Lexi and Laney's talk show

I love it when my kids get along and are having fun together. And don't worry about the water. They're little bath tablets that change the color. :)

Horrible Hair Day

It was "Horrible Hair Day" at Lexi's preschool, so we had to do something fun...

In my opinion, horrible would have been just not doing her hair at all. But we had to have some fun with it. She loved it, but as soon as she got home she wanted me to fix it. She said she didn't want to look horrible anymore. :)
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Ladies retreat '11

Toward the beginning of April, we had a ladies retreat. This, I highly recommend to any lady. It was the perfect weekend getaway. We had so much fun! I went to a mom's retreat a couple years ago with my good friend Megan, and we learned so much from it that we wanted to host one the next year. We did that last year, and though it was fun, it was a bit overpacked with classes and not long enough. So this year, we made it two days, and loosened the schedule. I was SO sad that Meg couldn't end up coming, but it was still really fun.

I admit, I don't like planning events. I hate it, actually. I'd much rather attend an event. BUT, this group of girls is just too great, that I felt like they deserved a weekend getaway.

Here are just a few pictures that captured our weekend, in no particular order...

A group of us went up early and hiked a couple trails at Zion's National Park. Beautiful, but it was kinda cold.
The next morning, we toured Brigham Young's winter home in St. George. It's fun to have a professional photographer come along. You get amazing pictures.
Here's my friend, Brittany. She's gorgeous, talented, and just about the nicest girl on the planet. I told Brandon that she would make a MUCH better Bishop's wife than I do.
I like these few pictures because of the awesome wallpaper. We called this house the House of Good Intentions. It was a very...interesting house to stay in. We had a mouse, backed up plumbing, a half-working grill, and awesome wallpaper. I tried to find a place that will sleep all 16 of us. This was the only thing I could find that was within our budget. Oh well, it made for really good memories. :)
Kristen giving her facial class. She was a last-minute addition for the classes, and she was great!
She also was nice enough to model for the photography class. She's beautiful, isn't she?
This is Jen. We talked one night, a group of us, about how completely gorgeous she is. I hope she's okay with that. We were talking behind her back, but they were only good words, so we didn't consider it gossiping. :)
Rachel teaching her gardening class. She will be the only reason we all have successful gardens this year. :)
Marta helping us all crochet. She got sick after the first night, and went home. Poor girl.
Rachel, 7 months prego, holding the only baby that came this year. He's 6 weeks old, and we all had so much fun holding him. I love this pic.
Here's all of us before we all went home. We seriously, well at least I did, had so much fun!
Erica giving her massage tips class. She gives massages, at your house, if you're interested. :)
All of us looking at our class sheets.
This is my favorite photo ever. This completely captures the essence of Janae. I also realized (well, I knew this before), that Janae is the most likeable person ever. Everyone loves her. You just can't NOT like her. She's due in a couple weeks, with her 4th baby. You are seriously lucky if you are born to her family. All the kids LOVE her.

I had so much fun. I'm so glad that I planned this. And thank you Rachel. You were a huge help in the planning process. Because of her, we were never hungry. We had delicious food and treats. She's the gourmet chef around here.

I'm not planning it next year, just so you all know. :) But THANK YOU for the gift card. You are all too nice. Let's do it again, okay? :)


These posts are so out of order. Oh well. Brandon and I have been wanting to take the girls camping for a long time. Thanks to our combined birthday presents this year, we had all we needed. And Brandon had this last week off work. So, we went to Southern Utah for warmer weather and camping. We got packed, which included so many things it's ridiculous, and headed out on Wednesday. We were only going until Friday. We started out with a fatality:

I'm officially an idiot. In coming down to get in the car, I put my iPad and computer down on the hood to get the keys. We loaded the girls, got in the car and went to get gas. In turning out of our complex, we hear a tumbling sound and we look back, and you guessed it. The iPad and computer fell off of that hood and we ran over the iPad. Ouch. I was so frustrated with myself I just cried. How could I be so dumb? At least it's just the screen. The iPad itself is fine. AND my laptop is fine. That would have been devastating because my life is on that computer.
Laney in the car. She got so impatient after about 2 1/2 hours in the car.
Lexi is an angel in the car. So patient and good.

We got to the campground, and the manager was a bit pessimistic.

M: Do you have any 4-wheelers?
B: No, sir.
M: Did you know this is a 4-wheeler park?
B: Nope.
M: Well, you'll be hearing them all day until quiet hours.
B: Okay.
M: Do you have any pets?
B: No.
M: Good, because they're not allowed.
B: Okay.
M: It gets really windy around here.
B: Okay.
M: When it gets like that, you have to make sure everything is tied down or it will blow away. I mean everything.
B: Okay, will do. :)
This was Laney's sleeping spot. Best idea ever. Quiet, dark with towels on the windows, perfect.
Lexi's spot in the tent. She was also very good about her little area. I didn't get a picture of our part of the tent, or the outside of the tent. I'll paint you a picture- Dry, barren, desert. No trees, no shade, and red dirt everywhere. That was one of the bad parts of the trip. This trip was awesome, but it had some really annoying parts too. Let's continue...

