Friday, July 30, 2010

friday fabulousness.

prints from MadeByGirl
too cute.
one for Carly's room . . . 
one for our living room . . .
Headed back to the ballpark tonight.
Can't help ourselves.
Happy Friday.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

shriek {!} and awwww.

My boys Sidney and Mario christened the brand new ice in the Pens brand new arena today.
I shrieked when I saw this picture.
Aren't they sooo cute?
Less than two months until the first pre-season game.
Seriously can't wait.
Shrieking again.

And in the "awwww" department, Carly has been very clingy lately.
I think its because I spend a great deal of time going through junk and packing, so she hangs out with me and plays while I do so, but I'm often very distracted. So lately she has been coming and sitting right in the middle of what I am doing, or planting herself right on my lap. She also climbs up into my arms and wraps her arms around my neck and gives me big juicy kisses and won't let go. When I'm in the middle of something I'm tempted to get frustrated, but its so incredibly cute that I can't. Anyway, its started to rub off onto her napping habits, and my once fabulous napper will suddenly only sleep in someone's lap or arms. Today I rocked her to sleep in my arms, and she wrapped her arms around my shoulders and buried her face in my neck. It was so delicious. But not very comfortable. After several failed attempts at putting her down in her crib, I finally took her to our bed and laid down with her. She fussed for a bit, but was so exhausted she collapsed onto Chris's pillow and fell asleep in seconds. So I got to lay down next to this for a bit:
[picture from my phone]
Did I already say delicious?
And another fabulous phone picture from today:
As my mother said, "She really is in the driver's seat."

Sunday, July 25, 2010

we live a good life.

I don't have too much to say tonight.
Today was one of those days I wanted to pull my hair out.
Carly won't eat.
And she won't sleep {nap}.
Chris is still under the weather . . . and will return to the doc tomorrow.
Its a million billion degrees here.
Chris took Carly for a ride to try to get her to sleep and she came back totally soaked in sweat. She spent the afternoon screaming . . . pretty sure she was dehydrated but she was so worked up she wouldn't drink a thing. Eventually, I was so clueless on what to do, I actually put the one kids DVD we have (Elmo's World, of all things) in and the strangest thing happened: she sat on my lap and watched it for like 45 minutes. Very un-Carly like to sit still when not asleep. Anyway . . . I'm sick of heat so intense you can't leave the house between 10 am and 6 pm.
So over it.
But I had a wonderful day at church.
We were released, which was harder on me than expected. I've spent 2 wonderful years with the Young Women. Its been a bit more tricky since Chris was called to the Young Men, but it has been a blessing to serve.
Oh, and want to hear a funny story?
I was sitting in sacrament meeting and a new couple comes in with a baby in a carseat. Its a common sight in our ward these days, with the new school year approaching. But this carseat happened to be the one that I coveted for Carly (but was a wee bit out of our price range) so my eyes lingered a bit. Then I looked up at the dad carrying the carseat and . . . weirdest thing . . . I knew him. He is from my home town and was my assistant tennis coach when I was in high school (he was a new RM back then). I caught his eye during sacrament meeting and we waved like "Ok, this is a crazy small world." I haven't seen him since my Junior year in high school. Isn't that funny? Anyway, he and his wife and baby boy just moved in, as we head out. Its nice Pocatello will continue to be represented in the ward. Though, they are both very nice so its too bad our stays in Kville didn't coincide.
Though Carly has been a bit exasperating lately, she is also delightful.
She has an incredible amount of personality.
100% diva.
But so generous and sweet.
She has a serious thing for her stuffed animal friends. She will reach to them and grunt and give them all kisses and hugs and crush them and rub her face into theirs. Its gotten to the point where I have to cover them with a blanket every night and tell her they are going to sleep, because if she can see them she will never stop wanting them long enough to calm down and go to sleep herself. Really quite cute.
The A-List: [L-R] David, Rex, Quentin Bear Cook, Cubbie, Benny, LBP, and Leo.
While packing I found a very old box of Otter Pops that expired a year ago. I was trying to keep Carly entertained, so I let her play with them, thinking she would never actually get them open. Not long later, Chris went in to find her covered in sticky blue liquid. I always underestimate her.
I very rare sight: Carly being still for minutes.
Snuggling Leo, who happens to be as big as she is, before meal time (aka, throw-food-on-the-floor-and-scream time).
I said I didn't have a lot to say, but it looks like I lied.
We live a good life.
ps. Two sweet friends lost their dad to cancer today. I was blessed to have him as my basketball coach for a year in high school. Taking into account how much I love my own daddy, I can't imagine the grief they must be experiencing. Today, I mourn with those who mourn, and I'm sure they could use any extra prayer available.

