Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Kalli's rockin' head gear

Here is a picture of Kalli's incision line. It's really not bad and you can't really even see it. There is just a nice bald spot there from where they shaved, which is too bad because that was where he longest hair was.  Joe took Kalli today to get her headband that will help reshape her head. Her head already looks so good, she has a nice round back of her head instead of a point. It broke my heart to see her in this but I think she is just too cute in it. Joe walked in the house and just said "she's precious". 
I got pink so everybody knows she's a girl and I have some plans for her bows when I find them. 
I just love this girl!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

A Year of Books

As some of you know, I am an avid reader. Looking back on my year of books there are a couple that I really loved and would recommend to anyone. Here are those truly impressive books:
The Hunger Games earns my #1 favorite book this year and may stay there through next year. The writing is amazing, the story is captivating and Suzanne Collins grabs you from the first page and never lets you go. Although the topic is a bit gruesome, it is an AMAZING book. I HIGHLY recommend this book to all. I even have testimonials from others that have read this, give this a try! I can honestly say that I am not the biggest Stephenie Meyer fan, I think her writing in the Twilight series is atrocious. She totally shows how well she can write in The Host. She once again shows her abilities to write an unlovable character into one that readers love. Although I do have to say there really is no climax to the story, it is all about the characterization. I surely hope she writes more to this story.  Umm, I love this series. Don't let the titles scare you (although they make me laugh out loud). I started reading the first one off of a recommendation from a very good source and haven't been able to stop reading them. They got me through the traumatic parts of Kalli's ordeal because they let me leave that world and enter Georgia Nicholson's. It is a YA book, so it isn't naughty, it just talks about snogging a lot. So funny. If you need a good laugh, this may be for you! Such a cute little book. It really made me feel like I was in the classroom again. I seriously thought there were times that I could smell that school smell again. This was a refreshing book that truly made me believe in good literature again. It was humurous in the right parts and serious in the others. Highly recommend. I heard that this has Newbery buzz around it, and I am a sucker for a Newbery book.  The Uglies is a series I ran across on I decided to try it out and was not disappointed. There seems to be a lot of the end of the world literature going on and this was at least written well. I really enjoyed this series (except for the fourth book). It is worth giving it a try and it is a very clean book which always makes me happy. 
The last book I would recommend would be Shannon Hale's Book of a Thousand Days. I think this book surpasses all her other books. As much as I am a fan of Goose girl, this one just made me so happy. Her story telling techniques are so amazing. I can't wait what else Hale has up her sleeve. 
Now I have given you mine, can you give me your picks for 2008? 

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas long past...

As of 4:30 pm Christmas day, our Christmas decorations are nowhere to be found. Joe combed through the house and packed everything away. Now it really doesn't feel like Christmas. 

Monday, December 22, 2008

Cute Kids

As crazy as life is right now, we've been having fun with our kids. Here are some things that are happening. 
Kalli went to her doctor visit on Friday. She is 11lbs. 5 oz (60%) and 23 1/4 inches (90%). It shocks me that she is in the 90th for height as she has Joe and I for parents. She only gained a pound in the last month, but I am blaming that on her surgery. 
She received 4 shots, two in each leg, and an oral one. Let's just say that shots and Kalli DON'T mix. I never had problems with Blake but Kalli screamed for hours that night. It was interesting because she barely cried with her surgery but she cried bloody murder after her shots. Go figure. Kalli is obsessed with a couple of things right now. First, she loves her animals on her swing and mobile. I put her up for a nap on Saturday and I could hear her "talking" through the monitor. I went up to check on her and she was just smiling and laughing at her animals, it was cute. She also loves to be in her swing and loves to watch the animals go around. She gets upset when they stop. 
The other thing she is obsessed with is sucking on her hands and fingers. If she can find them, they are in her mouth. She isn't the biggest pacifier baby, she will only take it sometimes and that's when she's not already mad. But those hands are her favorite. Too bad I swaddle her at night so she can't find them. This morning Blake got Kalli's boppy and sat on the couch and stated "hold it". He wanted to hold Kalli. He was really good with her, as always, but this is the first since she's been born that he wanted to hold her. It was really cute. I ask him all the time if he is going to be a good big brother to her and take care of her and he always tells me yes. That's a good sign because his favorite word is no. I sure hope he does look out for her and they become good friends. 
Now I am off to pack, enjoy your day!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The dilemmas of packing

