Sunday, November 30, 2014

Goodbye November

Tomorrow is December. November has been an extremely trying month, full of major financial setbacks, so I am happy to leave it behind and move forward. However, I'm slightly terrified for what the next month or so could bring.
Just barely over two weeks ago, my niece Danielle had a little baby girl. The following week, Cindy and I went down to Cedar to see her. They had to induce her early due to a rare growing disorder, so she was less than five pounds. She was seriously the tiniest little baby I have ever seen in person. And she was so still, hardly ever moving. Most of the time, it was hard to believe that she was real!
While we were down there, I got to take some 5 generation pictures with my grandma, my mom, Kim, Danielle, and baby McKinley. It's weird to think that my sister is a grandma and that I am a great aunt.

These pictures don't do her justice at all. She is so tiny!
Our visit wasn't long as I wanted to be home Sunday for Lance's birthday. It was a pretty normal day, unfortunately. Lance said he wanted socks for his birthday, so he got socks. Birthday's just aren't the same when you grow up, are they? When I told Will to go grab daddy's presents to give to him, he misunderstood and went and opened most of them up. Poor Lance.
The following day, Monday November 24th, Lance started his new job at Enterprise. He put his 2 week notice in at the DI a few weeks ago and started at Enterprise immediately when that two weeks was up. He is doing a Management Training Program and hopes to work his way up the company latter a bit. It is a complete 180 change in directions and I'm still trying to wrap my head around it. I will probably do a separate post entirely about this switch in jobs.
The day before Thanksgiving was a bit of a rough one for the kids. They always play hard and are constantly doing crazy stunts so it doesn't surprise me when accidents happen. At one point in the day, the kids were playing who knows what in Blake's room. I was sitting outside the room on the couch, working on a project when Blake started screaming and Will was saying sorry. She walked out screaming with a small mark of blood near her eye. We cuddled for a bit and eventually she was good as new.
Then later that night, Will tripped over a cord and fell into something and hit his lip pretty good. It wasn't quite split, but there was blood and it got huge. By the next day or so, there was deep purple bruising on the inside.
It was a bit of a rough start to the holiday.
Lance worked the day before and after Thanksgiving, so we did a day trip up to Logan for the holiday. We got there just after 9 in the morning, and Sharon was getting ready to throw the turkey in the oven. We played some games, watched football, played football, looked at Black Friday ads, decorated the Christmas tree, and mostly just hung out.
We tried to get a family picture or two, and as you can tell, Blake wasn't too thrilled about the idea. Her face cracks me up.

Here is a picture from Thanksgiving 2011. It's fun to see how far we have come in 3 years.
The food was great. The company was excellent. The holiday was a success. Thanks to the Hintons!

We left in the evening in time to get home and put the kids to bed. I dragged the kids to one store the next day, but I wasn't able to do much more Black Friday shopping than that.

Goodbye Novemeber!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Christmas Program Preview

A family recently moved into our ward that is incredibly gifted musically. They got called as choir directors and suddenly or choir is amazing. It is so fun to be a part of and I am super excited for our Christmas program. It's really going to be something special.

The primary will be joining us on the closing number and the all of the kids are in love with the song. I taught Will the words and he sings right along with them. It's a fast song, and he knows the words and is able to keep up. Here is a little sample. He is awesome.

I took this video shortly after he learned the song. He has gotten even better now.

I especially love his little "Gloria in excelsies dieo" line.

And finally, singing along with the audio version. It's quick!

During primary, we have started bringing the kids who will be in sunbeams next year in for singing time to help them adjust a little better. I was such a proud mommy on Sunday when Will came into primary and sang every word of this song. Even some of the adults haven't mastered it yet.

*Would love to have everyone come see our Christmas program. The Sunday before Christmas. I'm not lying, it's going to be good.

Hope They Call Me On A Mission

Will loves to sing and and is really good at memorizing songs. He loves the primary songs about missionaries, especially this one.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Halloween Week

Every year I say I'm going to go all out for Halloween and come up with some really great costume ideas as a family. And every year, October comes and I can't think of a single idea. Or I'm just too lazy to actually do it.

