Monday, November 17, 2014

Lucky Number 7

It's insane to think that it's been 10 years since Claudy and I met.  Let alone, that we've been married 7 years today.  We're getting old!

It all started my freshman year of college, in fall 2004.  I was walking on campus during club week--where all of the clubs get to set up a booth so you can see all of the extra circular options you have. Naturally, I was drawn to a booth that was playing hip hop out of a boom box (remember those?).  I found out that BYU had a hip hop dance group called Club Style.  I really didn't have any formal dance training (other than one year of cheerleading) but I loved to dance and thought it'd be fun.

Sure enough it was a blast.  We got to perform all over campus--Men's Volleyball Games, Campus nights, the Wilk, a basketball game, it was so fun! I remember a few weeks into the club this black guy shows up. (Remember, this is Provo, Utah--so it's 99.99% white.) He was late and had missed learning the first dance's choreography.  I thought to myself, "Oh, just because you're black you think you can just walk into the hip hop club late and be OK?"  To top it off, he had on camo pants.  I thought...stereotypical.  

Thanks to our awesome presidents, I ended up improving and learning a lot.  Since it was just a club--they had to accept everyone.  We only met once a week on Tuesday nights, but they decided to hold try outs for a "small group" that would learn more choreography and do more performances.  I decided to give it a shot.  I really didn't think I'd make it and was so thrilled to find out I did.  It was 4 girls and 3 boys.  

Come to find out--the "black guy" made it too. And, we were frequently next to each other dancing and were partners.  I swear we didn't speak that entire year.  I think the most I asked him was "Do you remember that 8 count?".  I thought he was a bit stuck up.  Like a Mr. Darcy stuck up.  But, it's cool because I'd just hang out with his friends.  Ha!

Come to find out, he was dating someone and had had some bad experiences dating freshman girls so he had sworn them off.  I think it was good because neither of us would have been ready to date and it gave us a chance to get to know one another from a far.

Thankfully, our friend, Tyronne, filmed our performances that year.  I pulled three out where you can see us dancing next to each other for your viewing pleasure.

I'm pretty sure this volleyball performance was our very first ever.  I'm the blonde in the tan camo pants and green camo shirt.  Yeah, a blonde.  See...we've changed a lot these ten years!

Gotta love my lime green and blue track jacket as well as my black cap.  I was so bad...kinda.

While this isn't our best performance, I like it because it shows us dancing without a big group.  I kinda of want to smack the people with their backs to us.  Also, I still have that blue jacket...I can't let it go!  This dance never felt comfortable on my body, but like the song said..."You should let me love you..."

If I could pause the video and tap myself on the shoulder and say..."You're going to have his babies"...I would have said you're mental.  Yet, as I type this I have his three year old asking for milk and his baby needing his rattle.  What???!!

We went from dancing together, to doing the biggest dance of life--marriage.  We slowly became friends, then dated, and now husband and wife.  I'm so glad we took it slow.  We had so many great times dancing in that group and made life long friends there too.  It's crazy how pivotal that one day was where I walked through the booths and decided to join that group.  The trajectory it's put me on was meant to be!  

We're still learning a lot.  Even seven years later.  Marriage is one fine tuned dance!  We learn when to follow and when to lead.  Sometimes we take missteps.  But, thankfully we enjoy dancing and we just keep on practicing.  We've grown together.  Even just fashion wise I went from track jackets and trucker hats to skinny jeans and heels.  We've allowed ourselves to grow and have become better both as individuals and as a couple.

Happy 7th anniversary Claudy.  I really hope this is a lucky number 7 where we have some good things happen to us.  We've sure been patient and prepared, so hopefully things will start to come our way.  And, if they don't--we'll always have each other!  I'm so glad my sweet moves swooned you enough for you to marry me...or something like that :)

