Thursday, February 28, 2008

Turn the Page

(The title of this post has no reference to the incident that occurred between my sisters and me when I was a young, ultra sensitive child. I can still picture them spinning me around and around while chanting, "Turn the Page! Turn the Page!" To this day, I can't figure out why I just cried and cried instead of sitting down or walking away so they couldn't spin me.)

Carson surprised me with his supreme intelligence and fine motor skills in this little video. He must have heard me say, "I think that was an accident," and felt he had to prove himself.

P.S. Thanks to Julie, we finally have a cute blog template! She showed me how to get it here.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

The Intrinsic Wonder of the Human Body

Carson meets Great-Grandpa

I'm not even sure what the word 'intrinsic' means in the title of this post, but it sure sounds good. That may have been the title of my anatomy textbook.

So, yesterday Carson and I made a stop by the hospital to see Grandpa. We were able to visit with him for only a few seconds, and then we watched as he was moved him from his hospital bed to a stretcher to load him into a van and take him back to his assisted living center. Poor grandpa has been through countless transfers like these in the past couple of years, due to a myriad of health problems. Yesterday, he was in pain, uncomfortable, and (understandably) depressed.

As we left the hospital, it struck me that I was holding a very fresh, perfectly healthy 3-month-old little boy who's body might one day be in a state similar to the deteriorating 80-something-year-old man we had just seen. What an incredible change our bodies go through during the course of our lives!!

Not long after our visit with Grandpa, Carson and I set out on our daily jog. (Well, my jog; Carson's nap time in the jogging stroller.) It was FINALLY warm enough to go out in short sleeves and without bundling Carson up to the point of near suffocation. As I ran, I felt so incredibly grateful for my body! I have legs that can run and walk, arms that can hold my baby, and a mouth that can talk and taste ice cream. Obviously, the list of functions our bodies can perform is endless. Isn't it just neat??

So, yesterday I re-discovered how wonderful my body is, despite its lack of perfect proportions. I also was struck with the realization that, due to aging or accidents, I may not always be able to run, hold a baby, and taste ice cream. (I'm really hoping the taste buds keep going strong, though.) With the aging process unavoidable, I am extra grateful that I believe in a resurrection: a reuniting of Spirit with a perfect body.

For now, Carson and I will just keep taking care of our bodies. He knows what it's like to be in the hospital, and we'll keep him from going back there as long as we can! (Just mentioning Carson's hospital stay led me to reminisce about his birth...) Just look at this tiny body:

"I believe in the wonders of the human body and the miracle of the human mind. Take the human body alone—the chance that all the functions of the individual would just happen is a statistical monstrosity. Our bodies were designed by our Eternal Father to be the tabernacle of our eternal spirits."

-Gordon B. Hinckley

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

L is for Love

We had a lovely Valentine's Day, and then continued the celebration of love through President's Day weekend.

On the evening of V-day, Rick had to teach his Cambodian class, and then we were slotted to participate in a Valentine's dance at a local nursing home, so we had a romantic Valentine's LUNCH instead of dinner! I converted our apartment into a fancy restaurant, and the meal turned out to be delicious!! (I will post the recipe in the comments section, if anyone is interested.)

So, our lunch was lovely, and so are my pearl earrings and necklace. Good job, Rick! That evening, Carson was the hit of the nursing home dance with his safety-pinned heart.

Rick also celebrated the holidays by finally getting over his nasty cold and his nice case of pinkeye. Pink was nice for Valentine's Day, but we sure are glad he's all better!!

On Monday, we continued our tradition of eating the amazingly delicious pancakes at Magleby's Fresh for breakfast. They are seriously amazing. We went there for our one year anniversary back in December, and we've been craving them ever since. We LOVE that the pancakes include free re-orders. You can see my 3 empty plates...

We also LOVE our nieces and nephews. For another celebration of Valentine's and President's Day, we went sledding with Alison and Wilson. Despite an intense fear of deer, the two little ones were very brave and fun sledding partners!

Carson LOVES his Bumbo chair from his aunt Jeanel. He can now sit up like a big boy and watch mom make dinner!

Finally, it is obvious that we LOVE taking videos of Carson. His new favorite activity is sucking on his hands. Rick and I have independently taken several videos of the hand sucking. I'll only share two of them. :)

We LOVE this boy!!!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Baby's First Jeans!

"JEANS!!!" Carson is very excited.

Today I was digging through the seemingly bottomless tupperware of cute baby boy hand-me-downs from my SIL Jeanel. It won't be long before Carson's into the 3-6 month size clothes!! So, today I found a winner: jeans!! I haven't been able to stop looking at him all day; he looks so cute. Just in case you want to look at him all day too, here are the results from his photo shoot.

Note the cute socks/tennis shoes!

He's also sporting the high school cheerleader style of rolling his elastic over one time. Unlike the girls, Carson is not trying to show more leg.

"Wait a second... is that MY foot???"

"Done with the pictures yet??"

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

The Perfect Valentine's Gift

I recently read a cute little story that could make Valentine's Day a little more meaningful for all of us. The author, Emily Watts, finally breaks down one Valentine's Day and tells her husband what she wants instead of expecting him to read her mind. (I, on the other hand, haven't been married long enough yet to give up on that expectation.) Emily really wants a pair of sterling silver earrings. Valentine's Day arrives, and Emily's husband, happy to have the mind reading eliminated this year, is very eager for her to open the gift. She excitedly opens the little box to find... sterling silver earrings! In the shape of... dinosaurs.

