Wednesday, November 30, 2011


For Thanksgiving this year we spent it with our friends Matt & Bethany. We had such a fun time. Bethany made some really yummy food, and she also kept Carter's diet in mind - which made it so much less stressful for me. I didn't have to worry about what was in everything, and how I would pay for it tomorrow if I wasn't diligent enough. David made some really good mashed potatoes using rice milk and dairy-free/soy-free butter. He also added some other things for good measure, keeping it Carter friendly.

It wouldn't be a trip to their house without David & Matt building something. Usually they have competing structures. However, today this time they worked together to build a ramp for the kids.

However, as Bethany pointed out, it also wouldn't be a trip to their house without a head wound for Carter. You'll have to enlarge this picture, but it looks pretty bad. He fell on a cedar chest and got a good line on his cheek. One of many to come in his toddlerhood. I'm just glad it didn't get his nose, eyes, or teeth.

Day after Thanksgiving, we went to the library to see Caspar Babypants. Carter LOVES the music. However, EVERY TIME we see him in concert he looks like this:

He really does enjoy his self, but he doesn't like the crowds. All the kids jumping up and down and running in circles really bothers him. He clings to daddy's lap with a grumpy face until it is over. Once all the kids leave, he sings the songs and dances. Silly kid.

The next day we did our annual pictures with Santa. He picked the soccer ball tie I got him while I was visiting my sister in Utah.

We really tried to prep him for Santa. However, he still cried. I am so glad we got one where he is not crying though. We need to clean it up in Photoshop, but this is the rough draft:

Then we came home and decorated the tree. David surprised me by putting it up while I ran out.

This is Carter when he first saw the tree - undecorated, but lit:

We let him help hang the ornaments that were less breakable.

I am so gratefull that David's mother collected ornaments for her kids when they were little. David has an ornament for every year he is alive. It is fun to see how old some of them are. It is like walking down memory lane. When he moved out, his mother gave him his ornaments so he would have something to hang on his own tree. We have continued that tradition with Carter in the hopes that he will appreciate it as much as we do.

Monday, November 28, 2011

So Creative

Carter is a pretty creative fellow. I find things all over that make me scratch my head in amazement.

I saw these guys last week. He gave them all hats and left to go play with something else:

He likes to find numbers in EVERYTHING. He has a shirt with airplanes on it. The trail they leave behind vaguely resembles a 6. He calls it his 6 shirt.

He eats the pretzels until they look like a 3 or a 6 or a 9. He is so proud of his pretzel creations.

He arranged his chairs and hats. So symmetrical:

Carter is getting HAIR!!! 

You can barely see it in this picture of static:

The above picture was taken at one of our playgroups. We also took this picture there together:

Carter likes to put something on me, and wear the same thing. These are two pictures that I have taken before. He INSISTED that I wear this hat.

His doll wore the same hat later.

We went to my aunt Darla's home a week or so ago. She is another one of Carter's "Grandma"s. Carter found this little guy. He came to me "Was he doing?" I told him the man was pointing. He asks that same question over and over again. Sometimes it drives me crazy. I always turn it around on him, which usually causes him to ask over and over again. However, this time he said "Ridin a skateboard."

I can see that.

My aunt Darla happened to have a skateboard!!! He was in heaven.

We had our friends the Webers over. They are considerably older than Carter, but he loves to play with them. They ran around playing all sorts of pretend games. He had a blast!!

Children's Museum

Daddy had a day off work and so we decided to go to the Children's Museum. We had so much fun!!

There was a traditional Japanese home. Carter enjoyed going into the kitchen and making us dinner for a change. We "ate" a lot of Sushi. He was very excited about the Sushi.

The house even had a microwave in Japanese characters.

He had so much fun with the Sushi, that he decided to run the Sushi shop. He dished daddy out some sushi in a bento box.

