Friday, June 20, 2008

On Our Way Home

Bonnie's younger brother Kevin coaches a T-ball team in Washington (right outside of St. George, Utah). Since I knew that we'd have to stop and nurse anyway, we decided to stop for the T-Ball game. This sounded like a great idea, as I knew Kevin's wife and Bonnie's parents would be there. The item that I did not factor in was the HEAT! I think is was 116 degrees. It felt way too hot to be outside for a ball game, especially after recently spending so much time in the cool Beaver mountains.

I called Mike to see if he minded that we prolong our return a little longer, as Bonnie's parents invited us to eat dinner with them in St. George. Mike said that it was fine and immediately guessed where we were headed --- Chuckarama! I could just eat the scones and honey butter there and be quite happy.

Not only did we get to visit with Kevin and Kim and Bonnie's parents, but I bumped into a couple that Mike and I worked with at the Salt Lake Temple and the mom of one of my childhood friends. What a great stop!

Singing and Dancing

In case you didn't know, I lived in Beaver from 1st grade through 7th grade. In the summer the community theater was held in this old courthouse. The floor with the courtroom was remodeled and served as a stage and seating. These were fun times and great memories. I even remember the song I sang for my first audition, "I Often Go Walking". I loved being in the shows each summer.

Love these guys!

The highlight of our trip was spending time with Bonnie and her family. Bonnie is a wonderful hostess. Among other things, she is a great housekeeper. It is just the example that I needed to get home and get excited about being more tidy and clean. Thanks Bonnie!Above is a classic shot of Brennan & Jaden playing with Jasper. They just adopted him and he loves them. Jasper likes to use their barstool as a walker, but he somehow manages to pull the stool down right on top of himself. In this photo the boys are supervising him, making sure he doesn't hurt himself. Thanks Brennan & Jaden you for all of your help!

Honoring Grandpa

Grandpa is the epitome of community service. He has spent countless hours with the youth sports programs in Beaver. Last week they named one of the ball fields after him, and he could not have been happier. I took Bonnie's boys over to the field for a photo shoot. While we were there we played in the park next door and also spotted some signs with the names of donors on them, and no surprise, there were a few my family's names. My grandpa, grandma, and their three kids.

We tried Jasper in the swing, but he just almost falls out. I tried him on the slide, and he didn't know what to think about it. Bonnie's boys had a fun time on the swings. I attempted to push Jaden while holding Jasper and my camera in the noon day sun. We were a little sweaty when we got back to Bonnie's.

Thank you grandpa for being a great example for us!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Busy Beavers

Bonnie married into a family that loves to spend time in the mountains. They all had their campers set up in the mountains for a family get together. Jasper and I were lucky enough to be invited up for a day of fun.

While we were on a 4wheel ride we drove by a beaver dam. Bonnie says that every year it gets bigger. We could easily see the trees that the beavers had used for their dam. It was beautiful in the mountains. Jasper had a lot of fun, and he especially like all of the dogs that were there at the camp. Jasper has quite an affinity for puppies, and his favorite was a little dog that was just about his size. When we arrived and got out of Bonnie's car, Jasper could hear all of the dogs barking. He immediately started flapping his arms and babbling with glee.

Jasper and I took a little nap in Bonnie's camper. It was such a treat to feel the cool mountain breeze and look out at the pine trees. We were having such a great time that I told Bonnie we should just sleep over, but her husband had already taken the generator home, so we had no way to turn the heater on at night. This is of course is a foreign concept to me, as it is so hot in Las Vegas right now.

First Tooth...gone!

While Jasper and I were home with Brennan and Jaden tonight, Bonnie's son Jaden lost his first tooth! Wahoo! He has been waiting a while for this loose tooth to finally come out.

Going to Grandpa's

Tonight I took Jasper up to my Grandpa's house for the first time. Grandpa took Jasper and I out to dinner at one of my favorite Beaver restaurant's, Maria's. It is only open during the summer. The salsa is great and I love the shredded beef taco salad. I ordered Jasper a side of refried beans, as he seems to really like them.

After dinner we headed up Grandpa's house with Bonnie's boys. Bonnie and her husband had a couple's club dinner to attend, and I was happy to take her boys. They are so great with Jasper! hey even help load and unload him from the car. Brennan fed Jasper an ice cream cone on the way to the mountains yesterday. I warned Brennan that once you start feeding Jasper ice cream he is very impatient between bites. Brennan soon learned this to be very true, as he just couldn't get the ice cream in his mouth fast enough.

My grandpa lives on a mountain outside town. He moved to Beaver almost 30 years ago when he retired as a firefighter in California. I have spent a lot of time at my Grandpa's house, so I was thrilled to take Jasper there.

