Thursday, January 24, 2008

Mr. Potato Head Glasses

We had Preston's eyes checked and turns out he needs glasses. But... he doesn't seem to mind much!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Evelyn's "Baby"

As most of you already know Evelyn has this doll that she absolutely adores. She got it almost a year ago for her first birthday from her Waite grandparents. Her doll means everything to her. She will not do anything or go anywhere without it. It's practically impossible to even "forget" the doll on the way out the door because the second her little rear hits the car seat she calls out for it. She calls her doll "Baby". Evelyn and her baby are inseparable. Part of me thinks that I really shouldn't encourage the bond as much as I do but on the other hand another bigger part of me can't help but see it as sweet and endearing. She treats the baby as if it were her real live baby. She pretends to feed the baby, she puts the baby down for naps, she sits her baby on the potty and she kisses and hugs her all day long. The baby now even has her own seat at the dinner table! She is practically a member of the family. To get to the point of this story, as adorable as all of this may sound there is one huge drawback. Her poor doll has gone through the ringer. An entire year of being carried around (by the hair) by a 1 year old sticky fingered little girl can make a doll pretty disgusting. We contemplated throwing it away and just making this our opportunity to break her of it but we decided that we just couldn't do that to our little girl so we came up with a solution. We decided to replace her doll with none other than the exact same doll (brand new of course). Andy ordered one on ebay and today we made The Switch. We took the old one away and told Evelyn that we were going to give her a bath and make her all clean. I kept her distracted for a few minutes while Andy retrieved the new one and then we just flat out gave it to her. She was totally excited. It was obvious that she could tell that it was her doll but that something was very different about her. The little light on her old one broke probably about 6 months back and I'm actually not even sure if she remembers that it used to light up so Evelyn now loves the fact the she can press her tummy and her little light turns on. It was so cute watching her get excited about it all over again. She kept touching her little braids which, as you can tell in the pictures, her baby hasn't had in a very long time. It was definitely a successful switch. Evelyn now has a clean brand new version of the real thing and she'll never know the wiser.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Australian Open Quarterfinals

Tennis is back! This time it's at the Australian Open. Tomorrow is the start of the womens semi-finals. Unfortunately my personal favorite tennis player and number 1 pick to win the tournament, Justine Henin, was defeated in her quarterfinal match Tuesday against Maria Sharapova. From the beginning you could tell she just wasn't playing her best. Sharapova put up a really great fight and it made for a very interesting game. The match ended at a sad score of 6-4, 6-0. The other quarter final game I got to watch a portion of on Tuesday was between Serena Williams and Jelena Jankovic. It was also a pretty good game. As the defending champ of 2007, Serena was supposed to be the pick to win the match but Jankovic beat her 6-3, 6-4. Today, the last two matches of the quarterfinals were played. The two semi-finalist games will be a match up between Jelena Jankovic vs. Maria Sharapova and Ana Ivanovic vs. Daniela Hantuchova. Now that Henin is out my new pick to win is probably Sharapova. She kicked some major butt on Tuesday. No one even thought she had a chance to win against Henin, who is currently number 1 in the world, but she not only beat her, she totally dominated. I guess we'll just have to wait and see what happens over the next couple of days...

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Glamorous?.... Not so Much.

My SIL made a call out on her blog to anyone who had ever had a glamour shot taken and asked them to post it on their blog. I think it's awesome, unfortunately I was never GROOVY (in the Bailey sense of the word) enough to have any taken. But here's the best I could do. You gotta love the pose, obviously very natural of course, and you can't beat the puffy purple shirt. Believe it or not that was my favorite shirt for like a year. Yeah, I was so NOT cool!
This was taken in December of 1994 so I was almost 11.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

The week in pictures

The last two weeks have been awful and frankly kind of <-disgusting. One thing that I learned is that one of the only things worse than being sick is being sick and having two sick kids. Evelyn had RSV and of course she's prone to ear infections so to add to the RSV she had an ear infection in both ears. The pediatrician gave her some antibiotics which cleared up her ear infections and then it was just a matter of waiting for the RSV to go away. With Evelyn very proudly showing off her new skill of identifying parts of the body -in particular the face- and having absolutely no concept of wiping her nose/covering her mouth/everything that aids in the prevention of germs it's no wonder Preston caught the RSV from her. And then to top it off Preston mysteriously got an eye infection. Let's just say it's been rough but on the plus side both the kids are almost all better and they are definitely back to their old mischievous selves.

