Thursday, December 29, 2011

It's a Christmas miracle!

So Christmas was awesome, and it's time we let the world in on the fun. We invited ourselves to Paul's brother David's house for the festivities. We drove up on Christmas Eve and stayed until the morning after Christmas. A HUGE 'thank you' to David and Hillary for letting us crash your house, eat your food, destroy your expensive trinkets (oh wait, that was supposed to be a secret), and all-in-all for being such fantastic hosts. We had a blast. Nancy, John and Cory and kids also came, which just made it even more fun (and crazy...we had 7 adults and 6 1/2 kids...again, THANK YOU, David and Hillary!).

These kids LOVE their Grandma Nancy. She certainly spoils them, as any grandma should. Reece was a little outnumbered by the girls, but he didn't let it phase him.

In case the shirts didn't give it away (and her general baby-ness), this is Amelia's first Christmas.

Amelia and Uncle David.
John and cute, pregnant Cory.

Grandma helped the kids decorate cookies to leave out for Santa.

And the kids helped themselves to some good ol' fashioned bed-jumping (again, sorry to D&H).


What an awesome group of kids.

John and Paul engaged in the grossest marshmallow-stuffing contest I've seen this year. John won, but he made Paul bleed to do it.

I'll take the one on the far right.

Lining up to see if Santa really came.

Stockings are always my favorite part of Christmas morning.

Reece had been eying that red present for a week and had to open it very first. Fun fact: says that both "eyeing" and "eying" are correct spellings of the word, but Microsoft insists that "eyeing" is incorrect. That's how I traditionally spell the word, so I'm going to challenge Microsoft on this one (but I'll fix it in my original sentence because I hate the red squiggly lines).

Amelia actually loved opening presents. Yes, she did enjoy the wrapping paper more, but I was impressed with how attentive she was.

Paul is a good dad.

Here is it! Our AMAZING quiet book that Teresa lovingly and painstakingly made for us. My kids LOVE it (maybe as much as I do). Reece played with it for the entire Sacrament meeting on Sunday, which was a dream for me. Thank you, Teresa and family!

Reece got his first bike, and we have yet to determine if it was a good idea.

This is Paul's "swagger" look (apparently his deodorant is swagger-scented). That's why I married him. Yep...that look right there...sigh. I'm pretty sure he married me because of how awesome I look in bright pink pajama pants.

Amelia loves her grandma.

In fact she kind of loves everyone...

Including you! Merry Christmas and happy New Year!

Also, if you keep hovering over your mailbox waiting for our Christmas card to arrive, you can trudge your way back through the snow. I neglected to do a lot of things this Christmas season, and sending out Christmas cards was one of them. We didn't even get a family picture taken. But as soon as that's done, I promise I will post joyful wishes and "whatever-season-it-happens-to-be" greetings on our blog for all to enjoy. In the meantime, have a safe and happy new year, and remember that we love you!

Also, if you're wondering still what is the Christmas miracle I am referencing in my blog title, the miracle is that I blogged at all. It's a Christmas miracle!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Giving Thanks

This ranks among the best Thanksgivings we've had in our married life. They're all good (how could a holiday centered around food be bad?), but this year was extra special. We had both Dave and Teresa, and Ryan and Liz's families come visit us for the long weekend, and it was absolutely fantastic.

Dave and Teresa got in Wednesday night, and the boys started off almost immediately with their debating. You can't have a Weitzel-Carr hybrid Thanksgiving without lots of political debates. I welcome this time openly, as it gets the debates out of Paul's system for a while and holds him over until the next time he can meet up with one of his brothers/bro-in-laws.

Dave and I also have a tradition of going on late-night walks. Usually those walks are through the streets of Chandler, so I was very excited to show off some of our local sights.
Ryan, Liz and Owen came in early Thursday morning to join us, and the day was spent cooking in my tiny kitchen and distracting the kids with multiple walks to the park, football games, and lots of laughter, noise, and bed-jumping. Dave and Teresa stayed in our guest suite, which includes one twin bed (complete with slide), one deflated air mattress, and plenty of floor space for their kids. Ryan and Liz opted for a more comfortable spot at the Navy base (thanks to everybody for being so flexible!).

Thursday and Friday nights we forced the adults to play board games with us, but I will go out on a limb and say that everybody had fun. They knew what they were getting into when they came to our house. Paul claims we had the most successful game of Encore! in history. I would agree (Team Carr won with flying colors!).

Friday we hit the beach. We went to La Jolla Shores and let the kids run wild while the boys braved the freezing water to do some boogie boarding. Amelia, Liz and I enjoyed the sun and sand.

After the beach we walked around the San Diego temple. We were accosted by the Sister missionaries, but got away without giving any referrals. Whew. We almost had to do missionary work. That was close.

Dave and I took some time that afternoon to jog through the zoo. It was my favorite visit I've had at the zoo yet (mostly because I wasn't pushing a stroller). It was fun to quickly enjoy the zoo ambiance, but more fun to just hang with Dave.

That night was dinner and more games. Teresa made her amazing white turkey chili and Liz beat Ryan in a balance contest during our Uno game.

Saturday we headed to Old Town and visited the Mormon Battalion museum. We hadn't been there yet, and it was pretty cool! Old Town also provided the only downer of the weekend, as we picked the wrong lunch spot and got stuck with a dirty and sub-par Mexican restaurant.

Then some of us visited Cabrillo National Monument to get some great views of the city, while Teresa took some of the kids to Mission Beach for some more beach time.

