Monday, December 31, 2007

Anniversary and Dog Doors

Rob and I celebrated our 3rd Anniversary this weekend. He was in charge this year (we take turns planning the Anniversary date) and we went to PF Changs to start off with for a nice dinner. He then took me up to the Hyatt at Gainey Ranch in Scottsdale and we went on a private Gondola ride. The hotel is gorgeous and since it was a little chilly - it wasn't a very crowded night. We had a private ride on the water (with candles on the edge of the boat and plenty of blankets piled on for warmth) and our guide sang us an Italian love song. It was a perfectly clear sky and a fun little experience. We had to laugh though becuase we kept blowing people away that we were on our 3rd year of MARRIAGE and not just dating. I know we look young but do we really look that young?! After the Gondola ride we went for ice cream at the Sugar Bowl in Scottsdale. It was a perfect evening! And Ellie was great for her grandparents that were watching her that night which made it that much more enjoyable. Of course my camera was in my diaper bag which was not with me so I have no pictures of the night!

This weekend came the day that I have been dreading. Eliza finally figured out how to get out the doggy door. The first time she did it I was more concerned with saving her than taking the picture (there is a little drop outside the door before our concrete patio). But of course getting a little stuck the first time wasn't going to stop her and it was only a matter of minutes before she was trying it again. This time I had my camera ready.

I really am beginning to think that Ellie thinks she is one of the dogs! She has no desire to walk anymore. She pulls up on furniture and walks around that way and will scoot boxes around and walk behind them but hates when we hold her hands and try and "help" her walk. She can stand up for a few seconds at a time but really would rather be crawling everywhere - probably because she realizes that she is just much faster that way. I thought for sure that she would be walking by the end of the year since she has been crawling since the end of September but just goes to show that these little ones will do things on their own time schedule! Ellie's favorite thing to do is crawl after the dogs and then hold onto them and let them drag her around the house. I am trying to capture it on camera since she just laughs and laughs and laughs when Max lets her do this. I love that my dogs are so good with her. Although I still hate all the shedding that they do!

Friday, December 28, 2007


Rob's Grandma DeYoung decided last weekend that she wanted to take all of her great grandkids in Arizona to Zoolights. I've been wanting to go for a while but wasn't sure if Ellie would really enjoy it this year yet but we figured we should take the opportunity. It was the Saturday before Christmas so it was absolutely packed!! But Ellie loved it. She rode on Rob's shoulders most of the time (which is her favorite spot to be) so I don't know if it was that or the lights that she loved. Either way though she stayed up past her bedtime and was happy!

Family picture

Ellie & Dad

Almost all of my nieces and nephews (missing the new baby Shar)

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Baby's First Christmas

We had a lot of fun today enjoying Eliza's first Christmas - even if she had no idea what was going on! She woke us up bright and early at 7 a.m. this morning (after a middle of the night screaming session since she is teething) so we decided that we might as well get up and open presents.

I've had a hard time keeping her away from the bows on the presents but she didn't really want anything to do with unwrapping them. Since her birthday is coming up in 7 weeks - we got her 3 little presents for under $30: a Playskool Pop Up animals toy, some Macarana toys that play music, count, etc., and a few balls. So far the balls have been the favorite since she can roll them and chase after them (I'm worried she is taking after the dogs a little too much).

Rob and I got the video game "Rock Band" for Christmas. And yes, I really am becoming a video game fan with these musical games! Rock Band lets you form your own little band with a singer, drummer, and two guitar players (one plays bass). Our friends Nicole and Jason came over and played with us for a little bit and then we had my Uncle Vern and cousins Jacob, Jessica, and Natalie came over this afternoon for an early Christmas dinner and many rounds of Rock Band.

I'm normally very stringent on my nap schedule for Ellie unless we are traveling or it's a holiday or something. Today I tried to get her down for her afternoon nap but she wanted nothing to do with it. I figured it was Christmas and I would just put her to bed early. We put her in her high chair for her snack and we were loudly playing Rock Band in the same room when we caught this:

Made me feel a little guilty! I guess all the excitement of the day got to her.

We were able to spend Christmas Eve dinner with Rob's family last night and then I came home and was able to talk to all my brothers and my dad on a conference call last night. It was already half way through Christmas day in Korea when we talked to my brother Kevin! So crazy. It's so fun to hear the missionary experiences of my brothers - even though I miss them!

I know this is a long post already but I have to share a cute little story about my neice Avery who is 2 1/2. Rob's brother Warren is in the process of building this massive playground in their backyard. It was supposed to be a surprise from the parents on Christmas and amazingly they were able to keep it a secret pretty well. The playground is 3 stories high (taller then the house) if that gives you any idea. Avery went out and saw it this morning and said "My daddy built me a Castle". Through the eyes of a 2 year old - it really does look like a castle! I will post pictures of it as soon as they are finished building it.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Santa Pictures

I took Ellie to get Santa Pictures done at the mall today. I fully expected them NOT to go well since it seems like most kids do not like Santa until they are a little older. And let's be honest - Ellie doesn't even like hardly anyone besides Rob and I to even hold her. But I wanted the picture anyway! So we put her in her cute Christmas dress and headed to the mall. The line was quite short and Ellie had fun looking at Santa's village and smiling at everyone in line and laughing at the little kids. Of course I had to be in the picture with her (which I was not quite prepared for) and she still was trying to climb up me and get away from Santa. But here is the Santa picture for 2007: (Sorry for the poor quality - I had to scan it)

Saturday, December 15, 2007

10 Months and New Niece

Eliza is 10 months old today!! I can't believe my baby is almost a year old.

