Saturday, December 3, 2011

Meeting Santa

Eliza met Santa last night.
We got just the reaction we knew we'd get... and hoped we'd get.  :)

Go ahead and call us terrible parents for making her sit in his lap... but these pictures make me super happy.  :)

Monday, November 7, 2011

Off We Go...

So.  Big News.  We’re moving.  To Albuquerque.

Aaron has accepted an offer with a public accounting firm there and we plan on moving down next spring after he graduates.


Am I excited?  Excited to choose an apartment I’ll never see before living in it?  Excited to leave my family and friends?  Excited to be pretty much alone in a city I don’t know?  No, I wouldn’t say excited is the word.  I would say accepting is a better word.  But I am THRILLED that Aaron has a job and am hoping that it will turn out to be a wonderful adventure for our family.  

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Happy Halloween!

We had such a fun Halloween!  My sister, Laurie, made Eliza and her matching Gwendolyn (the good witch from the Wizard of Oz) costumes.  They turned out fantastic!!!  Eliza's has been done for a few weeks and the first time I put it on her she cried and cried and cried!  There are little beads on the wrists that terrified her.  So from then on, Eliza wouldn't touch it!  She'd cry if I touched the fabric to her and would run away any time we brought it near her!  It was REALLY funny, but also sad after all the work Laurie had put into it!  Over the past couple weeks, we've had the dress hanging where she sees it all the time and have even dressed her stuffed animals in it.  
Laurie invited us to her work lunch so I decided that I'd put Eliza in it first thing in the morning to see if she'd be okay with it by lunch.  There was a lot of morning screaming and walking around like a zombie because the sleeves made her act like her arms were paralyzed, but it worked!  And for some crazy reason she let me even put the crown on her head and she would hold the wand!!  I don't know if seeing Laurie dressed like her made her feel cool about it or what!?  But anyway, she performed perfectly and it was so much fun.  She was so cute and just soaking up the attention at Laurie's work!

At night, our ward had a Trunk-or-Treat that we went to.  She had been so good with the dress all morning that I wasn't going to force her to keep it on.  She's in love with these hand-me-down boots so I let her wear those.  She got the little cowgirl outfit for her birthday from some friends of ours.  I think it is SO cute.

Eliza really can't talk and she doesn't eat candy, but that doesn't mean that I didn't want to see what she'd do.  :)  And, holy cow, she was cute!!  Once she figured out that people were giving her stuff, she was in heaven!  She figured out how to put the candy in her bucket and figured out that you went up to the person with the big bowl.  It totally melted Aaron and I!  She was just so cute! 
When it got a little heavy, she started swinging it over her shoulder like a purse.

Aaron took this video of her with her first piece of candy.  At the end she puts it in another kid's bucket and then is sad when he takes off.  So funny!
I'm excited for more Halloween's... Eliza definitely made it so much fun!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Berry Picker

We have a lot of raspberries where we live.  As in we pick 6+ cups every other day.  Yes, a LOT of raspberries.  And a lot of deliciousness.

Eliza has watched us for months and last week it all clicked and I looked down to see her picking one and putting it in her mouth.  I melted and ran to get the camera. 

It is ADORABLE.  See for yourself.

*Disclaimers:  I do not normally put two clips in her hair.  I had found one on the floor and didn't want to lose it so I just put it in her hair.  :)  Oh and yes, I know I sound like an idiot.  :)

I think her great-grandpa who planted these (and who her middle name is after) would be quite tickled and proud.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Summer Hikes

We LOVE the outdoors so we tried to get outside as much as we could this summer.  Here's a re-cap of our summer hikes.

Trail to Timp Cave with Hayley & Ben

 (we forgot her hat so we gave her a sunscreen mohawk!)

