Monday, October 31, 2011

We Stick Together - Halloween 2011

Halloween is a great time of year when parents can remember what it's like to dress up and pretend just like a child. While Kent has never been too keen on it, he has done it the last few years to put a smile on his little one's faces. For the first time this year, he agreed to dress as a family in a theme, one thought of by Isaac no doubt and took all my brain cells to figure out how to make. Thus was born the Lego family! We stick together!

The process was pretty fun and turned out better than I thought it would. I use a cheap clothes hanger and shaped it to fit individually. A nearby discount fabric store had tons of felt in all sorts of colors, perfect for our needs. The rest of the costume was born from some Styrofoam cups, a permanent marker, scissors and glue gun - I love glue guns!

For those of you who are quick enough, there's a reason the costume I wear is with 2 colors. This will be 'baby's very first costume, even if it's in utero! Here's to crazy creativity and family fun!

We also went to another party the night before and Isaac and I made bat and ghost cookies with Nutter Butters and Oreos. They were not so hot the first time around, but we perfect them and made another batch for his classmates. I wish I'd gotten pictures of those ones instead.

I also aided in his class for his party and got to see everyone all dressed up. It's so cute some of the costumes you get and the kids were wonderfully behaved, despite all the excitement and even with Mrs Becky as a sub for Mrs. Berneburg.

As if the Trunk or Treat church party weren't enough, Kent and I decided to show the kids the way it was done in our day. You earned the candy a little more with a decent walk from house to house and I remember needing to sing a song or even guess a riddle a time or two. It's so different now, all Keila got out of it was that there were 'tricks' and they weren't nice. (laughing shrunken heads, skeletons popping up from the ground - door to door may have scarred her ...) Somehow the candy made it worth it.

I have to admit I was rather embarassed when Isaac would always stop to question what was given him. It comes of being candy deprived and everything looks so new and interesting. We've gathered enough this year that I'm sure he'll be much more knowledgeable about what is given - for better or for worse! ;0) Happy Halloween everyone!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Growing Bigger - In So Many Ways

Deciding to have a third child was a big deal for Kent and I. It was the realization that diapers would be the norm for another 3 years to come, naps would run our schedules for another 5 years, our 1400 sq foot house would be a little too small in years to come, and finally, our little Honda Civic which has served us so well all these years would simply not do.

So after much debate, test driving and delay (until I was too annoyed with all the repairs on the Civic) we bit the bullet and went in today with the sole purpose of seriously looking to purchase. Of course we prayed for a good deal (when it comes to spending large chunks of money for a necessity, prayers tend to be rather fervent!) and were seriously blessed with this:

It had JUST come it, a 2010 own for a year and 5 months, with only 12000 miles. Someone was stalking us as we looked at it - clearly on high demand. It's an Honda Odyssey EX, exactly what we wanted (don't need frills, this thing is pure luxury compared to a 99 Civic) and in excellent condition. Kent and I joked that we need to go on a road trip now to break her in!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Mama is a Stick in the Mud

I'm a bit of a stick in the mud. I was brought up prim and proper and like things fairly neat and tidy. You can imagine my surprise when I had a child! Boy was life a different ballgame then! The mere thought of letting my 7 month old child feed himself baby food was like asking me to cut a limb. The blessing of a second child is that you begin to learn to let go. So this stick in the mud is posting this as proof that I'm still a stick in the mud, but I do know when to let go! If my kids ever say I NEVER let them have fun, I'll throw this back at them. ;0)

All it was was 10 minutes of inattention (busy cooking dinner), while they played outside after the rain. When I heard Isaac singing, "Muddy, muddy, muddy!" I had to go check on them. One very sharp intake of breath followed by a deep long moment of silence, all I could say was, "Don't you guys DARE to come in right now!" and I went and grabbed the camera. They had me grinning too in just a few minutes. Later I video them playing, by then it had progressed to mud slinging which had Keila in hysterics. Hosing off in the backyard was NOT fun and hopefully a small deterrent to the next dirty adventure.

This is Isaac building fort around Keila while she was busy giving Sunshine 'loves'. She thought it was pretty funny too.

Here they are having some cleaner fun from the weekend at a Fall Harvest Sidewalk sale. We had free hot dogs, painted pumpkins and made crafts, as well as a hayride and a visit with the Scottsdale Fireman and their truck and the Tempe police with one of their horses.