So I decided to abandon finding outfits for the entire family, and just focus on the kids (mostly Will) since Blake doesn't really understand what is going on.

With his obsession with trains, I thought it was only fitting for him to be a train engineer. I saw this super cute idea on Pinterest and decided that is what we would do. I showed the picture to Will and he asked me for days when we were going to make. If you want a tutorial or how I did it, click on that link.

Love her little grumpy face.
We finally started the week of Halloween and worked on it for a little bit each day. Through out the week, we also tried being festive with how the kids dressed.

We probably could have easily finished it in one day, but we just painted a little section every day and slowly pieced it all together. Blake's red struggled a bit more, and I even had to throw her's away and start over at one point. Three cans of paint later, hers was done. The blue was much better and only took one can of paint.

The lid on the smokestack comes off so that you can put your candy inside of that. But Will wanted to put his candy in a bag.

We had to do some shopping around to find some overalls and the hat. I found the hat at the train station souvenir shop in Ogden, and we found the overalls at the DI. They were several sizes too small, but we made them work. And luckily it was super warm on Halloween, so it wasn't a problem wearing floods.

Will couldn't wait to play with it. I let him walk around in it for a few minutes, then I made him wait until Halloween.

Then a couple of hours before we were going trick or treating, I took the kids over to a railroad track to take some pictures. I'm in love with how they turned out.

 Blake was not a fan of her train and kept asking me to take it off. I got a few pictures then she didn't wear it the rest of the night.

 Blake was supposed to be a coal shoveler or just the coal to fuel the trains. But her outfit wasn't obvious and took some explaining.

 Lance had to work, so we had some friends meet up with us to go trick-or treating. There were a lot of people that weren't home, but that didn't slow Will down. He was all but running from house to house, anxious for more candy.  And he biffed it several times. The light on the front ended up falling off, and the whole thing was pretty beat by the end.

The best part is the light on the front, because it turns on when you push it. Everyone loved Will's outfit and we got a ton of compliments on it. When it got dark, people could see him from a distance and see light and I could hear them commenting how cool they thought it was.

Took this picture at the end of the night, and the kids were ready to be done. We went inside, enjoyed some hot chocolate, and got ready for bed.

Happy Halloween!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Fall Update - The Kids

Oh these two...

These two little kids are smart.

These two are best friends.

They are out of control.

And they are adorable.

There have been so many fun changes lately, and I simply can't remember all of them. They are developing some huge personalities and each have little quirks and things they do. I'll let pictures do most of the talking, otherwise I could work on this post for weeks.

Within the last couple of days, Will has started calling her Blakey. "Come on, Blakey!" "Let's play, Blakey!"At first I wasn't sure about it, but now I kind of think it's adorable.

I know I say this every time, but Blake's hair gets longer and longer. It's a full time job keeping it out of her face. She plays hard and it is constantly getting messed up. Sometimes she looks pretty homeless.
Will loves wearing different costumes. He has spider man, Darth Vader, a ninja, and we just borrowed this one from Cindy.
They have both always loved story time, but it seems to have really taken off lately. I take the kids to the library and let them pick 5-10 new books for us to read. The kids love it. Especially Blake. All day, she is constantly bringing books to me for us to read. After a week or two of reading the same books, many times a day, they basically have the stories memorized.
When we turn to certain pages, Blake will make the noises I make or do the actions that we read. I've noticed a big change in her development and speech since we have started reading more. It's cool to see her actually remember the stories and it's awesome to see her so excited about reading. Hopefully that never goes away.
 We haven't had as many play dates lately, but Will always loves when friends come over to play.

 While we were up in Logan, we got to go see the Pumpkin Walk.

The kids saw a playground and quickly lost interest in the pumpkins and just wanted to go play.
Blake dislikes when things (besides shoes) are on her feet. If she is wearing pants that are too long and she steps on them, she freaks out until you roll them up. She doesn't like wearing tights and socks and will pull at them and try to take them off.

