Thursday, October 29, 2009

Rolling with the Pumpkins!

It seems like you get things running smoothly with your little one. Then an enormous speed hump hits you, and you've been knocked out to no-man's land. That's how it's been as of late with Isaac, but unlike last time I'm learning to take it in stride. I understand his need to exercise his growing freedoms and his desire to push against boundaries ... at least I think I do! ;0) This has my energy a little sapped, and I have little desire to do anything 'extra'. Thankfully despite that, we went out for a Halloween outing last Monday night. It was fun for everyone, the lighting was perfect for pictures, plenty of space for an active boy to run and explore, and some time for Mama and Papa to enjoy one another's company. What was a difficult day ended happily and peacefully!

It's amazing sometimes what make for a good picture. In this case it was the background of the vibrant green. Isaac has always been rather photogenic, but we were surprised at just how this one turned out.

Little boys love their toys!

Isaac could have rolled pumpkins around all night.

Keila was a little tired that night, this was one of the few happy shots. For whatever reason, the sound of the camera clicking made her giggle.

Isaac loved racing around with papa!

A few nature shots, one of mine, while running through a corn maze trying to keep up with an active boy. The last 2 are Kent's. We sure do love our camera!

Thursday, October 22, 2009


What do you do when you're housebound with a two year old with Swine Flu .... an impromptu photo session for a darling little girl. Having Isaac has made it harder to take the time to record things about Keila, so while Isaac was deep in Sleepland, Keila and I had fun taking pictures.

This one is my favorite! She's just so beautiful!

She had the giggles that day which only made it more fun!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

ABC's of Lego

Isaac's been running a fever and with all the latest hype about the Swine Flu, the doctor said to just assume it was the thing and watch Keila carefully for the next few days. Thankfully the symptoms are mild enough and Isaac just has a decreased appetite and a high temperature. Nothing for Keila now. But this means that we're home bound for the next few days and a bored little boy does not bode well for anyone. While playing Legos with him I hit upon the idea of using them to make letters and having him identify them from his book. It was great ... took up lots of time and we talked a little about spelling words ... such as 'hi' below. Unfortunately when I tried to get him to switch the letters around for the camera, he told me I wrong and kept it the same. ;0)

His ultimate favorite shows are Word World and Super Why. So much so that he's determined to be 'Super Why' for Halloween ... "with the power to read!"

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Keila's Baby Blessing

We had the opportunity of going out to Mesa today to meet with Kent's family for Keila's baby blessing. For living so close to one another, we don't often see each other so it was wonderful to get caught up on the family. Here's Keila saying hi to her Uncle Rich.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The All American Dessert

So I've always been intimidated with making pies. I see in my mind the tender crust that breaks off in little flakes as a fork cuts through ... something like in a commercial when they play it in slow motion so as to really get saliva pooling in the corners of your mouth. That picture would be my goal. but I was afraid that the reality would be my husband sawing at it with a steak knife!

I cornered myself though when I ordered a 30 lbs box of peaches from Utah. While we love peaches, there was no way that Kent, Isaac and I could eat 30 lbs before they went bad. I didn't want to make jam since all that sugar tends to mask the real flavor of the fruit and I simply didn't have the energy to can it all. When Lorna Sears mentioned having froze enough of them in peach pies that they ate it all year, I decided to take the leap.

Lorna, being the genius that she is, brought up the idea of freezing the filling such that when I got around to making the crust, I could just pop it in. It was perfect, especially for me when I have kids to worry about too. I froze the fillings for the pies on 2 different days and opted to try out the crust once before making it for all of them. It was divine!!! And now I can say, "I CAN DO IT!!!", flaky crusts and all! ;0)

PIE CRUST (makes one 2-crust pie)

2-1/2 c. flour
1 c. shortening
1/2 tsp salt

Mix together until it forms large crumbs. ( I use my electric mixer for this part since I'm basically lazy and it works.)

Combine, then add to flour mixture, stirring lightly with a fork:
1 beaten egg
1/4 c. water
1 Tbs. vinegar

Mix lightly and roll out. Avoid any excess handling. For best results, do not reuse the trimmings.


