Monday, July 28, 2008

I'm such a dork

First of all, thanks for everyone's sweet comments about my last post. I don't mean to be such a downer but sometimes my pessimism gets the best of me. Thanks for being understanding and reading my blog despite my whining. And best of all, just to add to the sweetness that is Brendan, he slept in until 9:00am this morning. I love that boy!

Second, I've finally decided to open up a little e-shop on Etsy. I love to make these little pillows as gifts and I've had such good feedback, I thought I'd try my hand at selling them. We'll see if any of them sell, but even if they don't I still love making them. The one above is, obviously, for Brendan and I'm in love with it. And since I hand embroider the names myself, I'm glad that he has a little bit of love made visible in this pillow. If you'd like to see my little shop, check it out here. I feel kinda silly broadcasting it but I thought I should spread the word.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Woe is me

Yesterday marked the 7 year anniversary of my brother Brian's death. July 26th is always a sad day for me although with each passing year the intensity has diminished a little. The picture above is me as a baby and him cuddling me. I cherish this photo and I'm glad that my mom let me borrow it from her (along with many others of me and my siblings) so I could make copies to have forever. And I'm even more glad that I have the blessing of the Gospel in my life to give me comfort, hope and peace. I know that I will see him again.

To go along with my sad mood, I've been frustrated lately. I get lots of little comments made to me about Brendan and his energy level. This past week has been especially hard for me since I'm a little more sensitive than normal. It's hard for me because although I know my son is very active, loud and hard to control at times, other people don't get to see the sweet, loving little boy that I get to spend each day with. Brendan gives the best hugs and sweetest kisses, he says thank you (sometimes at the wrong time but still, it's pretty cool), is very obedient, folds his arms for prayers (again, not all the time but my heart melts when he does) and loves to laugh. Just today someone told me that Brendan is "quite the screamer"... what did she want me to say to that? I wanted to punch her in the face but since I was at church, I figured that wasn't the best option so I just said, "I know" and left it at that. I know he can out-scream any other baby and I know he's all over the place- trust me, I know.

I feel like I'm being judged a little when people make comments like that to me. I'm sure they think that I let Brendan do whatever he wants and do as he pleases, which is flat out not that case. I've been working very hard with him to control his outbursts and learn that screaming is not okay most of the time, and Brendan's come a LONG way. For the past 3 weeks, he's played quietly by our side during church. He behaved so well when we were at the grocery store that I actually got everything I needed. He's learned that when I say "shhhh" to lower his voice. And I've seen him grow to be obedient and follow directions. The first time he stopped running when I said stop (okay, maybe I yelled it), I about fell over with shock and delight.

But worst of all, I know people see him and think he's a "wild child" (another thing someone said to me) and it just breaks my heart. Chris and I have prayed long and hard about Brendan and his challenges, and I know that one day he'll learn to control himself or grow out of it or whatever. I just know that everything is okay and will be okay. And I love that he gets excited and shows it easily. It makes for the best homecomings ever. And I love that he laughs so easily and so often. Thinking back about my brother, it's made me realize that if Brendan were gone I'd miss all the things that other people are criticizing. I don't want him to be any other way or anyone else. He's my special guy and I'm glad.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

The world is his canvas

Chris took Brendan on a trip to Target last week while I had my visiting teachers over, and he came home with sidewalk chalk (which is amazing that he bought anything since he's quite the thrifty fellow). Brendan loves to draw and scribble on anything so I knew he'd love the chalk, which he did. We had quite a fun time.

A look at our little artist's work (Chris helped some too).

Look! A picture with me in it... now that's a rare occurrence.

After he was done with the chalk, he was a bit of a dusty mess so we pulled out the hose and turned on the water. Playing with the hose is a beloved activity of Brendan's and I figured since it was hot and he was dirty, it was the perfect time for it.

Fun was had by all- Brendan loved his new chalk and the hose, and we cracked up watching him. I'll be sad when the summer is over and we won't have these nice distractions.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Today's your birthday?

Today is a special day in the Near home since today is Chris' birthday. And also noteworthy is that it is also David Hasselhoff's birthday, who just happens to be Chris' idol.

In honor of Chris' birthday, we'll be having some delicious Papa John's pizza (that's what he requested- I guess that shows how great my cooking is) and a special cake. And Brendan will be preparing a special song on the harmonica for him. What could be better than that!?

But really, I have an amazing husband who takes such good care of me and Brendan. He's a great person inside and out, and I'm extremely lucky. Here are a few reasons why:

1. His jokes are really lame but also hilarious. He's really a funny guy- just read his posts.

2. He has a great memory- especially when it comes to obscure theme songs to random TV shows. It's really quite remarkable.

3. He's determined. When he couldn't remember how to solve his Rubik's Cube, he looked it up in his journal (which had detailed instructions from his mission days), emailed his friend Zach for some help, and even researched it on the Internet. I don't think he ever got it though...

4. He lets me do just about anything I want. He even put up with me when I bought pink sheets for our bed. He wasn't happy about it but he was wise enough to go along with it. Those sheets have since been discarded. I don't know what I was thinking. And, he'll play Boggle with me even though he HATES it. That's love.

All kidding aside, Chris is great for many many many reasons. He's a devoted father, a very sweet husband (who really does have to put up with a lot with me) and he's my rock. I've never known anyone who is so faithful and trusting as he is. When I seem to falter, he's there to help me and keep me going. I really do have it all.

