Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Our Bay Area Trip

We went to the bay area for a quick weekend trip a little bit ago. The highlights included:
Family party with the Wiggins!
Biking the Golden Gate bridge
Seeing the Italian's boat sailing by practicing for the America's Cup race
Taking Avery to the beach
A Giants game
Finding out that Brad is actually from a small town (I remembered it being so much bigger he said over and over while we took two seconds to drive from one end of town to the other)
Meeting all the people from his hometown that I have heard so much about!

Please forgive me readers and universe for being such a terrible photo taker. There isn't a single photo from the Wiggin Family party which is tragic. Seriously. Hopefully my sadness will help me learn my lesson. Otherwise I am just going to have to forgive myself and accept the fact that this is how I am.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Picture Catch-up

I have been really bad at putting pictures of Avery on the blog lately. Here are the best from the last several months:

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Birthday Surprise

My birthday is March 27th, so don't worry, you haven't missed it. Brad decided to give me an early present.

We went to St. George this past week to be with family and when we got there he sat me down to give me my gift. He handed me his phone that showed on the screen our reservation for a hotel room in Las Vegas at the Venetian. The picture of the room looked beautiful and I was so excited! I scrolled down the page and saw that the reservation was for the next day and I got really nervous.

I could tell that Avery was not invited.

I would have to leave her overnight.  My heart practically stopped.

After some quick internal struggle, I admitted to myself that I knew that this day had to come eventually. So I decided to just let it be tomorrow.

We left in the morning after I put Avery down for her first nap and went immediately to get tickets to a Cirque du Soleil show. That is right. Not only were we just staying in Vegas, but Brad wanted to take me to a show as well.  He is the best. There are several Cirque du Soleil shows in Vegas and we chose Ka. We got a good deal on our tickets and after the overwhelming and time-pressured process of choosing our show we sought the safe haven of our beloved nearby Chipotle for lunch. It was delicious as usual.

Then we checked into our hotel. This is what our 38th floor suite looked like.  I am not joking.

Who has the sweetest husband in the whole world? This girl.

We then spent quite some time walking around our hotel and the strip. Brad had never been a tourist in Vegas before so it was fun for him to see how over-the-top it is. Vegas is crazy!

Here are some more pictures of our hotel that we are not in. The trip was a surprise so I didn't have my camera, okay? Just picture our smiling faces in the foreground of all of the photos I put in this post. :)

It was beautiful and super ritzy. We were most definitely the cheapest people in the hotel. Being non-drinkers and non-gamblers, we were pretty sure that the hotel was losing money on us :)

We also walked through the Wynn and a bunch of other places on the strip. It was hot and sunny and lovely. And by the time we changed for our night on the town we realized that we were already so tired from walking that we drove down to the MGM to where Ka was. 

We went to dinner at a little Italian restaurant at Tropicana where it was calm and we were by the window where we had a beautiful view of palm trees and grass and the pool. It was very nice and the food was good!

We wandered the MGM for just a few minutes before our show started and ended up in a Rolex store. Brad tried one on and loved it of course. And the sales lady was not even snotty to our young, clearly-too-poor-for-a-Rolex selves! When we win the lottery a $10,000 Rolex will be at the top of the list of things I get for Brad. Shopping for expensive things is fun even if you're never going to buy them. I don't know why, but it just is.

Ka was amazing almost beyond words. Literally my jaw was hanging down as far as it would go at certain parts. The coolest part was how the stage moved so much. It could go up and down two stories, and rotate 100 degrees. The whole thing was also a touch screen. It could look like water and stone and whatever else they wanted. There was sword-fighting, pyrotechnics, trapeze acrobatics, a wheel of death, rock climbing, shadow hand puppets, creatures that popped out of sand, and more that I unfortunately don't have the time to describe. Read the wikipedia article about the show if you are really interested. It makes you excited even if you have already seen it.

After the show we walked down the strip to the Bellagio to see the water fountain show like on Ocean's 11 which was really fun. 

