Tuesday, December 8, 2009
My actual birthday was on Sunday, so we just kicked it at home after church. I really needed a birthday cake though, and since there wasn't one to be found in the house, Benny and I set out to make one. I had fun letting Benny help me. You can't see it really well, but there is an entire container of cupcake cups there. When he wasn't looking I had to go back and make sure there was only one in each cup.
And that is his "cheese face." He has a habit of not actually waiting for the picture to be snapped before he moves though.
I can't believe I'm an idiot and didn't take pics of Thanksgiving with my side of the family. Oops. But basically we went down to Bakersfield and stayed with Ben's dad and stepmom for a couple days. We were able to meet Ben's half-brother and his fiancee as well. And just for the record, there was NO PUMPKIN PIE at Thanksgiving dinner. But other than that we had a really nice time. Benny had a lot of fun playing with his Grandpa Tom and hanging out with Grandma Tom.
We then met my parents and sister Kimiko's family in Morrow Bay for some lunch and window shopping. It was sooo cold and windy, so we didn't stay long, but I at least got to show Ben Morro Rock up close. He was really impressed.
Back at my parents' house Benny and his little cousin Mayumi just played and played and had the greatest time together. It was like they even had their own little language. I was so sad to leave and head back up to Northern Cal. Those are times that I miss now that we are not really near anyone.
We had a really nice November and look forward to seeing family again in just a few weeks. I love the holidays
Sunday, December 6, 2009
I always wondered what babies dreamed about. Suckers sound good to me
Thursday, December 3, 2009
Benny was sitting in the car eating raisins as we drove back from the park. He started shouting "stuck! stuck!" but I didn't pay much attention as he often complains about something he dropped or that his seatbelt is too tight. He seemed to get even more distressed though and then said the word "nose" too, and that's when I went "oh no" inside and saw his crocodile tears.
Me: Benny, do you have a raisin stuck in your nose?
Benny (excitedly): Nose, raisin, stuck!
I pulled in to the store parking lot as I was headed there anyway and decided instead of taking 5 more minutes to go home and risk it embedding itself further, I would buy some tweezers (so now we have like a bajillion pairs) and get it out myself while I still could. I was not going to end up in the ER or doctor's office for a measly raisin incident.
I performed minor surgery in the cosmetics aisle of Lucky and told Benny how gross that was and not to put stuff up his nose.
And then I've had to be super careful all day not to laugh so he doesn't get the bright idea to humor me and do it again
Monday, November 30, 2009
Thursday, November 19, 2009
And because I dind't act right away, of course I have forgotten. Why is it so easy to remember and focus on the negative, but so difficult to see the good? We're quick to look at the things we don't have, and slower to see what we do have.
Well unfortunately I cannot remember everything, but one thing I am really thankful for is my sweet niece. She called from Utah to say she had been thinking of me and felt like she needed to ask me if we wanted her camera. I have an old, slow camera, but a camera nonetheless, so when my brother was out visiting he gave his camera to my niece Mariko. I really want to replace mine with something better but can't afford it. Mariko said she isn't really using the camera and would be happy to send it to me.
Just one of the little things that put a smile on my face
Friday, November 13, 2009
He immediately climbed effortlessly up onto his changing table which is connected to his crib and laid down.
Now when did he learn how to do that?
Warning: lots of talk about my child
We have had a small rodent issue the past week or two. We were able to get rid of Rouse. Ben took him outside, still alive. Well, he either came back or one of his friends came over, but we saw one more. So we thought we better go for the kill this time. I bought some mouse traps and had them semi-strategically placed; placed well for the mouse, and semi-hidden from small hands.
Yesterday morning I was in the kitchen and heard a "snap!" followed immediately by crying. I just went "oh no" inside and fond Benny running toward me with a mouse trap stuck to his finger. I felt terrible, especially as he is so good about these things and gets over them quickly (although I'd probably feel really bad if he cried and cried forever, too). I removed the trap, he said "sharp! ouchie!", had me kiss it better, and went on his merry way. All day he would say "ouch!" if he happened to see it again (out of the way and not active).