Other things that happened last week:

Evelyn got into a box of sour skittles. I couldn't tell if she liked them or not. She would stick one in her mouth, spit it out seconds later, then grab another one and do the same thing. When I tried to take them away she cried.

Another day I heard Preston crying so I went to check on him and as soon as I walked in Evelyn shouted "I did it!" very excitedly - almost too excitedly if you know what I mean. I looked over at Preston and he was so covered in toys that I could barely see him. I imagine Evelyn was just trying to calm him down by giving him a stuffed animal.. and then another... and so on.

Evelyn learned how to get water from the fridge. Her potty just happens to be the right height so when she stands on it she can reach the button. Her new favorite thing is filling her little play pitcher up and transferring the water from one cup to the next, drinking a little in between until she runs out of water and has to refill it again. It's amazing what kids find to entertain themselves. I have to really keep a eye on her because as you can imagine this can get out of hand very quickly.

Evelyn had her first kind of intelligent telephone conversation. The highlight of it was watching Evelyn get all excited when she realized that her cousin, Eliza, was actually on the other end talking back to her. She kept repeating Eliza's name; Liza, Liza, Liza! and Eliza replied by saying "You're funny!". Nichole and I both tried to get the girls to say "I Love You" but the best we could get out of them was Evelyn signing it without saying a single word and Eliza whispering it back to her mom. It was pretty dang cute if I may say so myself.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Fourth and final part of our trip

I forgot to mention the other part of my gift to Andy. Along with getting his mission pictures organized and put into albums I set aside a certain amount of money for him to spend on himself. So after Chuck E. Cheese's we went on our search. A search to find the one thing Andy wanted most.... ROCK BAND!

Later in the afternoon everyone started showing up. It was great to get to see everyone and visit with them.

Blythe put this umbrella over Preston and he got a hold of the handle and would not let go.

Brigg rocking out on Guitar Hero.

Evelyn & I

Molly playing Guitar Hero & Ren sitting next to her.

Evelyn & Preston

The gang

Celeste trying out her new wheels.

Evelyn posing with her cousin, Jack.

Ren played me a song on the piano.

Jack, Micah, and Sarah looking at a book all about mythical creatures that Preston gave Micah for the cousin exchange.

Scott was showing me some cool camera tricks.

Later in the afternoon, Rob, Andy, Sam & I formed our own band on Rock Band. It was pretty awesome! Rob did the vocals (and the tambourine), Andy played the drums, Sam rocked at the guitar and I played the bass guitar. After that we played an arousing game of Trivial Pursuit which for some reason is one game that I have never been good at but I actually really like to watch. I learned that an astonaught has the most claustrophobic job.

Overall, we had an awesome time on our trip. It ended up being even more crazy than I thought it would be believe it or not but it was great. Thanks Anna for putting us all up and orchestrating the whole thing. You did a wonderful job. There is no way that I would ever in a million years have the patience to do all of that. Also thanks to all the sibs for coming. It was really great to see all of you. Sorry we had to leave early, I' sure you all understand. I can't wait to see you all in June.

Part three of our trip: Chuck E. Cheese

The day after Christmas we took all the kids to Chuck E. Cheese's.

This was Evelyn's reaction to Chuck E.

Evelyn & Andy
Evelyn was still recovering from her encounter with Chuck E.

Evelyn & Tucker

Evelyn riding her least favorite ride of all time.

Micah & Hayden

Evelyn & Andy playing the "punch the duck game"

Blythe cashing in her winnings.

Brenda, Tim, Anna, Emily & Rachael

Molly & Scott

Andy played the Simpson's game with the rest of our tokens and with the tickets bought her a ball & a bracelet.

We had a great time at Chuck E. Cheese's. The pizza was much better than I remember it being as a kid and it was fun watching all the kids have a good time.
Andy and I had discussed getting someone to dress up as one of Evelyn's favorite characters for her birthday party but after watching her reaction to Chuck E. and her previous experience with Santa we might just have to reconsider.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Part two of our trip: Christmas Day

Christmas morning came way sooner than I imagined. I forgot what it was like to wake up at sunrise and get all excited about opening presents. Surprisingly I was more awake than I thought I would be. We got up, went upstairs, watched the Butler kids open up their present (a PS2!) and then we pulled out Evelyn's presents and let her open them. I still don't think she quite got what was going on but I think she enjoyed herself. From us she got a Tickle Me Elmo, a tennis racket, and an indoor Elmo pop up tent. I'm most excited about the tennis racket. She's not going to really be able to play for a while but I figure the sooner I get her started the better plus it's a 19" which is the smallest they come in and it should last her until she's at least 6. We didn't bring Preston's presents to Utah with us but we got him a ball that rolls around and lights up, a talking puppy, and a big train set. For Andy, I organized all of his mission pictures and arranged them in photo albums and I gave him a stocking full of candy. I really enjoy taking pictures. I have a collection of at least 10,000 photos on my computer. So for me, Andy bought a new lens, a flash and a book on photography. I had such a great Christmas! I never thought that it would be so much fun to watch Evelyn open her presents. I also never thought that I would say this but this year I definitely enjoyed giving presents more than receiving. Not that I didn't enjoy the receiving part, that's always fun. The rest of the day was spent watching the kids enjoy their presents and playing the PS2 with them. One of the highlights of the day was definitely watching everyone play the karaoke PS2 game, in particular, watching Rob and Andy duke it out singing the Brittany Spears song "Hit Me Baby One More Time". That was hilarious! Another highlight of the trip all together was my awesome nephew, Hayden teaching me how to ride his rip board. I kind of started to get it but there's no way I could get as good at it as he is. I haven't told Andy this but I am seriously contemplating buying one. Of course that's probably going to be a mistake considering my previous experience with a skateboard but oh well, you only live once. To top it all off we had a great meal planned by Anna who by the way was a wonderful host and was awesome to let us all crash at her place for the holidays.

Part one of our trip: Las Vegas

Early Saturday morning, Dec. 22nd we began the first leg of our trip. We originally were just going to drive straight to Utah on Sunday but since Andy had the weekend off we decided to go up a day early and stay with Andy's hilariously awesome cousin, Jenny. So basically, one of my fondest dreams came true. I got to hang out with Jenny at "the place". Believe it or not it was even better than I could have ever imagined. We had an awesome time hanging out with everyone. We got to see Jenny, Anthony, Tom, Katie & Erin. It was my first time meeting everyone but they were so nice to me that it felt like we had been long time friends. We all went out to dinner which was great. Her boys were so sweet and nice to Evelyn and she definitely enjoyed hanging out with them. While we were there we couldn't resist getting our pictures taken with the famous fireplace and we also got to participate in one of Jenny's amazing videos. Check it out!

The next morning we packed up and headed back out. On the way there we had to drive through Mesquite so we decided to take a detour. Andy's Great Great Grandparents, William & Mary Jane Abbott, were the founders of Mesquite so at the City Hall there's a monument built in their honor. It was such a great opportunity to stop by and take in a bit of family history.

Early Christmas with the Grandparents

Before Christmas the kids got to spend some quality time with both sets of Grandparents. First was Andy's parents on the 20th and then my parents on the 21st. Greg played Santa (or I mean... is a personal friend of Santa's) for Evelyn and Preston which was really sweet. Last year we did the Santa thing too and Evelyn did alright with him but this year she freaked out. It was classic. It could have easily been on Ebaums it was that funny. After a few minutes Evelyn somehow managed to figure out who was under the suit. When we asked her where Grandpa was she simply pointed at Santa but she was still pretty terrified by the costume. We managed to get some pretty cute pictures of the kids and even took our Christmas card photo with Santa. As long as it's OK with Santa we're hoping to make that our new Christmas tradition and take the kids to see Santa every year. The kids each got some really nice gifts from their Grandma and Grandpa and we had a great time visiting with them.

Between visits Preston had a well visit with the doctor. He now weighs 15 pounds and is 25 1/4 inches tall. And the poor little guy got 3 shots which he took pretty well.

After the doctors I took the kids up to Tehachapi to see my family. My Grandparents took us all out to Domingo's which I am told is the best Mexican restaurant in Tehachapi. We got to spend some quality time with everyone and had our early Christmas. Among tons of great gifts I got a 2 1/2 pound box of chocolates which by the way I am almost done with and Andy got a box of See's chocolates. Evelyn and my dad have officially formed the cutest little bond. I'd say they now have a thing. My dad for the longest time has growled at her and she growls back. I'm not really sure how or when it started but it's pretty cute. I've been teaching her sounds and I can ask her "What does a chicken say?" and she says "Bac, Bac, Bac, Bac", "What does a cow say?" and she says "Mooooo", "What does Grandpa say?" and she says "Raaaaar". It's so cute. Anyway, we had a great visit with them before we had to rush home and get ready to leave for our trip the next day. My kids are so blessed to have such awesome Grandparents and Great Grandparents that love them so much.