Thursday, December 4, 2014

17 months and Thankful for Thanksgiving!!!

After 5 weeks apart, Ben finally finished his away rotation in Gainesville, Florida and joined us in Utah!! To say we are excited is an understatement…this was the last big chunk of time we will have to be apart. All that's left is 10 interviews in the next 8 weeks. WHAT? Yes, TEN interviews in TEN different cities all across the U.S. to see where we will match for residency. Ben will be traveling a lot and I hope to join him for some of the interviews that we are really excited about. We have an interview in San Francisco, California; Portland, Oregon; Two in Pennsylvania; Three in Texas; then Florida, Michigan, and Nebraska. This means a lot of flights, hotels, rental cars, and decision making. It's so STRESSFUL but also exciting to try to analyze all these different places and try to get in to the best program for Ben's surgical training but also for our family. After interviews, Match Day will soon be upon us and we will open up a letter indicating where we are to live for the next 5 years! Crazy. 

To be honest we've been so Thankful for all the time we've been able to spend with family. I can't foresee another time in our lives where we will have the luxury to just go to the park, eat dinner, and do fun activities with BOTH sides of our family. Its been a really great blessing to reconnect before potentially moving across the country!!

Kaden is 17 months! Almost a year and a half! This sweet, sweet boy grows more tender and fun each minute. He is a little chatterbox and SO CREATIVE! Give him a crayon and paper and he's in heaven. He loves to be read books too, (mostly the same books over and over called Pingo and llama llama, red pajama) and loves to be in the bath. He is still crazy about balls but it has spanned out to include bubbles and marbles. He's also really into "Tractors" which is basically all motor vehicles including cars and trucks. He also loves to "Roar" like a monster/dinosaur and is constantly insisting that I draw a dinosaur and a truck over and over again on his paper. He says "bubble, ball, drink, mama, daddy, Maddie, Bompa (grandpa), hot, and tractor" very clearly. He also has a word for "Grandma" that we all understand but not sure how to spell it here:) He is so happy-go-lucky and such a people pleaser. He LOVES to dance and show off for his cousin Claire and will go down any slide, no matter how high.

He loves hanging out with daddy. Their special thing is that they love to go swimming together. Its fine with me because I'm not a huge fan of swimming…in the winter. Kaden is shockingly tolerant of cold water and cold weather! 

That blonde hair, though…

Thanksgiving was with Ben's family this year and we had a great feast! I was especially hungry after running the Thanksgiving Point Turkey trot…I was freezing even after I finished:) There is nothing that motivates me more to run hard than a big slice of pie to look forward to after the race!

Now…to get ready for Christmas!!!! Thanks for reading!

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Kaden is 16 months and Halloween recap...

Wow. WOW! wow. Kaden is 16 months!!! I cannot believe it! It makes me so sad that he is growing up so much, but at the same time I LOVE how fun, interactive, and communicative he is now. I say this every month, but I really do love this age!

The past few weeks we've been living with my parents in Utah while Ben has been on away rotation in Florida. To say we miss him is a huge understatement. Ben is not only my husband, but he is my best friend, my stabilizer, and quite honestly my favorite person i've ever known. He is just the best, and the best father and so we are counting down the days until we are reunited!!! Then interviews begin which will be a lot of traveling for Ben, but at least we will see him a couple times a week!

Anyway, back to Kaden. Here are some of his new tricks:

-climbs everywhere and on everything. Also, remarkably committed to jumping off of things like chairs, couches, beds, etc. Gives me a heart attack.
-LOVES to go down slides. Has NO FEAR. I swear this kid must be a Welling or something (for those of you who don't know, Ben and his brothers are notorious for jumping off insane waterfalls, cliffs, bridges, etc.)

-Loves to play with animals. It melts my icy heart that said i'd never own a dog…maybe…
-Still obsessed with balls, and it is his preferred toy, but also loves to play with cars, trucks, and blocks.
-Legitimately will play with a stick in dirt for hours. 100% boy.
-has a weird thing with eating crayons
-has another weird thing with brushes: hair brushes, toothbrushes, paintbrushes, makeup brushes--he loves to play with them!
-LOVES playing with cousin and best friend, Claire. Can you spot the welling chin?!

