Friday, August 22, 2014

Pictures of a cutie

Just some pictures of a cute boy to start off your weekend right.

Monday, August 11, 2014

A call to arms... er, fingers!

I've been feeling a little homesick lately. I think it's mainly because my best friend, who happened to move into the ward I'm in a week before we did, is about to move out. We clicked so instantly, and became so close in such a short time, I'm certain we were meant to be in the same place at the same time. Because of this, I always kind of assumed we'd move out around the same time. Since I found out she's moving, I've really been itching to move back home.
Unfortunately, that's not always how it works.
This is what he does when I say "Say cheese!"
So, I'm asking for your help. Yes, YOU. You, my family and friends, who are reading this blog right now. As soon as you finish (or before, whatever), go and write a blog post. Let me know what's going on with you. Keep me in the loop. Pictures are an extra bonus, and will be rewarded with extra points. Yep, points. Points kind of like in Whose Line is it Anyway, where the rules are made up and the points don't matter. :)
Now I realize I can't ask this of you without doing it myself, so here's a blog post, complete with pictures!
We pulled the couch away from the window so he can play in the gap. He loves it. He doesn't love the dust on his finger in the top right picture.
Lately, Jeremy has been obsessed, and I mean OBSESSED, with anything that goes. Cars, planes, trains, boats, you name it. I've been amazed at how quickly his vocabulary has grown in that regard. He started with car, for anything that has wheels. Then he added bike, since we bike a lot. Next was boat, then, surprisingly, motorcycle. He doesn't say the whole word, just "cycle", but still, I think it's impressive! Next was choo choo, for train, then bus, and then truck, although that one is still hit or miss. I think it's amazing that a 1 and a half year old has 7 words for different forms of transportation. Maybe this bodes well for my dad, and he'll finally have one of his own grandchildren develop an interest in racing with him.
Playing with toy cars on top of my kitchen aid bowl
I wasn't sure if I was going to broadcast this, but I gave Jeremy a haircut last night. My dad HATES it when any of his kids cut their kids' hair, but it was getting pretty scraggly. I didn't want it to be too short though. The last time I cut it, I used the longest setting on the clippers, and it was WAY shorter than I wanted it to be. So this time, I was brave, and used scissors. My first ever hair cut not using clippers. I'm pretty pleased with how it turned out! And my dad didn't even notice (or at least didn't comment) from the picture I sent last night. I only sent the "After" picture from below.
Before and after. Much less shaggy now!
Jeremy has also been very interested in helping lately. He'll put his bib where it goes after dinner, he'll help bring plates and silverware to the kitchen from the table, and he loves throwing away garbage. He's pretty good at keeping it to things that are actually trash, but occasionally I'll find the bag for his toy blocks in there, or something else that isn't garbage. I try not to dissuade him from helping, though. It's adorable, at any rate :)
Helping rake up the leaves
 Thanks for reading! Now go write your own blog post, so I can feel more connected to my AZ roots!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Good news... We're still alive!

It's been a LONG time since I've blogged. Oops! Having a toddler really eats into your free time.

I also don't have many pictures, because the SD slot on my computer broke, and I only occasionally take the time to transfer pics from my phone. I should really do that in the near future.

But I'll include the few that I've emailed myself for various reasons.
In March, we went as a family to Disneyland! It was an absolute blast. Jeremy loved every minute of it! We were very careful to take him back to the hotel for his mid-day nap, and that was totally worth it. Sure, we lost a few hours of Disney time, but it meant that the time we did have after the nap, we could actually use effectively!
Jeremy's favorite part was seeing the characters. He was at that golden age where he wasn't afraid of them yet. I think he'd be terrified of them now! He had just learned to say "doggie", so Pluto was a big winner for him. We saw him MANY times over the course of our time there :)

He was also really good at the rides. We took him on Pirates of the Caribbean several times, and Haunted Mansion once, and he did great. I had never gone on Pirates and paid so much attention to all the animals. But when that's all you recognize, that's what you get excited about. It was so cute to see him point them all out.
Triking with Grandma

Feeding the goats at the zoo. Can you tell he's an animal lover?

