Friday, July 30, 2010

Wouldn't it be nice...

I've been pondering a lot about having a third child. Everyone I've talked to has mentioned that the 3rd baby was the biggest adjustment, because that's when your arms and the adults are outnumbered. I keep thinking to myself that I have 9 months (well, 8 now) until the baby comes and some time to train Lee and Annalisa to do a few things on their own, to make it easier for me. Wouldn't it be nice if before #3 comes home...

-Lee could buckle and unbuckle his own seat belt? We're working on it! He did it today with only a tiny bit of help.
-Anna wouldn't run in the street by herself? Lee is really good now about holding hands in the parking lot and across the street, but sometimes Anna fights us on it still. Gotta keep working on that one.
-Anna wasn't sleeping in the crib? Getting Lee out of the crib was a project from Anna's pregnancy. Hopefully we can do it again. I'm not a fan of bassinets. (But this means probably putting Lee on the top bunk and Anna on the bottom... whew, I'm getting tired thinking about it.)
-Lee could keep Anna and himself contained and entertained for an hour, even with TV or movie incentive, so that I can take a nap even if the kids don't? Right after Anna was born Lee stopped taking naps. I was so sleep deprived I couldn't drive to the store safely. I'm afraid of that happening again, and hope to take measures to prevent it.
-Lee could scrub himself down with soap and shampoo his own hair, and brush his own teeth? Not having to give him a bath would be sooo nice... but I'm not convinced it will happen.
-Anna would be potty trained? Let us pray.

What about you? What kind of preparations were the things you were grateful for, and what did you wish you had done before your kids were born? Maybe all I can really do is try to take a nap. ;)

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Little Doctor Anna

Lee wasn't feeling so great, and just wanted to lie on the couch for a while. He was kind of whimpering, and so Anna decided to help him feel better.

She tried bringing him a cup of water. But she accidentally drank it first. Then she tickled him on the feet, saying "gikkle! gikkle!" She rubbed his back, and asked him over and over and over again, "Lee? Sick? Sick? Sick?" She got him one pillow. Then LOTS of pillows. Finally he said his toe hurt, so she kissed it better. What a sweet little sister!

video

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Pregnancy thus far

I'm now over 6 weeks along. The symptoms are starting to set in: morning sickness, fatigue, and even that wacky pregnancy-bladder where you always feel like you have to go, and get no relief when you do. But still, super excited!

S. Family reunions

The last week we went to Southern Utah for the S. Family reunions: first the Bert S. reunion (Cody's grandfather and his family), then the next weekend the Dean S. reunion (Cody's father and family). They were both held at the family ranch, so we decided to just stay down there the whole time, especially considering it's a solid 5.5 hr drive. We managed to procure a room in the ranch house itself, so that was nice. I didn't want to have to camp while pregnant. So, without further ado...

One of Cody's all time favorite activities on the ranch is to go hand fishing. It's the only place he can do it really well, with the small little creek with plenty of deep banks. This is what he looks like while he's fishing:

And this is what he catches:

He brought back three foot long trout the first night for me to cook up. They were pretty tasty! These particular pictures actually came from a different fishing trip mid-week, and they released all the fish that day. The girls had lots of fun taking my camera out and snapping pictures.

Of course it was lots of fun to visit with our family. The kids are super tan now after spending many hours outside. Lee woke up each morning asking for his cousins, and cried each night when he had to go to bed. Annalisa loved being the littlest girl around, with lots of big kids to fix her hair, change her diaper, and take her on four-wheeling rides. (and I admit, with the onset of morning sickness, I sure loved it too!)

Anna became fast friends with the smallest and oldest dog at the reunion, Patches. She would feed Patches a whole bowl full of dog food one.kibble.at.a.time. It was hilarious.

video

Cody worked quite a bit with Dixie while down there, this horse. Dixie is a family horse, and unfortunately, her training has been spotty. But every time we're around, Cody gets out his training stuff and works away. He just loves it. She has improved so much, and Cody got several good rides out of her. Alisa even took all the kids on horse rides and she marched on like a champ. I think the kids calm her, actually.

During the reunion itself we had lots of fun activities, thanks to Sheila's careful planning. There was a shooting competition (pics below), some really funny relay races, and water balloon volleyball complete with 500 water balloons. Poor Sheila had bruised fingertips from tying all the balloons. Cody did win the fishing competition, much to Grandpa-Great's dismay.




