Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas

Christmas was good this year. Different, but good.

We spent Christmas eve with my family and Grandparents in Bountiful. Paul's parents and sister also came to town and it was good to have everyone together. We had dinner, talked about Christmas memories, and my Grandpa read the story of Christ's birth from the bible. Garrett leading us all in 'Joy To The World.'

On my mom's side it's always been a tradition to act out the nativity during the reading. Our family is so big that there always seemed to be a baby boy to play the part of Jesus, and plenty of others who wanted to be Mary, Joseph, the angel, etc. The past few years the tradition has faded, mostly because the family just got too big, and now a lot of the aunts and uncles do their own thing each year. This year my mom wanted to do it again. It was simple. Just Paul, Garrett and I while my Grandpa read. I thought a lot more about Mary as I looked at my own son while listening to my Grandpa read. Paul and I were kinda laughing as we got dressed and ready for this, but it ended up being a sweet little time for our family. I love being together with family and celebrating the birth of Christ. Hanging out in the manger.
Super Baby!!
Garrett got Air Jordans from Uncle Dave, among many other things from everyone else.
He's so spoiled.

Christmas morning we opened gifts together. We had to wake little G to come out and join us. He'd slept for 9 hours, and I figured that was enough. He woke up with a smile and he sat in his bouncer smiling and watching as we opened gifts and showed him what he got.Paul's family and two of my brothers came over for breakfast, and then we all headed to my Auntie and Uncle Jon's for lunch. Then that night we met up with our usual group of friends for dinner at Denny's and a movie. Paul and I started a new tradition last year, and we did it again this year. We've decided that a late night "second dinner" at Denny's will happen every Christmas for us, and we'll surprise our server with a nice tip. If you're working on Christmas you deserve it! Last year Paul sold a sound system to the funeral home he works for and we gave all that money to our server. This year I got an unexpected cash bonus from my old boss and we gave that to our server this year. We don't plan on receiving unexpected money every year, but we do plan on carrying on this tradition. We hope we'll be in a financial situation to do this, and we hope we can be more generous as the years go on.

It was a good day. Different this year, because the thought of moving out of this cute festive house in 3 days has been on my mind, but good. Having Garrett with us changed it too. In a very fun way. Even though he had no idea what was going on, he did a good job at humoring me.
A few days before Christmas we went and saw Santa at the Sugar Shack in Sugar House. I was secretly hoping Garrett would cry because babies crying with Santa is so cute, but he loved it. Maybe next year!Garrett got his very own chair from Grandpa and Grandma Greenhalgh. So cute!

It was a nice day with family.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Some thoughts on Christmas

Paul and I talked a lot this Christmas about wanting to find a good balance for our Christmas celebrations in our family. The bottom line, we feel, is that Christmas is about celebrating Christ. This time of year is happy and wonderful. It makes us think about things we don't always think about during other times of the year.

And we don't believe Christmas trees, stockings, and santa clause is idol worship.

I guess what I'm really getting at, is that for the first time in my life, I've learned that there are "Christians" who don't believe in celebrating Christmas. Their reasoning is because its considered idol worship. I think its crazy. I've read a lot about the origin of Christmas, pagan traditions, symbolism, and a lot of other stuff that wouldn't be considered "Christian."

I've talked to Paul, a couple co-workers and some friends this month about this, which I won't get into because it will take way too long. But I found a blog from a pastor about Christmas, Christ, Santa, the bible, Christmas trees, Magi's arrival to Bethlehem, mistletoe, etc. I agree with almost all of what he says, and because he says it better than me, I'll just share his thoughts with you.

My favorite part was this argument:

"The argument is that since we are not clearly authorized by the Bible to celebrate the birth of Christ during such a season, we should have no celebrations or even special services to commemorate the birth of Christ. On the other hand, Scripture does tell us to remember His death in the ordinance of the Lord's Supper, and we celebrate His resurrection by assembling on the first day of the week, but there is no precedent for celebrating His birth."

And his response to it:

"This is what we could legitimately call hyperliteralism in the use of Scripture. Such an approach completely misses the spirit and intent of the Bible. Hyperliteralism (or letterism) is an intense devotion to the details of the Bible in such a way that one misses the spirit and essential thrust of a passage. Mountains are made out of mole hills and the truth is missed. One is busy counting the number of letters in a sentence rather than listening to its instruction.

If we applied this argument consistently, we would need to discontinue the use of overheads, musical instruments, hymnals, chorus books, the church building, pews, Sunday school, Christian schools, and many other things. Further, there could be no special services or seasons to commemorate things God has done as with Thanksgiving or a dedication service for a new building. Why? Because the only illustrations of such things are found in the Old Testament and not the New Testament. If the New Testament had clearly spoken on this matter, this argument would be correct because the New Testament does take priority over the Old Testament. However, since it has not, the argument from silence is not sufficient reason."