We have come across some obstacles in packing. Last week we started packing up some of our belongings that we figured we wouldn't need until after our move. Well, as time goes by we now are feeling the effects of those items that are packed. Let me give you some examples:
~we packed all our DVDs thinking we wouldn't need them because there is enough on TV. Well, we also packed our Christmas movies and it just hasn't felt the same without them.
~I finished some sewing projects and figured I no longer needed my sewing machine out. Well, I have a couple of projects I would like to be working on before we leave, but it's not worth digging around.
~I packed all my scrapbook stuff because I haven't scrapbooked in months. Well, I packed stuff I needed to make a Christmas present. I actually did have to open that box to get it out.
~Lastly, Joe and I packed our dressers because there were clothes that we didn't need. Joe specifically asked if we would need our swimsuits. Well, duh, no. It is December and we're moving somewhere cold, why would we need our swimsuits? I just booked our hotel room for two nights in Albuquerque that we will stay in for 2 days before we close on our house. Low and behold, it has an indoor swimming pool. Ugh. 
Oh the joys of packing!

Friday, December 12, 2008

We're Home!!!

Kalli and I made it home this morning. Our doctor came in this morning and started unhooking her from her lines and sat her up and said "how do you feel about going home?". I told him I was nervous about it but he told me I'd be nervous a week from now. She's doing really well. You wouldn't even know she had surgery except for swelling and an incision. She was smiling and cooing at the nurses which made their day. She's home and happy. 
I can't express how grateful I am for her nurses and doctor. I had THE BEST nurses for the last two days. Her night nurse was amazing and I couldn't have felt more comfortable with her. Kalli's first night was pretty eventful and she was so attentive and caring. Her day nurse was really great too. 
We are happy to be home and be a family again. I am excited to take a shower in my bathroom instead of the "Family" shower at the hospital and to use a restroom that isn't 600 feet from her room. 
Unfortunately the camera was left home this morning so we couldn't get good pictures of her leaving but here are some from yesterday. She's bright eyed and happy and we couldn't ask for anything more.
I know Joe already posted this but we are so GRATEFUL to those that called and texted about her surgery. Your thoughts and prayers were greatly appreciated and we felt your love through the last couple days. We know we have the best friends and family members. Thank you to everyone who took concern with our family. There are some really special people out there that mean so much to us and I think you know who you are. WE LOVE YOU!

Thursday, December 11, 2008


Just to give everyone a quick update, the surgery was a success.  The surgery posed a few different obstacles as we found out that one of the problems causing the misshaped skull was extra bones in her skull.  We also discovered that she had two small holes in the top of her skull as well.  The doctor had initially planned on making two incisions (one in the front and one in the back), but due to her situation, the doctor made one incision across the crown of the head.  The surgery lasted approximately 2 hours and we can already see the results even with the swelling.  We fill blessed that we were able to be here in Phoenix with a good children's hospital and a great pediatric neurosurgeon to take care of our daughter.  We also want to express our gratitude to all the support from our family and friends.  Here are a few pictures of Kalli after the surgery.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Melts my heart

*She does her thing in the middle*

Monday, December 8, 2008

Tour of ABQ House

Here is our house. I finally got it to load. Enjoy! 

