Friday, April 23, 2010

First Giggles…

I’ve mentioned previously that Vivian is really quite a calm little thing.  She likes to observe and she likes to be near people but she is not yet really emotional…I’m just waiting for the diva that’s hiding in every girl to come out. :)  She smiles a lot but it’s very few and far between that she actually giggles.  That’s why yesterday when Christian’s dancing around in his pj’s and Halloween pumpkin bag made her burst into giggles, I couldn’t pull out the camera fast enough.  She really was having at it before I started filming but at least this video captured the winding-down of her amusement.  Got to love those first baby laughs!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

San Diego Trip

We spent ten days in San Diego this month and just got back Sunday night.  It was part business and part pleasure as Jared had a Training and Conference and also took a couple of extra days off to enjoy some of the sites with us.  My parents and Brother Michael came up too which made our trip even more special (and a little more relaxing as they let us go out as a couple twice).  This is a super long post but I decided I’d rather do it all in one go than have a million separate entries since I use this more as a journal than anything and I really like things in chronological order.  Feel free to skim through it or skip it altogether as it was a fun but pretty tedious trip (at least for me) with two kids and a husband that was mostly in meetings.


Friday, April 9th

After Jared got off work we drove to San Diego…it really wasn’t a bad drive.  It’s not as hilly as the drive from Phoenix to Salt Lake so I could actually rest when I wasn’t driving.  Jared and I had so much fun talking we forgot about plugging in the i-pod.  We arrived around ten and my parents and brother Michael were there to greet us (along with my mom’s pack and play.  Thanks again mom!).


Saturday, April 10

We, Jared, my parent’s and brother, the kids and I,  went to the San Diego Zoo’s Wild Animal Park.  It is a beautiful park.  I actually went there on Band and Orchestra Tour one year and it was awesome then too.  But now it has been updated and is even more cool.  There are also some amazing things to do at this park if you want to pay more: the photo caravan tour which is where you can drive right up to the animals in a jeep with a keeper, the balloon ride that lets you see the park from above, or the flight-line which is a kind of zip-line that they put you in a harness and you can go over 2/3’s of a mile across the park.  We didn’t do those but we did do the Journey into Africa tour from the “train”.  Here’s a video of some of what we saw there…it’s a little long but fun for me to see…it might be interesting.

This park is very cool.  The thing I really love about this park is that it is where they make a safe environment for their San Diego breeding program so that’s where there are lots of baby animals to see!  I love baby animals!


Once we left the park, we met up with our friends Megan and Justin for dinner.  We went to a fun hole-in-the-wall kind of pizza place.

As our day ended we decided to stop by the ocean and watch the waves beat against the shore.  It was Christian’s first time to see the ocean and he was very excited.  As he stood on the shore a wave came up a little higher than expected and it got his feet all wet.  As we were leaving, I asked him if he was cold and wanted to go home.  His response was “My feet are telling me that they’re cold but my heart is telling me it wants to stay longer.”


Sunday, April 11

I was excited to wake up to the news that my friend Brooke had her beautiful baby boy that night.  So we talked on the phone about her birthing as Jared drove us to Chula Vista where we enjoyed Church at my friend Heather’s ward (Heather’s mom is Marian who we rented from for about three years).  At church that Sunday I really got a different perspective on Adam and Eve that I never understood before so I’m really glad that was able to attend her ward.  After church, Heather, her Husband Russ and daughter Kim had us over for a delicious meal.  It was so nice to have real home-cooked food that was healthy and yummy too.  Thank you Heather, Russ and Kim!

Christian was quite taken with Kim.  On our trip back to the hotel Christian told me that he went into her room and he said that he “kept trying tell her that she was pretty” but she couldn’t hear him.  I asked him if he had tried talking louder and he got indignant and said “No, because I was trying to be Romantic!” He’s sooo girl crazy.