The new cheesy smile that pulls whenever she sees the camera

Rob's sister Brett had her little girl Sharon yesterday. We went and saw her this morning. She is a cutie! So chubby for a brand new baby and she makes lots of cute little baby noises. (Almost makes me want another baby but then I remember I have to go through being pregnant again and realize that I can wait awhile to try that one again). She was 7 lbs 12 ounces and 18 inches long. Brett was scheduled for a c-section on the 21st but Sharon decided she didn't want to wait that long. So she arrived 2 1/2 weeks early which was just fine by her mom!

Holding the new baby

Look at how chubby Sharon's little cheeks are!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Little Miss Piggy

Our Eliza has a new nickname of Little Miss Piggy. She's never had a problem with eating but now that she has been exposed to grown up food - I think her love has grown! No one can eat around her without her crawling over really fast and pulling herself up to try and get a taste. First she tries the cute tactice where she smiles up at you and laughs a little. If that doesn't work she goes for the whining tactice. And lastly she will break out the tears if you don't give her at least a taste. If Eliza sees you chewing she will try and open your mouth (and will try this other times too - just to make sure you aren't eating without her). And she readily gives out kisses if there is food involved. It's quite hilarious the little personality she already has!

Christina posted about these Brilliant Bows ( on her blog and I had to try them out for myself. I love them! They stay in Eliza's hair amazingly well. I don't understand how the lady makes them but I'm a loyal customer now! Especially since headbands were just not working anymore and I just think bows on little girls are so cute.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Green Thumb

I really don't have much of a green thumb when it comes to gardening. In fact, those who know me probably remember that I'm not good at keeping any plants alive. That is until we moved to this house with these amazing rose bushes! Rob's mom usually has to remind me to trim them each year and I hardly remember to water them .. .but somehow this is what I cut off last week (just a small sample):

I don't know how I managed to grow giant roses but they sure smell good!

Friday, December 07, 2007

What Iowans Should Know About Mormons article

I found this article very interesting and worth a read. Let me know what you think.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

10 Month Check-up

Eliza had her 10 month check up yesterday. Well really it was supposed to be her 9 month but we were in the middle of changing insurance so we had to move it back a few weeks.


Weight: 18 lbs 14 oz. (50%)
Height: 28 (50%)
Head Circumfrence: 43 1/2 (25%)

So for all the comments I have gotten about her head being big . .. it's really not! I think it's just round and looks bigger. :) I'm amazed that in the last 4 months she hasn't even quite gained 2 pounds but I guess that's what happens when they are mobile.

I took this picture the other morning when we were about to leave on a walk with my friend Christina and her daughter Elaya. We walk a few mornings a week together and lately it's been super cold in the mornings (and then warms up to the 70's) so we've had to bundle the little girls up! We keep thinking that we need to adjust our walking time but we can't seem to get the girl's nap schedule coordinated to pull that one off.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Grateful Sunday

In my blog hopping, I've come across quite a few people who do a Grateful Sunday post. I think it's a great idea - especially in light of Elder Eyring's recent talk in conference about recognizing God's kindness. Not to mention it's a great time of year to be thankful! Anyway . . . today I am grateful for:

* Eliza sleeping in until 7:15 (believe me - much better than the 6 a.m. she has woken up at for the last 4 months).

* The Ensign magazine. The holiday season has been a little depressing to me since my mom passed away but there was a whole section in it that I read today about people feeling the same way and ways to get into the "holiday spirit". Just what I needed to read!

* My Primary kids - all of them! I come home many Sundays completely exhausted and spend lots of time thinking about them . .. but I love my calling and getting to work with them. I am so impressed by some of them who have strong enough testimonies to come WITHOUT their parents. They are examples to me!

* Christmas pajamas. I think I have 7 or 8 pair of Christmas pajamas in my dresser right now and I love putting them on each evening since it brings back good memories. And I'm thankful that they fit again since last year at this time I could only look at them! :)

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Family Christmas Presents

I need some help! Now that it's December 1st, I'm realizing that I need to get going on my Christmas shopping. Rob's family has recently switched to each being assigned a sibling and giving them a present(s) that their whole family can enjoy. While I love this idea and normally can come up with some good ideas - I'm a loss this year! We have his brothers family which consists of the parents Warren & Melissa and then their 4 kids - Lance (8), Eden (5/6), Avery (2 1/2), and the baby Kimbel (6 months). My go-to present was always movies and games for families but they don't play many board games and seem to own about every children's movie. Any ideas?!

Then there are always the parent presents! Why are Dads always so hard to buy for? And I need a good present for my mother-in-law too. Rob won't give me any help since he would wait until Christmas Eve to go shopping and that doesn't work for me. I've tried the - you buy for your parents and I'll buy for mine - but I've given up.

Any ideas would be appreciated. I feel like I've lost my creative side since I became a mom! I thought it would be the opposite . . . .lol