Monday, December 22, 2008

My Little Bro

This is my cute little brother Jason.

This kid is the most hard working person I know. Giving up could have been easy. After years of schooling, studying, stress...he's going to dental school!

Congratulations Jason!
Doesn't he look like a dentist?

He's been accepted to a couple dental schools, so good luck with making that decision J. We love you and wish you and your cute little family the best.

I'll guess I can no longer be an "anti-dentite".

Jason and Livia studying hard.

Miss you guys!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Winter getaway...

You have to really love Lake Powell to stay there in the winter. We do... so we tried it and we had a blast! We were in desperate need for a little vacation so we took the 2.5 hour drive to Wahweap and stayed for two nights in the Lake Powell Lodge. You're probably wondering what you do at Lake Powell without a boat and when it's 50 degrees outside? We found some great sight seeing adventures and took the 3 hour boat tour. Our tour guide was very informative so we learned a lot of new interesting facts about Lake Powell. It was a fabulous relaxing trip for us and for our traveling companions/babysitters, Mr. B and Arlene. It was fun having them with us.

Searching for fish

The scenic overlook was a great view of the dam from the river side.

p.s. We forgot our camera so we we had put our trust in a walmart disposable. Love the streaks!

Monday, December 1, 2008

It's a Tradition

Last Saturday was our annual Christmas Tree Hunt. It's just too much fun, now that we live in sunny St. George to drive up a snowy canyon and play in the snow for a couple hours. The trees we chop down are never like the ones you'd find at a tree lot in the city, they're actually quite Charlie Brown-ish. The tree we found will be Halle & Taya's and will be theirs to decorate. Craig, Peggy, Hayden, Sarah, Holly, and Porter also went along and found a tree of their own. Tiara and Ellie couldn't have been happier running in and out of the trees so freely. And Halle's favorite thing? Eating snow of course!

The eyeballs in the blue coat - that's Peggy.
Holly in yellow. Sarah in green. Halle in stripes.

The snow princesses

Taya stayed cozy warm in the car.

Halle before her nose turned red and drippy.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Get out the wakeboard & ski...IT RUNS!

This is where our boat is normally....

And this is where it was on Saturday...Sand Hollow!

For all of you who've heard about our "boat woes" here's some news.
It finally had a great run!
Unfortunately for Natalie, it happened without her and the kids, but hey, is that a smile on Brandon's face? No frowns, cuss words, or boat parts flying? If you know our boat, you know it's kind of a joke. We bought it about two years ago, spent the first year redoing the interior and the second year getting the engine to work. We've taken it numerous times to the lake and spent what seem to be countless hours at the doc.
So this was a break through.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


Well, our favorite holiday has come and gone.
Here's what we did!
Our Pizza & Pumpkin carving Party

The Ramirez's Halloween Party 2008. Halle & Hallie... same name/great friends!
Sorry you were working Daddy.

Halle & her Mackie after some serious trick-o-treating @ Snow Canyon High. So much candy, mom had to carry the loot.

Mom & her baby cow. So huggable!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Halloween season happenings

It was fun to grow our own pumpkins this year. We came out with 7 good ones. We LOVE Halloween at our house!!!!

Funny happenings from our Halle
We were watching the news one morning and they had a story about Brian David Mitchell (the man who kidnapped Elizabeth Smart). Of course he was looking straggly and hairy as usual. Well Halle took one look at the TV screen and said, "There's Jesus!" in a very sure voice. She also thinks the cavemen on the Geico commercials are Jesus.

Lately Halle has been getting scared of things she normally wouldn't be afraid of (probably because it's Halloween season). The other day she was coloring in the other room and I hear her say in a slow terrified voice, "Mom... there's... a... bunny... in... here."

Halle is my emotional butterfly. I can't remember why she was crying one day in the car but when I started in on my tactics to get her to stop crying she said, "Mom, I just need to cry ok?" Well, it shut me up because I had to turn and smile at that one.
Halle likes to visit her Daddy at work and play in the fountain there. One night we were walking towards the fountain and Halle said she wanted to swim like a turtle. She began taking off her shirt in preparation to jump in. Before I could say no, we don't undress in public, she was down to her just her pull-up. I have never seen her undress SO FAST! Soon, her little bummy was out in the open. Yikes! Luckily I was able to distract her enough to explain that clothes are required in public and I got her dressed as quickly as possible.

