Thursday, December 18, 2008

To TV or Not To TV.

In my life I have really run the gamut of tv watching habits. In high school I watched General Hospital pretty religiously. In college I went for months without getting anywhere near one (including one three month period where we didn't even HAVE a tv). When I was in grad school and completely depressed because I hated it, I think I may have watched Law & Order 24 hours a day for about a week (and Law & Order, while being a very interesting and well done show is also totally depressing, so it wasn't the smartest thing to have watched!). Right now I have the Today Show on in the morning, whether I'm watching it or not, and then not much else after that. At night, depending on my exhaustion level, I might watch some shows,(as in i'm just too tired to do what I need to be doing and my brain is too tired even to read) but definitely not every day!

The funny thing is though, I spend most of my TV watching time (such as it is) totally annoyed and disgusted. I know!! Why am I still watching then? I'm asking myself the same thing! I guess it's just habit. And it's nice to have the background noise. As much as I love my Booboo, adult conversation is pretty scarce when you're home all day with a 7 month old! So listening to people talk kind of helps in some weird way...

But why am I so annoyed and disgusted? I could probably do an entire other post just about this subject, but I'll try to be brief here. Because it's so stupid!! The things they talk about, the way they smoosh everything into these ridiculously rushed 30 second segments (heaven forbid they talk about ANYTHING in depth). I'm mostly talking about the news and shows like the Today show here. And they are glorified commercials really. All they do is sell stuff. (and do stories on how to save money by spending it! Ha!) Reality shows are the devil (except for Jon & Kate +8, although I don't have cable, so I can't watch that on TV anyway!) it's all competition and glorifying cutthroat, backstabbing behavior. And the amount of sex on the rest is so depressing I can't even get into it. And don't get me started on commercials! (Jon will tell you that I get actually upset and angry at commercials all the time. I know, I'm such a dork!) How we are not all raging hypochondriacs from all the drug commercials I don't know.

Ok, don't worry, I'm cutting myself off from my little rant. So why am I talking about this? Well, a couple of months ago I read a great book called Funny in Farsi, and then an even greater book (pretty rare for a sequel) called Laughter Without an Accent. I would highly recommend these books to EVERYONE. I mean this is an unqualified recommend. Young, old, conservative, liberal, everybody! (Shout out to Jess for turning me on to these books!) The author is an Iranian American and the way she writes is just delightful, smart, uplifting, etc. I know, this seems unrelated, but I'm getting to the point. In the second book one of the little stories is how she decided that her family (she and her French husband and two children) should stop watching TV altogether and become a TV-free home. It's so well written: no preaching, no guilt-tripping, no judging, she just talks about how delightfully and unexpectedly wonderful life was without it and the one thing that was hard (folding laundry was so deadly boring without TV that she finally pulled out the radio and started listening to the news). I haven't been able to stop thinking about since.

I am grateful to TV for having pulled me through a tough nursing period with a newborn. And there are some good shows and it's especially fun to watch the little segments with craft ideas, recipes etc. But thanks to the modern miracle of high speed internet you can watch the little segments of shows like the Today show on the internet (and only the parts you want to see with one tiny little commercial which you can totally ignore), and I can get the news on the internet so I won't be totally cut off. And we will keep the TV set for watching movies, and you can get shows on DVD if you are willing to wait till the end of the season (no problem), and there are no commercials! Not that I will be doing that much, except of course for Jon&Kate +8!! It won't be easy at all. I'm going to have to develop a little more resourcefulness, and I'll probably have a cleaner house and get more sleep and knit more and listen to music more and maybe even start practicing my guitar again (i shouldn't get carried away. i'm not giving up Booboo along with the TV!)

I'm also not totally sure about this. For instance, there's a show on January 4th which is going to have all these amazing dance performances by world-class artists (the preview showed Riverdance and all kinds of cool stuff from all the world). I'm pretty jazzed to watch this as I LOVE stuff like this. I love to see stuff from all over the world, and dancing (no this does not include Dancing With the Stars). And I do love some of the stuff on PBS also, like Masterpiece theater, etc. So this will still be hard. But I think it will be good for me, and thanks to the conversion to digital TV, maybe it will be kind of easy. Because we don't have cable and we have a very nice analog TV and so if we don't buy the little conversion box I can keep my TV for movies and I won't have to exercise will power! It simply won't work after February somethingth! Awesome! That's still a couple of months away so until then I will try to wean myself off mornings without the Today Show keeping me company.


There are a lot of people in the world who are smart enough to have already done this, or at least REALLY cut back on TV, in fact there are organizations and websites dedicated to this (there are organizations and websites for EVERYTHING, have you noticed?). I'm not even suggesting that you guys do this! A little bit of escape time and connection to the world is not a bad thing at all, especially for stay at home moms!! I guess I just wanted to share what I've been thinking about a lot lately, and wouldn't it be funny if a lot of people did this on the digital conversion day? Just stopped watching TV? Maybe I should start some kind of Internet Movement, like Buy Nothing Day (the day after Thanksgiving) or Plastic-Free Christmas or any of the other myriad Social Internet Mini-Revolution/Protest Thingies. I'd need a clever name and a logo that people can put on their blogs and websites. Hmm...that sounds like a lot of work! I would probably have to turn off the TV to do it! ;)

Monday, December 15, 2008

'Tis the Season.