We ended our night with McFlurries from McDonald's. Don't judge! We were so tired from walking and it was right there. We just didn't have the energy to track down gelato like we planned.  

It was an excellent day.  I really didn't want it to be over. 

But the next morning I started waking up every hour from 5 - 8 thinking about Avery.  I couldn't wait to see my babe! We left pretty quickly so that we could see Miss Fat Face as soon as possible. Those cheeks are just irresistible.

It was an incredible surprise, and I love Brad so much for being so sweet to spoil me so much! 

Thanks to my family who took such good care of little A! They were so sweet to help make this surprise possible! Avery had a blast with them!

Thursday, February 28, 2013

I believe in science.

I read a really good article in Forbes on the subject of the trend toward "natural" health remedies, "There's Nothing Special About Alternative Medicine". It can be found at the link below.


I am really quite skeptical in general. But even I have fallen for things like Echinacea in the past (mentioned in this article). All I can say is that anecdotal evidence is powerful to a creature as social as a human being. And the placebo effect is real so that can make it difficult to tell if your alternative meds are actually working.

But even though "natural" products are super trendy right now and i have sometimes really hoped that they would work like the magic they sound like, I just wanted to publicly declare my love of the scientific process. It is sturdy and honest and fair. This article is a very excellent summation of my beliefs.

The end.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Three Years Ago Today

Brad and I went on our first date three years ago today. I love reminiscing about that night. It was magical. And you have no idea how many times we have gone bowling to recreate our first date since then because we both loved it so much.

But let's be honest. It was not a perfect first date. I love laughing about all the things that went wrong. And today, in honor of the upcoming Valentines Day and because I am so ridiculously excited that I have been with my husband for three years now, I feel like sharing those things that went wrong as a tribute to love and how it can conquer so many obstacles.

Thing that went wrong #1:
When Brad came to pick me up I was dead asleep and he was informed of this fact by my roommates. They essentially said, "Hold on for a few minutes while we go drag Rachelle out of bed. She is not very excited about this date." This was not a confidence booster for my poor future husband. But it wasn't true that I wasn't excited to go on the date. In fact, I was ecstatic. But I had mono and was trying to nap right before so that I wouldn't be yawning through the whole date. This turned out to be a bad idea. I was super groggy once awake. Oh my word it was awful.  And so he had to wait for like ten minutes while I was getting dressed and prying my eyelids apart with my fingers. Mono sucks. 

Thing that went wrong #2:
Brad's friend's car got stuck in one of the crater-sized Provo gutters outside my apartment (it was a double date and the friend was supposed to be driving). The gutters in provo re like 8 inch deep moats. So I played chauffeur and drove the four of us around all night. I am pretty sure this made Brad feel just a little bit lame. When a guy asks a girl out, he doesn't really want to have to ask her for a ride once he shows up.

Thing that went wrong #3
More than 30 minutes after I had woken up I was still really groggy. I was forced to take action. I said, "Um, I will be right back, I am going to go get a Diet Coke." I was really hoping that Brad would not hear that as "This date is so lame I need drugs to get through it." I was also hoping that for some mysterious but fortunate reason there would be 3x as much caffeine in the Coke as usual. Like the gentleman he is, Brad came with me and bought me my drugs to help me get through our date.

Thing that went wrong #4
Our goodbye was awkward. It was entirely my fault. This is not surprising since I am pretty awkward about these types of things anyway. So since I was driving because of the stupid Provo gutters, I had to drop Brad off at his apartment. Because I am a girl, I had never walked a boy to his doorstep so to speak, and I did not do a good job of it. As in, I didn't even get out of the car. (Do you see why I love to laugh at this now?) I was just like, "We should do this again sometime!", while my foot was still on the brake. And Brad said, "Aren't you going to give me a hug?" And I think I probably stammered something brilliant like, "Oh. Oh, yeah, okay," and reached over for one of those terribly awkward in-the-cramped-car-while twisting-your-spine-till-it-almost-breaks hugs, and he suggested that we get out instead. So we did, and that was an excellent idea.

