Monday, March 18, 2013

Baby Brooklyn

The newest member of the Paul LaClaire family is here! She arrived on October 14, 2012 at 11:24pm. She was 7 pounds 2 ounces and 20 inches long. Now I understand this post is little late, knowing that Brooklyn is now a little over 5 months old ... but hey, better late then never they always say, right? Brooklyn is a wonderful addition to our family. She is so adorable, and always has us smiling.

Brooklyn has already had her first Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, Valentines, St. Patrick's and soon Easter! Sooo fun having a baby during the Holidays!

Brooklyn is always smiling. Such a happy baby! When Grandy was here, she sang "A- You're Adorable" to her, she loves it! I finally learned the song, and without fail she smiles every time I start to sing it. I think it's easy to say that smiling is her favorite. She has made the transition from no baby, to baby pretty easy!
Being a new mom has been wonderful, fun, amazing and hard. There is so much to learn. Everyone's experience is different from pregnancy and beyond. Taking advice from people is good, but they way they do things could work for them but not for me. In my small silly brain I kinda thought things would come naturally. I thought I would be shocked with knowing all things simultaneously when I had Brooklyn. Well, oddly enough (ha) that sure did not happen. Sometimes it has taken prayers, advice, reading websites and books, and lots of faith to learn how to take care of this little precious girl. But I guess the most important thing that I do know is that I love this little girl and her daddy loves her, and even more importantly her Heavenly Father loves her even more. That is something I can not comprehend! 
Even though people have different experiences, I think there is one thing that most can agree on, having kids is the hardest, yet most wonderful thing ever. I'm sure it gets better and better and harder and harder as they grow. I'm only in the very early stages of it and it's already the best! I wouldn't change it for anything.
Brooklyn just turned 5 months. She's 14 pounds and 25 1/4 inches long. Usually they don't have a check up at 5 months, but her 4 month appointment was eh. She had dropped from the 30% to the 5%. The doctor demanded a weight check at 5 months! Meany ;)  So the last month has been full of making this baby cubby! In one month she gain about 3.5 pounds! Boom! This mama is figuring it out (slowly, no pro yet) She is back up to the 30%. The doctor was happier with me this last visit, and I with him)

Arizona is the best, hot weather = cute little tiny swimming suits. I got one for her at my baby shower that every girl wants! We have already hit the pool a couple times. Right now it's perfect weather. It's only going to get hotter and it will get too hot, even to swim. So we are enjoying every second!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

England May 2012

I feel like every time write on my blog, I have to catch up on a million things that has happened! I don't blog as much as should or want to. My life is about to get a little more busy and exciting in the next few months. Right now I'm 24 weeks pregnant, due on October 26! :) We are busily preparing for a little girl to join our family. I am also happy to say that I have not been sick - (knock on wood), yes tired but feeling great! Paul would say I'm a little "fussy" here and there, which is maybe true, but I'm allowed to be fussy right?! I love having a little spirit grow inside me. It is such a miracle!

In May we got back to our big trip to England. Paul and I both took 2 weeks off and went off to England! Paul and I tagged along with my mom and dad and Paul's sister Kim. We saw all the sights we could. It was a crazy trip and we would all go back in a heartbeat. We were fortunate to get to stay with Paul's brother Curtis and his wife Becky. They are living in England right now with their five kids. It was a long time to be away from home, so it was really nice to be with family and eating some American food! We were grateful to have them to stay with. It worked out really well!
We took the train everyday we went to London. Curtis and Becky live about a 40 minute train ride outside of London. We would try to catch the train with no stops to Waterloo, which was where we got off. We always seemed to get to the station just before one was leaving! On the last day we went into London, we finally caught a train with no stops! We were all excited.

Great family picture in front of the London Bridge

We were so proud to see St. Bartholomew's Church. We were sad that we didn't get to go in. The preacher walked out and said he is little English accent: "I'm afraid the church is closed." :( There is also a St. Bartholomew's Hospital right around the corner from the church.

