Wednesday, December 30, 2009

We Had A Very Merry One

This year Helen got the idea that Santa brings presents, but didn't really want anything to do with him.  She didn't want to go see him at the ward party and we weren't going to force it.  One day she asked me where her teapot (a ceramic one that had broken) had gone.  I told it was gone and she should ask Santa for a new one. At that moment she decided she wanted to see Santa.  As soon as Jake came home we headed to the mall.

She was really excited until we got about a yard from Santa.  Then she got scared.  But she was brave and told Santa that she'd like a teapot and Norah would like a star toy for Christmas.  This bravery only came as long as she was curled up on my lap and she was not facing Santa.

As soon as we said she could go she started to run.  Santa told her to come back and get a candy cane.  She picked one up out of the basket and tossed it back at Santa as if it was a token to the gods to make her wishes come true as she still faced away.  We had to tell her the candy was for her.  After we got home she was very excited again.

Christmas was spent at Jake's parents' home this year.  This may be our last Christmas with them before we move on to grad school or whatever life has in store for us after Jake's graduation.  For this reason we decided to take advantage of the holidays we do have with our families.  I made tons of candy - probably, okay not probably, but really over did it.  I made a rule for next year that I will only make 3 treats of some kind.  We went over Christmas Eve and had a fabulous dinner and hung out with the family and 2 of Brady's friends.  We did the traditional singing of hymns and reading of the Christmas scriptures.  Helen and Norah got the traditional present (pajamas) on Christmas Eve from Mommy & Daddy.  Then we slept over that night.

Christmas morning I had to convince Jake not to wake Helen up.  She definitely does not like to get up before she is ready (I reckon it is the Marble genes).  So Helen finally got up.  We were excited to see how she would react since this is her first Christmas to get what was going on.  What Jake &  I got was a completely unexpected reaction.  She was really concerned about who ate Santa's cookies and drank his milk.  When we said he did and the gave her some toys and left, she fell to the floor in a ball.  We think she was really upset that she didn't get to actually see Santa.  She spent a good 10 minutes in a ball on the floor and then after much coaxing we got her to look at the teapot Santa had brought her.

Christmas day was spent opening presents and hanging out.  Jake got a R/C helicopter.  He was given permission to open it once finals were done so he could spend his whole break playing with it.  Three days before Christmas he trimmed the trees (a.k.a. crashed) and it was non-flyable.  I told him to pay the extra shipping to get a few parts, but in the end he still didn't have all the parts he needed.  He did get to tinker with it and work on fixing it.  I got a wonderful present.  I was able to move up in rank from complete bachelor (w/ a wife and kids) apartment to a married student apt.  What this means is I got a couch.  A real one.  No more squeaky, broken futon.  Everyone can be excited.  I've seen all of you who've been to our apt before; it is the same with all who come.  They rush for grabs at the rocking chair.  Everyone hated that futon.  Not anymore. I have plenty of comfortable seating now.  I absolutely love it.  I can't bear to take the tags off in fear then it will not be new anymore.  Helen got a teapot and dishes and Norah got a star stacking toy from Santa.  Jake's parents gave us money ahead of Christmas and told us to surprise them as to what they gave us for Christmas.  Jake and I loved it.  Jake got helicopter parts from his parents and I got a photography class.  Hopefully I'll be able to take some better pictures for this blog and our photo albums.  I am so excited to start it in January.

The day after Christmas we packed up and headed to Idaho to spend some time with my family.  It was nice to spend some time with them.  I am especially in love the pan my parents' gave me for Christmas and can't wait to use it.

We've had a great Christmas.  We love our family and we love our Savior and grateful for this time of year to renew our love for Him.

p.s.  I don't have any pictures of the couch as of yet, but I will post some later.  When I get the motivation to get pictures ready for the blog.  Just before Christmas got in full swing Jake informed me that I have the shrinker software on my computer again and it has been on there about a month.  The one I use for my blogging and have been asking for since he fixed my computer.  So now it is up to me to get on the ball.

Norah Goes Solid

Norah is a very good eater and she likes her food.  She has chunked up very nicely and should stay away from Hansel & Gretel's witch for her own safety.  I had never planned on feeding a baby cereal this early in life, but this girl needs some satiety.  Her doc said when she is eating about 36oz in a day to go ahead and start feeding her.  She is about at 32oz a day.  So we thought we'd give it a go.  She thought it was great.  So did Helen.

