Yesterday afternoon Brian heard from his agent that the tenor in a production of La Cenerentola (Rossini's Cinderella) was sick and they were looking for someone to cover in case he is not well enough to sing this weekend. So we had Brian to the airport this morning by 8am. Kind of crazy since we thought we had a bit more time to relax, but they will pay him just for being there, and pay him more if he has to sing. With the new baby coming and Brian keeping his schedule free for the newborn time, extra money will not hurt us. Colin was sad Dada had to go to work (he cried by the door for a while when we got home from the airport) but Brian should be back in just a few days.

Anyway, I am a single, pregnant mom of a toddler again for a few days. If my parents were not close I would go crazy. My belly is getting big, which makes wrestling Colin hard sometimes. If the new baby girl comes as early as Colin did, we would only have 10 weeks until she is born. But if I am overdue, it could be as much as 15 weeks until she comes. Crazy.

When I was taking photos of my nieces, I had the tripod out for some extra lighting. For a long time after I was done shooting, Colin was pretending the tripod was a camera and saying "Smile!" It was very cute and he loved it. He should be a good little photographer someday.

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Since we had so much family in town, we went a bit photo crazy. Here are my sister's cute kids from Seattle.

My brother's girls were also here from Connecticut.

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Brian got some good photos of Colin's lunch yesterday. Brian feels it documents his descent from good little lunch eater to demented spaghetti demon.

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Here is Brian, also for one of my photo assignments. We liked this photo for if he needs something a bit more pensive for some music thing sometime. (Brian says I need to go to the blog writing lab to help me with the last sentence.)

Nephew Mikey. He has an appointment with a barber today.

Here is Grace when she does not have a mouth full of brownie.

If I had not married Brian and if I had been born in 1932 this could have been me. My mom is not sure how we are related, but kind of strange to see your former name in the obituaries. I spent a whole 28 years as Ann Hinckley.
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Just for fun and to have a creative outlet, I have been taking a little photography class. One of our assignments was to photograph a day in the life of something, so I did a chocolate chip. This chocolate chip was trying to escape becoming part of a brownie, but in the end was not successful. Thanks to Brian's help and to my niece Grace who selflessly ate some brownie for the last couple shots.

My sister's family is visiting from Washington and my nieces from Connecticut are here, so all the other Utah Hinckley's came over for a big Sunday dinner(17 or 18 people, hard to keep track). Brian is finally home from Florida (yeah!). He was only gone 2 weeks, but it was a long two weeks. Colin was very happy to see his Dada today. All day he would run over to Brian and say "hi Dada!"

At one point during dinner I thought Colin was running around with the cousins but he was mysteriously missing. My niece Anna went to look for him and this is what she found. He is very into moving furniture to get at what he wants and he wanted brownie. It was quite the disaster. We knew something was going on when we did not hear him for a few minutes (you can usually hear him playing or screaming).

Colin did show us that the brownies were not all the way cooked. For next time we will teach him to check with a toothpick.
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Kirsten with her siblings in 2005

A year ago this week our niece Kirsten Hinckley was violently taken from us while shopping for Valentines at Trolley Square Mall in Salt Lake City. It has been a hard year without Kirsten, especially due to the circumstances in which she lost her life. We miss her terribly and will always have a hole in our hearts for her.

My sister-in-law April wrote more about Kirsten and her own experiences in losing an infant son.

I have some very sweet photos of Kirsten at our wedding when she was playing with lots of her younger cousins. The last time I saw Kirsten Colin was about 7 months old and I am glad they were able to meet. Like April, I like to think that Kirsten is still looking out for her little cousins and is keeping our in utero baby girl company until she joins us in the Spring.

Valentine's Day will always be bitter sweet.
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Two years

Happy Birthday Colin! We have had a great two years (of which I realized we have been on the road for 15-16 months of Colin's life). We had a little party for him on Saturday before Brian had to go to Florida. (Brian is in Jacksonville, FL for a Traviata until mid February. We are missing him a lot.)

Colin got a little shy with everyone singing Happy Birthday, but when we were done, he kept saying "more birthday" and we would sing again. He got pretty excited when he realized the evening was about him.

We also had to light and re-light the candles several times since he enjoyed blowing them out so much.

Colin was a little more excited about the M&M's on his cup cake than the cup cake. He calls them num nums, and would eat them all day long given the opportunity. He also got to use a fancy birthday goblet. He is a funny, busy boy and are so happy to have him!
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A new car from Cars, thanks to Uncle Ted and Aunt Libbie

We got Colin a noisy firetruck, since he loves noisy firetrucks.

Colin also got a little play tent, which he calls his house.
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We spent a nice restful morning watching the funeral proceedings for President Hinckley. While we are sad at his passing, we are so grateful for all he has done for our Church and the world. It has been lovely looking back on his life and accomplishments.

I got the chance to meet President Hinckley in 1999 and he made fun of the mission I served for our Church. He set my parents apart as mission presidents when they were preparing to leave for England. It was a neat experience to have some time with him. (I think my Dad kind-of could not escape some church service since President Hinckley was a cousin of my Grandpa Hinckley, President Faust was my dad’s bishop growing up and President Monson worked with my Grandpa and Dad. We ran into President Monson in the hallway before the setting apart and he had my Dad in a head-lock talking about former work things.) So before the setting apart we had some time to sit around and chat. President Hinckley was asking us about our lives and asked us about our missions. I said I served in Argentina and President Hinckley said “too bad you did not serve in England” (unfortunately I wasn’t married to Brian yet since he served in England. Maybe a British serving spouse would have counted for something). I stood up for Argentina and said I liked it there but President Hinckley being quite the Anglophile very quickly said “I have been to both places and I know England is more beautiful.” I always hesitate telling this to any of my Argentine friends since England can still be a sensitive subject so disculpame Carlitos y Diana si lean eso. President Hinckley signed my call to go to Argentina so I think I was supposed to go there anyway. I find it amusing that our Prophet mocked my mission. It was still a very special experience to have some time with him and feel of his spirit. At the time I did kind of want to ask him some questions about my future, but I don’t think the prophetic calling really lends itself to fortune telling. When he walked into the room he looked like such a frail old man but that all melted away when he started speaking. It was very obvious how on top of everything he was. He has left us a great legacy and will be missed by millions.
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