Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas Day

Max was upstairs and enjoying the presents Santa brought before most of us were up. He got a toolbox full of tools from Santa, along with an army playset with a helicopter, some transportation DVD's, some books, a sleeping bag from Grandma Nancy, along with several other toys. (Of course what he really wanted to play with was Ellie's race track!) He is one spoiled/lucky little boy. His favorite toy of all, though, was the cargo airplane he got from Grandma and Grandpa. It's got it all, combining both his love of anything transportation and toys that can hold other toys. Plus it makes noise! Emily got blocks and some books and other little toys, along with her blanket and some clothes. To be honest, she didn't seem to interested in opening presents, just playing with the wrapping paper and ribbons! ;)

We spent most of the day at my moms so that we could spend time with Seth and Jessica who drove through the night to get there in time for Christmas. We took off around 4:30 to make the almost 2 hour drive up to Jeff's parents. We made great time, getting to our house about ten minutes earlier than usual. We stopped for a very quick unload of presents before heading up to Jeff's parents. The roads and weather were great until just after we passed Brigham City and then it got horrible. They were sure getting dumped on up north! We were glad that Meghan had called to warn us of the weather since her and Jay were making the same journey up to his parent's house and were about thirty minutes ahead of us. It took us an extra half hour to make the rest of the journey and it was pretty slow going with a lot of white nuckling done by me. We were very glad when we pulled into their driveway and excited to see all of Jeff's family, although not so excited to see Matt and Sherry take off shortly after we got there to head down south. Aparently the storm followed them and they had a rough and slow time the entire trip, but made it home okay. We were very glad we were spending the night, along with Curtis and Alese who got snowed in because the road over to Cache Valley had been closed. We had a great time playing and eating lots of yummy food! We woke up the next morning to a beautiful snow covered world and I was sad that we didn't have snow clothes so that we could go out and play in the foot of fresh snow. It was a great Christmas and we loved being able to spend so much time with our wonderful family and having several days after to spend time together before Jeff had to head back to work!

Christmas Eve

Holiday soup, singing around the piano, opening your one gift, playing games, and of course, watching "Christmas Eve on Sesame Street". The only down side was that I spent the night like this:

Ward Christmas Breakfast

Here we are at the Ward Christmas breakfast the Saturday before the big event. Instead of Santa coming to visit we got the Grinch in his Santa costume. I'm not quite sure how I feel about this. We were actually pretty surprised we were able to get Max to go sit on his lap, even if he was one of the very last kids to go up. Next year I'll have to make sure he gets to meet Santa Claus.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

My Favorite Place

I was cleaning up my craft area today and decided I would finally do that post that I've been thinking about doing for the past 6 months or so. Now, like I said, I was cleaning today. This area of our house is NOT usually this clean, plus I left some stuff I'm working on out of the pictures and pulled the ironing board that seems to have taken up permanent residence in this area out of the way.

I'm sure you already know that I love to sew, scrapbook, stamp, quilt, and basically make things. When Jeff and I bought our house I was really hoping that we would be able to get a four bedroom house so I would have some room for my stuff, at least for a few years, but the minute I heard "Cape Cod style" and saw the pictures of our house I knew this was the house I wanted even though it only had three bedrooms and needed a lot of TLC. There are many things I love about my house, but one of these things is how big our Master bedroom is. Since I knew that I wouldn't be able to have my own room for my craft stuff, Jeff and I decided that I could have one of the walls/corners of our bedroom. (Yes, I painted our bedroom purple, and No, Jeff does not have a problem with it.)

Last fall I watched my neighbor Aimee's baby (and his older brother after school) twice a week during one of her graduate classes. Jeff and I decided that the money I earned was my special "fun money" that I could do whatever I wanted with and pretty much all of the money went into this space except for a small portion that bought me some new maternity clothes. I called it my Charlie money. I bought myself my own serger, which I had been wanting for years. I bought my shelves and baskets and a Cuttlebug machine along with a bunch of dies and embossing folders. And I bought my beautiful desk that I LOVE! I just have to say that I had been eyeing this desk for months but it was way out of my price range ($400's, on sale). Because of some unusual circumstances I was able to get it for $200. With limited space I really needed to maximize the area, so I added the shelves and the baskets to hold my stamps, ink, and extra ribbon and I just love how easy it is for me to find and use my stuff now. Much better than the dig through my piles of stuff on the floor method I was using before.