So Christmas is in 10 days. 10 days! And, like many of you I'm sure, it has really snuck up on me.
I've been having a hard time really getting into the spirit of things. The tree is mostly trimmed and we are working on our Christmas cards but there is still shopping to do and winter weather has finally hit us and it all makes me want to bunker down and stay inside and say "Bah Humbug". But I'm probably just in a mood tonight. Because I really do love Christmas. Booboo LOVES the tree lights and so do I, and I look forward to lots of great time with family. That's really the best part. And the snow is pretty, even though it's so darn cold.

Last week we had two very Christmassy experiences. Jon and I were able to go the Mormon Tabernacle Choir's Christmas concert. It was absolutely amazing. I wish I could describe how beautiful it was. I cried many times. It was also cool because there were these lovely dancers and I just loved their costumes. They made me wish that I was either 1) a little girl again so I could play dress up in swirly skirts, 2) that long swirly skirts were in style again, or 3) that I was one of those slightly eccentric women who just wear swirly skirts all the time anyway! The second Christmassy experience was trying to get my 7 month old to take nice pictures for the Christmas cards. My cousin Janae did a pretty amazing job with a little boy who was very unhappy, very unwilling to smile, and teething, to boot. All this resulted in a large amount of funny pictures, and, luckily, a few that are good enough to give away. But for the sake of humour, I thought I'd share some of the funnier ones here: note the excessive slobber, unamused expression, and funny faces he's pulling. All evidence of teething!

What? You've never heard of the Great Christmas Carrot? Ok, really we were just desperately trying to get him to smile... And now for some of the good ones:

For those of you who are cool enough to get the reference: doesn't he look like Toby from The Labyrinth in these? I didn't do that on purpose, I swear!

I've been trying desperately to come up with a caption for this last one...He's doing something very specific with his hands here, but I can't figure out what! If you have any ideas post them in a comment!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

General Updates and Whatnots

Once again, it's been awhile since you've heard from me! So, of course, there is a lot to catch you up on. Booboo is now 6 and a half months old. It's amazing how much he seems to grow and change every day. Jon keeps plugging along at work, and being a great dad and husband. Things are getting better for me as Walter gets a MITE better at sleeping and Jon does everything he can to get me as much sleep as possible. And it really helps. Somehow everything is just so much sunnier and easier when you're getting more than 4 hours of sleep a night! I've been having fun experimenting with new recipes and making them my own as I've never really liked following recipes anyway. I've also been taking a knitting class with my mom. We are settling into parenthood and grown-up-hood by getting to bed by 10pm most nights and getting the hang of bragging constantly about every little achievement of "our son" (holy cow!).

For instance: he's got two teeth now, and has been eating some solid food. He rolls all over the floor and gets himself into some sticky situations. It's so funny to see his face when he gets annoyed at the couch for getting in his way. Then he'll either continue to try rolling into the couch (in the hopes that it'll just go away??), or try to chew on it (that's also pretty darn funny) or finally figure out that he should roll the other way. Watching him beats watching tv anyday! He can also sit up better now and is a very talkative, babbly baby. Below are two video's; the first is some footage of our first attempt to feed him solid food. You'll hear on the video that I'm frustrated because he doesn't seem to be swallowing his food. Don't worry, we figured out later that he does much better with food that tastes good, like sweet potatoes and bananas. He definitely doesn't like rice cereal! The second video is one I just took today of him babbling along and sitting up (I apologize for how dark it is in the beginning). If you look closely you can catch a glimpse of his two teeth. He is quite often this loud, especially in church! We always apologize to people and say that he's loud sad and loud happy! Enjoy!

Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing - Photo Books

Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing - Photo Books

Thursday, October 30, 2008


I love Fall! The weather here has been just beautiful, even though I, of course, could use some more rain! Booboo and I have been spending a lot of time outdoors, trying to get as much vitamin D as possible before winter sets in, and just enjoying the glorious changing colors. Here are some pics of Walter frolicking (as much as a nearly 6 month old baby can!) in the autumn leaves. If you look closely, you may notice a newly acquired skill...(drumroll please)....sitting up! He hasn't totally mastered the skill; you have stay really close to prevent head-first wipeouts.

He's making this adorable face because he's watching the leaves fall from the trees!

Other things I adore about fall: sweaters, putting cute hats on Walter when we go for early morning walks, pumpkin, squash, soup, cinnamon, nutmeg, everything warm and comforting, apple cider, not having to shave my legs as often (i'm being honest!) and scarves. I've been trying to work on my cooking skills lately, especially trying to come up with healthy recipes that I can eat right now since I'm on restriction (I haven't had sugar, white flour, and dairy in over a month, among other things). I thought I'd share a really good recipe I tweaked/invented in honor of this post on Fall--Pumpkin Cookies! They are actually really healthy, so could even be called Pumpkin Breakfast Cookies. The truth is I started out trying to come up with a muffin recipe and then decided that they were the perfect texture for cookies instead. If you wanted to make them more dessert-ish you could throw in chocolate chips, and if you wanted to make them even MORE healthy (which I might attempt in the future) you could substitute apple sauce for some of the oil and honey and throw in even more goodies like cranberries and flax seed, etc. Here is my recipe (so far) for Pumpkin Breakfast Cookies (they are very moist and spicy and just sweet enough) and Happy Fall!!
Pumpkin Breakfast Cookies
1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup honey
1/8 cup molasses (I just eyeballed this, half of 1/4 cup)
2 eggs
1/2 cup coconut oil (if you are anti-coconut oil you could use canola or somesuch)
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 cup pumkin puree
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup slivered almonds (or walnuts or whatever!)
18 minutes at 325 degrees. but keep your eye on it, cuz you might like them cooked to a different finish than I do!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Picture Tag

My SIL Julie tagged me, and my friend Jen requested that I post MORE!!! so here I go...