Ryan joined me for a jog around the park, which was the fastest jog I've had yet in San Diego (and surely his slowest). But again, the best part was getting the brother-time.

After dinner Ryan and Liz went to dinner with Liz's cousin and the rest of us walked to Balboa Park for a tree-lighting. We missed the entire program, but we made it just in time to see Santa. He was the BEST Santa, and they even gave us a free picture. They had a nice Nativity scene and beautiful lights. The kids did amazingly well, as the walk was about 2 miles round-trip and they'd already been going full speed all day. They kept up with us, no problem. I do have to say that Reece was leading the pack, running and jumping the entire way. That kid has no end to his energy.

I love my family. I am so grateful that I have siblings who live close enough for holiday visits, and who want to be my friends. I'm grateful that my brothers married such amazing women so I can be good friends with my sisters-in-law, and that my son and daughter have such awesome cousins. I'm grateful for excuses to be together, and I look forward to many more!

Friday, November 18, 2011

November Videos

My kids are too cute to wait this long between posts, and I apologize. Pictures to come.

First we have one of our many impromptu dance parties (which occur far too frequently for a family with zero dancing skills):

Don't you love Paul in that video, dancing with his little girl? Precious. Next we have one of Reece making Amelia laugh. He is her favorite person by probably a million:

Next, we documented Amelia's first haircut. Not really her first, since I had cut a few hairs the day before. But close enough. I think she looks cuter now:

Finally, we have a video of Robot Reece. He pretends to be a robot quite frequently, and it's actually very convenient. I can push a button and he'll do anything. In fact, even if he's not playing Robot Reece, I can say something like, "Which button is the 'Take a bath' button?" and he'll show me a "button," let me push it, and instantly obey. They say you should train your kids to be independent thinkers--I prefer the robot:

Maybe next time I'll gush about how thankful I am to be a stay-at-home mom. After all, 'tis the season for gushing. But not now, 'cause this is taking a long time and my computer tolerance is much less than it used to be. So in the meantime, Happy Thanksgiving!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Halloween Costumes 2011

This year Reece decided to be a pirate and he decided Amelia would be Baby Jaguar (from Go, Diego Go). We went with a female jaguar, hearts, frills and all. I kind of love it. Happy Halloween, everybody!

Friday, September 23, 2011

San Diego!!!

I apologize to the wide blogging world for withholding pictures of my kids for so long. I realize you've probably been pining away while waiting for me to get my act together. Well, my act is still not quite together and I have doubts that it ever will be again (if it ever was to begin with). But I will give you a few pictures to appease your curiosity/voyeur tendencies/appetite.

We have been having a blast in San Diego. It's beautiful every day (which we appreciate oh so much more after living in Portland), we LOVE our location, Paul has a good job, and my kids keep me more than entertained. I am really loving being a mom; more than ever before. I feel so grateful to be able to be their mama. Not just because they're incredibly cute, and not just because Amelia sleeps through the night (most of the time), or because Reece has an imagination bigger than the giants that chase him around the house (daily...unless they're hiding in his room, or in time out...that's right, I put his imaginary giants in time out, and it's no easy job). It's just everything. There's also the fact that we live half a mile from the zoo, four miles from Sea World, and can see the ocean from our balcony. Jealous? Then come visit! We'll take you out for some great Mexican food and we'll make Reece sleep in the hall so you can have your own private suite (with crib and air mattress included).

I guess part of having a great time being a mom is not taking many pictures. I have been horrible at documenting Amelia's cuteness and Reece's increasing cleverness. I love reading friend's blogs who write quotes from their kids or post silly things they do. You just won't get those things from this blog, because I am a slacker. But you will get pictures. And without further ado...
Reece's new friend is Elijah. We swap babysitting with E's parents, so these kids get to hang out quite a bit. We forced them to wear animal costumes, and cuteness ensued. That lasted about two minutes.

This is how Amelia looks most of the time. Except without the hat. And maybe more puke. Reece calls it "pute," and is super good and bringing me burp rags at a moment's notice.

These are in no order, because Kyle was here in early August. He helped us move and Reece misses him terribly. In fact, while I was posting these pictures Reece kept saying, "I want to see the picture of me with Uncle Kyle!" He misses his buddy.

Amelia comes from Fontana stock.

We visited Dave's family in early September. We were only there for a weekend but we all had a blast. Hooray for living close to family! Also, Reece and Amelia have 16 cousins, and Reece loves them all. In fact, whenever he sees kids that he likes or wants to play with, he calls them his cousins.

Our beautiful, smiley, peaceful girl. She really is an angel.

She's so chill. I can't say that enough. We love her. Also her hair is thinning daily. She takes after her daddy, I guess.

When I was a little girl my mom would tell me that if I stuck out my lower lip any more, a bird would come and land on it. Amelia inherited my bottom lip.

Okay, our kids seriously have the coolest hair. While Amelia's hair doesn't stick straight up naturally, she still has a rockin' natural mohawk. She also has a mullet in the back, but we try to ignore that.

At Sea World on the Elmo ride. We're big fans.

Uncle Bryce came to visit us in late August. We love him. In fact, we even made up a little song about him, which Reece will sing and dance to. It's pretty clever, if you ask me. ("Uncle Bryce is so nice." That's it. Awesome, right?)

At La Jolla Cove with Uncle Kyle. We've since explored this beach more and it's super awesome. Tide pools, sea lions, gorgeous waves, secluded beaches. Sigh...

Now start planning your visits. We can't wait to see you!