-Super talkative and has said these words: Hotdog, drink, mamma, daddy, bean, ball, NO, YES, dog-dog, and bath.
-Refers to almost all food as "bean". He really really likes beans. And Guacamole.
-raspberries and cheese are his favs.
-Really into playing peek-a-boo. Also he holds up his hands saying "where'd it go?" if he has dropped something.
-Great sleeper and napper…finally eating better too! This kid will eat an entire avocado, and entire yogurt, a string cheese, and a hotdog all in one sitting.
-still nursing:)
-huge mamma's boy

-loves to press "buttons" from the elevator to the garage door opener. He thinks he is magic!
-fascination with motorcycles, scooters, bikes, tractors, and pretty much all locomotives
-His newest thing that is so cute is that every night he will go get my Mom's essential oils and bring them to her for her to rub on him. He loves those doTerra oils!

-Was his mama's biggest cheerleader when I ran the Provo Halloween Half! It was the FUNNEST race i've ever done and so beautiful running through the canyon. However, coming straight from Texas I was freezing!!! Also, I almost PR'd if it wasn't for a couple of port-a-potty stops! TMI, i know.

-For Halloween he was a Chicken, and I was his Farmer. He was scared about trick-or-treating at first, but once he got the hang of it he would grab fistfuls of candy and put it in his bucket…then he must've gotten confused because every house we went to he would take from his bucket and put it into their candy bowl! This made me laugh because I'm sure that mistake will never happen again as he gets older and understands more of what candy is:)

We love this social, energetic, sweet sweet boy!!

Friday, October 3, 2014

Kaden is 15 months!

While I've been withering in the Houston heat, Kaden, on the other hand has been growing SO much! He is constantly learning, exploring, and never sitting still! Here are some of his new trouble-making skills:

-says "mama" about 700,000 times a day. Its very cute, but he mostly yells it.

-still says "ball" about 800,000 times a day. OBSESSED. He will watch any sport that involves balls on TV, but could care less about cartoons. Soccer, Basketball, even GOLF mesmerizes him!

-Loves getting into the following: garbage can, toilet, silverware drawer, makeup, food storage, and laundry basket. You can only begin to imagine the messes this kid creates! and yes, we try to baby proof without much success; he is tricky!

-loves listening to music and dancing. He especially loves Taylor Swift  and Katy Perry:)

-knows how to follow instructions like: go get your shoes, take a bite, throw that away (puts item in trash), lets go outside, grab the keys, change your diaper, etc. It is INCREDIBLE how much they understand at this young age!

-Still a terrible eater. He likes avocado, eggs, and beans but will only take a few bites at a time. He is a major blueberry lover and it makes a mess. He throws food whenever he is finished and creates disasters.

-knows how to give "kisses" and "loves" and it  is so cute because he usually just licks your face

-Runs. Runs everywhere, no walking here.

-loves swimming and bath time, will cry and bang on the bathroom door to be put in the tub.

-loves being outside. Constantly collecting sticks and rocks and carrying them everywhere. boy thing?

-knows how to go down a slide all by himself. will even walk up the stairs to the slide on the kiddie playground.

My heart hurts at thinking how fast time goes by. Kaden is such a teaser, a pleaser, and so empathetic to all people. He is the best snuggler and is my best little buddy. I honestly love being his mom!

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Oregon Trip, pit stop in Utah and back to Houston!

Wow! This summer has gone by way too fast!!! For Ben's rotation at Oregon Health and Sciences University, we were able to stay with his parents in Beaverton (a suburb outside of Portland). Ben was worked like a slave at the hospital (40 hour shifts!) but Kaden and I were treated like royalty by Ben's parents.

We went boating and Kaden wanted to show off his birthday suit:)


Kaden had a blast at the Beach!!! He didn't even mind the freezing cold water and went swimming buck naked in it! Lots of nakedness in Oregon…:)

This kid is already the coolest kid on the beach. I mean, surfing at 13 months?! Way cool.

