Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Baby’s Birthday Week

In our family, birthdays (especially Christmas birthdays) are a big deal.  So instead of one day of celebration, we go for a whole week.

We started off with a birthday party for all of Liam’s 1-year-old friends. Luckily for us, lots of them made the trek from LA to party.

bday party A few of his Rancho friends were able to come, too.

moms and babiesThe party had a racecar theme, complete with race. Don’t let Julie fool you, she didn’t win (though Rushton was a close second to Deanna). Race

There was even a race car cake with real toy race cars

race cake

along with tire cupcakes and other wheel-shaped foods.tire cupcakes He started off slow, but once William figured out the cupcake contained chocolate, there was no stopping him.bday cake  bday boy Liam’s generous friends gave him awesome gifts that he loves to play with.



And still likes to play with a week later.

truck farm Dump Truck After the festivities and a much-needed nap, Liam got to play with a present from Mom and Dad:


He’s not too sure about the helmet idea, though.


After the bike ride, the whole family got a present in honor of the new one year old:

new car It’s a 2008 Toyota Rav4. Only 35k miles and drives well. So far, so good.  Many thanks to Mike and Bri for their input and good taste.

On Liam’s actual birthday, he got to open a few extra presents, this time from Grandma and Grandpa Garff.

present from grandma phone

Even though I am anti Christmas presents for Christmas birthdays, we gave him a nativity so Liam has his own “decoration”.


Not that it really stops him from taking ornaments off the tree, but we tried.

The following Friday, Steve was able to get off work early due to the company Christmas party, so we took the opportunity to use Steve’s free “Give a Day, Get a Day” pass to go to Disneyland.

DSCN2710 (2)

It’s kinda sad the only day that Steve could get off to go to Disneyland was just a few short hours, but we did manage to have lots of fun together.escape  jungle cruise carousel! Toad Mr Toad's Wild Ride

The best part was that the festivities seem to never end! I was able to convince Steven and William to come on my run with me on Saturday before work.

bike path

And then off to LA for Lucy and Macy’s birthday where we had lots of fun eating, exploring, and socializing.

mail crawling at Macy party What an awesome week+!!! Thanks to everyone who helped make it fun!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Happy Birthday, Baby Boy!!!

I can’t believe our little guy is already one.  It seems like only yesterday that we were rushing across the UCLA campus from the hospital to the Bar Ceremony. Now we’re rushing across the chapel to make sure he doesn’t end up on the pulpit.

We’ve had a lot of fun with this little guy.  We knew the day we met him that those bright eyes and round face were the beginning of many months (and hopefully many more years) of fun.

NewbornP10105711 month


2 months

231 (2) 

3 months


4 months


5 months


6 months

William 002 (4) 

7 months

Nerdy William

8 months


9 months

pulling up

10 months


11 months

yummy dog treats

12 months (almost)

Bill and Billy


We’ve had a lot of fun and a lot of adventures. It’s been awesome watching him grow into his big personality and to see what traits/characteristics are sticking around.  He’s still our smiling, creature-caring,  binky-sucking, social, sensitive, silly Billy.

I’m also very glad his big, beautiful blue eyes made the cut. But surprised at how he filled out from a skinny little 10th percentile force-fed guy to a 22+ lbs chunker who can be persuaded to eat almost anything (edible or not).

We love you!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Many Adventures of Garffs at Thanksgiving

Last week was quite the week.

We picked up a new couch (which, due to the dimensions of our Explorer, entailed William and I running home in the jogging stroller).

IMGP1100I had to sell my car to convince Steven to get a new one, and boy am I glad. This replaces the broken Ikea couch we got when we were first married. It’s so soft and cushy (though we do seem to get attacked by the pillows from time to time).

We then loaded up the car to head up to St. George to meet the rest of the Garffs for Thanksgiving.

IMGP1102We had dinner at the lodge in Zion’s National Park.

Dinner went off without a hitch unless you count the fiasco of no highchair (which entailed a baby eating on my lap for most of the dinner until we could get a booster and an obvious need for both of us to change our clothes).

dinnerand a slight fall on the wagon while we were taking pictures of these two cute cousins.

riding wagon We enjoyed the stuffed animals in the museum.

grizzlyBut Daniel was a little scared

Daniel and the bearAnd so was Grandma Karen.

scared karenWilliam was so excited at first, because he thought the polar bear was Kiki,

polar bearBut slightly disappointed when it turned out that the arctic foxes weren’t Kiki either.


The boys took a real liking to old Cousin Joe.Joe and the boysThe rest of the weekend was lots of fun.

We swam, read, slept, watched movies (including the new Harry Potter, thanks to Grandma and Grandpa), and had lots of fun with our family.

Bill and Billy enjoyed hanging out together.Bill and Billy

And the little boys couldn’t get enough of the dogs.Dogs and BabiesDaniel and the dogsAnd the dogs couldn’t get enough of them. loving liam But the way home was less fun than the rest of the trip. My dad and brothers had come through St. George on their way to Kanab point to go hiking and towed down my grandpa’s 1968 Plymouth Satellite (which had been passed around the children in my family and was my car in high school) to bring back to my uncle here in SoCal. Being the nice people we are, we offered to tow the car the rest of the way, since we would pass by my uncle’s home on the way back.

That’s when things got interesting. After dropping off the Explorer at the dealer to get trailer lights installed, this “favor” for my uncle was getting less and less enticing.

We had trouble getting the lights to all work, and things seemed foreboding already.

Even though we drove below the speed limit through the Virgin River Gorge, the weight of the Satellite, steep/winding roads, and slight wind were too much. The Satellite turned us around 180*, we all hit the median, and the the Explorer crashed into the Satellite as it flipped over.

flipped Satellite

It was a terrifying experience. As we swerved through the canyon, William was screaming, luggage went flying, and I was worried if we would make it home alive.

explorer left damage

Luckily, we were all buckled up and I think the Satellite and the median took the brunt of the hit, which probably saved our lives.upside down

upside down satelliteplymouth undercarriage

We are very thankful for all the emergency crew that was working on Sunday and the kindness of strangers who kept us company, gave us blankets, and held the baby as we tried to sort out the wreckage.ford rear damage medianMy dad even offered to drive down from SLC to drive us home, but we decided it would be better to take the cars to a tow yard in St. George and rent a car to get home.

We all made it out with minor injuries. William’s side-impact protecting car seat prevented him from anything other than a very minor bloody nose and a lack of sleep, and Steven and I just got some slight whiplash and some scrapes and bruising. We are very thankful the accident happened when and where it did, because it made everything work out better than we could have expected. We are very grateful for family and friends who care about us and are concerned for our safety.

And VERY thankful for collision insurance.

Next order of business: buying another car. Anyone have any recommendations for a small, slightly used SUV?