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Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Utah Trip Part 3

Saturday and Sunday: Brad’s brother Greg, his wife Sally, and their kids arrived while we were sleeping. It made for a very fun weekend. Brad’s brothers Mark and Doug came over with their families and the kids had a terrific time with their cousins. Leah even played a toddler version of tag with her cousins Katie and Kameron. It was adorable. Sean fell in love with his Uncles Mark and Doug who coaxed belly laughs out of him. After thoroughly wearing Sean out, his girl cousins took turns holding him while he slept.
I was grateful that Greg and Sally were willing to make the trip down; I love spending time with both of them. Poor Greg had a hard time winning Leah over and it was my fault. The first time she saw him was Saturday morning when I tried to hand her over to him to go swimming in Grandpa’s swim spa. She was very upset that a strange man tried to hold her and wouldn’t look at him the rest of the weekend. Poor Greg.
Sunday evening Ally stopped by with her new fiancĂ©e and showed me her shiny new ring! We got to catch up and spend some time just chatting. I’m very excited for her future; Jeff is a keeper. You can’t really go wrong when you meet as temple workers, now can you?

Monday: Grandma took the 3 of us to the Children’s Museum in Ogden. It was perfect for our little toddler. She loved running around, trying on costumes, riding horses, gardening, coloring, playing instruments and just being with Grandma. There was so much to do there, all of it was interesting to Leah, but, more importantly, it wasn’t overflowing with people like the Houston Children’s Museum always is. It was lovely.
Leah the Cowgirl

Waving to the rodeo mannequin

Smiling in her Pocahontas dress

Being crowned by Queen Grandma
Such a cute off-kilter little princess

Running her kingdom

Sean's contribution to the activity

Deciding on her next decree

Leah finally let Sean have a ride

Tuesday: We played at home with Grandma and Grandpa and I made dinner – the least I could do for my wonderful family and all they do for us. That evening Joanna came up with her boyfriend and I got to spend some time with them. They even helped me bathe Sean and put the kids to bed. I love that wild child.

Wednesday: Our last full day in Utah and we spent it in Salt Lake. First we visited with my dearest friend Liggs and her little man Wa’akea. I got to see Papi Ligget for a little bit too – no one gives tighter squeezes than Papi. It was a priceless morning spent with my friend. Leah and Grandma walked around outside and Liggs and I chatted over babies. I’m so sad we forgot to take pictures, but that morning lightened my heart so much. I miss Liggs immensely. I’m trying hard to convince both Liggs and Patch to move to Texas. Hmm. We’ll see.

After our lovely visit, we met my friend Hsin Yao in Temple Square. She’s working for the Church and finishing up her PhD at BYU but took the time to wander around the beautiful square with us. We took some pictures and enjoyed the perfect fall weather while chatting. Heavenly.

Leah loved the fall colors and weather

Hsin Yao and Seannie

What a nice looking group

We took TRAX back to the Little America Hotel where we ate lunch with Brad’s Aunt Liz. I love that lady; she’s been all over the world. She’s also an author and told me that she’s dedicating her latest book to Mom Reynolds, which is awesome, especially since her publisher’s decided on a spicy title for it. Mom had a good laugh on that.

I am so grateful for the time the kids and I had with our family. Sean and Leah are growing so quickly that we jumped at a chance to visit our family so they can remember their grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins. The greatest treasure we have on earth is that of our family and I thank my Father in Heaven every day for those wonderful people.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Utah trip part two

Thursday: Our first day in Utah was hectic, and with the interrupted sleep we all (didn’t) enjoy we needed to stay close to home the next day. Leah was attached to Grandma’s hip and left her alone long enough to play the organ and applaud her own efforts. She loved it!
Play a masterpiece

And applaud!
We dined with Patch, her husband Chris, and her son Oliver that night. Leah and I brought Oliver some soft alphabet blocks that spelled out “OLIVER” and a bird (that looked a lot like the twitter bird – wholly unintentional) that I sewed for him. Did I mention how much I love my new sewing machine? We snapped a few pictures after dinner for posterity.
"Sean, be sure to drool for the picture. Good job, buddy!"

Oliver was impressed with the amount of drool Sean produces.

Who's a handful? You are!

I think Leah saw a plane. She discovered a sky full of planes while at Grandma's house and has had her head in the clouds ever since.