My best lil' buddy:)

We went on some GORGEOUS hikes this trip. Bart, Ben's dad, knows the most beautiful hikes/waterfalls/parks in all of Oregon and took me and Kaden to some of them. Oregon, your beauty is unsurpassed. 

The best thing about being at your sweet hubby's childhood home is looking at baby pictures from the past. Ben, you sure were a cutie! Kaden is a mini (blonder) version of Ben, don't ya think???

While in my last week of Utah I was invited to choreograph a Hip Hop routine for Provo High School's Dance Company. The best part is that I got to see them perform at the first Football game of the season! They did so well and performed with great precision and energy. I was so proud, especially of my baby sister, Maddie who is in her first year on the team. 

Can you spot me among the teenagers?? haha

someone couldn't take his eyes off of the bulldog and kept saying "football" over and over again

Just preparing him for Disney World in November! I'm glad he isn't scared of these things!

This crazy kiddo is always putting on glasses…trying to tell us something Kaden?

Loving reading his favorite book, Pingo, on the porch with Grandpa Bart

One of the best mornings EVER! I ran a 1:45:23 Half Marathon! I set a PR of a 7:57 pace and won 5th place in my age group and 11th place overall. I was also so proud of my MIL Rebecca who won 3rd place in her age group!!!

Kaden is obsessed with splash pads!

Loves to swing so much! Giggled like crazy!

Still obsessed with balls and out of the entire toy store this is the only thing he wanted to play with!

And finally…after three months we are back to HOUSTON! Wow, Houston you are HOT! I was hit in the face with the humidity as I stepped on the plane! Phew! It'll take some getting used to! Just to show you how humid it is, take a look at the curls in kaden's hair!!

Til next time, folks!

Sunday, August 3, 2014

More Utah Fun!

Honestly, Utah, can you get any better?!?! This week the weather has been AWESOME! I personally love the rain and the cool breezes we've been getting. I heard its been the coolest July in Utah for thirty years...not sure of the source but I believe it! It's been so nice!

Also, I'm continually impressed by everything there is to do for kids here! We've loved doing splash pads, 7 peaks, pioneer festival, playing with cousin Claire, and simply being OUTSIDE. Kaden is in heaven as long as he is outside. We've had so much fun playing, just missing Ben so much! This week Ben started his away rotation in Oregon and it feels like a harsh slap in the face to have him gone again. It seems like our moments together always go way too fast! Once all our rotations are over he has interviews and we will be apart a lot again. I'm just getting anxious to get life back to normal, though that probably won't happen until we match for Residency in MARCH! Ah! I am so anxious not to be husband-less or home-less anymore!

Anyway, here are some more of the fun things we've been up to!

First Campout!!!

Kaden and Claire eating marshmallows:

Paddle Boarding and Canoeing on a double date w/ Rachel and Steve (bummer you can't see our faces)

Me getting a good workout trying to propel myself on that thing! haha

Ben and Steve trying out Sailing...too bad the wind was gone:(

Kaden eating fistfuls of blackberries:

Pioneer days Petting Zoo:

Playing outside in the rain (Kaden has the best bed-head hair!):

Eating Soap in the Tub---Kaden loves baths so much he will cry and cry to be put in there

Don't mind the no make up look in these next pics! ha! Running my 10k race---my fastest time ever and I won first place for women 20-24!! 4th place in women's and 11th place overall.

Perfect overcast morning!

My motivation to get to the finish line!

Most of you know that I competed ballroom and danced all growing up. While I still love and adore dance, there is something so refreshingly straight forward about running. You are either faster than the other person or you aren't. There isn't any politics, costumes, or judges you are worrying about pleasing. It isn't subjective, and nothing depends on your dance partner or if your dance routines are exciting enough or whether that judge saw you in that one split second. It is only about YOU, pushing yourself as hard as you can go. You are in control of the outcome; what you put into running you get out of it. I love the no nonsense of it. I can't wait to start getting into it more!! Now to train for my half marathon coming up!! Yikes!

We have one more week of Utah and then we join the Hubby in Portland! Woot! Can't wait!!