Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Not Very Manly?

My mom and dad have a little Shih Tzu. My dad LOVES him like he is his son. Sometimes Scooter does little dog things (like being afraid of cats), and my dad says "Scooter, that is not very manly." I think this video is hilarious he is pretty much terrified that the bunnies are going to eat him; however, he still wants to play.

Has it really been 9 months?

I can't believe how quickly 9 months have gone by. Emily can do so many new and amazing things. Here are some video clips of some of our favorites. She is so much fun. I thought that being a mom would be hard because I would have to worry about someone else's needs before my own (I know it sounds selfish), but I have been surprised to find that most of the time it is a joy to put her needs before my own. There are times when I really just want to finish what I am working on or I really just don't want to get out of bed, but mostly I love being with Em. I never expected to love her so much or enjoy being with her so much. Before having a baby I had no idea how to interact with kids. I have been surprised to find much of it comes naturally. I am still working on learning more songs and games, but so far she is a pretty big fan of the itsy bitsy spider, popcorn popping, and row row row your boat.

Skills at 9 months:
She is very into finger foods. She loves crackers, raisins, and is mastering eating cut up fruit. She is less of a fan of anything pureed.
She wants to pull herself up on EVERYTHING.
She is not really into toys, but loves to push empty boxes around the house.
She can click her tongue.
She has an umbilical hernia that makes her belly button poke out.
She doesn't have any teeth, but I think that I might feel a bump forming.
She is still a very good sleeper (she sleeps about 14 hours a day).
She is starting to be an early riser. It is hard to keep her in bed after 7:00 am.
She is starting to be very mommy oriented. She gets upset when I leave the room.

Thursday, April 24, 2008


So tonight I went visiting teaching and had a very interesting experience; I found out during our visit that both the woman we were visiting and my partner had had some experiences in our ward that had made them feel uncomfortable. They felt like they didn't fit in, like they didn't belong. I was shocked to learn this. I have lived in this ward for over 3 years and I have always felt a little out of place. At first I attributed it to the fact that everyone was moving in so fast that no one felt comfortable. Over time it seemed that friendships formed and I just never really clicked with anyone. I was amazed to discover that my partner felt the same way. She is confident, smart, spiritual, kind, she has adorable well mannered kids, she is cute, clean, thin, and I think that she may be able to leap small buildings in a single bound. I have always been so amazed by her. When I am with her, she makes me want to be a better person. When I learned that she felt like she didn't really fit in, I felt two things: 1. happy that I wasn't the only one, 2. a realization that there are likely more smart, confident, wonderful women in our ward who are also feeling out of place. The two of us made a pact that we are going to sit together on Sunday and invite other women to sit with us. Somehow it is daunting to me to try to make new friends, but with someone else with me I think that it will be easier.

I have to admit that I don't have a lot of women friends. For the last 6 or 7 years I have struggled to make friends, actually I think college was the only time in my life that I really felt like I fit in. Church is the natural place for me to make friends, but it seems I have only made casual acquaintances. The type of friends that you chat with on Sunday, but not the type of friends that you do stuff with, that you talk to, that you depend on. Recently someone moved into our ward that I totally clicked with. She is fun to hang out with, we have similar interests, and our babies are one day apart. The other night she called to find out how Emily's doctor's appointment went. It was such a small thing, but it made me feel so good to know that I had a friend that was thinking of me. She is the type of person that is genuine, I don't question if she is going to talk bad about me later behind my back. This friendship and several others I have been developing over the last several months have reminded me how important it is for us to support and love one another. Life is hard but when we help each other carry the load it becomes much easier.

So to anyone reading this I invite you to take our challenge and be kind to someone that you don't know well. Invite someone who is alone in Relief Society to sit by you, talk to them, find out what they are interested in. You can never have too many friends.

I don't mean to stand on a soap box or preach to you. There are three reasons that I write this, 1. because I want to remember tonight (how I felt, what I learned, and what I committed to), and 2. because it is easy to forget that everyone needs a friend, 3. if I show up on your doorstep just to meet you and say hi you won't be surprised.