I did a similar layout with my sewing area with shelves and baskets over my sewing machine for all of my sewing supplies, patterns, and scrap fabric. So nice, especially with little kids because most of my stuff is way up out of their reach. I'm planning on adding an inspiration board to the wall next to the sewing machine and maybe some little wall quilts or vinyl lettering. Someday. Right now I just love having my own little area. It's so nice to have a place to do the things that I love doing. I think every mom should have a little area all her own to do the things that she loves.

On a related note: After I bought my desk, Jeff was a little sad that he didn't have a space of his own. I offered him joint custody of my desk, but him being the super nice, thoughtful person that he is told me I should have a space that was just mine. Instead of sharing my desk we bought Jeff this beaut off KSL for about $30. One of these days I'm going to paint it when he's not looking. We figure that in a few years it might make a good school desk for the kids. So now we both have a little wall in our room that is all our own. And since we also have our computer in our bedroom we have three desks in here. I tell ya, our room is stylin'!!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Cutting down our Christmas tree

I already posted about us cutting down our tree, but I didn't have any pictures because both my rechargeable batteries and my back up batteries to my camera died on Thanksgiving day. My sister was nice enough to take some pictures for us and send them to me. Thanks Erin!! Why are kids so cute when they are all bundled up? (Please ignore my crazy/scary bangs!)

Christmas Crafts, part 1

I obviously can't post some of the Christmas presents I've been working on, but Emily doesn't keep up on the family blog so I think I'm okay to post this one. I love the flannel section at Joanne's and when I saw this yellow, flowery fabric I just had to have it. I really wish I could girl up Emily's "gender neutral" bedroom, but since it is the most done room in the house and we have so many other projects I want to do it just doesn't make sense to redo it, so this is a little bit of a compromise. I got to make a girly quilt and use the Christmas money to do it! The white squares are a really soft minky fabric that I just love. Emily's really into soft things so I think she'll really like her snuggly little quilt. Oh, and I found out that I could do free motion quilting with my sewing machine and it is so fun! (Although I'm not very good at it!)

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Have you ordered a turkey that's a whopper?

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving with Jeff's family and then went with Erin, Brian and Ellie and Brian's brother Craig and his wife Cammie and their three girls to cut down our Christmas tree Friday morning. When we got home early that evening we began cooking for our "Chinese Thanksgiving" meal with my Dad and Sharon. (Can I just say, "YUMMY!" We had won-tons, lettuce wraps, tiny-spicy chicken, and beef and broccoli and then had pumpkin pie for dessert.) We especially enjoyed having it at our house since we were able to put our kids to bed and didn't have to drive home. We all slept in this morning and then got to work putting up the Christmas decorations. Max and Emily were both so excited while we were decorating the tree. Emily danced to the Christmas music (that girl sure loves to wiggle and shake!) and Max made mischief and mayhem all day long.

I love Christmas decorations and am so excited to spend the next month enjoying our Christmas lights. I asked Jeff if we could move one of our couches into the living room while we have out tree up. I can't wait until we can buy furniture for our living room. Sigh. We've hung our "holly on the door" and I've "got a crazy feeling that I'm gonna hit the ceiling". I guess we're bound to have a Christmas like we've never had before! (Can you tell we've been listening to Ruth Lion? If you're not a member of my family, I'm sure you have no idea what I'm talking about - sorry!) I hope everyone else in feeling happy and in the Christmas spirit. I just love this time of the year!!!

Monday, November 24, 2008

All That Jazz!

Jeff and I got invited today to go to the Jazz game. Can I just say that it was SOOOOO fun!?! We got to watch the game from one of the luxury suites, we ate yummy food and some REALLY yummy white chocolate covered popcorn, we got to hang out with friends, and the game was very exciting! The Jazz did end up losing, but IN THE LAST SECOND! Come on, how excitting of a game is that! What a fun night out. (Oh, and we had such a cute babysitter who I felt so good about leaving my little kiddos with. Thanks for letting us borrow your daughter for the night, Lesley! And thanks, Candie for a wonderful night!)

