Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Our 4th Anniversary at the National Harbor

Chris and I celebrated our 4th anniversary this past weekend at the National Harbor. Chris' parents anniversary is the day before ours so they stayed at the harbor the night before we did. I was really worried about leaving Arista overnight, but after much reassurance we headed out for an amazing mini vacation.

We stayed at the Gaylord hotel, which is massive. Our room was on the 17th floor right in the middle of the hotel, with a fantastic view of the harbor and the inside of the hotel.

After checking out our room we walked the streets, and checked out the shops. There were all kinds of neat little stores, but my favorite store had to be the Peep store. Yes, a store all about Peeps, Mike and Ikes, and Hot Tamales. They had everything from the Peep bunnies, to Peep pens, and even Peep art! It was crazy! We tried a new candy that will be coming out in Spring 2011 which is a chocolate candy with marshmallow filling. Mmmm!

After shopping we went down to the harbor to check out the "Awakening" monument. We have seen it before, but weren't ever able to touch it. We couldn't leave without a picture in the giant hand.

When through site seeing we went back to the hotel and changed for dinner. We decided to eat at Moon Bay Coastal Cuisine which was inside the hotel. We had a crab cake for an appetizer, Chris has fish and chips and I had the best crab ever! To top it off we received free dessert for being part of the anniversary package. The dessert was 2 drumsticks covered in caramel, it wasn't anything special. Then when they brought out the check they also brought out complementary COTTON CANDY! It was the coolest thing! The cotton candy came out in a beautiful glass, and it was delicious! I have never had banana flavored cotton candy before, but it is now my favorite!

After dinner we walked around the hotel, and I played on their grand piano. It had a beautiful sound. Chris printed out our wedding song "Come What May" and I played it for us. After a little while we had an audience...the picture says it all!

After taking many more pictures we changed into our swimming suits and headed for the pool. Every night they play a children's movie on a huge projection screen over the pool. We watched the movie for a little bit, sat in the jacuzzi,then went outside and sat on the lawn and watched fireworks. It was so magical!

When the fireworks were finished we went back to our room and rented "Get Him to the Greek". It was a pretty funny movie! Then we crashed. I haven't slept that great since Arista was born! Chris woke up and headed down to the spa while I slept longer. Part of our Anniversary Package included free entry into their spa which included a sauna, whirl pool and tons of free stuff! After the spa Chris ran out and got Arista from his parents and brought her up to the room. She had a blast crawling around on the marble floors, and staring at herself in the mirror.

We grabbed a quick Cinnamon roll for breakfast, and then took Arista to the pool. They have a little fountain area outside for little kids, and she LOVED crawling through. Chris took her in the pool for a while, and they had a blast there as well. Arista was a huge fan of riding the glass elevator, and crawling all over the place in the lobby.

Arista was wiped by the time we got home, and so were we! We made it just in time to change and race to church.

We cannot thank Chad and Sue enough for watching Arista overnight for us. It was great to spend quality time together for our anniversary, and to feel like we were on vacation for a little while. Thank you Chris for setting this great weekend up for all of us, and for a wonderful time! I love you!

Saturday, August 21, 2010


This darling little miracle turned 9 months today! Time seems to have slipped away since the arrival of this fun little girlie.

This month has been all about...

Toothies: Arista has 8 teeth! She got 2 while in Hawaii and 4 coming through the gums the past 2 weeks. Despite the incredible pain she has been through, she has kept a smile on her face. We've been trying our hardest to help her little teeth with frozen pretzels, giant carrot sticks, and Popsicles.

Traveling: We went from Idaho to Texas and from Texas to Hawaii and from Hawaii to Virginia. That's right, this 9 month old baby has been all over the USA! While I am clenching my seat during the turbulence, she is laughing! Arista is quite the travel bug.

Crawling: Arista took up crawling while in Hawaii, and now she is on a roll. She crawls everywhere and anywhere. Chris even taught her how to crawl up the stairs. A baby gate will be purchased in the near future.

Standing up: Now that Arista has mastered the crawl, she is all about pulling herself up on things and trying to walk. Grandma and Grandpa have a huge foot rest and she circles around it for hours at a time.

Arista currently loves sweet potato and carrot baby food, along with sweet potato Gerber puffs. She can drink from a sippy cup, and will drink formula when I am away. She has severe separation anxiety when she is away from me, but was able to sleep a night away while we celebrated our anniversary. Arista LOVES animals and is fascinated by chewy. She loves to get up really close to him until he runs away. Arista loves to swim, especially with her daddy! Arista loves life and can bring a smile to any ones face.