Adventureland = Beaver

Jasper and I are staying with my very best friend growing up, Bonnie. Her two boys, Brennan and Jaden are so great to Jasper, and he loves them.

Yesterday we went up to Little Reservoir in the mountains. Bonnie's boys made boats out of 2 liter bottles and they were anxious to test them out. The shoreline was not the best for boat floating, but we had a great time anyway.

Parowan Pit Stop

We ALMOST made it all the way to Beaver from Vegas without stopping. But, Jasper started having a meltdown after Cedar City, so I knew we would need to stop in Parowan to nurse and stretch our legs. Lucky for us, Bonnie's grandparents, who I also affectionately refer to as Grandpma and Grandpa, live in Parowan. They have the kind of home where you know you are welcome anytime, day or night. With or without advance warning.

So we popped up on the steps and were greeted with a hearty hug from my adopted granpda. I snapped a picture of their front porch, just for memory sake. I have had a lot of good times visiting their house over the years. I remember once when I was attending SUU and had gone to visit my grandparents in Beaver for the weekend. I was driving back to Cedar City from Beaver late at night in a horrible snowstorm. When I left Beaver it was just lightly snowing. As I headed down the freeway the storm became fierce. I could not see the road and was really scared.

I got off in Parowan and spent the night in borrowed frilly nightgown . Even though everyone was already asleep by the time I pulled up, they happily got up to let me in and gave me a comfy bed and warm flannel quilt to sleep in that night.
I took a photo of some levi's on the clothes line because it reminded me of days gone by, when we used to hang our clothes on the line when I was younger. It also reminded me of a comment my mom kept making when she was in Vegas visiting us. She would always say, "Let's just hang the wet clothes out to in the backyard. It is hot enough that they would dry in 5 minutes". She is probably right.

Having a great time in Beaver

We are having a wonderful time in Beaver and are a little sad to leave tomorrow. Of course we miss Mike & we look forward to being home with him. The weather is perfect in the mountains and we spent most of the day up there today. It is so beautiful here.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Hitting the road

The tiny man and I are going to visit family and friends in Beaver, Utah Tuesday through Friday. We are excited to go up in the mountains and have fun. We are most exited to visit, especially my grandpa.

Enjoying TODAY

Sometimes I complain to Mike about the amount of time I spend feeding Jasper. Between breast feeding and then solids three times a day, a big chunk of my day is spent feeding Jasper. I have even found myself thinking...I can't wait until Jasper can feed himself.

I am working on not wishing for tomorrow, and instead just enjoying today.

On the positive side, Jasper is a great eater and is a lot of fun to feed. As you can see in this photo, he loves to cross his leg and bang it on the middle of the high chair. He loves anything that makes noise. It is fun to feed him and have that one-on-one interaction time so up close and personal.

When I feed Jasper bites of bananas I hold up my fake fruit banana to try and teach him what he is eating. He swiped the fake banana from me and started to teeth on it.

For the last 9 1/2 months he has taken a bottle of pumped milk. I have not understood what mom's mean when they say -- my baby won't take a bottle. For the last three months he has happily drank water out of a bottle. All until now. He wants nothing to do with a bottle and won't even touch a sippy cup. He just wants to drink out of a regular cup. That would be fine, except for the fact that he doesn't swallow the water...he tries to chew the water like food and then swallow it. It is quite a funny thing to see. My super smart mom figured out that a Tupperware midget cup is just the right size and sturdiness for Jasper. He's been attempting to drink out of the midget cups for 4 months now and does okay. We always have one packed in the diaper bag for him to use when we eat out. The problem with paper, plastic or stryofoam cups is that he crushes them or he teethes on and eats the rim of the cup.

He is a happy baby and I am so grateful that I get to stay home and raise him. I know that the time will come soon enough when I'll be wishing for these days back. Hopefully I can do a better job at enjoying them now!

Who's Bentley is that?

We ran into Best Buy on Saturday night and saw a very nice Bentley in the parking lot on the way in. I don't know that much about cars, but I do know that Bentley's are very pricey, and that the owner would probably be easy to spot. I half jokingly said -- I am curious to see if we can figure out who in the store owns this car.

When we got in the store Mike and I split up. I forgot about my Bentley owner challenge, but when I met back up with Mike & Jasper, Mike said, "I am pretty sure I know who owns the Bentley". He pointed to a very tall man wearing a flashy gold and silver necklace the size of a bike chain standing across from us. Since I also don't know too much about NBA Basketball stars, I had to ask who it was. Jermaine O'Neal. Turns out he is a super famous player on the Indiana Pacers.

