Friday, September 30, 2011

Name Dilemma!

I have been really bad at blogging lately. I haven't been feeling all that motivated these last few weeks. Plus, we really haven't had a lot going on: Shad is still job searching... we are STILL waiting on bar exam results... so life feels a bit on hold right now. But we are enjoying all the time we get to spend together. We spend a lot of time at home together, going to parks, the library, and walks. Owen absolutely LOVES having both mommy and daddy around at his constant beck and call, and we are happily enjoying our family of three until the new babe makes his appearance. Owen is so fun to hang around all day and watch him just soak up everything around him. He is a constant surprise! For example...

This post isn't much about pictures, which I haven't taken too many lately. (I should get on that!) But this was too funny. Owen found one of my shirts and insisted on wearing it! He didn't want to take it off, until we were leaving the house and we HAD to get it off him. But he loved wearing "Ma's purp shirt!"

Funny little boy.

Now for the name dilemma. Once we found out we were pregnant one of our first thoughts was, "What if its a boy... What are we going to name him???" We decided not to stress out too much about it until we actually knew it was a boy. Shad and I are not the couple who has all their names picked out and are dead set on one or two names. It is VERY hard for us to agree on something and we are both very indecisive. Always going back and forth between names. Owen didn't have a name until a few hours after he was born. Why is this so hard? Boy names are harder for a few reasons: First, girls are taking many good boy names. Second, you have to find a name that is suitable for both an adult/man and child. Third, all the good boy names are EXTREMELY popular and never changing. (For example: all biblical boy names are GREAT... but too overdone?) Forth, there are so many weird, dull, and overused nicknames associated with good boy names. Not a fan of the nicknames. I know we have a good while before we really have to decide on anything, BUT it would be nice to have at least a good top 5. Right? In short: we'd love any name suggestions you have. :) Anything... really.

Thursday, September 15, 2011


Well, it looks like I am really going to be outnumbered around here, because...


We are thrilled! I am not going to lie, Shad and I were really hoping for a little brother playmate for Owen. Especially since they will have such close birthdays and will be so close in age. Also financially this is a plus, because we already have all the boy stuff! We are just SO EXCITED... ITS A BOY!

We didn't get a digital copy of the pictures, like we did with Owen. Nor did we get a 3D ultrasound, so these are no where near as good as Owen's pics. But he still looks like a real cutie!

Got any name ideas??? Boy names are SO hard... we have NO idea.

Monday, September 12, 2011

What we've been up too...

Just thought I would give a little update on what we've been up too since Finland. Summer has been treating us well!! The weather here in Seattle has been amazing... we are experiencing one of the BEST late summers ever. Everyday has been gorgeous! Naturally we are taking full advantage of nice summer days, before the rain comes, and before Shad hopefully lands a job. Here is a bit of what we have been doing on these lazy summer days:

-Shad has been job searching, job searching, job searching... even though the odds of him landing a "real" attorney position are slim before he receives bar results our hopes are high! (Keep us in your prayers!) But he has stayed pretty busy applying for jobs, revising his resume, sending emails to contacts... just waiting for that right something to come along.

-I've been busy growing a baby! The belly has popped out and I can certainly feel our little peanut moving. It feels more and more real everyday and we are eagerly COUNTING down the days until we find out BOY or GIRL!!! We find out in THREE days... Thursday! (Leave your guess as a comment!! What do you think??) I honestly have NO idea what this little one will be. I thought by now I would have some sort of incline towards one or other, but I don't! With Owen, I KNEW it was a boy from the beginning.

-We've been CHEERING on our Cougars. Despite the sad loss on Saturday, we are staying TRUE to our Cougars! This picture is blurry because I was trying to capture Owen running around and saying "TOUCHDOWN" just after we scored!

-We've been playing in the Pool! This little $5 pool was a GREAT investment, HOURS of fun!

-We've been hanging out at the parks and lakes! I think everyday or at least every other day we go and explore some new park/lake. Its fun to go out as a family pack a lunch or dinner and enjoy the summer sun! Owen is pretty fearless when it comes to water!

-We've been enjoying friends at the lake! This was on Labor Day at Dashpoint State Park, a little bit crowded and a little bit smelly, but still lots of fun! Also our great friends from law school moved over here last month, and we have been enjoying lots of time with them! (This is Owen and Harrison)

-Owen has been busy playing! His new passion: cars, trucks, tractors, & trains!!! All day long that's all we hear about "cars...pease!!" He also loves "Pa's truck" in the garage and repeatedly asks to go out and play in it.

-Shad's been busy with his calling with the YM. He really enjoys his calling serving with the deacons... and our ward sure has a big deacons quorum! Last week he went on a 10 mile biking trip, and this last weekend he went on a campout with the boys to do a 20 mile bike trip! He enjoyed it!

-We enjoyed a family day at the Puyallup fair! So fun, so HOT, and so crowded!! After we finally found a parking spot and got in for FREE, we hogged out on some serious fair food! Owen LOVED all the animals and was really excited to see all the TRACTORS!! It made his day!

