2.07.2015

this little boy...

yep. you could probably tell from the title, but this is going to be a mushy-mom-post. if you are a mom, you totally get it. your kids are your entire world, your everything. for those of you who aren't mom's (or parents), you probably get sick of us mom's writing and saying stuff like this. but we just can't help it! these little munchkins take up so much of our time, energy, sleep, thought processes and dreams that we just can't help but gush over them sometimes.

posts like this help me when I'm having hard mom-days. you know those days where everything is going wrong, you feel like a complete failure as a parent and you look up at God and whisper for the millionth time in that same day "i am a terrible mom." those days, thankfully for me, are getting rarer and rarer the older Dylan gets, because the older he gets, the more independent he gets, and that, in turn, gives me less opportunities to screw up throughout the day. but, those days happen. they happen to all of us. and when the good days come, i feel like i appreciate them so much more because of all the screw-ups, mess-ups and blow-ups my little guy has had to endure one time or another. i cannot express the guilt i feel on a constant basis and thinking "how did i get such an amazing kid? i don't deserve this little ball of unconditional love with a set of lips that spouts never-ending kisses and a mouth that constantly states "HI MOMMA!" and "I LOVE YOU MOMMA!" and has hands that constantly reach for mine whether we are in the car or on the couch." 


i have been thinking about writing this post for a couple of weeks now, and it always occurs to me to write it after we put Dylan down for bed and we have done our sweet bedtime routine of brushing "teefies," reading a story and Dylan saying our family prayers (we say them and he repeats what we say. cutest.thing.ever) then hugs and kisses and some tickles, then putting him to sleep and as we walk out we say "goodnight" "love you" "see ya later" over and over as we walk out slowly and turn the lights out. he says each phrase back to us as we walk out. we have done this as long as i can remember (well, as long as he could say the words) and i fall in love with him all over again every night as i hear him say those phrases back to us. my heart literally melts. maybe it has to do with the fact of knowing we have 3-4 hours of free-time to do whatever we want before bed. or maybe it has to do with knowing he doesn't fight bedtime so it makes it much easier. whatever it is, each night as we walk back downstairs to continue our night while he lays in bed and drifts off to sleep, we, without fail, talk about what an amazing kid we have, and how we can't get enough of him and how we can't imagine life without him. every. single. night. that conversation happens. it's a renewal of love for our little man, who knows how to both drive us absolutely bonkers and make us melt in puddles of oooey-gooooey love for him. 

so as i said, this is a mushy post (captain obvious) and i just wanted to say some sweet things about him that we love right now, and that we are proud of, and that we absolutely go crazy for about this kid. this is my favorite time right now. i honestly wish there was a way to freeze time, even if it was just for a moment, because if i could, i would do it right now. he is so fun, so sweet, so talkative but not to a point where he knows how to talk back, so hilarious and so darn cute. want to hear how crazy i am?  i have literally thought about setting up cameras all around in each room and video for all hours of the day just so i can watch them in the future and remember how darling he is right now. yep, I'm a crazy mom. but i know this time is so short and it goes by so fast. i don't want it to stop. i don't want him to keep growing. i don't want him to change. wishful thinking. so instead of being a crazy psyho mom, i will just post a few favorite and fun things about him.

this little boy...

-loves school. mondays and wednesdays cannot come fast enough for this kid. the bus is his favorite thing in the world and on the days it doesn't come, he asks for it constantly. so grateful he loves learning and isn't afraid to be without me and is learning skills i can't teach him here at home. he constantly talks about his school "fwends" (friends) and how he loves to play with them.

-has the capacity to watch the same show over and over for weeks on end. nothing but the same.dang.show. no idea how he does it, but i would go bat-crazy. whatever floats his boat.

-has been potty-trained for over a month now. he basically learned all on his own and did it in one day. no joke. one day. in one month's time he has had 2 accidents. he is day and night trained. so grateful it wasn't a painful process and that he was finally ready, and once he figured out he was, it was a cinch. so freaking proud of him i could (and have, multiple times i might add) squeeze him until he grunts for air! 