Friday: We headed up to my brother Barry’s in-laws’ house in Brigham City first thing in the morning to have some yummy oven apple pancakes. Yum! We had fun catching up. I’m so proud of Barry and all that he’s done with his business over the last couple years. Emily, of course, never ceases to amaze me with her gardening and canning abilities. Someday, when we have the resources (meaning: space) I’ll be turning to her for help on how to harvest our own pantry full of goodies for the winter. She even canned chicken this year.

My cousin Sandra and her husband and 3 sons came for lunch. By then, Leah was exhausted and willingly cuddled with her Uncle Barry. Lucky man. We headed home to spend the evening with Grandma and Grandpa, but I had to make a quick run to Salt Lake to pick up my cell phone. It had gotten lost in the shuffle on my whirlwind trip to Provo and Joanna was kind enough to collect it for me. I got to see her getting her hair and makeup done for the fashion show she took part in. Wish I could have made it the actual show, but at that point I needed to get home. The trip home was horrendous, 3 traffic accidents and a migraine meant it took over an hour to make it back. Yech. I grabbed some ibuprofen from a Walgreens on the way home and the sweet lady at the check out counter could tell I was in pain. She offered me some chocolate and sympathy. It was lovely to get home, eat dinner, and relax while the ibuprofen kicked in.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Tt . ndkk,m

I walked away from my computer to take care of dinner and Leah decided to start my latest blog post with a personal message. So, if you don’t understand the title of this post, you’ll need to speak with my 23 month old daughter.

It is autumn in Texas and the weather is wacky. Today I spent the day with the fans on and tomorrow is supposed to be fairly chilly. I am adjusting to the quirky behavior of Texas seasons and am quite relieved that cooler weather is upon us.

Speaking of cooler weather, the kids and I thoroughly enjoyed our trip out to Utah to stay with Grandma and Grandpa Reynolds for a week. The weather was perfectly gorgeous and autumnal enough to satisfy my little heart. Autumn is my favorite season and Utah delivers beautifully on cool, crisp days filled with vibrant colors.

Grandma Reynolds flew out to Houston the week before and we got to play with her before we left Brad alone at home to fly to Utah. It was a relief to have Mom Reynolds there to help me with the kids on the plane. They both fell fast asleep on the ride from the airport up to Grandma and Grandpa's house.

Upon arriving at the house, Leah took off with Grandma with nary a glance back to her poor mother. The extra days with Grandma at home meant Leah was fully devoted to her by the time we got to Utah.
Reading "Little Blue Truck" with Grandma Reynolds.

She had fun picking apples with both grandparents, but wasn’t quite warmed up to Grandpa yet.
They waited until Leah arrived to pick they apples so she could help. How sweet is that?
"Don't make eye contact and maybe I'll be ok..."

Sean was thrilled with Grandpa because he got down on the ground and played with him within minutes of our arrival. All you have to do to win Sean’s heart is get down on his level.

That night I took the train to Provo to catch up with Nicole at her bridal shower. We were roommates for 2 years and I was thrilled to learn she was engaged. In fact, she was the catalyst for the trip out to Utah. I was able to chat with her a little and help her prepare some wedding invitations before I had to run out the door with Joanna, another former roommate, to catch up with my friend Ally (who was wedding dress shopping – Woohoo!) to get a ride back north with her mom. Phew! It was a quick reunion, but we were able to spend more time together later in the week. It was a crazy first day in Utah, but seeing my dear friends was worth the exhaustion. I love those girls.

Friday, November 1, 2013

All is Well

Just a quick update: Sean's neurologist says he is an incredibly healthy little man. She was impressed with his physical abilities and confirmed that he seems to have left behind whatever caused the seizures he suffered. We'll have another check-up in a few months to make sure everything is going well. I'll post soon about our little jaunt out to Utah and the adorableness that was my children on Halloween.

Happy November!

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Not again

My sweet, snuggly, happy little son had another seizure this morning. It happened while I was feeding him, again. The 3 seizures that he's had have been while feeding him and when he's tired. Because the EEG came back clean, the doctor ordered an MRI, which will happen in Galveston, some blood tests, and a meeting with a neurologist. The nurses tried drawing blood, but after lots of probing, some pinching and poking with needles, they weren't sure if they had enough blood for all 3 tests. Poor Seannie was very sad and cried dreadfully whilst looking at the nurses with accusing eyes. They all felt terrible for causing him so much pain and heartache, but it had to be done. Poor little man left the office with 2 bandaged arms and a bandaged hand. Sometimes those chubby little arms and hands are problematic.

