"Life is change. Growth is optional. Choose wisely."

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Desert Snow makes for a Merry Christmas!

Even though it's been a whole week since it snowed, the turn in weather really perked me up and made everything feel like Christmas... here are a couple of pictures of the snow at my mom's house. This first one is my favorite. I had just been thinking how one of the blessings of living in Las Vegas during the month of December is that the roses are still blooming!! Weston just loves smelling the roses at Grandma's house.
I think this is the first time I've ever seen snow stick to the ground in Vegas. What fun! Ironicallly, I left house wearing sandals that day. :) Needless to say, I was slipping around a bit.

Weston loves to be outside, rain, snow or otherwise!And to think, just a week and half before the snow, we had this bright and sunny picture taken for our Christmas cards:I hope that each of you has a lovely, memorable, and joy filled holiday tomorrow!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

I want to send you a card!

To all of my lovely blogging friends, I would love to send you a Christmas card!
Please leave me a comment with your address so that I can...
And yes, I do realize it is a bit late - but better late than never, right?

Friday, December 12, 2008

New Skill # 3678

Who knew that getting in and out of the tub could be SO much fun? Weston discovered this skill yesterday, after his bath (but before dressing - obviously).
Today one of the first things he did was head for the tub. After a couple of minutes in there, he realized that it really isn't as exciting without the water. Go figure!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Athletic Shopping

Athletic Shopping should be a competitive event. I think it would be great for teenagers. You could put them in a store, preferably a department store with lots of sections, some full of breakable items. Each teenager would be in charge of one toddler, preferably a tired one - tired and all wound up. They would be given a list of items to find, all very specific so that it takes a good hour to complete without kids.
Then, anyone who completed the event successfully without injuring their assigned toddler (or anyone else's) could be a winner...

Forget safe sex. They wouldn't even want to take the risk after that experience. I think it would be an effective method of promoting abstinence.

Has anyone else had any insane shopping trips lately with their little one(s) besides me???
I think I ran like 20 laps around Steinmart yesterday chasing Weston! You know it's bad when your mom suggests getting a babysitter before shopping together next time! :)

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Thanksgiving: The Perfect Getaway

We went up to Bear Lake with my mom where we spent 3 perfectly relaxing days at my brother's house.
Here are some of the highlights, in count-down fashion:

10. Seeing Weston all bundled up in his warmie clothes. I realize this is just a chore to those of you in colder climates, but coming from Las Vegas it was actually a treat to do all that bundling. 9. Picking out our Christmas Trees. I love this tradition!!8. Riding Horses. It was Jason's first time ever, and he had a good time. I don't think he was even nervous.
And for me - getting BACK on the horse! I've had a couple of scarey experiences that have left me a little skittish about horses. I've managed to avoid it the last few times we visited, but this time, something said "just do it." Oh yeah, that something was actually a someone: my hubby. But honestly, I'm glad he and my brother encouraged me. The funniest thing about riding horses is that they say if you feel nervous the horse can sense your hesitation. So then you feel even more nervous because you know you have to supress the nervous feeling. It's pretty much a vicious cycle!
I am happy to say that I was more comfortable this time than ever before in my life - and instead of relief washing over me the moment I dismounted, I actually felt disappointed to get off! I know, not my best side:7. The Farming Game.
This game is so fun. Don't let the hokey title fool you. I've been telling Jason about it ever since we got married... I had built the game up so much that I figured by the time we got around to playing it, there is no way it could meet his expectations - but I was wrong!
6.Iron Man, the movie.
Certainly not the best part of the trip, but probably the biggest surprise: I LOVED IT!! (Do you suppose Robert Downey Jr. had anything to do with that?)
5. Weston warmed up to Uncle Mike... finally! The first night he cuddled up on his lap and stayed there for a good 20 minutes. We could hardly believe it, because that is something that he rarely does even with us! He also let him carry around when he was tired:
He also had a blast with Aunt Carrie... they cooked together and she even let him "drive" the truck.
4. Working the cows. I honestly enjoy it. We always have a good time, although it was a bit less eventful than usual this time without any castrations or branding to do. To be honest, I was relieved there were no castrations to watch, although I think Jason really found that part fascinating in the past. (for those animal lovers out there who are tempted to think ill of us, let me assure you that it is not as brutal as it sounds - when you do it young enough, they don't even act like they're in pain.)
3. Weston made friends with the dogs - finally! He didn't want anything to do with them until the last day, but once he decided they weren't so bad, he couldn't get enough of them!!
2. Sweet moments with the little munchkin 1. Incredible, phenominal food. It was almost all Carrie. She did such an awesome job. Every meal was divine, making our vacation complete! Mom did a beautiful job decorating our table for the Thanksgiving Feast too:

