Sunday, December 27, 2009

Meet The Newest Members of the Staley Family

I would like to introduce you to the newest members of our family.

Please welcome Rascal (orange) and Gracie (diluted calico).

They joined our family on Christmas day and things will never be the same again.

Christmas and Everything Else

I know, I know, I know. This post has been long overdue and I am sure you will all just graze over the words and look at all the pictures.

I will start off with the latest and work my way to the earliest news.

Our tree is always the last tree on the street to drop it's leaves, I don't know why, but is always the last and always drops them right after Thanksgiving. So we piled up the leaves, made sure to leave a pile in the middle of the grass, and waited for Cameron to come home from school. Boy did those two have a blast.







The Sunday before Christmas my family headed out to Christmas Tree lane, like we do every year, and walked around and looked at all the lights. It was nice, but so very cold. This Christmas season has been really great because Madeline has really gotten into it this year. She gotten into it so much that she even opened presents 2 weeks early only to have them wrapped up again.







And finally we come to Christmas and all the presents and family gatherings. It was a busy one for us this year, but we enjoyed every minute of it and I think the kids did too.





Now we are on to the New Year and new beginnings.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Christmas Lights Parade




So I hauled the kids off to our local Lights Parade that they hold every year thinking they were old enough to not complain too much about the cold. I was wrong. With only half the parade done I had my leg peed on because there were no bathrooms in the vicinity of the parade route and the boy was tired of being in the cold and wanted some dinner.

The parade was much longer than in past years, so it took 2 hours before it was finally over. Yet I made them stick it out until we finally got to see Santa close out the parade. If I was going to be out there with a wet leg they could make it to the end of the parade. Then we walked as fast as we could to the car, turned the heater way up, ran to Taco Bell for dinner, and made it home to cuddle under the blankets and watch some movies together.

Note to self for the next year, it would be much better if you have friends to go with, because they can commiserate with you and your kids about how cold it is. I will be investing in a cold weather thermos for next year to haul in my own hot chocolate. Starbucks was far too busy and I didn't stick around to buy my kids some hot chocolate to quench their poor little appetites and bodies for warmth.

Acoustic Christmas

Our local radio station puts on an acoustic show every year right around Christmas, hence the name Acoustic Christmas. This year they had a stellar line up and I had to go, and take two of my sisters with me. It was awesome. So glad I spent the $70 to go. I hope that they have just as good a line up next year so we can go again. Third Eye Blind
Mat Kearney
Ingrid Michaelson
Green River Ordinance
A Fine Frenzy


Amanda, Myself, And Laura

Cutting Down the Tree



Again this year we were along for the ride and the company. Paul was working and we don't get a tree without dad. So we went to enjoy some great company with the cousins, their great friends, and my wonderful grandparents.

We head up to Apple Hill every year to cut down the tree, stop at the farmers market for some farm fresh apples, and then back to the grandparents for yummy hot soups.

It was great. Loved the extra time with the cousins. And even got a picture of all of us cousins that were able to go just like my Aunt Wendy used to do when we would go to cut the tree.

Thanksgiving


It was an absolutely wonderful Thanksgiving Holiday this year. We had a total of 36 at my parents and it was wonderful. We had so many cousins that we have not seen in a number of years and all sorts of nieces and nephews running around and some really great friends that helped make the holidays even sweeter. It is holidays like this that really makes you appreciate how important families are and how lucky we are that we get to spend eternity with them. For that I am thankful.

I don't have a lot of pictures from the festivities at dinner, but did catch some photos of Cameron playing with my cousin Ashley's little girl Dakota. They really enjoyed themselves.

I hope that we can do that again very soon.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

First Haircut



The time had come that Madeline really needed a haircut. I was tired of the tears when it came time to brush and comb out all of the tangles. So I bribed her with a large piece of cake to get her haircut. And I mean a large piece of cake. (If only it was that easy all the time) She was all for the cake and the haircut.

