Saturday, September 14

Catching Up

I've been a little AWOL lately...
August was crazy, and I'm thinking September might just be the same.
We didn't really do a whole lot except me go back to summer school, start working on my National Boards, me start school and JW start preschool. 
Let me rephrase that then: August was crazy for ME.
And THAT is why is blog has been neglected.

Thankfully, with my school schedule, everyone has been going to bed earlier and waking up earlier.
Except for last night (Friday), when I was asleep waay before JW. 
So, at 8 o'clock in the morning, T and JW are still snoozing away.
I just heard Richie talking to himself in his crib, so I went to go get him and he was just lying there speaking him gibberish. 

He looked at me and smiled, a usual thing for him to do.
He always makes my mornings better with his wonderful attitude.
I'm thinking once JW wakes up, he'll be the same way.
Whenever he wakes up on his terms, he's always happy, and I just love his cute little personality.
Yesterday, I was supposed to go to work and get the week ready, but our babysitter fell through.
This was actually a blessing in disguise because it gave me some time to hang with my kids, clean my house a little bit, and actually relax. 
I don't think I've relaxed since school has started.
I'll move on.
JW started preschool.

It's not a big difference for him considering he's been going to that daycare since he was 18 months old, and now he's just in a different room, but it's a big deal to me.
It's symbolic of how big and tall and smart and boyish he's getting.
Although, as tough as it is to see him become more and more independent and be witness to his almost 4 year old temper tantrums, I sure do love watching him change and evolve. 
Richie has started walking all the time.
It's weird the way that happens.
One day, he's just crawling everywhere and the next he's decided he's going to walk and now he's walking everywhere.
He's getting pretty good, too.
He doesn't fall down nearly as much.
Now, both kids are awake, and JW is not in as good of a mood as I'd hoped, and T went to play flag football with some buddies.
My reflection time is over...

Thursday, August 1

The Life of a One Year Old

This child still my baby.
I don't care what you say.
He's just a taller, more mobile, louder, more talkative, hungrier, heavier baby.
We sure do love him.
 He does some pretty funny things these days.
Lately, I've been trying to workout everyday (I own you, baby gut!) and whenever I do crunches, Richie likes to climb on top of me and face my knees, and hook his legs just under my chin.
That's right, folks!  That means, his little diapered butt is sitting directly on my face.
Not the most pleasant thing if we have yet to change his diaper in the morning or if he just went number 2. Otherwise, it's just distracting...
He loves our phones.  Yes, he still loves to chew on them, but now he also like to put them up to his ear like we do.
He loves to play peek-a-boo.  He really loves it when T hides somewhere, Richie goes off to find him and T jumps out at him.  He thinks that's hilarious!  When I do it, not so much.
He likes to play a little rougher than JW ever did.  He likes to be bounced and swung and thrown. 
He's close to walking.  He did take some steps while my parents were here, but I'm thinking that was just a fluke.  He likes to stand up in the middle of the room, and then, eventually and slowly come back down. 
His eyes are still steely blue...WTF??
I think he likes to give kisses.  If we're laying on the floor, he'll come over and put his slobbery mouth somewhere on our faces.  Sometimes, he likes to bite T's nose, but with me he just puts his mouth on my face. 
He loves things that make noise or move. 
He's such a wiggler!  I am having a devil of a time changing his diaper these days because he flips right over the minute that diaper is off!
That's why I couldn't get a good picture of him for his monthly photos!
For his birthday, we got him a gift, and we also got JW a gift, too.
JW doesn't quite understand the concept yet, and so he thought it was all our birthdays.
We sang to Richie, kept him from touching the lit candle, and then JW blew it out for him.
We then relit the candle, sang to, and blew out candle for everyone else in our little family, too.  JW insisted.
Richie, then went to town on his cupcake.
When we gave JW his one year old cupcake, he touched, felt the icing between his fingers, and started crying.  I had to feed him the rest of his cupcake.  I love that sensitive kid.
Richie, on the other hand, got ahold of that thing and never let go.  Seriously, he just held it near his face and kept chomping away.  He got a pretty dirty face, and it seemed like he really enjoyed it.
 Bottom line:  We love Richie Rich!

Tuesday, July 30

Parents in July

My parents came to stay with us after Jake's wedding. 
I really love having my parents come and visit.
I obviously wanted to see them, and my children obviously wanted to see them. 
JW is a huge grandma fan, and Richie is a huge grandpa fan. 
I guess the main reason I was ready to see them this time is because I revert back to their child and act like it, and they revert back to my parents and act like it.
My mom takes care of the kids, cleans, and does projects around my house.
My dad buys a ton of groceries, cooks all our meals, and takes us on fun day trips.
It's like all my responsibilities just melt away for the time they are here.
It was very much needed since I've been super stressed with work starting and doing my boards. 
Anyway, everyone had a great time.
One of the days, my parents took us on a little day trip by a nearby canyon.  My dad made potato salad and we enjoyed the windy day as well as the drive. 
Another day, my dad made cupcakes with the kids.
JW talked about this for days before it actually happened.  You can tell the kids had a great time.

My parents brought this small suitcase with them.  For whatever reason, the kids LOVED sitting in it and watching T.V., so they spent a lot of their time doing that.
T was in the Pioneer Day Rodeo, and we got to go watch him.  I LOVE it when he does cowboy stuff like that.  He looks so manly!

My parents got to see my brother in the MTC because he broke his ankle.  It looks like he's going to be staying an extra week in the MTC...
My mom, T, and myself did a team triathlon.  I did the biking, T did the swimming, and my mom did the running.  It was really fun!
The kids basically just had a good time with their grandparents, and here's some pictures to show it...

