Sunday, September 27, 2009

Love Bug's Birthday!

When asked this morning what she wanted to wear to church on her birthday, she replied that she needed to wear a pink princess dress with a pink bow. Here she is all beautiful (after church, since I forgot to take a picture before) with her sparkly birthday crown compliments of her dance teacher!

Four years ago today, Jake & I became parents when Caroline Anne joined our family. We are so grateful for the sweet little girl Heavenly Father entrusted to us to love & care for here on earth. I still can't believe she's 4 - and she's already asking us when she'll be 20 and go to "college school". (NEVER!) She requested Macaroni & Cheese, Peas and Orange Fluff salad for her Birthday meal today and we enjoyed celebrating with some of the family.

Here is a glimpse back on the last 4 years!

One of my favorite pictures - Jake cradling our firstborn.

Just a few days old.

Two months old.

5 months old.

1st Birthday

2nd Birthday (We celebrated the day before we blessed Clayton. She was just getting used to a new baby brother and needed some TLC from her aunties!)

3rd Birthday.

Today! She COULD NOT WAIT to open presents! And she had lots of help from her brother.

Checking out the new DVD from Uncle Pete & Aunt Sarah together.

THE birthday present she wanted - Bendaroos, from Clayton!!! (DON'T buy these. They're a waste of money. Complete junk.)

Before Connor was born, the kids & I went to Safeway to look at the cake book in their bakery. I thought that since I'd have a new baby, I'd make it easier on myself by just ordering cakes. Clayton chose Batman and Caroline surprised me by selecting a "Hello Kitty" cake. But I just couldn't justify $20 for a cake when I could do it myself for under $5. So here's my version of a "Hello Kitty" cake. There are a few less than perfect spots, but Caroline & I had fun doing it together. We rolled out Starbursts and used a cookie cutter to make flowers.

The rainbow cake inside. I got the idea here.

Caroline and her new Meadowlark bird from Grandpa & Grandma Butler, that actually sings the Meadowlark's distinctive melody (ONE noise making toy that I will NEVER tire of - especially in the winter when the Meadowlarks fly south!); her new doll with the same color eyes & hair as Caroline and sporting PINK! COWGIRL! BOOTS! And the new Little Pony nightgown from Uncle Pete & Aunt Sarah. And a unicorn sticker. On her cheek. Also from Pete & Sarah. They know what she likes!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Cuddle Monkey

One of the cutest things Connor does, that I absolutely love, is hold on for dear life by grabbing hold of my shirt or finger while I'm holding him. He's got quite the grip and we were noticing last night that he was squeezing so tight that his little knuckles were turning white. There is something so snuggly & sweet about feeling his little grasp on my shirt or hand, as if he is saying, "Mom, I trust you to not let go or let me fall. But just in case, I'm holding on as tight as I can." I think it reminds me of a little monkey clinging to its mother - and that may explain why every time he does it, I start humming "You'll Be In My Heart" from Disney's "Tarzan"!
I know it appears as if he is looking for dinner in this photo, but he had actually just nursed and was fast asleep - slipping down the front of me slowly while gripping my shirt.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Baa Baa, BAD Sheep!

On Saturday, the kids and I enjoyed picking some of the fresh produce that made a comeback after the hail storm that pulverized the garden in June. We picked a basketful of small tomatoes, about 25 jalepenos (in addition to the 50 or so we picked the week before!) several carrots (the only ones there were) and 3 beets (out of the huge row that survived!) I set the basket on the steps and ran into the house to grab a camera to take a picture of the kids with their bounty. As I was reaching the door to head back out, I hear panicked, sobbing, screaming. I open the door to "Blackie's eating our VEGETABLES!" Caroline was truly concerned, and Blackie was enjoying a deluxe salad! We managed to get them all picked up and the lamb shooed away which resulted in a much calmer little girl.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

One Month Old!

I can't believe it was a month ago today that Connor arrived! The time has really flown and he seems so big already sometimes. I just want it all to slow down! He is such a good baby - he rarely cries and mostly just fusses when he's got a little bubble or gas. He's smiled at different family members several times in the last week (but I was first!) Around the time he turned 2 weeks old, he decided he'd try out sleeping through the night. We enjoyed 3 or 4 nights of bliss and then he discovered that wasn't for him. But he usually only gets up once, around 2 or 3, for which I am very grateful, though still tired! And just for kicks & giggles, I pulled out my measuring tape today, and near as I can tell, he's added another inch to his length for a total of 23 inches. He's recently discovered his voice and I love to hear his little coos. What a sweet baby he is and how grateful I am everyday for his presence in our home and the spirit he brings, so fresh from heaven.

My boys. I love saying that! (being from a family of 7 girls).

Connor was smiling at Clayton but everytime I tried to snap a picture, he'd throw his arm up, sortof like he was trying to wave "hello" to the camera.

Monday, September 14, 2009

It's Always Fun When Family Comes, When Family Comes, Hooray!

Photos of our family visiting, in random order because I'm trying to do this all before Connor & Clayton wake up from their naps and also because Caroline wants to play and I don't get a lot of one-on-one with her these days...

Caroline cried when Mona & Papa left on Friday. She took her time enjoying them and giving them lots of loves before they pulled out of the driveway.

Laying a big surprise smooch on Mona!

Clayton was not to be outdone by Caroline and had to copy her.

Giving Papa a goodbye hug.

Caroline & Clayton enjoyed "helping" Papa with all the projects he found around our house. I have lots of new places for storage thanks to Dad!

Mona & Connor enjoying some cuddle time!

Dad Butler & Dad Redd putting up a very nice new railing for the stairs up to the deck. It was so fun to watch them together!

Papa enjoying his new grandson.

I went to check on Connor and he had pulled the flap of his blanket over his head. It was so cute!

Connor found his thumb. With Mona's help.

I didn't have to change many diapers while the family was here. I had lots of help. Particularly from Marilyn & Nanny. Nan just didn't want to chance getting anything on her clothes, so she always covered up with my old housecoat.

Papa took Caroline & Clayton on a walk his first morning here. They had a blast! It was so cute to watch them walk past the house in the morning mist. Notice the leash Caroline has attached to Papa's belt loop. She wanted to make sure he wouldn't get lost.

Mar sharing Tic-tacs with Clayton. (How to win friends and influence nephews...)

Clayton & Cindy (He was very happy because she kept giving him Tic-tacs, too!)

Caroline loves her Aunt Cindy!

Cindy & Caroline

Marilyn, Connor & Nanny

Connor & Nanny - I LOVE this photo!

Cindy & Connor

Marilyn & Connor

Marilyn made a birthday cake with 6 candles - 4 for Caroline who will celebrate her birthday later this month and 2 for Clayton who celebrated his in August. We had a little party for both of them where they were showered with gifts from their aunties, Papa & Mona.