Tuesday, December 27, 2011

My latest soapbox . . .

Often in the midst of our greatest trials we learn our greatest lessons. It is in this light that I share something I have come to feel very passionate about. It's really a very simple thing, but something that I believe if followed could help save lives.

When my friend Julie was at my home and her son began to choke (if you remember, she was alone as I had just ran to get Lucy from dance and was away for about 5 minutes) she needed to call 9-1-1. She did so using her cell phone and when they asked her for the address, she didn't know it.

Would you? Do you know your best friend's address by heart? Your parents? Do they know your address? Could those you leave to watch your children tell others your address in the event of an emergency?

After I got back from the hospital after being with Julie after Jonah passed away, I was sharing with my Mom how awful I felt about a lot of things and one was that it had to happen when I wasn't there (of course I've come to trust that this was meant to be, but it doesn't mean I don't feel bad about it) and my Mom asked, "Well what could you have done?" I answered that I know I couldn't have done anything more, but I could have at least told Julie my address so she wouldn't have had to figure that out in such a stressful moment. I recognize in our situation, her knowing my address immediately really wouldn't have changed the outcome, but it still opened my eyes to this idea.

I thought about making a cute little sign with my address on it and putting it on my fridge for all to see and I thought about the fonts and colors I could use. Then as I pondered on why I wanted to do this I knew I needed to just do something. Fancy fonts and cute pictures could wait. I then took a scrap of orange paper out of the drawer and wrote my address on it and stuck it to the side of my fridge.  I point out that it is there whenever anyone is at my home.

It's nothing big, but I believe it could help. I also believe we could just make it a given that our address can always be found on our fridge. My thoughts for this campaign are very much in the infancy stage, but like the scrap of orange paper that hangs on the side of my fridge, I know it just needs to have a start.

So I challenge all of you to put your address on the side of your fridge. Those moments of not having to scramble to figure that out just might make all the difference . . .

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Seven glorious months with our Vivi

Our little lady brings so much sweetness to our home. We love our precious Vivian with all of our hearts. Some milestones for this month include: two new bottom teeth, after one week of being sleep trained like a champ she got sick; so we'll be working on that again, sitting up on her own-but still needs pillows for back up just in case, grabs EVERYTHING she can see and reach, interactions with David are becoming stronger which is so sweet to see, Lucy always seems to know the perfect toy she will want, Daddy does some great dancing with her, and Mommy could just eat her up all day long. We love our dear Vivian Rose.

This picture just begins to capture how much I adore this sweet baby. I find myself holding her well after she has fallen asleep (like hours) because I just can't get enough of her. When she naps for longer than a few hours, I feel an emptiness in my arms and I can't wait for her to wake up. She is pure joy.

The song I constantly sing to her is, "You and me baby we're stuck like glue." Because as overwhelming as it is to have this little one always wanting me, I know it will only be for a short season so I treasure soaking every second of it up. We love you Vivian Rose. Thanks for joining our family. You make life better.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Lucy's Nativity Dance Recital

Lucy had her dance recital where the theme was, The Nativity. She was a twinkling star and this is what little stars do when they see one another. 

I just stood back and watched all the sweet interactions between these cute girls. They made me smile with their discussions about their shoes and how they couldn't help but dance as they walked around the room. 
Does Lucy have some great hair or what? And when did she get this grown-up?

Lucy's fan club: Grandpa & Grandma Sampson, Grandma Kay, David and of course Mom, Dad and Vivian. 

These next few pictures of her dancing speak for themselves on how much Lucy truly loves what she's doing. I love how happy she is in them and the dear friends she is surrounded by. Her teacher, Miss Amber, believes strongly in sharing the spirit of Christ through dance and it is so clearly felt and seen as I watch the performances she produces. I LOVE that my daughter can be a part of something so beautifully inspiring. Enjoy the pictures (I sure do):

Can I tell you how much I love that this is my life: telling my daughter what a beautiful dancer she  is while my mother attends to her every need as I hold my other daughter. Such a beautiful life I live.  

And then my handsome Jack shows up to show me his special prize. I  love this moment and I treasure my life. 

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Making the neighborhood gift with my children . . .

It seemed like such a great idea at the time, and it actually was quite enjoyable for about 80% of the time. Then there was Lucy spilling flour out onto the floor and David having breakdowns each time I had to take the bowl away from him to make a new batch of mix resulting him not being able to take his measuring spoon and toss freshly made mix onto my counters.  I will try to remember and focus on the 80% that was glorious ;)

My Christmas Angels

Life is just better with a sister!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Gingerbread creativity

I saw an idea online to make a gingerbread nativity instead of a house. So this is what we did for family home evening and it was so fun to create something together. Marc was good at constructing the stable while I worked on the finishing touches with Lucy and David . . . 

Our finished nativity. 

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Thanks Merts

We love our hats

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Pre-school Christmas party

Lucy's little neighborhood pre-school had a Christmas party that was a lot of very fun organized chaos! We started with re-enacting the nativity. Lucy wanted to be a shepherd so she could hold the sheep. 

Then we read Christmas stories and sang Christmas songs.

