Tuesday, June 29, 2010

I should be focusing on my psychology homework...but it's a hard chapter. I thought it was only 19 pages, but in fact it is 29 pages. Too bad I can't do simple math, as I could have chosen a different chapter. Anyway...

While talking to my best friend Lauren today, (and by talking I mean instant messaging) we got into a discussion about creativity. I read a lot about it yesterday for my Early Childhood Education class and it sort of stuck with me.

I've said a million times "I'm just not that creative"...which is pretty stupid considering I've been exercising creativity my entire life, and possibly even more since becoming a mother. It's easy to classify creativity as coming up with new ideas, doing artwork and projects, or photographing beautiful things. But in fact, it is SO much more!

Creativity is in enjoying our surroundings, being aware of the way the clouds move in the sky. IT is in stopping to smell the roses and appreciating the fact that they bloom so beautifully.
(I took this picture...pretty creative of me huh?)

Creativity IS art in all its forms: Photography, painting, music, dancing, performing. We all possess an amazing ability to be creative in some form or another.

I think some of my creativity is found in my appreciation for art. I took an art history course a few years ago and since then I have found it extremely important to surround myself with art in some form. I don't remember all the technical details, i.e. artists names or periods in which they were completed, but I do know how they make me feel.

Lauren pointed out that I'm creative in my abilities to find ways to save money. So true! It's an art form to me, something I'm proud of and love sharing with others.

Also- being a mother is creativity in itself. It was the most creative thing my body has ever done-producing this perfect little creature. And each day the choices I make for him help me to be more creative and teach him how to be creative as well. Reading books together, going for walks through the canyon, letting him reach for and feel his mobile toy animals as I pick him up out of the crib. All of these are rich sensory experiences that benefit us both.

Aesthetics is probably my new favorite term. I think I enjoy the aesthetics of my Connor more than almost anything else. I love smelling him, kissing him, watching him sleep, watching him watch other things, helping him eat, etc.

I challenge all of you to find different ways in which you are creative!!! Don't discredit yourself. IT will make you feel so alive and good about yourself if you can discover even one thing you take for granted that makes you a creative person.

Leave a comment!!! I'd love to hear from you!

Sunday, June 27, 2010


Today was full of appreciating the random things in life. And I need to post some pictures of things that I have neglected to our new HUGE T.V. (50 inches) that we got for FREE. Yep. Free. If you haven't read my past posts about online offers, I'm sort of a junkie. I've made $4,100 so far. My latest was $1500 to Costco. It took me a long time to complete thanks to the fact that I had a baby in the middle of that...but I did it. And so did my mom. We have so far purchased this tv, and a Blu-ray player..and some randoms. Still have about $300 left. :)

And my grass patch. This is something I begged Ben to do all year. He said it would be too hard. I didn't want to hear any of I did it myself. With the help of my dad and and Ben right at the end of course..and guess what? It wasn't THAT hard..only now it's got dead spots from our lack of watering it...thanks to our outdoor spicket that is busted. Which leads me to a great story. We decided it'd be smart to just use our kitchen sink-hook up a hose to it. We bought the little doo dad that made this possible. It worked great. Until tonight. I was eating an oreo minding my business in the kitchen while Ben was out watering. Suddenly I was getting sprayed. Not a little... a LOT. I was gasping for my breath (the water was cooooold) and hollering for Ben with my best "the baby is asleep but I still need to yell" voice. Water was EVERYWHERE forcing me to clean the kitchen. sigh...

These are my birthday flowers. I told Ben why get flowers that will just die in a week? They can bloom all summer this way :)
Also outside are our zero gravity lawn chairs. Love them. We sat outside last night listening to the music of groove fest which was over a mile away. Somehow in a small town the noise can really travel far.

And a post wouldn't be complete without a little Connor info. He has, as of late, begun SQUEALING. Not a little...and not quietly. It's LOUD. Like people came up to me after sacrament and said "I've never heard anything so high pitched and loud before..". Yeah...we know. We especially love it when he drops his bottle and has a total come-apart. He is throwing lots of tantrums lately. I love it that Ben thinks he can say "Connor-NO- that is not a choice" and thinks it's going to make any impact. Connor just smiles and squeals again!
He's pretty close to crawling...scoots himself around, just trying to figure out how to get his knees to move him. I'm so excited but I know I'm going to be a lot busier when he figures it out. (doggy door escapes...yikes)
I have established that I have a truly happy, good-natured son. He smiles ALL the time. He doesn't need anyone to make him smile either. I catch him smiling at lights, toys, the trees blowing, shadows, the animals and whatever pleases him in the moment. LOVE it!

