Saturday, February 28, 2015

January and February

(A lot of these pictures have been posted on Instagram. Sorry if it's a repeat for you, but I wanted to record these on the blog too.)

The past two months have been full of snow and cold weather.

We've played out in the snow a bit, but have mostly stayed inside for two months. And between Dallin getting sick a few times, me being sick for a week, and a handful of snow days off from school, we've been at home A LOT. Bennett has been fine with that, but the older boys: not so much. I've tried to come up with a few fun things to occupy them.

I saw this fun idea on Pinterest to put paint inside a ziploc bag and tape it to the table.
It's supposed to be mess free finger painting.

I think I should have used more paint. It didn't work very well because the boys couldn't quite figure out how to manipulate the paint through the bag. So 15 minutes of preparation bought me 5 minutes of them playing. That pretty much sums up parenting.

One craft project that did work came from the Kiwi Crate my mom ordered for the boys. It's a service that mails a few age appropriate craft projects to your house. Perfect for the winter months!
This crate had crafts related to baking. First they got to decorate a chefs hat and apron with crayons and stickers. Then they got to decorate a foam cake with "frosting" clay. They had a lot of fun with the cakes.


We've also played with the Periodic Table building blocks that Connor got for Christmas.
 
We spelled out the names for everyone in our family. Mine was the only one that could be spelled out perfectly.
The 3 boys all needed silent letters at the end of their names.

Other ways to keep life interesting when it's below zero:
Penguin sandwiches, floating through the cantaloupe-iceberg filled ocean, eating goldfish crackers. Connor loved it and has requested this lunch several times.

I found some Christmas pajamas on clearance for Dallin.
They pretty much made his life.

 For Valentine's Day this year, I didn't make valentines for Dallin's Kindergarten class. Too much effort for not enough appreciation, in my opinion. He chose Avengers cards from the store and we were both perfectly happy about that. Connor, however, was invited to a little Valentines party with some of his pre-school age friends from church, so I helped him make some train valentines to pass out.
I did it because 1) I only had to make 8 valentines, and 2) Connor was so excited about the trains and went crazy gluing hearts coming out of the smoke stacks. Worth it.

 Dallin's class had a fairy tale ball on Valentine's Day. The kids got to dress up as a fairy tale character. Dallin asked to be the big bad wolf and I almost made him this costume. Then I thought about how much time/money it would take, and then I remembered this costume we already had.
He was a dragon. The cutest dragon at the ball.

Connor, who now thinks dressing up in costume is part of Valentine's Day, wanted to wear something special to his party too.
So he went as Superman.

We've been to the doctor more times that I wanted to in the last two months. Once was for Bennett's 2 month check up, so that was to be expected.
He weighed 13 lbs 5 oz and is looking just perfect.

Dallin had a couple of ear infections. More doctor visits and antibiotics.

One morning just after Dallin got to school, I got a phone call that he had fallen while getting off the bus, cut his chin and would need stitches. From what I've gathered, his aid was holding his hand and Kendal's hand, and the Special Ed. teacher was holding Dallin's other hand as he was stepping down. Dallin was distracted looking at the other kids getting off buses, and with his coat hood up, his vision was limited. So when he tripped/stumbled/fell, he couldn't really see where he was going and his hands weren't really free to catch himself, so his face did the catching instead.

Luckily, Mckay hadn't left for work yet when I got the call, so we all drove over to pick him up and took him to urgent care.
He was pretty calm and happy by the time we saw him. 

He was cut badly enough to need three stitches. He HATED having his arms and head strapped down so the doctor could stitch him, but he was fighting so much that it was necessary. After screaming for 10 minutes straight, he was finally stitched up and we could leave.
As I drove him back to school, I told him he should tell his friends how brave and tough he was. His response was "I not tough! I was a little scared."

