Wednesday, December 31, 2008

All I want for Christmas are... two front teeth! Technically we've only seen one, but I am sure the second is to follow any day now. She is a little shy about it still, but as soon as she lets me get a peek with the camera, I will post some pics.

Baby's First Christmas

Christmas morning got off to a great start as Reese slept in until 8am! Gotta love that. Reese loves to rip paper to shreds (especially J Crew catalogs), so I thought she would LOVE to tear all the wrapping paper off of her presents. And she did, for the most part. But since Reese was such a good girl this year, and Santa brought her tons of gifts to reward her, there were just too many things to open for one morning. So after her nap, she came back for more. In fact, I think she was opening gifts under the tree for two or three days! Here are a few shots from the day:
Next, please.

Now that's one happy girl!

She got pretty good at opening presents as the morning went on--look she can even do it with her eyes closed!

This is definitely one of Reese's favorite new toys. The back of it flips up so that Reese can push it while she walks behind. She is going to be walking on her own in no time! Stay tuned for video to follow.

Quarter Life Crisis

I turned 25 this month. For some reason, I thought I would feel a lot different. I don't. But I had a really fun day--Reese and I went to lunch with some of my girlfriends, then we came home and took naps, then we played some more, I got calls from lots of my family and friends, then I got my favorite birthday cake from my sister--Cookie Dough Delirium ice cream cake from Cold Stone (if you haven't had this, you haven't lived! Only 351 days until next year's cake!)

My husband got me the most thoughtful gift--a cake decorating class at Sur La Table! I have wanted to sign up for their classes for years, but have just never done it. I didn't give Michael much help when he asked me what I wanted for my birthday and I was so excited when he told me what he got me!! I recruited one of my friends who shares my affinity for baking to come with me and we had the best time. When we arrived for class, our stations were all set up with an 8" cake, off-set spatulas, pastry bags, frosting, decorative tips and a practice board. And when the class got started, I could hardly contain my excitement--I am pretty sure I was grinning from ear to ear.
The first thing we learned how to do was to level and tort a cake, which just means splitting a single cake layer in half horizontally to form two layers. We learned the techniques to fill and frost the cake so that it is perfectly smooth and straight. This was the best I could do on my first try.
After we had our cakes prepped, we learned different decorating techniques with pastry bags and tips and tried them out on our practice boards. Finally, we learned how to make poinsettias and masterpiece!
Unfortunately, we ran short on time--it's true what they say about time flying--and I didn't get to finish the bottom border. I've got a lot of practicing to do still, but, ooooh, it was the most fun way to spend a Saturday and the cake was delicious, if I do say so myself.

Monday, December 15, 2008

SANTA!!!!!! I know him.

Last week Reese and I went to Tysons Corner to meet Santa! This Santa was almost fired after 18 years of service, but the community rallied behind him, staging protests and signing petitions, and they brought him back! I wondered what kind of Santa could be that good, but I must say, he didn't disappoint.

When I first put Reese on his lap, she seemed a little unsure--she held her arms out to me and I almost caved and went to comfort her, but she was quickly distracted by the jolly ol' guy and once she checked him out (see their silent communication below), she was happy as can be!

Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Thanksgiving week!

We had a very busy Thanksgiving week this year! We started our trip with a few days in Utah for Michael's brother's wedding. It was a great day! Matt and Julianne got married in Salt Lake and it was so fun to spend the day with all the Wheatleys. I love this picture of the happy couple--doesn't Matt's face say it all?!
It was so much fun for Reese to get together with her cousins! Reese gets so excited whenever she sees little kids--she squeals and screams and waves her arms--it's hilarious. She and Tyson became fast friends. They had crawling races down the hallway at Tyson's house, and even though Tyson left Reese in his dust, she and I have been practicing for next time. How cute are these cousins?!
Our last stop before leaving Utah was to visit my friend Heidi for a much needed play date, but more importantly so that Reese could meet Max. Reese could hardly contain her excitement and was a little too shrill when she laid eyes on Max, scaring him half to death. I hope he will forgive her!
We spent the rest of the week in Montana with my entire family for Thanksgiving. We had a delicious Thanksgiving dinner, played our first annual Stimpson family Turkey Bowl and finished with only a couple minor injuries, played Guitar Hero, the boys golfed, and watched movies. It was a great long weekend! Reese and I were the cheerleaders at the Turkey Bowl.
And here Dean is taking it all the way to the hizzee!

