Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Kauai 2017

In January Kyle and I traveled with his parents and sister Brittany to Kauai. Brittany's friend Sydniecame for most of the week as well. It was a blast and the perfect escape from winter in Utah. We stayed at a resort at Kalapaki Bay. The beach was fantastic and the water was a blast for boogie boarding. Each morning we started our day with a trip to the hot tub and then claimed our spots at the beach for the rest of the morning. The first morning we made quite a scene getting to and from the hot tub. There were 5 hot tubs, but only two you could access without getting into the pool. The other three required a short swim in the freezing cold 8:00 am water. We were not so quiet about our attempt to reach the open hot tub across the water. There may have been plenty of screaming and complaining. But we made it. And it was worth it. 

The first couple of days were breezy and cool. I was actually COLD in Hawaii! Thank goodness I did have some warmer clothes with me. But still... I'd take cold in Hawaii over freezing and snow in Utah.

In the afternoon after spending the morning at the beach we set off around the island exploring. We drove to an overlook and oohed and ahhed at a waterfall (I don't remember the name). 

We drove up North to check out the Napali Coast, or at least the small portion of it we could put our feet on. The Napali Coast is inaccessible by car. You have to hike in. But it is impressive and so worth the effort. Though not without it's risks, as evidenced by the signs we encountered starting the trail head.

The hike was quite steep and rocky, but so neat. We did just about 1 mile in, enough to get an idea of the ruggedness of the coastline. We chose to see the rest of the coast via boat. We took a 5 hour tour around the West side of the island up to the Napali Coast. We stopped for an hour and snorkeled in the ocean, my first time! It was a blast until I started to feel seasick. The floating in the ocean while snorkeling started me off. After getting back on the boat I started to feel a little off. Then as the boat continued on along the coast the waves became bigger and bigger and I became sicker and sicker. Soon enough I spent the tour throwing up over the side of the boat. Somehow I still enjoyed it, despite feeling terrible. The coastline was amazing, we saw whales in the distance and dolphins right next to the boat. Hawaii is beautiful!

Our next adventure, my favorite adventure, was kayaking on the Wailua River. We rented double kayaks and cruised down the river to the trail head for Secret Falls. The day was overcast and slightly rainy, which proved to be the perfect day for kayaking and hiking. The water was perfectly calm, like glass. It made for fun and easy kayaking. The hike to the falls was muddy and slippery, but so fun! We were laughing all along the way as we slipped over the mud. The waterfall did not disappoint. It fell to a pool of crisp cool water. We braved the cold and swam out to the waterfall. How often in life do you have the opportunity to swim underneath a waterfall in Hawaii? 

Our other Hawaiian adventures included:

Spouting Horn

Delicious food. The best burgers came from Kalapaki Beach Hut. Seriously, first bite and it was instant love. The best breakfast sandwich came from Paradise Bakery, who also supplies Kalapaki Beach Hut with their bomb-diggity buns. 

Luau. We were drug on stage to shake our hips. It was the most uncoordinated hula ever. Haha.

Kyle took surfing lessons. He loved it and did great! He also met Kyle #2 in his class, who we proceeded to run into again, and again, and again.

Any other undocumented time was spent lounging at the beach, boogie boarding, or floating in the bay on a small Walmart special inflatable tube. The tubes were the best idea. They were relaxing, but also so fun, especially when a big wave came up and swept you into the shore. Oh Hawaii, you were good to us. Let's do it again someday!

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Kacey: 19 months

Kacey hit 19 months on February 1. I love this age. She is learning so much so quickly, her personality is starting to burst out, and she is able to play by herself and with her sisters for a bit. Though with that comes the illogical tantrums and a busy, busy body. But just about everything she does is so innoncent and extra cute.

Kacey is a jabber-mouth. She talks all day long. I took her to the doctor for her 18 month check up and the doctor asked how many words she has, if I had tried to count them. She suggested that the average number of words for a child her age is 5-10. I laughed... oh she has way more than that! Honestly, I don't think I can count them all. It seems that nearly everyday she has a new word. She attempts to repeat most everything she hears. She has just started putting two words together, most commonly "where (fill in the blank)?". Her phrases include, "Where'd it go?" "There it is!" She also might be the most polite toddler ever. She nearly always asks "please" for an item, and without prompting responds with "thank you!" She recently has picked up on "more" which she pronounces so well and "mine" and "no" have slipped in. I'd rather she didn't know those two, but with two older sisters it was bound to happen. Kacey is able to communicate most everything she needs, which is so helpful! Though that vocabulary could still grow. We do play the guessing game from time to time while Kacey simultaneously signs and says "please", with no context to back her up.

