Friday, January 29, 2010

Some Christmas Eve Pictures.... Again

I finally got my Mom's camera with Christmas Eve pictures on it, so why not post them a month later??? We have a tradition of getting together on Christmas Eve, Acting out the Nativity while Scriptures are read, Sing Christmas Songs until Santa comes, Sit on Santa's lap and then eat sandwiches and goodies. This year was no exception.
We started the festivities with the Nativity
Uncle Ben was the narrator and this year we sang songs at different times in the story.
Here is most of the cast. Some of the kids are getting a little old and some are a little too young to get it, but we always make due with what we have. And it always turns out great!
Anna was the lucky Piano player and I got to lead the music. It was fun, but I pretty much did solos for each song.... Not so fun for those that had to hear my voice! (Look at my cute pregnant sister, doesn't she look great!)
Here is the "cowboy Shepard!" The outfit was a bit big so Ethan held it up and showed off his boots the whole time. Silly boy just loves his boots!
This is the only good picture of Katelee as an angel. Of course she looks just the same as always because she is our little angel! (note the sarcasm)
And here is the cutest donkey I have ever seen, and a talented one at that! Madilynn had to hold the baby Jesus the whole time. She is such a little girl!
Here are my kids waiting to eat.... I can't believe they were actually sitting still for a bit!
Then we sang a little and in came this guy....
I love this picture because Ethan is looking in awe at Santa. He was so excited this year.... It really made Christmas a whole lot more fun with him so excited!
Katelee is normally okay with strangers unless they are wearing too much read and a huge white funky beard! She was not having it at ALL!!!!
Ethan did a good job and loved it!
When Santa left we started to eat, but not Ethan he was watching Santa leave. We had told him so many stories of Elves, Reindeer and such that I think he was hoping to see Santa fly off into the sky. He is such a smart kid, all the other kids were too busy playing with their stuff or each other or eating.... But my son was watching Santa leave in hopes of catching a glimpse of something more!
Katelee got some stacking blocks, the girl loves to stack things, take them down and then stack them again! It's so cute....and thoughtful!
Ethan got a little dump truck and lost the brown bolder before we left that night! Doesn't that figure???
My cousin's house is huge and there is plenty of room to run, so Ethan did. He ran back and forth until his cheeks were nice and rosy and his asthma was kicking in!
Katelee found a baby stroller and pushed it around forever. She was not too happy when we took it away from her to go to Grandma and Grandpa Nelson's house!
Once again we had a great Christmas. I love that my family and Chris's family have traditions. I think they are so fun. At times it is overwhelming to get them all in, but some how they just work out!

Meeting Some Baseball Players

(This is so typical of Ethan)

My parents have always had a softball park right by the house. Recently the fields got a HUGE make over and they now resemble 6 MLB fields. Monday was the Grand Opening and in celebration of it they were offering free admission and food. My parents took the kids over around 3:00 and let them enjoy the festivities. Ethan of course was in Heaven. First off he was outside, this always makes him happy, second there was sports involved. Ethan loves going to baseball games and they had a few games going on. Katelee loves it as well, she loves to go outside too..... While they were there a few Baseball players were there signing autographs and talking with the people there. Ethan and Katelee didn't have a clue who half the people were, but one day my Dad will explain to them how cool it was for him to meet them.

Ethan will WallyJoyner

Ethan and Jason Giambi

Madilynn with Wally Joyner

My mother will tell you she took this picture for Katelee, but really she just wanted a picture with Jason Giambi! :)

Katelee and Grandma with Wally Joyner

Katelee and Grandma with Bill Madlock

Ethan with Bill Madlock, he was a very nice guy. This is Ethan's excited face, fingers in/by mouth!

And here are two of my cousins kids with Wally Joyner. They were so excited because he plays the Bishop in The RM movie and they watch that all the time. Steph, you guys have the cutest kids!!!