On the way home, Reese and I stopped in Utah for one more night. We had dinner with Matt and McCall and Reese got to make another new friend--Halle! These two girls are going to be trouble when they get older, I can already tell! Look at those faces--they almost look like they got caught doing something they shouldn't, right?

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Hooray for visitors!

A couple weeks ago, my twin sister and her husband Ben came to visit us! Ooh, I had been looking forward to this for months! They arrived Thursday evening and got to stay until Sunday evening, which sounds like a nice, long weekend, but I knew it would go much too quickly. This was Ben's first time to DC, so we had a lot to squeeze into a short time.

Our first stop on Friday was to Georgetown. I have been to Georgetown with just about all of our former visitors, but this time was a completely new experience. Lauren is a budding Interior Designer and so we went into stores like Ann Sacks, Baker Furniture, and Waterworks. It was so much fun to walk through these showrooms, especially with Lauren who knows what she's talking about and can offer lots of insight as to the quality of work, projects on which she has used these vendors, and how we would design our own dream homes. After that we strolled down M street and visited Georgetown Cupcake. (my favorite! something about looking at tons of cupcakes just makes me incredibly happy...and since they are so small, I hardly feel badly about indulging!) The line was out the door but that isn't saying much, as only four people can fit inside at a time. We were later told by people all over town, who saw us carrying the pink box, that it was a 'short' line and how lucky we were to have gone when there was only a ten minute wait. We split a half-dozen and they were all equally delicious!
I took Lauren and Ben to Five Guys for lunch--I felt like it was a must for out-of-towners who enjoy a good burger, especially since east coast people talk about Five Guys the way west coast people talk about In n' Out. I thought I would let Lauren and Ben decide for themselves which they will be loyal to.
Next stop: Natural History Museum. I could not let Lauren come all this way and not take her to see the Hope Diamond. Lauren is fan of all things sparkly...if you've seen Reese sporting her bling binky and sparkly clips, just about every sparkly thing Reese has is thanks to her Aunt Lallycakes! We also went to the Bones, Reptiles and Insect Zoo. Very interesting...but I seriously got the creeps at the Insect Zoo.
On Saturday we went to a preliminary tour of the new Capitol Visitors Center. It is underneath the Capitol and it's pretty incredible. I am a wimp/novice when it comes to parking in DC, and I parked at the opposite end of the Mall from the Capitol. I mean, it doesn't seem that far, right?! Uh, it is, in fact, quite far. I made Lauren and Ben march almost two miles from west of the Washington Monument, by the Tidal Basin, all the way to the Capitol. Sorry, guys. But they did get to see all the monuments on the way...and it only took just over an hour to get from point A to point B! (I am a miserable tour guide. But, I didn't make them walk back--Michael and I walked/metroed back to the car while they went to the Supreme Court and Library of Congress.)
On Sunday, before heading to the airport, we stopped by the Arlington National Cemetery. We power-walked up to see the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknowns and then walked into the Memorial Amphitheater. It was pretty chilly, but when the sun peaked through the clouds, it was actually a gorgeous day!

Reese and I were very sad to see Lauren and Ben go. In fact, I think Reese cried all the way home from the airport...poor little lamb. It was so much fun to have them with us for a weekend! Please come again soon!

Monday, December 01, 2008

Catching up...

November was not my best blogging month, I won't lie.  And I've got a lot of catching up to do.  I'm excited that I can finally blog about one of the most fun things I did in the last month.  I got to meet Ina Garten!  While I was at Sur la Table getting some things to make a cookbook for my sister, I found out that Ina Garten, of Food Network fame, was coming to sign her new cookbook at that very store just a couple weeks later.  With Christmas fast approaching, I thought what a perfect gift this would be for my mother!  (I gave my mom her autographed copy of Ina's new cookbook this week, so I can finally tell you all about it!)  

