Wednesday, January 21, 2009

And Halloween, Too

Was NOT motivated at all to make any costumes so we borrowed a cute little tiger costume for Lucas from Cliff and Lisa (the same one Collin wore two years ago) and threw together a pirate costume at the last minute for Collin. We went to the ward Trunk-or-Treat at the church and had a dandy time. I like Trunk-or-Treat a lot better than going from stranger's house to stranger's house asking for candy. And the kids get their bags full in record time, which doesn't matter now to the boys but it will in just a few years. Here they are in their costumes, Collin only kept his eye patch on for the pictures because of the candy we promised him. Whatever works, no?

Some October Stuff

We joined Sunni's pre-school group at the mud-I mean Pumpkin Patch in Corrales. It seemed like a nice enough day, it had been raining a few days earlier but things had dried up at our house pretty well so we thought we were safe. Apparently the sun doesn't shine in the corn maze too well and it takes a little longer to dry things out. By the end of the maze we all had mud hi-heels, it reminded me of running through my Grandpa Donaldson's freshly irrigated fields with my siblings and how we were all about 4 inches taller from all the mud that had collected on the bottom of our shoes--'course if you keep on running the mud flings off your shoe to the back of the person in front of you and your shoes start collecting again. Anyway, about this corn maze, it was my first time in one and it was kind of freaky-claustrophobic-panicky feeling for a while but I calmed down once I figured out where we were on the map and how to get us the heck out of there. We stopped every now and then to wipe our shoes on an obliging corn stalk and made it out in good time. At the end there was a little petting zoo and some fresh apples. I was glad that my boys didn't want to pet the animals because there was nothing but mud puddles to wash hands in before eating the apples--and I'm tellin' ya, those animals had been wallowing in their muddy/poopy pens for quite a while. (I'm really not that big of a freak about dirt and germs, it just crossed my mind, that's all). We were all brought back to the start of the maze on a hay ride--Collin's favorite part by far because it was pulled by a tractor. All and in all, a fun day with plenty of 'laugh about later' material.

Get a load of our shoes!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Toys, anyone?

Collin loves to get Lucas after Lucas wakes up from his morning nap. He doesn't actually 'get' him, he just likes to be the one that opens the door and goes in the room first. It has become a regular thing that I don't mind because while the two play back and forth I have a few extra minutes to finish up whatever I am doing before I go get him and then start lunch. In the past the routine was: Collin opens the door, Lucas squeals when he sees Collin, Collin tosses in the stuffed animal that Lucas threw out of the crib before his nap, Lucas tosses it out to Collin, the two laugh and I smile to myself to hear them playing together, I go in a few minutes later and get Lucas, change diaper, go on with life, etc. Sometimes there will be a few more toys in the crib that Collin thinks Lucas needs, but there aren't many toys in the nursery so it's never a big deal. That was then, this is now:

This all happened in about 5 minutes. Collin was stealthily quiet and went back and forth from his room to Lucas' and collected just about every toy bin and unloaded them on Lucas. When I came in the room Lucas was contentedly playing on the mountain of toys kindly brought to him by his brother. more 'few minutes to myself while Collin entertains his brother'.

Monday, January 12, 2009

NM State Fair

This was from back in September, too. Jesse's folks came up for a visit and we made plans to go to the New Mexico State Fair. It was kind of a pain to get us all out the door and drive into Albuquerque but once we were there we felt very glad to have made the sacrifice. (Which made us grateful for Jesse's mom because we probably wouldn't have gone to the trouble if it weren't that she wanted to go so badly.) It was pleasant weather and the crowds weren't bad at all. We saw all kinds of animals (the boys really loved the alpacas and horses), blew gigantic bubbles, ate deeeee-licous fair food, and rode a ton of kiddie rides. Jesse ran into a few State Police buddies that were working the fair and they gave him a bunch of their complimentary ride tickets.

Watching the horses go by. It is almost comical how huge Collin looks, I swear he's only three years old. Can't believe I can stand to hold him!

Jesse and Collin getting belted in for a ride. This bee-ride made awful groaning/squeaking noises as it went up and down. We were glad it held together long enough to get them safely back on the ground.
Collin rode every ride we introduced him to about two times, but the train had to be ridden three times. He didn't smile much but sure did go on and on about how fun they were after he got off.
And sweet little Lucas only got to ride in the stroller. He was content to sit and watch his brother on the rides most of the time. What a pleasant child!