A stinky red telephone booth, but we totally all had to take pictures in it! It's a RED telephone booth in England. This is one of the things on Kim's list that was a must do! 

The famous Tower of London! Lots and lots of history at the Tower of London. This is where all the crown jewels are! Lots of bling and gold everywhere in the tour. There was no cameras allowed so we didn't get any pictures, but there were some pretty stunning, expensive and beautiful things in this exhibit! There was a gold punch bowl that could hold over 130 bottles of wine! We learned about when and where certain crowns and other things were worn. They have carried on traditions that  people have been doing for the past 500 to 1000 years! Another exhibit in the Tower of London was the royal armor (English spell it armour I think.) As we walked through we saw different armors from the many kings England has had. We also got to check out some ancient swords and other weapons that were used way back when.  There is tons of history everywhere in England, everything is so so so so old. We also got to attend the ceremony of the keys, that has been going on every night for the past 700 years! The ceremony of the keys is basically in a nut shell, the guards and the beefeaters locking up the Tower of London. It's very interesting how much they go through just to lock a door. You know what they say, American's think 100 years is old like English think 100 miles is long. 100 miles? We did that 2 times in one day going to and from Grandma's house - many times! 

Old fashion train car. I don't know what else to say, England is also known for their trains - and here is a old one :)

The famous Big Ben! For those who didn't know, Big Ben is the bell, NOT the clock.

Windsor Castle where Queen Elizabeth lives most of the time! Windsor Castle is huge! One really cool thing about many of the places we went to, had what was called an audio tour. Many of them looked like old cell phones and some where Ipods. Parts of the tour would have a posting of a number, when you typed the number into your device, a voice would continue to tell you about what you were looking at. We spent a lot of the tour asking each other what number we were on... "Paul, number 12 was back there, we are looking at 18." ;) Windsor Castle, St. Paul's Cathedral, Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace Muse had an audio tour. Some very interesting things were learned, ask Dad about the man whose body was preserved in brandy!

Paul enjoying his very missed Kebab! (No, it's not on a stick- I thought the same thing) He was so happy :) The meat that is in the  Kebab is cooked on a large skewer for long time. It's a really big chunk of meat so as the out side cooks they take big ol' knifes and cut off the cooked meat. This meat then is then used the Kebab. Meat and other veggies are put in a pita and enjoyed! I never got my own, but I did try it, kebabs are very tasty.

One of my favorites, Saint Paul's Cathedral! We hiked to the very top of this building! It was 1,167 steps to the very top, I counted every step. Just kidding, that's how may google said it was. I thought it was a 1,000,000 steps it was so many! The view at the top was incredible, we could see all the way around the dome. It was a beautiful day and it was worth the hike!

The Big Red Bus Tour! We had this tour for 48 hours. During this time, we could get off and on as much as we wanted. The bus had a route it took around the main part of London. We listened to the tour guide tell us about many of the things we passed. It was a really cool to see lots of things all at once. We got to ride in an open top double decker bus! One thing we passed along the way was the U.S. Embassy. The U.S. Embassy in England is the only one in the world that the land isn't owned by the U.S. When the Embassy was built, the land was not for sale, so they couldn't buy it!

This is the famous tube! We rode it lots when we were getting from place to place. The transportation systems in London are virtually flawless, it's amazing! Everything is well marked, it's like an airport, only you are riding in a tube 5 stories below ground, in London England! So many of the people who live in London don't own cars, train, tube and bus rides are so easy to navigate through. Believe me they get used, it seemed like every moment of the day the stations were buzzing with people rushing to catch the next train. By the end of the week, we were pros at finding what route we needed to take!
Another highlight was going to see Wicked! I can't believe that we got to see Wicked in England! Mom and I were so excited. It was a little different since all the actors had accents. It was very cool!

