Friday, April 27, 2012

Sick, sick, sick...nothing but sick

Saturday Dad helped our landlord tear down another trailor. He was in the sun for several hours and got very sunburned (note - we were glad it was Dad and not Mom who got that sunburned). Sunday he had some kind of heat stroke or something similar. He was supposed to sing in church - but stayed home at Mom's insistance.

Sunday night Big Brother was sick in the middle of the night. Dad slept on the couch and watched movies with Big Brother. Big Brother spent most of Monday on the living room floor feeling quite sick.

Tuesday Big Brother asked for oatmeal for breakfast and Mom knew he was feeling better. Baby was having a hard time though and started crying around 10 am. At 2:30 Mom took him to the doctor (he was still crying) and found out he had a sore throat and 1 infected ear. Baby did sleep through the store while we were waiting for his perscription - but then resumed crying until around 5:30 when his medicine must have started working. Big Brother and Baby Brother both started coughing.

Wednesday everyone was starting to feel better.

Thursday Big Brother's cough was sounding better but baby's wasn't.

Today, Friday, Mom decided that  Baby needed to go back to the doctor. And she was right. The doctor says he has Bronchlioitis (Baby Bronchitis) - a strain of RSV. We had to go get the nebulizer and medicine for it. Baby really doesn't like that thing - he got so mad he cried until he was coughing (actually a good thing). We're hoping the breathing treatment stuff works because if he doesn't the next step is the hospital.

How, in all this, did Mom manage to not get sick??? No one seems to know. Perhaps only by grace alone - and perhaps the fact that she takes care of everyone else when they are sick.

Will we be better next week? Watch for an update!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Squirt does the blogging

Mom said that now that I'm 2 and a half that I can update the blog again. I've been waiting for about forever to update the blog!

Music is still one of my favorite things in the world - though lately I've been expanding my iTunes library. In addition to Crush and I've got a Dream (which are still the top two on my list) my new favorite songs are Here Comes the Sun (Beatles), and American Pie (Don McLean). I have also recently discovered lots of fun kid songs. My favorites are 'Wain down' (The wise man and the foolish man), Wheels on the bus, Itsy Bitsy spider, Snowman, Sunbeam, and of course, my all time favorite Primary song, Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes. I am often singing and I always ask Mom to turn on the iTunes and dance with me. She says I'm getting too heavy though - because she can't sing and dance with me for very long. Sometimes Mom dances with Emmett and I dance with Tey.

I also love to talk. I am starting to remember things very quickly. I learned who President Uchtdorf was over Conference weekend. Now when I pray for President Monson I have to make sure to add President Uchtdorf too. I am always talking to Emmett. Often I tell him, "So-kay baby. Mama's gotcha. Caleb's here." Some other funny things I have said recently:

(in a very dramatic voice)"Uhhhh-ohhh. Where's my daddy? I don't knoooooow."
(when asked, what does a raven say) "never more"
"____________ in the sky with diamonds" (usually airplane)
"Emmett is a hungry elephant."

I like to pretend I am a rhino. Aunt Terese showed me how to use my finger as a horn. I like to roar at people. Mom keeps saying I need to ask before I roar someone - but I don't get why...Sometimes I ask anyway - but I rarely wait for an answer. Everyone wants to be roared when I am a scary rhino!

Lately I've decided I don't like baths. Mom doesn't like this because she used to have an hour of entertainment for me while I played in the bath tub. Now I only take a bath for a few minutes most times. 

I love that we have a new car. Every time we go somewhere I ask if we can go in the new car. I can see out the windows so much better now! I often yell "Bingo!" Mom says I'm just supposed to say that when I see a yellow car - but I just like yelling it whenever.

Mom has been teaching me about full names. I usually call myself C. Thomas Robbins or Caleb C. Thomas Robbins. Almost everyone else is their name then C. Thomas Robbins. Emmett is the exception. He is usually Emmett C. Steven Thomas Robbins. I am very good at remembering names. I remember most of the names of the kids in Nursery and I sing about them all week long. I am also fascinated by learning who is a boy and who is a girl. But I don't really know the difference. I have a 50 % chance of guessing and I remember once I'm told - but I have no idea how to figure that out on my own.
Recently Dad was teaching me about trading. He had fruit snacks and I had raisins. I asked him for a fruit snack and he told me I had to give him a raisin. So I gave him a raisin and he gave me a fruit snack. Then I wanted another one. He said we had to do a trade. So I went over, got a whole handful of raisins and on my way back to Dady I shoved them all in my mouth. I then asked Dad for more fruit snacks. He said I had to give him a raisin. So I went back to the raisins and got another handful. I carefully pulled out one to give to Dad, then got a fruit snack - and shoved the rest of the raisins and the fruit snack into my mouth. Boy trading is great!

