Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Some goings-on

This morning I took Clara to get her photo taken for her passport application.  In most of the pictures she was scrunching up her eyes and making a cheesy smile so we went with the more serious approach instead since I think it serves better for identification purposes.  I also measured her this morning and found that she is 33" tall. 
We aren't planning a specific trip yet, although we keep bringing the topic up and discussing when and how to make a trip work this year and where we should go, etc.  Our initial thought (which we have tossed around for years now) was to just go on a cruise, but we get really mixed feedback about that type of vacation unless you talk to someone who has done a Disney cruise (which everybody raves about but they seem like they are out of our price range).  But we also wonder whether our approach to travel would make just flying to one location (a carribbean island, for example) and staying for 5-7 days a better choice for us.  But then how do you choose which island out of all the options?!  Maybe a "big" trip won't happen this year given our indecisiveness about it but I figured we might as well prepare by getting Clara's passport in order, just in case we spot a fabulous last minute deal for somewhere amazing like Aruba or something (I saw a few this week and was kicking myself that we couldn't jump on them).   

To satisfy my wanderlust, I made crepes the other day and dreamed of wandering around Paris. 

The weather has been lovely (in the 70's this week even) and so the other weekend we picnicked in the backyard while Paul was home to join us.  You can see the empty planter boxes Paul made for me for Christmas.  Aren't they lovely?  We still have to get the dirt for them and get our garden planted. 

Paul also spent a couple of days installing crown molding through the main living areas of our home.  He did a great job and it looks beautiful, although, like our baseboards and trim, it still needs to be sanded and painted to be finished.  Clara is really into "helping" these days.  Whatever we are doing, she comes and holds on (to the broom, to the molding, to the quilt I am sewing, to the spoon I am stirring with, etc.) and chirps "helping!" in a bright little voice.  I tell you, sometimes I just die she is so cute.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Recent home videos

Here are a few short clips from videos taken on my phone lately.  I really need to be better about taking video and uploading it because I love watching these even though I sound super annoying - especially in the last video.  The first one is the best though because it showcases just how much Clara is talking, or at least trying to talk.

Clara says the prayer from Amy Nash on Vimeo.

Airport conversation from Amy Nash on Vimeo.

Clara the photographer from Amy Nash on Vimeo.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Cupid Cutie

While I was getting ready for church this morning, Paul whipped out the camera and did a little photo shoot with Clara while she was in a great mood.  Actually, she was in a pretty great mood all day (well, okay, so she wasn't super happy about nursery but she stayed the entire time and Paul and I were able to go to our own classes, which is a huge improvement for her).  Anyway, as I was going through and editing these photos I just found myself smiling over her many hilarious faces and her long, long hair (which I did with a curling iron for the first time today, just to flip the ends evenly).  She is the best Valentine ever.

Paul set up the tripod and we took a quick family photo just as we were heading out the door to sacrament meeting.  I'm not in love with it for me, but it was a great shot of Clara and Paul looks really good in it too.  I am thinking that I will probably update our adoption profile with this photo instead of the one we took last May (which is super old and Clara has changed SO much since then). 

More day-to-day Clara

We have spent a few fun afternoons breaking in the fingerpaints around here.  Clara points to the color she wants, I put on a drop or two of color here and there on her paper and then she goes to town.  I admit that I enjoy this activity as much as she seems to.

Artwork is apparently serious business.

Clara got some new puzzles for Christmas, including this great alphabet puzzle.  We tell her things like "find the apple" and give her the "A" piece and she can put it in.  She can do about 2/3 of the pieces.

She scoots up and down the hallway on her bumblebee every day. 

A few of the quilt blocks that I completed.  I'm starting to piece them all together now.

While we were in Utah there was a rousing game of Bingo with my grandparents one night while we ate both strawberry and lemon shortcake for dessert.  (Have you ever heard hot lemon pudding with whipped cream over white cake?  It is SO yummy.)

My mom bought these darling dresses for the three girls (have I mentioned on here yet that a third niece will be joining the family in April/May?  I am so excited for that new little sweetie!) so we dressed up the girls and tried to take some photos together in Jennie's basement.  They weren't super cooperative but they sure looked cute.

Jennie did "story time" for the girls.  Isn't their play area amazing?  I totally love it and wish we had this much space for a play area too.

Clara LOVES Emma.  Like, LOVES her.  "Emma! Emma! Emma!" - that is what I hear all the time, even now that we are home. 

And one last picture of Clara in her crib after waking up from a nap.  As a little potty training update - she has been totally dry through the night for over a week now and has only had a couple of accidents.  I didn't hate changing diapers at all, but I must admit that it is so nice that she can go potty in the toilet and that she knows how to "hold it."  She is getting so big!!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Visit with Kayli

Last weekend, Clara and I flew to Utah to see Kayli.  I have been dying to see her for a long time now but she was busy doing sales all last summer and then she flew to Texas over Christmas while we were in Utah so it just hasn't worked out.  But I have been keeping my eyes open for decently priced tickets to Utah (is it just me or have ticket prices been way higher than in the past?) where Kayli is going to school and I scored big last Thursday when I found roundtrip direct airfare from SFO to SLC for $220 on Delta as long as I flew out Saturday and came home Tuesday.  So after a flurry of text messages with Kayli to make sure she was available, I booked the ticket and started packing. 
It was SUCH a great visit.  Kayli's homework load was light and she had Monday off of work to boot so we were able to spend a lot of time together.  We have been missing this girl SO, SO much.  Since we got in Saturday evening and Kayli had work, she said that she would just meet up with us on Sunday for church.  She drove up to Farmington to attend church with us in my parent's ward, which worked out great since she and I were able to hang out in nursery with Clara for the last two hours of church.  Clara got some coloring help from her Kayli.