When we went to India, they had this cool motorcycle to ride on:

They had water:

He got wet:

 There was a little playground. This red haired boy climbed right around Carter on those steps. Carter started talking to him very sternly: "NO, My turn! Get down! My turn!". He was frustrated that the other boy was not taking turns.

 Then we rode the monorail to the mall, where we had lunch. It was a pretty fun day.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Play Outside? TODAY? But it's raining!

My one request for David this summer was that he prepare the back deck for winter. I foresaw a very active boy wanting to play with his outside toys, despite the fact that it is 40 degrees and raining outside. It involved him pressure washing the entire deck, and the roof above it, a bench, and his water table. It was no easy task. It took a good 4 hours.

You could not see sun through the roof before:

Now, it is always bright:

This was the finished product:

So today, when Carter asked if he could go outside and play, I gladly said "Yes, that's a great idea!". I don't think it got above 40 degrees F all day today, and it rained pretty hard. Boy was it nice to have a place Carter could play and get his energy out before we went to the library!!

Monday, November 21, 2011

A Clue!!

Every morning I wake up before Carter and get completely ready before I get him out of bed. Sometimes my shower wakes him up, but I still finish getting him ready beforehand. I figure if I don't get ready before he is up I can kiss my shower goodbye. Not to boast, but I can count on one hand the number of times I have not been ready before he is up.

Today was one of those days. David woke me up before he left for work (at 6:30 AM) and told me that I should get up (an hour early) because Carter was awake. I told him to put some toys in the crib to hold him over until I could get up and ready. NOPE. David being the amazing dad that he is heard Carter awake and went in to take care of him. He was changed and fed and playing.

I put my bathrobe on and tried to take over. Carter looks at my bathrobe and shouts "A coo, a coo!!"

I was at a loss for what he was saying. This was a new word for me. Then I saw him point to the paw prints on the bathrobe.

It's a "Clue" from Blue's Clues. He was so excited to find a clue on mommy's bathrobe.

My mother-in-law made me this bathrobe for Christmas two years ago. I love it. It is so soft and comfortable. It is also just the right length - hard to find in a store bought bathrobe. She is a very good seamstress.

We had an day a couple weeks ago where I dilly dallied too long on the computer and Carter woke up before I got in the shower. I went in to his room with some toys and told him I would come get him in a couple minutes. He just stared blankly at me in my bathrobe. I didn't even get a chance to tell him anything. He said "Go get dressed. Put clothes on." and pushed at me. It was so funny. He had never really seen me not dressed before and it completely stunned him. The last time I was not dressed and showered before getting him out of bed, he was an infant in a bouncy seat.

Saturday, November 19, 2011


Carter has several "Grandma"s. Women in my life who have adopted me, and then turned around and adopted Carter as their own grandchild. This is Rocky. You may remember her from a post I made over a year ago. Her and her husband Chopper have a way with Carter. I am so sad I didn't get a picture of them together last year. However, I wasn't going to let that happen again.

Rocky was Carter's first kiss. He went to her right away and stayed in her arms the entire afternoon. Today, he was so busy, he hardly stayed anywhere for long. However, he had to visit with Grandma Rocky. We went to a birthday party for another "Grandma" - Janelle. We celebrated her 60th birthday. What fun. Her white couches sure gave me something to stress about all night!!

Carter has so many "Grandma"s that love him. I hope I don't leave anybody out. However, I want to acknowledge the "Grandma"s in his life that really try to spoil him. They truly enjoy getting down and playing with him. He has a "Grandma" Norma in Arizona (and "Grandpa" Carlos right beside her), and a "Grandma" Norma here in town, "Grandma" Douglas (Can't forget "Grandpa" Wes), Great-"Grandma" Barbara, "Grandma" Rocky (with "Grandpa" Chopper), "Grandma" Janelle (and mean old "Grandpa" Steve), "Grandma" Larsen (with "Grandpa" Larsen), "Grandma" Darla, "Grandma" Karen, "Grandma" Debi, "Grandma" Berni, "Grandma" Froisland (and "Grandpa" Froisland, also known as "Him" or "Wilson". He knows what I am talking about), and "Grandma" Bryan (Sorry, I can't call you Jennifer yet. After 18 years it is ingrained in me.). I also wanted to make special mention of "Aunt" Shalea.

