Friday, May 27, 2011

Picture Overload

As promised, here is what we've been up to! I woke up Tuesday morning and found this note on the table. :) He was already out in the backyard working away and in the meantime found this heart shaped rock!

This might be the only picture I have of the backyard before any of the pavers went in so as of now, lets use this as the BEFORE picture (even though Spence had already worked out there for hours and hours in the weeks before tilling, finding probably hundreds of nails from when our home was built, and flattening out the yard).

After he tilled the entire yard, it was time to set up a sprinkler system. Thanks to his good friend Vaughn and BIL Ben's tool-man supplies, it was set up in no time, timer and all.

He spent quite a few hours leveling the yard at this point and drawing out the plan of how he wanted the yard to look. After figuring out the exact dimensions, choosing pavers and a pattern, etc. it was time to order those puppies!

A huge delivery truck pulled up to our house Wednesday morning around 9:15 am and delivered seven pallets of pavers... most of which he was able to fit in the garage. AWESOME!

This picture is totally in the wrong place, but this is the before picture of our patio... a nice big slab of concrete accompanied by a yard full of AZ dirt. :) Don't mind me in the reflection of the sliding door... I should have thought that one through a little better.

By about 2 pm, Spence had already built the retention walls where we will eventually plant some vines that will climb and cover some of the ugly cinderblock wall that we have been looking at for almost a year.

Thanks to Spencer's Dad, he was able to create a mechanism to level out the sand that would lie underneath the pavers.

Spencer had tons of help from his good buddies that he has made at school this year. Dave helped Spence with the retention wall and laying the sand in just a few hours Wednesday night.

Thursday morning Matt and Keegan pulled up bright and early and put down the majority of the pavers... I couldn't believe how fast they were going! They seriously were sweating bullets out there and working SO hard.

By 10:30, it looked like this:

Keegan was a trooper and stayed a few hours more.

From the sliding door looking out...

Then I woke up this morning and found that he had finished even more! He used extra pavers to create a trail leading to where our planter boxes will go and to the back gate. I love it!

I am so proud of Spencer and am SOOOOO excited about our backyard! It looks better than I ever thought it could! There is still some work to be done, but the majority of it is already behind us. Summer BBQ's here we come! :)

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Well, no baby yet folks!

He gave me a scare a few weeks ago and made me believe that he was going to make his appearance much earlier than planned... as in, four weeks earlier. Although it would have been so fun to finally meet him and see his cute face (and not have a pregnant, heavy body anymore) , it is probably in his best interest to stay cooped up in my belly until he is fully ready.

Hopefully that means he is coming sooner than later. I mean I am 38 weeks now, so you would think that he is fully cooked, right? :) I'm just getting really anxious for him to come and I am so excited that another two weeks seems like an eternity away. I am becoming more patient by the day though!

In the mean time we have been trying to keep busy instead of sitting around and waiting because I have figured out the hard way that sitting around and waiting is the most horrible thing when you're trying to make the time pass.

So Spencer has started working on the backyard! It's a project that we've been planning for a long time now and it's finally happening. We ordered the pavers, they were delivered yesterday and it already looks AWESOME!!! Really though, it is already transforming into a real backyard and we could not be more excited. Both Spencer and I really can't believe it. More to come on the backyard in future posts because I have a ton of pictures that I haven't put on my computer yet.

Also, my feet have been looking something like this lately...

Of course I didn't put a picture of my real feet on here, or anyone else's real feet because quite frankly I think feet are disgusting. So cartoonish feet demonstrate it well enough. My legs have retained so much water in the last two weeks that when I touch them even slightly, they leave dents in my feet for at least an hour. It really is unbelievable. My feet used to go back to normal after being up for a few minutes, but that does not happen anymore! And this picture is not too far off of what my feet look like in real life. Oh boy oh boy... please come soon. It's hard to do anything productive when your feet are twice the size that they normally are. I used to be able to wrap my hand around my ankle and almost touch my fingers together... now my hand only makes its way around half of my ankle. No exaggeration.