We went to a small little place and walked right in to get her haircut. Thank goodness it wasn't busy or Madeline may have thrown a fit. She was so good. She climbed up into the chair and sat so still while the stylist cut and brushed her hair. We didn't cut a whole lot off. Just enough to make it easier on mommy to get the tangles out.

Now I have a cute little girl with a cute little haircut.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Nine Years and Eternity To Go



It was on this date, on a warm fall day, that I married my best friend and husband for eternity. And how lucky I am that I did. He is smart, silly, serious, and just the most wonderful person all at the same time. The first nine years haven't always been bliss, but we still love each other and care for each other and what more could you ask for. Life would not be the same without him.

I would be lost without him and so would our children. He does his best and that is all that a girl could ask for.

He was my Prince Charming from the very beginning and still is today. He gave me two of the best gifts ever, our children Cameron and Madeline. And now we can be an eternal family.

I love him more and more every day.

So here's to eternity.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

What Do I Want???

This is the question that has been asked the most of me at the moment. With my anniversary in one week, and birthday in one month, and Christmas coming up, I am being asked constantly what I want. While pondering this question I had an epiphany.

For my anniversary I want my husband, all to myself for dinner and a night of holding hands walking down the street, to the car, shopping, whatever it is that we do for our anniversary. No XBOX, no kids, no phone calls, no hassles, just me and my husband having some alone time on a date.

For my birthday, I would like the same thing.

For Christmas, I would like my family to be together enjoying the most absolutely best Christmas in history, where the kids understand the true meaning of Christmas and their eyes twinkle with delight know that their hearts desires might just come true.


And so this is What I Want.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Now She Says "I'm a Big Girl"



Three years ago today our little girl joined our family and changed the dynamic of our small little family. We were a quiet little family with a sweet and quiet little boy who followed directions, cuddled constantly, and stayed close to mother hen. Then there was Madeline.

She was so calm and easy going in the beginning, I thought she would be my little angel. Little did I know it was the calm before the storm. She was crawling just before 6 mos. old, walking by 9 mos. old, and running by a year old. She was loud. Didn't understand the word quiet or whisper. She beats to her own drum, which often gives her the opportunity to run around the pews during church services. Not anything like the quiet and subdued nature of her brother. But we would not have things any other way. She is the perfect complement to her loving big brother. And she makes our family a little more interesting. Not so quiet and subdued anymore.

She really is my little angel and my little dress up doll. It won't last forever, but I am thankful for the time that God has granted me. And the tremendous responsibility he has given me.

We love you Madeline. Happy 3rd Birthday Baby Bama.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

We Love Halloween



It was a really good Halloween for our family. It was a lot of running around, but a really good one. Paul made the most amazing Spongebob costume for Cameron and Madeline was "pretty Minnie" as she put it. Lots of candy and lots of good times. Hope the same can be said for yours.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Fall=Halloween Corn Mazes




This has been a long time coming, considering that we went to the corn maze the first week of October.

We go every year and enjoy some fun times together. This year the farm has added a train, so of course we had to check it out and go for a ride.

Cameron was much more adventurous this year than in past years, so the two of us went through 2 of the 3 mazes. Madeline was done after just one.

We had lots of fun and can't wait to go and see what they have in store for their first year decorating their farm for the holidays.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Waiting



It is late Sunday night and I am staying up trying to wait for my husband to walk through the door. The little ones are bundled up in their beds sleeping the night away and so the house is quiet. I am up all alone waiting for my Prince Charming. I just need that pick me up, that little cuddle, that kiss good night, that hug that makes everything all better, the smile that makes me feel so secure in myself.

The swing shift/cover shift is a lonely one for the wife. I am in bed before he comes home and out the door before he wakes up. He is out the door before I get home some days and so the cycle continues. So I sit in front of the computer listening to my music, typing the night away hoping he walks in the door as soon as he can. Making me smile and making me remember everything I miss about him when he isn't around.

