Friday, December 25

merry christmas!

Friday, December 11

December 11th

This little one is going to be 6 months old in two weeks. Six months? How did that go so quickly?

Best Dad Award.

James is such a sweet baby. He is very mellow, very happy, we really just feel spoiled having him in our family. I thought Sam had set a high standard, but James is such a delight. We feel doubly blessed that Sam is so darling with him and has never shown any resentment or jealousy, only love - which is Sam to the core. Full of love and happiness. 
and trains. 
and trucks. 
and chocolate milk.

Today I realized that it was exactly a year ago, this very day, almost this very hour, come to think of it, that I found out I was pregnant with James. I've shared the story on this blog; it really was a miracle. I sat there looking at the positive test thinking there was absolutely no way. It was late, right before bed, so I sneaked that test into the garbage, knelt with Taylor in prayer at our bed, and didn't say a word. I guess I mostly didn't believe that it was real, or felt that something would be wrong. I didn't know how or what to pray for that night, but all I could think of was to say thank you. Even if nothing came of this, thank you for the chance to see a positive test, just once. 

Since James has joined our family it seems each time I look at that sweet face I say a silent prayer of thanks in my head. I'm humbled at how much the Lord gives me when I am so simple and weak and don't understand the big picture. Again and again I find my weaknesses being amplified through the lens of motherhood and trials, but every time I seek for God's help it is there. I'm grateful to know of the existence of a living God who participates actively in our lives, even in the mundane things. He cares, He helps. He makes up the difference between what we are able to do and what we're not able to do when we reach out to Him. This little babe is a daily reminder to me of that truth. How grateful we are that you are here, sweet James!

Tuesday, November 10

Finally Fall

The night before Halloween I realized I didn't have a costume for James, so I took the scraps of fabric from making Sam's costume and pieced together a tiger suit for James. I was so glad I did, because look at these two tigers together! Also, is there anything better than a baby in snuggly fur?

We went up to G-ma and Tapa's house for the last trick or treat on this front porch. Sad to see my childhood home all packed up, but their new home is looking beautiful (and right behind this one).

 We gave Sam free reign on designing his pumpkin - we handed him a pastel crayon and he drew this awesome face! His artistic skill (as in, being able to draw things that we can actually tell what they are) has skyrocketed since starting preschool. Yay, Sammers!

Taylor did his traditional Jazz pumpkin.

We started James on solids, and he cannot get enough. This child loves loves loves to eat!

Taylor ran the Snow Canyon Half Marathon, so we took a quick weekend trip to St. George. The weather was fantastic, Taylor ran a strong race, and we had a lot of fun taking the boys to the spectacular St. George Children's Museum (way better than the museum in Salt Lake, and you pay what you want!). We spent the afternoon scrambling around the rocks and arches at Pioneer Park. My parents used to take us to Pioneer Park all the time when we were young, and it was fun watching Sam explore and climb around the red rocks like I did. He loved the red dirt and sneaked some red rocks into his pockets. 

Thank heavens for little boys who remind you to slow down. Yesterday we were getting in the car to go to the grocery store before dinner, and Sam pointed out the leaves glowing in the sunshine and asked to rake them into a big pile. Normally I would have said "We'll do it later," but something in me said stop, slow down, and just do it. I'm so glad we did - it made Sam's day, and I got this quick snapshot of the boys that says it all.  I'm having to remind myself more and more to stop, slow down, and simplify. The days when I remember to do that are pretty awesome, and I'm hoping this picture can remind me of that. Why do I always forget that? Those mama to-do lists are killer, and perpetual. We didn't get our fancy ingredients, but there's something to be said for grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup on a fall day. 

Thursday, October 29

James & October

A lot happened in October! 

Taylor's parents put together a family beach trip on Kiawah Island for the first week of October to meet their new grandbabies, and the trip (once again) coincided with a hurricane, or the "Storm of a Thousand Years" for South Carolina. We knew we wanted to bless James on this trip, and my sweet parents decided to fly out for Conference weekend to see Charleston and Kiawah Island and join us for a couple of days. The beach house the Turners rented was on the opposite end of the island and roads on the island were underwater (they wouldn't let you on the island unless you had a vehicle with high clearance). We ended up going to the condo where my parents were staying to bless James until we could figure out whether or not our cars would make it to the beach house.

