Thursday, June 30, 2011

Le Art

We moved to Reno for the summer because Russell is doing his first rotation in a PT clinic, the "rural" setting.  He goes to Fernley, NV daily and Ty and I hang out in the biggest little city that we used to live in. Since we moved with practically as little as possible, we have nothing to hang on our walls (besides a clock), so we decided to make our own art.  With a few clearance canvases, tempera paint (the obvious choice for the serious painter of wall art...), and foam brushes along with whatever other objects we found to paint with, we went to work  We obviously did a great job since we cranked out so many in about 90 minutes, including baby interruptions.  Enjoy perusing our gallery.

Crayons! Ty's first encounter with crayons was super serious...seriously delicious.   
"Crayons--I love crayons!"
"Mom, I'm busy being artistic here.  Do you mind?"
We had a fun challenge making Ty's fabulous hand print collage.  He giggled every time we painted his hand and wiggled every time we wanted to stamp it down.  :) I think it turned out kind of cute, though.  (Don't worry--he's wearing a diaper.)
The tools (styrofoam cups, push pins, popsicle sticks, paper plates, masking tape, plenty of wipes, etc.):
"Essplosasion" by Russell Gourlie
"The Size of a Cup"/"Lettuce CUP" by Carolyn Gourlie
"Falling Down a Waterfall...As it Should."  -a still life (or still death because it's not that good looking) by Carolyn
"Attempting Crayola" by Ty Gourlie (This was mostly created by dropping crayons while switching them from one hand to another and rolling the crayons over the canvas while crawling over it.)
"My Hands Is Big" by Ty Gourlie
"Recollection Emesis" by Russell
"Your Right-Hand Fam" by the Gourlie Family (background by CJ)

Yes, you may commission us to do a piece for long as it's okay if it's kind of a piece of cr@p.  At least we had fun!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Dance it out, Baby!

I started taking a dance class back in January at the community center once a week.  I'm glad to be doing it 1) because it counts as a hobby, which makes Russell happy 2) it usually counts as exercise and 3) "I love to dance..." (anyone know the/a reference?*).  Anyway, it isn't too challenging, which I suppose is good, although I would like more critique to improve.  I've long since given up my dreams of professionalism (actually, I don't think I ever had any...), and choose to watch SYTYCD instead of try to be on it, but I do really like dancing and as I've watched in the mirror during class, I've come to the realization that I'm worse than I used to be!  It's sad, really.  I don't go to stake/BYU dances anymore, I haven't taken a real dance class in about 4 years, and when Ty and I dance together, I don't think I'm really using any kind of real dancing.  I need some work!  Few things get me motivated like a performance in front of an audience, so when I heard about the class' culminating dance recital in May, I was excited.  We (the adult class) ended up performing 2 numbers: 1 tap and 1 jazz and I had fun!  I think I danced a little more "full-out" than I should have been, but I was just a little too excited.  Oops.  My lovely supportive family came and watched (Ty was asleep by the end and Russell recorded the dances on his phone), but you all are welcome to come to the next recital in December! 

The theme of the recital was the '60s, in case you couldn't tell.  :)
 My dance crew and I after the show.
*The quote is from "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" in the beginning when SJP's character, Janie, is introducing herself to the class.  I think of that part every time someone says they love to dance...

Subbin' Adventures

 I am fortunate enough to be employed as a Clark County School District Sub, so I can work whenever and wherever I want...sorta.  I choose to sub about once a week so that Russell can watch Ty while I'm gone.  I decided that I definitely like to sub for elementary school more than high school because they treat you more like a special guest rather than a free ride to get away with stuff.  Now that school year is over, I don't substitute teach anymore (duh), but I did manage to write down a few funny things that were said/written over the last couple of months!

 -"What's your name" (I tell him)  "Oh, well my grandma performs at the Tropicana.  Gladys Knight--I'm sure you've heard of her..." -Gladys Knight's grandson (Whoops--I think you just dropped a name there...)

-"Everyone keeps saying you look just like Taylor Swift."  -5th-grade girl
-Same girl, about 15 minutes later, "Can I call you Taylor Swift?  'Cause you seriously look just like her."  (Uh, I'm flattered, I guess, but I really don't look anything like Miss Swift.)

4th-grade end of the year reflection responses:
 -"What I learned in 4th grade was its not all about you but the people around you.  That you can't always just care about yourself because no one will be like you."  -C.  (Very reflective!)
 -"I got to go to the water park.  It was luxorios." -T. (I'm not sure I've ever heard a water park described that way, but if that's how you feel, my man, live it up.)
 -"I also learned withitness and perserverence skills.  And i got better at tetherball." -S.  (Ordered from least to most important, I'm sure.)

And my absolute favorite:
 -"It was a prety good year ecsept for the constant learning." -A.  (Dang--what kind of awful school do you go to?  All that learning is exactly what's wrong with education these days!)

I'm sure there were lots more funny moments, but now I'll be smart enough to remember to write them down. Happy summer break, everyone!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

New Baby Niece!

