July 26, 2015

Emerald Isle 2015 - Part Two

The second half of our trip we still spent plenty of time at the beach, but also decided to try a few other activities on the island. We went on a harbor cruise, made a trip to the aquarium, Dave and I went to see Jurassic World while we had babysitting, and we had a girl's night out with shopping and DQ blizzards. The end of the week always seems to come so soon and it's hard to leave. We hope it works to come back again in another couple years!

Part of the family went on a trip to Cape Lookout, but it was going to be a long adventure so we decided a harbor cruise in Beaufort would be better for the little kids. 

Sophie was really excited to go on a boat. We saw lots of animals, including wild horses that live on the island, but even 40 minutes started to feel long to the little kids so Uncle Tim kept them busy with an exciting game of "Who can see a green boat?"

On Thursday we went to the island aquarium. It's a fun little place and the kids and adults both had a good time.

More beach fun

My little mermaid

Some of the days were really windy, which helped with the heat. It also meant we saw lots of kite boarders. I'm always amazing at how fast they go whipping over the water. 

Getting ready to go home - Dave did a fabulous job watching Sophie while I got our suitcases packed up. Until next time!

July 25, 2015

Emerald Isle 2015 - Part 1

In July we flew to North Carolina for a beach trip with all the Howes. I have finally finished sorting through pictures and have narrowed down the hundreds of pictures to just 60 - it was a fun week!

Our last trip to the coast was when Sophie was only 3 months old and I was glad we didn't have a newborn with us this time. She was so little and it was hard to be out in the sun and wind, so I spent most of that trip inside. This trip was the opposite - she loved the sand and water and wanted to spend every waking minute outside. Our first few days at the beach were pretty relaxed - a morning swim after breakfast, followed by lunch and naps, and then a second swim before dinner, games, and bed.

The house where we stayed was right on the beach! We had rented the right half of the house about 6 years ago, but this year we were on the left half. We loved it (although I was jealous of the other half's porch swing) and each family had their own room and bathroom.

Sophie ran straight into the water without hesitation the day we got there. She had no fear, even after being knocked down a couple times by bigger waves, so we had to keep a close eye on her. The whole vacation she would splash around and say "my so HAPPY!"

Sophie and her cousin Emma went back and forth between best friends and worst enemies. They both love the same things, which is great, but it made sharing difficult. As long as there were no princess or ponies around to fight over, they had a great time playing together!

Sophie also had fun with Liam. Their interests don't overlap as much so they were able to handle being in each other's space without as much drama. 

On our second day there was a huge thunderstorm that lasted a couple hours. We made it in from the beach just as the downpour started. I had never seen so much lightning and thunder! We went back outside after it passed and enjoyed an empty beach for awhile. 

We were each assigned a night to cook and clean up a dinner. For our night we made chicken teriyaki, but for mom and dad's night they grilled steak and cooked some crab - a real treat!

Every shell was a beautiful treasure to Sophie. She brought us hundred of little shell pieces throughout the week to show us how pretty they were. 

One night we went out crab hunting with all the bowls, colanders, strainers, and tongs we could find. It was slim pickings and we only caught 5 - three bigger ones, and two that were more like large spiders.

When we weren't swimming, I had fun building sand animals for Sophie. The first day we made a sand snowman, something she had been talking about doing ever since we told her we were going to the beach. After that, her next requests were a turtle and a shark. 

July 13, 2015

Being Happy

This week we are at the beach. We weren't orginally supposed to be on this vacation because it's also the week our baby was due, but I'm glad we are here. I thought I would be sad when this time arrived, but anything I do feel is just a shadow of the hurt I felt six months ago.

I still do not know why that baby had to miscarry - nothing's happened that has made me go "ah ha! now I understand" and maybe it never will. I do know, however, that bad things, sad things, and hard things happen to everyone in this life, and when they do it's our choice on how to move forward. In the last six months I feel like I have gained a better understanding on how to be happy.

I had all these ideas in my mind that I wanted for our family that didn't happen - like starting a family sooner than we did. and having a second child before I turned 30, and having a smaller age gap between Sophie and her future sibling, and magically getting pregnant on Mother's Day after the miscarriage... but different does not equal bad and I've learned to stop looking back at what could have been and be happy with what I have now, because now it great! 

