Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Family Portraits

We took some family portraits earlier this year. We were pleasantly surprised at how well they turned out because we just put our camera up on a tripod and used the timer and took 5 shots at a time. It worked really well, for the most part.

While we were getting the settings right on the camera Sam just wanted to eat the leaves. I had to rescue quite a few.

But once we started taking pictures he was a great sport!

During the pictures of just Cameron and I, Samuel sat in his stroller nearby so happily.

We took him to the playground afterwards and I rode down the slide with him and we continued to take some pictures while he played. He liked those a lot more than the posed ones.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Park City Picnic

One day last October we decided we needed a vacation, so we took the morning and drove up to Park City for a picnic. The weather was beautiful, the fall colors were amazing. It's such a beautiful place!

Sam loved it! He had so much fun crawling on the grass and exploring the trails via his stroller.

He especially liked their little pond and stream and wanted to play in it.

and I got this precious picture of Sam and his Daddy together.

(Be very impressed. It took me forever to get the exposure etc right on this one. Cameron's the better photographer of the two of us.)

We had such a lovely time having a family outing and a half-day vacation. We're so blessed to live so close to such beautiful places like this!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Forgiveness is Hard

Sometimes there's someone who you haven't seen in two years and you think that you've forgiven them for whatever happened.

And then you run into them unexpectedly.

And they insist on standing there awkwardly trying to talk to you, "Wow, has it really been that long... yup... well..."

And you can't say anything because you're not sure if you want to tell them all the horrible things you thought of saying years ago, or thinking if your husband was there he'd punch this person in the face, or cry because you feel badly for having these mean thoughts when you thought you were over it. And you're hoping that if it gets awkward enough this person will just leave, which they finally do with a "good to see you," which just makes you feel worse for feeling like you're lying when you return the phrase.

Yeah, this happened to me today.

And then, I thought of the Savior. He died for this person and loves him just as much as he loves me. I thought of him saying "Of you it is required to forgive all men." (D&C 64) I want to have a softer heart. I want to forgive. I want to be like my Savior. Some people sure make it hard.
Me. I make it hard on myself. No matter what others do to me I need to take responsibility for my feelings as well as my actions.

Tonight I am praying for a change of heart. I want to be able to forgive. I want to be able to love others. I want to feel that my Savior is proud of me. I want to be my best self.

I am grateful for the atonement, that it allows me to be able to repent. It helps me to change and grow and put the past behind me. I thank my Father in Heaven for loving me and being patient with my imperfections.

(Image from LDS Media Library)

Learning to Forgive from the Savior

disclaimer: this story is not about an ex-boyfriend. 

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Eleven Things About my Eleven-Month-Old!

It's been so long since I've posted. I tried to take a break from the computer over Christmas break and it was fabulous! And before that was final exams, plus a sick baby, plus getting ready to travel, so.... yeah.

Anyways, happy new year! My baby is eleven.months.old. As in, almost one year! How did this happen? So, to celebrate, here are 11 things about Samuel:

  1. Sam loves his new high chair! It makes feeding him solids so much easier and a lot less stressful, so I've been doing better about making sure that he's getting the nutrients he needs. Yesterday he actually asked to get in it! (asked being a strong term. More like "avidly reached for it until I buckled him in and gave him some cheerios.") His favorite solid foods that he's tried are probably scrambled eggs and spaghetti. He likes the taste of bananas but struggles to pick them up on his own so they make him a little frustrated.
  2. He is getting very good at stairs! We don't have any in our apartment, but he will crawl up any stairs he sees! This is a trick he learned over Christmas break and it's so cute to see how excited he gets about being able to navigate them himself.
  3. He's responding more and more to what we say! It's so nice to know that he understands what we're saying. He can now give hugs and kisses (the wonderfully slobbery kind!), plays peekaboo, responds to "hands up," and knows if we say "feet first!" he needs to turn around and not try to dive headlong off of the couch or stairs.
  4. Samuel loves positive reenforcement. If he's doing something that he thinks is difficult or cool, he'll look at other people for acknowledgment. Sometimes he'll even start clapping for himself if he wants applause. He does this most often when he is pushing his new walker or drinking from a straw. It is so sweet!
  5. He dances! He never did it until I showed him a video of his sweet friend Lucy bobbing up and down to music. He looked at her like he was confused, but by the end of the video he had started swinging his arms from side to side. Now he'll often do that or sway side to side when we have music on, or kneel down and bounce.
  6. He's a Tigger, like his daddy :) he always wants a horsey ride, or to jump on the couch, or in his bouncer, or in your arms, or anywhere really. He uses his carseat like a rocking horse when it's inside. He'll also sit up against a wall or the couch and bounce horizontally against it like I did when I was little. Isn't that funny? I don't think we purposefully taught him those things, or showed him how to do them. He just loves bouncing!
  7. He says "Da!" a lot, followed by "na," "ha," and "ma." Because he says it infrequently, it makes it all the more special when he says "mama" and he usually does it in a somewhat appropriate context, which makes me so happy!
  8. His silly teeth still won't come out! The two front ones on the bottom are so close that you can practically see them through his gums, and they're pushing up pretty far, but they just won't break through! I think it's getting pretty uncomfortable because Sam has been a lot more irritable and tired over the last few days than normal.
  9. He loves climbing! He'll climb over or under the bars that attach the legs of our chairs together, tries to get up onto the couch, explores the underside of our coffee table, and even tries to find ways to use multiple objects as a staircase. A few days ago when I was doing some dishes I turned around and he had climbed from his carseat, to a chair, and was trying to get up onto the desk! That little guy is too smart for his own good, but I'm so proud!
  10. One of his newest favorite "toys" are doors. He likes to go into my bedroom and push the door almost shut and then open it again over, and over, and over. He'll sometimes use the door to play peekaboo. He's so sweet! 
  11. He also loves baths and showers. Both of his grandma's have very large sinks so he loved taking baths in them over the holidays. We're thinking of doing a bubble bath themed birthday party for him! :)
I am so grateful for my sweet little boy, and for the way that he brings so much joy to our lives! It is hard and tiring being a mom and doing school at the same time, but it is also so rewarding! I am also so grateful for Cameron who helps so much with Sam and the house as well as working and doing school full time. He is my hero, and I am so in love with him!

Thank you everyone for your kind thoughts, encouragement, and help. We love and appreciate you so much!