Arista you are a doll, and we love you more and more everyday! Happy 9 months!!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

A Very 'Cheesy" Birthday

Grandpa Chad had a birthday on Thursday and we were torn on what to get him, so we decided to be creative...

We built him a diet Mt. Dew castle with powerade pillars 2 gift cards, black licorice,bananas for palm trees and a balloon as the flag.

We went out to dinner at one of Chad's favorite places, The Cheesecake Factory.

We told our waitress that it was Chad's birthday and they brought him out the cheesecake he ordered with a candle and "Happy Birthday" written on the plate. After the chorus of singing ended and the waiters went back to work Chad asked what kind of cake they had brought out to him. In which we all laughed and told him it was the cheesecake he had ordered.

Grandpa Chad let Arista dig into his dessert along with him. She was a sticky mess, but loved every minute.

We love birthdays and were excited to be able to celebrate with Chad. We hope you had a great one! We love you!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Hawaii Trip 2010

The final day of the BAR exam Arista and I flew to Texas to meet up with Chris. After spending the night in Houston we left early the next morning on an 8 hour flight to Oahu, Hawaii.

We found this little kitty in the Houston Airport, and Arista loved playing with it on the flight.

In Texas we bought Arista this little toy steering wheel. She had a blast driving the plane and shifting the gear.

The flight went by rather quickly. We were able to watch 2 movies, have 2 meals, and Arista slept about 6 out of the 8 hours! Chris' parents picked us up at the airport and then we went to grab a quick bite to eat and then headed to Bellows Air Force base. We stayed in a 2 bedroom condo with Chris' sister Marissa and husband Chris. Chris' parents and brother and sister-in-law we in the one right next door. Our luggage was lost when we arrived, but luckily we brought a swimsuit in our carry on. We threw them on and headed to the beach, which was literally right outside the back door.

I have a huge fear of the ocean but the waves looked just like the ones from the wave pool at Roaring Springs waterpark, so I decided that I would go out there and jump in them. I was doing great, jumping through the waves until a massive one came. I thought that I would be able to stand and take it, and it totally rocked me. I was doing somersaults under the water, and the moment I came up I decided the ocean was not the place for me. So I spent most of my days working on my tan.

While I was in Idaho I made sure to get a good base tan before leaving for Hawaii, so I wouldn't get burned. Chris decided to go the first day without sunscreen...ouch! He was fried! His entire body has peeled numerous times, even his arms! It took him a good 4 days or so to recover from the horrible burn.

Arista was not a fan of the water at first.

We spent many many days soaking in the sun. Arista and her cousin Claire enjoyed playing in a little blow-up pool that Grandma Sue brought for them.

One day we went to Duke's Restaurant for dinner and to celebrate Curt's 27th birthday. We spent the night walking through shops at Waikiki. We went mini golfing one night at Bellows and Arista crawled for the first time on the golfing green. We were all so proud of her.

Were were able to go and see the Hawaii Temple while were were there one day, and it is BEAUTIFUL! It has been closed since 2008 for renovation, so we weren't able to go inside. We were able to watch a video about the Polynesian Culture center and the church, in the visitors center. It was neat to see how their visitors center is set up. After the temple we went snorkeling at Shark's Cove. It was my first time snorkeling and I was really nervous. I did great for about 20 minutes, then my mouth was hurting from biting so hard on the snorkle. We saw soo many neat looking fish, and Arista loved splashing in the water.

One of the days we went to the Arizona Memorial in Pearl Harbor. Arista loved the boat ride over to the memorial. It was neat to see all of the names, and the boat still leaking oil from so long ago. After Pearl Harbor we went and hiked the Diamond Head Volcano. There were many many stairs so Chad and Chris took turns carrying Arista up to the top. It was breathtakingly beautiful uptop. It was a steep hike, but totally worth it.

We had a great trip and were so glad we were able to have this opportunity to all be together. We spent our final days playing tennis, riding a crazy 4 person bike, and going shopping at Waikiki again.

Thank you to Chris' parents Chad and Sue for a wonderful trip. We were sad to leave and head back to the real world, but we are grateful for the photographs and memories we have. We wish our little Preslie could have been there with us, but she wasn't forgotten.