Saturday, December 26, 2009

Christmas Eve

I am so grateful for the Christmas season and all the love felt during this time of year. We had some wonderful opportunities to serve and show love for those around us.

We spent Christmas Eve and morning with Andy's parents, grandpa and grandma, aunt and cousin. We had a delicious dinner at Andy's parents house and spent some time visiting before we let the kids open their Christmas Eve pajamas. I didn't make them this year, and they aren't even Chrismasy, but they all got some nonetheless. They were very excited to open a gift early!

The kids each get to choose where they leave their stocking for Santa to find, and place there it before bed. Kayman chose the fireplace and finally left it there after wearing his stocking for a while. He kept putting his foot into it and thought he was pretty funny! :)

Syd chose the green couch for all her loot.

And Jess chose the big green chair for hers.

Once we got that all settled we got the kids all bundled up and headed downtown to see the lights at Temple Square.

It is tradition with Andy's family to go to Temple Square on Christmas Eve, no matter how cold it is. Luckily it wasn't too bad this year. It was cold and everyone had frozen bums by the time we were done, but I have endured MUCH colder outings to Temple Square! It was so beautiful.

After the Temple we headed back to Andy's parents house to put the kids to bed. It was just about time for Santa to come and the kids were hoping we didn't miss him. They thought maybe we were out too long and he passed our area already. Luckily we got home and they feel asleep just in time.

Syd was very excited about the digital camera santa brought her. She loves taking pictures!
Kayman's got another football! Jess picked this out for him.
Jess getting loves from Nana.
Everyone had a wonderful Christmas. We spent the morning at Andy's parents and then headed to my parents for a while. After a gift exchange at my parents house we headed to my Uncle's house to spend some time with my extended family. It was such a wonderful day! I love spending so much time with family. We are so lucky to have so much family so close. We did miss Andy's siblings and their families though.
Christmas evening was spent putting away all our new treasures and packing for our upcoming vacation. We were headed to Maui in 2 days!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009


The girls started taking dance at Vision Dance in September and have learned SO much! They have great teachers who have taught them very well. They have both improved so much since they started there!
Jessica has become so flexible and gained so much balance! Syd is getting more flexible and is so strong. She works very hard to be sure to get each step right. They both pay a great deal of attention to detail and practice a lot! They really enjoy dancing!

Syd danced to toe Nutcracker song and did such a great job. She has wonderful stage presence. She smiled beautifully the entire time and didn't miss a step!
The pictures I got of Jess were too far back and she was behind another girl the whole time so they didn't turn out. Luckily we got video of her dance. She danced to Mariah Carey's version of "Santa Claus is coming to town" and it was adorable! She took it very seriously and practiced at least 5 times a day as she was learning it!

I am so excited that they both love to dance and that we are able to take them to such a great studio!

A home visit!

On Sunday afternoon Syd asked me if she could borrow my gold pen (an old fashioned one that you dip into ink) to write Santa a letter. She was just getting it out when there was a knock at the door. I answered it and we were all surprised with a very unexpected visitor! Santa came to our house! Big red bag full of toys and all! He came in and and asked the kids what they want for Christmas.

Syd was in shock! She couldn't take her eyes off him! She told him she wants an American Doll, Baby Alive and make-up.

Jessica was thrilled and told him she wants make-up too. That's all she could remember when faced with the man himself!

Kayman sat on his lap but leaned as far away from him as possible. He wasn't scared of him, just a little unsure of why this strange man was holding him and talking to him.
Santa made sure to tell the kids to remember Jesus on Christmas because that is what Christmas is all about. He then gave them all a toy. The girls got new dolls and Kayman got a little stuffed animal. They were all SO happy! What a special day!
Thanks Santa for the personal visit!

Syd was very interested in his car. He drove a red car that Syd remembered seeing at church on Sundays. I quickly told her that his "helper" that came with him goes to our church (Syd recognized her too) and Santa was borrowing her car. She is a little too observant sometimes!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Big 2 year old!