Friday, July 23, 2010

friday fabulousness.

I decided on a new fun tradition.
Every Friday I thought I would share a few things I find fabulous.
Not that I'm an expert on fabulousness.
But, still . . .
It could be anything!
Won't that be fun?
It will mostly be fun for me, I'm aware.
But a great way to start off the weekend, don't ya think?
Today's addition: mostly home decor.
As that is what I'm currently obsessed with.
I heart blue & white.
So simple, but so delicious.
L.O.V.E this fabulous coral mirror.

Glossy black will be finding its way into our new home.
Of this you can be sure.
And finally, how fab is this necklace?
I'm a wee bit obsessed.
You know, Carly's birthday is coming up, and I never got a "push present" . . .
Happy Fabulous Friday.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

hard at work.

[Carly hard at work on her memoirs.]
I don't understand how we have so much stuff.
We've been packing, packing, packing.
We have a ginormous pile of boxes filling our living room.
And yet I look around and there is so much more stuff to go.
We haven't even started on Carly's room.
Anybody want some stuff?
We have plenty. 
Chris went off lactose.
After a fair amount of deduction, he thought it might help.
We think it might be helping, as he has been feeling better.
No wheat, no dairy.
We are quite the pair.
Carly is smart.
She must watch us on the computer, because when we let her play on our very old one, she started typing with perfect form (as seen above).
And she likes Rihanna.
Like I said, she's smart.
I'm a little addicted to pepperjack cheese and avocados.
As you can see, we are very busy these days.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

girl crush.

I have a girl crush on Gisele.
I think she is a natural stunner.
And I love this picture of her, so casual but stylish, with little make-up on.
Just being mom.
I want to be her when I grow up.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

rays of sunshine.

Well, well, well. My last post was a bit pouty, and I'm sorry about that. What you should really take away from that post was how much fun we had at the baseball game. I'm really a happy person, I promise.

As hippy-esque as this sounds, I was thinking about rays of sunshine today in sacrament meeting, you know, when the sun is behind the clouds and the rays shine out from behind (oh, where the mind wanders during church).  When I was a little girl, I always thought that when rays of sunshine were coming out like that it meant that Jesus was coming to Earth to visit. To this day I can't see rays of sunshine without thinking of the Savior.

A few other rays of sunshine:
  • I've been thinking about my "poor" pout. Did you know in the long run we aren't that poor? We have a place to live that is warm when its cold outside and cold when its warm outside. We have cable TV and an Internet connection that is slightly better than snail speed. We have couches and beds and cameras and clothes. And we have food in our tummies (those of us you don't refuse to eat do, anyway.) We are probably top 1% in the world. We are blessed.
  • A friend asked how we are getting through school without any debt. The answer: academic assistantships. Here in TN and in MI, Chris got assistantships that pay the entirety of his tuition and give him a monthly stipend, which is what we survive on. Thanks to that, BYU's beautifully low tuition, my scholarships, and generous family, when all is said and done we'll have 4 degrees without ever taken out a student loan. Like I said, we are blessed.
  • Since our plan to purchase new couches has gone the way of the earth, we have a little wiggle room in the decor budget. I'm currently addicted to design websites, saving pictures of ideas here and there. My new addiction is Deco My Place, where anyone can upload pictures of their homes. Some are not that great, but I like it because it has more realistic designs than a lot of design sites. I'm getting excited to use the things we have in new ways, and to be best friends with the thrift store that is not too far from our new place in Michigan.
  • Today at church we sang As Now We Take the Sacrament, which just happens to be my all-time fav hymn. I swear we always sing it when I need it the most. Strange choice, maybe, but its a beautiful song with the greatest lyrics. Every time we sing it and I comprehend the words, I remember what a miracle and blessing it is that we get to take the sacrament and renew our covenants every single Sunday.
  • We are going to Idaho the first week of August. We will get back 3 days before our moving truck arrives. This is why we are trying to be as prepared as possible before we go. It may be a little crazy, but I'm so very excited. Idaho is truly the promised land.
  • The babe is walking more and more. She is good at walking back and forth between Chris and I, though she does have a tendency to dive once she arrives. This video isn't the farthest she has ever gone, but you get the idea. It also captures her refusal to continue walking (she has been walking back and forth quite a bit before we started recording.) And when she is done, she is done. She is so delightful.