After visiting the London are for about a week, Paul and I got to go to the Island of Jersey, one of the places that Paul served on his mission. Jersey is a 5 by 9 mile island, so small but so beautiful, and surprisingly 90,000 people living on this little island! We stayed with Debbie, a lady that Paul baptized while on his mission. It was very fun to see her! She took us to all the sites Jersey has. On one side of the island on a clear day, you can see the cost of France, unfortunately it was a bit cloudy so we weren't able to see it. But the island is actually closer to France than England. This picture (above) is a view of a lighthouse off the coast.
The next picture down (above) is a picture of Elizabeth Castle. While the tide is out, you can walk to the castle! It was so cool walking out in the middle of the ocean with out getting wet! There was a pathway to walk on, so you aren't walking on the wet wet sand. When the tide is in, you can take a boat out to it. 

Castle Howard a stately home in North Yorkshire 
After we spent couple of days in Jersey we took a train up to the north part of England. It was about a 4 hour train ride. Paul has a mission friend, Jon Tilley, who lives in Scarborough. We got to stay at his place and hang out with him and his girlfriend Rachel. It was fun to see North England! It was a little different than the south, more open and less compact and huge like London. Tilley took us all over the Scarborough area.

It was a great trip to England! It was a new experience to see how other people live in a different country. I would defiantly go back to visit again.

Sunday, January 15, 2012


Our biggest news of the year is that we got a dog. If you know me, I don't really "do" the whole dog deal. I was totally against it. I thought I would probably NEVER get a dog! But then of course I married a major animal lover and wa-bam, we have a dog. I am just so nice :) Needless to say I honestly love our little puppy named Holly. Holly is a black lab retriever mix (someone told me that she has some pit bull in her, we don't know though). She is so fun and teaches us some responsibility and lots of patients. 
Paul is the fantastic trainer and has already taught her to sit, shake with both paws, speak, lay down, go to jail (kennel) and army crawl is in what he is works right now. 
We adopted her from and animal shelter that is in PetsMart when she was 8 weeks, she had just gotten spayed and had hernia surgery 3 days before we got her. Now she is 13 weeks. She has been to see the Vet 2 times, each time she was very good and stood very still! Everyone she meets thinks she is the cutest thing ever (and their right) and automatically Holly thinks she has a new best friend. 

 We are still working on potty training her. I just don't think she quite knows how to tell us she needs to go outside. Although, she is doing pretty good!
She is our sweet girl. Loves to cuddle and play and chew on her bone and steal our socks! 


Monday, July 4, 2011

Disney World


We got to spend 5 days in Orlando, 4 of those days were in the Disney parks. We went to Animal Kingdom the first day, which is best described as a really really awesome zoo! Our favorite ride of the park was Expedition Everest. We went on this ride at least 6 or 7 times, and after a couple my Mom was done riding. But she got this sweet picture of us! We are actually on this!!

They have a safari that we went on with all different types of animals from different parts of the world. It was pretty exciting! I would be lying if I told you that this is our safari truck, and that my mom snuck out and got this really great picture of us (see there I am waving) :) Just kidding. But I thought it was a pretty cool picture of the safari ride!

Here is all of us in front of the famous Animal Kingdom Tree! The day we went to Animal Kingdom was Paul's birthday. He wore a "Happy Birthday" pin, so everyone could say Happy Birthday to him!

Happy Birthday to Pirate Paul :) It was a very fun day!

Magic Kingdom was my favorite! Everything about Magic Kingdom is so magical (hence the name, very well thought out) I love all the attractions, decorations, characters, it's all so awesome. Pirates of the Caribbean, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, Buzz Lightyear, The Jungle Cruise, Peter Pan, Splash Mountian (yes we got soaked!), The Haunted Mansion (Paul screamed like a girl), Monsters Inc Laugh Floor, I think I'm missing a few, some of these we went on a few times! The Monster's laugh floor was really funny, It's an improv show full of jokes, my Dad even got on camera to be asked a question, it was so fun!
Andrea has a friend that works at Magic Kingdom during the summer, Joseph. He hooked us up the whole week with lots of fast passes,  front of the line spots over and over again. It's defiantly worth having a friend inside! It was awesome. He is a really cool guy. 