Stopped by the Mormon Battalion Museum when we got back from Heather’s.  Russ had said that someone had said it was like Disney Land and I thought that was really weird.  But guess what?  It almost was like a ride at Disney Land.  If you’re ever out that way, make a point to stop by.  It was very cool.  Here are some photos of what they let Christian wear when he said he wanted to be a solider.

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One of my favorite things was that at the end of the tour they give you this cool postcard.  I love free!  Especially cute free!


Monday, April 12

My dad left in the morning to go on a business trip so our entourage got a little smaller.  The day turned out to be a very overcast day which made us all nervous about what the day would hold.  But we Went to the San Diego Zoo in the Morning.  It was a little overwhelming at first as there was so much to do and Jared needed me to drop him off for his volunteer work at the convention center.  I ended leaving Christian with my mom and brother while I took Vivian with me to drop Jared off.  When I got back to the zoo we took the bus tour and then looked at the Koloa’s and the outback area.

It was getting a little later so we decided to go back to our hotel and then as soon as we were leaving it started pouring rain on us.  Jared called right then and said he’d finished early.

That evening the sky cleared right up and we went to dinner in Old Town called Casa de Reyes.  It was really a fun place with an authentic feeling atmosphere and all of the waiters and waitresses were dressed in traditional Mexican clothing.  The food was delicious too which was wonderful.

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Here’s a picture of my mom and brother Michael at the restaurant.   I loved the fun lighting as well as the banners that you can see hanging above their heads.


Tuesday, April 13

This day ended up being very sunny and warm.  We visited Sea World and Heather and Kim were able to join us which was an awesome bonus since they really know their way around the park.  Jared, mom, and Michael all got pretty fried Christian’s ears got a little baked too.  The shows we went to were fun though I came to the realization that I need a faster shutter or something next time I go to Sea World because I was terrible, absolutely terrible at getting the whales jumping and for some reason my video didn’t work out too well either.  Dang it.  Christian’s favorite exhibit was actually the sharks which is interesting…I think it proves my point that this kid is pretty fearless.  The coolest thing to me was that Jared bought me a clam shell that they opened and there was a pearl inside.  We’re going to have it set in a ring.

That evening we were able to check into the Hyatt on Mission Bay that the company Jared volunteered with paid for two nights for us.  It made me feel like the bargain place was a glorified tent once we got back  the nicer hotel.  I found it really interesting that at the expensive hotel they bring up a crib for free but in the cheap hotel they charge you for it.  This hotel was right off the bay and the view from our room was amazing!  Not only that, it had three pools and a water slide besides little sitting areas with fire pits.  It really was a little too windy for me to go  out there but it was great just to look at.

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Here’s Vivian on our bed waiting for them to bring up the crib when we first got there.


Wednesday, April 14

Jared was in a training all day with the company that he volunteered with while we went back to the San Diego Zoo to use the rest of our five-day park pass.  We took the Skyfari first and worked our way from the back of the zoo to the front.  I think this way worked out extremely well since it’s a very large zoo.  I absolutely loooved the baby panda!  It was so sweet.

Once we got to the front of the zoo we stopped by the petting zoo which was closed on Monday and Christian was happy to pet the goats.  I love little goats.  Someday I want my own!

After our visit to the zoo, I dropped Christian and Vivian off with my mom and Michael and went back to the hotel for a dinner with Jared for the company he volunteered with.  It had great food!  We had some interesting conversation with the women at our table as we were all parents and sharing pictures of our kids.

After the dinner, Jared and I raced to the San Diego Temple to do a session.  We weren’t sure that we’d get there in time but we made it.  That is such a beautiful building.  It’s more beautiful than I could imagine any place could be.  One of the neatest things was that Heather’s husband, Russ, was working in the Temple that night so he met us as we came up the stairs.  It made me realize that when we get to Heaven we won’t feel like strangers.  There will always be someone to greet us that we know.

Thursday, April 15

This is the day that we relaxed the most.  Jared was in Conference and I checked out of the nice hotel *sniff* and went to my mom’s hotel.  We didn’t leave too early and spent the day visiting Old Town San Diego.  It was pretty low key.

