Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The joy of frosting beaters...

I'm not a big fan of kids making messes. Yes it may be fun for them, but the clean up/staining can be torturous.

Call me a crazy mean mom, but I don't give my kids a plate full of spaghetti and sauce when they're a year old. I don't let them have syrup on their waffles/pancakes until they're much older. I prefer drinks to stay in cups with lids. And yes I like to purchase dye free popsicles, they're white and they're genius.

However, when it comes to beaters, I'm a sucker. Of course they can lick the beaters. Yes it will be messy. It will be all over their face and hands, and half of it always ends up in the hair for some reason. I think it goes back to my childhood when my mom would make a certain "marshmallow frosting" (which contained no marshmallows, but enough egg whites to replicate it!) for our birthday cakes. When it was your birthday you got first dibs on the bowl and beaters and it was a delicious sticky mess. It seemed as though you had to use every last finger to make sure the beaters were completely clean.

So when Steve's mom offered up the frosting beaters to Hallie and Hunter I couldn't refuse. I half wished there was a third beater so I could join in their fun and excitement.
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Instead, I watched them take the first couples licks with huge grins across their faces. Then of course I noticed frosting was ending up more on the ground than in their mouths so I suggested they savor their treat outside.

They sat on the steps next to each other in pure delight.
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It made me wish it was my birthday as a kid!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Just a little cheesehead...

In honor of the Packers making it to the superbowl, I thought I would post these pictures from a while back!

Living in Wisconsin for five years, we always desired to see the Packers play. Unfortunately, they always play on Sunday aside from a few pre-season games held on Thursdays and Saturdays. Steve was able to go to a preseason game with friends, but I had yet to have the opportunity. So when we found out the Packers were playing the Bears, we jumped on the opportunity.  What was even better was that it was in Chicago, not Green Bay, and we were able to enjoy it with some of our closest friends.
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We drove down to the outermost part of Chicago and hopped on the L train. We made a quick stop for some Chicago style pizza at Giordano's East and then went straight to the Stadium. We got off the train among swarms of Bears fans with a few cheeseheads thrown in. We made the 5 block walk to Soldier Field with a great mass of people. It was energizing and exciting. Both Bears and Packers fans are very devoted and they make it known.
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We found our seats which of course were surrounded by religious and obnoxious Bears fans. It was a little hard to hide the fact that we were cheering for the Packers and the dirty looks shot at us like daggers. The more the people drank, the worse it became. There were just a few times I was slightly concerned for my life, but those moments passed as soon as the Bears did something worth noticing.

It was a good and close game right up until the end when the Bears were able to pull off a field goal with just seconds remaining. Such a fun game to experience.

The only downfall...the drive home in the wee hours of the morning. But well worth it!

Friday, January 21, 2011

26 weeks and then some...

Yes, we are well over half way through and this is the first picture I've taken of this pregnant belly. Just goes to show you get lazy the more kids you have!
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We found out a while ago we will be welcoming another boy into the family. I went into the appointment with a very open mind. I was happy with either since we have one of each. But the minute I heard, "it's a boy" I suddenly realized I did have an opinion as to what I wanted, and I wanted a girl!! Another boy jumping off furniture? More cuts and bruises? What about the sweet girl who quietly plays with her dress-up? I wanted another one of those.

And I knew how bad Hallie was wanting a sister. Right before we left for the appointment I was talking with her about it and she had very sound reasoning for wanting a sister. "First of all mom, I already have a brother, but I don't have a sister. And Hunter doesn't even let me put bows in his hair, my sister would."

Probably so.

When we picked Hallie up and told her the news, she ran into Steve's arms and gave him a big hug. And then she didn't let go. For a long time. Steve pulls her away and she is sobbing. Really sobbing. Uncontrollably.  This was nothing a treat was going to fix. It crushed me. I felt her pain. I wanted more than anything for her to be close in age to a sister, but it just didn't work out that way. So after about 15 minutes of consoling and talking, she finally settled down. We convinced her she would get her own room and Hunter would forever share a room. She liked that idea. I tried telling her a sister would just try and steal her makeup and clothes but she didn't really understand that side of sisterhood! Instead she understood that she was going to be my shopping partner and nobody else. She liked that. So did I.

