Thursday, January 31, 2008


Another digital layout done today - YAY!

Palm Springs

I did this layout last night right before going to bed. Then as I went to save it my computer freaked out and I lost everything I'd worked on. Nice...So I recreated it this afternoon when the boys were napping (something they haven't done all week - so I was grateful!) And here ya have it!

What would you want to be remembered for?

Ok, I have been thinking these last few days about what I want to be remembered by, or what I want people to associate with me. You know - when someone says, "Joanna Ellis is so_____________".

Like when I think of my friend Denae I automatically think, "Denae is one of the happiest people I know - being around her always makes me happy and I leave with a smile on my face!"

Or another friend of mine is a really disciplined person and I wish I could be as disciplined as she is with exercise and eating healthy. I wish I could be like her in her desire to run - she really LOVES it. (I'm trying to even tolerate it...)

And then there is a woman in our ward who is always selfishlessly serving EVERYONE. I've heard it said of her that she is a bloodhound - always able to sniff out when someone needs help even before they know that they do. She is always taking meals, making visits, helping in other's yards - she's amazing.

Or a friend who always remembers birthdays - no matter what she always sends a sweet card and sometimes a little gift. But without fail - I know that Melissa always remembers birthdays.

I have a grandma who is always thinking of others too. She's so sweet at sending my boys little notes and cards in the mail with stickers and pictures. Gabe loves it!

And the list could go on and on. I admire so many people for the lives they live. You all really do inspire me and make me want to be a better person!

Unfortunately I think that the one resounding thing that everyone who knows me well would say is, "Joanna is always so stressed". And it's true....I am just a stressed out person. I stress about pretty much everything under the sun. I stress about my kids being well behaved in public. I stress about having a lot to do with my Young Women calling. I stress about getting work done for our business. I stress about family and friends coming to visit - wanting my house to be clean and orderly, and to be a good hostess. I stress about looking just right when I go out with friends and I stress about loosing these last 15 lbs that are hanging on for dear life. Honestly - I don't really know what my life would be like if I wasn't stressed - it's just who I am.

But that isn't what I want to be remembered for in life. I want to live my life in a way that there are other things that people think of when they think of my name. I'd like to be remembered as a good mom. I hope as my kids get older that I can be a FUN mom - one who plays with her kids, and has fun with them. I wish I could be remembered as being a patient person - although I have a long way to come with that one..... I hope that my kids will think of me as someone who loved the gospel and our Savior. I would like to think people would associate me with being a good cook, a humble person, a compassionate friend and neighbor....the list goes on and on. But hey - I would even settle for being known for making the world's best chocolate chip cookies. :)

So what do you want to be remembered for? What do you want your legacy to be and what are you doing to work towards that? I want to hear the silly, and the deep and important. I would really like to hear EVERYONE's comments. So lurkers, frequent posters - everyone - please leave a comment!

And if you leave a comment between now and Monday morning (February 4th) I will put all of the comments in a hat and draw 2 winners. The first winner will have a choice between 2 DVD's - Ratatouille, and a collection of short Pixar movies. And the second winner will get whatever is left over :)

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

President Gordon B. Hinckley

So one of the reasons I'm kind of glad we came home from our trip early is that on the way home we heard that President Hinckley had passed away. I was filled with joy as we heard the news – so happy for him to be reunited with his sweet wife after being apart. I can only imagine the beautiful reunion that took place between them and the thought of it made me want to hug Cory a little tighter, and love him a little better.

I was also sad. Sad that we wouldn't be able to enjoy President Hinckley's wit and wisdom at every conference. I loved his sense of humor and love of life. I loved how as he taught us he didn't ever chastize - but he loved us in a way that made you want to be better. He never made me feel guilty, but that I was trying hard. He loved all - not just Mormon people. He loved the youth and I think that they really felt that. He will be missed, but what a joyous reunion it must have been with his sweet Marjorie.

I'm glad we've been home to enjoy the tributes that we are seeing everywhere on the local news programs. I have loved hearing about his life, hearing stories about his growing up, his experiences as the prophet, and how he touched so many lives. What an amazing man.

He certainly makes me want to stand a little taller, and do a little better.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Our trip to California

(I tried posting this yesterday - but my internet was on the fritz all day...)

We got home last night from a trip to California. We were mostly going for our annual Blind Guy awards banquet, but decided to make a bigger trip of it. We asked Cory's mom to come along so that we could attend the banquet together without the kids, and also because we wanted her to get to spend some fun time with the boys. We had planned on going to Palm Springs for the banquet and Cory's meetings (which included a lot of golf too…) and then we were going to San Diego for several days. In San Diego we were going to go to the Wild Animal Park, possibly the beach, and Sea World. We had been talking this all up to Gabe for weeks now. I showed him the websites, learned about different animals – really got him (and me!) excited about the trip.

