Thursday, December 25, 2008

A Christmas to Remember

From our hearts to yours, Merry Christmas!!!

This Christmas will go down as one of the most memorable. I think it will be impossible to describe, in the short words and pictures below, how remarkable this Christmas was for us.

The Twins
To begin, Tasha and I, for some reason or other, didn't have much time to shop for gifts this year. I know...twins is a weak-sauce excuse, but that's the card I'm playing...they were our Christmas. They're healthy, happy, and growing very fast and we couldn't wish for much else.




The bows mean that they were officially going down in the Bigler history books that they were our Christmas gifts this year.


The Miracle on 650 South Street
Last week we received a knock on our door from an unidentified man giving us a Provo River cruise, where we'd take a tour on a boat to see the Provo Christmas lights. As is the case with the Cusick brain, my wife immediately went into "problem-solving" mode, trying as she might to think of who would give such a nice gift.

Perhaps it was coincidental, but we think not, that the very night we were supposed to be enjoying ourselves on a cruiseliner bound for Provo's best lights, Kaya spiked a fever and started throwing up...I know, for those that know Kaya, that never, never happens (she's always feeling 100%, especially around holidays...NOT!!!) But I digress.

The coincidence came at roughly 7pm on the 23rd, the same night and time we were supposed to be on the cruise. I'm changing Jacob's diaper, Tasha's feeding Emma, Maleah and Kaya are chasing each other around our "race track", when we hear a knock at our door. As always, Kaya and Maleah practically jump out of their skin to answer the door, especially the loud knocks.

The next thing we hear is Kaya yelling (practically screaming): "There's a rocking horse on our porch! There's a rocking horse on our porch! There's a rocking horse on our porch! And there's a lot, a lot of presents!!!"

Tasha got to the door first (although I've got diaper changing down to 15.23 sec, when it's really bad...well it takes a little longer). "Grant, you've got to come see this."

When I arrived, all I could do is laugh. I'm not sure why, except that it was a little unbelievable. Our front porch was literally covered with gifts, and Santa was nowhere in sight. Tasha thought that perhaps these gifts were given to distribute to those in our neighborhood in need, until we saw that every gift had one of our names on it.

Attached to the smorgasbord of gifts was a kind letter from Santa (with an additional generous endowment) reminding us again what Christmas is all about. I share in part: "it goes to show that you never know who is watching you...one day, I may call upon you to be my special helpers, and I have no doubt you will be able to deliver for me as I have done for you...Keep fighting the good fight and remember always that you are loved."

I believe whoever penned this letter had the essence of the Light of Christmas. I don't know that the Author of Christmas would, Himself, have phrase it differently. We are so blessed and fortunate to be the recipients of this kind act of service...and to any who may have been involved that might be reading this blog: Thank You for your kindness and generosity. You have reminded us, and have helped teach our children that Christmas is about giving. With each gift given, we celebrate and rejoice in the Babe of Bethlehem, Jesus Christ, the Giver of all good gifts.



Christmas Day
Believe it or not, this is our first Christmas in our own home. The previous 9 Christmases have been spent in Colorado. That means it was our first time being "Santa"...and wow, I didn't know how much thought this title requires. I had to think about stocking stuffers, traditions, food, placement of presents, the sequence of Christmas morning, etc.

Kaya, and Maleah making their entrance to the tree (Maleah wouldn't come along with Kaya without shedding some tears...so enter: Mommy)

Kaya inspecting whether Santa ate all dozen cookies...and yes, I did...finished the last one at 1am

"Santa did what?"

One of the many gifts from Santa included books and educational toys, along with some much needed diapers (of all sizes--just thinking about that is nuts. Our diaper requirements span sizes 1 through 4!!! Are we crazy??? No, just happy and broke.) Thank you Santa.

Maleah liked climbing on the presents. Opening them was another story. I don't think she really gets it yet.

True joy. (Kaya wanted a Barbie, and Mommy compromised by getting a Barbie head...Kaya loved it).

Kaya and her "children".
We really missed our friends and family in Colorado. But, what a fun and memorable Christmas. The snow, the gifts, the smiles, the diapers, the surprises. Kaya felt good the entire day, and Maleah just ran around testing her limits (by hitting Kaya). Merry Christmas everyone!!!

The First Snow

The snow storm that just hit the Orem area was amazing!!! It reminded me of the snow I remembered getting as a kid. This is the first snow experience where Kaya didn't complain of being cold (which usually hit 10 minutes after getting suited up). So much fun!


Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving with the Biglers can sometimes be overwhelming. My 9 siblings and their nieces and nephews makes for a household of...fun. Tasha and I now operate on "twin time" (the official definition we're requesting Wikipedia to add is: 'we'll be there between the hours of 8am and 5pm'...reminds you of RC Willey's delivery practice doesn't it???)

We thought we'd go up Thursday and comeback Friday...but then we (Tasha really) noticed how many extra hands there were in the house to help, and our one day vacation quickly turned into three.

In those three days, I practically mastered Guitar Hero (after only three songs...I promise), we gorged ourselves with yummy food (my favorite was the Prime Rib and Ratatouille), Maleah (force)fed Emma a Cheeto, near-death experience with a leaking propane tank, a nice walk through Lagoon's park, and a fast-paced Bigler brother go-cart race.

Kaya and Maleah were so fun walking in the park together...Maleah was so comfy with my piggy back ride that she fell asleep.


Kaya with some of her cousins: Kamille, Kolby, and Kendall.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

twin binkis

Maleah never took a binki when she was a baby...but now she's making up for it.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

More pics

So, as many of you have guessed, our groove has been severely adjusted right now. Our REM sleep is basically nill, as it has been replaced by "cat naps" throughout the night. Now I have to preface everything I do at work with, "I'm sleep deprived, so just bear with me..."

Tasha is a trooper. She has performed the other wonder of the world: feeding multiple babies at one time.

Kaya, of course, desires to help more helpful than we want her to (the other day, I walked into our room and she was holding the breast pump gear under her shirt and said, "I'm pumping")

Maleah finds every binky and puts it in the babies mouths and then back into her own, right after she "honked" their nose and pointed out every major facial organ (ear, nose, eyes, etc)

A day in the life...but oh it's worth it.

Kaya always wants to be the mother...
this is the first time Maleah has every wanted to hold the babies...Emma got the 1st try.

Little piggie, little piggie, let me in...(Jacob G looks good in pink :)

Kaya and Maleah w/twins

video
Many have been asking how Kaya and Maleah are reacting to the twins...here's your sneek peak.

Havin' fun in the leaves

Kaya and Maleah fully enjoyed our leaf raking project...
video

Sunday, November 02, 2008

BABIES!!!

Here's a little play-by-play of our recent events. First, we've documented that Tasha really did have a shelf on her tummy:
Second, we noticed that other's thought she had a shelf too (Tasha's sister, Heidi, told us that her boss was visiting the hospital this week, and noticed "the largest pregnant mom, dressed in a brown mumu" that he'd ever seen...little did he know that he was talking to that pregnant mom's sister)
Third, Tasha has what she calls "sausage toes". And evidently, post labor doesn't reduce swelling. It's getting worse. She thinks she might get stretch marks on her feet.
Now for the fun part. Tasha called me at work Thursday afternoon, saying that her contractions were 6 minutes apart. I hung up on my client, and sped home. When we arrived at the hospital, she was dilated to a 6, and that was without experience painful labor pains.

After checking her, our doctor said that there was a bum and a head competing to come out first. We resolved to push the bum up and break the water of the baby that was head-down. We quickly learned that breaking the water accelerates contractions. In the interim, we were convinced that Tasha should have an epidural. (I've learned that this is one of the wonders of the world, and a saving grace for this father's thumb and forearm muscles). After laboring for about 1.5 hours, we went to the Operating Room (just in case we needed an emergency C-Section). But that wasn't necessary. In fact, Tasha did amazingly well. She delivered both without difficulty. Emma came first, then Jacob came 14 minutes later (a natural gentleman, of course...allowing the woman to go first).


Emma Rae Bigler 5 lbs 10 oz, 18 inches

Jacob Grant Bigler 6 lb 14 oz, 19.5 inches

Both of them love being next to each other.

With twins, we became a collector of arm bands.


All Kaya wants to do is kiss and hold Emma.

Maleah is pretty clueless. Although she looks at them and yells "baby" really well.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

maleah eating???


at least she likes tomatoes...we had the best brushetta, fresh from our garden tomatoes and basil. Yummmmmmmy.

