Monday, November 21, 2011

Jesse at Five Months

November 21, 2011

Dear Jesse,

You are just growing, growing, growing! This sure has been a month of adventures!

(Sorry Mom keeps dressing you up, kiddo)

Your mom may or may not have called your dad crying about that mark on your forehead.
You continue to surprise us with your calm cheerful personality. You've been practicing sitting up - you are just about there! The problem is that big heavy head. You prop yourself up with your arms then reach for a toy. Usually you end up folded in half over your legs, but instead of getting upset, you wait patiently until one of us can untangle you.

 We have been on a lot of walks lately - to the grocery store or the library. It's good for both of us to get out of our basement apartment and get some sun. You always get excited when we get out of our quiet cul-de-sac and you can hear the noise of the cars. Vroom! You sit in your stroller like a sultan, serenely watching the world go by until the movement lulls you to sleep. When you wake up, I'm there to sing songs or make silly faces. I'll be sad when you get too big for the stroller that faces me!

Laughter has become kind of a theme this month - your dad and I act like fools to make you smile. You are becoming more ticklish - you always grin and wiggle when I zip things up your tummy. You've discovered your toes - they are SO INTERESTING! It's funny how they wiggle. They also taste delicious. Sometimes, you even giggle in your sleep, and it always makes ME giggle! We are so glad you are happy, little one.

This is also the month when you stopped sleeping through the night. Apparently this is a normal thing around four or five months, but I hope it resolves soon! I'd gotten used to more than 3 hours of sleep at a time.

Dad has new nicknames for you: Fezzik and Fishstick. I don't know why, or where they came from, but it amuses him to say "Hey, Fishstick!" as he's coming to pick you up.

Maybe it has something to do with you sitting on his face...
You are such a clever boy! Grandma M taught you to look for the dog - when she asks "Where's Watson?" you look on the floor. Poor Watson is still nervous around you. It probably doesn't help that Grandma uses you to chase him around the kitchen, although you think it is very funny. You are staring to make your wishes known. You hum and sing vowels - sweet and soft when you're happy, loud and insistent when you are frustrated. But you have already learned that the best way to get what you want is to be charming. You will smile at ANYONE who even looks at you! The grocery store has become a lot of fun with you flirting away.

Those toes are so tasty!
We WERE going to bless you on the 6th, but you had other plans. Poor kid, you threw up all night the night before (starting at 3am, naturally). You were fine - it was just a little 12 hour bug - but I sure was glad to have your dad home that day! We took turns giving you pedialyte and cleaning you up. You were still so nice! Throwing up made you pretty uncomfortable, but as soon as you were done, you would go right back to sleep or coo quietly at us. Of course, 2 days later, Dad and I came down with the same bug! It was much easier to deal with - I would much rather be sick than have you be all sad and lethargic!

My favorite moment of motherhood (so far!) happened this month. You had just finished eating and were drifting off. I was humming to you, and looking at your lovely face as I rocked you in my lovely chair. You were mostly asleep when your eyes opened and you looked up. When you saw me, you smiled and sighed a little, then closed your eyes and fell asleep. If I hadn't been wrapped around your finger before, that would have done it right there. It still melts my heart to think that you recognize me, even half asleep.

We love you, darling boy. Thank you for bringing so much joy!

Mom and Dad

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

11-11-11: The Eleventh Hour

For you non-Whovians out there, I'm sorry this is the third Doctor Who post in a row. Why don't you go try it out? Then you'll know what we're talking about! Start with Blink. It's on Netflix! You REALLY won't regret it.

My hair is supposed to imitate a fez. What do you think?

Friday was 11-11-11 - the Eleventh Doctor's Day, as declared by Geek To Me (I actually was already thinking of doing something like this, but that was just the encouragement I needed). And because my love of Who knows no bounds, I decided to turn it into a full-fledged Eleventh Doctor Party!

My cousin Tasha and her husband Ben, my sister-in-law Chelsea, and of course, Joseph all came to watch The Eleventh Hour, The Beast Below and Victory of the Daleks. We also had some pretty awesome food, if I do say so myself!