We walked in drenched with rain, and out of a bedroom came my little sister Liz! I about lost it, I was so excited to see her with her family there and introduce them to James. My mom is always working up a surprise! Taylor grabbed his white shirt, bowtie and James's blessing outfit out of our suitcases at another location and James was blessed between Conference sessions. My sweet mom somehow put together a delicious meal for everyone, Mary brought a homemade oatmeal cake (our favorite) all the way from the mission home, and we loved watching James meet his cousin Keith for the first time. It was a sweet experience, to hear Taylor give James a beautiful blessing in the midst of a pretty epic rainstorm. 

Don't you think James looks like his dad?

Keith, Sam and James. Liz brought matching shirts for the babies!

The Oldroyd grandkids!

My poor family never saw any sunshine while in South Carolina, but the day after they left, the sun came out and we were able to enjoy the rest of the week on the beach!

Our sandcastle masterpiece.

Judd and Mary meeting their two newest grandchildren! It was so hard to drive away from these two. Missions bring incredible blessings but are tremendous sacrifices for the missionaries and the families. We feel very lucky that their mission is so close and that we can visit them. Next time we're together these babies will be a year old! 

This baby! My goodness, they don't come sweeter than this little guy.

Sam asked to be a tiger for Halloween, and though we tried a couple different tiger costumes, none of them fit - he's too big for the toddler costumes, too little for the big kid costumes. So, I ended up dusting off the sewing machine to make his costume. Thank heavens for all those sewing lessons growing up!

The costume was more like a tranquilizer suit, because we couldn't figure out who this kid was in the preschool program:
It was so bizarre! Sam sitting still? Just looking at us? Isn't he supposed to be singing at the top of his lungs, running around? 

Finally, James is now 4 months old! This baby is heaven on earth. 

At four months old, we're at 100th percentile for head, 25th for height and weight. He's started solids and cannot get enough. He sleeps through the night about once or twice a month, but is so sweet and goes right back down in the middle of the night that I can't complain.

Sam and James are officially sharing a room, which is a lot of fun (luckily Sam is a very heavy sleeper, like someone else I know...). I'm so grateful to have a baby that goes with the flow, is happy to sleep in the carseat, and is so patient with me. It's hard to put him down when all I want to do is snuggle him and kiss that sweet face. Oh little James, we love you so!

Thursday, September 24


A quick update, mainly for me to have on hand. It's been nice having this blog to look back on and remember what we were doing when Sam was James's age. So, here you go!

James is almost three months old, and has us all wrapped around his finger with his sweet smiles, coos, and happy disposition. I was convinced that there couldn't be a better baby than Sam, but boy has James proven me wrong (though Sam was a better sleeper...). I mean, this face! This baby! I can't get over him. Sam kept saying yesterday, "You're just so cute, James!" It has been so much fun watching him "come to life" and start using his hands, rolling around, and getting some reddish hair (!). 

September has been good to us! We started the month with a staycation in Park City thanks to Taylor's parents' Marriott points. It was a much-needed break, and though we were only 20 minutes from home, we felt like we were hours away. Sam love love loves staying in a hotel. It's pretty hilarious, especially because he says "hotel" with three syllables, like a Southerner.

We took the gondola at the Canyons resort and did a couple different hikes - the second of which ended up being pretty steep and pretty far, but we all made it! 

Taylor was out of town on business for a while, so we did things Dad wouldn't necessarily want to do, like going to the Fairy Festival. 

It was fun to see Sam get into it this year - he loved exploring the fairy villages and seeing all the little houses. We lucked out and missed the rain and because we went later we got to see everything all lit up! It's one magical night, and fun to see all the little kids dressed as pirates and fairies. 

Football season started! The only time BYU has lost is the day I didn't dress the boys in BYU gear, so maybe that's the key to a victory?

Sam started preschool twice a week and thinks it is the coolest thing ever.

We forgot to thin out the branches of our apple tree this year, so we have apples apples apples everywhere. They're pretty tasty, but there's just so many of them! Even the smallest branch is full of apples. We should have gallons of applesauce to share this year, if I can find the energy to make it.

We're counting our blessings this month. It was a year ago now that we thought having a second child might not be a possibility any time soon, and here we are. These boys are such a sweet gift to our family, and it seems every night Taylor and I find ourselves reflecting on how blessed we are. The Lord has looked out for us in so many ways, and we are so grateful.