It is so comforting to me to see how they show their love to him. They are always mindful of his special days, and are really excited to hear about his milestones. When they hear about an unexpected doctor's visit, they are always the first to call and check up on him (Which means so much to me). They don't all spoil him with toys or clothes, but they certainly dote on him with love and attention. When he talks, sings, or reads, it is like the whole world stops for them. He can feel their love for me, and it makes him at ease in their presence. They know that it is those special moments that they get with him when we are all together having fun where they really bond with him. I can see it when they are reading, playing, singing, dancing, and jumping with him. And I know when I ask him about (Insert Grandma's name here) and he can tell me what they did (Usually in one or two word answers. My child is smart, but he is not that good yet.). And when I can say "Do you remember when you ______ with _______?" and he answers me back - I know he bonded with them. It is hard to relive that with Carter and have those conversations when I don't even know what they did.

Thank you for being there for us.

And thank you to "Grandpa" Wes and "Grandpa" Chopper for not buying Carter that pony that you both so desperately wanted to get him.

I also wanted to mention a Grandma that I really think shows what I am talking about:

Our friends Matt & Bethany live very far from their family. It is hard, but they go to visit a couple times a year, and both grandparents fly in to visit for random weekends throughout. Grandma and grandpa get no alone time with their grandchildren, but that doesn't stop them from bonding with them because they know what is important in their relationship. Matt's mom keeps a blog which I follow. Carter and I saw her at playgroup when she was here last. It was so much fun to talk to her about everything that goes on in her grandchildren's lives. She really cares. I loved the title of her post "Things Grandmas must do when visiting". She is such a neat lady. Thank you Andrew and Emma for sharing your grandma with us for a weekend.

Eye Patch

I noticed for about 6 months that Carter has one eye that seems to wander. I brought it up to my pediatrician and he gave us a referral to the Pediatric Opthamologist. We went last month and they saw right away what I was talking about. They diagnosed him with Exotropia.

They said the unusual thing about Carter's eye was that it unfocused and walked away while Carter was attempting to focus on something. The closer an object got, the more the eye said - "Too much work, I'm out of here". They told me that it is not normally like that. In a typical exotropia case, the eye will wander when tired or bored. Carter has an unusual form of exotropia called "convergence insufficiency". They told me that muscle exercises are usually pretty helpful in treating this.

So, we bought a box of eye patches, and are using them to strengthen Carter's eye. He thinks they are great. The first time I used them I told him we were going to watch Blue's Clues. He begs to watch it now. It is his favoritest thing to do. He is so engrossed in it. I couldn't get his attention for anything. He got all of his balls out and put them on the couch with him to watch. Today, we watched one episode, and then played with toys to get him to use his eye more. He really likes eye patch time, but it is probably because he gets to watch Blue's Clues.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

The Temple

 We went to the Temple on our way home from trick-or-treating at the mall. Carter saw it from the freeway and wouldn't let us drive by without stopping. He was soooooo excited.

He wanted to play in the "garden" and really enjoyed playing hide and seek with the temple.

Unknowingly, we took a lot of pictures in the same places that I took last time (August of 2010):

He is not big enough to climb this by himself!!

With my brother Jordan: 

He was worried about getting his hands wet, unlike last time:

With my sister Caroline:

We went "inside" the temple to get a drink of water in the foyer. He was soooooooo excited. He has been telling all his friends that he went in the temple just like daddy.  

It was so cool to look back on the pictures I took a year ago. He has changed so much! He was a rolly-polly little guy that never moved. He didn't crawl, he didn't go anywhere. Pictures were so much easier to take!!!