A whole bunch about us you may have never wanted to know.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Austin's perfect pictures

I have been dreaming about this set-up for months. I made several hats so I could pick the perfect one. I scoped out which balloons to buy and use. I went through my scrapbooking paper to make the perfect banner. And I knew how I'd make the cake. I have to say I wasn't disappointed in the least bit! At the end I decided to have my friend Autumn take them so I didn't have to stress about my camera, and I'm so glad I did. How adorable are these?

Okay, non-cake ones first just to keep the suspense ...

And now for the perfect pics, as if the above ones aren't cute enough!


Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Performance time

Shayla had her dance performance, and it was ADORABLE!!! There is nothing a 4-year-old girl can do wrong in a dance performance, because it's all so stinkin' cute! We curled her hair up good and she looked adorable. I seriously looked forward to this for a long time. What a cutie!

Shayla in costume
Performing -- Shayla on right
After her performance -- so happy!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Austin's birthday

My baby is one!!! He is seriously such a doll. He is the happiest baby I have ever met, and I've met some happy babies. :) I tell people if all babies were as good as he is they'd have 20. Good thing, huh, since they turn into toddlers and teens! ;)

Anyway, we enjoyed his birthday in full-force. I took him to get professional pics from my talented friend Autumn (pics to come), and we did a cake smash at her house. I'm so glad we did, because he decided he didn't like cake and wouldn't even eat a bite of it for the family cake smash. Sigh ...

Anyway, here he is with Austin from the Backyardigans. This is the last of my monthly shots of Austin and Austin:

And, just as a reminder, this is how the A&A pics looked to begin with:

It's always amazing to see how much they've grown.

As for opening presents, he LOVED it -- I bet you can't tell. (Shayla picked the wrapping paper, so pretend you don't notice that it says Merry Christmas. :) I had wanted to get him a couple of books I know about, but Walmart didn't have any of them. We did get him one book from there and some stacking toys. The boy could open a dirty sock and be happy. ;)

So after Austin opened his gifts my other "babies" had a blast trying to get him to play with it. These moments are the ones that make a mom's heart melt:

Then we had a family cake smash with a few of his cousin-friends. Here he is with Gavin (6 weeks younger than Austin) and James (4.5 months old). These three are sure to be trouble soon enough:

 Then it was time for the boy to dig in:

  This part reminds me of Tyler, who barely touched his first birthday cake:

As mentioned, he already knew he didn't like it, so there was no need to taste it. I'm surprised he made the connection, because the two cakes looked nothing alike! Oh well -- I've got a smart one.

This is at the end -- look how clean his face still is:

And I figured family wouldn't want to eat the cake that had been smashed, so I made another one for them all to eat. I saw something similar while looking for a cool cake to make for Paul and couldn't resist making it this year for Austin:

The kids had a blast "designing" their own aliens. I have to say that cute cakes are the bomb!

Oh, and I forgot to mention that it had been nice the day before (no snow on the ground), and then it snowed all day on Austin's birthday! We had to document that, poor boy:

Monday, March 28, 2011

Miscellaneous Monday

So we've been having a lot of fun and I have a few more pictures to post.

First, one I forgot to include from the old camera -- a self-portrait of Becca. She's decided that self-portraits are cool, so she takes them every time she uses the camera. Without fail. At least I finally convinced her that she needs to be straight on or above her face instead of below it. (If you wonder why, try an up-the-nostrils shot and you'll quickly find out. :) Since she was home this time she must have been wanting to capture her hair, which she now spends hours on:

Also, we LOVED watching Jimmer Fredette and his BYU team. Us and the rest of the nation. :) So, we had to go see him in person one time before he leaves BYU. We were very luck to go to the last game of the year, which also meant we got Conference Championship posters of the team. Go Cougs!
Can you believe that shot of Jimmer in the air? Just think if I had my nice camera with the zoom -- I would have gotten some great shots. :) Funny thing is I'm not sure if me or Shayla took this picture. Either way, it's a good one.

Last year we were horrible visiting temples as we had planned, so this year we kicked it off good by visiting two temples in one day. That's easy when they're so close -- from the Oquirrh Mountain Temple we realized we could see the SLC Temple, the Jordan River Temple and the Draper Temple. Isn't that amazing? We'd already visited SLC and Oquirrh Mountain, so this year we visited the Draper and Jordan River. We got to tour the Draper Temple, which was an awesome experience. And I just recently found out that my second mission president is now temple president here. The first pic is the Draper Temple, and the second is the Jordan River Temple.
I was so grateful that we went -- I was amazed at what my kids would notice and point out. It really is a cool experience to teach them to look for symbolism on the building and grounds and have them understand what you're doing. I need to make a srapbook of the temples we've visited so far!

And last, but definitely not least, we celebrated Paul's birthday!!! The geek is 30-something. And boy did I make a geeky cake for him:

 Here it is with the motherboard I copied:
My boy was soooooo happy! He loved the capacitors (???) and wondered if the wires were real. Nope, everything was edible! He said I didn't have to include one element (no idea what it's called) that is no longer used, but I told him I consulted another geek (our friend Scotty), and was informed that even if I used old elements that it would be nostalgic. When I said this Paul laughed and nodded his head -- he agreed completely. It was a lot of fun to try to mimic this old motherboard, but man was it harder than I thought it would be!

