Soooooo many pictures! And there are only about 3 people on the planet that will enjoy seeing all of them, so the rest of you- feel free to scroll on down and browse.
On December 7th I geared up for a month long trip to Utah. Clayton would stay in Michigan for finals and get uninterrupted study time, then join us in Utah two weeks later. I was nervous about traveling with two all by myself, but it worked out ok. In fact, it went incredibly well. I think I had concourses of angels helping me through the day, once again due to the faithful prayers of our mothers. They may have even been fasting, not sure. All I know is that we were prepared and it was uneventful. A long day of travel, sure, but all in all- Hooray.
We arrived late in the evening in Salt Lake City to our own little fan club. My mom, dad, sister-in-law Jenni and her daughter Allie. Allie and Eleanor took to each other right away.
I mean, come on. Are you dying? Jenni and I were beside ourselves. We daydream about our girls playing together all the time. So this is honestly one of the happiest sights to me.
The next day we headed up to Clayton's folk's house. This is the first time Clayton's dad got to meet little Winston.
We discovered they look an awful lot like each other. This is a picture of Rex at 6 months old. Well, it makes sense- Winston looks like Clayton... Clayton looks like his dad. But still!
Back at my mom and dad's house. This was home base for most of the trip. Allie and Eleanor enjoying sno-cones in their tutus. (P.S. Using the sno-cone machine we got at our wedding from Clint and Alison! Thanks guys, you have no idea how much that thing gets used!)
Tom, Jenni, Shane & Megan tried to feed Winston a banana, or, his first solids, like, ever. He wasn't having it and it was hilarious.
Here Winston is thrilled to hear about Tommy's mission call to Mexico City, West. He leaves later this month!
The girls helping in great-grandma's room. This is my grandmother, Marguerite. She is 93 (92?) and suffers from Alzheimer's. She is on hospice care and they keep telling our family that she has very little time left, but she keeps proving them wrong. She still has a strong love of babies, chocolate and winking. It's funny how some days she wont say two words all day, then the next she will comment on Winston's dimple and try to tickle him. It was sweet to have the kids spend time with her over the holiday.Megan and her two boyfriends. Shane seemed pretty cool about sharing her with Winston.
Uncle Adam was some sort of baby-whisperer. Almost every picture I have from the trip is him rocking Winston to sleep.
Eleanor "fixing" great-grandma's hair on a good day. Mom and I had cut and curled it, and E wanted in on the action.
I don't think Eleanor wore her regular clothes there for more than 20 minutes at a time. Here she is dressed as a ladybug.
Later, Eleanor really wanted to go outside. While it was an unusually warm winter, I didn't think she was quite dressed for an evening stroll. However, being a stubborn two year old, I finally let her out so she would learn for herself. Sadly, and as usual, I caved first. She was halfway down the block before I realized this particular "lesson" wasn't hitting home.A few nights later I got to meet up with some friends I haven't seen in ages. This is Kennedy and Winston.
Another day Jenni and I took the kids to go see Santa. Last year we missed him and were ticked about it, so we got in early this year.
Both kids liked him just fine. Poor Eleanor really didn't know what he was about. Aside from a few songs, we hadn't covered what Santa does yet. He gave her a candy cane though, so he could slaughter unicorns for all she cares.
After the ride, they got to see Center Stage (a local dance/talent company) give an hour long concert in the mall food court. They were in heaven. Eleanor kept asking me to let her up on stage. She figured she was a little girl in a dress and she also wanted to dance. I love that she doesn't get that they are all dancing in unison. I may have to start her in lessons sooner rather than later. Also- Allie was wearing an outfit similar to the little girls in one of the numbers (Allie is right behind Eleanor in this picture) so they kept trying to herd her up with all the girls. It was kind of funny.
Hitching a ride on the back of the rental stroller.
Hitching a ride on the back of the rental stroller.
Abby, Win and grandma. Both my parents work so Abby is one of grandma's best caretakers during the summer and holiday breaks.
Allie "taught" Eleanor to rollerskate. It is now one of her favorite things to talk about. "Mommy, dwaw a picher ov me. Tay, now dwaw me wit whoawer skaze." (...draw a picture of me, okay, now draw me with roller skates. I get this all the time.)
One day Abby and I tried chalking our hair into rainbow colors. Or rather, I used Abby as a guinea pig and then did it to E and myself. Well, Eleanor's washed right out, both Abby and I got stuck with pink sections for over a month. I guess it's not a great idea on processed hair.
Back on the Firth side of things, baby Winston got to meet his newest cousin little Audrey. She is one month younger and a freaking doll-baby.
Clayton's sister Monica was selling her dog Tess's puppies and brought them down to Rex & Kathy's for the week. This is Tasha (well, I think). Win seemed to like her.
Here is proof that Eleanor touched one of the dogs. As obsessed as she was by them, she got more and more tentative as the week went on. She has even named two of her little stuffed toy dogs "Tasha" and "Growler" after these dogs.
Sweet cousin Natalie. Eleanor used her as a pillow while she watched the Mickey Mouse Christmas Carol.