That night, was frustrating. It was HOWLING wind on the tent for about an hour at 12:30. You just couldn't sleep through it, though Lexi did somehow. The tent was SO noisy in the wind. And it was FREEZING. I got up at about 3:30 to check on Laney in the car. I was so worried she'd get hypothermia. She won't sleep with blankets, so I was worried. I did what I could and went back to bed. At 4:30, Brandon got up and checked on Laney cuz he was worried too. We seriously thought we'd wake up to a dead child. I'm not kidding. And we're not terribly paranoid, usually. He put three blankets on her to see if she would be okay. We finally made it through the night, and Laney had thrown all three blankets out of her crib, the stinker. At least she was alive. Lexi said when she woke up, "That was a long night, Mom." We made her wake up a few times and get better situated in her sleeping bag.

The next morning, we had some fun. We ate breakfast, cereal, Brandon took the girls on a walk, and then we got ready to play at the lake. We had a lot of fun at the lake.
This water was FRIGID. It was like walking in ice water. I firmly believe that kids don't have fully developed nervous systems til they're 12. They played and had a blast. The parents, on the other hand, stayed in clothes on the beach. We enjoyed some lunch...

And played some more. The girls played for another hour in the sand together. It was so cute.

And what trip to the 'beach' would be complete without a dribble castle? :)

I sunblocked the kids, but I didn't think Brandon and I would need it. We were in the shade most of the time. I was in the sun for about an hour. I got a little burnt...

This was taken when we got back at home, and yes, that's my baby bump. Ridiculous. It wasn't terribly painful though. Brandon got burned a little on his arms and his face, which was odd because we wasn't in the sun at all.

After naps, on Thursday, we were all feeling a little sunsick since there was no shade except for our beach umbrella, so we took the girls on a drive in the air-conditioned car to Hurricane, which was close by. We looked at some houses around there just to look, and we found a park with shady trees for them to play at. We got some ice cream on the way back to the campsite, and then we had hotdogs for dinner. We did s'mores, got in pj's, bundled Laney up in lots of warm clothes, and went to bed.

That night, holy moley. The wind was out of control. It was windy all night, and the tent was SO LOUD. No matter of tying things down and using guylines would fix it. Brandon and I were up all night because of that darn wind. It was miserable. First thing in the morning, I think out of frustration, we got our things together and just left.

Sand Hollow State Park- don't camp there if you have a tent. The end. Only campers will be enjoyable.

So, like I said, fun, but it had some really annoying parts. I'm sure that you're not reading this anymore, but we hope to take the girls camping, in the woods, in AF canyon, in the summer. We think that will be a lot more fun.

Best part- not showering or doing my makeup for 2 days. :)
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Lexi's primary talk

I feel like Lexi gives talks a lot in our ward. Is that true, or am I imagining things? Anyway, as usual, when Lexi is assigned the talk in primary, I get all OCD and I make her memorize and practice it at the church. Here's the video I took when we practiced on Saturday:

Sadly, my OCD is rubbing off on her. Did you see the part where she straightens her little pile? Classic. BUT, here's the big news: When she gave her talk in church, she did it ALL BY HERSELF! She didn't even make me stand by her. She's so big and brave! Good job, Lexi! We love you!


Sorry, this post is pretty picture-less. Sorry bout that. I'm such a lazy picture taker. Anyway...

Brandon's birthday is April 10, and mine is the 18. It gives us a pretty full week for birthday celebrations. The problem is, I wasn't really feeling the whole birthday thing this year. I don't know why, but 27 didn't seem like an exciting number. This is a problem because it means I didn't really get into Brandon's birthday either. I know, wife of the year. AND, his birthday landed on a Sunday. Somebody please tell me how on earth you celebrate a bishop's birthday on a Sunday?! AND, I had been gone all weekend at a Ladie's retreat- more on that later. So again, wife of the year.

Our Sunday looked like this: Brandon leaves at 7:30, later than usual, and essentially stays at church all day til about 4:30. I was going to bring him lunch and celebrate at the church a little, but he found time to come home and scarf some food down. So there goes my one surprise I was planning. Then, he invites some old friends over for dinner, which was super fun, but we couldn't really celebrate as a family. THEN, I have stake choir practice, which I'm the director of, at 7. I didn't get home til 8, then I had a million phone calls to make. Brandon's birthday was a bust. I made it up to him I hope. We went out on a surprise date the next night and had lots of fun at Tucano's.

By the way, the benefit of having two birthdays in the same month- two free birthday dinners at Tucano's. We're going there again for my birthday dinner tonight. Holla!