When Ben got home, I told him of the morning, and of course he felt bad that we had left the trap where small hands could reach it. Not long after this conversation we heard another snap followed by crying. Even with all the "ouchie" talk all afternoon, Benny found the one remaining trap and had to have it removed from his other hand. 2 traps in one day! I feel terrible but it was also kind of amusing because he is so cute about these kinds of things. The funniest is that whenever he gets hurt, I give him a hug and tell him I'm sorry that happened. So now whenever he gets hurt, he says "I sorry, I sorry."
Now on to the gum portion. Benny LOVES mints and often is scavenging in my purse for anything he can eat. I have told him in the past not to eat gum as it is yucky for his tummy. That doesn't stop him from eating it, though. I got out of the shower to find an entire package of gum wrappers on my bed, with Benny proudly proclaiming, "Gum! Yucky!" I asked him if he ate all that gum, and he, without hesitation, announced "Yeah!" Like, of course, Mom, what do you think I did with all that gum. I cleaned everything up, told him not to eat anymore, and then noticed something in his mouth as I turned to leave.
Me: Benny, what's in your mouth?
So enthusiastic, he is.
And this is just a cool pic at that awesome children's museum in Sausalito
Saturday, November 7, 2009
Anyway, the thing that made my day was my husband. He was watching the BYU game, and if you know Ben, he is an AVID BYU FAN. You do not mess with his games.
Well it was time for Benny to take a nap and he said he wanted a book first, and he wanted his dad to read it to him. When I told him Dad was busy, Ben came right out, read Benny his book, and put him down for his nap. He really likes that little boy.
Thursday, November 5, 2009
So I came home and decided to renew the lease. In the middle of signing I spotted Rouse running across the living room floor. Ironic, or a sign? Oh brother.
At least he's kind of cute.
Friday, October 30, 2009
I know that picture quality is not so good (thank you, cell phone), but I was just tickled pink I actually got the boy smiling on camera! He HATES having his picture taken, just like his mom and dad. What a photogenic family we are. I used to be sad my mom and dad didn't have more pictures from my childhood; now I understand why. It is hard to capture every moment, especially when your child doesn't want you to.
We had a fun visit from Ben's mom and brother a couple weeks ago. They flew into Oakland from Salt Lake because they missed the boy. I'm sure they wanted to see us too, but it was definitely some quality Grandma/Benny time that week. Unfortunately, Ben had to work, so he missed out on a lot of the things we did. But we went to Sausalito on a rainy day and had some good seafood lunch along the waterfront. We went to Fisherman's Wharf and had more yummy seafood along the waterfront. It was a nice, warm day, so there were extra sea lions out on the wharf, more than I've ever seen. They were just basking in the sun, being fat, and smelling bad. On Saturday, we all, including Ben, got to go to the Academy of Sciences in Golden Gate Park. It is an awesome museum and we didn't get finished with everything, but some highlights are an aquarium and rainforest. We ended the week by having to speak in church on Sunday. Whew, glad that's over with for awhile! (The speaking, that is)
We appreciate them and are glad they could make the trip!
For Halloween, Ben's class dressed up yesterday. One of his coworkers made a Cat in the Hat hat, so that's what Ben was. He even let me put a nose and whiskers on his face and wore a tail. I was so proud of him for putting aside his manliness for the day.
Benny was supposed to be Homer Simpson, but that did not work out so well. He kept fiddling with the pillow we stuffed in his shirt and pants, and hated the latex bald cap we had on his head. So at the last minute we dressed him in his Chinese pajamas and painted on a little mustache. Too bad we didn't have a little Asian hat. So off he and I went to Berkeley to have dinner and trick-or-treating with some families from the ward.
I already felt frazzled as he was hyper (no candy yet either) and we had been rushing around to get out the door, but then as we started walking around UC Berkeley's housing and everyone was Asian, I felt completely stupid with my quarter Japanese boy who looks white wearing a supposed Chinese outfit. But he had fun getting candy door to door and eating loads of desserts. The funniest was everytime he got something in his basket, he took it out and wanted to eat it. I had to explain we were not going to eat all the candy along the way.
And yes, he was even more hyper by the time we forced him to go to bed way past his bedtime.
