Friday, February 27, 2009

Update on Hawaii

As I've said before, Ryan is in Hawaii right now at a construction competition, specifically the ABC competition. 20 teams go there is groups about 4-5 people and compete by representing themselves as if they were building a specified project from the ground up, organizing all that needs to be done succesfully. It is actually a real project in the works right now this year so it'll be interesting to see what all the teams come up with. So yesterday after a day of bidding with sub-contractors, they had to turn in a huge load of work that would detirmine the top 5 teams that would be able to present. So keep in mind that all 20 teams go there hoping to present this info they've put together over the last month, and then only 5 are actually chosen to present, today. Yesterday they posted the list with the top 5 groups and BYU was on it! It was a relief considering how much work they've put into this and now they get a chance to prove it. And out of the top 5, BYU was the only returning team. So they present today and find out who wins tomorrow. So everyone say a little prayer today that they do well. I will keep everyone updated as we find out more. This is all really important because if they do win, Ryan will have an even greater chance of recieving a job offer, maybe even in Hawaii, and in this economy, we will take all the help we can get to be noticed. Today Ollie and I are off to Arizona to visit some best friends, cousins, and grandparents and we are excited! I will try to post as often as I hear anything, I know you're all on the edge of your seats, as I am!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Knott's Berry Farm

Today my mom took us to Knott's Berry Farm, and this being Ollie's first time, it was quite the memorable experience. Oliver went on every ride he was allowed to and although sometimes seeming a little panicked, never had a melt down or wimped out. Scratch that, he refused to go on a plane ride by himself, he's not even 2 yet, give the kid a break! Grandma got him a Snoopy stuffed animal which he loved and a huge sucker which he loved even more. The place was totally empty so there was no waiting and no crowds. It was a perfect day. Even off a half hour nap, he was unphased, totally on a high from all the action. He even went on the log ride! I accompanied him although two boxes highlighted back problems and a growing fetus, check check. But really, the log ride...piece of cake. The large drop in the end may have been a little much for the lad because I'm pretty sure he didn't breath again till we got off. He loved it though. And he LOVED watching the huge roller coasters and watching his Aunt Chelsea go on a few. When she came off them, it was like, "Wow Chelsea, you're my hero, you survived!". SO funny. I'm pretty sure he'll be the crazy boy who will go on anything, no doubt. All in all, it was a wonderful day and full of memories. We went to Knott's often as kids because my mom grew up as a little girl just around the corner. I have some great memories from there. These are Chelsea's pictures but I took some also, just haven't gotten them on here yet so I might post a few more cute ones later.

Word Verification

I just went online to search for the purpose of word verification. So I saw a few things that made sense but nothing to convince me of it's absolute need. I really dislike word verifications. So I'm sorry if your blog has one, I'm sure for good reason, but it makes me skip commenting because it's just that much more work. Ok I'm done. I'll try to be more patient next time. It sort of reminds me of indexing...but at least then I'm being productive and reading cool names like Otis and Violet.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Adventures at KidSpace Museum

This was a huge climbing tower and he made it about half way up before realizing how high he was, then I had to coax him down.Here's the tube where the bees would come in and out. It said that they do a bee dance to let the other bees know where they found all the good stuff to eat.
Since watching Winnie the Pooh, Ollie has a whole new love for bees. I wonder if we can build one of these in our future home.
Look at that concentration. It's amazing to see how little boys take play so seriously. It is their JOB!
The beginning of the drenching.

Mom, do I look super hard core? Too bad they didn't have skateboards. I can see the injuries and lawsuits now...
Oh the excitement of it all!
You could paint this leaf with water colors and then a waterfall would come on and blend all the colors and wash them away. At first I was like, oh yeah, let him play, no biggie. But then the mom always takes over and you just snap, and then you're done with the messy paint. Fun while it lasted:)
The beginning of a game of chase.
Look how closely he inspects that hand in the flower, like, could that really be mine?

Ollie and I decided to take advantage of the beautiful sunny day and go to the museum. A few of the highlights were riding cool bikes with helmets on. Ollie felt like such a big kid with his helmet. We got to see a nest of bees making honey and they would come in and out from the outside through a tube. They marked the queen with a spot but we could never find her. By far the coolest part for Oliver were the squirt guns that you'd shoot to hit all sorts of drums and makes lots of noise. He was drenched by the end and loved every minute. Well after 3 hours, Oliver still was not done and I could have lasted even longer because there was so much to do and so much sun outside. But naptime approached so the day was over and Ollie crashed. It was well worth the money. What shall we do tomorrow, beach maybe?

