cute little pirates.

We watched the nativity video and read from Luke. Then rushed them off to bed. They were so cute trying to go to sleep fast. Tyler walked by their door and said "ho ho ho". He said they giggled and he heard Garret say "did you hear that Spencer- he's here". I can hardly wait til tomorrow morning!!!


We are celebrating Christmas eve tonight so I know there will be more pictures. Here are a few from the last couple days. Tyler thinks Adele is big enough to throw around a little!Getting ready for Doorbell ditching!

Every time we looked over Spencer was eating sprinkles.

We acted out the nativity. Not as fancy as last year but still lots of fun.

More to come!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

The anticipation

The anticipation of Christmas is the best part of it. All the preparations, decorations, contemplating what gifts to give, reading Christmas stories...etc. All of that will come to an end preparation for Christmas we spent the week doing Christmas things. We read stories, danced to Christmas music, made Christmas plates for friends (delivered them in disguise and with friends!), drank hot cocoa, made secret presents (the boys are very creative, don't tell Tyler but Garret made him a necklace with a bell on it and it has a coloring page glued to it, in the words of Garret "now he will have a beautiful necklace, a bell to ring and he can color whenever he wants!"), I broke and let Tyler open a present, he broke and let the boys open one present, we are kind of weak willed when approached with the a puppy dog face- oh well we are all having fun. It has been such a great week (even with the somewhat bad news that arrived in the mail- that is a subject for another post). I love the spirit that comes with Christmas. Everyone seems to smile a little more. Just a couple more days to go! I'll try to post pictures soon.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

I Don't Even Know What to Title this...

Tyler and bunch of dental school buddies went up to Canada to do an "eating challenge".

The challenge- 72 ounces of steak in less than an hour.
The success rate for the challenge was quite low (obviously).
Possible outcomes- 75 dollars from your pocket...or a stomach ache and free T-shirt.

(Enlarge picture to get a good look at that bad boy...looks more like a roast to me)
The outcome- he did it, just in time too. Yep, he ate the whole thing. (I am not sure if I should be proud or not). He had fun though and didn't have to spend anything on it and he did get a free T-shirt!!! He got the stomach ache too and wanted me to put a picture of that up (that's right his steak made a second appearance on the way home). I think we can all picture it without seeing it- great now I can't get the image out of my head....

He had fun though...way to go Tyler!!!

Christmas Music

I love Christmas music so many of the songs bring back memories and make me think of people I love. This year we have been listening to the Josh Groban Christmas CD Noel a lot. I love it, it's beautiful and has a lot of the religious Christmas songs on it. My favorite is number 2 Little Drummer Boy. I never really listened to the words until this year.

Here are the lyrics-

Little Drummer Boy
Come they told me, pa rum pum pum pum
A new born King to see, pa rum pum pum pum
Our finest gifts we bring, pa rum pum pum pum
To lay before the King, pa rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum,
So to honor Him, pa rum pum pum pum,
When we come.
Little Baby, pa rum pum pum pum
I am a poor boy too, pa rum pum pum pum
I have no gift to bring, pa rum pum pum pum
That's fit to give the King, pa rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum,
Shall I play for you, pa rum pum pum pum,
On my drum?
Mary nodded, pa rum pum pum pum
The ox and lamb kept time, pa rum pum pum pum
I played my drum for Him, pa rum pum pum pum
I played my best for Him, pa rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum,
Then He smiled at me, pa rum pum pum pum
Me and my drum.

I feel like that little drummer boy so often- what can I give him? I have nothing worthy of his greatness. But then when I do the best with what I have I feel his warmth and know he is smiling at me too. Just like at the little drummer boy. Every time it plays I just want to do my best with what I have to offer. It's like the parable of the talents (don't hide your gift/s use them) . If playing a drum is your gift- play your drum. If smiling is all you can do then smile. I hope this holiday season and always I can use the gifts I have been given no matter how small they are.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Happy Days

Life has been SO great lately. Here are a couple highlights.

The dead DVD player became the greatest entertainment ever. Garret just kept saying "I didn't even know all this stuff was in here." They spent literally hours taking screws out. We started our 12 days of Christmas (early since our Christmas will be early). So Friday night we read "Aaron's Christmas Tree". (It made me think of my Mom). I barely made it through! Then we all slept in the living room by the tree. It was so fun! The boys looked so cute sleeping all snuggled together. Spencer talked quietly to himself for a while and pointed at the sky then suddenly crashed!