Halle loves to dress up, but even more she likes to dress Ellie up.

Our littlest munchkin is getting strong. She can now sit up in the boppy. She loves this new view and giving us smiles the whole time. She also loves to watch Halle in her busy-ness. Taya is lucky to have such a loving big sister.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Anniversaries rock!

Ok, so I'm not a big shopper. This weekend however...I was on fire!
Brandon and I celebrated our 8th wedding anniversary last friday 10/10/08. And instead of making a big deal about it we decided to spend the day together with the girls and do a little clothes shopping. Lately, I've been very conscious about where our $$ is going and trying not to spend it where I shouldn't. Usually, when I shop I buy for Halle & Taya only, but Friday was all about me.........and Brandon too. I guess I don't shop for myself that often because I rarely find anything I have to have. Or while I'm out I forget that I need something until I get home and then remember. The stars must have been aligned because everything we needed was either on sale or a really great deal! Our luck didn't end that night because Saturday morning we found a lady who was selling brand new furniture in a yard sale (THAT never happens). I picked up a set of chairs for by bedroom for less than half price and some MaryKay for 50 cents a piece (sorry Kimmie).
Well, the shopping was great while it lasted. I'm glad my love for my husband is much more constant than my shopping. I'm greatful for my hubby of eight years and friend for over twelve. Don't know what I'd do without him. He is my rock.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

a Birthday a Blessing and a Wedding

Our last trip to SLC was a doozie. Brandon celebrated his 34th birthday, we blessed Baby Taya and Brandon's dad (Mr. B) was married. Why not cram it all into one weekend...? We did, and we added family pictures too! It was great to reconnect with friends and family and be able to relax a bit after the festivities.

Baby Taya is wearing the blessing dress that her Nana made

Love Birds
Mr. B is a LUCKY guy. Arlene sure is a treasure. Halle loves her new Granny!

The trick is getting Halle to smile and look at the camera... two strikes on that one.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Hello Nature

Ok so, if in my next life I had to live as an insect, (there's no hesitation) I would choose to be a dragon fly. I absolutely think they're beautiful. This lovely one flew into our back yard the other day and I had to run for my camera. It wasn't until I got up close that I realized he was missing one of his four wings. I sat and watched him nibble on my Red Yucca for about ten minutes, hearing every bite he took into the blossom. When he finally took off, it seemed effortless for him, even though he was handicaped.

Nature amazes me and I love having time to just sit back and watch. My Chaste Tree's are swarming with bumble bees this time of year. The blossoms are a brilliant purpleish blue which makes them very attractive to bees and wasps. Lucky for us I planted one right by our front door... hmm...

Monday, September 1, 2008

~Spidee update~

Our garden spider died this morning. While we were out doing some yard clean up, Brandon noticed a baby spider in her web. Not knowing he was a she-spider, we decided it was time. Plus she was getting bigger and BIGGER by the day. Brandon was surprisingly sad. He said he felt like he just killed a family member. Personally, I am quite relieved.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Our garden friend... not so itsy bitsy

So, if you know me at all - you know about my plant fettish. If it weren't for my kids and hubby, I'd spend all my time with them. It's a sickness really. In finnishing up our yard last year, we built a garden to hopefully sucessfully raise veggies. Who knew I'd have to learn to share my garden with this guy.

