Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Father's Day Camp Out

I know that our camp out to the Graham's is old news now, but I still want to blog our experience. Tim had Father's Day Sunday off by some odd fluke (it was a vacation day his Sargent gave him if he wanted it, yes please!). So that afternoon we left for our camping trip at the Graham's. I had never been there before so I had no idea what to expect. The drive there was full of stories that Tim had about going to EA and living in Stafford. Like I said, I had never been to that side of Arizona so I had no idea what to expect. I got a good laugh and finally a good visual to go along with all of Tim's crazy stories: catching trains, working at Pizza Hut, cruising down Main Street, and living in what use to be a pretty run down house (it was remodeled to Tim's dismay). I can only imagine how much fun Tim had.

(Tim and Lee cooking Breakfast -- David and Quinn playing catch)

Soon we were driving up the Graham's and by nightfall we reached our camp out. David, Tricia and Lee were there with the motor home and Jill came with Quinn and Parker. We managed to find a good place to set up camp despite the darkness. The first thing I noticed was how cold it was! As expected the first night of sleeping in a tent on a air mattress was pretty rough. But we were excited to be up with the sun and explore our new home for the next two days. Abbey was the most excited of all, she had a blast playing in the dirt with her cousins. She would wander off and come back to get more toys or food. It was a lot of fun to let go of all our worries and enjoy the quite of nature. We even got to take a drive up and see the lake. And yes, Abbey fell in the lake. What would be a lake trip with out someone falling in? (Which reminds me, I didn't have my camera with me... who ever has those pictures, can I have copies?)

(Quinn, Parker and Abbey with Grandma in the dirt and playing catch)
(Parker playing with Aunt Lee -- Abbey snacking on Strawberries all morning)

Later that afternoon, Pete and Brit with Meg and Mel joined us. They brought their yellow lab to Abbey's delight. That evening around the camp fire we had a Family Home Evening. It was fun to listen to the stories all of the Merrill's had of growing up, Grandpa Merrill, and going camping. I think the message of the night was to cherish the simple memories and things in life, especially family because they are what makes this life matter.

(Abbey lounging in her chair eating Doritos! -- Meg and Mel playing with toys)

(Running free in the fields -- Abbey's bath, the water was brown in the end) (Parker dead asleep!)
Our second night under the stars was great, we slept hard due to the lack of sleep and fresh air. Our last day camping was bitter sweet. David, Tricia, Lee, Jill, Quinn and Parker left shortly after breakfast. So Tim and I got to spend some time with Pete and Brit. We took a drive and enjoyed a walk around the lake. Pete's dog was showing off his skills as a swimmer. He went pretty far out, I was a little nervous that Pete was going to jump in after him. The girls had fun throwing rocks in the water. Abbey especially liked the freedom of walking beside everyone like one of the big girls. She did really well and made it 3/4 of the way before she got tired and rode on dad's shoulders. After the dusty ride back to camp, we decided to try and get a nap in. With allergies flaring up and restless kids, we all decided it was time to pack up and head home (the plan was to stay one more night and leave in the morning).

(Our little family at the lake -- Abbey riding on Dad's shoulders at the lake)
It was sad to go but it was good timing. We needed to get back so Tim didn't feel rushed before work the next day. Plus it was nice to sleep in our bed again. Abbey was very excited to take a bath. She looked just as excited and relieved to see her crib. What a fun trip it was... I am looking forward to the next one, I just hope that Heidi and Jere can make it because we sure did miss them (we all felt a little guilty, they were the ones who brought up the idea in the first place!). Most of all I am looking forward to making more memories as family.
(Riding back from the lake, a dirt booger showed how dusty the ride was -- On our way home, Abbey was pooped! We rinsed her off in the drinking water pump at the camp site, it was very cold. She rode home in her diaper!)

Word is Out...

