Thursday, December 16, 2010

Pre-Christmas Christmas

We had a little pseudo-Christmas celebration this last Sunday. We are flying out to Utah/Colorado for the holidays and we didn't want to pack any big presents. So we had Reece open his "huge" presents a couple of weeks early. It was really fun, but Paul and I both now feel like Christmas is already over. For Reece it will be a wonderful surprise to get more presents next week at Grandma and Grandpa's house, and now that he knows Santa = presents, he gets a lot more excited when he sees Santa paraphernalia. These videos will be all sorts of fun for me to watch for years and years, but probably kind of boring for everyone else. Just so you know, it looks like a ton of presents, but we wrapped every possible thing to put under that tree. He really only got three presents (which is fine with me). Also we keep a tiny Christmas tree so the presents look more abundant by comparison. It's genius, I know.

This last one is just for fun. This is Paul Skyping his mom late one night. He tried to make her think she was seeing things. She was a good sport.

Now it's time for our real Christmas celebration. Reece and I head to Utah tomorrow for some quality family time and Paul joins us next week. We can't wait! Merry Christmas to everybody and please know that we love you. Unless you're one of those people who keeps trying to post SPAM in my comments section. I don't love you.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

World's greatest cuddler

Reece is the best cuddler in the world. I just love it. He also tries to get out of bed at least three times before he actually goes to sleep. The reason he still tries it is because I give in so often. What can I say, I love to cuddle with him. Lately when we're away from home he'll ask for his bear or his blankey and then say "home...cuddle." Then as soon as we get home he grabs his bear, his blanket and his mama and we cuddle away. I just love love love that little boy.

I post this now because I'm trying to be strong and not go in to get him while he's calling for me (it's 10 PM and he's two hours past his was babysitting, bless his heart). He keeps saying "Mama, cuddle!" How can a mom resist that? My answer: blogging about it. It worked, apparently, because he's now asleep. It was harder tonight too because he has a killer heat rash on his leg and he kept telling me about his "sore." Maybe if I go cuddle with him it'll go away...

Friday, December 3, 2010

Pregnancy: week 14

I have to edit this post a bit from what I previously said because Paul got mad at me. If you don't check our blog every hour, I was ranting about how pregnancy makes you feel fat. He said I'm not fat and I shouldn't complain because I'm healthy. I appreciate his support. So I am amending that rant to say that I am grateful to be healthy. It's so nice to go to the doctor and to feel like I'm doing everything I can do keep myself and my baby healthy. I am coming to accept that my body just needs to gain more weight than average during pregnancy, and that's going to have to be okay. I worked hard to get it off before, and I can do it again. So here I am at 14 weeks pregnant. I am SOOOOO glad to not be sick anymore.

So I know this is ridiculous, but I had a really smokin' hot picture that I took the same day, but I accidentally erased it. So you get this one instead. Not quite as smokin' hot, but probably closer to how I actually look.

Now the good stuff: I have started to feel the little flutterings of a baby in my belly. Nothing huge yet, but this is about the same time when I started to feel Reece kicking around in there. It's very exciting, and pretty much the only good part of pregnancy (besides getting the baby at the end, of course). I've talked to several women who loved pregnancy (my sister included) and I think they're all crazy. There are good things, but they're outweighed in my mind by all the crappy things. Remember: we're not taking the whole "getting a baby" thing into account. That's so awesome that it is obviously worth going through the 9-month gauntlet of pregnancy. Otherwise there's no way I would have done it again.

So with all that said, I am very grateful that I am healthy, that the baby seems to be healthy, and that Reece is healthy. Pregnancy is a miracle, even though it sucks sometimes.

Notice I didn't say that Paul is healthy. He actually broke his wrist this week. He had a pretty bad crash on his bike when his back tire hit the train tracks wrong. It was dark outside and he was wearing all black, so we're grateful he didn't get run over or hurt even worse. We're still waiting to hear if he needs a full cast, but he's in constant pain and has a hard time doing most simple tasks. I still wonder if he crashed on purpose just to get out of doing dishes and changing diapers. Hmm...probably not.

Notice Reece's pants go up to his chest. He's just so short and he insists that his pants don't touch his toes. I think it's adorable.