Here are our Sonic Screwdrivers (Green, of course, for the new Sonic) I would totally make these again!

Fish fingers and "custard"! Just what we needed.

We start them young around here! Jesse already knows that hanging onto that sonic screwdriver will serve him well!

Ginger companion cookies with homemade English custard. The cookies were probably the best part of the whole meal. The egg in the custard got cooked a little bit, which was a shame, but it was still delicious.

TARDIS self-destruct, or Jammy Dodger? (Well, as close as I can get in America)

From a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint, time is more like a big ball of wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey...stuff. It also is good to eat.

We know that bow-ties are cool!

Thanks to everyone who came! Thanks to my kind husband who helps me clean when I spring a last-minute party on him, because he knows it makes me happy. And thanks to Stephen Moffat and the BBC for making the most clever, heartwarming, funny, exciting show on television!

EDIT: Geek To Me actually grabbed some of our pictures for his Doctor Who slideshow! Whoo-hoo!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Must be all the running

Because I know some of you understand my love of Doctor Who:

I may or may not have fallen out of my chair laughing.

This little bit of genius brought to you from kakashisensei24.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

It was a graveyard smash!

Because Salazar asked, my brothers-in-law:

Issac, as Calvin (his stuffed Hobbes is on the couch behind him)

And Joseph as the Tenth Doctor, guarding London (you can't see his red Converse, but they are totally there. And yes, that is my sonic screwdriver.)

Joseph is my Doctor Who buddy. I introduced him to the TARDIS and her lovely crew this summer, and we've been slowly making our way through the new series. It's fantastic to have someone who gets as excited as I do!

Monday, November 7, 2011

We did the Monster Mash!

Everyone loves the food & family holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas, but for me, Halloween beats them both for sheer childlike glee. I'll use any excuse to dress up, and no one looks at you funny if you wear a hoop skirt or a sword on Halloween. I start scheming about my costume in July. It's even more fun now with Jesse, because I have someone who will dress up with me! Jon tends to be a bit of a Scrooge when it comes to Halloween (Except for the candy part--this year he bought 24 pounds. On October 5th. It was not a positive contribution to my weight loss endeavors!)

Part of the fun of Halloween is showing off your clever costume (at least, for the little diva in my head). I wasn't really sure I would get to show mine off this year: I'm too old and Jesse's too young to go trick-or-treating, and none of our friends were throwing parties. I decided to just go trunk-or-treating with my parents and siblings, so at least the people in our ward could admire our costumes.

I usually go over to help my sisters get ready for school on Halloween morning. The excitement and creativity of finding the perfect way to put a costume together is one of my favorite parts. This year we had a pirate, a Cirque de Soleil dancer, a bottle of ketchup, a knight, and a cowgirl. Mom invited me to go to the various costume parades at my siblings' schools, and also asked for my help with Dad's costume. I ended up spending the whole day with her, at two different schools, Costco, a party supply store and a craft store. LOTS of people saw my costume, and I got lots of comments! I loved the attention, although that's not a surprise to most of you.

I really wanted to do paired costumes for Jesse and I, but I wanted him to be comfortable as well, so no itchy polyester suits. After tossing around a ton of ideas, I saw this hat at the farmer's market. Frankenbaby was born!

Of course, when Dr. Frankenstein realized that his creature was actually a baby, he needed someone to care for him (at least until he was old enough to pillage on his own). Enter the Nanny of Frankenstein!

It's a mix between Mary Poppins and the Bride of Frankenstein. Any day I get to wear a wig and a poofy skirt is a good day in my book! Excepting the wig, I actually already owned all the pieces for this outfit, including the slip from my wedding dress. You'd be surprised how much use I've gotten out of that...

My mom and I spent most of the day gathering things for my dad's costume. He's the bishop of our church congregation, so we've often talked about making him a bishop chess piece costume. Neither my mom or I sew--our lack of skill is actually a running joke in my family. That said, who needs a sewing machine when you've got duct tape, staples and safety pins?

