Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Giving Thanks

We got to stay here in The Ridge for Thanksgiving and it was SO nice. My men began the day heading off to kick field goals (cause who wants to actually play football?) while I got lots of cooking done.
Apparently I was preparing Evan to go play football Thanksgiving morning in Utah. A thermal top, mittens, fleece jacket, and beanie. Nate informed me that all came off within probably half an hour, because Thanksgiving day ended up being beautiful weather. Weird! I'm still not used to this silly desert weather.

We got together with three other families and had such a feast. I wish I would have taken pictures of how much food we had, but I was too dang excited! It was absolutely awesome. The couple whose house we had dinner at, prepared entertainment for all of the kids for after dinner while parents cleaned up and rested :) 
Here's the kids competing for the coloring contest; the best turkey won. What do you know, they all won 1st place and a prize?! (PS-yes, that is my husband passed out on the floor in the corner of someone else's home...)

It was also one of the mommy's birthdays, so after Thanksgiving, we continued on and had a birthday party! 
Nate literally slept through singing, noise makers, and children walking on top of him. All that eating must have really worn him out. ;) (There was indeed a weigh in before and after the meal, along with before and after pies).

 We had such an enjoyable, lovely day, and I was feeling overwhelmed with gratitude to get to spend time with my little family, to enjoy such great company with good friends that can make family feel less far away, and just for the comfortable life we live, in general. It was a nice day for reflecting on my many, many blessings.

One thing I love about staying here for Thanksgiving is that I get to spend the entire next day fully jumping into Christmas mode!
Evan and Nate put up the Christmas lights on the house, and they look great! Evan thought it was hilarious to see Daddy on the roof, and he always loves when he gets to be a helper. (His hat says Santa's Little Helper!) He's kind of adorable :)

I spent the day taking down fall decor, and trading it in for lots of red and green!
 I didn't realize it until I started unpacking my boxes, but apparently I am starting quite the collection of Nativities. And I love it! But I don't know that I have room for any more :)
I pulled out all of the stops with Christmas music blasting all weekend, and we finally got to get out the Christmas jammies! I know, I really get way too excited for the little things in life.
 Evan was also quite thrilled by his new penguin jammies. But who wouldn't be excited over $3 pajamas? With penguins on them?!

This son of mine is truly his own character. He is growing up so much, and has quite the mind of his own.
There is no water left in this tub. But he REFUSED to get out. I don't know if he was just being (nearly) 2 and stubborn, or if he was super tired, but there was nothing that would get him out. At one point he started telling me about hearing the ocean...As much as this kid can drive me absolutely crazy, I absolutely love him and he cracks me up every day.

We loved having a long, easygoing weekend at our house. It is the first time in quite awhile that we have spent that much time together as a family, just us. We needed it, and even though Nate and Evan came down with some runny noses towards the end of it, I think we all felt rejuvenated and charged up to let the busy, wonderful month of December begin!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

...Singin' In The Dead Of Night

Last weekend, we joined a friend (whose wife was away for the weekend, and he needed to entertain his boys) down in Lancaster to visit The Blackbird Museum.

Blackbirds are these black, ridiculously sleek, smooth and fast-beyond-fast jets. They go coast to coast in one hour. ONE hour!! Can you even imagine?! I imagine these things sing in middle of the day, just as much as in the dead of night. I am sure these bad boys are loud!
I learned that a Blackbird has never been shot at. Well, technically, shots have been attempted, but come no where near hitting, because by the time a shot is in it's radar, the Blackbird is long gone.
Evan was thrilled to see "big jets, way fast!!!" He was completely beside himself when Nate lifted him up to let him touch this one :)