Chris and I meet my parents at the ball park after work around 5:30 or 6. We got some free food and hung out for a while. Around 6:45 when we were ready to go Ethan and Katelee both did not want to go. They had been there for over 3 hours, almost 4.... It was freezing and they still wanted to stay.... I love the fact that my kids love to be outside so much. I hope that continues and they don't become those kind of kids that always want to be inside watching TV or playing video games.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Our January 2010

There are moments in my life where I stop to breath and realize that I haven't really 'stopped' in a long time. I just noticed this today when I thought of updating my blog. We have done so many things, yet I haven't really had time to blog about them. Life has definitely been busy so far this year. The kids have taken turns getting sick, not sleeping through the night and definitely being grouchy, but all in all January has been a good month.
We started the year off with Touro's Winter Gala. I was so excited to go out with my husband on a formal date. We don't go out very often because I hate to impose on our parents to watch the kids all the time and we are too poor to pay someone to watch the kids... Any how, Anjali came over a did my hair all fancy like and we were off to the dance. I was able to meet some of Chris's school mates and get to know them better. They definitely are a fun group of people. They got the dancing started and we had a blast! I just wanted to put a picture of my hair from the back because I love when Anjali does it! I always feel so pretty! Thanks Anj, I love you!
The other day we woke up to a whole bunch of fog. It was crazy to see it all over the place, specially in VEGAS! Ethan didn't quite get the concept of fog and continues to this day to call it smog. Before we left for Grandma's I wanted to take some pictures.....
I told the kids to put their arms around each other and this is what they did! Silly kids, at least Katelee is touching Ethan!
The pictures didn't quite get the whole effect, but it works.
This is just in the complex, we couldn't even see the wall at the end of the road!

Once we got past Nellis the fog started to lift and this is what it looked like from behind!
The other day Aunt Anna called and asked what Ethan was doing on Saturday. Since Ethan is such a busy boy I checked his schedule and he was free. I told her and she asked if she and Uncle Enrique could take him to Disney on Ice with Madilynn. Of course I said yes and they had a blast. Aunt Anna and Uncle Enrique took my pictures and got a few pics of the kids.....
I wonder if they were watching Lion King, it looks like Ethan is growling.....
And again with the growling smile!
Of course Aunt Anna and Uncle Enrique got the kids toys and hats and they feed them all the sugar they could. I just love how much Ethan and Katelee's Aunts and Uncles do for them. They are always so willing to take them somewhere, play with them, talk with them, hold them or anything else they want! They have truly been blessed as well as Chris and I to have such great sisters and brothers!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Random Ethan-isms

The other day while eating lunch as a family Ethan out of nowhere says, "When Grandpa's knee hurts him, I laugh at him!"

The other night while brushing Ethan's teeth he says, "Mommy, why your belly getting bigger, you got a baby in there?" I want you all to know that I'm NOT pregnant and I have actually been doing an ab workout 3-4 times a week for a good month now.... Guess it's just not working!

We went to a UNLV Basketball game the other night and ever since then Ethan out of nowhere will say "re........bels, re........bels!" It's pretty crazy to be driving somewhere having a conversation with him and then out of nowhere hearing "re........bels!"

We had a lot of fog this morning and Ethan says, "What is that?" I told him is was fog. We are driving down the street and there is a whole bunch and he says, "Boy, it sure is smoggy out today!" Silly boy no matter how many times I corrected him he kept saying Smog or Smoggy!

Any time Ethan sees Football or Basketball on TV he will always say, "Go Cougars!"

The other day Ethan told me and Chris, "When I turn 6, I'm gonna buy Grandpa's jeep." Later my mom asked him how he was going to get the money to do that and he said as he put his head in his hand, "I'm going to work at the bank." For Ethan's sake lets hope he doesn't work at a bank when he gets older!

Last night Ethan called his Aunt Anna and told her, "It's raining, my doggy does not like to get wet!" I thought this one was cute because he called Soley 'his' doggy.

Katelee and Ethan have been sharing a little toy in the car the last few morning and Katelee isn't the best sharer yet, she was screaming when I made her give Ethan the toy for his turn. Ethan a looked at her and said in the sweetest tone, "Relax Katelee, when my turn is done you get it back!"

Lately if Ethan really likes something he will say, "This my favorite, in my life, ever!" I haven't quite figured out where he has picked this up from, but I'm sure one of us says it all the time!