All three girls share a room. Typically Kacey goes to bed an hour before the older two. However, sometimes the three of them go to bed at the same time. When that happens we often hear Kacey in the bedroom loudly repeating, "Hailey. Hailey. Hailey!" or "Keira. Keira. Keira!"

She has started getting into pretend play, especially with baby dolls. She brings a baby and a blanket to me, asking me to wrap up baby, then she hugs baby and shakes rocks her. She puts her finger to her lips, "shhh..." and pretends to feed baby a bottle. She also has picked up on pretending to eat the play food from the play kitchen. Of course it's absolutely adorable when the puts a toy purse in the crook of her elbow and waves "bye-bye" and walks away.

Kacey loves books. She is a book monster. If I mention books she drops what she's doing and literally runs for the bookshelf. She grabs a book and pats the couch where she wants me to sit down. Kyle and I look forward to the day that we can sit on the couch and just sit. While we love to read books to Kacey, sometimes you just want to sit. Anytime we take up residence on the couch Kacey comes running over with a book to read and often throws it in our face. 

She loves to push the stroller around. She doesn't just walk with it, she runs. She zips all around the house and over obstacles on the floor. She has a toy lawn mower outside that she loves to push around too.

Kacey has become quite possessive of any objects she has been playing with, or wants to play with, or has looked at it in the past 24 hours. If the girls touch anything she thinks she has laid claim to she erupts in screams. 

Kacey's eating habits vary day by day. Somedays she will gobble anything up I give her. Other days I'm not sure what she's eaten. The only sure foods she'll eat are fruit. She LOVES fruit. And yogurt. She has a daily gogurt and apple sauce pouch- she'd live on those if I let her. She loves snacks and sprints for the pantry at the suggestion of it. She also will routinely devour eggs.

I recently took away Kacey's pacifier. She had gotten to the point where she would sneak it from her bed and run away and hide with it. She also talked with it in, or sometimes took it out to talk. It was a hard first few days, she was very sad to not have her pacifier with her. But she has moved on. The only problem is if she wakes up at night (which still happens often) I don't have the pacifier as a quick way to help her back to sleep.

Kacey's latest trick is jumping from the stairs, off the couch, and off the window seat in her bedroom. She has no fear and does it over and over and over. Maybe I should stop her so she doesn't get hurt, but it keeps her entertained and helps her burn some energy. She loves to jump on the trampoline at my parent's house and also gets both feet off the ground when she jumps from the floor.

Of all three girls Kacey is the least of a people person. She is scared of faces she doesn't know and is clingy to me. She screams and cries while I check out at Costco and the grocery store. Men with beards especially terrify her. She is not a fan of nursery. She stayed for the first time last week. When I checked on her I'm pretty sure she was whining and crying next to the door, but at least she wasn't screaming. So that's a success!

Kacey loves to color. On anything and with anything. So far the worst has just been pencil on the wall and dry erase marker on her shirt. I can't sit down and write without her hovering asking to color. "Color. COLOR!" 

Kacey loves to run and hide. Her favorite spots are behind the couch in the living room, behind the curtain in her bedroom, or just in the middle of the room either standing or laying down with her hands covering her eyes. She runs away at the mention of bedtime and brushing teeth, and of course while I'm trying to get her dressed- that can be a wrestling match.

While she may be busy, she helps keep us on our toes and sure is entertaining. It's fun to have another personality in the house to add to the chaos. :)  

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Hailey is 7

Hailey turned 7 back in November and I can hardly believe it. Seriously, just today I asked Kyle if he thought it was crazy to think that we have 3 kids. We both agree... totally crazy. And on top of that the oldest is 7. 7 years ago we became parents!

Hailey is a fantastic girl. She plays the part of oldest child exceptionally well. She nurtures and cares for Keira and Kacey. She tries to keep them in line and sometimes I have to remind her that she isn't the mom. But she loves her sisters and is always willing to help whenever I ask. She plays with Keira and reads with Kacey. This morning I was pleasantly surprised to come out of my bedroom to find Hailey, Keira and Kacey all downstairs in the kitchen, Hailey with a bowl of cereal in hand for Kacey. Hailey had been kind enough to drag help Kacey out of her crib and make her breakfast. What a great way to start Saturday morning! 

Hailey has lost 2 teeth. Her second one she lost at school while I was there eating lunch with her! Currently, her top two teeth are loose and have been for months. We're just waiting for those two to fall out!
Just this past week we had parent/teacher conference at Hailey's school. She has two teachers, one for homeroom who teaches math and science and the other for language arts and social studies. They had nothing but good things to say about her. We couldn't be more proud of her! Her reading fluency is well above 1st grade, in fact it is near where it should be at the end of 3rd grade and her comprehension is 2nd grade. Her math level is 2nd grade as well. Somehow in the car we got into a discussion on multiplication, a topic she could definitely grasp with just a little practice.