(In my defense, I often think of posts but then decide that everyone will think it is dumb. Does anyone else feel that trepidation sometimes?)

THE RULES: You have to post the 4th picture in the 4th folder in your pictures folder. Then give a brief description before you tag a few others. So here it goes!

You KNOW I am being honest here as this is a terrible picture of me (Jon and I were just goofing off and I was not thinking I would share it with the public someday!!). We took this picture in the beginning of my pregnancy, I believe on the day we first told his family that we were expecting!(I look pretty happy though, don't I?) I decided to stick a pillow under my shirt to see what I would look like when I was more pregnant. Now I can only wish that I still fit into that shirt!!


Ok, I would like to tag Jen, Janae, Rosalyn, Emily, Ashley and Miss Kim. Ooh! and Adrienne and Heidi, if you guys are reading this, you're tagged too!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

The Most Wonderful Weekend

1. Beautiful gray, raining-all-day weather.
2. Finally getting to put cute chilly weather clothes on Booboo.
3. Making up a huge batch of this amazing stuff called Texas Caviar and eating it all weekend. Seriously, it's so good!!
4. Hanging out with mom-in-law and sisters-in-law while the men folk are away.
5. Watching a really fun movie called "Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day".
6. Lounging around the house in comfy clothes all day Sunday. It's so wonderful to spend an entire lazy day at home now and then, isn't it?
7. General Conference. The most wonderful thing in my wonderful weekend.
8. Especially this great talk about living simply that was filled with Henry David Thoreau quotes and based on his time at Walden Pond. I love that book (I read it a couple of years ago for my Environmental Lit class) and I love the whole idea of Simple Living, and I just felt it was so relevant right now with such major looming economic crises. I'm inspired and determined to make better financial decisions and prepare for the future and pare down our life from the tedious, superficial, superflous, media-mandated desires of the world to the really important, joyful, spiritual, tangible, deeply meaningful desires of our hearts. (sorry, I'm rambling off-topic and should probably make this the subject of a future post instead!)
9. The best thing about any weekend: spending two whole days with my husband.

Monday, September 29, 2008

2 years ago today...

Jon and I went on our first date 2 years ago today. 3 months later we were engaged and 3 months after that we were married. I would never have guessed that I would do it so fast, but when you know it's right, you can't wait for the rest of your life to begin!

And life DID begin!! 4 months after getting married we were pregnant, and 9 months after that we were parents. It's been wonderful, it's been hard, and I'm so so grateful.

To celebrate we basically just hung out with our slightly cranky, possibly teething, nearly 5 month old. Aaaahhhh, life is good!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Bye Bye Burrito Baby

*Sniff* *Tear* my baby boy is growing up!

Ever since the hospital Walter has responded really well to swaddling. It always really calmed him down. We started out just doing it like the nurses showed us. But we learned, as he grew a little, that we needed to swaddle tighter to really keep him still, to make him feel cuddly safe, and to help him to sleep. We referred to this newer, tighter wrap as "the ruthless swaddle". Then later than that he started to wriggle free and wake himself up at night again, so we developed a newer technique that we called "the nuclear swaddle". I even developed a "summer swaddle" which just kept his arms tight because it was too hot to have the rest of him wrapped up. They always calmed him and helped to him to fall asleep and keep him asleep longer. We took our swaddle blankets with us everywhere. People at church became accustomed to seeing Jon perform the ruthless swaddle on the foyer couch during the meeting, and then pace around carrying Walter in his favorite position, the football hold. For a while there all our swaddle blankets were red, and we got all kinds of comments about how he looked like a little chili pepper (all he needs is a green hat!) and my chiropractor always called him Super Baby!!!

But when he started wriggling free of the nuclear swaddle and still staying asleep through all that we began to get the idea that he might not need the swaddle anymore. So I've been putting him down for naps without it, but we kept on doing it at night for the last couple of weeks. But last night he went to sleep without the nuclear swaddle and slept really well. So I think we may be the proud parents of a big baby boy who no longer needs to be swaddled!! Sad.
As a sort of tribute and good bye, here are the pictures we took of our swaddled little boy while he was growing. And I guess we'll put 7 or 8 square pieces of knit fabric in varying colors in a box for the next baby who likes to be swaddled!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

4 Months!

My little boy just keeps growing! On friday he turned 4 months old, and he had his 4 month check up. He is now in the 94th percentile for height and the 76th for weight. He is 16 lbs, 5 ozs. He's basically as big as his cousin Brooklyn, who's almost a year old! Jon likes to say that he's half as big as me, since when I hold him he covers my whole torso. Ha ha!

