Friday, May 29, 2009

The Bell Pepper Bandits

You remember these guys ...

Yeah, the cute little "roommates" that I so adored a week ago.


A few weeks ago, I had this phenomenal idea to start my own little garden. We had one up in Logan and it was a lot of fun. The problem is ... we don't have much yard space -- AND -- we have two dogs that would love a little "snack" in the afternoon when no one is watching! We have a small flower bed in the front yard that is unused. I decided to get a couple of pots and plant some tomatoes, red and green bell peppers. Joe mentioned this to his mom and she asked why we planted them in pots rather than in the ground. No real answer came to mind ... ??? I just wanted to do it that way. Besides -- it was prettier!

Those little turds gave me a darn good reason!

They turned this:

Into THIS:

Those pesky VERMIN ate my pepper plants! They have their eye on the tomatoes as well and started snacking! They no longer are cute little fuzzy beings that I adore ... they are ugly beasts! We were forced to move the garden to the back deck ... with two dogs hopefully THEY will become the lunch!


Wednesday, May 27, 2009

The Conversations "WE" Have ...

I am right at the end of the fourth Fablehaven book. Jace was up -- so I decided to read to him (I just couldn't put it down). He started to fuss a bit, so I put down the book and just started to talk to him. Here's how our conversation went:

"Let me tell you what is going on so far. All of the good guys were taken away by these huge Griffins to a Giant TROLL! The troll wears a silver choker that makes it so he can't lie. If he lies, the choker will strangle the troll. We don't lie do we Jace, nope that's bad! I won't lie to you, you don't lie to me. Well I will lie a little to you -- about Santa, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy. See we have these to make special occasions seem more magical (or commercial!). Well ... I'll tell you now ... so when you are all grown up you won't get mad that I never told you the truth. Mom and Dad are actually Santa. We are also the Easter Bunny AND the Tooth Fairy! It's true! Now I feel a bit guilty for telling you about Santa. At least you won't remember in about five minutes. Birthdays. Mom and Dad do those too -- but we don't lie about that. Birthdays are fun! You get to have birthday parties! You can have friend parties when you turn five ... eight ... twelve ... sixteen ... and eighteen. Eighteen? Maybe. When you turn twenty-one you will be on your mission. Mommy will send you all sorts of neat things while you are on your mission. She will send you tapes that tell you how much she loves you. A new tie? Maybe. She will send you chocolate too! March is cold enough to still send chocolate right? Unless you go on your mission to Brazil or anywhere in the southern hemisphere ... If you go to Russia -- Mommy will send chocolate. If you go to the southern hemisphere she will need to send a chocolate cake mix instead. You see the seasons are backwards in the southern hemisphere than they are here ... OH boy Jace ... if others could hear what we talk about "

We have similar conversations ... all of the time.

It seems a bit embarrassing ... typing it "out loud" for the whole world to read. :)
Just bonding with my boy. haha

Monday, May 25, 2009

Sleeping Through the Night

Not yet!
But that's okay :)

Jace is changing SO SO fast. I thought I'd take the opportunity to share a picture of him ... for those of you who live too far away to see him often. AND so his proud mom can brag a bit.

It is getting more and more fun every day to be a stay at home mom. I have talked to other moms of brand new babies ... and it seems like I am quite lucky to have such a good one! (I was talking to one mom yesterday at church. Her babe is 1 week older than Jace. He cries from 6-9 EVERY NIGHT!! phew!) Jace generally sleeps in the evening. He'll wake up at about 10 or so to eat. He then wakes up every night at about 3. He only cries long enough to get our attention really. He is all smiles as we change his diaper. He then will wake up at about 7 or so.

He has started to coo a bit and talk to us. He likes to look at his mom and dad -- and we love to look at him. He is such a special boy ... I can't wait to see what the future holds for him!

A Unique Opportunity to Serve

How often does a brand new temple get built in YOUR area? We have a special opportunity in our area to serve at the new Oquirrh Mountain Temple during it's open house. Joe and I signed up to take part in this event last Friday. We signed up under the "historical records/badges" assignment. Our job was to direct everyone else were to go as they arrived for their assignments. The rest of the job was to make notes of "big wigs" that came through the temple and to keep track of how many people were serving there that night. Keep the records ... basically. {{Crazy side note ... As we were helping the people know where they needed to go, I looked up and this man was like: "I know you!" "You were my 9th grade seminary teacher" I exclaim!! CRAZY WEIRD. Shout out to Bro. Smith -- New Testament :)}}

There were eleven people that signed up for the six slots needed that night. Joe and I spent the first hour directing people were to go (and getting the door for them). When the new tasks were being assigned, there wasn't much for everyone to do. Our options were to wait an hour and (maybe) get a job to do ... or to leave. We decided to head out since there were a lot of opportunities to serve that we could sign up for. Before we left we took the opportunity to walk around the temple grounds, take a couple of pictures, and enjoy the spirit that the temple grounds bring.