So that's our week. A little about Reece and I'll be done: he is amazing. He is so funny and a real jokester. When Kyle was in town he started spitting in people's faces. But he'd be sly about it. He'd go in for a kiss, then at the last minute he'd spit right in your face. Now when he does it he'll say "no no no" and then "Kyle" because he really only wants to spit in Kyle's face. It's sweet.

Another trick he plays is fake sleeping. He'll say "night night," then pretend to snore. Then, when he thinks he's lulled you into a false sense of security, he'll roar like a bear. This started when Paul would fake being asleep and Reece would growl to wake him up.

He is best friends with his teddy bear. He'll ask it questions like "Belly? 'Kay." Then he'll tickle the bear's belly (only after getting permission, of course). Or he'll put the bear in a basket and push him around the house (like Paul does to Reece). He always makes sure the bear gets enough to eat and drink at mealtimes, and he definitely gives the bear plenty of hugs and kisses.

One of my favorite things is a Reece cuddle. He LOVES to cuddle, and he's super good at it. He gets his blanket, his bear and his parent and just cuddles right in. He really is the sweetest boy. He's very obedient (most of the time...for now), he's very compassionate, and very funny. We couldn't love him more.

So you now wonder, with how awesome Reece is, how could I possibly complain about pregnancy? It's a funny thing being a parent and feeling your love grow for your kids. You definitely love your child more if you sacrifice for them, so by the time they're born you can't help but feel so much love because you've spent so many nauseous hours letting that love grow. Or something like that. I guess if the next kid isn't as cool as Reece, I may change my sentiments (kidding, kidding).

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Thanks: Given

We flew to Phoenix for Thanksgiving to spend time with Dave and Teresa's family. Tyler and Bryce also drove down, so it was a regular Carr extravaganza. We had a blast, though we wish we could have stayed longer. It was so refreshing for me to be around people I know and love and to have somebody to talk to. Also the sunshine was nice. I seriously feel rejuvenated since that trip. Thanks for having us, Dave and Teresa!

Waiting at the airport at midnight. Reece was doing great. Me, not so great.

Eva loved reading to Reece. Porter loved jumping on Paul. Reece basically followed these kids around everywhere and he loved playing with them so much he pretty much woke up an hour earlier than normal every single day.

Paul and I wrote a murder mystery for Wednesday night. The title was "Cereal Killer," with all cereal mascots as the characters. It was kind of a bust since we wrote it in about 5 hours, but it was still fun to get dressed up a little and try to manipulate each other.

Dave and Teresa's friends Eric and Jeri. They had the best costumes and were very good sports.

Dave as Cap'n Crunch and Teresa as Mrs. Butterworth. Dave caused a lot of scandal in this game, which I'm pretty sure he loved doing.

One of Reece and Ivy's many tea parties. Dave got them started with Mountain Dew, and even looking at the pictures Reece started freaking out and demanding more "sugar."

Climbing on Thanksgiving day.

Our only picture of the entire Thanksgiving gang.

Reece loves him some Eva.

Thanksgiving lunch, due to a delayed turkey. Not a bad tradition, I'd say.

Reece disappeared several times to go dig in the backyard. It was SO nice having good weather so we could go outside.

The cutest attendees at the party.

Back in Portland, "painting" cookies.

Oh yeah, that's some good Christmas prep.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Halloween, Birthday and Magic Tricks...oh my!

Let's start this post out right. Reece was Elmo for Halloween, but I neglected to take any pictures that day, so this was taken this morning. Talk about an excited kid...

Last week we celebrated Paul's 29th birthday. That's the age everybody says they are when they want to pretend to be young, so I figure he's at a good stage in life. He says he's well past middle-age for a Weitzel male, but let's hope he stays around a lot longer than that. We did a semi-themed birthday for our Super Dad. He really is an amazing husband and father, not to mention my best friend. I'm so grateful to have him around.

This was supposed to be a Superman cake, but I ran out of red M&Ms. Close enough, right? Apparently it was good enough for Reece.

Happy birthday, dad!

If you seen us on Skype in the last two weeks then you've seen these two new Reece-tricks. But they're pretty cute, so it's high time I preserved them for the ages. To start us off, the best magic trick you've ever seen...from a 19-month old baby:

And next we have the world's best knock-knock a baby:

Sunday, October 24, 2010

So I've been completely slacking in the blogging area of my life. My reasons are fair, I suppose: I'm lazy. Also we haven't done very much that's been super exciting. We did, however, go to the coast a couple weeks ago (we picked the rainiest day), along with the Tillamook Cheese Factory.

