Sunday, February 18, 2018

Valentine's Day

We've had a fun filled week. Alex began it with an cousin activity. Alex and his cousin play really well together and it is fun to watch them interact.

The kids both enjoyed their Valentine's day with valentines at breakfast and parties at school. Unfortunately their separate school parties happened at the same time of day so Debbie had to do some running around to give them both the attention they wanted. Fortunately Alex got to attend some of Abigail's party and enjoyed the make-your-own-Italian-soda.

We finished the week by hosting a baby shower for Greg's sister. Debbie enjoyed planning the French themed party. She also appreciated all of the help from cousins, and Abigail, to pull it off. We enjoyed yummy French food and visiting with many of Gen's family and friends.

Alex loved having a date with grandparents this weekend too. They let him dispense his own frozen yogurt and get all of his own toppings. He loves being spoiled.

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Last Two Weeks...

The last two weeks don't have a central theme other than Greg working late and Debbie and the kids enjoying the unseasonably warm weather.  Here are some moments in the last 2 weeks...

Abby has been doing some vision therapy to help strengthen the muscles in her eyes.  Alex thinks he looks pretty cool in her glasses.

Alex won't eat a banana unless he is up in a tree like a monkey.  Even when it is cold and he has no shoes he insists on getting up there and munching.

Alex got to go help build with his cousin.  I'm sure they were loads of help putting together the Ikea furniture.

One night this week we had the power go out for a little under an hour.  Luckily, Debbie had just finished making dinner so we were able to eat by candlelight.  The kids wished the outage would last all night but to their disappointment it didn't last too long.  It was a good reminder to be prepared for situations like this.

Abby and Alex are block heads.  They spend most of their team either doing legos together or else Minecraft together.  They usually can make it for an hour or more before something Abby does will set Alex off and he'll get worked up.  Once he calms down, they will switch to the other activity until the next blow-up.  They are pretty great about playing together 80% of the time and during those times it is awesome.

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Birthday Alex

Happy Birthday Alex! 

For the past couple of months, Alex has been placing a lot of emphasis on "when he turns 5".  Things like starting to read on his own during bedtime, getting dressed on his own, etc, all were things for the distant future when he turned 5... but now that time is finally here!  Alex enjoyed a couple of birthday parties this week- one with family and one with friends.

At the family party Alex had pizza, rootbeer, and an ice-cream-sundae-bar.  A pretty awesome combination.  He also got to wear a crown that he had received at school.

On Saturday we had his friends-party.  Alex decided that the centerpiece of this party was going to be a treasure hunt at his house. Greg hid a bunch of clues around the house that eventually led them to a box of donuts which Alex prefers to cake.  The kids then opened presents and played with toys.

Between friends and family, Alex received 4 Lego sets which he has spent most of his free time putting together.  He does an awesome job of being able to do them almost completely himself.  He prefers it when he has an adult near by to dig out the right pieces for him to assemble but he figures it out even without help.  Once the Legos are assembled, he likes to take them to the Legoland room that he and Abby have created in our guest room that they took over.

Despite all the sandbagging he did in procrastinating things until age 5 we are very proud of how much Alex can do on his own.  He continues to surprise us with new words and his ability to understand the conversations going on around him.  We love you Alex!

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Finally Winter

Despite being a few months into Winter, the weather hasn't been too cold and we have only had one snow of any significance... that changed a bit this week when we finally got some good snowfall that looks like it will be staying around for a little while.

Early in the week Alex got to go to the Aquarium.  His favorite things were some of the animals that were not fish... mainly the penguins and snakes.

While we had warm weather during the week, things got a lot colder on Friday night and it snowed through Saturday. On Saturday morning, we had a cousin visit and the three kids had fun playing out in the snow.

While the snow has been fun, having a dog when it snows is less fun.  Bella seems to try to see how much snow she can accumulate on her body before she is ready to come back in.  That means we have to carry her into the bathroom for a spray-off before we can let her free in the house. 