4 lb. (about 8 large peaches), peeled and cut into 3/4" slices
1/2 c. fresh raspberries
1/2 c. sugar
1/4 c. flour
2 Tbs. butter, cut into pieces

Combine peaches, raspberries, sugar and flour; turn into bottom crust. Dot top with butter. Roll out remaining dough. If peaches are very juicy, sprinkle fruit mixture with 1 more tablespoon of flour. Place top crust
and crimp edges. Sprinkle top lightly with sugar. Bake 350 for about an hour until golden and juices are leaking out. (Bake on a cookie sheet.) This bakes just fine from frozen.

Here's the filling, lined with wax paper and sealed in a ziploc bag.

And here is the finished masterpiece ... well not really, it's not as esthetically pleasing as one would like, but I had barely 15 mins to make it before I had to feed some cranky children! ;0)

Monday, October 12, 2009

Two Month Ouchies

Kent and I have the gift of having large children. So much so that carrying them around results in one arm resembling Popeye and the other a limp noodle. Following in her brother's footsteps, Keila at 9 weeks is not 23.5 inches long and 11 lbs and 14 oz. That puts her in the 87 percentile for height and the 74 percentile for weight. She's also 'pre-teething'. Amazing what can happen in 2 months! I swear my little girl was showing off for the doctor, cooing and talking up a storm and soaking up the praise ... at least until the nurse showed up. But she was a trouper and they were good at their job there at the office so that Keila didn't cry until they were half way through with shots. I had to laugh when I picked her up and she sniffed deeply and moan a few complaints as if to say, "How could you let them Mama?!"

There was one particularly tender moment between her and Isaac before the nurse showed up. On the way there I told Isaac that Keila would need shots and he was rather concerned about the 'ouchies'. He asked to give her a hug and while tenderly petting her head he said, "Ouchies Keila, but it's okay, it's okay." and proceeded to kiss her gently. It was a wonderful display of a sibling's loving support. How I love my two children and hope their love for each other grows more each day.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Thankful for Inspiration

Behold Utopia:

Behold The Enemy of Utopia: (as perceived by Keila)

Thus is born our first battle by a most adamant darling little girl. We waited a little late to start her on it and now we are paying a price. Unfortunately we've planned a long overdue date night - on our anniversary no less and we were starting to get anxious to have her accept the bottle. She took it a time or two (only with breast milk) but within the last few days has refused it and has very loudly protested.

From such moments are born prayers of desperation and I've learned that Lord really does care, even for the smallest of things that keep a mother sane. While dozing off to sleep 2 nights ago I had the clear distinct thought of dipping the nipple into sugar water to get her to latch on. Sure enough, it worked, even if it was me holding the bottle. How thankful I am for the inspiration from above that helps me raise a child while keeping myself mentally and emotionally healthy!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Refreshed Once Again

I love Conference weekend when I can settle down on the couch with my family and listen to the prophet and apostles speak. It's always a celebrations of sorts, a quiet one, where I prepare lots of food and we plan family fun activities between sessions. Most of all I love how refreshing it is to reminded once again of the important things in life and to humbly begin once again to be better at following Jesus. With my preggie brain still recovering, I can't quite recall exactly the things that struck me other than the feelings of how the family is truly central to God's plan for us, how it is God's love that surpasses any gift we can give or receive and how the Spirit is there to guide us - we are not alone. Truly reassuring thoughts to a woman like me who is trying to be the wife and mom her family needs.

Walking in Big Footsteps

Finally the cool air of fall has arrived in Arizona, enough to help me remember why I like living here. Evenings walks are a pleasure for all and help to calm an otherwise wired boy. While patiently waiting for his Papa, Isaac thought he'd try on his socks and shoes!

With Halloween in a few weeks Isaac's been practicing diligently. He knocks firmly on the closed doors of the house and declares, "Trick or treat .... give me my candy ... please." I guess I should be proud that he remembers to say please. ;0)

The Elusive Smile

Trying to capture a baby's first smiles on camera is about as elusive as capturing a rainbow. I kept the camera on hand all day yesterday to catch her when the unsuspecting noise or face gets a tiny 'hee, hee' out of her and her eyes crinkle up with that wide-mouth gummy smile. This is the best I could get and it wasn't until late in the evening when I finally got it. She's a little leery of the camera now since I had to use the flash ... which only means I'll never know then I'll get the chance again!

Mama's attempts at dolling her beautiful little girl up. Yes, it's a little big for her now, but she'll grow into it.