 We also went to AZ on that trip for my Papa's Celebration of Life. We were really grateful we could make it to that, and it's always great to see family. Jeremy also enjoyed the crackle-fest at the memorial.
Lately Jeremy has been picking up a lot more words. He's getting really good at animal sounds. Just in the last week or two, he's learned horse (neigh), cow (moo), kitty (meow), and car (vroom! and go!).

He also has become obsessed with bikes. We recently got a bike trailer, so we can take him out on bike rides. He would rather play with the pedals and chain on the bike than sit in the trailer, but he's gotten really good about staying in there and keeping his helmet on.

I'm also super busy right now. I just got a new calling as the 2nd councilor in the Relief Society Presidency, so I'm in charge of planning all of the evening activities. I spent several hours today getting things organized, but it's going to be hard finding enough people to be on the activity committee.
I also just started an 8 week fitness challenge. My best friend Essi's family is doing it, and she invited me to join up. It's the first one I've heard of where it isn't based purely on weight loss, so I decided to join in! You get points for doing or not doing certain things, and it's all fairly easy, just a matter of doing it and keeping track. The hardest things are exercising 5 days a week for 30-45 minutes (or more), and not eating any sugary/sweet treats 6 days a week. We're in week 2 right now, and so far I have a perfect score! That'll change on Friday though. Justin, Jeremy and I are going camping with Essi and Mark, her hubby, and I'll definitely be breaking the rule to not eat after 9pm. It IS camping, after all!

That's all I have for now, but I'll try to update more often as time permits.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

I choose YOU, Aladdin!

The other day, I was about to put Jeremy to bed, hoping to get him down before a few friends came over, when there was a knock at the door.
Well, he definitely heard it. Maybe, even though all previous experiences would indicate otherwise, maybe he'll be okay with going to sleep after just a few minutes of seeing Lisa.
So, I keep Jeremy in my arms, gathering up a few of his stuffed animals, getting him his milk, all while exchanging pleasantries with my friend. Jeremy is, of course, very excited to see her, but I still try to keep him somewhat calm, hoping he'll go down.
The face of trouble

We had gotten into the habit of offering him several stuffed animals, and letting him choose which one he wants for the night. He hasn't formed a really strong attachment to any one stuffed animal yet, but definitely likes having one to cuddle at night. I'm hoping by letting him choose, he'll keep switching it up (which has worked so far!), and I won't ever have to deal with him only wanting one animal ALWAYS.
So, that night, I gathered up some of his animals, and asked him which one he wanted. What do you think he did? He turned away from all of the animals, and pointed RIGHT at Lisa!
Needless to say, he didn't go to sleep right away.
Later on that night, he spent quite a bit of time stroking Lisa's leg... I think Jake, her husband, might have something to worry about! Or maybe I should just take that as a note to shave more... It's winter, and I wear long socks and pants! Why bother, except for church, when I wear a skirt? Right?!

This little boy has been cracking us up SO much lately. He always knows just what he wants. The hard part for me is figuring it out! Sure, he points, but when he points to the kitchen counter, which tends to be covered in dinner dishes and goodies and who knows what else by the end of the day, it's kind of hard figuring out exactly what he is pointing to.

Life has been pretty crazy lately. There have been some incredible, wonderful things happening, and at the very same time, some very sad, tragic things happening. The juxtaposition of the two extremes has been a bit exhausting. My Papa went in for heart surgery on the 14th. Things were going well, until they very suddenly were not. He passed away on the 21st, and it's been very difficult to deal with, emotionally. We all knew it was a possibility with the surgery, but since he seemed to do so well recovering up until Thursday, it was still a pretty big shock. It has been really hard on me dealing with it away from family. I keep feeling like I can't quite connect to anyone. Justin has been very supportive, but doesn't have quite the same grief that I do. All of my family that is going through more of what I am is so far away, so it's hard to really feel connected to it all. It's very different, grieving from afar, than it is to grieve when you're there in the middle of it all. I think they're both very hard, but in very different ways. I am looking forward to going to AZ later on for his celebration of life.

