Monday, September 29, 2008

It's Monday Night Again... FHE time

So every week we are trying to be dilligent about having Family Home Evening. Alex loves to sing Primary songs and looks forward to it every night.(Correction... Alex loves to listen to mommy and daddy sing Primary songs every night before he goes to bed.) We try to make FHE a fun time for him. I am just seeking ideas that all you smart moms have done with your kiddos when they have such a short attention span. We have done picture stories, coloring touch and feel bags, etc. Any other ideas come to mind?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

One Cool Dude

Alex loves to wear his sunglasses. Some times he wears them around his neck or upside down. He gets a kick out of wearing them and walking around the house. He is one cool dude. I just thought that some of you might enjoy them.

Friday, September 19, 2008

We survived Ike's Fury

Hello Friends and Family,
I feel so blessed to let you know that we survived the great and dreadful day that Ike and Houston collided. It seems like it was a one-sided fight, but judging from the way that our ward and neighbors have pulled together and helped one another, I would have to say that from our vantage point that it was a little more even. We started making preparations earlier in the week and were so thankful that we did. We got some more water, batteries, milk, and fuel to cook with. Since the storm wasn't supposed to make landfall at Galveston until the early hours of Saturday morning we spent Thursday and Friday making preparations to greet Ike. We cleaned out the garage and parked inside cleaned up the yard, filled tubs, checked and rechecked 72 hour kits.

If we were not blessed with modern technology to let us know that a storm was coming, it would have been like any other day. After we were as prepared as we could be it was a wait and see mode. We invited our friends to come and play games with us for a while to try and take our minds off the impending storm. I was very nervous and the baby could tell because it was very active. Probably more active than it has ever been.

After our friends left to go to their own houses, we took showers, put Alex to bed and then waited. Eric had gotten up very early on Friday morning (4 am) because he couldn't sleep and then at 10 pm, with Ike still hours away from making landfall Eric passed out. With the wind howling around us, he was sleeping so soundly. When it got really windy, I took Alex from his bedroom and brought him down to the make-shift bedroom down in our entry. Before crashing Eric brought down a mattress and we had set up his pack'n play.

I sat half awake from that time until Alex woke up at 2:30 in the morning crying. I could see green flashes of light from transformers popping and could hear the wind howling and the rain pelting against the glass. The only thing that would calm Alex was singing hymns and primary songs to him for about 2 hours. I listened to the electricity flicker and come back on. Finally about 3:30 it went off for good. I kept drifting in and out and finally was able to sleep at about 4:30.Eric woke up briefly and we discovered that we had two small leaks upstairs. We found buckets and then tried to go back to sleep. I was awakened at 8 the next morning with an update from my friend Melanie. Luckily we still had phone and could contact our family and let them know that we were safe and that we just needed to ride out the rest of the storm. Later that morning because of the shift in wind direction, we got water in our back door. After we surveyed the damage to our house and neighborhood we were convinced that we were spared the brunt of Ike.

We lost some shingles and then had that minor leak, but we were extremely blessed, we know that Heavenly Father has spared us and had a watchful hand over us.We went and checked on our ward family and neighbors. Most had the same amount of damage as us and we are so grateful for being protected.

We were also blessed to get power on Sunday about 9:45 and even though it has been splotchy at times, we have had it continually from that time. We just got our phone and internet working again and that also seems splotchy, but we are thankful for the time that we have it. Eric has had the week off work and has been helping to clear debris and help around the house. I wanted to thank all of you who have been praying for us and our safety during and after the storm. I didn’t take many pictures of the damage that we saw, but we are thankful for so many volunteers who have come to help those who have been adversely affected by the storm. Please continue to pray for those who have lost so much in such a short period of time.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Our weekend plans...

... got Umbrella?

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Colorado Update

Last week we had the great opportunity to visit family in Colorado. Alex loved all the attention and cool weather to play outside in. I sure do wish that I could have taken that wonderfully cool weather with us when we went back home. He LOVED playing on the swings and even got to play on the trampoline for the first time. He was in heaven. Thanks so much Heidi for being an awesome surprise hostess. We created a lot of wonderful memories of our time there.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

A Family Birthday Surprise

So on Saturday was my sister-in-law's birthday. She lives in Colorado Springs and unknown to her, there were secret family plans in the works for over a year. Eric and I have know for a while that his parents were planning on moving back to Colorado Springs and they finally settled on a September move. Heidi, my SIL, had no clue that they were planning to do this. She has been trying to convince her parents and us to move back to be closer together.
Here is where strategic planning comes into play. Earlier this week Eric got a call from his parents saying that they were packing a moving truck and would be leaving early the following week and wanted to surprise Heidi for her birthday on Saturday. Eric and I really wanted to be there for the reaction and to spend time with his family. Fortunately her birthday fell on the Saturday right before Labor Day and Eric was able to get time off so that we could travel to Colorado.
Normally in the past we have made the trip in 16 hours, but with a prego mom and a busy toddler, that time was seriously lengthened by numerous stops to visit the restroom, take breaks and recoup our sanity.
We finally arrived in Colorado Springs late in the afternoon on Saturday, Heidi's birthday, and found out that she was going to dinner with her family and would be back a few hours later. We decided to try and beat her home, park the van down the street, and wait inside for her reaction. Mom Stewart had called Heidi earlier when Eric, Alex and I arrived in town and found out her plans. Heidi, who's always so quick to figure things out, thought the grill about her birthday plans from her mom was suspicious began to suspect that they had traveled out to surprise her for her birthday.
After getting cleaned up and refreshed we jumped in Mom and Dad Stewart's van and headed over to her house. Just as we pulled up to her house Mom got out of the car and looked down the street. Uh-oh just as she got out of the car, Heidi and her family rounded the corner to their house. BUSTED!!!! We jumped back in the car and Dad Stewart started driving around the block and we were laughing in the van trying to figure out what to do next. Mike, Heidi's husband, who was driving their van was honking at us to stop. We finally pulled up right back where we started, in front of her house, they pulled up alongside us and Eric popped out of the van and was greeted by some very surprised and shocked faces. He grabbed the camera and I jumped out of the van to greet my nieces and SIL and BIL. Heidi was in such a state of shock, but the surprises were not over yet.
Heidi was talking to her mom and was saying what a bad liar she was because when they were talking earlier on the phone Heidi had asked where they were and Mom's response had been, "We're home." ( Which they were, at their new home.) Mom and Dad Stewart had lived in Colorado Springs 17 years earlier and had been leasing their home for all that time after they had left. They were now moving back to their old home, 10 minutes away from Heidi's family. Here is the video of a shocking birthday surprise.