Even more important than his 4 month check up on Friday, on Sunday we finally had him blessed at church. Jon did a great job and though apparently Walter cooed and gurgled through a lot of it, it wasn't picked up on the microphone, so the rest of the chapel didn't hear it! Although that probably would have been cute! Below are some pics of my Booboolala in his cute blessing outfit. Sunday went great, we had a lunch after and I got to see some beloved family, and some wonderful friends I hadn't seen since before my baby was born! Thanks to all!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Treehugger, Jr.

Most Saturday mornings Jon lets me sleep in just about as long as I want while he takes care of Walter. This morning, when I finally came down I couldn't find them in the apartment so I looked outside, and this is what I saw:

Can you tell what that is? That's Jon laying on the grass with Walter on his tummy, both looking up into the tree. This is actually a pretty normal sight, because the surest fire way to get a frantic, stressed out, upset Booboolala to calm down is to take him outside and let him look at trees. Maybe this is pretty typical of babies, I don't know, but I do know that all kinds of people have noticed it and remarked on it as unusual, and these are people who have had lots of contact with lots of babies (my mom, Jon's parents, my Aunt, etc...). He really loves to look at trees, but the main effect is just being outside. I'm talking--just inside the door a screaming baby. Cross the threshold to the outside and the screaming just stops and Walter's looking around intently like he's trying so hard to take in EVERYTHING. It's really cute and amazing. I spend a lot of time on the front porch and pacing around the front lawn. I wonder how it will be in the winter...

So we took some pics of Boo in his happy place/natural habitat for all to enjoy. I guess it makes sense that the child of a woman who has loved and adored trees all her life and a man who is happiest on a mountainside would be like this!!!
Now for another funny little tidbit: Boo has been laughing for over a month now, but he'll only do little chuckle/giggles and I can usually only stumble on the way to make him giggle randomly, and it (whatever it is, blowing on his face, tickling under his chin, etc) will only work about twice, and then he gets bored of it. So no matter how hard I've tried, I've been unable to get it on video. Today when we were taking pictures of him in the tree we decided to take some video of him grinning and kicking his legs and then.....ta da!!! He started laughing and we got lots of it on video. It was pretty awesome. I'm going to post the 2nd video we took below because it's a little shorter, has some good chuckles, but I have to apologize for a bit of a fumble on my part in the very beginning. But if you are a diehard Booboo fan (grandparents, etc...) Here is the link to our Dropshots page where I've also posted a longer first video, with more laughing and pure Walter Watching Enjoyment!

Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing - Photo Books

Monday, August 11, 2008

So Big!!!

A week ago our little Booboo turned 3 months old! I can't decide if the time has gone by really fast or really slow. Kind of both, if you know what I mean. We spent the day at my mom's which was a present for me, really. She watched him while I took a nap and then a bath in her great big tub. It was great. Then later, just after he woke up from a nap, he was being all cute so mom took some pictures, and here they are! He's getting really really big and finally has some good chubbiness to him, although I'm not sure you can see it in these pictures. You'll just have to believe me!

p.s. sorry about all the red!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Any Other Bookworms Out There?

So apparently the National Endowment for the Arts is all worried that most Americans have only read 6 of the books on this list. So people are posting it on their blogs and showing which books they have read. I, being a former English major, have read more than 6. I wanted to do this list mainly for myself, to see how many I have read, and for some great ideas of some books to read in the future! I stole this list from my friend Jen and I'd love to see which ones some of my other friends have read!!

* Look at the list and bold those you have read.
* Italicize those you intend to read, and/or books you've started but haven't finished
* Reprint this list in your blog so we can try and track down these people who've read 6 and force books upon them ;-)

1 Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2 The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien
3 Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
4 Harry Potter series - JK Rowling
5 To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
6 The Bible
7 Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
8 Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell
9 His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
10 Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
11 Little Women - Louisa M Alcott
12 Tess of the D'Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
13 Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
17 Birdsong - Sebastian Faulks
18 Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger
19 The Time Traveller's Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20 Middlemarch - George Eliot
21 Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell
22 The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald
23 Bleak House - Charles Dickens
24 War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25 The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
26 Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh
27 Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28 Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck
29 Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
30 The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame
31 Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
32 David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
33 Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis
34 Emma- Jane Austen
35 Persuasion - Jane Austen
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis
37 The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
38 Captain Corelli's Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
39 Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
40 Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne
41 Animal Farm - George Orwell
42 The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44 A Prayer for Owen Meany - John Irving
45 The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
47 Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
48 The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood
49 Lord of the Flies - William Golding
50 Atonement - Ian McEwan
51 Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52 Dune - Frank Herbert
53 Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons

54 Sense and Sensibility- Jane Austen
55 A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
56 The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57 A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens
58 Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61 Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck
62 Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov
63 The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64 The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
65 Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
66 On The Road - Jack Kerouac
67 Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
68 Bridget Jones's Diary - Helen Fielding
69 Midnight's Children - Salman Rushdie
70 Moby Dick - Herman Melville
71 Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens
72 Dracula - Bram Stoker
73 The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
74 Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
75 Ulysses - James Joyce
76 The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath
77 Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal - Emile Zola
79 Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
80 Possession - AS Byatt
81 A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens
82 Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
83 The Color Purple - Alice Walker
84 The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
85 Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
86 A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte's Web - EB White
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90 The Faraway Tree Collection
91 Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad
92 The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery (en francais)
93 The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94 Watership Down - Richard Adams
95 A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
96 A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
97 The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
98 Hamlet - William Shakespeare
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl
100 Les Miserables - Victor Hugo