-loves babies. is obsessed with babies. acts like a baby just to make me laugh. can't get enough of every baby he sees. he.loves.babies.

-is starting to love to cuddle. yeah, i can hardly handle my excitement myself. he loved to cuddle when he was a baby, but for the last couple years he wanted nothing to do with cuddling. now he is on my lap all of sacrament meeting (and i don't have to force him, he actually wants to be there) and on the couch he just climbs on my lap. it's probably the best feeling ever.

-is talking more and more every day. i think it coincides with the being potty-trained thing. in the same week as the potty-training happened and was a success, he started saying SO much more. full sentences. and they just keep coming and coming. we are so happy and excited about this. it's so fun to talk to him all the time.

-still has strawberries and yogurt every single morning for breakfast. this has been his staple breakfast since the boy could eat solids. he loves it, and i love it because it's healthy. sometimes i feel bad that's all he ever wants for breakfast so i make him pancakes and he likes them, but given a choice, he always chooses the yogurt and strawberries. 

-really really really really loves superheroes. it's all he talks about, thinks about and wants to be when he grows up. i guess its fitting since he pretty much is one in his own right.

-is a sucker for candy. will do anything and everything for it.

-loves to think and say everything is beautiful. "those trees are beautiful!" he says. "those lights are just beautiful!" he exclaims. oh you should've heard him every time we drove at night around christmas time. for hours that's all he would say in the car while we drove passed houses and businesses. "those christmas lights are so beautiful!" i had soup for a heart every night when we'd get home.

-has a fetish for waiting until i least expect it, then backs up as far as he can and then darts as fast as he can, making a b-line for my legs and giving me the most ginormous hug around my thighs while almost knocking me over in the process. one of my most favorite things he has started doing.

-says the funniest phrases (like point above) and i have no idea where he hears them. maybe i say them and don't realize it and he says them a few days later? maybe he gets them from movies he watches or from school and the other kids? no idea. but we love it.

-still goes to bed early (6:30 or 7) and wakes up around 7:45 each morning. we love him for this. we know that's not the norm for most kids his age, and we constantly thank him by not changing the routine in hopes it doesn't change anytime soon.

-likes to put himself in time-out. no idea why. but when he's done something he knows he shouldn't have done, he will go put himself on the stairs and serve his full 3 minutes in silence until we come get him. 

-wants me to hold him all of the time. this i don't mind at all. i soak up every time he asks, and sometimes even beg him to let me do it because i know, since he is already half my height, the time is  limited i will be able to do this. i am sure we look so silly, me holding what looks like a 5-year-old while we walk through the store or a museum, but i love it way too much to care. he's my baby, and i love holding him. i'll hold him for as long as he will possibly let me.

-loves to sing songs. his favorites are "let it go" (no idea when he will actually let that one go), Jesus wants me for a sunbeam, twinkle twinkle and the eensy weensy spider.

-has a sixth sense for when i'm sad. he can be anywhere in the house doing anything and when i cry, that kid has a radar and comes running to save the day and wipe my tears and to give me a get-better cuddle and hug. this has happened multiple times. and it's not like i'm wailing or anything. he senses feelings. i love that about him.

-was a jedi in another life. every time he gets out of the bath he has to have his "jedi-cloak" or as the rest of us call it, his towel. he has to have it on his head and wrapped around him while we (he and I) hum the Star Wars theme. then he has to stand on the toilet so he can have a full-body view for himself with his jedi-cloak on and he sings the song again while he smiles and looks at himself. most entertaining part of my morning.