Well…things didn't go as planned.

First off – it's harder to travel with 2 little boys than I had anticipated. At one point I was complaining to Cory about how hard it was with the 2 little guys – and he said, "What were you expecting exactly?" Well – honestly I was thinking that somehow both boys would be so excited that we were on vacation that they wouldn't throw fits, need naps, or have tough times….Yeah – I'm an idiot, and looking back I'm realizing just how dumb I was. Hunter isn't even 6 months old yet, and Gabe is very much a 2 ½ year old. They hadn't read the memo that on vacation everything is supposed to be cheery, happy and temper-tantrum free (honestly – I hadn't read the memo either – I can be a crab on vacation with the rest of the bunch!)

So nothing I had planned in Palm Springs ended up happening. There were naps in the car while Tammy and I explored Palm Springs from the seats of the suburban, a trip to Costco for Cory's new GPS toy (which ROCKS!) – which took us all over the area (since we didn't have the GPS yet, and the directions I'd looked up on the internet only took us ½ way there…), there was swimming in the pool, a semi-successful trip to one of the coolest outlet malls ever, and time in the hotel room. Poor Hunter didn't sleep nearly enough, and Gabe probably didn't either.

Cory and I DID get to go to Cheesecake Factory for a late night dessert after the boys got to sleep one night, and enjoyed most of the banquet another night before I needed to head back to nurse the baby (we were there for all of the banquet – just missed out on some of the chatting afterwards).

Then came our change of plans. We drove to San Diego Saturday afternoon. The weather forecast said it was supposed to be SUPER rainy. Everyone we talked to when we got there warned us of the rain and apologized that we had come on such a crummy weekend. They said it was supposed to be the biggest storm of the year. Since both of our big plans included being outside (Sea World and the Wild Animal Park) we were nervous. If it had just been Cory and I we would have definitely just forged ahead and gone in the rain. Hey – rain means fewer lines eh? And really, with just the 2 of us and Gabe – we would have totally done it too. But since we had the baby we were just leery of taking him out in the cold/rain/wind for 2 days. I volunteered to stay back at the hotel with the baby, but Cory decided that it would be best to head back home. We'd save quite a bit of money, and it had already felt like a long trip. This decision made me sad, I have to admit. I had spent a LOT of time making plans, researching places to go, hotels that were close to what we were going to do, and had really gotten Gabe excited about it. I kind of felt like I had failed somehow….which is silly. But none-the-less it was a bummer.

So we drove home yesterday. Cory took his mom ½ way home today (met his sister to take her the rest of the way) and now we're trying to make sense of our day and get PILES of laundry done. And I'm feeling a major we-didn't-really-go-on-vacation slump. I'm also avoiding talking about Sea World with Gabe. We never really came out and said, "And we're not going to Sea World now". He hasn't asked about it yet, and I'm praying that he doesn't hate me when it does all come up. It's funny because up until yesterday he had begged to go to Sea World every chance he got – but since yesterday morning he hasn't even said a word about it….so I hope he doesn't because I think telling him we're not going after all the hype will make me cry.

And then there is the fact that I hardly took any pictures the whole time we were gone. Truthfully I took pictures at ONE place – the outlet mall when Gabe was riding in a race-car, and they are horrible pictures (really blurry). Bummer. I guess if I don't have pictures, if we didn't really do anything fabulously-vacation like, it wasn't much of a vacation right ?

I am glad that we got to go to Cory's meetings and banquet. I'm grateful that I had a few little moments with Cory as we got our dessert at the Cheesecake Factory, and I enjoyed seeing the diversity that Palm Springs has. And San Diego area is really pretty too. I hope to go back again someday – soon. I'm also grateful that Tammy (Cory's mom) got to spend some time with the boys. I wish we lived closer to all of our family so we didn't have to rely on times like this to spend time with family. (I think vacationing makes me kind of grumpy and I wished that family got to see me more at my 'best').

So we're back, we're cold (it's snowing and super windy today), and we're good to go.

Have a great week!

Monday, January 21, 2008


I saw this quiz on another blog and I found it interesting. It actually confirms who I thought I wanted to vote for - so at least I'm going to be supporting the canidate that most accurately supports my views.

So check it out:

Happy Monday!

Friday, January 18, 2008

He's feeling better!

YAY! Hunter is feeling somewhat better. He is still off of his schedule, and has decided he likes to be held STANDING UP ONLY, but other than that, he seems to be on the mend. He even managed a shopping trip to Walmart (among other errands) without even crying once. Way to go buddy!