Light up my life

On Sunday night Joe, Blake, Kalli and I went to the Mesa, AZ temple to check out their Christmas lights. I couldn't believe how many people were there. The lights were amazing and they really helped me feel the spirit and remember the true meaning of Christmas. Although the Mesa temple doesn't quite compare to the Salt Lake temple, it was still beautiful nonetheless. I took pictures but they don't show how truly beautiful it was. 
Today was Kalli's last day in our ward because of her surgery so I decided to dress her in a Christmas dress. I attempted to get pictures of the two kiddos before church and it went pretty well. Blake just wouldn't let go of the ball. Oh well.  Blake wanted desperately to run out to these lights. They were beautiful.  They had these bunches of trees in a couple locations. I heard one older lady comment that they should have put blue in. Seriously, I am happy how it is.  The beautiful manger scene. They were playing the Mormon Tabernacle songs and Oh man was the spirit so strong. That was until a woman started screaming at her son that he was so embarrassing that she would just die because he embarrassed her so much. The boy was only doing what every child was doing. Poor little guy.  Joe and Blake enjoying the manger scene. It was so cute because every little kid around us was pointing out each animal. So amongst all the talking you would hear "COW" "SHEEP". It was cute. 
It was such a beautiful night and I am so glad we were able to find time to go out there. I hope Blake was able to feel the sweet spirit there. He was very well behaved so maybe he did. 
It was like 60 degrees out and we thought it was funny that people were wrapped in heavy coats. We just had long sleeves and were fine. Funny Arizonians. 

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Number One Question

The number one question I get is "How do you get her bow to stick to her head?" 
I get this pretty much every time I go out with her and usually multiple times at church. Random strangers stop me in the mall to ask, it's quite funny.
The answer: Karo syrup. 

Monday, December 1, 2008

A bump in the road

As if our lives weren't crazy enough, we are adding one more flaming hoop to jump through. Two weeks ago, Joe's boss approached him and asked if he would be willing to transfer to their office in Albuquerque, NM. We were stunned especially because we really like Phoenix, were buying a house in Phoenix and we had Kalli's surgery coming up. We decided to pray about it. I was totally against it, I really wanted to stay in Phoenix. I told Joe we should go over there and check it out before we made any decision. We went over last weekend and found a house that we love. For the sake of Joe's job we decided to make the decision to move to Albuquerque. We feel that it is a good opportunity for Joe although we felt that even if we decided to stay in Phoenix, we would still be blessed. Although we don't know too much about the area we are excited to start a new chapter in New Mexico. 
Like I said, we found a house we love. We are in the process of buying it and should close on it a few days after Christmas. In case you're wondering about our house here, we can back out till the day we sign. So we gave it up this morning. 
Kalli's surgery will be the 10th so that poses no problem for our move. She will be 2 weeks post op and her doctor told us that we could move easily with her, that she won't have to see him after her surgery, it could be done by her pediatrician there. 
I changed the picture of our house on the right wondering if anyone would notice the change. Did you notice? 
I took a video tour of our house while we were there but am having troubles getting it to load. In the meantime here are photos. 
Our hallway leading to the rooms
Our master bedroom with a bay window. 
My beautiful kitchen. The countertops are corian and the cabinets are the same from our house we were building in Phoenix
The front of our home. 

Friday, November 28, 2008

Black Friday

So today I braved the crowds and went out. Each year I tell myself I won't go out, the deals aren't that great and if they are you have to be first in line. But each year I go out and regret it. This year I just wanted to get a few odds and ends and decided to go out. Joe actually started black Friday by going on Thursday. Yes, after dinner Joe headed over to Michaels because they had Cricut cartridges $60 off. He actually got a hold of one, among many many women. 
My sister and I then went Friday morning shopping. We stopped at JoAnn's first because they had snuggly fabric for $1.50 a yard, which is a good price and fleece for $2.99. I got there found a couple of items and got in line to get my fabric cut. The line was at least 30 people and almost all of them had at least 20 bolts of fabric to be cut. I stayed in line for a bit but when it hadn't moved AT ALL, I decided to leave. 
We then headed over to Kohl's to get some kids clothes. Well, their sales weren't great. I bought some fleece sleepers the other day and today they were the same price (at least I didn't feel bad for buying a couple days ago). I did find a FABULOUS frame that was more than 50% off. It's amazing. I had a couple people ask me where I found it when I was in line. That frame made up for my hour long wait in line to purchase it. 
Our third trip of the morning was to Target to get some things not for Christmas. I ended up just finishing Blake's and Kalli's presents there. Not bad there actually.
What is really sad though is that a 34 year old man was killed at a Walmart by stampeding people. So sad. What is wrong with those people?! 
From the looks of the stores today, the economy shouldn't be as low as it is. People were spending mega bucks today.
Enjoy your black Friday!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

