Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Family Christmas Letter

Ho, Ho, Ho! Merry Christmas!

This past year has been an exciting one for our little family. It has been a year of challenge, change, and blessings. Here’s a quick update. . .

Drew finished graduate school in May, took the Virginia Bar Exam in July, and began working for his father’s management consulting firm (Hilton Consulting Corporation) in August. He wears a number of hats, but his official title is Director of Marketing & Business Development. He’s excited to be working with his dad and learning all about how the business world works within the federal government.

Taylor (or “Baby Tay” as Carter calls her) joined our family in June. Her birth was a wonderful experience, and we were excited that Carter was there for her arrival. Taylor is just a bundle of sweetness. We feel so blessed to have had another very happy baby. In fact, she’s so happy that sometimes she even likes to play in the middle of the night! Unlike Carter who would always go right back to dreamland after eating at night, Taylor very regularly is up squealing and “talking” to herself around 2-3 a.m. each night. She is our sweet girl, and we love her so much. We didn’t think we’d ever have a girl, so we’re especially grateful to have her. She’s the perfect addition to our family. Heavenly Father sure knows what He is doing.

Carter is a busy 3 year old now. Sometimes we don’t know if we should be steaming mad at the things he does or laugh like crazy. Here’s a great example of a typical day with our little wise guy. . .Carter is a big boy now and goes to the bathroom all by himself, after which he washes his hands. Well, sometimes Mommy is busy with Taylor and can’t come immediately to supervise Carter’s hand washing. One day, Corinne heard the water going in the bathroom and assumed Carter was washing his hands like a good boy. A few minutes later, Carter was shouting for help, saying he was stuck. Hmm. Well, Mommy to the rescue! When Corinne came into the bathroom, there was Carter…naked...sitting in the sink (a pedestal sink mind you)...the water almost overflowing and his legs stuck under the faucet. Oh yes, and he had finger painted all over the mirror with hand soap! Corinne immediately said, “What are you doing?!” Carter simply responded, “I’m taking a bath, Mommy.” Everything seems to make sense when you are 3 years old.

At the end of October we moved into our first house. We’re home owners! We live in a small planned community about an hour outside of Washington D.C. We are enjoying our townhouse and all the blessings (and challenges) that come along with having a house. Even though it is brand new, we have definitely been initiated into the homeowners’ club! We have already had a visit from the plumber, the dishwasher fixed, found (and disposed of…thank you, Drew) a mouse on our kitchen counter, and put up Christmas lights. We’ve even changed a few of the doorknobs to prevent a certain little three year old from running outside at 6:00 in the morning. Fun times!

We hope each of you is happy and healthy! We think of our family and friends often. Thank you for the powerful influence you have had on us. We are grateful for this time of year to reflect on our blessings and remember the significance of the Savior’s birth. We hope each of you will feel of his love as you go about your holiday celebrations.

Much love!

Corinne, Drew, Carter, & Taylor Hilton

All I Want For Christmas is My Two Front Teeth

Our sweet little Taylor hasn't been feeling well for the past three weeks or so. The week after Thanksgiving she cut her first tooth and last week her second came in. Poor little dear! I had forgotten how terrible teething is! This week she has an ear infection and a cold and is just miserable. I don't think she has slept for more than an hour at a time in several days. Her mouth hurts, her ears hurt, and she just exhausted! Keep Tay in your prayers. On my wish list for Santa this year is a happy baby girl!

Here Comes Santa Clause

Carter recently met ol' Saint Nick at our church Christmas party. He didn't want to sit on his lap but he did give him a hug and told him that he wanted an airplane for Christmas. This Christmas season has been so fun with Carter and Taylor. Carter loves the Christmas lights and can sing Frosty the Snowman almost by himself. He even helped pick out our Christmas tree! He loves egg nog (which he calls "special milk") and candy canes. Most of the gifts have been left hidden but the ones that are out are constantly being rearranged by his little hands. Yesterday he showed Tay how to "open" presents with an empty box and some of his toys. It was pretty hilarious. I suppose that is what big brothers do!

Monday, December 18, 2006

We love Nancy!

We love our midwife Nancy. She's our favorite baby catcher! We wish she could be with us at the rest of our births. Drew and I are turning into midwife activists :). Actually, Drew thinks I should become one! What do you think? Here is a couple of pictures of Nancy and Taylor in November. Don't you just love how Tay's ears totally poke out!

A Classic Taylor Expression

Carter turns 3 years old!

F-Files Letter for November

The F-files a family news letter that Drew's wonderful Grandma Firl puts together every few months. Each individual family writes a letter and she compiles them and sends them to each of us. I am going to start posting ours here as well. Enjoy!

Hi Everyone!

