Saturday, November 26, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

So much to be thankful for!

I'm never very good at taking pictures during the holidays. I get too caught up in the moment of hanging out with family and friends to pull out my camera. Last year I only have one picture of Thanksgiving (sorry Harlow). Since I didn't do much to document her first Thanksgiving last year I figured I'd put a little more effort into it. But, I didn't do much better. So instead I'll just say that I am most thankful for having family and friends to be around and spend the holidays with. To have such great people who I enjoy spending my time with. I'm also thankful that Harlow has so many people who love her. And for my husband, Pete, and Harlow, of course.

Our Thanksgiving started off with breakfast at our house with my parents and brother and sister-in-law. We are always happy when they are in town! It usually takes a little while for Harlow to warm up to them but she eventually gets to it. Maybe they need to have kids so she can play with cousins. That will change her reaction for sure! (hint, hint)

After breakfast we went over to my Uncle Robert and Aunt Salena's house for Thanksgiving lunch. We got another great meal and the company of even greater people.

After Thanksgiving lunch we headed home to let Harlow take a nap and for Pete and I to recoup. All that eating wore us out and we hadn't even gotten to dinner yet. Finally we got ourselves up and headed over to Pete's mom's house for Thanksgiving dinner.

Harlow had a full day of thanks giving. I can't wait until she understands what the day is all about. But for now, she just thinks it's Happy Turkey Day. hmmm, maybe next year...

Family photo outside our house after breakfast.
Me, Harlow, Pete, my Dad, Mom, Aiko and Dev

Lunch at Uncle Robert and Aunt Salena's house. Harlow's first real Thanksgiving meal. With some help from her favorite person.

You can always guarantee that Harlow will be your friend if you share your iPhone with her.
Harlow and Shawna.

My brother and Harlow chilling on the couch, hanging with the iPhone of course.

At Grandma Lori' and Papa Rick's house for dinner. Harlow and grandma making the buns.

And Cousin Amelia helping too.

The dinner table set and waiting for us all to sit down.

While everyone was cooking and setting up, this is what Pete did.

Papa Rick carving the turkey.

Aunt Brianna and Cousin Amelia.

Harlow sitting at the table ready to eat.

And the cousins cuddled on the couch after dinner.

At home after dinner and getting ready for bed.

On Friday morning Andrea, Jenn and Terra stopped by. So glad my friends can check in when they come to town.

And on Friday night we headed to my parents house for dinner. To spend some more time with my brother and sister-in-law Aiko.

My brother Dev helping Harlow draw a picture.

The last few days we have skipped Harlow's bed time and just enjoyed being spoiled by having so many family and friends around. I love the holiday season!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Salesman of the Year

I feel like the title of this post doesn't do it justice. It's a title, but in this title, there is more than "salesman" included, at least to the trained eye (mine). I want to scream from the roof tops that my husband was the number one salesman of the year for his company, but in doing that he was also number one husband, number one dad, and number one friend all at the same time. It deserves to be acknowledged because he worked so hard at ALL of the above listed, not just his job as a salesman.

I won't lie and say that getting here this year wasn't hard. It was definitely HARD. If you don't know already what Pete does, he does sales/marketing for a home security company based out of Utah called Pinnacle Security. His job is different than most, it takes him away from our home in Clovis for the entire 4 months of the summer. 4 months out of each year is a lot, and definitely takes a toll on him and us as a family as well. It is hard and trying emotionally and physically to pack up your family and move them temporarily to another state EVERY year. But his job doesn't end and begin with the summer months, in the off-season he is still training, hiring, recruiting, managing an office and selling accounts. It is a tireless and time-consuming job that in a sense, has no real office hours. He is on-call 24/7 it seems. When a client calls, he answers, when there is a last minute problem, he fixes it. I will admit that I give him a HARD time about separating work time and family time because I have a hard time dealing with the blurred lines of it all. He has put up with a lot of my whining about it this year too. (Sorry Pete)

