Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Caeden Turn's Two

I can not believe that my little human is TWO years old.  I think she is the most adorable little human EVER!!
Of course I am a little biased.  I call her the little human because she is so small and she thinks she is so capable of doing whatever any other human could do.  She gets her own food.  Wants to do her own hair.  Moves the stools to wherever she needs to be.  Opens the fridge.  Gets her shoes. Gets in the car.  Reads books. Plays puzzles.  And generally feels as if she belongs with the big kids ALWAYS!!   She is quite a character. I have not had a child like her yet. Into everything---all the time. Writing on walls, writing on herself, and not stopping for a minute.  Until nap time and then she hits the bed and crashes for a few hours everyday. 
Thank goodness. 
 I am amazed every time I look at her.  Her little body, with her little muscular legs that walk and run her 
non-stop all over the place.  I am thankful that she is mine, that God has given  me her special spirit and amazing human body to raise in this troubled world.  
I love her--she wears me out--but nothing makes me smile more.

An Elmo Cake to celebrate the occasion. 
We had a great turn out for the party--Thanks Grandpa Gary!

A cute little sheep from Great-Grandma and Grandpa Carlson
Lots of loves and kisses for the sheepy!


JUST A Sample of the Mischief.
Halloween make-up, how did she find it?? GOOD QUESTION!

 Love you Caeden

Sunday, March 20, 2011

January 2011

Happy Birthday to Me
 I kept telling Ben that all I wanted for my Birthday was a  BIG FAT CHOCOLATE CAKE.
You know the kind that is so gooey and yummy and chocolaty that you have to have the vanilla ice cream on the side or you would die from chocolate overload.  That is what I wanted.
The dear sweet husband of mine--Baked me not only 1 but 2 chocolate cakes.  He found the recipes online and couldn't decide which one would be better so he made them both.  The cakes were good--Bless his heart
the frosting just didn't turn out so great....but a great big  Thank You for my birthday wish!!

 Courtlyne did wear this to school today. 
I am glad that she is not afraid to show off her individuality 
 and style. 

Kids got a hold of the camera, and the funny faces commenced!!

I hate to admit it but I was a little disappointed in the birthday gifts from my sisters..  I mean usually my sisters give me something that I really enjoy like some great books, or new make-up that I would never buy myself, or a free massage,  this year I got these...

Really guys... I like chocolate and everything--the jam was horrible, but I was grateful that I had gotten a gift at all and that they were there to eat cake with me.  Little did I know... this was just a preview of a great surprise.  The next day I was minding my own business at work and my three sisters showed up with a bunch of balloons--I was like are a little late with the birthday present. But they had arranged for me to leave work--run away to Heber/Park City and escape for the night. We stayed at the Swiss Alps Inn---hence all the Swiss treats.   It was a great surprise.  I am now only sad that because I am usually the camera man, and  I was caught off guard,  I did not have my camera to take any photos of the adventure.  We just hung out--laughed, played a game, ate a lot of junk, watched a movie, stayed up late, and enjoyed the time.  It was amazing to me that they worked out the logistics of my life for me.  
The job, the kids, the husband, and the home were all taken care of without me worrying about a THING.  Amazing!  

Friday, March 18, 2011

2010 *The Year*

  • I celebrated my 34th Birthday!!  My Mom made me the most delicious chocolate cake with chocolate frosting. YUMM!! It was big enough to have leftovers for a week.  Nothing compares to that homemade chocolate cake.  
  • Courtlyne started competing Level 5 gymnastics.  I now have had the role of gymnast, gymnastics coach, and the most stressful, gymnastics mom.  She was a little nervous and I was a lot nervous. 
  • Tie-dye fest.  We just needed a colorful picture on a drab January Sunday.  YES-- we made them all!

  • More gymnastics meets.  I am getting a little more settled in watching her compete.  She is a natural. I wasn't sure what kind of a competitor she would be--all girls are different.  Some rise to the occasion of competition while others freak out and mess it all up--She definitely takes it seriously.
  • Caeden turns #1.  Wow my little baby is one and she is such  a character.  
  • Caeden learns to walk. Watch out!! Running and climbing are not far behind

  • Courtlyne and Carter were super excited to be the little Misses for Christie Cerenzie and Candice Wride at the Miss Spanish Fork pageant.  We spent a day at the salon getting their hair curled and all girlied up for the pageant.  That is stuff that we are not especially used to at our house.  They had a lot of fun escorting their pageant girls.  And---Christie won  1st  attendant and Candice won 2nd attendant.  Fun night for all!!
  • Crazy hair day for the second graders 
  • Caeden always, always wearing Dads hats.