Happy Birthday Kayman! My baby is 2 years old! My little man is growing up way too fast! He has changed so much in the last few months, it's amazing to me. He has found his sense of humor and loves to make us all laugh. He LOVES fire and was excited (although it's not obvious from the picture) to have some lit candles on his birthday cake.
He didn't love all the attention though. There were about 15 people singing Happy Birthday to him and he got pretty shy. He just started this hiding behind his hand thing recently and does it whenever he gets embarrassed.
He loved his gift from his great grandma. She gave him a little teddy bear that he carries around everywhere.
Syd and Jess helped him open his other gifts. He got some puzzles, bean bags, stacking blocks and a big monkey pillow! He loves it all!
I absolutely adore this little boy. He is my little man. I love the way he giggles so hard when I tickle him, the way he kisses each cheek and then my lips, the way he turns my head to look at him when he wants to tell me something, his new dance moves, his independence, the way he looks at me as he runs away when I try to get him dressed, that he cares so much what shoes he wears, that he loves having his hair fixed, that he tackles his sisters already, the goofy faces he makes at me, and that he loves to cuddle up on the couch and watch Nemo with me. He is the most loving boy. I am so grateful for him and the joy he has brought to me. Happy Birthday Man! Love you forever!

Thanksgiving weekend

We headed to St. George to spend Thanksgiving with my family. My parents have a place down there that they purchased with the intent to flip, but now they have fallen in love with the house and all the amenities that go along with it. Our whole family is able to stay there without feeling crowded.
We had 19 people sleeping there, and ended up with about 25 there for Thanksgiving dinner, and everybody had something to do without getting in anybody's way. They house is very accommodating to large groups, and is equipped with a pool, hot tub, pool table, theatre, game table, trampoline, and basketball court. Everyone had a great time just being together at the house. We were all there most of the weekend spending time together, and everyone was busy so there was no reason to leave the house! It was a wonderful weekend!

Here is Jess showing off her turkey she made in Preschool. She really wanted to take it with us, but was okay with just taking a picture with it instead.

The traditional Thanksgiving morning football game. I was the official camera (wo)man. Good thing, cause I'm not much of an athlete. They played at the Encampment Mall at Dixie College.
Kayman kept running out on the field thinking he'd like to play a little football too!

My two guys wiped out from the game!

This is my dad with his 2 most recent interests. The house behind him is the one spoken of earlier in the post. My dad has spent the last few months completely remodeling the house...I mean completely! He moved the staircase, tore out and re-built walls, basically stripped the place to the studs and floorboards and changed the entire look of it. He was the contractor and did much of the work. He has such vision and it turned out so beautiful! I love my dad and am so grateful for his generosity!
And the motorcycle. He just purchased it and is off to ride around St. George with one of his buddies.

This was definitely the best Thanksgiving ever! We spent lots of time together as a family and with lots of extended family we rarely get to see. Thanks mom and dad for sharing your home with us and for helping us so much with the kids! We love you and are SO grateful for you!

I am very grateful for my family and for how close we all are. I am so blessed to live close to them and to get to see them all so often. I love my children and my sweet husband. I am so blessed.

All I want for Christmas... my 2 front teeth!
It's been about a year since the tooth fairy has visited our house...until last week! Syd lost another tooth. It was hanging by a thread so she just pulled it out! She came running in the room and just said, "Tooth Fairy!" and showed me her tooth! She was so proud of herself for pulling it out by herself.
Her top front tooth is also just about out also. It's starting to stick out and discolor, as you can tell from the picture. She's learned and is prepared to sing the song "All I want for Christmas is my 2 front teeth."