Saturday Morning we started by reading another story. This story was about giving gifts on Christmas and how important it is to give. We told them that later we were going to take a toy to donate. Then I got on the phone with my Mom and while I was on the phone they started making a pile of toys. I got off and they told me they wanted to give more toys to people who didn't have toys. It was so sweet of them, they wanted to give some of their favorite things. I reminded them that they wouldn't get them back and they still wanted to give some of them away. The sweetest thing was Spencer giving away his Lightening McQueen car. He got the car for potty training and loved it. I reminded him over and over that he wouldn't get it back and I didn't want him to cry about not having it. He still wanted to give it and after we gave it away he said "someone else is playing with my car" all smiley and happy about it. It's so easy to give things you don't want but I think it means the most when you part with things that you would like to still have. In the end we put together a whole pile of things to give to the homeless shelter. They loved it. They went through the whole house, getting games, toys, clothes, food and art supplies (as well as some art projects Garret made for "the other kids"). Then they decorated the box and very eagerly loaded it up and we went to deliver it. The whole experience was so great because they really instigated it. I think in a small way they really got it! (I hope they always have the spirit of giving). Just so you know they are not always this sweet, but its the sweet moments I want to remember forever!

After that we headed off to see Santa. My kids are pretty funny about Santa. They always ask if he is real. They don't even look at the Santa at the mall because they don't think he is real (he has no reindeer). This one they seemed to be more convinced about. They really enjoyed playing with him and talking to him about Christmas.

After that we went Christmas shopping. At one point it really drug on. I tried not to get annoyed by how slow Tyler was going. The kids were getting grumpy and he was still going SO slow.
We were at Target and I was starting to say things like "can we wrap this up in like 20 minutes". Then suddenly I rounded a corner and who do I see but my Dad. It took me a while to recognize him (you don't expect to see your Dad in Target (he is rarely in Target)) and especially not the Target in Buffalo. It was so exciting!!! He decided to surprise me and totally surprised me. He could only stay for about 48 hours (I feel pretty special that my Dad would spend all that time traveling to see me for such a short time).
We started out by going to dinner. Then there was lots of wrestling, cookie eating (thanks Mom), late night chatting, more wrestling (the boys and my Dad- no one else joined in), lego playing, puzzles, Church, more wrestling (my boys like to wrestle), pizza and farewells. For Sunday's Christmas activity we shared our Testimonies of the Savior. It was fun hearing what the boys had to share. Spencer said "I thankful for Jesus Christ". Garret talked about his birth and how he died for us and a few other things.
My Dad had never met our little Deli girl so that was exciting! She seemed to really enjoy being held by her Grandpa! She even decided to give him a special present at Church- nope not a Christmas present...the only kind of present she knows how to make and it was a big one! The boys love Grandpa Bob so much!!! When we dropped him off at the airport Garret and Spencer held it together pretty well. They needed lots of hugs. As soon as we pulled away, Garret started with the lip quiver followed by heavy breathing. He said in the most pitiful little voice "I'm getting sad already". It just escalated from there and after a few minutes I was getting worried he was going to make himself sick and throw up. He eventually calmed down. Spencer didn't going into hysterics he just kept saying "I miss him, Grandpa Bob is my friend". Then when Garret got all upset Spencer started saying "Garret, we gonna see him in Washington, it's ok".
We all loved seeing my Dad and can't wait til we get to see him and everyone else again. Thanks for the visit Dad- We love you!!!

Once Tyler got done with school it was time for our next Christmas activity. We pulled taffy. It was an annual event growing up for me and one I remember loving. The boys loved it too! They were kind of wimpy pullers but they still had fun. Tyler was very un-wimpy, so tough in fact he burned his hands!!! It was lots of fun!
We really have had some great times the last couple days. Everyone is a little on the exhausted side now but it was all well worth it!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Last Night

-Adele slept for 9 hours, she just gets better and better every night!!!

-Two years ago we lost a library DVD and it was found last night. So our DVD player fizzled out and we knew one of the kids movies was in it so we took it apart to get that out (we didn't want to throw it away with the DVD player) while we took it apart we found somehow stuck inside the movie we lost two years ago. I don't know how Garret got it in there (it was in a weird place) and I don't know how the machine continued working as long as it did.

