25 April 2010

Welcome To Dell (Alternative name: Go To Dell)

So last weekend Caitlin and I set out to take a weekend adventure. If you have been our friends for a few years, then you know that Caitlin and I try to take a wacky, wintertime adventure every year. First year was Lizzie Borden. Second year was Philadelphia (-20 degrees) to see Edgar Allen Poe's house. Third year was to go to an ice sculpting competition in Lake Geneva. This year - Indoor Water park Excitement at the Wisconsin Dells! I can't tell you how excited I was (possibly because when I get excited I saw naughty words), but lets just say I couldn't freakin' wait. Finally the weekend came.

We got up there late on Friday night, after a 3 hour ride turned into a 6 hour ride with an upset Max and a slight car wreck in Milwaukee. But we made it. After a dinner with the Wortley's at Culvers, we went straight to bed in anticipation for the big day ahead of us. Upon awakening, we went over to the Burgon and Ward's pad to for breakfast crepes!
Guess what - at 8am all the babies were awake! Big surprise. Jane was super psyched like me to take on the day.
Sometimes the boys just have to revel in their precious babies. Max has all types of chicks in his life - like Ella and Jane here. He's always hanging out with older women.
You'd think that is a donut that Ells Yeah is eating, but its plastic. Weird taste in food - but whatever!
Is this my kid? YOU BETCHA!
Oh yeah - crepes. Yeah, as you can see above they were amazing. We had all the right toppings to make them taste like candy.
I learned on this trip that the Wortley's have a whipping cream dispenser. It was fantastic. It's like you think you know a person and then boom, they whip out their whipping cream dispenser.
Hims? Yeah...hims is adorable with his little monster outfit.
You know what is really hard to do? Take candid shots - especially with a big camera. Everyone always wants to pose or get awkward...but I think I got a good shot here of the Wortley's laughing their butts off. Man, they are the life of the party. Or maybe it was Chris just off screen doin' his wacky thing. Well, the funniness was over and it was time to hit the water parks in a big way.
The girls were brave with the water, but Max chose to stay away. He felt the warm indoor air, heard all the noise - and he was out.
Question: did I have fun? Um, what do you think. The first water slide I went down, I screamed like a little girl, squealing to the very bottom. I forgot how much I enjoy water parks. I used to go to Wild Waters in Boise with Mikey like every week growing up - I miss those days. I don't think I have been to one since Freshman year. Its been too long.
Baby boy woke up when we got to the wave pool and I spent some quality time with hims. I can't wait to take him into the water. Unfortunately, there was like 9,000,000 gallons of chlorine in that water to dissolve all the kid urine (and the adult urine - don't judge me!).
We literally kicked it for 8 hours at the water park (note Max is fast asleep again in his car seat). It was great. Then the Wards and Burgons left for home - but the Wortley's stayed on for another night with us in the Dells. We went out to dinner at had fried cheese curds and blue cheese burgers (heaven). I slept good that night - and surprisingly Max did as well. The water park wore him out.
The next morning we went to The Cheese Factory - which funny enough was a vegetarian restaurant that really didn't serve too much cheese. This place was wildly amazing - one of my favorite vegetarian restaurant of all time. Caitlin was also pleased.
That's polenta right there people - the grain of the Gods. Okay, actually it is the grain of the poor, but still. Delicious.
You already saw our cute family picture from the restaurant. Here is another glimpse of how much we love this kid. He is smothered in it...probably to a point that he gets annoyed with us.
After breakfast/lunch we went to downtown Dells (population no one) to see the craziness. We started it off with Dairy Queen blizzards. The thing with the Dells is that it is a freakin' joke. There is no tourist trap more freaky than here. Check this out.
Awkward indian poses.
Haunted houses and abandoned torture museums.
Cars on the walls? Whatever. Now I've seen everything.
T-shirts - most of them lame except this one: "If you see da' police: Warn a Brother!" I started crying in a meeting this week when I thought about this shirt. In hind sight, I wish I bought one.
The Dells is pretty hard core is what I'm trying to say. What's that? You don't think the Dells is weird enough for you?
How about a gigantic Trojan Horse that you can go-cart through? Hmmm. Odd.
Or how about a replica of the White House upside down? Yeah, you can tour the inside and see the furniture on the ceiling.
The president's limo crashed into the side. Did aliens pick the White House up and drop it in the Dells?
Yeah...that's how messed up it is here. Its a place I could really settle down and retire. We had a great time with our friends. But seriously, how awesome is a huge indoor water park in a freaky town? I'm so glad I married a woman who loves adventures and we are friends who like to partay. What will our next winter adventure be???