 On May 27th at 9 a.m.-ish, Alana Noelle Swift was born to Tina (my big sis) and Hunter.  Now Soren is a big brother and Russell and I have a niece!  Alana was upside-down and, although attempts were made, wouldn't flip, so Tina had a C-section.  This meant that recovery was a bit harder, especially with a 2-year-old.  Enter the heroes: us.  I flew out with Ty (on Jet Blue--only $29!) and a day later Russell drove out to help out our favorite SoCal family.  Unfortunately, Russell's bag failed to make the trip, so we had a bit of clothing and personal item shopping to do. Besides that, I had a fun time and am glad that we could be there to help, even if it was just lifting Soren in and out of his high chair!  Russell "helped" Hunter, too, by keeping him entertained at a couple of fancy car events on Saturday morning one at which they met Tanner Faust!  (For those of you who aren't familiar with this dude, he's a racecar driver and a host of the American Top Gear show.)  Anyway, we are happy to have a cute new baby in our fam.  :)

 Baby Alana, meet Aunt Carolyn (or Auntie C.J. or Uncle Beej, whatever you prefer).
 Uncle Muscles looks so good holding a teeny baby.
 Ty had some mixed feelings about Alana.  I think he may have thought she was a toy and, as evidenced below, really thought she was funny and would crawl up to her and laugh.  Whenever I held her, though, he climbed up to me and grabbed on to me...a bit jealous?  I do want to have more children whenever the best time for them to come is, but I am very grateful that I don't have babies 10 months apart!
 We took this picture to show size comparison.  It felt really weird calling Ty "baby" since he is so ginormous next to Alana--literally 4 times her size!  This precious little hand-hold was spontaneous on Ty's part.  Sweet cousins... 

On a trip to the store (which Soren was VERY excited about so we could stop by the toy aisle and buy a car for baby Ty since he discovered how fun it was to play with them now that he crawls), we plopped Ty next to Soren in the cart just for a picture.
Apparently, one picture was all that Soren could handle.  He said, "Get baby Ty outta dis cart!"
 They made up, though, and they're still cousin buds. I suppose they're even, though, because as Soren "read" Ty a book, Ty was interested for about as long as Soren wanted Ty in the cart.  Luckily, I got a picture first!
 Soren's reading skills extend to the very small, too, as he reads his baby sister one of his new Cars books.
 (He must have been reading the really surprising part.)
 Last, but not least,Ty woke up crying pretty early one morning and since he was sharing a room with Soren, we didn't want Soren awake, too, so Ty got to come out to the couch with Russell and I.  Look at these little snugglebugs.

Congrats, Swift family!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Utah Trippin'

Back in May, Russell had a week break after Spring semester and before the Summer term started, so we decided to visit the home of our single days: Utah Valley.  We went just for fun and also to drop of Russell's bike to a friend who was going to "babysit" it for the summer since we weren't going to take it with us to Reno.  Unfortunately, the weather was awful--rainy the whole time--so our plans to walk around Temple Square were totally busted, but we managed to still have a fun time.  :)

We went to 5 Guys (the burger place everyone's been raving about) in St. George.  It was good, but the whole double-patty thing was a bit too much burger for me along with the 50 other toppings.  Next time, I'll do a better job of ordering.  I wasn't a huge fan of their style of fry; they tasted a little "dirty" to me like the potatoes needed to be washed better.  They do, though, have a big box o' peanuts that you can scoop out of into these little brown trays.  Obviously, Ty had a fun time with the tray.  It kinda looks like a little WWII salute to me!  

We spent the night at Uncle Vic and Aunt Michelle's house and saw Riley who had just gotten home from his mission in CA!  Ty had a fun time playing with them and didn't go to sleep/act tired for a while.  (Speaking of which, he just woke up from his nap and is talking to himself saying, "oh, oh, oh, doh, nah, oh...")  The next morning, instead of going to Temple Square, we went to Ikea (okay, so we were probably going to go anyway...)  For those who haven't been to that lovely store, they have a bunch of rooms set up and decorated with products that you can find in the store.  Russell and I have a fun time looking at stuff and playing "someday when we have a house."  We both decided that we really liked this kitchen (with a few minor changes, of course).  Anyway, I decided I'd better take a picture of it so I can remember it down the road.
Ikea has some great little kid toys and we saw these ones on the shelf.  I tried to pull one down for Ty to look at/test drive, but they were bolted down!  Strong Russell lifted Ty up for a while so he could play.  The joke was totally on us, though, because about 10 feet later, we noticed a big play table with multiple sets of the toys for kids to play with.  Oops.
We got to visit Dan and Karla Smith in their new home in Kearns and see their lovely little girls and brand new baby boy!  Lucy (pictured next to Ty) was born July of 2009, so she's a year older than Ty.  She's a little small for her age and Ty's a bit large, so it was really funny to put them next to each other and see NO difference in size!  Cute.  Wish we coulda stayed there longer!
One of my favorite places to eat in Provo was Zupa's: a soup/salad/panini chain in UT.  We met Michelle Walks and my bro Kai there for some good lunch and even better company!
We have many a pictures of the 2 of us from Elementary, Middle, and High School.  Obviously, Ty wasn't in them.  Just me and Soshina...(shout-out!)
Kai and I hung out around BYU's campus for a bit while Russell had a play date doing man stuff.  (Ya know, motorcycles, video games, getting pulled on a longboard by a pitbull, and probably other stuff that I don't know about because I'm a girl...)  Anyway, Ty practiced his walking skills with Uncle Kai-Kai on the partially-dry (finally!) ground outside of the HFAC, a building I went to for a majority of my classes.
And although I didn't take pictures (I am poo at getting everything!), we did hang out with Chalyce and Ryan Peck for a while one evening and (of course!) went to Nicolitalia Pizzeria, Russell's former place of employment and dined with the Stentzels and Stephanie.  Again, great food and fun company!
We ended with the whole little fam-damily at the Y!  We had a fun trip and would love to make it back another time to see everyone, especially those we missed.  Don't expect us in winter--we don't do that snow thing anymore--but we'll see ya again, Woo-tah! 

