Sunday, October 30, 2011

Sneak peek!

Today was the epitome of a Fall day: 

crisp, sunny, and clear with a significant breeze in the morning, 
leaves blowing, cloudy, and drizzly in the afternoon. 

Not quite perfect for driving, because of the wind, but otherwise most enjoyable.

I have a husband back.

Except he will likely be comatose and M.I.A. this week for various reasons:

1. lack of sleep in Meh-he-koh
2. at least one different exam scheduled for each day this week. Maybe more than one on some days.
3. recovery/re-entry/reality, which includes catching up on classes, tests, homework, and sports.

But it's okay, because I won't have to go to bed alone this week.

Looking back, I felt like the week flew by.
In the moment, I felt like the week flew by.
When I was lonely, I felt like the week dragged on.

In other news, I have something really spectacular to share with you today.
It's a real special treat.

whenever someone uses "treat" in a sentence, my brain automatically thinks "chocolate." 

This treat does not involve chocolate.
Though it may make you hungry.
Baby hungry.

Please enjoy this sneak peek from a most talented, amazing, and epic photographer:
a.k.a. Mom
a.k.a. Gammy

This particular collection of shots has been only minimally edited.
Please enjoy.
Drool even.

Then hop over to her blog and check out other work she's done.
p.s. she's hilarious. 

 Why yes, I do in fact model while eating breakfast.

Trust me, a little pear with my blue eyes is very flattering.

Oh. My. Cuteness.

The original slide is red.
very, very, red.

Hi, Mom!

Ooh, dirt!

And just in case you couldn't get enough...

This one has not been edited.

Doesn't she have an amazing eye for shots?
I was very impressed.
Still am.
Short story: During the trunk or treat, as we made the rounds, several well-meaning people furrowed their brow upon our arrival and stated "I think he can have this one" before tossing a piece of candy into his bucket. What they didn't seem to understand was the fact that he is not quite 10 months old and really "cannot" have any of the candy. He is merely a very cute prop for his dear parents to rake in some yummy goods.
plus, I carried him in my belly for 9 months, pushed him out, and (we) have taken care of him ever since. I think I (we) deserve some free chocolate every now and then. :-)

Happy Halloween!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Fall Flavors

So I had a little girly get together last night with some friends and I was feeling in the mood for Fall.
Even though it was not a very Fall-ish day.
In fact, it was about 75 degrees yesterday.
83 degrees today.
But I know it will only last until tomorrow, when it will then drop 30 degrees. Ugh.

Anyway, I made some Fall treats.
And I'm dying to share.
I apologize for the lack of photos, but please, trust me and try these things without seeing them.


8 cups apple cider
5 cups pineapple juice
2 cups orange juice
1 cup lemon juice
1 tsp. whole cloves (or 1/2 tsp ground)
2 cinnamon sticks
1/3 c. sugar.

Combine in a large stock pot. Simmer for an hour or two. Strain if desired. Serves 20. Can be frozen.

Heavenly Fall in a mug.
Thank you, mom!!!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins 

The muffins I made last night were a huge disappointment to myself. Especially when compared to the muffins my most amazing, gorgeous, and talented sister in law makes. So here's her recipe since the one I made failed.

1 1/3 c. sugar
1/3 c. oil
2 eggs, beaten
1 c. pumpkin
1 3/4 c. flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 tsp. salt
1/3 c. water
1 c. milk chocolate chips.

Mix dry stuff. Add liquid stuff. Combine gently. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or less. 7 minutes for mini muffins (yum!)

Those are the best pumpkin muffins I've ever had!
Even Mister Man, who hates pumpkin, loves them.
And try them with this amazing frosting!!!

Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

8 oz cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup salted butter, softened
3 1/2-4 c. powdered sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp vanilla
2 tsp cinnamon
2-4 TBL milk (or water)

Beat the cheese and butter until fluffy. Add half of the sugar, the salt, vanilla, and cinnamon. Beat until incorporated. Add the remaining sugar and some milk then beat to desired fluffiness. 

In my mind, this frosting was the perfect blend of cream cheeseyness and buttercreamness with lots of cinnamon, which I love. It was amazing on the mediocre muffins I made last night. I'm imagining how incredible it would taste on cinnamon rolls!