Sunday, November 23, 2008

My Talk Is Over!!!! Yeah!

Just an update on how the big talk went today. I actually feel really good about how my talk went. I was really nervous all morning and couldn't eat much breakfast and then felt sick when we got to the church and sat up on the stand. We had a few minutes before the meeting started, so I went into an empty room by myself and said a prayer. I felt a lot calmer after that. It wasn't as scary looking out at the whole church as I thought it would be. It was actually calming to see so many faces of being that love and care about me and my family. I was nervous when I started speaking, but I felt calm pretty quick and was able to say what I wanted and was even able to wing some parts instead of just reading the whole thing like I had planned on. My hands were still shaky the whole time, but I don't think anyone but the bishopric could really tell. It was so nice to have early church and be done with my talk by ten. Jeff did a great job on his talk and it was nice to be able to relax and enjoy it since I was done speaking. Unfortunately, Max was in a "mood" today and ended up sitting on the stand with us even though my neighbor had said he could sit with them. (Jeff said, and I agree, that it would have been easier to dress a badger this morning.) He wasn't too bad and my good friend had Emily so I was able to enjoy Sacrament Meeting more than usual. It was very nice to get home from church and take a good nap this afternoon. Now I can get back to stressing about all the Christmas crafting that I've got going on.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Confronting My Fears

Well, the dreaded day of reckoning has arrived. For the first time since Jeff and I have been married I've been asked to talk in church, next week, on thankfulness and giving. I'm having a hard time being thankful right now. I haven't talked in church since I was about fifteen. It was one of the most horrible experiences of my life. I've turned down speaking in church ever since. Honestly, if I didn't have a testimony I would quit going to church because you're always being asked to give lessons, talk in church, be the enrichment leader, all stuff which makes me VERY nervous. I'm trying to blame Jeff for making me say yes. When we got engaged our bishop asked us to talk in church and I, of course, turned him down. Jeff was so disappointed in me that I felt extremely guilty and promised to talk the next time we were asked. I could just feel him looking at me when they asked us to see how I would respond. Stupid promises! (By the way, none of you are invited, even those of you who are members of my ward!)

Monday, November 10, 2008

Rainy Days and Mondays

Mondays tend to be this weird combination of lazy day and work day at our house. I know a lot of people clean their house on the weekend, but I prefer to do it on Monday. This is because it seems like it gets the dirtiest over the weekend, so if I clean on Saturday, by Monday it feels like I need to clean again anyway. Since I plan on cleaning on Mondays, I tend to put off taking a shower and getting ready for the day, making me feel like it's a lazy day. Today we got a very late start to the day. Emily didn't wake up until 10:00 and then I woke Max up at 10:30. Before you get all jealous, this is not the normal time my kids get up, we just had a late night last night and Max woke up around three and screamed for about an hour for who knows what reason, so I feel I was justified in having my kids sleep in today.

It was a gloomy, dark, rainy day which put me in the mood for a little extra homemaking so Max and I made homemade granola bars. I don't know why I've become such a from scratch kind of girl lately, but I love making things on my own that most people would normally buy from the store. This is probably part loving to save money and part loving to create something. These are very easy to make and I think they are pretty good. Of course I got the recipe of Allrecipes, if anyone was wondering. Oh, how I love Allrecipes!

4 cups rolled oats
1 cup flour (I used wheat even though it calls for all-purpose)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup honey
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1-2 cups chocolate chips (or raisins, nuts, etc.)

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Lightly grease a 9 x 13 inch pan. In a large bowl combine all the ingredients but the chocolate chips. Stir in the chocolate chips. Press the mixture into the pan. Bake for 18-22 minutes until golden brown. Cool for 10 minutes and then cut into bars. Wait until they are completely cool before serving or removing.