On another note about Hunter, he is just NOT into sitting up. At this age Gabe was almost sitting up, at least for a few moments at a time. Hunter - no way! He arches his back, throws himself to the floor, and is in a heap within seconds. Any tips from you out there to help strengthen those muscles?

And the outfit Hunter is wearing? Yeah - Gabe wore it about 4 months from now...Hunter is weighing in at 15 1/2 lbs, which I'm pretty sure is a lot bigger than Gabe at this point (I need to go find his weights somewhere....) At this rate Hunter is going to be the 'wrong' size for all of Gabe's clothes - since he will soon be wearing summer stuff, and it's been roughly 10 degrees here this week!

I love these pictures of Hunter too - especially the 2nd one - he looks like, "WHAT!?!?!" What a cutie and sweetheart!

One of my greatest mothering accomplishments to date

These pictures are to document one of my greatest mothering accomplishments to this point. Today we went and ran errands that have been piling up all week long. Gabe fell asleep about a block from our house. Normally this would mean no nap for the day because once we'd get home he'd wake up as the car came to a stop. And if not then, he certainly would wake when I tried to get his seatbelt off. And if by some miraculous turn of events he was still asleep after I took his seat belt off - he surely would wake up as I took him into the house.

But NO! Not today! Today I went through all the motions, and got into the house with him STILL asleep! Not only that, but he slept for over 1/2 hour after being laid on the couch. YIPEE! However, waking up in a different place than he fell asleep totally threw the poor guy off, and he woke up like a beast...

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Christmas pictures

So at Christmas time I did a little project to give to grandparents/great grand parents and parents. I created these 5X7 pictures of the kids with digital supplies. Nothing fancy, but it was fun.

Anyway, last week I got a call from Wal-Mart (where I had these printed) and they said that my pictures were ready to be picked up. Apparently they had made a mistake back in November when I ordered the pictures, and printed 3 batches. They said it showed there was no charge for them, and if I didn't want them, they'd throw them out. Well that was a waste of pictures - even if I didn't need the pictures - so I picked them up. Now I have over 100 extra pictures (because my original order consisted of over 60 pictures).

So - now I have a STACK of pictures of my boys, and nieces and nephews. If any of you need pictures of these kids - let me know. You can send them to your other family members, hang more up, or use them to line your bird cage (although that seems a little sad....) just let me know if you want me to send some, and how many.

Sea World

I just turned around from posting the last message and said, "Gabe - that's awesome - you ate ALL of your lunch!" He gave me the cutest smile and said, "Now we can go to Sea World!"

It's too bad little kids can't quite grasp "in a week"....but if it will keep him eating all of his food - we'll dangle it out in front of him for a while :)

Our Wednesday

  • I LOVE super cold Diet Dr Pepper and these frosty mugs (sorry for the blurry picture) are PERFECT for a chilly drink. I have gone through all of my mugs though and they've been dropped, cracked, or almost exploded (seriously, I had it sitting on the kitchen table and was drinking from it one night when the mug made the loudest sound - like it was about to explode - and then bubbles came out of the cup. We couldn't find a hole, but it was just a bit scary so I tossed the mug). Anyway, I searched Ebay and found a set of new mugs (4) and they came in the mail yesterday. YAY! And these come in incredibly handy when you need a quick "pick-me-up" - which I difinetly need today after being up almost all night (see the next bullet)
  • I've got a sick baby. Poor little Hunter is stuffy, booger-y (I'm pretty sure that's not a word...), frustrated, and feels miserable. I took him into the dr this morning and he has a double ear infection and croup. Poor little guy. He's still been smiley, but he definitely doesn't feel fabulous. Gabe has never had an ear infection, so I had hoped I'd be lucky like that with Hunter too. No such luck. Darn it! I'm praying he gets better within the next week so he won't be sick while we're on vacation.
  • High School Musical - I have a confession, I love the music from these movies! Gabe loves the movies and the music too - it's cute. I think my dream in life would be to be in a musical like that, singing, dancing - all like it's natural and part of life. However, that would require that I have a decent voice and could dance...and I really don't see either one happening anywhere other than in a "dream". I am pretty fantastic when I sing and dance around my kitchen for the boys though :)
  • Gabe hasn't really been excited about the new Mater Helicopter he got. Almost every nap and bedtime he has cried for his binky. He even told me to call the mail lady and have her come get his mater copter so he could send it back. He wanted his binky back and wanted to trade. The the mail lady came to our front door yesterday (to deliver the mugs) and Gabe was all upset because she didn't take his Mater Copter with her. Darn - I was disappointed, I thought he was in love with the toy. I guess those darn binkies have been pretty special to him too. But we've stuck to our guns and been binky's hoping we can keep it up!
  • Yesterday Gabe was at my friend's house while I went visiting teaching and she asked him how old he was. He said, "I'm FOUR!" Well....2 years off, but more accurate than you'd think. This little guy is such a funny chatter-bug and talks so well for his age. And when I went to pick him up I was informed that next time I have to let Gabe come when the other girls are home so Cory and I can go on a date (they're in school) so they can all watch him. I'll have to take them up on that.
  • Speaking of dates - Last night Cory and I went out to dinner - just the 2 of us and it was heavenly! We normally don't go out - or we take Hunter with wait - we rarely go out! But last night we did and this weekend we have another babysitter lined up too! We also talked to one of our favorite sitters and arranged for her to be our 'regular' sitter - and she's going to call us once a week and tell us when she'd like to babysit - and we'll work with her schedule. I had an arrangement like this with the Wilson family when I was growing up and it worked out great. This way we know we get to go out regularly, and it won't depend on US to get the sitter - she'll come to us and remind us we need to go out. I'm excited. Even if it's just going grocery shopping together - at least we'll get to be us for a couple hours a week.
  • I know I said I'd do a contest/giveaway on the blog this week and haven't followed through. I've been trying to come up with something fun to do as the contest...but I'm not so creative right now. I'll be sure to get it figured out soon though.
  • And lastly - Gabe wanted his picture taken when I got my camera out to upload some pictures - so here's the messy little stinker.

