Family Reunion

The Millers organized a family reunion for my grandparents, their children, their children's children, and their children's children's children. All in all, I think they said that about 88 people came. It was a huge endeavor. I am indebted to all who were involved for the wonderful company, activities, and accommodations. Jared was just recovering from his surgery, so he was unable to make it. I had both the girls by myself in a suite. It was a lot easier to take care of both of them by myself than I thought. That was until Chloe got the stomach bug... And even though I caught it from her and ended up spending most of our return flight in the tiny bathroom, hunched over, it was a fantastic trip. The resort we stayed at had swimming pools, a private beach, and a lot of fun activities. I nearly cried when I saw posted on their bulletin board that they did free rubber duckie decorating! Here are a few photos of the things we did.
Our duckies
Becca and me boating
Chloe, showing off her crown and facepaint with her best girl pals, Ella and Molly, my cousins' daughters
Playing on "the beach"
This was the most disappointing part of our trip. We went fishing with my uncles. Right off the bat, Chloe was catching fish, doing great. I even caught one too.
So far, so good, right? It was just then that my camera started to shake violently. This is the only usable picture that I have of Chloe with one of her many fish.
But here is where it got down right unfair. Chloe, while fishing with a little Barbie pole, got a nibble. She started to reel it in, and said to Grandpa Tidwell, "I'm done." He took the pole from her, only to realize that she had a huge fish on her line. He was reeling it in as best he could, but soon found out it was an 18" (at least) catfish. The net was on the other side of the pier, so we all scrambled to find something to catch it with. Unfortunately, by the time we found an acceptable replacement for the net, the fish had broken the line. This was the best picture I could get of it. It looks like one of those Sasquatch sightings, but I swear I had other witnesses.

Baby Projects

I got a little carried away (surprise, surprise) with gifts for my sister and her baby boy. One of my favorite things that we gave her though, was Chloe's gift. My sister loves elephants. Don't ask how we were lucky enough to find it, but she got her an elephant duckie!
Carseat Cover
I also made a Boppy cover, nursing cover, sleep sack, and pacifier clip, but the pictures of those didn't turn out well. I loved that they were all matching though. Maybe I'm just a little OCD...

Playing Catch Up

There are so many things that we have been keeping ourselves busy with this summer/fall. I have a ton of things to post, so please be patient as I list events that are 6 months old. :)

My Sensitive Girl

My little sweet Chloe sometimes surprises me. She seems tough on the outside, but has a soft little heart.
We were putting her in bed a while ago. Occasionally, if she is just too wound up to go to sleep, we'll tell her a "Princess Chloe" story. It's usually something either Jared or myself will just make up on the spot, hoping with each sentence she'll be that much closer to passing out. Here's how the last one went-

Once upon a time, Princess Chloe and her best friend Dragon were playing in the forest. They stumbled on a golden egg. They looked around, but couldn't figure out where it came from, so they took it home with them.
They waited and waited for the egg to hatch, but soon they fell asleep. After they had fallen asleep, the egg started to crack. It hatched and out came Princess Fiona! She looked around and saw that they were sleeping, so she went to find someone to play with.
She looked and looked, but couldn't find anyone else to play with. She soon realized that she was lost and it was getting dark, so she couldn't remember the way back to Princess Chloe and Dragon. She started to get really sad.

(Insert FULL hysterics from Chloe!)
"Mom!" She said through sobs "I don't want Fiona to be lost. She will be crying. I just want her to be safe."
"Chloe, it's not the end of the story. We have to wait and see what happens." At this point, I started to panic. She rarely really pays attention or gets emotionally vested in these stories. I knew I had to make it good AND FAST. It took me 2 full minutes just to calm her down to hear the rest.

Princess Chloe and Dragon woke up from their nap and saw that the egg had hatched. They looked around but couldn't find anything. Princess Chloe noticed that the golden egg had golden footprints around it. She and Dragon decided to follow the footprints and they soon found Princess Fiona, who had been crying. She was so happy to see Princess Chloe and Dragon. They all went back home and had hot chocolate and cookies. The End.

Now every time she recounts the story, Chloe's favorite part is when they have hot chocolate. She still asks me why Fiona has to get lost. I guess from now on, our stories wont have conflict. English 101 must not have had my 4 year old in mind.

The Rule of Threes

I have heard it said that significant events happen in 3 and 7s. Luckily for us, it was 3s. Had 7 of these similar events happened, I might have lost my mind.

1st- We were very fortunate to have brought a beautiful, healthy, sweet baby girl into the world in January. Though she is a blessing, no one can deny that adding her to our family was a life-changing event. When she was just 6 weeks old we found out...
2nd- Jared had a tumor. He had been concerned about a lump on his shoulder that was not receding. At first he thought it was a pulled muscle, but after massage and chiropractics, he decided to ask our family practitioner, who ordered and MRI and within a week we were planning biopsies, radiation, and surgery up at Huntsman Cancer Institute. This made it a little difficult to do...
3rd- Move upstairs. We had been renting out the basement apartment in my parents home for some time. The space was needed for someone else, so we consolidated our things and moved into 2 of the bedrooms upstairs in my parent's home. This was quite a challenge for me because Jared was out of commission, Fiona was very much a hold-me-or-I-wont-sleep baby, and I was still trying to organize projects from when we moved in.
The good news is- we survived! Jared is healthy. His surgery went better than expected. Fiona is still healthy and strong as ever. She is lively and very loving. We are all still adjusting to living together upstairs, but so far things have gone very smoothly. Every day, I have to remind myself that we are lucky... this could have been a round of 7s.

Mother Jeeves

I know this dates me, but generally I am the "Ask Jeeves" of my family. Unfortunately, either from mom-brain (which is a scientifically proven thing by the way!) or system over-load, I have been unable to perform my duties lately.

Usually things go something like this-

Jared: Hey, Amanda, who's that actress? The one with the funky feet?
Me: Uma Thurman?
Jared: Yeah, I don't like her...

Chloe (in a very desperate, sad voice): Mom, where is my purple blanket?
Me: It's under your covers.
Chloe: Oh thanks Mom!

Jared: Amanda, what is the name of that actor? The one in the movie I like...
Me: I have no idea what movie or person you are talking about.
Jared: You know, the one where it's winter...
Me: I don't know

Chloe: Mom, where is my other glove?
Me: I don't know. I think you lost it.
Chloe: But why?
Me: I don't know.

I can only hope my abilities will soon recover, otherwise soon our whole family will be unanswered... and probably lost.

Hansen Family Awards

We were visiting Jared's parents on Monday. Chloe was playing with a notepad when she tore off a paper and walked up to Jared. She handed him the paper and said "Here daddy. This is for you for being the best basketball playing." He thanked her. She tore off another page and brought it to me. "Mommy, this is for you for being the best tv playing."
Grandma got one for being "the best cookie making."
Grandpa got one for being "the best smelling flowers."
Fiona was "the best wiggling."
We asked Chloe what she is best at. She said at first that she was "best at tv watching with Mommy tv playing." When asked again, she decided that she was also "best at snuggling duckies."
Stay tuned for next year's awards!

Our Little Family

Our Little Family

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