And one last Fall favorite...

Fall Trail Mix

3 c. Harvest colored M&M's
3 c. candy corn
3 c. dry roasted peanuts

Combine in a large ziploc bag. Consume by the handfuls. 

Thanks for this one too, mom!

And now for your viewing pleasure, here is some Fall Fun eye candy! Enjoy.

Thank you for the amazing onesie, Gloria! 
We LOVE it!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Strange Phenomena

There is a strange phenomenon occurring in my life tonight:

I am actually enjoying watching baseball on TV.

What the heck!?
I've never, ever, ever, ever, in my life enjoyed watching baseball on TV!
So really I cannot believe I wrote that.
And I really cannot believe I'm thinking it!

But here is why I am enjoying it:

The Cardinals are playing in the World Series!

It's really hard to live in St. Louis and not be a Cardinals fan.
It's seriously like a fever.
A very, contagious and expensive fever.
But a fun fever.

Have you ever felt odd and out of place at a grocery store for not wearing a Cardinals (or other team) shirt or hat on game day? 

Well, I have. I've felt it alot actually.
Which means that someday I will get a Cardinals shirt.
And I will wear it to the grocery store on game day.
And I will not feel out of place.

This post was not meant to be about baseball. 

The other strange phenomenon that is occurring in my life is this:

I actually really enjoy watching sports on TV.

If we had cable I might watch Cupcake Wars and Say Yes to the Dress and Property Builders all the time. But we do not have cable.
Which means I resort to watching college football, college basketball, and Professional Baseball (huh?!).

This happened because I did something a few years ago that I do. not. regret.:

I married a sports nut.

He's a good sports nut.
Kinda like a nice, salty peanut.
Or a perfectly roasted almond.
Or a deliciously sugar roasted pecan.

He really knows his sports. And he enjoys them. And so do I.

But I did not start out that way.

It just kind of happened.
There might be a parallel here with how Satan tries to lead us astray.

that looks like ashtray...

Anyway, what I'm trying to say is this.
Actually, I don't really know what I'm trying to say.
But I enjoy sports.
Even on TV.
And I'm proud of it.

You could even quiz me on some terminology and some college teams and I would provide some answers.
They may not be completely correct, but who cares, really?
I do know what Oklahoma football is ranked right now...
Number 1!!!!

In my mind, anyway. 

I had a conversation with my mom the other day. It went like this:

me: "Mom, am I the only mom that feels like I have to mop my floor and give my child a bath after every meal?"
mom: "No, you're not. If you remember, your dad and I used to lay newspaper down around your highchair so the clean up was easier. And we fed you in a diaper." 
me: "oh. yeah. That explains alot."

Don't you just love these faces?
I sure do.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

While the babe sleeps...

Have you ever been surfing the internet, facebook, blogs, and such and come across links posted by friends to blogs you've never read? Which then has links to blogs you have read, and a particular link to a blog written by a famous LDS singer who you rubbed shoulders with while student teaching in her son's kindergarten class? Well, that happened today.

And it left me thinking, and feeling.

Feeling like I want to make a difference. Like I want to do something big.

Feeling like I want to be more accomplished than wasting spending precious time reading blogs and checking Facebook every 5 minutes to see if someone said something that has any relevance to me.
...not that I do that.

I admit, I'm stuck in a blogging rut.
Actually, a cooking rut, a cleaning rut, and an exercising rut too.

All I really want to do is play with my baby (which I do), then snuggle up in bed with John Grisham and a can of Nutella while Bubs naps.

I don't really wanna snuggle up with John. That'd be weird.
And all wrong.

Sometimes I feel like I've found myself. I know who I am, what I want, and where I want to be in life.

And then I forget. Quickly.
And I read other people's blogs and wonder how they got where they are now. And I wonder how I can get there too. Wherever there is. 

But then I stop and think about my life in reality. I do know who I am, I do know what I want, I do have what I've always wanted, and I'm ecstatically happy. I have more than most people could ever dream of.  

Anyway, mostly I'm in a blogging rut and mostly I don't feel like I know who I am or what I represent when I blog. Mostly because I blog about so many random things.

