Tuesday, November 25, 2008


I had a very good Birthiversary this year. I was dreading it because I turned a horrible age that I didn't plan on turning for at least 5 more years.
We started the Birthiversary weekend by taking the family pictures on Saturday, which was a much more successful event than we had ever dreamed.
Sunday Ben made my birthday cake from scratch using his mom's recipe for an almond/raspberry cake. It's a very dense, rich yellow cake with almond paste and raspberry filling. It was not only beautiful, but tasty. I was proud of Ben; although, I did get scolded for advising him on baking... or bossing, as he puts it.

That night Andrea dropped Clay off on her way to a church meeting. Clay watched Lucas while we went to dinner. When we got home I opened the door to see Clay jumping to attach a sign to the wall. "Ahhh... Clay decorated for my birthday" I thought. Then I walked inside to see streamers, balloons, and Audrey. At this point, I though Jeana came to help Clay and Andrea decorate the house. Then the rest of the crew came from the stairs to surprise me. And I was really surprised! I thought we were having people over Monday night.

It was very sweet and fun. We have the best friends ever! If I had to turn such a dreadful age, this was the way to go. Check out the cool sign Ben designed.

Notice how it matches the cool streamers and balloons. Thanks, everyone!

Family Pictures

Have I ever mentioned how Lucas is nearly impossible to photograph?

For our anniversary we decided to try to get some good shots at a studio...not a super-cool studio, but a studio none the less. We finally got some decent shots. Gagus and Gampas, you'll have to wait to see them, but here are a few from the gag reel!

(BTW, my hair was a lot darker when I got the lowlights 2 weeks ago... It's faded a lot)

Sunday, November 23, 2008


1 beautiful little boy
2 happy parents
3 countries visited
4 cars
5 places lived
6 years of wedded bliss

And more adventures to come. Happy Anniversary, Baby. Here's to our future.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Recent Lucasisms - November

Stinky pants: A few times this week Lucas has told me he had a dirty diaper (which isn't new), but he then lied down on the floor when I asked him to so I could change his diaper (this is NEW!).
Another thing about poopy pants. When I change his diaper I ask, "Lucas, did you go poop in your pants?" He answers "No." Then I ask who did and he answers, "Gagu." And then he laughs. I don't know which grandma is pooping in his pants, but could you two please stop?

Abandonment: Lucas has declared that he wants freedom from his highchair. He now eats in a normal chair like mom and dad. He probably doesn't eat as much because it's hard for him to sit still. And I find myself not only cleaning the floor, but the entire chair - every rung of the back, after dinner. When Lucas is done eating he likes to take his dish and put it in the dishwasher. Then he starts the dishwasher, which is a little annoying, but still cute that he want to be helpful!

Foodie: Lucas is a pretty healthy eater. His favorite foods are blueberries, watermelon, strawberries, grapes and now apples. Sometimes we find ourselves saying, "Lucas eat some more of your cheesy pizza and you can have more grapes..." The other day I think I actually tried to get him to eat potato chips. Yesterday on three separate occasions he went to the fridge and got out the bag of grapes and an apple and brought them to me.

Dance Machine: Lucas and I enjoy watching Dancing with the Stars together. He's really cute because he gets up and dances sometimes. Then he always applauds and says, "Yay!!" when they are done.

Family Matters: When Lucas reads a book, he always points out the mommys, daddies and babies. Even in a dinosaur book. Last night we were looking in our Little People caveman book and he pointed out mommy, daddy, baby, gagus and gampas. Even the dinosaurs have families.
The other weekend I took Lucas to the Childrens Museum and he was playing with the cow display - a couple cows, calves, and a barn. He made a mommy cow a daddy cow and two babies. I didn't bother to go into how both cows were female... We'll talk about alternative families next time. I think it's great that he likes having a mommy and a daddy (I assume).

Learn, Baby, Learn: Lucas has his letters down. Now he's getting really good at lowercase letters and numbers 1-9. Ben is a good teacher after work!

Name Game: If you ask Lucas his name, he says "Baby." I think "Lucas" is just too hard for him to say. Or maybe it's because all three of us are named Baby in this house.
FYI - he is getting better at other names. He says Mannie for Maddie, LiLi for Lisa, Clay, Kate, and a slew of ofther names... He also says K, green and orange now thanks to Gagu.

I'll get more pictures up as soon as we get them put back on the computer. iPhoto is currently out of the office.

Mommy Sad?

Yesterday during nap time I stumbled across a blog that a friend had told me about a few weeks ago, but I had since forgotten. It is the Nie Nie Dialogues by Stephanie Nielson. In August Stephanie and her husband, Christian, were in a private plane crash that killed the pilot and gave them severe burns. They are currently recovering from their burns in Mesa. Stephanie's sister, Courtney, has taken over her blog reposting favorite entries from before, but also has her own blog where she writes about her new life (taking care of her own son, plus Stephanie's children) and updates on Stephanie and Christian's conditions. She uses her blog to raise money for Stephanie and Christian's recoveries. Stephanie will be needing skin grafts for years.

