So much has happened and I haven't done any blogging :( And now I'm finally getting around to it :)
In October we went on a family vacation with Jer's family. We headed down to San Diego to check out the Zoo, Legoland and SeaWorld and had SO much fun! We also stopped at the La Jolla Sprinkles Cupcakes, and the San Diego Temple (my favorite of all the temples, but I've never been able to see in person until now!) While we were there, we had our 6th anniversary. We weren't able to celebrate til a couple weeks after we got home though (Ella had her first sleepover while we went to dinner, a movie, and out for dessert).
The Zoo was HUGE, we walked over 5 miles that day checking out all the awesome animals!
Hey, it's Rafiki from "The Lion King"!
She wasn't too thrilled about this photo op!
I thought this was a kind of fox, but it's not. It's a panda! The coloring is so pretty!
I could watch the gorillas (and monkeys and orangutans) all day, they're so fascinating!
On to Legoland!
They had a lot of rules and were SUPER strict about a lot of them (like if a kid was barely a centimeter too short for a ride, they couldn't go on it). The ride that we went on here they wouldn't let 2 adults ride together, and Ella was too little to go on it (which seemed odd, I mean I have a lap and there was plenty of room next to me). So we waited in line for awhile to find out we couldn't even ride together. I suggest skipping most of the rides here and just checking out all the cool Lego creations instead!
Sleeping Beauty in the Fairytale Land ride
Yay for Hagrid and Harry Potter!
This was awesome. They had the car frame underneath and built the Legos around it!
What's San Francisco without a little homage to "Full House"?
I'm not big into Star Wars, but they had a whole section full of scenes from the movies, pretty cool for fans of them.
HAD to post this video of Ella fighting sleep, so cute!
On to SeaWorld!
So crazy how the glass and water can distort how you see things, the dolphin's head is above the water and to the right of it's body!
One of these is not like the other. Cool fact about starfish: If they lose a 'leg', sometimes when it regenerates, 2 grow back instead of one!
Being silly at the hotel
At the BEAUTIFUL temple!
Ella was making sure she was clear on the safety protocol!
Phew, that's a lot of pictures!
I'll post soon about the holidays. Hope you have a WONDERFUL December!
There's a Facebook 'game' that has people in an uproar. It's upsetting to me and some of my friends. I know other people have blogged/written about this on their blogs, but I feel like I should as well, even though I have a very small readership.
If you don't know what I'm talking about, it's the Breast Cancer Awareness 'game' where you post in your status whatever the rules say. In the past it's been the color of your bra or where you like your purse (which, to the unknowing reader, seemed crude). This year it makes it seem like the poster is pregnant and craving a certain candy, dependent upon when their birthday is. To some it might seem like a funny joke to get people thinking you're pregnant when you're not. To those who are struggling to even get pregnant or get a baby, I assure you it definitely ISN'T funny. It's yet another reminder of what you want, but for whatever reason you can't have. It's not a joke, it's hurtful. For those who are lucky and have never had to struggle with IF (InFertility), you can't understand how it is to be on the other side. The one who ALL you want is a baby of your own, the one who has to see pregnant bellies everywhere, hear people complain about their children, and/or read posts about pregnancies on Facebook. Each of these things tears their heart out in a different way. Each of these things causes distress. We want to be happy and supportive, but we mourn what we still don't have with each happy 'announcement'. (Yes, I realize I have a baby, but I still count myself as part of this group because of our past experiences, and we have no idea what the future has in store).
Besides the pain these kinds of statuses can cause, what the heck does it have to do with cancer awareness? How is it educating anyone or doing the cause any kind of good? I assure you that cancer is already something people are aware of, some more than they'd like. Most people I know know someone close to them who've had it, I know many who've had it and conquered it, or died from it. I guarantee they aren't getting any extra help from this game.
I'm sure I have more thoughts rattling in my head, but that's it for now. I don't mean this to offend anyone, I only mean it to educate those who don't know or understand why it's so upsetting. Maybe some still won't get it because it's hard to know unless you've been in those shoes. All I ask is for a little sensitivity to those who need it, and for people to at least TRY to understand.
And here are the afters! Beautiful lawn with a crab apple tree in the front, along with day lilies, dogwoods, rocks, and some other bushes. The back has lilacs, I'm so excited for them to bloom (in the spring I'm guessing?). Hopefully we'll be able to getting around to planting a vegetable garden in the spring too!