38!!!!! Sweet! Only a true bookworm would be proud of this! On the other hand, it's sad how many of the italicized items were books I started and never finished. Oh well!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

A Highland Fling

On Saturday Jon and I gathered up our courage and our baby to try and get out and have a little fun. We'd attempted it a couple of weeks ago at the Salt Lake City Art Festival, but that was close to home, and we only went for 2 hours. This time we decided to try something farther afield, and for a longer duration of time. I'm a big fan of my Celtic heritage, and so I love to go to Highland Games, otherwise known as Scottish Festivals. So we packed a lot of stuff, picked up Mom and Joel (two cripples, what were we thinking? What were they thinking?) and headed down to Payson for their Scottish Festival. We were there for several hours, and then we stayed even longer to help Joel out and so I could visit with a friend I hadn't seen in a very long (pre-baby) time. By the time we got home we had had quite the time with a tired Booboolala and my mom summed up the day very well: "It's been real, it's been fun, but I can't say it's been real fun!!!"

The first half was a breeze because Walter fell right to sleep in the sling. Here's a pic of His Cuteness!

And I had to get some pictures of his first diaper change in a woodland glen...

...surrounded by bagpipers!!

All in all, quite the day, and a very good thing for me to get out of the house!!

Monday, June 30, 2008

A Belated Tribute to a New Daddy.

Yes, I know Father's Day was a while ago. But life in the newborn vortex is just as crazy as ever. Besides, I've included a cute cute video I just recorded on Saturday, so it all works out! Here is just a little proof that a great new daddy has been born!

Jon likes to take Walter out on walks in the baby sling. It's especially helpful when I need a break and some more sleep! Here is a great early picture of Walter in the sling, but he still carries him around that way even though he is now a hefty 12 pounds!

Here is a great, funny picture of a very happy baby on his daddy's belly! I love this one!

Jon has been really working hard to get our new little family's affairs in order and get us more prepared for possible hard times. Because of him, we have no more credit card debt and we own both our cars outright. We also now have more than a one year supply of food. All this in just one year of marriage! Let me tell you, it feels good to know we have it!

And as promised earlier in this post, here is a fun video that I took at the Salt Lake City Arts Festival on Saturday. Jon was performing a little maneuver on Walter that is called "the milkshake". It's just a really great way to get burps out. But we were at an outdoor concert and the milkshake became a sort of rock out/shimmy! So I got video; the beginning is mostly Walter, but there's a great bit with Jon also at the end of the video. Enjoy!

Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing - Photo Books

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

This Needs to be Seen.

So I'm posting it here. It brought tears to my eyes. I think it is one of the most important issues being mostly ignored today. It is slowly getting more press though, which is great. Anyway, here is a link to a video on CNN about autism and a recent march they had for the cause. Jenny McCartney is a celebrity with an autistic son, so that's why she and her husband are speaking in the video, in case you didn't know.

Watch Jim Carrey and Jenny McCarthy rally against vaccines:

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Things I Have Learned in a Mere 3 Weeks.

1. Posting blogs slips pretty far down your priority list when life gets this crazy. Sorry everyone!
2. A teeny, tiny, brand-new person can rack up a lot of nicknames in a very short time. Here are some: Fussy McFusserton, Piglet, Frogger, ET, Squirmy, Boo Boo La La, Bug, Roly-Poly, Potato Bug, Little Old Man, etc.
3. The first time you get 4 hours of uninterrupted sleep feels like Christmas morning. And pretty much every time you get that much sleep.
4. Watching newborn facial gymnastics is more entertaining than the American Idol finale (and a lot of other stuff, cuz that show was pretty boring. maybe I should say it's more entertaining than the last 10 minutes of the finale!).
5. You can literally spend ALL your time dealing with feeding and feeding related issues, especially when your baby is having trouble nursing, so you have to nurse, and supplement with bottles, and pump, and occasionally have a bite to eat yourself, and change diapers, and run to the bathroom--often while your baby is screaming at you--and guzzle some water, and what? your husband's home from work and you're still in your pajamas? Yep.
6. Feeding and burping a newborn can be a very traumatic and emotionally-exhausting process. I'm not exagerrating.
7. 10 minutes of adorable can totally make up for several hours of pain-in-the-backside (he's pretty cute in that mode too, though).
8. I love my husband and would be absolutely lost without him.
9. The love and support and unending service of family and friends (especially your mother!)and your husband and your Heavenly Father can help you live through and deal with some truly difficult experiences (like an emergency c-section after 17 hours of labor and 6 weeks of recovery).
10. Magic for newborns: the swaddle and the sling.
11. Magic for mamas: a hot shower and a nap.
12. I am truly blessed.
13. I have the cutest little boy. Here is photographic proof, provided by my talented cousin and her talented friend:

Friday, May 9, 2008

World, Walter. Walter, World.