 Once Evan and his buddy Tyson saw this "old firetruck", they couldn't leave it. They thought it was way cool, and wanted me to take lots of pictures of it.
 Besides Blackbirds, this museum had another park of all different kind of planes. We saw an F-14 that looked just like the one Goose flew in Top Gun :) And lots of other cool ones, too.
 This is a B-52 bomber. I cannot describe how LARGE this plane is. We are talking, the killer whale of all airplanes. It is absolutely enormous, and can hold, literally, thousands and thousands of pounds worth of firearms.
 They even had a real pilot's seat to try out, and Evan thought this was way neat. He wanted everyone to sit in it, too.
Of course, we can't go out of town without hitting up Costco. Plus, my friend introduced me to this spinach and artichoke hummus from Costco that I have been desperate to have in my fridge! So after a busy, fun day, Evan was out as soon as the car was on the road home. I love watching him when he sleeps; it helps me remember how oh-so-very-sweet he can be :)

 Evan is a very busy boy, and is quite the helper, most of the time. Mind you, I did not ask him to help me unload dishes at this point. He opened it and got in all by himself.
I did figure though, if he was going to be in there, may as well make him useful. Like I said, a good helper. He seriously loves putting dishes away. Let's see how long this chore stays fun for him.
 When he was done, he obviously needed a break. He asked me for a "tiny water", then opened the dishwasher again and had a little rest. Crazy kid.
 As of lately, I am finding him in the oddest places, doing the strangest things. His creativity switch must have just flipped on, because he is exploring everything and telling the strangest stories these days.
 This is one of those times I show the world how great of a mom I am. Evan was telling me wanted to swing, but wasn't patient enough for me to get over to him to help him up into the hammock. He tried to get in himself, and this is what happened. Instead of immediately running to his aide while he kept repeating "I stuck! I stuck, Mommy!", I took a picture first. I know he'll appreciate it one day.
 He thinks he is so funny. And if you do happen to laugh at whatever he was doing, he laughs so hard and loud, and says, "Evan funny!" This is one of those times.
A few nights ago, Evan woke up about 330am just screaming and crying and having a fit. Nate went and got him and could not calm him down, so he brought him into our bed so I could help Evan chill out. Between both of us cuddling him, he was able to compose himself and fell back asleep. Neither of us cared to attempt putting him back in his room and risk going through all of that again, so we just let him sleep in the middle of our bed for the rest of the night. I say, sleep...I don't really know if Evan ever actually sleeps. He is all over the place! Which means neither Nate or I got any sleep. Evan refuses to be underneath blankets, so try as we might, he was constantly on top of our bedspread, which made having the covers actually on us a bit difficult. At one point in the night, he was laying exactly perpendicular between us, on our pillows, with his hand raised above his head, holding onto my ear (what a strange way for me to be awakened!), and his feet literally pressed into the back of Nate's head. And when Nate tried to move Evan's feet away from his head, they would immediately go right back and assume the position. Thinking about it now, is actually making me laugh pretty hard, but we were not amused at the time. (I wonder if he just liked the way Nate's hair felt in between his toes?) At one point in the night, Nate actually picked Evan up and moved him all the way down the bed, so he would be nowhere near his head. This just led to Evan feet kicking him in the back, and Evan using my hips and behind as a pillow. On top of all this, Evan was up and ready to go for the day at approximately 648am. Nate and I were exhausted and ornery before we even got out of bed for the day. Later that morning, I was going out for our usual walk, and needed to work out a little more stress, I suppose, so I jogged for about a mile (note:I haven't ran yet this pregnancy, and probably not for several months before that!). But it felt great, and Evan seemed to really be enjoying it. When I got home and went to get him out of the stroller, what do I find?! Sleeping Evan, in the middle of the morning!!! That's why I thought he was liking the jog so much, he was totally out. Apparently, HE had a rough night ;) I was so mad he thought he could sleep, while I was working hard and relieving stress that he brought on to me! :) But then I couldn't help but melt as I watched his sweet face. I left him in the hallway in the stroller, and got in some uninterrupted yoga in while he slept more. We were both in much better moods when he woke up, and he still took another nap that afternoon. :)