As for news in our family, there's not much going on. Jer's job is great and he's really enjoying it! Ella's saying more 'real' words, but most of what she jabbers sounds French. We also got an '09 Nissan Rogue last night, I'm so excited to have my own car again! I was beginning to feel trapped and anxious, now I can actually run errands or do fun things while the sun is out and I'm feeling alive and awake, as well as have a way to get around in case of emergency.
It's been in for over a month now, and I'm finally getting around to showing the before and afters. These are the before's, the weeds, then the clearing and sprinkling system going in, and the dirt loads that were brought in.
I haven't blogged in awhile (as is my habit) so thought I'd better remedy that. I'm limited on pics at the moment, but a couple are better than none (which is what this post started with).
We've had a fairly busy July. Jer's been working at ACS, and doing independent contracting on the side for a company called SEO.com. He interviewed with them a bit ago and only offered him the i.c. job, but it was a foot in the door. More on this later.
July 4th weekend we went to Oakley for the rodeo, as usual. We attempted sleeping at the
cabin, but by 1 a.m. it was clear Ella wasn't going to sleep away from home, so we packed up and drove home, arriving around 3 a.m. We were exhausted to say the least. Our mattress was also getting all lumpy and uncomfortable, so we went mattress shopping over this long weekend and found ourselves a lovely bed which I'm in love with. I knew it was *MY* bed from the moment I lay down on it, but of course we had to check around and make sure.
Our yard was finally finished, but they're still tweaking it a bit. Jer mowed our lawn for the first time today, pretty exciting if you ask me.
Jer's family took a trip down to Lake Powell. Because of the whole cabin situation and Ella not sleeping away from home, we opted to stay home and let Jer go (he'd been looking forward to it and we'd missed last year's trip because he was in training for his job). Well, a couple days into the trip he received a phone call and email offering him a FULL TIME position starting asap with SEO.com where he'd been doing independent contracting!!! Of course he accepted and came home early (yay for me, we'd never been apart that long) so he could go to ACS and quit!! WOOHOO! Major blessing! Jer's adjusting to the new job, but it's so much better for him.
We're all much happier since the change.
While he was in Lake Powell, I had the week off work (because I thought I'd be going too), Ella and I had the car and had some fun. She played at my parents while I went to get my shot, we went to Wheeler Farm, twice. We went to Hogle Zoo
for her first time w/an old H.S. friend and her cute son,
we ran errands and went to the bakery. We kept pretty busy, it was a fun and exhausting week!
The 24th weekend we had a family bbq at Jer's parents (as usual),
but it also brought a lot of anxiety as Jer and I were assigned to speak in sacrament meeting. It was my first time speaking in church since I was a youth speaker over 11 years ago, so I was a bit of a shaky, nervous wreck! But my topic was Roots and Branches (spiritual and ancestral) and Jer's was Our Legacy. Pretty good for the day we spoke on. I told some colonial, pioneer, parental and personal stories, and Jer told about how Ella got her name and making sure we're leaving a good example for the future. I think we did alright, though Jer told me to start with a joke, so I did. I think the only person who laughed was the Bishop, but I didn't get too mortified!
Oooh, and we welcomed a new niece, Jer's sister's family were able to adopt a new beautiful baby, we're so excited to have her in the family. Ella's not the baby of the family anymore, but that's ok!
As for Ella and her shenanigans, she's just getting more and more fun and exhausting! She jabbers like you wouldn't believe! She's got a big personality. Sometimes I look at her and wonder when this little person appeared out of the little baby she used to be. She has 11 teeth, 3 of which are molars. She says shop (shaw), shoes, go, mama, dada (which she usually whispers), lunch/sandwich (cheh), book (keh), and can shake her head 'no' with the best of them. She smiles and giggles all the time too.
Sadly, I'm getting more wisdom teeth in the same place as I had them removed 2 years ago. It's very uncomfortable and frustrating to be 'teething' again!
*Update, I went to the dentist and it's not wisdom teeth! I thought I might be crazy when I found that out! It's from stress and the constant change our mouth bones go through. I guess I need a massage or something!
Hopefully I'll be able to add some pics soon, until then I hope my writing kept you somewhat entertained, I know this was kind of a long post.
