Monday, December 21, 2009

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

On Thursday afternoon, the weather news said that five inches of snow were expected to fall on Saturday. Cool!

Later that night, the reports began to say five to ten inches of snow were expected. ...That's more than we usually get...but we can handle that.

By Friday evening, reports from the radio said we would get TWELVE TO TWENTY-FOUR INCHES OF SNOW! Chris and I just looked at each other in amazement. This is the East Coast, people! We don't DO snow. Do you know what happens when snow begins to fall here on a weekday? We SHUT DOWN. No school, no work, no driving--we don't do it. Very different mentality from our Western counterparts, like Utah, Colorado, Idaho, etc.

So when it began to snow around 9pm on Friday night, Chris and I had to laugh to ourselves when we stopped by Shopper's to pick up a movie at Redbox. The place was packed! Chris said he could barely walk through any aisle--everyone was rushing to get food before they were snowed in. That's why we LDS have food storage! ;)
We went to sleep with maybe an inch or so stuck to the ground. And when we woke up Saturday morning, we couldn't believe our eyes...
WHITE! EVERYWHERE! COVERING EVERYTHING! Not merely a few sprinkles dusted lightly on our grass. Much, MUCH more than that!



And it didn't stop...

We ventured outside to take some pictures.





Chris was brave enough to get the mail


and he even walked to Shopper's to return our Redbox movie (State of Play--really very good). Driving the car wasn't even worth it because there was so much snow. Don't worry friends, Shopper's is right around the corner and Chris made it home safely.

The snow finally stopped around 6-7pm Saturday night. We're really in a Winter Wonderland! It's unreal. This storm covered a good part of the East, reaching from as far south as North Carolina to as far north as New York. Church was canceled--you know it's a big deal when church is canceled! When Chris went to dig out the car on Sunday, it was honestly buried. You could only see our rear end license plate!

If you want some snow and haven't gotten any yet, feel free to stop by our place and take some home for yourself--we have a feeling this won't be melting any time soon!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

So, I was off...

I thought I was eight or nine weeks along...that was my motherly guess.

Noooooo, I am twelve weeks along!

We were very surprised when the technician told us this at the ultrasound yesterday. According to Baby's measurements and all the other specifics, Baby measures 12 weeks. Baby's due date: June 28, 2010. We have little pictures of Baby which I will scan later.

Chris immediately informed me that June 28 is John Elway's birthday. John Elway is Chris's favorite quarterback of ALL time. We love the name John for a boy; it's one we've written down as a definite...so if this baby IS a boy, I think we all know what his name will be! haha

Since I'm twelve weeks along, this means I've virtually skimmed right through nausea in my first trimester, which I consider a total blessing. When I was pregnant with Liz...let's just say it was more of an all-day sickness, not just morning sickness. June 28 means that I won't spend the entire summer in my third trimester--I'm fine with that! haha We are very excited to find out all we can about Baby Killion #2.

So far, so good!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Yes, it's true!

I'm pregnant! Liz is going to be a big sister! We're going to be a family of four! Any way you say it, there's a Baby Killion #2!
I know I had said we wouldn't try again for another baby until Liz turned a year old...and Lizzie's birthday was yesterday haha. Well, when we got to thinking awhile ago, we realized that if we did in fact wait until Liz's first birthday, Baby Killion #2 would be born right as Chris would potentially be starting his first week of law school. Add to that the fact that there's a good possibility we may be moving, depending on where Chris goes to law school. Me going through a move at 38-39 weeks pregnant...I haven't done it, but I'm fairly certain that it would be quite uncomfortable. SO we decided we needed to start on Baby #2 sooner than we had originally planned and here we are!
*Next paragraph: TMGI (Too Much Girl Information) for some males* I'm not sure exactly how far along I am because I've only had one period since Liz was born, and that was in June. Before you gasp, it's because I'm still breastfeeding Liz haha. I'm scheduled for an ultrasound tomorrow to see Baby's progress. My guess is that I'm eight or nine weeks along. So we shall see!
Needless to say we are VERY excited! I'd love a boy because I think that would be fun. Hopefully it wouldn't be like Bill and me at that age, when I tried killing him all the time...Chris would like a boy too, of course, but he points out that a girl would be nice because we already have everything we need for a girl! haha We feel good about this baby because we want our kids to be a year and a half- two years apart and Baby Killion #2 fits right in there.
I mentioned that Liz's birthday was yesterday and yes, we had a good time! We invited the Clark's over for dinner and of course, cake and ice cream. I made Liz a funfetti cake with strawberry icing--it's my new favorite combination!
video

We placed Lizzie's cake slice in front of her and we expected her to go all out and get messy, but she was the exact opposite. She ate her cake neatly, one piece at a time!



