Sunday, December 18, 2016

Wild One

It seems it was just last month that this little man was born.

He was my little monkey man when he was born, with his curly dark hair, heavy brow, and wide nose. As he changed and grew, I realized his personality would test me more than my previous two and I started calling him my wild child. So when I saw this Wild One outfit on Amazon I was sold.

And slowly a little theme and party began to come together. I was just going to have family come over for his cake and presents, but then I realized, it's more fun if more people get to watch him destroy a cake. And when I was exercising at a friends house I noticed her room had a bunch of decorations that fit the theme perfectly. She let me borrow them and I made a couple more easy decorations, and soon we had a simple wild-themed house to party in.

The feathers and the tepee were borrowed, but I made the arrows, cupcake toppers, and cake topper.

It was my first time making a smash cake, and I baked it in a formula can (thanks Pinterest). It turned out perfect. I also really liked the frosting idea that was a pudding/whip cream mixture. It was less sticky, not so sickly sweet, and held up really well without melting or running as it sat out.

We had a wall with a picture of Kendrick every month since he was born. My mom said it looked like a funeral, but I loved putting together the wall and the decorations. This last year went by so fast and it was nice to see how he has really grown each month to the little boy he is.

All of the decorations were so simple, but it was more than I've ever done before. I'm not really a party planner/decorator person and usually we just have pizza, open presents, and eat cake. Kendrick sure got spoiled (not that he knew or cared).

As for the actual party, we first opened presents. My favorite was the hat that I've been preparing him for, for weeks. Oh my goodness it's cute! He's been a hat hater and usually cries whenever I put them on. But when I saw this hat and imagined his face in it, I had to have it. After ordering it, I knew I had to prepare him so he actually would wear it. So for weeks I put hats on him ALL the time. He would fuss and try to pull them off, but I would put them right back on. And it worked. He doesn't love them, and he especially doesn't love the fur under his chin, but he wears them!

Yes, I torture my children for my own amusement.

After presents we had a lunch of roll sandwiches, oranges, carrots, chicago mix popcorn, and cream puffs.

And then cake!

Kendrick wasn't sure at first, but he loves his food so we all thought he would really go for it. But his shyness got the better of him. Everyone staring and encouraging him to go for it put too much pressure on him and he just lost it. That little face puckered up and he let out a wail with his hand just sitting in the frosting of his cake.

We realized our mistake and all pretended to ignore him until he slowly got into it.

He started by only poking the cake and licking off his finger. Then he began to get little pieces, and soon he was doing pretty good.

We eventually all moved back to the living room from the kitchen to sit down and conversate, and I scooted Kendrick so he was nearby and let him take his time with his cake. He ate about half of it. I figured it was job well done in his own way. Then he crashed hardcore and took a three hour nap. Turning one is hard work.

While he napped we watched funny you-tube videos with friends and talked and had a great time.

This boy is such a joy to all of our lives. Lydia and Ammon just adore him (too much sometimes) and he is a silly, playful little boy. Here are some of the stages he is in:

  • He could walk if he wanted to, but he is too chicken and immediately falls to his knees if he even THINKS you're about to let go of his hand.
  • Because he wants to walk so bad, but is too chicken, he will walk on his knees to get to you.
  • Kendrick loves balls and books most out of all his toys. He will bring you books all day and loves making animals sounds, especially the horse and sheep. Chasing and throwing balls keep him occupied for quite some time.
  • Kendrick loves a good chase. Whether you chase him or he chases you, he squeals in delight.
  • His favorite foods are plain baby cereal and bottles and he loves vegetables like asparagus and green beans. 
  • Kendrick also loves the dishwasher and pulling dishes out to suck on them and "helps" Brigham do the dishes all the time.
  • He is so smart when it comes to spitting food out. He knows just how to make it so you can't put it back in. He sticks his tongue out and continuously blows a raspberry when you try to put the food back in so the air and tongue in the way make it impossible. Stinker!
  • He is the WORST napper ever. But that's nothing new.
  • He already cries if he's told no and throws fits when things are taken away from him. None of my other kids did that, and I find that I don't care for it.
  • When he gets my phone or other things he knows he's not supposed to have, when you notice, he just holds it in the air above his head so you can take it away from him.
  • He is a great talker and makes tons of sounds and tongue actions. He also waves for bye bye and night night and claps.
  • He is 24 lbs and in size 3 diapers. He's in about the 60th percentile for both height and weight. His head size is still big, but not near as big at the 70th percentile (down from 96th!! hahaha!)
  • Kendrick has 8 teeth and is getting three more molars already. And he is a biter! ugh.
  • Kendrick is super cuddly and loves being sung to while he is held. I LOVE it! He also gives kisses. Wide-open mouthed kisses that are sweet and slobbery.
  • His hair still curls when it gets wet and he has the longest eyelashes and puckeriest lips.
  • He's deathly afraid of umbrellas and the shower curtain.
Being busy with older kids has made this last year flow by and I just can't believe this day has already come and gone. I love this little miracle baby with all my heart and our family wouldn't be the same without him. He's our spunky, handsome, smart little boy. Happy Birthday Kendrick!!