From where we were standing we could see three temples in the valley: Draper, Jordan River, and Oquirrh Mtn. It is amazing.

My Weight Loss Journey

I have decided to post my weight loss on the side bar of my blog rather than make a new post every week. You can still see how I'm doing! This week wasn't fantastic -- only 1 lb. BUT I figured that I will just keep going with it. I am seven lbs lighter now than three weeks ago. That's something. I probably won't get my goal for next week. I'd need to lose five pounds this week, but I aimed high and still came out pretty good. I'm not disappointed.

"Roommates"

We have new roommates living with us at our house! Every year a mommy bird lays her eggs in the "beautiful" pillars in our front yard. Early spring we start to hear the eggs hatch and the chirp of baby birdies. We watch the mommy fly in and out of her nest providing food for her babies. Yesterday was their first outing. They were all over our yard -- trying to fly! They aren't quite strong enough to just take flight. They would try to gain altitude and end up flying into the fence or the wall because they couldn't quite make it. It was super fun to watch them.

As you can imagine ... our hound dog wanted to play with the baby birdies. All he got was the front door!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Second Weigh -In

This morning I weighed in at
189.2
That is a weekly loss of
2 lbs
That is a total loss of
6.2 lbs

Which is
3.2%

Only 6.2 lbs to go to reach my goal of 183 by June 1st. I'm a little disappointed, I was hoping to get just a bit more ... now my 183 goal will be a bit difficult. I'm not giving up yet though!!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

EXERCISES

Every day Jace and I "exercise". The "moves" are supposed to build muscle resistance. I just like having time to play with him ... plus we are teaching him that ... "every day we do our exercises". Careful, the song is catchy ... I made it up myself :)

video

Flyin' By ...

How time flies! Jace is two months already. I can hardly believe it. (I just checked out his one month post ... I started it the exact same way.) Jace is getting to be such a big boy! We went last Monday to his 8 week appointment. He now weighs in at 12 lbs 1 oz {68th percentile}(I faintly remember a time when we were concerned about his weight. NOT anymore!!). He is 23.5 inches long {80th percentile} 16.5 inch head circumference {120th percentile ... bwahahaha that's not even possible! He is in the 93rd percentile though}. At least he is proportional (besides his head). I marvel at the little spirit I have in my home and each day he is more and more fun to be around. I feel truely blessed to have him -- makes 8 years of waiting worth it!

At 2 Months I Can ...

Like mentioned above, Jace is more fun now than ever before! It melts my heart to see him smile, which is happening more and more often. He has two smiles: the 'I'm amused' half smile and the 'dimple' smile. When he gets in the right mood he will give us the dimple smile while we play. Last night Joe can into bed with a big grin. "That was worth it". he said. I looked at him and he imitated Jace laughing. I have seen it once or twice ... precious! Jace is becoming more interactive with his toys; he is fascinated with their sounds and will follow them with his eyes. The sound of his rattles can also calm him down when he is upset, a temporary fix to whatever is bothering him. His head strength continues to grow. He will hold his head up for long periods of time and look around, (always with his forehead furrowed!) On several different occasions, he has rolled over from his stomach to his back while laying on my bed. He is sleeping longer through the night, a straight five hours! He loves to cuddle still; I hope he never stops.

Our Journey So Far ... (Since the Last Time)

Playing with my Crib Mirror

Trying on my Blessing Outfit
My Blessing Day

Sleeping in my "Big Boy" CribTummy Time

Let's Try That Bath Thing Again ...
Walking to Harmons with Mom
2 Months Already!Shut Up ... How Cute Am I??

Monday, May 11, 2009

Blessed Mother's Day

I feel so blessed this Mother's Day. I have so many great women in my life -- who I love and appreciate.

To Rayma:
I LOVE YOU! I have never met a more brave person than you. I can only imagine how scary it would be to join our crew -- but I am so glad you did. It is amazing to see how Heavenly Father has played a role in you joining our family. You stepped into a difficult situation -- and I am so grateful for you. You are truly a mother in every sense of the word. You are kind, caring, compassionate. You are understanding, fun, a pure joy to be around. On a more personal, recent note -- you will NEVER know how grateful I am to have had you around when Jace was in the hospital. It was such a scary time for me -- I didn't say much to you then-- but know that I was able to stay "together" as much as I did ... because you were there. I love you ... and am so SO SO glad you are a permanent part of our lives.

