Monday, July 25, 2011

Firsts and some not-so-firsts but still 'funs'

  • Caroline rolled over from her back to her tummy unassisted for the first time on Friday... and I MISSED it! She was hanging out in the living room while I prepped dinner in the kitchen. I peeked to check on her... and lo and behold she was on her tummy just lookin around! She hasn't done it again since then, so maybe it was a fluke, but I am still excited about her development!
  • Caroline also transitioned from the cute gurgles and bubbles of last week's vocal experimentation to SCREAMING. She discovered the sound on Friday (I guess Friday was a big day for her). She just likes the way this new noise sounds, so she'll lay on the floor screaming even if she is happy. It kind of makes it hard to tell what she needs. And our house just got really noisy.
  • Gwen has been dreaming. Wednesday after her nap she said she was riding on the back of a blue elephant. Saturday when she got up from her nap she said, "I SAW him! The carrot was dancing! Outside! Let's go see him!" Funny. blue elephants. dancing carrot dreams. Gotta love kids.
  • Gwen also had her first successful poop in the potty. (And then 2 accidents in the same day. obviously, we're not finished training yet.) That's progress!
  • Not really Gwen's first birthday party to attend since she's been to 4 or 5 before, but this was the first one that she was really old enough to appreciate, I think. She really had a blast at J's Princess Party. I think Cinderella's visit, the crown, and the wand have rekindled her interest in Princesses. She wants to have them all the time and loves going around saying, "biddy,boddy,boo!"

  • Friday, July 22, 2011

    5 years

    I am jumping the gun since our anniversary isn't actually until the end of August, but a friend is sponsoring a group writing project (with prizes involved!) that just happens to revolve around "the next 5 years"... which really got me thinking about our upcoming anniversary.

    5 years ago, Eric and I were still in Utah.
    Now we're in Ohio.
    5 years from now, we'll be where ever residency takes us.

    5 years ago, we rented a duplex in Springville from Grandpa.
    Now we rent an apartment in Columbus.
    5 years from now, will we be renters or own a place of our own with a fenced in backyard? (pretty please...)

    5 years ago, Eric and I were still undergraduates at BYU.
    Now Eric is a 4th year med at OSU and i'm in a master's program at CSU.
    5 years from now, he'll be an MD almost finished with residency and I'll be a master of humanities.

    5 years ago, we were poor newlyweds.
    Now we're even poorer, very much in debt not-so-newly weds.
    5 years from now we'll have an income!

    5 years ago, I was skinny and so was Eric.
    Now, I'm not so skinny...and I think Eric might be skinnier.
    5 years from now... hopefully I'm skinny again!... and Eric will most likely still be skinny! :)

    5 years ago, we were a family of 2.
    Now we are a family of 4.
    5 years from now, will we be a family of 6?

    5 years ago, we had children aged 0.
    Now we have an almost 3 and a 3 1/2 month old.
    5 years from now, Gwen will be turning 8, preparing for baptism. Both Gwen and Caroline will be in Elementary school. Weird.

    5 years ago, I taught at the MTC and Eric taught Physics students how to be better writers.
    Now we both teach ABC's, numbers, colors, animals, manners, potty training, obedience...
    5 years from now, we will still be teaching all the above, plus a few more things.

    5 years ago, we made sacred covenants at the alter of the temple.
    Now we are striving to honor those covenants.
    5 years from now, we will STILL be striving.

    5 years ago, we were happily in love.
    Now we're happily in love.
    5 years from now... we will be even MORE happily in love!

    I love my family SOOOO much! I can't believe how much life has changed in the past 5 years and I can't even really imagine what lies in store for us. Bring on the next 5 years!

    Tuesday, July 12, 2011

    Caroline 3 Months

    Last Friday Caroline hit the 3 month mark. She has found her feet, grins all the time, rolls onto her side, wiggles and turns around so that we can't safely put her on the couch anymore, jabbers and sings to herself, thinks faces rule the world, can get her arms out of her swaddle in the mornings, and is basically the most pleasant baby! When she pulls her feet up to grab at them, and her belly bulges out to the sides, she looks like a pleasantly fat Buddha. :)

    Monday, July 11, 2011

    Gwen is reading!

    I have to tell ya, I'm EXTREMELY proud of my smart lil 2 1/2 year old! She is reading 3 and 4 letter words! Mom, Dad, hot, dog, milk, etc. Anything phonetic, she can sound it out and READ! The longest she's read, I think, is napkin. I am not only proud of her, I'm amused by the phonetic lapses in our English language. The other day I heard her 'reading' to herself...

    "buh- eh- ah-rr-ss ah-nn kk-hha-ah-ih-rr-ss" (lol, Bears on Chairs!)

    Even though it isn't perfect, even the imperfections make me glow with pride. I think my daughter might be a genius. (and all of you can just roll your eyes and give me patronizing compliments. I know I'm only slightly biased)

    and these other pics, because I think my daughter is beautiful:

    can you tell she is obsessed with Thomas right now? He even gets to wear bling! :)

    Sunday, July 10, 2011

    I found a relative! Guatemalan President!