I used only 1 cup of chocolate chips even though it called for 2 and I think it was plenty. The first time I made these I used raisins and I thought they turned out really good even though I'm not a huge raisin fan. I also pressed down the mixture halfway through baking and again when I pulled them out of the oven. There was also a suggestion on Allrecipes to add Rice Crispy's to give them that crunch that Quaker granola bars have. I think this sounds like a great idea, but we don't eat cereal and I didn't want to buy a box just to make a batch of granola bars. Maybe next time.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Family Pictures

A few weeks ago my high school friend Natalie took family pictures for us while she was visiting her family in Utah. I got my disc in the mail today with our photos and I am so excited! I just LOVE these pictures. Natalie is an amazing photographer. I wish I knew a bunch of people in San Antonio so I could spread the word. If you look in some of the pictures you can see that it was snowing. Crazy Utah weather! Because of the weather, Max wasn't being too cooperative, yet she still got some great shots of both him and Emily. Can I just say that these are my favorite family pictures I've ever gotten!? Thank you so much Natalie! (You can check out Natalie's website here.)

Nine Month Old Baby Girl

Our beautiful little Emily turned 9 months old on Halloween. She is so much fun right now. She crawls all over and pulls herself up on things. She makes some very funny growling and huffing noises. She gives the cutest and sweetest hugs and kisses, although the kisses tend to be a bit on the slobbery side. I just want to eat her up she is so stinkin' cute! She had her well check visit today and she weighed 17 lbs 1 oz. (20%) and was 27 inches long (25%). She seems long and lean but apparently she's a little on the small side, which suprised me a little. I mean, look at her parents. We are anything but small. Her head on the other hand was 75%. I told Jeff and he said, "That's my girl!" Now if only she would stop growing for a while.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!!

We had our ward trunk-or-treat last Saturday, so I spent the week hurrying to get the kids costumes done. When I got Max's finished he wanted nothing to do with it. We went to the chili cook off anyway and all he wanted to do was admire all of the pretty princess dresses. I was a little worried that he was going to miss out on trick-or-treating this year, but luckily he is old enough to understand when I tell him that no costume = no trick-or-treating = no candy. I tried to not out and right bribe him, but I think it was a little border line. Of course, once you can get him to wear something once he seems to be fine wearing it again and will often make the once hated item of clothing the now loved ad most worn piece of clothing. I sometimes just don't get his thinking!

I made Max a prince/king costume this year in the hopes that he could use it to play with his cousins when they dress up as princesses. As you can tell by the continued princess dress obsession it isn't really working out that way. Oh well. I'm torn because I don't want to out right tell him, "Boy's don't dress up as princesses." And it's a very big double standard. If he was a girl wanting to dress up as a boy there would be no issue at all. On the other hand, I do believe in gender roles and I don't want to go out and encourage the dress loving.

Max did a pretty good job with the trick-or-treating this year. He seemed to understand the concept pretty well and I could get him to say "trick-or-treat" about half the time and almost always he would say "thank you". I think the holidays get so fun the older your kids get, when they can really understand what is going on and get into the spirit of the holidays.

Emily got to be a carrot because 1. she loves carrots and 2. I already had all the material I needed to make the costume. The face she is making above is her Jeff face. When she makes this face it's a little spooky how much she looks like her dad.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

My dreams have been SQUASHED!!

(Ha, ha, ha! The title is one that Jeff threw out when I asked,"What should I title my post?" and we had a good laugh over it so I decided to go ahead and use it.)

Anywho, we brought home several butternut squash from Jeff's parents after the wedding festivities a couple of weeks ago and I have had a wonderful time finding ways to use them. Who ever knew that cooking with squash could be so fun and yummy?!

The first squash I used to make baby food. I have been making my own baby food for Emily, and it is very satisfying and easy. I just cook up a bunch of sweet potatoes, carrots, squash, or whatever vegetable I want to add to her repertoire of food. Then I puree it in our blender, adding some water if needed to get the consistency I like. Then I pour it into ice cube trays. I store them in freezer bags after they're completely frozen. When it's time to feed her I just thaw 3 or 4 cubes in the microwave and viola! She loves her food and I love looking in the freezer at all the pretty colored bags of frozen fruits and veggies. Right now she has squash, carrots, green beans, and pears. (BTW, that one squash made enough to fill that whole freezer bag. We are down probably about a third of what we started out with.)