We're off to visit friends tomorrow for the new year.  I'll work on adding pictures when we get back.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Fast Sundaes

Back in August when we lost our bag in Park City, we also lost one of our favorite card games inside of the bag.    I have searched all over for it, but I am asking you for help to broaden our search.  It is an LDS card game called "Fast Sundaes".  It has a yellow box with a cartoon of an ice cream sundae on the front.  I found our original copy at Seagull Book.  I had also seen it at Deseret Book and Walmart in the LDS book section.  I have checked all these places and online, but can't seem to find a copy.  If you would please look in your area for a lonely copy of this game I would greatly appreciate it.  It may also be in BYU bookstores.  Just leave a comment  on this post if you have found it.  I will pay you back and reward you with real ice-cream sundaes.  See there is something in it for you.

Thursday, December 10, 2009


So our new little Norah has already been to the opthamologist. On Monday she was fussy beyond normal before bed but we got her to sleep.

Then on Tuesday I got Jake to help me set up the crib in the morning.  After we got the crib set up, I left Norah in her bumbo seat and Helen playing in the room while Jake went to get the car warming to leave and I went to go start a load of laundry (always throwing a load with Helen's jammies in). Helen was playing with Norah's hands as I left the room.

When I came back Norah was fussy. I figured, since it was her normal nap time, she was just overly annoyed by Helen shaking her hands. I picked her up and she started her pain cry (aka death shrieking). I couldn't figure out what was wrong. Jake came in after a few minutes to see what was going on too. I noticed one of Norah's eyes was redder and more teary than the other. Jake and I both tried to ask Helen calmly (so she wouldn't be scared and would tell the truth) if she had touched Norah's eyes. She said yes and no. All answers were indefinite. I decided that Norah was hungry and really tired. I gave her a bottle and after a few ounces she settled down and got dosey. I put her down in the crib. She woke up a couple of times and whimpered like normal during a long nap, but put herself back to sleep.

A couple of hours later, Jake had come home to get Helen and take her sledding. As I was dressing Helen, Jake got Norah up. He was holding her and said, "Ya that one eye does look more red than the other still. Maybe there is something in it." He couldn't find anything. Just as they were leaving out the door and I was holding Norah now, I saw something in her eye. It looked kinda like a weird bubble. I thought of a time my mom pulled on her eye when having a allergic reaction to our cat.  She had thought it was a contact but it was a bubble on her eye that she actually pulled.  I decided to try and see if it was something that would come out though.

Sure enough I wiped out a bunch of eye junk and piece of what looks like a centimeter of slightly twisted plastic used to hold tags on clothes. Ouch! I don't know how it got there. I doubt it was Helen. But within 10 seconds that I pulled it out Norah's eye started looking better and she became happier. Imagine that. Maybe she rolled her eye on the ground during tummy time. I don't know, I'm just glad I got it out.  Here it is so you can see the size.  No wonder the poor little thing was in pain.

So, then on Wednesday morning we hauled her into the opthamologist just to check her cornea and make sure we didn't need to be on antibiotics for an infection.  Everything checked out fine.  When Norah sneezed out that dye they used to test her eye it was pretty astounding as it was florescent yellow.  Now I am paranoid about any little thing on the floor.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

At it again...

Seriously, Folks.
Is this how my whole winter is going to be?
Is is necessary to let Helen develop antibodies to every known germ there is during this one season?

Yes, she is sick again.
We did make to church 2 Sundays in a row.  That is a record for the last...who knows how long.  I don't even remember.

So just as I was starting to make play dates again, I am once again being a hermit in my apartment with my girls.
They are cute.  I love them.  They are good things in my life.  And we will get through this winter with my toddler activities book by my bedside every night.

Someday I'll show Helen the joy of having friends and the greater joy of actually being able to visit them.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


Helen was just admiring the Christmas stockings that I hung last night.  We have very simple stockings made of felt.  She looked at them and said, "They so pretty." Then pointed to Jake's and mine and said, "They not so pretty."  Obviously hers is superior to ours.  We are going to go buy Norah's today.  Hopefully we can find one that meets the critic's approval.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Clear your plate, please

Funny moment from the life of Helen today:

We are trying to teach Helen that she can't get up from the table until she is done with her meal.  We have tried the threat method.  Doesn't really work.  So today I gave her one chance to get back up to the table.  The next time she got down I simply asked her to bring her dishes to the counter.  While my back was turned as I was loading the dishwasher, she brought her plate over.  I quickly turned to see where she put the two half-eaten sandwich quarters and her apple slices I had just seen on her plate.  Could she really have put them in the trash?  Nope.  She simply took all her food off her plate and put it on the table.  She then got up to the table and continued to eat.  When she said she was done I asked her to put the rest of her food in the trash.  She started with the apples, but by the time she got to the trash she had all the apples in her mouth.  She looked at her empty hands and went back to get her sandwich remnants.

