Sunday, December 26, 2010

Christmas Holiday

It truly was a Merry Christmas this year. Not just because I got everything I needed such as a large mixing bowl, the mini loaf bread pan, my beautiful wedding ring got cleaned and re-dipped, a perfect cook book I can now start gathering and collecting my recipes in, etc.  I was able to enjoy watching Grandma Jackson putting in long hours at Santa’s workshop making all the grandchildren’s experience a memorable one.  I guess I had the opportunity to sit back and enjoy the people who are most important to me, my family! I am very grateful for the wonderful traditions that both of our families have continued. We were able to remember why we celebrate Christmas through the life Nativity put on by Devin and his brothers and all the grandchildren.  It was so wonderful to see Teos and Ethan dressed up as Mary and Joseph, Natalia was an angle, Devin was a Shepard, Dusty was the Wise Man, Kip was the donkey, Jeremy was the narrator, and most importantly Laila was baby Jesus.  It was so wonderful to see them all willing and excited to put on the show. The best part was that I had front row tickets and I was able to feel the spirit of Christmas.
            I guess Christmas was truly everything I needed to jump start me into a new year full of unexpected things. I think it would be selfish of me not to thank everyone for making this moment so special and for all the wonderful presents they gave to both our girls. THANKS EVERYONE!!!! I am really grateful for all the warm PJ’s and for all the beautiful dresses, all the wonderful dress-ups and all the toys that will keep them entertained for many months from now.  

The kids spread food for the reindeer

Mountain of presents

Santa delievered Snow White on Christmas day

Natalia sharing the love with her sister

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Yesterday we had the ward Christmas party and Great Grandma Andrus’s Christmas party too. Devin and I have been telling Natalia that she needs to tell Santa what she wants so he can bring it to her on Christmas day. Santa was at the ward Christmas party and Natalia was really excited to see him. We stood in line and practiced what she was going to say. When it was our turn Natalia sat on his lap and didn’t even look or talk to him. She was very nervous. She jumped off and I asked her why she didn’t talk to him.  Luckily Santa was going to be at Great Grandma’s house that night and she still had a chance to tell him what she wanted.
            Before we went to the party we went over to hangout at Grandpa Jackson’s house. We started talking about Christmas and Santa got brought up and then I told them how Natalia was really shy at the ward party and needed to practice what she was going to say to Santa. So Grandma Cheryl was pretending to be Santa, she sits down and says “Ho, ho, ho, Natalia what would you like for Christmas this year?” Natalia very quietly says “Snow White.” We all cheered and said that next time she sits on Santa’s lap she needs to tell him.
            That night we went to the Christmas party and ate wonderful food and had a wonderful time talking to everyone and enjoying the company. When the time was right Santa came and was waiting for us downstairs. We all went downstairs and (THIS IS THE BEST PART!) as soon as Natalia saw Santa she stood right in front of him, tapping on his knee saying “Santa, I want Snow White for Christmas.” Santa was busy with another little grandkid but Natalia was determined to tell Santa what she wanted so she continued to tap on his knee while saying “Santa, I want a Snow White.” All I could do was smile because I knew how important it was for her to tell him and how much she wants a Polly Snow White.
            Later it was her turn to sit on Santa’s Lap and tell him what she wanted, she was still nervous but she did what she was determined to do.  Because of her bravery and diligence I am pretty sure Santa is going to bring her a Snow White for Christmas.
Laila is just the same size as these teddy bears.

Laila on Santa's lap, she wasn't to happy about that.

Santa gave Laila a fun little toy. Natalia got a princess wand we don't have a picture of Natalia on Santa's lap but we got a video.

The whole gang getting their pictures taken.