I am so glad that we went on this date, and that these things that went wrong weren't a big deal to us at the time and are hilarious now. It was the best first date because of how well we got along and how much fun we had together. At the end of the date I was really happy and was praying that Brad would ask me out again. I couldn't be happier that on this day three years ago, I went on my last first date. I love you Bradley!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Avery is 9 months!

Avery has now been living in the outside world as long as she was in the womb. I have definitely enjoyed the months that she has been out much more than the months that she was in! She is such a joy. She continues to be active, determined, independent and enthusiastic about life. She is extremely busy. She has been crawling for over a month now and is getting fast. Today she got half way up the flight of stairs before I could catch her! She is also pulling herself to a standing position on everything. She even thinks that she should be able to climb up on top of the couch. She keeps lifting her knees once she is standing as if that is where she is going.  I don't think that she will master that one for awhile (fingers crossed). Recently she also started chewing on the ends of her crib. We have plastic on the sides, but the way it is made doesn't allow for plastic covers on the ends, and of course that is where she is choosing to go to town!

Avery's current sleeping schedule is to wake up at 6:00 am, take a 45 min. nap at 9:00 am, a 90 min. or longer nap at 2:00 pm and go to bed for the night at 7:00 or 7:30 pm. She falls asleep on her own at night like a champ! She even smiles about it.  I sing her "Twinkle, twinkle little star", lay her down and put her blankie on her, and she clutches it up by her face and smiles at me while I leave. We are working on getting to that point with her naps. Right now she takes forever to put herself to sleep for her afternoon nap, so it is painful, but she does it.  She still nurses to sleep for her morning nap. Teaching her to go to sleep on her own has been a long and imperfect process for both of us, but I think we are both getting better at it.

Avery is less and less interested in nursing.  After she was sick and had lost weight, and was too distracted to nurse as much as she needed to, I started supplementing with formula. She was really enjoying being able to be semi- in control of her drinking while we were using a bottle. She would "help" me hold it up etc. And Andrea gave me a bunch of her extra frozen bags of breast-milk so that I wouldn't have to keep giving her formula which was so incredibly nice of her! My pump is lame, so pumping my own milk is extremely time-consuming, so this was so awesome. But Avery stopped taking bottles a couple of days later. All she wants to do is eat whatever I am eating and drink my water from my glass cup. Do you have any idea how much a baby backwashes when she drinks from a cup? Ha ha! It is pretty gross. And literally she will yell at me until I give it to her if I eat or drink in front of her. If she thinks it is mommy's and that mommy likes it, she will eat anything.  Seriously. By giving in I have created quite the demanding little monster albiet a very cute one (even when she is yelling).

Some of my favorite things that Avery does lately:

  • When she wants me to pick her up, she crawls over to me and starts banging her head against my legs
  • She yells when she wants something. It is not crying, but yelling. It is hilarious!
  • She is so dainty with her chubby fingers. 
  • She will take cute little bites of crackers or apple. She makes good use of those teeth!
  • She has become even more effective at splashing in the bath. She can get rid of half of the water in her tub before you know it!
  • She claps all the time. She claps when she is excited, when she is trying to entertain herself because she is bored, when she is telling me good job.
  • She loves to turn the pages when we are reading. That is the only purpose of books for her.
  • She gets upset when Brad leaves for work and is overjoyed when he comes home.
  • She initiates peekaboo. Tonight she pulled something over her face and didn't come out till we said, "Where's Avery?"
  • Understands what I am trying to communicate.
  • Showing empathy.
  • Loves "The Itsy Bitsy Spider".
  • Her favorite books are "Goodnight Moon" and her "Peekaboo!" book.
  • Her favorite foods are apples, cheerios, peas and tilapia.
  • Her laugh is amazingly adorable!
18 lbs. 13 oz. - 43rd percentile
28"in height - 57th percentile
17" head circumference - 21st percentile

Love you baby!