Friday, July 16, 2010

thoughts and baseball.

Yesterday, as I sat on the ground in the baby food isle of Walmart (in my defense, it was the nicer Walmart in town), I leaned toward Chris and said "I feel defeated". "By her?" he asked, motioning to Carly. "By everything," I replied.
I am fully aware of how lucky I am. With so many people struggling with true challenges, I know my mundane day-to-day ones are small. But sometimes they don't feel small.
Carly recently went on a hunger strike.
For 2 days the girl hardly ate a thing.
I felt like loser mom of the century.
Why couldn't I get her to eat?
And why does Satan jump on such an opportunity to tell me what a crappy mom I am?
That's annoying.
Made for a stressful and trying few days.
[It looks like our strong-willed girl was quitting baby food cold-turkey. She enjoyed a banana pancake and GF spaghetti today without a problem.]
Sometimes I don't want to be poor anymore. You know you're poor when you consider pregnancy as a way to cut back on the cost of tampons (jokes, jokes . . .). Sometimes I want a new couch, and matching bedside tables, that darling frame. Sometimes its hard to remember that all we need is "sufficient for our needs". But we are so very blessed with generous parents. When we dropped $100 on diapers and formula the other day, I walked out of Sam's trying to think of the last time we had bought either. It had been a while. Chris's parents keep us well-stocked. As I pack away Carly's clothes, I can count on one hand the things we got for her with our own money. My parents keep us well-stocked. We are so blessed.
I'm rambling. But the other day on Walmart's floor I thought of Carly and money and moving and Chris's nagging health issues (doctor's bills, anyone?), and I felt defeated. Then Chris said a few magic words: "Lets go to Jimmy Johns for lunch." We sat and enjoyed the world's best BBQ chips and fed Carly bites of banana and I thought about stuff . . . and somehow I felt at peace. Jimmy Johns has a healing power over me, I think. Or maybe it was the prayers.
In a way, I'm grateful we are in a situation where we can be as poor as we are. Does that make sense?
We have no debt, no mortgage, no pressing money issues hanging over our heads. We live month to month, and supplement with savings . . . and this is why I am blessed to be able to stay home. We squeeze by, but we are at a time in our lives where we are able to 'squeeze by', and for that I am grateful.
Sometimes I look at my husband and my daughter and think of our loving families and I feel like the luckiest girl in the world. That should be more often.
Anyway, we finished Gilmore Girls. They made a mistake, it ended wrong. Rory was supposed to marry Logan and go live in San Francisco with the avocado tree, and Luke and Christopher were supposed to find fabulous mentally stable women while Lorelai sought counseling for her emotional issues. That would have made for a perfect ending.
And to end all this fabulousness: Last night was a picture-perfect summer night for those of us who love baseball to an unusual degree. East Tennessee is home to the Cubs AA affiliate, the Tennessee Smokies. Last night we met up with our wonderful friends [with their beautiful month-old girl, Eliza] and enjoyed a summer evening at the ball park. And even witnessed a large handful of home runs.
"take me out to the ball game".
Easily her favorite part:
Laura, Kase, Eliza, moi, Chris, Carly
daddies and their girls.
It was a wonderful (albeit soggy) night.
We will miss these 3 greatly upon our departure.
I got to love on Eliza, and I simply couldn't believe our wild thing was ever that small.
How time flies.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

stacks and stones and the gilmores.

