Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Crazy Crazy Christmas Time!

After spending a crazy week up in good ol' PG, we were tired, and sick and sick and tired of being that way so Daddy put his foot down and told the Grandparents that we would be staying home for Christmas Day this year. Grandma Naugle wasn't overly happy about this (in fact I think she thought she was going to convince us to stay the night at her house on Christmas ever) Every year since Andrew and I have been together... even when we were dating, we have spent Christmas morning with his family at their house. The Cowley side does things a little differently. Since I am the youngest and all of my siblings were married and had children before I even got married, my parents quickly decided that it made more sense for them to come to everyone else rather than to have to tear all the kids away from their Christmas gifts. So my amazing parents spend every Christmas traveling from Logan to Payson to visit every family and give the kids their gifts. But Andrew is the oldest child in his family so Pam is used to everyone being at her house for Christmas. With Stevie being on his mission I think her world is changing a lot and its hard for her... and we, sadly, are not helping. But she was a good sport about it and she and Steve and Jake all made the trip to our house to see us on. It was so nice to see everyone and to get to just be at home and play and be our own little family.
We got to see Dave and Dyl on Christmas Eve Eve. (yes... its like holiday in our house) They came over for a 'late night' and we built our lego train track and played games until well after bedtime. We are too lucky to have such awesome friends... who are really more like family.
On Christmas Eve Uncle Stevie called home from Brazil and we even got to see him on Skype for a while. It was fun to see his ever happy face and for the kids to get to interact with him a little. We spent all day at Grandma Naugle's and had a Christmas Eve dinner with the family.
Christmas was a blast. So relaxed and just plane fun. AnDee and Pep scored big time (actually all of us scored big time) Santa brought a kitchen set and a rocking (spring??) horse and mom and dad got a baby (and accessories) for Bug and lots of car and train things for Pep. The Grandparents were all too generous as always and Pep got a little tractor that he can ride on from Nana and Poppy and a remote control train from Grandma and Grandpa and AnDee got a ridiculous amount of dress ups from Nanny and Poppy and little Leap pad lap top from Grandma and Grandpa. As I am every year Im totally overwhelmed by the amount of gifts we all received. Saying we are "blessed" would be a gross understatement.
I got very few pictures this year... I have been so bad about that lately but here are a few
 Team work. Pep likes to pull down on the legs while AnDee rides to give her a little extra bounce.... she really gets going sometimes

 This is Peps side of the kitchen set. Its the manly side, complete with grill
 And this is our little homemakers side. She has become quite the little mommy.

We are so grateful for the Gospel and of course our Savior. We try very hard to remind the kids about Jesus and Christmas being his day. I hope that they are really understanding. It is so easy to lose Christ in all the toys.

P.S. As a super extra surprise, Andrew printed my blog into books! They are beautiful and I love them. Makes me feel like I am actually "journaling" like I should be.

Thursday, December 20, 2012


Pep loves saying HO HO HO! every time he sees Santa. Its like he is speaking Santa's language and whats cooler than that?
This last weekend was a crazy one! First we attended a funeral on Thurs. Then we had Andrews company party on Friday then the Cowley family Party on Saturday (All this time Andrews cousins from Colorado were here so we were trying to squeeze in some time with them) and then my parents farewell was Sunday and then we had a little break on Monday (which was when I finally made it to my doctor to get a something for the ridiculous sinus infection/cough Ive had. Oh and AnDee went on her first skiing adventure) and then on Tues. Uncle Jake returned home from his mission. We decided that instead of driving back and forth from Payson every day for 6 days in a row, we would just stay at my parents house. Oh... I forgot to throw in that Andrew spent a few days in Canada last week so I got to prepare for this extra long weekend by myself. And lucky Andrew got to go straight to my parents house from the airport. Things need to slow down a bit...
Anyway... back to Santa. Santa comes to the Cowley family party every year and this year was no different. My kids like to see Santa in movies and on pictures and whatnot but when he appears in real life... they don't care too much for him. We were at the mall a few weeks ago and Santa was there taking pictures with kids and such and even from a distance AnDee was hiding behind me and Pep wouldn't even look in his direction (they take after me in this category. I was terrified of Santa as a kid) So I thought that Santa being at the family party was going to be less than successful for my children. I was wrong. As soon as he walked in the room Pep kept speaking in his second language saying "ho ho ho!" over and over. When his name was called he went right over and sat on his lap. He wasn't exactly overjoyed by it as you can see from the pics but he wasn't scared out of his mind either. Success? I think so. AnDee took some persuading but we got her up there too and she even talked to him a bit! When he asked her if she would try hard to be nice to "The Pep" (hehe) she said she would. Sadly we didn't get any pictures of our own so I had to steal the ones my brother got on his phone (Thanks Jason?)

