Wednesday, September 30, 2009

A fond farewell to summer

Brrr! Yesterday was COLD! It's not quite so bad today, but there is definitely a new chill in the air and I'm positive that fall has officially arrived. It's also the first day in three months or so that I've worn socks.

Luckily, we were able to squeeze on last perfect weekend in before we have to start bundling up. Can you imagine anything more perfect than a warm September morning in Millcreek Canyon?

Let me back up a little bit, and tell you about our whole wonderful weekend. Chris had been in Pennsylvania for work for two weeks and flew back to Salt Lake City on Saturday, so the boys and I took advantage of the opportunity for a mini-vacation. We drove to SLC on Friday night and spent the night with Grammuh and Grampuh. Gordon has repeatedly asked why we can't just move in there.

The next day, before Chris' flight arrived, we went to This is the Place State Park in Emigration Canyon. We had originally planned to go to the zoo, but after being diverted by the crazily long lines, we were happy to be at a place with a low visitor count but still plenty of great sites. And really, when you're with your grandparents, any place is the right place to be!

Also, if the place happens to have a train... well, it's just perfect.

After we filled a couple of bags with candy from the General Store, we hurried to the airport to meet Chris. Hooray! Homecoming!

There were some LDS missionaries on their way home from their missions and I think seeing the families at the airport made Chris extra emotional. I don't know if you can tell, but his eyes are wet in this picture. So sweet. We're so glad to have him home.

Chris and his dad went to the Utah game (hence all the red) while the boys, Grammuh and I just hung around the house and enjoyed the warm back yard.

On Sunday morning, to celebrate Grampuh Gary's birthday (HAPPY BIRTHDAY GRAMPUH!!), Chris's birthday, and Neil's birthday, which all fall within a few days of each other, we went to Millcreek Canyon for a picnic breakfast. The weather was absolutely perfect, the breakfast was delicious, and we were the only people there. Add that to a bunch of rocks and a stream to throw them in, and we were in heaven.

I'm so glad that we were able to spend such a lovely time with Chris' parents and that we sent summer off in perfect fashion!

This week has been fun and busy as usual. The boys are out of school for the weekend, so I'm making them clean up! Mean!

Gordon learned about the letter C this week-- "Clowns"-- and looked so stinking cute with his hat and little red nose that I have to share.

And last night I got brave and cut off all of my hair. I'm a pixie! Don't worry, it will grow back eventually. :D

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Neil's Hair Story

Here's the story about Neil's recent haircut:

First of all, I normally don't make a habit of cutting my children's hair. I do it occasionally out of pure desperation, but I generally trust the trimming duties to someone else. In this case, however, I was getting one too many comments about my baby's long hair (my own mother called him a beatnik baby) and I think it was getting hard for the poor little thing to see.

So, I got Neil's head wet, set him down on the bathroom sink, and took one last picture...

... then proceeded to cut. My idea was that I would keep it sort of long, just trimmed, thereby holding on to those precious locks a little while longer. While I was cutting-- and picture giant tufts of light brown hair falling all around-- I was thinking about how it wasn't really that hard to cut a baby's hair. When I was finished, I thought, this actually looks pretty good!, and I stuck him in the tub.

Very cute.

After his bath, when his hair had completely dried, I realized that I had turned my child from long-haired hippie into a kid who looked like his hair was attacked by his 4-year-old brother. The hair on the left side was still quite long, while the hair on the right side was short and blunt. And the back... oh my. No one even saw and I was embarrassed. Apparently I'm not the next Vidal Sassoon.

So, I got out the trusty clippers and buzz, buzz, buzz... now all of the hair on Neil's little head is the exact same length.

And he looks exactly like my other boys.

Luckily, he's still the same sweet boy with and without his luscious long hair.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

An entire month.

That's how long it's been since I've blogged. Amazing, and terrible.

I am sure I don't need to tell you that it's been an extremely busy month, to the point of being overwhelming. I can't really remember a time when I've felt as stretched and overextended as I have in the past few weeks. Still, I find myself accepting more responsibilities, as we silly humans tend to do. I even said, "Of course I can (fill in the blank)! What else would I be doing?" as if I just sit around and paint my toenails all day long. My toenails, by the way, have not been painted in the year since Neil was born, and that time they were blue.