Hailey is our scientist who currently aspires to be a geologist or a meteorologist. She has an interest in learning, which I admit, we need to do more to harness. She loves watching science videos on YouTube with Kyle. Their latest video was on mosquitoes and malaria.

Hailey really is a sweet girl who tries her best to do what is right. She offers the most sincere and thoughtful prayers and is quick to keep us in line for evening family prayers. She really is a pretty easy going kid who loves everyone. 

Here are a few Haileyisms from the last year:

1. A conversation between Hailey and Kyle about a copy of the Book of Mormon we have: 

Hailey: "Dad, where did you get this book?" 
Kyle: "Probably the MTC."
Hailey: "The empty sea?"

2. It was raining and Hailey said that the clouds must have put on their thunderwear!

3. I love that kids mix up words based on what it sounds like to them. Hailey said she wanted to "bury her testimony".

Keira is 4

Keira turned 4 in December and she's already planning for her next birthday. 

Keira is proof to me that all children come with pre-programmed spirits, full of individuality. She is her own unique fun person. In some ways I see similarities between me and Keira, mostly in our worries and fears, but her personality is all her own.

She loves music and she loves to dance. According to Keira, she has to dance. One Sunday morning we had church music playing. Keira heard the call to dance and ran upstairs to change her clothes. She came down in her finest dress and announced that the show was about the begin! Kyle and I told her not on Sunday. Her response was that because the music was playing she HAD to dance. Just last month I took her to the doctor for her yearly check up and the doctor asked if she could walk on her toes. She happily obliged by gracefully spreading out her arms as she tip toed around the room like a ballerina. It is so entertaining to watch her dance, she puts on a performance- and is serious about it. She moves her body with a purpose and her face is serious, yet you can tell she is enjoying herself.

Keira wears a skirt or dress nearly everyday. I cannot get her in a pair of pants, unless they are leggings. She has a plethora of clothes handed down from Hailey that sit in her drawer. I've given up on the fight. As long as she somewhat matches I try to let it go. 

Keira loves to have books read to her. She loves to go to the library to check out new books. Her attention span for storytime doesn't last long enough, but she is more excited to grab a new stack of books and sit on the couch in the library looking through them. 

I've always felt a little guilty for not spending as much time teaching Keira as I did Hailey. I guess it's a little bit of middle child syndrome- the first gets the attention, and then the middle child gets a little lost while the third gets even more attention. Even with that, Keira is a smart girl and is picking up on her letters and letter sounds. She is able to recognize every upper case letter and the vast majority of lower case letters. She knows the letter sounds for a good number of them as well. Sometimes it's hard for me to know just how much she understands, because she is the child who knows more than she lets on. Or even knows more than she realizes. This year we have done a once a week co-op preschool with friends and it has been so fun to do. Keira is learning and playing with friends. We love it.

Keira likes to play by herself. Not all of the time, but often I will find her in the playroom with the door closed. Granted, that is mostly to keep Kacey out. She isn't so much of a fan of playing with Kacey because she destroys her play. Hopefully in the next year or two that will all change. There are many times though that Keira prefers to play on her own, and I think it's good for her. Sometimes she just needs some space to herself.

She does love to have fun. She is a fun girl. And funny. So many times we've had people tell us how much they love Keira. It's because she is just fun. While she can be quite dramatic, her dancing, singing, and down right silliness draw people to her. 

This picture is her in every way possible. The outfit, the pants tucked into the socks, and the pose. She stood like that for a minute or two posing for a picture. Thanks to Brittany for capturing it for us!

A few Keiraisms from the past year:

1. "Mom, if we go to Lagoon everyday this week I will give you a quarter out of my piggy bank."

2. One time while bowling, each time before her turn to bowl she had to put her face in the air blowing up from the ball return. Even in between her two bowls. I guess it was her good luck charm of the day.

3. One afternoon while our two neighbor boys were over playing Legos, Keira went upstairs to her bedroom and changed her clothes. She gracefully walked down the stairs dressed in a nice dress, a necklace, a ring and had spent sometime in the bathroom brushing her hair. She came up to Camden and Tate and fished for a compliment, "How do I look? Do I look pretty?" Haha, poor girl, the boys hardly looked up from their Legos to take in her look. 