On the way out to pick up Leah, the office left a message saying that there were no neurologists available in the near future in our area so they were transferring Sean's records up to Texas Children's. My friend Andrea, who babysat Leah for me, is an RN and she said this is probably the greatest blessing for us at this time. Texas Children's, of course, specializes in children, we will meet with a doctor who is experienced in the areas we need, and any procedures that might need to happen, like a lumbar puncture, will be done by someone who has much more experience than would happen here. So, that is a relief.

More good news: Sean weighed in at 18 lbs, 26.75 inches long. He's a tall boy. He'll outgrow his carseat in 2.25 inches or 4 pounds. Phew! Brad and I were talking about cars and carseats the other night. We plan on staying with one car for a few more years, but if we have another baby after next year, we'll have to fit 3 car seats in the back seat. Fortunately, one short Google search later, I found a blog post written answering the question: do 3 car seats fit in the back of a Toyota Camry? I love Google. Apparently, it will work. It'll be a tight fit, but we will save so much money by staying with one car for as long as possible. And as long as the next pregnancy isn't twins, we'll be fine.

Sean is gurgling and making spit bubbles and looking drowsier by the moment. I'm going to go cuddle with him now.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Celebrating 5 months of Life

So, here is our little man, all of 5 months old. How did we celebrate his 5 month birthday? With an EEG, of course. Sean has had a couple seizures over the last 2 weeks and his pediatrician ordered an EEG to figure out what was going on. So, I dropped Leah off at a friend’s house and headed down to Galveston. Naturally, the last 2 weeks has been clear and mostly dry, but the day I have to drive 40 minutes to Galveston Island the weather is dark and pouring rain. Yech.

The EEG wasn’t the most pleasant experience of Sean’s short life. The technician drew marks all around his head with a black pencil, then scrubbed them, then stuck 20 electrodes on his tiny head with glue. Poor Sean, the calmest, happiest baby you’ll meet, screamed the whole time. I have never heard him scream before and it broke my heart. Then the tech wrapped his whole head in a bandage to secure the wires in place and he looked like a sad little baby with a head injury. Not unlike my brother Nathan after he slammed through the front windshield of a car.
Of course, this was just days after Barry had his own bike accident. Barry was jealous that Nathan's accident was in the newspaper, even though Barry got a ride home in a police car.
After another hour or so we were finally done. We headed back to get Leah and stayed to visit a bit with my sweet friend and her energetic son. A couple hours later we got a call saying Sean’s doctor reviewed the test and everything was normal. As far as Brad and I can figure, the 2 times Sean has had seizures he has also been overheated. So, our goal is to keep our little guy cool. Watching my son go through a seizure is a very scary thing that I do not ever want to repeat again. Needless to say, it’s been a rough couple weeks with this worrying my mind. I am very grateful that there doesn’t seem to be anything major wrong, we just need to be careful in this Texas heat, I guess.
Short sleeved pajamas!

All in all, I’m feeling very blessed with the wonderful family I have. My husband is so in love with our children, takes such wonderful care of all of us and treats me like a queen. My daughter is happy, affectionate, and funny. My son is such a sweet, loving little guy. Our parents have been very supportive and helpful while we try not to worry too much about something we can’t control. Every squeeze, kiss, giggle and smile is a reminder of how blessed I am.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Busy Hands

If anyone is curious about what I've been up to for the last several months or so, besides giving birth and keeping my children happy and healthy, here are some of the projects I've been working on:

I actually started this cross stitch project before Sean was born, thinking I would make it for a friend. But then, as the months passed, I realized it was going to take a very long time to finish. Then I found out I was pregnant, and finished it in time for little Sean. Perfect! I started another counted cross stitch for a gift, but it will also take a while to finish. My cross stitching time is very limited.

Because I did a cross stitch and made a quilt for Leah, I felt it was only fair to also make him a quilt. My friend Sheri is an amazing quilter and helped me figure out a pattern I liked then designed it for me. It was a very good learning experience and I finished sewing it the night before Sean was born. So here’s the result:

Close up of the square patterns.

I backed Leah’s quilt with flannel, but now that we’re living in Texas I didn’t feel the need to use flannel.