Midway with my extended fam

Cecret Lake with my fam

Grandier Peak with Aaron's fam

Temple Quarry Trail with my fam

Oh and I should have mentioned quite awhile ago that she walks!  She picked it up at exactly 13 months.  I love it; it's adorable.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

My Kid is Cool

This seriously makes me so happy to watch.  I think it is ADORABLE that she LOVES cars!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Working Women

You may or may not know that I have continued working since having Eliza.  And I took her with me.  Just as of the past week we quit going in.

People constantly told me, "oh you're so lucky that she's just like that and will go". That was partially true and I KNOW we had help from above to make it work, but it's also all she knew. She went to work since she was six weeks old so it just became her life.

The long and short of it: It was HARD, SO HARD, but it was also a great blessing to be able to continue to have some income and to keep me busy because that is important for my mental health. 

I really think that more employers should give this a try because it worked really well for us.  The reason it even came up was because I suggested it to my boss when I was pregnant and asked if he would be willing to give it a try.  He said yes but, of course, said we'd have to have a trial period (which we passed) :). 
So my tips for having it be possible are to work for a small company so that your boss can make decisions like that and to be nearly irreplaceable.  That may sound prideful, but I have worked really hard over the past 6+ years to make it so that my boss would not want to lose me and would give this a try.  And the most major tip would be to go with the flow.  Every month brought a new challenge of how to make it work and with a lot of prayers, I was able to come up with new ideas to make it last just that much longer.

I had planned on it ending once she crawled, but we were able to stretch it a couple months past that though those were the worst and hardest months.  All in all, I would definitely not suggest going in every day like I did.  It was incredibly stressful on me and Eliza hated it by the end.  (Can you blame her?  5 hours of being sweet in a 5 foot by 5 foot area?  Definitely not.) 

Anyway, here's just a little recap of our working life together.  :)
At first it was pretty easy since she slept a lot and would sleep in my arms.  I became really good at one-handed typing!
I would take her out to the car every few hours to eat.  When she refused to nurse, I would take her into the bathroom with me while I pumped and she'd sit in her swing. 
After she refused to sleep in my arms, we used this little bassinet.
But then that quit because she is such a light sleeper and sometimes it was pretty loud.  So then we tried the swing which helped her to sleep through some of the noise.
That worked for a few months, and then she quit doing that too because she has an issue with me seeing her fall asleep (?!?) but I was able to get her to sleep in her carseat under my desk by letting her get really tired, giving her a bottle until she would drink no more, put the shade over her, and rocking her like crazy.   And luckily that continued to work until we quit going in.

While she was awake, it was all about change.  The past few months have definitely been the hardest since she only slept for about an hour of the 5 hours we would go in.  After she quit using the bassinet, I used it to store her toys and any bit of trash she seemed to like.  I would lay a blanket on the floor and sit her on it and she'd usually entertain herself with the toys for a short while.
Once she started crawling, she found that sucking on the casters on my chair was fun.  :)
Once she was able to pull herself up, she would play under my desk a lot. 
(Weird face, eh?  She went through a stage where she made it A LOT.  She still does it occasionally, but definitely not as much.)
(love those eyes!)
I also emptied a file drawer and filled it with stuff so that she could empty it all.  She'd stand there holding onto the edge and reach in over and over and over.  I occasionally would set up the swing and she'd play with it.  I'd also give her a stack of papers and ask her to make a huge mess of it.  (30 minutes of mess making for her = 29 minutes of me being productive + 1 minute of cleaning up after her!)  Every day was a new challenge of helping her make it through.

Now I'm working from home 4 days of the week and going in 1 if my mom is able to watch her.  The past week has been DIVINE.  Words can't express how much being a stay-at-home mom is a luxury!  We love going on walks daily and spending time working in the yard and such.  To put it simply, we love it!  It's so nice to finally work on getting her on a dependable schedule (which DEFINITELY suffered) and do what I've always dreamed of doing--being a homemaker.
I'm so grateful my boss was willing to work with us and that I've had the opportunity to continue working, and I'm excited for the future of working at home and being able to be more of a mom.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Project: Eliza's Presents

For Eliza's birthday I decided to give her some homemade gifts.  I love reading the blogs with great ideas and I love making things myself so it turned out great.  :)

Gift 1: Beanbag Letters
I made her first and last name.
Here she is playing with them when I first gave them to her.
She likes to pull them out of the bucket one by one and toss them behind her.  Pretty awesome.