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Some pictures for Dad

Just had to include a few cute pictures of Ollie's for my sweet hubby to see. Don't worry babe, he is as rascally as ever and still very cute:) And for those of you who are curious, here's a shot of my new darker hair. I really like it and the fact that I don't have to pay to get it done now, very easy. I'm sure I will want to switch back lighter soon enough but the change is fun for now. We are still having a great time in California. My back is feeling a million times better and I'm grateful to be young and heal fast. Oliver is having fun torturing Chelsea's cat, taking long walks not in snow, playing with Jeff whom he idolizes:), taking care of his baby cousin Carson by stroking his head, and bonding with Chelsea over Classic Disney movies. Every time I talk to Ry I miss him so much but am also grateful to be here cause I can tell that he is crazy busy. It's nice not to be a distraction when there's so much to be done. He goes to Hawaii in less than a week and they are feeling good about their work. We are proud of you baby and pray for all to go well, you're the best.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Crazy February Update

Since returning from Christmas break, life at our house has been a little different. Think single mother:) Ok not really because I still have my wonderful husband but let's count the # of things he is doing...School full time (21 credits), Part-time work (15 hour a week), Construction Competition in Hawaii (about 15 hrs a week or more), Sunday School Presidency for the Stake (Sundays and then some) and just joined a band...hmmmmm that leaves just about no extra time for that poor guy. The good news is, the competition in Hawaii is at the end of this month. These boys are in it to win it, so it is very worth the amount of time they put into it to do their best. So fingers crossed that they win! Today Ryan drove all the way to Reno all by himself, 7 hours all alone bless his heart. There's a competiton there that he's not officially part of but is still nice to be at because there's a million companies there and the more exposure you can get in this economy, the better. Even though jobs are hard to come by right now, I have always been peacefully assured that we will be just fine. I know Ryan will get a job, he has earned that and it's nice to know it's a priority to him to take care of business. He's so great. And he's staying with my wonderful friend Court which really makes me wish I was there, so thanks guys for taking care of him. So, as for Ollie and I? We are in La Canada! We flew into Oakland to hang out with my sister Leah and Steve and their new baby Carson, then today we road tripped it to the parents house. It is so rainy, everything is gorgeous and green. Quite the difference from Utah in Feb:) So for the next few weeks we'll be here soaking in all the family and friends we can and giving Ryan his much needed space to take care of all the things he has on his plate. We sure miss him. He's been talking to Ollie on the phone and it's so funny cause Ols listens so carefully and every once and a while says, "si". In other news, I completely threw my back out doing who knows what. It's always a general progression till I basically can't move and I have to crawl to wherever I'm going. I mean, I'm 26, in pretty good shape, and this really should not happen to me so often. This has happened many times, but this time was worse than ever. I went to a chiropractor at Leah's and he felt my back and was like oh yeah, there is something definetely wrong here, you'll need an MRI to really see what needs to be done. Awesome. Over 3 days it's gradually gotten better and today I can walk upright and the pain is bearable. So if you're a person who has really bad back pain, I feel you and sympathize, it's so painful. I actually screamed out loud the other night in bed trying to roll over. I just need to get to the bottom of it because I've had bad back pain since high school so something is not right. I'm so glad it's feeling better and I know my sweet husband is praying me into health. So I figured, if I'm a temporary single mom this month, might as well be somewhere warmer, near lots of family to love, and wait out the rest of the month to welcome our hubby and daddy back from Hawaii. Can't wait.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

We've got a bowler on our hands

We took Ollie bowling last weekend and just had to capture a little of the excitement that this activity causes in him. I'll be honest, he was freaking out so much at times that I was like, "WOW, who's kid is THAT". What we got on video was very much toned down. The real hard part was figuring out that we all took turns, which was far too long to wait of course. I ended up forfeiting many turns cause it just meant so much more to him than me and it was so fun to watch his little face light up. The best was that there was a boy scout group bowling next to us who got so loud and excited, Oliver was in complete heaven watching the "big boys" and he just felt like one of them I think. He is so funny.

Thursday, February 5, 2009


I've been reading this really wonderful book, "Love as a way of life" by Gary Chapman, the same author of "The five love languages". Both are really great books and are those types of books to keep around and read over again when you just need that little reminder. Anyways, the book asks that you as an individual remember certain acts of kindness you did or saw. I love the following excerpt from the book...
Try to visualize every person you meet as: Valuable beyond measure, Gifted, Born for a unique role in life, Capable of receiving and reciprocating true love. (Essentially the way God views each of us, hmmmm, sounds familiar:)

So here are a few acts of kindness I did lately:
-I saw a homeless man in the parking lot of Wal-Mart and instead of just handing him a few dollars, I parked my car and walked over to him to ask what specifically I could do to help. Did he need anything from inside the store, did he just need money? What was his situation? So he said that he and his wife and kids were trying to get to Texas and his wife was expecting another baby and they just needed to raise enough money to get there. Now I have a tendency from working with drug attics to be skeptical of stories but reminded myself that no matter what his story, he needed kindness and that was the point. Anyone willing to beg for money is always in need of help, always.
-As I got off the machine I was using at the gym, I saw an elderly woman was waiting for one to open up. When I walked past her I told her mine was open and then asked if she knew how to use it. She said she didn't, so I offered her help to get on it and program something for her to do. She seemed really grateful and her thanks was more kindness than I deserved.
-Ollie and I were grabbing a slice of pizza at Costco and I noticed an older man had just gotten a hot dog and was walking around by himself looking for somewhere to sit. I invited him to sit across from us and boy was I glad. I got to hear all sorts of stories from his life, how his wife had died of breast cancer, how he thought he'd never love again but then found another amazing woman, that both their families combined made up 13 kids, that he was visiting his son from Florida, and the list goes on. When we parted, he just said, "I am so pleased to meet you". It was enough to make my eyes fill with tears because he was just so sincere.