So all those adorable dresses that are packed away in pink bins will sit for yet another couple years perhaps. And yes, we do have plenty of little boys clothes as well, unfortunately they are in the complete opposite season than what we will need, but we'll make it work somehow!

Steve couldn't have been happier about the news. He's been pulling for a boy ever since he found out we were pregnant! And just to set the record straight, Steve's got what he wanted for each child. No joke. Here's how it played out:

First child: I really wanted a boy, a protector for the family. Steve wanted a girl/babysitter.
Steve won.

Second Child: I really wanted a girl for Hallie to be close to her sister. Now that Steve has his babysitter he's done with the girls and wants a boy to throw the football with.
Steve won.

Third Child: I thought I didn't care, but evidently I was pulling for a girl for Hallie, one last shot at having her semi close in age to a sister. Steve wanted a wrestling buddy for Hunter.
Steve won.

Steve thinks he's pretty cool because he keeps getting what he wants. The jokes on him: If he gets to choose the sex of the child, I get to choose how many!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Funny Comment...

Since moving back to Arizona Steve has a new restaurant obsession (besides In & Out)...Tia Rosas. It's mexican food - it's great and Steve is in heaven. While my sister was visiting we went to check out the Temple lights and then hopped in the car to go out to dinner afterwards.

Hallie: Where are we going to go eat?
Steve: Tia Rosa's (in his best mexican accent)
Hallie: But what is it really called?
Steve: Tia Rosa's (yet again with a great accent)
Hallie: (very frustrated) Dad, stop it. What is the name of the restaurant?
Steve: (without any accent whatsoever) Tia Rosa's

Kaytlin who is in the backseat with Hallie notices she's now crying.

Kaytlin: Hallie what's the matter?
Hallie: I just want to know the name of the restaurant?
Kaytlin: Your daddy told you the name, it's Tia Rosas.
Hallie: (frustrated and now with an elevated voice) I don't speak spanish, stop talking in code. 

Steve, Kaytlin and I are now trying to contain the giggles.

Steve: Hallie, we're going to eat at Aunt Rose's.
Hallie: (Still crying) But I don't even know where that's at.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Christmas Day...

We had quite the crowd on Christmas morning...Steve's sister and her family of six kids, another sister with two kids, another sister, my sister, and Steve's parents. C-R-A-Z-Y!!! The room was packed to the brim with presents for essentially 6 separate "families".

Our kids are still at the age where they don't require, or expect a whole lot which is awesom. We've really downplayed the whole santa gig and the kids realize that only their stocking is from Santa. And in it they find very basic things. That way all the really cool presents we get the credit for. I don't want some imaginary fat man stealing my thunder!!
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Hallie's list for Christmas included a toothbrush, toothpaste, candy and a pillow pet. We were able to give her all those wishes! Hunter is too young to understand if you ask for things you just might get them, but was still happy about his loot.

Hallie's favorite gift: Unicorn pillow pet (which is the last time I allow Steve to pick up a gift for me...a unicorn?? They have dog, bee, bear, ladybug...and he comes home with the purple unicorn??)

Hunter's favorite gift: The $3 thomas the train engine and the Melissa and Doug Mail Box (which was quickly confiscated as it became the source of contention for too many children!)
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Seeing as though our traditional Thanksgiving breakfast never took place, I wasn't about to let our Christmas breakfast go. We had some delicious buttermilk waffles (with our new fancy waffle maker) with strawberries, whipped cream and the most delicious buttermilk syrup which tastes more like candy! We supplemented with scrambled eggs, sausage, monkey bread and fresh from the tree orange juice. Just thinking about it makes my mouth water.
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Breakfast was followed by a trip to the neighbors skate park to test out the cousin's new skateboards. It was beautiful outside and there was just something peaceful about enjoying the nice Christmas morning watching the kids skate around on a full belly!
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We rested for a short amount of time in the afternoon before it was on to yet another party. Steve's parents hosted the Christmas evening buffet and all but two of Steve's siblings were in attendance as well as a few cousins and their families, an aunt and uncle and my sister. We again stuffed ourselves silly and wondered at the end of the night why we didn't feel very well. But it was all too good to pass up.

