Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Last week

Last week was busy for us. Taylor's car broke down on Tuesday, so that's always fun. We had one of Taylor's professors and her husband over for dinner on Wednesday. we made our famous sweet pork and I made these beautiful cupcakes from the book Hello, Cupcake!On Thursday we headed down to Lehi early. When we arrived we went outback at my parent's house to find that their tree had one huge branch breaking, and it was leaning on their fence and swing. Worst of all it was pulling on their telephone wire and threatening to pull down a large power pole. Their wonderful neighbor came over with a chainsaw and it was mostly resolved by the time my dad made it home from work early.

I helped Taylor's sister Whitney clean out her old house and move into her fun, huge new house (we're so excited for them, and so excited to use their ample storage space. My pageant dresses may have a new home!). Then we went to the horse parade and Lehi rodeo on Thursday. We caught up with Brittany Tait, a brand-new Lehite, at the parade (Brittany--did we not take a picture of Kyle and Gracie together?). My kids got to hang out with their cousins, Gavin and Whitney who are respectively 4 months older than each of mine. They had a great time, and we continue to wish we lived closer to them (they don't hit and neither do my kids, so it's a good, rare match).

On Friday my dad and Taylor drove up to Logan to get the car towed to Transwest in Ogdent where it put on a truck to Transwest in Lehi (it's a salvage car, and that the place we got it. We figured they'd be best and cheapest it fix it). The kids and I stayed with Mom. We went to visit Grandma-Great and hung out at her house for a bit. We walked back to my parent's house and my mom and Claire went to get some Arby's. Grandma and I hung out with Kyle in the backyard. He was playing in my parent's waterfall/river. He thought it was fun to lay in it (fully clothed) and even more fun to dip the top of his head in the side. Funny little man. Grandma and I were very entertained.

As soon as they got back we went to the miniature parade and after dinner we left for the Cameron (Taylor's mom's side) Family Reunion in Alton, Utah. We arrived around midnight. Kyle decided he slept enough in the car, so it was fun night. We spent Saturday at Bryce Canyon and watching the kids in a kiddie pool. That night was also not great with Kyle (apparently it is too fun to sleep in the same room with everyone. He kept calling out all of our names, just wanting to play.)

We went to the Alton ward on Sunday. I must say it was the most delightful Sacrament meeting I have ever attended. The Bishop was such a cute good old boy, and everyone there was just so small town good, we started wondering whether we should have accepted the job in the similarly small town of Loa. Really, we're still wondering about it. Everyone was just so happy and cute and welcoming. There must be so much good in small towns as they are so cut off from worldly thing. And although I did cry for a couple months after moving to this little small town we're in now, I have to wonder how I'd do in a real small town away from everything. It was charming--but maybe only from the outside.
Oh, and Saturday night we laughed our heads off over and over to this movie. Click it, it's the funniest thing I've seen in years. Really. The stars there were more beautiful than I have ever seen, and the moon just hung on the horizon forever. It was gorgeous.

We drove to Lehi Sunday night arriving again near midnight. Taylor had to be to work in Ogden (Yeah, Work!) early Monday morning, so he took one of my parent's cars, and we hung out for a bit. For dinner we went up the canyon with Jake, Britt, and Bailey. We met Taylor in Salt Lake and finally made it home by 9pm. It was a long, fun weekend.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

2009 Miss Utah Pageant

First things first, I found the DVD with my pageant clips on it. I had to upload the crowning to YouTube (1st for me), so here it is for all of you who have waited these 4 days to see it:

Yesterday was fun. It started with a breakfast for the contestants, their parents, and the former queens. There were about 12 people formers there. I think. Here's a picture with most of us who were there:

My favorite part was hearing Kayla and her parents speak. It brought back so many memories. She's from a small town too (Manti), so it her stories seemed so like my own. I'm sure we and our parents could be best friends. Renita, the director, spoke shortly but said something I liked. She said something like this, "We are not looking for a Miss Utah who fits the mold of what the Miss America Organization [aka Hollywood/the world] thinks Miss America should be. We're looking for someone who represents Utah and is true to herself. And if Miss America picks her, then good for them." Miss America is having an identity crisis lately (see my post about swimsuit legs), and a good Miss Utah would do them well.

I got to go up on stage with a number of the past Miss Utahs. Of course our camera was on a weird mode, so Taylor didn't get any great shots, but here's what we have:

Notice how I'm wearing the gown I gave my crown up in. I figured that the fact that it fits outweighed the fact that it was 8 years old.

