Saturday, December 29, 2007


Our Christmas this year was bittersweet -- to say the least (well, to me anyway). On one hand, I was so excited to have a Christmas with Max (his second one) (and Mattie, too -- my first one with her) where he was excited about presents and toys. I wanted him to feel the spirit of Christmas and to be excited. He learned who Santa is and every time he sees any picture of Santa or something that looks Christmasy or any man with a beard (including Jesus) he says "HO HO HO!" really loud. He even ho-ho's at old men in the grocery store.

And I was really excited that no one was sick this year. Last year was a disaster and this year everyone was healthy and content. I was really excited about the presents I was giving this year. I thought they were pretty great (picture me huffing on my knuckles and rubbing them on my shirt). Tyler made a great DVD for my dad and his parents of Max videos. I made a couple of really adorable slide shows for my parents of Max and Mattie (which made them cry when they saw it -- go me!). I made an adorable tu-tu (thanks Mariah!) for Mattie that she wore around all day on Christmas. Max got some great toys -- ones I knew he would love!! I made Christmas cookies and decorated our house and listened to Christmas music (including the 40 songs Max bought for us from itunes -- that's another post to come, and trust me people, it's a good one).

And don't get me wrong, all of that was great and spirited and fun. But always in the back of my mind, through the whole month, I knew that at the end of it all, it really was the end. My mom was not that in to Christmas this year because she was stressed about moving across the country the day after Christmas and it just kind of but a bittersweet feeling on the whole holiday.

Christmas Eve we spent at my parent's house, among boxes full of their belongings ready to load onto the truck in two days. It was fun, Max got tired fast and so we left pretty early and took him home. But the food was good (stuffed shrimp was awesome and the bacala and macaroni) and it was fun to relax with my family for one last Christmas in that house and eat our Christmas Eve fish.

Christmas Day was at our house. It was a zoo in our little apartment. But we had ham and mashed potatoes and creamed peas and it was yummy!! We opened presents and played with the kids' new toys. We went outside and ran around with them. This was the last day Mattie was here. The day after Christmas Danielle and my mom flew her to CT to stay with my Aunts while my mom finished up the packing here. So like I said -- bittersweet.

They are all gone now. My parents left this morning. The truck full of all their belongings left last night. I feel like I am closing a chapter of my life. That now I am starting a new page in a new book. I'm hoping the story gets better. I'm hoping the hurt and sadness I feel at Mattie going away gets less and less. Afterall, she was practically my baby, I cared for her like she was mine.

My Christmas was merry. Not very merry, but merry enough. I got some great presents, and most important of all, I saw my little boy so excited about all his great gifts and having his house full of guests (he loves guests) and it was good.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!!

I have a lot of blogging to catch up on... but for now...


Saturday, December 15, 2007

Our Little Musicman

Max LOVES music. He always has. He's very particular about music, too, especially when we are in the car. There are only certain CDs I can listen to at certain times. Sometimes particular songs must be played over and over again (he will ask and whine or cry if I don't).

We've been taking the kids to a Spanish music class every week for a while now (since he was about 6 months old) and Max just soaks it all up like a sponge. He loves it. He loves playing with the instruments and dancing.

He loves to play his little piano and sing, too. Here's a video we finally got of him with his little music routine. He does this a lot -- climb up on the couch, get his little piano, and sit there and sing for us while he plays.


So we've always known he's had a love for music. What really solidified it for us though is when Max climbed up onto our kitchen table and bought 40 Christmas songs from itunes all by himself. Isn't that nice? Somehow he climbed there, found a Christmas play list of songs itunes had and managed to buy THE WHOLE LIST. Thank goodness they were all mostly good songs. But still... we're going to deduct the amount it cost us from his allowance when he starts getting one.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

My Marriage Meme

I started this a while ago and I guess I never posted it! So here goes!

1. Where did you meet your husband? The first time I actually met Tyler was at a Family Home Evening activity at the Institute in Berkeley. I didn't expect much because I already didn't like him. See, I was in charge of keeping our Missionary board up-to-date which meant asking the guys on missions to send us a short letter and photo to place on a big map of the world. It was really cute. And wouldn't you know -- Tyler was the ONLY missionary who ignored us. So I thought he was a jerk. Yet I was surprised at how cute he was when I actually met him and that made me hate him even more.

2. What was the first thing you said to him? I think it was something like, "Oh, you are the jerk who ignored our letter and acted like he was too good for our wall." Seriously, I think it was something like that.

