Friday, December 19, 2008

Cute Little Critter

Today Randy took his last final for the semester, and we all let out a huge sigh of relief. There was a lot of catch up to be done as the semester came to a close, because of an adorable little distraction that kind of interrupted things about a month ago. Plus nobody has been getting very much sleep around here ever since. We are looking forward to our vacation starting this Sunday. It is well deserved: Randy did so well this semester, and got really good grades in some pretty tough classes (accounting, music history). What a hard worker!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Baby Bump My Friends Never Saw Thanks to the Joys of Bed Rest

Today was a long, tiring day. Wes wasn't feeling that great--so I was rocking, and rocking, and singing, and rocking, and feeding every other time that I wasn't rocking and singing. Which got me to thinking. As hard as moments like this can be--that little screech just breaks your heart--I wouldn't trade it for the world. And I certainly wouldn't go back to a few months ago . . .

Many of my friends never saw my baby bump, so I have some photographic evidence for them that I really was pregnant (no, we didn't pick him up from the cute baby store). So here you go.

This one was taken in September, when I was aproaching seven months.

And here I am in all my glory, about a week before giving birth. Please refrain from the "wide load" jokes: no I did not beep when I backed up.

All I can say is holding the baby like this is infinitely better.

Life is Rough Being This Cute

Hi, My name is Wesley, and life is rough.

My sports team is having one of their worst seasons ever.

My grandma went home to her house in Oregon so she can't read me stories anymore.

I can't escape the cameras as hard as I try.

It just takes so much out of me.

Luckily, Mr. Monkey understands. He's pretty cute too.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

I was reading my friend Melissa's blog yesterday, and she was talking about Christmas traditions--which got me thinking. I really love the holiday season, and it has been an interesting process the last two years figuring out what traditions from my childhood to bring into our new family, and what traditions we would like to start. Randy and I were fortunate enough to go see the First Presidency Christmas Devotional two Sundays ago, and our favorite parts were when President Eyring spoke about the Christmas tradition of a Christmas play at their house, and President Uchtdorf's memories about Christmas traditions in Germany. On the way home Randy and I talked about our favorite Christmas traditions in our house, and the differences between Christmases in a big family (he is one of eight) verses a small one (only child). Last year he got to experience Christmas at my house: this year it is my turn to see the other side of the coin. Growing up, Randy's favorite tradition was the annual enactment of the Christmas story, inevitably showcasing his mom as the donkey in the stable (Darlene, you were such a good sport!). We never had adequate cast numbers to act out the story, but we always read the story out of the bible as we sat around the Christmas tree on Christmas Eve. Christmas at my house started the day after Thanksgiving, when we would bundle up (which most often meant rain gear--I am from Western Oregon, so who are we kidding) and trek out into the "woods" (aka a Christmas tree farm) and find the perfect tree. The rest of the day would be spent decorating the tree and the house, eating leftover delights from the feast the day previous, and listening to all our favorite Christmas music. By the way, favorite Christmas song ever: Santa Baby performed by Eartha Kitt. Feed me enough Christmas cookies and cranberry punch late at night and you'll get a performance. That night if it wasn't too late by the time the house was completely decked out, we might watch "It's a Wonderful Life." Cheesy Hallmark Christmas movies were a big tradition this time of year for my family--the more ridiculous the better. My mom has a top secret cranberry punch recipe she has handed down with an oath of secrecy (seriously, I think I would be disowned if I gave it away) that we drink all season--it's our family's wassail. We always have a ton of the most delicious chex mix, and assorted Christmas treats my mom has baked to give away to friends as gifts. Christmas day begins when my dad--I mean Santa--rings the sleigh bells hanging from our front door, and then we go out to the beautifully lit tree with presents from Santa magically there. Before we open our gifts we read Christmas letters that we wrote to each other and placed in each others stockings, which always brings a nice spirit into the gift giving. Then there was present opening, and general merryment. Later that day we would have a Christmas feast, prepared by my parents who are amazing cooks (it is a miracle I'm not like 500 pounds). The Christmas season would pretty much end for us at New Years, when my dad would finally insist we take the tree down.

As Randy and I have started our own family, there is inevitable give and take with traditions. The cheesy Christmas movies are out (Randy just couldn't handle the really poor quality cinema. Plus there weren't enough explosions or car chases) but he has been good enough to keep watching "It's a Wonderful Life" and usually I can wheedle an evening of "White Christmas" out of him once a season. The tree goes up the day after Thanksgiving, along with the decorations still, and having been entrusted with the secret we sip on punch all season. The Christmas feasting is a little different now that I'm Vegan. I have decided that in place of the American turkey on Christmas night I will make traditional Mexican tamales, which I learned how to make from a lady on my mission--which is what hispanic families eat on special holidays like Christmas. In honor of our scandinavian heritage sometime during the season we have special rice pudding for desert, with an almond hidden in someone's portion. Be lucky enough to get the almond and you get a prize. This year I am starting a tradition of celebrating the 12 days of Christmas--British style, the 12 days following Christmas leading up to Epipheny, Jan. 6, when many Christians celebrate the arrival of the wise men to worship the baby Jesus. So my decorations will come down the 6th instead of New Years, and I'll have a special treat every day for those 12 days. I'll let you know in future blogs how this new tradition plays out.

With the arrival of our precious little Wesley, it is fun to look forward to all the years of traditions with him. It will be interesting to see the things that he likes to do at Christmas, and how he makes this season all the more exciting. Little kids at Christmas are the best--that excitement and joy are contagious, and I can't wait until Wesley has enough awareness to celebrate the season with us. This year he is our little stocking stuffer, and really he is all the Christmas present I wanted this holiday.

I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday season, filled with the best traditions and memories.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Happy One-Month Birthday Wesley!!

I can't believe we have had this precious little guy for a month already. Sometimes it seems like we have always had him--that he has always been a part of our family. Other times, when I haven't had very much sleep, I can't believe that I have lasted this long on little naps! I have never functioned well without my eight, maybe ten hours of uninterrupted sleep at night, but I guess it is one of the tender mercies of the Lord that I haven't flipped out yet! I have adjusted pretty well actually, and recovered very well from the c-section. Wesley and I like to go have adventures in the stroller. Yesterday we tackled the mall and did Christmas shopping for Daddy. He is such a good baby, I don't worry about taking him places. We can't wait to go visit both sets of Grandparents in a few weeks, and all the aunts and uncles we miss as well. Most of all we can't wait to meet Wesley's new cousin, who will be joining the family any time now. We are thinking of you Mandy!

The birthday boy. On Grandma Weatherspoon's monkey blanket.

Sleepy boy on the afghan I knitted for him.

Some cute pictures from the last couple of weeks:

All set and ready for operation "Get Mommy out of the house before she goes crazy!"

My little pirate boy. On his pirate blanket.

All snuggy in the bunting I knitted for him while on bed rest. Yeah, it's really big on him.

Sweet sleeping boy.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Blessing Day

On Sunday we were able to bless Wesley in our home. Originally we were planning on blessing him in Sacrament Meeting, but in the sharing spirit of the season, the entire Johnson clan that got together for Thanksgiving managed to give each other a nasty 48 hour (plus or minus depending on the person) flu bug, so we had to change venues last minute. We were so grateful to our accommodating bishopric who helped us out in that regard! In any case, we were very happy to share Wesley's special moment with family and friends, and we hope that the disease didn't spread to anyone else on our account!

Our little nordic boy! Something special of note: Wesley is named after Grandma Johnson's father, and she crocheted those beautiful booties and the blanket.

Our happy little family