They gave me a rose, and Claire immediately stole it. She says her favorite part of the night was seeing me up on stage. Maybe because I got a cool light-up rose; maybe because I gave her thumbs up.

The best part of pageants is always catching up with old friends. Kelly and I each have a bad eye and noticed that while we were talking to Francine she was staring at our bad eyes (his right eye is bad too). So we took a step back and stared at her from our weird eye side. I don't know that she noticed, but I was in good company. It made me feel better about a day I was pretty nervous about because of my eye.

I was thrilled to catch of with Brittany Wiscombe. I hadn't seen her since I was pregnant with Claire. Miss Utah gets a CAR this year. Lucky, Lucky girl. Here Brittany and I are pretending it is ours.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Congratulations are in order

For me! It's my 8 year anniversary of winning Miss Utah. It really was a cross-road in my life. The person I became after that day varies drastically from the person I would have been had I not won. Because of that day I have so many wonderful things in my life...free education, my husband, kids, my exceptional speaking abilities :) Lots of good stuff. It was the hardest year of my life...wait, just the hardest up until that point...but I grew and became so much more than I could have without that experience---the good and the bad.

So, let's all sit back and enjoy a few of those great memories:

Okay, so you can't. My video DVD won't work on my computer today. Maybe some other time. I know you're sad. Me too.

Oh, and I guess congratulations are in order for Taylor too. He has a job offer! Celebrate! We'll fill in the details later, but it's possible that we won't be leaving our current home for a while now.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

This week

So we did the stomach flu this week. Kyle started it on Monday night and Claire started it (in the car with my parents) Thursday night. Needless to say we kept our germs home from church today---just in case there is anyone in the ward who hasn't had it. From what I hear few families have not. Because my parents were in the car with Claire when hers started, they got her a big 44 oz Carl's Junior cup after they got her cleaned up from the first unexpected bout. That cup has been glued to her chin ever since. She's sleeping with it right now. It's annoying but cute and funny. She says it makes her feel better, so we allow it.

As I stayed home from church I felt it my duty to read church-related material. I finished the book "Contentment: Inspiring Insights for LDS Mothers" by Maria Covey Cole. I'd highly recommend it to all of you mothers, especially young mothers. I'll quote a little from it now:
It seems to be the lot of mankind that we fail to recognize the beauty and worth inherent within each phase of life we pass through. It was M. Scott Peck, in The Road Less Traveled, who stated, "life is difficult. . . . Once we truly know that life is difficult---once we truly understand and accept it---then life is no longer difficult. Because once it is accepted, the fact that life is difficult no longer matters."

Elder Henry B. Eyring said, "On many days, doing what matters most will not be easy. It is not supposed to be. God's purpose in creation was to let us prove ourselves. . . .'And we will prove them herewith, to see if they will do all things whatsoever the Lord their God shall command them' (Abraham 3:25).

As daughters of God, when we acknowledge His goodness and mercy in our lives, accept that life is not meant to be easy, and learn that motherhood is, by divine design, difficult and testing, we will truly be content with the things the Lord has allotted us.

I'll quote more later, as I thought it was a book worth quoting, but I like that part. I especially like the scripture from Abraham in context with the rest of what was said. That we are here to prove ourselves. Not to take it easy, but to show God that we're worth it. If that means taking on difficult trials, or the stomach flu, I'm up for it.

Monday, June 8, 2009

I won!

I've entered a few contests online, but never won. Until last night. Thanks to Brittany posting her family pictures online, I saw a little contest to get a free photo session with your family. I just sent in a few lines on why our family needs it (beyond our financial situation of just having finished grad school, I entered my whole sad eye story including how I've never really been in a picture with my big boy Kyle---last one was when he was 4 weeks old.). And we won. Nine photographers participated and here's ours: http://www.sweetyesterdaysphotos.blogspot.com/

Yeah! I'll certainly be posting them a soon as we have them.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Interesting Church Today

Church was interesting today. Two members of our bishopric were out sick, so Taylor was on the stand as EQ Pres. This has happened once before. He looks good up there.

So I was a lone woman. I respect anyone who has more than one kid and goes to church without a partner. First the Sacrament was coming around. Kyle always needs to partake. I tried to help him drink from the little plastic cup. He wanted to do it on his own. I whispered to the man holding the tray, "This can only end badly." Sure enough Kyle managed to suction the cup to his tongue. It was hilarious---his whole tongue was stuck inside. He choked a little, but I managed to remove the sucker pretty quick. On the plus side he didn't spill.