Then, today, I made a new pillowcase for my body pillow. It was super quick, to my surprise. Both my children cooperated so I could whip it out. I also added more stuffing to the pillow since IKEA is stingy with their stuffing. Now I have a nice, fluffy pillow with a pretty case instead of a flat, lumpy pillow with a nasty lime green case. Such a nice change.

Today I am feeling so very grateful for my amazing sewing machine and my sweet husband who gave it to me for Mother’s Day.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Cute Excuses

I would say, "Whoops, I missed a couple months," but this little face is totally worth it.

One evening, after Leah was in bed, I was snuggling the little man and told Brad I wanted a picture because there weren't very many of me and Sean. Brad did point out that I tended to be nursing Sean whenever the camera came out, hence few pictures with me. So this was a rare moment of me being prepared, if tired and worn out, for a picture. Sean smiled at the perfect moment. He's such a good snuggler.

Leah is absolutely in love with her little brother. We heard a lot of warnings about jealousy, but Leah just loves her brother. She will talk to him, make him smile, and give him (often overwhelming) cuddles and kisses. She only gets frustrated when we limit her contact with him. Sean is patient and sweet in return. I know I have been blessed with two very sweet children.

On the news front, Leah is currently recovering from a double ear infection. Friday afternoon she woke up with a fever of 103 so I immediately called the doctor. While waiting for them to call back, we drove over to pick up Brad from work and Leah started vomiting. I dropped off Brad and Sean, and then Leah and I headed to the ER where they confirmed both ears were infected and prescribed medicine. We were there for over 2 hours and for the first hour waited in the internal waiting room by ourselves and the tv playing "Hoarders." Leah was content to lay sprawled across my chest and let me rub her back - a sure sign of illness. The girl is affectionate, but rarely cuddles for any length of time. She was a very good girl during our trip, and, I have to say, I feel very good about my housekeeping and storage abilities after watching an hour of "Hoarders."

So, that was a rough start to our weekend. Then I woke up on Saturday under the weather, so we all stayed home from church on Sunday. The thing about our apartment - we have crummy cell phone reception. So when Brad walked upstairs to get something he found he had several missed calls and voicemails. As did my phone upstairs. Turns out our bishop was frantically trying to reach us and finally left a message saying he was releasing me as 1st counselor in the Primary. He felt bad he had to do it over the phone, but I was fine with it. There was no way I was going to church that day, so it had to be done. Poor man sounded a little frazzled. And apparently we have a new primary, but I haven't a clue who's in it because my old primary president hasn't called me back. Just a little (lot) curious.

The counselor I talked to told me to take a week off so I have a feeling they already have another calling waiting for me. Brad and I are hoping that we will be able to go to Sunday school together at least once. That would be a nice change! I have loved serving the children in Primary, with all the struggles (pretty much only with adults) that come with the calling. We'll see if I keep serving in the Primary or where the Lord sends me next.

To finish, here's a couple more pictures of my excuses for not posting sooner:

Sunday, February 10, 2013

And we're back

February 10, 2013. That’s a long time between posts. I really do want to be more…consistent in my blogging so here’s to a new beginning. Today my sweet husband gave an incredible talk in church. He captivated the congregation with his charm and shared his well prepared study and insight into a beautiful topic – the Savior’s love. At one point he opened his soul and spoke about a very personal and spiritually intense experience he had. I was so proud of him for sharing so much. I know his faith is deep and firmly founded in Christ, and I was so happy that he was willing to go outside his comfort zone to share his testimony with others. I was a very proud wifey.

So, Brad does this thing with Leah where he’ll shake his finger at her and say, “Don’t overdo it,” and she shakes hers back and jabbers something in Leahese. Well, as Leah and I were sitting in the congregation listening to Brad, and he started going into the story that was pretty intense, Leah suddenly started shaking her finger at him and jabbering. I could just hear her saying, “Don’t overdo it, Daddy!” I couldn’t help laughing and tried to sober up because I didn’t want to distract Brad. It was pretty funny and we couldn’t wait to tell him about it when church was finished. He couldn’t wait to tell us that the first person to grab him after the meeting ended (and she rushed over there) didn’t want to congratulate him but to give a passionate plea against us circumcising our son. Not that we had mentioned that. To anyone. Ever. Poor Brad, spiritually drained from his talk, and pretty darn hungry to boot, could only say, “Uhm. Thank you for that,” and go on his way. We’ve had some good chuckles about it.

I’m signing off since I don’t want to overdo it. Leah and Brad make sure I keep that in mind lately. I will try to be back soon, though. Really.