Driving home, Jesse and I talked about the strange change that happens in your life once you become a parent. It was amazing to us how this whole fair experience was so fun and gratifying when all we did was look at animals we had seen dozens of times before and watched Collin ride these dinky little rides that went around and around. It's all so strange. Suddenly our enjoyment comes from giving happiness and enjoyment to another. We love to bless and make our kids happy, makes me think about Heavenly Father and how much He must love to bless us and see us enjoy those blessings.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Updating: September

September was the month I met my new wonderful friend Leticia. I got new gals on my Visiting Teaching list and Leticia was one of them. Visiting her was like stepping back in time to the mission. She's from Mexico and has all the mannerisms, decorating tastes, clean house smells (suavitel fabric softener and fabulouso cleaner), and hospitality of the dear Hispanic people I worked with on the mission. She's been working in the nursery in the ward for a while and I had talked with her a bit as I took Collin in. She speaks decent English but is much more comfortable speaking in Spanish and has a special gift for working with and loving children.

When I went to visit her we got started talking food and right away made plans for a 'cooking lesson' at my house. The next week on her day off I picked her up and we headed for Wal-Mart for the supplies and then to my house to make chile rellenos. I could have died they tasted so good!!!!! She is a whiz in the kitchen--I had Cliff and Lisa over to learn the relleno trick and enjoy the meal with us. Lisa and I just marveled at how pretty her hands looked as she cooked and how she was able to do everything without even measuring.

I feel like I have stumbled on to a really special friend. Leticia was the oldest of eight kids (I think) and has three almost grown kids of her own. It's hard to put in words what makes this gal so special--it's just something you feel when you're around her. Cliff and Lisa feel the same way. We sat around after she left talking about the tingly, wonderful, hard-to-describe way she made us all feel. When I talked to her about working in the nursery and how great she is with kids, she told me that she feels like she has a special gift for mothering. Maybe that's the best way to describe how she made us feel...mothered. Well, that word sure looks weird, but you know what I mean.
Here she is at the stove. Boy, I wish I had some rellenos right about now!!

First Thing's First

Before going into all the happenings of the last few months, the first thing I need to do is announce our third thing on the way. Here it is:
I can get away with referring to this little one as a 'thing' still because we don't know what we're having yet. From the ultrasounds, though, it looks like a human child with two arms, two legs and that's exciting. :) We'll hopefully find out boy or girl stuff mid-to late February. I am 13 weeks along and feeling much better than I was a few weeks ago, although I still have my spells of hard-core gagging and fatigue. The other morning I could only get to the kitchen sink and sweet Collin stood by me and asked, "you ok, Mami?" over and over between his own sympathetic gagging. Good times. Actually, the up side to feeling crummy (this may be the first time I've ever used that word) is that I'm not into any projects lately, I just sit on the floor and read or play with the kids. And when I'm really feeling good we get bundled up and go for walks, but no painting furniture, sewing, scrap booking, or anything of the sort for now. And that's (deep breath) O-K. I am (deep breath) O-K.

We sure do love our first two 'things' a ton and feel so excited to meet our third little 'thing'. Oh yeah, the due date is July 18th. Same due date as Jesse's little sister Anita and a month before my brother's wife Lisa. Our families are growing exponentially these days. Cousins are great!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Back in the Saddle (sort of)

Well folks, I have a long list of good excuses for not posting for so long. The first hick-up came in November when we lost our Internet for about three weeks, then there's always the holidays to blame for my busy-ness, and last of all--I'm just plain pooped and unmotivated. Did I say it was a long list? Well, not long, but good enough. On the bright side, I'm coming out of my gloom and feeling a bit more inspired. That probably has a lot to do with the fact that Jesse came home for good on Christmas Eve. He got transferred back up here and I can almost physically feel the difference in our home atmosphere. I certainly feel a million times better emotionally and that seems to spread out to how I feel mentally, physically, and even spiritually. Love my Jesse, it's pathetic how much I need him.

I figure my next few posts will be just catching up the last few months of 2008. I know my poor Mama is anxious to hear about my little life even if the rest of you aren't. :) I got to talk to her on Christmas and she is still loving life in sticky, hot Panama. I'm really starting to miss her, though. I'm pretty used to long months without seeing her, but this year and a half thing is for the birds. They'll probably come home sometime in the middle of this year. Lookin' forward to it. Anyhoo, stay tuned for the updating posts to follow. It may take a few days, we're making a quick trip down to Artesia this afternoon to pick up our truck and then I'll be back in the saddle with this blogging thing (for a little while, at least--you know how I am).