Natalia helped Devin set up the Christmas Tree. It looks so perfect!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

A Year In Review

       Another year has passed and I can now say that it went so fast. There is a lot that we were able to do and a lot that we were able to accomplish. I don’t even know how to begin summing things up.  I guess the biggest things that happened this year were:  Devin got accepted into pharmacy school, we took one last vacation and Laila was born.  As for Natalia she keeps getting smarter and more beautiful as the days pass by.
            I guess I need to start back from when Laila was born. She was born on June 14, 2010.  She was just this beautiful chubby baby. Natalia fell in love with her the first minute she saw her in the hospital. Natalia was such a big helper and loved to kiss her, hold her and lay next to her while she told her stories. It was a bigger adjustment than I thought. At the time Natalia was my whole life. We did so many things together and I love being able to spend all day just with her. I love teaching her ABC's, numbers, colors, shapes and playing any game she wanted to play. When Laila came around she needed me just as much as Natalia needed me and I wasn’t getting enough sleep (Natalia would wake up at around 3 times a night and Laila had acid reflex and needed to be held most of the night). I felt like my patients with Natalia were trickling away. Thankfully Natalia would do the sweetest things through out the day to help remind me how much I needed her and how much I love her.  It was also good to have Devin remind me at times that Natalia was only two, a smart two year old, but still only two.
            Now Laila is six months and I can’t imagine my life without either of them. They bring me so much joy and happiness and I am grateful everyday for them. At six months Laila sits up, talks all day long, and loves to give out a very high pitched squeal, she is in the 98% in height and weight. She eats puree foods and loves it, she likes to chew on anything and drools all day long. But the best part of it all is, how happy and smiley she is. Her smile is a very contagious one, when she flashes you a gummy smile you can't resist smiling back. I love that she reminds me everyday that there is so much love to give and love is never-ending.
            Natalia is a little over 2 ½ years old. I hate to brag but she truly is one of the smarts little girls I have ever met. She talks so well and has been talking clearly and in sentences for a long time. She is fully potty trained and has been for almost a year. She knows her letters but forgets at times. She can count anything up to 15 and I think she is beginning to understand basic subtraction and addition. (she will have 4 candies and when she gives me one she says “you have one and I have three”) She loves to dance and can wiggle her hips like you wouldn’t believe and she love to sing. I think one of the things that she does well is comprimising with us. It seems like she always has something better to offer (for instance - If I tell her "Natalia you can have 3 skittles as your treat." Natalia would respond “o.k mom how about I get 2 skittles a cookie.”).Whatever she does and says makes me feel so proud because she truly is a very thoughtful, caring, loving little person. I think one of my favorite things she does right now is when I am upset at her she goes to her room and draws me a picture and then she says “I made this for you are you happy now”
            My children bring me such joy and I have to thank Devin for that! He has made a lot of sacrifices for us so that I can stay home and I am very blessed to have him as my husband. Devin is a hard worker that loves to dream big. The best thing about that is they tend to come true. For a long time before we got accepted I was doubtful that we were going to get into pharmacy school. I don’t know if it was because I was scared or I just wanted to start a real life with a house and a regular, real job. In either case Devin never gave up on the dream.  After graduating he went back to school to take some pharmacy prerequisites, he continued to work and then he decided he would get certified as a pharmacy technician. It seemed like he was bouncing from one place to the next. I am so grateful to say it has worked out. Now we are in pharmacy school and he is gone most of the day and most of the night but he knows this is a another milestone for achieving his next dream. You guys need to understand that I really hate bragging but I just have to say that Devin has received 100% on every test he has taken. I just know that he sets a great example for our family and anyone else that takes the time to get to know him.  I am a kind of person that believes in fairy tales and he is my dream come true.    
I love a good smile!

We went to the airport to check out some really cool airplanes
I got this for Valentine's day, two of my favorite things Natalia and a basket of fruit.

I love this picture because it takes me back to how relaxing it was to be on vacation.

Devin and I really enjoyed our tours in Cancun.

My baby is born just as perfect as I could have hoped for.

First time meeting her sister.

Hanging out!

From the day she was born, Natalia can't stop hugging her.

Reading a book to her Oso (Bear). I wish you could see the clip it is so cute.

Bath time in the sink. It was alot easier then filling up the tub.

Grandma Cheney always knows how to make you feel very special and very loved.

Nap time for both girls.

Our really good friends at Laila's baby blessing.
Her hair has always done its own thing.

Lagoon Day, thanks Grandpa Jackson!

My three favorite people.

I hope we can always remember the good times.