Like I said before, Andrews cousins from Colo were here so on Thurs. night we took them up to Temple Square to see the lights. We have really struggled with the picture taking lately and this is the extent of what we got while we were up there....
 Isn't Andrews hat lovely?

On Monday Andrew and Pam took AnDee skiing for her first time!! I was SO sad I couldn't go. SO sad. But I was sick.. and fairly pregnant. It just didn't seem wise to go skiing.  They took her right during her nap time. Hehe. You'll see from the pics how that turned out. But she did great and we got some super cute video of it.
Getting fitted for her little skis...
 Ready to hit the slopes!
 Trying so hard to make a pizza shape with her skis..
 This is what happens when you take AnDee out during nap time. Andrews back was hurting so he laid down for a minute to stretch it out... without a word, Bug flopped down next to him and was out within seconds. She slept like that... right on the side of the mountain with skiers passing by... for about 45 minutes, at which point her dad had to force her to wake up and get moving. She is just to stinking cute.

Tuesday was the big day! Uncle Jake finally made his triumphant return from Brazil. He is such a good kid, its going to be so fun to have him around again. 
Everyone waiting...
 This is how we entertained the kids while waiting. And yes... AnDee did wait too long to turn around and got wiped out at the end.

 Meeting Pep and Wyatt for the first time..

My favorite part was when he went to give me a hug and looked down at my belly and simply said "whoa" yes... Im huge, thanks for the reminder Jacob. ;)

And here are a couple of pics I somehow missed... Probably cause we were all incredibly sick (weird I know.) When we had the flu the day before thanksgiving, AnDee was getting to the end of it and was starting to feel penned up so I somehow mustard to strength and will to put the tree up with the kids while dad was passed out on the couch. Im still not sure how I accomplished this but I did and it made the kids happy so I guess it was worth it. ;)

I apologize that my posts lately are huge and probably don't make a lot of sense. I should be doing a bunch of smaller posts but thats not how I roll. I like to wait until it all piles up on me and then I throw everything together in to one giant post. You're welcome?? 
P.S. Remember how I told you that we were all starting to get healthy (thanks to quarantine) just in time to go spend the weekend up at Grandparents houses and get sick again? Well guess what?! We are all sick again. Poor Pep got hit the worst again. I have never seen a kid so gooey. His eyes are as boogery as his nose and his ears are incredibly infected. I think we are going back in to hiding. I feel like I don't want my children to leave the house until winter is over!  