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Ty Update--10 months!

Ty is now 10 1/2 months old and he's developing quite the little personality!  Luckily, he puts his personality to rest quite easily and sleeps all night long (usually about 11+ hours) and either one 3-hour nap or 2 2-hour naps.  He rarely cries when put down and sometimes leans toward the crib.  He started crawling a few weeks ago and now that he can go where he wants to go and play with whatever he can get to, he sure is getting into LOTS!  I wasn't one who ever wished that he could crawl, so I'm fine that it took him a little longer than average to be mobile.  If he's crawling, though, he might as well be walking so that I don't have to carry him everywhere.  This dude is heavy!  By looking at him, you can tell that the crawling is slimming him down a bit, but it must all just be turning into muscle, because he's getting harder to lift.  He is super fun to play with, though and is such a little ham!  Sometimes he gets into stuff (cupboards, cords, etc.), but sometimes when he's quiet, I find him just reading books.  :) 
 If Russell or I are sitting down, Ty will crawl over and pull himself up our legs.  This action is accelerated if you're eating anything.  It's kinda cute because he just wants to play/cuddle/eat what you're eating. Occasionally it is less welcome like when one is trying to take a nap or in Russell's case below, play a game.
 Pulling himself up again, "Hiya, Momma!"  Actually, as I'm typing this, he came up behind me, is almost piggy-backing me (I'm sitting on the floor) and is reaching his head around to look at me.  Love this goober... [I stopped typing to play with him for a while and now that he's in bed, I'm finishing!]
 See?  More of the same. 
 I was doing something in the kitchen and gave Ty a mini Hershey bar to play with (ya know, crinkle the wrapper, toss it around...), but it was a bit of a mistake.  You see, I forgot about 2 important things: 1) Ty holds on to things for a very long time and most importantly 2) he now has seven razor-like teeth in his mouth.  He bit through the wrapper and was sucking out the chocolate that had melted in his hot little hand.   You outsmarted me this time, Tyzar...  We then put him in his high chair and gave him the rest.  I am pleased, however, that he was kind of indifferent toward it.  Might as well have given him green we know!
This "baby" is too big for my lap.  I do love to snuggle with him still.  He's such a cuddlebug, too.
While crawling around and playing, Ty stopped in this "posed" position for a while to watch part of Baby Einstein.  He's so funny!  We're lucky parents and we love our dude.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Happy Birth Day at the Park

The actual celebration of a birthday gets less and less important/dramatic as the years go on.  So far, it's been 26 whole years for me!  I had a fun day with friends at the park and a real date with Russell.  Thankfully, finals had just ended and a relaxing day was exactly what we all needed.  Facebook spoiled me as far as friends sending b-day greetings.  Anyway, all together, it was a fun day.  

Last year on my 25th b-day we had a baby shower for this guy.  Now look at him!
Addie, Ashley, and Ty all have daddies in the PT program and we hang out fairly often.  It was amazingly difficult to get all 3 to look in the same place!  This was good enough...
 Again, a bit challenging to get everyone even staying still--Ty's trying to walk away!
 I can't believe how grown-up he looks here...
 Unintentionally, we were both matching our babies! 
 It really was the perfect day for the park.
Ty and Addie doing what they do so well.
Later that evening, Russell and I walked througth Caeser's Palace and went to the restaurant Serendipity III. There's another one like it in NYC (that we also went to summer 2008 when I worked out there) that's a lot more famous, but no more delish.  Here's what I look like 26.  Different?  Not really.
 I'm getting hungry just looking at this food!  It's a little pricey, but really good.  The atmosphere is kind of awesome, too, since the outside seating is right on the in the sidewalk is below the seating area.  (See next picture.) 
 Mmmm-mmmm.  And, if you do go to Serendips, you have to get a Frrrozen Hot Chocolate (also way overpriced, but way good).  This lovely dessert has been featured on movies such as "One Fine Day" and "Serendipity."  Russell and I shared it, but I'm pretty sure I could have had 2 more just like it.  ;)
 When I was getting ready for our date (ya know, like primping a bit and stuff), Russell came in and said, "Wow, you look good!"  Pretty sure that's all I needed for my birthday--made my night.  Love that man.  I suppose the b-day shopping to purchase some new clothes didn't hurt, either.