The next squash I used to make squash soup. Now, Jeff was not too excited about the prospect of squash soup for dinner, but he changed his mind after he tasted it. This was YUMMY!! Here's the recipe:

1 small onion, chopped
1 medium carrot, chopped
2 medium potatoes, cubed
1 medium butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cubed
32 oz. chicken stock
salt and pepper to taste
sour cream

Cover the vegetables with chicken stock. (I actually used part stock and part water and bouillon because that's what I had.) Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 40 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Transfer the soup to a blender and blend until smooth. (I actually used our hand wand and blended it right in the pot.) If needed, add more chicken stock to get the desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper. Serve with a dollop of sour cream. (Crackers go really good with this soup.)

The original recipe called for celery, but I didn't have any so I left it out. It also said to saute the vegetables in 2 T. butter first, but I skipped that part. Did I mention that this soup was yummy? It made enough for the four of us for dinner (with both Jeff and I having a second bowl of soup) and three lunches for me and Emily. (My brave little eater Max would not try this soup. He just kept pretending to take a bite and then would say, "I no like it, mommy!") Another thing that was great about this soup was that all the vegetables, minus the carrots, came from Bill's garden. Thanks for a yummy dinner, Bill!!

Yesterday I cooked up our third squash and made "Better Than Pumpkin Pie". Jeff and I both thought this was one of the best "pumpkin" pies we have ever had. Here's the recipe:

1 1/2 cups peeled and cubed butternut squash
1 cup lightly packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 egg, beaten
1 cup evaporated milk
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 pinch ground allspice
1 pinch ground cloves
1 pinch ground ginger
1 pinch ground nutmeg
1 (9 inch) unbaked pie shell

Place squash in a saucepan with enough water to cover. Bring to a boil, and simmer over medium heat until tender, about 15 minutes. Drain, and cool.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). In a blender or food processor, combine butternut squash, brown sugar, cornstarch, egg, milk, cinnamon, allspice, cloves, ginger, and nutmeg. Process until smooth. Pour into the unbaked pie shell. Bake in preheated oven for 50 minutes, or until a table knife comes out clean when inserted in the center.

Instead of cooking the squash on the stove, I actually pricked it with a fork several times and baked the entire thing in a 400 degree oven for an hour. Then I cut it in half, scooped out the seeds and blended the squash in our blender. It was a big squash and it was not cooked all the way through, so I ended up cooking some of it in the microwave for a few minutes. I only used 1/4 of the entire squash to make this pie.

Can I just say that I have had so much fun expanding my recipes to include squash! Who knew that I would love cooking with squash so much. I actually have one more butternut squash that I got from a neighbor and I've found a recipe for squash fries that is supposed to be even better than sweet potato fries. I'll let you know how they turn out. In the meantime, Bill and Deanne stopped by today and brought me a big red cabbage. I've already got what looks like a yummy recipe to try for tomorrow night!

(If you are looking for a place to find good recipes, check out Allrecipes. It is AWESOME!!)

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Craft Tag

My friend tagged me to post a fun craft idea. (Sorry it's taken me a while to get mine posted, Kathryn!) :) I love this tag, because who can't use some good craft ideas, especially with Christmas coming?!
Anyway here are the rules:
1. Post a project that you have been working on lately or some thing you want to start soon.
2. Include pictures, a few instructions on how to make your fun project/craft idea, or a link to where you found the idea.
3. Then tag a few people to do the same!!

I'm doing my post on fabric covered buttons. If you haven't seen these before, they are so fun and so easy! You don't really need instructions - you'll find them on the package of buttons and they are super easy to make. The fun thing about these is that you can then turn them into magnets, push pins, pony tail holders, etc. The button part is removable, so you can take it out really easily with some pliers to make the magnets and push pins. (The ones I bought online had the option of a flat back or a button loop on the back.) I'm thinking of stamping little images on some plain muslin for some cute holiday magnets (probably for gifts) and am planning on also using them for embelishments on scrapbook pages and cards. You can buy them at the fabric store or online, which is actually cheaper if you want to buy more than just a few, and they come in about five different sizes. I'm tagging Erin, Shelly, Shannan, Tiffany, Meghan, Ines and anyone else who has a fun project or craft idea they want to share.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

For Time and all Eternity

Curtis and Alese were married yesterday in the Logan Temple. It was such a beautiful ceremony, one of the most beautiful I've ever been to. Because they got married two days before our fifth anniversary, in the same temple we did, it really made me think back to my own perfect wedding day. As the sealer was talking about the covenants we make when we get married and the blessings that come from a celestial marriage, I sat next to Jeff with his arm around me and felt such gratitude for our marriage and our two beautiful children. I often wonder why I have been so blessed and am so grateful for my little family that I love so much. Even though Max was running all over the flower beds and being a little stinker about pictures after the ceremony, I still felt like I had a sense of gratitude that stuck with me the rest of the day.