These two have so much fun together and I love to watch their friendship grow. Often times when I pick them up from daycare at the gym, they are playing alone together, even though they are surrounded by other kids.
Every time Blake gets put into her car seat, she immediate takes her shoes off. And often I'll look back and find her with one leg up over the side, just kicked back and relaxed. She thinks it's funny when I ask where her shoes went.
Will is in that phase where everything is a race. And he gets mad when he doesn't win. When we go out to the car, he likes to finish buckling up before I finish strapping Blake in. When we are eating, he has to finish faster. When we are getting out of the car, he has to beat me to the house. I'm trying hard to teach him that it is ok to lose, but he sure doesn't like it.
Cereal is definitely a favorite here at our house. Blake will eat every bite and drink her milk until she is all done.
Look at this girl's closet! And that is only shirts and dresses. She has a dresser full of pants, shorts, skirts, etc. Someone was selling garbage bags of girls clothes for a good price so I got them. She is definitely spoiled. Though don't think it's just her. I bet Will has just as many clothes, if not more.
Once school started, Lagoon was only open on Saturday and Sundays. Since Lance works Saturdays, it made it difficult for us to make it there. We finally made it for one last hoo-rah! Will was sad I wouldn't go on Rattle-Snake Rapids, but it wasn't exactly warm and sunny anymore. We enjoyed our season passes, but I'm not sure if we will get them next year again. Maybe it'll be an every other year type of thing.
Will's memory simply amazes me, as well as his sense of direction. If I say that we are going to our friend Savannah's house, he can tell me all of the things we need to pass in order to get there. I'm pretty sure he could tell someone who had never been to our neighborhood how to get the to gym, and it's a 15-20 minute drive. He always knows exactly where we are. It is seriously impressive and you can't appreciate it until you have driven with him for a while.
Will is so smart, so detail oriented, and able to focus. He can build complex train tracks and know how to stack blocks or legos to form bridges and other little things. And he is very good at playing with the track without always knocking it over and destroying it. I've noticed when other kids his age come to play, they have a hard time moving the trains around the track without their bodies hitting other parts of the track. Will gets frustrated when others try to play with it.
Will has been on a Clifford the Big Red Dog kick. He especially loves the episode when Clifford is a little baby. We then discovered a whole series where Clifford is a puppy..."Puppy Days".
Almost every time we go out into a store, we see someone who has a baby with them. And every time we see a baby, Will points and yells "A baby! Mom! Look at that cute baby! Can we buy that one?" It typically gets smiles from the mother.
Will makes friends every where we go. Whether it's the park, McDonald's playground, or the doctor office, he always finds a friend. He is very social and is definitely not shy.
When you ask Will what his name is, he says "big boy". If you try to correct him and ask if his name is Will, he gets very upset and says, "No! Big boy!" And if you try calling him "big boy Will", then he says, "No! Just big boy". He gets very intense about it.
Will is getting more and more picky about what he wears. I let him pick his clothes the majority of the time because we will likely just be staying home all day. On this particular day, we decided to walk to the park. Jammies, snow boots, and snow jacket...and it was fairly warm.

The kids have also really enjoyed having so many apples all of the time. We typically have a basket with some apples in our kitchen. Blake loves to pick one to eat. More than once, I've gone to the basket to find 5-6 apples with one bite taken out of them. The only bad part is when we are outside and she just grabs one off of the ground. She'll be eating one when I notice it's gross.
Blake is getting quite the little attitude. She knows exactly what she wants and she will throw a fit if she doesn't have her way. Her new favorite word is nuh-uh, with a shake of her head. And when she tells you no, she means it. Good luck getting her to do something once she has decided not to.
She used to eat anything I put on her plate. Then suddenly, overnight, she has become a super picky eater. Often times, she wont even try it. She instantly gives me the nuh-uh and her mouth is sealed shut. I've tried forcing food, and she'll just spit it out.

When she gets upset, or you tell her something she doesn't like, she walk away to where you can't see her then throw herself on the floor and have a little tantrum.