Belly show

Upon popular request...
You should see her with a hula skirt on... :)

We are officially at 30 weeks and Tasha measures a small 44 inches. The good news is that we only have 10 weeks before the due date. The bad news is, the next 10 weeks is when the baby's grow the most...along with mommy's belly. HOLY STRETCH MARKS!!!!! Each baby weighs 3 lbs right now, so we are on track for a couple healthy babies.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Summer catchup

First trip: Oregon.
Purpose: Tasha's family reunion


Next trip: Balloon Festival, Provo
Next trip: July 4th at Primary Childrens...sorry, no photos. We're frequent fliers there and have enough photos for a while. Although, we are considering requesting a room with our name on it...preferably on the West side so we have front view of the fireworks in SLC. (Kaya ended up having a kidney infection this go-round).

Next trip: Colorado


don't worry, more to come...

Jack and Jill...

It's official...well, it's been official for a while now, but we are trying to prep all of you blog readers for our infrequent posts (who knows what's going to happen when these twins crush our world)!

A Boy and a Girl. Yep, I get my boy, along with another package of estrogen. Boy am I excited...to be able to hang with a guy. :) We really haven't decided on names (we can hardly come up with one, let alone two), but we have heard a couple funny ones:

Jack and Jill
Alfredo and Marinara
Milee and Cyrus
Daisy and Duke

See what we have to choose from??? Basically, we need help.

The best thing--we have a minivan that will tote these screamin' demons anywhere we go.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Ummmmm.........TWINS?????

I was working on the computer late one night when Tasha gently laid a pregnancy test on the desk. "What do you think of that?" she asked. Both of us didn't think it was possible (especially considering our track record of getting children after 4 yrs of trying), so she got another test out. Positive. "Maybe they're old pregnancy tests," I said. At 11:30pm Tasha went to Wal-Mart to get some new tests. Sure enough, even the new one showed positive.

Shocker! We were really excited, but needed to wait a couple weeks to confirm this with the OB. At this appointment, they brought us to their ultrasound room. After a little looking, the doctor asked, "Do you want the good news or bad news first." As you know, we don't like to be teased about "bad news" at all, so we were quickly relieved (kind of) when he said that we were having TWINS, "which is the good and the bad news".

Needless to say we left the OB office in total shock. That turned out to be the beginning of many realizations. The first came as we approached our car...yep-we suddenly realized that our Lexis is now too small. Four carseats and sedans just don't mix. SUV? Nope. Not when you consider we would be the ones having to crawl over the middle seat to buckle in Kaya/Maleah or the twins in the back. So minivan here we come--and yes, I'm actually getting more and more excited about it. And the list of realizations is getting longer. For now, we are just plain excited.

Due date is mid November, and yes, this time we'll find out what we are going to have.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Education...life...and other not-so-deep thoughts

As many of you know, I've been contemplating furthering my education. For a long time, I've been anticipating a masters in business or some finance-related degree. But earlier this year, I was re-directed.

Tasha asked me one morning: "Grant, are you doing what you should be doing with your life?"

That penetrating question sums up the beginning of a great many days of pondering about what type of education I should obtain. My answer came clearly. I need attend law school. Although a clear answer, I spent the next several days asking myself if I was listening to the right spirit...and after other events triggered confirmation that I was, I became assured more than most times in my life that my path for the next 4 years is clear: law school, here I come.

What type of law? What school? I have no idea... I would have preferred that the answer came after softball season was over and after some of my other businesses were off the ground (studying for 15 hours/week doesn't leave time for much of anything). I will take the LSAT in June and plan on attending fall of 2009...somewhere. Until then--yes--my blog posts might be sporadic. :) (they may have some consistency, however...it helps that I got a new iMac (and can see my new toy while typing)--yes, I joined the MacRevolution (or the anti-PC revolution...either way...)

My last note: This process has renewed my understanding of how to approach life. Life isn't all about so many things, and meant specifically for a few things. I value education...in a variety of ways, not necessarily tied to a formal degree from an accredited institution. Many books sit on shelves with pages unopened. Many children sit at home participating in good practices that could be better or better yet, even best.

So often we live life by moving with the tide...doing things because others do them. But we are here to learn, to stretch, and have experiences that build our faith in God. I believe if each of us asked and involved the Lord in even our daily duties and decisions, we will be given more ability to accomplish tasks that are designed to complete and enrich our character. Thus we will be positioned to bless the lives of many others.

We went to the open house of the Rexburg temple earlier this year...my camera almost didn't work in the -20 degree weather. I loved Ricks...but am not sure how I made it through the winters...