These are the new boots he got from his great-grandpa Brent and great-grandma Sherron. They are too big right now, and go with an adorable cowboy outfit he can where when he's about 2. I can't WAIT to get his pictures taken in them!!! :) Thanks grandpa and grandma!!!

He went up Cedar Mountain for the first time (first time out of my belly) yesterday. Here's what happened...

Baby sees leaves...
Baby grabs leaves...
Baby eats leaves!!!

I am pretty much rocking out school. It is challenging at times but somehow I am staying ahead. And getting pretty good grades so far. It's great to exercise my brain again. I feel like I have a lot more to contribute to our conversations and I'm learning valid information that helps me in my life. My early childhood education class is making me a better mother, now and for the future. I love it! So glad I decided to go back. This is my sweet work station.

We have a technology overkill going on at our house. We have a Mac, a PC, two laptops, two I-pod touches, a Mac laptop that doesn't work at the moment, and a Wii. Not bragging, in fact I'm a lot ashamed. What has this world come to?! Here's our desk area these days..yuck.

I am baby hungry. I don't know why...I have a baby. But this motherly instinct of mine wants another one. Good thing Ben's resisting for now...(only for now).

My sister in law Breanna is a surprisingly AMAZING singer. She's known for being rather quiet and reserved. But she's self-taught with the guitar and has been recording some of her songs lately. I'm super impressed and want someone to discover her. If you feel like checking her out..go HERE.

Another awesome singer who is really making her place in the world is Ben's cousin Lucy Schwartz. She recently sang a song on the Shrek Forever After soundtrack. I love her voice. She and Breanna sound a lot alike I think.

I missed an opportunity to go see Audra McDonald in 110 in the Shade. Could have gotten great seats for cheap from Groupon. Could have met her. Ben knows the people who manage Hale Center Theater. Why do I do these things? GRRRR...second time missing out on meeting one of my fave celebs. sigh again....

Another frustration is that I have been eating myself sick lately. Why do I do this?! I was feeling so good when I was eating great and exercising. Then we went on vacation and it all went to he-double hockey sticks. Time to get crack-a-lackin!

Here are the pictures from our overnight trip to Vegas. Ben had to work at an expo, so I went and helped and took advantage of the free trip. We left little C-man with my family and I missed him like craaaazy!!!! I was so excited to sleep in that I didn't sleep at all. Kept checking my phone to see if I'd slept in yet. Stupid. We ate at the Paris buffet, enjoyed our awesome room and relaxed. We rode the roller coaster at the Sahara, I got cheap tickets from Groupon. First roller coaster I've ridden since getting pregnant with Connor! It was nice to have some quality time with the hubby...

I'm looking forward to a week full of homework, snuggling with my little man, and cracking down on my diet/exercise! Hope y'all have a great week as well!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Father's Day

I think Ben would tell you his Father's Day was FANTASTIC! We were in St. George the night before and woke up early for 9:oo church on Sunday morning in my parent's ward. Connor got to snuggle with his daddy and then his grandpa before getting all ready in his Sunday clothes! It is so fun being there because Connor gets SO much attention! (Not that he's ever lacking here at home ha ha) My mom gave a little talk which I think she finished writing while still on the stand...ha ha. Connor was ready to get home for a nap after Sacrament so we came home and let him get some rest-but not before taking some family Father's Day pictures. Ben was THRILLED that I made him put his shirt and tie back on for some of these...ha ha.

After some naps and when everyone else was home I prepared the hours de' vours- shrunp cocktail, crab salad with crackers, and sourdough bread with oil and vinegar. It was SO yummy! The men go to open their gifts in their new zero-gravity chairs my mom gave them! (I got one for my birthday woo woo!) Ben was surprised to get an I-Pod touch, I was SO happy I finally surprised him! He always figures everything out! He needed one to help him stay organized with his schedule and he just always felt left out when I had mine to play with! ha ha...he also got some new workout clothes and a desk calendar from Connor with his cute pictures on each month page. Finally something to show him off with at work! Connor gave my dad some beef jerky, and our gift to him was the awesome dinner that soon followed! It was fun watching them open and get excited over their stuff.