 We're counting down the days for when we can see them again!

Friday, July 26

This is Going to be Long... (aka: The First Part of July)

July has been insane!  I mean, I knew it would be.
Still, July has seriously (and sadly) gone by in a flash.
Being a teacher, I wish and hope that my summer vacation is long, relaxing, enjoyable, and just...perfect.
Then, in the middle of January, during a snowstorm, while I have recess duty, and the biting wind is blowing right through my coat, and the kids are mad because I took them away from their Christmas celebrations and are taking it out on me by refusing to learn or do anything, I can daydream about my perfect summer vacation where I swung on the metaphorical hammock while I drunk a refreshing and delicious fruit smoothie.  My flawless body, perfect for bikini weather, with absolutely no stretch marks whatsoever, allowed the sun to bronze me from head to toe, resembling a Greek goddess, my gorgeous locks (NOT covered in baby boogers) flowing in the gentle summer(non-Wyoming) breeze.  I never have to worry about skin cancer because, well, this is a fantasy, where reality does not exist.   There's also Hawaiian music in the background. 
Unfortunately,  my summer hasn't resembled that in the least bit.  Sure, there have been days where I watched the kids destroy the house, and I've done absolutely nothing to stop/pick up after them.  I'm not sure I would call those days 'relaxing', though...
So, since my month has been a tad hectic, I'm just going to jot down EVERYTHING that has basically happened so far in July and then move on to shorter posts when things have calmed down. 

Obviously, July 4th we celebrated July 4th...
It was kind of low key, due to T being on call that whole weekend.  It kinda stunk because he had a four day weekend, and we could have had gone someplace and done something outside of town, which would have been my preference...
It was still ok.  We did the typical things, we went to the parade.  I had to practically pick the candy up for JW because he's not an aggressive kid and didn't want to fight his way to the candy... He chose his outfit, so he melted a little bit. He spent a lot of the parade sitting in this chair, which is not ours.  Hopefully, the owner wasn't too peeved...
 Richie had a good time, I think.  He was his basic, happy, smiley self.  He actually loved the noises and the commotion.  He just stared and stared at the hoopla.

In the evening, we went to our friends parent's house and had the perfect view to watch the fireworks.  I know I always say this, but the fourth of July is sooo much better here, in my small town, than Phoenix.  The weather is cool and perfect.  People are obsessed with lighting fireworks, and as a result, there were mini firework shows all around us.  It truly does make me feel more ... patriotic.
Earlier in the month, T's sister, Laney came with her four kids for two weeks to take part in our town's swimming classes.  JW was going to take some, too.
JW LOVES Laney's kids.  He really loves kids older than himself because those kids aren't as rough with him.  Plus, Laney's kids are, well, they're just good, gentle kids.
As much as JW loved having them here, it was a learning situation for him, too.  JW, being the first-born and his little brother is just a baby how doesn't care 95% of the time about toys or having things, JW gets free reign on pretty much everything in the house.
Yes, we try to teach him the value of sharing or not being mean, or not 'accidentally' knocking babies off the couch, but there is only so much I can do when your baby doesn't care.
Having these kids here made JW HAVE to share his stuff, which was a difficult lesson to learn, and valuable, too if only for two weeks. 
Overall, though, he had a great time.  He really loves being around kids.  He also really loves being with or around anyone that aren't his parents, that's neither here nor there.

This last school year I decided to do something pretty crazy.
I decided to get my National Boards in Education.
For those of you in education, you're thinking, "WOW!! Good for you!  Good luck (because you're going to need it)!"
 For those of you not in education, you might be thinking, "What is that?  It doesn't sound so bad." 
I don't really know how to explain it, so I won't.  All you need to know, it is hard.  Many people have said it is harder then getting your Master's. 
So, while Laney was at our house with mine and her kids, I went to Laramie to do a workshop to get a running start with this three year process.
It was very overwhelming, and now, I am terrified.  I know it will help me be a better teacher, but I still feel like I'm way in over my head.  Did I also mention I'm going full-time next year?  I really hope this process gives me some good insight on how to be a better teacher.  I feel like I could use some guidance in that arena.

Later in the month (July 19th, to be exact) T's brother, Jake got married in the Brigham City Temple.
Amber looked positively glowing throughout the entire ceremony. 
Now, I've been to a few wedding ceremonies in my day (I'm an oldie now, I can say that).  And during that ceremony, every bride looked so beautiful, so serene, so calm, so... happy.  I don't quite understand that because when I got married,
I. was. terrified.
 I was so scared, I don't remember one word.  I remember everyone was staring at me and T, and my grandpa, who happened to be the one performing the ceremony kept talking to us.  I remember I felt like the room was closing in on me.  I remember T had to coach me when I had to say something.  Maybe you're thinking, "Sure, you were scared on the inside, but on the outside, you probably looked beautiful."  Nope. There were a few people, including T, who told me later how scared I looked.

Anyway, both of them looked so happy, and not scared at all. 
Doesn't she look absolutely gorgeous??
My kids, probably me too, are so acclimated to Wyoming weather.
Poor JW started to melt while waiting for the bride and groom to come out.
We had to bribe him with ice cream as we took the obligatory family pictures.  He was so hot, he kept finding other peoples' water bottles and trying to drink out of them.
After the ceremony, we had to make a quick run to Wal-Mart. 
Afterwards, we went to a park nearby and had a family-style picnic.
It was a memorable day, and I wish them as much happiness as they can handle!
There is more to document about July, but that will have to be at a later time.  Besides, I've already written too much!