Friday, January 11, 2008

In case you were wondering....

We picked up Applebees and brought it home tonight - and this salad is FABULOUS! It is worth every single 5 points. I felt totally healthy eating it, and I'm not kicking myself now for cheating. YUM.

Seasoned grilled chicken breast atop a bed of fresh spinach, tossed with red onions, roasted red peppers, sliced fresh mushrooms and reduced-fat cheddar and mozzarella cheeses. Served with a chili-lime vinaigrette dressing

New do's

Gabe, Cory and I all went and got our hair cut this afternoon. I think poor Hunter felt left out...

Anyway - here is Gabe and I. I took off about 6-8 inches and it feels FABULOUS. I am just a short-hair kind of girl, and it feels so much better short. I actually think I'm going to cut some more off the next time I go in for a trim. I love it because I got rid of a lot of damaged hair too - which feels nice.

So here are our new do's.

Thursday, January 10, 2008


It finally came! The "Mater Copter" I ordered on December 3rd finally got here today. They were backordered everywhere - so I just ordered one to get here after Christmas. It is just a 15$ toy, and there were places that had them for $50! I guess Gabe wasn't the only one who asked Santa for one.

Anyway, today when it came I decided to do a little bargining with Gabe. See - on Christmas Eve we talked Gabe into leaving Santa all of his binkies except for one. We told him that Santa would leave him some fun presents if he would trade for his binkies (he only has them for naps and bedtime, but I still wanted to get rid of the darn things!) It went over fantastically - since Cory let him keep one. So tonight I made up a whole story to Gabe about how Santa heard he had one binkie left, and if Gabe would send him his last binkie - that Santa had a surprise for him. So he handed it over very willingly - it was surprising. I handed him the Mater Copter and his eyes got all big and he said in awe, "Thank you....."

He had a blast playing with it, loved pulling Mater out, and went and got a couple of his other cars to ride along with Mater - he was having a blast. Mater watched him take a bath, and Mater got placed on his book-case when Gabe went to bed to watch over Gabe. Then he realized it - he didn't have his binkie. He actually went down ok at first - we told him he was a BIG BOY, and talked it up real good.

But about 3 minutes after we left his room he fell apart. He wanted his binkie! "I want my ONE binkie!" I went into the room and he just threw his arms around me and wanted to be rocked. We tried explaining to him that he could play with his helicopter tomorrow, and what a big boy he was and how proud of him we were. We explained that if he got his binkie back that we'd have to send his toy back in the mail. He said he wanted, "the lady who brought the Mater Copter for Santa to come pick it back up". (The mail lady brought it this afternoon, and he knew that there was a surprise in the box) Then to distract him I went and got some music for him to listen to as he fell asleep.

Well, about 1/2 hour later I finally left him in his room crying - because I had rocked him, rubbed his back, gotten him water, rocked him some more.....I was afraid if I kept it up he'd think this is what we'd do every night. So I left him and let him cry a bit. Then Cory went in and promised Gabe he'd play with him tomorrow, and Gabe was fine and went to sleep. So here's hoping that he doesn't get up in the night and want his binkie!