Next was the DELICIOUS dinner we all got to enjoy! My daddy and Hubby got the royal feast for themselves but we all got to partake of a lot of it too. My dad got Lobster Tail and New York Steak and Ben got a huge Rib Eye Steak! (Ben's not a fan of much seafood). To top it off we had pasta salad, fruit salad, baked potatoes, fruit, corn on the cob and more shrimp cocktail. It was MMM MMM GOOD!!!
I was proud of my HUGE lobster tail I cooked for my dad. He LOVES it so much and I thought it was fun to feed him something he wouldn't normally buy for himself! Connor enjoyed his sweet potatoes to the you can see...

I am SO thankful for my wonderful father. He has always been such a great example of hard work, dedication and integrity. He has taught us all so well and I love how close he is to the Spirit. He is so sensitive that he cries pretty easily (that's where I get it from) but will deny it to the death if you try and point out the tear on his cheek.

I am also SO happy to be married to such a wonderful man, the father of our first born. He is SO good with Connor! He changes diapers with no complaint, plays with him, reads to him, feeds him and is usually the one who gets him first thing in the morning. I know I married my perfect match when I see how closely linked our parenting styles already are. He keeps the binkis clean, Connor away from germs and is always concerned with his well-being. Thank you honey for being such an awesome daddy! We love you with all of our hearts and souls!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

25! Great Day...

Yesterday can be summed up in for your viewing FANTASTIC BIRTHDAY!

Red Mountain spa with my mommy!


I might have struggled getting into the hammock...

Say hello to the reason I'm FRIED...

KRAVE Frozen Yogurt!
Yummy Prime Rib Dinner @ Milts....MMMM

FREE was gone before I even had time to THINK about a

Picture I took with my NEW zoom lens! Thanks Benny! :)

It was a REALLY great day and today I'm still so relaxed from my awesome massage...sigh...can't wait for another one!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

6 Months!

Where has the time gone?! I can't believe my baby boy is 6 months old! I remember when he was 3 days old..being sad that time was going by so quickly..and NOW look at us! I have loved every minute of the past 6 months! maybe not the colicky moments. Those were HARD. But I have to say this age is by far my favorite! He has such a fun little personality! I think his dad is having lots more fun with him now too...he plays and laughs and reaches for EVERYTHING. He LOVES his bottles..the second he spots one-whether it's empty or full he gets SO excited. He reaches for it or squeals like a piglet to get it! Ha ha! He went to the doctor on the first and these are his stats:
14 lbs 6 oz
27 inches long
I'll just mention some of our favorite things about Connor right now:

*He is a CHAMPION sleeper now! He goes to bed without crying, and sleeps until 6 or later..then eats and goes back to sleep for 2 hours! And no crying for naptime either! He just watches me leave and goes to sleep! We are SO thankful for that!
*He is totally teething..the second his bottle is gone he sticks his hands in his mouth to chew on them!
* He gives the BEST snuggles. I love it when he is drowsy and just burrows his face into my neck. He also has started reaching for people..mostly just mommy so far..but it's SO fun!
* He has had some solid poops..ha ha sorry if that grosses anyone out..but we are so proud of him! ha ha
* He loves to grab the spoon in my hand when I'm feeding him his baby gets quite messy every time!
*Foods he's had: Squash, sweet potatoes, bananas (his favorites), peaches, pears (NOT his favorite), carrots, rice cereal and oatmeal cereal. HE'S A PIG!!
*He loves his daddy..he won't cry with him..just lays there and plays and has a grand old time.
*He LOVES Figaro! This isn't anything new but his adoration for that dog grows everyday. He smiles and giggles at him and it makes our lives that much better for him to have entertainment from the dog!
*He is SO ticklish and sometimes can't even get his giggles out..just sorta screams in delight! LOVE IT!
*He's almost ALMOST sitting up alone! Most of the time he can do it- but likes to get lazy and fall over ha ha
*The other day at the grocery store he had a giggle fit that went on for about 5 minutes. I was in line waiting to check out then checking out and everyone around us was smiling. The checker beside me said " I don't know what you do to that baby but he's the happiest one I've ever seen and heard!" Ha ha! I was cracking up watching HIM crack up and it just made the day golden! He always gets told what a happy pleasant baby he is!
*He reaches for anything and EVERYTHING. He particularly loves my cell phone so we got him his own toy cell it begins..ha ha
I know there are so many more wonderful things we love about our sweet baby boy..but those are the ones that stand out to me! I love him SO much and can't believe in another 6 months he'll be a year old! CRAZY!
For Connor's half birthday we celebrated with aunt Tasha. She stayed with us for a few days and we had a great time! We walked to main street and had some ice cream from Bulloch drug, then went to Great Harvest and got a slice of bread..then to Papa Murphy's to get som pizza which we walked home and cooked and ate while we watched "Leap Year". Such a fun day! Connor loves his aunt Tasha! She loves holding him and playing with him!
Bath time is STILL his favorite time! He thinks he's so big now and loves to pull himself into sitting position!
HA HA this is when he dropped his toy on the side of his tub and tried to get it! Stinkin CUTE bum!