It was an awesome Christmas.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Pre-Christmas Festivities...

It has been a long time since we've spent Christmas with Steve's family, and the holidays are a big deal. There seemed to be parties left and right and we were in a constant state of exhaustion but it was totally worth it.
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To start off the holiday, Steve's mom hosts "Nana Sleepovers". There is a total of three "sleepovers". There are the girls (ages 4-11), boys (4-11), and teenagers (12-18). Since we are currently living in Steve's parents house, we seemed to a part of each party!

This was the first year that Hallie has attended and she was beside herself. They made pizzas, decorated cards, decorated cookies, went caroling, watched elf, stayed up until midnight, woke up at 5 am, ate a delicious breakfast, did eachothers hair and painted fingernails. Sadly, I have no pictures to document such an event! We left for the majority of the night and when we came back to put Hunter to bed Hallie was insistent that we leave because we were not invited. We went into hiding!!

The next morning we made a very quick observation that Hallie was definitely not old enough to stay up that late and get up that early because she had a very hard time controlling the waterfall of tears that continually streamed down her face! I suppose once a year will be her limit -

We managed to stay out of the way during the boys sleepover. They seemed much more rambunctious than the girls and slightly out of control. :)

During the teenager night (which wasn't truly a sleepover, just a late night) Steve and I were fully involved with the night. We ate dinner with them and helped orchestrate games. This was by far our favorite group! No one spilled any drinks, everyone could clear their plate by themselves, and not one of them did any screaming. It was great and they were so much fun to hang around with.
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We had a dessert night at Steve's brother's house - a full on dessert crepe bar. It was heaven. There was chocolate filling, vanilla filling, peaches, strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, whipping cream and chocolate syrup. I think I found my new favorite treat. The peaches with cream was my favorite combination!
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We went to lunch with all the ladies - always a good time. I think I found my new favorite chicken tortilla soup on this outing.  Thank you Crackers!
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We had a family home evening where everyone in town was in attendance. All the grand-kids performed musical numbers or shared talents.
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A cousin gift exchange followed where gifts were opened, exchanged, opened, exchanged. Hallie was pleased as punch with her larger than life box of Lucky Charms. And she was kind enough to share them with her brother the next morning for breakfast.
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We enjoyed some delicious pizza at Steve's sister's house as we watched the somewhat pathetic performance of Boise State during their bowl game. Steve and I really looked into going to Vegas to see the game, and we were very happy we did not waste our money for a so-so game.

Steve and I celebrated our 7th anniversary - Wahoo! Seeing as though Christmas is a crazy busy time, we tend to celebrate our anniversary another time during the year, but we did manage to make it to lunch by ourselves and shared with each other our 7 favorite qualities of one another, and 7 favorite memories.

Christmas Eve was hosted by Steve's parents. We had a Mexican themed buffet complete with a pinata.
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We opened our traditional Christmas jammies and read "Twas the Night Before Christmas". It got too late for the kids to enjoy a nice role play of the nativity, so perhaps we'll have to fit that in earlier in the day next year.
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*Thank you to my sister-in-law. as I stole some pictures from her!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Hunter dude...

I'm completely in love with this little man but boy does he know how to push some buttons. He delights in pulling his sister's hair, yelling "no" at the top of his lungs, throwing anything within reach and scratching whoever is near him when he's angry.

If he wasn't so darn cute I think I might return him! I know it's the terrible twos, but it started long before he turned two...hmmm....
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Saturday, January 1, 2011

Cookies with Santa...

Hallie loves any opportunity to sit on Santa's lap and the "Cookies with Santa" at the elementary school was no exception. We walked over with Steve's sister and her family and joined up with Steve's brother's family.
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Each kid wrote a letter to Santa and Hallie was very concerned about making sure she got it just right. She asked for a toothbrush and toothpaste, as well as a pillow pet and candy. She also informed Santa that she loves that he makes everyone so happy.
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Surprisingly Hunter wasn't overly concerned with Santa. He was a little reluctant at first to sit on some large man's lap who he didn't know. But once he saw his cousins do it he seemed fine. We now need to go back to teaching him that strangers are bad and to never accept candy from them!
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