We are still plugging along with nothing too exciting going on. Ben is still really enjoying his job, and I am enjoying the mama's boy Benny has become. We are still trying to figure out where we're going to live. House hunting/condo hunting is pretty frustrating out here, a lot different than in Utah. But as long as I don't have to walk up tons of stairs and get to use my washer dryer that's sitting uselessly on the patio, I think that is all I will need! My how my tastes have changed;) I may become humble yet
Sunday, October 11, 2009
He's just being a typical two year old I guess. Today in Sacrament meeting he announced he wanted to go home and watch Yo Gabba Gabba. Grrr . Feeling a little worn out today
Anyway, this week we went to an awesome kids' museum right underneath the entrance to the Golden Gate Bridge. Talk about a view! The weather was gorgeous and there was TONS of stuff to do. We probably only got through with a thrid of it. It's not really a museum but more of an activity place for kids.
Wouldn't you know, both sets of batteries for the camera were dead and my phone also ran out of memory. I got a couple shots though, and hopefully the friend I went with will send me the ones I took with her camera:
They're not the best quality since I took them with my phone, but can you see the aprons they are wearing as they paint? So cute!
This last one really has nothing to do with anything. I just posted it cuz he looks so old:( We are at Walmart and he is sitting on his new Elmo potty in the cart
This week Ben's mom and brother are coming to visit. I will hopefully have lots of fun stuff to post next time!
Sunday, October 4, 2009
Are all kids this funny? My little 21 month old sure can talk. He says the darndest things. Right now he is obsessed with pillows and hogs all of them. We have given him 3 or 4 so at least he's not taking ours all the time now. The other day we had to run an errand, and after we got in the car he realized he did not have his pillow with him. I told him it was in the house, so he looked up at me and said, "Get it."
"No, I am not going to go back and get your pillow so you can take it to the store."
He is also obsessed with chocolate. He loves all candy, but especially chocolate (to his Grandpa Christensen's dismay/delight). I gave him a milk dud today and as he was running around, he started making gagging faces. I asked him if he was ok and he matter-of-factly said "choke!", fixed the long stream of caramel going down his throat, and went on his way. No idea where he learned that one.
He was the life of the party yesterday when we went to a ward member's home to watch the Saturday morning session of General Conference and then have lunch. He cried when he first got there as the new situation and faces scared him, but he warmed up by the time lunch rolled around. When he heard the banging plates and silverware, he hopped up into a chair and sat alone at the table, patiently waiting for all the food prep to be done so he could eat. When it comes to food, he is not shy.
He is also super into TV. I have created a cartoon monster. When we first moved into these apartments, we didn't have any of our stuff except for our laptop. We used it to steal internet off of one of the neighbors and let Benny watch episode after episode of "Sponge Bob Squarepants" until our stuff came. Once the TV came he always wanted to watch "toons." It is the first word he says when he wakes up in the morning. He has his favorite shows. He does not want to leave the house to go the beach or the lake. I am a horrible mother for allowing this to happen and he will fry his brain. Actually though he fortunately watches learning shows like "Elmo," "Dora," and "The Backyardigans." I'm the one that finally turns it to "SpongeBob" when I can't take another rerun of "Yo Gabba Gabba." That show is WEIRD. But he LOVES it.
He is still very big and very heavy. We wonder when he's going to slow down as his doctor swears he will not be the huge football player we're hoping for. He's also not too bad looking and we get a lot of attention and comments whenever we go out. I had one lady at the drive-thru of Carl's Jr. practically poking her head into my car so she could ooo and ahhh. I finally said I had to go and drove off. It's nice that people like him though. He's always smiling and telling everyone hi and bye.
Oh, speaking of drive-thrus. I remember one time my former boss telling me his family went to the drive-thru cleaners to pick up some clothes once and his toddler boy piped up from the back "I'll have fries!" I thought that was so funny. Well, now if I go anywhere drive-up Benny asks for fries too! I guess we eat out more than I thought we did.