3. Where was your first date? Kiss? HA. That's a funny story actually. The date part -- not the kiss part. The kiss part is sweet. So Tyler and I had become pretty good friends in a short amount of time and he called me one night in October and asked me if I wanted to go shopping with him in San Francisco because he needed a new pair of dress pants and a belt or something. Since we were already friends I thought we were just going to go hang out, like friends, no pressure, definitely NOT a date. Well, apparently Tyler was planning an ambush date (he will argue completely against this fact of course) because it wasn't long until he was trying to put his arm around me. I shrugged him off at first, to test him, and he went right back for more. So yeah, our first date was an ambush. But I didn't complain too much, we cuddled all the way home on the BART and while we watched a movie with some friends (secretly of course). Actually, our first date is one of the fondest memories I have with Tyler!

4. Did you have a long or short courtship? Way WAY short. Shorter than I ever would have imagined, ever. I always said that I could never be one of those girls that gets engaged or married after only a few months, that it would have to be at least a few years. Well, yeah, that went out the window. Tyler and I dated from October through December and got engaged in the beginning of January, married at the end of June. We knew we wanted to get married after a few weeks though (so crazy I know) but he's been the man of my dreams ever since!

5. Where did you get engaged? Well, Tyler proposed to me in the same spot on campus where we had our first kiss. This light post right by the library. It was wonderful. I didn't cry or anything, I was way to excited. I had been waiting and waiting for him to do it! We decided we wanted to get married a while before we actually got engaged and had shopped and picked out the ring together and I was dying with anticipation for it to actually become official. He got down on one knee and asked me (I think he was a little nervous).

6. Where did you get married? We were sealed in the Oakland Temple on June 27th, 2003 in Oakland, California.

7. How did the reception go? Not so well. It was hard with all the stress of the day to enjoy it. The day we got married it was SUPER HORRIBLY hot. Record breaking hot. There was a lot of tension with all the families and that added to a lot of stress, plus the heat -- it was a recipe for disaster. The building we had our reception in was the Berkeley Institute (Phoebe Hearst's mansion). It's a gorgeous building and we assumed it had air conditioning because it never got very hot in the building (and we could have sworn that cold air came out of the vents during church on Sundays freezing us to death). So on the day we got married it was REALLY hot in the building and we thought the AC had broken. The bishop called a repair guy to come and look at it and the guy came back down from the roof and told us that the building didn't have air conditioning. We were all shocked. The bishop and his counselors raced home and grabbed as many fans as they could to try and cool it off. We were married in the morning and our reception was in the afternoon and by the time we got there my bouquet had died, the icing on our cake had melted (despite the valiant efforts of our baker with his mini fans trying to cool it off) and most of our guests and wedding party were miserable. It wasn't at all what I had planned or hoped for. I was glad when it was over. I did appreciate all the efforts of everyone who helped though!!

8. How was the honeymoon? It was wonderful. I love vacations in general with Tyler, but our honeymoon was great. We spent the first night in the fabulous Claremont in Berkeley. The room they sent us to first was beautiful, but the air conditioner had broken (because it was so hot that the system got overloaded -- it had never been that hot before). So they upgraded us to this amazing room with Bay views, a HUGE jacuzzi tub -- it was AMAZING!!! We spent a fortune on an amazing dinner in our room, too. We had a great breakfast and then got on a plane and flew to Las Vegas to spend a night before we drove to Zion National Park to stay in a wonderful hotel that Tyler's aunts and uncles had given us as a wedding gift. Zion's was beautiful (really hot -- no surprise there) and it was so nice to have so much uninterrupted time together. After a few days there we drove back to Vegas, saw a Blue Man Group show (I was gunning for Celine but she was sold out) which was the weirdest thing I've ever seen. We had plans to go to Great America (Six Flags in San Jose) but I got sick and we had to cut the last couple days short. But we had a wonderful time together.

So that was fun!! I'm tagging Lauren, Molly, Brooke, and Tiffany.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Evel Knievel died and then entered the body of my baby...

Max has become a little dare-devil lately. And that is putting it lightly. On Thanksgiving we found him like this:

And this:

He had taken all the pan lids out of the drawer one by one and then he was really quiet for a while so we started to wonder what the heck had happened. And there he was, in the drawer.

This morning he had scaled our built in bookshelf, made it to the third shelf and then I grabbed him so quickly that it scared him half to death. Hopefully he was scared so bad he won't do it again.

Last night he figured out to how to climb on his little chair and leap onto the edge of our papasan chair, pull himself into it and climb out, proudly declaring "I DID IT!!" The video isn't great because he tends to clam up as soon as he sees the camera, but you get the idea.


If there is something climbable you better believe he will climb it. He climbs into his high chair on his own, up slides and stairs and ladders. He's crazy. And we love him!

Friday, December 7, 2007

Photo Shoot

On Thanksgiving I had a photo shoot with Max and Mattie. Kids are SO not easy to photograph. But this was my first one and I don't think they turned out that bad. I wanted to doctor them all up in photoshop but my free trial expired before I got to it so that will have to wait.

Here it is for your viewing pleasure!

Max and Mattie Shoot

Thursday, December 6, 2007

You're IT!!

