Monday, November 12, 2007

Dental Drudgery? Not for these girls.

Who says visiting the dentist isn't fun? Ok, I do, but only when I'm the one sitting in the chair. My girls seem to love their dental appointments. I think we have flouridated water and tooth paste to thank for that. NO CAVATIES! I always take pictures when the girls are getting their teeth cleaned because I think it's so cute. They're quite brave and cooperative with the hygenists and the dentist. Emma wasn't always so fond of their dentist. The first time she saw him, knowing he was coming to visit her teeth after Hannah's, she leaned in to me and said, "I don't like him." Thankfully, they have a very gentle and kind dentist who knows that Sleeping Beauty is also known as Aurora. This knowledge made him instantly acceptable in Emma's eyes. Here's pictures from last week's visit.

Safety sunglasses in place, Emma's ready to "ride" the chair up and back. Six months ago, she refused to be reclined in the seat. The seat went back, but Emma stayed rigidly upright. They also tried to raise the chair up, but she about jumped off, so they let that go too. This visit she was very brave. No chair or mouth instrument issues. She even allowed them to take X-rays. When they told me they were going to attempt this, I laughed and wished them good luck. But Emma watched Hannah have "mouth pictures" taken and decided that was OK for her too. She looked a little nervous in the X-ray room all by herself with the heavy cover on and the camera wedged under her jaw, but she did it. Whew!

Here's brave big sister Hannah, in the seat next to Emma for her cleaning. Thank goodness for big sisters who experience things first so little sisters can watch and want to follow their example.

Emma "kissing" the suction tube thingy to get the rinse water out of her mouth. She liked that thing so much the hygenist had to ask her to "open" over and over. She just didn't want to let go.

Hannah, during cleaning.

I just had to snap this picture of Emma. She's so small in the seat! And you should know that this is a pediatric dentist's office so the chairs are small to begin with! Her feet don't even come to the chair's knee bend area.

After the dentist's final inspection, the girls got their new toothbrushes, "good patient" princess stickers, and a small toy for good behavior. No wonder they love the dentist - look at all the great loot they get!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Provo: Food, Football, Fun

Ryan and I visited Provo this weekend and had a wonderful time. The girls stayed with Grandma and Grandpa Carlson and also had a wonderful time. We'll see if we can get some pictures of their weekend on here in a future post. In the meantime, here's some highlights from our Utah getaway.

I'll start this posting with a confession: Before this trip, Ryan and I had never eaten at Cafe Rio. Yes, that's right. Shocking, I know. Honestly, we're not sure if Cafe Rio existed when we were at BYU. Furthermore, when we were in college, we were financially strapped and rarely ate out. If we did eat out, we went to Los Hermanos wearing our "free drink" T-shirts. We loved Los Hermanos and, most of all, our free Brisa de Mora Negras. So it was only under intense peer pressure that we stopped in at Cafe Rio in Provo. We waited in a line that went out the restaurant's door and asked the guy in front of us what we should order. He said he'd been to Cafe Rio "over 100 times" and gave us some good suggestions. In the end, we were very impressed with our dinners (Ryan: steak enchilada, Laura: Pork Barbacoa Salad). The food was super flavorful and SO fresh.

The next night, we went to our old favorite: Los Hermanos. Both of us packed our old Los Hermanos "free drink" T-shirts in our suitcases, but not wanting to look like old school fools, we called Los Hermanos before we donned our shirts. Ryan's phone conversation with the girl at Los Hermanos went like this:

Ryan: Hi, do you still honor the "free drink" Los Hermanos T-shirts?
Girl: Do you mean the "eternal coupon?" [I can't even type it without laughing.]
Ryan: Uh, yes, I guess so.
Girl: Yes we do!

Ryan and I laughed for a good while after that. Only in Provo would it be called "the eternal coupon." So, we went to Los Hermanos and enjoyed our free Brisas and dinner. It was only after finishing and seriously contemplating our dinners that we reluctantly decided that .... we liked Cafe Rio better. I feel bad saying it, like I'm letting down an old, faithful friend. But, we couldn't deny that Cafe Rio was much more flavorful and fresh. Nevertheless, when we want a free drink, we know where we'll be going... eternally.

