Friday, October 31, 2008

Ice Cream Goodness

I went to Coldstone this afternoon to pick up some gift cards. (I may have just ruined the birthday surprise for a couple of people. But really, are you shocked to know that we bought you Coldstone for your birthday? That's classic Blockburger gift-giving. Who doesn't love ice cream?)

Anyway.

We walked in the store (Julia and I) just behind an elderly couple. It appeared that they had never actually been to Coldstone before, as they began sampling lots of different ice cream flavors. Sampling, and sampling, and sampling. Trying to make a decision.

Now, there have been days in my life when all this sampling on their part, and thus the waiting on my part, would have caused me great frustration. When waiting in line was the most terrible thing that could ever happen to me. When (I thought) I had places to go, people to see.

But that day was not today. I made the conscious decision to just relax, and enjoy watching them experience all my beloved Coldstone flavors for the first time. (A calm baby may have contributed to my sense of ease.) And honestly? It was totally worth it that I walked in after them. They were tasting the Sweet Cream, the Cake Batter, the Oatmeal Cookie Dough, the Pumpkin, all those flavors that I savor and crave, and it made me smile inside. And probably on the outside, too. The guy behind the counter was so kind to them, giving them suggestions, looking so happy to let them sample as much as they liked.

And then I saw that they were missionaries, and that made me smile even more.

And then, AND THEN, to top it all off, when they went to pay, he said, "You know what? Missionaries eat free today. Enjoy."

There really are good people in the world. And I am so grateful that I got to see some of that goodness in action today. Thanks Coldstone.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

They did the Mash

As Clark mentioned, we carved pumpkins last night! Julia did not join in the fun, because she was being a crankypants and just needed to go to bed. Could she be getting another tooth already? Who knows.

Anyway, back to pumpy-kins! So, pumpkin carving has never been something I'm very good at. Basically, all my pumpkins end up looking like a 5-year-old 's handiwork, and a 5-year-old who hates art projects at that. However, it's one of those things that I get excited about every year, thinking that we just have to do it, it's an integral part of Halloween. I'm pleased to report that this year I've created a pumpkin that I'm proud of. And that we actually saved the seeds. Usually I want to save them, and then I have no idea what to do with them, so they just get thrown away. But this year, I've got a recipe from allrecipes.com. MMMMMMMM!!!!

On to the pictures! Here is Clark, hard at work:My cute little pumpkin, in the light. Do you know who he is?
"OH, YEAH!!!" That's right, I did the kool-aid man. I like it.
And then Clark got all fancy with the camera and tripod. I thought it was a neat effect.
Pictures of Clark's pumpkin are on his blog.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Books!

It turns out my kids loves to read her books. She'll just sit and flip through them. She loves loves LOVES to turn the pages. I got this cute little sequence today (sorry they are kind of dark):




So studious. We went to the park today, as well, and she enjoyed reading her book there, too. I even got a video of her page turning skills.

video

Ah, nothing like eating your sleeve after finishing a good book!

Silly Ol' Julia

Apparently spoons are the enemy.

video

And I just thought this was cute.

video

By the way. . .

Julia hit a big milestone over the weekend. Clark found it, so he got to tell the world.

I haven't posted much lately because I've been singing and singing and singing. Or at least it feels that way. We had our choir concert last Tuesday, which meant we also practiced on Monday. And then I got to be part of the huge combined choir at a Gala on Saturday, which was a great experience, but it also meant that we had practices on Friday night and Saturday morning, and then we sang Saturday night. Poor Clark had to put Julia to bed 3 times last week, which is no easy feat when she gets all worked up.

This week should be a little less hectic. Well, maybe not, I've got a couple of enrichment activities, and then there is Halloween. But it should be lots of fun stuff.

Oh, and don't worry. Our new ward is making good use of our musical talents. I'm substituting on the organ this Sunday, and Clark is playing the piano for the choir Christmas program. But you know, I wouldn't have it any other way. I love music!

Weekly Quote 10/27/08

"Did you make some Z's?"

Sorry to be a little slow on the quote this week. Last week's quote was from Everything is Illuminated, which is really a good show, and I'd never heard of it until we saw a preview on. . . I think it was I Am Legend? Anyway, I checked it out from the library, and really enjoyed it. You should check it out.

New quote up!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

"And I'm back in the game!"