Good thing that he is coming soon! He will make it all worth it.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Going to the Dark Side....

For the longest time I wanted to try going darker... and by that I mean my hair. I would muster up enough guts to try it and then when the time would come around to take the plunge and set the appointment to get my hair done, I would always revert to going blonde again.

Over time Spencer decided that he wanted me to try it too. By the time he was encouraging me to go darker, I officially decided that I couldn't ever do it and I would always stick to the lighter side when it came to my hair.

This last time I got my hair done Spence was not too excited that I was going light again so he made me promise that the next time I got my hair done, I would go darker.

The promise was made.

And so it is.

After this baby is here, I will go darker.

I'm nervous to see what it looks like and hopefully I like it enough. I was looking through pics today and realized that I have had my hair dark before!!! (well at least dark for me)

So here's to many changes in the near future! And if my hair looks something like it does in these pics, I think I might be ok with it.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Pregnancy Updates

I will miss the tricks I can do with my belly...

I was sitting with my cup like this the other night and didn't even notice. I guess I've acclimated quite well to having this belly of mine.

And here I am at 36 weeks!

I went in yesterday for my 36 week check up and I am dilated 1 cm. My body is definitely getting ready for this little guy to come! Braxton hicks are becoming more painful by the day and I have had them all. day. long. I started feeling them pretty hard in my back yesterday and today I had them so hard that I had to stop pushing my cart at the store multiple times. They have slowed down a little bit but I'm not sure how much longer I'll be pregnant! I was reading a website last night of all the symptoms of going into labor and I was able to check off everything on the list but one... my water breaking. So were just waiting! My due date is officially June 11th, but they are only going off of the size of the baby. Could be days... or it could be weeks!

What are your predictions?

Day/time of delivery
hair? color?

Guess away!


Spencer's last day of class was last Thursday, so naturally, we celebrated!

I have been wanting to try this recipe that I found here. If any of you have had the privilege of eating at either Tucanos or Rodizio Grill in Utah, or I guess if you served your mission in Brazil, you may have had the chance of devouring these babies. They are SO delicious! So I finally gathered all of the ingredients that I needed and made pao de queijo to help Spencer celebrate his last day of class.

I quickly made a sign before he got home and used the translation app on my computer to translate something like, "Congratulations on your last day of class!" I don't know if it's exactly right... but he got the point. :)

As for the recipe... it's awesome. They are definitely the best fresh, and if you're going to try them, I would leave off the salt that she added on the top of the individual rolls. Other than that, they are perfect!

Wahoo Spence on almost completing your first full year of dental school! One down and only three more to go! :)

I came home to...

...these beauties last week.

Thank you to my handsome hubby!

He is also continuing a tradition that his father had in their home growing up. Every year, his Dad gave his Mom a corsage to wear on Mother's Day. Usually the young women in their ward actually make the corsages and pre-sell them for a fundraiser for girls camp and deliver them to the doors of those that purchased one so that the women will have them Sunday morning when they wake up for church.

Such a cute tradition... and it is super fun to see nearly all of the women in the ward with one on at church that Sunday. I hope the tradition stays alive for many years to come! :)

Monday, May 9, 2011

2nd Grade

I finished my student teaching way back in December and have been able to go back only twice since then to visit.

This last Friday was the most recent of the two and my oh my, I sure do miss having 21 little kiddos racing towards me for a hug while simultaneously screaming down the hallway, "Mrs. Hill!!!!!!!"

My mentor teacher never tells them when I might come so every time I do, it is a complete surprise. I think I like it the best this way. :) I love seeing their faces when they finally recognize me with this huge belly of mine and I secretly love it when they try to walk back to the classroom as well behaved as they can and instead they can't stop talking, smiling, and giggling because I am there for the afternoon.

This time around I was able to tell them that our little baby is a boy and oh man, those 13 boys in that classroom were cheering and hollering as loud as they could! I also showed them my 3-d ultrasound pictures since they won't be able to meet the baby because he will be born in the summertime. They asked as many questions as they could including:

"What are you going to name him?"
I told them Colby, but that was not enough.