I was tagged a super long time ago by Molly (sorry!) and I'm finally getting around to doing this! I love being tagged! Makes me feel wanted. So here goes...

A. The rules of the game are posted at the beginning.
B. Each player lists 6 facts/habits about themselves.
C. At the end of the post the player then tags 6 people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know that they have been tagged and asking them to read your blog.

1. I am obsessed with cookbooks. All kinds. I love to collect old ones and new ones -- any ones really. My most cherished one was a gift from my grandmother. It was her mother's and was given to my grandmother for a wedding gift. I remember my grandmother cooking out of it my whole life. I love it!!

2. I am terrified of spiders. So terrified in fact that sometimes I make Tyler come home from wherever he is to kill them because I become paralyzed with fear. But, most people are freaked by spiders so it isn't that weird that I am, too. What is weird is that I like to leave the dead spider guts on the wall or ceiling for a while because I fully believe that other spiders will see their dead comrades and think twice before parking it on my paint. (Hmm... maybe that's a little too weird to be sharing with the internet of world).

3. I am a vicious neat freak. You may not be able to tell by the looks of my house on a regular basis, but I a seriously obsessed with things being in their proper place. I hate clutter, extra stuff I don't need, and reserve two drawers in my closet to shove stuff in and regularly have nightmares about it. I can't sleep if there are dishes in the sink, clothes unfolded, toys not put away. I pick up the house at least 5 times a day (I'm not exaggerating). So even though the outward appearance of my house is that of chaos, please know that it drives me nuts NUTS nuts and one day I will have cute matching boxes all labeled and lined up on shelves with all of my (our) stuff neatly arranged, nothing out of place, all ORGANIZED. One day...

4. I love LOVE love crafts and art and doing them and looking at them and thinking up projects. I love it all. I could spend hours and hours walking up and down the aisles of a craft store over and over again. My head is always churning out ideas for things I could make and market and sell and earn money for. My only regret is that I don't have enough time to do all fun crafty things I want to do.

5. My bed has to be perfectly made and only I know how to do it perfectly right. Especially before I go to bed at night, the covers have to be perfectly smooth, no wrinkles, and then I can go to sleep. (I'm thinking this list is making me look a little OCD... but so what if I am).

6. I plan on writing THE Great American Novel someday. I have about 200 stories already started and I'm waiting for that light-bulb moment to hit me. Seriously I wait for it daily. I try to force the light bulb on sometimes. But I know that some day it will hit me and I will be a famous writer and they will make college students read my book and write papers about it and analyze the many facets of it.

So... there you go.

I now tag Nancy, Monique, Chelsea, Lindsay, Vanessa and Hairyshoefairy. Now come on ladies... step up. It's fun!!

Monday, December 3, 2007

The Stinkin' Rotten No-Good Horrible Day!

So the other day I woke up to clouds and wind and rain and I thought, today is going to be a great day! (I LOVE the rain and don't get enough of it down here in San Diego). Boy was I wrong.

I decided that I wanted Max to wear the new pair of pants I bought him but realized I had left them in the car. After searching for our only umbrella for about 20 minutes with no luck, I decided to just run quickly to the car, grab the pants and run back in. As I was running to the car, I fell. Hard. In the mud. This wasn't a graceful fall, it was a big, sad, mud up all over my face, hair and back fall. It was so bad I had to take another shower and wash my hair TWICE.

With that freak show over I decided I had to go to Target and Michaels to pick up a few things. Michaels went pretty smoothly. Target was another story. I rushed around grabbing what I needed, got through the line, paid for my stuff and on my way through the automatic doors the sensors go off telling me I've stolen something and I will be utterly humiliated in front of many people while my child screams bloody murder. I wonder what the heck it could have been that I walked out of there with when I look down in front of me to Max who is bawling in his stroller and notice a bright red Elmo sitting in his lap. Apparently he had grabbed it off a shelf when I wasn't looking and in my haste to get a fussy baby out of the store, hadn't realized I was walking out with it. I kind of panicked at that point and said "Oh, I'm so sorry, I'll pay for it." So not only did I teach my son a wonderful lesson (if you steal it and get caught, mommy will buy it for you anyway) but I ended up spending $12 for a stupid Elmo doll (that Max now carries around kissing and rocking like a little baby).

To make matters worse, when I finally fled to the safety of my car, I couldn't find Max's blanket (this is THE blanket, the one he hardly ever lets of out his sight). I realized he must have dropped it somewhere in the store. So I had to go BACK into the store and run around looking for it. I even asked the woman at the front desk who looked at me like I was nuts. By a miracle I'm sure, I found the blanket, made it to the car and drove home, crying all the way.

On top of all of that, Max wouldn't take a nap the whole day. He becomes impossibly impossible when he doesn't get a nap.

It was the worst day ever. Ever. Ever ever.

But I can't be mad at this face... look at how cute he is!!