Another little thing that happened this week that still has me laughing (and yet totally confused). On Monday we had a bunch of snow and Cory looked online and picked out a snow shovel he wanted me to buy. It was stinking expensive, but he said it would last at least 5 years, and so I just said fine and bought it. The shipping was ridiculous too - like $20.00! But I had no idea how much a snow shovel should cost.

Well yesterday afternoon it was delivered. I put the box in the corner and figured Cory's open it when he got home. So last night when I got home from YW Cory said, "Come see the shovel I got. I put it together, but I can't figure out what to do with the extra parts, there are a whole bunch of extra parts." So I go in and look at his new expensive shovel and then he shows me the box - there are 5 other handles and 5 other shovel bodies in the box! Yeah - a few 'extra' parts.

So we looked at the packing slip, and apparently we bought ONE UNIT - not one shovel, and one unit was 6 shovels! Yeah - that would explain the $20.00 shipping! It's odd too because we can't find anywhere on our order, online, or anywhere else where it would have specified that we were buying SIX shovels. I guess most people are just smart enough to see the price and know that a shovel doesn't cost 78$ most of the time. I don't know....I'm emailing the shipper and we'll see what the deal is....I guess now instead of an expensive shovel that will last us 5 years - we'll be set for at least 30 years!

Last night Gabe said the funniest thing. It was a crazy night with Young Womens, and Cory wasn't going to be home in time - so I decided we'd run and get Wendy's for dinner. I talked it all up to Gabe - hoping it would help him eat better. (I'm willing to try anything at this point!) I said, "Hurry up Gabe - let's go - I'm really busy tonight!" He answered with, "Mom - I'll go myself. You stay here and feed Hunter." He paused for a second and said, "Go get me your keys!" I almost took him up on it - but then I realized that he couldn't see over the steering wheel, reach the peddles, and there was snow on the roads...bummer - he is pretty good with left and right - AND directions :)

I have now exercised for 4 days in a row - YAY! I also found a training schedule I'm going to try - to mix it up a bit and keep me increasing my speed and distance some each week. I also ordered a running bra - that get this - is called, "The Last Resort" sad, it looks like I have no other options :)

Well I am heading to bed. The good thing about this exercising and getting up earlier in the mornings - I'm ready for bed by 8:00 most nights.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Happy to report...

I'm happy to report that I went to the dentist today for a check-up and I am CAVITY FREE! Yay! I do have to do some flouride treatments, and of course floss more (does anyone else have a hard time with that one?) But things look good, and I got some nice compliments on my teeth too, which was nice. We actually were trying a new dentist and I think I like him. The funny thing was that I left the boys with a friend and so it was kind of like having a little 'me' time. I think it was the most relaxed I've ever been in a dentist office - it was nice.

Anyway, I talked to the hygenist about what we could do to help Gabe want to brush his teeth more. He's actually gotten better about it - but he's still not the greatest. Sometimes he hardly even lets us put the brush in his mouth. I've tried buying several different "fun" brushes (he has Elmo, Nemo, Cars...and some other one....Power Rangers I think) - so he can pick which one to brush with. And he has Winnie the Pooh or Cars toothpaste too. The hygenist basically said that it comes with age - and not to worry about bringing him in for a cleaning, but to wait to bring him in until he's about 3 or so. That was a relief - now I might still be in the running for mother-of-the-year award

(I'm totally kidding! I have been out of the running ever since Gabe turned 2 and started trying my patience...or probably before that!)

And lastly - I'll share a couple of Gabe funnies (I mostly do this so I can remember these things - I have a HORRIBLE memory, and blogging is like a journal for me):