-Our tub drain got completely clogged (like it didn't drain all day) we had some flashbacks from my Dad's last visit! Tyler got the snake out and started working on it. He snaked a while and then finally tried going the other way closer to the tub. In the end he pulled out what I thought was a rat (seriously I screamed and asked how a rat got in the drain), it wasn't a rat but it was the largest nastiest hairball ever. (This story was included for Tyler and my sake- it was memorable, it was that large. And as a warning to all- get something to keep the hair from going down your drain, it will save you in the end. And for my Dad how had the great pleasure of cleaning my drain with me before!!!) Just be glad there is no picture- we contemplated it!

-I also got to go out for a bit with my friend Amber...which was fun of course...then I came home to a super clean bathroom (which was the greatest surprise).

All in all I would say it was an eventful night!!!

We are doing our Christmas eve on December 22 so we are starting our 12 days of Christmas tonight. Each day for the next 12 days we are doing an Christmas activity, a story and a scripture. I think it is going to be so fun. I am sure I'll have some pictures and stories to share- I love Christmastime!!!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Something to smile about...

-I said something funny to Garret and he laughed...then said "my bum kind of jiggles when I laugh"..."look they really jiggle" (then he stands up, turns around and starts laughing)!!!

-Spencer loves his family and extended family. Often when we are driving or out and about he will randomly say things like "I like Uncle Trenton" or "I like Uncle Dan and Heather". It's pretty cute because we know he is thinking about people.

-Today I gave the boys rags and had them wash the kitchen floor. I left the room to take care of Adele and while I fed her I was serenaded with two very off key voices singing "cleaning the floor is fun to d0, fun to do, to do, to do".

-Garret-"I want to go the library soon"
-Me- "what would you like to get at the library"
-Garret-"books about mice and bears"
-Me-"you want to know about mice and bears"
-Garret- "I want one that shows whats inside of them"
-Me-"whats inside?"
-Garret-"Yeah, Im just really curious about what is inside of animals and people, I just want to know what is in there"

-After Garret got home last night he said "I did a real good thing tonight" ( he did).

-Tyler sings to the boys every night, most nights at least one of them picks the song from Chuck E Cheese.

-Last night I went to check on the boys and Spencer was laying there with his limbs all extended, no blanket and his jammies unzipped all the way.

-All day I get to over hear conversations like this-
Garret- "Spence come play blop blop and octopus with me"
Spencer- "I don't wanna play blop blop and octopus, I wanna play super hero"
Garret-"Ok you be a super hero and I'll be an octopus"
etc. etc. etc.

I could go on and on, they are just so entertaining!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Future Missionary

Garret got to go out with Tyler and the missionaries tonight. They were meeting with a family that is looking into the Church. Garret was so excited to go. He had lots of things he wanted to tell the family. Tyler said he did a very good job of being reverent and helping answer questions. He looked so handsome tonight and so grown up. He wants to be a missionary someday. I think he is going to make a great missionary. It's crazy to think he will be that old someday but it's exciting to think he might go out and serve the Lord as a missionary. I love my Garret-boy so much.
Adele went to bed early and Spencer and I got to spend the evening together. We had so much fun. I think I am the luckiest Mom in the world. We truly are blessed.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Two Months

My sweet little baby girl is two months old as of Sunday. I took her to the doctor today for her check up and shots. The boys were very sweet to her, telling her to be brave and that it would be ok. She did pretty well, only crying for a minute or two. She is still our big girl. She weighed in at 13.7 pounds (97%) and was 24.5 inches (95%). The doctor was impressed with how strong she was and said she looked like a big healthy girl! We have sure loved having her these past two months. I can hardly imagine life without her.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Spencer's Tree

We normally always get our tree the day after Thanksgiving, but this year we had company and Tyler was busy studying for boards. We decided to wait til he took the test...but it snowed yesterday and he needed a break so when he got home from day one we went and got a tree. Last year we let Garret pick it, this year it was Spencer's turn. He understood this to mean that it was his tree and has taken ownership of our tree. If I say what a pretty tree it is he says "it's my tree"! He did pick a nice tree and we had fun getting it decorated.
Adele was so smiley this morning but I still couldn't get a great picture of it. She loves to look at the lights on the tree and will push herself up pretty good to get a better look.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


While Tyler is off taking boards today (he takes them tomorrow and the next day as well- ugh), we went out and enjoyed the first snow of the year. According to my neighbor, Grandma Bates, this is the latest first snow she can remember, she's in her mid-nineties. Anyway, the boys were so excited about the snow. They love wearing their snow clothes and pretending it's winter so the real thing is almost more than they can handle. It was good packing snow so they were able to roll some pretty big snowballs. Adele also went out in the snow but she just chilled in the front carrier. I wish it could be snowy from now til Christmas! After Christmas...that's another story!