I made a triumphant return to Gold's Gym last night. Yeah, my account has been on freeze for at least a year, maybe longer, and last night I decided to just be brave and go. Julia was in bed, Clark was playing Starcraft, it was the perfect time to go.

OK, brace yourselves. . . I liked it. I actually enjoyed working out. Me! Exercise hater! Now I like it! Or at least I liked it the one time I went last night. But still, progress is being made. Also, I discovered that they have a Zumba class on Wednesday evenings (at 6:30, so not quite the ideal time of 8:30, but still doable). I have heard a lot of good things about Zumba, it's basically a latin dance exercise class, so i'm pretty excited to go to that.

There. Now I have 3 posts about the gym.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

A Plea for Help

For our wedding, Clark and I registered for this cute kitchen set:


After we opened all our presents, we discovered that we were only missing the flour canister. However, it was marked as "purchased" on our registry, so we decided not to buy it ourselves, and just wait for it to come to us. I mean, really, someone went to all the trouble of buying, of course they'll give it to us. Right?

Wrong. About 6 months later, we still hadn't gotten any flour canister. So I decided that the time had come to buy it myself. But alas! My beloved Target was discontinuing this line! And while they still had some of the other pieces on clearance, the flour canisters were all gone. Gone!

And so, here we are, 4 years later, with no flour canister. Part of me thinks that I should just get another one that doesn't match, and then this other part of me is holding out hope that either I'll find it for sale on ebay, or the purchaser of the wedding gift will find it in their garage and realize they never sent it, and be brave enough to send it 4 1/2 years late. So here's the plea: if you are that person, we don't care at all that you haven't sent it yet, we'd just be happy to take it now! In fact, the value of your gift has increased greatly (at least in my eyes) as time has passed. So just send it. Please?

Oh, and the other plea: if you are ever looking at garage sales, or on ebay, and you happen across a canister that looks like this (except it says FLOUR):


please buy it for me. I'll pay you back.

Halloween Preview. . .

Shanny got crafty. . .

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Silver Lining

I was feeling all encouraged yesterday to try solid foods with Julia yet again. I mixed up just a little bit of rice cereal, but fed it to her with a different spoon. No dice. She actually started gagging. So I pulled out some sweet potatoes, because that's the only baby food we had in our pantry. I decided to feed that to her on my finger, to see if that helped. Alas, no. Apparently it's not just spoons, but all foreign objects being shoved toward her mouth. Though, she didn't gag with the sweet potatoes. Just made a face that indicated, "Ew, ew, ew, what is this, get it out of my mouth." And then she started crying.

SO, I've decided that my darling daughter just isn't ready yet. We're still going to get a highchair, so that she can sit at the table with us at dinner. Maybe that will pique her curiosity enough to get her eating solids, I don't know.

But wait! Before you go thinking that I was just so sad and miserable about the whole experience, there is a silver lining. I realized that I have had a grudge against sweet potatoes for many years, as they are lumped into the whole "vegetable" category that I have despised until recently. But as I opened the baby food container, they didn't smell so bad. That's right folks, I had a taste. Heaven knows Julia wasn't going to eat any more, why not have a sample? And you know what? I kind of liked them. I think they'd be better warmed up and with some spices, but still. This is perfect timing - Thanksgiving is right around the corner!!! I'm going to be able to add another vegetable to my list! WOOT!

Monday, October 20, 2008

6 Months

Today we went to the doctor for Julia's 6 month check up. Everything looks fine and dandy. She doesn't have teeth yet, but we got a toothbrush and a prescription for fluoride drops for when she does.

I asked the doctor if she had any suggestions on what we should do about Julia's extreme hate of all cereals on spoons. She said we should try a vegetable. Any suggestions on which vegetable, dear readers? I think we might try the cereal again, play around with consistencies. Even though she hates it. At this point, I think she's developed an aversion to the spoon, so I doubt anything will taste better to her. I guess maybe we'll get a new spoon. The doc said, "You know, you can't breastfeed forever, kid. You've got to grow up sometime." Persistence, my friends. Persistence.

Julia was much happier about the doctor this time, she let her check everything out, and even "talked" to her. And she demonstrated her hate of long skinny things in her mouth with the tongue depressor. Of course, the shots were not fun, but she was only sad for about a minute, and then she was just fine.

But on to what everyone really wants to see, the stats!