As for the rest of the month, we've been snuggling with Bennett
 and enjoying the peaceful moments.
The very rare, peaceful moments.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Colorado after Christmas

We spent the week after Christmas 2014 in Colorado. Since it's only an 8 hour drive from Utah to Denver, Bennett and I drove with the rest of the family. Bennett did great. We stopped twice for bathroom/gas breaks and I fed Bennett during both stops. Other than that, Bennett slept peacefully in his car seat. Dallin and Connor watched movies for most of the trip and danced for part of it.
video

Bennett was blessed at church in Colorado. We figured it made more sense to do his blessing when we were out visiting family, rather than have our family make an extra trip to Indiana.
My amazing parents and my brother Joseph drove from Utah to be there for it. The words of the blessing were beautiful and it was wonderful being surrounding by so many people who love us.

After church, Connor took a nap with his dad.

During our stay, we spent a lot of time with family, playing games and doing fun things. We took the boys to Casa Bonita for the first time.
I forgot how gross the food is. The boys didn't care about eating and had a wonderful time.


On New Years Eve, we did another soda taste test
This time it was Coke vs. Pepsi. The goal was to see how well we could tell the difference between the two. Given 4 cups of soda randomly filled with either soda (so you might have 1 Pepsi 3 Cokes, or 2 of each, or 3 Pepsi 1 Coke), you had to tell which drink was in each of your 4 cups. Mckay and I both got 100% right. Most were surprised by how difficult it was to tell the difference. I, who am not a big soda drinker, was surprised by how easily I could tell the difference. 

We did Easton family pictures too while we were all together.
This is not one of the professional pictures, just a cute one I snapped of my boys all dressed up.

It snowed a lot, so we spent some time out playing in the snow, and lots of time snuggled up inside.

This picture makes me laugh.
Three generations of Eastons napping.

We went to an Avalanche hockey game again like last year, but this time we had Bennett with us. I carried him in the moby wrap so he stayed plenty warm and safe. He slept through the first two periods, ate during the third, pooped during overtime and was wide awake for the shoot out.
We sat all the way up at the top of the arena so we had a little more privacy. The noise up that high wasn't too loud for Bennett, unless you count his own father and uncles screaming and cheering a few feet away.
The Avs won so it was a good game.

Our travel plans for Denver back to Indiana:  Bennett and I flew from Denver to St. Louis on my birthday. (Not one person at the airport who checked my ID that day wished me a happy birthday! Maybe that's because I flew out at 6 AM again. People are grumpy in the morning, especially at the airport.) Mckay dropped me off at the airport and then drove for 12 hours to St. Louis. I beat him there and hung out with Grace again. The next morning we left Grace's house and drove home. The drive back to Indiana was much more uneventful than our drive last year, though I did leave my travel case of baby wipes in the Taco Bell bathroom in Effingham, IL. Darn Effingham! Thank you Bennett for waiting to poop again until we got home. 

Monday, February 23, 2015

Christmas 2014

Christmas 2014 was magical. My parents rented a cabin for the week in Heber City, Utah and all of my siblings and their spouses and children were there. We were glad that we gathered in Utah this year, since that made it a easier for us to travel from Indiana to be there. Since Bennett was barely three weeks old when we began our Christmas break, I knew it would be difficult to drive 24 hours across the country with a newborn. So we came up with a 4 day travel plan: 

Day 1 (Wednesday): we left Indiana right after Dallin got out of school and drove to St. Louis. My good friend Grace was happy to let us stay with her, as always. Day 2: Mckay left St. Louis that morning and drove with the two older boys to arrive in Denver that night. They stayed with Mckay's parents. Bennett and I spent the day with Grace in St. Louis. Day 3 (Friday): I flew out of St. Louis at the not-so-bright and early time of 6am and and arrived in Salt Lake before noon. I spent the day with my mom and two of my sisters getting food/supplies purchased for our week long stay at the cabin. (I'm not sure why we thought it was a good idea to go to Costco on the Friday before Christmas with 3 kids, two being newborns, to buy a weeks worth of food for 40 people. It was crazy busy but we had a some good laughs.)  Mckay took Friday as a day to rest in Denver and visit with family for a bit before driving the final 8 hour leg of the trip to Utah. Day 4: Mckay left Denver and drove to Heber with Dallin and Connor. The rest of the Crapo Family (or most of them) arrived by Saturday night.

