December 21, 2012

Where Oh Where Have I Been??

Sorry about being MIA for the last month or so! It's been rather busy around these parts. We had an eventful Thanksgiving break, which included Dallin receiving 7 stitches in his face and lots of good food! Once we got home, a dear friend of ours passed away and we were fortunate enough to provide music for the funeral. Since then it has been decorating for Christmas, preparing for baby boy to make his arrival, last minute Christmas shopping and gift making! Most nights I fall into bed exhausted, until I get awoken by kicking, contractions, or having to make yet another trip to the bathroom. I'm feeling incredibly blessed right now as I reflect on the events of the last year, however and am so grateful for the life I have.

Dallin is 3/4 done with graduate school! Hooray! One semester left and then he graduates in May with his MBA. I couldn't be more proud. He works so hard and has been the absolute best husband any pregnant woman could ever ask for. Somehow, he still thinks I look beautiful, despite my increasing belly (and the ever increasing numbers on the scale...) he always volunteers to take Claire and run errands (usually picking up an ingredient from the store that I forgot to get at an earlier shopping trip) and he gives me foot massages. Really, what more can a girl ask for?!

Claire is keeping us busy, busy! Her vocabulary is slowly but surely getting bigger and better and her favorite words these days are "lis-lis lies" (Christmas lights) and "me miss-moss" (Merry Christmas) She loves all animals, but cats and dogs seem to be the favorite. She's a picky eater (surprise, surprise, as I was deemed failure to thrive when I was her age because of how picky I was!) but will surprise me every now and again by eating something totally out of the blue. She loves tutu's, dancing, music and singing. She is able to pick up on songs so quickly. One day she randomly started singing Jingle Bells, and Dallin and I still have no idea where she learned it. We have been listening to Christmas music for quite a while, so she must have picked it up from that, but neither of us taught it to her. She sings along to the theme songs of her favorite tv shows, Arthur and Little Einsteins and can usually be heard singing both of those songs as she falls asleep at nap or bedtime. She runs everywhere, climbs as high as we will let her and would spend all day, everyday outside if we would let her. She's stolen our hearts as well as the hearts of all her aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents. We think she's pretty special!

At my Dr. appointment last Thursday I was dilated to a 3 and 90% effaced. We thought for sure this little man was coming that day or the next, but he has decided he really likes where he's at for the time being! I have another appointment this morning, so I will update if anything new has developed. We thought for sure this pregnancy would be just like Claire's and that he would come at 37 weeks, but I'm almost 38 and he doesn't seem any closer to coming, so who knows! I pray I don't go full term. I will be the grouchiest lady that ever lived if that happens!

All in all, we are grateful for this wonderful season and for the reminders of what is truly important. We're so grateful for the gospel of Jesus Christ in our lives and for the health and happiness we have been so abundantly blessed with. Stay tuned for more updates, I promise I will get better at blogging again! This has been a great journaling tool for me and I want to keep it better updated, if for nothing else, than to have my kids look back and see what happened in our lives! And now, the pictures!

This girl LOVES her rain boots!

On the way home from church one Sunday

Anything can be used as a phone. Even PB&J's!

Any sticker will always end up on her cheeks.

The battle wound! A piece of hammer chipped off and flew into his cheek. It was bloody and took the doctor almost 3 hours to get it out.

The stitches! I was mistaken, there were 5, not 7.

Fall in Salem is beautiful!

This was me at 36 weeks. I'm much bigger now!

Our beautiful Christmas tree! I will be posting more pictures of our Christmas decorations in another post.

October 26, 2012


I love this time of year. There is something about the season changing, the cooler weather, all the delicious scents that are filling the air and, among other things, my birthday, that make this time of year just awesome. I've been impatiently awaiting the arrival of the cooler weather so that I wasn't sweating every time I put on my boots and sweaters, and the forecast as of late has been very obliging. Needless to say, I am in a happy mood!