Perfect Day

Yesterday was a perfect day. My little alarm clock (Em) woke me up at 7:00 (didn't enjoy that part as much), but it was good because I had just enough time to get us both ready and head to the hospital for her appt. with the surgeon for her umbilical hernia. Ryan took the day off work so he could go too (isn't he the best dad ever). The Doctor's appointment was quick, he walked in, put his thumb in her belly button and told us that it would heal on its own, but since it is so big it will probably take 4 or 5 years and will likely get bigger before it gets smaller. The surgery is out patient surgery and takes a total of about 2 hours at the hospital with the surgery lasting about 15 minutes. It sounds like the recovery is really not too bad (they don't even give pain meds, just Tylenol). They scheduled her surgery for the 9th of May. Anyway once that part of the day was over, we had a whole afternoon together.

I love ditching. I am a firm believer that ditching work or school every once in a while. Ryan does not share this belief. In the last 8 years we have been married he has only taken sick time when Emily was born and when he had pneumonia! My mom used to let me ditch school and we would hang out. This carried into college, when I would ditch and go shopping or hang out at the beach (I graduated with a 3.98 GPA, so I think it worked for me). There is nothing better than ditching in the spring on a warm sunny day. One of the rules of ditching is that you are not allowed to be productive. You need to spend the day doing something fun. Shopping is always a good idea. In the spirit of ditching, Ryan and I went to CPK for lunch (the portabello mushroom ravioli is my most favorite thing ever). Then I did some window shopping at baby gap and gymboree while Ryan checked out some new computer games. He is so cute, he bought two games that he knew I would like. The first was bust-a-move for the wii (we tried it out and we are not big fans of the controls). Then he bought the Adventure Collection. It is a series of several puzzle/adventure games. The interface is mostly lame, but the game is awesome. We started playing at about 4:00 and didn't stop until we solved the puzzle at around 12:00 (you had to get this girl off an uninhabited island). It was so fun to play together and hang out all day. I realize this is a super boring post for most of you to read, but it was one of those days that I want to remember, so I am writing about it. It is funny how the little things are the best things in life.

Also on a happy note, Emily has been sleeping through the night for about a week now. I have been catching up on some much needed rest and I am no longer feeling like a zombie.

Also this morning I got my CD of family photos from my friend Jen. I can't even tell you how much I love them. I just ordered a bunch of prints from snapfish and I can't wait for them to get here. Don't worry grandma's I ordered some for both of you.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Quiet = Trouble

Have you ever heard anyone say "Oh no Johnny is being quiet, I better check on him he is probably in trouble." In the pre-toddler days I wondered how you could possible know your child was in trouble just because they were being quiet. I now know quiet is caused by total fascination. Fascination results from something new. Something new is likely something that mommy has previously not let Emily touch, but somehow Emily has managed to get to it. This morning quiet time has resulted in consumption of wood pellets that I use for the bunny litter box (fortunately they were clean) and unraveling of several toilet paper rolls. I have also discovered a new found desire to clean toilets since Emily has discovered a new found desire to touch and climb on them.

More Template Pages

Here are a couple more pages I made using a template from Epson.

Saturday, April 19, 2008


Here is a layout I did using a template from http://www.epson.com/cgi-bin/Store/PrintLab/pl_home.jsp. I changed it a bit, but I am pretty happy with the results. I used materials for the shabby princess Olivia collection.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

So Much to Catch Up On

What a week it has been. Last weekend Emily and I went to St. George with my mom and dad for Spencer's baptism. It was so fun. We spent Saturday visiting with Grandma and Grandpa Hales (sorry we didn't have more time), playing in the park, going to the baptism, having a BBQ, and making hair bows. Sunday we got up and slowly made our way home. With a baby and a puppy it is a slow process. I think we stopped about 5 times. We tried to get some asparagus in Delta, but either it wasn't out yet or it had been sprayed with weed killer, either way there was no asparagus :-(

This week I am not even sure what I did, it went by so quickly. The bad news is that Emily is sick AGAIN! I took her to the Dr. on Wednesday and they said it was just a cold. She is getting worse, so I think I may need to take her in again Monday. They also said that she needs surgery for her umbilical hernia. I take her to a surgeon at Primary Children's on Wednesday :-(

