How we live and love and what we have to say about it, from Mommy Mumblings to Daddy Discourses
Stan and I first met in BYU's weight room. We've been married since Dec. of 2000. 11 years later we're still madly in love and so happy to have each other. We've earned 4 degrees: 2 BS's, 1 MS and 1 PhD. We've lived in UT, VA, MS, and now CA. We love rock climbing, yoga, exercising, reading, writing, making each other laugh, and our 4 beautiful children.
Stan surprised me with an early anniversary trip. I didn't think we'd get to celebrate since all the Halls are coming together the week after Christmas (during our anniversary). He set up baby sitting- Thanks so much Dana and Jason, Jimmy and Mallory, and Kira! We had lots of fun. We stayed in Midway at the Invited Inn run by Bill and Susi. They were very kind and helpful during our stay. We ate at Snake Creek Grill (owned and operated by the chef). It was at Bill's recommendation and located nearby in Heber. We recommend both the Inn and Snake Creek Grill. The only trick with the resturant is that you have to park a bit in front of it in front of other resturants and walk on the boardwalk to the Grill. We were confused about how to get to it at first. Excellent service. We split everything- apetizer (their loaded flatbread), pinenut salad, Sea Bass Special, and Black Bottommed Banana Cream Pie (their signature dessert). Susi introduced me to Steamers (these so yummy hot milk drinks with flavorings (I of course chose caramel)) Now I want to make them myself. I wonder if you need a special machine? If you've never had one- give them a try. I like it better than hot chocolate and I really like hot chocolate.
We had so much relaxing fun together. Thanks Stan for a great trip!
Israel with all his teeth AND Grandma Ashcraft (picture take last Sunday at the Ashcraft Christmas Party)
We were surprised to discover that Israel was loosing his first tooth (as mentioned below in Israel Funnies), but excited at the same time. I had so much fun telling Israel all about the tooth fairy and reminding him to wiggle his tooth as much as he could. I am forever grateful for some nice climbing guys at The Quarry who played with the kids and blew bubbles with the kids and then encouraged Israel to pull his tooth out all by himself after he had showed his new friends how loose it was. They were encouraging him to just yank it out- just reach right in there and pull it out- and he did! Stan and I hadn't wanted to do it ourselves. Israel wrote the tooth fairy a note explaining how brave he had been in pulling out his tooth himself and the tooth fairy was so impressed she gave Israel extra quarters.
Aunt Dana told Israel what a good tooth puller Grandma Hall was, so we know you're very proud of him Grandma:)
I don't usually post anything that isn't about the family, but I felt I needed to post the ad to the right and hope that you will all check it out and sign the petition if you agree with me. This is legislation that Pres. Elect Obama has already promised Planned Parenthood that he would sign. It supersedes all State and Federal laws currently in place in regards to abortion allowing for partial birth abortion, giving minors rights to abortions without parental consent, and not longer informing women of the dangers associated with abortions or having any type of waiting period. The law would force all hospitals and doctors to perform all kinds of abortions-even 3rd trimester partial birth abortion, and allowing for children that do not die of abortion to have no medical treatment whatsoever, to not even be treated as humans. The Catholic Hospitals have already stated that they will be forced to close down if such a law is passed. Please help me by signing this petition and helping your friends and family to be aware of this Act so we can fight the so called "Freedom of Choice Act". www.fighfoca.com
Okay, so I know I've been doing a lot of posting and we don't really have anybody reading or commenting on our blog, but I'm thinking of it as our way of recording our memories, so I have a few I just have to share today.
So on Sat. we went to Matthew and Jared, my twin nephew's baptism. While sitting in the chapel I got a view into Israel's mouth and realized that my barely 5 year old is getting a new tooth- his first grown up tooth, and not only that, but it's already growing in behind his baby teeth- Uh Oh. So I checked the one if front and it's a little wiggly. We called the dentist and he said to bring him in. So today we went (conveniently Stan has his cleaning check-up scheduled this morning) and Dr. Sachs told us that if we can't wiggle it out in 1 to 2 weeks max he'll have to pull it. He said that often the tongue will push the tooth into place, but if it doesn't we get to see an orthodontist- already I'm thinking? We thought maybe Israel, with his impressive teeth spacing maybe wouldn't need braces and we're already talking about the possibility. A bit overwhelming. Israel is taking it all in stride and we're practicing wiggling- he says it hurts, but he's trying.
So the funny- today at Preschool he was coloring AND eating his snack. Then he tells me he needs a new purple crayon and I realize the tip has been bitten off. I'd been watching Julia, so I knew she hadn't done it and I asked Israel what happened and he had accidentally bitten it off thinking he was holding one of those pretzel sticks- poor kid.