There has been lots of baking and nesting going on here in the Calaway household and I have to admit, I am starting to feel like January 7 can't come soon enough. I am so excited for the arrival of baby boy and, as my chiropractor so kindly pointed out today, I've popped out quite a bit in the last week or so. {Although I really like my Chiropractor, let me just throw this out there- never tell a pregnant woman that she's gotten a lot bigger since the last time you saw her. That fragile self esteem during pregnancy gets battered and bruised pretty easily. Needless to say, I'm over it and I feel just fine about myself... most of the time! ;-) }

Anyway, this is pretty much a picture dump post, because I know that those of you who still visit are mostly family who just want to see pictures of my cute nugget and not hear about my ramblings of pregnancy, chiropractors and boot/sweater combos. So here she is, in all her sweet 2 year old glory.

She'll hate me one day for this picture, but my goodness, it sure is funny!

She'll probably kill me for this one, too. Once again though, I caught her at the best moment.

Just wearing a super saggy diaper and boots!

Daddy gives the best horsey rides around!

We got some free ride vouchers from friends that moved away from Salem and decided to use a couple of the yesterday at the carousel! She refused to take a nap, so she was a little tired during the ride.

The leaves outside our complex. I LOVE these trees!

I'll be back with another post sometime in the next week or so with a 30 week belly shot, thoughts on turning 25 {I'll be 30 weeks the week I turn 25 on the 30th of October. Confused? Yep, me too!} and other misc. things! Until then, enjoy this yummy fall weather!

October 17, 2012

The Condition of my Heart

I have a confession to make. For those of you not of my faith, this probably won't seem like a very big deal, but for those of you who are LDS, you'll understand.

 I don't read/study my scriptures very often. {gulp!}

I am so bad at making them a priority in my life. The thing about it is, I love it when I actually do take the time to sit down, open my scripture notebook, take notes, highlight verses, STUDY. It calms me, lifts my spirits and gives me insights that I know I need. I just have a hard time sitting and doing it. That is going to change though.

As I attended the General Relief Society broadcast a few weeks ago, I left with a theme running through my head. I don't know if it was the theme that all of you who attended walked away with, but it was surely what I needed to hear. The question, "What is the condition of your heart?" followed me home that evening.

I decided to take a little inventory of my heart, and found myself severely lacking in areas that were of great importance, scripture study and charity being chief among them. As I examined my life, my worries, my "necessities", I found that the bulk of my focus was on things that really weren't that important. TV shows, blogs, Facebook, Instagram, were just a few of my "frivolous" focus items. Not that those things are bad, but they were consuming the BULK of my focus, while other things such as my daughter, my husband, my spiritual well being, my home being clean, etc., were being neglected. I didn't like what I saw when I really looked at my heart. I want to like what I see and more importantly, I want my Savior to like what He sees.

Today, as I studied my scriptures, I found myself in Mosiah 15. Just a little background- Abinadi is addressing King Noah and his wicked priests on the atonement and Christ's sojourn on earth. As I neared the end of the chapter, one phrase particularly stuck out in my mind (He's referring to those who have willfully sinned and rebelled against God and have not repented. ) "... for He {Jesus Christ} cannot deny justice when it has its claim." The price has been paid for our sins, but if we are not willing to repent, or if we are willfully disobeying, Christ can do nothing for us. Justice has to be served somewhere. He has provided the mercy, and if we repent, then justice has been served. If we fail to make right our sins, however, that mercy has no claim, because justice has to be met.

As I read this, it struck a chord deep within me, because although I have been trying to make the condition of my heart more to my liking, I still fall short. I'm a natural {wo}man, you see. I am tempted to fall back into bad habits, and sometimes I succumb. I realized that I have to work so hard to not fall into those traps though, because if I am not willing to change, then mercy will not be extended to me. Now, I don't go around all day thinking of ways I can be bad or dishonest or spiteful, but I do make choices that can either help or hinder me on this mortal journey. I make the choice everyday as to whether or not I can have the Lord's justice or mercy in my life. I much prefer the mercy.