"What is his middle name going to be?"

and then my favorite,

"What's his last name going to be?"
I couldn't help but chuckle a little under my breathe... I helped them figure out that it was probably going to be Hill :)

Just a few things that I don't want to forget:

~ The second we got back into the classroom, two or three little girls started furiously drawing me pictures so they could finish them before the end of the day and before I left.

~ "Mrs. Hill! You're tummy is SO BIG!!!!"

~ My little friend Alex gave me two words of advice, "Good and luck." She continued to tell me about her little brother and that when they turn four, I better watch out and not let Colby on any counters because he will definitely find the candy that's hidden up there in the cupboards. Before we left for the buses, she ran up to me and fished a little something out of her pocket... a quarter.

"Mrs. Hill, this is to help you buy baby clothes for him."

I just love their little personalities! I also walked out the door with a few more treasures that the little cuties were keeping for themselves to take home. Rocks that they had found from recess :)

I can't help but go back one more time to visit before the school year is over. Friday it is! And once again, it will be a secret.

Chandler Shower

I was lucky enough to have a few baby showers put on in my honor for this little boy of ours. The first was put together by my mother-in-law and sister-in-laws while we were visiting in Utah a few weeks ago. It was absolutely fabulous to visit with many of the Hill and Peterson family members in Utah that we miss so much! The food was so delicious and Nicole made the cutest cupcakes I have ever seen! Too bad I didn't pull my camera out ONCE! I have got to get better at that.

My sisters here in AZ put together an AWESOME shower for me a few weekends ago. It was so great to have some of the Peterson clan there as well as a few friends from Peoria and of course, my sisters.

The food was so good... I could not stop eating it.

On the menu was:

Emily's cheese ball with crackers
veggie platter
breadsticks with marinara and alfredo sauce
cake pops
oreo truffles
delicious fruit
Mom's shortbread cookies
cotton candy
and Izze's for drinks!

Here was the layout... and the "C" in the middle is for his name, Colby. The decor was SO cute! And I have to confess that I only have pictures of this one because I stole them from my sisters blog :) Thanks Erin!

Emily and Lyla

The sisters

It was so perfect to just visit with family and friends, open presents together, and enjoy each others company. Thank you sisters for making it all happen!!! And thank you to everyone who could make it! This little man is already spoiled and he isn't even here yet! Spencer and I have been blessed with so many wonderful family members and friends and are so thankful for all the effort that has gone into these gatherings!
Thank you!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

I Have to Brag....

The other day Spencer told me about a small awards ceremony that the school was holding in honor of all the dental school students (1st-3rd year). It was students only... no family invited. He thought that all the awards were probably going to the 3rd year students so he chose to come home and study for an exam instead.

The ceremony was yesterday and last night he got a call from a friend of his that attended the ceremony asking him where he was! There are about 110 first year dental students and only 9 awards were given out... 4 for student council members due to leadership abilities, and 5 for all of the other students.

Well take a looksy at who got an award!....

He kind of thought his friend was pulling his leg so today he decided to ask one of his professors who was in charge of the awards. Sure enough! And here is a brief explanation of the award from his professor:

Golden Hands: After looking at overall assessments, practical exams (where he has an alloted time to carve or wax up a specific tooth), discussing with many faculty members, etc., the three people that receive this award were students that do well on a consistent basis and have dependable skills when it comes to operative handling and working of the teeth.

He further explained that this is a prestigious award for their school and they believe that the people who receive it will be at the top of their class operatively now, as well as when they leave dental school.

Wahoo Spence!!! Every Friday he comes home telling me about his practical exams and he always seems to be able to do them extremely well and in a very short amount of time... it has definitely manifested itself as being one of his many talents.

I'm so excited for him and I love seeing all of his super hard work pay off.

Awesome job babe! We have an amazing dentist in the works! :)

Monday, May 2, 2011

Otter Pops

This means its summertime.

At least the beginning of summer. My teeth better watch out because I have been sucking these babies down right and left already and it hasn't even hit 100 degrees outside.