Curtis and Alese had decided not to have a reception, so after the wedding lunch we went out to Jeff's parents house. It was such a perfect fall day, a little chilly, but bright and sunny with some fall leaves on the ground. We spent the day talking, laughing, and enjoying each others company. It was so great to have a day in the middle of the week to spend with family. And, of course Bill's garden is still blessing the whole family. We brought home Max and Emily's pumpkins, several squash and a couple of bags of potatoes. Yum!! Max was so excited this morning to see his pumpkin and has been looking at and carrying the pumpkins around the house all day. I feel blessed in so many ways and happy to be a part of my own little eternal family!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Those Silly, Quirky Kids!

I've been tagged twice in the last little while to post seven quirky things about myself, and try as I might I cannot think of one single thing to write. I am sure that I have some quirky things that I do, but my brain will just not function to help me recall them. Instead I've decided to write some quirky things about my two little squirts. Here goes:

- One of Emily's bum cheeks is bigger than the other one. (related side note: Emily has the cutest, chubby bum which is a little out of place on her not chubby body and I think I'm a little obsessed with how cute it is.)

- Max has become very particular about what he is wearing to the point that he has even begun to outright refuse to wear one particular orange stripped shirt anymore. If his outfit looks a little strange it's because he picked it out himself. This is one battle I'm choosing not to fight.

- Emily doesn't really laugh very often. Instead she does a kind of "huffing" sound when she's excited about something.

- Max dips his vitamin in whatever we are having for breakfast that day, whether it's eggs, oatmeal, pancakes, etc.

- Sometimes when Emily cries she blows raspberries at the same time.

- Max really likes to use his utensils, so if he is having a hard time spearing food with his fork, he'll pick it up with his hands and stick it on his fork instead of just putting it in his mouth.

- I'm not sure if all kids do this, but both of my kids like to get in this position when they are in the crawling phase. I like to say they are doing their yoga.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

The First Snow

Today we woke up to a snow covered world. I love the first snow of the year! I asked Jeff if he would let me wake Max up today. (He normally gets him up on Sundays while I get ready for church.) I brought his stepping stool into his room and opened the blinds for him so that he could look outside and see the beautiful, snow covered yard. He was very excited and kept talking about building a snow man.
After dinner we all bundled up and went for a Sunday walk. I have to admit I was singing Fall's praises to Jeff the whole time even though I was a little cold because I didn't wear a warm enough jacket. When we got home, Max and I drank some yummy hot chocolate to warm up. (Jeff's going without sugar again right now, so he didn't participate.)
For me it was a beautiful, magical day! Sorry, I forgot to take pictures I was so excited about the snow!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

FALL !!!

Fall is here!! There are so many things that I love about this time of year. I love getting out my sweaters and warm clothes - I love sweaters! I love the crisp, cool air and the changing of the leaves. I love the anticipation of Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. I love it when the heater kicks on and you feel all nice and cozy inside your warm house when it's stormy and cold outside. I love that snow is coming. I even love the nights getting longer with the changing of the seasons. It's just my most favorite time of the year!

Monday, October 6, 2008

In the last few days...

I had about eight inches cut off my hair. I've been in need of a haircut for a while and have been wanting to go short again but kept putting it off. With family pictures this weekend and Curtis getting married next week I finally got motivated to get it done. Now I just have to figure out how to get my bangs to look all cute like the lady at the salon did. I'm open to tips or recommendations.

Emily figured out how to pull herself up onto her feet! After spending several weeks getting up to her knees she finally had success. When I walked in her room and saw her standing she had such a proud and excited look on her face.

We had an unexpected visit from Veronica and Victoria Rojas. Jeff (and his missionary companion Steve) taught and baptized the Rojas family about thirteen years ago while serving his mission in Tacoma, Washington. It was so fun to get to spend a few hours catching up with them. I love getting a glimpse into what his life was like for the two years that he was on his mission.