Next the meeting was almost over and Claire started to unbutton my shirt. I reprimanded her. It's a policy of mine not to undress in public, especially in church. She pulled at my shirt and got a glance down my top. "Mom! Your boobies have a cheeser!" She yelled it. It was heard at least three rows up and back. Awesome. We (perhaps irresponsibly) taught her how her underwear causes a wedgie/cheeser/whatever-you-call-it, and she has used the language frequently in the last few weeks. I never imagined it would show up in church in reference to my cleavage and garments. I know a lot of people went home with a good story today.

Best of all was when the police man showed up in Primary. Our president is out on maternity leave, the 1st councilor wasn't there, and the other councilor was doing sharing time. Although I am Secretary and last in charge, I was summoned to speak with the officer. Apparently a child called 911 twice and officers rushed to the church. I had to check every class. It was funny but odd. I knew the entire time whom the culprits were, and that everything was fine, but had to check anyway. I was also conducting, so during the closing excersises it was my responsiblity to remind the children that the church phone was not for children, and especially not for children who are prank-calling 911. A teacher volunteered that she saw two certain boys playing with the phone. One adamently denies it; no news on the other. I know they did it. I could have told you without a witness to confirm it.

That was interesting. Probably not as interesting as when someone had a heart attack and was unconscious during Taylor's home ward's sacrament meeting. The paramedics came. Probably the primary secretary didn't have to deal with that.

Saturday, June 6, 2009


Two things. First: Taylor and I always say dumb, untrue things about things that aren't/haven't happened. We talk about how we made out on our first date (not true, didn't kiss for 3 months!). Stuff like that. So today he went upstairs then promptly hollered my name. I thought he just needed a diaper or something, so I said, "Crap. Did I leave porn up on the computer again?" [So obviously not true.] I came around the corner to find him holding the phone out to me and giggling. To make it worse it was my visiting teaching supervisor. She swears she didn't hear, but who knows. Lovely. And even worse I didn't do my VT this month. First time this year. First time this year she's called me... What are the chances?

Second: The other day we saw a pregnant lady. From a distance I pointed her out to Claire. This is what Claire said, "Oh. I didn't know she was going to have a baby because her bum is big too. And Mom---you do not have a big bum or a big tummy." Too funny. And the lady did have a big bum. And I do not. But I am not pregnant.

Just thought those were funny moments to share.

Monday, June 1, 2009

A lot about Kyle

Because we have lived so far away since Kyle was born, a lot of you don't know Kyle like you know Claire. It's unfortunate, so I want to talk about him a little. I'll post on Claire later, so you don't have to read through this thinking, "what about Claire?"

To know Kyle you'd have to spend at least a week observing him. At first glance he seems very random. He goes with the flow. He doesn't seem to care what's going on around him, at least he's never bugged by what's happening; he's just is along for the ride. He spaces out here and there; he can play on his own for a long time; he's happy about 95% of the time. Once you get to know him though, you realize how cool all of these qualities are, and then you realize it's not random: it's Kyle. Taylor just got a taste of this after my last surgery. He had both the kids for a few days, and then just Kyle for a few more. I kept getting these texts from him, "Kyle is so cool." "This kid is awesome." "I'm so glad that I get to be with my boy." When you really spend time with him though, you find that his randomness is remarkably fine-tuned. He's just so broad in his behavior that you can't put it together without an attentive study. Here's what you'd notice if you had the chance:

Kyle thinks everything is funny. He even knows when things are ironic funny and says this funny, "haaaa-haaa." His laugh is awesome. It comes out in a loud burst, like he cannot help but laugh and can't hold it in any longer. I dance; he laughs. A toy car drives on his leg; he laughs. He throws his bottle and it spills; he laughs. I run; he laughs (okay, anyone would if they saw me).

Kyle loves his toy cars. Since he was tiny, like 5 months old, he's been able to do this funny motor sound. I don't know how he does it. He did it everywhere he crawled. Now his toy cars do it everywhere they go. He inspects their parts. He'll sit and spin the wheels, examine the windows, taste them, and vroom them all over the house and all over us. He announces most cars that we pass on the road. "Car. Car. Car. Car. Car." If there are no cars on the side of the road we hear, "Where Car?!?"

Kyle's equally number one love is for balls, specifically basketball ("ball-ball"). If he sees a basketball standard on the side of the road he announces it too. He likes to play any game that involves a ball.