Stephanie has amazing faith. Her love for motherhood and for her Mr. Nielson is inspiring. As I was reading these two blogs, I was crying my brians out thinking about what these families are going through. Lucas came into the office and saw me and suddenly got very worried.
"Mommy Sad?" he said
I explained to him that I read something that made me sad and that I was okay and that I loved him very much.
"Mommy okay." Lucas said.
"Yes, Mommy is okay."
This went on all night. We drove to see Ben at work and have dinner downtown and while we drove Lucas kept saying, "Mommy okay?"
Lucas is such a sweet boy and I'm glad that I can be his mommy. I'm glad that I was the one that had to carry him across busy downtown streets last night while he fought me so he wouldn't get run over, and I'm glad that my husband was there to chase him out of the restaurant when he escaped. I'm glad he has such spirit, which I often blame on Ben's DNA, but it makes him who he is and he is wonderful.

Read about Nie Nie and C Jane if you need to be inspired... or cry.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Bike Rack Ben

Ben entered a contest to design a bike rack for the Downtown Austin Alliance. He was one of three chosen winners and his bike rack will be built in front of the Art Museum on Congress.

Ben will be a busy boy now trying to find all the bike gears to use. When he first entered the contest, I didn't know he would be responsible for making sure it got built, but he is.

You can read about it and see the other winning designs here.

Congratulations, Baby!

Sunday, November 9, 2008


Today was stake conference at church. It seemed like half of Austin was there. The chapel, overflow area, gym, and stage were full. There was even a video camera transmitting to little TVs in the Relief Society and multipurpose rooms, which were also full.
We were in the multipurpose room, along with lots of other people with noisy kids. Lucas was having a hard day and refused to sit still. Finally I took him out and we went in a classroom and watched Elmo's World. Yes, I brought a DVD player to church and I don't regret it, so there. After about 30 minutes we headed back to try to sit by Ben. This time Lucas did a little better, but soon got antsy.
The final speaker was Elder Packer (Boyd K. Packer's son). He was nearing the end of a great talk when Lucas decided he would rather escape from the classroom than listen. So, I ran after him... straight into the gym. I figured surely he would be afraid of all the people and turn around.
Nope. Instead he headed right down a row of people. I followed (in my 4.5" heels) hoping he would stop soon, or that someone would see the panic in my eyes and stop him for me. Then he turned towards the chapel once he got to the center aisle. Again, I thought, "he won't go far. There are too many people in his way." But, no, he got to the last row of the people in the chapel, where I thought he would be trapped, zigzagged and made his way right into the chapel, where he resumed traveling at full speed. He made it all the way up to the very first row, turned left and was right in front of Elder Packer. Luckily he didn't go on to the stage (his favorite place to play) and luckily the video camera was in his way in the front row. As he tried to make his way around it, someone stopped him for me and I carried him out.
Sadly, we didn't make it on camera for Ben to see, but everyone else in the whole church got to see. I made it out of the chapel before I started to laugh/lecture Lucas. After that, I took him to the multipurpose room where we gathered our belongings and our dad and we headed to the car (only after Ben had to chase Lucas so he wouldn't run into the street, of course).
I talked to Lucas for several minutes about how he can't run away from me. I don't think he got anything out of it, but he did tell me he wouldn't run away anymore. I don't believe him.
He's been sweet ever since we got home.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Adventures with Gagu and Maddie

My mom and niece, Maddie, came to visit us last weekend. They arrived on Friday just in time to go trick-or-treating.
Lucas was Elmo for Halloween. I thought he would love his costume and want to wear it all the time, but no. He hated his costume and I might have scarred him forever by forcing him to wear it. He refused to wear the hat, so he always just looked like a furry red kid or a decapitated Elmo.
Here is Lucas with his friends (in order, Drew, Lucas, Kate (so helpful!), Anna, Riley, Audrey, Ocean, and Eden):

After T-O-Ting we went to a super-fun party at our neighbor's house. Then we were off to bed.
Saturday we decided to go out for lunch to Flip Happy - a place downtown that sells crepes out of an airstream trailer. When we got there there was a long wait, so we decided to go for hamburgers instead. That line was long too, so Ben dropped us off at the park and headed back to get lunch. After waiting in line at the hamburger place, he decided to wait at Flip Happy. So, about 1 1/2 hours later Ben made it back to the park to find 3 exhausted girls and a half naked sunburned boy. The crepes were good, though.
Saturday night was the Halloween party at church. I didn't make Lucas wear his Elmo costume. Instead he wore angel wings from last year and hardly knew they were there.
Sunday Lucas and Maddie finally go to play a little after church. Maddie is a good girl and sits in Lucas's chair like a champ. He loved having her to read to him. Now he expects me to do it ;).

Sunday evening poor Maddie had to head back to ABQ so she could go to school on Monday. I got to take her to the gate and make sure she got on the plane. I'm glad to report she made it home safe and sound with no incident.
Lucas also had a great time with "Gagu." They practiced learning his letters and also read lots of books.

Monday and Tuesday my mom and I went around Austin on various errands. The most important being to Hobby Lobby to pimp my kitchen (above the cabinets). We bought the candle holders, trunk, basket/greenery, and I already had everything else.

I'm so glad my mom could help me because I didn't know what to do, and would have bought too many plants and made it crowded. Thanks, Mom!
Tuesday after nap time Lucas and I took Mom to the airport. Lucas whined most of the way, but we got her there safe and sound. She met up with my dad in Dallas and they headed to Florida to stay with my grandma for a couple weeks.
We had a great time with our company. Thanks for coming Mom and Maddie!