Friday, December 30, 2011


We had a nice quiet Christmas this year. Santa brought Carter a tool bench (Which has been hidden in the basement next to the dryer for about 2 years now. I bought it at a second hand store - new in the box - when he was just an infant. I knew it would come in handy for a Christmas eventually.) My mother sent me money to buy Carter something and I found a vacuum cleaner - a real one - that was short enough for Carter to use comfortably. He LOVES it. He uses it about 45 minutes a day. He got a lot of toys and clothes from family and friends. We are very grateful. He was getting packages constantly the last couple weeks. He loves all his new toys and new clothes (especially the ones with balls on them).  

Carter is holding up the Mater Pez dispenser he got in his stocking (David took the candy out before he learned they are supposed to have candy. There will be plenty of time for that later, but for right now we wanted him to enjoy the toy without wanting to discard it when the intended use for the toy - i.e. dispensing candy - was expended.). Carter got gloves last year for Christmas, but they came too late for our trip to the snow, and the weather here was so mild he didn't get to use them. Now his hands are too big for them. He got these cool gloves from a boy at church. Carter LOVES them because they have balls on them.

We went to the Douglas home again this year for fun and singing. Carter was completely consumed in the iPhone. He also loved playing piano with Zoe. They had a lot of fun. They both really missed Chloe this year, but they will see her soon enough.

We went to David's parents' house for more Christmas fun.

He seemed more interested in dancing to the music (It's okay if you can't hear it, I couldn't either.). I am so grateful that he is not the type of kid to open every present all at once. He really likes to enjoy what he gets.

Carter got some fun new toys that he loves. Uncle Daniel got him a Cabbage Patch doll named Lincoln:

Just like he had when he was a boy. David's mother took this picture and emailed it to me after I took the one above. So cute.

We went home Christmas evening and had our own celebration of Christ's birth. We cleared the floor and sat on a blanket. Carter wanted to exercise instead. 

We all got a sheep and pretended to be shepherds.

Then we sat down and watched this video:

Even though there are no English words, the message is pretty powerful. I have always loved this version of the Nativity. It was a perfect tie-in to the spirit of the season.

Remember Him:

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Good Deals

I am a sucker for a good deal.  I cannot pay full price for anything. I just can't do it. I have trouble paying sales prices for most things. I use a lot of coupons, but not like those extreme couponers. I don't want something for free just because it is free. I just wanted to toot my own horn here for a minute and brag about a couple of good deals I have gotten lately.

You may remember this suit, but for those of you who don't - I got it for $2.73 at JC Penney.

I got this metal gate for the top of our scary basement stairs on Friday for a quarter. Yes, 25 cents. List price on this is $119!!

And this jacket I also got for a quarter:

It looks like a Letterman's jacket.

David and I decided when Carter was born that we would not do too many character themed bedding or clothing items. I could have done his whole nursery in Blue's Clues. However, that was too commercialized for me. I don't want to teach my child that the characters on TV are that important.

That being said, I do have to give him some choice in what he wears. We are having trouble getting him to wear jackets right now. He would rather freeze than wear one. I saw this and decided that I want him covered, and if it takes a bribe - I'm okay with that.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Carter in Christmas Lights

This will be our Christmas card picture this year. Thank you David.

If you get a card from us, you are on my Christmas card list. If you do not get our Christmas card by Christmas, and you wanted one - let me know. I may not have you on my list. But that doesn't mean I didn't want you there. 

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Santa Again

I am OCD about pictures. I know that we will not get a perfect picture every time. I have never been worried about bumps and bruises - to be honest I forgot about the bruise from our "Cedar Chest" incident (Carter is very quick to point out that he got his bruise because: "I fall down on a cedar chess". It is super cute). I am more concerned that you can see my child's cute little face, and with any luck, a smile.

We get our Santa pictures at The Old Cannery.

So, I was spoiled with this picture in 2009:

In 2010, I knew that we were going to have to have a "Crying on Santa's Lap" picture. Everybody has one right? I was proud to put that on my list of fun photos.

No family picture this year because he was screaming too much.

But, these didn't sit well with me. I knew that once my child warmed up to Santa, he would be fine. So, in the hour that we stood in line (and the whole day leading up to it) I prepped him. We watched other kids sit on Santa's lap, and we showed him the candy you get. But, I still have the "Get me outta here!!", sucking on his hands, crying look.

Not to mention - I don't like the family picture. It is not very symmetrical.

So, without question, my husband braved the line with me again to get the perfect Santa picture.
I think it was worth it!! Carter walked right up to Santa and climbed up on his lap all by his self! We were struggling to catch up with the camera and the stroller. He was such a big boy.

And we got an awesome family picture.

We waited in line for 3 hours to get these pictures (cumulative 4 hours if you count the time we spent in line 2 weeks ago), but it was well worth it. Every time I stand in this line, I make new friends.