By the way, have you ever tried two of these at the same time?!?! Ya eating a blue and a red one together at once?

I tried it tonight.

Let me just tell you, it brings otter pops to a whole new level. The possibilities are endless.

And by the way... I decided tonight that I need to grow my hair back. I chopped it just below my shoulders a few months ago and I don't know what I was thinking. I have always had long hair! I was looking at our engagement pictures tonight and realized how much I wished I had it back.


This year Spence and I were able to attend the Easter Pageant at the Mesa, Arizona temple grounds. It was a beautiful performance and really set the tone for what Easter is truly about. Then on Sunday our ward put on an amazing choir performance that really pulled at the heart strings. I love Easter Sunday and really taking the time to think about the life, death, and most importantly, the resurrection of Christ. On top of all of that, we were able to squeeze in some fun Easter activities.

Spence only remembers decorating Easter eggs once in his lifetime... and that was with me on our first Easter together as a married couple. Of course that was hard for me to hear since I have fond memories doing this very tradition probably every year that I can remember. So naturally, we dyed Easter eggs on Saturday night and had a blast. It was super fun to see Spence ask questions like,

"What if I leave my egg in the blue for a really REALLY long time? Like all night long? What do you think would happen?"

His curiosity was at an all time high and it reminded me a little of when I took him to the Oregon Coast to see the tide pools... he was seriously a little boy again seeing all of those starfish and sea anemones. Proof below... look at his eyes. So funny!

This pic makes him look like a ghost! ha!

He couldn't believe that he was seeing these things in person!!! After taking all of those biology classes where he studied these kinds of things in books... he could finally see them in real life. He was in his own little world for those few hours. :)

Back to Easter.

While we were decorating Easter eggs, I told him about an Easter tradition in our family... the Golden Egg.

Every year growing up my Dad would hide a very large plastic egg somewhere in the house. Inside was the best present of all... usually a gift card or $5 or something. Throughout the day he would give us one riddle at a time that would help us locate the egg. Now keep in mind that there are ten kids in the family, and only ONE egg. This was intense.

I clearly remember one year as a little girl being so upset that I couldn't find the egg because the riddles were just too hard for me to understand and I just knew that my older brothers and sisters would find the egg before I could. I wanted to find it SO bad! My sweet Mother, who was cooking dinner at the time, took me into the living room, sat me on her lap and rocked me in her squeeky rocking chair while I cried and cried. I was clearly so upset when just a few minutes later I felt something funny in the pocket of my Mom's apron. She tried not to crack a smile as I sat there with a confused look on my face trying to figure out what it could be. I finally reached my hand in the pocket of her apron and lo and behold....


Those tears dried up in an instant. I could not believe that I had found the egg and I was beyond excited.

I had not gone to the store to get anything on Saturday for Easter morning because the day's schedule just didn't allow me to. But I went downstairs Sunday morning and found a delicious breakfast that Spencer had made just for me. Sitting next to my plate were six clues written on little pieces of paper. He had hid a golden egg! I sure got a keeper :)

I searched all morning before church and could not find the egg... he's a pretty clever one.

When we got back from church I took a few more minutes and finally found the "golden egg substitute" taped behind a frame hanging on our wall. We didn't have time to get a huge plastic egg so paper would just have to do this year. The paper said, "Look on Spencer's computer." To make a long story even longer, I decided that I just wanted to be surprised when the present came in the mail in a few days. Well, today was that day! He is always saying that he never knows what to get me for presents so he would rather just give me money to go and get something... but take a look at this... I think he always does a pretty dang good job:

I was SO excited and was totally not expecting this! It's a 10 inch tall Christus statue that fits perfectly on our shelf. I've always wanted one but thought that it was something we would get maybe when we moved into the house that we would be in forever... ya know... in a stinkin long time ha! I absolutely love it.

Then he pulls out another package for Mother's Day and a late bday present! Here they are:

I love the Willowtree collection but I have never had one of their figurines before. He totally outdid himself and like always, spoiled me.

I sure do love that man! I'm glad I get to keep him. :)