Wednesday, December 30, 2009


This is my sister.

It is her birthday.

These are my Top Ten favorite things about Laura.

1. Every time I see her she has a funny story. Whether it's related to me or not, she has one.

2. She is good for a lot of information. She's like my own personal Dex, she knows of good places to eat, new places to visit and can usually give me directions to somewhere if I call her up in need of some.

3. She is always polite, even when completely shutting you down, or saying no to something, she can always do it in a pleasant, non-threatening way.

4. Her talents never go un-practiced. If someone needs her to play the piano, sing, or cook dinner, she'll do it. Bringing me to number five:

5. She is a magnanimous sister, always helping me with Jack, or her other nieces...(there is no gender neutral word for nieces and nephews).. She is always helping with her nieces and nephews.

6. We have many inside jokes. I love inside jokes.

7. She has made nothing but good choices in her life, making her a very inspirational person.

8. She would be the best person to bake her birthday cake.

9. She always laughs BEFORE she tells you something funny.

10. She makes a super best friend/sister. If I had another sister, I don't know if she could live up to it..

Happy Birthday, Lar.

I lit you a Birthday Candle.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

My Son, the Genius.

Merry Christmas, everyone. On a completely non-festive note, I want to acknowledge how very observant my now- four year old son is. He will take note of things visually. Like anywhere he sees the BMW logo, he makes sure to tell me it's "just like our car!" or he pegs any Honda as "Natalie's car" or Prius as "grandma's car" and he knows how to tell which is which.

He also has designated each color as a Disney or Gabba character, as anything red is "Lightning McQueen" and anything green is "Chick Hicks" and so on.

A couple weeks ago it was finally brought to my attention HOW DETAILED Jack's photographic memory is. He came running upstairs to tell me he had "built our house downstairs" and after a lot of 'way to go! good jobs!' he finally took my hand and brought me down to the basement to show me how he had built our house.

After a good look- I realized he did a spectacular job, and I was quite impressed.
Our house is, after all, yellow, tall and skinny with other colored houses on each side, with a pointy roof, and a front door on the right.

Good job, Jack. Way to go.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

December 17th

Jack's birthday was on a thursday. The most boring day of the week. So we spruced it up with some birthday breakfast eggs, a trip to Primary's to deliver gifts to those responsible for Jack's ongoing birthday's, lunch at the PlayPlace, a fun visit to the Pet Store and then Zoo Light's after we did presents. It was certainly a lovely day and Jack had fun and was a great participant in all of it. We love him so much, and feel blessed to have this fourth birthday.

THEN, on Saturday, we had his birthday party at the Barn. It was SO much fun and I'm so thrilled I thought of the idea.. :) Because otherwise, Jack's birthday would have just gotten lots amongst all the other get-together's everyone is having during this holiday season. So it was very special, and I think he'll remember it.

We all got to play with the bunnies, kiss the llama's, and pet the goat at the barn. Then we had presents and ice cream and it was a grand old time. Thanks to everyone who came, and thank you to the Flamm's for letting us use the barn.

Thursday, December 17, 2009


How strange, that I have a four year old. Even more strange, is to be at this point where we have no surgery on our calendar this year. Ever since Jack was born I couldn't see past his third surgery. Now that we are after our fifth, I can't explain the bliss- of moving forward. It is a simple thing, but to have a four year getting ready to go to preschool is the biggest accomplishment for our family. Jack's year consisted of many ups and downs, illustrated by this collage.

1. Jack gained a very genuine interest in Cars. Be it trucks, sports cars or cartoon cars, he loves them. Anything red is "Lighting McQueen."
2. We got to take Jack to Universal Studios this year and he learned that Dora and Diego are NOT of average height.
3. Jack grabbed some scissors and cut off his beautiful golden locks. It turned out to be a good thing because he wouldn't have had time for a haircut in the upcoming months.
4. Jack had his third open heart surgery, completing the Norwood Procedure to adjust his blood flow to and from his heart. It changed him forever.
5. Jack made many trips back to the hospital, due to his pesky pleural effusions. His spirits were bruised but he took it like a rockstar.
6. In between hospital stays he got to enjoy the warm weather and do fun things like visit Red Butte, Thanksgiving Point, and go to a carnival with his cousins.
7. After his fourth pleural effusion, the surgeons decided to do surgery to help him recover from the new heart adjustment. Another surgery followed that one..
8. A three week stay in the hospital set us back a bit, but we took advantage of summer and got Jack's skinny bum outside.
9. Jack LOVES to swim... and tries to be brave by ditching any floating device. We are still working on keeping him above water.
10. Make A Wish granted Jack a wish, to go to Disneyworld and meet all of his disney friends. We are so excited to take this well deserved trip with him in February.
11. For the better part of the year Jack became quite attached to WALL-E and opted, or demanded rather, to be MO from the movie. That costume lasted 10 min.
12. We went to California a couple of times per Jack's request. He was able to go to SeaWorld and get drenched by Shamu.
13. Because of his mommy's example, Jack prefer's to be behind the camera more than in front, and has proven hard to get pictures of as of late.
14. Jack has managed to be potty trained despite taking his diuretic everyday that REALLY makes him need to ... evacuate. We are really proud of him.
15. My little baby bum is turning into a boy. He loves guns and tools and he doesn't always want to be my little side kick each and everyday. He is very independent and capable.
16. This was Jack's 3 year old pictures. I will be doing his 4 year old ones soon. He is FINALLY getting so big, and for the first time I am sad about it... every pound he gains is a huge accomplishment and each inch he grows is a celebration, but suddenly I want him to slow down now that I don't have to worry so much about it.

Jack is the most charming little boy I know. He can make you smile seconds after making you mad. He knows he has the skills. I will never take him for granted and I hope he grows up knowing that he is a blessing to everyone's lives. This birthday is so special for him and I hope that this next year will bring more imagination, more laughs, more games, more clubhouses, more vacuuming.. and more love.

Happy Birthday, Buddy. You conquered 2009.