Cancun Vacation
  • So we needed a little vacation--It had been almost 8 years since we had gone for an extended vacation without the kiddos--We booked it in January with some good friends of ours so all through the cold months we had something to look forward to. 
  • The best water I have ever been in.  Body surfing and sun and the sand and oh...I could have stayed on that beach all day. 
  • Hot husband in the waves.
  • Our pool view.
  • The large iguanas that I was dared $10 dollars to try to touch.  I got close, and then a little iguana started to run at the big iguana and then it started to run at me.  I RAN.  The locals say they are just like chickens and will not hurt you, however, we have chickens and I don't really like to touch them either.
  • Rai-Rai--our topless neighbor. AUGGHH
  • Snorkeling--I loved it!
  • The pornovator--This elevator was so trippy I wish I could have captured a decent picture. Wall to wall mirrors--flashing lights, it was HUMMM...Not sure what it was really.  

  • Cal turns 5.  Ready to start school this year--Wow, the boy is growing up.  We celebrated with his best friend Kyson at Chuck  E. Cheese.  Man I hate that place.  Transformer cupcakes, and lots of boy toys.
  • Pictures with Great-Grandparents. 
  • Pictures with Grandma Linda, she made him a sweet cozy blanket, and Grandpa Gary.
  • Birthday Spankins!!!
  • Then we had Easter---Amazing to wake up on a bright Easter Sunday to a good 6 inches of snow--WHAT!! The Easter Bunny always brings the kids swimsuits for Easter... so being the picture taking Mom that I am I had to get the photo... in the snow, in the swimsuits.  YES!!!  LOVE IT!!

  • May 1st Carter turns 7. We had a spa birthday with a couple good friends and the amazing work of the Azalea Day Spa! Thanks to HOLLY. Pedicures, and fancy gift bags and cute presents.
  • Then a family party with Grandmas and Grandpas. 
  • Hersey Track meet.  Courtlyne crosses the finish line first in her 400 heat.  I LOVE watching her run--and she hates running.  But she is so good at it. I hope it is a talent that she will someday want to develop.   
  • We had a little Cinco De Mayo on Mother's day with a great piƱata for the kids. 
  • Grandma Betty, Mom and me
  • Me and my kids. 
  • Mother's Day 2010.  I didn't know at the time that this would be the last Mother's Day that I would  spend with my Mom.  I think we all knew that she was not getting better but reluctant to admit it.  We had a great day just being together and spending time.  I guess none of us really knows when that day may be the last time--Cherish Each Other. 

  • Courtlyne finishes out the season at the state meet.  Becoming one of the top 3 in the state for her age group.
  • Swimming lessons.  A must every summer--although it always seems so cold!!!
  • Relay for Life- This years Relay was quite emotional for all of us.  Originally they asked my Mom to speak at the big ceremony to start the luminaria  walk for the event.  She said she would be glad to.  Then Mom got sick.  Really sick. To me it actually seemed like it happened over night. The cancer that was in her body finally won the fight.  Regardless of the fact that my Mom became so sick and  incoherent she still thought she would speak at the Relay.   My Dad told her that he would take her place if she was not able to go.  He ended up having to do the job, and he was amazing. It was refreshing for so many people to hear what he had to say about being a caregiver to someone who is sick.  
    It was pouring rain ALL night and we were wet and cold--Dad stood up there and  did a great job making people smile.  For the first time we ended up leaving the Relay, we packed up our tents in the middle of the night and took our soaking wet selves home to  bed.  It is a good thing that we did because we surely would have drowned at Payson park that night.  