Weight = 16 lbs 15 oz (69%)
Length = 25.49 inches (39%)
Head Circumference = 16.8 inches (59%)

So she's still chubby, but not quite as much. And she's shorter. Short, fat baby. I like it :)

Weekly Quote 10/20/08

"Following the light of the sun, we left the Old World."

This was a Christopher Columbus quote. New quote up!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Julia Returns

She's back! Miss Julia and her videos! The first one is a lot of her rolling around on the bed, and the second one involves her getting up onto her hands and knees, though it only happens once near the beginning. And they are both kind of long. So be prepared. Of course, when I say they are long, it means the first is 2 minutes and the second is 1 minute, which isn't that long, but still, when it's not your kid, that can be a long, boring minute, I understand. Anyway, we think she'll be crawling pretty soon, she just has to figure out how to propel herself forward, instead of backward. And figure out that by doing so, she can get where she wants to go. I guess we should start babyproofing now, eh?

video

video

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Nighty Nappy Land

Perhaps I haven't mentioned it before, but my daughter doesn't nap well. She generally takes a 15 minute nap in the morning, a 30 minute nap in the afternoon, and maybe a 20 minute nap some other time, often when we are either walking or running errands. She seems to be happy with this small amount of sleep, I just can't get much done during the day.

But the last 2 days, she's taken looong naps. We're talking 2 hours yesterday and 1.5 hours today. HELLO! That's 3 times as long as she was going before. It's a miracle!!!! I have no idea if it's something that will continue or if it's a fluke, but I'll take it.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Free Tour!

What's that you say? You'd like a tour of our house? Well, sure! Follow me. . .

(*Note: you can click on the pictures to enlarge them. Just in case you thought they were too small.)

This is the entryway. We're thinking we might put our organ here someday. You know, when it's actually in St George instead of at my parents' house. And provided it will fit.

First on the tour, we'll head down the hall. Ignore all the pictures waiting to be hung.
Oh, that door is the coat closet.

The first room we come to, on the right, is the spare room. It currently houses our keyboard, bookshelf, and un-used computer desk. It's also the "guest room." If you don't mind sleeping on an air mattress, you are welcome anytime. We love visitors.
The next room is Julia's room. Unfortunately, it's naptime, so we won't be seeing that room.

This is the bathroom. You'll notice that we kept the seashell shower curtain. We did purchase a new liner (I tried to wash the old one with vinegar, and it didn't fix the problem). And our other bathroom has a liner only. Someday we'll get a cute curtain for in there, but it's pretty far down the list of things to buy for the house. Maybe I'll get one for Christmas?

This is the linen closet. We have so much storage space in this house, I love it!
Now entering: the Master Suite.
Yes, that is a door to the backyard. I like it.
You'll notice that we each have our own closet. This is Clark's. It's the smaller of the 2, but it's twice as big as his old closet.
You'll see my closet to the left of the sink. Notice the archway, I think it's pretty. If we turn to the right, we come to. . .
The master bath! It's small, but functional.
OK, now let's head back down the hall and to the front room. There's a lovely pile of pictures to be hung here as well. And you can't see it in the pictures, but we have nice, high ceilings in our front room, and I love it.