23 April 2010

Family Pic at the Dells

Last weekend we went to the Glorious Wisconsin Dells. Jeff has been pretty slammed this week with work, mutual, scout meetings, and preparing for a camp out this weekend, but I'm pretty sure he'll try to fit in time this weekend to blog about our good times at the Dells. Until then I thought that I would at least post this precious family picture. Not the best picture of me but doesn't Maxers look so adorable? Love that kid.

19 April 2010

Poor lil' Maxer

So I just got back from physical therapy. You would think it would be for me or for Jeff since we both have herniated discs but instead the physical therapy is for precious baby Max. Yep, at 3 months old Max has to go to weekly therapy. Max was diagnosed with Torticollis a few weeks back. I had never heard of it before but as I have talked with other Moms apparently it is fairly common. Torticollis basically means twisted neck. Max has weak muscles on his right side and as a result he always tilts his head to the right and looks left. They don't know why it occurs but think it could have happened in the womb or during delivery. Occasionally this can be caused by bone abnormalities but we had x-rays done and luckily everything is normal with his bones. Now we just have to work on strengthening his little neck muscles.
The therapists have been helpful and have given us good ideas on how to help him. In fact, now we have to change the way we interact with Max. All of his toys should be placed on his right side to help him strenghten his muscles. Whenever we change his diaper or lay him down for a nappy we have to make sure that we are on his right side. I also learned a few new ways to hold him today to strengthen his neck. Hopefully as long as we work with him now and attend weekly therapy he won't have any long term complications. So if any of you want to come hang with Max, please do so- but you just have to be on his right side!

13 April 2010

An Ode

Goodbyes are never easy. Last week I had to say goodbye to a dear friend of mine that has seen me at both my best and my worst. Ohh Cybex Arc Trainer you are missed! Last week my gym membership at Northwestern’s gym ended and I had to say goodbye to my beloved workout machine. For anyone who knows me really well also knows about my obsession for working out and for this machine. It puts no stress on my jacked up back (I have a herniated disc) and it allows me to burn more calories than any other machine that I have found. I have loved this machine since my days at Gold’s Gym in Provo. It was on this machine that I would wake up at 6am and memorize scriptures before my mission. It was on this machine during my senior year at BYU that I nursed my hurt knee back to health (I tore my LCL playing soccer.) Then my love affair with the Arc Trainer continued when we moved to Brooklyn and they had 2 machines in our gym. There is a chance that I often requested that people follow the rules of only 30 minutes on the machine so that I could have my own precious 30 minutes. It was hard to leave Brooklyn for many reasons and knowing that I would be leaving this machine only put salt on the wound.

And then when we moved to Evanston my heart grew full when I discovered Northwestern had four Arc Trainers in their gym. What I didn’t anticipate was that the professors and students at Northwestern also loved the Arc Trainer. In order to guarantee that I could get on a machine, I would have to arrive at the gym ten minutes before it opened and then race to the machines before others got there. Jeff would often get me a towel at the gym since I didn’t have time to get one myself if I wanted to secure getting on the machine. I worked out on the Arc Trainer 5-6 days a week throughout my whole pregnancy. But now my Arc Trainer is nothing but a memory.

Arc Trainer please do not be mad at me that I have replaced you with this machine at my other gym.

For now, we say goodbye but I certainly hope that we see each other again and very soon.