He is SO sweet. Even when he was tiny he was so good and tried so hard to be good. He likes to cuddle. He likes to hold my hand. Last month I told him Claire was sick. He climbed up on the couch and gave her about 15 kisses. He blows kisses to everyone when we say goodbye. Big MMMMMWWWAAA! kisses for everyone.

Kyle is having a language explosion at the moment. I can't even keep up with the new words he uses daily. His latest sentence is, "I need a cracker!" Only it comes out in a yelling voice and all one word. He's a fast talker whenever it's more than one word.

Kyle loves his sister. If Claire does something, Kyle will try to do it too. Every time he comes down the stairs after his nap he yells, "Claire! Claire!" He'll even call to her to come to his room in the mornings---she doesn't get him out, she just gets in with him. He wears her necklaces and her shoes---anything to be more like her. All of his intonations in his speech come from her. You can't tell their "hi" apart if you are on the phone.

He's the best sleeping baby you will ever find. We struggled with him for maybe 3 weeks. After that he just would go to sleep when we laid him down. No fuss whatsoever. We joke that you could just throw him in and toss a pillow in and that's all he'd need. If he's not tired he just plays and talks until he is. We get up with him at night maybe once every six weeks. Other than that he sleeps from 8pm to 9:30 or 10am. It's awesome. He even naps from 1-3. Such a treat!

Kyle is special. He was sent to us at such a strange time. I originally planned to have my eye removed in March of 2007. We did it with the intent of wanting another baby, but not wanting to deal with pregnancy and what it did to my eye. When I showed up for the surgery I found out that I was pregnant. I was shocked. Let me just say we don't know where he came from. I had had a miscarriage a month or so before I found out I was pregnant with Kyle. Two weeks before the planned surgery I had a ultrasound to make sure everything passed from the pregnancy. Britten was there with me, she can attest to the fact that they said everything was great and there was no baby. I had an ultrasound two days after I found out I was pregnant with Kyle. He was 7 weeks old. He should have been there in the first ultrasound. And he was born 10 days early (according to that ultrasound) and was over 8 pounds. He was meant to be. He's our little miracle. My heart thrills every time I hold him. He has been such a joy and such a blessing during this difficult time in my life. I am so grateful for him and can't wait to see what he will accomplish in life. Because of the circumstances surrounding his birth, I know his purpose is great.

Weird Walk

There is a trail by the river up here that is absolutely perfect. It's one mile one way, has 5 bridges, and lovely benches and 18 baby ducklings. We've enjoyed it daily for two weeks since we discovered it. I've also lost about two pounds since then too. All is good.

Last night we embarked on the journey. We made it fine to one end. We sat on the bench at the end for little sip of water as we traditionally do. Suddenly the wind picked up, it started to thunder, and we were swarmed by about 75 mosquitoes. It was insane. They were everywhere. Fortunately we had some bug spray with it. Taylor grabbed the spray and started trying to simultaneously cover all of us. When it didn't seem to be happening fast enough we panicked and just started spraying the swarm. It was crazy. I'm sure it was quite the comical scene. I'm glad we had the spray. We have a couple bites, but made it quite unscathed considering.

Just as we got away from the blood-suckers the wind picked up even more and started blowing cottonwood seed everywhere. It was like it was snowing; practically a blizzard. However those little devils went right up your nose if you dared try to breath. We tried to hurry on to beat the impending storm (thunder continued), but we had a mile to go in a blizzard of cottonwood. Soon after this started I noticed that one seemed to have gotten in my (seeing) eye. I did have a ton of bug spray on my hands, so I didn't want to touch my eyes, so I kind of ignored it, and we made it to the car before the rain really started.

Then as soon as I opened my eyes this morning I knew I end up at the doctor's office. As I only have one eye, I guess I have to be cautious with the other. I didn't want to go to Salt Lake to see my ophthalmologist, as I was sure it was just a corneal abrasion, so I went to InstaCare. They put some numbing stuff in my eye and had a look. I guess the seed was still in there (glad I went!). He wiped at it a bit which was fine because I could't feel it. He thought he got most of it but there's still a speck that wouldn't come out. He said maybe it's just pigment left over or whatever. They did another drop that would make scratches fluoresce under a black light. There were no serious scratches, so I went home with an antibiotic and stuff to irrigate my eye. He said to give it two days. We'll see how it goes. This is my continuing life. An innocent walk and I end up seeing a doctor. Of course if I'd been wearing my fancy sunglasses, I probably wouldn't have this problem...but it was dark and shady, so I took them off. Now I know.

Oh, and Kyle got two bottom teeth today. Maybe he'll stop yelling at us now.