Now, lucky for you I have a great zoom on my camera. If I didn't, there would be no picture. I am terrified of my garden friend but also...fascinated by him! I can't have Brandon kill him because he's eating all the creepy crawlies that could possibly ruin my crop. So, I'm learning to love him. Just last night Brandon threw a moth into his web just so we could watch him hunt. I tell ya, you have to witness this if you have a spidee friend lurking around your house. Seeing it on TV doesn't do it justice. So, next time you're at our place, come check him out. He's fabulous!!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Reunion a la Park City

So, we just returned from another trip up north. This trip was special for us because we were able to introduce Taya to some family members who hadn't met her yet, and we also had a condo in Park City to make it even more fun. Baby Taya and Baby Owen, exactly one month apart in age, had their first introduction and photo shoot. Plus, it was Cooper's 1st birthday (the only boy grandchild on the Pratt side and dang cute at that).
We love our double-smoocher kiss picture with Halle so Nat and Kimmie had to recreate it with Taya
Babies Taya and Owen (future kissing cousins?) Hopefully NOT!

For Halle, there's nothing like popsicles.......and her Morgan

Cooper stole the show with his monkey crawling abilities - on hands and... feet?

Cooper eyeing his cake. He eventually needed a little help from Dad

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

That's our Halle... :)

It was Halle's bedtime a couple nights ago and as Halle went to pick out some books before bed I hurried to the freezer where an ice cream sandwich was calling my name. I just needed a little bite before the long drawn out bedtime process began. As soon as I turned around there was Halle. "What are YOU having, mama?"
"Nothing..." I said with my mouth full. And with a very serious face Halle said,
"Mama, say ahhh........say ahhh mama."

Days here in St. George can be PRETTY hot, so every once in a while we'll take Halle to the park in the evening. In the car on our way home one night it was dark and Halle kept asking for us to turn on the light. We kept saying no, and giving reasons why we shouldn't have the light on while driving. She insisted again and again and soon we heard, "Turn the light on... I HAVE to see the boogie!" She had picked her nose and wanted to check out her treasure.

Halle is our little marathon runner. She doesn't walk anywhere. She runs from the car to the house, from the couch to the fridge, from the toilet to the sink (well I haven't actually witnessed that one...yet) and her recent run we encountered was in the shower. She was running from one wall to the next, and it went on for about 5 minutes. Unfortunately, I was too slow to get it on video.

Halle and Ellie are best friends these days. We're not sure if Ellie really enjoys being pulled around the house by the collar, chased and cornered with kitchen utensils, and covered with diaper rash cream, leave in conditioner and baby powder. She has been a great little companion for Halle though, and has learned to take the abuse well. When Ellie's had enough I'm glad she snaps softly at her to show her she's reached her limit. Halle usually comes running back to us saying with a sad face, "Ellie bite me. "

Ellie sporting diaper rash cream which is impossible to get out since it's waterproof.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Time's a Fly'n By

Yep, she's 6 weeks old as of yesterday, can you believe it? We sure can't. Taya seems to be loving life and so are we. She's practicing holding her head up on her own and even smiles every once in a while. Brandon is out of town for work for a few days so it's going to be a girly party every night! Here are some recent snaps.

Halle modeling a new summer dress (great find @ neighbor's yard sale)

Halle eating goodies & people watching @ the yard sale

Who's going to catch the ball - Halle or Mackie?

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

"The Girls"

Halle & Taya are great friends. We were hoping it would happen and it did. Who knows how long it will last (hopefully a lifetime). Life has never been sweeter in our household. It's really fun to refer to our kids as "The Girls". I always thought I'd have boys....who knew?

We've also been giving a little more attention to our "First Girls" lately. Sunday night we visited St. George's first dog park. It was recently completed and looks to be a real hit with all the local dog owners. It was a little bit rainy and windy so Natalie and Taya stayed in the car while Brandon and Halle took TT and Ellie Bell into the park. The dogs LOVED it, so we'll try to make the dog park a weekly outing. Then yesterday, all six of us went on a walk. We were gone about an hour and Natalie is learning what pushing two kids uphill in a stroller is like. YIKES! All we have here are hills, so hopefully that baby belly & butt will be outta here quick. On the way home we walked through our neighborhood park where we encountered the funniest thing we've seen in a while. We didn't even know Ellie liked to swim or was even boyant. As soon as she saw a duck in the pond, she was after it. The duck looked like he was enjoying the swimming chase but never let Ellie catch him. He swam just fast enough to keep two feet infront of Ellie. The poor beagle wouldn't give up so we had to call her back to shore so she wouldn't drown. We were all laughing so hard we could hardly speak on the way home. Next time we do the dog/pond thing, I'll bring the camera so we can get some video.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Baby Taya!