At the end of the year, Pinnacle has an awards ceremony for their salesman and for their technicians. It was held in Orem, Utah this past weekend. Normally I would send Pete off by himself to enjoy it with his team but this year he mentioned that he wanted Harlow and I there, and I wanted us there to support him in such a great achievement. We left on Thursday afternoon and arrived that evening. Utah is cold! I know this, but still wasn't prepared for it. It actually snowed for a few seconds too while we were in Salt Lake. On Friday afternoon/evening, Pete had to be away at manager meetings so Harlow and I were left to do what we do best, find a mall thanks to iPhone maps and do some exploring. Saturday was the awards ceremony and we headed home on Sunday morning.

On Tuesday, before we had even left for the trip, I noticed that Harlow felt warm. She was also being clingy and emotional. I took her temperature and sure enough she had a fever. Her fever never went down until about Friday. I must state, Harlow is normally a really sweet, well behaved child. But, this past weekend I think I would have called myself a liar. I have NEVER been more overwhelmed by her in my life. On top of the stress of traveling, try traveling with a sick and emotional baby. And it turns out that she didn't just have a fever, she had Roseola too. On Friday morning I noticed a patch of red spots on her forehead and cheeks. And by Saturday it covered almost all of her body. She was irritable, emotional, and clingy. I don't think she ate more than milk, Jamba Juice, water and crackers for 4 days. She wasn't sleeping well either, but she usually never does in a hotel. Luckily by Sunday she was feeling a little better and I could catch glimpses of her usual self. And today her rash is gone and she has eaten 3 full meals and snacks and has been in a great mood. Whew! She sure knows how to make a trip exciting...

We had a few of the mornings free so we hit up a park and watched some of the Pinnacle employees play flag football. Nothing like a little swinging and sliding to turn a toddlers mood around. We didn't last long because it was so cold.

Check out those mountains! They are beautiful!

Dad was having a hard time fitting through the slide.

Saturday night was the awards ceremony. And guess what we were greeted by when we first walked in! This handsome picture of my husband :) A HUGE poster-size picture I might add.

Pete's dad drove up from St. George, Utah to be there for Pete's award too. We are so glad we got to see him and Harlow immediately warmed up to him. Even though she was sick. Don't mind her "say cheese" face. I'm told she'll grow out of it. (Fingers crossed)

These 3 definitely look related.

The even was held at the Capitol Theater which was a great, old restored theater.

We started off by sitting in our reserved seats in the front but ended up sitting in the very back, alone, so Harlow could be her emotional, crabby self all she wanted without bothering anyone else (but me of course). Here is Harlow having her 382576835 temper tantrum of the weekend. So instead of comforting my child I decided to document it for future blackmail and took pictures of her terrible moment.

Please excuse the off-center and blurry pictures. I had a screaming toddler on my hip but I didn't want to miss this moment.

Pete walking down to the stage for his Top Salesman of the Year award.

Harlow finally relented a little and passed out dead asleep on the floor of the theater. Yes, I am that mom. I was at my wits end so I didn't object when she fell asleep on the dirty floor. I just went with it and embraced the fact that she wasn't crying anymore.

Pete was also given this Nixon ceramic watch. A ridiculously expensive watch he has always wanted but would never buy for himself. He deserves it!

On our way home at the airport. She was so excited about all the airplanes.

I wish I had gotten more pictures of this weekend. Maybe next year...

Harlow and I are so proud of Pete and his accomplishments. He was not only top salesman of the year but he also was number one manager for personal sales of 289 accounts but was also in the top 10 for summer managers. And in the 200 club for selling more than 200 accounts.

I love that he works so hard, and works so hard for US. We are truly blessed to have Pete looking out for our family. By working so hard it makes it possible for me to stay home with Harlow, which has always been important to me and to him. For now we make big sacrifices for bigger rewards in the end. Thank you Pete, we love you!