I've also learned to not hinge all my future happiness on what might take awhile to happen. I hope so much for another baby, and hope that it won't be too far in the future, but as Dumbledor says, "It does no good to dwell on dreams and forget to live". So for now I am enjoying my week at the beach. I am loving spending time with family. I am working closely with my doctor on a plan for baby #3, but not letting it take over my life. I am making an effort to connect with friends and be more active in our ward. I love my job and am looking forward to a new school year that will start in just a month. I love my Heavenly Father and know that he is mindful of me and continues to bless me daily. 

I am happy.

July 7, 2015

First Trip to the Dentist

The recommendation these days is to take your child to the dentist when they first get teeth. Sophie's teeth started coming in at 4 months and I thought it seemed a little ridiculous to take an infant to the dentist so we waited. Now that she's two and has all her baby teeth, however, I thought it would be good to schedule an appointment.

Sophie was really anxious about the visit, and truthfully I was a bit nervous too. She actually does really well with adults and strangers, but 2 is an unpredictable age so I asked Dave to come along for support. Turns out we had nothing to worry about... those pediatrics offices are awesome! The staff was really friendly, the decorations were amazing, and we both had a great experience! The best part was her x-rays showed no cavities, and that her baby and adult teeth are perfectly aligned with plenty of space to come in! To celebrate a successful visit we took her to get a free cookie at Smiths. Good job Sophie!

She had her teeth brushed and flossed by a hygienist. The hygentist gave her a Minnie Mouse toothbrush - score!

Sophie brought her two Cinderellas to the visit for comfort, but they were not needed. In the exam room they had a movie playing and gave her some glasses so the light wouldn't bother her eyes. She completely zoned out, even though the movie was only playing credits.

Her room was decorated with every Disney princess imaginable. It's like it was made just for her!

Getting examed by the dentist.  He counted her teeth, gave her a fluoride treatment, and walked us through her x-rays. His only recommendation was for us to start flossing between her two back molars to prevent cavities. I'm not sure how much she's going to like that, but we'll try!

July 5, 2015

Fourth of July 2015

We normally travel over the 4th, but this year we were still in Utah. We had a great day with some close-to-home activities and enjoyed spending time with family. Our morning started with the ward pancake breakfast at a nearby park, then we met up with my mom and brother at my grandma's house, and we finished our day with some fireworks, of course.

She arrived at the breakfast in style!

Proud and grateful to be Americans!

The breakfast started at 8:30, but pancakes didn't start coming off the griddles until 9:15 due to a power issue. We were glad there was a playground nearby to help pass the time and distract this girl from her hungry tummy. 

Hooray for pancakes - yes, she has pancake in her mouth, but this was the best one we got.

After the breakfast we went up to Salt Lake to help move some furniture from my grandma's house. The majority of the furniture is from the room where I used to stay as a child and I'm glad it's new home will be my parent's house, where my children will use it someday. After the packing was complete, we went to lunch with my mom, Derek, and my grandma Mimi at Little America - delicious as always!

Dave is a master trailer-loader. It's one of his hidden talents. There was doubt about whether everything would fit, but he got it all with room to spare!

We finished off our day with some fireworks. Since Sophie is only 2, it wasn't worth fighting the crowds and putting up with the heat to get a good viewing spot for the city fireworks display. Instead we put her down for bed, and then got her up again 10 minutes before the show, drove to a parking lot about a mile away, and had our own personal show. Not the best, but we did have a good view and she loved it. 

Happy 4th of July!

July 2, 2015

June Roundup

June was a fantastic month for us, other than insurance drama with our car, which we still do not have back. I had the first week off from work, and then worked shorter hours for the rest of the month. Sophie really enjoyed the extra time with me and we had some fun adventures. I attended my first ever library story time, we made good use of our aquarium and Thanksgiving Point membership, went swimming, and took lots of "hikes" through our neighborhood. For one week, we also went down to Provo to house-sit for my aunt, which is always fun.

We have also definitely entered the terrible twos. She is still smart, sweet, and silly, but we are seeing more and more of the dramatic side. So many emotions in such a little body! This week has been amazing, but last week was full of "mommy go AWAY, no say that, my do it, no touch me" and so on. I love her to death, but am learning that sometimes you just have to step back and ride out the storms. Luckily her happy self never stays away for too long.

In mostly phone pics, here is what we were up to last month:

Sophie with her besties at the farm - we also went to the aquarium and dinosaur museum with them

Sometimes this is the only way a dinner gets made

Wedding reception for my cousin Tyler - she loved GG's jewelry.

A very hot wagon ride at Farm Country