I'm pregnant!! Tim and I decided that it was time to add to our family... a month later I took a home pregnancy test and there you go... We are excited to bring in another little spirit into our home. The baby will be due the end of February, beginning of March. I think everyone, with the exception of Carrie, feels like it will be another girl. Time will tell... I just hope this pregnancy is as easy as was the first (no real morning sickness). I hate throwing up!! I also hope I can get Abbey to stop biting her baby doll on the arm out of frustration! Not a good sign. But she loves babies, so I'm not that worried. Plus we get to practice every time we see Christine and Luke. It is nice to have a bigger sister going through these things before I do... it makes me more confident that I can do it too!

Friday, June 22, 2007

The Most Wonderful Man in the World!

So I was looking at every ones posts about Father's day when Tim looked over my shoulder and asked "When are you going to post something about me?!?" It has been a long time coming but here it is...Tim and I have almost been married for three years (July 16th it will be three years to the day) and I still think that I couldn't have found a better man for me. He is everything I need and more. My sisters give me a hard time because they think I take advantage of how much Tim will baby me. On the outside it may look like I do, but I truly know how lucky I am to have him in my life. I hope I tell and show him enough! Yes he will baby me, or maybe it is me bossing him around? (it depends on who you ask) He also puts up with my crazy quirks, like my "Nazi" cleaning as he calls it. Not to mention the emotions that come along with all that has happened this past year. He has truly been my rock of stability these past 7 months. How lucky am I to experience the hardest trial of my life so early on in our marriage. At times it can seem unfair, especially when I think of how much it effects Tim. He has had to deal with a whole move and squad change. Then, live with my dad and little sister and for almost a month my mom! Through all of this, he has let me cry on his shoulder and take my frustration out on him. He has cooked a ton of meals and taken care of Abbey when ever I needed him to. He has hung out with my sisters and me, taking us to Joanne's and other places not many guys want to go. He has even watched Abbey and Wyatt together so that us girls could get something done. Ultimately he has allowed me to be a little selfish while he has been selfless. I am so lucky to have him stick this life out with me so far (going through all of this wasn't exactly part of the deal when we got married). I feel so lucky we are able to strengthen our marriage by going through such a hard time in our lives together. I notice and know that he has given a lot to me and my family. I am so blessed to have him prove he will be the man he promised to be when we were married. I feel like we are building such a strong foundation for all the years to come. I just hope in return, I can help him through any hard trials that come his way with so much patience and love; as he has done for me. We all know marriage has its ups and downs. When one partner is down the other will be strong and lift them up, vise versa. Tim has been the strong one for me first. How blessed I am to have found this man, he is the most wonderful man in the world to me. I love him very much, in fact with all my heart!Tim has been such a wonderful Father too. Abbey loves her "daddy" very much. They are great pals. They love to cuddle and watch tv and movies together. It is so fun to watch them. They look like each other and have similar personalities. They both love TV, outdoors, being goofy, and they both love "mommy." Tim has always been a very hands on Father. He has never had the attitude of "your the mom at home and I go to work." He always has helped me with Abbey since the day she was born. He would get up and change Abbey's diapers in the middle of the night and then hand her to me to nurse her when she was just born. He has always shared in bath times and bedtimes. He also will take over when we are at restaurants! If I have one weakness it would be my ability to not tolerate Abbey at restaurants, but Tim is so patient and helpful during those times. He even tries to fix Abbey's hair sometimes, it is so cute to see the result (he is getting better though). I can't wait to see what the future years will bring with Tim being a "daddy." I know he will be so involved in our kids lives just like his dad was and still is involved with his kids.

It is funny, some people will see how Tim does so much for Abigail and me (like helping with cleaning, changing diapers etc.) and say how so you get him to do all that? Tim himself tries to act like it is because I am wearing the pants and cracking the whip (he jokes that he doesn't want to get in "trouble" by me). But the truth is that I don't ever really have to say or ask anything! He does it on his own!! And if I do ask he will usually do it with out question. That is just how wonderful Tim really is as a person. I have to give credit where credit is due, David and Tricia sure did raise a great man. I am so thankful for their love, support and example to Tim. I look at their life together and hope that Tim and I will be as successful as they have been. We have a lot to look forward to, and I am so happy that I am able to share it with the most wonderful man in the world!!