So the questions I ask myself now are: 

Do I change what I write about? 
Do I need to have a theme or focus for my blog? 
Do I write too much about my child? 
Do I share too many things that personal enough they shouldn't be share? 
Should I change what I write about? 
Should I focus on a certain type of content for a certain type of audience?

I may find answers to those questions someday. Maybe you can help me. 

But for now, I must identify a way to get some fresh basil in my hands or show up at our church activity tonight with a very sad, basil-less, bruschetta.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Hi! It's me, Bubs!

So Bubs here, taking over the blog today. Mommy is too busy worrying about laundry, dishes, and getting new tires on Daddy's car to have time to write today.

So, last night I crafted up an evil plan to get back at Mommy and Daddy for all the times they've pinned me down to change my diaper, pulled cords out of my mouth, and said "no" when I was trying to read the nice books they keep on the bookshelf. 

It all started when I heard they were taking me over to a friend's house that night while they went and did whatever grownups do. I think I head Daddy say "basketball" and Mommy said "temple" and they didn't take me. 
How rude. 
Well, I decided to make the best of it and charm Mommy's friend into letting me stay up late. It worked! We had lots of fun playing! When Mommy came to pick me up, I charmed her into thinking I was happy as a clam. She believed me (I think). But then for some reason she put me to bed as soon as we got home. 

I didn't think that was very nice, so I decided to just take a little nap. 
I wasn't done playing yet! 
I waited and waited until it was the perfect time to try out my newly developed vocal chords: 
12:40 am.

You see, the louder I cry, the faster they come get me. It works like magic! 

Mommy came in first and thought I'd be happy with just a binky. Psh. What does she know!? I knew I could get her back in if I stood up and screamed bloody murder. So I did. And it worked! This time she brought a bottle, thinking I was hungry.

Naw, I just wanted to cuddle. And play. And talk.

For awhile, both Mommy and Daddy kept coming in and leaving. But I knew better than to sleep. It was so much more fun to cry every time they laid back down in bed! What a fun game! I recommend all you babies out there try it! 
Eventually Daddy came in and let me crawl around and play. Finally! He knew what I wanted. 

But then Mommy came in again. She put me in my crib and dragged Daddy out. By this time it was definitely past 2:00 am! Wahoo! And I finally decided I was tired. I tried crying some more to try and trick them, but they didn't fall for it.

This morning I thought I'd better sleep in since I partied it up all night. I guess partying does make you kinda tired, but that's okay because I know Mommy has nothing better to do with her day than hang out at home and let me sleep! 

She's such a nice gal. 

So then, during my first nap today, my pants got really itchy and uncomfortable. Of course I did what any smart baby would do: take them off. It was awesome!
Why doesn't Mommy let me run around without pants on all the time? 

And why, oh why, won't she let me chew on cords!!!!? They just feel so rubbery and delicious in my mouth and they're so fun to grab. Hmph.

Well, life is tough being a baby and it's even more tough to party all night. Time for me to jump in bed and take a nap so I can play some more! Later yo!

Monday, October 17, 2011

My 10 minutes of fame

I'm famous.

Well, in the Mormon realm of the world.

and by famous, I don't really mean famous.

Do you remember this amazing woman? Who gave this amazing talk at General Conference?

 Elaine S. Dalton
General President of Young Women

She's pretty spectacular.

Some people know, some people don't, but I was recently called to serve as the 1st counselor in our Young Women's presidency in our ward. That's a huge calling!

So I had an amazing opportunity to attend a training meeting for all the Young Women leaders in the area on Saturday. Sister Dalton was there directing the training. During the meeting she did an object lesson of sorts, using people as visual aids. She made a comment about how many of the YW leaders these days look young enough to be the girls, and then how she needed someone who looked young to come up and act as a young women.

We had happened to get there early so we were in the 2nd row.
And I'm young. Really young.
And I look young.

She looked straight at me and had me come up.

She put her arm around me and talked about how I was the young women and how I needed a strong support group. So she had other audience members call out people who could be a support: mom/dad, yw leaders, young men leaders, home teachers, bishop, sunday school teachers, seminary teachers, grandma/grandpa, etc. They all came up and formed a circle around me. Then Sister Dalton came into the circle, took me by the arm and led me out. She commented on how easy it was to pull me away from that group, and how even though a young woman can be surrounded by all these people, one big temptation can come in and take her away.

