Monday, December 19, 2011


Last Thursday was a big day for Tracen and I.  I finished my internship (i no longer have an excuse to sit and watch TV all day) and Tracen got to go see Santa.

We got him all dressed up in his best clothes.. and he got to talk to Papahashi about what we were going to do. 

He seemed kind of unsure of whatever Papahashi was telling him

We went to Cross Iron mills for the free pictures with Santa, I probably wouldn't have taken him to see Santa had it not been free.

He seemed to like Santa, we sat him on his lap and he just sat there, no tears, no smiles, just content.  

And because the angle was a little off the first time, we got another free shot.

I love how Santa is looking down at him.
Turns out Tracen made it to the Nice list this year!

Oh, and if anyone was wondering what Tracen would look like had be been part of the Jackson 5, here is the answer:

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

I always feel best...

Lately, with talk of Christmas and it's true meaning I've been reflecting a lot about past Christmas' and times that I have really felt what i believe is true christmas spirit.  And I realized that I always feel best when i am doing service.  

I have also been thinking about a time where our Sunday School class took "Christmas" to a less fortunate family in Calgary (thank you sister paxman for this experience).  

We (Luke and I) decided to do something similar with the 14-16 year old Sunday School Class we teach, they were really excited about the idea too.  We got some decorations for them to paint, and then were praying to know who we could give a Christmas tree too.  Our prayers were answered when we heard a sister bear her testimony and mention that this was her first christmas without any of her family (she is a recent convert and from the phillipines).  We decorated a little tree with the ornaments the class painted and each member wrote her a card with a special christmas message.  We invited her into our class and presented the tree and cards to her.  A few members of our class explained to her that she had a ward family who loved and cared for her, the joy that we could see in her eyes filled our hearts.  She was so grateful, but I think i felt almost as happy and as her, and so grateful for the opportunity to forget myself and do something for someone else.  Luke and I have made a goal to do something like this every year.

Today my friend Stephy sent me this picture that she somehow found:

it literally brought tears to my eyes for a couple of reasons:
a) this is from my time at BYU in Provo, and i miss it
b) this is from Adaptive Aquatics that i used to go volunteer with every friday, and it was one of those times i felt my best.  Adaptive Aquatics was a program where we would play with mentally challenged children for a few hours every friday, and it was the perfect way to start every weekend.  

This picture helped remind me that there are opportunities all year round and not only at christmas.  How  wonderful would it be to take advantage of ALL these opportunities and feel my best all year round???

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

13 weeks old

Tomorrow Tracen will be 13 weeks old.  I am pretty sure that I was never effective with my time before those 13 weeks like I am now.  

Tracen is still a great baby - and just keeps getting to be more fun.  He makes me laugh when he talks, and his smiles always make me smile - even if sometimes they have to be earned. 

Sometimes he can be a little bit shy and is very good at ignoring people right in his face.  

 He was very excited that Grammie made her way home on Friday. 

We went to a dance birthday party and he loved to listen to the music and dance with her. 

He even wore his party hat without any complaints. 

He even let me dance with him for a bit. 

How cute is corban?? He thoroughly enjoyed the party as well. 

I am pretty sure that if Tracen's eyes are going to stay BLUE!! YAY!

On Saturday we ventured out in the snow and made our way to our church Christmas party.  A drive that usually takes about 30 minutes ended up taking us and hour and a half because of the dumping of snow.  But it was worth the drive. 

I particularly enjoyed the turkey feast and decorations. 

This was Luke last night playing with an antenna.  He wanted the picture on the blog - i don't even know what to say about the picture...

Sunday, November 27, 2011

thoughts from last week

Times sure have changed... we were driving downtown and saw a homeless man talking on his cellphone. When I was growing up, youth didn't have cell phones, let alone homeless people.

Jenelle pointed out to me that I can't have milk, but i make it.  kind of crazy.

You know it has been a long time since you have worked out, when your almost 3 month old baby laughs at you trying to work out.  Apparently my jumping jacks were hilarious, and my lunges were giggle worthy.  Looks like even working out in the privacy of my own home can't keep me from being embarrassed. 

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

happy birthday

Tracen wanted to do something nice for Angie for her birthday, because he knows how good she is at singing.  he wasn't so good with the words, so we decided to nix them and reasoned that it's the thought that counts. 

Untitled from Alana Allred on Vimeo.

Happy Birthday Angie! Thanks for always being there for me, you are such a great friend, sister and mentor.  I sure love you!  

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

family picture

I have been meaning to post this family picture that Angie took on the day of Tracen's blessing.
Kind of looks like we took it in a studio, but we didn't. 

Right now I am having a competition with Tracen to see who can 'sing' louder. The only thing he might like better than singing lately is putting his fist in his mouth and/or licking it. 

Luke looked at some pictures from when he was born last night, and it made me cry. He used to be SO little - he is already almost 11 weeks old. Where does the time go?  

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

first doctors appointment

Last week Tracen had his first doctors appointment - a check up really.  Because we used a midwife, we didn't need to go see the doctor until about 2 months.
I can't believe how big he is getting (doesn't every mom feel that way?)

So at 9 weeks he:
weighed 12 lbs and 4 oz (50th percentile)
is 23 and 1/2 inches long (75th percentile)

He is so much fun, and everyday is just so exciting to see what new sounds he makes and things he discovers. 
 He loves to talk and loves to try to sing while you sing (or maybe he's trying to get us to stop singing?)

It is interesting to see what traits he has already inherited from us.  
Take this for example, he got his hand on a little candy bar and wouldn't let it go.  If anyone knows Luke, he LOVES candy and is rarely found without some sort of treat.  Looks like Tracen is already on to that. 