I've met a Christian or two who suffer from hyperliteralism. People like this don't talk, they tell. They try so hard to not be a bad Christian that they miss the mark of what it means to be a true Christian... that is "Christ in and through us." As Christians we are called to be the voice of compassion, a friend in the midst of a crisis, AS WELL AS the voice of reason, never just the latter. These hyperliteralists tend to take such a 'heady' or cerebral approach to understanding God and/or theology that they miss the main point, which is living a life in Christ, not just telling people about it.

In conclusion, regarding Christmas traditions, I think this pastor says it best: "As with all of these doubtful things, each family needs to make up their own minds. In my opinion parents can explain the traditions and have fun with them, but make sure your children understand the historical roots and use these things to teach the truth behind the traditions."

We had a wonderful Christmas with our little family, as well as extended family and friends. And we look forward to many more to come as Garrett gets older and our family grows. (Details and pictures from Christmas coming soon.) We hope you all had a wonderful Christmas too!

If you're interested in all of the pastors thoughts, you can find it HERE.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

in no particular order...

Yesterday, after living in this house for almost a year, I suddenly forgot there were 2 steps down into the living room. I was carrying a bowl of soup and a glass of diet coke and I almost face planted.

Speaking of forgetting, friday on my way to the wood co, I made it to 106th south before I remembered I worked of off 72nd south.

We went to dinner with friends. Garrett was wide awake until we decided to take a picture of him and baby David wearing matching shoes. We tried to wake him, but he wanted nothing to do with it.
We went to Paul's work party. It was pretty fun...well, as fun as an evening spent with funeral directors can be. Hah! I forgot to take pictures.

We went to the wood co Christmas party Saturday night at Edison St. Live music, (from the boss and band) food, dancing, and old hip people in their holiday attire, bustin' a move. It was a lot of fun.Some of my favorite ladies.Dancing the night away with my favorite little man...

We took Garrett on his first trip to see the lights at Temple Square. He seemed to love it, even though it was SO COLD! We heard a group of people say when they first saw Paul they thought he was holding a teddy bear. Garrett looked pretty adorable in his winter suit.We had a Christmas dinner party with our small group. So fun... I'm gonna miss these people so much, I hate to even think about it! I made snow globe cupcakes, and other Christmasy ones...Garrett spent the evening getting plenty of attention from the ladies...Garrett rolled over for the first time on his own today. He's done it before with a little assistance, (positioning his arms, holding his head) But today I was on the floor wrapping presents and he was playing on the floor by me. He kicked his legs up and rolled to his side, grunted and moved his arms a bit, and then rolled all the way over. It was so cute! I laid down right by him after he did it and as soon as he saw my face he lifted his head up and gave me a huge smile! "Look what I did mama!!"

I decided this is the busiest holiday season I've ever seen. And I'm not talking about the busy I've added to my life, I'm talking about stores and parking lots! Every time I've gone out since black friday its been crazy. Doesn't matter what time, what store, or what city. It's a mad house out there! I'm glad I'm done!

Monday, December 13, 2010

It's the most wonderful (busy) time of the year.

I wish December was twice as long...

Between Friday and Saturday we have 5 parties and 2 concerts that we're supposed to be going to. And I'm working both days. And I have to make soup for 60 people for Sunday afternoon. A lot of our month has been busy and over-booked, but this is the craziest weekend.

I hate missing things, but it looks like we'll be doing 1 concert, and half each of 2 parties.

And here's a few pictures I can't resisting posting.

Sometimes when Garrett is really tired and wants to be held, he face plants and falls right to sleep. I don't let him stay that way, because it looks hard to breathe in that position, but it sure looks cute.Jordon was seeing what it might be like with twins... Watching Baby D and Sweet G while the women did crafts.And then he tried to kidnap G.Getting ready for Paul's office Christmas party.The thumb sucking picture. He's trying so hard to get a good lip grip on that little thumb of his!Watching 'The Sing-off' while dad worked on his computer.And then playtime with dad, and all smiles for mom! I'm so impressed with my kiddo's neck and leg strength... I don't know how strong babies should be at 11.5 weeks, but he's been standing like this "on his own" (see dad's hand) for at least 3 weeks now. I'm a proud mama.
Garrett was laughing so much this morning, it made my whole day. The only sad part was that I left my camera charger in California and it just came in the mail today. So the super laugh time happened when my camera was dead, but here's a tiny look from this evening at the new cute noises that are coming out of my baby! (This is mostly for my mom...and it's likely that after the move, there could be at least a video a day on here...)

video
Also, that Christmas song? The most wonderful time of the year? I hate it now that I've listened to the words. Scary ghost stories?? At Christmas time?? And don't tell me it's not a Christmas song. It says "Christmases" in it. It's a Christmas song. And I don't like it. But it is the most wonderful time of the year.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

So much goin' on...no time to blog.

I can't believe I blogged everyday for a whole month. How did I do it?!?

A lot has been happening the past week or so, so I'll try to give you the short version.