Photographing Everyday Life

So I haven't posted in a while and therefore didn't mention about my nice, wonderful camera being broken. It was, of course, horrible timing. I had been asked to photograph Shayla's dance recital by the teacher, for which she gave me a free ticket. The camera stopped working on Wednesday night, and the recital was Saturday night. I called the repair shop and he said it would take three weeks to get finished. THREE WEEKS without my camera?!? When I asked, "Really? Oh, man!" the nice man asked when I needed it back. I mentioned the dance recital and he said for sure not for that. However, when I told him it was my baby's first birthday the following week he said he'd rearrange and get it done. Phew!

In the meantime we've got the old camera to use. I emptied off the card and realized that Zachary and Shayla have used it quite a bit to take pictures. My budding little photographers captured things I may not have ever captured myself about our lives.

I'm sure if any of you have called here you've always wondered what phone we're using. ;) Well, now you know. We have six handsets but are only using four of them -- three on the main level and one upstairs. So although it seems like a lot, sometimes still I can't find any of them while the phone is ringing:

In all of our addition photos I'm guessing we never posted a picture of our new family room ceiling fan. We spent enough time and trips to multiple stores to agree on one, so it's definitely worth a picture, too:

This pic shows I haven't uploaded pictures from this camera for a while. No, I don't still have spider webs (fake ones anyway ;) on my banister -- this is from Halloween. This landing is what we call our Rameumpton since it seems so high and mighty.

The kids are starting to understand games a lot more now, which is a lot of fun. Here we are playing Bang! Our latest is Settlers of Catan, and they love it. (I also love it because it doesn't take nearly as long as I originally thought.) Other favorites include Doodle Dice, Blokus, Battleship, Bonanza (the bean game), Ticket to Ride, TransAmerica, etc.

I still love my photos on the wall. Only thing is that I took new pics to put up months ago and still haven't gotten to it. I'll have to make that happen soon.

Yes, that's right -- I take off my shoes and socks the second I can. If the kids see me at home with shoes on they know that means I'm not home to stay. What you can't tell from this picture is that I'll wear flip-flops or sandals any time I can get away with it -- even in the middle of winter sometimes.

Yes, we have a loop and the kids sometimes use it. :) Growing up our house had a "loop" where we could literally run circles all day long. My younger brother (whose bedroom was under the kitchen part of the loop) vowed he'd NEVER have a loop. Can you believe with our addition we added this loop, as well as one that can go upstairs and downstairs? And as you can see from Shayla running away, this loop gets used! (In the background Becca is getting her hair done for Sweethearts. :) Oh, and my brother who vowed he'd never have a loop has one. Fortunately for him his baby can't even crawl yet so there isn't any loop-running in his house ... yet.

This picture captures something you can find ANY day of the week at our house: Zachary's dirty socks. I had to buy him and Tyler different socks so I knew who was to blame for the dirty socks on the floor, and the only time it has been Tyler's is when Zachary wore Tyler's by mistake. Sigh. Maybe one day he'll find the hamper without being told!

Yes, we have scouts at our house every week. I love that we don't have to go elsewhere to do it. And we love that it is with Tyler and his friends right now. It's a sweet calling that I've enjoyed and am glad I don't have to give up with a new calling I've received. This also proves we do the Cub Scout Oath every week ... and that Tyler isn't always necessarily paying attention. ;)

If I didn't have a picture would I ever record how much Paul loves the Sunday color comics? It's the first part of the paper he reads every week. We both love Dilbert (having worked in cube environments) and he has to get his weekly fix. He also enjoys looking through the rest of the paper and NOT recycling it when he's done. :)

This picture shows two things: 1) I still love this man I married -- he makes me smile almost every day. And 2) If you drop by my house, 99 percent of the time you'll find a basket or two of clean laundry in the family room waiting to be folded. Or just folded and not put away. I'm notorious for not putting things away until I need the laundry basket the following week, because I only do each person's laundry once per week and then I'm done until the next week.

This is Becca doing yoga. She says she LOVES it. She's nuts. Of course, she's obviously not doing a bunch of it right if she's in jeans, but she tries once in a while. And again, the laundry in the background ...

And, finally, who doesn't love a picture of a cute little guy? (And I'm not talking Cookie Monster this time. :)

By the way, I got my camera back and can resume "normal" pictures. I didn't have it in time for Paul's birthday, but I got it in time for Austin's. Pictures to come ...

Friday, March 11, 2011

Crazy hair and cute puppies

Shayla is loving her pre-school. It's no wonder when they do fun things like crazy hair day! She was up and ready for school early one day last week so she could get crazy hair:
(Amazingly this style lasted all day! There is a toy ketchup bottle under the hair holding it straight up.)

And this week for pre-school we went to see puppies! I figured the girls would love sweet, soft adorable little puppies, and they did. (And fortunately nobody dropped one like Shayla did last year -- oops. :) Here is Shayla getting some puppy love:

My boys didn't want to miss out on the fun, so I took them the night before to  make sure they got to see the cute little puppies:

Amazingly, the only one who didn't like them at all was Austin. Maybe he was just tired. But when we put the puppy on him, he just held his hands high so they wouldn't touch the puppy, and then he did the whole "if I ignore it maybe it will go away" thing and wouldn't even look at it. Finally Austin pushed it away and got a very sad face:

We'll have to try again with him another day to see if he likes them better.

After seeing adorable little puppies I am always grateful I have a husband who is allergic so the kids don't whine and beg to take one home! :)