The last day we were there was Pioneer day, which is a big deal in Utah, especially in small towns. We got to participate in the parade, and Anna and I rode on the float along with some of the other kids. It was a special experience for me, but not necessarily because it was super fun to ride in the float...it was special to watch the kids learn. They all wanted to ride so badly, but didn't understand that we would have to wait in line and throw all the candy to the crowd--not eat it, or save it for our family. They had to wait patiently and we forgot water, so wonderful Grandpa walked up and down the parade looking for water, then refilled the bottle in a sprinkler when the one bottle wasn't enough. He later brought us popsicles too. It taught us all about gratitude and how much Grandpa loved us. Then, we had to all ride with happy faces and waves, even if we were hot and tired and thirsty. I think everyone really did enjoy themselves, but it was different than they expected.





We came home on Sunday and are now very glad to be back. Cody is the most wonderful man alive and let me watch the Bachelorette while he unpacked the van. We've been whittling away at the massive pile of laundry (Lee used an average of 3 outfits a day while down there...I did laundry twice while there, and still came home with absolutely nothing clean left).

Whoosh! What a huge post! I probably should have broken it into sections like I did the H reunion, but oh well. Enjoy. We sure did!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Discovering Number Three

I won't post this for several weeks, because we need a chance to tell our families. I'm writing this on July 10, 2010, just to give you an initial idea of how things went down.

Cody and I knew we wanted more kids the moment Annalisa was born. After some thought and consideration, I put my foot down and swore off all future summer pregnancies (well, pregnancies that would end in summer...I've done two of them, and they are HOT). I really, really wanted to have a baby in the spring. So we decided to start trying as soon as a projected due-date would put us in the spring/late winter of 2011. Remember this post, when I officially weaned Annalisa from breastfeeding? And I also mentioned I was growing out my hair again... both of those things were actually for the start of our official trying-to-get-pregnant period. *Kind of a random thing, but with each of my kids, I decided to grow out my hair and donate it in the end of pregnancy.

As soon as the risk of a December baby had passed, we started trying. The first month I was still "drying up," so I wasn't surprised to not be pregnant. The next month I was sick and on all kinds of meds, so again, not much surprise, but definitely disappointment. And then this month. I promised myself I would NOT take a test to the H Reunion, and if I was still in the clear when the reunion ended, I could test when we got back. (the timing was right for that setup.)

A few days before the end of the reunion I started having some PMS symptoms... not really definitive, but still enough to give me pause. Of course, the slightest symptom would make me doubt my chances of being pregnant, which would make it worse because then I was depressed about it as well. And as hard as I tried to ignore the whole deal, when you're trying to get pregnant, you just can't.

Despite the PMS (which symptoms I found out could also be attributed to too many rich foods and high altitude, or even early pregnancy...), my period didn't start. I'm like clockwork. Being one day late for me is a big deal. The day we went home, I knew I was officially late. But that could have also been because of stress, or who knows what? I told Cody I would wait until Saturday morning to test (which is today, as I'm writing this.) But as I was driving home by myself, since we took two cars, I wondered the entire way home. I passed Cody and got a few minutes ahead of him. I decided to sneak in the house as quickly as I could and test before he had a chance to come tell me no. I tried my best to completely ignore the possibility of a negative test. We parked in the driveway, I dragged the kids inside, and ran to the bathroom, not even bothering to close the van doors.

I tested. Oh, the agony of waiting for those little pink lines to appear! The first line appeared quickly--the one indicating the test is working, and if that's the only line, it means negative. I watched the empty spot beside it as I washed my hands. Nothing showed up. My stomach sunk. Three minutes, I reminded myself...I must wait three minutes before I call it. A solid minute went by. I reminded myself that the best results are found at the beginning of the day, not at eleven in the morning. Maybe it's just too diluted? Maybe I'm not pregnant?

Cody came home. I locked the bathroom door and went back to the test when I saw it--the tiniest, faintest line showing up. It's hardly there, but there it is! I frantically whip out the instructions to see the meaning of this. My heart skipped a beat when I saw the line "One line may be fainter than the other" on the pregnant result instructions. I checked the test again, just to make sure. It is still a faint pink line, but there are two! Two distinct lines! I'm pregnant!

