Saturday, December 29, 2007

Christmas 2007

Here are a few highlights of our Christmas season. This was our first Christmas celebration away from major family and it didn't really sink in until the evening of Christmas day - then it seemed like the house was too quiet - imagine! Here are some quick facts -

Favorite Gift to the Boys - Train table/set
Favorite Gift from Greg - Casino Royale DVD
Favorite Gift to Greg - The Office Season 3 DVD
Christmas Dinner Menu - BBQ pulled pork chops, garlic/seasoned potatoes, veggies, Martinellis, and brownies with ice cream

How Late We Stayed Up Christmas Eve - 1:00 am
What My Kids Gave Me - Silver heart (3) necklace charm


Happy Christmas Eve and the kids first presents - flashlights!! Christmas was 4 days ago, and already we've had to change the batteries in both lights.


E with her froggie animal from Greg's parents

A big THANK YOU to my mom and dad for the cute jammies they sent us. Also LOVED the clothes for the kids. Miss you!

video

And finally - Le creme de le creme - the FROGGY BOOTS!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

SuperFriends Come Together!

We got home this evening from VT to find in our mail Boyd and Kandi's Christmas gift. This is quite possibly the coolest gift I have ever received.





Can you guess which one is Greg?

This season marks about 8 years since we met Shayne and Lea - who introduced us to Jen and Amos and subsequently, Kandi and Boyd. Time flies. Thanks again for the magnet - It made our week! Love it!

PS - The term, "Superfriends" is an age-old Simpsons cliche - somewhere lost between seasons 5-8?? Not sure. I stopped buying the collections after season 6.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Our Attempt to Showcase Perfect Children

Christmas around our house means new jammies. This year was a treat for us - I bought these back in July and I've been waiting, sneaking them away in our cellar until just the right moment.

Isn't it funny how you take photographs, trying to display to the world your idealized family? Where love, joy and peace are always present? Nobody seeing the final photograph would think anything wanting. My bet is they never see the shots that dont make the final cut.

So here you go - our best pictures and a few that didn't quite make it. It's also the quickest visual explanation of how things can change so quickly in our house...


Here's the LOVE




Here's the JOY






Here's A hitting E




And here's the end


Sunday, December 9, 2007

My Latest Confession

This was inspired by Natalie's cute posting here. Here's my twist on the same idea...yet completely different.



I Am In Love With




THIS








SMOTHERED IN








WITH A SIDE OF






WHICH IS WHY I STILL CANT FIT INTO THESE



The Truth About Roo

My son is obsessed with dogs. Talks constantly of wanting one, goes nuts when he sees them, sleeps with 4-5 stuffed ones, and (when possible) insists on wearing them.


video

Surprisingly, Greg - mucho dog fan of the world - has had no influence over this obsession - though he's thrilled beyond belief with his son's natural inclinations. Can this be genetics showing their true color? Gosh, I hope not. I need all the help I can get putting off a dog for at least another 5 years...

Monday, November 26, 2007

David's 15 Seconds

I don't know why this happens, but when BYU and national TV come together, my brother-in-law, David is usually there to make spotlight history. And here he is once again... (in the white hat)

video

Thursday, November 15, 2007

That's great Big Guy...uh...what is it?

Today Big Guy brought home 'the big project' he's been working on for weeks at school. He was pretty excited - it has feathers, blocks, a dead leaf, an acorn. I asked him what it was and so far I've received numerous answers -

"It's a smokestack mom"



"A turkey. See the feathers"



"No mom, it's for my collection. That's a good leaf."



"It's for the table"



The mysterious object in question


The other piece of artwork he brought home was his big Thanksgiving poster to show what he's thankful for. Mom? Dad? Sweetie? Pretty Girl? Family? Friends?



no. jellyfish.



Monday, November 12, 2007

Monkeys, Firemen and We Miss the Nelsons!!




Up until August, J was all about pirates. And then for some unknown reason, he suddenly shifted gears to a fireman. Sure we now live 6 houses down from the local volunteer firestation, complete with 4 big trucks, but what does that have to do with anything???

A still doesn't care, so in the name of economy we dressed him up in his brother's monkey outfit from last year. Still very cute - loved the ears.




Also spent several lovely mornings and afternoons at local pumpkin patch farms. We are having a beautiful October month! (minus the flood - see previous blog entries)







This is our first Halloween we can remember where Greg and I didn't go to the Nelson's annual Halloween party back home (where we all leave our kids with sitters). So unfortunately, Greg and I were not motivated to dress up this year. Although here's some classic pictures from last Halloween - good times, good times....(we REALLY miss those times)





And finally...we can never forget my favorite Halloween picture from years ago with Greg and the husbands of our Super Friends group. Sorry, I'm not at liberty to reveal the names of the guys pictured below.