And I know you haven't seen near enough pictures of him, so here are his one year old pictures for you to enjoy.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Tappana Times: Things I'm Thankful For

November is a month I try to spend reflecting on the things I'm grateful for. I have SO many blessing to count, but I'll just name a few here.

First, I'm grateful that this boy turned 11 months. Because that means I get one more month before my baby turns one!

I usually try to delete my pictures down so I don't have a million of Kendrick on the same day in different poses, but each of these capture his personality in a different way so that I had to include them.

He's at such a fun stage. It took longer with him for me to really be able to enjoy a particular age with him, but I'm loving this one.  He's trouble, but fun to watch explore. He's clingy and needy, but SO cuddly - oh I love that. He loves chasing and being chased and his burp rag. Naps are still questionable, and he's super shy. He's getting good at throwing fits but his squeals of excitement, especially for his siblings, come often.

 One thing I want to remember about this age: he is the cutest eater. I don't know what it is, but I could watch his fat, dimpled hands pick up food from his tray and then his chubby cheeks and puckered lips bounce as he chews, all day. I may sound weird, but I'm not the only one in this house that feels that way. We all just sit and watch him eat and adore him. When he spits out food it's literally one of the cutest, funniest things I've ever seen. I'm going to be in trouble when I have to train him to eat what's on his plate, because no matter how hard I try, I can't help but laugh as his little tongue darts in and out until all the food is out and then blows a raspberry to really make sure it's all clear, all while making this guttural sound of disgust. You probably have to be there, but it's hilarious.

Besides Baby Kendrick, I'm grateful for these two:

They are both so helpful, so silly, so smart, and such lights in my life. And boy are they good looking. Ammon is really starting to find his groove in Kindergarten and his handwriting is awesome for his age. His sense of humor just kills me. And Lydia only got raving reviews from her teacher. My favorite was that she is just so KIND. Now that makes me proud.

I'm grateful for my body. This picture doesn't do it justice, but I was playing basketball with my family and my brother's friend, Carter, who is big and tall and skilled. I decided I was going to get the rebound no matter what, and went up against Carter. Bad idea. My middle finger hit the ball and then I was in a world of pain. I thought I broke my three middle fingers at first, the pain was so bad, but after a few hours I could tell my middle finger was just jammed. It swelled up twice its normal size (that's what I was trying to take a picture of, but you can't really tell) and the entire finger was black and blue and green and yellow and purple and red for a couple weeks. I looked and felt really really bad.

When my hand got cold, that finger would go completely numb, and it would often go white. It still feels a little stiff and hurts when I use it to pull my shoes on. But, three weeks later, I was back on the court with my family, killing it at tornado and poison. The body is an amazing thing!

I've also been grateful for my calling. I'm the young women's sports athletic director for our ward, and I've been loving it. I felt a lot of pressure at first because, while I love watching and playing sports, I'm not actually skilled and I don't really know how to coach, but it's been a blast.

Our young women's team even made it to regionals, and while the competition was tough, it was fun to be part of it. Basketball season is next!

I'm grateful for cookies.

Especially babies and cookies. Cookies are delicious.

In fact I'm grateful for food in general.

It tastes good, it keeps the body going, and it allows us to have Thanksgiving feasts with friends and family.

Thanksgiving was good this year. Turkeybowl, where I caught my first kickoff return and had a blast. Games and conversation and food. Time with my niece Amelia and brother and sister-in-law.

Like I said, I have a lot to be grateful for.

One last person I'm going to express gratitude for is this birthday boy.

He's been working so hard and he comes home and still puts in time to take care of things with the family. He still tells me how beautiful I am when I just woke up or stayed in my greasy hair and sweats all day. He LOVES his kids and is a smart, handsome, kind-hearted man and father.

I'm grateful that I can finally listen to Christmas music and that we have twinkling Christmas lights to cheer me up during these dark, gray winter days.

I loved watching my kids (kids here means Lydia and Ammon. Kendrick mostly just whined because I was ignoring him) decorate the tree this year and the glee they had in their eyes and voices. Though, when they turned their backs, I had to hurry and re-disperse their ornaments all clustered in the same spot.

We've got some fun Christmas surprises in store for these three and I CANNOT wait.

I'm grateful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Because of it I get to be with these people for forever.

 The grace, healing, knowledge, promises and hope the gospel message brings is the greatest blessing in my life.

I hope your Thanksgiving was wonderful and that you were able to reflect on some of the things that you are blessed with as well.