In shock, I walked out of the bathroom to our bedroom just to compose myself. I could hardly breathe. Cody came in and saw me with my hands clasped on my mouth. He asked me what was going on. I couldn't say it out loud yet, but he figured it out. "Did you test?" I nodded. "What was the result? Negative?" I shook my head. "What?" he gave me this huge hug. "Really?" Then I showed him the test, faint pink line and all, and I explained to him how the instructions clearly say that any 'pregnant' line, no matter how faint, is a positive result. We gave each other huge hugs and just held each other for a while, both in shock and joy. Once we regained composure, we called Lee and Annalisa to us and explained that mommy was indeed pregnant, and we would have a new baby come join us in March of next year. Lee got pretty excited. Annalisa wandered off to play with toys, but she did keep saying "beebee? beebee?" for a while.

Throughout this pregnancy, I will journal my thoughts, feelings, and milestones. I really love going through my posts about Annalisa's pregnancy and birth, and I definitely will do the same thing. Right now, we are so excited! Hang on for the ride!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Whew!

We're back for good now! We have had tons of adventures this month/Summer, and I'm glad to be home now. It was an amazing amount of fun. I will put up pictures and journal entries and stuff as I get there. Tonight: there is a beautiful memory foam mattress with my name all over it.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Guess What?!

That's right folks, I'm pregnant!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Sprinkler fun

Yesterday we went outside to play in the sprinklers. It was a blast!

Annalisa wasn't a huge fan of getting wet, but she did like running just close enough to feel a few drops of water before screaming and saying "wet!" and running away. Lee, on the other hand, would sit on the sprinklers, pick them up and hang them over his head, and all kinds of other stuff. He loved it!

It sure felt good to go outside for a little while just to burn off steam, and beat some of the July heat!

Doughnuts...yum...

There's this sister in our ward who makes divine homemade doughnuts. I adore them. She brings them to nearly all the major ward functions, but that is not nearly enough for me--which is probably why I like them so much; I never have enough to OD. So anyway, yesterday we had this young women's camp fund raiser and this sister auctioned off a dozen doughnuts, to be delivered hot and fresh in the morning. To my dismay, the bid was already above what cash I had in my pocket. bummer.

But just seeing that "One dozen hot, fresh doughnuts" on a piece of paper made me crave them so badly that I decided to just make my own, and spent my cash on 3 hours of babysitting and house cleaning. Ha! I beat the system!

So last night I mixed up Alton Brown's recipe for Raised Doughnuts. I let the dough rise in the fridge over night and this morning I devoted an hour to rolling, cutting, proofing, frying, and glazing doughnuts.

aaaaaah. So good. The batch was huge, and fresh doughnuts are one of those things that really should be enjoyed immediately and not tried to save for anything. So Lee and I took a dozen over to Raychel, and then we scarfed the rest. My appetite for doughnuts has been quenched, temporarily. I'll certainly be making these again, and I might just swear off old stale bakery doughnuts forever.

(Yes, this doughnut and a half is all we have left. And I assure you, they will not be here for long.)

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

July 8-9: End of the Reunion


After all the craziness of July 6 and 7, July 8 (Thursday) we took kind of easy. Kind of. There was Granddad's golf clinic, which I didn't have the pleasure of attending, and a baby shower (which I did attend). I won a prize at the baby shower for coming up with the most original names using only the letters from the sentence "What are your cravings now, my love?" I had 103 names, 60 of which nobody else had thought of.

Grandma and Grandpa F, pictured here, had fun reading new books to Lee and Anna. Lee's new book was a search and find pirate book (think Where's Waldo?) which Lee ADORED. Anna's was a fairy tale book that she also really likes.

Friday morning was just wake up, breakfast, and pack to go home. We were sad to leave, but alas, all good things must come to an end. We were grateful to have spent the week with the family, and really had a great time. It was one of the best reunions ever. Thank you again Grandma and Granddad H. for putting on this spectacular event. It was more than we could ever have hoped for, and we will cherish the memories forever.

Monday, July 12, 2010

July 7: Lee's Birthday!




We woke Lee up on the morning of his birthday with a big group to sing for him. He was super excited! We opened presents first thing. He loved his pirate swords and all 3 Toy Story's from Grandma and Grandpa F. (the 3rd was movie tickets). We played and tried to eat some breakfast and played some more.

After lunch and a good nap time for the kids and adults, we had a birthday party.

First we decorated cupcakes and sang to Lee again with candles.
video
Then Grandpa F. did an awesome magic trick, which was adored by kids and adults. At the end he told the kids to find magic rocks when they went walking. After that, I saw at least ten kids picking up rocks and feeling them to see if they were magic. It was definitely a hit.