We did do more than eat, I promise. Below, we're at the BYU football game. It was so beautiful and HOT! We had to go back to our hotel at halftime to change into cooler clothes.

Here's a shout out to my sister Julie, former BYU band member and horn player. Horns Rule!

After the game, we went to Brick Oven. Does Cosmo the Cougar always go to Brick Oven after football games? We seemed to be the only people surprised to see him. In our college days we weren't post game Brick Oven regulars. We probably went home after games and ate Hamburger Helper. We took advantage of our Cosmo celebrity sighting and took this picture.

We spent a lot of our time walking around campus. We visited the new JFSB for the first time. It replaced the SFLC building from our college days. I won't say what everyone REALLY called that building. Those of you who were there already know. It would be hard to call the new JFSB any gross name. It was so beautiful, well planned, and spacious. We also walked through the buildings we once worked in. My JSB was exactly the same as far as I could tell. Ryan's Testing Center was mostly the same with some technological updates. We like the huge flat screen that told which tests were being offered, what late fees were being charged, and what the average testing time was for each test. "Yes, I love technology." We tried three times to visit the new Hinckley Visitor's Center. Unfortunately, we kept getting there after hours. Regardless, we were very impressed with the exterior alone.

We walked through Helaman Halls and my old dorm. We took the following picture standing in front of my dorm window. What a great view I had! The mountains, the Y , the Cannon Center, the grassy meadow (NCMO Meadow? After dark it was anyway.) And now, the Hinckley Building is in view too. I was interested to discover a new Cannon Center being built behind the old one. That probably explains why the old Cannon Center hasn't changed at all since I was a freshman.

We spent a little bit of time in Salt Lake visiting Temple Square. We saw the newly refurbished Tabernacle and listened to the "acoustical demonstration" there. I'd never heard this done before and was most impressed by the pin drop from the podium. We heard it perfectly from our seats in the far back. Back at our car, we discovered someone had left a pass along card under our windshield wiper. This was amusing, but made even better because this well-intentioned person had stamped "I Love You" across the picture of Christ on the card.

Overall, we had a great weekend. We love BYU and love any time we get to spend there.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

H-A-double L-O-W-double E-N spells HALLOWEEN!

Did anyone else sing that song in elementary school? "Halloween means ghosts and goblins, scaring the people who open the door...." To this day, I sing it to myself when I have to spell "Halloween." I always thought it was a cool song, but I sang it to my girls and they were totally unimpressed.

Our Halloween began with a couple of parties last weekend including our ward's Halloween party. We ate chili, cornbread, and hot dogs. Someone made these cute little critters from half a hotdog wrapped in a biscuit with Chinese noodle legs. Emma was suspicious of eating something with legs, so we told her they were aphids. Ladybugs eat aphids, right? So... She ate it and said it was a great little aphid.

Emma and the half-eaten aphid.

Here's Ryan wrapping the girls up in the mummy wrapping contest.

Final product.

Halloween night was CRAZY, as always. Did you know that the busiest pizza delivery day of the year is Halloween? I believe it. Dinner is kind of an afterthought when you've got costumes, makeup, candy, parties, pictures, etc. to think about.

As you can see, Hannah was Sleeping Beauty and Emma was a ladybug. They loved their costumes and are already planning what they're going to be for the next two Halloweens. We had the girls dressed in layers as it was in the 40s during trick-or-treating time. We tried to walk quickly between houses to keep warm. At least it wasn't raining.

Although they were so excited to trick-or-treat, they were a little timid at first. Hannah wouldn't knock on the doors for the first block or so. Emma would get so enchanted/scared by the other kids costumes, she'd just stand in the doorway, mouth open staring at costumes. So much for "trick-or-treat." One little boy's Spiderman costume was particularly scary to her. Ryan's "spiders eat bugs" comment didn't help the situation.

We trick-or-treated until their buckets were full (I gave myself a pat on the back for choosing small candy buckets). Back at home, they looked over their loot and literally danced around it. Hannah wanted to know what each kind of candy was. Emma would have eaten it all that night, if we would have let her. This morning, the first thing she wanted was more candy. We had to have a talk about when we eat candy and when we don't. Before 9:00 AM is a time we don't.

Hope everybody had a great Halloween!