Sunday, June 15, 2008

Two more weeks in the life of the Hale family

Since today is Father's day, I want to wish all the dads out there a Happy Father's Day! I got Aaron some new shirts and socks for work. Boring, I know, but he needed them!

We took the boys to church today! Well, we really just took them to Sacrament Meeting and then Aaron stayed home with them while I taught the lesson in Relief Society for the second Sunday in a row. The boys were really good and they had many adoring fans who have been waiting to meet them. I thought they looked so cute in their little outfits today. My cousin, Kelly, sent them to the boys. Emma kept saying, "Ohhh, they are so cute in their little church shirt." Here is William in the blue plaid shirt: And Jonathan is in the green plaid: The boys had a doctor's appointment last week (well, two weeks ago-the day after my last post). Jonathan weighs 9 pounds, 12 1/2 ounces, and William is 9 pounds, 7 ounces. They are really doing great and they both smiled at me on Friday. It wasn't just one of those random smiles, but the first time that I said something to them, they smiled, I said something else, they looked at me and smiled get the picture. It was so exciting for me, especially since they were born so early. From what I understand, when babies are preemie, they usually hit the milestones at their adjusted age (their age based on their due date, not their actual birth date). That means that if they are supposed to smile at 2 months, then it wouldn't be unusual for the boys to smile at 3 1/2 months since they were born 6 weeks early. Does any of this make sense? So, if you understand all my rambling, then you can understand why I am so excited. Smiling is a milestone that is usually reached around 2 months so the fact that they are pretty close to that is amazing! (It takes so little to get me excited!)

This is the new "park" that my parents got for Emma and the boys. We have been having friends over to play several days a week, and we hosted a church playgroup last week as well. The park is awesome-it has a climbing wall, two slides (one tube slide and one wavy slide), two swings, a trapeze kind of thing, and a glider. There are also monkey bars across the place where the swings are. And, in case you can't see it in the picture, there is a picnic table and benches in the lower part of the tower.

My dad is quite proud of his method for acquiring said park. He traded it for plants. The whole thing. He even traded out the cost of delivery and set up. Is he awesome or what! Thanks, BB and Jefe! As you can see, the park is big enough and sturdy enough for adults to play on, too. I burned my elbow going down the tube slide. It is small enough that Aaron and I have to lay down to go down it, but man is it fun! The wavy slide is also a lot of fun. It is a fast slide! I have been working on my monkey bar skills, which are currently non-existent. I need to get some upper body strength! We learned very quickly that we needed to come up with some rules for the safety of the park goers! One being, no standing up in the swings. Another being: Don't go to the park without telling Mommy or Daddy or Russell. Good thing you can still have fun while obeying the rules! (My camera lens was dirty when I was taking some of the park pictures and I didn't realize it until I had already taken them.) Can you tell that we have gone from talking about the boys to talking about Emma? Here is last week's outfit for church. I got this dress from a consignment store for $5, and it is one of my favorites! I am so jealous of Emma. She has the greatest complexion-I have never put her in a color that doesn't look good on her. (Is it wrong to brag about how cute my kid is?) If you don't know this about Emma, she LOVES books. She is always looking at a book or making Aaron or Russell or me read to her. Lately I have been sending her up to her room 20 minutes or so before her nap for some calm down, reading time before I go in and read to her. On this particular day, she fell asleep before I got in there. You can see that she loaded up on books that day, but never made it past the first Dora book. My cousin, Bonnie, had a big swimming party at her neighborhood pool on Friday night. Emma chose to wear her new swimming rash guard top with matching bottoms and hat that BB got for her. She was so fun to watch at the pool! She also had on her "cool girl" Liquid Force kid's wake boarding life jacket. She started out swimming in the pool with Aaron holding on to her, but in a matter of a few minutes, was swimming around all by herself. She thought she was so big. It was so fun to watch how excited she was...but somewhere inside me a little piece of my heart was breaking. She is growing up way too fast. And then she swam up to the side of the pool where I was waiting to take her picture, and spit a mouthful of water on me. Ahhh, that tender feeling lasted but a moment...

Russell's birthday was on Monday, and I asked him what kind of cake he wanted. He asked for a "Funfetti" cake with vanilla icing. He also told his friends that, and he got two cakes. Lucky guy! I also got him some Panda Express for lunch (I asked him what he wanted to eat, and out of all the places to get food, he chose Panda.). He spent the evening with some of his friends going out to dinner and going bowling...I think.

