Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Bella, the Center of the Universe

Bella is usually too excited to cuddle.
When she does, we have to take a picture to prove it.Living outside of Utah and being an avid Jazz fan has been
a little bit of a trial for my hubby.
Although she is small, she isn't that small.
She just wanted a toy under there.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Daddy Daughter Time

I found this video and thought it was cute that Ryan videoed himself playing with Bella, so cute that I had to publish it on the world wide web. He's the best Daddy in the whole world.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Is She not the CUTEST!

Bella is still mastering her Christmas toys.
She does so by climbing on top of them.

I've resorted to imprisoning Bella in her crib while I get ready. It's for her own protection. Otherwise she turns up sucking on the toilet seat or eating treasures she finds in the garbage. To the left we see her excitement when she sees me coming toward her (to take a picture). To the right we see her realizing that I'm not going to pick her up yet. Could anyone possibly resist those compelling eyes?

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

When Ryan met Celia

Puddles painted the gray parking lot black and splashed my feet as I crossed the cracked asphalt. Nylons, plus my favorite, cotton, Puerto Rican skirt paper shielded me from the goose-bump October air. It was my twenty-second birthday. Seated inside the office, Colleen questioned me about past retail experience. I looked into her St. Nick eyes and told her everything. I had none. A guy in my Spanish class suggested I come work at the Distribution Center, and his invitation came just after I learned that my new calling would keep me in Utah for at least a year, instead of the short four months that my five year plan dictated. That would mean twelve months of sharing a car with my mom, and sister, unless I got a job.

Nothing on my resume would impress a retail manager, except one line mentioning my service as a missionary, because this retailer was the Church Distribution Center. She shook my hand and led me to the door. Meandering through the isles between bookshelves and white clothing, I scanned the store for the pair of heaven colored eyes that met me when I came in. I didn’t find them until I was unlocking the driver’s side door of the borrowed Honda Accord. He followed a white haired man to his car, pushing a cart laden with boxes of books and church materials.

“Did you get the job?” He called to me as he lifted the boxes one at a time into the man’s trunk. His name tag glinted golden in the afternoon sun, advertising “Ryan” as his name.

“We’ll see,” I shrugged. “She said they would call.”

I never saw him again… until my first day at work a week later.

“What mission did you serve in?” He asked, leaning on the swinging door that closed off the middle registers.

“Puerto Rico San Juan, and you?” I said from inside the enclosure with a duster in hand.

“Mexico City North, the best mission in the world,” he beamed.

“Sorry, but Puerto Rico is the best mission in the world,” I corrected him.

“My mission president told us something important. He said, ‘Every mission in the world has to think they are the best mission, but ours is the only one that thinks it is the best and it’s true.’” His smile revealed two perfect dimples accompanying his straight teeth.

“Oh please! Mexico is nothing compared to La Isla del Encanto.” A limp noodle rebuttal was the best I had in my armory. My blood pressure began to climb.

“It’s okay for you to think that, just as long as you understand it isn’t true.” I was still careening from the assault when he decided--either by divine intervention, or wisdom on Ryan's part--to go stock shelves again. In our first real conversation he had already pushed a red button. After a couple hours, and several dimpled smiles I decided not to hold it against him.

Our first date was that Saturday night, and although he tore my cup to pieces in a nervous fit at Subway, we didn’t get into the Latin celebration, and a cold breeze coming from the broken seal on his car window kept my teeth chattering all the way to Salt Lake and back, we giggled and grinned too much to be allowed. In our distribution center getup, we went to a haunted house. The hour-long wait to get in afforded lots of opportunities to flirt, and quiz each other on their past.

Ryan enjoyed himself enough to ask for my phone number at the front door. He also asked for a piece of paper, and then a writing utensil, because he didn't believe in having a cell phone...yet. When I got home that night, I announced to my mom and sister that I had just been on the most amazing date in my life. The subsequent dates were even better.

I knew I was going to marry him within two weeks of that first date. I couldn’t sleep at night because I relived every moment I was with him until my memories were ragged, and my creative juices ran out from imagining our upcoming dates. Out of respect for my family’s history of heart problems we waited a month before we officially got engaged, and three months before we got married—exactly two years ago today. February 17, 2007 was the best day of my life, and the best decision I ever made. I thank God every day that I have such an amazing husband, that I love more and more every day. Happy anniversary Honey! I love you.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

La Noche Mormona

Several weeks ago, a family in our branch hosted our first, monthly, "Noche Mormona." Bella spent most of the time exploring the floor and trying to get to the basement stairs. Meanwhile, Ryan and I smoked the competition with our combined international-church-membership-statistics knowledge and won starburst for it. While we were busy winning treats, Bella found a treat of her own, a discarded sucker on the carpet. When we detatched her from it she threw a tantrum that could have won a prize at any checkout stand in the nation. It was cute though, because her tongue, lips and chin were all dyed with her blue slobber.

This was before her first unauthorized taste of candy.

Over-used Quote Ahoy

"God gave us our memories so that we might have roses in December," goes the old adage. It is quoted so often that the author's name has been lost in the copy paste craze and most people call him "unknown. " If anybody wanted to super sleuth it, they would find that a quick google search yields the mysterious name "James Matthew Barrie"as the one who coined the phrase.

Beginning in September, when I have to start sporting a jacket, I'm ready for Spring to come. Five, sub-freezing months later I am dying for Spring. Well this week, we have been making new memories with some rosy weather in February, which is better than just remembering last June.

In the past two weeks we have had several days with the thermometer peaking at 70 degrees or more. Bella has seen more of the brown outside in the past fortnight than she did in her first 8 months of life, well, almost. After several trips to the playground near our apartment Bella discovered SAND. She enjoyed it in several ways:

grabbing it by the fistful and letting it leak between her fingers,

burying herself in it,

and playing ostrich- which she was preparing for right here.
We did more than play in the sand. We had a healthy picnic, played on the playground, went for walks and Bella even got a ride on Daddy's shoulders.

No, that isn't a creep peeking in the tunnel, it's just Ryan.