Thursday, November 29, 2012


So... our Thanksgiving weekend got off to a rough start. It all began on Tues.  evening when AnDee puked her guts up on my kitchen floor... multiple times. Thank goodness it was in the kitchen though, right? The 24 hour stomach flu hit her at full force and she threw up repeatedly through most of the night. At about 1 a.m. it hit me and at about 8 in the morning it hit Andrew. Somehow Pep escaped the wrath of this nasty bug and for that I am grateful. We spent all day Wednesday being totally miserable. By Thursday morning we weren't  puking anymore but none of us had any energy. It zapped us. We decided to make the trip to Uncle Phil's (in logan) for Thanksgiving dinner regardless of our condition. It actually turned out to be a good idea. We all continued to feel better and better and although dinner wasn't real appetizing because our tummies weren't 100% yet, it was SO fun to play with cousin and see family that we don't see often enough. And the little we did eat was amazingly delicious.
 Uncle Phil's house is a little overwhelming for my kids however. It is seriously better than Disneyland but my kids get over stimulated by it all because we try to keep things pretty simple at our house and we are pretty strict on home much tv we watch and don't even have video games so... we feel a little bombarded when we go to Uncle Phil's house. There are T.V.s and IPads in every room and the theater room is always a hit. The kids LOVE to watch movies in there. Its like their own personal movie theater, complete with stadium seating. The toy room is loaded with every toy and game you can even imagine and the backyard is no less than incredible. Seriously... I honestly think AnDee would prefer their house over Disneyland. No joke. Pep however, just hid most of the time. And most of the time the dog hid with him.
AnDee adores all of her cousins but the big kids tend to get a little crazy for her. She takes the play fighting (and sometimes real fighting) a little too serious sometimes and it upsets her. Lucky for her, Briggy was there and Brigs is her best bud. They look like twins and if you see one, you know that the other is close by. We ended up staying the night and Im pretty sure the only time they were apart was when we were sleeping. I love that she loves Brigs, cause I love him too. They are good for each other.
We were so grateful to get to spend Thanksgiving with my family. We thought we were going to miss it and that was a little upsetting, especially since Nanny and Poppy wont be here next year.
Our lives are SO incredibly blessed. We are so so grateful for the amazing family and friends we have that love and support us in everything we do. We are grateful for our home and the peace and comfort we find here. Pep is such a little homebody. We were gone for a total of 4 days over the weekend and Im pretty sure we heard him ask to go home about 900 times. When we did get home on Sunday he was so relieved and on Monday when I tried to take him grocery shopping he was not having it. He did NOT want to leave home. He threw quite the fit about it and then he again told me he wanted to go home about 100 times while we were trying to get our shopping done.
I am so blessed to have such an amazing and healthy little family. My kids are incredible and I adore everything about them. My husband is so good to all of us. Such an attentive father and spouse. I am so lucky to have someone who is so devoted to me and our children. Its so easy to get distracted by other things but he doesn't let that happen. Im so excited and grateful for the new baby that will be here soon! We are so blessed to have the chance to raise these kids!
Here are some pics of the madness at Phil's house. It was too much fun!
The rock walls... of course Buggy loved these...

 The merry go round is strategically placed right up the hill from the rock wall that drops off like 8 feet....
 The little play house..
The 30 foot blow up slid and bouce house.... cause who doesnt just own (yes I said OWN) a few a of these? SO FUN!

The upstairs toy room, complete with swing set and trampoline...

 Pep hiding with the puppy...

It was a blast and to top it off we got to stay at Grandma Naugle's the rest of the weekend and have dinner with them and even had a get together with extended family. It was busy and we are glad to be home but it was oh so much fun!