Here he is being attacked with a hug by a tiny girl. He cracks me up
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
We took some bread with us, hoping to toss some to the birds in the water. Well they saw us coming and swarms of geese came out and walked around. It was like the movie "The Birds." They were extremely people friendly and waited for the food; I'm guessing this happens a lot. Well the funniest and slightly scary part was when Benny decided that he, too, wanted bread and was eating a large piece. One of the birds was not going to let that piece go and came over and snatched it right out of Benny's hand as he was holding the bread to his mouth. I couldn't believe how brave they are and was just glad they didn't go for his eye or something as they did get a little feisty with each other fighting over pieces of bread.
I really like this area and hope we can find a good place to live. And we will all have to go back to that park and take the camera next time. It was a nice day (until he, of course, threw a fit when it was time to leave).
Monday, September 28, 2009
If you can't tell what's going on, he is naked and sitting on top of his changing table. Well, not completely naked; he did leave his diaper on. Why he took off his clothes, I am not sure. This situation would have been funny if he was just naked. It would have been funny if he was just stuck on his changing table. But the combination of being naked and stuck was too much and I couldn't stop laughing. Ben stayed home sick today and I made him get out of bed to come see what this little monkey was doing.
Benny got up and was kind of talking and hanging out, so I let him be for awhile and stayed in my cozy bed. Finally he started crying, so I went in to get him. I saw his clothes on the floor and he was sitting "Indain style" on the changing table! He had this look on his face like "oops, I did something and now I am stuck." I picked him up and he just gave me hugs and hugs and hugs. I think he felt kind of dumb and scared and was glad he was ok. I was glad he was ok! He wanted his pillow and blanket, so I did what every normal mom would do: I gave them to him, set him back on the changing table, and ran and got the camera.
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
We had a crazy summer with trying to sell the house, packing, working, family get togethers, and weddings. Everything fell into place for everyone though and we had some fun times.
After my niece Jacqui's wedding, Ben and I went up to Willard to spend some time with family as my brother Allan was here from St. Louis. We only see him every few years or so. We went to Willard Bay and spent the afternoon in the water and watching the kids have fun.
Then, of course, we had to eat so we went to my sister Janice's house for some great food as usual. Grandma (my dad's mom) came over and the newlyweds came back from their honeymoon, so we had a nice dinner with quite a few of the family including my mom, brother Allan, sister Janice's family, sister Kimiko's family and brother Frank's family.
Fast forward now to after the move to California. We took Benny to the Oakland zoo our first weekend here. Boy was it not fun. We were having a heat wave and it was soooo HOOOT. I about melted. Benny was super tired and grouchy. He is frowning in all of these pictures, and the one on the ground is the fit he threw in the amphibian house. I finally got one on film as no one believes this sweet little boy throws tantrums.
Well at least we have a memorable experience of our first weekend in California.
He also likes to "dust" which is vacuuming, sweeping or mopping. I sure hope he keeps it up when he gets older.
So anyway, yeah, my parents came up for the weekend to visit. They hadn't been to San Francisco for awhile and hadn't seen their youngest grandson in a few weeks, so we got together. It was nice to have them here and Benny sure enjoyed them.
We went to Fisherman's Wharf and had clam chowder on the bay and watched all the interesting people. We went to Ghirardelli Square and got chocolate and yummy waffle cones. And then we went home and went to Wal Mart he he. I know the Wal Mart part doesn't sound very exciting but it actually kind of is. Our Wal Mart is part of the mall, like JC Penny or Sears, and it has 2 levels. You push your cart around and then either take it in the elevator or send it up the escalator on some sort of pulley thingie. I died laughing the first time I saw it.
Benny enjoyed reading books with his Grandpa and eating LOTS of junk. I don't know how much chocolate my dad and Benny ate this weekend. In this pic of him eating ice cream at the table, he got all excited when he saw my dad eating some and ran and sat down and exclaimed, as clear as anything, "I like chocolate!" It was too funny. He busts out with some pretty amazing language and we have to be careful now what we say because his talking has really taken off.
The last picture is a bay front walk not too far from our apartment. We don't live on the open ocean, it's more of a marshy bay, but there are some really nice walking trails and parks.
We had a fun time and hope to do it again soon! We will have Ben's mom out here next month, so we'll probably have some more clam chowder and sour dough. Yum
Thursday, September 10, 2009
with something weird. He just has bad luck this way.