We also got to walk around and get some other cute shots. These are some pictures that we weren't intending on comparing, but just happened to get similar shots of.

3 months old:

2 years old:

 2 years old:

3 years old:

3 months old:

1 year old:

2 years old:

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Day off with Daddy

The day after the concert Daddy surprised us by taking a day off work. We went to our favorite playgroup (Carter loves it because he gets a name tag. He calls it his "Friends Playgroup").

Carter and Daddy built this town:

Then Carter climbed to the top of this thing:

Then we all wore hats (sorry daddy):

Then Carter drew a giraffe (it is the thing in between him and the little girl that kind of looks like a giraffe!):

We went straight from there to a Caspar Babypants concert at the mall.

We have seen Caspar at least 7 times in concert and this is THE FIRST TIME he has ever SMILED, STOOD BY HIMSELF, or DANCED!!! He always has a permagrump face. I was shocked. I got video!! He hopped to "Mr. Rabbit", and he ran, jumped, danced, spun, ect. . . to "Run Baby". That video was harder to get because of the massive amounts of kids there.

We have so much fun with Daddy when he is home. I almost wonder if Daddy's car wakes him up every morning, then he goes back to sleep. Because when Daddy is home - he knows it.

Straight No Chaser

After seeing a video on YouTube, I was hooked. I cannot believe how amazing this group is. David bought me tickets last year. This year, he bought the tickets in May!! We had a blast. 

This video is horrible quality. We had great seats - down on the floor as opposed to last years up on a balcony. However, my little camera cannot take the overload of noise, or the constant movement. David was manually focusing, so it was also hard on him. However, he did a great job. Enjoy:

Carter stayed with his friends Emma & Andrew while we were at the concert. He had so much fun.


Some of Carter's friends at church play volleyball. They think it is really cool that the volleyball is among all the balls that he can tell you about ("Soccer ball goes in the goal net", "Football goes in the end zone", "Golf Ball goes in the hole", "Baseball goes in the mitt", "Hit the Tennis Ball with the racket"). "The Volleyball goes over the net" he says. So, they invited him to one of their games. He sat almost the entire game and watched (as long as he had this ball to hold).

At the end, he got to go down and play around. Ben lifted him up so he could hit the ball over the net. He was excited to do it, until he saw somebody on the other side - then he didn't want to let go of the ball and loose it.

We are so glad that he has such great friends - even if they are so much older than he is.

Christmas Party

Our ward Christmas party was awesome this year. It was a night in Bethlehem theme. Different people set up "Shops" around the gym. We were all given coins to purchase food and crafts. We set up blankets to eat our food on - Carter and I are right up front on our blanket.

These are the missionaries assigned to our area. They are pretty cool. We got to have them over for dinner last week and get to know them better. The one on the left always looks up when we call Carter. It doesn't matter where we are - at church on Sunday, at the Christmas party, at our house - he turns like he is going to answer me. We got him to admit that his first name isn't really Elder, like his name tag says, it is Carter. 

These are our neighbors - the Froislands. Carter loves "Brother/Grandpa" Froisland. We go over to visit and Carter follows him around the house. We don't see him at church on Sunday because he is not actually a member of our church. But his wife is, and he is very supportive. He comes to all the activities, and to church whenever the kids or grandkids have a part in the service. Carter saw him from across the room and was very excited to see him. I hadn't noticed him until Carter pointed him out. That kid has better recognition than I do sometimes!!

This is Carter's friend Ben (on the left). He plays the trumpet. Carter thinks that is pretty cool.

In the end, Carter wanted to help put away tables and chairs. What a great helper. It was a chore getting him out of there though.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Blue's Clues

Anyone that knew me pre-Carter knows how much I love Blue's Clues. I have a plethora of Blue's Clues toys and games. (Not all pictured here)

David made me this blanket for Christmas 7 years ago:

So, now my child has discovered Blue's Clues. And it totally helps that we have a dog named Blu. I ask him in the morning what he thinks Blu wants to eat/play/sing/do. My mother is sending us some "Clues" that I can move around and put on things.

Thanks to my good friends the Transiers, I have a Blue's Clues Memory game that we play together.

I found this "Thinking Chair" at the Deseret Industries for $1!!!! (For anyone that doesn't know, he is dressed as a firefighter. That is his "Fireman Hat" and his fireman boots.)

I love Blue's Clues because it really gives me a chance to test his recall, and it gives me time that he will wear his eye patch. We were in the car today and I asked him what Blue's first clue was. I was amazed when he answered correctly - a sun. Then he answered the second clue correctly too - the rain. Blue wanted to sing the Itsy Bitsy Spider.

The ladies at the Therapy Center that we go to said it is a great show that you can talk with your child about. There are concrete things they are putting together, and critical thinking skills they are using. It is also a good show you can watch with your child to encourage their skills. Thank you Netflix!!!