Most every night Eliza tells us my bed is brokon as we send her to bed. Her blankets have to be just right and she sleeps with 4 of them and 2 pillows (her choice). She also sleeps at the bottom of her bed horizontally (we've been joking that we'll just at Julia to the top of the bed and we could take down the crib). Okay back to Eliza- when she told us last night at 9:30 pm when we finally sent the kids to bed- since we'd had the Wesley's down from West Jordan- I almost just told her to deal with it. Thankfully I went to check it out and all the kids had actually broken her bed. We had to fix the boards and the box springs. So let this be a lesson- never cry . . . my bed is broken:)
At our RS Enrichment this week I got to make the cake! I used Sylvia Weinstocks Classic Yellow Cake, buttercream, and filling recipes- it was very rich and yummy. I decorating using wafer chocolate. It took a while, but I was really glad that I made a stacked cake from scratch.
Also at our Ward Christmas Party last night Israel and the Primary did a little number and hopefully this video will actually load:) Well it's not loading, hopefully we'll get it on here soon.
We're excited for Christmas and going to put up the tree tomorrow- wish us luck with Julia:) We also took our Christmas photo at Church today. We squeezed Eliza into her outfit from last year, so we all looked festive, so hopefully we can get cards in the mail the end of this week or the beginning of next.
We hope everyone is enjoying this Christmas Season and the focus of celebrating our Savior.
We can't find the kid's Johnson baby wash. Did the kids carry it off? Is it hiding in our spacious apartment? or what I've finally decided, it must have fallen into the trash beside the tub and we threw it away. At least it was only half full, but still, a bit of a dissapointment. I'm still hoping a bit that it will turn up mysteriously one day soon (before a store run preferably)
Yesterday Wymount took all of our damp leaves that had totally covered the ground and made wonderful piles. The only thing was they didn't come back quick enough to pick up the piles before thrilled children got to them:) Trina and I didn't want to tell our children not to play in leaves. That's what kids do right? So here are some pictures of our kids and their leaf time. Trina's boys are Travis (in the green) and Jeremy (in the blue coate and hat).
While Stan was out of town I got in the habit of staying up until at least 11 o'clock each night instead of going to bed as soon as Julia goes down . I needed the quiet time after crazy kid days and I'm not great at going to bed alone. I would read or work on my cake decorating or watch a movie. Now that he's back, I still am staying up, tidying the house and then having my luxurious me time. Last night I sipped my peach spritzer in our crystal goblets (I had to clean one first) and read my book. It's amazing what a good mood that put me in (I actually looked at the bottle to make sure it was non-alcoholic:)
Now if only I could convince my kids to wake up after 8 . . .
On the 25th we went climbing up in Ogden on 9th St. with my sister Michele and her family. Here's some pictures from our fun trip. My strength still isn't back from my mono fun, so it was a bit frustrating for me, but fun to see Konner my nephew climbing so well. It also felt good to have my hands hurt so much after a climbing trip.
Here is my Stan with his FAVORITE candy. I promise he didn't eat the ones in his ears and nose:) For our ward Halloween Party tonight I made this Spider to guard our candy for the Trunk or Treat The Cake I've been laboring over for the past 2 days. I love it and am so happy with how it turned out. The hardest part was getting the fondant all the colors I needed it to be.
Israel like to make up songs- kindof like my dad always did about whatever is happening. Well today he discovered that his tinker toys work like those music blocks we get sometimes at library story time, so with his music maker and Eliza beating along he sang:
Eliza likes Grandma Hall's house But Eliza doesn't like her dog But she likes the adorable doggie on her shirt
Reading it I realize it doesn't sound as funny as it was, but trust me, it was great, especially since her doggie shirt is a dressed up poofy looking dog that scares me a bit. Also, he used the word adorable and even realized what was on her shirt- did he think of it before he started singing? I was just impressed, so I had to share.
Israel is going to be a cowboy for the 3rd year in a row for Halloween. This year there is no way he's going to squeeze into the Woody costume he wore the las 2 years, so we're making this one on our own. Stan has been wanting Israel to have cowboy boots for quite a while so I told him now's your chance, take him shopping before Halloween and it can be part of his costume (the only purchase this year besides candy:) We're borrowing a doggy costume for Julia from my sister Jane and a fancy princess costume from Andrea in our ward. Thanks for helping me be lazy this time around.