Yep, she finally came! We know, a week and a half early isn't bad.... no one's complaining around here. Taya Regene was born June 23rd at 4:00pm and weighed 6 lbs. 13 oz. and was 19 in. long. Labor was a breeze this time around! There aren't too many women who can say that so we feel lucky.

Taya has been a delight from the very moment she was placed in our arms. We feel so blessed to finally have her with us. Halle even loves to hold her, kiss her forehead, and count her toes.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Potty Girl

So, the big change in our lives here is potty training. Halle finally decided to take it on and is in full potty mode. She loves that she gets a goody if she goes. We didn't plan on this happening before Baby Taya's arrival, but are welcoming it with open arms. Who wants to have 2 kids in diapers - 1 is enough for me, thank you.

We're still on target for the 4th of July. The Doc said she's measuring about a week large but didn't want to change the due date. Of course, in my mind I'm planning/hoping for an early arrival. Brandon will be in Chicago next week for some IT training, so we've told her not to come that early. Halle's kiddy pool just wasn't fun enough without a slide, so we pulled the slide off of her castle and made it work. When she saw it, there was no time to put on a swimsuit. Halle and cousin Mackie had a blast that day.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Memorial Weekend

Another great weekend has come and gone. Shara and Justin's family came to visit. The kids played 24/7....park, frogs, horses, bunnies, bumper boats, miniature golf, big wheels & bikes, bubbles, fire pit, and even on the X-Box, (kids pictured above). The weather was a little on the cool side so not a lot of outdoor water activity, like we're used to around here. The time together was a blast and hope we can get together again soon.

5 weeks left and counting. The time is drawing near and the aches and pains are in full swing. I don't know how many times in the day I have to ask Brandon to do something. It's really getting on my nerves, but he doesn't seem to be bothered. What a great guy!! Baby Taya is measuring 6 days large but the doc doesn't want to change the due date. We wouldn't mind if she came a week or two early.

Halle surprised mom today by reading a book from front to back before her nap. She has a few that she's memorized now. What a smart gal! Due to my Usborne Book party, she'll have 19 more books to memorize. Can't wait!!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

7 weeks left.....

We're finally nearing the end of this pregnancy. Wha hoo!!! Tomorrow will mark the 33rd week, with 7 weeks to go. All three of us have agreed on a name for our little one. We've decided on Taya Regene. We are so very excited to meet her and get to know her.

Last weekend Shara held a dual baby shower for me and Jamie in North Salt Lake. Jamie's baby is due just two weeks after ours. It was so fun to spend time with all the ladies in the family again. However, it was hard to be away from Brandon and Halle for a couple days. While Mom was in Salt Lake, Dad and Halle drove to Lake Powell to be with Mr. B and Craig's family. The main event was a car show and Mr. B's Benz won 3rd place in the whole show!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Spring time fun

It's definitely getting hot here, so once a week we head towards water. Stephie and Mackie meet us at the Townsquare water park every Tuesday afternoon for lunch and water play. It's becoming a favorite place for kids and parents alike because of all it's amenities. There's a splash pad, a water walk with rocks, water falls, a water garden, room to run (for Halle's enjoyment) and of course, SHADE.
We just returned from another fabulous trip up north. Luckily, this trip there was no snow and the trees were even in bloom. We stayed at Nana's, Mac's, and GG's and had a blast from the get-go. We were fortunate to look out the window Monday morning to see a heard of eleven dear in the yard. They didn't stay long so we enjoyed every minute they were there. Halle and Morgan loved prancing around in Nana's dress-ups, getting into trouble in the pantry and riding the elevator-- giggling all the way. Nana and Mac were also nice enough to allow me to hold a get-together with my girlfriends from highschool. The kids were invited too so as you can imagine it was a whirlwind night of fun, food and craziness. What a wonderful opportunity it was to get together with my gals again and especially meet their kids.