-and finally, this little boy is patient. he's a teacher. he's a lover, not a fighter. he's a friend. he's brave. he's so well-mannered. he's a momma's boy. he's Brett's doppleganger. he has my eyes, and he has Brett's heart. we are so blessed and constantly amazed at how much we love him and how much he makes us laugh and we are always in awe of how we really don't deserve him. we have no idea where he came from. we have a piece of heaven in our home with us, and we know it. i always say to Brett "he has set the bar SO high, almost too high, for the rest of our kids. i don't see how they will ever measure up in cuteness or personality." i know i say that only because he's all we've known, but that's how i feel. i don't see how another kid could be as cute or as good or as sweet as him (basically how every parent feels about their own kid). hopefully i am pleasantly surprised when the rest of them come along :)


we love you Dylie. we are so stinkin proud of you and all you have accomplished in all your 3 1/2 years. you have changed us and made us so much happier than we ever thought we could be. 


so on those bad days, you know those ones we all go through where we feel like the worst moms in the world? i will look back on this and hopefully it will remind me that, although he may have given me H that day, deep down under all of those tantrums, fits, crying and wailing and gnashing of teeth, there is a sweet little boy who means more to me then i could ever express in words. he's there, and i need to remember that. and i need to remember that he is so patient with me, and he deserves the same. because we all have bad days, what matters is how we handle them and how we get through them. 


1.07.2015

5th Anniversary Photoshoot

you guys. i know it's been a while. let me just tell you, the holidays kicked my butt! i got sick over both Thanksgiving (barfing and a tummy ache the whole weekend) and Christmas Eve through after New Years (Bronchitis is the worst!!! don't get it). and on top of all that, i was finishing up my first semester back at school. i am happy to say it was a success :) so i am sorry i have been MIA. i have been so busy i haven't even been able to make sure my legs are staying shaved haha (sorry Brett ;) 

but, i just had to blog about this AMAZING session that Brett and i had with Lisa Miller Photography. i had been thinking about maybe getting photos taken for our 5th anniversary (which was back in May) but we were so busy this summer moving and getting ready for school to start for two out of the three of us, that i kind of just forgot to do anything about it. but then, my good friend and incredible photographer friend had a giveaway back in October for a free portrait session, and i entered, and i won! i was so excited, especially since i never win anything ever! it was the perfect opportunity to not only do the photoshoot i wanted to do, but to do something completely out of the box and something i have never done before. i wanted a more timeless and old-hollywood type feel for our shoot, and to say we succeeded is an understatement. Lisa was amazing at helping me pick out the perfect outfit and helping me bring my vision to life. we just got our photos back a few days ago and we love love love them!! 

a special thanks to Tori Plant for doing my makeup, and to Bottles and Blooms for my amazing flower crown. i was obsessed with that thing and wore it the rest of the day. so sad real flowers can't last forever. and the biggest thank you and shout out to Lisa Miller Photography!! i have loved her stuff for so long, and she just gets better and better with every shoot she does. i was so thrilled to have her shoot us. we couldn't love these any more. thanks again girl! you are the best! we will treasure these forever!





































10.28.2014

Florida part lll: the beach, Disneyworld & going home

so if you thought the last post had a lot of photos, you ain't seen nothing yet. this post probably has triple the amount of photos. we took lots and lots of pics. i am only sharing a few of the hundreds we took, so it could be worse right?

so after we finished Universal Studios, we were definitely ready for a day to relax. we researched beaches that would be good to go to, and decided on a beach in Titusville by Cape Canaveral. It is a National Seashore Park so it's really clean and bathrooms and well-kept. It was about an hour drive from our Marriott, but we didn't mind the drive with the windows down and the humid air blowing in. We stopped and got Subway to take to the beach, and also a gas station for gummies, drinks and candy.