I think we did everything we wanted to! One of our favorites is Space Mountain

We went to Hollywood Studios the next day. This was show day! Lots of fun shows: a cool stunt show based off of Indiana Jones, The American Idol experience, Beauty and The Beast musical, Fantasmic (night show with water and lights and lots of characters), also an awesome car stunt show called Lights, Motor, Action. There was also really a cool roller coaster called The Rockin' Roller Coaster featuring Aerosmith! 

It was a very fun roller coster with Aerosmith songs playing, a very smooth ride going upside down, take the back of the ride, it's the best! Even Mom loved it. She went on it a few times, along with the rest of us! Another really fun ride was and interactive Toy Story game. Before our trip to Florida my Mom and Dad met with Brother and Sister Bailey, they gave them all the ins and outs of Disney World, even down to where to sit at each show! They told us right when we got to Hollywood Studios to go right over to Toy Story and get fast passes. Good thing they told us, that is a very popular ride! Fast passes run out very fast! 

All the decorations in every ride at Disney World makes the whole experience so awesome. Everything thing is so well thought out! Toy Story has some very cleaver decorations. Toy Story was a very fun ride, we could have ridden it again and again! But we just didn't have time to, the line was so long and no more of our fast passes that we love so much. 

The next day was Epcot! Epcot was so cool! We got there before the park was open, because we got to have breakfast with the princesses, They breakfast was in Norway. A very European breakfast with things we usually don't eat for breakfast: fish, cheese slices and interesting croissant things. 

They came right to our table! We were the very first table they saw. We really like Arial's dress. She said it was made out of seaweed:) They were all very cute! We loved the Princess breakfast!

Epcot is a very big park! All the parks are big but Epcot just seemed extra big. Maybe because by this day we were all pretty tired but still having so much fun. Epcot is a few rides but the mostly the park is a big horseshoe shaped area of a bunch of different countries! Every country had little shops and restaurants, some had attractions and others had short movies about the country, everything seems so authentic! The workers in each of the countries were even from the country they were working in. It was pretty cool. Again, another very carefully thought out detail! Paul was excited to get to the United Kingdom and find authentic fish and chips! We shared some chips together, they were very tasty! 
In Japan there was a lady making little animals out of candy, it was pretty amazing to watch her.  My mom was excited to get to France! She said the things there were very much like the things in France, everything down to little candies that were in the shops. You can't see in the picture, but there is a mini Eiffel Tower there too. 

One of the rides was mission space. This ride was a simulator ride that simulates a space craft going to mars. You could choose "Less Intense" or "More Intense". Basiclly it was either no spinning or spinning. In the spinning one, the simulator would spin 35 MPH to act like G-force. We did less intense the first time we went, it was pretty cool but kind of whimpy. My Dad, Andrea and I wanted to go on the more intense one, now that we knew better. Paul didn't go the first time but concluded when we were on our way the second time: "You go big or go home!" I think he enjoyed himself. 

Another cool ride was test track. It was a ride that took us thorough all the test that a car would maybe go through when tested. Incline, bumps, heat, cold, sharp corners, swerving with and without ABS breaks, and our favorite speed! At they end of the ride, (GM was obviously the sponsor) They had a bunch of cars set up to look at and even buy, A GM representative is standing by for any questions!

One of the highlights of the day was Emily got to see Tinkerbell. Disneyland doesn't have Tinkerbell, at least when we were there. But Epcot has her, and she is very popular! Emily and Mom waited almost and hour to see her. We didn't wait in any lines to see the characters so we didn't have any papers to for them to sign. So Emily asked Tink is she wanted to sign her shirt, Tink told Emily, No sorry mouse's rules. We thought that was interesting. A nice lady had a piece of paper so that Emily could get her signature!


We had so much fun and can't wait to go back! We loved every minute of it. It was the best trip ever!

After Florida we went to Colorado. Emily graduated High School! It was very fun!
She had a graduation party that night at the church filled with pizza, volleyball and dodge-ball, lots of people came! Everyone loves Emily! Congratulation class of 2011!!!