Then each kid made a candy cane ornament with pony beads.  Lucy did a great job following a pattern. She taught us in family home evening that night, the candy cane is for the shepherd's hook and when turned upside down is a "J" for Jesus. Then they had these cute snacks in a bag that looked like a butterfly. As the children left they each put a toy they brought in a box to be donated to needy children. It was a very enjoyable CHRISTmas party.

Growing up

It never ceases to amaze me how often I can look at my children and think, "When did they get so big?"

Marc said he looks like a college freshman in this outfit.

And this little lady leads the pack every day getting so grown-up, cute and wise!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Hang up the baby's stocking . . . .

Hang up the baby's stocking. Be sure you don't forget. For little baby Vivian, has never seen Christmas yet. We told her all about it. She opened her big blue eyes. We're she understood it, cause she looked so cunning and wise!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

At our stable . . .

Everyone is welcome: pink my little ponies, duckies with American flags and leis. We try to remember the true spirit of Christmas around here.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Decorating the tree

I love decorating the tree with my children. They get so EXCITED with every part of it: the lights, the tinsel, each ornament .  .  . it is so fun to watch them. It was really fun this year because Lucy & David were both old enough to put the ornaments on. It truly is the most wonderful time of the year!
A sweet story about our little angel. She is from the 60's and used to be my Grandma Sampson's. I love her for many reasons: she used to be my Grandma's, she's vintage, she has an a-line haircut and best of all: she is a red head. Apparently David shares my love because as soon as we took her out of the box David reached for her and said in the sweetest voice, "BABY!" We gently handed her to him (I was hesitant, but wanted to put my child's love and enthusiasm for Christmas above material items). He gently looked at the angel and then gave her a great big hug. It was priceless!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Seeing Santa

While at The Gateway we were on our way to The Childrens Museum and low and behold there was Santa with NO ONE in line! What a Christmas miracle! Lucy told him she wanted candy corns, candy canes and a tea set. David was just brave enough to sit on the same couch as him with Lucy as a buffer and Vivian was just happy to be living life.

And does this picture melt your heart or what? So fun to be celebrating another baby's 1st Christmas at our home.

SLC Stay-cation

After staying at my parents for Thanksgiving we went to SLC for a few days to have a little vacation as a family together. I worked hard to figure out what to do with our little ones while we were there, but the truth of the matter is; the hotel room was biggest highlight of all. Each night we popped popcorn and the kids thought it was incredible (and I thought it was wonderful I wouldn't have to clean up all the kernels).

I love this picture as it captures the spirit of childhood so well. I didn't even notice the different colors of tile, but to Lucy they became an instant gameboard where she could only step on the dark tiles. I love seeing the world through the eyes of my children.

And when a bed appeared out of the couch, you would have thought it was Christmas morning! Such an exciting place these hotel rooms can be.

We spent the next morning seeing Santa and going to The Children's Museum. It was an amazing place. David spent the whole time playing in the water feature while Lucy explored every nook and cranny: the market, the car, the horse, the house . . . Marc chased after the two of them while I sat in this lovely section deemed for nursing mothers and nursed sweet Vivi. So fun.

That night my parents joined us for dinner and we took the train to see the lights at Temple Square. 

It was a bit cold, but still very magical.

David thought riding on the train was the best part of the whole vacation.

And apparently it was not the highlight for Miss Vivian.  

The next morning we ate a yummy breakfast at the hotel (the Froot Loops were the kids' favorite) and headed home. It was simply wonderful to have TIME together as a family.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Vivian 6 months old

Our sweet baby is growing and growing. She has TWO teeth on the bottom that were a bit rough to get here, but we managed. Whenever you put her on her tummy she moves right back to her back. She has started eating rice cereal which she tolerates, but she loves most to suck on an apple.

She still loves her Sophie Giraffe and chews on anything she can get in her mouth. She gets nervous when I am not around, but manages without me. She thinks everything David does is hilarious and admires her big sister, Lucy. She smiles big for Daddy when he gets home and likes to dance with him.

and she is constantly melting my heart. Every time she nurses, she has to grab my finger and I absolutely love it. We love our little angel Vivian.

Bunk beds!

David was trying to climb out of his crib so we took that as a sign he needed to move to a different sleeping situation. We went through several ideas and finally landed on the idea of bunk beds. The kids LOVE them. Getting David to stay in his bed has been a challenge, but I've actually been pleasantly surprised at how well he has done. At first Lucy was a bit timid with the ladder, but she caught on quickly and has become a pro. Lucy tells everyone we meet about her bunk beds and even Grandma Kay had to stop by to see them. There is just something magical about bunk beds I've come to discover.

Thanksgiving 2011

We were apparently too busy stuffing our faces to take very many pictures of our Thanksgiving this year. At any rate, here is what I can report. We spent the holiday at my parents' home with our dear friends, Heidi & Yvette. Marc and I started the day with a lovely walk in the hills so we could "earn our turkey". Then the boys went shooting and the ladies prepared the feast.

How is that for a toddler's feast?

My Dad making the potatoes!

And Lucy with her lovely decoration. We spent the night at my parents and then headed out for a "stay-cation" in SLC-FUN!