Thursday, December 24, 2015

Barlow Stars Christmas Newsletter 2015

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Barlow Stars 2015 Christmas Newsletter

As a family we have enjoyed many things together this year. We have had many visitors and gone on some fun camping trips both local and far away. Yellowstone was our biggest trip. It was relaxing and beautiful. We love to go camping, fishing, and shooting. The two most exciting things of the year is that we are expecting a daughter at the very beginning of January 2016 (or sooner) and that Lars sequel to his first book is available now, With The Snow Fall (Zero Book 2)J

Roan turned 3 and has not stopped growing. He is super tall for his age and likes to try and do everything by himself. He loves to help cook and clean in the kitchen, play with friends and cousins, sing songs, create with Legos, and read books. He loves Star Wars and loves to pretend he is a traveler where is excellent at protecting the public from dinosaurs and dragons. J Roan also graduated from a crib to a big boy bed, potty trained, and he often asks when he can go to school and wear a backpack. He is excited to be a big brother soon and tells us over and over all the things he is going to do with his baby sister, like swimming, eating, and playing with toys.

Stephanie keeps very busy between work @Select Health, family, and lots of fun activities that she enjoys such as party planning, crafts, and exercising. She was released as Young Women President in the Spring and has since enjoyed just being a “civilian”. She ran in two 5Ks this year, one of which she took 1st place. (To be fair there weren’t very many participants…like maybe 3). Stephanie is loving being pregnant in all its glory. Having a daughter is a whole new world to explore and she is giddy with excitement.

Lars is also kept busy between work @EMC, family, and home repairs (new water heater and trying to resurrect our furnace and other cool yet boring adult responsibilities). Lars is a Sunday School teacher for the 12 year old class. Lars newest hobby has been ammo making and shooting. He went to a Turkey Shoot in November and brought home a 12lb turkey. WAHOOO! Another accomplishment we are very excited about is that the sequel to his first book is available now, With The Snow Fall (Zero Book 2)! You can check it out by clicking on the link and the print edition will come out in a few more days.

Have a Merry Christmas and Joyous New Year!!!
Lars, Stephanie, Roan, & Baby Liv Barlow

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Baby and Her Name

This post is about our daughter and how she got her name. I know with Roan I blogged a lot about my pregnancy. I have been keeping a journal with this pregnancy but most everything else I have kept close to my heart. I am willing to share but just a little shy for fear if I share too much I will jinx myself and things will get bad as they have done the last two years when it comes to staying pregnant. 

We are very excited and grateful that this little girl is coming to our family now. 
We had a few names on the table that we previously liked with other pregnancies. 
We both have Danish in our heritage and decided that when we had kids we wanted them to have old Norse Danish names with special meanings. When we chose Roans name I knew without a doubt that it was his name. I heard it and angels sang in my head. We had his name picked out for him around 18 weeks. Seriously that was just how it went. 
Now that he is growing up I can tell that his name was supposed to be his. 

When we found out we were having a girl Lars wanted to settle on her name being Freya. I liked the name but didn't have the angels singing in my head so I was nervous to settle. SO we kept on looking. One day Lars came home with a list of 5 more names. We reviewed them and I thought they were all okay but nothing exactly stood out except for one name, Liv. But at the time Lars said the old Norse way of spelling would be Leev and I thought that too wonky so I shoved it out of my brain. 

Over next few weeks I reviewed over 100 Old Norse Danish names. I passed by Liv a few more times and really researched what the name meant and alternate spellings and pronunciations. 

Derived from the Old Norse name Hlíf meaning "protection". Its use has been influenced by the modern Scandinavian word liv meaning "life".

I really liked it and couldn't stop thinking about it. Then I realized that some of my favorite t.v. show characters were named Liv (iZombie & Fringe). But I wanted to make sure her name was hers and not to be confused with those famous people or character that happen to share her name. I am also not into giving a child a name and then shorting it with a nickname, like Livy or Livia. 

I vowed that if I ever had a daughter I wanted her to share my middle name or to use my Mother's first name as a middle name. When we put it together. 

Liv Joy

I just fell in love with it. 

Liv Joy Barlow

I loved that fully her name meant Protector of Joy or Life and Joy. Which honestly was spot with how we are feeling about being pregnant here and now. 