Finally, we went to the tennis courts and had water balloon tossing contests. This again went over superbly, with the little kids enjoying just throwing the balloons, and the bigger ones attempting to toss them back and forth in towels.






More food, more games, more fun! More tomorrow....

Sunday, July 11, 2010

July 6: Treehouse Museum/Ogden

July 6, Tuesday, Cody, Doug (my brother in law), and my Dad all went back to my hometown to work. While it was a bummer that they had to go, we all understand that that solitary day of work allowed all of them to be there in the first place, and was very important. I missed my man, though.

Axton played with my camera for a while. I thought you might like to see what it the world looks like to a 2 1/2 year old.



We all went in to Ogden for the afternoon. Some people went to the temple, but Kathy and I stayed on kid duty and went to the Treehouse Museum. It's a fun little place with TONS of activities for kids. Their tagline is "Jump into a Story." Lee loved the mini pirate ship. Axton loved the trains and music room. Annalisa and Benjamin just enjoyed playing in a new place.




video
After the museum we hung out at a park, and eventually went and got dinner. I had planned poorly and didn't have any water for Anna in the last hour we were outside. She was so thirsty that at dinner she drank nearly 2 adult-sized glasses of apple juice. (yes, it was an AWFUL diaper later.) :) We got back to the resort that night right around bedtime. I put the kids down, played a game, then went to bed myself. Cody got back around 11:00 pm.

Next... Lee's Birthday!...

Saturday, July 10, 2010

July 3-5

July 3rd, we went up to the H Reunion. We arrived around noon, and our kids had slept in the car so we skipped nap time. Lee and Cody went swimming. I played cards with my siblings. Other people arrived throughout the day and we enjoyed the visiting time.
July 4th was Sunday of course, and so we held our own little church meeting at the resort lodge. It was a very special mini-service, which was a highlight of my week. I helped my mom and dad make dinner, which turned out really well. See my food blog for my yummy green beans recipe. :) Porter spun Lee on this chair. Lee kept saying "Stop! Stop! Stop!" until I finally intervened. Lee told me he was really sick. I had him sip on water and walk around outside for a while. Then as soon as we got back inside, he ran to the chair and said, "Push me, Porter, Push me!" *sigh.

video

July 5 was more play time at the resort. More swimming, more games, more cards, more parties! Cody went golfing all.....day..... (at least it feels like all day to the wife who is alone with the kids ;) ). Sara and Eric brought a huge beach ball that was played with all week, even though we only took it in the pool once that I remember.

video

Then we ate more food, played more cards, stayed up late AGAIN, and laughed so hard that we woke up Benjamin (oops). More to come....

SSS: Mountains

Something Super Saturday!
When I was a young kid, we lived in places with mountains. Our Grandmas and Grandpas also lived in the mountains. I became addicted to them, and I didn't even know it. Until we moved to Minot, North Dakota, that is.

I ADORED North Dakota (once I was out of sixth grade, that is, and found a few friends). I loved the people, the rolling thunderstorms, even the blizzards. But there was one thing I missed greatly: the mountains. I really do love the ND sunsets that stretch across the endless horizon, but I missed the mountains.

Then I came back to Utah for college and have stayed here since. I. Love. Mountains. I love the way they tower over everything, and the way they hug our valley protectively. I love the smell, the sounds, and the sheer stature of mountains. Spending the last week at the top of a mountain made me love them even more. This week, my Something Super is (duh) Mountains!

Friday, July 9, 2010

July 2: Fireworks




On July 2nd our city held their annual fireworks show. I love that they do it on the 2nd so that we have more time to go see other fireworks or do other things. We let the kids stay up late and watch the fireworks. The next day, Cody helped with the ward Pancake Breakfast, then we loaded up the van and the car--yes, 2 vehicles--and headed up to the reunion.
video (the kids were SO excited to see the fireworks start!)


The first night we were there, we watched more fireworks. Our condos were on top of a tall, tall mountain (tippy top, about 9000 feet). From that vantage, we could see the town below, our home valley to the north (even though it took about an hour and a half to drive up there), and even a snippet of the cities to the south (love my vagueness?) Friday, July 3rd, a few clouds rolled in. From our viewpoint, we could see the clouds light up as the fireworks went off. We could see flashing lights--almost like lightning, but colored--from as far away as fifty or sixty miles. The ones in the town below we could see really well. It was amazingly cool.