I asked Mike is he had any idea how much the necklace (chain) was worth. I could not stop staring at it. It was glitzy gold and silver and HUGE. Mike said that he saw Jermaine in Utah years ago and he had on some really big diamond earrings. Mike said, "Maybe he doesn't believe in banks." :> I think these may be the same earrings in this photo.

Jermaine seemed like a nice guy just out shopping with his family. The Best Buy computer sales guys were scurrying too and fro trying to help him. I am sure they went home and told all their buddies that they sold a laptop to Jermaine O'Neal. I probably would have too.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Happy Father's Day

To my sweetheart, Mike.

I made him a Father's Day card with this photo on it, and the text, "Lead Me, Guide Me, Walk Beside Me". Mike is a great Dad to Jasper and I am so grateful for him. I love you sweetheart!

Mike & I have a family tradition to make homemade cards for our birthdays, Valentine's Day, our anniversary, Father's Day and Mother's Day. It is a lot of fun. Mike says that he has, "limited craft skills", but he still seems to come up with some creative ideas. My anniversary card was super cute -- I will have to post a photo soon.

Mike & I were talking before church about some of our favorite memories of Mike being a dad for the past 9 1/2 months. I told him that one of mine is when I was delivering Jasper. Mike was SO EXCITED when Jasper came out. He was the most excited I have ever seen him. He was doing a bounce/jump up and down action, and had to be with Jasper at all as the nurses attended to Jasper in different areas of the delivery room. I remember that Mike went to church 11 hours after Jasper was born so that he could bear his testimony in Fast and Testimony meeting about how grateful he was for Jasper.

One of my other favorite things about Mikes is a tradition that he & Jasper have that we call the "Male Mail Team". Mike puts Jasper in the Kelty pack and they go get the mail every night. Jasper LOVES spending time with Mike. Jasper gets really excited when he sees the backpack because he knows it is time for the mail male team to ride! This photo is from their maiden voyage in December.
I am also grateful for my Dad. He is a loving father who has always worked so hard for our family. He recently came to visit and had a great time with Jasper in our backyard in the teeny tiny pool. I love you Dad!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

This NEVER happens at our house

Jasper is 9 1/2 months old, and he has NEVER slept on the floor, on the couch, in the pack-n-play, etc. for more than 15 minutes. Before you think that I have not read every sleep book out there or tried everything, you have to remember that Jasper has really bad reflux for the first 8 1/2 months of his life. Since he was 6 weeks old he slept in a Tucker Sling in his crib or his swing. He now sleeps in his crib and takes the first half of his naps in his crib, but has has never been able to just crash out on the floor and fall asleep -- EVER! Whenever I go visiting teaching the other babies are just zonked out on the floor, and I think -- how would it be? Now I know, and I love it. The main reason this happened is because Jasper would not fall asleep for his afternoon nap, and he just pooped himself right out. And of course this happened right when we were supposed to leave to go out to dinner for Father's Day. :> But I am just going to enjoy watching him sleep.
p.s. He just woke up! But I will take the 40 minutes and call it a win!

Swimming with Daddy

Mike went to the office at 6AM this morning to get some work done. We convinced him to call it a day after 4 hours or so and hit the pool with us! Jasper and I have been swimming every day and we were excited to show Mike some of our fun games and tricks. Mike showed us a game or two of his own. Jasper got all tuckered out after all of the fun and excitement!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

What is Heaven like?

When you live in Las Vegas, Heaven is REAL grass, lots of tall trees and a cool pool to swim in. Today was playgroup with the mom's and kids in our Ward (church congregation). We went over to one of the mom's homes that has a beautiful BIG backyard. I kept telling Jasper -- for me, today, this is Heaven! The pool has a great big step for the little ones to play on and a big slide. In the photo on the step Jasper is splashing so hard I had to close my eyes (click on the photo to enlarge it and see the drops of water). I pushed him around in this pool float (which you can see in the background of the same photo) for 15 laps or so today. I figured that I might as well try to get a little work out in, and Jasper loves me to swim him around. His favorite game is when I go under the water and pop up for a peek-a-boo.

I owe Mike a big THANK YOU today. I locked my keys in the van when we arrived at the party today. Mike came up to rescue us on his lunch break. I love to tell Mike how hard my life is with all the chores, errands, TRYING to keep up with Jasper, etc. Well, let's just say that when Mike arrived at the pool party in the Heaven of a backyard, suddenly my life didn't seem so hard. There we were splashing, playing and eating Cheeto Puffs. Hard life. :>

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I am full time wife and Mom. Jasper is my busy 3 year old who keeps us on our toes. I like to sew and craft and make our house a home. I love to be outside and play with my boys.