So Paul had to prove his manliness and go in the freezing water. You can't tell, but the rain was coming down sideways, and quite a bit of it, too. I think I got more wet than Paul while waiting on the shore.

He is quite the man.
We loved the cheese factory (who wouldn't?). We had plenty of cheese samples and piles of ice cream. Dad, if you ever come visit us, we'll buy you the 30-scoop bowl. We also just might buy it in your honor because it looks awesome.

Paul had Veteran's Day off (hooray for being a government employee!) so we hit the pumpkin patch. They had both a train AND a boat ride, plus we took this wheelbarrow ride for free.
We didn't get a picture of the mechanical shark, but there was also this pretty cool dragon. What pumpkin patch has metal sharks and dragons? We loved it.
Here's Reece's face if you ask him to smile for the camera. Apparently smiling is pinching your cheeks. Good thing his cheeks are still nice and pinch-able.

And finally, Paul was nice enough to let me take a nap yesterday afternoon. When I woke up, the men in the house had turned back to their caveman instincts (shirts off and everything). Paul made finger paints out of pudding and they painted some pretty impressive stuff (Paul painted the Mona Lisa and Starry Night; Reece painted the floor and his face).
Who knew art could taste so good?

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Portland, Portland, it's a wonderful town!

We can't believe it, but our little guy is now 18 months old. He is more fun than ever as he explores, discovers, and all in all causes a ruckus day after day. We have loved being in Portland so far (we've even had good weather!) and we look forward to many more fun adventures. Reece and I have zoo passes, children's museum passes, and a gym membership to keep us busy. And Paul has work to keep him busy. I'll let you decide who makes you more jealous.

Now, for your viewing pleasure, a bunch of videos of Reece as we explore Portland:

I finally got a video of Reece's adorable scrunchy face. He gives us this smile all the time, but then when you ask him to smile, he pinches his cheeks (not quite as cute). I sure do love this kid.

We spent a few hours at the Pirate Festival. Look closely and you just might see a dancing dragon, a running shark, and any number of swashbucklers (besides us). It was worth trudging through the rain to see this:

And then, of course, leave it to the pirate festival to answer the greatest of life's questions: Who wins the fight between a shark and a ninja?

Our first time at the Oregon Zoo. It's actually a pretty good zoo, with plenty of playgrounds and fountains for a toddler with a short attention span.

Here Reece shows off his amazing vowel vocabulary (he knows one letter, and he thinks it's his name):

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Vive la France!!!

My goodness, have things changed. First of all, we now live in a different state. For anybody who knows our history, it's not surprising that our Labor Day weekend consisted of driving 12+ hours and moving to a new town. In our 4 1/2 year marriage we have lived in 8 different apartments in 4 different states. This was our biggest move to date, so needless to say we are tired of packing, unpacking, driving, and moving in general. (Is this a good time to mention that we're moving to San Diego next September?). But we have had some amazing experiences, met some incredible people, and we are so blessed to have consistent work, so we couldn't be happier.

It's also no surprise that we took advantage of our change of employment to go on another crazy vacation. Reece was actually super awesome most of the time,and we always had a cute photo subject. And thanks to a heavy baby/stroller combination, we didn't gain any weight, despite the combined efforts of delicious french bread, crepes with Nutella, glaces, and that delectable Swiss chocolate.

The best part of our entire trip, and in fact the whole reason we planned this vacation, was spending time with Ryan, Liz and Owen. It was SO SO SO SO wonderful being able to hang out with them and see their town and let Reece and Owen play together. Owen is such a good cousin and Reece learned a lot from him. He's now much better at eating hot dogs, really enjoys juice from a box and applesauce from a squeezable tube, and his language has really taken off since his Owen experience. Not his French, unfortunately. Actually, he's probably been speaking French all along and I just didn't realize it. The French people LOVED him, and Reece being fluent in French would definitely explain a lot. Anyway, it was also nice to talk to Liz, since I haven't had much of a chance since high school, really. Plus Paul and Ryan were constantly engaged in some boring conversation or another, so not only did Paul let off some conversational steam, but I had a fun person to talk to in the meantime.