  • Gabe has become the MASTER of stalling when it's naptime or bedtime. Bedtime can take HOURS and makes Cory and I crazy. Today when Gabe called me into his room at naptime he said he needed a drink of water. I was frustrated and it showed on my face I guess because he said, "I make you nuts - huh?"
  • The other day Gabe did something silly and I said, "You're a little stinker you know. Has anyone ever told you you're a stinker?" He answere with a "YUP! Gramma!" I asked him which Grandma and he said, "Hmmm...don't member." So aparently one of his Grandma's called him a stinker (and rightfully so) - but don't worry - it didn't hurt his feelings enough that he remembers.
  • My friend Lynette is a hairdresser and has cut Gabe's hair for us several times. The other day - about a week ago - Gabe was eating breakfast and he said, "Mom - I need a haircut - please call Sister Stone. I go her house and eat popcorn, watch a movie, and get a haircut. You need a haircut too!" I laughed and said I'd talk to Lynette and we'd go over to her house soon. So yesterday we were having YW presidency meeting at our house and I told Gabe that Lynette was coming over in a bit for our meeting. A few minutes later I caught him getting popcorn out of the cupboard and I had no idea what he was doing. Then when she came to the door he ran to the door and yelled, "Lynette - you're here to cut my hair!?!? Come - have popcorn." He remembers EVERYTHING - it's funny. (The last time we went to her house he watched a movie and ate popcorn while she cut his was months and months ago though and I hardly even remembered it.)
  • After our presidency meeting my other friend was rounding her 3 girls up and getting them in the car. They walked out the door and Gabe had to wave good-bye to them from the front porch. When they got in the car he yelled, "Wait - good-bye - I LOVE YOU!" at the top of his lungs. It was pretty cute - and he kept saying, "I lOVE YOU!" and blowing them kisses. (This family - the Richeys actually have 4 girls from the age of 7-1 and Gabe LOVES them. One afternoon I picked up their oldest Mariah from school and when she got in the car we got to talking about how much she likes Gabe. She said, "Wouldn't it be funny if I married Gabe someday?" I laughed and told her I'd be delighted if she married Gabe. She laughed and said, "We'll just have to see what happens I guess." So even the older girls are after Gabe.
  • Another time I was talking about the Richey girls to Gabe for some reason and I said, "So Gabe - what do you think of those Richey girls?" He got this far off look on his face and said, "Riah's pretty!" (once again - she's 7 years old....scary!)

So I've given you enough Gabe tid-bits this week...sorry to be so boring. Have a great day. I'm off to get on the treadmill. I normally want to exercise in the morning, but today I couldn't drag my tired behind out of bed in time to do it. So I'm trying to stick to exercising Monday-Friday and hoping on this afternoon while the boys nap.

Oh - one more thing! I'm thinking of doing a give-away on the blog. We've been members of the Disney Movie club for the last several months. This past month they messed up and sent us 2 copies of the movies we ordered. So I have an extra copy of "Ratatouille" and an extra copy of a dvd collection of Disney/Pixar animated short films. Disney isn't charging me for the second copy (in fact they said I could throw them away if I didn't want them....that's dumb!) and so I thought I'd give them away at some point from my blog. So be watching, and I'll have some kind of contest and if you're interested please join. More info coming soon.

Monday, January 07, 2008

1st food

Since Hunter has been sticking everything in sight into his mouth lately we decided maybe it was time to start introducing solid foods. So tonight - January 7th was Hunter's first experience with rice cereal.

This is a bittersweet time for me. On one hand it's great to have something other than nursing to give him nourishment. It's nice to know if I have to be gone Cory can try to feed him (at least once he gets a hang of food). But on the flipside it's just the beginning of him becoming more and more independent. At least when he just nurses I have a little more of a connection - he needs ME. I know at times I get frustrated by my kids needing just me - but there is also something special about that. Does this make sense? I guess I just hate the idea of them growing up so fast, and knowing that soon he won't need me at all anymore. A sad day that will be.....

Well since I have already posted 3 other times today I think I'll wait to post pictures until later. But they will be coming soon.

a few other ramblings

I forgot to list a couple other things about Gabe that I wanted to remember:
  • Gabe is working on learning the alphabet. We got a great movie from Jed and Laura for Christmas that is helping with it. I highly recommend the Leapfrog Letter Factory - it's awesome! (I couldn't find it when looking online, but I did find this one - Word Factory and it looks good too). Gabe has learned quite a few of his letters - and more importantly - the sounds. Thanks guys - we love it!
  • As for letters - the letter W is Gabe's favorite. He can pick it out every time. But this morning I showed him the letter M and asked him what letter it was. He said, "An upside down W!" Yeah - I guess he's right...He also loves the letter O and S.
  • Gabe LOVES these sticker books. I had bought him one for Christmas in 2006 from Costco and it's been one of his favorite books to play with. I was so sad when he did all the activities and searched all over online and stuff to find him the same book again. I couldn't find it, but I did find a Spanish version - and bought it to give him for Christmas this year. However, when we were at Costco this weekend I found a whole bunch of them and for cheaper than I found online (only 7.99!) so I bought 4 of them - and now after we've played stickers all day long I think I need to go get some more of them while they still have them...
Now I can't think of the others I was going to mention....more later I guess.

I remembered the other thing I was going to say.

  • Gabe has developed a fear recently of robots and turtles....funny huh? Both times he was being babysat by someone (at their houses) and they said he totally freaked out about their family turtle, and a toy robot that our other friends have. He's just starting to tell me things he's scared of, and Cory's hoping it's just a phase - he wants a TOUGH kid.
  • Gabe LOVES BBQ pork sandwhiches. Tonight he ate a whole big sandwhich and a bunch of broccoli (which he corrected me when I said they were "trees" - he said, "No mom, I wanted BROCCOLI!") Food is a funny thing with him....

