Sunday, December 30, 2007

Tommy's First Day in Nursery!

Thomas went to the Nursery at church for the first time today! He doesn't actually turn 18 months (the required age) until Jan 10th, and we hadn't even intended to take him in today, but Ryan took Thomas for a little "walk" after Sacrament, and ended up chasing him down the hallway where the nursery room is. Thomas ran straight in when he saw all the kids and toys! I felt mean taking him out again and I figured he was so close to being old enough anyway, and the nursery workers told us they were ok with it. So today was his first official nursery day! Thomas loved it and totally thought he was in Heaven with the toys, snacks, and big bunch of friends! He played really well with the other kids, but as usual, he was very tired and grumpy and ready to take a nap by the end of church. I sat in with him, but he barely even noticed I was still there and would probably have been just fine if I had left! He's usually really easy-going about being left in the care of others. But ~ I ~ was the one having a hard time leaving! I kept telling myself I should go so he could get used to me not being there, but I ended up staying the whole time. I guess I just wanted to watch his reaction to everything and be there for his first day...he was so cute! Next week and from now on I'll just drop him off. Though the idea of getting to relax and listen during the last two hours of church is really nice, I am having a hard time with how quickly my baby boy is growing up!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

A Visit to Santa Claus

This morning Thomas and I went to the University Mall in Orem to see Santa! I've been meaning to take him for weeks, and then started panicking yesterday when I realized that some schools were already out for Christmas break, and that Santa would probably be really busy over the next couple days as all the other parents brought in their kids last minute. So we rushed to the mall at 10 am, right when Santa got there for the day, and thankfully there was no wait at all! Thomas saw Santa here last year and was perfectly okay, at 5 months, being put on Santa's lap, and gave a cute little grin for the camera. So this year I was worried my luck would change and Thomas would freak out. But he was a champ! He was totally curious about this white-bearded guy talking to him, and just looked around and admired Santa's Christmas tree. He gave a great smile for the camera again, and I've had a lot of fun comparing this year's photo to last year's. He's looking off to the side in both pics, with a similar expression, and its so fun to see how much he has changed!

Thomas is definitely on the "nice list" this year, because he is getting spoiled!!! =)

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

We Have a New Nephew!

My older brother Zane and his wife Amber are the proud new parents of their second child and their first boy! Dalin Toa Kotter was born Monday, December 10th and was a big, healthy boy at 8 lbs 7 oz and 21 inches long. He has lots of dark hair and dark blue eyes. Dalin's older sister, our 3-year-old niece Ciara, is excited to have a new baby brother but was disappointed that her mom and dad didn't name him "Hercules" like she wanted. They all live in Montana so we have not yet seen Dalin in person, but we are excited that they are probably going to come to Utah for Christmas.

My brother served his church mission in New Zealand and took Dalin's middle name from the Maori language spoken by the Polynesian people there. "Toa" means "Warrior." Ciara also has a Maori middle name, "Anahara," which means "Angel."

We love you Zane, Amber, Ciara & Dalin!

Monday, December 10, 2007

6 Years and Going Strong!

This last Saturday, December 8th, Ryan and I celebrated our 6th Wedding Anniversary. Crazy! I can't believe how quickly these years have passed. I still remember so clearly the nervous, excited feeling I used to get around Ryan when I first developed a crush on him, and how wildly happy and emotional I was the day he proposed to me. Ryan has been the greatest blessing of my life, and I could not have asked for a more devoted, loving, hard-working husband and wonderful father for my children.

Friday night we decided to give each other our gifts one day early, and Ryan also presented me with a beautiful bouquet of roses and lilies. We asked my mom to babysit Thomas all day Saturday and overnight til Sunday morning, so we could spend the whole day together and stay overnight somewhere. It was the first time we had someone watch Thomas overnight, and though I was a tiny bit anxious to leave him, I knew he was in good hands. Ryan and I planned a totally jam-packed day on Saturday: We did a session at the Mount Timpanogos Temple (where we were married) in the morning, then afterwards went to a matinee of the movie "August Rush," which was a great film! We had cut it kind of close and didn't have time to get lunch before going to the theater, so we went crazy at the movie concession stand and got hot dogs, nachos, popcorn, candy, and pop. After the movie we drove up to Salt Lake City where we had dinner at the Macaroni Grill, our favorite Italian restaurant. After dinner we went to a Christmas Concert put on by several successful local musicians: Ryan Shupe & the Rubberband, Peter Breinholt, and Sam Payne. After all this we were pooped! We stayed overnight in Salt Lake at the Anniversary Inn, a really cute, romantic bed and breakfast. It was a fabulous anniversary! I love you with all my heart Ryan!

Sunday, December 2, 2007


Yesterday morning it was great to wake up to beautiful, new-fallen snow blanketing the ground and trees. I have to say, I don't particularly like winter...I grew up in Montana where winters are terribly, bitterly cold and seem to last 6 months. Ryan experienced the same thing growing up in Wyoming, and he feels an even stronger dislike for the cold months. But what I dislike more than winter is a winter with no snow! Its so depressing when the trees become barren and brown and the temperatures freezing, but with no snow to show for it! What's winter without a beautiful white landscape, or without fluffy snow to romp around in? Thomas was mesmerized when he looked out the window yesterday morning...I can't wait to take him out to build his first snowman! It was nice to have a relatively warm October and November, but now that the holiday season is in full swing, I want a White Christmas!!!