Monday, November 7, 2016

Tappana Times: October with the Incredibles

The Tappanas did not float away this October, despite Washington's best efforts. It was the wettest October EVER recorded.

Kendrick pulling faces
Despite the dreary, dreary rain, we have managed to maintain entertaining times and Halloween fun.
Kendrick decided to really find his voice and LOVES animal sounds. He practices until he can say most of them. He also pulls this weird funny face ALL THE TIME. What a character.

We have also discovered that Kendrick is TERRIFIED of umbrellas. Like ridiculously so - scream hysterically, climb up my body, and shake and tremble in fear so.

It doesn't matter if they are opened or closed. It's all the same scary beast to him.

Normally, being Washingtonians, we do without umbrellas, but it's not fun standing at the bus stop getting soaked every day as we send Ammon off to school. So our neighborhood gets to endure lots of hysterical screaming. The bus driver finally asked me what Kendrick's problem was, and when I told her Kendrick is afraid of umbrellas, she said,"That's weird! I've never heard of that."

Neither have I, lady.

It's funny, sad, and painful all at the same.

In October, we of course had to carve pumpkins and we invited my parents and sister over for a fun family night activity. My mom hates carving pumpkins so she observed while Kayleen and my dad worked their magic.

I made my kids do a little more work this year, and they were required to get out all their guts before I would help them. They did ok...but I still had to do most of the scraping.

We each had our own pumpkin and the kids were quite creative with their designs. I had them draw on paper what they wanted it to look like before I carved the face for them. Ammon wanted six eyes, sharp teeth, and a triangle nose. Lydia wanted eyelashes and a bat and star decoration on the sides.

The baby mostly observed with my mom, and honestly was the crankiest monster that night. He still got a baby pumpkin that I carved for him with a cute little face.

He liked playing with it...for a minute, and then he didn't anymore. Twice.

This year our family theme for our Halloween costumes was The Incredibles. I mean, we are pretty Incredible.

Brigham REALLY wanted to do it since we have all the right people to mimic the family, but he was the only one. So we made a deal with him that if he exercised for one month (at least 30 minutes, 5 days a week) then we would do it. Brigham held up his end of the bargain and so the Incredibles we were.

And I have to admit, it worked out great. I even got a new "mom" haircut last month that I could style to look just like Elastigirl (note: not for the costume - the timing just worked out), Lydia is growing out her bangs so she had the perfect hair to hang in her eyes (though it's not dark), Ammon is blonde like Dash, and Kendrick and JackJack are both babies...and trouble. Brigham could use some toning he was told, but hey, he worked out to earn these costumes!

We had a friend that loaned Brigham and I our costumes and I sewed Incredible shirts for the kids. Probably one of the easiest years to put together costumes. Thank goodness!!

Halloween morning Kendrick decided to work on his own masterpiece for his costume. More like he was left unsupervised  with Lydia and Ammon watching him for far too long and found a marker he managed to get the lid off of.

In person it really looked like he had black blood coming out of his mouth - vampire style. And he sure turned into a devil when I took the marker away from him.

That morning was my regular boot camp exercise class at the church. The instructor (dressed as Richard Simmons) turned it into a Halloween edition. We all came dressed up, got our butts kicked like normal, and then had "healthy-ish" treats of protein balls and whole wheat muffins afterwards.

I dressed up as Zorro and it helped me realize how uneducated my kids are about the good old movies. Ammon asked me who Zorro was, so I showed him the movie case so he could see what Zorro looks like. When I was all ready to go he exclaimed, "You look just like him!" Hahahahaha. Made my day.

My boys went in their cute Halloween shirts (not allowed to wear costumes to school, boo!) and I only wished I could have caught Lydia with them too. They later donned their Incredibles costumes for the evening.

Trick or treating was wet, but not too unbearable that night and we got PLENTY of candy! Kendrick lost it 2/3 of the way through so my mom finished taking my kids with my sister so I could take the baby home and dry ourselves off. I mean if you're afraid of umbrellas, it doesn't bode well for keeping dry. Or for nights of trick or treating when lots of parents are out with umbrellas.

That wraps up Halloween, but we still had more stuff like my brother's We The People competition that I went to (think government/constitution debate/trivia type event), Kendrick actually falling asleep on his own -miracle!-, and I found my nephew's absolute twin at our library. Seriously, when Quenton saw a picture, he even thought it was himself.

I keep trying to take videos of Kendrick reading to himself, because he does it all the time and makes all the animal sounds and there is nothing more adorable. But it is almost impossible to catch it.

This video is a mediocre capture of the cuteness, but it'll have to do.

Despite all the rain in October, the sun came out three times. And when it did, so did we.

Because, just like our costumes, fall colors in Washington are incredible!