(Neo, Disco Stu, Little Richie, Suba Steve)

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

More Tagging...

Yes, yes...thank you Lea. Although this ranks under one of those, "who the heck wants to read this??" categories. So we'll say it's purely for family history/scrapbooking purposes.



Big thanks to Greg who decided to try this one out as well. So if you thought you already knew FAR TOO MUCH information about us already - here's some more...

Each player lists 6 facts/habits about themselves.

RACHAEL

1. I'm a clean freak. I start to get cranky if the bathroom hasn't been cleaned, beds are unmade, the rugs need to be vacuumed - you get the idea. And I'm obsessive with floor boards, light switches and door knobs. Always good to have 1 or 2 containers of Lysol wipes at hand. One of my biggest stresses is coming home from a vacation - or even a day trip - to a messy house.

2. I'm a walking advertisement for Eddie Bauer. Not that I buy solely from EB - I just feel most comfortable in their style.

3. I'm somewhat of a closet Han Solo and Princess Leia fan. That's all I'll say on that.

4. I dislike talking on the phone - even with my husband. It has nothing to do with the person on the other line, I just dislike the whole process. Seriously - nothing personal. I'm more of an email person.

5. I have a huge weakness for chocolate chip cookies, Indian food, and apple beer (although not eaten all together).

6. I read every night before falling asleep. That age-old advice about not reading in bed because it will affect your sleep habits has never applied to me. It's been my nightly ritual for almost 8 years. It doesn't take long - sometimes 1/2 a page - other nights I can almost make a full chapter. But it's a joyous way to wind down and spend time with Greg (who usually is reading next to me).

GREG

1. I eat too much good (bad) food – such as Oreo’s, candy, and soda. I have no self control with these and I would rather run ½ hour a day than quit. It is a good thing I don’t drink alcohol or smoke.

2. No supermodel or actress could ever be as sexy to me as my wife is. She doesn’t believe me, but maybe that’s a good thing. To all the supermodels and actresses out there – can you please take “no” for an answer???

3. Sometimes, I wish I was Han Solo. That’s all I’ll say on that.

4. If I could be any tree, I would be a gun. Seriously, I feel that if every responsible and capable person owned and carried a gun there would be almost no crime. Last I checked there has never been a violent crime committed at a gun show, and nobody has ever been shot, either.

5. Fruits don’t belong in desserts.

6. In my home we will not only obey the laws of thermodynamics, we will understand the laws of thermodynamics. And my daughter is going to be a nun. You might not think those 2 topics belong in the same group, but until you can explain to me why a particle can borrow energy from its future self, only to repay itself later, you’ll just have to live with it.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Making Her Debut




E has finally decided to show her bright side. Sadly, she reserves these smiles mostly for her dad. Her mom's just some milk machine, kids driving, meal making, argument negotiator, healer of injuries, house cleaning person. Sigh!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Useless Information

Taken from my cousin Kelly's website. Email me if you post on yours - would love to read more of these...

5 THINGS I WAS DOING 10 YEARS AGO

1. BYU junior year with my 4 favorite roommates, including my cousin Kelly
2. Dating a guy named Kelly
3. Writing weekly letters to another guy in the Philippines :)
4. Loving American Humanities with Dr. Bassett & not loving Econ 110
5. Sending out resumes/cover letters for a humanities internship in DC

5 THINGS ON MY TO-DO LIST TODAY

1. Laundry (it's overflowing because I changed all the sheets yesterday)
2. Go to Costco - "loaf of bread, a container of milk and a stick a' butta'"
3. J to preschool
4. Defrost turkey for slow cooker - BBQ turkey tacos tonight
5. Take kids to the library - J needs more books for reading time

5 THINGS I WOULD DO IF I HAD A MILLION DOLLARS

1. Hire a babysitter so I could exercise/lose pregnancy weight
2. Give 10% to my church and another 10% to the Perpetual Education Fund
3. Buy steak, strawberries, avocados and blueberries on a regular basis
4. Buy the high-end, name brand diapers
5. Pedicures and massages more often

5 THINGS I WILL NEVER WEAR AGAIN

1. Big bows (or any bow) in my hair
2. A two piece swimsuit
3. My maternity clothes
4. Belly-revealing shirts (I think I wore one twice 10 years ago)
5. Blue eye shadow - sad but true - I was make-up challenged in junior high

5 FAVORITE TOYS

1. Our computer - I'm online much more often than I should be
2. Scrapbooking bag - love getting together with friends to throw pictures together
3. DVD player - I'm a sucker for watching favorite movies again and again
4. Digital camera
5. Stratego - I have to beg Greg to play with me. I've loved it since 5th grade

Saturday, October 13, 2007

When it Rains...it Floods



So here's the numbers -


6 inches of rain in 2 hours


3 hours for Greg to get home from work


30 gallons of water emptied from our cellar


4 wardrobe boxes lost


= you do the math


Welcome to Connecticut baby!


Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Our Pretty Girl, the White Dress and a Prophet of God


This past weekend we had the amazing privilege of blessing E up in Sharon, VT at the Joseph Smith Birthplace Monument. By sheer good timing, Greg's parents are currently serving there as mission directors and consequently, we blessed L about 10 feet from the original home of Joseph Smith's family.




Another highlight of the event - E was blessed in a dress my mother sewed for my own blessing 31 years ago.


Thanks to the devoted care of my grandmother, the dress is still in my hands and in superb condition (albeit, just a bit snug on L). Here's a couple pictures of my blessing day - love the one with my grandfathers!













One very proud big brother...





I am thrilled we all got to experience this at the memorial. So amazing! I love knowing that Joseph saw God and Jesus Christ. My favorite apostle - Elder Maxwell - says it best -

What followed Joseph Smith’s prayer in the spring of 1820 irrevocably illuminated our view of God, ourselves, others, life, even the universe! A young boy in a small grove of trees began receiving answers to mankind’s oldest and largest questions! But young Joseph certainly did not go into the Sacred Grove seeking the restoration of the holy priesthood and the holy endowment, the sealing power, and all the keys thereof. He did not even know of their existence! He merely wanted to know which of several churches to join. His prayer was for personal and tactical guidance. The response, however, was of global and eternal significance!



...given all of the foregoing, “what can I say more” except “Praise to the man who communed with Jehovah!”



-Neal A. Maxwell-


Monday, October 8, 2007

All the Pretty Leaves





Apparently every fall season thousands of people flock to New England country to see...leaves. Laugh though you may (I sure did), it was really breathtaking. We chose Vermont. The abundance of color, the red barns in the foreground and spreads of green fields - I found myself overwhelmed with gratitude for the chance to be here. Who knows where we'll be next year. Fall is my favorite time of year and...wow! What a great year!








Note: all these locations were reached in a mini-van (yes, Shayne and Lea - that's 266 vs. 244) playing both Keith Urban and the most recent Pride and Prejudice soundtrack. It kept the kids either happy or asleep - whichever one was needed at the time :)



























We were all pretty tired on the way home...

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Fumbling Through Exhaustion

What's the hardest part of having 3 kids??

When one child gets sick, they all get sick!

Don't worry - all the handwashing and hand sanitizers wont save you - although you may think you're trying your best.

What's the second hardest part of having 3 kids??


I use to survive on 5-6 hours of sleep with 2. Now I do much, much less. And with less sleep, things like the following just inevitably happen...



So this post is dedicated to the extremely talented woman and lyrics that understand my pain -

Shawn Colvin



Another Long One

If losing sleep were any indication
Of the loving that I've missed
I would wrap myself around you
But how likely can that be when I feel like this
And if life were not unfortunate
And reason blew like summer through the trees
I would stop to let you catch me
But I think that you would find me on my knees

And it's gonna be another long one tonight
It's just me and my well-intentioned spite
I said someone did this to me
But no one did, there's no injustices
I just can't afford to be right no more
I bought myself another bad dream tonight
With these little boys (A&J) in my head sleeping tight
It's gonna be another long one tonight

Monday, September 3, 2007

Hello Pretty Girl!

My Baby Girl Has Arrived!

7 Pounds, 14 Ounces


A mother’s body remembers her babies – the folds of soft flesh, the softly furred scalp against her nose. Each child has its own entreaties to body and soul. It’s the last one, though, that overtakes you…

A first child is your own best foot forward, and how you do cheer those little feet as they strike out. You examine every turn of flesh for precocity, and crow it to the world.

But the last one: the baby who trails her scent like a flag of surrender through your life when there will be no more coming after – oh, that’s love by a different name. She is the babe you hold in your arms for an hour after she’s gone to sleep. If you put her down in the crib, she might wake up changed and fly away. So instead you rock by the window, drinking the light from her skin, breathing her exhaled dreams. Your heart bays to the double crescent moons of closed lashes on her cheeks. She’s the one you can’t put down.

-Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible-