Wednesday, December 30, 2009

A Very "Carsten" Christmas

It had been over a year an a half since we visited Montana, so we decided to make another trip this Christmas. We're sure glad we did! We spent most the time just hanging out and relaxing, the perfect way to spend our vacation.
Group shot!
Grandma Tami with little Max. See the resemblance?
Addision was great with Max and made sure he had enough toys. One point when he was on the floor playing with her and I had to take him to feed him, she stood in front of him, objecting to me taking her little baby. It was very sweet!
Me rocking out on Guitar Hero.
Pegi, who I must say, is quite a lot better than I am.
Levi found his dad's old transformer.
He called it a rocket ship, robot, airplane. Needless to say he LOVED it.

A very "Jensen" Christmas

After a restful night we all gathered at the Goodrich/Jensen home to open presents! I'm sure this is one of the last few where everyone will be waking up at the crack of dawn to see what Santa brought.
Our tree.
Stocking for the four boys. Mom (aka Nese) filled stockings for all the grown ups with the help of the boys. I was up before Levi and it was so fun to see his face when he came into the living room and saw the stockings on the piano, he was so excited and it was hard to hold him back from pulling them down!
Nese added these fun Christmas outfits!
Stockings were a hit, I think they would have just been happy without all the other presents.
We are just a bunch of floor sitters.
From uncle Jared, Ice Age I and II to go with his III. After opening them he said "This one..."
"...this one?"
A group shot.
Just making sure we got everything.
Scroungin' for food!
The aftermath. We all survived.

A very "Jensen" Christmas Eve

This year was our first Christmas without my grandfather, our family patriarch. He is usually the one who is 'in charge' at family gatherings and directs us in what we do, when....whatever (though I'm sure was partially directed by Gram =). We got through it and ended up doing things differently than we usually do but it was all lots of fun! We sure do love and miss you Grampy!
We didn't have any formal 'program' or anything. Jason was very much opposed to doing any sort of Christmas 'pageant' where the kids dress up in costumes and act out the Christmas story. He is very anti 'cheesyness'. I'll talk him into it one of these years!

Jason made is traditional Christmas Eve Lasagna. Then we all sat down and decorated cookies!

Me and Levi being goofy. When we first started he asked to take his shirt off, who knows why. Note the awesome cookies he decorated. A plane which he insisted upon when we were cutting them along with all the rest of the trees, snowmen, stars and ornaments.

I got a big glob of frosting on my hand which he quickly began to lick off. I couldn't keep from laughing. He wouldn't let my hand go either!
Eli and all the rest of us loved all the decorating candies out. Some very interesting creations were made that I'm sure Santa was able to appreciate.
After throwing the messy ones in a bath they were given new pj's from Nese (grandma) who then insisted they hug for a photo shoot.
Just checking to make sure the chimney is all cleared out for the big guy!

A Very "White" Christmas

This year we had four Christmases. FOUR. That's a lot even for us. It all started with Christmas with the "Whites" with all the 'original' White kids, except Isaac and my dad and step-mom gathered at the Goodrich homestead for a spaghetti dinner. I think someone else got most of the pictures that day, but here are the ones I was able to get.

The first gift the two 'big boys' (Eli and Levi) was a Buzz Lightyear helmet and knee pads. They LOVED wearing them. I mean, LOVED them. I think they would have been quite content with just that. But of course grandpa Gary went out and brought in matching bikes (with training wheels), which they also loved.

The 'big boys' helped out their younger brothers open their presents

and play with them too....Their little bros didn't mind much, they were happy just playing with the wrapping paper!

I wish I had gotten a picture of it but us 'Goodrich' family got a popcorn popper, but not just anyone, one like they have in movie theatres, along with all the pop corn popping necessities. It was awesome. We made a number of batches that night as we hung out, the first of many batches I'm sure. It will be well loved.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Picture time!!!

We finally got our family pictures done. It took a lot of work to get them done. You wouldn't think taking a couple (ok hundred) pictures would be that much work but they are. I wanted to get a good group shot but that didn't happen, we have too many squirmers, THREE to be exact.

I thought I'd add a couple more, just for fun. They aren't the best, but hey, it's us!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009


This is our family if we were all rocket ships made out of blocks. Can you tell who's who?

Thursday, December 10, 2009


I love being able to be at home with my two boys. At times it is hard and I wonder what it's all for but then I have such amazing moments where I am in complete awe at what we are doing. Being a parent is the best job ever!

Some of my favorite moments of the day:

After I changed one of the WORST Levi diapers in the world, he stood up, hugged me and said "thank you mom". I almost cried.

As I brought a spoonful of food to Max's mouth, he grabbed it and started to shove it in his mouth. Is he old enough to do that?!?!

When Levi and I were driving I asked him what we should have for lunch and he said "Let's see.... hmmmmmm" while stroking his chin. It was halirious!

After feeding Max on the bed (he likes to eat), we had a quiet moment while Levi was occupied. He smiled that cute, wrinkled nose, grin of his and he cooed and cooed. I love snuggling with that man!

Sitting at the piano with Max in arms, and Levi by my side while we 'played' a couple songs!

Taking a break from work at my desk, having Levi by my side (he now has his own chair and drawer so he can 'work too') and dancing to songs from Glee.

I can't imagine my life without these two!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

St. Nick

This Saturday we had TWO Christmas parties to got to, in a row. First we had the annual VF party at the Lake Oswego Country Club. Then the Bethany Ward blowout of a Christmas Dinner. Each were great! Moments from the day:

Explaining Santa to Levi before hand:
Mom: Levi, we're going to go see Santa today. He is really nice and brings presents to nice boys and girls. When you see him you sit on his lap and tell him what presents you would like. What present would you like?
Levi: Rocket Ship! ......Dinosaur!........Airplane!..........
Levi flys out of the room for a minute. Comes back after I think he's gone:

Levi's a boy who knows what he wants.

At the VF party meeting Santa:
There were games, cookie decorating, crafts for the kids. Levi, of course, only cared about making cookies. So we frosted a tree and ate some M&M's (ok a lot of M&M's). Santa comes walking into the room ringing his bell.
Mom: Levi! There's Santa!! He's coming!! Do you want to go see Santa??
Levi: NO. (obvously not impressed about the man in the red suit, continues eating/decorating)
Kids start lining up to get there presents and pictures taken.
Mom: Santa has a present for you, should we go see him?
Levi: YEAH!!!! (now he cares)
Hugs Santa like they were best friends, gets present, hops down, says "Thank you" and we run off to get a cookie.

Max decided to stay with daddy and eat a lot. Boy that boy can pack it in! But he was a sweet as can be for the whole party, mostly in awe at everything that was going on. Oh, for presents Levi got blocks and Max got some cars. Levi was quite upset when Max actually wanted to play with them. Little Maxo is quite a fighter and has a really good grip, much to Levi's dismay.

That party was mid morning. Then we went home and ALL of us (including daddy) crash for a couple hours to prep for the next party.

Party #2 was AMAZING!!! (not that the other one wasn't) but they had a couple rooms set up as Santa's workshop with tons of toys, elves and yes, and extremely impressive lego train set. Yeah, he wasn't supposed to touch that.....

When it was his turn he gave Santa another big hug like his was his best friend then sat on his lap but didn't really smile (I personally think he was wondering where the heck his present was after he sat on this guys lap) But he livened up after he got some candy heading out the door.
Max was just as confused as could be. I would be too little one! What a good sport you are.
After a fabulous dinner there was a Christmas program where the little kids were asked to come up front to participate. Levi lasted about 3 minutes till a older boy decided to start crawling around on the floor. Noticing what the other boy was doing, Levi exclaimed "CHASE!" and chase he did.
All the rest of the night. Must have been all the cookies.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

For Emily

Several days before Thanksgiving we found out that a couple we knew while attending BYU suffered a terrible loss. Husband and father, John Jones died in a caving accident in the Nutty Puddy Caves in while visiting family for Thanksgiving.

I remember John and his sweet wife Emily, though we only knew them a short year. They were always happy and had a smile on their faces. Whenever you were around them you felt just a little bit happier. They were always so kind and cheerful.

He was attending medical school where he was studying to become a pediatric surgeon. John, his wife were expecting their second child. When I heard all the news all I could think about was Emily and not being able to fathom what it might be like to deal with such a tragedy.

So I decided to pass on some info for anyone wanting to help out, weather or not you knew this amazing family.

If you would like to contribute, donations can be made to:

The John & Emily Jones Memorial Fund (Utah Community Credit Union and Wells Fargo)
The Emily Jones Children Donations (Zions National Bank)
For those of you not able to go to these places, you can donate online here.

There is also an online auction at A Daily Scoop with funds going towards the family. There will be daily auctions (I have put up a number of items from my etsy shop), and she gives instructions on how to bid (check out the first auction here). If you would like to contribute any item to be auctioned off rather than bidding, then you can e-mail her ( or comment on her blog saying you would like to contribute. I think it's a great opportunity to make Christmas gift buying turn into a double blessing for those in need. I'm excited to be a part of something that will help Emily and her children.

Merry Christmas Emily - I hope this helps.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


Last night, at four in the morning I awoke to a sweet voice saying "don't cry baby Max, don't cry" and as I tiptoed across the hall I saw Levi standing over the crib trying to comfort his little brother who had been crying. My heart melted!!! Levi is such a good big brother and Max just adores Levi. It has been so interesting to see them together in the past month or two since Max has been able to sit up, roll over, grab things and just be more involved in everyday life.

What I love about this growing brotherly bond:

- How Levi loves grabbing Max's hand, shaking it and saying "nice to meet you"

- Listening to Levi say 'baby, teute' every time he refers to Max

- Max's eyes following Levi whenever he's in the room

- How Levi says 'don't touch' and waggles his finger when Max grabs onto a toy, who has a pretty tight grip! And then how Levi is pretty good about finding a different toy for his little bro to play with

- How when asking someone to draw our family, Levi always remembers 'Baby Max'.

- Often, to his parents dismay, Levi wanting to go get Max from the room because he hasn't seen him in a while

I sure do love my house full of boys, what a lucky girl I am!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Halarity at Church

Why bother???

Going to church with little ones is always interesting. Sometimes I wonder why I even go to church. For example today, I sat down for sacrament meeting with my little family and we were able to listen for a moment, ok five minutes, then Max cries. Dad takes him because if Levi sees me leave, he'll really freak (he's in a clingy mommy mode lately). I try my best to keep him occupied with books, coloring, crackers but we end up having to leave to 'run off some steam' for about 30 minutes until those blessed nursery teachers arrive. Then off to Sunday school with Max. I sit down, literally two minutes later the nursery leader tells me I have a poopy toddler. Change said toddler. Get back to Sunday school and Max starts crying (grandma took him during that time) . I go and feed him. Sunday school ends. Relief Society starts and I have Max this week (daddy is usually able to take him most of the time). I lead the music, sit down with crying baby, then have to do music time. As I come to sit down for the second time, Max decides he doesn't want me sitting, so we leave and walk the halls where I get him calmed enough for me return for the last five minutes of the lesson, where he flirts with everyone, giving them his sweet smiles, convincing them all that he is the sweetest baby in the world (which he is for the most part). I finish by leading the music with the grandma's watching over my little 6 month old (by 'watch' I mean they slipped him part of a candy bar but according to them "it calmed him down".) What a Sunday. Good thing I know the church is true!!!!

But among all that hall walking and feeding there were some HALARIOUS moments, such as:

Showing Levi this picture:
When asked what he saw he replied: "skateboard".

When I walk the halls with Levi I try and talk about the pictures on the wall to make it a learning experience for him so I'll at least feel like we're getting some spirtualness out of the meeting. He insisted at stopping at this one:
Then he stated matter of factly "superman" and pointed to Samuel.

Oh and the funniest part of the day (at least in my opinion)
The ward choir gets up and starts singing to which Levi chimes in saying "me sing too, me sing too. popcorn, popcorn" (popcorn popping on the apricot tree, he loves that song). When he realized they weren't going to change their tune, he sat on his chair, folded his arm and says "dear Heavenly Father, amen". Looks up, sees there still singing and yells. Not just any yell, but shouts of "nursery time, nursery time". And so we walk.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Me too, me too!

A lot can happen in six months. For us the past six months have been a lot of fun having two fun boys in our house.
Six months ago, our little Max came into our lives. We were a little nervous because we didn't know how it would work with two kids (ok, just mommy was nervous). But we hit the jackpot and got one of the sweetest, most easygoing, fun babies ever created! We are so glad you were born Max! Now we can't even imagine life without that amazing smile of yours and your sweet presence in our home.

You are such a sweetheart. When your sad you want mommy to hold you, but when there is a good giggle fest to be had, only daddy will do. And that brother of yours is just fun to watch! One day you'll be able to follow him.
Now you are discovering the world around you. Yes, those hands can pick things up and can even get them to your mouth.
Now you know you can get around just by rolling a couple times, it's quite fun to watch because then Levi will get down on the floor and show you how it's done!
Hmm....someone, (who shall remain nameless) couldn't resist getting in on the photoshoot.

You've also been able to teach that big brother a thing or two!
You don't ever forget to tell us just how you feel and tell us when enough is enough.
I really mean it mom. I'm done.

We love you Max, you are such a wonderful blessing in our lives.