And here's a list of acts of kindness I saw:
-My sister-in-law Meg called me to ask if we wanted a babysitter to go out. She didn't wait for me to call her, she just called and offered and was genuinely happy to do it.
-My sweet husband tells me every day how beautiful I am and does about a million small things to make me know he loves me. I can call to tell him the smallest, dumbest thing of my day and he always is way into it, like I'm the funniest girl ever. He's never like, hey I'm busy, and this doesn't really concern me, can we talk later? Never has he said that to me.
-My sweet sister Laura came by a little while ago when I was sick, and watched Ollie, made us both dinner, and cleaned the house cause she knew it was driving me nuts that I couldn't do it. She also watches Ollie as often as I need her.
-Our home teachers asked if we needed anything and for once we were like, yeah, we need to go to the temple, and they said, we're here, let us know what time. What a blessing.
-When I was going to my sister Leah's house, I missed my flight and was really upset. Leah called my mom to tell her what happened and my mom called me right away and her and my dad were like, you are getting on a flight, whatever it takes! They didn't rub in the fact that I had missed my flight, which was dumb and totally my fault, they just wanted me to be happy. As I'm on the phone with my mom, my dad's like, head to Southwest, it's already taken care of. This is one of the many amazing acts of kindness my parents are capable of.
-Over Christmas break we all got strep throat and at one point I was feeling so bad I just burst into tears and Ollie saw and put both his arms around me and said, "tis ok" in his sweet little baby voice even though he was sick too and had a horrible temperature.
The list goes on, trust me, but I just love to remember how many blessings we can receive and give, it really does amaze me. And I definitely need to work harder, and I will.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Sticks and Stones

So I was telling Ryan this funny story of Oliver yesterday and he said it was totally blog worthy and I should write something about it. And it's true, there are so many random funny things that happen daily that really should be documented. So yesterday, we were at the duck pond near campus to feed the ducks all sorts of scraps we'd be saving. So I have a few things I struggle with at the pond. First off, in general I think birds are really dirty and when they ruffle their feathers, I envision this powdery filth coming off of them into all of our lungs. Gross I know. Secondly, these particular ducks are really aggressive and Ollie takes just a little too long to throw their bread so they snatch it out of his hand. I know he won't get bit, or hope I guess, but their persistence either makes him cry or get really angry and he starts hitting at them or kicking them. Either way it's an ordeal, but so funny to watch. Another pond factor this time of year is the mud/snow. It's been pretty warm and all the snow had watered down into massive muddy puddles. It's hard trying to tell a toddler to avoid a puddle because the mere fact of pointing it out sends their curiosity through the roof so that they MUST step right into it. The last and most difficult factor is the actual pond. Oliver is a no-boundaries sort of child. That coupled with the fact that he doesn't listen very well= drowning in ice cold, dirty poop, pond water. I kid you not that in all my time in taking Ollie to the pond, I have saved his life over a dozen times, and probably had myself a few minor heart-attacks. So to the funny part. Oliver sort of started this game with himself. He would pick up a rock or stick and inspect it really thoroughly. If it didn't pass the test, he would discard it immediately and go looking for the next candidate. When he found just the right stick, he would barrel full speed down towards the pond and throw it in, while standing on the very edge, almost falling in every time. Oh my heart. Every time, I just ran after him and held his shirt in my hands so he wouldn't fall in. Then back we'd go to search again for the right stick or stone. It was quite the process to watch and even funnier when the items didn't pass the test cause Ollie would look disgusted and throw them really far away or really hard, like how dare they. So he found a few out of the many that passed and would be thrown into the pond. The last trip down, at full speed, he slipped near the edge and slid through the mud on his bum only to be saved by yours truly before plummeting to a certain fate. Oh my gosh, my heart must have been beating out of my chest. Well his bum was covered in probably half poop, half mud so it was about time to go home. But man, every time I take him to the pond I think, why do I do this, it stresses me out! But then I think of how patient he is with the cold and how often he stays inside and on sunny days, it's just what needs to be done. Sorry no pictures of the escapade. I avoid bringing my camera because that would be a safety violation for my son's life:)

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Happy Birthday Mom

I just wanted to wish my wonderful mom a happy birthday today! One of my favorite memories with my mom was when she came up just before Oliver's birth to be there and help for the whole process. She spent a lot of time and money I'm sure to be there and take care of us, it meant so much to have her there. And it's not often I get to have my mom all to myself so that was really fun to share with her one of the best experiences of my life. It's something we'll always have together and I love her so much!