And one of the newest things he says is, "When I was your age, I did that too!" Apparently Ethan is growing younger by the days!

We sure love this little guy in our lives, he continues to provides us many learning experiences. We have definitely learned to watch very closely what we say around him.....

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

My Workout Buddy

So Ethan loves to do whatever anyone else does. Every night after we put Katelee down Ethan gets to play quietly downstairs until it is his bed time. Most nights Chris and I try to get things done around the house during this time. Ethan is usually a very good boy while we do this. I have been trying to workout lately and this night decided to do so during Ethan's quite time to get it over with. I pulled out my floor mats and of course Ethan wanted one too. So I got him one too and we started our workout. Ethan was so darn cute. He laid there for a minute and then he started to try to do the exercises and I think for it being his first time he did a pretty good job! (Look at his legs moving back and forth)

(I just had to share this cute video!)

Thursday, January 7, 2010


You can always tell when Katelee doesn't feel very well, her eyes give her away.
It all started Sunday. Katelee got pretty warm at church and was very cuddly. She took a good nap after church but was still really warm. We had dinner at Grandma Alberta's and actually left early so we could get her home. Tylenol and Motrin would work for a little bit but never take her temperature back to normal. She was up that night burning up and whinny. We took her temperature in the middle of the night and it got to about 101.9. Monday my mom called me at work and told me that her fever was now at 102.5, so I called the Dr's nurse just to see what we might be able to do. After talking with the nurse about her other symptoms-NOTHING besides loss of appetite- we decided to have her seen that night. When we got to the Dr. her fever was still about 102.5-the girl was burning up and just seemed so sad. The Dr. looked her over and found nothing, she said she was PERFECT except for the fever. Of course this did not make me feel better, I don't like not having a reason for things, but it did make me feel better to know that she didn't have an ear infection or something like that. The Dr. suggested we give her a luke warm bath and really push liquids. We gave her a bath and before we could finish poor Katelee was shaking and shivering. I took her out and about 10 minutes later she calmed down. Once again she had a rough night where her fever got to about 103. She didn't want to sleep but I can't imagine she was able to get comfortable enough to sleep being that hot. Finally Tuesday afternoon her fever came back down closer to normal and that night it was ideal. However Tuesday and Wednesday night she didn't sleep well at all. Last night she woke up around 3:30am fussing and it turned into a blood curdling cry around 4am. She didn't want to be held but if you put her down she would scream louder. She had no idea what she really wanted. I even took her downstairs and gave her some toys and yogurt to see if she would be happy, but none of that worked. I called the nurse on the way to drop the kids off to see if there was something I was missing. She recommended I bring her in in case they overlooked something and our FAVORITE Dr. had an opening in 20 minutes. I dropped Ethan off at my mom's house and headed over there. He came into the room talked with me for a moment and then came over to listen to her heart and said "oh, I should have just looked at her, she has Roseola." I was actually excited that we finally had a reason for the fever and the irritability. To my astonishment she did have a rash all over her belly and back. It's not a BAD rash like eczema is, but it is definitely there. He told us she was no longer contagious and it would go away in a few days, yeah! But for now she might be annoyed with the rash so that is just something we will have to deal with. With Ethan's medical history it doesn't really ever give Chris and I "new" medical things to deal with, but this is something new for us. My poor little princess is just not herself and I can't wait till we can have the happy Katelee back. We miss you and hope to see you soon!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Our December

Please be advised: This post is going to be a long and boring one. If you just look at the pictures you will probably enjoy it much more!

We started our December out with Chris taking his first Physical Therapy finals. I will sum that experience up by saying the week before finals was full of long days for Chris. He would leave the house early and come home late. The kids and I had a lot of time to bond. Chris ended up getting great grades and I couldn't be more proud of him!

The Saturday before Chris's first finals I took the kids to my parents house so Chris could study at home for a while. We got there just as Grandpa and Grandma were putting up their Christmas lights outside. Of course Ethan and Katelee were very excited to help, or maybe just be outside. Here is my princess helping....

The kids demolished a pile of leaves my dad had racked up in the front yard. Ethan ran though them first so of course Katelee had to do it as well. They had a blast and were entertained with this for a while.