Here is our dining area, complete with bay window. And our new (to us) dining table and chairs! They are from my Great-Aunt Alice. Antiques, in fact. And loads better than our old table.
If you turn around, you'll see our built in computer desk/piano nook. We don't have a piano yet (that is also in SLC, waiting for a means to get down to us), but when we do we think it'll fit nicely here. Also, this is why we aren't using the computer desk. We wanted to have our computer in the front room, and the desk was already built in, so we're using it.
Here's the kitchen. We have lots of counter space.
I love having the microwave over the oven. And I love that our fridge has an icemaker. Woot!
Just off the kitchen, we have the laundry room. There are some more cabinets here. We seriously have so much storage space, we have some empty cabinets. It's nice to not feel crammed anymore.
And opposite the washer and dryer, we have our pantry. It looks like we'll need to be working on our food storage. I swear, there is more food in there than it seems - I should know, I'm the one who moved it all.
And finally we come to the garage. Complete with shelving. Very handy.
And because cars belong in garages, here's a picture of my car.
OK, that's the house. OH WAIT! We have a yard! Here's a shot of our rosebushes and the door from our bedroom.
We have a peach tree! Hopefully we'll get a good crop next year!
And here is a picture of the neighbor's dog who hates me. We have a lot of dogs in this neighborhood, and I swear they have the Twilight Bark (like in 101 Dalmations). One of them starts, and suddenly there are dogs barking all over the place. I walked outside to take the pictures, and BAM, barking. Also, this picture highlights our gnome/dwarf.
Looking to the left.
And here is another dog that hates me. He's hard to see, as he's small (and therefore yippy) and in the bushes. I hope the circle helps.
There is our tomato plant. Part of it is dead, part of it is alive. Or at least was, it might have died in the cold weather we've been having, I don't know. But I do know that we've eaten tomatoes from our own backyard, and I don't think I can ever go back to store bought tomatoes again.
Our little garden on the side.
And here is a nice shot of our patio. We could have some great BBQ's out here. If we owned a grill. Someday, someday.
Well, thanks for coming on the tour. It was long, but I hope you enjoyed finally seeing pictures of the house!
(I didn't include any pictures of the front yard because, well, I don't want to be stalked. Though, I don't think many people read this blog, and I've got my last name on here, but still. I guess it's the principle of the thing.)

Christopher Columbus!

Yesterday was Columbus Day. Nobody cares. Except for us, because Clark had the day off! And the M's were in town for the weekend!

A word to the M's: we are so glad you made the last minute decision to come and visit us one last time before your big move to Tucson. It was so fun to have you stay at our house (!), teach us Speed Scrabble, play Fantan with us, and generally have a great time. So thank you.

Clark and I went out to The Pasta Factory for dinner, to honor the old Italian himself. It was very tasty, and I can't believe we'd never been there before. Well, actually, I can, because in Clark's words, "It's the forgotten stepchild restaurant of The Pizza Factory." I'm just glad he didn't use the term "red-headed stepchild," as you can imagine. And then we came home, put Julia to bed, and watched a movie.

So we watched I Am Legend, and I liked it, it was a good movie. But probably not the best movie for me to watch, especially not right before bed. Because I am deathly afraid of 2 things: the dark and being alone. Right. Bad movie choice. We crawl in bed after the movie, and I just start bawling, because I don't want to be alone, and I don't want people to die, blah blah blah. It sounds ridiculous, I know, but that really is my biggest fear. It was a miracle I ever got to sleep.

All in all, it was a good Columbus Day. No pictures of the house yet, because, well, with a baby and a toddler and house guests, it turned into somewhat of a diaster area, but we're getting things cleaned up. Soon, my friends. Your patience will be rewarded.

Weekly Quote 10/14/08

"But still I love technology, always and forever."

That was indeed from Napoleon Dynamite. And so appropriate, considering my conflicting feelings between my hate for Qwest and the mess that was, and my love for the internet.

New quote up!

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Hello Internet

Internet! My friend! I have returned unto thee!

After many phone calls, and many agonizing days spent cut off from the world, Qwest finally pulled through. They sent us our "Activation Packet" in the mail, complete with CD. Don't worry, the CD was broken. But we still got it set up after 2 more phone calls to Qwest technical support.

I'll admit, part of me was hoping they wouldn't set it up today and then we'd just find another internet service provider. But instead we have internet today! WOO!

So, I need to post pictures of the house. I found the camera. I put fresh batteries in it last night. They were dead by morning. So as soon as I dig up some more batteries, I'll take pictures. And hopefully they will have enough juice to get the pictures onto our computer, though who knows. Stupid camera, sucking batteries dry.

More blog posts will follow. I have to catch up on other blogs first. I've only got 57 to go! (that's down from 132)

Monday, October 06, 2008

Weekly Quote 10/6/08

"Pack 'em up and move 'em out, it's time to move to your brand new house!"

That quote was from Strawberry Shortcake, back when she moved to her new house. I loved that show. Sorry we missed last week, the internet was sadly lacking from my life. And don't get too excited, it's still not hooked up at home. I'm on Clark's laptop right now. Maybe, just maybe, we'll have it on Thursday. Or maybe we'll just have a phone line we don't want. Clark has already blogged about this, so I won't go into further detail. It would just upset me. Also, I just found the camera today, so now I need to find some batteries, and then I can take pictures of the house, and then I can post them on the internet. Such a slow process. But they are coming.

New quote up!