In the midst of all this, a while ago Justin and I planned a Disneyland trip. I've been so conflicted about whether to reschedule it, because of the timing, but if we cancel it, it will be hard to find another time to go. This summer Justin will be transferring to a new role at Intel (still in Sacramento, just a different set of responsibilities). Between the training for all of that, and considering when his current desk tends to be busy, there isn't really a good time for him to take a week off of work. So, we're keeping the DL trip for the beginning of March.
But we're making him work for it! Okay, maybe not really...

Also in the middle of all of this, I started up a cake business! Crazy! I made up some business cards a few weeks ago and sent them in along with some cupcakes for Justin to take to work. I figured, okay, I'll throw these out there, and maybe if I keep sending in goodies with business cards, eventually I might get a business started. Well, that very same night, I got my first order! I was not expecting results so quickly, but I'm quite pleased! So I've been putting some effort into that, finding photos of cakes I've done and putting them together on a Facebook page so people can see my work. One of the missionaries in my ward mentioned last week that his birthday is this Wednesday, so I'm going to make him a cake. It won't be big, because it's for 2 elders, so it's not too much extra work, plus it gives me more to put into my gallery of cakes. Plus, it's nice to imagine someone in Portugal doing something similar for Justin's brother, who's on a mission right now. I like to imagine that any time I do something nice for the missionaries, it's like doing something nice for Luke.

So, life has been a roller coaster. Lots of high highs and low lows. I've also been dealing with some other frustrations (let's just say certain aspects of church are getting difficult, and it's a good thing I have a strong testimony, or I'd be one of those people that stops going because they are offended). So, lots of emotional turmoil. I am grateful that I do have a testimony, that I can rely on my Savior to help me through all of this. I know I will see my Papa again, and I know that the Savior understands me and is here to comfort me. It's been hard, but between that and the help of those who love me, Justin and a few good friends here, as well as family far away, I've been managing okay.
He sure loves being outside!

Well, this post kind of went all over the place. I started out just wanting to tell the funny story of Jeremy wanting Lisa instead of a stuffed animal, and look where I ended up! Anyway, I love you all, and I look forward to seeing some of you when I come to AZ later in March.

And, to finish, I will add all the photos that I didn't squeeze into the post.
He rubs his nose when he's tired. Not his eyes, like most babies. His nose. Crazy kid.

Sometimes I snap the picture at JUST the right moment!

He points a lot. All the time, really. I should probably tell him it's rude.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Open for Business

My friend Essi and I just opened an Etsy shop. Go check it out! We sell Baby Shower Invitations.

We might branch out to other things down the road, but we're starting simple. We're super excited! :)

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

A renewed determination

This morning, as I sat in bed trying to ease myself awake, I stumbled upon my old blog. The blog linked to my maiden name email address. I spent quite a while reading posts from back before I was married, reading about what seemed so important at the time, but now I don't even remember. Evidently, in December of 2008 I was very stressed about my Latin final. It was almost surreal reading through some of those posts, most of which I don't remember at all. It feels like it was a lifetime ago.

Reading through those posts made me realize how much I value having written them. It is so easy to forget the day-to-day worries and excitements as time passes. It renewed in me a determination to blog periodically, to document those daily moments that are so fleetingly brief.

So here I am, blogging. :)

On Saturday, Justin and I dropped Jeremy off at our friends' house and made our way to downtown Sac for the Chocolate Salon.

It wasn't super big, but it was a lot of fun! Every table had free samples. We made our way around, hitting the less crowded tables first, then going back to the more popular ones. 

One table (pictured below) had a bunch of different samples of chocolate made using cocoa from different places around the world. It was cool to taste the difference, just from a different cocoa. 

We got a LOT more chocolate than is picture below; that's just what we didn't eat while we were there. Some of the chocolates were VERY fancy. There was definitely a lot of chocolate there that I wouldn't pay the price to get, so being able to sample it was fun. 

We even ran into Mary! Back when we were looking for housing here, we went to Le Grand Confectionary, where we met Mary. We chatted for almost an hour, and haven't been back since. But she remembered us! It was fun chatting with her. She's the one in the middle. 