A day to give thanks

As Thanksgiving approaches tomorrow, I wanted to share some of the many things that I am grateful for. 
First I am very grateful for our sweet, beautiful little girl. In the six weeks that she has been alive she has already gone through more than some will go through. She continues to be sweet and well mannered. Kalli started smiling so early and continues to brighten our days with her smiles. We rarely have our hands full with her. She sleeps very well, even at night and rarely causes us any grief. 
Going along with our gratitude for Kalli, comes gratitude for her doctors. I can't be more grateful to her pediatrician who caught her condition so early. If it would not have been caught so early, her surgery would be a lot more invasive. I am also grateful for her neurosurgeon who seems to love his job and cares for children. In the weeks to come I know I will not be able to express my gratitude to all the people at the Children's Hospital that will help Kalli out. How grateful I am to all these people for helping children. 
As much as Blake drives us crazy he is a fun boy to be around. He is lucky to be coming home from Albuquerque in one piece as he was very naughty for us. But there are moments when his sweet little spirit shines through. The day we went to the neurosurgeon we were driving as a family. I was crying in the front seat and Blake chimed in and said "mommy, are you sad?". It made me laugh and cry at the same time. He can be an extremely sweet boy. I am grateful for those times when he lets that sweetness shine through. I am also grateful Blake brings laughter into my life. He is a funny kid and does many things during the day that make me laugh out loud. Even though at times I want to donate him to the pound, he still is my little boy that brings laughter and joy to my life (along with stress and probably a heart condition).  Joe and I have been married for over 4 years and I couldn't be more grateful for him in my life. I have truly married my best friend. We have such a good time together and the conversations never seem dull. I am grateful that he treats me as an equal and with respect. He values my opinions and openly admits that he couldn't live without me because I do so much for our family (he also says he can't live without me because he doesn't know how to blog). Joe is a great example for our children and it warms my heart to watch Blake emulate his father. I love him so much and am grateful for his role in our family. 
Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. I LOVE cooking a big Thanksgiving dinner for my family. It brings me such joy to cook this great meal. This Thanksgiving we have a lot of rough times ahead, but I am thankful to know that in the end all will work out. I am grateful for a Heavenly Father that has brought peace to my heart and given me the strength to get through the next couple of months. I also can't express how grateful we are for close friends that call and check in on our little family. Your words of comfort and love are deeply appreciated. You will never know how much you mean to us. 
Have a happy Thanksgiving and know that we are thinking of you!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

The woes of Kalli

So some of you have made inquiries as to what problems we have had with Kalli from the last post. Now that we know exactly what is happening we will share it with all of you. At Kalli's 2 week appointment the pediatrician had concerns about Kalli's head. She thought that her plates in her head were already fusing which would be really bad. She wanted to send us to get x-rays to check it out. When she checked with our normal pediatrician she was told to hold off a week just in case they are funky because of birth. We waited a week and went back in to see our normal pediatrician. She thought they were also fusing so told us to go in the next week to get x-rays. 
The next week we went in and waited 3 hours to get 20 minutes worth of x-rays. We then proceeded to wait for the doctor to call us back. A week later she called and said that they are fusing, therefore we would need to see a neurosurgeon to get checked out. She told me surgery would be the drastic way, she didn't think Kalli would need surgery. 
After doing some research and finding other's who's children also had this, we pretty much knew she would need surgery. I made an appointment with the neurosurgeon and we proceeded to wait until our appointment which is torture, let me tell you. 
Today was her appointment and the first thing the doctor does when he comes in the room is tell us she definitely has it. By having it he means sagittal synostosis, which means that her plates are fusing too early. He will have to make an incision in the front of her head and the back and go in endoscopically to remove some of her skull. They will be taking a Y shaped amount of skull out from the front of her head to the back. She will then have to wear a little helmet thing to help reshape her head for 6 months. Kalli will be in the hospital for 2-3 days and in the ICU for the first day. Unfortunately they expect her to loose quite a bit of blood so she will need a transfusion during surgery. 
We expect to have the surgery done in the next two weeks, we're just waiting to get scheduled. I can't think about it too much or I will start to cry. Joe decided to stay home from work today and we hung out with his mom because I knew I just couldn't be alone today. 
We will keep you all up to date on her surgery, but we wanted to let you in on what is going on with her. She'll need all your thoughts and prayers for the next couple of weeks. 
P.S. I decided to go on a business trip with Joe, so we will be in Albuquerque, NM for the next 5 days, getting back just in time to cook Thanksgiving dinner. 