Happy Birthday Lizzie! We love you :)

I totally forgot to write about Liz's twelve month check-up, which we went to this morning. Liz is doing wonderfully well, as always. Dr. Wendy is back (YES!!!) from her maternity leave so we were able to talk to her today.
To every question she asked about progress in Liz's development, I answered, "Yes, she does that!" That was reassuring. Liz eats her fruits, veggies, proteins; talks up a storm, etc.
Her stats are:
Weight: 19.65 lbs (25th percentile--her lowest weight percentile ever, but this is typical for breastfed babies)
Height: 29 in. long (50th percentile)
Head Circumference: ...I can't remember exactly. 19 in.? (But it was in the 95th percentile)
All in all, she's "beautiful and perfect" as Dr. Wendy says. I already knew this, of course ;)

Monday, December 7, 2009

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

When Chris told me it was going to snow on Saturday, I merely scoffed. Having grown up in New Jersey, I remember all those times we children were promised snow...which never happened. Or, if precipitation did happen, it would be freezing rain or sleet (which are awful and not nearly as exciting as snow).
Imagine my honest surprise when snow began to gently coat everything in sight on Saturday morning, shortly after we woke up. It was beautiful! I was glad to see snow because it is now December and I can always handle snow in December. *Unlike Utah, where some seasons, Mt. Timp would be covered with snow on LABOR DAY! That's SEPTEMBER, people! My inner New Jersey couldn't handle the sight of such early appearances of snow.
We took advantage of being inside our warm house to do some Christmas decorating. Last year, we didn't put up anything because I was too tired and too pregnant to care about decorations. Now that Liz is here and is interested in all things that light up and sparkle, it was off to decorating!
We have a cute 4' tree, which is PERFECT because we put it on Grandpop's table and it's (mostly) out of reach for Liz, so she can't pull everything off the tree.

It has blue and white lights, and I fondly call it our sports tree because nearly all the ornaments on it are football-related (soccer and basketball are runners-up).

Why are many of our ornaments football-themed, christened with the Broncos logo? Well, every year since he was born, Chris received an ornament from his parents. Each ornament has his name on it and the year it was given to him (funny to think some of his ornaments are older than I am!). Valerie saved all of these in a box and gave it to Chris when we got married. So now we can continue the tradition on our own Christmas tree. And it's such a good idea, we are going to do it for Liz! She already has two ornaments on the tree!

We looked around for a cute angel or a pretty star to place at the top of our tree, but I tell you what--everything was came across was cheap-looking or just downright ugly. So, we placed a silver bow on the top which we love.

Here is the K for the Killion tree, which we bought our first Christmas together.


Chris's parents sent him a mini tree for the Christmases he spent on his mission, and it's still in perfect condition. We've made it our dining room table centerpiece for the month of December!

The first present under the tree belongs to Chris! Hmm, I wonder what Santa brought him? :)

My mom has given me a wooden Santa Claus and a collection of wooden sprigs with holly which are decorating our doorway. I'll have to get a picture of that. Chris bought me a wreath and bows, so I took the bows and tied them to the wreath and it looks pretty cute! Thank goodness it was easy to do!

Oh yes, here is our mantle, with our stockings:

Liz is the snowman stocking.

Mom is the Santa stocking.

And Dad is, of course, the Broncos bear stocking, complete with helmet and football. I laughed when I saw this stocking for the first time, because it is CHRIS to a tee!


Later that night was the ward Christmas party. We had a really good time! We sat with the Heit's and the Turman's and proclaimed our table "The BYU Table" since all of us adults graduated from the Y. There was dinner (HAM!!) and a Christmas program with musical numbers from members of the ward. We are very glad the snow didn't stop the celebrations because it was so much fun!

The snow is melting as I type because the sun is shining. We shall see what it looks like outside in a few hours! Have a great week!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Thanksgiving in the NJ

My first Thanksgiving home since my senior year of high school :)

We saw the last show of The Sound of Music at good ol' Wildwood Catholic. Katie was a nun and Joe was Admiral Von Schneider, a nazi, and a guest at a party. They both did wonderfully and we really enjoyed the show. We've been singing songs from the play all weekend!