The finished product:

Not bad for six hours and duct tape. Pretty much, we rock.

One of my life achievements happened while we were working on Dad's costume. Mom will often say "YOU can be replaced" when we are giving her a hard time about something. I teased her about her sewing skills as we were finishing, and she said, "You can...well, actually, I don't think I could replace you!" She said that the costume would never have gotten finished without my help and encouragement. Basically, I win at being a CHODAT! (I understand that few to none of you will get that reference, please pardon my self-indulgence.)

After trunk-or-treat, various friends stopped by to show off THEIR costumes - Betty, Barney and Bam-Bam Rubble, the Tenth Doctor and a Plasma-vore. All in all, a fantastic Halloween! I'm already planning what we can do next year when Jesse can walk...

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Jesse at Four Months

October 21, 2011

Dear Jesse,

You are four months old! We can't believe it! Four months is not a very long time, but it seems like you have been a part of our family for much longer.


As I type this, you are sleeping on my shoulder, recovering from your shots. They always give you a little fever, and make you fussy for the day. Poor kiddo! You were SO TIRED this morning that you only cried for about a minute, then you fell asleep before we got down the elevator.

At the beginning of this month, you started gurgling instead of cooing. You thought it was so funny when we gurgled back! Now you make ALL SORTS of sounds, especially in the morning. You usually wake up to eat at six am, then wake up cooing and talking at seven. I bring you into bed with me so we can play and doze for another hour, then we are up for the day! You are a very sweaty little boy - I have spots on my fitted sheet where your head sweated THROUGH your blanket.

Good morning, Mom!

You look so much like your dad it's ridiculous. He is just about your favorite person in the world. You get SO EXCITED when he is home! You DO, however, have my squinty eyes and wrinkled nose when you smile. You eyes are beginning to change colors - you now have a golden ring right around your pupil. I'd love it if they stay blue like your dad's, but as long as you keep smiling at me I don't care what color they are.

The wrinkle nose looks less like "I'm going to eat you!" in person.

You are much more interested in people than in toys. When someone holds a toy in front of you, you will typically bring your hands together at your chest and just stare at it - you don't swing for it like most babies I know. But if someone talks to you or make faces at you, you are just so delighted. Your hands are still your favorite toy - you'll intertwine them and wave them around, then eat them. Sometimes you choke a little on your hand, then you look at me kind of accusingly. "Gee, Mom, why'd you do that?" If you can see someone else's hands close to your mouth, you throw yourself forward so you can eat them. You dive-bomb for Dad's arm, too. Little cannibal baby.


Patty-cake is HILARIOUS. It feels so funny to have your hands move around without you controlling them! And Mom makes such funny faces. You still love any singing, but the ABC's have been pretty consistently able to calm you down if you are upset. Dad laughs at me, but if you like it, I'm going to keep singing it!

All things are better with a bear hat.
Probably my favorite new thing this month is your laughter. You laughed for the first time on September 25th, and you have been laughing more and more since then. It used to require all sorts of silly noises and faces to make you laugh, but now, if you are in the right mood, just hearing Dad or me laugh can set you off. We LOVE it. Making you laugh is the most fun thing ever.


When I babysat Caden, you were totally chill, even if he did love you a little too much sometimes.

You were interested that he was little like you, but much more active. When he would roll around, you'd turn to watch him. And when he got a little aggressive with his curiosity, you just shrugged it off. That's my boy! We really hope you guys grow up to be good friends.


You still have major tummy-to-back rolling skills. You just pop right over like it's nothing. You have even rolled from back to front two or three times, espeically when your dad is above you and you are craning your neck to see him. Your little kicking legs are also getting so strong. Dad will put you on his knees to play with you and you kick him in the stomach. Ha, now he knows what it feels like! Between the kicking and the back-arching, we have to be sure to buckle you into your bouncer, otherwise you end up all squished in the seat! Of course, then you can see your feet...