Ever since our trip to Utah, Keila's been begging us for a horse. Thankfully it's an easy one to have an excuse for. (Sorry honey, there's no room!) May she never grow this sort of attachment to cats or dogs, otherwise we'll NEVER hear the end of it.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Zion's Park and Utah Trip

Kent and I figured we need to get another family trip in otherwise we wouldn't have one for another year with the #3 coming. With all the trouble down in Mexico, we opted out of our timeshare there in Rocky Point and went for a road trip up to see old friends in Utah and stopped through Zion's park along the way. Between my trip to San Diego and this one, I was left with only 4 days to get ready. To complicate it, it had snowed up there in Utah just 2 days before we were to headed up, so out came all the winter clothing. It was a good thing too, Zion's at night was REALLY chilly!

Long pants out already in Kanab, Keila kept saying,"Told! Told!" I'll be a little sad when she moves out of the toddler speech phase.

Our first hike! Isaac was determined to be a trooper - a 'Scout Trooper'! With Baba being a scoutmaster, he wanted to make him proud and not whine about the hikes. He did awesome and never failed to find a hiking stick.

Keila, on the other hand, had no shame in whining, "Hold me, hold me .... Mama, PLEASE!!!" I got my workout, that's for sure!

Beautiful scenery!

What did I tell you! A walking stick! I used the excuse that we were in a national park and therefore could not take anything from it ... otherwise we'd have ended up with a milllion sticks and rocks in our car!

This one is of us hiking to Emerald Springs. The kids had more fun climbing the rocks and sliding down them than anything else.

We paid for a night at the Zion's Lodge which turned out to be pretty nice for us. The room was cozy and the kids enjoyed the snuggling up to watch a princess movie and read some books.

Keila fell in love with the horses! She could not get enough of them and when she's much older, I'm tempted to pay for that 3 hour ride up into the canyon.

This was our hike up to Weeping Rock, which isn't even a full mile. Keila will walk around our neighborhood, half running for a mile, but not when there's an incline apparently. This was our last one so Mama wouldn't give in and hold her. Can you see her dragging her chubby feet up the hill?! The little stinker had plenty of energy to run around afterwards, so don't feel too sorry! ;0)

Yet another stick!

At the top of Weeping Rock, beautiful stuff!

While in Utah we made a point of visiting family, but forgot pictures with Stephanie and kids. Incidentally, she's a month ahead of me in pregnancy. We also took time to go to temple square. Since the weekend before was Conference, Isaac was thrilled to be in the place where the prophet and apostles had spoken just a few days before. They have a new display in the visitor's center which is a cut out of the temple, displaying rooms that I've never been in. It was fascinating for all of us. Best of all was the feeling there, just one of peace. How grateful I am for the gospel of Christ in our lives!

Lunch at the Blue Lemon across the street from Temple Square.

Anything Isaac does, Keila has to do too!

Isaac in his very serious karate pose!

Heading up to the Christus.

At the temple doors.

Keila and Isaac's first encounter with a leaf bug. They were facinated!

Hanging out in Grandpa's patio and enjoying what I call a fairytale garden!

For those who know my 'American Family' from the far side is Uncle Louis, Aunt Liz, Aunt Margaret (Keila was SO attached to her) and myself and Keila.

Clean up post our traditional chinese meal that i always make at Grandpas when I visit.

The following pictures are the reason why I call my Grandfather's backyard a fairytale garden. He has a gazebo, loveseat swing, roses, raspberry and blackberry bushes, peaches, hazelnut trees. He had a cherry years ago along with apricot trees. We can't even get started on the garden that fed me and my roommates through college. Despite his ageing years, he manages something on a smaller scale, but it still holds the enchanted of my younger years. We had fun exploring all it had to offer and enjoying the many fruits it still provides.

We brought back a crazy load of these hazelnuts. Isaac was thrilled with the stash!

We missed out on the box of peaches from Utah, but got there in time to have some ripe off Grandpa's tree! Heaven!

I visited with my old friend Satomi. Her son and daughter are the same ages as my kids and she is also a month and half ahead of me in pregnancy. Got a picture of the kids watching Tangled together.

Our final day was a morning spent at Thanksgiving point playing at the farm. Keila loved feeding the animals and kept yelling and giggling with delight as they tickled her hand with their tongues. Isaac was less interested in the animals, but did manage to run himself down a little with an obstacle course. The huge highlight was the pony ride. Even Isaac did it and Keila screamed in protest when it stopped.

A visit with Grandpa wouldn't be complete without pictues with him. Here's the master gardener himself! We love you Grandpa, thanks for all the fun!

On the way back we stopped at a U-pick orchard for some crisp Fuji apples!

They had gelato there too and I couldn't resist the mango one!

We drove back through Zion's park to catch the sights we missed on the way in. While they weren't actual hikes, the forays were nice and with the cold weather, the leaves were just starting to turn the brilliant colors of yellow and red against the rust iron of the rocks made for unbelieveable beauty.

How we wished we had more time to see more friends and enjoy thier company. All in all, it was a wonderful trip, memorable and one we hope to repeat again soon!