So happy birthday, Chris. Love you.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

His bite is worse than his roar

Brendan has learned to roar and I think it's the cutest thing in the world. So now, about once an hour, I try to get him to roar which has made him very weary to do it. But I'm determined to get it on video becuase it makes my heart melt.

And Brendan is still teething and loves to bite everything he can get in his mouth. Including your finger if you let him. I don't know why Chris finds it so amusing to put his finger in Brendan's mouth to have him chomp down on it, but he does. Especially since it REALLY hurts. That is not behavior that I encourage since I'm now worried that he will go around biting all his friends. It hasn't happened yet luckily.

I forgot to post this cute picture of Brendan with cousin Mary but luckily my mom reminded me. So here it is. Mary looks quite adorable and Brendan couldn't care less that I was making the strangest noises I could come up with trying to get him to just look at the camera. He was much more interested in our wall I guess.

I've always been feeling very domestic lately, which is new to me. I've found a strange new love of cooking this past week. I made Banana Bread for the first time in what must be at least a year (more likely two) and Brendan devored most of it. I also made homemade Blueberry Muffins, which turned out much better than I expected. I bought the blueberries for Brendan but he's now decided he hates them so I had to find a way to use them up before they went bad. The muffins were a success and Chris has eaten most of those. And all week, I wasn't dreading the time when it came to make dinner. Instead, I tried some new recipes and found I really enjoyed myself. Who knew? Here's to hoping this lasts! And if anyone has any great recipes, send them my way! I'm ready to keep trying new things!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Excuse my lateness

I'm a little late in my birthday wishes for my bro, Ian- but I hope that his day was extra special and fun! Wish we were there to help you guys celebrate... but maybe next year in Cali?

And this is just because I stumbled across this photo of my cute sister-in-law, Erin. doesn't she look fierce in those sunglasses?!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Worst Weekend Ever II

Worst Weekend Ever II, if by worst you mean best, and by II you mean second and by weekend you mean Thursday evening through Sunday Afternoon, and by ever you mean radical. What I'm trying to say is that we spent the weekend in Vegas with the Parry family, at least most of the Parry family anyway.

Thursday we arrived in Vegas and that night we went to see the movie Hancock. Now I don't want to give away the ending for those of you that haven't seen it yet, but the part at the end where Will Smith dies in the arms of his wife, played by Charlize Theron, and then Spider-Man makes a cameo and avenges Will Smith's death, well, that part was awesome! So, overall the movie was good, but not great. But don't take my word for it. Ask Geoff Ellsworth. He was there.

Friday we went to a local pool. Brendan couldn't wait to get in the water. Then he put his face under water and got scared and he couldn't wait to get out of the water. Then he got hot and found a happy medium by standing in the three inch deep section of the pool where he splashed and laughed and got the lifeguard's feet wet along with other passerbyers. Valerie and I were also at the pool. Valerie liked to splash water too. The day ended with a delicious barbecue that Zach made and we also played some Mario Kart. I might be confusing my days too, but we also went to Peter Piper Pizza. Not for the delicious pizza, but for the games. Zach and his two kids, Cadence and Jack came with us, along with an old mission friend Dan and his wife Alise (spelling? Dan, now that I know you read these posts I apologize if I misspelled your wife's name. I'll give you my password and you can edit this part if you need to). The kids all loved the games and toys and play areas. The ultimate goal was to win 20,000 tickets so we could win this TV that looked so old you can't even find the style in stores nowadays. If you combined all of the kid's tickets we fell short by about 19, 887. So, instead of winning an old TV the kids all got handfuls of tootsie rolls. Hopefully they weren't as old as the TV.

Saturday was a special day. We got to fly in Zach's father's plane. It was a Cessna Skyhawk. It seats four people (when the conditions allow) and it was a lot of fun. It was also a little scary. It's not like flying United or Delta. The only thing separating you from the outside is a thin piece of metal and some red leather upholstery. And the only thing separating you from the person next to you is the pants you are wearing. The cabin is really tight which means even if you aren't the pilot you are still right there in the action with a steering control right in front of you and brakes rights at your feet as well as rudder controls. If I wanted to I could have knocked out Zach's dad and taken control of the plane right from my seat. If it's anything like the video games I've played, then I should have had no problem flying it. It was fun. I went first. Valerie went up second. She like it a lot too. Then Brendan went up. Actually, he was safely napping in his pack n' play. Meanwhile, Zach was in the mini- airport working on his blog and downing at least three cups of hot chocolate. It was over 100 degrees out, but he couldn't get enough of the stuff.

Saturday night we went to Cafe Rio with Zach and Amber and talked about the time I saw a 90+ year old naked when I was painting a house one time. Later that night we played more Mario Kart and set an unprecedented record on the team challenge by scoring 209 points. No one will ever beat that unless our team reunites sometime in the future.

What else? Friday morning we drove from Vegas to St. George to get some McDonald's. Then we drove back to Vegas. Brendan didn't sleep one night. Amber's brother got baptized Saturday. Amber made brownies for it. Brendan loved playing with the Parry's dogs. He loved pushing Memphis' brown button. We went to a chocolate factory tour. We went to a cactus farm. Then we came home. It was a good time. If by good you mean best and by time you mean weekend ever II.

The End