Sunday, November 16, 2008

The life of Blake

Last night we were hanging out in the living room and Joe got out the baby play mat for Kalli. Blake quickly got inside and Joe decided to make it a tent for Kalli and Blake. Kalli didn't last too long but Blake loved it. He is also clothesless because Blake now likes to disrobe at all times. I walked into nursery today to check on him and he was in the middle of pulling off his pants, great! 
On Friday Joe and I were able to attend a session at the Mesa temple. Joe's mom so graciously watched our two little ones while we were away. When we came back Joe's aunt Beth and her daughter Amy Jo and her husband Joey were at the house. Blake was having the time of his life with Joey. Dad no longer was cool and it was all about Joey. He's going to make a great dad one day, he sure has the energy for it! When they were leaving Blake wanted to wear Joe's sunglasses and Joey had some ones like them. Blake kept saying "cool dude" and doing a thumbs up. It was cute. It's so nice to have such great family around us here and we love having the opportunity to get to know them better. 
Joey and Blake
P.S. Thanks Beth for the wonderful gifts. We used the blanket today at church and everybody loved how soft it was. You are awesome!

One Month

Kalli is now one month old. I know everybody says how time flys, but it sure does. I actually think it went faster with her than with Blake. She is still such a delight in our home and is really a sweet baby. She is very calm and rarely cries or fusses. When she wakes up at night she doesn't cry, just starts smacking her lips. Kalli loves her brother. The other day she was fussing and I couldn't pick her up at the time so I told Blake to go over and sing to her. He lay down next to her and started singing "Sunbeam" and she instantly stopped crying and watched him. As soon as he was done she started fussing again. It was so sweet. We go see her pediatrician on Friday so we will post her stats then. 
I love her facial expressions
Stink eye. 
It is such an accomplishment when I get a smile. She kept smiling for me when I had the camera, she knows how it works. 

Monday, November 10, 2008

Kalli's blessing

Last weekend we were able to bless Kalli. Unfortunately our bishopric never mentioned that that weekend was going to be a state-wide stake conference so we had to do a private blessing. We ended up doing it in our relief society room with family. It was very exciting to have family come and share with us in our very happy moment. Joe's mom and dad were there along with his brother Eric and his family. My mom and grandma were also there along with our bishop. Joe's mom asked to make Kalli's dress and I kindly obliged (seriously I was super excited). She did such a great job and I truly love it. Joe gave her a very beautiful blessing. I am extremely grateful for a husband who is worthy to use his priesthood whenever it is needed. With all that we have been going through with Kalli, it was such a blessing to hear what great things are in store for her life.  
Here she is in her pretty bow and dress. 
She just wanted to sleep when I wanted to take pictures. So sweet. 
Four generations of women in our family. I kinda look like a giant to them, I hope I don't shrink too =)
Kalli and me. I just love this little girl!
Happy mom and dad. She was lounging as far back as she could which doesn't make for good pictures, oh well. 
On a side note, I have these really cute bows that I put on Kalli's head everyday and the bow that she wore for her blessing. These were all made by a friend of mine. She is very affordable and has some cute stuff for older kids too (they also make adorable bracelets that Kalli wears everyday). Check out her website: 

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Just for smiles

If you look closely, you will see one of Kalli's first smiles. Priceless. 

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


If you haven't already, remember to vote today! Happy polling!