The beauty in all of this is that there is mercy. Even though we make mistakes and try so very hard to be better, we still fall short. But we have the wonderful, beautiful, infinite power of the atonement in our lives, and that makes all the difference. I am so grateful that, despite my imperfections, I can be made perfect in Christ; and with his help, I can improve the condition of my heart. So that is my mission for the present moment. Improve myself and my heart and take full advantage of the mercy that has so lovingly been extended to me.

I made up a little print that all of you are welcome to use, if you so desire. It's simple and plain, but it poses a poignant question. This is my own work, so please do not redistribute or sell it. For Personal Use only.

{Print is 8x10}

October 12, 2012

Rocking Chair Re-Do!

I love creating. I love having the ability to see something and know that it has potential to be anything I want it to be. There is something so satisfying in making what was once deemed "ok" into something fabulous! My mom and dad have had this little old rocking chair sitting in their garage for years and years and I decided that I wanted to give it a makeover and a new home. (I, of course, asked if I could take it, just in case you are thinking I ran off with it smuggled in the back of our truck.)

This rocking chair has history, too, which just makes it even more cool. This was my Grandpa Henry's chair when he was a little boy. 

That's my Grandpa and Grandma Henry. Wasn't he so handsome? I never had the opportunity to meet him, as he passed away about 3 1/2 years before I was born.

So here is the much anticipated "before" picture of the rocking chair.

 As I pulled off all the fabric, batting, padding and what have you, I found a penny, a bright light {raise your hand if you ever played with a bright light as a kid! *raises hand*} and other miscellaneous junk that I promptly threw in the trash. I did hold on to that bright light for a while though, just to savor all the good memories it held. I am sure I was the kid the stuck it in there. 

And now, the "during" picture. When all the junk is ripped out and you are left with a bare-bones structure. At this point I started thinking, "wait, I have never re-upholstered anything in my life. What if I can't get this put back together?? What was I THINKING?!" And then I promptly took it outside and spray painted it to death with that beautiful Rustoleum Heirloom White spray paint (satin finish, if you're curious). It is my favorite off-white spray paint. If you go buy it and use it on your next project, you will not be disappointed. Seriously. It's amazing. And it has this 2x coverage feature that really makes it unnecessary to use a primer, if you don't want to. (I did use a primer with this project, but I have used the paint before and not done a primer layer and it was totally fine!)

After this, I looked at the fabric I had bought (in haste... gulp!) at Joann's a few months ago and realized, it just wasn't doing anything for me. I showed it to Dallin (who had been with me when I picked it out) and he said, "why did we buy that again?" Yeah. My thoughts exactly. It was nice. But that's all. I wanted something AWESOME that I loved! Not just nice. So, I went to the Joann website and could not find anything I loved that was less than $39.99/yard and I was not about to pay that much money for fabric. So, I then turned to my wonderful friend, Google, and stumbled onto this website. Behold, Warehouse Fabrics Inc. This place ROCKS MY UPHOLSTERY FABRIC WORLD. There were so many fabrics to choose from, I about had a heart attack. And all the fabrics I loved were only $7.99/yard!! {Note: not all their fabric is that cheap, it just so happened that all the ones I loved were that cheap.} I really debated between this, this and this, but ended up loving the red (it always comes back to red with me. I am so my mother's daughter it is uncanny.) Ok, and if I am being honest, this one and this one were totally in the running. I just really love owls.

So, here she is in all her finished glory!


We're still trying to decide if we want to add the arms back on or just leave it as is. I kind of want the arms on. Aesthetically,  it just looks better in my mind. But I think it is still pretty darn cute without. Please don't look too closely at the upholstery job I did. While it is just fine for me, it is by no means professional looking! There are a couple of puckers here and there and things aren't totally symmetrical, but it was for Claire and she loves it and it looks cute with the rest of the decor in the living room, so I would say... SUCCESS! It wasn't terribly difficult, and now that I have done it once, I will have more confidence to do something like this again! Thanks Mom and Dad for the rocker, she will be very much loved in the coming years. :)

Linking up here!