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Capturing Calvin: 5 Months

 photo 20141109_153307_zps7dd42560.jpg
Calvin, you've made it through your first season, summer, and now we're well into fall.  Can you believe it?  I'm not sure I do.
I feel bad this post is so late (you're almost 6 months now) but I have a good reason!  We moved!  And, then we didn't have Internet for three weeks.
I'm not even sure you noticed we moved.  You seemed seamless in the transition.  And, it was a big transition for you!  You went from sleeping in the completely dark bathroom (hey--I was sleep deprived and willing to do anything to get you to sleep) to sleeping in a crib in the same room as your noisy brother.  Well done!  He's only climbed into your crib once...and thankfully he wanted me to see his feat, so he didn't squash you before I got there.  (We still can't figure out how he did it...eek!)
I remember thinking we'd have to slowly do it, but we put you in the crib your first night and you took right to it.  Way to go!  It's probably a good thing because man you can move all around that thing.  For someone who can't roll a complete 360, you can sure wiggle and rotate yourself.
 photo 20141109_152741_zps413c0830.jpg
You are still scratching yourself.  You especially claw at your forehead when you're upset and overly tired.  In fact, I'm not so sure it's eczema as it is just a habit.  You love to scratch to find the textures of things.  I find you doing it with any material--especially me and your Dad.  I think sometimes I'm more of a scratching post for you.  My arms and hands have scabs on them from you clawing me over and over.  My poor hair has lost clumps too.  You seem to really like to grab onto your dad's cheeks, I'm not sure if you like the stubble or not, but it sure fascinates your small fingers.
You are still very smiley and do these big, gapping mouth smiles and will do longer laughing fits.  I still wouldn't say you giggle, more like chuckle here and there.  I'm waiting for the full on giggle fits.  I hope you do it soon!  I wouldn't say you're as smiley or giggly as your brother.  Perhaps you'll be more serious like your father.
You love to be lifted up and down and it will make you grin from ear to ear, especially if we do it over and over.  You also love to be brought in close to our face and then back out again over and over. 
 photo 20141109_152300_zpsc319c996.jpg
You've stopped using a binky. I can't remember if I documented this last time, but you are officially over them.  I'm not sure what happened or why.  What did they do to you?  Sometimes I'm glad because I won't have to wean you later and sometimes I really wish you'd have something to comfort you...especially when you're falling asleep (or lack thereof).
You had a bout where you were getting up a TON.  I'm talking like 5-6 times a night.  I was dying.  Thankfully you've gone back to for sure once, and sometimes twice a night.  You go down around 7:30pm and wake up around 7:30 a.m.  You take small naps which is odd for me.  Your brother would take 2-3 hour naps and you do an hour nap at the most.  Because of this, you take like four naps a day.  It seems we're always up and down, up and down all day long. 
 photo 20141109_152231_zpsc40f384c.jpg
You also eat very frequently during the day.  I don't think I'll ever get you up to 3 hours in between.  You like to eat when you first get up, and usually before you go down.  I'd say at max you go every two hours--which is why it's crazy you're not a chunker!
We finally found the bumbo when we moved and you sure like it.  Even when you would be mostly slumped over, you still loved it.  You have never seemed to like to be laid down.  It's like you feel like you're missing out.  You seem to be more OK being sat down if you're sitting up in the bumbo where you can see.
You have mastered rolling from your tummy to your back.  Good job! 
You like to chew on your fingers.
 photo 20141109_152921_zpsacbc5b0b.jpg
You love to make noises and can do some awesome raspberries.  You seem to especially like to do them in your daddy's face.  He sure appreciates the wetness :)
Carter has started sharing his toys with you and you just fixate on them as you pass them back and forth in your hands.  You have great hand-eye coordination!
Unfortunately, you also have taken a sippy cup to the head, a rock to the head, and a construction truck to the head.  Your poor head is going to be very tough thanks to your brother's excellent aim.  I'm so sorry--I really try hard to protect you from him, but I really stink at catching and he is quick when I'm busy doing things...I promise he does love you!
 photo 20141109_152423_zps6e1539c0.jpg
Speaking of brotherly love, Carter loves to go in with me to get you from your naps and likes to give you good night kisses.
You seem to not like to be in your car seat, and have a harder and harder time sleeping in the car.  We have to endure quite a bit of screaming before you'll finally tucker yourself out.  Carter will even tell you "sshhh, shhh".  It's kind of funny.
You went on a swing for the first time.  You seemed to really like it!  The video is on your father's instagram.
I'm still avoiding wheat and dairy for you (you're very welcome!), and it seems to be making a difference in your eczema. 
 photo 20141109_153542_zps290b785c.jpg
I feel horrible, but sometimes I feel like I take you for granted.  Your brother is so high energy sometimes that when I take a moment to take you in, to notice your sweetness, your beautiful face that I remember just how lucky I am to have you with us.  I like to look over pictures of you at night, and it's in the quiet and stillness that it hits me how magnificent you are.  I hope you feel loved and adored over, even if I can't fawn over you like I did when I just had one.  Thanks for being patient while I learn to juggle two.  This was especially crazy because your father went back to work and is still in class.  I had your father home a ton when he was out of work, so even though you were a few months old, I felt like I was learning to deal with two kids on my own for really long periods of time.  Sometimes you've had to cry while I help your brother with something and it feels weird doing that, since with one kid that never really happened.  But, as soon as I pick you up, you stop and seem to forgive instantly.  I so appreciate that.  You always quiet down as soon as you're held and you're so quick to smile. 
 photo 20141109_152249_zpsad974e13.jpgThe nice thing about being the second though, is that I find I do some things better.  For example, I really look forward to church with you.  I always had some level of anxiety with your brother--afraid someone would get him sick, afraid he wouldn't nap and his nap schedule would be thrown off...yada, yada, yada.  But, now I love church because it's an excuse to sit still for three hours and just hold you.  I don't feel like I should be cleaning something, entertaining your brother, or making some food for the next meal like I do when I'm at home.  I have to be there, and I can just snuggle your warm body against mine.  I used to get nervous when Carter would fuss or make noise during the lessons, or think "how much longer until nursery...?"  but now I just think how lucky I am to have you with me in class.  I get to caress your face and so what if I have to stand most of the lesson and bounce you?  I'll be sitting by myself in Relief Society the rest of my life.  I feel honored to have you with me for these short 18 months.  I hope you feel the same and look forward to Sundays like I do.  Thank you for being so cuddly.
I've also completely eased up on letting you sleep with us, and have you in our bed.  I love to have you in my arms and see your angelic face sleeping.  I know you won't remember these quiet moments, but I will always cherish them and hope they'll cement our bond forever.
I sure love you little Cal. 
 photo 20141109_153151_zps1a9705f7.jpg

Good Morning!