On another note, today Helen told me she didn't want to go see Santa Claus.  She just wants to see Rudolph.  Go Figure.  Jake thought that was cool.  I told him to go find Ruldoph cause he probably won't be at the mall.

Fun Candy Turkey Place Settings & Thanksgiving

When I was a kid, I remember making these for a Thanksgiving where we invited some other families to our home.  I know one family was in our ward but originally from Brazil.

This year we made them with our Activity Day girls.  I put together one afterward for a try at a tutorial.  Problem being I didn't get around to making it until after Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving this year was spent with my family in Jackson Hole, WY.  We went up the night before and had pizza and then went swimming at the hotel.  Jake even got me to swim not only under water, but under a partition that led to the outside part of the pool.  It was so cold!  Jake would get out and do push-ups then jump back in the water.  What a way to prove his manhood!?!  I thought he was crazy.  Helen loved swimming as usual.  She didn't even notice how cold the water was.  She was turning a purplish shade of blue but we still couldn't convince her to stick at least her feet in the hot tub for a minute.  I finally took her into the sauna.  I know that isn't good for kids, but she really needed to warm up and I went in with her just until her color would come back to a normal shade.  After we all got showered we played games until we too tired to stay awake any longer.  The next day we had a nice lunch at the restaurant in the Snow King resort.

I am so thankful for my family and the time I get to spend with them.  These times are fewer and farther between now that Jake is back home and I have more commitments to stay home.

So onto the tutorial.  You can save this idea for next year!  See you are already ahead for the holidays.

Here are the supplies you need for 1 Turkey

10" x 10" brown netting
1/2 cup Candy Corn
1.5" brown pipe cleaner
1 flare section of wavy pipe cleaner
3/4" red pipe cleaner
2 googly eyes
3 Feathers
Elmer's glue

1. Make the body by putting the candy corn in the netting and tightly closing it off with the brown pipe cleaner.  Make sure the body netting is tight and not loose.

2.  Tilt the extra netting toward the back.  This will become part of the tail.

3.  Now make the head.  Take the flared pipe cleaner and bend in the shorter side (side flare is closest to).  Round it like a head and then bend the red pipe cleaner in half to make the gobbler.  Attach by twisting onto the bottom of the curve.  Then attach the eyes with Elmer's glue.

4.  Glue the 3 feathers into the tail area.

5. Attach the head to the body by pushing it into the front of the body and  adding some Elmer's glue where the tip meets the netting.  Wa-la!  You have a candy turkey to place with name cards or on a plate for a wonderful Thanksgiving place setting.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

New Project

Just bought some sewing patterns...I know I can do this.  I know I can.  I think I can.

Not planning on starting this project until after the new year.  But I promise I'll share as I do it.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Pix & Pureed Pumpkin

As promised, here is a picture of Norah.  She's just chillin' on Jake's leg.  It must be after a bottle because she looks pretty lethargic.

Remember this from last week?  Man, it was awful.  I had leftover canned pumpkin so I mixed into some pancake mix.  It turned out pretty dang good.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

What we've been up to

Just a little of what we've been up to.  Sorry no pictures of Norah.  She is such a good sleeper.  Which is nice because 1. I can sneak in a shower while she naps and Helen watches a movie, 2. I can spend some one-on-one time with Helen, 3.  I can keep up on the house somewhat.  But I am finding if I have one thing planned for Helen and I to do together each day, it makes the day easier for both of us. Sooo....

We've been baking.

Um.  So when the cookies came out of the oven we ate them so fast I forgot to take pictures.  I am also trying to take pictures with natural they seem cold and non-cozy to me.  Gotta figure that out.  Wish I new how to work the camera better.

We've been mending dress-ups.

We've been building a snowman.  Okay so it is a lame snowman.  We didn't have much snow & I really can't stand playing in the cold.  I went outside to play only for Helen's sake.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Blog Update

I'm glad you have been able to catch up and find me at my new blog address.  I have been planning this move for a long time.  I am still trying to update my blog look.  I am going for a more simpler look, but I am not quite done getting it together.  I really do have other posts to post, but I am waiting for Jake to upload the photo shrinker tool to my computer.  It makes my blogging life much more simpler.  The more you and I bug him, the sooner it'll get done I bet.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Tin Foil Dinners

We made these last Friday for dinner.  Sometimes I call these "Homemade TV Dinners" when we cook them in the oven instead of on a campfire.  I love them because they are so simple.