Just looking at all that good food makes me hungry again... I hope your Thanksgiving was wonderful too!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Super Bean

As some of you know, a few family members sometimes refer to Weston as "the Bean." Jason started calling him that when he was practically the size of a bean, and since, many variations of the title have emerged. A few of these include "cutely bean," "sweet bean," "baby bean," and even "beanie weanie." Well, tonight Weston became SUPER BEAN!You know little hooded towel thingies? Well, a lovely family friend made one for Weston when he was first born. It was so big I figured it wouldn't be the right size for at least 10 years. (slight hyperbole)
Well, Weston has entered a new age where he hates post-bath dry off time. I was getting flustered the other day trying to manuever his squirming body out of the bathroom when suddenly I remembered the cool hooded towel that Sister Swan made. He LOVED it!! I still had a hard time tackling him down to put a diaper on, but at least he was happy.

Because it looks kind of like a cape, the term "Super Bean" was born. Although, I must admit he looks more like Mother Theresa in the picture below! Super Bean is definately a water baby. Sometimes I let him play in the kitchen sink while I cook just to keep him occupied and happy. He would play there for hours if I let him!

Last Sunday I plopped Weston on the counter (again to keep him happy while doing something in the kitchen). I didn't realize that I had plopped him right next to some left over cold spaghetti that I was going to warm up for myself. When I saw him dig his little hands in the meat and sauce, I could hardly believe it. He just started eating right out of the bowl with his fingers.
Now, I realize that the scene I just described would be a nightmare for most moms. Letting your toddler sit on the island of the kitchen eating cold leftovers with his hands and making a huge mess in the process - not a mother's dream come true.
However, if you knew how many months it took to get this kid to eat ANYTHING, you would understand the joy that filled my heart when I saw Weston stuffing his face with glee! I didn't even have to coax him. It was wonderful!
I may not be teaching Weston the best eating manners, but at least he's happy, right? (I don't sound like a hippie do I?)
The other way he loves to eat is sitting at the big table on a big chair! He's so tall that it actually works (although I only let him do it once in a while).
I am so thankful for this little munchkin. He fills our lives with so much joy... (and exercise, from chasing him around so much. Sometimes I wonder, with so much exercise, why am I not supermodel thin by now?!?)

Thursday, November 20, 2008

What a difference a nap makes

BeforeAfterNeed I say more?

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Disney World Extravaganza

Last Wednesday Weston and I woke up at 3:30 in the morning to catch a 6:00 flight to Orlando. We met my mom at the airport, spent way too many hours in the air (at least for Weston), and after a connecting flight and a long bus ride, finally made it to Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge.