So she had the people link arms around me and then she tried to get in. She said when they were all working together and trying hard to help support and protect this young women, it was much harder for temptation to get in. Then she had everyone go down and she put her arm around me again and talked and I have no idea what she said. Until she asked me how I felt in the circle. Then she said "and I know you're one of the strong one's because you have that sparkle in your eye." And she side hugged me and said thank you.

Uh, pretty dang cool!

I've never met a General Authority of our church before, not too mention have ever been that close in proximity to one. It was a pretty neat experience! Something I will definitely never forget.

It was a really spectacular meeting and I learned alot about myself, about the Young Women organization, and about my responsibilities as a leader. I am so grateful I was able to attend!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

What am I thinking?

Hate: buying new tires for our cars.
2 cars = 8 new tires = the cost of an arm, a leg, and Bub's left pinky toe.

Love: pumpkin caramel latte candle
currently burning it right now and it's making me hungry.
(so maybe I really shouldn't love it?)

Hate: I can't really think of anything else I hate right's some more love.

Love: m&m's, candy corn and dry roasted peanuts, aka "Fall Mix"
does flavor get any more perfect than that?

I can't really think of anything actually.
And my baby is awake now.
Off to sell my soul to Costco for some new tires. Oy.

Monday, October 10, 2011

9 month stats and pictures!

9 Month Stats for Bubs:

First of all, since when was our baby 9 months? Seriously. Time really needs to slow down.

Weight: 17 lb, 9 oz
Height: 27 inches
Percentiles: still really low! But he's growing well so it's fine.

Things that he can do:
-Crawl! Like a crazy man
-Pull himself up to standing on everything. He can even pull up using the back of my legs. He's starting to figure out how to walk along the couch and coffee table.
-Mister chatterbox! "ma ma, ba ba, ga ga, da da, mumm" all day long.
-He bonks his head on everything. He's had lots of little bruises on his forehead. Usually when he bonks he lets out one cry and then is fine. Except for the time he pulled up on the folding chair and it folded flat sending him crashing to the ground backward and the chair falling on top of him.
-He will not lay still for a diaper change unless he's drinking a bottle. It's a 2 man job now.
-Still loves splashing in the tub
-Loves pears, peas, cheerios, ice cream, cookies, toast and smoothies.
-He loves listening to music while eating. He'll even rock back and forth to the beat. Sometimes he sings along.
-He mimics me dropping keys on the floor.
-He loves holding and "throwing" balls, footballs, bouncy balls, lacrosse balls
-He loves trying to pull on and eat cords.
-His favorite toys are my keys and phone
-He loves banging anything he can get in his hands on on something to make noise.
-He loves grabbing everything. I feel like I have 4 extra hands.
-He smiles non-stop all day.
-He always giggles when I read "The Going to Bed Book"
-He always wants to eat what I'm eating.
-He loves crawling onto my lap and pulling himself up with my shoulders.
-He is a very messy eater, and enjoys playing with his food, just like his mama.
-He's starting to figure out how to throw a tantrum.
-He thinks it's hilarious when I throw a football, but not when Mister Man throws it.
-He has already eaten 2 cigarette butts. Never thought I'd have to tell my 9 month old to stay away from cigarettes. (he found them on the ground at a park in the pavilion. so gross.)
-He loves being outside.
-He's a non-stop ball full of energy and fun!

I seriously LOVE being a mom! It is the best thing in the world. I never thought having my own kids would be so fun! It's so cool to watch all of the developmental milestones happen and see his little personality emerging. I'm so grateful I get to stay home with him (though I definitely miss teaching!).

Coming up....
-a post on Faith. I've been thinking about it alot.
-the debut of all the jewelry I've been working on and want to start selling.

Best dollar I ever spent. He loves this ball.

Good morning, Mom!!!

He loved conference just as much as we did!

I find it hilarious when he holds things in his mouth with no hands.

Oh mom, why do you think I need to sleep?

Love his bum.

This picture should be in a caption contest.

Lovin' his new hand-me-down toy!