Hunter - 5 months old!

(WARNING: If you get sick of hearing how my boys are growing up too fast, and get bored of monthly posts of Hunter 'growing up before our eyes' - ignore this post. Or - you can probably go back to the 4 month post and just insert 5 instead of 4 - and call it good)

On Wednesday Hunter hit the 5 month mark. I can't believe it! 5 months is moving right along and he's growing right up! Here are some things happening with Hunter right now:

  • This month he's definitely found his voice. He loves to sing - sometimes to the point of embarrassment (but I still love it). He loves to squeal and my favorite is when we get him belly laughing when we tickle him. I have gotten my camera out several times to record his squeals of excitement only for him to become completely silent the instant he sees the camera. So I hope to catch it at some point.
  • He's rolling over more and more. He is pretty content on his back - but if I put him on his stomach he rolls right over. He also wiggles around in the funniest ways. I never know how/where I'll find him if I leave him on a blanket and leave the room. Unfortunately that even includes his swing. He arches his back so much that he has been hanging out on one side of the swing. - a Today he started screaming and I ran to the swing and he was almost hanging out of it and totally uncomfortable. That is a total bummer because now I'm afraid of putting him in the swing. I need to see if it has some other settings to work better for him.
  • MOUTH - My goodness - I don't remember Gabe putting so many things in his mouth. In fact, more than once Cory and I commented about how Gabe wasn't really an oral baby as much as some that we knew. Hunter on the other hand has to have something in his mouth at all times. His favorite thing is to chew on our hands - and he has a bite (yikes!) I think he might be starting to teethe, but I remember saying that with Gabe long before it actually happened - so I'm not making any predictions. Anyway - Hunter's need for something in his mouth is still not pacified by a binky - which is a bummer.
  • Hunter is sleeping pretty good...he gets up one to two times a night, wants to eat and goes right back to sleep. Most of the time I sleep through the whole experience and stumble back to bed. Sometimes I even just end up sleeping for a bit in the chair in his room and wake up with a kink in my neck. But he's pretty good about not wanting to get up and 'play' at night, and that's a blessing!
  • Hunter's poor hair is looking sad...he has a bald spot on the back (Gabe never did) - and the rest of his hair sticks out on all ends of his head and most of the time looks like a bad comb-over. It's really fine hair and has cowlicks all over just like his big brother.
  • Speaking of his big brother - Hunter is a lot bigger than Gabe was I think (I need to go back and see how big Gabe was). But Hunter is out-growing clothes right now that Gabe didn't start to wear until the end of we'll see how they compare as they grow up.
There you have it - Hunter at 5 months. I can't believe that next month he'll be 1/2 of a year old - that is crazy and I can't believe how fast it's all going!