We had a wonderful Thanksgiving dinner at the house. Everyone helped in some way, which made the day and its cooking responsibilities that much easier. Liz was the official taste-tester and tried everything we made. Don't worry Bill--we had plenty of turkey in your honor.

We ate a ton but we had a lot of leftovers (perfect for breakfast) and some of us managed to take a much needed nap after dinner!

On Friday night, we drove up to the Stake Center for LJ and Kaylie Sikahema's Open House. What a fun night!


I really enjoyed seeing some of my friends that I haven't seen in so long. Of course there was some dancing towards the end, and we all joked that it was just like a stake dance from long ago! Liz danced with us too; that girl didn't close her eyes until we were in the car for the ride home!
She met up with cute Vai Tafuna (whose mom, Melissa, is a good friend of mine) and just had to give him a kiss!


On Saturday morning, my mom and I drove up to the Sewell Chapel to go to Sis. Diane Paul's funeral. It was a beautiful service to a woman who put everything before her own needs. We send our sympathies to the Paul family-- we love you all!

My mom needed a new phone so we stopped by the Sprint store in Court House...and then we went to Stone Harbor. Why, you ask? Well, for the first time ever, Springer's decided to open during Thanksgiving weekend because SH usually gets a pretty big crowd that weekend. Ahhh it was so nice to have Springer's at the end of November, when we are usually dreaming of the summer when it opens again. We loved it!




After church on Sunday, the branch had a "Linger Longer" where everyone brought something for lunch to share with everyone. Mom's ham soup was my favorite.
Of course, the break went by much too fast. We're back in Maryland, looking forward to Christmas!

Monday, November 16, 2009

On the way to DC...

Oh the weekends. We look forward to them all week and then they are gone in a flash. Saturdays are the days which especially fly by. On the 14th, we went downtown with our friends Dave, Meg, and McKelle Clark. Dave works at Lockheed with Chris. The Clarks attend the Seneca Ward which meets before us (Quince Orchard Ward) on Sundays. McKelle is just a month and a half younger than Liz so these girls always have fun with each other.

Driving down George Washington Parkway (a place to visit in itself--so pretty), we went straight downtown towards the Capitol Building. The Clarks made us a reservation online so we went right in. There was a fifteen minute movie about our US History and then off we went on the tour.
What a magnificent building. We observed the Rotunda and its beautiful frescoes and reliefs,

the old House chambers with its whisper spots,

the crypt where George and Martha Washington were commissioned to be buried (they rest in Mt. Vernon however, because that's where they wanted to be),

as well as some of the exhibits around the building. This is a replica of Freedom, the statue which sits atop the Capitol Building.


From there we took the tunnel that connects the Capitol Building to the Library of Congress. What an interesting building--I've never seen architecture quite like this. We weren't allowed to take pictures in the research room, but if you've seen National Treasure, then you've seen the research room! We were able to get a ton of pictures of the lobby though.



Here is the outside of the building.


When we left the Library of Congress, the Capitol Building was in a perfect spot for picture time :)




We had to move our cars before they got towed (gotta love DC parking) so we drove over to the Washington Monument.

Love this! It doesn't seem like it is stationed in any particular place, but when you reach the base of the Monument you see how awesome its placement is. In each direction there is another Washington DC spectacular: the Lincoln Memorial,

the White House,

the Capitol Building,

and the Jefferson Memorial (it was a bit obscured by trees so I couldn't get a good picture). It really is a cool sight, right in the middle of everything.

We walked over to the White House and we saw a flat screen on. Someone was watching TV (upper right hand window)! Pretty cool.

Unfortunately at night, the White House doesn't capture well on film, thanks in part to the double fencing around the grounds. But we tried! You can see it in the corner. Our daughters were peacefully sleeping in their strollers at this point!



We spent an hour trying to get out of the city (major accident on the Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Bridge) and by the time we got back to Germantown, we were FAMISHED. Only one way to cure hunger: FIVE GUYS! ;) Thanks Clarks for a fabulous afternoon!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Honestly

I'm going to write another blog tomorrow about our weekend, which I will then send to my bro Elder Jett. But my friend Kara tagged me in her note "Honestly" so I will now think of ten honest things about me!

1. "You can take the girl out of Jersey but you can never take Jersey out of the girl." This is a true statement. New Jersey is my home and it always will be. No matter how many more places we will live, New Jersey is where I am from.

2. I'm not a fan of pregnancy. Don't get me wrong, I love Elizabeth and the future children I may have. But the whole pregnancy thing...if the nine months could be condensed into one month, I'd do it. I hope my next pregnancy will be better. (*Not that my pregnancy with Lizzie was horrendous.)