I went the day before the big release to buy a copy of Back to Basics, securing me a place in the autograph line.  I asked the Sur la Table employee what I could expect for the big signing launch and he said that when Rachael Ray came to sign one of her cookbooks, people were waiting in line starting at 6am! (the signing was not scheduled to start until noon)  I thought about going super early, but quickly realized that it would not be wise to make Reese miss her morning nap, and decided to go as soon as she woke up.  By the time I got to Sur la Table, the signing portion of the afternoon had just begun and the line was through the entire store, out the door and halfway around the block!  It was a little chilly, but luckily I bundled Reese up and had toys and snacks to keep her happy.  It took us a little over an hour to get through the line and Reese was a champ!  Sur la Table employees were walking around with Barefoot Contessa samples from her line of boxed mixes.  We got to try her coconut cupcakes with cream cheese frosting, peanut butter and jelly bars and lemon angle food cake.  Delicious!  It made the wait so much more enjoyable...and Reese was a big fan of such yummy new treats to try!

When we finally got to the front of the line, I seriously had butterflies!  hee hee.  Ina was so nice...she said how beautiful Reese was and how nice it was to see us.  I told her I love watching her everyday and love everything she makes!  (I had an hour and a half to think of what witty thing I would say to her when I got to the front of the line, but when push came to shove, I froze!)  All in all, it was a great day and a very enjoyable experience!  (much more so than the last book signing I went to when they pushed me out of the way as I was trying to get my picture taken with the author.  the nerve!)  And, to top it off, my mom loves her new cookbook!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

9 months old!

I cannot believe this little mush is already nine months old. (I know, I say that every time another month goes by.) She had her nine month check up yesterday and is growing like a weed. She grew two inches (28.5 in) and one pound (17.1 lbs) since her last visit, putting her in the 90th percentile for height and the 30th percentile for weight. the lucky duck. She got two shots and hardly cried at fact, when we were leaving, the doctor even said how impressed she was at how little Reese cried. She is so tough!

Reese continues to be a happy, smiley baby! She is very friendly and LOVES to make new friends (don't worry, no separation anxiety, Mom). She will crawl over to anyone and pull herself up on their legs...especially if there is food involved. She wants to eat everything that she sees others eating! Reese has such a sweet and fun personality and we giggle at almost everything she does!

Friday, October 31, 2008

fashion show, fashion show, fashion show at lunch!

Reese and I had another photo shoot with the very talented Andrea a couple weeks ago and the pictures turned out fabulously! Reese is turning into quite the ham whenever the cameras come out. And now that Reese is crawling, she usually does not like to sit still, so Andrea had to be quick! Toward the end of the shoot, when Reese was long overdue for a nap, I had to get creative in getting smiles out of Reese--I won't tell you exactly what I did to try to amuse the little princess, but the only facial expression I could get out of her is the blank stare that you see in her beanie, as if to say, "uh, nice try, mom. you are a weirdo. you're going to have to do better than that."

Monday, October 27, 2008

Trunk or Treat

I feel a little bit guilty that I have let you think this entire last week that Reese is finally a dream sleeper. Not so. That 12-hour best night ever was a one-time thing...for now anyway. The four or five nights that followed were pretty miserable, I hate to say. Every time I had to go in her room to calm her down, I prayed that a tooth was the reason for our sleeplessness...but still no sign of one. It wasn't until Friday night that she had a better night...and I'm convinced it is because Reese heard me say to her dad that morning, "Reese is crying it out tonight." She's no dummy.

Saturday night was our ward's annual Trunk or Treat. I had SO much fun dressing Reese up in her two costumes...and she LOVED seeing herself in the mirror fully decked out. Michael thought it would be clever to have Reese hand out Reese's peanut butter cups at the party, but she was too busy eating them herself--or at least the outside of the wrappers.

Which costume do you like better?

Saturday, October 18, 2008

no doubt about it

7:30pm to 7:30 am...that's what I call sleeping through the night! No binkie malfunctions, no eating, no "I'm standing up in my crib and I can't remember how to get down and please come help me" whining. I didn't have to go in her room at all...even though I did just before 6am when she hadn't made a peep and I felt the need to make sure she was still breathing. Hopefully it wasn't a fluke and she will do it again tonight...and the next night, and the night after that. How cute is she in those little pajammies?

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Eight Months

This little munchkin is eight months old. I honestly cannot believe where the time has gone! She continues to be the sweetest little girl...and she gets cuter and more fun every day. Here are a few things she has been up to lately...