One, Two, Buckle my shoe

Syd had her first presentation at school! She memorized the nursery rhyme "One Two Buckle my Shoe" and presented it to her Kindergarten class and lots of parents. She didn't even get too nervous. We came up with some signs I could give her from across the room to prompt her if she forgot, and she only needed my help 2 times!
One, Two, Buckle my shoe
Three, Four, knock on the door
Five, Six, pick up sticks
Seven, Eight, lay them straight
Nine, Ten, big fat hen
Eleven, Twelve, dig and delve
Thirteen, Fourteen, maids in courting
Fifteen, Sixteen, maids in the kitchen
Seventeen, Eighteen, maids in waiting
Nineteen, Twenty, my plate's empty

I had never heard the whole thing before so we learned it together. Syd took a shovel for her prop and pretended to dig during the line "dig and delve." She did so great! I was so proud of her.

Monday, November 16, 2009

My older man!


Andy had his birthday last week and turned 30! He is officially OLD! :) I tell him he's my distinguished older man. Nevermind the fact that I am only 6 months behind.

When he got home from work I took him out to dinner to Olive Garden. We enjoyed a nice dinner without distractions from the kids, but went home to them and had a little party.
Jess got her daddy some Flarp. It's puddy stuff that makes farting sounds when you push your fingers into it. She thinks it's hilarious and wanted to play with it all night! Syd got him a gum ball machine, then of course wanted some gum as soon as he opened it. They are such sweet girls! It was fun to watch them pick out gifts for him and see the excitement as he opened his gifts! Kayman got him some socks. I know, he was really excited too! :)
Happy Birthday Babe! We love you!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Tiny Dancer

Ok, so she's not so tiny anymore, but she sure is a dancer! She is getting so good! She started at Vision DLC in the summer and has loved every minute of it! Syd got her first pair of competition dance sweats tonight! She looks so grown up in them. They have her name on the front and some fancy bling on the back. Here we go with the dance scene!

Monday, November 2, 2009



I went with some girlfriends to "This is it" last week and now I can't get enough Michael! This is an amazing film, and I highly recommend it. If you liked Michael Jackson even a little, you will appreciate it. It's the raw footage of the rehearsals for the concerts he was going to do in Europe during the summer. It really is a shame he died before this performance, because it would have been spectacular!

I always liked his music, and I LOVED watching him dance all growing up, though I never got too into him. I thought he was strange, but I always admired how he embraced himself in spite of everyone's opinions. You see him in his working environment in the film and it was very insightful. He is so passionate and involved in every aspect of the show. The rehearsals are just like concerts for him, he dances the whole time. It's not like he doesn't know the dances after all these years!

I have been listening to him for the last week, and now the kids love listening to him in the car! Today Kayman was singing "Beat it" and "I'm Bad"!!! I showed the girls videos of him dancing online and accidentally brought up the scary "Thriller" where he turns into a werewolf, and I turned it off immediately thinking it would scare the kids. Syd was definitely scared, but Jess wanted to watch it. I explained that it is pretend and let her watch it, and she has watched it about 10 times! She isn't fazed by it at all...should I be concerned?! After the scary part is over, she asks me to start it over for her. Hmmm, shouldn't my 4 year old girl think that is scary?!

What an amazing artist and performer he was! I always wished I could sing and dance, so I really enjoy watching those who can. Seriously, go see it!


This is being written a little later than I wanted. Once Halloween is over, I am so done with it, but I was too busy ripping out the dead flowers in my yard to get this done. That is something I have been procrastinating for weeks, and today's weather was irresistible!
We had a great Halloween! Syd was a fairy, Jess was a princess (again), Kayman was a rooster, I was a devil, and Andy was a hippie/rocker/long-haired-dude. My parents came out to see the kids in the afternoon so they could be home for their trick-or-treaters. They live at the top of a huge hill and lots of the kids make the trek up there for the BIG candy bars, so my parents like to be there for them. We had fun with them for a while at our house!
We had a trunk or treat at our church and got WAY too much candy! The kids loved it and I loved seeing all my primary kids in costume. They looked so cute! We then went home for our traditional "Frito Pie" Halloween dinner with Andy's family. Frito pie is frito's, chili, cheese, corn, tomatoes, and sour cream. So yummy! After dinner we headed out for more candy! It was fun to see the kids so happy and having fun. Kayman finally got the hang of it, but for a while he kept giving the people at the door his candy. What a sweetheart! Enjoy the pictures!