Monday, November 26, 2012

The Kiddos

I probably should be blogging about other things... you know like Thanksgiving and whatnot, but today I want to do an update on my kids. I rarely do this anymore and I feel like I am forgetting so much. 
The Xavi Boy:
20 months old and 26 lbs. He by no means is a fatty but he is definitely solid. He is build just like his Papa Cowley and his dad likes to say that his legs are only 3 inches long... in reality they are probably closer to 10 ;) He can bend over and put his head directly on the ground without bending his knees or spreading his legs apart. 
The kid is a joy. Seriously... SO MUCH FUN. He loves to tease and giggles at himself quite often. He especially thinks its funny to pass gas (boy??) and always follows it by saying "toot" and then laughing his head off. He tries to be patient with his sister... actually he adores her but she is bossy and controlling and sometimes he has to put his foot down... Which equals screaming at the top of his lungs.
He loves Pooh Bear and his love for Pooh has translated in to a love for stuffed bears in general. Most of the time you can find him carrying some sort of stuffed animal around.
He thinks that Mickey Mouse is a monkey, not a mouse and makes monkey noises every time he sees him. Mickey is now referred to as Mickey Monkey at our house and is greatly loved.
Pep loves his puppies... or just any puppy (or dog) for that matter. Actually I don't think there is an animal he doesn't love. And of course he has all the animal noises mastered and speaks to them in their own language.
Papa is close in the running as to who Peps favorite person is. Every time we make the trip up to visit he yells "PAPA!!" as soon as he sees their house.
He eats green beans and peas by the pound and of course loves marshmallows.  He also LOVES soy beans (just like his sister) 
He is becoming quite the talker. In fact he talks ALL the time. The problem is that a lot of what he says has to be translated by either AnDee or I. It makes perfect sense to us but apparently other people don't understand it. Its ok though. I kind of like that I get to be his translator.
He is a neat freak. Not kidding the kid is always cleaning. He runs around the house picking things up and saying "away" (put away) over and over. 
He loves trains and airplanes and Christmas lights and also enjoys carrying dads tools around. He is still addicted to the bottle but Im not ready to fight that battle so he is going to stay addicted until well after the new baby is born. It sure makes it easy to put him to bed though. Just hand him his bottle and tell him to go to bed and he does. End of story. He naps about 3 hours a day and sleeps about 11 hours a night. 
He is extremely observant. Definitely isn't a kid that just dives in to things without thinking. He loves to watch others do it and learn from them before he tries whatever it is. It is so fun to watch him, you can just see his little mind going crazy figuring things out.
He isn't a real fan of noise or crowds. He tends to hide when there is too much going on for him. But he comes by that honestly since both of his parents do the same thing. So at most family parties you will find our little family hiding outside or in a quiet room.
His favorite time of day is when he gets to watch his one cartoon a day. Not because he gets to watch T.V. but because he gets to watch Avatar with dad. 
Bath time is a close rival for favorite time of day. I cant get him out of the tub half the time. I usually end up pulling the plug and letting all the water drain until he is laying on the bottom of the empty tun, freezing... and then I still have to drag him, kicking and screaming, out of the tub.
I love this kid more than words can express. I love to cuddle with him and hold him. Im soaking up those things cause I know its just a matter of time before he grows out of it. He is already so independent and wants to run everywhere and do everything by himself. I wish he would just slow down a little. I love this stage and will be sad when he grows out of it.