We got there and, the way the park has it set up is, about every mile or so, they have a parking lot and number associated with the parking lot and it has a walkway to the beach (you can't see the beach from the road, you have to walk up a walkway to get to the beach). basically it's just super organized and very clean. so we are driving and each number we pass the parking lot is dead empty. like no cars whatsoever. keep in mind, it was a Tuesday, the day after Labor Day so school is in and it's the middle of the day in the middle of the workweek, so we knew it wouldn't be super crowded (that's why we planned it for that day) but we didn't expect it to be that dead. so we kept driving just to explore, and as we get to the last beach in the park, #13, the parking lot is PACKED. all the parking stalls are taken, and cars are lined on each side of the road. we are thinking, wow, this is where the party is at! and by this time Brett had to pee, so he ran into a stall and i decided to go up and check out why this beach was so popular. and keep in mind that we couldn't see the beach from the road, and the bathrooms are on the road part so Brett couldn't see anything either. so i walk up the walkway expecting to see a bunch of families with their kids building sand castles, frolicking in the water and enjoying the nice weather. ummm wrongo. i get up there and see this:

sensored for those who don't want to see bare butts. if you want the real one let me know ;)
and about 50 other bare bottoms and, i'm nauseous to say, full frontals. oh my gosh! and they were frolicking all right. frolicking all over the place and their bodies were frolicking as they moved. i wanted to claw my eyes out. not even kidding. i wish i could've seen my reaction, i got up there expecting to see a completely sweet and innocent scene, then to my surprise i saw bare body parts that nobody should have to see without being warned. couldn't believe what i was seeing, decided to take an iphone pic to have proof in case Brett didn't believe me, and hightailed it back to the car like a bat out of Hell. that place was crawling with people in the nude. they seemed quite comfortable in their nakedness. but i, for one, wanted to dig my eyes out with a spoon for a few minutes after witnessing what i witnessed. more power to them for being that comfortable with their bods. oh man, even as i write this my mind needs a little scrub-a-dub-dub. so many bits and pieces i want to rip out of my brain.

so anyways, i get back to the car and Brett gets out of the bathroom and he is about to go up to the beach because he didn't expect me to be by the car. i shout to him with all my might, stopping him so he didn't have to witness what i had. i wanted at least one of us to go on living without having those images stuck in their head. and what do you know, he didn't believe me. i knew there was a reason my first reaction was the take a pic. so i showed him and just like that, we were back in the car, heading straight to beach parking lot a few miles away from the nudists. safe and sound. we were thrilled to be the only ones in the parking lot. no surprise bums were going to be at the top when we got there, and i was very happy about that.

so we get up there, and oh my gosh, it's BEAUTIFUL!! (i'm sure the other beach was just as pretty, but the surrounding objects kind of stole my view of the water and its gorgeousness). just see for yourself:








oh isn't it beautiful? oh my gosh, i would give almost anything to go back. and it was so great because we had the entire beach to ourselves. it was awesome. it was so hot, but the good thing about it being so hot was the water was extra warm too. if you know me, i'm not a huge fan of getting into the ocean. i don't like the saltiness, i especially don't like the cold of it and the rocks on the bottom that hurt your feet. this trip changed my mind about getting into the water on the beach. it was like hot-tub water. it was SO warm. it was almost like someone filled up a gigantic bathtub of perfectly temperatured (is that a word?) water and dumped into the ocean that day. it was perfect. we swam in there for almost an hour, jumping waves and just talking while we swam. we thought about maybe even becoming nudists ourselves for a minute there, then realized maybe we were getting carried away with how good the water was and decided not to scare the fish.




















i have missed getting wet, then laying out, then getting wet then laying out. with a little boy running around you can't really do that so it was a special treat to just relax on the beach, read, listen to the waves, and just chill. what isn't so relaxing is going to the beach without any sunscreen. do you see that last pic of Brett with his back facing the camera? he is burning to a crisp by that point. you can't really tell, but i made him put his shirt on after being at the beach for 3 hours. even in the sun i could tell he was fried. i didn't have any on either, but i had been in the sun so much this summer that i knew i would be okay, although i ended up putting a shirt on too once i felt the tan turning into a slight burn. so our day at the beach got cut short to 3 hours once Brett could feel the sun had melted into his skin. but 3 hours was plenty of time.