This is the birthday message I wrote for Uncle Cody yesterday:

nc nnnnnnnnvnvvcvvvvvvvvvvv vvvvvtt33-pppppe0oiurt,..jnjklgfldhgklrfkhkflcmn tuirdcjh gb jjhhhhhyhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhttttttttttttwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww66652``QQIGADFJK-
Translation: Cody - no write love you now - write Happ Day to you now. Uh - oh. Cody and a Bryce. And a Caleb. Baby lion a computer. Cody's a 'Cabe. Emmett's awake. Talkin' a Caleb (aka - we should video chat again sometime).

I guess that's about it for now. I have lots of other things I have to do today besides blogging. I mean, there's chalk, and bubbles, and rainbow rice, and water beads, and cars, and running, and hollering, and singing, and talking, and calling Grandma on the phone, and watching movies, and... Yes, I am a busy two year old.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Digital Scrapbooking organization

Put a preview of each digital scrapbook kit as the file image on your computer - makes it easy to see a general idea of what is in the kit without opening the file. Mac instructions.

How do you organize your digital scrapbooking stuff? I don't mean the pages you've done - but the elements and papers. I must have too many - I guess. I never seem to remember what each kit looks like and even with this organization I find myself opening almost every kit trying to see if it is the perfect kit for whatever layout I'm working on.
Just recently I remembered how to do this really cool thing that has helped me a lot. You know how each file has a little picture of a file? Did you know you can change that picture?

You can even change the file picture to a little picture of the kit inside the folder!

See? Now I can just look at the preview (yes, it's tiny - but it gives me a general idea of what is in the kit) and I don't have to open every single kit to find something perfect to work with.

Here's how to do this - at least, on a Mac. I don't know how to do PC stuff much - but I imagine you could do something similar on a PC.

First find the picture you want to use. I usually use the preview of the kit. If there isn't one or if the kit you're using has a really cool element that shows several of the colors you can use that. Open a jpg image in Preview.

Now you want to select the whole image. I usually do Command + a (or Apple + a) - I usually use key strokes. I think they are so much easier. Then do Command + c to copy. To do this manually I think you can select the entire image under Select and then you can do Edit and Copy.

Then click once on the folder you want to change. Then you need to pull up the information window. You can do that by using key commands Command (Apple) + i or right click on the folder and select 'get info.'

You'll see this at the top of the window that comes up. Click on the little folder image. This one will be at the top of the page - not the bottom.

Once you have selected the folder image do Command + v or paste. This will put your image where the folder image used to be. You should see it change almost immediately at the bottom of this window as well as in your finder window.

When you have all your folders done in one file it will look like this:

To see a quick preview you can just click once on a folder and then hit the space bar. Once the preview is up you can use the arrow keys to get a preview of other folders too.

Now you can quickly see what colors are in each folder.

It's also really helpful in Bridge. This program comes with Photoshop and I love, love, love Bridge - but we'll get into that some other time.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Blessings from a dead car

So...this last weekend was crazy. It involved a 9 hour trip to my parent's house (normally it takes 4-5 hours), a dead transmition, two tow trucks, a wedding, an Eagle court of honor, an Easter egg hunt, a stinky baby who had to leave church for a bath, a new car...and 6 inches of snow.

I guess when the car died I kind of expected things to be like they were the last time our car died. I was amazed at how differently things were this time. the number one biggest difference is that Sam and I weren't alone this time. We had 2 little boys and my brother. And while our two year old was thrilled at getting to see 2 different tow trucks come and pull our car - he was not impressed that his teddy bear was in the car. We unloaded everything we thought we'd need for one night but somehow managed to miss the teddy bear. And he thought "Tey" was gone for good. Really, he did. Even though it was 1 am and I was trying to get him to bed he wanted his teddy bear. I explained to him that the teddy bear was in the car and that we'd have to go and get it in the morning. And somehow (perhaps only by the prayers of exhausted parents) he fell asleep without his beloved Tey for the first time in 18 months. The next morning Tey was the constant topic of conversation. "Tey all gone. In car. On truck." He really thought his teddy bear was gone for good. But he didn’t let that stop him from having a great time with Grandma and my siblings. But we were sure glad to see Daddy come back with Tey (and all the other things from the car too.)