BusyLittle Bees!

Wow its been over a week since my last post. Our little family has been busy! First it was Luke's birth, then Father's day, then straight to the Grahams to camp for 3 days and 2 nights. Once we got home, we said goodbye to Grandpa Webb (he is in Finland for 3 weeks) and I had Cub Scout Pack Meeting Wednesday night. Thursday we went swimming and today we picked Wyatt up and took him for the day. As a bonus we got to eat lunch with Pete and Britt, they were down here for a temple session! Whew!! I haven't even been able to download all my pictures on my camera. I am impressed with my Merrill family because they all have posted already about Father's day and the camping trip! I will eventually get caught up on my posts. One at a time I suppose.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

The Force Is With Us!

Baby Luke has arrived! He came early this morning...around 2:20 am. He is a beautiful healthy little boy. He hardly cried out at all and was very calm. What a dream baby if he stays that way! Christine did great, she had an epidural so she couldn't really feel a thing. Her labor was a lot faster after the Doctor broke her water. It only took about 4 hours to deliver from that point (a lot faster than her first!). The first thing we noticed about Luke was his hair. He has a good head of hair and it seems to be wavy. He has beautiful lips... very much like Christine's with the Cupid's bow top lip! His chin seems to be a little more pronounced then Wyatt's was when he was born. As expected his fingers and toes were really slim and long. All in all he is a perfect little pink baby boy. I can't wait to hold him more... Congratulations Christine, Jared and Wyatt!!
P.S. John and Jill, thank you so much for letting Abigail spend the night with you... It meant a lot for me to be there for Christine and I know that you guys have been busy with babysitting recently. If you need a break from your kids bring them on over!

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Sitting, Waiting, Wishing

Today has been a lazy but anxious day! Christine is suppose to be induced today so I thought I was going to be busy welcoming baby Luke to the world. Instead it has been a day of waiting anxiously. Turns out that the hospital can't give her a room until the earliest tonight! So, instead we went and visited mom then went over to Christine and Jared's. Christine has been busy fixing up Luke's room and cleaning house for the past week. Yesterday I helped her finish last minute things like folding laundry and sweeping and mopping. So today she hasn't had a thing to do. Tim and I decided to help her day go by faster by letting Abbey and Wyatt play. We also brought over Little Caesar's $5.00 pizzas for lunch. It was fun. We left with the attitude of call us if anything changes, and came home to get Abbey and Tim down for a nap. (Tim is sleeping on the bed beside me as I post! that wasn't a joke!) What else is new with our family, I haven't been able to post as much with Abbey's fussiness with Herpangina and helping Christine out before Luke is born. I guess I can let everyone now how Abbey is doing with her illness. She is slowly getting better. The blisters have only broken out on her tongue and not her hands and feet. Therefore, thankfully it is only Herpangina. It should go away in a few more days. She really only has one more sore on the tip of her tongue, although it looked like she might get some more? I hope not. She has been drinking lots of milk, I even bought her some Ice Cream so life couldn't be that bad huh!Tim has been working real hard. He had a overtime job on Sunday before his normal shift. It was a indie filming crew filming a movie about Jake's Corner Bar down by Roosevelt. Looks like it will be a beer and motorcycle kind of a movie. Turns out the lead is someone we all know and hated when we were growing up. Who reading this remembers Kindergarten Cop? Do you remember Crisp the bad guy with the round face and dark long hair pulled in a ponytail? That was him!! What a has- been! Tim thought it was pretty funny. He said he hasn't aged at all. The film crew all thought they were hot stuff and high rollers! Tim and the other officer just laughed. They both felt lucky to have their jobs (something that really makes a difference in the world)and to have not bought into the wannabe scene.
Yesterday I got the opportunity to go into Carrie's XS Spa and get a laser treatment on my underarms for free! When Carrie first got her job the Medical Spa ladies needed a table to practice on until they got there own. I was offered to oblige by Carrie. Since I wasn't using it, I was more than happy to let them. After they were done with it, they said they would do the laser hair removal treatment on my underarms as payment. So I finally went in for the treatment yesterday. The treatment was fast and easy. It felt like a rubber band was slapping my armpit. Not the most comfortable feeling but not bad enough to bring tears to my eyes. I hope it will work. It can take a few weeks before any hair falls out and to be honest it usually takes more than one treatment. I think their payback was more of a ploy to get me to come back and pay for more treatments. So far the only difference is armpits kind of sting and itch but other than that I really don't notice anything yet.
So there you go... I hope I didn't bore anyone!