we have stacks of boxes in our living room.
and stacks of randomness about the rest of the house waiting for a box.
we are moving in one month . . . August 13th, to be exact.
Carly loves the boxes.
She likes to look at me put stuff in them, then take the stuff out.
Its super helpful.
She also likes to scale them.
She is good at scaling things, just can't get back down.
Its a familiar scene, and she also loves to climb on the couches.
Chris has kidney stones.
He has something, though the pain isn't quite as severe as your traditional kidney stone, just always there, always painful.
The pain is in his back.
He has also felt nauseous, and has been to the doctor once a week lately.
Maybe he is pregnant.
No, I feel so bad for him, and the antibiotics are only making him feel worse.
Please go away soon, whatever you are.
Carly and I are getting back into a routine.
We are trying to resume our walks, though its like 1000 degrees by 10:00 in the morning so I'm going to have to pull things together to get out of the house earlier (Carly traditionally sleeps in til sometime between 9 and 10. De-lish.). Today's walk in the cooler cloudiness lasted over an hour at a rather quick pace. I have a lot of food to work off thanks to our Shrimp Boil vacay.
We have a little tradition that after I'm done with the workout portion of our park-time, we swing in the swings and look at the beautiful cardinals and bluebirds and make friends with the bunnies. I will miss this park. Probably the only non-human part of Kville I will miss.
I dare say she loves the swing. Yum.
In other C family news, while in Indiana we spotted the final season of Gilmore girls on DVD at Sams Club at an insanely low price. A few years ago I got all the seasons except the last one on DVD really cheap from some distributor from Korea (I'm pretty sure they are legal . . . ) but I've never seen the final season. I'm a major fan of the Gilmores. We brought the final season home and have been watching it non-stop since. On Saturday, I kid you not, we probably watched 6 episodes. And yes, by "we" I mean me and Chris. He likes it too. Anyway, we only have two episodes left, and tonight took a break to watch Deadliest Catch and the All-Star Game (did you know I heart the All-Star Game? I do.) So don't tell me what happens.
And some Carly wonderfulness:
mmm . . . pudding.
first night in big girl jammies.
my current fav of her.
she is the sweetest thing.
thats it for now.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

eleven months old.

Eleven months.
I don't even know what to say.

Carly, at eleven months you . . .

*are starting to take 2-5 steps on your own here and there. You mostly do it when you don't realize you are, and once to realize it you get nervous and drop into a crawl. And you ONLY walk, assisted or unassisted, when you want to and you initiate it. As with everything, you can't be forced.

*love to share. You love to give me or your daddy your favorite toys, remote control, or cell phone. You even share your food, and learned to feed your daddy your Chex [cutest thing ever, by the way].

*are so lovey. You pick up Rex or David and give them a kiss, then hand it to me to give a kiss, then take it back and give another kiss. You also take one stuffed animal out of the basket at a time and give each one a kiss.

*play . . . for reals. I will chase you, then you chase me. You spit your food out (all over us) then laugh like you are the funniest thing. You are fun and spunky and developing quite the little sense of humor, and its so fun to watch you become more and more of a little girl rather than a baby.

*have caught on to the fact that real food is way better than baby food in jars. I should probably be moving you to more table food, but it makes me nervous.

*climb . . . everything. You like to climb up on the back of the couch, and even climbed from the couch onto the growing stack of boxes in our living room.

*are becoming an independent sleeper. I give you a bottle and you drink as much as you want, then push it away and look at me like "ok, put me down now." I put you down and your eyes are wide open, but you roll around until you are perfectly positioned and then go to sleep. It gives me hope for when we do the no-bottle thing.

*talk more and more. You have new adorable sounds every day. You also continue to growl, and will mimic sounds, such as the "villain laugh" when we throw our heads back and say HA HA HA!

*are beyond delicious. I call you "the bomb diggity" and "the bomb dot com". Daddy calls you "sweetheart". And we can't get over you.

Happy eleven months, Car. We're glad you joined us.

Monday, July 5, 2010

party in the USA.