It made me think a lot.

I now understand more of how we are supposed to "be as a little child." My son doesn't remember life without his teddy bear. He got that teddy bear when he was 2 months old. He didn't start loving it and carrying it everywhere until he was 1. And sometimes even now it's a struggle to leave the house without it. We often have to hug Tey and tell him to "have fun" before we can leave him behind. It's his most cherished possession. And this weekend he though it was gone for good. As the parent I knew we could get Tey back. But he had to wait. It was an entire day before Tey came back. I'm sure it felt like an eternity to my son. But he waited. He talked about Tey. Asked about him. I know he wanted him back. But he didn't get angry. He didn't throw a fit. Even at 1 am while refusing any other stuffed animals, he wasn't angry. He still loved me even though I totally forgot to bring the bear with us. He doesn't hold any hard feelings against me.

I wish I could be like him. When I felt my most cherished possession had been taken away I didn't react so kindly. I felt angry and bitter. And I shook my fist more than once at God asking him why he would take a baby away from me that I hadn't even had a chance to meet. I was angry for a long time. I wanted to stop going to church. I honestly don't know how I made it through that Christmas season with everyone talking about baby Jesus. I guess on auto pilot. It was, I thought, the last in the string of a lot of trials. A few weeks later the car died for the second time. We were stranded. It tok us 24 hours to get to my parent's house that time. I thought perhaps that would be the last of the trials for us for a while. A few weeks later we moved and I got a new calling which felt like yet another trial.

Sam and I were called to be Primary teachers for the 10-12 year old boys in our ward. I was devastated. I was scared. I didn't think I fulfill the calling let alone enjoy it. It felt like a huge mistake. Within an hour of meeting the boys I knew that calling wouldn't be a trial for me. I knew I would love it. I fell in love with those little boys. I fell in love with their testimonies. I fell in love with the funny random comments they would make. I still love those boys. They are now turning 14. I can't even describe the feelings I get when I watch them passing the sacrament. They get up to give a talk and mention something we taught them so many year ago. And something pulls at my heart. These are my boys. They helped me so very, very much. They gave me a reason to question what I believed. They gave me an opportunity to share my testimony. They gave me a reason to keep going to church.

Amazing isn't it - how the Lord puts things in our lives that keep us going when we just feel we can't keep going any more? He does have a plan for us. It's hard to see it sometimes. It's hard to be patient while we wait for the next step in our lives. But it's worth it. We just have to have faith. We have to trust that one day we will have our most cherished possessions returned to us. How I wish I could be as understanding as my 2 year old. I guess that’s one of the reasons we’re given kids, right? So that we can see ourselves as our Heavenly Father sees us. It’s an amazing experience to be a parent. I am so grateful for that blessing in my life. And what an amazing blessing it will be when we get to be reunited with our other baby. That is a day I truly look forward to…I just have to remember to keep enjoying my days here too.

So what blessings do we get from a dead car? Already I can see that this new van will be much easier when it comes to moving than a car. We have been looking at buying a truck and trailer - but now we can just pull a trailer with the van. We just got our tax return back - we actually had money to buy a car right now. Even just a few weeks ago it would have been a huge problem to be buying a car. The Lord's timing is amazing. I'm sure there will be other blessing we see from this experience in the future. I have hope for the future. It will be great.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

An Easter Testimony

Since Easter is coming up I thought it might be a good time to share my testimony. It seems strange to post it online - but somehow it feels right too. I get so nervous in front of people that I rarely share my testimony in Sacrament meeting - but I heard not too long ago that Sacarament meeting is not the only way to share and build your testimony. So I'll share it here.

I have a testimony of our Father in Heaven. I know He watches over us always. Sometimes it feels as though He has forgotten about us, but He never forgets us. We can pray to him any time, anywhere. Sometimes He doesn't answer when we want or the way we want him too, but He always has an answer. It's not always easy to see what His plan is for us. Sometimes it is near impossible until much later. It takes faith to find His plan. Sometimes it also takes patience. Sometimes it takes extreme circumstances and we find ourselves in the midst of trials or hard times. But I know that if we are patient and pray for guidance that Heavenly Father will answer our prayers and we will be able to see His hand in our lives.