Reese has been crawling for about six weeks now and she likes to pull herself up on anything that she can get her hands on...including unassuming toddlers. (They usually don't like it too much.) Sometimes she gets a little cocky and lets go of whatever she is holding onto, thinking she can stand all by herself. It usually lasts for just a second or two before she tips over.

Reese loves electronics! When she sees her mom or dad on their laptops, she hustles over to get in on the action. She loves pounding on the keys and even managed to pull a few keys off her mom's computer. (thanks, sweetie)

Reese lives for peek-a-boo. It has been her favorite game for months and months--it never gets old! 25 times in a row and she still laughs every time! Her other favorite pastimes are jumping and dancing...she's got great footwork already!

For being such a little peanut, this girl is a big eater! She loves eating...and loves all the fruits and veggies that she's tried so far. She doesn't have any teeth yet, but she is very anxious to eat big girl food. She wants to eat whatever her mom and dad are eating, and we sometimes cave and give her a taste. It is a crack-up to watch her eat because she opens up super-wide to let us know she is ready for another bite. And, if she really likes something, she makes a yummy sound.

Reese has quite a vocabulary for such a little tyke...she can say 'mum' and 'dada' and has even said 'hi'. I don't think she know that she is actually calling us by name, but we still feel very special when she says our names. She is a little chatter box...she just gabs and gabs all day long!

We love our Reeses to pieces! She is a happy girl and she loves to make new friends. But, my favorite thing about Reese is the way she lights up when her mom or dad walk into the room...(sigh) melts me.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Home Visitors!

When you're sad about the end of an amazing week-long vacation, what could be better than coming home to visitors?! Well, I guess they are not technically my visitors, since they didn't stay with us, but I got lucky that Lacey and Ashton were in DC for a few days visiting Lacey's grandparents and Reese and I got to play with them! We met Lacey and Ashton downtown and went to the newly re-opened National Museum of Natural History. It was my first time to go to this museum too, since it has been closed for renovations practically since we moved here, and it was really cool. Reese loved it too, and LOVED her new best friends!
Reese's favorite part was this little gem. Her eyes got as big as saucers when she saw it...she tried to get her hands on it, but the glass was in the way...and then we got yelled at by the security guard for touching the glass. Oopsies.
After the museum, we went to Georgetown for some shopping and dinner. We went to Johnny Rockets for burgers and fries and Reese got her very own balloon! Talk about hours of fun!
It was such a fun afternoon and so good to see Lacey and Ashton again. Come again soon!

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Wedding Week 2008

It was quite a busy and exciting week as we prepared for Lindsey and Mike's big day. Reese and I got to San Diego a week early to spend as much time as possible with the family, as well as to give Reese a head start getting on west coast time. A couple days later, the rest of the family started trickling in and the fun could begin!

First things first. Of course we had to spend some time getting pampered with the bride. Here is Lindsey simultaneously getting a mani and pedi... about Heaven! Reese even loved spending time at Nail Time and Spa in La Jolla and made quite a few friends with the nail techs. When I went to pick her up after my manicure, one of the girls ran over to me and insisted that I hand Reese over, saying that I shouldn't risk ruining my nails until we were absolutely POSITIVE they were dry. It had been at least fifteen minutes of dry time, so I'm pretty sure she just wanted a turn holding Reese. After nails, we went straight to a bridal shower for Lindsey thrown by all of our old friends in the seventh ward, which was a blast! Then we had an after-shower bachelorette party with sisters ONLY. We didn't have a chance to do that at the last two sisters' weddings, since Lindsey was on her mission, and it was so much fun!!

For the weekend, we stayed at La Costa Resort and Spa, where the reception was also to be held, and we spent some time enjoying the pool, or shall I say pools--fully equipped with a sprayground and waterslides...
...this little princess was LOVING the pool and playing with all of her Aunts and the MommaCat!
Meanwhile, the boys hit the course for a nice golf outing. Poor Mike has been away from the course for too long and came back with a few blisties. (I had to laugh imagining the scene from The Office with Andy playing golf...hilarious!)
The morning of the wedding, Lindsey was the coolest bride I have ever seen. And why not? By then, Lindsey had taken care of every last thing (with some help from Lauren and my mom). And, c'mon...when you look like this on your wedding day, what is there to worry about?
I think it is safe to say everything about Lindsey and Mike's wedding day went perfectly. Perfect weather, friends and family flown in from all over the country, perfect dress, beautiful flowers, delicious food, perfect day.