Gift 2: Church Books
I bought two of the Gospel Art books from the LDS Distribution Center and then some 'brag book photo albums' from Walmart for $1.  I cut out each picture and put them in the book.  Since Eliza LOVES flipping pages, I thought this would be a hit.  Plus that, I like that I can point out things in pictures in church that have to deal with churchy stuff. :)

Gift 3: Her Baby Blanket
The baby blanket was supposed to be ready for her, oh you know, when she was born... obviously it wasn't.  I had never appliqued and there are some definite errors, but I think it turned out pretty cute.  For the animals, I googled something like 'nursery animals', looked at the images and sketched the ones I liked and then made a pattern for them.
The front was finished before she was born and I bought the backing and the binding the Saturday night before I went into labor Monday morning.  When I bought the fabric, I assumed she would come late so I thought I would have at least a couple of days before she was born to work on it to keep me busy.  Not so!  Yay for babies coming!  So Monday morning as I'm in labor I washed, dried, and ironed the backing and binding just trying to keep my mind off things.  I took this picture of the wrong side of the front because I thought it looked fun.  :)  Who knew we'd have her in our arms late that night?!
 I still wasn't quite sure how I wanted to bind it and then I had her and things got a little busy.  I had the blanket in the back of my mind for months but never could figure a good way to quilt it.  As a year started to approach I decided it was time to buck up and finish it.  I decided to quilt around the animals and then quilt straight lines across it.  I made a goal to finish it for her birthday and I finished binding it two days before.  The back is a green vine print.  I actually don't really like the way I bound it.  So if you have ideas of how to make it cuter, let me know. 
I'm not quite sure what to do with it since she really doesn't use blankets, so I hung it on her wall for now.  As you can tell, she was thrilled to be in the picture.  :)
 I'm so grateful I've been given the talent to create.  I love making things.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Brad & Janelle

My brother Brad was married to the lovely Janelle from Tremonton, Utah on July 8 in the Bountiful Temple.  It was a fun day.  I love weddings.  :)
Check out the bouquet, boutinerres, and corsages.  I made them!  I've never done anything like it before, but Janelle told me I could so I watched some videos on youtube and voila!  I think they turned out really well.  I loved doing them!
Have I ever told you I love my family?  When the photographer lined them up with my parents Brad said the women should face one way and the men a different.  So they did.  :)  
Here they are with their current niece and nephew.  Eliza was SO tired and therefore VERY unhappy as you can see!
 Eliza only wanted me (which makes me feel like a million bucks!) and even PUT HER HEAD ON MY SHOULDER!  She is NEVER cuddly so this was pretty sweet!  I asked my sis to take our picture and Brad leaned in.  Love it.
Eliza did cheer up a bit and entertain us with her spit bubble-making!  She does it when she's tired!
We had the luncheon and then a reception that evening in West Jordan.
We siblings, of course, did our part to bless their car!  We had windowpaints, streamers, and balloons but also these little lovlies in the windshield wipers to ride off into the sunset together!  (Notice they're holding "hands".)  :)
We also had a good amount of stuff hanging from the back.  Nothing says "Happy Wedding" quite like a spatula, febreeze, and a diaper box!
  Eliza clapped as they left.  :)

The next evening we had a reception in Tremonten.  I love watching our parents with Eliza.  It's so unreal to me that my dad probably tossed me in the air just the same way.
And here is my brother tempting Eliza with grapes.  :)
It was a fantastic wedding!  Congrats Brad and Janelle!