I have a testimony of Jesus Christ. I know he came to this earth and lived an exemplary life and then died for us so that we can return to our Heavenly Father. He, more than anyone else, knows what we are going through. No matter our situation, Christ understands. He understands our pain, sorrow, and heartache. He suffered so we would not have to ever feel completely alone. He always understands. He also understands our joys and triumphs. He is on the sidelines cheering us on. He rejoices with us when we are happy. He cries with us when we are sad. He is our Savior, the only one who can really understand everything in our lives. I am thankful for His infinite love for me and for every individual. Through His atonement we can be healed, forgiven, and ultimately, reunited with our Father in Heaven.

I have a testimony of the temple and of the sealing power that binds us together as families for eternity. Death is not the end. We can be with our family forever. I believe that is the ‘happily ever after’ we hear about so often. It takes a lot of hard work to reach that ending, but it is definitely worth it. I am so grateful for my eternal family. This includes not only my husband and my two boys, but my extended family as well. It includes my grandmother who passed away a year and a half ago. It includes the baby we lost over 3 years ago. It includes future children that aren't here yet. It includes ancestors I never got a chance to meet. The sealing power of the temple is amazing. I can't imagine where I would be without it. Death is a hard part of life, especially death of loved ones. It is hard when it was someone we have known and loved our entire lives. It is hard when it is a baby we never got to meet. But because we are sealed together we can continue our relationships after death. It doesn't really make losing a loved one easier, but it does give us a hope for the future and a dream of a wonderful reuniting.

I have a testimony of Joseph Smith. I remember the first time I heard someone say that he either had to be a fraud or he was telling the truth. I remember how my first thought was that I didn't believe he was a fraud, so that must mean I believed he was telling the truth. That he saw God the Father and Jesus Christ when he was 14 year old. He gave his life for this gospel and I am so grateful for his sacrafice.

I have a testimony of the power of the Priesthood. I know it is the authority of God on earth. Through righteous Priesthood holders we can, through the laying on of hands, hear messages straight from our Heavenly Father directly to us, individually.

I am so grateful for the many blessings the gospel brings into my life. I am so grateful for my family, that they can be my family forever. I am grateful for the power of the priesthood. I am so grateful for a Heavenly Father and a Savior who love me more than I can imagine.

In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Scrapbook pages for baby

Here's a page for Emmett's 3 month pictures:

Here's a fun page. I made a page about Emmett - his name, why we gave it to him, people who share his name, and famous things that happened on his birthday. I found all the information online from various websites.
I have a similar page for Caleb but that kit hasn't been released yet so it will be a little while before I get that one posted.

To get these kits visit this page or click on the CT Artist button on the left hand side of this page.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Baby does the blogging - 4 months

Can you believe this little guy is 4 months old????

He looks so much like his daddy. And now for his update (with a shocking lack of photos since Blogger seems to hate me these days.)

Hi everyone! Mom says I get to update the blog again. I am now 4 months old. I weigh 13.1 lbs and I am 24.5 inches long. Mom says I'm growing slowly enough that I can actually wear an outfit more than twice before I grow out of it. She says she's glad for that.

My favorite person is my big brother. I love to watch everything he does. I always save my best smiles for him (even though he usually misses them.)

I've been sleeping through the night for several weeks now. I usually go to bed between 7 and 8 pm and then wake up around 5 for a quick bottle then I go back to bed till 7 or 8 am. Sometimes I don't even get up at 5.

I have been losing my hair like crazy. It seems to distress my mother - but I don't really care. She says I have the funniest comb-over...whatever that is. My hair seems to be coming in dark. Mom's excited about that. My eyes are turning brown pretty quickly.

I enjoyed visiting the doctor's office the other day. I was fascinated by everything going on around me. I wasn't impressed with the shots and I was pretty miserable the rest of the day. I cried and cried and didn't even want to be held because my legs were so sore. Dad finally suggested putting a warm rice bag on my legs which helped a whole lot.

My mom sure can make some funny noises. There is one in particular (kind of growling in the throat) that makes me laugh every time. Mom says she can't figure out why it's so funny to me. I love for other people to talk to me or pay attention to me. I love it when big brother pays attention to me. Even if that attention is smashing a mirror to my nose (aka showing me myself in the mirror) or other forms of playing that are kind of rough.

I like to sleep in my carseat all wrapped up in a blanket. But I like my arms to be free. I think it feels like someone is holding me while I sleep. That's my favorite way to sleep. I would always be held if I could. Or watching brother do cool things like have a parade with his cars or play with rainbow rice.