The two latest injuries:
Shaving his head, he sliced off a chunk of ear.
It was a small piece, but it bled all day and reopened
a few times days later. Nice.
The day after we arrived in California, we were sleeping on the floor. Ben awoke to something on his face which didn't feel too pleasant. Benny had found his dad's razor and decided to shave him. Thankfully there's just a small spot on the right cheek. No great injury but I thought it was hilarious. That kid cracks me up
And I promise I will get around to an update with the the goings on of the move and how things are going.
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
I've been thinking about them a lot lately and have been wanting to write about them and let them know how much they are appreciated. As I write this now, I realize Grandparents' Day is this weekend! What a coincidence.
Grandpa Tom and Grammy (Ben's dad and stepmom) live in Bakersfield and Cambria, CA. This was actually taken last Christmas, the last time we saw them! So it has been awhile. Definitely time for a new visit! We are looking forward to seeing them soon now that we live a little closer:
This is Grandpa and Grandma Christensen who live in Lompoc, CA. I think this was taken around New Year's. They go to Utah to visit several times a year, which was nice. We now live about 5 hours away and plan to have a visit within the next few weeks:
Grandma Sue and Uncle Jon (Ben's mom and brother) live in Lehi, UT, which was about 20 min from where we were. It was nice having them so close. They helped out with so many things, especially taking care of Benny. This was a farewell dinner at Outback right before we moved:
And this is great-Grandma Christensen, Kari's dad's mom. I don't remember my great-grandparents, so it is nice that Benny has one right now. He also loves this huge Care Bear at Auntie Kimiko and Uncle Dan's house. This was at his cousin Mayumi's 1st bday:
Thank you to the grandparents who do so much by supporting us in all we do, babysitting, feeding us, and thinking and praying for us! We know we are in your thoughts, and you are in ours.
Two and a half hours later I almost had one of the cars registered. I have to get a signature and then I also have to go back to do the drivers license part! If I had done the written test and gotten licensed today it would have easily been over 3 hours.
Benny was a trooper through it all. He didn't have any screaming fits but he did lie down in the middle of the cold hard floor for a bit.
I had decided the reason I don't get anything done is I usually decide to take a nap when Benny does :) So today I was going to be super productive during naptime instead. But after a morning like that, I think I need a nap too!
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
I ask because Benny sure seems to think they do.
We weren't sure if he knew who his Grandparents Christensen were, but after yesterday we are pretty sure he does.
Before leaving for California, my parents came to Utah for my niece's wedding. My mom was able to stay and help me clean the house before we left and sold it. We were able to do some fun things, like going to Willard Bay and feeding the birds:
So we have been in California for about 2 weeks now. We had to get rid of a lot of stuff before we moved, so after we got here we've been getting a few small things again. We found a TV stand on Craigsist and as we arrived at the house where it was located, Benny said "Grandma." We had no idea if he was recognizing something from the neighborhood that reminded him of his Grandma Sue's house, or if he thought the Asian man in the driveway reminded him of Grandma Christensen.
We purchased the TV stand from the Asian man, and his wife also joined him outside. As we drove away Benny excitedly kept chanting "Grandma, Grandma, Grandma" from the backseat.
We thought it was pretty funny the Asian couple reminded Benny of his Grandma Christensen. Well at least he does know who his grandparents are!
Monday, August 3, 2009
-We've had a lot of things fall into place. We were approved for adoption and are just on the waiting list now for a birth parent to select us.
-We were looking for a home for our dog since we were selling the house and didn't know what the new situation would be, and one of our neighbors just happened to be looking for a housetrained family dog. Couldn't have asked for a better home.
-We've been able to enjoy family and had several birthdays and other get togethers
-We've had TONS of help with babysitting this last semester from Ben's mom and my sis Kimiko, and a few others who have stepped in. We really appreciate their help
-My boss did a ton of dental work for me, even after he knew I'd be quitting. That was really, really nice of him. You'll all have to check out my new pearly whites
-And my hair is starting to grow. Yay!