-Shad and I had a fun date night at the Mariners game! We watched them WIN, complete with two home runs! Made for a fun game and night out together. Even better, it was "value night" so each ticket was $5 off and they had $2 hot dogs!! (I ate two... one for me... one for baby!)

- Owen has also been busy learning, talking, and growing!!! Oh man, he is learning SO much everyday. He talks all day long. And is constatly surprising Shad and I with new words. I swear everyday Shad and I look at each other and say "I didn't even know he knew that... did you!?" Here is my mommy BRAG moment... Owen is a smarty pants. After showing off his skills to many other moms, friends, strangers, etc. I'm convinced he just loves to learn! Here is what our little 19 month old can do:
-Count to 12
- Recognize numbers
- Recognize his letters (almost all of them)/Recite ABCs
- Spell his name
- Knows shapes
- Learning colors
- Knows animals sounds

Overall we've just been trying to enjoy this family time that we have together and wonderful weather!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Finland Part 3: Helsinki

It's about time I post part 3 of this Finland vacation!! But we have been having too much fun enjoying the AMAZING summer weather we have here! And this post will have the most pictures and stories to tell, so I have been avoiding it!

The last two full days we had of vacation in Finland we decided to spend in Helsinki doing all kinds of tourist activities, shopping, and eating. It was fun to be "touristy" in Finland, even though we have been there so many times. It was nice to spend some time in the capital and getting to know more about Helsinki and its interesting history. Here is how we spent our time there, in pictures:

Our first stop coming into Helsinki was the temple, dedicated October 2006. It was very neat to be there on the grounds.

Sadly, it started raining shortly after we arrived. And then it started POURING buckets! So it was a brief visit.
Owen loved the temple grounds. He loves rocks.

When Shad and I were first married we were lucky enough to attend the broadcast of the dedication of this temple in SLC with my parents. It was the last temple dedicated by President Hinckley.
The next day was a full day of sightseeing! Luckily it was beautiful both days we were there! It started off with a bus ride into town... this was the HIGHLIGHT of the entire trip for Owen. He still talks about riding a "Bus," and begs to go on one!!
After arriving downtown at the train station, we walked around downtown for a bit. We found our way to the famous Helsinki farmers market. It had wonderful looking fruit and berries, and I couldn't resist and bought Owen some blueberries. (Which he scarfed down 3 at a time!)

Typical Finnish food spread: herring, salmon, & potatoes!
We made our way to the docks, to catch a boat ride over to Suomenlinna Fortress.

Owen enjoyed the boat ride both there and back!
Pulling up to Suomenlinna. This fortress was started in 1748, by Sweden (When Finland was under Swedish rule). It has since been used by the Russians when Finland was under Russian rule, it was also used in World War I & World War II, and many other historical wars and events for various reasons. It spreads over 6 different islands. Very cool place.
This is the burial site of Augustin Ehrensvard who built and designed the fortress. Shad is pulling the sword from the stone. No such luck!

Gotta be tough when near cannons!

View of the Fortress:

It provided spectacular views of Helsinki & the Gulf of Finland:

"The Kings Gate:" Where the King of Sweden entered to inspect the new fortress.
Our last stop was the church located on the fortress:
Taking a break with Daddy, poor kid was running on no naps and long/hot days! But he was still a trooper!
On the boat leaving:

After we arrived back on the main land, we stopped at the beautiful Uspenski Cathedral. An Eastern Orthodox church, built under Russian rule (1862-1868).
It had great views of Helsinki downtown:
Love this!
The Helsinki Cathedral, the main jewel of Helsinki and center of downtown. (Built 1830-1856)

Some views of the inside:

Owen zonked out at this point... so he missed the church. I don't think he minded.
The view from the church steps: Senate Square, what used to be the main city center.
Our last stop of the day: Karl Fazer Cafe. Karl Fazer is a Finnish chocolatier, who makes most of our favorite candy in Finland. We just HAD to stop at this iconic cafe, built in 1891, and indulge ourselves. We also stopped in again the next morning for hot chocolate!
Look at all those treats!
Our picks:

Day 2 of Helsinki was made up of a lot of walking around and enjoying the city. And a lot of shopping! (Not as many pictures!) However, Shad and my dad stopped into Finnish Parliment and took a tour. It was one of the most enjoyable stops of the trip for both of them. The parliament building (built 1926-1931):
These are pictures Shad took of the inside:
The Parliament Chamber:

Some sights we saw during the day, but didn't have time to visit in depth. The National Museum:
Olympic Stadium, built for the 1940 Summer Olympics, but due to World War II those games were not held. So it was used for the 1952 games:
The Opera House:
Lots of walking... and shopping:
Our first and last stop, the railway station to catch the bus back to the hotel. A very popular and iconic building in Helsinki (Opened 1919) .

A very memorable family trip for us. Goodbye Finland...Until next time! As always, you did not disappoint!