Ella just had her 15 month check-up. She's 18.5 lbs (because she had a tummy bug a couple weeks ago and is still gaining her weight back) and 28.5 inches tall. Her head is slightly bigger for her body in the percentile charts, but the Dr. jokes that's just because she has a bigger brain. She's a petite little miss, but the Dr. isn't worried about it, he says she's just meant to be a smaller person. She's healthy and happy and thriving, that's what matters most.She has such a big, cute, silly personality. She loves jabbering (I've been told by a few people that she 'talks' more than most babies they've known), dancing, walking/running around, 'helping' with the laundry, getting into her dishes, cuddling her toys and blankies, hugging (and patting your back when she does it), blowing kisses, squealing, and I think singing. She hums along with songs sometimes, it's so cute. She keeps us pretty entertained and busy these days. She has 2 molars coming in, so she's been a little whiney lately, but pretty good considering how uncomfortable they must be, and then 8 teeth in the front of her mouth. She loves it when people come to visit, she loves being around people in general (as long as she's not being closed in on by a lot of them). In sharing time for Primary, she wanders the aisle in front of us and will go to random kids we don't really know. She loves the kids in there, and they all seem to really like her (even the boys)! She loves being with females (especially her older cousins), but is VERY wary of strange men, and men in hats (including her dad). If a man comes around wearing a hat, she flips out and buries her head in my shoulder or scrambles to be picked up - even if it's Jer in the hat. She loves getting into my shoes and makeup, which I like to say makes her a girly girl, but Jer just thinks she does it because she's a baby/toddler. I think it's both, I'm pretty sure if she were a he, he wouldn't be as excited by the opportunity to hold my lip-gloss! I love her so much, I can't believe how big she's getting! It's an incredible thing to watch a baby grow up, I know I'm blessed to have her in my life.
(This is before they started working on the yard, I'll do a post on the progress once it's finished)
As for our yard.... well it was 'supposed' to be finished by the end of May, but because of the lame rain it got pushed back, but now I don't know what the hold up is and we're worried it won't be finished until sometime in July (and we have parties/BBQs planned already, eek). Here's to hoping it gets finished in time!
Ever have one of those days where you go over in your head the conversations that you had throughout the day and wonder if you were the dreaded 'me-monster'? Did I talk too much about myself, did I make everything about me? Did I sound so stupid? Am I over-reacting? (probably yes to that last one) Well, I've had one of those weeks. Maybe it's my social anxiety that makes me stress over my interactions with other people, thinking that they must judge/hate me because I'm so weird or annoying or say all the wrong things or focus too much on myself (in reality I don't know if that's true or not). Sadly, past experiences of things people said about me to my face have made me more paranoid than I should be, on top of my anxiety disorder (I've been told that I'm annoying, not wanted around, weird, etc.). So how do you tell the difference? How do you know if people genuinely care and want to talk to you? This seems to be an issue I've had my whole life, trying to figure out who's fake and who's genuine. What's the secret to knowing? I guess I could try to not care, but I think we all know that's not gonna happen.
In other news, Ella walks! It's all she does anymore, it's so crazy to watch her. She falls (a lot) and I figure she'll crawl since she's already down, but she pushes herself back up and keeps walking around looking drunk! We had to put a gate up at the stairs too, I knew the day would come, but she's been so disinterested in them for so long I was sorta thinking we'd never need a gate. I was wrong.
Our yard was supposed to be started a couple of weeks ago and finished by the end of May, but because of the rain nothing's happened yet. Hopefully they'll get started on Monday. I'll be sure to post before and after pictures (our weeds are actually quite impressive from all the rain, but I don't see in any point of pulling them because there are SO MANY and the landscapers will be taking care of them anyway). We'll be getting sprinklers put in, then top-soil, then grass and plants and rocks. I'm REALLY wanting lilacs (they're my favorite flower) and a dwarf weeping cherry tree (because they're so cute and pretty). I'm excited for it to be finished so Ella and I can have picnics in the grass instead of on the driveway!
Ella has been a pretty busy little girl lately. Getting into everything, trying to walk around and eat random things, 'helping' me w/the dishes and laundry. Sometimes I wonder what the point of all her toys is when she's more interested in the tupperware!?
The other day when I was feeding her yogurt, she laughed about something and it sprayed all over me. All I could do was laugh because of how worried she looked after she'd done it! And just yesterday she was super busy while she was supposed to be napping. I went in since she wasn't sleeping to see her blankets on the ground, her pants on top of those, and her diaper nearby. She was just standing there, half naked, with a big, pleased grin on her face. When I went to get her out, she kept dancing around in the wet spot on the fitted sheet. She's so talented and silly! I was a bit frustrated because I was tired, but I laughed about it because what else can you do? Yesterday seemed to have a theme of peeing on things, for the first time in her life she peed between getting her diaper off and getting into the tub, that was pretty funny too. She gives the best hugs and squeezes tight, it's wonderful. And sometimes she'll give me kisses, which always seem to make her giggle when she's done, it's adorable. I try to soak up every day with her because she's growing up WAY too fast.
This is by no means a complaining post, just an update of how silly Ella is these days.