Thursday, December 31, 2009

2009 in Pictures

I didn't do Christmas cards this year. But, really, who am I kidding? I never do Christmas cards. I at least try and do some type of "virtual" card though - something. But not this year. So, in a lame attempt to catch people up on our lives, here's the highlights of 2009. My favorite thing about each month:


January was cold and snowy. On New Years Day, we decided to go sledding as a family. We picked what we thought was a small, safe hill. There was only one tree at the bottom and the hill was just big enough to be fun for the little kids. Unfortunately, Brynlee's sled found the tree. She hit so hard that it knocked her boots off - her face was bloody and she wouldn't open her eyes. Defintely a scary moment. We spent the majority of New Years Day in the ER getting her check out. Luckily, because she had a hat and her hood on, her head was ok.


February was also cold and snowy. Really, not much happened other than Brynlee turning three. I cannot believe my "baby" is so big. She was potty trained right before her birthday too. And she is such a princess. I cannot imagine life without Brynlee - she brings the comedy to our family, as she is always making a joke. She's also compassionate, loving, musical, and really bright.


March was definitely a fun month, as we took a family vacation to Orlando Florida. We were able to spend several days at Walt Disney World and a couple more days at Sea World. The girls LOVED Disney. Gracelin is a daredevil, and went on every ride that she was tall enough for - including Tower of Terror seven times in a row. The only reason she stopped riding, is because the park was closing. Poor Brynlee was literally a hair too short to ride the majority of rides, and really felt left out. I suspect that we'll be making another trip at some time in 2010 to remedy that. The girls are wonderful travellers - even when we took the red-eye flight, and went straight from the airport to the parks. They didn't miss a step.


Easter came in April this year, and as part the festivities, we spent a rainy afternoon at the Easter Festival at Wheeler Farm. The yucky weather didn't deter anyone - the kids thought it was lots of fun to be able to actually use an umbrella (it doesn't rain much here). Other than the giant creepy Easter Bunny that followed us around, it was great.


May finally brought nice weather, and the chance to finally get outside. We decided to start a tradition of Saturday family hikes (I think we only actually went this one time though). Brynlee is still a bit young for anything strenuous, but Gracelin is a hiker. She just loves being outside, and is so athletic.

In June, is the annual Lehi Round-Up celebration. And since Lehi is my second home (thanks to my job), it is almost an obligation to attend the festivities. The girls love it though - dressing like cowgirls and going to the rodeo is right up their ally.

In July, we took a vacation to Jackson Hole and Grand Teton National Park. We travelled with Grandma and Grandpa, as well as some aunts, uncles, and cousins. We all stayed in a condo at Teton Village, and had a great trip. It brought us the chance to do some hiking, swimming, shopping, and to spend an evening at the Bar-J Wranglers. More cowboy stuff - the girls were in heaven.

In August, Gracelin started kindergarten. She was totally ready, and so excited to be in school. She's really excelled too - she's reading well and making lots of new friends. G is such a bright and amazing girl - and she's so well-behaved. She's content to sit in the shadows, until she's doing something physical. She's learned to ride a 2-wheel bike this year. She played soccer and scored several goals. She's taking gymnastics, and can do some amazing things (especially on bars, her favorite). She's even taken up ice skating. I think that 2010 will be the year she learns to snow ski.

September was a quiet month. We spent our days getting used to having a school-age kid, while balancing gymnastics, soccer, and homework. Life is so busy.

October my favorite month - not because of Halloween, but just because I love the shorter days and the changing leaves. The kids love Halloween though, and I was even a good sport this year - I dressed up for them. G and I were both witches, and Bryn made a last minute costume change - from a "glampire" to a ballerina. She is such a girl.

Thanksgiving was spent at the Fairbourn's this year (we take turns). It was a small group, but it was still perfect. We are so grateful and blessed.


Which brings us to December - Christmas. What a fun Christmas we had this year. The girls, who are 3 and 5, are the perfect age. They really "got it" this year, but it is still magical for them. It has been such a great year for us - of course, we've had our "ups and downs", but we are richly blessed. Here's to 2010 - an even greater year.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Ice skating

Ben and I decided it would be fun to take the kids downtown to ice skate. We decided to go to the Gallivan Center, an outdoor venue in the middle of downtown. Knowing it was going to be cold, we were prepared: gloves, hats, scarves, and even snow pants for the girls. We made the trek through rush-hour/christmas traffic, and luckily found parking right across the street. As we began to unload, we realized that we had forgotten coats for the kids - gloves, hats, scarves, and snow pants wouldn't quite be enough. So, after a quick trip a couple of blocks away, and a purchase of coats one size larger than the kids need (they were REALLY on sale), we made it.
The place was alive. Christmas lights, carols, and a fire pit. All that was missing was Santa.
Neither of the girls had been on skates before. It was quite the adventure.
Of course, there were plenty of slips/falls/spills/near-misses. But they actually caught on pretty quickly. Especially G, who actually made it around the entire rink without falling. Of course I'm biased, but she just seems to pick up on athletic activities quickly. (a trait she obviously inherited from her father)

Brynlee did pretty well too. . . .for a 3-year-old. And I think that if she hadn't gotten hungry, she'd have done much better (she's like her momma when she's hungry. . . watch out!!)

After skating, we topped the night off with a trip to Jason's Deli - which of course wouldn't have been complete without the free ice cream cones. What else goes with ice skating?

G told me that she couldn't wait to "get back on the ice".

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Being a stay at home mom

Just for this week, I'm a stay at home mom. Next week, I have to go back to work. But this week, its all about fun and frolic. Its only Wednesday morning, and check out what we've done already:

Painted Christmas ornaments
My laundry is caught up (usually there is a large pile of clothing in this area)
We've played dress-up
Decorated cookies inspired by the Pioneer Woman
Made our annual gingerbread house

I've been working on some hand-made Christmas presents
I've also cooked healthy meals - this one is whole-wheat pasta, low fat alfredo sauce, and grilled chicken.
We've made more cookies - these are yummy butter cookies.
And, of course G has gotten her homework finished before dinner every night. I've also had a good workout every day (gotta burn off all the cookie sampling I've been doing). Its been fun, and I love it! I wish I never had to go back to work. :( Oh well . . . I'll just have to enjoy it while I can.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Secret confession

Ok - so maybe it isn't such a secret, because I'm posting it for all the world-wide-web to see. But I do have a skeleton in my closet. Actually, it isn't much of a skeleton: its more of a mound of unwashed laundry. So deep in fact, that there are summer clothes at the bottom. And its clearly winter clothes weather.

Just in case you don't believe me, here's proof from inside my closet:
Yes, those are are all clothes waiting to be washed.

And lest you think I never do any laundry, here's proof that there is no less than 3 clean loads just waiting to be hung and/or folded:
Clearly, I have issues. It is not uncommon to have to get clean clothes from the dryer - in fact, it may be more the rule than the exception. Its just that I really hate laundry. And the further behind I get, the harder it gets to catch up. Maybe we should join a nudist colony.