I shared my findings with Lars. I told him that if this was her name we should spell it LIV. He said he needed to think on it. A week or so later he came to me and said that one night he got the impression that this was HER name. I cheered. I was so excited that we finally had a name and felt like it was supposed to be hers. 

As her pregnancy went on we stopped and pondered about the past few years, something we do often. Lars and I talk about the struggle it has been to stay pregnant, what we have learned, and what it means, what our heavenly family will be like, and how grateful we are for what we have now. During one of these discussions it dawned on us that her name literally means LIFE. Something we have wanted so badly in another child here on earth. So for us her name has a double meaning. 

We cannot wait to meet her on the outside on the womb. She has brought so much joy into our lives so far. I love feeling her grow and move and I love hearing Roan tell me all about her.  Seriously it is like he knows her so well already. The other day he voluntarily described what she looks like to me. It is so special to me that he loves her with all his heart already. He is going to be an amazing big brother. I love my family. 

And Now a fun comparison pic of bellies
32 Weeks with Liv NOV 2015

32 weeks with Roan NOV 2011

Baby Girl Shower

Two of my wonderful friends, Jessica and Tiffany, (I didn't get a pic of them grrrrr) threw me a lovely baby shower. 
My Mom made the cake

We had a soup bar. I love soup.
My cousin Karen
My friend, Katie

It was a lovely shower with a few games and a lot of people. Here are some action shots from the gift opening part. Thank you everyone who game. We love and appreciate you so so much. 

Thanksgiving 2015

We decided to keep this years Thanksgiving super low key. When we lives alone in CA we would have this small fun little holidays where Lars and I would cook traditional and nontraditional food and then go see movies. This year we showed Roan what it was like. 
We made gratitude hats. We wrote on the back of them what we are grateful for. 

Okay, first these were going to be a leafy banner but then it turned into hats with leaves but they look like feathers so Lars thinks they are racists so I am not allowed to put them on FB. He didn't say anything about blogs however. ;) Next year I promise we will make pilgrim hats to even the "hat racism" saga here. LOL 
I find that crafts with toddlers are good for killing time. 
We played while we watched the Macy's Day Parade
Then we had a cheese fondue
Then we took Roan to see his first Theatre Movie every. We saw The Good Dinosaur. 

He did SO GOOD during the movie. I did learn a few things that will help us when we go take him to see Star Wars in a few weeks. 
Then we went home and had gourmet pastrami sandwiches
Lars made a pumpkin pie from scratch
I made a banana cream pudding pie
We took our pies to enjoy with Lars' Koons cousins. It was a lot of fun. 

We love our family but also love being in our own little family sometimes. It was so nice and relaxing to show Roan what a traditional out of family state Thanksgiving is like. 
This is Roan playing in his room the day after Thanksgiving with his sombrero hat 
(yup a post with more racism LOL) 

This Kid

I love the fall. I think the boy does too. This post is full of random stuff we have been up to. 
In this weekend Roan and I got some one on one time to rake leaves, have a treat from Chick-fil-a, go to the Dentist for his first cleaning, and goof around the house. 

Roan has a wild imagination. I love listening to him play and make up stuff all on his own. he wanted to convert these two boxes into a space ship and helmet. 

My sister in law Lori was in town for a minute and we so kind to stop by my work so I could give her and her darling kids a hug. 

I went to a fun girls craft night at a local store with my friends and it was so fun. 
Roan has been so happy to help in the kitchen lately. He loves to stir, mix, and pour things for me. 

Sometimes I think I look pretty hot!
At one of Lars friends wedding receptions
Roan got new short PJs and he wanted to wear them everywhere. I suggested we take a pic instead. I told him to strike a pose and the above is what I got.  
 We still love after bath photos. 
Roan has been a big helper in getting things organized for the baby to arrive. While I sort and clean and organize he plays and tests everything thing out to ensure it is brother approved for "his baby girl." 

I love this kid, the other day he asked me to play with him because we are "Best friends". It made my heart melt. I hope I can try and be a good Mom for him. I know sometimes I am short or impatient with his shenanigans but I try to return his love that he so easily gives me.