To my Mom (known now as Grammie ... that's what I've decided):
Heavenly Father knows what is best for our family. I am so grateful for the sacrifice that you made -- you left this world to save us. I don't know what kind of person I would be today if you had not made the choice to "raise us from the other side of the veil". You were always my best friend, and I never told you I love you enough. I know that you knew it ... but I wish I would have said it more. I love you ... SO many good things that I have inside of me ... come from you. Being a new mom ... I miss you so much ... but I know that you are here. Rooting us on! I would be lost without the knowledge of eternal families. I will see you soon (but hopefully not too soon). Until then ... save a seat for me and my little family. I can't wait to officially introduce you to the people that mean the most to me -- Joe and Jace. Please continue to stop in and "see us". We love you! LOVE YOU!

To Ann:
Joe is a good person because of you. His character is a reflection of the love that you put into your family. Thank you for making him such a priority in your life. Thank you for all of your support and love. Every time we needed your support you are so quick to jump at the chance. I will always cherish the time we spent so close to you guys, in Ephraim. It has been so great to get to know you as Jo-mama (hehe) and now I'm so excited to learn first hand who Grannie Annie is. We have so many good memories -- skiing with Jake and Jen "BOUCHER", our "open house", hanging out in Manti/Ephraim, moving -- moving -- moving :), birthdays, birth announcements, birth - days. I love you! Thanks for being a part of my life.

To Jace:
You are my sunshine, my only sunshine. You make me happy when skys are gray. You'll never know dear how much I love you, please don't take my sunshine away.

I love being a mom -- and I am so glad that you are my son. You make me happy every day. The blessings of heaven overflowed the day you joined our family. I love seeing you grow, and can't believe that you are 8 weeks already. You make me want to be a better person, and I hope that I can be the mom that you need. I will ALWAYS love you ...

p.s. these aren't the best pictures of all of us, but they are fun pictures of us. I hope you don't mind me sharing. :)

First Weigh-In

This morning I weighed in at
191.2
That is a loss of
4.2 lbs
Which is
2.2%
Only 8.2 lbs to go to reach my goal of 183 by June 1st.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

The Miracle Diet

I found this diet online ... not sure if I should try it or not ... it doesn't sound very easy ... let me know what you think!! PLEASE :)

Daily Activity

As you know I am trying to make better choices about what I eat and how much I move. I have been really down lately -- my life is different and I am trying to get used to it -- but it is not easy. I feel like all I ever do is watch TV, check the computer, and feed the baby. I don't mind the baby bit ... but I don't want my life to resort to the TV and computer. I have made some goals with myself to help keep me motivated. Some of my daily tasks include: exercising, drinking 6-8 glasses of water, tracking what I eat, eating breakfast, cleaning my house, and taking time out for JEN!

To accomplish some of these tasks, I have started walking to the grocery store with Jace every day. While there we pick up what we need for dinner that night. I think this is genius actually -- when we go, I get to exercise AND drink water. CHECK! While we are there I can only get a small number of items ... since I can't push a cart and a stroller I have to use a small hand basket -- so I don't go overboard on my spending. I am going to be saving money because I only get the essential items AND I will be USING the essential items that night. I mean I'm not going to walk all the way to Harmons, buy the food, then not use it! In the past -- we would buy enough groceries to last a week or two and then end up eating out most of the days. SO we would spend money eating out AND on all of the food that would go to waste in our fridge.

I am excited to try new recipes. When I find a recipe that I like, I am going to post it on my new blog: www.jensyummycreations.blogspot.com -- there is a link to the right, along with my latest "masterpiece"! I am totally pumped for this new project AND it is really fun to take a picture of my meal before I eat it.

I am trying to change my life ... and am excited for the progress that I am making. Jen time for today (blogging): CHECK!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Rejected

We didn't get into Bingham's daycare for next year. We have been on the waiting list since October. Since then 2 girls at their school have gotten pregnant and the teachers at their school have priority over anyone. SO even though I was on the waiting list before them, they take my spot. It is a bit frustrating. I don't know what to do for next year. Any volunteers ?? :) haha

Monday, May 4, 2009

Cafe Sabor's Rice con Pollo

I have my favorites and I never deviate from them. Whenever I go to a restaurant, I always choose the same thing. In Logan there is this GREAT Mexican Restaurant called Cafe Sabor. The first time there I tried this dish called Rice con Pollo (or something similar) and I get it every time. SO SO good. I have been thinking about it for a couple of days and I wanted to recreate it. I don't have the recipe but I figured I'd guess. It turned out very tasty, and I think probably quite healthy.
Cube 2 medium chicken breasts. Saute the chicken breast in water (spices: sugar, salt, little pepper, crushed red pepper, chili pepper ... I don't know how much.) Remove chicken and set aside. Cut 1 onion, 1/2 red pepper, 1 green pepper, 3 stalks green onion, 2 tomatoes into chunks. Cook with 3 Tbsp olive oil and same spices listed above until tomatoes mash and peppers are tender -- not mushy. Add 3 cups cooked long grain rice. Stir together until rice is coated. Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese.