Visits at Grandma's

Abigail loves to visit Grandma Webb to help mom give her vitamin shakes. She recognizes when we pull up to Springdale, sometimes she will even giggle when we say "lets go visit Grandma!" She knows the whole drill, where the room is right down to the drawers that hold the powder shake. She has a whole routine when we go to Grandma's. It goes like this...Up first is her favorite part, the water fountain at the front. We can spend the whole visit playing with the rocks and water! Next is running down the hall ways avoiding mom and dad's attempts to catch her. Once we actually get in the room it is directly to Grandma's air mattress pressure gage box. She loves those buttons and twisting gages! Then, when mom has enough of running around after her, she loves to sit up on Grandma's bed and give Grandma affection (on a good day, most of the time it is crying and wiggling to get down and visit the water fountain again). She likes to pat Grandma's arm and give her hand kisses. Sometimes she will get real up close to Grandma's face. When the visit is over she will always kiss her hand and blow it to Grandma with a wave "Bye-bye" once her whole arm is extended from the kiss. I know that Grandma loves her visits, she will watch her and follow her with her eyes the whole time we are there. The nurses and patients love to see her walking down the halls too. We get a lot of comments about Abbey. I hope she brightens up every ones day as much as she does mine!

Friday, June 8, 2007


It seems Abigail has some kind of Hand-Foot-Mouth Disease or possibly Herpangina! Lately she has had mouth pain, which I thought was from her getting her new teeth. She has been grabbing at her mouth and fusses. But today I noticed that she had some white round bumps on the tip of her tongue! I thought maybe she had bitten her tongue and it became like a sore? She doesn't want to eat anything that is acidic. I gave her a banana and she would spit it out. I'm thinking that it isn't a big deal, go on with my normal plans for the day. Lucky for me, I planned on babysitting Wyatt tonight so Christine and Jared can go on one last date before baby Luke is born on Tuesday. Jared is a dentist so I had him look in Abbey's mouth when we arrived for the night. I can't seem to get her to open without a painful bite, but Jared got her to stick her tongue out and she had more spots on the side of her tongue! Poor baby, they look like they hurt. Dr. Williams proceeded to tell me that it is probably the two diseases mentioned above. They are viral and usually go away in a week or so. If it is Hand-Foot-Mouth Disease then she might get little blisters/rash on her hands and feet. We just have to wait it out I guess. There isn't much I can give her other than Tylenol and Orajel to help with the pain. Soft foods that aren't acidic will help to. Has anyone else had to deal with this? I hope it goes away fast!

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Chocolate Truffles

Last Friday Abbey and I were doing chores outside all morning waiting for Tim to wake up. She started to get bored of being outside so I opened the doors to let her roam in and out. While I was busy tending to my little garden I realized that Abbey hadn't come outside for awhile. I went inside to check in on her and noticed she had some type of wrapper in her hand. Upon a closer look I saw that she had a Chocolate Truffle half eaten in the wrapper. The rest was all over her hands and lips. I have no idea how she got one. They were all in a bag on the kitchen table! She knew I would be taking the delicious treat away before she could make anymore of a mess, so she ran under the dinning room table. Once she came out it was all the more smeared on her face. I brought her up to Tim and we had a good laugh. I took some pictures of her very gleefully eating her truffle. It was worth the little smudges of chocolate she got on our beds sheets!