Had I been in this situation, I think at this point the little dinosaurs would have been either under the bed or out the window, depending on how far I could have thrown them. The tears would have begun immediately. (Again, I haven't been married long enogh to mature in some areas.) However, the author makes a wonderfully interesting point. She says that when she opened the earrings, she imagined a balance in her mind. (Like, the kind with two little hangy plates that they used a long time ago to weigh things.) On one side of the balance, she mentally put all the great things about her husband. He is faithful; he works hard every day to support his family; he's extremely caring; he's a worthy priesthood holder; he takes care of the children; and the list goes on and on. On the other side of the balance, she puts those silly sterling silver earrings in the shape of dinosaurs.

That Valentine's Day, she smiled and thanked him for the earrings, grateful not so much for the gift, but for the wonderful husband she had married and would be with forever.

Isn't that a great way to think of things??? I am now going to adopt the 'balance' thinking whenever I'm disappointed or on the verge of getting angry. I think I can get over my husband leaving his dirty socks on the floor once in a while when his innumerable good qualities have the balance practically tipping over, it's so lopsided. The 'balance' thinking even works with babies: Carson's dirty diapers and few fussy times are on one side of the balance, while his smiles and cuteness and my hopes for his future are weighing down the other.

So, that's my most recent lesson learned.

Although I wouldn't complain if I got a really, really nice Valentine's Day gift.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Strike on Tummy Time

If you've ever read a book or talked to a health professional about infant development, you're sure to have heard about the importance of tummy time. It helps them develop not only their neck muscles, but pretty much all the muscles they'll need to eventually crawl and become a functioning member of society. Some books and articles emphasize tummy time so much, you're convince your child will fail kindergarten if he doesn't spend at least 15 minutes a day on his tummy. So, what do you do if your child won't STAND even a minute of tummy time??

Carson's "tummy times" either quickly turn into "back times," or are met with a piercing scream that would make anyone quickly pick the boy up off his tummy.

He has also recently been doing this thing where he makes his body extremely stiff, like he's flexing all the muscles in his lower half.

In short, Carson is winning the battle over tummy time.

He sure is cute though!

Wednesday, February 6, 2008


After days and nights full of diapers, spit up, nursing, baby talk, baby play, baby baths, cooking, grocery shopping, working (or trying to) from home, laundry, dishes, etc... It was so nice to have a girls' night last night!!!

Many thanks to Jackie for hosting us, and to Britt, Kim, Laney, Ashley, Christy, Beth, Emily, Carly and Tiffany for the conversation and friendship.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Our Big Adventure

We couldn't pass up the opportunity to attend President Hinckley's viewing on Friday. We'll only be Utah residents for a couple more months, and we'll miss living so close to SLC and the church's headquarters.

Allow me to document the sequence of events that occurred Friday night:

We left at about 2:00 pm, hoping to beat the rush of people going to the viewing after the work day had ended. (I was planning on being home in time to spend the entire evening preparing my talk for Stake Conference.) We took Trax for the first time, leaving our car at what we thought was the nearest Trax station. (More on that later.) When we got to the conference center, we couldn't believe the humongous line that curled all the way around the building. Undaunted, we got in the line and began to wait. Two hours, one very whiny kid behind us, and one Hispanic lady whom we let cut in front of us later, we finally entered the doors of the conference center and left the 20 degree weather behind. When we walked through the doors, we saw... more lines! We asked a security guard how much longer it would be. He said, "another 2 hours. I wouldn't take my kid." Thanks a lot. But he turned out to be very helpful, finding us a room where we could feed and change the baby, and then allowing us to jump in line a little closer to our destination.

President Hinckley was a picture of perfect peace. Rick commented afterwards that this was probably the closest to perfection we've ever seen.

We left the conference center and jumped back on Trax (now about 7:3o pm). We rode it to the last station in Sandy and got off, ready to jump into a warm car. Hmmm, where is the car? We walked all around a very unfamiliar parking lot, desperately trying to figure out where on earth we could have parked. We realized that perhaps this was the wrong station. After riding back and forth on Trax a few more times, we finally wised up and looked at the ticket we'd purchased in the beginning! There in my pocket was the answer to the mystery of the lost car: the name of the station where we had parked. The car was found, and we were on our way with a cold and hungry baby. (As the picture shows, we had squeezed into the only semi-available spot in the lot, involving Rick using his bare hands to clear away some snow.)

I only wish the story ended here. Since we were all starving, and we had a gift card to a restaurant, we decided to grab a bite to eat and feed the baby there instead of heading home right away. Well, poor Carson was all out of sorts from the long and crazy day, so nursing in the restaurant didn't go too well. There were nursing covers, milk, and limbs all over the place. I attempted to go out to the car and nurse him there with little success. We quickly ate our food while Carson snacked on a pacifier and then made a quick escape. As soon as we got to the car, I was hit with an unfortunately familiar sinking feeling. The keys were IN THE CAR. And the car was LOCKED.

Well, we finally made it home barely before Friday had turned into Saturday. Thanks to the Johnsons in our ward for picking us up from the restaurant. :)

As you can imagine, this day was not pleasant for us, save the few seconds in which we paid our respects to the prophet. We had to sacrifice one afternoon to see him. I later realized that he sacrificed well over 70 YEARS in our service. I'm ok with having given up one measly afternoon.