We have had quite the getaway over the past week plus.
We topped it off with a food-fun-family filled 4th of July weekend in Chicago with Chris's extended family.
You see, before I entered the C family, they had a long standing tradition of having a New Orleans style shrimp boil for the 4th. Chris has an aunt from New Orleans, and she and her husband would fly the shrimp up from the gulf and boil it all Cajun-style and dump it on the tables and everyone would feast.
Chris's grandfather, Papa, passed away a year before I met him, and after that the Shrimp Boil ceased to exist for a time.
This year was the resurrection of the Shrimp Boil.
And I, being the shrimp lover I am, was rather excited.
Chris, much like when he was ten, decided to fore go the shrimp and stick to hot dogs.
Here we have extensive photographic evidence of our celebration:
[Uncle Tom the Blackhawks fan mocking my Pens]
[Chris and two of his lovely cousins, Alyssa and Caroline]
[Chatting it up with cousin Cody and Jenny]
[Bocce tournament. We lost. Our plan is to practice extensively and be crowned champions next year.]
[All the C cousins.]
Ahh . . . yes. The Shrimp.
Here they are fresh from the Gulf.
Uncle Tom informed us they were a bit more expensive this year thanks to the oil spill.
But they were there, in all their glory.
Massive pot of corn on the cob, lemons, onions, garlic, potatoes, and spices.
Waiting for its honored guests.
Carly eyeing a shrimp.
FIL Pat and Uncle Tom: chief boilers.
The mountain of shrimp waiting for me.
Unfortunately, the tradition also includes extensive side dishes, including authentic New Orleans jambalaya, so I didn't have room for nearly as many little guys as I would have preferred.
Chris and his hotdog.
Me and my shrimp.
And what did Carly do all day, you ask?
Oh, she was just smothered by Chris's young cousins,
snuggled by her grandparents and great aunts and uncles,
played in a pool,
tasted shrimp (ew!) and apple-snickers salad (um!),
stood a lot,
clapped a lot,
gave high fives to semi-intoxicated people,
and played with bubbles.
And looked good while doing it.
And my favorite picture of the day?
Chris's father converted to the LDS Church (a decision I am eternally grateful for) as a teenager, meaning Chris's aunts, uncles, cousins are members of other faiths. Carly's great-aunt let her feel the "cold" beer since it was so hot outside and her aunt Becky snapped a picture. I think its a little bit hilarious, and the sunglasses make it even better. (Though we'll make sure beer-touching does not become a habit of hers).
All in all, it was a fabulous day.
I sure love this fabulous family I married in to.
I am blessed.
Did you know the 4th of July is my second favorite holiday?
{After Christmas. Everyone's favorite is Christmas.}
I have endless childhood memories of BBQs with my grandparents and cousins, lighting fireworks in the street, and walking down to the fairgrounds with blankets in arms with my dad and brothers to watch "The Biggest Show in Idaho." I love fireworks.
My last two 4ths, I have been away from my family. Last year, I was the size of a whale, and was not about to journey to the local fireworks show (here in Indiana). I was pretty bummed that I wouldn't be seeing my beloved fireworks. Then we heard booming outside. We went out to see Chris's parent's neighbors lighting off what must having been hundreds of dollars of amazing fireworks. The local show would not have been any better, and this was right in the backyard. It was a true tender mercy for an oversized, homesick, prego.
This year, the shrimp boil was held on Saturday, and we spent Sunday the 4th at the same house, but with a smaller crowd. That night Carly was exhausted, and again I felt a bit melancholy that I wouldn't be catching any fireworks. We got to our hotel room, on the fourth floor, and could hear booming in the distance. We left the lights off and opened the drapes to see fireworks as far as the eye could see. All the little communities south of Chicago were having celebrations, and we could see all of them.
I got my fireworks.
Carly put one hand on my shoulder, and her other hand on Chris's shoulder, and watched the bright lights with wide eyes.
Her wide, fascinated eyes made it my most favorite 4th of July to date.
I love my country.
I love my family, both born into and married into.
I love the Gospel.
I love my husband.
I love my baby girl.
Happy {belated} Independence Day.