 And he has the Takahashi need to not miss anything, even if he's really tired, or maybe he gets his great apatite and ability to sleep from me (eating makes us sleepy, and sleeping makes us hungry)

Unfortunately our appointment with the US consulate did not go as planned in many ways.  It took a lot longer than it should have, we had to pay $5 to check an empty diaper bag and carry all his baby stuff (and go through security twice), and turns out Luke didn't live in the US long enough for this baby to get citizenship. So now with a US father, and green carded mother, we need to find a way to not run into any trouble when we go down to school again with our baby.  It may even be filing for a green card for baby...  here we go again!!
Luckily the blessings in our lives outweigh the trials, and we are becoming experts in US immigration rules and standards.  AND - we registered for classes yesterday and surprisingly Luke and I both got the classes we need and got it arranged so that we never have class at the same time, and are taking an online class together. I'm counting that as a major blessing.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

This Never Gets Old

Tracen is just one day shy of 9 weeks old.  He is such a good baby and a blast to play with and cuddle with.  

Trying to get good pictures of him smiling is tough though. Smiling for mom behind a camera isn't as good as smiling for mom sans camera. 

Sometimes he still has a real serious look and when he does it reminds me of Luke so much.  

But he really is such a good baby.
Last Thursday I had to venture back down to the USA for ANOTHER immigration appointment to try to finally actually get my green card (as if a trip to montreal and a trip to vancouver weren't enough). I scheduled an appointment for Helena, MT and Mom was gracious enough to drive us down, and Erika came along with us too.  I couldn't believe how good he was in the car and we only had to stop one time each way to feed the little guy.  He slept great at the hotel, and did great while we shopped.

My appointment was at 1pm and we got some good shopping done before it, and then we went there, and I wasn't sure exactly how long we would have to be there... my experience with these things is that you do more waiting than anything else.  Well - I should have known that in Helena I would be one of two people with appointments and things were quick and all I needed was my fingerprints done.  Turns out the people at the border neglected to gather those when I crossed. Hopefully this means I'll get my green card in the mail finally!

Then on saturday I got sick.  Gross, can't-keep-anything-down, and my-body-aches-in-every-joint, kind of sick. We stayed the night at mom and dads and I am so grateful for a wonderful husband, great mom and good sisters that helped to take care of me and Tracen.  I feel bad that I got mom sick, but so far her and I have been the only victims... and it wasn't fun.  Luke still is taking good care of me, especially since I've been weary of food.  He makes sure to keep me hydrated and trying to eat.

This week we are trying to get Tracen's US citizenship all figured out... seems like US immigration will always be on my to-do list in some form.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

pictures... and halloween

to read about Halloween, you need to look through these pictures first... 

Tracen finally fits into his fortune cookie slippers Candi made him

You can see the fortunes sticking out. 

On Saturday i was able to have the old 3rd ward girls over to hang out (at least the ones that still live here we missed the rest of them)... 
It was really good to get together with friends, i don't do it enough. and our timing was good because Katelyn was due to have her baby soon, but we didn't know how soon (the next day).  I am so grateful that I was able to grow up with such a great group of people.  

this is our cute little guy after his bath... i am obsessed with Tracen.  I just think every moment with him is so special and fun.  

Tracen's first Halloween was a lot of fun!

He was our little monkey. 

We tried to put him in a pumpkin, i don't know who was more scared about it.. Jenelle or Tracen?

They both calmed down after we took him out:

now some more pictures of our little monkey.... he likes to try to stand, even though he still hasn't quite mastered holding up his head completely. 

This picture is funny to me, because Tracen is looking at Erika, who was holding up Candy to bribe him to look.  
He didn't even get to eat any, and it already works as a bribe, it's not his fault his dad has a major weakness for sugar.

Lincoln even got some cuddles with the monkey

Dad and Luke didn't dress up for Halloween.. or did they? I can't tell if Luke was dressing like Papahashi, or Papahashi like Luke.

 but being dressed as twins made them both happy.  And they even got some work done on our car.. the grease on their hands is proof. 

Friday, October 28, 2011

happy friday

our baby is 7 weeks.. his smiles are my favorite...

Monday, October 24, 2011

for memories sake

just so i have record...

1.  Luke has been gone all weekend - a trip to Oakland (to see the Raiders with this brothers) and then to Las Vegas to pick up our car (hopefully it doesn't break down again) and finally HOME tomorrow. Tracen and I are excited, we miss him. But, it has been really fun hanging out at my parents.

2. I did power90x with erika today, it is really hard, and i actively participated in pretty much only the water breaks.

3.  Tracen started to really smile today.  I tried to get it on camera, he got shy.

4.  Samples at Costco aren't as fun when you have eliminated dairy from your diet.  But having a happier less fussy baby is worth it (although sometimes it doesn't feel like it).

5.  I dyed my hair 'ombre' - too bad when i was looking up tutorials they were saying that that trend is on the way out and red hair is on it's way in... i'm so behind.

6.  Tracen is really cuddly, sometimes he is fussy and all he wants is someone to hold him tight and cuddle, I gladly oblige. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

6 weeks old

Tracen is already 6 weeks old.  
Today i went through his clothes and put away the things he had outgrown - it was sad for me.  The little clothes he came home from the hospital in he no longer fits into. 

Check out the little booties that Erika made for him.. he loves them

He's been swimming, out to dinner and to movies, but we still haven't gotten him smiling too much.

this kind of looks like a smile - but it is really his discomfort from the hiccups.

He is starting to coo and i think it is fun. This boy sure loves to cuddle and I'm enjoying every bit of our cuddles