The Buggy Girl:
Oh man, this girl is a hoot. She is so darn funny and just completely entertaining. Her vocabulary makes the things she says even more funny. It just seems so odd to hear a three year old say things like "impressive" on a regular basis.
She is the biggest helper in the whole world. Seriously... she will do ANYTHING for you as long as you make it sound like she is helping you out. 
She is just like the rest of us and hides when things get too crazy. She loves to play with other kids but doesn't really like big groups. (kids tend to fight a lot when they are in groups and this upsets her) She would much rather play one on one or with just 2 or maybe 3 friends (3 is pushing it) It scares her when kids fight and I hear her tell other kids to "just settle down" or "relax" on a regular basis.
She is still quite the little dancer and has completely mastered the cartwheel. Seriously... straight legs, straight arms, the whole deal. Its scary how physically capable she is. 
We have kept her out of any classes (gymnastics, dance, even preschool) because we haven't been sure about the whole moving-to-texas thing (which we aren't, by the way. No Texas for us... at least not for the time being. Now the question in the air is about a possible move to Vancouver. This is all fun and whatnot but Im starting to feel like my life is always up in the air. Im just ready for some answers) and I think its driving her mad. She needs a way to channel some of her energy. Unfortunately she doesn't have a lot of options in the friend category where we live and it is causing her to miss her cousins like crazy.
Mom has been slacking on the preschool thing (of course I am, I slack on most everything) but lucky for me this little girl is a smarty pants. She loves to point out her ABC's everywhere she goes... billboards, street signs, menus ect. She has become quite the artist. She loves loves loves to draw and paint and she is really quite good. Much better than I ever was but that really isn't saying much.
She is SO excited for the new baby and is COMPLETELY convinced its a girl (of course) I actually brought her to tears a few days ago when I suggested it might be a boy. Im afraid of what might happen if it does come out a boy. We may have to send him back ;) Apparently we already have a boy (Pep) and we don't need another one, we need a girl. If you argue that we already have a girl cause she is a girl, she simply replies that she is not a girl, is is a big sister! (duh) She has also named the baby. Its name is Pokey. No discussions on this one. 
Unlike her brother she is built like a Naugle. Tall and skinny (and lucky) She is too tall for 4t pants but only weighs about 35 pounds and is only 3 and 1/2. Im not sure how to dress her without her looking a little shabby in some way. Either her pants are way too short or way too big in the waist... those are my options right now. 
She is a drama queen through and through. Sometimes it drives me totally crazy. I cannot stand the dramatics when it comes to trying to get her way. Makes me want to beat her! ;) luckily she is dramatic most of the time (not just when trying to manipulate) so sometimes the drama is genuinely funny.
She really is a very good big sister, even if she is bossy, and really does help take care of her brother and watches out for him when they are playing. She is super protective of him still, which makes me happy. I hope they always look out for each other.
The Christmas thing is super exciting for her this year. She helped me put up our tree (even though we had the flu at the time and I seriously thought the exertion of that much energy was going to kill me.) and put all the ornaments on. She did a pretty good job hanging the ornaments but she can only reach so high so our tree was a little heavy on the bottom for a while. 
We are really trying to keep our focus on Christ throughout the season this year. It really shouldn't be too hard. The girl LOVES Jesus. If you want to upset her just tell her that her choices would make Heavenly Father or Jesus sad. Breaks. Her. Heart. I try not to say it very often cause it really upsets her. She is the kid that always reminds everyone when we have forgotten to say a prayer (even when we are in other peoples homes) and then promptly volunteers to say it. This makes me feel like Im doing something right... or maybe Im just super lucky to have such a good kid?
She really is a good kid too. She does her chores every morning and helps with anything I ask her to do. Of course we run in to a few things she doesn't want to do but it doesn't take a whole lot of convincing to get her on board. She is positive and happy and just fun to be around. The only time we ever struggle with her behavior is when she spends a lot of time with Grandparents or Aunt Gayle or anyone she knows she can push around. Then she comes home and tries to do it to mom and dad and it doesn't go over well. We cant blame the grandparents though, thats their job right? To spoil them and then send them home. Hopefully one day she will just realize that bossy and whiney isn't the way to go but until then we will continue to fight that small battle.
She is still a great napper. Most days she naps for about 2-3 hours. A lot of people seem to think its odd that I still make my 3 and 1/2 year old nap. Well guess what? She is happy and healthy and in all honestly she likes her naps. More often than not she asks for a nap. We will do naps until she is 10 if it makes her a happier kid. (Im not sure why Im being angry about this.... just lay off me alright?) Plus she sleeps better at night if she takes a good nap and so... in my opinion... naps are the best thing ever.
The girl is my best bud. I don't know what I would do without her and I cant remember what I did before her. I love being a mom. I was telling Andrew the other day that I didn't understand why women make motherhood seems so miserable. All the women that complain about how their husbands get to go to work and they "have to just stay home with the kids all day"... I don't get it. Im not saying its necessarily wrong or that they should feel bad for thinking that way, Im just saying that I don't understand it. Don't get me wrong, being a mom is hard. Really hard on some occasions and some days I cry a lot. But I am not living to get through raising my kids. I am living TO raise me kids. I cant be away from them for more than 20 min (literally) without missing them. Im so grateful for a Heavenly Father that has a plan for eternal families. I don't know if I could stand living an eternity without my children. They are everything to me, along with their dad of course. Im SO lucky to have them and SO lucky to have my faith.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