What're ya talkin' about, "messy eater"?

p.s. Does anyone else ignore the "Do not consume raw cookie dough" warning on a big tub of Nestle chocolate chip cookie dough from Costco? Cuz I definitely do.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Family Pictures

So here are some more of our family pictures taken by the amazing and wonderful Angie.

I have quite a few things I would change if I could do it over, but none of those things have anything to do with the photographer! Mostly I'm just really critical of pictures of myself. And Blake was not being his normal crazy, happy, mouth-wide-open, smiley self. But I won't share those things with you because you can just think they're perfect, amazing, gorgeous, incredible family pictures! (which they really are)

Thank you SO much Angie!!!!! We sure love you!

Kind of love this one.

This one is pretty great too!

I think this is  my favorite though.

Which one is your favorite??

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

On Chiropractoring


It's a word I made up.
Last night.
Mister Man was hugging me tight and trying to "adjust" my spine at the same time.
When I say adjust, I mean squeezing and trying to pop my back.
I said "stop chiropractoring me and just hug me!" (please)
He did.

Then this morning he enlightened me with a bit of Chiropractoring knowledge.
It went something like this:

"You've been sleeping better since you had Basic last week, right?"
"Well, there's these pain receptors that do x, y, z, and these other pain receptors that do a, b, c, and when the x, y, z, receptors feel pain it's usually a dull ache. The a, b, c, receptors tell your brain you have a sharp pain when the dull pained area is aggravated. The x, y, z, receptors send a constant doo-whop-doo signal to the brain that tells your brain to keep you awake. So, now that your coccyx isn't hurting maybe you're able to sleep better because the dull ache is gone and the keep awake signal is not being sent" (or something like that)

And then I thought about it.
And it made so much sense to me!

9 months ago I had a baby.
For several weeks afterward I had horrible pain in my tailbone and the surrounding ligaments.
Then it subsided a little.
Then I started exercising and moving more. And it came back. Bad.
Then I started getting it adjusted by interns and clinicians.
It never stopped hurting.
...6 months later...
Mister Man and I thought Basic would really, really help.
But it was break so I didn't have an intern and he didn't know how.
Then I got an intern.
She did Basic. Twice. (so far)
The pain has subsided and I have been sleeping so much better in the past week!

So does Chiropractoring work?
In my experience, YES!

And what is Basic, you ask?
Well, it's dealing with the sacrotuberous ligament the runs through the sacrum which is around your bum. Which means the chiropractor presses on that ligament in a way that makes the spine and ligaments align and work correctly somehow.
I really don't know much about it, other than it seems to work.
This article is pretty good if you're curious.

Anyway, there could be several variables that are allowing me to sleep better now, but in any case, I like my hubby's explanation and I love the fact that I'm sleeping!

p.s. A good friend brought me an herb called Chamomilla, and it also makes a huge difference! Doesn't necessarily help me sleep, but it helps soothe my brain during the day so I don't get so anxious about things. Wahoo!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Fall is...

Fall is...


BYU's Riley Nelson led the Cougars past Utah State on Friday, 27-24.

(thank you Riley Nelson for saving our butts against the Aggies)

Chris Brown Chris Brown #29 of the Oklahoma Sooners runs with the ball against Kenji Jackson #13 of the Missouri Tigers at Arrowhead Stadium on December 6, 2008 in Kansas City, Missouri.


and tossing a pigskin in the parking lot with my husband while our baby giggles at us.

Fall is...


Pumpkin Caramel Latte 14.5 oz Filled  Candle - Slatkin & Co. - Bath & Body Works

Pumpkin Caramel Latte. 
My current favorite this year.

Fall is...

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins
...or Pumpkin Cheesecake
...or Pumpkin Bundt Cake
...or Pumpkin anything!

Fall is...


This is what my backyard will look like in a week or so.

Fall is...

The smell of fire
Cold rain
Misty clouds
Apple Cider
A mysterious chill in the air
Crunchy leaves
Rosy cheeks
Cool breeze
Crisp air
Cozy couches
October is my favorite month of the year. 
Fall is my favorite season. 
I love everything about it. 
And I'm so excited it's here, I might just burst!

Especially since I have these two cuties to snuggle with when I'm cold!

I LOVE FALL!!!!!!!