Introducing Walter Scott Richardson!! Born on Monday, May 5th, at 3:30 pm. 8 lbs, 6 ozs, 21 inches long. There's a lot more to the story, but I will tell that in another post. As for now, he is perfect, beautiful, sweet, mellow, and the nurses and doctors couldn't stop raving about how good-looking he is. I, myself, am pretty astounded by it also. He is definitely more than the sum of both his parents. Not that hubby isn't the handsomest man on earth, and I'm not too shabby either, but this little boy passes us both up by far!!

We named him Walter for Jon's dad, and Scott for my maiden name, which is now serving as my middle name. And yes, we knew about the author, and thought it was pretty clever of us to come up with that name. So we like to call him Sir Walter. We are also paying homage to a couple of other literary figures named Walter that are favorites of mine. So with a name like that and parents like us, the poor kid is pretty much destined to be another nerdy bookworm! Here are some pictures of our little man: enjoy!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Waiting. But Not in Vain. Hopefully.

First of all, just to clarify, my little countdown ticker is a little off. I made it months ago, and either I was thinking positively, or I was just somehow off, but I'm not actually due until Friday. Silly me. But I'm not actually overdue yet, which is good.

Hmmm...I'm having trouble deciding how to actually start this next little section I want to talk about. Basically, I'm feeling the need to be pretty honest, and not all positive and putting up a (false) brave, strong front. So I apologize in advance if I make anyone feel uncomfortable or unduly sorry for me. For the most part I have been really positive, and happy, and not stressed, and not worried, this whole pregnancy. So it hasn't always been an act. I've had a lot of lovely spiritual experiences, and the hypnobirthing thing is very reassuring and calming, but this last little stretch of pregnancy is very very hard, and I find my faith wavering a bit, and I suddenly have to work superhard during my relaxation sessions to stay in relaxed mode, and I have to tell my shoulders and neck and jaw, quite constantly, to unclench. Blech.

Poor Jon came home to find his wife a sobbing mess on the couch today. I'm actually quite proud that I made it safely home, as I was crying the entire way, and it's no easy feat to cry and drive at the same time, especially when you wear glasses. Home from where? you ask, and why was I crying? Because I had an appointment with my midwife today, and I'm 39 and 1/2 weeks pregnant, and she did an internal exam, and my baby is still high and hasn't dropped into position, and my cervix (sorry if this is too much info) is all closed and high and thick and blah blah blah. So for someone who's due in 4 days, my body isn't acting like it's going to go into labor any time soon.

Now my logical mind was trying to prepare myself for this news, and I know that it doesn't really mean much as many women don't have any progress at all until they actually start actual labor. But the part about the baby not having dropped was pretty discouraging, and then my midwife had to talk about what will happen if I don't go into labor before I reach 41 weeks. All this stuff that I REALLY REALLY don't want to do, like being induced, and if that doesn't work, being c-sectioned. That stuff drives cold, sharp, nails of fear into my heart. So I was sobbing because I feel like I have this, to quote my friend Emily, ticking time bomb set for 2 weeks now, and if I can't dismantle it/go into labor on my own, it's going to go off in the form of a traumatic, medical birth ordeal, that I don't want. That's a lot of pressure for a girl to live under.

Of course hormones and fatigue are also not helping very much. And I try to remember that this is 60% mood swing and that tomorrow I will feel better and a little more rational and positive and proactive and all that jazz. And I'll try to remember that poor L'il Bit is feeling all my mood swings too and I only want him to feel happy welcoming love vibes, so that he'll want to come on out. But tonight I'll be praying my guts out, and I don't mind asking that if you believe in that sort of thing, that you will pray for me too. To naturally start labor before my "time" is up, and to not have the frightening kind of labor that requires pitocin and forceps and emergency surgery, etc, and to have an increase of faith, and to not be so pitifully anxious right now. I hope I'm not asking too much...

I guess that no matter how, this boy will be born within about 2 and 1/2 weeks, and won't just be squatting uncomfortably on my bladder for forever. That is something to be grateful for. I guess. Thanks for putting up with my pity party, and I'll try to write something all upbeat tomorrow or the next day about spring, and gardening, and how sitting on my front porch is like sitting in a tree, and my new fun calling at church, and washing darling little sleep gowns with yellow ducks on them, etc. All the many, many, many good things in my life.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

It's Just Like Christmas!!

Jon and I just made our first ever Ebay purchase, and I'll be honest, it was mostly Jon. I watched and was totally confused and not very helpful. So that was my contribution!! But we've been dreaming of getting a bread mixer for months now, and researching them and trying to decide if we wanted to spend $350+ for a really good one that would last longer than us, or a more modest amount on a smaller, less higher rated model/brand? In the end we compromised and got the super mixer, a little bit used, for almost $200 less--or basically the price of the other, smaller mixers we were looking at. Pretty cool!

We got it yesterday night, and while we haven't actually made bread, we did put it together and turn it on, and it seems to work! So we are very excited to make bread and rolls, and never buy storebought junk again. (ok, maybe sometimes we'll buy bread still!!!)

But as great as this is, it is not what has me in an ecstatic 6-year-old-with-a-brand-new-bike-on-Christmas-morning state.

Every single piece of that bread mixer came wrapped in TONS of bubble wrap!!!

Very, very, happy Megan.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

little updates and some appalling pictures.