Karen (aka Noah)'s Birthday

Yeah, so maybe it was technically Karen's birthday this weekend - but in true grandma tradition - she stepped aside in order to celebrate grandson Noah's birthday that would be taking place next week. Celebrating youth is just a lot of fun, so why not? I mean, look at that cake? A cake for me that awesome at my age would just be silly, right? But for Noah it just makes sense.
Noah prepares to blow that candle out with vigor.
SUCCESS! He enjoyed us singing to him and blowing out the candle that he wanted us to relight and do it again. We did...and then he stuck his hand on the candle and got burned hard. After 10 minute break for crying, we were back to blowing out candles and smiles.
But let's all remember that Karen is special too - even if she is older than Noah. If she wasn't this old, she wouldn't be a grandma, right? And she's a killer grandma from what I can tell (even if she did give Noah jeans, which he quickly rejected). She's also a killer aunt and I have always enjoyed talking with her. She is loved.
Back in Noah world, he prepares for cake consumption.
Apparently this cake needed some additional construction - and Noah was prepared to do the work.
He is also a master of serving ice cream. Then it was present time and his joy was full. He retired to bed to watch Finding Nemo with his new Finding Nemo action figures. Could life get any better?
Happy birthday to both of you. Thanks for letting us party with you.

12 April 2010

RAD - The Party

This is the face of a boy who is awaiting the calm before the storm. Max knew something was up, something big.
Maybe it was the fresh flowers in our house. Or maybe it was the balloons up on the walls.
Maybe it was the pink tablecloth and strategically placed "30s" all over.
Maybe it was the confetti rice krispee treats? Or maybe Max just ESPN or something because he quickly decided it was time to retire in the back room before the mass of people walked into our house for a defining hour of partiness.
Guests Jerms, Megarad and BoBanna pose.
Christopherson, Heathrow and Ells Yeah pose. The Shrink and Cheron Time pose.The hosts? Yeah...we pose as well.Finally - birthday girl Jazzy Jenna and Dennis pose. We had called everyone together to celebrate Jenna's 30th birthday. As we all know, 30 is a very pivotal moment in a human's life. Its a moment when you can decide if you are going to spend the rest of your adult life being lame and responsible...or if you are going to take life by the horns and just rock it. Well, these guys chose appropriately to enter the 30s. They did so in a way that honored Jenna's heritage - the 80's.
While not everyone chose to dress up - look for those that did. There is no shortage of side pony tails, head bands and neon in this picture. I love Caitlin's face in the back...hilarity.
Gentlemen, sport that wear. I rocked a woman's pink blazer with shoulder pads, shredded jeans, sweatband and neon shirt. Some people chose to rock it 80s Wall Street style? Dennis's jacket is phenomenal.
I also appreciated the double polo on Chris. Nice touch.
This was a party that really demonstrated the difference in all our lives from last year. Observe the quantity of little people in this picture! Its staggering. We had at least 15 kids in our apartment that night. We have truly graduated to family living.
But at least they are all cute - like Hannah here.
A combination of Easter and 80s snuck its way into the cake which was excellent.
Sometimes its embarrassing to the center of attention - but not as bad when you can hide behind your shades. There were a few brave souls like the studs above that were willing to move onto the second part of the party. Jenna and Dennis took it to the next level by having us drive 40 minutes into the suburbs to go here:That's right...the local roller rink. It smelled like a junior high school gym. The music was pumping while the college aged employees skated around telling you what you couldn't do. It was hilarious...that same childish desire to break the rules instantly surfaced when on the rink. They would say "no skating backwards" and I would instantly turn around backwards when their back was turned. Internally you just have to hate those guys from ruining your fun.These girls participated in a race and were paired up with 10 year olds. At least they beat 1 out of the 2 kids.
I also raced, but against the nerdy 15 year olds. I got 3rd and won a small soda. I forget how mad my skills are on the roller skates.

Seriously - how long has it been since you went roller skating? Do it - it will resurrect something inside of you that has been buried for a long time. Thanks Jenna for giving us all our youth back on your 30th.