I love him and miss him and so I continue to wait, hoping he knows how much he means to me, and hoping that he is hoping that I am still up when he gets home.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Decorating



Paul has had a shift change, which means I have a lot of alone time in the evenings.

I also have a broken air conditioner at the moment.

So to combat the alone time and take my mind off of the fact that it is a sauna in the house, I decided to finally put some decorations up on Madeline's poor barren walls. Which have been barren since the day we brought her home from the hospital. I know, nearly three years, but I was waiting for the perfect decorations to jump out at me for her walls. They are a particular shade of green and yellow, and it has been so hard to find exactly what I wanted until I walked into Target (my favorite store by the way, can't walk out of that place without something in my hand).

Some wall washing and some sticker sticking and we have a room fit for a cute little girl. We have butterflies on the yellow half of the wall and flowers on the green. Still have a lot of work in her room, but at least it is a start.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Holiday Weekends=Home Improvements

For nearly 3 years I have lived with the ugliest of ugliest of cabinets. They don't match and they completely enclose my kitchen so that I feel claustrophobic if there is more than me doing anything in there. While we don't have the money to completely remove the cabinets and get new ones, we could at least paint them to look alike. That is what we did over our Labor Day Weekend. We were supposed to go out of town, but they had changed my pay schedule and had a really small check coming so our hope of leaving vanished, instead we made improvements on my ugly cabinets. Here are some before and after pictures for you. The After Pictures

Here are the Before Pictures


All Grown Up


Well not completely grown up, but it sure feels like it sometimes.

My little Bama (Madeline) has started her first year of preschool, well Joy School. My sister Tiffany and I did it for our boys and now the girls are having their turn. It has been fun to see how her vocabulary has grown in the two weeks that we have done so far. She really is picking up so much so fast. Soon she will be on her way to school and I will have an empty house. It makes me sad just to think about it. I love my little girl so much and am so glad that she is doing so well. She really is growing up.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Another Busy Weekend






It just seems like life is getting busier and busier as the kids get older. School, soccer practice, PTA, work, and not anytime for some family time. Well, we got some family time over the weekend.

Saturday started early for us with the Primary trip to the Oakland Temple. We met at the temple @ 9:30 am, which meant a departure time at the latest 8 am, which meant I was up at 5:30 am to get everything together to have a smooth morning. Did I mention that I am not an early early riser. I need to sleep till at least 7 am to even function normally.

After our wonderful trip to the temple it was a quick jaunt home to pick up Paul and head out to the Giants game with a 6:05 start time in San Fran. Another 2 hour trip back to the bay, but well worth it. The kids did so much better this time around at the game. Madeline didn't need the restroom near as much as the first time and the kids got along great.

I couldn't have asked for a better weekend.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Firsts


The picture is of course my little Cameron man on his very first day of first grade. And he really isn't that little anymore. My little boy has grown up so fast. He has gone from my sweet arms to the first grade and I still wonder where all the time has gone. He is at school all day now and I miss having him at home. Who would have thought that I could miss having a kid at home, but I do. It is a lot different when it is just Madeline and I. That will change in week as well. She too will be starting her very first year of preschool.

My kids are growing up before my eyes and I would like time to stop for just a year or two so my kids don't pass me by. So here's to firsts and kids growing up when all we want is for them to stay innocent and little.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Busy Busy Busy













I had figured that with school finally starting on Monday I had better get all of the pictures posted prior to Cameron's first day of school photo.

It has been a busy last two weeks. With the end of the Jr. Giants season, our team got the opportunity to play a game on the field at AT&T park. Along with that trip, my sister and I took the kids to Sacramento for a last trip before the start of the school year. We headed out to Fairytale Town and the Zoo.

We have had a lot of fun during that last 2 weeks, but I am so ready to have Cameron back in school and for a full day of school. No more half day school. I can get so much more accomplished with just one child at home instead of 3 (hahahaha).