Well, I thought I'd do a little update and post some pictures of very preggers me, as it has been requested by a few people. Believe me, if it were up to me I would do this pregnancy all 19th century style and enter into my "confinement" until I emerge triumphantly with a one month old baby!! But, alas, Heavenly Father saw fit to send me to this century instead, tee hee, so I will post these pictures even though I am astonished, when I see them, to see that I can still remain upright. Pregnancy is an amazing condition in deed. This first picture is from about a month ago, and the bottom two are from this last Sunday.

As for the updates... the horrible cough is actually getting incrementally better and I'm able to sleep a little better. In fact, I'm sometimes amazed at how quickly and thoroughly I can zonk out! But I think my body must be trying to catch up a bit, in addition to the whole pregnancy fatigue thing. Poor Jon caught the disease but he seems to be handling it better than I did. He can still mostly sleep! Here's hoping he will be all the way better by the time Roo makes his appearance. I need Jon at the top of his game in the hospital!

The little boy who has given me this strange new silhouette continues to grow and amaze me. I thought I could feel every movement before!! Ha! His little stretches and adjustments are my constant companions now and it is quite the surreal experience. Yet at the same time it's a sort of cozy experience. We are just practicing for lots of future cuddles so that's ok.

And remember the to-do-list of several posts ago? Well I just revisited it, and I'm quite proud to say that we have checked off many things on it, including: packing my hospital bag, Jon painted the bathroom and stairs, I've shopped lots without feeling too much like I was going to "drop" with the help of the internet, with Mom and Jon's help we've moved in the rest of the way, I've had two lovely showers, the nursery nook is basically ready and decorated (i'll post pics soon) and I've even managed to do SOME cleaning. Not too shabby.

So this little boy can come whenever he is ready!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Can I Cough My Way to Preterm Labor?

Seriously. I know it's been a while since the last post, but it's been a crazy while. I've been sick for over a week. A horrible mystery cough. I don't really feel sick in any other way, except I'm more sleep deprived than normal from coughing all night and now i've got crazy rib pain, also from coughing so much. I did eventually go to the doctor who said he couldn't do much for me (that's what they always say, which is why it takes me forever to go). But Jon felt better knowing it wasn't in my lungs, and he gave me a prescription for cough syrup that isn't "for sure" safe for pregnancy. Well I tried it last night and it did jack squat for me. Didn't even make me drowsy, and I swear it made me cough MORE. So, not going to take that again. Luckily it was only $5, so not too big a waste of money. Sigh. But I tell you what! It's super fun to have a coughing fit that's stressing out my ribs and my ab muscles, while at the same time having a rock-hard Braxton-Hicks contraction, and a L'il Bit with hiccups. I'm pretty sure I'll be the only woman in history to give her baby Shaken Baby Syndrome before he's born.

Ok, I'll stop complaining. I guess I'm pretty lucky to be able to take it so easy right now, no one relying on me. I can just recoup. And I'm also lucky because the baby is doing great, and I'm having no major probs in my pregnancy. And I'm on this very exciting 9 month ride where every day I walk around feeling like a little miracle. Carrying a little miracle. And in another week or so, if I do cough myself into labor, it won't be preterm anymore. That's pretty amazing.

That's the update.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Rib Kicks and Hiccups and Somersaults, Oh My!!

Jon's family really loves to listen to Bill Cosby and they've got all these hard to find audio recordings of his stand-up routines on their computer. Well one of them has this really funny bit about babies in utero and how hard it must be for them. They're in this tiny room and it's really really humid, and then he says (and this is funnier the way he says it, with sound effects and whatnot), "the last 2 weeks or so they just start to go crazy in there man, punchin' and punchin' and writing their name on the walls..."

I know what Bill's talking about. And I have 2 months left, not 2 weeks! This baby boy of mine has been a very active baby for the last several months but for the most part the action was gentle, and amusing. Except when he'd make a direct hit to a few spots on my lower anatomy that would usually make my eyes roll back in my head--but that was pretty rare. Then he went really quiet for 2 days and I started to get worried, but he moved a little still, so I decided that things had gotten a little too crowded in there for his usual aerobic workout and this was going to be the way it was for the rest of my pregnancy.

Ha! Not exactly! My new theory is that he had a major growth spurt for 2 days that required some serious sleeping because my active little boy is back with a vengeance, and the strength of his movements have multiplied threefold. I no longer have to tell Jon what hijinks the baby is up to; he can see them. I've now had my first rib kick and a few breathless moments that were possibly resulting from lung kicks. I can feel him actually turn, which is really strange, especially this one day where I swear he was laying sideways for a couple of hours. Whenever I've laid on my side in bed he's always had a fun time kicking at the bed. Well those were the good ol' days because now I'm pretty sure he turns sideways and is jumping on the bed. And about once a day he gets a good case of the hiccups. For the most part it's a bit like having Jerry Lewis or some other physical comedian in my stomach. He keeps me company and he makes me giggle and he has impeccable comedic timing.

In other news, it has been brought to my attention that my referring to my little miracle as "the kid" really irks some of my loved ones, so I will try not to do that anymore and instead use the the universally acclaimed "li'l bit". My other nickname for him is "Roo" as in Kanga & Roo from Winnie the Pooh. I think it's pretty appropriate! Except I guess that makes me Kanga...

So that's the news! I'm off to start dinner and pretend like Roo isn't trying to dig some kind of escape route right now! I'll keep you posted!