This is a new dress I got. I thought that it showed how skinny I have gotten (I reached my goal weight through Weight Watchers and am the skinniest I have been since before I was pregnant with Emma) until I saw the pictures that Aaron took. Emma tells me that the dress "lets my tummy out." Don't know what that means exactly, but when you want to look skinny, that can't be a good thing! Anyway, I really like the dress, it is comfortable, and works for nursing. So, here are some better skinny pictures: This is Emma and me last Sunday before church. I haven't worn this skirt in three years (or more), and it is one of my favorites! I was so excited to be able to just zip it up! I don't want anyone to think that I am trying to tell you how great I look, but I think that anyone who has had a kid knows the post pregnancy weight struggle. I am just really glad that it isn't as much of a struggle as it has been in the past. And, it is always nice to fit into the "skinny jeans"-you know...those ones that are lurking somewhere in the back of the closet, that you take out and sigh and gaze at longingly, just wishing for the day...well, my day is here! (Don't worry, I have some skinny jeans that I still can't fit into, and I am working on getting into those...but I am starting to think that it is a lost cause). Here is a front shot. I was having a bad hair day. The humidity is crazy down here! This is a picture of my blue hydrangea that is right outside my kitchen/office window. This thing has been blooming for quite sometime, and I love it! I enjoy it so much that I thought I would share! Oh, and my project that I tackled this week. I bought a lot of strawberries the other day and made some freezer jam. Last year, Aaron's grandparents gave us a good amount of strawberries two days before we left for Hawaii. (I hope I don't sound ungrateful-I was so glad they did!) I wanted to use them to make freezer jam, and I had never made it before. I called my mom who told me her recipe, then went to my local Wal-Mart to get jars, pectin (is that what it is called) and the other stuff I needed. When I got to Wal-Mart, I found this little package next to these cute little plastic "jars." I called my mom and told her what the package said (1 1/2 cups sugar to 4 cups crushed strawberries) and she and I debated over how well this would turn out. I decided to give it a try, and it is the best freezer jam I have ever had! It tastes so fresh! We thought at first that it must be a low sugar recipe, but it doesn't say that anywhere on the package. Now, I know this qualifies as cheating when it comes to freezer jam, but it is so fast and easy, that if cheating on this is wrong, then I don't wanna be right! (You have to imagine me saying that last sentence in my thickest southern accent to get the full effect!) Here are the pictures of my strawberry freezer jam. So delicious!

Since my last post, some other exciting things have happened. Our friends Lindsey and Jeph had their baby girl! We are so happy for them, and I wish so bad that I could hold their baby (they live in Utah). Grandma Hale sent me a book that I have been wanting to read, called "I Am a Mother," which was first recommended to me by my friend, Lexi. And my friend, Marci had a birthday, and we (with several other people) went out to eat at Olive Garden. Yum!

I am going to try to do a better job of posting weekly so I don't have a million pictures to post each time I make a new post. We will see how that goes. Oh, and in case I haven't said it, I really love all the comments that people leave. Sometimes I feel like I have totally lost touch with some of my friends, and I am glad to know that you guys read the blog! Have a great week (or two, depending on when I post again)!


Rachel said...

We made freezer jam this year, too. It was so yummy.

The boys look great.

How come all of Russell's friends are girls?

Nicole said...

Haley you look amazing! Nice work. the boys and Emma are adorable. and that play set. so nice. I am sure it will be a favorite for many years to come.

kinslowfamily5 said...

I love to read your blog. Your family is awesome. I am so jealous of all the weight you have lost. I am proud for you though. Your kids are just darling.

Tammy said...

Haley, I almost feel like you were sitting in my kitchen talking to me! That was a great post! Everyone looks so great, especially you! I miss you and really love reading about life in Georgia, and seeing actual blue hydrangeas! I am so glad your boys are are a blessed family! Send me a plant catalogue!!! I am acquiring more and more flower bed space as we speak!!!

Peggy said...

I love reading your blog, Haley! It makes it not feel like you are living so dang far away! You family is so cute. And so is your yard!

The Butler Family said...

Hi Haley,
I love your blog! It looks like you've got everything under control already! Wow, that is wonderful! We need to take a trip to the zoo in Atlanta or something so we can see you in person!

Karolyn (just up the road now in NC!)

Marc and Megan said...

Hi! Congratulations on your twins!! A family friend who is also a friend of the Hale family told me about your blog, so I just had to check it out. (My family goes way back with the Jones' family... Aaron might remember me.)

My husband and I are expecting identical twins and are so excited. Reading through your experiences has been so fun! I would actually really love to ask you some questions about your pregnancy... I'm in desperate need of some advice. My email is: marcandmegan at gmail dot come.

Jewele said...

Love the update! Whoo! You guys have been busy! You making jam gives me faith that life will eventually gain some sense of normalcy :) Love the low-sugar jam recipe! And Emma is so darling, as are the boys! And of course, you look fabulous!

Ashley said...

i do not know how it is to have post baby weight [because i have not had a baby] but i have been around ALOT of people who talk about how hard it it... and i just wanted to say you look great!!!!!

i want to try that jam, i actually saw someone on tv do it like that and in those exact jars :)...

Christina said...

Sounds like you are staying busy. Your boys are so adorable, and you look great btw. Danica used to tell me after Whintey was born that I still looked pregnant - so sad huh. Guess you never really know what's really going through their minds. Danica and Whitney both fall asleep with books like Emma too. even after I have already read three or more books to them.

Steve and Kalli Hale said...

Steve and I made freezer jam a couple of weeks ago too... It really is sooo much better than anything store bought!