Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Come, ye thankful people...

Happy Thanksgiving! Chris had to work (grumble, grumble, grumble), so we had a very non-traditional day. Our big family meal was actually breakfast-- complete with yummy Belgian waffles with strawberries and cream, bacon, sausage, eggs and hot chocolate. We listened to Christmas music while eating, then watched a little bit of the Macy's parade. It was a lovely, relaxing morning.

After Chris went to work, I made a special dinner for the boys and me-- chicken! We're actually headed to my in-laws today for an actual Thanksgiving dinner (thank you to Gary and Marilyn for delaying your feast a couple of days so we could join you!). The boys requested their favorite chicken dish, so I made that and some yummy sides. I did venture out a little bit and made my neighbor's recipe for homemade rolls. They turned out marvelously, which was very exciting because I'm a little inexperienced and nervous when it comes to yeast. I decorated the table with Thanksgiving placemats and candles, and we drank our milk out of the fancy glasses. It was fun to see how careful and polite the boys tried to be for a special dinner. Neiler slept the whole time-- good little boy!

We also made a little paper turkey and wrote on his feathers things we are thankful for. Even though we each only had a few feathers, it was kind of amazing how huge our turkey became! It reminded me again how blessed we are and how important it is to remember to show gratitude in everyday life. We love our families and our friends, and we hope you know how grateful we are for your part in our lives! Thank you!

I should have taken some pictures of our Thanksgiving chicken dinner, but between cooking and setting up, I just didn't. However, there are a few pictures from last weekend I haven't shared yet:

Little Neilio has the cutest grumpy, bed-head face in the world! Aren't those big lips just kissable?

Chris's parents have a fantastic grandparent house. One of the features is a great backyard with a bunch of trees-- perfect shade in the summer, and perfect leaf-producing in the fall. There are few things my kids look forward to more than the prospect of jumping into a big pile of crunchy leaves. This year, Gramm left the leaves out for our boys to enjoy. They had a great time raking the leaves into a big pile, then jumping in, getting buried, and building a tunnel. So fun!

Are these two sweet, or what?

I can't believe that it's finally completely appropriate to listen to Christmas music all the time. Okay, so we started a teeny bit early...

Yesterday, we broke out some of our decorations and I started on the annual newsletter and music mix. It's such a fun time of year!

IMPORTANT: If you moved in the last year, or if you didn't receive a Christmas card from us last year but would like to this year, I NEED YOUR ADDRESS. Please send it to me at elisehansen1 at hotmail ASAP. Grazi.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

A Perfect Day

It doesn't get much better than this for my cute husband: VIP tickets with his dad, rubbing shoulders with notable Utes, a buffet before the game, and a 48-24 win over BYU to bring the season to a perfect 12-0 record. Chris is a most loyal fan, and Saturday's game was the perfect reward! Look out, BCS, here come the Utes!

More from me tomorrow!!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

What are you wearing?

On Sunday, the boys wore sweaters.

Little Neil is wearing his hair long these days!

I'm wearing Neil! (Thanks Kimber and her awesome company!!!)

And "Batman" is wearing some kick-A boots.

Friday, November 14, 2008


I remember a conversation with a coworker long ago where we discussed the fact that I say the word "seriously" way too much. I try not to sound like an idiot, but like a lot of people, I have a couple of words that I just can't seem to cut out of my conversational vocabulary. At least I'm not too bad with "like" and "ya know." My bad habit has rubbed off on the boys, because every other sentence from both Thomas and Gordon has a "seriously" in it. In the last two minutes, I heard this:

Thomas: "Mom, I can't find my other glove! SERIOUSLY!"

Gordon: "I want another snack! Seer-less-lee. I'm really seer-less. Seer-lesslee."

Seriously, this has got to stop.

Here are some non-serious, random pictures from this week...

Chris and the boys having a "candy trading session" with the Halloween leftovers. Fortunately, those once-full buckets are almost empty.

My mom brought Neil this adorable little red romper, just perfect for indoctrinating him into the Utah Ute way of life. As you can see, his dad is quite pleased with his progress.

Finally, here's our little poser. Gordon is such a fun and rambunctious kid, and I've been busy reading a book called "How to Behave, So Your Preschooler Will Too!" We've been having a great time with our discipline challenges this week-- even my mom, who raised six children of her own, said, "I'm not sure what to tell you!"

I did have a funny Gord experience today that helped my perspective a bit. Gordon and I went to the store this morning and he brought along his Luigi hat from Halloween, Lightening McQueen sunglasses, his blanket tied around his shoulders, and a green plastic light saber adorned with two of my hair clips. I nagged him in the car on the way to the store-- "You have to leave your blanket and the light saber in the car"-- but he refused to leave any part of his outfit behind. Tired of arguing, I finally agreed to let him come in as is. He marched through the store, light saber in ready position and a serious glare on his face, and didn't pass a single person who wasn't smiling at his costume. In fact, his appearance also caused a toddler to stop crying and stare, and a grumpy-looking old man to chuckle. I realized how petty and nagging I tend to get with Gordon, and how I focus too much negative attention on things that don't really matter. In truth, it didn't hurt anyone to let him go to the store dressed as "batman", but actually probably put smiles on faces that wouldn't have had them otherwise. And it certainly doesn't hurt to let Gordon use his vibrant imagination! So, the moral of the story: I need to relax and just let Gord be Gord.