After the Temple, there was time for a quick bite at In 'N' Out before heading back to the hotel to get ready for the reception.

The night was beautiful, and it was so fun to see everyone who came to the party...especially Abby, who flew into town to be an honorary sister for the weekend! I couldn't have asked for anything more...except maybe for time to have slowed down. The week, and especially the weekend, went by WAY too fast.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Mike and Lindsey Smith -- est. September 20, 2008

I know, I know--it's been a week and still no post about Lindsey and Mike's wedding. You know how it come home from a trip and have 45 things you have to get done and the week flies by before you know it. I promise I will get to it, but until then, check out my sister's blog for details and pictures (half of them are from my camera anyway). She is obviously way more on top of things.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

the nerve of some people!

I've got lots of picture to post from our trip to San Diego for my sister's wedding, but before I have time to get to that, I had to tell a story from our travels.

I always stress out a little when I travel with Reese--not because she is not a good baby, but because it's a long time to expect a newly-mobile baby to sit still and be quiet. We flew direct to and from San Diego because I figured it was the lesser of two evils--either you go direct and have one really long flight; or you have a layover, have to move all of your gear on and off planes, and have one extremely long day with twice as many opportunities for ear-popping pain for the little one.

On the way to San Diego, Reese and I sat by a very kind, older couple who had just spent a week with their own grandchildren. The lady even offered to hold my drink on her tray table so that Reese would not knock it over and poured it into my glass from the can whenever it got low. And for the ten minutes or so that Reese screamed (on a 5.5 hour flight, that's pretty good), I heard the man lean over to his wife and say, "Poor baby is so tired," or something like that, rather than "Geez, I wish that mother would shut her baby up!"

When we boarded the plane to go home, I found that we were again seated by an older couple and hoped for the same kindness and understanding. But, when I told them we had the window seat, they both looked a little put out that I was asking them to get up. Maybe I was imagining it. As I sat down, and started to get all my stuff organized, I suddenly smelled a very yucky diaper. Can you believe that I actually thought for one split second how bad it would be if I waited until we were in the air to change her diaper, so as not to inconvenience this couple? But I quickly realized that if I could smell the foul diaper (with my sub-par olfactory sense), then it must be really bad and I better change it as soon as possible. I grabbed a diaper and a travel pack of wipes and said to the woman next to me, "I'm really sorry, but I have to go change her diaper really fast." She looked at me straight-faced and said "Oh, Jesus!" (in the most annoyed tone of voice you can imagine) My jaw literally dropped open as I waited for her to laugh, hoping she was just being sarcastic; but then she said, in the same annoyed tone, "This is going to be pleasant." I could not believe what I was hearing. I asked her if she would like me to try to moves seats, not exactly sure what else to say...

As I walked to the back of the plane, I fought back tears wondering how in the world we were going to get through this flight. I asked the flight attendant if it would be possible for me to switch seats and she told me that they had over-sold the flight by 30 seats, so it would only be possible if I could find someone to switch with me. As I changed Reese's diaper, I silently prayed that Reese would be the best baby she has ever been, and not make a peep, and sleep the whole time, and make that lady eat her words. I knew that if Reese cried even for one minute, the lady would probably bite my head off and I would completely lose it. When I finished changing the diaper, I tried to compose myself and take some deep breaths before going back to my seat.

Reese whined for no more than 60 seconds when we were taking off before she fell asleep. She slept for over two hours and I don't have to tell you how sweet babies look when they are asleep! She woke up happy as can be with just under two hours left until we landed. I was so relieved that she got such a great nap and knew that at least should wouldn't cry because she was tired...I would just have to entertain her for two hours. And that is just what I did. When we had about 30 minutes left, Reese got hungry and fussed for a minute as I got my hooter-hider out (so impatient!). After she ate, she was completely content for the rest of the flight! Best baby ever! And the old grouch did eat her words--she apologized for being so "crabby" to me before and said what a good baby Reese was.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

my little buttercup...has the sweetest smile

This is the way I found my little angel when I went to get her when she woke up yesterday. In fact, believe it or not, she is always this happy to see me when she wakes up...which makes me completely forget how many times I had to get up to replace her binky, or rock her back to sleep, or listen to her scream when there is nothing left to do.

