September 28, 2009

Soccer Season

It's that time again . . .
But with a brand new player this year!
Go Kacin!
This little guy plays hard.

Taking a rest with Grandpa . . .

There has already been a bit of sibling rivalry with being on the same team, but they are learning to work together and support each other (and hopefully soon stop grabbing each other by the shirt and yelling that the other never shares the ball).

Kyler stats: Season #3, 2nd game in, scored 9 goals so far and 1 assist.
We all think the assist is pretty awesome and hope that there are more of those to come.

Watching the game on a blazing hot morning . . .

September 25, 2009

Are You Joking?!

Did you hear the one about the boy who got a promotion? Yeah, he moved his family from Utah to Arizona. And right when they were getting settled, 3 days before their closing date on their new house, he was asked to relocate again! This time to Washington!
ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

Well, the laughter is mixed with a lot of tears. And even more confusion and debate about what to do.
We did make our decision though, and hope that it is the best one for our family.
We are heading to Washington!

These last few days of utter turmoil and distress (exaggeration? I think not.) have taught us a few things about life.

*Don't tell yourself that you plan on being somewhere for at least 5 years. Shoot for 6 months and then you'll be happy if you make it longer.
*You don't need all your stuff (because it's in storage) or a big house to be happy. You just need your family, some creativity, and a good attitude.
*Your decisions always effect other people. That has been the hardest thing about this decision. The poor family that we were buying the house from had just moved out when we got the word about our relocation. It was the hardest thing to make the decision to back out of the house and accept the position in Washington. I cry for them and pray that things will work out for the best for their family.
*The father (in this case, Eric) is the head of the house. He can be trusted to make wise decisions for the family (with guidance and support from the wife).
*Have patience!
*This is a good talk that helped us as we made our decision: Revelation 
*When you think you've already learned your lesson to trust in the Lord, you've really only begun to scratch the surface.
*DQ coupons (buy one get one free blizzards!) are very nice.

When we talked with the boys about the move to Washington, Kyler's first question was "Do they speak English there?" Since that question, we have spent a lot of time on google earth and looking at videos and pictures of our new state. We have a few more months before the move, so for now, we will be enjoying our time in Arizona and anxiously awaiting the start of a new adventure.

September 22, 2009

A Big Word

I love Kacin's school, Bridges, and Ms. Lynn, his teacher, for a lot of different reasons. Today it is because of the new word Kacin is using at the dinner table.

Kacin says Oviparous is whoever lays eggs. Like a chicken. And Ms. Lynn.

I am amazed that he is pronouncing such a word. And now calling us all oviparous, just because he can.

September 15, 2009

Can't Find Me!

It's the game we play. Kacin and I will be reading books or playing cars. Kacin may jump up and shout "Can't find me!" and run as fast as he can to some secret hiding place. Or maybe I emerge from my room and Kacin is "missing". Where could he be?I love my 4 year old. It's always the same, but it's never the same. He may be hiding under the bed, again. But from the delight on his face and his booming laughter, it's like it's the first time. Ah, the sweet joys of life.

Staying Active

Our days are filled with swimming, running, and biking . . .

It is sooo much more fun now that the boys are swimming (well, at least they can get around on their own now) and I don't have to worry about them . . . as much.

I've been making myself get up early and go running in the mornings.
Kacin got some "tie shoes" and so he woke up around 5:30am to join me. It made for some grumpies later, but it was fun having him with me once around the block. I'm excited for when he gets older and can really come with me!

We discovered the canal trail, and have some sweet babysitters now, so we've spent the last few Saturday mornings riding bikes.
When we first got our bikes awhile ago, it was torture to ride for 15 min. We went 20 miles last Saturday. For some, that would be nothing. For me, it was a proud moment.

September 13, 2009

The Family

I think the best part of being home in Arizona has been being around our family again. I didn't realize how much we were missing while we were living in Utah. Though, I wouldn't trade my Utah moments for anything--the people that we met and the experiences that we had changed my life for the better--but there is nothing like hanging with your family.

The day after Bryce was born Kacin went around singing something like this, "I have my first cousin, he is my cousin, his name is Bryce, he is my first cousin"

Kyler loves his little baby cousin and giving him kisses on his forehead.
Uncle Eric
Labor Day breakfast at my parents house . . . my sweet Grandma and Grandpa Allen joined us!
Grandma Allen and Ky
What's a family get together without some funny faces from Jenny?
Stef, Tyson, Bryce, Kacin and Me
Biweekly Allen Family Home Evening is well underway

The one and only, Fatman! The head of the Allen family.Wouldn't you want to play with Tyson, too?

We are glad that we are closer to the Allred side of the family, too and we hope that this is the weekend that we make it up to visit!

September 8, 2009

The Story . . .