so we drove back to the Marriott and Brett wanted to take a shower and before he got in, he came out of the bathroom and he looked like this...

this is not edited people! he was as red as a lobster. he may as well have been one. he was burned worse than he has ever been burned before. yeah not the smartest move. (to be fair, and so i don't look like i am irresponsible, the day before at Universal i kept seeing people putting on sunscreen and i commented to Brett that we should probably get some. he replied "oh i'm fine. i don't need sunscreen. i only tan". yeah, that's a real nice red and pink tan you got there). so i didn't even bother saying we should buy some on the way there because i knew he would say the same thing. so, this one isn't on me. 

well after i showered and Brett took a nice little sprinkle in the shower since he couldn't really handle anything touching him (i'm not sure how he even wore clothes to be honest) we went on a date to a jazz club where they had a live jazz band playing and you have dinner and listen to the music. it was SO fun. we have wanted to do it for a while and i was so glad we found this club that was just a little way from where we were staying. and by this time i had gotten used to the humidity so i was able to start wearing my hair down and not feel like i had to put it up 8 seconds later.









the food was amazing and pretty cheap. and the music was so fun! the band was really cool too. they asked the audience questions and were pretty funny. we were way impressed. we wanted to go back once more before we left but didn't have any time. then after dinner we went shopping for a little bit and i got some stuff at Charming Charlie's and we snapped a pic there since our room at the hotel didn't have a full size mirror. and Brett was a way good sport and didn't hardly complain at all about his sunburn, 

the next day (and day after) were the days i had been waiting for the most this entire trip. DISNEYWORLD!!!! i won't go on and on about my love for this place, but let's just say something in me changes when i go there. i turn into a 6 year old. i want Minnie ears. i want cotton candy. i want to find Mickey and Minnie and give them big hugs and kisses. i want to ride Space Mountain 9 times. i want it all man. Brett was so sweet to oblige my childhood fantasy. he took me to do all those things, some of them even twice. what a guy :)

first Disney day, Magic Kingdom:





they had the cutest sequins Minnie ears. i hadn't even planned on getting ears (not saying i didn't want them but it wasn't really a priority) until i saw those ears. it was like i was magnetically drawn to them. that was the first thing i did when we got there. then of course took pics.







yes i beat Brett in yet another shooting game. i was on a roll. and we just had to meet Buzz for Dylan. 



this Gaston was hilarious. we were dying.







and of course we had to meet Pooh and Tigger because Dylan loves them too. 






teacups! and yet another video for your enjoyment.




Space Mountain. my favorite ride. i laugh the entire time on this thing. it's the best. and again, there were hardly any lines peeps. we walked on this one 6 times then the last two times had to wait 20 minutes (that was later in the night).







we ate at the California Grill. it's a nice restaurant on top of one of the hotels at Disneyworld. it definitely wasn't worth the money, but it was a cool experience. and the food wasn't half bad either.





the view was pretty cool. that's Epcot right there.


then it was the moment i had been waiting for. Mickey. they actually got smart at Disney and decided to just have the most popular characters in a certain spot the entire day so you can meet them whenever you want (and so you don't have to roam the park searching for them). and what was cool about this Mickey is he blinks and his mouth moved as he talked. i was in complete awe. it was magical. see, i tell you. i'm 6.







we played a card game with him. he is so cute.








oh man we were absolutely pooped by the time the day came to an end. we loved every single second of it though. and it was cool what they've added, like the village in Beauty and the Beast, Gaston's tavern, a new Little Mermaid ride, Rapunzel's tower. it was fun to see it all. and we rode pretty much every single ride in that place. twice at least.

our second and last Disney day was Hollywood Studios...





 i haven't been there since they put in the Rockin' Roller coaster and it was so fun! i was disappointed there weren't more dips and that it went by so fast, but it was still really fun.