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My darling kids glued to a PBS special on playing the bass!  Vivian was incredibly intrigued.

Then we came back and took a nap and my mom picked my dad up from the airport and they went to the Temple.  When Jared finally got back from his conference we had take-out and enjoyed watching Ultimate Challenge with bridges made out of cereal.


Friday, April 16

Of course Jared was in conference this day but my dad was there so in the morning we decided to visited Scripps Aquarium. 


It was pretty fun.  The neatest thing is the Tide pools they have in the back that they let the kids touch (with one finger) the sea life in it.  They also had a table of water with a pump on one end where you could build up dams and make currents flow.  Christian was very interested in that.  It was really hard to pull him away from that.

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We stopped by In and Out Burger so that Michael could experience that.  He liked it so that was good.  I’m honestly a pretty big fan. 

Then we visited the Loma Point Lighthouse.  The view was beautiful.  I made a video (which is a little boring) but I wanted Jared to experience the view somehow.  Poor guy.  In classes while we were having fun.  At one point I realized that Christian had never seen a phone with a cord (as you can hear on the video) since he kept asking what it was. 

Christian also kept going to the top of the stairs (there was a barricade so you couldn’t be by the light) and then he would be too frightened of the steep stairs to come back down.  It’s nice to discover that your child knows they are mortal.

When we got back to the hotel I got ready and my dad and brother dropped me off to be with Jared for some evening events.  I met Jared at a reception for students attending the conference and Megan and Justin were there as well.

Then we all went to a party on the USS Midway, an aircraft carrier with the Beach Boys in concert and all you could eat and drink.  This was all followed by a fireworks show! It was an incredible evening!!!  Luckily we ducked out before the after party because some people said that they were there until 2 am.



Saturday, April 17

My parents left in the morning and so I took the kids to spend the majority of the day at La Jolla Beach.  Heather met me there and then Justin showed up a little later with a friend Rachel and her son Jonas.  Justin and Rachel played with the boys and flew kites while I chatted with Heather as we took turns playing with Vivian and trying to keep her4-19-10 590 under the blanket as much as we could.  

It was really nice.  It was a cold day though so I didn’t plan on Christian getting in or near the water.  Silly me.  I really should have listened to the little voice in my head that said to take a swimming suit and extra clothes. 

I stole this cool photo of Christian and Jonas jumping in puddles from Rachel…you can see Justin in the background flying his kite.

Christian playing in the sand 

Christian was sliding down a muddy sand dune and basically got soaked and his pants (which barely can hang on to his little waist anyway), came off.  So he started running around the beach in his jacket on and only underwear on his lower half.  It was pretty funny.  He was so dirty that you couldn’t even tell he wasn’t wearing anything.  I was really bummed when I pulled out my camera to take a picture and realized that it was dying!

I called Jared and he and Megan stopped by the hotel (or in other words the glorified tent) to get Christian some clothes.  Then they showed up and enjoyed the beach with us for a couple of hours.  Jared is now incredibly interested in getting a kite like Justin’s.


Christian got to have his wish to build a sandcastle with his daddy and Megan helped him find shells to decorate it with.  Justin held Vivian and I found out that was the first time he’d ever held a baby!  I can’t even imagine….poor guy!

Baby hunger

Megan invited us to come up to Carlsbad to their apartment.  So we went and got cleaned up and then went and had a lovely dinner with Megan and Justin.  Justin was quite taken with Vivian and held her pretty much the whole time.  It was really sweet. 

Justin chilling with Vivian Justin holds Vivian Vivian and Justin

They are both so good with kids I know that they will be awesome parents.  Thanks Megan and Justin for a great meal!  It was so nice to have a real meal!


Sunday, April 18

We packed up our room and checked out and then visited Heather and Russ’s ward again.  They have the nicest ward.  I really liked what the Sunday School teacher had to say about why we have classes in church among other reasons she said that “Teaching is to change lives.”  That really rung true for me.