3. I look forward to dinner time. When Chris and I were first married, I'd make the same things over and over again; because of that, cooking was not fun for me. But now that I'm done with school and I am at home with Liz, I actually have time to find recipes and to make them. Family Circle magazine has some really great recipes!

4. I miss school. Not the test taking, paper deadline, overachieving classmates part of school. I miss going to a lecture, listening to my professor, and jotting down notes on fresh loose leaf with a Papermate pen. Yes, I used only Papermate pens when I was a college student. I just like the way they write!

5. I miss Utah (not the actual state). I miss our friends, Beto's, Tucano's, football games, campus, the JFSB courtyard...I miss everything BYU. I also miss being close to my family and Chris's family who still live there. We have a ton of fantastic memories associated with Utah.

6. I love the East Coast with a passion but I hate how liberal it has become. It really makes me take Chris seriously when he talks about us living in Texas long term. Really.

7. I miss being a teenager. I loved high school, prom, stake dances, crushes on boys, basketball games, baseball managing, school plays, school rivalries, summers working on the boardwalk and hanging at the beach. I hope my siblings love their high school experiences as much as I did.

8. I have zero tolerance for people who call themselves LDS but do not live the standards of the church. I also have zero tolerance for anything that(or anyone who) lacks in morals, virtues, and standards.

9. I never read anything Jane Austen until my senior year of college. I think I was one of two students in my Jane Austen class who had not read a single Austen novel before attending the class (the other person was a guy). During the class we read all of her works except for Sense and Sensibility, which I am reading now (and so is Emily!) :)

10. I have a tendency to get angry over petty issues. This past week, as part of my personal scripture study, I read President Monson's talk about anger which he gave during Priesthood session. One line in the talk took my breath away: "To be angry is to yield to the influence of Satan." I have never thought about anger in that light so I am consciously working on refraining from getting angry over trivial situations.

I'll tag Heather, Bri, Britney, Adri, Megan H., Jess, Emily, anyone who wants to do this. Thanks Kara and Francesca for sharing your ten with me! :)

Monday, November 9, 2009

Across the USA

I LOVE living in Germantown, Maryland! We are right in the middle of some of the greatest places in the Unites States! We are just down the street from our nation's capital and tons of national history; we can go to Philadelphia, New York City, Boston, Richmond VA, or Raleigh NC for a day trip; we can get to a beach within a few hours (a necessity in my book); we live very close to Revolutionary War and Civil War battlefields (a necessity in my father's book); we are fifteen minutes away from the Washington D.C. temple where Chris and I were married over two years ago...this place is awesome. We are fully taking advantage of it while we are here!

Saturday was the Cherry Hill NJ Stake temple day (along with two other stakes that we know of) so Mimi, Pop-pop, Katie, and Julia arrived Friday night and spent the night with us. Katie and Julia were kind enough to watch Liz for Chris and me so we could go to the temple with my parents. It was packed! (It usually is on a Saturday.) We even saw a wedding which was nice--always reminds me of my wedding :)

We got back to our place with the entire afternoon to spare so we headed west to Harper's Ferry, West Virginia. (Another great point about the Eastern US--you can drive an hour or two and be in a completely different state! Not like the West where you can be traveling for FIVE hours or more and still be in the same state.) We entered the National park, waited a few minutes with some entertainment,

and took a bus to the actual town of Harper's Ferry:

Harper's Ferry was once a bustling town, as it is situated on the banks of where the Potomac River and the Shenandoah River meet. When the US economy relied on waterways and railroads, Harper's Ferry was the place to be. Harper's Ferry also has some claim in the Revolutionary and Civil Wars (I forget what exactly...but my dad can tell you!)


What's great about this town is that it has kept its charm that it had over a hundred years ago.



There are no McDonald's, gas stations, or supermarkets. There are antique stores, family-owned and operated taverns, used book stores, jewelry stores, etc. Beautiful!

One of our favorite things was the bridge that goes over the Potomac. It begins on the West Virginia side in Harper's Ferry; when you reach the other side of the bridge you are in Maryland! The rivers and the area surrounding it are absolutely gorgeous.



I'll readily admit to you that when I thought of West Virgina, I thought of brown scraggly dirt with some scattered trees (sorry to my WV friends). I now know that my first thoughts of the state were completely wrong. West Virginia is really "wild and wonderful," as their license plates say.

We loved it and we can't wait to go back!