My mom had won a trip to Disney World through her company (along with about 1300 others), so the first night we were there they had a huge BBQ rib dinner for us in the Animal Kingdom. The vegetarians might not have been thrilled, but I was in heaven!
The funniest thing happened at the dinner. To start with, you could have confused it with a church activity if you were judging by the number of kids in attendance. Weston, after a long day of sitting, was extremely antsy. Mom and I alternated chasing him around, because if there's one thing he can't resist it's socializing with other kids. He loves being around kids (except in nursery at which time he cries hysterically until rescued).
At one point some lady with a fun poofy skirt was bending over her stroller. Weston happened to be right behind her, and I guess he couldn't resist the skirt because he reached up and with both hands grabbed that lady's derriere!!
The next day we were up and at 'em at a decent hour I thought. Here we are waiting for the bus to the Animal Kingdom: Walking up to the Animal Kingdom... we brought our own little monkey to keep tabs on Weston. I don't know what I would have done walking through masses of people without this leash. As you can see, Weston isn't so much of a stroller rider as he is a stroller pusher.
We realized within 5 minutes of arriving at the Animal Kingdom park that waking up at 8:00, which seemed like a good time, was beginning to take a toll on Weston since 8:00 Florida time is like 5:00 Vegas time. The poor little man wasn't handling it well, so as soon as we got there we caught the next bus back to to hotel for a nap. We decided to take a nap too.
Here we are, the second time around (much more rested this time) waiting for another bus, this time to the Magic Kingdom.
One of my favorite things about trips like this is meeting people. We met so many wonderful families the entire time we were there. These people were from Louisianna. I told them how my husband had lived there for a couple years and wished I would cook "southern" for him. One of their three kids asked, "What does it mean to cook southern?" The mom quickly responded "it means you add fat to everything!" Isn't that the truth.
Here we are, finally arriving at the Magic Kingdom! I was way more excited than Weston... Until he saw the cool stroller we rented!
Our first ride: It's a Small World. Don't these pictures alone bring back blissful childhood memories? I've got to be honest, I hadn't remembered the monkeys. I thought I had better snap a picture of them though - why, I'm not sure. I was a little picture happy at first, as you can see. I believe Peter Pan was next. That ride was kind of a dissapointment. It seemed so much cooler 25 years ago!
The Cindarella Carousel was cooler than ever. Actually, I don't ever remember seeing it before. But Weston LOVED it! Here he is patting his horsie.
Dumbo had to take the cake. Weston actually cried when it was time to get off. Here he is with Grandma:
I'm not sure why we went on the TeaCups right after lunch, but Weston got all into it. He actually tried to turn that thing in the middle that makes you spin. For some reason, just looking at this picture makes me feel a little dizzy!We tried to take lots of fun pictures, but Weston spent much of the time an unwilling participant - there were just too many more exciting things vying for his attention! As a result, I have an abundance of pictures that look something like this:We had a blast on a few more rides like Pirates of the Carribean and the Haunted Mansion, then ended the evening watching the Parade of Lights, or something like that. It is basically the same thing as the Main Street Electrical Parade, but they had to change the name I guess. It was impressive, and I know Weston would have absolutely loved it if he had been awake for it!

The next day we went to Epcot. I had woken up with a really bad cold, so my picture taking resolve waned slightly. I spent most of the time sneezing, blowing my nose, and sweating to death (it was HOT!!!), but still really enjoyed the day. I had never been to Epcot before. I always thought the entire thing was inside the big ball. You know what I'm talking about? This thing: Here's us starting off the day at Epcot. You can actually see that big ball thing in the background if you look right in the middle above our heads:Epcot has this lake that you walk around with various buildings, stores, rides and shows representing countries around the world. Mom and I really enjoyed that. We stopped at the American Adventure, which was half way around the lake, to watch a little colonial marching band do some Patriotic songs. It was pretty neat I thought.We tried everything to keep Weston close:But ultimately, he was most interested in running around and examining new, never-before seen attractions like the fence.

Mom admitted to me that she didn't remember how tiring it was to chase after a toddler all day!We stopped to eat at Japan. I loaded the wasabi on my sushi, which I must say worked wonders in clearing my head up. I had a much more enjoyable time after that. Eventually we got Weston back into the stroller And miracle of all miracles, he finally fell asleep.
We did a few other rides at Epcot like Nemo and Spaceship Earth, both of which Weston slept through.
Because we were staying at the Animal Kingdom Lodge, all we had to do to see the wild animals was go outside. We took a gander and happened upon a Kudu and a giraffe! This is the picture of the Kudu. You have to look closely - it is inbetween the two poles. This next one has the giraffe. I apologize that it is really hard to see. It seemed so much closer up in person.
The last night we went to Disney's Holleywood Studios for a special dinner. We had this beautiful dinner outside with a band and a studio in front of us and these huge bleachers behind us. Midway through dinner it started sprinkling. The sprinkles steadily grew stronger until it was first raining, and then pouring! Everyone ran up into the bleachers behind us, because they had a covering. This actually turned out to be a blessing in disguise though, because from way up in the bleachers we could actaully see the spaceshuttle taking off!! What great timing, huh? I had only heard earlier that day that NASA was sending up a shuttle that evening. It was an awesome sight to behold. Unfortunately, I didn't get to my camera in time. It looked like a bright red firey mass way up in the dark sky. I tried to find a picture to show what it looked like from our view, but couldn't find anything.

We had a great trip but now I know that two days is not enough for Disney World! Also, extra time cushions would have really helped with Weston. (Like not having to get up at unearthly hours to catch flights going both ways) He was a trooper though. I'm glad we had the chance to go. Next time, we will definately bring daddy along!