Monday, November 14, 2011

Nathan Turns TWO!

Guess what Friday was?! Nathan's 2ND Birthday!!! 
The fun banner I made for his big day.. :)
Nathan walking down the stairs checking out all the streamers and balloons in the living room..
"BALLOONS!?!? Orange balloon?! Red balloon?! Green balloon!!!

"How old are you Nathan?" "I'm TWO!"

At Nathan's birthday party at the park-- once he finally woke up (by finally, I mean, "half an hour after his party started," and by "woke up," I mean, "got woken up by his Mom." )

All the kiddos decorating their cupcakes-- 
Nathan had a special little kid cake that we decorated together... (and all the kids wanted it.. EXCEPT NATHAN)
He just wanted to decorate a cupcake like everyone else.
Later that night we had cake and ice cream with the family...

This is Nathan conducting his birthday choir.  Every time we lit the candles he'd start conducting and start everyone off by singing, "Haaaaappppyyyyy....."
And of course-- the moment he'd been practicing for... for like, oh, weeks.  He was a total pro.

Ecuadorian tradition is to bite into your birthday cake once they're done singing and you're done wishing... {except generally this is the point where someone secretly comes behind you and pushes your face into the cake... Maybe next year, Nathan.}
But we did have fun playing with the whipped cream icing on the cake!
Lots of fun... 

And Daddy got to play, too! 

 I can't believe he's already two years old!  One thing that I love about motherhood is that every month I'm like, "You know, Nathan was cool last month, but this month is the BEST EVER!" And then the next month I say the exact same thing again.  Month after month he just keeps getting better and better--  I don't know if all kids are this fun, but I sure like Nathan.  He's such a great kid and I'm so lucky to be his mom!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Pumpkin Carving

Time to carve our pumpkin!  What fun!
Here goes....!

Except that Nathan did NOT like the feeling of the seeds one bit! "Ahhh!  Sticky!!"

The stem (or "hat" as N called it) was particularly fun to play with...

...But a little tricky to get back on just right.

Trying to blow out the fake candle inside the pumpkin...

Here we have the "Papa pumpkin" and the "baby pumpkin." If you ask him where the "Mama pumpkin" is he shrugs, shakes his head, and says, "No hay!" (English translation: "There isn't any!")

Our Mickey Mouse Jack-o-lantern!
Showing his Mickey Mouse ears!

Uh... posing? We're working on that.. :)
 We had a lot of fun carving Nathan's first pumpkin!!  Halloween was so much fun this year!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Update on Us

I wanted to blog about a few things, and I know I really should get back to our Ecuador trip, before I forget all the details, but in the mean time I'm falling behind on blogging all of the other things going on in life.

So-- just a few quick updates:

We got a new(ish) washer and dryer!  Yesssss... As you may remember, we had bought beautiful, brand new ones, just over a year ago.  Well, long {and sad} story short, when we moved into our new house, we needed electric ones, and we had just bought gas ones.  So we ended up selling those to a good home and had been keeping our eyes out for a good deal.  Well we found one!  We got this set for $150... TOTAL.  And they work perfectly, which, obviously makes them even better {than, I don't know, if they hadn't worked..}
Nathan helping me show off the washer and dryer.

Nathan not loving that the dryer was on while I had him pose for a picture. 
Anyway, so that was exciting, because going to laundromats when it was 110 degrees outside was getting old real fast.

We celebrated our 4th anniversary! {Well, not really.  We have been married for four years; we haven't celebrated yet.} On our anniversary, I was in CA for a friend's wedding-- and because of the distance she was traveling, the only day to do her endowment at the temple, her bridal shower, and bachelorette party-- was on our anniversary.  We decided that it was okay for me to go, because we're planning on having lots and lots of anniversaries in the future.  But not to worry-- we're planning a nice, relaxing anniversary weekend to celebrate four wonderful years... The theme of our anniversary this year: Four is just the beginning of four-ever! :)

Also, Freddy's started training at Wells Fargo-- he's going to be a personal banker {and my guess is a pretty good one, too!}.  But before he can get to work, he has a month long training, so he's been enjoying that.  He'll be working at the busiest branch in the whole state {literally}, so hopefully that training really prepares him well!

We've both started a new semester with BYU-Idaho.  This is Freddy's first semester with BYU-I online, and so far he's enjoying it.  But now he totally understands my Tide Cycle of Stress, I like to call it.  Monday I'm like, Okay, lots to do, but I've got a whole week.  Tuesday, I'm like, Wow, okay, more time consuming than I realized, I've really got to get things done here.  Wednesday, Holy cow!  How am I ever going to get all this done?! Thursday, I HAVE TO DROP THIS CLASS.  THERE IS NO WAY I CAN EVER FINISH ALL OF THIS.  Friday (as I turn more and more things in), Okay, I'm most the way done, but I still have a lot to do... And Saturday, once everything is all done and turned in, Huh. That wasn't so bad. I made it through... One week down!  Woohoo!!  :) Essentially that's my weekly Tide Cycle of Stress.  I'm a wreck on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, but come Saturday and Sunday-- I'm totally fine again. 
Anyway, we're enjoying classes, and one week down.  Only twelve to go.  

Tomorrow both Freddy and I are teaching classes-- his normal Sunday School lesson for the 14-15 year olds, and I get to teach the YW lesson tomorrow. :)  We both really enjoy teaching, and it works out perfectly that we're busy during opposite hours of church, that way the other person can be the back up if Nathan's not enjoying nursery as much as we'd like him to.

Anyway, time for me to get to bed.  And thanks, Em, for motivating me to blog right now

And, shout out to the new Blogger dashboard. I love it!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Nathan's Big Boy Bed!