I wish I had taken more pictures of the house we stayed in. It was huge with tons of bedrooms and several bunk beds in each room. There was a hot tub, a sand volleyball court, a Foosball table and a pool table, several big living areas for everyone to visit and play, a huge kitchen and, while no table known to man could fit all 40+ people, this table could usually fit most of the little kids.

Julie and Christian (my sister and her husband) once again made a lot of the magic happen for the kids.
They brought an art easel, a train set, gingerbread housed to decorate, lots of dessert projects for the older grandkids, and a new Christmas book to read every night. They were always plenty to do. And there was plenty of snow so the kids got to do lots of playing outside.

Bennett and his cousin Annabel are only 3 weeks apart (she's older), so they did a lot of the same things: eating every 2-3 hours, dirtying diapers, sleeping in whatever set of arms was available.
They shared things too, like the bouncy chair and their pacifiers. (The pacifier sharing was unintentional, but all the pacifiers looked similar and with 15 other adults helping to care for the babies, no one could keep them straight.)

We did a few fun activities outside the house, like riding on the Heber Creeper North Pole Express.
We got to drink hot chocolate, eat cookies, sing carols and meet Santa!

The kids were all pretty hyped up.
video

As if the sugar-filled, Santa-excited kids crammed into a train car weren't enough to give all the adults a headache, they gave everyone a jingle bell. Now there were 80 jingle bells ringing right by your head. Fun times! It was actually pretty fun, but there's a reason why Christmas only comes once a year.

While we had all the family there, my parents hired a photographer to take family pictures.
Here's grandma and grandpa with all 17 grand kids, ages 13 years -3 weeks.

Me with my siblings.

 The whole group
Well, we're one short in this picture. My sister's husband had a last minute change in work schedule, so he couldn't be there for pictures. I hear there's a plan to photoshop him in later.

And here is our family.

I just love these two cute boys.

On Christmas Eve, we had our traditional talent show, complete with lots of singing and the best Louis Armstrong impersonation I've ever heard. (Well done Joseph!)

We gave the kids candy canes

and then sent them to bed so we Santa could fill the stockings.

I think we got a few hours of sleep before the kids woke up on Christmas morning.

All of the kids got a light saber in their stockings.
video

We did a round of opening presents. With so many people, it took a long time, so we had a breakfast break.

We ate delicious Kneaders french toast and home-cured bacon, all prepared by Nate.

Then it was back to presents!
Dallin's presents were mostly Star Wars themed.


And Connor got a stuffed minion!

It was a wonderful Christmas.

Friday, February 6, 2015

November and Thanksgiving

With Dallin being at school all day, Connor and I get to spend a lot of time together. And since he went to all my midwife appointments with me and helped me get out our baby things, he was really pretty excited for Bennett's arrival.
When I got the baby car seat out, Connor put his baby in and read him a book.

I would often find him with a stuffed animal down his shirt, pretending to be pregnant.

***
Thanksgiving was the day after I came home from the hospital with Bennett. It was a very lazy day. 

My wonderful parents cooked all of the dinner for us. I requested my favorite turkey recipe and my dad did a great job.

Here's our 7 pounder next to the 11 pounder bird.

 Ready to eat!

 For dessert, we had a delicious selection of 5 pies.
It may have been overkill for 4 adults, but we couldn't narrow down the choices. The leftovers made a good snack over the next week for a hungry, nursing mother.

A few days later Bennett got his first bath at home.
He doesn't like being cold, but as long as I kept him bundled and warm, he enjoyed it.

 I just can't get enough of his sweet face.

The excitement of a new baby hasn't worn off yet. Every morning, Dallin and Connor are so excited when Bennett wakes up and they ask to hold him.

Most of the time, they are sweet and gentle to him. We've only had to remind them a few times that Bennett can't wrestle yet.

 I made a quilt for Bennett while I was pregnant. 
The plan was to have it finished completely before he was born, but that didn't quite happen. I did manage to finish it before he was 3 weeks old, so I'm pretty proud of myself. I love the fabric and colors and I'm pretty happy with how it turned out.