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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!