Back to the way I found her--with one arm out of her jammies--I'm not sure how she managed to do that. Maybe she had finally had enough of her drab pajamas and decided to do something about it. I can just imagine her thinking, " how can I improve this old nightgown?...maybe if I can just get my arm out...and make it a miniskirt...tahdah! Much better." My little diva...already designer her own sleepwear. She is so fashion forward!

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

this baby's got moves!

Reese has been working on her new moves for a couple weeks now. She started pulling up onto her knees from her tummy and then rocking back and forth. Then she realized that if she lunged forward onto her tummy from her knees, she would end up that much closer to her goal. It wasn't long after that she realized her arms would move forward too (what a concept!), and now there is no stopping her!

It cracks me up every time!

dirty little secret

Since having a baby almost seven months ago (where has the time gone?!), I've come to learn of a few small details of early motherhood that no one really talks about. Or, shall I say warns you about. Like breastfeeding. Why won't people level with you about what it's really like in the beginning? I mean, I had countless people ask me if I planned to nurse my baby, but that was pretty much the end of the conversation. And most of the people in the hospital make you feel like a bad mother if you say you are even considering not nursing your baby, but do they prepare you for what you can expect for those first miserable weeks? No. Ok, so maybe it is an awkward topic of conversation, but c'mon, if your girlfriends won't tell you about it, who will?

Ok, enough about that--the dirty secret that is really plaguing me at this point is the massive amounts of hair that I am currently losing! I remember one person telling me about losing hair after you have a baby. This was right after Reese was born, and at the time it hadn't, like an idiot I thought, "Oh, goodie, maybe I am one of the lucky ones and this won't happen to me!" Ha! At exactly three months postpartum, it started. At first I thought, "oh, ok, so this is what she was talking about." Four months later, I want to cry every time I wash my hair, brush my hair, even touch my hair. Ok, so maybe that is a little dramatic...or maybe I really am losing more hair than the average person. I've been taking Biotin like candy, but it hasn't helped. I try not to complain about it too much, (because, really, what are people going to respond? "you're right, your hair really is thinning!" I don't think so.) but I really do feel like I am going to be bald at the end of this. In fact, I am about ready to get pregnant again just so my hair will stop falling out! Desperate times call for desperate measures.

I got my hair cut last week and while my stylist was combing my wet hair, and could see the gobs of hair that were falling out, she was even surprised! Should that make me feel better that I was not just being a baby about my hair loss? Or worse, that it is actually way more than normal? I choose to feel better. She recommended some hard core pills that she said would help. Not that I don't trust her, because I completely do--but at this point, I am willing to do whatever it takes to keep the few hairs I have left in my head! Here's to hoping that these little pills will save me.
(Note: sorry for the ranting. I try to tell myself that it could always be worse. and I'm not writing this so you will post a comment about what great hair I have and how you can hardly even tell that my ponytail is a fraction of the size it used to be...if you do, I know you are lying...but for the journal-keeping sake of this blog, I felt the need to say it once and be done with it.)

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

swing, swing

Reese and I went to the park today to enjoy the beautiful weather we've been having. Reese loves to put her feet in the sand box and jump and dance around (she pretty much likes to jump and bounce whenever her feet touch the ground). Today we decided to try the swings. I don't think she quite knew what to make of it, but it was so funny to see her experience something new!

Friday, August 22, 2008


Reese has been eating solids for about the last month or so. But, it wasn't until just the last week or two that I started to introduce her to real food, rather than just rice cereal. We started with sweet potatoes and then bananas. As I started with the baby food, I would say "Mmmmm, yummy" with every bite, hoping that she would be more accepting of the new tastes and textures. Reese is a pretty good little eater and practically lunges at the spoon when she is ready for another bite. The funniest part, though, is that she now does the "mmmmm" sound when she gets a new bite. It is hilarious! I will try to get in on video. Can you tell this girl loves her bananas?