After church we stopped by Heather’s house to see Kim and Russ was kind enough to give us some water.  Heather had a lot of church responsibilities to attend to so we had to say goodbye to her at church.  It was so nice to have friends to visit and see.  I honestly felt more home there in San Diego where we had friends to go and see than I often do here in Phoenix where the people I do know I don’t know very well and don’t seem to have as much interest in seeing me.

4-19-10 596 Here’s Russ with Vivian…apparently he’s the baby holder at church.  He held her all through sacrament meeting that day.4-19-10 614 Christian was really wanting to play upstairs and never go home. 4-19-10 602   Here’s Christian and Vivian with Kim….you can tell from this picture that both my kids got a little too much sun at the beach.4-19-10 611

It was a really fun though exhausting trip and I’m so glad Jared talked me into going with him all those months ago.  I’m especially thankful that some of my family was able to join us because it sure made things a lot more fun for us (especially me).  Thanks again, mom, dad, Michael, Heather, Russ, Kim, Megan and Justin for making our trip so enjoyable!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Conference Saturday

We started out General Conference Saturday morning setting up the video recorder, only to find out that because we didn’t have a HDTV we couldn’t record it.  So I missed the first ten minutes or so as I set up the computer to stream it live.  Jared took Christian to soccer and he missed the whole thing, but I spent an enjoyable time organizing the study while listening.  When Jared got back we departed to spend the afternoon session with our adopted AZ family.   Here’s a little video of what we had to listen to pretty much the whole way there (we were being punished for forgetting  scripture scouts).


We had a nice Barbeque lunch with our surrogate family and then watched conference.  One very cool thing we learned is that Kalei is expecting.  She announced it with an invitation that had no set date and I was a little confused at first until I read it through again!  I’m so happy for her! 

I was a little worried about Jared’s lack of attentiveness during conference until Sherrada reminded me of a scripture that pertains to this video….

“…and he cast himself upon his bed, being overcome with the Spirit and the things which he had seen.”  IMG_3060 

Here’s Jared cuddling up with the bunnies.

After conference we had pizzas for dinner and then the men went to the Priesthood session while the rest of us (excepting Kalei’s family) went to Ladies night at Deseret Book.  I found a very cool book that I’d been wanting to find by one of my favorite children’s book authors/illustrators Jan Brett.  Here are Christian and Lydia as we waited in line and we got to stand by the chair for a minute.  They were really exceptionally behaved even though Lydia lost it at the end, for the most part they were both very good.

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I love Conference and it was really nice to spend it with friends again!  Thanks again you guys!

Monday, April 5, 2010

April Fools Day…Fun with Food

Ever since I had Vivian I’ve been trying to do something “special” daily with Christian to make him feel like a big boy.  It doesn’t always happen especially lately since I’ve been a little overwhelmed with the basic tasks at hand with our traveling schedule.  Usually we just read and/or do some kind of project or have what Christian calls a “learning lesson” where I let him do letter or number worksheets that I’ve laminated with contact paper so that he can use the dry-erase markers and redo them a couple of times (it helps cut down on paper). 

Christian really does like to cook so when I saw this idea on my friend Shawna’s blog, I thought that it would be a fun activity to do with Christian.  They’re spaghetti octopus’s (I actually used linguine noodles because I thought they would be a little more sturdy).  I heated up some spaghetti sauce in the fridge and it was a little weird (I’m really not used to eating spaghetti with hot dogs).  But then I realized later that a creamy cheese sauce would have tasted really good with these.  I know it’s not the most healthy meal so we made veggie wagons to go with them as you can see on the left edge of the picture.



Here is Chef Christian Happy to show off his work.  He had so much fun making them that I totally let him take over and I only did a couple.


Later that day as we were eating our salad’s, Christian put all of his olives on his fingers like I’m sure every kid does and started giggling… “Look, I’m a red-eyed tree frog!”  It was just too cute not to take a picture of.


Too bad he didn’t get red-eye for the photo (j/k).

Sunday, April 4, 2010