In general, you are my lovely, smiley baby. You still love to cuddle with me, even if you are determined to sit up. You love to sit in the Bumbo on the table and watch me dance around and do the dishes or make dinner. Such a funny mom! The other day Dad said, "I always though it was such a cliche, parents loving their kids so much they can barely stand it. Now I understand what they were talking about."


Thanks for being our cliche, little boy.

Mom and Dad

Thursday, October 20, 2011

I don't care about being skinny, I want to be FIT.

Oh man. Have you ever been so sore that you can feel it when you breathe? It's an awesome feeling - it's my body's way of telling me it is changing. As part of That Weight Loss Challenge 2, I lifted weights with my mom for an hour yesterday, and did Zumba later last night when my muscles started complaining. Woo hoo!


After I came home, I saw that Jenna had asked, "What are you going to change?" In the hope that if I define and express my goals, I will be more accountable to them, here are mine:

1. I will weigh myself every day, and write it down. I eat more mindfully when I do this.   I know that weight can fluctuate a lot, so I will also measure my bust, waist, hips, thigh and bicep in inches every month.

3. I'll take my thyroid medicine, dang it! It's ridiculous when I get behind, and it makes me feel so crummy.

4. I will go to Zumba (or some other aerobic exercise) 3 times a week and lift weights with Mom on Mondays and Wednesdays.

5. I'll go on a long walk with Jesse at least once a week. If it gets too cold, I'll reevaluate. I feel better when I spend a good amount of time outside, and hopefully it'll help with the winter blues.

6. When I feel like a snack, I will drink 6 oz of water first. If I'm still hungry after 10 mins, I'll eat some fruit or veggies. I'll also drink a ridiculous amount of water during the day.

7. I will plan meals before I get my groceries, lunches AND dinners. I'll prepare my veggie snacks as soon as I get home so I can just grab them out of the fridge.

8. I can have one treat on Family Night. After that I will only eat treats if someone brings them to me, and no more than 2 treats in a week. If I have 3 one week, I only get 1 the next.

If I feel like cheating or get discouraged, I'll look at my before pictures, or find new inspiration for my Workout Pinterest board.  I'll reevaluate everything in 3 months.

Do you write down your goals? I know people that don't - Jon keeps track of everything in his head so well, making a list is redundant. Me, I can't remember pretty much anything unless I write it down. How about staying fit? What are your tricks?

Monday, October 17, 2011

Tricky Tricky...

Today on Offbeat Home they are talking about housekeeping realizations - things that make your life much easier and make SO MUCH SENSE once someone tells you. You know, like keeping hair stuff in a basket in the bathroom, or using your suitcase and under your bed as storage space. (Check out the comments - there's some awesome stuff in there!)

I don't even remember where I learned this trick - I think it was from the internets somewhere, but it was years ago. Basically you fold your shirts an extra time, like so:


and then store them upright. Now you can see all of your shirts, so they don't get lost in piles, and you've got more room in your drawers. Tank tops get a quarter fold, and are along the bottom of the picture. The little dividers really help, too.


What awesome tricks have you learned? Please share - I need all the organizing help I can get!

Monday, October 10, 2011


If you asked one of my younger siblings how old Mom turned on Saturday, they would tell you she was 24 (actually, that's what we older kids would say too, since we value our lives). My dad was already going on a business trip to San Fransisco, so they decided to make a romantic whirlwind birthday trip of it. I heard there was a gourmet chocolate walk.

All of this meant that Mom and Dad were gone this weekend, and I WAS IN CHARGE! WOO HOO!

So we:

Took naps in the middle of the day,


Played with our food,


Ate cupcakes for dinner (hey, who picked in the frosting?! Oh,




Gone! (That raspberry lemonade one on the bottom left was the favorite - so deliciously tart!)


After dinner, we plotted to take over the world,


Set fire to our homework,


And made a BIG mess! (Mom doesn't like puzzles because we never finish them quickly, so they get left out and pieces get lost. This was the only puzzle in the house that still had all of the pieces)


I am the coolest big sister ever.