Friday, June 1, 2007

Abigail Marie

What a beautiful little girl. We love her so much. Abigail has been getting so big and mature. I can't believe she is coming up to 2 years old! She already has quite the personality... She is very independent but also loves to cuddle when it is on her terms. She loves her Daddy, especially when he wakes up with her and she spends the morning with him while Mommy sleeps in! She loves movies, Peter Pan was her first favorite. Lady and the Tramp, The Incredibles, Little Mermaid, and Cars are other favorites (except for Frank the Bull/Tractor in Cars, he scares her). She also likes cartoons in the morning. Sesame Street is her favorite and Curious George. She loves music, anything she can dance and jump to. She loves it when we sing Pop Corn Popping and tries to do the motions. She loves to pretend she can read Mommy's magazines and her own books. She likes to taste every ones meals and snacks, especially if it contains sugar. She has to have her hand in her hair when she is tired, bored, or calming herself from being upset. She loves to take any clip, rubber band or bow out of her hair. She loves Harry the Cat and is very interested in birds, fish and of course dogs (even though she is afraid of dogs coming up to her). She is very interested when Harry eats his wet food and will always bring Aunt Carrie the plate when he is done. She likes to go visit Grandma Webb at Springdale and say "Hi" and "Bye-Bye" to Grandma and everyone else in the hall. She loves to kiss Grandma Webb's hand and blow kisses to her. She also loves to walk very independently down the halls and play with the nurses. She loves to push wheelchairs, strollers and anything else that moves. She loves the water. Baths, swimming pools, puddles, and fountains are so much fun for her. She is quite the dare devil. She likes to make mom and dad nervous climbing on the table and dancing close to the edge. She also wants to jump right in any water, and in baths has learned how to lay on her back and float. She loves to help out with things around the house, putting trash in the trashcan, sweeping, finding the cleaning supplies, helping get out pots and pans to cook, laundry, and picking strawberries and tomatoes out of the garden (even if they aren't ripe). She loves her baby blanket mommy made for her before she was born, it is the only blanket that stays in her crib at night (the rest she will throw over). She loves to play outside, especially at Grandma and Grandpa Merrill's where it has grass and is nice and cool. She loves her cousins and aunts and uncles. She is learning to say her cousins names, so far she says "Wy" for Wyatt and Bode. She is starting to look at me and Tim and say "mommy" or "daddy" like she wants us to pay attention or answer a question (it melts my heart and I always answer "yes baby?"). She loves necklaces, bracelets and makeup. She also loves to put Aunt Carrie's tall shoes on. She is defiantly a girl. Still, she loves to run. She runs fast. She will also play with Wyatt's cars. She loves to laugh and play hide and seek or chase. She is ticklish. She loves the phone, cell phone, remotes and computers. She loves to turn on and off the TV. She loves to sit on the couch with you after she wakes up or before she goes to sleep and chill. She is very naughty in church but is really starting to love nursery. She will laugh mischievously when she is told not to do something and gets in trouble. When she gets in serious trouble she will automatically try to hug you and cuddle. She loves to fold her arms to say prayer. Sometimes she will mumble like she is saying her own prayer. She loves to be the center of attention, even though she will get embarrassed sometimes. She has a way of touching every ones lives she meets. She has such a strong spirit inside her that she wants to share with everyone. She is the most important person in my and Tim's life right now and we love her very much. Life wouldn't be the same without our little Abigail Marie.

Memorial Day Fun

Dad came home for Memorial Day weekend. He hadn't been home for 2 weeks, the longest he has been away since his and mom's accident! We sure missed him so it was a lot of fun for all of the family to get together before he left to California. We went out to lunch on Monday to Bajio's (my Uncle Lynn and Julie's fav). The food was good and so was the conversation. It isn't that often we can have EVERYONE there with us. Tim is usually working or someone else can't make it, but this time everyone was able to make it (even though Tim had to work right after lunch!). We wanted to make sure and get some pictures. Getting everyone looking just right was difficult, but here you go...
Top:Carrie, Dad, Cameron and Jenny, Julee and Lynn, Christine and baby Luke-- Bottom:1st picture Jared holding Wyatt, 2nd picture Tim holding Wyatt, Misty, Connie holding Abbey