Max played dress up for the first time. I guess it was inevitable with all of his girl cousins that Max would catch the princess fever. The last two times we have gone to the DI he has wanted to hold a princess dress from the costume rack while we are wandering the isles. (We go there about once a week to look for books, puzzles, etc. - it's a cheap way for us to kill a little time.) Well, when we went to my mom's this Sunday for Conference, Ellie had brought her Snow White dress down with her and Max wanted to wear it, too. I think maybe it's time to invest in some boyish play clothes for him.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

So Big!

I was trying on a new pair of pants today and Max said, "You're so big, Mommy!" The tone clearly implied that I should be proud of how "big" I was. I'm choosing to take this as I'm such a big girl for being able to dress myself.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Our Little Talker

It seems like Max is talking better every day and it is so fun to hear what he comes up with to say. These are probably only interesting to me and Jeff and you miss so much when you don't actually hear it coming out of his mouth, but I wanted to document some of the funny/cute things he has said this last week.

A few days ago I was making blueberry muffins for breakfast. While I was putting the Crisco away after greasing the muffin pan, Max swiped the pan with a finger and stuck it in his mouth then stated, "It tastes yummy, Emmy!" (Max loves butter, margarine, shortening, etc. and is always trying to scoop out a bite with his fork or taking a bite out of a cube of margarine when I forget to lock the fridge. - Yes I am that anal about the childproofing in our house.)

Today during the sacrament, Max proclaimed, "That was so good!" after he ate the bread. Then when the water came he repeated this statement. I was trying so hard not to laugh and was failing miserably. I wonder how bad my cooking is that a teeny tiny piece of bread and drink of water are so delicious.

Emily loves to stand on her own recently, but can't get there on her own yet, so I will sometimes stand her up and let her hold on to her crib railing or whatever is available. She was standing in her crib tonight and Max told her, "So proud of you, Emmy!"

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Woman's Conference

The older I get the more I seem to enjoy church meetings, especially Woman's Conference. What a wonderful opportunity for us to go and refill our spiritual cups. Especially for someone with little children who often feels like I don't get much nourishment on Sundays because I am spending so much time battling little ones. A couple of things that I felt prompted to work on was regular temple attendance and recognizing and responding to personal revelation. My favorite part of the conference, though, was Elder Uchdorf's talk. His message really hit home with me, as I'm sure it did with many women. I especially enjoyed how he talked about us using our powers of creation in this life to make the world better. Maybe it was the subject of creation, but I think it was mostly just the power we have as women to create relationships, beauty, memories with our families, etc. What a great reminder to me of how we have all been blessed with individual talents that we can use to bless the lives of those around us!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The Nie Nie Dialogues

For several weeks now I have been running across posts out in the blogging world about Stephanie Nielson, of the Nie Nie Dialogues. She and her husband were in a plane crash in August and are both still in the hospital undergoing some major recovery. I finally linked onto her blog when I found out she is originally from Utah and is LDS and was so touched by her writing that it has been consuming my free time for the past couple of days. I can see why she has touched so many people and inspired such a responce to this tragedy. If you are intersted in reading her blog you can link to it here.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Planes, Trains, and Automobiles

Before I had Max I don't think I really appreciated how different boys and girls are. I guess my one, very quiet (at least when he's around our family!) brother didn't have much of a chance to open me up to the world of boys growing up in a house with a single mother and five sisters! Having a little boy has been such a learning and growing experience for me. He seems to have endless energy, curiosity, and an eye for making mischief. Along with this comes a love of all things transportation. He loves to point out helicopters and airplanes in the sky, and will point and squeal when a train goes past. His favorite toys are his cars and trucks.

Well, on Saturday we were invited to the Brigham City Airport appreciation day by Mike and Marianne (Mike has done some cabinetry work for the airport recently). I was only able to stay for a few minutes because the girls had Alese's bridal shower to go to that day, but Jeff stayed on with Max and some of the other men (and kids) in the family. Max had a blast looking at all of those airplanes and helicopters up close and even got to sit inside some of them. Definitely a fun day for our busy little boy!