The Beach

The day we arrived in Cali we headed straight to the beach. No stop at the hotel, we just changed in the car. We had been in the car for way to long and it was time to party. It was PERFECT, 90 degrees, sun shining, the waves were perfect, not too big and scary. Andrew and I had made sure to scare the snot out of AnDee about how dangerous the waves could be and whatnot. She tends to be a little fearless and we didnt want to have her diving in all by herself. We apparently did a good job because she refused to touch the water unless one of us was holding her hand. When Aunt Amber and her kids showed up and her kids dove right in AnDee was mortified! She was yelling at all of her cousins that it was dangerous in there and they were going to drown. I didnt want to ruin the ocean experience for her but I think a little fear can be a good thing sometimes. Eventually she loosened up a little (not too much) when she saw that Brigham could splash in the water without dying and she got a little more adventurous. Pep.... was Pep. He chilled in the sand, got his toes wet and was just happy in general. I think his favorite part was chasing the seagulls and pigeons away from our food.

 Little Gracie goo..
 Andrew catching sand crabs for the kids... Pretty sure he had more fun than them.

 Ok so AnDee has been watching avatar with her dad.. she now does these weird avatar moves all the time. She quite often tells me that she is a water bender.

We caught crabs and saw dolphins and just had  a good time in general. Andrew and I even saw a itty bitty shark swimming by us. It was SO good to get out of the car and on to the beach!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012


OK so everyone likes Disneyland, right? Even Andrew has admitted that he likes it now that we have kids. Kids really do make it WAY more fun. The truth is that I have become one of those weird people that really adores Disneyland. I love it. We went for 3 days and it wasn't enough for me. Although I think 3 days was more than enough for my husband and probably even my kids too. We drove out there, which made me nervous at first but my kids are awesome and we took our time so it really wasn't bad at all. We got to spend some time with cousins while there as well as Nanny and Poppy and we got a special day at Disney with Dave, Dyl and Whit. AnDee was in heaven. We had a blast and I am really grateful that we have the means to be able to do these kinds of things. We are spoiled. Like REALLY spoiled. Pep is only 18 months old and has already been to Disneyland twice. Crazy.

So you cant see it very well but I made the pillow that is around AnDee's neck. Its just like a normal neck pillow but the back is WAY smaller so it doesn't push her head forward. LIFESAVER. Ill never travel long distances without them...

 You can kind of see my Dad and Buggy in this one... if you look hard..
 Why do I always look so lovely in these pictures?

 This was about the most time we spent with my family. Not sure why we didn't meet up more often. I think AnDee enjoyed just hanging out with them more than going on the rides. We got to watch an entire 20 min parade with them! Next time we will plan for more cousin time.

 AnDee wanted to go on EVERY ride with Whitney. New best friend??? Very possible.
 Poor Xavi boy got left behind on more than one occasion. AnDee was big enough to ride a couple of bigger rides like Splash Mountain (moms favorite.... scared the snot out of her) and Big Thunder Mountain.
 Ok.... So I am a horrible person and snuck my fat pregnant belly on  a few rides that I wasn't actually suppose to be going on "in my condition" (What does that even mean?!) but seriously... I doubt that Splash Mountain is going to cause any real harm. If the kid comes out with brain damage, you can all blame me (please bless it doesn't come out with brain damage)

 Poor Pep... how embarrassing.

 My kids took about a two hour nap everyday... in the park... they are awesome. And of course Andrew would never pass up the opportunity to sleep :)

Pep got a Pooh bear...

He drags that thing with him everywhere now. He LOVED the Pooh ride and made us go on it multiple times. AnDee got a baby Dumbo (you can see it in the parade pic) She too takes it with her everywhere. Again... spoiled. SO spoiled

Winnie the Pooh wasn't the only surprise Pep left Disneyland with...
The day after our last day at Disney Pep looked like this most of the day...
 And then this started to appear...
 yup! Disneyland gave us Hand, foot and mouth disease! Wahoo?!
These pics were taken on like day 3 of the rash... its worse now, so much worse. The skin is cracking and peeling off. He is in pain pretty much always. When we finally got him in to the Doctor yesterday the doctor said it was one of the worst cases he has ever seen. We are just waiting for AnDee to come down with it... as well as Andrew and I (Although it wont be nearly has bad for us) Its inevitable. Ill let you know how it goes.