October 11, 2012

Claire Turns 2

If you can believe it, 2 years have come and gone and I am officially the mother of a toddler. I guess she has been a toddler for awhile, but for some reason, now that she's two, it feels more official. Silly, I know, but that's my brain for you!

We celebrated last weekend with Dallin's family, opened a couple gifts on her actual birthday and then will be spending this weekend with my family, so needless to say, Claire is getting spoiled rotten. :) She doesn't seem to notice, except that she has a couple new toys to play with some new outfits, and a new pajama sleeper with a "tee-tee" (translation: Kitty) on it. She is OBSESSED with cats. Takes after her mother on that one. I could not leave cats alone when I was a little girl.

Just a few things to mention about Claire at 2:

Favorite Foods: Yogurt, Granola bars, French toast, Fish crackers, Graham crackers, Popcorn, Ice Cream, Pizza and Apple Juice.

Favorite Activities: Taking walks, chasing "tee-tee's" around our apartment complex, reading, hauling stuffed animals around, putting pennies in containers and transferring them to another container, singing, talking on Skype to family, "talking" on the phone, lining up her farm animals in a perfectly straight line... :) She is meticulous in some things, it's kind of funny.

Favorite Shows: Arthur, A Bugs Life and How to Train Your Dragon seem to be the favorites right now.

Whenever we say, "I love you" she responds with "too!" every time. It is so cute. She has become ok with the term, "night night" and doesn't really fight us on going to bed, but will lay in her bed sometimes for almost an hour just talking, singing and laughing. She has also started hoarding stuffed animals. :) There are probably 8-10 in her crib right now, which she refuses to take out. I didn't even know we owned that many stuffed animals, but they came out of the woodwork and now, here we are with a million, it seems!

She has been very attached to me, but just in the last week or so, she has started getting super excited to see Dallin and will even kind of "shun" me and just go to him. It's making both of us very happy, since she has been refusing to go to him for the last little while. She is still very much a momma's girl, but we're working on that. She likes nursery again (hallelujah!) and loves to play with other kids. Whenever we have the windows open in the apartment and she hears someone talking or shouting outside, she starts yelling to them, like she's having a conversation. And whenever she sees any kids she'll start yelling to them too. She's a people person. She also says "Bye" to anyone that looks like they're leaving. Literally, everyone. And it's not a quiet "bye" either. It's a super loud, everyone turns and looks kind of "bye". I just laugh and shake my head. :)

Her rainbow birthday cake! She apparently doesn't like cake, as she would not eat her piece on her first birthday or the piece that we gave her of this cake. She loves ice cream, though!


She LOVES shoes. I thought I had a problem, but she's even worse than I am. She cries if we try on a pair of shoes that she likes and don't end up buying them. Boots are her favorite, I am finding. (She is SO her mother's daughter!)

She still speaks mainly in her jibberish language that we fondly call "Claire-abic" but we occasionally catch one or two words that make sense. I am hoping that one day she just suddenly busts out in full sentences. She can count to 5 all by herself and then needs a little help with numbers 6-10 from us. She also knows the tune to the alphabet and is pretty good to get to "G" all by herself, and then we step in and help her the rest of the way. She is a bright little girl and is learning by leaps and bounds every day. It has been such a blessing to help teach her and see her grasp new concepts. I feel so blessed to be her mother. She's the sweetest little thing with a stubborn streak a mile wide. We're learning to work with it though and she really is very obedient. We love her sweet little spirit and can't wait to see what's in store for the next year!

All of these next pictures are from her actual Birthday day. I love her expressions, they are priceless!

She thought sitting on her wrapped presents was what she should do instead of open them!

Daddy's girl!

She put the block up to her eyes and said, "Where's Care? Deek-a-doo!" She is a funny child. :)