4. Apparently we order too much pizza from Papa John's. Keira refers to Parmesan cheese as Papa John's cheese.

5. Fairy Potter = Harry Potter

6. While at Cafe Rio the ladies working were speaking Spanish to one another. Keira turned and said to me, "They don't talk very good."

7. In a way that only a 4 year old could so innocently say, Keira told my mom, "I'm getting bigger and you're getting old."

Thursday, February 2, 2017

2016 RECAP- PART 2

Because updating an entire year was just too much for one post, here is PART 2 of our 2016. 
(PART 1)

JULY was a party. Kyle, Kacey and I drove to Washington (with Brittany too!) and celebrated Kacey's first birthday. We enjoyed the 4th of July by avoiding the crowds and hung around Papa and Rara's house. 

The next day we packed up and took off for the Oregon coast with Aunt Jen, Jill and Jaden. We stayed in Seaside in a house right next to the beach of an inlet to the ocean. 

All 11 of us rode together on one bike, we explored the ocean and Haystack Rock, and had a blast just relaxing.

I think we all wished we had stayed longer! 

Hailey and I spent some time sewing for our self declared sewing week. Hailey sewed a small messenger bag for a friend, a belt, some bookmarks, and a lunchbag for her upcoming school year. 

Kyle and I busted out our longboards for date night and cruised to dinner at Station Park. It had been way too long- it was so fun! 

Curtis came to town at the end of the month for a dairy conference in Salt Lake City. We were so lucky to see him 3 times in one year! 

For Pioneer Day my parents took the girls and I on a hike around Silver Lake- it was perfect for the littles.

AUGUST 1st Hailey lost her very first tooth! It had been loose all summer and finally popped out while eating lunch at Cate's house. 

In an attempt to get in some last of summer fun, the girls and I explored Wheeler Farm with my mom one afternoon. 

Of course we also tried to squeeze in as much Lagoon time as possible! 

Hailey started first grade! What did she say was her favorite part of her first day? Eating lunch at school. :) 

Jeanie came from Washington to visit family and we met up and went to Music and the Spoken Word at Temple Square together. We need to do that more.

SEPTEMBER was a fun filled month with first Kyle's parents visiting over Labor Day weekend. Second our fabulous friends the Hague's came to visit! That was awesome, having them stay with us. We went to Frightmares at Lagoon, toured around BYU and ate J-Dawgs, hiked around Silver Lake up Big Cottonwood Canyon, and just enjoyed being together.

 At the end of the month we learned that Hailey had been accepted to the local charter school. 

It was a hard and quick decision whether to move her. She had already been in first grade at the neighborhood school for 4 weeks- we were just starting to adjust to the new school year. We decided to try out the charter school because it has some neat programs that could expose her things she may not experience otherwise. She adjusted quickly to the change. It was harder on me than it was on her. Keira started preschool at home with two other friends in our ward. It's fun to be involved in her learning, but she still gets to interact with other kids during the week.

I turned 32 in OCTOBER. I'm still not sure how that is possible, but it happened. 

We drove up to Snow Basin to cheer on a neighbor in his high school mountain biking race. It was a beautiful day for a picnic and enjoying the mountains.


My mom and I took the girls to the pumpkin patch over Hailey's fall break from school.

I started hosting Science Friday once a month for the girls and their friends. In October we experimented with dissolving canding, producing carbon dioxide gas with baking soda and vinegar, and played with dry ice bubbles. 

Of course we ended the month with Halloween: Honey Lemon, Batgirl, Robin, and a jedi.

Hailey turned 7 and Kyle turned 32 in NOVEMBER.

Kyle went to Colorado for a weekend hunting trip with his uncle and cousins. For preschool Keira and I went with our friends to the Living Planet Aquarium and hit up Chick-fil-A for lunch. 

We celebrated Thanksgiving with Kyle's familiy. His parents flew in and spent the week with us while his siblings came up to visit for a day or two. I ran my first official 5k on Thanksgiving morning. I far exceeded my expectations and ran the whole race in 27:31. We rode the FrontRunner to SLC to see the lights at Temple Square and grabbed some hot chocolate from Starbucks on the way home. 

The end of the month we had our first big snowfall of the year.

Keira turned 4 in DECEMBER.

The month flew by and before we knew it Christmas was here. Kyle and I spent Christmas Eve at the car dealership buying a new van. Hooray! Straight from the dealership we went to my parents house to spend the evening with them and Corinne and Taylor eating dinner and opening presents. 

We woke up Christmas morning to a new coat of snow. It snowed all day long. The girls had a blast playing outside and we enjoyed the nice quiet day at home. 

2016 was pretty great, but we're looking forward to an awesome 2017! Hopefully I can keep up!


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