Sunday, November 25, 2012

Clara - 23 Months

I can't believe that in a month Clara will be TWO!  Actually, she's starting to have more and more two-year-old moments, so maybe it's not that hard to believe.  Here's a little bit about what she's up to:
-She pretty much narrates our entire day.  It seems that every month for the past few I've been saying her vocabulary is really exploding, but now more than ever.  She can repeat most words with really good accuracy.

-Loves to watch football!  She still calls it foobooball even though she can totally say "foot" and refers to her foot and feet often.  She loves to tell the players to "ruuuuunnnnn!" and says "uh oh" or "oh no!" when someone gets tackled or fumbles the ball.  She also says "touchdown!" at the appropriate times and puts both arms up in the air.

-I've found her saying her own prayers a few times.  It's the cutest thing!  One day she was in time out and when I came to get her, she was standing with her arms folded and her head buried in her arms.  She was talking quietly and then I started to make out what she was saying, ".... for the kitty...... for baama (what she calls grandma).....Jesus.... amen!"And put her head up with a huge grin.

-Is obsessed with watching the movie I made of her first year.  We watch it at least once a day.  I like to think it's good exposure to babies and what's about to rock her world in about two months.  Plus it's fun for me to watch and think about all of those sweet baby phases we get to relive with the new kiddo.

-Is still SO expressive.  It's fun to have all of her various expressions matching up with her new words.  She can be so adamant and serious about the funniest things.

-Still a great little sport on all of our outings.  It may be a bit of a shock to stay home more once the baby comes because daily she asks to "go to store."

-Has tinkled in the potty twice!  I thought for SURE that we'd be on the set-three-days-aside-and-get-it-over-with side of potty training, but so far that hasn't happened.  Ugh.

-Can be so stubborn (Spencer would say, "just like her mama" - but I have no idea what he's talking about).  A few battles have been over walking vs. riding in the stroller, getting dressed, changing her diaper, etc.

-Loves her kitty more than ever and has a cute scolding tone for when the cat is doing something she shouldn't.

-Still a music lover.  One day I was tired of singing Praise to the Man (again! again!) and got out my laptop and played it for her on the church's music website.  Now she's always asking me to "get man" and if I start singing it she says, "no, get it mama."  We're working on using "please" in contexts outside of wanting more food...  Her favorite songs right now are Praise to the Man (man), Popcorn Popping (pah-corn), Stand for the Right (words), The Lord Gave Me a Temple (body), I Love to See the Temple (temple song) and Teach Me to Walk in the Light (always).  We listen to a primary CD every time we're in the car and she's learned so many more songs too!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Your Opinions Please

The time has come to replace our $20 Ikea living room rug with something a little more substantial and grown up.  Actually, the time came a long time ago... but my nesting instinct is finally forcing me to get this taken care of.

Our living room is mainly dark brown, beige and aqua blue.  The chairs with the big floral pattern have accents of a mustardy yellow color.  I have found several rugs that I like, are within our price range, and meet Spencer's criteria of 'not too light' (for the most part).  Some are wool, some are synthetic.  They have good reviews.  I feel like with the three chairs with floral-y patterns of different scales that a more geometric pattern is appropriate (rather than yet another floral pattern).  I snapped a quick photo of our current living room - the area where the rug is, at least - and popped in our different rug options.  All of these rugs are larger than our current 4x6 Ikea rug, but it was easier to just fill the space that the rug already occupies.

Here is what the living room looks like right now:

The Brown-Beige Indoor/Outdoor Rug (as seen on Centsational Girl - she has it in their living room too and raves about how it stands up to the daily abuse as their highest traffic room)

Next up, The Caspian - a nod to Spencer's preference of something more tradtional

The Handmade Trellis Indoor/Outdoor Rug

The Luna Easy Care Trellis

The Luna Marrakech Wool Rug

And then I start to wonder if all this neutral stuff is too conservative, and I need to play off an accent with something like the Gold Handmade Luna Marrakech.

Thoughts?  I'd love your input.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Thankful For...

Tonight was one of the best family home evenings we've had.  It was short and sweet.  We typically read a story from The Friend, but tonight we opted to watch a short Mormon Message video about gratitude.  Clara climbed up onto my lap and watched and listened intently.  When we were finished, we each said some things we were thankful for.  First I helped Clara think of some things (her baby, her friends, mommy and daddy, etc.).  Next, as Spencer started to list off the things he was thankful for, Clara quietly folded her arms and bowed her head.  We realized that Spencer's gratitude list was similar to the things for which he often thanks Heavenly Father in prayer.  When he finished she looked up and said, "Amen!" We love our sweet girl and her tender heart.

Friday, November 02, 2012

Halloween Recap

I just realized I never finished my post last year (2011) on Halloween.  Oops!  I think I may have to go back and do that, because Clara was such a cute little cow.  This year was even more fun, since Clara really got into it and we had all kinds of Halloween events to attend.

Every year, my dad grows huge pumpkins.  Clara loved seeing them on their porch and couldn't believe how big they were.

We carved pumpkins for family night on the Monday before Halloween.

Two weekends before Halloween, Clara had her photos taken in her costume.  We paid $15 for a 10 minute micro mini session with a cute setup and while I think it was worth it, I don't know that I'd do it again.  I really like the photographer's style generally, but I was a little disappointed that we received highly edited photos, and nothing with bright, vivid colors.  Last year we did halloween pics at Sears (they were free! including lots of prints) and I liked that they were more of a true representation of Clara and her costume.  But enough on that.  Their setup was super cute and we got a couple of darling photos.
On Friday, the 26th, Spencer's office had a Halloween party and it was really fun!  They had bags the kids could decorate for trick-or-treating, cookies to decorate, a conference room all decked out and full of snacks for everyone, a room to help assemble hygiene kits for a local shelter, and of course trick-or-treating all around the office.  Clara caught on right away, and filled her little jack o lantern bucket right up.  She was not shy about choosing treats from strangers' cubicles and offices.
Riding the elevator up to the 15th floor!

Roaming around daddy's office

On Saturday, my friend Lindsey and I put together a neighborhood trunk or treat.  It was pretty low key (and last minute!) but I think we'll consider it a success.  With little kids, half of the fun of Halloween is seeing all of their friends in their costumes - which doesn't always happen on Halloween night.  So we planned our party in the afternoon so they could see each other in daylight and run around and play.  The kids who came cleaned up candy-wise and I think everyone had a good time.  Next year we might add a chili cook-off or some other element to round out the party a little.

Whit, Maggie and Lindsey (I stole this from your blog, Lindsey!)
One cute thing, at the trunk or treat, Clara went up to a 5 year old in our ward (whom she's never really met) and gave her a big hug.  Then I heard the girl run over to her friends and say, "you guys, there's a baby over there and she just gave me a hug and said, 'huuuuugg.'"  Haha - that's my girl.  She is not shy about offering affection.

Clara hugging Lottie

Clara and some friends - Scarlett and Lottie

On Halloween day, Clara spent the morning trick-or-treating around Aunt Carol's office at Utah Housing and got lots of treats!  Halloween night was spent entertaining grandparents and handing out candy with a few visits to some of our older neighbors who we knew would want to see Clara in her cute costume (heaven knows we didn't need any more candy from a full evening of trick-or-treating).

Holidays are just getting more and more magical as Clara discovers what they are all about and can enjoy them more fully.
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