It is quite tasty ... you should try it!

A Roller Coaster Ride

This is my (very public) journal. If I were writing in my private journal, my roller coaster ride of weight loss would be part of it. SO I have decided to post updates of my weight loss journey online. Brave right? I just figure that I want to journal my progress to help keep me motivated AND to get support from anyone who cares to give it.

Starting Weight
195.4

Goal Weight
150

1st Mini Goal:
183 by June 1st

1st Mini Goal Reward
A Day at Lagoon

I will be updating my weight loss journey every Monday. I am going to start Weight Watchers tonight -- one more way to keep me motivated. Here we go :)

"It's Your Special Day Jace!"

We woke up yesterday morning and all I kept telling him: "It's your special day, Jace!" We blessed Jace yesterday. 41 members of our family joined us in this special event. We tried to keep the invite list short -- because there were three baby blessings -- so if and invitation was not extended ... we hope you are not offended.

The day was perfect. Jace looked like a little angel. I am so grateful for all of the family that came to support us ... many traveling for a couple of hours to get here. I am grateful for my family beyond the grave that were there as well. During the blessing Rayma had her arm around me. I distinctly felt that I had one mom sitting on both sides of me. Rayma on one and my dear mom on the other.

Afterwards we went to Aunt Charri's home for a barbecue. My house isn't big enough to fit our large family and it was very gracious of Char to lend us her's. There was a lot of great food and good company -- and the man of the hour! He was passed on from one family member to the next. When we got home Jace slept and slept and slept.

It was a fantastic day and I am so grateful that Joe was able to bless our baby. I am so glad that we are able to help Jace start his life with us and in the gospel. It was such a difficult road getting him here -- I plan on cherishing him every minute of every hour of every day!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Eight Feet Overboard

Joe's poor shoes are running ragged. He has needed shoes for SUCH a long time -- but we don't generally remember to get shoes while we are out shopping. Shoes can be super expensive -- it's not something I enjoy spending money on. I like trying on shoes ... but not buying them. In fact, those who know me well know about my number one shoe choice --- the beloved flip flop. A $2.50 wonder! It was time for new shoes.


While at JC Pennys on Friday night we noticed a sale on men's shoes. 2 for $99. Perfect! Joe and I were there getting new outfits for Sunday and decided to come back after dinner to pick out the shoes. As we were ringing up and there was a sale that if you spent more than $75 you got $15 off. NICE! We also got a 15% off coupon if we went home and did a survey. The numbers started clicking in our head. 100 shoes - 15% off - $15 .... 2 shoes for $70 ... Jackpot.

We did the survey and went back Saturday night. While hanging out at Aunt Charri's house she gave us a "mystery gift card" with who knows how much on it. $5 ... $8 ... Who knows? We are off! Joe found two pairs of shoes that he liked. One was originally $70 and the other $64. So here's how the math played out: Originally $134 we got it for $99. - 15% off = $85 - $15 = $70 - mystery gift card = $58 ... With tax we got his shoes for $63. WAHOO!!!!

Proud of our purchase ... we headed out to the mall to grab dinner and go walking. We were passing Payless Shoes and I walked inside. I really enjoy trying on shoes ... like mentioned above, but I rarely purchase them. Well Payless was having a buy one get one 1/2 off sale so we figured that if we found 2 we liked ... we might as well get them. I started trying shoes on and found 3 that I really liked -- well 4, but one was so colorful ... I wouldn't normally justify it. I was trying to dwindle the choices down to two, but was finding it incredibly difficult. Joe smiled, handed me the colorful shoes, and I left Payless with 4 new pairs of shoes!

6 pairs for $120. Not bad eh?

A bit out of control right? We justify it because the last pair of non-flip flop shoes I purchased was back in July 2008. Joe bought running shoes last October, and who knows when the last was before that. We don't splurge often -- very rare actually.

As we were leaving the mall Joe looks at me and says: Don't let Copper eat them! Uh ... yeah! (he wouldn't have had to say that if it hasn't happened time after time again!!)