My dad let Ethan help him hand the last light. Ethan loved it and hated it all at once. He loved helping but I think he might be just a little afraid of heights! Now when Chris gets on the step stool at home Ethan will hold on to it and tell him that he's making sure it doesn't fall! Silly Boy!

Aunt Anjali, Uncle Matt and Madilynn invited us to their ward Christmas party, so of course we went. We got Katelee dressed in her Christmas dress I bought on clearance last year and even put her hair in a little ponytail!

I told Ethan to go upstairs and get a shirt. Halfway up the stairs I told him to turn around so I could get a picture and this is the pose he decided to give. Sexy, wouldn't you say? Watch out all you innocent little girls, Ethan is gonna get you! (and yes that pile of books is only a few of Chris's school books! Yeah)

We got to the Christmas party and Madilynn, Grandma and Grandpa Blackburn were saving seats for us. Isn't my niece just so stinkin cute? I just love this little girl.

And of course I think this girl is pretty darn cute too

Matt and Anjali had the privilege of playing the part of Mary and Joseph for their ward party. I think they did a pretty good job. They knew all their lines PERFECTLY and looked so cute up there.

The program went a little long so Daddy took Katelee home and I stayed with Ethan so he could see Santa. We were some of the first people in line and Ethan said, "Ma Ma can go first!" I'm pretty sure he didn't say this because he is so polite, but rather because he was still a little unsure of Santa all together!

So I had Madilynn and we went up to see Santa and this is the picture we got of her!

(notice what she has a handful of??? Yep, good thing they aren't very big or she wouldn't have been able to get such a good grip!)Ethan was unsure still when we went to see Santa but once Santa gave him a treat bag Ethan was good to go! And as always here is his "smile" when you tell him to smile! It looks as if he is in pain however I assure you he was not!

We put our tree up one Monday night with Grandma Nelson and Grandma and Grandpa Blackburn. (Thank you Grandma Nelson for taking the pictures for us)

Katelee and Ethan thought they were so helpful and it was fun to have them enjoying themselves but this is one of the few times when I will say I can't wait until they are teenagers. Decorating the tree took us about an hour longer than normal because we had to keep putting the ornaments on that Katelee kept taking off and throwing!

Here are the kids "decorating" the tree!

And here is Daddy putting the star on the top with BOTH kids.

Here is a classic picture of Katelee pointing. Every time we came home she would stand by the light plug and point at it until you plugged the lights in. She loved the lights on the tree and especially the lights at Grandma and Grandpa's house.

Here is Ethan holding up an ornament he decorated this year with his Grandma Nelson. Thanks Aunt Lisa for bringing them down for him.

And here is Katelee showing us an ornament she just took off the tree. (my mother made this one. She makes all of us kids a new ornament each year just like my Grandma Stewart use to do)
The next week for FHE we went to a house in North Las Vegas that has tons of decorations and a train.

Ms. Katelee Snowman (picture above)

And Ms. Madilynn Snowman (below)

And Mr. Ethan Lou Who(below)

Here are all the kids and Tayler. They all just love Tayler and she is so good with the kids. I can't wait till she gets old enough to babysit! She will do such a great job, all the kids are going to love her!

These trees changed colors with the song that was on and Ethan and Katelee just loved it! They sat here for quite a while just watching them!

And then all the kids and Tayler went for a train ride. They all really liked it and would wave whenever they passed all of us!

For our ward Christmas party Santa came as well. Side story to this pictures, Ethan played in the hallway with all of him buddies for quite a while and his face was dark red the rest of the night. Katelee didn't mind Santa because he gave her a sucker, Ethan was more concerned about where his friends were than Santa, so this is the best picture I was going to get!

Then came our Christmas Eve party. Of course in the hustle to get every where on time I forgot our camera. Just know that Katelee was an angel and Ethan was a Shepard. At one point during the reading of the nativity I hear Ethan out of nowhere say "Go Cougars!" It was a proud moment for his father but all I could think was 'great, Ethan is going to be doing his Primary Presentation, say his lines and then shout GO Cougars!' But that is just my boy, he loves to do things he shouldn't and I love him for it! So anyways perhaps I will get those pictures from my mother or sister and get them on here some time

Next came Christmas!