While Ben and I have had to go to Cali a couple times, we used one of those times to also celebrate our 6th anniversary. We spent the day in San Francisco at Pier 39 and Fisherman's Wharf and went to the aquarium. If we are in a city with an aquarium, Ben will pretty much make us go (I like aquariums too, but Ben LOVES them).
When we got back, we bribed Benny by taking him to the zoo. When I say "bribe," it's actually just to make him like us again. He never wants to leave Grandma's house after we leave him for a bit, and we missed him, so we wanted him to be happy to see us. Here he is trying to take off--very normal, energetic boy.
Sorry to Ben that this is not the world's greatest pic, but I think it's so funny how Benny has an ear obsession. He sucks his thumb and either holds his ear or someone else's. It's his little comfort object. Kids do weird things.
I have had Colleen, this hobby horse, since I was a little girl. I was going to trash it in the upcoming move, but one day came home from work and found out what Ben and Benny do while I am gone.
I was amazed at the riding skills of this 18 month old boy. I kept waiting for him to fly off forward into his bookshelf, but he sure held on. So I guess we are keeping Colleen.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
So, update on us:
We (ok, really more me) are stressed. We hate moving!
-Sale of the house fell through
-No place to live yet in Cali
-Job situation has minor glitch (ask Ben if you really want to know)
So I'm being a little "woe is me" and will stop lamenting, but I just have to vent those things somewhere. Everything is going to work out, I'm just tired at the moment and would like to see it start working out now, not later. I'm at the point I'd rather just stay here where we are comfortable.
But, it's not about taking the easy road or being comfortable, right? It's about doing what will be worthwhile in the end and what is right for us. And I know the right thing to do is to do this move.
-Ben will like this job and enjoy the kids he'll be with
-I will get to stay home more with Benny and spend time with him
-No snow in No Cal! Yay!
-Closer in proximity to some of the grandparents
I'm sure one day I'll look back and say "all that stress was nothing. Look how great it turned out in the end." We just have to get past this stuff and look at the big picture. I tend to get sidetracked on the little things along the way and lose my focus.
I know everyone has things going on right now too; we've all just got different baggage, and this is ours at the moment.
So, for the next few weeks I am going to try to pack up that baggage and store it away and support Ben as he leaves on this venture. Three more days in Utah and he is outta here!
Good luck Ben!
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
So the show takes a bunch of newlywed couples and they have to carry out certain tasks and relay race type things every day, and each day they vote to eliminate someone. Each day the money pot grows bigger and in the end, someone will go home with it. Like "Survivor" but for newlyweds.
Well, the Corlisses were not your sugary sweet little couple. His whole body was tatooed, and she wore very little clothing, and what was there was very tight. First impression may not have been the most positive with them and they almost got voted off pretty much every week.
Guess who won..........
Yep, the Corlisses. I COULD NOT believe it.
As the show ended, Ben made another brief but deep thought. As in life, we get kicked down many times. But the best thing to do is pick yourself up and hang in there. And if you hang in there long enough, things can really turn out well in the end.
The Corlisses were so close to losing so many times, and they never quit; they just tried harder. They ended up growing closer as a couple and winning half a million dollars.
How's that for hanging in there!
Saturday, July 4, 2009
We started the festivities by having our friends Steve and Adrienne over for dinner and a game of Rock Band. I can't find the pic of all of them rocking out, but here is second best. Steve and Ben have known each other since high school and are very similar in a lot of ways. Steve had quite the knack for the guitar, and Adrienne was an "awesome" singer.
The next day we went to Ben's mom's and sister's house for a barbecue. Costco cake is the best!
Saturday, June 27, 2009
Benny enjoyed running around and looking at stuff:
He especially enjoyed the icy Ogden river running through the park. Our feet were numb from the cold, but he wouldn't get out!
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
We have lived here in Orem, UT the 6 years we have been married, and Ben has lived here in Utah County most of his life. I have been here in Provo/Orem almost 13 years as well! Crazy! So this will be a big move. Most of our family is here, as well as many close friends.
But it will be a great experience and we are excited to start a new adventure.
So...I caved and started a blog and will hopefully be able to keep in touch with people this way. I am also a horrible journal writer and am hoping this will somehow count.