Clara also tried on Kayli's shoes, which were amazing.  I can't get away with wearing heels like hers but I wish I could.

After church we got to go spend some time with Kayli's grandparents (Clara's biological great-grandparents).  We love these people so much and they are so kind and good to us and they love Clara so much.  Kayli's grandma is in a care facility so we ate dinner there with her and Kayli's grandpa and Clara had fun watching two fish in a fish tank.  Kayli's grandpa even found some fish food so that Clara could feed the fish, which she thought was hilarious fun.  Unfortunately, Clara didn't think posing for a picture was quite so fun.  Sundays are long days for her with interrupted nap schedules and she decided to be uncooperative for this photo, but I still wanted to capture a pic of her with her extended family anyway.  And just so you know, even though this looks like a sad face on Clara, it is actually a tantrum.  She just knows how to turn the waterworks on and off at a whim, which she decided to do once I pulled out the camera.  The moment I put it down and she got to slide off Kayli's lap and run around, the fake crocodile tears vanished.  You almost have to see her do it to believe Clara is capable of such trickery.
After dinner we got to go to Kayli's aunt and uncle's house and hang out there for a little bit meeting more of Kayli's family that I hadn't met before.  They are such incredibly nice people and we had a fun visit with them.  Clara was in a better mood by that time and showed off by giving a double round of hugs to everybody before we left, the little minx.  I wish I had thought to take a photo with them too, but I guess it will have to wait until next time.
On Monday my mom, my niece Emma, Clara and I drove down to Spanish Fork in the morning to my sister Jennie's house.  Jennie had let Emma stay with Grandma Cece for the whole weekend so that she and Clara could play as much as possible while we were in Utah.  Emma is possibly Clara's favorite person in the whole world and those two laughed and giggled and hugged and chattered with each other all weekend long.  Clara hasn't stopped talking about Emma since we left and "Emma" is often one of Clara's first words after waking up from naptime.  Jennie doesn't live too far from Provo where Kayli is going to school at BYU so Kayli was able to come by with a friend for part of the afternoon.  We enjoyed Cafe Rio salads and then played downstairs. 
Clara's imagination is really starting to develop and if you show her how to pretend things she will pick it right up.  She and Kayli were "washing" their hands in the sink of Emma and Lily's new kitchen that they got for Christmas.
Then they were baking up something delicious, I'm sure.

This is the best photo I have of the three of us together and unfortunately I look wretched in it.  But it was so fun taking it because Clara had just reached her arms around both our necks and pulled us all the way in to her until both our faces were touching hers.  You can't see her little hands or arms since our hair is covering them, but she was giving us both a little squeeze for this group photo and it was such a precious moment. 

We wish Paul could have come too but he had too much going on at work to get away.  I loved catching up with Kayli and hearing all about how things are going at the Y for her.  As I have been working on this blog post, Clara has been pointing at each picture and describing them for me by excitedly repeating "Kay-yee! Quair-uh! Momm-mee!" over and over.  We sure love our Kayli and we love open adoption.  Hopefully we can meet up again soon!

Friday, February 1, 2013

Feeling the love and a big step for Clara

You guys, seriously, thanks SO, so much to everyone who shared links to our adoption profile or adoption blog on Facebook and other social media outlets over the past two days.  Who knows what will come of it, BUT I have been blown away by the massive jump in number of views of our adoption profile in the past 48 hours - almost over 600 views, in fact!  Maybe, just maybe, one of those views will lead us to a baby.  Here's hoping.

In other news, (and this is where I insert a disclaimer that I am about to write about potty training and some people may just not want to read any further if that sort of thing bugs you about blogs) Little Miss Clarabelle spent this past week learning how to use the potty and I am very pleased that she is sort-of potty trained now.  I say sort of because I know that she is really young and will continue to have accidents here and there and she will probably wear a diaper at night for a little while still, BUT she didn't have a single accident yesterday or today.  And that was even with me taking her all over the place - the library for story time, to the park, to Costco, to the grocery store, to the post office, to the bank, to the gym, etc. (I had tons of errands for some reason!) - and her taking 2 1/2 hour naps each day where she woke up totally dry.  She used the potty at Costco and at the library like a champ while I held her for support.  We are SO proud of her! 

We started putting her on the potty last Friday and went for it full-fledged starting last Saturday.  We went through every pair of panties she owned each of the first three days (Sat. through Mon.) and I had to do laundry every night because she had zero control over what she was doing, but by the end of Monday she had started to figure it out and Tuesday she only had three accidents and even those she had given me signs that she was needing to use the potty and I just couldn't get her into the bathroom and pull her pants down fast enough. 

Anyway, that is the big news around here.  We didn't do a whole lot else this week since the first few days of potty training we spent a significant portion of our day in the bathroom while I read books to Clara to keep her entertained while we sat and waited for her to learn what she was supposed to do.  I am so glad that now even if another baby comes along the way we will only have one in diapers!  Tomorrow might be a big test of Clara's skill with potty-training though since she and I are flying to Utah for a quick trip!  Wish us luck!