okay so i need to explain something to you guys. i was excited for this day, but my most biggest fearful ride ever is there, and i knew i would have to go on it. Tower of Terror. i was avoiding it as much as possible for as long as i could. but Rockin' Roller coaster is right next to Tower of Terror, and luckily the Disney app tells you the wait times, and lucky for me, the Tower of Terror had no line at all. yay. I knew it was inevitable that i would have to go, but i was super scared, as you can tell by the photos. i posted a photo from when Brett and i went with his parents back in 2008 of us on the same ride:


yeah you see that guy peeing his pants at my expense? that's my father-in-law. here's 2014:


as you can see, not much had changed between then and now. if you can't find us, we are the bottom left. but then, after riding it, i figured it wasn't so bad so i said we should go again, so we walked right on it again, and this is what happened the second time:


much more cheerful right? we took a break but wanted to come back after we did some other rides.

the Toy Story shooting game was SO fun. we used our fast pass on it (you can only have two per day, yeah they changed that too) and we were so glad we did. i won Brett the first time around and he beat me the second.





                                                     Kate                                               Brett



                                                Kate                                      Brett

then after a few other rides, it was time to hit-up Tower of Terror again. i was the one to suggest it. who was i? i didn't even know. all i knew is i was starting to love that ride.



the first time back on after a few hours i was pretty scared. Brett and i had planned on making silly faces, and i did it, but before the camera took it so it got me scared out of my pants.


back right


middle right. see, by the end i was a pro, and loving that ride. i conquered my fear! yahoo!



Rockin' Roller Coaster again







this stunt show was awesome. they showed us how they do fast car scenes in movies and it was way entertaining. we have a video but it's way long so i won't post it.


oh yeah, and it poured for a little bit while we were there. a lot actually. we got soaked to the bone. but by then it was 6pm and we were getting to be done anyways. so we did a couple more rides then decided to head back.





oh what a treat it was. we loved it all. and i was happy that i ended up loving the Tower of Terror. it's now my favorite ride. that night we got back to our hotel and packed and dreaded going home, but were so excited at the same time. we were dying to see Dylan.

the next morning we woke up, checked out, and headed to the airport and dropped off the rental car. funny story though. we missed our flight. that has never happened to me before. apparently you have to be checked in for your flight 45 minutes before takeoff. we got there at 38 minutes before takeoff. so lame! and it wasn't even our fault. but that's a long story that isn't interesting so i won't tell it. but luckily the guy at the desk was super awesome and found us a flight that was only an hour after our first one had left. and we got to sit together on both flights (we had a layover) which we were shocked about.



our layover was in Dallas and they had some pretty cool stuff at their airport:





that candy shop was amazing. i was tempted to buy until we heard some guy saying the prices. 1lb of gummy candy was $4. ridiculous. but it still deserved a pic. then that's us waiting for the train they have around the airport. and that benefit vending machine? most amazing thing ever! i wanted to buy something just to feel special, even though i am stocked up on most everything i use. i loved it.

then we got on the plane and headed home






i started that book on the plane ride out to Orlando, and finished it on the plane ride home. it was SO good. no i didn't cry on the airplane. well, kind of. it was so good. i need to see the movie now.

anyways, we got home and my heart ached to see Dylie. i was dying. it was like Christmas morning, the anticipation to see him. well we finally saw him by the baggage claim with my mom, and spoiler alert, he didn't even care to see us. he warmed up to Brett pretty good but wanted nothing to do with me. i was a little angry. what the heck? i had worried day and night about that boy and this is the thanks i get? he was spoiled rotten while we were gone. my mom warned me before we came home though that he would be that way. i didn't actually think he would because he is kind of obsessed with me (not to sound weird but you know? boys and their moms). but after about 10 minutes and by the time we were walking to the car he was hugging me and kissing me and didn't want me to put him down. that made it all better.

and there you have it. Florida in 2 posts. sorry this one was extra long. but i didn't want to split it up into 3. so thanks for those of you who stuck around to the end of this post for reading. we had a fabulous time and can't wait for our next adventure (not that we have anything planned, but when we do :)