Recently, she was having a particularly rough night and throwing a major fit. Instead of getting frustrated, I decided to pull out the video camera and laugh about it. But boy did she not think it was funny. She ran into her room and shut the door. When I came in, she threw herself on the floor. When I tried getting closer, she would arch her back and scoot across the floor. Then when I really tried to pick her up, she crawled under her crib, all the while continuing screaming. I tried grabbing her leg and pulling her out, but she would grab the underside of her bed and hang on for dear life. She barricaded herself under her bed for quite some time. *(Unfortunately the video is too long and I am unable to upload it.)
She is already such a girl and so full of drama. Sometimes when she is mad, she will go into a room and close the door and scream like she wants you to go in and get her. But if you go into the room, she will glare at you and shut the door so she can resume screaming.
The last time we were on our way home from Logan, it was late and Blake had fallen asleep in the car. When we were almost home, I noticed that Blake had waken up. But for some reason when I would look back at her, she would close her eyes and pretend to be asleep. After a few seconds, she would peek her eyes to see if I was still looking. If I was, she would instantly hide her head and pretend to be asleep again. It was hilarious.
Whenever Will gets into trouble for not listening, he always says "I want to listen!" usually followed by doing exactly what we told him not to.
I never know what I'll get when I take these two on errands. I'd say for the most part, they behave and we don't have any issues. Those bad trips, however, are bad enough that I swear I'm never taking them anywhere ever again. Then I get desperate enough to get out of the house, I just forget all about the bad experience.
We go to they gym in the mornings and the kids have fun playing at the day care. I love going in there to pick them up. The moment I call for Blake, she gets super excited and starts frantically cleaning up all of the toys before she will come to me.  I'm not sure where she learned that, but I'm not complaining. Then once I pick her up, she starts yelling for Will.
Will is already pretty protective of Blake. One time I had a wellness check-up and they had to poke Blake's heel to draw a little blood. I was explaining it to Will, and he started crying and telling me not to hurt Blake. Blake wasn't even phased by it, but Will was freaking out.

If I do or say something that makes Blake cry, Will gets upset. He asks me what I did, then tells me that wasn't very nice.
I taught Will how to play Mario-Kart. The first few times were pretty rough. I remember one time in particular, he was doing like 18 minute laps. He quickly got the hang of it, and by about his third time playing, he was down to 2 minute laps. I'm sure he'll give me a run for my money one day.
They love to laugh and meal times are often times of laughter at our house. This is one of my favorite pictures. Simply put, they love life.
Both kids love being outside and ask several times a day if they can go play. They enjoy tv and movies, but if given a choice, they would choose playing outside any time. I hope it stays that way forever.
Will's obsession with trains grows stronger and stronger. When we go to the gym, he likes us to take the way that passes over the railroad tracks so we can look down the tracks to see if there is a train. Every time he sees a train track, he has to point it out and ask where the train is. And when we happen to see a train, he gets so excited.
Every so often, we like to let him go for a short ride on the FrontRunner. I'll drop Lance and the kids off at one station, then they will ride to the next one where I'll pick them up.
Within the last week, Will got a haircut from our neighbor. He is surrounded by girls all day and is convinced that he wants his hair long like mommy's and Blake's.
As you can see, he wasn't very happy about getting it cut. But i think he looks super handsome.
 A few days ago, I asked Will to go open Blake's door since she seemed to be awake from nap time. He went in and never came back out. When I went to investigate, he had his arm around Blake and was rocking her in the rocking chair. 
 I was trying to get him to smile, so I said, "Show me your teeth..."
Will loves going to church and gets really excited for nursery. For the last few weeks the incoming sunbeams have joined the Jr. Primary for singing time. He likes that, and I think he will transition into primary very well. (I hope!)
 While Blake is a copycat and loves to do and say whatever Will does, she is developing her own personality. She is funny, spunky, full of attitude, and just lots of fun to have around.
I wish people could see what I get to see every day. These two kids are so smart and fun, and most of the time, I am the only one who gets to enjoy it. How lucky am I?!