Calvin seems to be his happiest in the mornings.  He is just happy to be awake and moving.  Where he gets this from, I have no idea.  Claudy and I are NOT morning people.  Don't even talk to us before 8am. 

If I HAVE to be up (Calvin usually gets up between 7-8am) then at least I have his adorable smiles to look at.  I'll often bring him back to bed and snuggle him until I can function and get moving a bit more.

One morning I had to capture some of his grins, because he is just too adorable to not.  I find I'm doing more and more collage pics with him, partly because I have a smart phone that can do it, and partly because I can't stop at just one picture of this handsome little guy!  photo calvinmorningcollage_zpsedc11ef2.jpg

Food Allergies Update

As I mentioned before, we were going to take a break from food allergy testing for awhile.  This was for multiple reasons:  one, we'd tested over 100 foods, so I felt we had enough safe foods to go off of until Carter was older to make the decision; I was pregnant and burned out.

However, I started noticing that there was goats milk at our grocery store.  Since that seemed like an easy and convenient other milk source, I decided to test him to it.  I also realized that we had never tested him to yeast, and I found a yummy looking recipe that called for nutritional yeast.

Unfortunately, Carter failed both of those via prick testing.  I guess goats milk has a high occurrence of failing those who are also allergic to cows milk.  I was a bit disappointed since you can actually have goat cheese out of goats milk--but it's fine.  We've never had it, and will learn to live without it.  Just doing those two tests made me glad we're not doing anymore!


Three handsome men in my life.  How did I get soooo lucky???
 photo 3handsomeboys_zpsb4b98771.jpg

Father-Son Camp Out

The father-son camp out was the first of September.  I was super excited for Carter because he could now eat marshmallows and I knew he'd find it even more fun than last year.

I'm so glad Claudy makes sure to take him on these fun outings.

I think Carter was the most excited because his bestie--Tommy--was there too.  Our stake was genius and had it at a camp ground that also had a play ground.  They probably didn't even realize they were camping!  Claudy said all they did was play on the toys until it was literally too dark to keep playing.  They put their tents next to each other and Claudy said Carter had a hard time going to sleep because he kept hearing Tommy and wanted to be around him.  Claudy finally got Carter to stop worrying about what Tommy was doing by playing flash light wars.  He's such a great parent.

I was sure to pack tons and tons of food, since I wasn't sure what safe foods would be served, and Claudy said he hardly would touch anything because he wouldn't stop playing to eat.  Oh, to be young again!  And, of course he got up as soon as the sun did and demanded to go right back to the play ground.  Needless to say, he took a long nap that day when he got home!
Claudy said the temperature really dropped and it was freezing.  My thoughtful husband put all of the blankets on Carter (we don't have any sleeping bags, I've got to invest!) and was so cold he couldn't sleep.  He finally went to the car for a bit to unthaw.  Poor guy!  He said he thought about trying to snuggle with Carter under the blankets who was warm and content, but was afraid he'd end up pulling off the covers in his sleep. 

Poor Calvin didn't get to go this year, but I'll look forward to a night to myself next year.  Carter just loves his daddy and I'm glad they can have an excuse to spend quality time together making fun memories.

 photo fathersoncamping_zps6e865644.jpg

Cow Appreciation Day

I don't know how I never knew before (especially since my sister worked there) but every year the restaurant Chik-Fil-A has a day that they call "Cow Appreciation Day". 
If you dress up like a cow, you get a free meal. 
I found out about it late in the morning, but was still determined to go.  Since I'm not crafty (and let's  be honest--lazy with a newborn) I just took one of my white t-shirts and stapled black circles on it that I had cut from colored construction paper.  I made little ears and a tale too and off we went to Chik-Fil-A.
It's Carter's only safe fast food restaurant where he can have an entire meal (other places he can have their fries and a drink).  We adore Chik-Fil-A also because they actually have food allergy precautions in place and it's just tasty too!
The line was quite long, and it was a HOT summer day.  But, Carter lasted in line because he loved looking at everyone else's costumes.  They also had a poor person dressed as a cow (they must have been melting!) that he thought was interesting (of course, until it was time to take a picture, and then he acted scared of it). 
He started jumping up and down yelling "fries and lemonade" once we got inside.  He gets sooo excited to have his favorite meal.
It was worth the long wait to have an excuse to do something different--like dress him up--and get a free meal.
Thanks Chik-Fil-A.  We'll definitely be doing this every year!
 photo cowappreciationday_zpse6a55db5.jpg