Monday, November 16, 2015

Casino Royale

Saturday night, Enterprise had a party for all of it's employees at the Marriott at City Creek downtown. It was a black-tie event and themed Casino Royale. Guys were encouraged to wear tuxedos and women were supposed to wear formal gowns. 
We dropped all three kids off at Cindy's and made our way downtown to the event. The room was full of tables and chairs, a small dance floor, and card tables. Buffet tables were scattered throughout the room with different types of food from prime rib, cheese sandwiches, little smokies, shrimp cocktail, mashed potato bar, etc. 

Everyone was given raffle tickets to put in a drawing of a gift basket of your choice. They were giving away ski tickets, a PS4, tickets to a jazz game, fitness package, a night stay at the Marriott, etc. Each person was also given 150 poker chips. You could buy more raffle tickets with your poker chips. One hundred poker chips could be exchanged for one raffle ticket. We played Black Jack for a little bit, though both Lance and I played a bit conservative and we walked away about even. 

There was also a fun little photo booth with a ton of dress-up props. 
I was running on only a few hours of sleep from the night before, so we didn't stay until the very end. It was fun to get out for a little while and be around other adults. It was my first time leaving Austin for a long period of time, so I was a little anxious, but she did great. Huge thanks to Cindy for making it possible for us to go. 

Friday, November 6, 2015

Austin's Newborn Photo Session

I originally thought that I would try to take Austin's newborn pictures myself. I feel like I'm getting better with my camera and I was excited to try it out. I figured the least I could do was try, and if I didn't like them, then I could pay someone else to take some. 

While we were in the delivery room, I got my camera out to take some pictures but it wouldn't turn on. I recently got a new battery, so I thought maybe it was the wrong battery or something. Lance ran it down to the battery store and they said it was fully charged and should be working. Suddenly my only camera was my phone, which wasn't quite what I was hoping to use for her pictures. 

I called around to a few photographers, but most of the decent ones were booked out several weeks/months. A friend of mine recommended Hanna Roberts Photography to me and luckily she had an opening a few days later. 

While we were there, I also had her take a few shots of Will and Blake.

I was in the other room feeding Austin while she took the kids' pictures. I could tell that Blake was being quite the pill and not cooperating. Big surprise there. She is the most difficult person to photograph. Either she is making crazy faces, has her hands covering her face, or is simply trying to run away. Getting her to hold still is nearly impossible. So I am happy she was able to at least get a decent shot of her.
I especially love this last one of her. Though I wish her hair would have been less out of control. It doesn't like to stay "done". 
And then for the really hard part. The kids couldn't wait to go play and were not excited to take more pictures. Blake refused to sit closer than a foot to Will. Likely this picture was captured right after I picked up Blake, set her down right next to Will and dashed away as quickly as I could. Seriously, it was a bit of a joke. I didn't want to waste more time trying to get an impossible picture, so we gave up and moved on to Austin and let the kids run wild.  
At home, this girl is hardly ever awake. And it almost takes work to keep her awake. But as usual, once you try to take pictures, you can't get them to go to sleep. We sat there and waited about 45 minutes for her to finally doze off. She wasn't thrilled with not having a blanket and would wake up every time we tried to take it off. 

 Probably my favorite picture of the whole group!

 I also really like this one. 

Thanks Hanna Roberts! I'm really happy with how they turned out. I love my kids so much, and I am grateful to have Austin in our lives.

Photo credit: Hanna Roberts Photography

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Halloween 2015

"Truly wonderful, the mind of a child is." - Yoda
I have a love/hate relationship with Halloween. I am always really excited and want to come up with creative and awesome Halloween costumes. But then my mind goes blank, and I can't come up with anything. I scour pinterest, yet nothing seems to stand out to me. I knew Austin would be born shortly before Halloween, so I really wanted to get everyone's outfits ready before she came. Doing a Star Wars theme had crossed my mind, but I wasn't really thrilled with the idea. So I did nothing. Then Austin was born, and I still had no ideas for costumes. We have plenty of dress-ups, however, so I figured as a last resort they could just throw one of those on.

Will was supposed to dress-up for preschool the Wednesday before Halloween, and they were having a party and a little parade where the parents could come. On Monday, I suddenly felt ambitious and decided to go ahead with the Star Wars theme. Because Will's had to be finished by Wednesday, I started with his. 
Copying a link on Pinterest, I came up with this Jedi outfit. I bought some cheap khaki pants and made them into skinny jeans. Then I found a pattern for a vest and cloak. I love how the vest turned out, but the cloak is a different story. There were so many different patterns, and most were more complex than I really cared to try. I didn't have a lot of time to make it, so I wanted something simple. It gets the job done, but it was poorly made and doesn't look great up close.  
Once I had Will's made, I started on Austin's. Originally, I was just going to make the Yoda beanie for her and call it good, but then I decided to add a little tutu, and a vest-type thing as well. I think it really completed the look. I know it's probably pointless to dress a newborn baby up, yet it was fun ,and I think she looked absolutely adorable.
Cutest little Yoda I've ever seen.
And lastly I began to tackle Blake's outfit. I originally wanted to make her dress myself, but one day while I was in kid-to-kid, I noticed they had this Leia dress in her size. I didn't buy it then because I was still determined to make her dress. But some of the patterns for the dress that I was planning on using were very similar to the jedi cloak and I wasn't happy with how that turned out. Plus, by this point it was already Friday afternoon and I was quickly running out of time. I decided to run back to Kid-to-Kid and see if they still had the costume. Luckily, they did. It came with a different Leia hair piece that was quite hideous, so I made this hat for Blake to wear instead. 

I told the kids we couldn't go trick-or-treating until I took some pictures. They were not excited about it, but after enough threats they finally complied...somewhat.  
It was chilly and there was a bit of a breeze, so I tried to take the ones with Austin quickly. She was squirming and became fussy quickly. Fortunately, I got a couple of shots that worked. Afterwards, Lance took the kids trick-or-treating while Austin and I stayed home to pass out candy. 
"The force is strong in my family."
Happy Halloween!