We interrupt our regularly scheduled programming of our Adventure in Ecuador series to bring you an exciting addition to the Sarmiento home....

NATHAN'S NEW BIG BOY BED!!!! :) Before he had a crib, but had never slept it in the whole night-- he's pretty much been with us in our bed since birth. Which has been fine, but we were ready for a change. :)
We'd been wanting to get him his own bed for a long time now, and we happened to come across an amazing deal from Groupon that made it all worth it. We paid $50 to get $200 worth at the Mattress Firm, and then we found this twin mattress and box spring which ended up being perfect for us. We walked out of there paying $20! So that's a mattress and box spring, with taxes and all for just under $70-- we're so pleased! (Considering originally we were looking at just getting a basic twin mattress-- no box spring-- from Walmart for $100-- which probably wouldn't have been anywhere near as nice as this one!) Nathan loves his bed! The first night he slept until 6:10 am all by himself! Then the next night was a little harder-- he woke up a couple times and was pretty sad to find himself all alone-- so I went in there... and yeah, accidentally fell asleep in his room. And then last night, he woke up a couple times-- the first time he was screaming but then the second time he just got up and headed toward our bedroom, without any drama.. SO! Overall, I think we're making good progress!
Also, we like that his bed makes the room look at lot less crowded than the useless crib did. So that's good--And he chose his sheets-- although it was a toss up-- he was very indecisive as he went from sports, to Toy Story, to Spiderman--- all favorites of his. Finally the sports theme won, because of ALLLL the balls on it. He runs from one side of the bed to the other, pointing at each ball. It goes like this:
"Basketball???!! (Dunks the ball) SLAM DUNK!!! Soccer ball??!! (Kicks) GOAAALLLL!! Baseball?!!? (Swings bat) HOME RUN!! Football!?!!? (Throws the ball down) TOUCHDOWN!!!!
(Now, obviously he can't say them as clearly as that.. but that is what he does, I promise!)
We're glad to have our own room again and that Nathan likes his room so much!
{And we'll get back to our Ecuador posts just as soon as I get our picture CD from my mother in law-- because we just have the actual pictures that we took on her camera and I am not scanning them all in. Until then, enjoy the more up to date posts!}

{Ignore the fact that Nathan is holding my chapstick in every. single. picture. He's a little obsessed with it. He loves that silly lid. That, and anything that resembles a lid like that, i.e. the little plastic white thing that covers the end of those springy door stoppers. Rolls eyes.}

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Ecuador: Trip to Esmeraldas

First, let's finish up our trip to BaƱos-- on the way back we stopped in Ambato at a mercado, or market place. We ate a typical Ecuadorian dish there, called llapingachos. It was SO good (I even ordered a second plate to share-- wait, did I share it? Maybe not, because it was delicious!) And I also loved the fresh juices that they offered at a nearby stand, too.
The cooks at work...Nadia (F's aunt--Marco's wife), Zoila (F's grandma), Marco (F's uncle), and Elvie (F's aunt).
One of my favorite things in all of Ecuador was all the fruits and vegetables they had. Here's a view at just a small part of their fresh fruits at the mercado. So much color! :)

Then, after Ambato, we stopped in Quisapincha, which is a little town near Ambato, famous for their leather goods. It was incredible what we were able to find there, and at unbeatable prices! We ended up getting leather jackets for each of us, and I got a couple pairs of cute boots, too! Loved it!
We got back to Quito late that night (Wednesday the 18th), and then left for Esmeraldas on Friday the 20th. Esmeraldas is a coastal city, famous for their beautiful beaches. (And they are beautiful.) It was about a four hour? drive there, but with several winding roads...
We stopped along the way to grab a bite to eat, and Diana (F's cousin) discovered a great way for keeping track of little Nathan! (That's her headband wrap thing..) :)
Nathan, just hanging out.. :)
Fermine, Diana's dog got to come to the beach with us-- which was great for keeping Nathan entertained during the drive. While we ate, he got to take Fermine for walk!
On the road again... (And that sign, about the curves coming up... yeah, no kidding. Although, to be fair, they have been doing a lot of renovation on their highways, and I was impressed with them, overall.)
This was the beach house that we stayed at-- it was Marcelo's (Diana's husband) parents' beach house. It was in a small gated community that was right up along the coast. Perfect, because since we were there during the off season, we had the whole beach to ourselves!
Now, I know beach pictures aren't the most flattering, but I'll make the sacrifice so that all can enjoy the pictures. ;-)
Nathan really enjoyed playing in the sand and the small waves-- and hey, there are shells and rocks to find!
The Ecuadorian beaches are suuuuuper pretty.. but beyond that, the water is warmer than you'd ever expect! And because they don't really have seasons, it stays that way all year long. You could go in the water at 4 am or 4 pm and it would still be warm enough to swim and enjoy the water.
Nathan with Grandma-- :)
These were the stairs down to the water, and the rocks that separated the higher ground with houses from the ocean-- during high tide, most of the stairs were covered!
Freddy climbing on the rocks. :)

The boys showering off after swimming..
The sun down there is suuuuper strong. I forgot to wear sunscreen for like ten minutes and I was already like a lobster..
Andddd... this is in town, when our camera broke.. It would turn on for like 0.2 seconds and then die. So... that's the last picture that we got on our camera. Luckily, Monica (my mother in law) was there with us and we got to use her camera for the rest of the trip (which was totally fine because her camera is way better than ours anyway.. Ha..).
And more to come, because after that we went on a week long road trip all along the coast and throughout Ecuador!! :)