All in all, it was a great date. We finished off the day by having dinner with the Lowry's, then playing a game called Funglish. It was a great Saturday. 

Friday was an equally great day. I spent the afternoon baking cookies with my friend Katie. Then, when Justin got home, he surprised me with a fun evening all planned out. He brought me flowers, blueberry bagels and strawberry cream cheese (one of my favorite breakfasts), then we loaded into the car and spent the evening at Scandia. It's a fun Scandinavian-themed amusement-type park. They have a few little rides (none of which we could do with Jeremy), an arcade area, and miniature golf. We did a round of golf, and by then Jeremy was ready to sleep. It was a fun surprise though, even if we didn't get quite as much time there as we would have liked. 

There's not really a story behind this picture, other than the fact that Jeremy decided there are better ways to use a fork than the conventional method. :) He's such a silly boy. 

On Saturday morning, (yes, I know I'm going all out of order) I gave both of my boys hair cuts. Jeremy did NOT like it. But we made it through, and he no longer has a mullet. I miss his long hair on top, though. I wanted to keep it longer on top, but I'm still figuring out how to do any style of haircut different than Justin's. 

In the last week or so, Jeremy has learned a new word: Amen! He knows when to say it, too. He usually jumps the gun a little, saying it when the one praying says "in the name of Jesus Christ," but I'm so excited that he is learning language so well already! Occasionally he says it in the middle of the prayer too, if it's a longer prayer. I guess he's trying to tell us to wrap it up. :) 

This means he can say 5 words: Mama, Dada, Amen, Nana (for food - started from Banana), and No. He can also do the sign for "all done", and occasionally "eat". He might say more, but that's all I can think of right now. 

He's also started walking more and more. Up until last Wednesday (Jan. 22), the most he had done was 4 steps at a time, and it was very sporadic. He'd only walk on his own every week or so. Since Wednesday though, he's been doing a LOT more walking. It's exciting and scary at the same time. It's great that he's walking and growing and all, but it means he's going to be more mobile and probably more adventurous as a result. Not sure I'm ready for that. 

Lately we've been spending a lot of time at the park. Supposedly California is in a drought... Coming from AZ it's hard to tell. But we've been capitalizing on the lack of rain by spending lots of time outside. This little boy LOVES being outside. 

The park we like to go to has a playground with this fun little tunnel, which Jeremy loves. It's always one of the things he spends the most time on. The tunnel, and the swings. 

In other news, Justin is going to be an uncle! Sort of. Our stake is doing a pioneer trek, and he has been asked to go as an "uncle". It's basically a support roll, to be extra hands and an extra priesthood holder. He's really looking forward to it. I'm excited he gets the opportunity, too, since he never went as a youth. I wish we could go as a Ma and Pa, but with no family around to watch the bear, we weren't really a good choice for it. Maybe when we move back to AZ we'll have the chance.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Since everyone else is doing it...

What can I say, I'm a follower. :) At least when it comes to blogging.

So, what's new with me? Well, last week we got rid of Jeremy's pacifier. That was not very fun. But he's just about used to it now, and surprisingly, it actually made this last Sunday easier. Since getting rid of it, he has slept less during the day, but that means he could make it through 3 hours of church without having a complete meltdown from exhaustion. On the other hand, it also means he's only taking one nap a day... Oh well, it was bound to happen eventually. 

Isn't he the cutest?!

I'm also in the process of opening up an Etsy shop with my friend, Essi. She can draw really cute little animals, and I make baby shower invitations. I'll post a link here when it's up and running. It's been a lot of fun designing them, and working with my best friend on them has been a blast! 

We watched our friends' two kids on Saturday while they went on a date. They are returning the favor this Saturday when Justin and I are going to an event called the Chocolate Salon in downtown Sacramento. I'll try to remember to post here all about it. 

Another project I'm working on is upgrading my office into a craft room. Justin has a desk in there right now, and it mostly just serves to collect junk. So I asked him if he'd mind if I kicked him out of that room, and he said sure. So, I'm getting a craft/sewing room! Right now there's still a bunch of paper and such that needs filed, but once that's done, I'll get to start rearranging and organizing.