I have SO many pictures from Halloween, so I just made a slideshow for y'all.

I also wanted to post a few of my favorites cause I just LOVE them!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Back Update

I have been going to physical therapy for nearly 3 weeks and doing the exercises prescribed diligently. Sometimes I feel worse after the exercises, and sometimes I feel better. The pain has actually moved from my butt to my hip and my piriformus muscle is VERY tight. I've been stretching it the best I can without further aggravating the nerve.
After 3 weeks of physical therapy and only minimal relief, I decided to go ahead with a cortisone shot in my back. I made the mistake of looking online for people who had done this before and got only negative feedback from people who had adverse side affects. This made me so nervous!
Yesterday morning I went in to Dr. Zamas, who is phenomenal if you are in need of someone, for the injection. I was getting so anxious and nervous for the shot I was really wishing I had taken a pain pill. The thought of a huge needle sticking into my spine right next to the nerve that is killing me was very scary. The Dr. came and got me and told me to lie down, hold very still and that it shouldn't last more than about 90 seconds. He hooked up the X-ray machine so he could see if he was in the right spot and injected the cortisone. The pain shot down my leg making my calf and foot tingle, but it was no worse than it has been for the last month. I was so relieved that it didn't hurt nearly as bad as I thought!
In the picture above, the white thing is the disc, grey is the spine, and yellow is the nerve. My disc and bone are both pushing on the nerve from different directions. The cortisone shot is supposed to reduce any inflamation in the area, and had some lidocain in it to numb the nerve for a few hours.
I felt the relief from this immediately! I was able to bend over and put my shoes on pain free for the first time in a month! Now that the numbness has worn off, I still feel it in certain areas and just need to be careful when I move around, but I am SO much better than I was! Hopefully this is the answer for me and I can keep it under control without having to turn to surgery. Thank you to everyone who has helped me and my family during this time. I really appreciate the great friends we have!


We got enough snow this week that the kids HAD to go out and play in it...before school! They love winter! We still have not taken the trampoline down yet, so jumping on it with snow was heavenly for them.

Kayman's snow clothes from last year still fit, luckily. I got him some boots from Kid to Kid for $6, and knit his hat. The only thing I didn't think of was gloves. Good thing Jessica's from last year fit him! Poor kid. Maybe I should knit him some?! Maybe.

Pumpkin Patch

We went to the Pumpkin Patch for FHE Monday night to get a few pumpkins, one of the favorite things for the kids this time of year. Kayman has been looking at the pictures on our calendar (us at the pumpkin patch last year) and wanting pumpkins! I did attempt to grow some in my garden this summer, but they never even flowered. I hear they are the easiest thing to grow...but not in my garden. I think I put them in a place that doesn't get enough sun and stays too soggy. Anywho, we went to the pumpkin patch to purchase some. After we picked them out we took the kids on a hay ride, which they loved...

...except for Jess. She hurt her foot or something and was a little grumpy.

Kayman loved the hay ride!

Wheelbarrow full of kids and pumpkins!

Jess found her favorite pumpkin, which was not easy because most were rotten and soggy.

Our little farmer.

Blissfully happy Man!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Witches at Gardner Village

Gardner Village is amazing this time of year. They set up some really fun witches and displays and the kids love to go there. This year we went with my friend Robin and her kids. Here are the girls with the chocolate-lovin' witch! Spooked Syd right out!

Jessica the witch

Syd the witch

The boys. They found this spot all by themselves, sat together, and posed for pictures. They are good little buddies.

Jessica refused to sit with Syd and Man for this picture.

Jess and Man in the photo booth.
What a great day! It was nice to get out while the weather was still warm. Beautiful day!