We spent a few days in Paris, all of which we loved. As Paul said, "We kicked the trash out of Paris." We really did. We saw everything in all of our guide books, and then some. Then we spent two days in the Chateau de Cherveux, which I thought was in the Loire valley when I booked it, but apparently I was very wrong. Luckily Ryan and Liz were very nice about it, but we had a two hour + drive to get to and from the Loire valley castles. It ate up a good part of our day, but it gave us some quality time in the car. We drove through the Dordogne region on the way back to Toulouse and it was gorgeous. Then we forgot our camera as Ryan gave us a tour through Toulouse, and again when playing petanque in the park (two of my favorite things we did...mostly because I'm so amazingly awesome at petanque). We did get good pictures of our time on the beach and our great hike in the Pyrenees. Ryan and Liz were nice enough to drive across the border so I could say that I've been to Spain. We ate tapas at a bar there and they tasted terrible. But other than that Spain was nice. We uploaded all our photos to our Picasa page, so if the next twenty or so pics aren't enough, see the link on the right. Enjoy!

For any of you on the fence about visiting Ryan and Liz, I would definitely recommend it. We loved our time there and you can't ask for a more beautiful country or more fun hosts.

Posing on the Seine with Notre Dame in the background.

Our nightly hang-out. We were here until after 11 PM most nights, as we hadn't yet adjusted to the time change. Lots of people and beautiful views plus perfect weather. Even Reece kept saying "cool."

From the top of the Arc du Triomph. My, what handsome boys I have!

We hiked to the 2nd level of the Eiffel Tower and yes, I was wearing flip-flops. It was totally worth the hike, as it was WAY cheaper than the elevators and WAY faster too.

Napoleon's tomb. It's huge. Like....huge. It's two levels down from where Paul is standing.

This was at Versailles. We were tired and tried to take a shortcut and it led us to this pit of death. I can't be sure but I think the bottom was full of poisonous snakes and sharks. And yes, those are sharp spikes on the opposite side. Renaissance death traps.

Gates of Versailles. Super elaborate and over the top. So naturally it was awesome to visit.

Getting in some family time.

The Chateau de Cherveux where we stayed for two nights for SUPER cheap. I'm talking like 45 euro a night. Staying in a castle was a dream come true for our family and we're excited to tell Reece about how cool we used to be.

This was at chateau Chenonceau. I was tempted to do the same thing.

Chateau Chambord was huge and looked fake, but it was my favorite castle of the day.

Reece survived on these chocolate cookies on this trip. At least we know where he got those chubby cheeks.

Looking over the Dordogne region. So beautiful. We were there for only a few hours but we fell in love. Some day we'll take a hot air balloon ride over this valley. In our dreams.

The boys spent a good portion of the beach day building these castles, which had connecting underground tunnels and a reflecting pool. The little boys then destroyed them while the big boys were snorkeling.

This picture makes me smile every time I see it. We miss you, Owen!

Our hike in the Pyrenees to Lac d'Oo. The water was so incredibly clear. The little boys threw rocks in the water and looked at the polywogs while Ryan ran around to the waterfall on the other side.
So beautiful. I mean the waterfall.

This was the last of a series of pictures in which Owen's head pops up from behind as a nice surprise.

We strategically placed ourselves right in front of the waterfall. Genius.

Then after a couple of nice, low-key days in Toulouse where I had so much fun I completely forgot to take pictures, and then 9 hours of train rides, we made it to the Matterhorn near Zermatt, Switzerland. After last year's vacation, Paul's been dreaming of visiting the Matterhorn. And honestly, he's been dreaming of it since he was 48 inches tall and started braving the abominable snowman and bobsleds at Disneyland. So the long train rides were totally worth it. The mountain was absolutely gorgeous and the four hours we spent at Zermatt made for the perfect vacation day. We took the gondola to the top, played in the snow, ate lots of chocolate, threw rocks off the mountain, and all in all reveled in this Swiss bliss.

Zermatt from the gondola.

A unique experience only parents can enjoy.

Behind us is where the Jet d'Eau is supposed to be. We saw it the first night in Geneva, but winds were too strong this day. Made for a nice walk out on the water, though.

The best of Geneva. This is what Reece does when you say "Put up your dukes!"

In the end the best part of all of this was having time to spend together as a family. It's totally worth the time and trudging and tuppence to do it.