Although carrying the dog through the house a good workout, it is usually pretty challenging.  On one trip Sunday morning, Greg caught the pocket of his pants on the doorknob and ripped a large area of the pants right out!  Of course, we didn't notice that until half-way through church.  Awkward!

On Saturday night Debbie got to have a girls night with cousins. Abby couldn't believe that all they did was talk. She thought that sounded like the most boring date ever. Debbie, however, had so much fun she stayed out half the night.

Monday, January 15, 2018

Fun Activites

This week was filled with a lot of fun activities that were had with various groups of people.  

Alex helps Debbie clean the church each week and they have gotten to know some other women from church pretty well.  Alex considers them his friends as well and invited them over for a "grown-up friend" lunch date. He planned the menu, set the table, and cleaned up. Our friends were so impressed and couldn't get over how cute he was.

Menu: rolls, tomato soup, apple slices, and cookies

Alex with his grown-up friends

One night this week we had the pleasant surprise of getting BYU basketball tickets from Greg's work again.  Last year we took Abby and left Alex behind but this year we decided to give Alex the chance to experience it.  Alex probably only watched 30 seconds of the ball game (and spent the rest of the time on the iPad at our seats) but the rest of us enjoyed the game and all of the snacks that came with it.  We've been very spoiled with all of the fantastic tickets we have gotten, it will be hard at some point in life to go back to the "cheap seats"!

Alex spent a few days obsessed with wearing a "bonnet".  He even wore it to the bus stop.  That habbit went away as randomly as it started though.

On Saturday we went up to Sundance not to ski (though Alex and Abby really wanted to do some loops on the chair lift) but just for lunch and then to do a hike.  We had a yummy lunch with the kids sharing a BLT and Greg and Debbie sharing a delicious banh-mi.  After the lunch, we went down the canyon a bit and found a little fork of the river that had frozen over and we slipped and slid around on it.  We then went to a dog park and did a little walk around a park.  It has been strangely warm and dry this winter so we have tried to maximize our outdoor time in this unseasonable weather.

Sunday, January 7, 2018

First Week of 2018

2018 has gotten off to a great start. We thoroughly enjoyed our time off but it was also nice to get back to our familiar routine of school and work.

We spent sometime this week making some individual and family goals for 2018. While we have casually done this in the past this year we decided to be more intentional about it (writing them down) and get the kids involved. The kid's goals include saving money (Abigail) and getting dressed without help (Alex, though he decided that he doesn't need to start this one until he's 5). Hopefully our enthusiasm will last long enough to create some good habits.

Also this week, we enjoyed our annual cousin's white elephant party at Greg's grandparent's house. As always there was yummy food and lots of time spent visiting and playing. The kids are getting old enough not to need as much guidance in their play which gives the adults more time to socialize-which is nice.

Between goal making, getting back to school, and partying we still found lots of time to play. One of the kid's favorite is a family-rules version of The Farming Game. Alex picked up the game itself a few months back from a garage sale. He didn't have money to pay for the game but he really wanted it so he did some bartering and for the price of some chores was able to get the game.

Sunday, December 31, 2017

Finishing Up the Year

We are glad we've had a few days after the Christmas and anniversary rush to catch up on real-life. 

One of the things on the list was figuring out what to do with the dog's every increasing fur length. We didn't like the price tag of a professional groomer but we were a little intimidated by the idea of home-grooming. In the end we just took the electric razor and figured it out. We were quite surprised at the amount of fur that came off and while she looks a little like a Brillo pad it is nice to have all that extra bulk off.

After haircut

Some of what came off

 Debbie's parents have been preparing to sell their rental property and Debbie and Abby were glad they could help out (Abby might have had a financial incentive). Abby cleaned the basement windows and only had a hard time with the window wells that had visible cobwebs and spiders. Debbie painted a bathroom and was glad to be able to complete the job before needing to leave.

We had a few extra days with Greg's mom in town and loved having her for a couple of meals and games this weekend.

The kids may be a little disappointed in our lack of New Year's celebrations but that will have to wait until they learn how to sleep in. 

2017 has been an exciting, busy year for us. We look forward for all of our adventures in 2018.