Last night we had family photos at temple square. It was beautiful, the flowers were in bloom and everything was perfect, except Em could not have been more unhappy. We coaxed a few smiles out of her, but overall she was not impressed with the experience. The photos are pretty great (see http://jenniferbertoch.blogspot.com/) I was running late to meet at the temple and couldn't find a place to park. Finally I parked behind the conference center and started walking up the hill when I heard someone call out "Jen?" It was my friend Dinah Weldon from the USC ward. I had not seen her in probably 6 years. She was walking home from work. After pictures I stopped by her house to catch up. She one of the most amazing people I know. She is so happy and optimistic. She lives in a house that is about a block from the conference center. Two apostles are in her ward and she said that it is pretty great to hear them speak. I was so glad to catch up with her again.

About 2 weeks ago Emily learned how to climb the stairs. It is now her favorite activity. She is also a big fan of chasing the bunnies. It is so funny. She crawls after them as fast as she can. When she gets close the jump away and she starts the chase in the other direction without missing a beat. It makes her giggle chasing after them. I don't think that they are as fond of the game as she is. Every day I am amazed by the new sounds she makes and the new things she can do. She is a big fan of finger foods. Last weekend she ate hot dog, chicken, teddy grams, raisins, and dried apricots. I have been resisting self feeding because it is so messy. However, this weekend I discovered that she loves it and it entertains her while I eat, so finally I gave in. I know that I am violating the one new food every 3 days rule, but it was all stuff she had had in small quantities before.

Below is video of Emily I took this morning. I hope you enjoy.

Also for those digi scrappers I just discovered two favorite short cuts (most of you probably already know, but I was a big fan). control+J makes a new layer from the selection. This is awesome if you use the magnetic lasso to select something that you want to either recolor or leave colored, then you press control+j and it will make a new layer. I use this when I want to whiten my teeth or leave Em's eyes blue while changing the rest of the picture to B&W. My other new favorite is control+G. Use this if you want to add patterned paper to a layered template (you can find lots of cute free templates online) or if you want to add paper to any .png or text all you have to do is drag the paper into your project and have it as the layer above what you want to cover. Then while just having the paper as the layer selected press control+G and it will clip the paper to the shape of the template, text, or .png! (It is better explained here http://mistycatodesigns.blogspot.com/2007/03/layered-template-tutorial.html she has tons of awesome tutorials) This was a very exciting discovery for me. I will post some samples soon. Also there is a great free bracket frame template at http://www.digitreats.typepad.com/. She posts new freebies every day. They are only free for a few days, so you have to keep up.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Sleep Deprived

So last night was the first night of my resolve not to get up to put the binky back in Emily's mouth. She cried from 12:15 to 2:00 then I couldn't go back to sleep for a long time. This morning she woke up at 7:45 and I am exhausted. I am not sure how I am going to make it through the day. Here are the scrapbook pages I worked on while she was screaming.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Some Pages from Our St. George Trip


So Emily has discovered that she can pull herself up on things and stand. That is pretty much the only thing she wants to do now. I have been putting things in whatever room we are in that are the right height for her to get up on so that she doesn't try to get up on something that will fall over and hurt her. She is a wild woman.
This is Emily providing Ryan's wake up call this morning. She was fascinated by the stubble on his face.

Anything for Love

This morning when Ryan woke up he said he had a crazy dream. He dreamed that we were in France (if you know my husband you know that is the last place on earth he would want to go). While we were shopping, we found this store that sold really special fabric made out of orange peels. It was $3,000 a yard, and I wanted to buy a yard to make bows. Somehow he consented to the request and then spent the next three weeks mad about it. I think this dream is hilarious. It is funny that my bow making obsession even made it into HIS dreams. It is funny that he would let me buy the fabric and it is funny that he would be mad about it in his dream. Maybe I have a problem :-) Sometimes when Ryan has dreams that I do something bad (like cheat on him), he wakes up and really is mad at me. It takes a few hours to wear off. It is funny, he tells me about the dream and then keeps asking, "you wouldn't really do that would you?"