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

book party

While we were in North Carolina a couple weeks ago, my sister-in-law Lindsey found a local bookstore that was hosting a launch party for Breaking Dawn! We reserved our copies and went to the party just before midnight to participate in the festivities. There was a station to decorate some sweet masks (I'm not sure if the Masquerade theme has anything to do with the book, but that was the theme that the host chose for the party), a station where you could get your astrology birth chart, and also a station where you could have a Tarot card reading! How could we resist?! It was pretty funny to see only about 6 people at the party when we arrived--the last Stephenie Meyer function I went to had about 1,000 people in attendance. But, it was quite an experience and I was really glad we went...and am even more excited to read all 754 pages of Breaking Dawn.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Reese rolls

Reese has been practicing rolling from her tummy to her back and occasionally from her back to her tummy for a few weeks now, but she usually waits until no one is looking. Yesterday, she finally seemed to really get the hang of it and was rolling all over the floor--even when I got the camera out! Michael and I could not help but laugh when she would make little noises trying to get her bottom shoulder out from under her. Listen closely on the second video for Reese's little grunt when she didn't make it all the way over on the first try. hilarious!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

need more will power!

All I can think about right now are the cookies on my kitchen counter. I made some oatmeal chocolate chip cookies for a luncheon this week and kept a few too many at home for my husband. Naturally, I tasted the cookies when I made the dough and again when I baked the first batch (I had to make sure they were good before I fed them to other people, right?!), so I know how delicious they are. Since that first taste, I have somehow managed to find the will power to abstain for the last couple days. But that will power is just about gone. (I know what you're thinking..."just have a cookie and get it over with!"...I know, I am being ridiculous. The thing is, I can't just have one cookie...I'm an all or nothing type of dessert-eater. If I go in for one cookie, I will end up eating four.)

I went to get a diet coke this evening, which is usually just the sweetness that I need to finish the night. But, tonight it is not enough. There are six cookies left...if I can just last one more day, either Michael will finish them, or we will take them with us on our trip on Saturday morning. (That's the other thing...we are going on a trip TO THE BEACH for a week, where I will likely be in a bathing suit every day...and I STILL want to go and eat cookies!) If I can just keep typing, then I won't go into the kitchen and make it five cookies left. (more like two cookies left, if we are being honest)

Enough of my is the recipe for the cookies I can't stop thinking about. Try them--you won't be disappointed. And next time, I will be sure to give more of these delicious treats away!

Here's what you'll need:
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 firmly packed brown sugar
1 package JELL-O Brand Vanilla Flavor Instant pudding and pie filling
2 eggs
3 1/2 cups quick-cooking rolled oats
1 cups raisins (optional)...I substituted chocolate chips, naturally

Mix flour with baking soda. Combine butter, the sugars and pudding mix in large mixing bowl; beat until smooth and creamy. Beat in eggs. Gradually add flour mixture; then stir in oats and raisins/chocolate chips. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls onto ungreased baking sheets, about 2 inches apart. Bake at 375 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes. Makes about 5 dozen.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

john mayer or bust

My family LOVES John Mayer. Lindsey and I especially love John Mayer. We have all of his CDs, we know all the words to his songs, and we never miss an opportunity to see him live. Not even the pouring rain could keep us away...literally. Lindsey and I drove to Maryland to see John Mayer in concert the other night, and it was a torrential downpour when we got to the venue! We sat in the car for a little while waiting to see if the rain would lighten up at all before we went in--oh, did I mention that the venue was outside, and our tickets were for the lawn behind the seats? As we walked in, we saw people walking back to their cars who were already drenched. At first I thought the show was canceled, but these people just weren't the superfans that we are.

We got there just in time to see the end of the opening act, which was pretty good timing because tons of people got there really early to save the best seats on the lawn...those people were all completely soaked. Lindsey and I came somewhat prepared for the rain--I brought an umbrella and a rain jacket and she brought a hoodie. The entire lawn area was a muddy mess and people were falling and getting stuck in the mud left and right, but we found a nice little spot in the front (we were a little closer than it appears from this picture). Unfortunately, a group of people came to stand behind us and one of the girls kept slipping, falling on her rear and kicking me in the back of the legs! (Luckily, she didn't ever take me down with her!) But, when John came out and started playing his set, nothing else mattered. He was fantastic! He played some of my favorite songs, he was fun and witty and made everyone feel good that we were standing in the rain to see him. (It did, in fact, rain the entire time we were there.)

Lindsey and I had so much fun! It was the perfect last hoorah before she moves to San Diego at the end of the month.