  • At the end of May my parents went on a trip to Washington D.C.  and when they got home my Dad immediately took Mom to the hospital.  My sisters and I went to visit them on a day that they just happen to be counseling with a social worker about Hospice.  I am so grateful for the insight that we had to go to the hospital and to go together.  We all were able to talk about things that Mom wanted and where treatment would go from there.  I remember us all having to be at work and just sitting there not going anywhere. It was horrible and sad and at the same time we were still laughing, as Mom requested that we all sing at her funeral.  Not just any song but "You Raise Me Up"  By Josh Gorban.---WE DO NOT SING and if we do it sounds horrible.   So we were all  just laughing because she was still making jokes.  It was hard.
  • It seems like from that moment on at the hospital that I knew I needed to or should speak at my Mom's funeral.  I started thinking every night about what I would say and how I would say it.  I told my Dad I would like to do it if he wanted me too---I hope that I did not take over by offering to speak.  I just knew I needed to do it.  It felt good to be able to stand up there and honor the amazing, spiritual woman that my mom was, and to remember the good times. 
  • Caeden said "I love you" for the first time ever  to my Mom during this time.  I know she heard her little voice. 
  • About a week before she became bedridden she was outside with me and the kids, dragging her oxygen tank and teaching them the art of dipping fries into your slushie.
  • I felt inspired to call my brother who was able to come out a couple weeks before Mom passed away.  I recall that the last real semi-coherent day she had was the last day that he was here. 
  • Emma moved in and sacrificed her time and energy to help out at home. THANK YOU. 
  • She couldn't bath herself, she couldn't get out of bed, she couldn't talk.
  • We had to move her to a hospital bed downstairs where she was to stay until she passed away.   
  • Dad called us all to come over and talk taking Mom off of her oxygen.  We knew she wasn't really with us anymore and her spirit was ready to go home. We decided to meet that next day and be there together.  The hospice nurse said she could possibly live a few minutes  to a few days without the oxygen. 
  • We prayed together-My Dad asked specifically that she would not suffer and that she would be able to pass quickly with out pain.  We cried. 
  • She passed away peacefully in minutes after the prayer on June 24th 2010. 
  • I felt relief for her and her suffering and sorrow for my Dad and our family.
  • We talked to Allan in Chile on the phone for a few hours.  He had great support there while serving his mission--My Mom did not want him to come home.  He honored her wishes by honoring the Lord.  
  • My sisters and I were able to dress and prepare my Mom for her viewing--it was a very spiritual experience that I will cherish forever. 
  • The viewing was held at my parents home. At first we all thought it would be a little creepy and weird--but it was perfect.  Like my Dad said where else would she rather be?  No where but home. 
  • All the family came.  
  • The funeral was held July 1st 2010. 

  • When my  Mom said she would rather have a party than a funeral I never really thought that it could or would happen--but that is pretty much what happened. The Carlson family reunion just happened to be planned for that weekend.  Her 6 brothers, and 1 sister were all there--with lots of their own kids and grandkids. So after the funeral lots of family and lots of crazy fun.
  • Stitches in Cal's ear after a run in with some cousins.
  • Paper bag on the head massacre. Ending in a......Broken nose and an expensive trip  to the emergency room for Gregg, after a run in with a cousins girlfriend.  
  • Kickball and Ben's pulled hamstring.  Caeden is kissing him better in the photo.
  • Death defying blanket tosses in the backyard.... and 3 YES 3..... ripped through blankets. 
  • Courtlyne turns 10 and enters the world of double digits.   She got lots of her favorite things--Dollars!
  • 24th of July parade, carnival, kids parade, fireworks at the park, and relaxing on the front lawn. 
  • An entire mixture of swirling emotions that are not quit real or manageable at this point. 

  • Snowbird of COURSE!!
  • Carter reluctantly hiking.
  • Kids in the pool--one of my favorite things.
  • A sweet log hut we discovered in the woods,
    • Courtlyne showing her style--5th grade.
    • Carter cute as ever with her new haircut--2nd grade
    • My man Cal starts kindergarten. Riding Dad's old bike to school for the first time. 
    • Caeden at home with me  eating spaghetti.  YUMMM!

  • Ben's 35th Birthday--officially now you have to round up to 40.  
  • September Slip and Slide--Yeah for fall time Sunshine. 
  • Cal's knew kicks--Air Jordan's  the shoes Ben coveted when he was a kid.  
  • A crazy Sunday afternoon when the kids became their own freak show in the basement.  I love when stuff like this happens. They all play together, Ben and Caeden and I take a nap, and we wake up to the music playing, and the kids performing something amazing that  they have made up.  Love the wigs!

Disneyland Vacation