Monday, April 7, 2008

Em at 8 Months

At 8 months Emily seems to be learning new things every day. She has only been crawling for about 3.5 weeks and is already pulling herself up to stand. She loves to stand and seems very proud of herself. She continues to love to eat. New foods at 8 months include chicken, steak, parsnips, cauliflower, broccoli, plums, and cheese. She eats about 3 cups of baby food, cereal, and table food plus about 30 ounces of formula a day. She loves to explore and find new “toys.” Everything that she has not previously put in her mouth is considered a toy. She loves to play games with mom. Her favorite games include patty cake (we are still working on clapping), itsy bitsy spider, peek-a-boo, and an imitation game (I do something and she copies me). The cutest thing she does is move her head from side to side while eating. She is starting to smile, giggle, and interact much more. She is also starting to express displeasure and frustration, it first involves rapid breathing followed by squeals. She loves baths and will splash for as long as I let her (usually until she starts trying to drink the bathwater or standup). She hates being still, which also means she hates getting dressed or having her diaper changed. She is very independent and will play by herself for hours. She goes to sleep easily, but has been waking up a couple of times a night for her binky. She is very good natured and doesn’t cry unless something is drastically wrong. Overall I feel lucky to be her mom.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Gymboree: Cute Kids Clothes or Crazy Mommy Cult

The last several days I have spent a lot of time putting away Emily's winter clothes that don't fit and washing and organizing her summer clothes. After going through her closet, I am concerned about my clothes obsession. The box in the first photo is overflowing with all of her winter clothes that don't fit anymore. The second photo shows her closet that is packed again with summer clothes (I didn't buy them all, she has had many generous contributions from her cousins).

I do admit that I like to shop. When Em was first born I would just pick up items here or there as a went about my errands, Target, Wal-mart, Old Navy... Now buying baby clothes has taken on a whole new dimension. I blame it on my sister and the Gymboree Cult :-) Gymboree has SUPER cute clothes, but they are really expensive, unless you know how to work the system. There are rules: you can't buy clothes when the line first comes out you have to wait for them to go on sale, you should make most of your purchases either when you can earn Gymbucks or redeem Gymbucks, the outlet has lines from last year and they are marked down by at least 50%... I thought my sister was crazy when she was telling me the rules. However, I now know that next Thursday is the first day to redeem Gymbucks and that I better get to the store when it opens or the best sale items will be gone. I also know that I better not take a stroller because the store will be packed with other crazy mommys who also know the Gymboree rules. I realize I am insane. I just can't help myself when it comes to this cute little girl.

By the way I am looking for footless tights. If anyone knows where to get them let me know.

Love Shabby Princess

So I just bought the Carnival, Olivia, and Modish Girl kits from Shabby Princess and I LOVE THEM. My new blog backgrounds and header use paper and elements from the Olivia and Carnival kits. Shabby Princess gives you so much in a kit for the money, plus they have tons of super cute free downloads. Now I just have to scrap. I have a bunch of photos from when we went to the cabin in early March and last weekend in St. George.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

New Home for the Bunnies

I am looking for a new home for my bunnies. I love them, but my allergies are really bad and I just cannot live with them anymore. If you know anyone looking for bunnies, the specifics are below...

I have two very sweet rabbits looking for a new home. The female is a lop mix and has full control of her ears (she can put them up or down). She is very soft. She is fixed and about 2 years old. The male is her baby, he does not have full control of his ears, he is about 1.5 years old. He is also fixed (this means no yucky spraying and no baby bunnies). They are a bonded pair and I will not consider separating them. I am including their cage. It is about 3 ft. x 3ft. I would prefer that they go to a home where you have room for the cage, since they are used to having spacious quarters. They are indoor bunnies and need to go to a home where they can live indoors and be let out of their cage to jump around. They are litter box trained. They are pretty mellow and can be picked up and held, but prefer not to be held. They are typical bunnies, you have to watch them or they will chew on wood, carpet, and electrical cords. I love them and really would like to see them go to an allergy free home where they can be out more.
If you would like to set up a time to meet them, please e-mail me at jhales@jsanet.com