Random Ramblings

It seems like it's been a bit since I've blogged about anything of importance. Mostly because nothing has been happening, and I didn't want my posts to be filled with, "And my sweet 2 year old isn't always so sweet, and is making my head hurt". It's been a rough couple of days/weeks with the boys having colds, Gabe being 2, and me being grumpy from the post-holiday let down. Oh - add crummy weather - and it's just been kind of a downer. But things are looking up today! So here you get some ramblings from me:
  • Can you believe how grown up Gabe looks in these pictures!!???!! I can't believe it! The first picture especially. It's so surprising what a little BOY he's becoming!
  • Today I set my alarm for 6:30 am (which might not sound early to most of you - but for me it's was the CRACK of dawn!). I got up without pressing snooze (because I don't know how to use the snooze button on my new alarm clock). I put on my exercise shoes and exercised! YAY! We bought a new treadmill on Saturday and I am happy to say that it does the trick - it got me out of bed, moving, and feeling better most of the morning. I only went for 1/2 hour, but I did some crunches and stuff after and I feel so much better. It felt better to move, better to do something productive to start my day, and has made me want to watch what I eat because I don't want to waste the fact that I got up early on eating garbage food. So here's to hoping that I can keep that up all week. I want to workout 5 days a week Monday-Friday. I'll post from time to time to say how I'm doing on that.
  • Gabe is in LOVE with his GeoTrax sets he got for Christmas (Thanks Mom & Dad and Grandma & Grandpa Whisler!) He is constantly wanting Cory and I to go downstairs and play with him. He's decided who gets what train, and has informed me that when he gets the fire-fighter train he wants I can have the yellow one. Cory has enjoyed it just as much I think and can spend hours putting together new configurations of tracks. In fact we had to buy some extra track on Saturday because Cory was getting frustrated and wanted to make more stuff :).
  • We now have 1:00 if that's not a reason to become in active - I don't know what is :). (I'm totally kidding!) Both boys nap from 2-4(or 5:30!) every single day - so Sunday's are going to be an adventure. Hunter didn't take his morning nap yesterday either, so by the time we got home from church at 4:00 he had only slept for 10 minutes. Not enough! But the good thing was that Gabe was in bed and asleep by 7:30 _ something unheard of at our house.
  • I just barely put my hair in a ponytail, and it's 3:00 in the afternoon! Ok - that probably doesn't sound like a very big deal - but for me it is! I end up with my hair pulled up at some point EVERY day. Lately, since I desperately need a haircut, I haven't even bothered leaving it down. I blow it dry, and pull it up right away. So the fact that I lasted until 3:00 - that is an accomplishment! I'm hoping to get my hair cut this week - and I'm thinking short. It's been about 2 years since I've cut it short - so it's about time. I need to accept the fact that I simply don't like my hair long! (and it's super damaged right now)
  • Gabe has really been developing his imagination lately - I LOVE it! Today he kept wanting me to sing "Happy Birthday" so we could celebrate our birthdays. Then he made a "cake" out of these stuffed letters we have and we all had to eat it. He made different kinds for me, for Hunter, and for himself. I got German Chocolate (YUM!), Hunter's was strawberry and Gabe's was white. He also gave each of us a letter that we had to use as our hat - and we HAD to keep it on through our party. Then today when we were eating lunch I told him to eat his banana. He said, "Mom - it's not a banana - it's Thomas the train!" He was just offended that I thought it was a banana. But it's funny to see what he comes up with. He definitely keeps me laughing.
  • Right after the train incident he said, "Mom - Aunt Kori fell down." I asked him when and why? He said, "Her and Chase were dancing and spinning. She fell down on the ground." I'm not quite sure when that happened - but he was pretty concerned that Aunt Kori was hurt when she fell. (Are you ok Kori?) I love watching him talk about family members - wanting to call his Grammas every day, wanting to make pictures for aunts and uncles, wanting to see videos of cousins on the web - he loves our extended family - even if they live far away. I love that. He also was chattering away during lunch and I turned around and he had a pretend phone he was talking to Aunt Julia on. I said, "Gabe - what are you talking on - I don't see a phone". He said, "Mom - it's a CELL phone" Oh - duh....what was I thinking!?!
  • We ended up with about a foot of snow last night. It is really pretty for the time being. I don't particularly enjoy when it gets all slushy and dirty _ but the clean white snow is sure pretty right now! We sure need the moisture, so we're happy when we get it. They were reporting at the end of December that Utah had gotten over 200% of normal precipitation amounts for the month of December. That's great! I hope it keeps up and that people don't have flooding problems because of it.
  • When Cory and I were first married and living in Rexburg I loved serving Kool-Aid with our meals. I think it was because we almost always had milk with meals growing up and since I was in charge now - I served Kool-Aid. Anyway, we LOVED this flavor called, "Oh-Yeah! Orange Pineapple". It was delicious and a definite favorite. Well one day when I went to buy it I couldn't find it at the store - anywhere. I was devastated. I even called and wrote to the Kool-Aid company to ask where I could buy some and why I couldn't find it. (Cory thought I was such a nerd). But they said it was discontinued and to watch to see if it came back eventually. Nine years later - it still hasn't made it's appearance. And I do check most of the times I pass the Kool Aid displays at the store. However - last week I was getting some Crystal Light (since I don't drink Kool-Aid anymore) and guess what they had? Orange Pineapple flavor. I bought it - hoping it would be similar. Guess what? Almost EXACTLY the same - it's delicious! So I'm enjoying a great big glass of it right now. No calories and TASTY!
  • I got an email on Saturday saying that Gabe's "Mater Copter" is finally on it's way. I ordered it a month ago, but it was back-ordered. So even though Santa didn't bring it, I think he'll be excited to get it later this week. I'm hoping he is anyway.
Ok - totally random and rambling post. Sorry....Like I said - my life has not been very exciting lately. Have a great week!

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Julia (paper scrapbook layout)

Journaling reads:

"Julia - i came across this picture today and WOW! I can't believe how much things can change in just 4 years. You are now (almost) a grown woman! You're 18 years old, getting ready to go to college; you're making big choices, getting ready for big changes in your life. It's amazing to me to see my "baby" sister growing up so fast. But it makes me happy too; happy to be your sister, excited for what is to come in the upcoming years and thrilled for you to experience all the fun 'grown up' things you'll be doing in the next 4 years. Love you little sis!"

All of the products on this page are from the Making Memories Funky Vintage Ruby line. They are funky colors/patterns that I looked at and wondered how I'd ever work with them, but once I got going it was fun! I love not having to think much, and just use all the stuff that coordinates.