Sunday, February 17, 2008

What's In a Name?

A lot, apparently, because I feel just frozen with indecision practically. I do trust that it will be a little easier when I finally meet my baby boy (I hope, I hope!), but at the moment, my list of names is at a whopping 10! And I think it will be easier if I could get it whittled down to 3 or 4 before I get to the hospital and have to make a final decision! So here's my list of 10, feel free to tell me your favorite 1, or 3. Input is always welcome!*

(these are not in any particular order)

1. Luke
2. Dane
3. Seth
4. Elijah
5. Charles
6. William/Liam
7. Connor
8. Jack
9. Cole
10. Benjamin

* We reserve the right to change our minds completely and pick something not on this list!

Monday, February 11, 2008

Sweet Things

*Warning! Megan's blog will sometime's include posts about topics she cares about!! Some slight soapboxiness may occur!!*

1. I recently read an article about how honey is a really good natural antibiotic and works well smeared on wounds. Of course the FDA is regulating it and there will soon be an actual product on the market, not unlike Neosporin, except with honey in it! Kinda cool, I think, and I bet that actual honey will do in a pinch!

2. Today I read this cool article about how honey has now been medically proven to soothe coughs better than cough medicine! It's an old folk remedy, and now science backs it up! And it's very timely because now you can't give little kids cold medicine. Definitely DO NOT give it to babies under 1 year of age (that infant botulism risk is still very real) but after that, a spoonful of honey doesn't just make the medicine go down, it IS the medicine. I've always had a testimony of honey as a healer for sore throats (when I have a sore throat I live on hot water, lemon, and honey. It feels so good.) but I've never tried it specifically for coughs. I'm excited to try it! Not that I'm excited to be sick again, tee hee. Here's the link for the article if you'd like to read it yourself:

3. This is a weird one. I apologize in advance. But I am not a product princess, and I love to find alternative ways to be pretty and clean, and most of all (I hate winter) moisturized! So I also recently learned that you can WASH your FACE with honey and I had to try it. It's antimicrobial and antibiotic so it actually cleans your face, gently, and is very moisturizing. I love it. But, um, make very sure that your hair is completely secured away from your face!! And use it very sparingly. Too much is, well, too much!

4. Last one: I also just read an article about recent research on artificial sweeteners. It's not majorly conclusive evidence as it's only been conducted on rats so far, but definitely interesting and worth a read, especially if you are like me and you try your hardest to eschew "fake" sugar. Which is quite the task, let me tell you. I basically can't buy normal yogurt anymore, what a trial. Anyway, the rats given yogurt with fake sugar ate lots more than the ones who just had normal sugar! I guess it just confused the rat's body and slowed down their metabolisms. Here's that link, if you want more than my measly synopsis:

p.s. has anybody heard anything more about the big mysterious decline in honeybees? i've been wondering. i guess i should just google it! what did we do before google?

Friday, February 8, 2008

I'm using you.

Here's what's on my mind: I just quit my little part-time job for various reasons, one of which is that I have so much to do before Bitner Jonathan Richardson arrives (no? but we could call him 'Lil Bit for short! still no? tee hee) that I was just not getting done while I was working. But, the thing is, it's called a "To Do" list, and not a "To Think About Doing Someday" list. So I thought that if I published the highlights of the "To Do" list, I could use good old public humiliation as extra incentive to get this all done. Plus writing it down makes it more real, etc. etc. So yes, I'm using you all as my personal accountability, because I think maybe I was born without any of that, anyway. Or at least I have a deficiency...

To Do Before the Baby Gets Here:

1. Finish moving in to our apartment we moved into last September!
2. Clean everything in sight. A couple of times.
3. Shop till I drop. Basically.
4. Paint bathroom and stairway.
5. Start some kind of baby book so I have a safe place for all my ultrasound pics, etc.
6. Stretch and exercise frequently.
7. Practice my hypnobirthing stuff. Every day.
8. Help my mom plan a rockin' baby shower.
9. Thank HF for my mom. Daily!
10. Decide on a baby name. Or at least whittle the list down to 3 or 4 before I head into the hospital.
11. Make a million more lists with titles like, "Things to Learn How to Do" and "Stuff I Need to Start Gardening" and "Books to Read" and "Stuff to Put in my Hospital Bag" .
12. Do some token decorating of what I like to call "The Nursery Nook" since the kid's not going to get his own room for a while.
13. Not to overshare, but--Get as much husband and wife special time as possible before baby makes 3.
14. Related to 13--Come up with some wonderful plans for our upcoming first anniversary!!
15. Look into digital video cameras so we can be those annoying parents that video tape their first child's entire life and then forget we own it when kid #2 comes along. Just kiddng.
16. Get off this blog and start doing some of the stuff on the list before it get's even longer and sends me back to bed in desperation.

Thanks for your help!

oh my goodness! my very own blog!

Leaping lizards!

I was going to wait until after the kid arrived to start this up, but I decided I'd better at least get it set up now, and I guess there are some things to post before he comes along, although I think the blog will get more *exciting* when it's full of cute cute baby pics. And there are still 2 and a half months until that time, give or take a week or two. So be patient until then!

Oh, and, as lovely as this green blog template is, bear with me whilst I tinker around with the look of my blog, with the help of the husband.