1. Garrett keeps getting cuter...A lady at church today asked me if I ever thought I'd love anything so much. No, no I didn't.2. I had a couples baby shower for Deb and Erik. Baby Conner is on his way and we're all so happy for them!3. A few days ago I was in a car with two dear friends. We all got teary eyed when we realized that in a few short weeks we'll all live in different states. Kate is staying in Utah, I'm moving to California, and Mara is getting married in a month and moving to Tahoe. I'm sure I'll make new friends eventually... but wow, I'll miss these girls.4. I've been going through everything we own so simplify (and to try and save money on the move) its amazing to me how much stuff we accumulate. I feel like a borderline hoarder.

5. December is going by so fast. I remember as a child feeling like Christmas would never come. I'd look forward to changing the advent calendar everyday. I'd be sad if I got home from school and realize that I'd already changed it before school. Now I have Christmas countdown blocks and I find myself falling 5 or 6 days behind at a time. It started at '25 days til Christmas' the next time I remembered to change it was at '17 days'. It's still at 17 and it should be 13. Slow down, time!

6. Paul gave his 2 weeks notice at work on Friday to the owners, and tomorrow everyone else at work will hear the news. It still doesn't seem real yet.

7. Garrett laughed! It's so cute. He's only done it a couple times and we can't get him to do it like we can get him to smile, but it's SO cute! I will get video of it because its the best sound in the world.

8. He has also started sucking his thumb. It takes him a long time to get his thumb stuck out and his lips around it, but he does it. Mostly though, he sucks on his whole hand...and just about everything else... I have a picture of it on my phone, but I'm too lazy to get it.

9. This little turtle is Garrett's best friend. We use it mostly on long car rides. I don't want to get in the habit of not feeding him myself, but every once in a while it's a HUGE help. The turtles mouth holds a bottle at the perfect angle so its a hands free feeder. He usually drinks a whole bottle with no slips and no spills and it almost always puts him to sleep. I ordered 2 more off amazon, just in case we lose toby the turtle.10. I hate Christmas shopping. I always come up with fun little (inexpensive) ideas early on, but the closer Christmas gets the more I second guess my plan, so then I do a lot of last minute shopping.

I'm sure there's more, but both my guys have fallen asleep on the living room floor so I need to get them to bed.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

You're Invited!

To my pity party.

Please bring candy, diet coke, and presents.

And don't wear any make-up. I cried all mine off and I don't want anyone to look cuter than me.

It's my party.

Garrett had his 2 month well check yesterday. Everything is great. He had his first round of shots. He cried. But not as much as I cried. He actually did really well. He ate and took a long nap right after. Then later he got mad that his legs hurt, and he made sure I knew about it. But it really wasn't bad. He had a little bit of baby grape Tylenol, some Grandma Greenhalgh TLC, and he slept through the night. Today he's been a little happy bundle of joy.

So why am I having a pity party?

Because one month from now, we're moving. To California. In the winter. With a baby. Away from my family. Out of our cute little white house, with a cute little door knocker that says "White's", that was there when we moved in. Sounds like its meant to be, right?? Well, I guess it's not. (Also, Paul's boss and some coworkers don't know yet, so no facebook posts please.) I always knew this day would come, but its been in the works for so long that I was starting to think it might never happen. We made this decision about 3 weeks ago, but it finally became real yesterday at the doctor. My friend Melanie referred me to her when I was 7 months pregnant and I've had nothing but great experiences with her. She's a family practice doctor so she's also G's doctor. Its so convenient, and she's so great. I referred a pregnant friend of mine, Deb, to her a couple months ago as well. (Deb just called me as I'm typing this to tell me that she had another appointment today at the doc and that she LOVES her.) Yesterday I sat in the exam room in tears because I realized that it was the last time I'd see our doctor, and I felt so jealous of Melanie and Deb that they have her. I have to find a new doctor for me, a pediatrician for Garrett, a therapist for his head, and a Pediatric Urologist to do his surgery in April. Needless to say, I was overwhelmed and sad. I already have all of those things here, and I'm so happy with ALL of them, and I have a mom here who can come to any of them with me when I need her to! Now I have to start all over.

I was talking to my neighbor today who moved to Seattle with her husband and 2 small children a few years ago, (she's back now), but we were just talking about how totally different it is to move with kids. There are so many more things to think about when its not just me, or even just me and Paul.

We both feel good about this decision when it comes to long term goals we have, job security, and me staying home full time. But its really hard right now, (mostly for me)...(probably for my mom and dad too)... When we told my parents, my dad asked me how often we're going to come back to Utah to visit Garrett. They both love him more than you can even imagine, and it breaks my heart to take him from them after such a short time.

Leave and cleave, leave and cleave, leave and cleave...

I say that to myself about a million times a day. Mostly when I start thinking that its doable for Garrett and I to live here and we could just get together with Paul on the weekends!

We have so many great friends here. My brothers and a sister-in-law. Great people at church. Good neighbors. Extended family.

I've moved a lot, but as I told my mom, all those moves were in my crazy, carefree days and I always knew I'd find my way back to Utah. This one feels a lot more 'final destinationy'.

I think I'll make a "Good things about California" list in the next few days, but for now I just want to be sad and feel sorry for myself.

By the way, I like swedish fish. And its Diet COKE, not Pepsi.