I don't mean to bemoan by busy-ness. We're actually having a lot of fun, and despite the fact that I'm finally packing a month's worth of blog in at 10:45 PM, I think things might be about to settle down. Maybe.

Here's a little overview of my life in the past month:

1. Another picture from our anniversary day. Gord cracks me up! We ate at Chili's-- mmm, romantic-- then came home and finished packing.

2. We moved. Between a huge U-Haul, our van, and the back of my dad's Tundra, we managed to transport all of our stuff to Idaho Falls. Some very generous guys (and one woman) from our new ward came to help us unpack and we divided everything between our new basement "apartment" and my parents' storage shed. Then, I spent the next week going between the two places to get everything in its right spot.

3. Chris started working and Thomas went to school.

That was a stressful day, but don't they look cute?

Actually, it was probably more stressful for me than it was for them. We all woke up early, having not slept altogether well the night before, and got through the day on anxious energy. I think first days are hard, but we made it.

Thomas is loving 3rd grade. I was very nervous about sending him to a new school and all that a new school entails, but he has proved the "children are resilient" maxim very well. He has already had a couple of play dates and is his normal school-loving self. Tom's teacher is delightful and I've been impressed with the school so far.

4. Gordon and I explored the town. We've established a little routine for our week where we do something different every day. On Thursdays, we go to the public library's pre-school story time. It is fabulous! The kids are entertained with a half hour of reading and songs, then a fun little craft. Afterward, Gord and I have been browsing the kid book section for 4 new books, then up to the DVD section for another Thomas the Tank Engine rental (for which I can thank the extremely annoying song running through my head right now), then up to the grown-up section where the selection of new releases makes me a bit giddy, then down to the koi pond, then out the door and across the railroad tracks. I can't think of a better way to spend a Thursday morning.

Our other new favorite thing to do (Fridays), is to go to the greenbelt and feed the ducks and geese and annoying young seagulls that camp out there. We've been saving the heels on all of our bread. Gordon loves this little adventure and it is so pleasant to be outside. I kind of forgot how much I enjoy being by the river.

Sometimes, we'll go on a little walk and cross the street. Gordon makes sure that all of the cars know we're crossing by vigorously waving the orange flag. It's worked-- we haven't been hit!

5. Thomas was baptized.

In our faith, we believe that children are able to understand right from wrong at the age of 8 and at that time, they're given the opportunity to be baptized. A lot of times, people refer to this age as the age of accountability, which I think means that they're old enough to be accountable for their actions. For me, though, Thomas turning 8 suddenly meant my own accountability to him as a mother. I gave a little talk about baptism during the program and looking at Thomas, so sweet and smiling in his little white outfit, I felt very overwhelmed at my responsibility to be a good parent to him and to the other boys. It was a touching moment for me, and I vowed to try harder for them.

I think he looks like a little angel.

It was a really special day for our family and one I hope Thomas will always remember.

6. Gordon went to school. On Mondays and Wednesdays, Gordon attends preschool. He absolutely loves it and I am completely thrilled with the school. One of the kids in the class has already spent a little bit of time in the "time out chair" and Hooray! it wasn't Gordon!! :D

He is having such a great time making new friends and doing lots of projects with glue. I'm not sure if I've mentioned this or not, but I am not a glue kind of gal. I love the fact that he gets to use it at school and that they get to clean it up-- that alone is worth the monthly tuition!

7. We played with friends. This is one of the huge benefits of moving back to IF-- I already have some built-in friends. One of those is my dear friend, Becky, who I've known and adored since elementary school. She has a little boy just a couple of months younger than Gordon, so we've decided to make a weekly play date. It's been wonderful to catch up with her and to let our kids play. Hooray for friends!

8. Allison (my sister) went to homecoming. Cute!

9. We got an offer on our house! YAY!!!!! We are set to close on October 15th.

This picture has nothing to do with that, but I cut Neil's hair this week and I just need to get another shot of my long-haired baby in here before the buzz-cut boy makes his appearance. So sad.

I think that's it. I'm really going to try harder to update this more regularly, especially so it doesn't take an hour to do each time!!