The following recipe is for 2 people,  just multiply it how you need to.

2 carrots, chopped large
1 onion, wedged
4 potatoes, or 6 sm red potatoes, quartered
2 cube steaks (or 2 hamburger patties, or 2 chicken breasts or 4 chicken tenders)
Salt & Pepper or other seasonings

Meat can be cut into bite-sized pieces or left whole.  If left whole it may take a little longer to cook.  Season meat.  Divide all vegetables between two large pieces of heavy-duty foil.  Add meat.  Fold up foil envelope style.  Bake in 375 degree oven for about 45 min -1 hour, or until vegetables are fork tender and meat is done.

They can also be cooked over coals outside.

So yummy!

Blech! Don't try this!

I am going to post a recipe that we tried and it was awful.  I ate 2 bites.  Don't know how much Helen ate.  Jake ate his bowlful, but didn't like it.

It is Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal.  It was featured in Taste of Home.

It looks a heck of a lot better than it tastes, and it looks horrible.

Saturday, November 7, 2009


This last weekend was quite a busy one for us.  The girls were chickens for Halloween.  I absolutely loved their costumes, and felt quite proud of the one I made for Norah.  She hated it, but this is what we do as parents right?  Helen was nervous about saying "Trick or Treat", but was eager to hold up her bag to each stop at the ward trunk-or-treat.

See what I mean.  I think she was the cutest chicken of all Halloween Day.

It was also Jake's birthday.  My parents were nice enough to take Helen and Norah for the evening so Jake and I could go on a date.  We went to Olive Garden, and then just drove around talking and stopped by Borders for awhile.  May sound dull to some, but it was so nice just to be able to talk and be alone for awhile.

Then on Sunday, Norah was blessed in church with a breakfast following at Jake's parents' house.  She is a doll and we are so happy to have this sweet child in our lives.  Whenever I hold her I feel heaven so close.

It was also the first time we have had both of Jake and I's immediate families all together.

Here is Grandma Nani (my Mom) with all of her grandkids + a baby doll.  This and the next picture were really hard to get because Helen was being a stinker that day.

And here is Nana (Jake's Mom) with both of her grandkids.

Phew.  It was a busy weekend.

Pioneer Woman

I bought Pioneer Woman's cookbook when I found out she was coming to SLC for a book signing.  The day of the signing was this past Wednesday.  I hadn't felt so good (yes, I'm sick again.  We've all been sick every other week since 3 weeks before Norah was born.  Gettin' real tired of it)

Anyway, on Wednesday, I wasn't sure if I was going to go or not.  I ended up leaving about a half hour later than I had planned.  By the time I got there, I had missed the opening.  I also wasn't able to get a ticket - just had to wait until all the letters had been gone through.  They were estimating 1 or 2 o'clock in the morning.  I didn't know if I wanted to stay, but ended up sticking it out.  Here is a copy of my twitter posts that night, intermittent with a couple of pictures.

I'm at @thepioneerwoman 's book signing. Crazy amount of people here.
This was my view sitting on a cold brick flower bed across the street.
At this point I was still contemplating on just leaving.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Girl Time

I had a great time with my mom today as she visited before she went down to visit my grandma. Then had a great IM chat with my best friend from high school. It is so wonderful to have time with other women, especially women I love.

Pictures of last weekend's activities to come tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Google and Me

I got this from Lindsay...(who did it forever ago, and I started doing it half of that forever ago but forgot about it. I am cleaning up my blog and found the post, so I thought I'd finish it while I wait for my baby to finish mucking her ticket (New Zealand way of saying filling her diaper). Then it is back to bed for both of us...hopefully.

Here's how to play:
For each question, look up the answer in a google image search. Then choose your favorite image from the
first page of results only. Have fun!

my age (there was a more interesting picture when I first started this and I was a year younger,
but I am trying to keep it real for the day I am posting this)

my MIDDLE name

my favorite place to travel

my favorite object

my favorite vacation spot

my favorite food

my favorite animal (I guess...I don't really have one)

my favorite color (there's two)

town where I grew up

a previous pet (and she looked like this too)

town I live in now

past love (or shall we say pre-teen crush)

nickname of my kid

my screen name

my real name

one of my bad habits

my grandmothers first name

1st job

What I studied in college

Mission Organize Apartment