For his birthday present, I told him I combined his and my birthday and got a bunch of camping stuff so we could go camping with the girls the next week. Which we did, and it will be the next post.

ANYWAY, for my birthday, I told Brandon I really didn't want or expect anything, which was totally and completely true. I had a monster headache, and I just wanted to relax. My grandma was visiting us for a day from AZ, and we were talking about how good boiled peanuts are.

Side note- the two best things about having a southern grandma are 1)Grits and 2)boiled peanuts. SOOOO good.

Brandon went to the store and bought some roasted peanuts for us to boil. Roasted peanuts aren't as good as raw peanuts to boil, but they were still pretty good. Such a nice birthday present!

Then he got Lexi to hide some eggs around the house with little notes inside about what Lexi loved about me. So cute. He made up one, and she made up the rest. Try and guess which one is from Brandon:

1) Thank you for reading me stories at night
2) We are grateful for a wonderful Mommy who loves us.
3) Thank you for teaching me how to read (for the record, she reads 3-letter words. That's it.)
4) Thank you for making me feel better when I feel sad.
5) Thank you for always helping me clean my room. (I'm an enabler, I guess)
6) Thank you so being SO hot!
7) We are grateful for the best dinners ever- we love granola bars too.(This one's funny because she hates eating what I cook)
8) I love it when you give me surprises. (Shocking)
9) We love your wonderful smile.
10) I love that you gave me the game Fashion Solitaire (Lexi's addicted)
11)We love your hugs- you give the best hugs
12) Thank you for playing with me and taking me to the dino museum.

So nice. That night, I felt a little better so I went shopping. I got a book for me, one for Lex, and one for Lane. Brandon has a million books at home that he wants to read first, so I didn't get one for him. I told you, wife of the year. Then I went to Old Navy where I got 9 articles of clothing, for me and Brandon, for $63. It's always nice to get a deal. Including some shirts I can wear during my 'fat' period. You know what I'm talking about. Where you just feel fat until you're about 5 months along? Yeah.

It was a lovely birthday. Thanks hub, for making me feel special!


"Part of Your World"

Sometimes we have to get creative to get the girls to stay at the dinner table for longer than 5 minutes. Here's what Brandon came up with a couple days ago. And yes, Laney is also trying to sing...

Numero Tres

I have been a blog absent these days, but at least I have an excuse...
That's right. I'm prego with baby number 3. Here's the only problem. This pregnancy is WAY harder than my other 2. Whoa boy. Let's see how my symptoms add up: 1) These headaches are driving me crazy. I had mild headaches with the girls, but none, I mean NONE, this bad. They're incapacitating. My poor girls have to entertain themselves most days, and don't even talk about how messy my house is. And poor Brandon has to pick up the slack. He so good about cleaning, making dinner, and keeping the girls entertained while I lay in bed. Ugh. I never get nauseous. Never have. But these darn headaches are going to be the death of me. 2) There is nothing better than cold and dark. Do you know how weird that is to someone who loves warm and bright? Just when my car gets warm in the morning and my body gets comfortable, I get a headache. And showers make me miserable. SHOWERS. The best part of anyone's day. I have to rest my head on the cold wall while my body gets warm in the water. Again, WEIRD. The good news- my bedroom is always cold and dark. Ahhhh, just thinking about it makes me want to go lay down... 3) I have to eat every 2 hours. I mean, HAVE TO. You think that sounds fun, right? The problem is I have to bring food with me wherever I go. And only certain things sound good at certain times. Funny though- Funyuns are always yummy. Not exactly the most healthy food on the planet. 4) Do you know how pregnant I look? I look 5 months pregnant and I'm only 12 1/2 weeks. I asked the doctor to check for twins- nope. Just one baby in there making me look huge. I'll try to post a pic, but frankly that doesn't sound very fun right now. 5) Soda sounds disgusting to me. I love soda. I guess that's pretty unhealthy. But it helped with headaches with the other pregnancies. I'm trying Excedrin (aspirin free, don't worry), but it's hit and miss as far as helping. 6) What I realized is that every time I needed to have my energy reserves and no headaches, I had the help I needed. I really think the Lord was helping me out big time. If I had a responsibility for my calling, I had the energy. If I had something I needed to do for the community (like singing time), I had help. It was pretty crazy. In a good way of course. 7) I seem to be sighing and touching my head a lot. I feel like the sighing helps relieve the pressure in my head. And rubbing my head, well, doesn't help, but for some reason I do it too. :) 8) I'm so excited to be pregnant, don't get me wrong. I think the reason why it's so annoying to me is because I had easy pregnancies the first two times. If I'm not having a boy, I'm going to be mad. :)
This is Brandon's idea of coloring with the girls during conference.
For Brandon's (and my) birthday, this was dropped off to us on our door. It's kind of an inside joke, but it's our family made out of rice krispies Mr. Potato heads. I thought they were stinking adorable, and really yummy. :) Be prepared for some make-up posts in the near future...
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