Thursday, November 13, 2008


Inches, that is. Actually, if you count the very ends, it's closer to FIFTEEN inches of thick, red braid that Locks of Love will be receiving sometime in the next couple of days.

After more than three years of "growing it out", I was very ready for a change and decided to cut my hair. I had a full day of pampering-- in addition to my trip to the salon, I also had an hour long facial, courtesy of my cute friends, Christy and Holly. It was so relaxing and refreshing! My mom was visiting for a couple of days, so she had the joy of watching the little dudes while I had my girl's day out. Thanks, Mom!

So, here are the before and after pictures...

I am LOVING my new 'do-- less shampoo, less blow-drying time, less weight on my head... it's a good thing. Or, as our President Elect would say, "Change we need"!

Saturday, November 08, 2008

This week...

Gordon decided that he really isn't too old to take naps. Just don't tell him that.

We voted and wore our stickers to prove it.

Then we stayed up really, really late (Chris out of employment obligation and me out of curiosity) to find out the results. I have to admit that I got a little teary listening to both McCain's and Obama's speeches. I thought that McCain conceded with grace and that Obama offered a very moving rally cry to our country. It will be interesting to see what happens now.

I took about 500 pictures of the three boys together. And got one good one.

I went to Soda Springs, ID for the first time to visit my dear friend, Becca, in person for the first time in... well, years and years. It was so much fun, so we definitely plan to visit Soda Springs again!

We ate yummy Japanese food with Grammuh Marilyn! The boys and I ♥ Kyoto!

Neil continued to work on his communication skills. Sadly, his baby acne has surfaced this week, earning him a new nickname: "AcNeil". Despite his skin problems, he's still a cute little turnip!

Quote of the week: "I screamed and hugged a man I didn't know." Spoken by Chris after Utah's game-winning touchdown in the last minute in Thursday's game against TCU.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

A little self-promotion...

Sweet Dreams is on sale today only for $2.00!!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

All Hallow's Eve

We had a great Halloween. In fact, I think it was our best one yet! This has a lot to do with the fact that Chris was home for the whole day and helped with all of the details, making my day relaxed and easy. Last year, if you recall, I did all sorts of running around and ended up eating more than my share of candy just out of stress. I told Chris that I definitely don't want to spend another Halloween without him!

Thomas had a party at school, so Chris and I decided to take Gord and Neil to the Cache Valley Mall for some mid-day trick-or-treating. Ah, the mall. I think Halloween may easily be it's busiest day of the year, traffic wise. The people-watching was almost as fun as the treats! I was honestly tempted to take some pictures of some of the more interesting and laughable costumes (those were costumes, right?), but in the interest of being polite, I only got a few of our cute Gord collecting his hundred tootsie rolls.

His day was so fun and exciting that a nap on the kitchen table couldn't be avoided. And look how cute Chris is-- he dressed as a Ute fan. :)

Little Neilstus didn't have a costume, but he looked extra cute in his monkey shirt from Grammuh over his Halloween jammies. You may need to look closely at his shirt-- that is a monkey body. I sent a pix message to Caitlan of a similar image and she replied asking if it was lava spit-up on Neil's shirt. Ha ha! He's making the "I'm ready to sleep now" face, which is on par for 3PM when I took this picture.

After Thomas came home, it was time to get down to business. I made our traditional Halloween dinner of chili and scones (YUM!), which the boys were forced to eat-- we even had to call Grammuh to have her remind Gordon of the "no chili, no trick-or-treating" rule. I am currently the only one in our family who really loves chili, although Thomas is coming around. Despite this, Chris agrees that tradition is tradition, and we're going to keep having chili on Halloween night.

Finally, it was time to get into costume. The boys were really decked out-- we put extra black spray-in hair dye on their heads and took extra care with the mustaches and eyebrows. They were so excited! They even put a little music video together of the Mario Brothers Rap!

Chris took Thomas and Gordon around our neighborhood while Neil and I stayed home and passed out candy. It was so warm afterward that we all sat out on the front porch and chatted with our neighbors while the kids chased each other with plastic glow sticks in the yard. It was actually quite idyllic.

Once inside, the boys couldn't wait to unload their loot. They certainly did well for themselves this year!

Just to show you how much make-up and hair goo went into these simple costumes, here's Gord washing off:

After showers, jammies and six pieces of candy each, we all snuggled up and watched "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" together. It was the perfect way to end our perfectly wonderful Halloween!

Monday, November 03, 2008

Oh my goodness, I finished reading a BOOK!

I pride myself on being someone who is passionate about reading. There are very few things I love more than getting cozy with a good book. In fact, good novels tend to make me think in "novel speak" in my head-- I go around describing my life to myself in the third person, as if I were reading about what I am doing in a book. Is that really weird? Anyway, I love it when that happens because it means my brain is on and I'm being very observant about the little details in my life and maybe being a little bit introspective. It also means I've been reading something worth reading.

Then We Came to the End is a great book. I love that this was Joshua Ferris' first novel because hopefully that means there will be more from him. The book is written in the first person plural, so it isn't long before you feel yourself part of the "we". Having worked in a corporate environment for most of my professional life, I loved the funny and painfully true points he makes about rumors and gossip and information, and the way we feel about the people we spend most of our time with. The story is funny, tense, and very savvy, and I loved it.

{Warning for the discriminating readers among us: "we" (in the book) tend to use a bit of profanity.}

Maybe this means I'm back in my normal reading routine? Probably not, but at least I can finally move on to the next book!