We have so much news to share since our last F-Files letter. First of all, we are finally homeowners! Yes that is right. On October 27th (Happy Birthday Steve!) we closed on a brand new townhouse in Stone Ridge, Virginia, which is a few minutes west of Dulles Airport. Our technical address is Aldie, Virginia but soon our zip code will change and our town will be Stone Ridge (which is actually the name of the planned community we live in). We definitely saw the hand of the Lord in every step of the way in finding this house. We hope that it will prove to be a great investment that will help us pay off our student loans in a few years when we sell it. And until then, we are having fun living in it. It’s so beautiful! We feel really spoiled to have a two car garage, a gourmet kitchen, and even a soaking tub in our bathroom! It is far more than we could have ever hoped for. Just last night, Drew performed his first duty as a homeowner . . . he installed blinds on eight of our windows. Way to go Drew! Our brand new home already has lots of scratches in the paint from Carter playing, and we have already had to have our dishwasher, bathtub, and front door lock repaired. I guess you can say we have officially joined the ranks of homeowners like most of you. We are extremely grateful to Drew’s parents for letting us stay in their basement for a month until we could close on the house.

Halloween was particularly fun for our family this year. It was Carter’s first year trick or treating. He was Bob the Builder, and sweet little Taylor was a lamb. They were both so cute! In the days leading up to Halloween we explained to Carter many times about knocking on the door and saying “trick or treat” and then saying thank you after a treat was placed in his bag. At the first house, he went through the script we had taught him, and he stood in amazement when the man actually put a piece of candy in his bag for doing it. He turned to me and said “I got a treat!” At the next house he turned from the door saying “I got another treat, Mommy!” After the second house, he was running as fast as his little legs could carry him to each house. Pretty soon, he got so excited about all his treats that he threw all his manners out the window and started cutting across people’s yards to get to their front doors! And of course, I was the typical teary eyed mom the entire night. I can’t believe he will be 3 in a couple of weeks.

Taylor is just a sweet little thing. We call her “Baby Tay” for short, but with Carter’s wonderful sense of pronunciation, he changed it to “Bay Tay”, so now she’s officially Bay Tay. Anyway, Taylor is four months old and is putting everything in her mouth. She is also learning to use her little hands and just recently rolled over for the first time. A funny story about Taylor is how much she loves to watch Carter. In fact, recently she started mimicking him. Carter, like most toddlers, likes to growl and roar and make all sorts of loud noises. Well, a few weeks ago Taylor was just starting to put some noise behind her coos. It was so sweet and every time she would “talk” we would both melt. Well, then Carter starting roaring and growling and our little sweet Taylor starting making similar noises. That’s right, our sweet little Taylor now roars like a bear instead of cooing like a cute 4-month old baby. It is just hilarious to hear those noises coming out of a tiny little baby, especially since she makes them with a big smile on her face!

Drew is really enjoying his new job working for Hilton Consulting, and I love having him home in the evenings and on Saturdays. He says he likes being able to finally use all that pent-up knowledge from school in real-world settings. Other than his mission to Hungary, this is the first time Drew has been out of school since he was five years old. Wow! Drew says he especially likes his boss and thinks his boss’ wife is a babe J.

I love Drew. I love Carter. I love Taylor. Them and unpacking is enough to keep me busy right now.

We hope your holidays are wonderful!


Corinne, Drew, Carter, & Taylor Hilton

Tay is 4 months old!

Fall Fun

We went to Cox Farm with Grandma Heidi and Uncle Jeff in October. Carter loved the hay ride and face painting. He was very proud of the pumpkin he picked out.

September Family Letter

Hi Everyone!

Just wanted to post a family letter and let every one know what has been happening with us. The first news is that we have a house! We close on a townhouse in Aldie Virginia at the end of October. Yahoo! I think Drew and I have decided that we are great at house hunting but terrible at house deciding. Drew found us a beautiful investment property at a great price. It was built this year and we will be its first owners- we even get to pick our carpet J. Overall, we are excited as well as relieved that the house buying process is over for a few years.

Drew has been working now for a couple of weeks and is enjoying it. I am not quite sure what he does each day but work is work- so good job Drew! Carter, Taylor and I are keeping down the fort in Richmond each week. Drew either comes home on the weekend or I take the kids up to northern Virginia for quick visits. I have begun the packing process as our lease is up in 2 weeks. I am not quite sure where the kids and I will be living until we can be in the house but I’ll keep you posted.

Carter and Taylor are doing great. They are just both so adorable. Carter can be quite the chatter box and is constantly asking to play outside. He loves rocks and dirt and everything else that can get him dirty. Taylor is still just as sweet as ever and has become a very smiley baby. She loves attention and will coo and “talk” until she is tired. We love her “look at me” squeals and her bright blue eyes. Drew and I are so blessed to have had another very happy and social baby.

In August we spent two weeks in Boise and it was a very interesting trip. The third night we where there (our anniversary night) Drew ended up in the emergency room. He had 3 kidney stones! Two passed and we are waiting on the third. Needless to say our trip wasn’t a vacation for him as he was “out” on pain meds most of the time. He didn’t perk up until a couple of days before we left. But even though he didn’t feel well, it was fun to spend time with family. I think everyone was pretty excited to meet Taylor and to see how Carter had grown since last summer.

Well, that is what we’ve been up to. We look forward to another beautiful fall in Virginia. It is perhaps my favorite time of year here.

We love you all!

Corinne, Drew, Carter & Taylor

Taylor is 2 months old!