This is what Ethan saw from Santa when he came downstairs....

And this is what Katelee saw from Santa when she came down......

And this is all of our stuff.....

We tried to video tape the kids coming downstairs but of course our video camera ran out of tape right when we pressed record. I guess now I know why it had that cassette flashing for so long! Oops....
So here is a picture of the kids after they had gotten downstairs.

And here is the after picture of our living room....

And the other side of the room.

The kids were excited to play with all of their stuff. Katelee did a good job unwrapping her gifts. She would tear a little piece of paper off and then hand it to me. Ethan finished opening all of his presents and Katelee was only done with about 7. But Ethan helped her finish the rest more quickly.
Ethan got a new scooter from Grandma and Grandpa Nelson, and he wanted to play with it right away. Once Chris got it put together he was outside and trying it out!

Of course Katelee wanted to do it as well.....

After everyone left we headed over to 7-11 to say hello to my friend that works there. She had to work on Christmas and I wanted her to know that we were thinking of her. She hooked us up with a free drink and Slurpee and lots of hugs. We then went over to Madilynn's house to see what they got and then later we headed over to Nelson's for lunch.
Little Miss Katelee loves to swing but usually gets on and off. But on Chrismas she just sat there with Grandpa Nelson for quite a bit. And he loved every minute of it!

Later we went over to Blackburn's for dinner. Our Christmas was great. We got to spend a lot of time with each other and our family, does it get any better than that? I think not!
I had the week after Chrismas off of work, which was great. Chris had it off as well so we got to spend a lot of much needed time together. My boss had given me two free tickets to the Springs Preserve so we deceided to go one day. This is the kids before we went. (these pictures were too cute not to share!)

The kids had fun at the Preserve and so did Chris and I.

I had a lot of things I wanted to get done while Chris and I were both off of work, one of them being getting the closet under the stairs cleaned out. I wish I had taken a before picture because it was a mess! But when we got it all cleaned out the kids just loved playing in it.

Aren't they just the cutest! I was tempted to move all of their toys into that closet and just let it be their play area. We almost did it but had nowhere else to store our vaccuum and knew they would just bring the toys out in the living room and make the same mess they make now so it just wasn't worth it!

On New Year's Eve day we went to the park in Boulder City for a picnic with Grandma and Grandpa Blackburn. Miss Katelee is our wild girl and loves to go down the slids. I love this picture, This is our typical Katelee-tounge out and not caring!

And here is Katelee and her humble servant Daddy... :)

When we got to the park there were about 30 Big Horn sheep just grazing in the grass. Ethan loved it and so did Grandpa Blackburn. I love this picture. My son does whatever Grandpa does, which as many of you know could be a good and a bad thing!

Just a picture of the oldest sheep out there, and the oldest guy out there. He He!

For New Year's Eve we had our parents over and Anjali and Madilynn. We played games and really had fun. I love to play games but Chris doesn't so we never really play any, however that night he played them all with me! Thanks babe, that made my Year!
The next morning Ethan and Katelee awoke to see that Mrs. Clause had been by and given them another small toy.

I'm pretty sure they both loved their new toys.

Our 2009 was full of lots of love, heartache, trials, lessons, firsts, stress, joy, pain, much support and every other emotion possible. We learned a lot this year and grew as a family far more that I ever expected us to. Katelee and Ethan have grown so much it seems like it couldn't have only been one year. We have accomplished so much and that makes me feel like 2009 was definantly a year that will never be forgotten. The lessons that came out of 2009 are lessons that will affect my life forever. I have a stronger testimony of the Plan of Salvation, of life after death and of the redeeming love of our Savior Jesus Christ and our Heavenly Father. I have a stronger bond with my parents, in-laws and siblings because of the overwhelming amount of support that was offered to my family this year. 2009 brought a college diploma to our house and the start of another one. It brought a potty trained boy and a girl that no longer walks, but runs everywhere. This past year has been full of life lessons that sometimes take people years to learn and for that I'm grateful. So here is to an even better 2010, let it be full of much LOVE, learning and improving.