    Folks, I'm SOOOOOO excited about family history right now! Gotta tell ya, I have been scouring baptism and marriage records from Guastatoya, El Progreso, Guatemala (a lil parroquia where I have at least 3 generations of ancestors) and found the evidence that links my Grandmother's grandmother as a cousin to a very famous Guatemalan President: Jose Maria Orellana Pinto! He took over the presidency in a coup, then got elected officially, and is especially famous for his work on the economy. His face is actually on the Quetzal, Guatemala's equivalent to the dollar! It has been a popular rumor in my family that we were related to him, but unfortunately, pretty much EVERYONE with the last name of Orellana claims relation to him, and we didn't have proof. Well, NOW WE DO!!!! His father was the brother of my great-great-great grandmother. Pretty exciting stuff, folks!

    Arkansas was AWESOME!

    Trip to Arkansas was a great success! We had all kinds of adventures! Gwen had the best time, I think, and was hardly grouchy at all (once we gave up on trying to sleep Gwen with her cousins in the same room and put her to bed in our room. She just had too much fun in there... sleep didn't happen. Side note, but I gotta add that even after we moved her into our room, we once heard her jabbering during a nap... and discovered that her cousin A had climbed into her packnplay with her and they were just chattering away!)
    If it looks like the trip revolved around food... um, it pretty much did! We were treated again and again by both my parents and my sister's family and let's just say we got pretty spoiled! (good thing I got a work out every morning with either my mom, racquetball with my dad/bro/hubby, or intense gym-going with my amazingly in shape sister!)

    click on any pic to see it more detailed. these collages can get kind of tiny, but it is faster than uploading individual pics
    Welcome BBQ with Spencer at the grill... oh, man, the food hit the spot! and relaxing together while the kids played was amazing! I love the both cousin J and cousin A chose to pose with their bacon when I came over with my camera... :) And you gotta love the stacked cups next to Gwen. She thought they were toys. She also thought the plastic knives and forks were fun... she kept dropping them between the wood slats so they'd fall irretrievably under the deck.
    Enjoying the kiddie pool... not just for kiddies! Eric and my bro, Spencer, had a lil splashing contest that turned into wrestling. Boys. Go figure! the gorgeous gal is my older sister, Tamara, and the goofy guy in orange spraying down the kiddos is my dad. He loves being a Grandpa. :)
    Gwen, cousin A, and pretty much everyone enjoyed picking fresh blueberries from Grandpa's bushes. I think it was a morning ritual for Gwen and Grandpa to check to see if they were ready. She was quite "regular" on this trip!
    One of my best friends from HS, Carly, and her sweet daughter, Im..., came for dinner to hang out and catch up. It was so wonderful to see her and share our lovely children!
    Gwen and Grandpa demonstrating that the smores were good
    Mexican dinner with everyone except Spencer. Love the pixie tails on lil cousin L'S!
    Splash park with the Heiners. J and A were totally into it... Gwen wasn't so sure. Though after we left she kept asking for days to go back to the "splash".
    Post Splash park frozen yogurt with the Heiners... Caroline is there, under her carseat cover.
    Had some shopping--just us gals!-- my sis posing in cute shoes to prove it. Had some of us together, but unfortunately, I looked awful beyond crop or photoshop fixup, so those pics didn't make the cut.
    Swimming with the Heiners-- Eric was a great jungle gym.
    Pizza to celebrate cousin J's sportiness
    Kayaking with the Heiners
    Off the dock activities!
    Lunch with everyone at Huhut Mongolian BBQ... DELISH!
    Gwen sitting with Grandpa
    Gwen learned how to ride a tricycle... and LOVED it!
    Gwen relaxing with Grandma "Sugar"
    My Mom and Dad
    Grandma and Grandpa lovin on Caroline. She found her feet on this trip!
    Gwen really grew up in my eyes too. She remembered everyone's names, used complete sentences with finesse, and developed a real bond with her cousin A, closest to her in age. Even though we've been home for 2 weeks now, she still asks me regularly "what is A doing?" or "Gwen to go play with cousin A? At his house? Please mom?" How can I refuse a request like that? We'll just have to do it again soon... see ya'll at Christmas! :)

    Tuesday, July 5, 2011

    Perilous--check this out, folks! It's a Contest!

    Hey, I know I've been MIA for awhile. We went down to visit my family in AR and I have SOOOO many photos, I am admittedly daunted by the task of documenting everything. I'll get there, but it may not be awhile. Living in the present trumps uploading pics. Sorry.

    But, I DO want to give a shout out to my sister, Tamara, who has a video interview here (not available after today, so don't procrastinate watching!) about her recently published book, Perilous. Check it out! You just might be inspired to purchase a copy for yourself or someone else you love!

    and if you DO go and check out the video, leave me a comment about your thoughts on Perilous. There just might be something homemade in it for one of you.... :) (Let me spell it out: I will randomly select one name from the comments I receive to win a homemade prize from me. I will tailor the homemade goodness to you/your family if you win. but there's a catch: I must get at least 5 comments, or the contest is nullified. So spread the word!). don't delay! Check out the video, leave me a comment, tell others, and cross your fingers that you win!