Getting mono really did a number on me. I had all these Christmas plans that I've scratched and halloween ideas I've not done. I learned that it's okay if my house isn't clean when people come over and that I can wear jammies all day long too. We finally do have 2 mini pumkins by our door thanks to our preschool field trip to the Vineyard's Pumpkin Patch. One thing I'm still doing is taking the Fondant Wilton Cake Decorating Class. I'll post my first cake too (Thanks Michele and boys for helping us eat it.) I like to make cakes, but only enjoy eating so much.
We had an awesome trip to Virginia at the end of July! Full of eating, playing with go-carts and tractors, partying, picking blueberries, eating, having campfires and making lots of memories with cousins.
I don't want to commit to really posting consistantly again, but wanted to at least give a Happy Birthday Cheer to my 3 kiddos, now 5, 3, and 1. Here's some pictures from the fun. We had a party at Nelson Grove Park in Orem- gorgeous park if you've never seen it. The only down side we could discover- you can't fill up water there. We sent a friend to fill up our Gott cooler somewhere else- we were quite thirsty on our hot Sat. afternoon. (The pavilians aren't covered)
For some reason I can't seem to move my pictures around- sorry about the weird order, I'm too tired and lazy to try to figure it out any better. Israel opened this ball first and ran off to play with it with Nathan and Travis. We didn't open all their presents because they didn't even want too. Playing was too fun. There were a lot of balloons at the party- I'd learned how to make ballon animals and we'd gotten helium filled balloons -that got horribly tangled- and Aunt Dana brought balloons too. What a party
Julia happy with her link toys
This lady bug cake took an entire jar of no taste red coloring to be this red. Julia was happy until it was gone. Israel and Eliza shared the sheet cake- it took some help to get the candles blown out- thanks Uncle Jason Eliza got 2 sets of wings from both her Hall aunts- she loves them.
That's what I've been dealing with for 3 weeks. Not very fun and pretty debilitating. Thank goodness for family and my ward for taking care of my family (and me). Thanks guys. Hopefully soon I'll be back up and running and maybe even post some pictures from our VA trip. Wish me well . . .
Okay, other than the fact that Julia is screaming her head off in her crib and I'm going to have to get her in a few minutes- she is my favorite child . . .BECAUSE . . . she said Mama first. That's right- Israel's first word was ball and then Dad, Eliza also said Dad first, but wonderful Julia, she's been saying Mamama for about a week and a half consistently and today she said lala when Eliza left the room and was really happy when she came back- could Eliza be her 2nd word maybe? She also did say dada one time today, but mamama- she says that a lot. Sometimes it is nice to here your kids calling to you.
We've been busy with our travels and haven't posted in a while- now that we're back get ready for a picture overload. We had such a fun time at Cole's Knob with Grandma and Granddaddy Hall. Isreal loves how they have "too much toys" a go-kart, a tractor with a trailer, their dog Prince, and of course Grandma and Granddaddy to play with. The entire Hall Clan was together for a brief overlapping day and a half (everybody except workaholic Llew- just kidding, I mean he really wasn's there and he really likes to work, but I don't want to go too far, he's family after all:)
The 2 travelling days were a bit trying, but we were able to relax, enjoy the Blue Ridge Mountains, golf, swim, have hotdog roasts, go rock climbing, eat tons of yummy food (I gained 6 pounds), and be with family. We saw Callie Ann for the first time and got to know our cousins and in-laws even better. Thanks Grandma and Granddaddy for the trip. Look back soon for pictures of all our adventures.
First we went to Dana and Jason's block party and had lots of fun. Israel and Eliza especially enjoyed the rides behind the tractor. Then it was up to Bear Lake with all my side of the family that's living in Utah (27 people)- with only 2 bathrooms between us getting all ready for 8:30 am church was an adventure and I don't know how we did it, but we were all on time. Jane and Bruce brought up 2 4-wheelers with those and Mom and Dad's Polaris Ranger we got pretty dirty having fun driving up Mill Canyon and up to Temple Flat.
Aunt Jan let Israel and Eliza ride their miniture horse/pony Squirt. They took the baby bunnies for a "walk" and did farm chores brushing down Squirt and taking water to the goats.
We also of course spent plenty of time at the lake. Stan practiced open water swimming and my brother Mike gave him some pointers on howto swim straight (a problem in the Provo Tri) I rode the wave boards with my sisters and we all made sand castles and tried to keep Julia from eating them. It was great to be in Laketown- it's a place I can easily allow my body to really relax and enjoy.
We also went to Minnetonka Cave in St. Charles, ID. It was a really fun, cool tour. We spent 90 minutes underground. Israel was Grandma's buddy the whole time and was so creative. The last picture is of a Stalagtite( or is it mite) called the groom. Israel saw it and said right off that it was a space ship taking off. I think his interpretation is much better:)