Happy 6 month Birthday sweet baby Connor!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Brings a tear to my eye...

this post will have no caps because i am typing one handed with the babe in my lap watching. it's one of those days. yep..the days that make the good days seem awesome. a day with short- if any-naps, diet coke, and cussing at the stupid drivers in c-town. but the perk of days like this is i find myself appreciating the small things. today connor was trying so hard to fall asleep. as i did yesterday, i tried bringing him in my room and laying down with him. he started out really mad but slowly gave into the idea. he's such a snuggler..and i hope he stays that way for a long time. he nuzzled into my chest and kept patting my arm with his hand. he made little sounds and sighs of contentment. at that moment i felt so much love for him it brought tears to my eyes. and a few of them even fell down my cheeks as i laid there holding my precious angel. moments like those remind me how amazingly lucky i am to be a mother-and how i never want to take it for granted. my favorite time of day is cuddle time with my little one, and the mornings when he lays in bed with us happy as can be. ben is such a fantastic daddy and i love seeing the adoration in his eyes when he looks at connor. these two guys are my greatest blessings and I thank heaven for them daily.also- i am loving school so far and am staying at least a week ahead of all my homework. it's so nice that in our home the tv is hardly ever on anymore. and our grass patch is looking great!

the past week i have been getting up when connor is up for his first feeding..around 7 and going for a walk.
i get to walk up the canyon which is super close...and it is sooo nice and beautiful. i took this pic with my phone:
aren't we lucky???
i'm so glad warm finally got a clue and came. but hot got here way ahead of schedule. oh well...i'm not complaining about the tanned skin, swimming pools and ice cream!

happy summer!
p.s. i'll be 25 in a week...yikes!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Memorial Day

We had such a wonderful Memorial day weekend! It didn't start out so great but did end well...Saturday morning I started itching all was weird because I couldn't see any rash...but by that evening I had broken out in a full body red rash. It was SO miserable! I took Children's Benadryl to ease the itch..but it didn't help a whole lot. I took some regular Benadryl as well..and was out cold Saturday night. Luckily Ben was able to take care of Connor for me! :-) I slept so long the next morning..felt good but still had the rash--and it was worse. Realized I was probably allergic to my antibiotics. Good to know!!! So I stopped taking family came up for Sunday dinner so they could see Connor and comfort me in my rash time..ha ha. It was nice to have them here and my dad and Ben were able to give me a blessing. By the next morning it was almost GONE! I am SO thankful for the priesthood and that I have a father and husband who are worthy to hold it! :-)

Sunday night my sisters Desi and Tasha had slept over, so the next morning we got a wild hair and decided to clean the backyard! It had WEEDS and mess all over! It was SO ridiculous. The owners of the home laid rock down last year before we moved in...and it is SO stupid. There are weeds coming up through the rock because of how they did it! So we spent all morning and part of the afternoon working our butts off. I was SO sore and weak..but we did such a great job! I wish I had taken a before picture..but this is what it looks like after. We planted some wildflowers in our planter, and I was insistent that we plant a little patch of grass so Connor and I could sit out there this summer and play! :-) I am SO sore today but it was well worth the hard work! I'm so glad my sisters were willing to help me and work so hard!

My parents came up around 2 and my dad is the one who helped plant the grass and finish the yard with me...while my mom made brownies for our family party. My grandma Irene turned 86 last week so the WHOLE family (minus the Gate's clan :-( ) Came together for the holiday and to celebrate her birthday! We all got together around 5:30 and had a fun BBQ. There were a LOT of us there...I'll have to was a bit crazy...but SO fun. I have such a funny family! I love being around everyone and having a good time! Here are some pictures I snapped of the day..

My camera went dead before we got to the cemetery..but I was so moved when we got to my grandpa's grave and saw the big flag waving by his headstone, and his World War II plaque on the back...I wish he were still around so I could ask about his days in the service. I also have an uncle who served in Vietnam, and a cousin who is in the National Guard. And another cousin who just graduated from the naval academy..and another uncle who serves in the Army and has been in Iraq within the past few years. I'm so thankful they are all safe and have served our country well!

We had a wonderful weekend and today it's back to reality! School starts! I logged into my classes today..and think I'll be FINE! Can't wait to get learning again!

Have a great week!!!