This is a version of the most requested, most repeated story in our house . . . . Every time it is told, I can't help but feel immense gratitude to our families for their support and acceptance of our little family, gratitude for the cutter of the hair who will never truly realize the impact of her words, gratitude for the ward and neighborhood that we moved into who understood and supported us, gratitude for caseworkers, therapists, Brenda and Maroud, and especially gratitude for, and a very special kind of love for, the birthparents . . . So I'm writing this down now for our kids . . .
Once upon a time, there was a little girl with the cutest chubby cheeks. She loved to play house and school. She had a fun-filled childhood and the most loving, creative family you could ask for. She was taught that when she got older she could be anything that she wanted to be. And she did want to be a teacher and a mommy.

Once upon a time, in a smaller land, there lived a smart, good little boy. So maybe he got into a little bit of trouble, but overall he was a pretty good kid. He lived with his wonderful family and learned how to work hard and lots of other important things. He was taught he could be anything he wanted to be. And he did want to do something successful to take care of his future family.

This little girl got a little older. This little boy grew up, too. They met at the Oaks. And with some encouragement from a friend, he asked her out on a date. He even gave her a kiss! They became best friends who loved each other very much.

On November 7, 2003 they were married in the Mesa Arizona temple for time and all eternity.

Together they decided they were ready to start their family and have some of their own chubby-cheeked troublemakers, who were smart and creative.
But unbeknownst to them, there was a different plan.
You see, they had a much wiser and perfect Heavenly Father who knew them and loved them and wanted them to be happy, but he also wanted them to learn together, become stronger, and gain experience.
So the girl didn't get to have a baby grow in her belly right then.
It was a sick belly.
She had to do hard things like visit lots of Dr.'s, have a little surgery, and get her blood tested a lot. She's very scared of needles and doesn't do well with blood, but she can do hard things.
The boy had to do hard things, too. Like take care of the girl.
They didn't really understand why they couldn't get a baby in her tummy, but they prayed a lot, talked together a lot, and got priesthood blessings.
And they learned to have patience and trust in God. They began to feel peace.
They also began to feel something grow in their hearts.
But it wasn't a something, it was a someone.
Not just a someone, but someones.

The girl became a teacher. The boy finished school with two degrees. You see, he really was a smart boy. And still someones were growing in their hearts. They didn't really want to move to Utah, at all. But they both felt it.
The boy needed to accept that job in American Fork.
So they packed up their stuff. Said goodbye to all of their family and friends.
And went to Utah.
They lived in the little blue house on the corner.
And the girl needed a haircut.

So she randomly picked a salon. And she got her hair cut.
She talked to the nice cutter of the hair and mentioned they were trying to adopt through LDS Family Services. The cutter of the hair told her about a friend she has that does foster care.
The girl was intrigued.
The cutter of the hair gave her the friend's phone number. And the nervous-to-be-calling-a-stranger girl called the stranger. It was a delightful conversation that inspired the boy and the girl to become foster parents.
They really did take all of those classes. And prepared their house. And were licensed.
In April 2008, a man named Scott called.

He told the girl about two little boys.
As he spoke, her heart jumped. She was thrilled, and nervous, and excited to meet them.
She saw pictures of them and was amazed to see some chubby little cheeks smiling at her. How much they looked like the boy and the girl! They got the beds ready and cleaned their house and made a big yummy meal.
The boys tumbled in full of energy, and feeling a little anxious themselves.
They all had so much fun playing together during the week. The boy and the girl knew that these cute boys were two of the someones who had been growing in their hearts for so long.
The boys came to stay with the boy and the girl.
Though there were challenges and lots of adjusting, they became a family--
The kind of family that sticks together, works things out, loves each other, prays together, has fun together, and trusts each other.
Most importantly, they knew to put their trust in their Father in Heaven, always recognizing His hand in their lives and always showing their gratitude to Him.
When they were sealed in the Mesa Arizona Temple on April 14, 2009, they knew their story would not end. They were a forever family.

September 4, 2009

Welcome, Bryce!

I am an aunt! Congratulations to Stefanie and Tyson on the birth of their cute little boy, Bryce! Stefanie made childbirth look so easy. I was with her all afternoon while she was having small contractions. Then at 3:oo pm I took her to get her bag and meet Tyson. They checked in at the hospital at 4:30pm and little Bryce was born at 8:13pm. It was the most miraculous thing to watch Bryce being born. Stefanie was awesome.

Classic--Mom checking Stef for a fever.

Just relaxing and waiting . . .Good thing the Dr. lived so close to the hospital, she almost didn't make it and Jenny was getting ready to deliver the baby. . .He's here!

September 2, 2009

A Late Night Snack . . .

Setting: Before family scriptures, 6:30 am; Kacin cuddling on my lap, Kyler snuggling on my left.

The Conversation:
Me: Kyler, did you wake Kacin up this morning?
Kyler: No! He was already awake. I saw him picking his nose, so I told him to stop.
Kacin (all smiles): In the night time, when I get hungry, I pick my nose! My picking my nose are food. Picking my nose is good!!