Saturday, December 27, 2008

SeaWorld 08

I'm not one to force people to look at hundreds of my pictures, but our SeaWorld trip was so much fun, I thought it might do everyone some good to be a little jealous.

Drew gets excited about things like rocks and grass, so you can imagine her excitement when dolphins swam and jumped right past her.

Her face must have been sore from being wide open all day.

She had to fight the seagulls to keep her snacks safe.

Her new thing was holding hands. She wanted to lead us everywhere around the park.

Can everyone remember their first bite of hot, steamy, tasty churro? I hope she will remember hers.

Her new "ma-mu" puppet has rarely left her sight.

Shark exhibit is awesome.

Our Elmo-loving girl had a great time in the Sesame Street play land.

She wrestled a few penguins.
Tried out the merchandise.
And crashed late in the afternoon when she couldn't keep her little eyes open any longer.
I never thought SeaWorld could ever be this much fun with a one-year-old. But Drew is possibly the best little girl ever, we have decided.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Friday, December 19, 2008

Picky Drew

What Drew used to eat: everything.

What she will now eat: nothing.

Today I lovingly buttered and toasted up a grilled cheese sandwich for Drew's lunch, to which she politely shook her head and said, "no." Okay, since when do you not like cheese? You have always loved cheese. And when have you decided to not like anything that I thoughtfully prepare for you?

You can not live your life off of fruit snacks and Goldfish!

My dear mother was at least a two-meal maker, and sometimes a three-meal maker. By this I mean she would make dinner, and make something different for Shawnda and sometimes me if we didn't like what was made. I'm not going to lie, I was a very picky eater growing up! I hardly EVER tried anything new. Mom, did you create this monster in me??? Although I wouldn't call myself picky anymore, I am very conservative in my foods and far from adventurous. (Alright, maybe I am still a smidge picky.)

I do not want to be a two-meal maker! What is that, Drew? You are not particularly fond of that grilled cheese today? While I appreciate your politeness, "no" is not an option on the menu. So it is the grilled cheese or the highway for you.

Actually, I tossed the grilled cheese and cut up an apple instead. I two-mealed it. The girl's only 15-months old! But you can imagine what is in her future if she keeps this up.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

A Series of Unfortunate Events...

Shawnda: Oh, yay it's my niece I am so excited to see! I am going to run and pick her up first thing when I see her.
Drew: Um, I remember this lady a little bit, but she is starting to freak me out. I will try and keep my distance by pushing away with my arms.

Shawnda: Oh, come on Drew, kisses and hugs and I love yous.
Drew: Okay, get me out of here.
Nathan: It's okay Shawnda.

Drew: If I don't look at her maybe she will go away.
Shawnda: Just a little kiss?

Drew is having a little trouble adjusting to all the new people. Not just Shawnda. She has given everyone a temporary shun who is not named mama or dada. We are working on the un-shun.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

I've had some time on my hands

Since Jason has been gone the last six nights or so, I've had some free time on my hands after Drew goes to bed at night. This dress is my latest creation. Since I draw the pattern on my own, I never really know if it will fit her well or not in the end. Luckily, it fits like a dream.

She is perfect to make clothes for because I could tie a trash bag around her waist and she would make it look good. But she is pretty amazing in zebra stripes.

My philosophy on little girl's clothes:

1. It should be something that I would most likely wear if it were made in my size.

2. It MUST be comfortable fit.

3. And it MUST go on and come of easy. Elastic waists are the best. Things can still look fashionable and have elastic waistbands.

I love Drew's round little belly and am sad when I have to zip and button up her jeans and they dig right in when she bends over. Babies shouldn't be subject to the uncomforts of fashion at such an early age.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Drew meets Santa

The anticipation was rising. We could see glimpses of his bright red hat from the distance. Drew and I waited in line as each child took their turn on stage to sit on Santa's lap.

Drew could barely be held as she kicked her feet, clapped her hands, and said over and over again, "Sa-ta, Sa-ta." Every time she looked and caught a glimpse of Santa, she turned to me with big eyes and the biggest oval open mouth like she could not believe who was sitting in that chair waiting for her.

This continued until we were next in line.

Then, with each step I took towards the big, hairy man, Drew began to realize what was going to happen. I started to feel tiny little nails dig into my back and she fell silent. As I bent down and let go of Drew to release her to big and hairy, I noticed something was still attached to me. With the sheer strength of her thighs and her will and determination to live, she held onto me for dear life.

But no tears and she did manage to snatch a candy cane.

I love this little thing.

Um, her little legs need to be nibbled up. She kills me.

Annual Ward Christmas Party, success.

Friday, December 5, 2008

It's Frightful Here

Somebody loves the snow and doesn't mind that it's 20 degrees outside.

I substituted a third grade class a while ago and we were reading a story about a boy who lived in Arizona. I was telling them how I am from Arizona and where I lived it never snowed. Everyone's mouths dropped open like it was unheard of and a boy said completely seriously, "You never had Christmas?"

I started laughing and assured the boy that you can have Christmas time even without the snow. To which everyone else in the class said, "uh uh," "no way," and "no you can't." We definitely had a hard time getting back to the story we were reading.

But it is true that watching big fluffy snow fall (which is the only kind I like) and everything covered in white definitely makes the Christmas season that much better.

The problem is come February when there is still tons of snow, the holidays are over with, and all you could use is a little sun. Come February those third graders are going to be begging for my Arizona sun.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Cute skirt, right?

I made it.

Pretend you have never had a washing machine. You wash your clothes by hand. And you wash a lot of clothes. And then one day you get a washing machine, and you feel like singing.

That is how I felt when I used my new Singer Profinish Serger machine for the first time this week. I wanted to jump up and sing. This skirt was conceived, worked on, and born all in one single nap time. I heard Drew waking up upstairs just as I finished the last stitches. I had never dreamed such a project could be done in that amount of time.

And just wait till you see Drew in it. I am obsessed with her and ruffles. And for once I don't care if you look closely at my work, inside and out. Every stitch looks professional with my new machine.

Are adults wearing ruffles these days?

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

The Match

Jason has five more months of medical school, and only a few more months until our lives fall into the hands of "the match". Here's how it works:

1. Jason applies to a lot of programs (September)

2. He gets interview offers and goes on interviews (December-January)

3. We rank all of the programs he has interviewed at in number order where we would like to go, and the programs rank all the people they interviewed (February)

4. The National Resident Match Program uses a matching algorithm to put students into programs based on everyone's rank lists (March)

5. We get a letter telling us where we will live for the next five years (March 16)

It is just a little concerning to me that our future lies in the hands of a math algorithm. But I figure, if we can live in Iowa of all places and love it, then I think we would be happy most anywhere.

Jason is in Pennsylvania and New York right now and I am really hoping he can somehow drive through Scranton. It would make my week.

And Jason, I cracked open a can of your Mountain Dew tonight... something I would never do if you were in the same state as me.

And Drew says, "wuv wuv."

Friday, November 28, 2008

Chelise 2, Turkey 0

Now I have made two turkeys and so am a seasoned Thanksgiving cook. Last year when I realized what barbarous things I would have to do to our turkey, I wasn't sure if I could do it. But this year, being weathered and wised, I only cringed a couple times.

Does anyone else hate the word giblets? Don't worry, those were the first things to get tossed.

I am learning to be a one-hand chef, since Drew always wants me to hold her while I am cooking. She has a healthy love of food and naturally loves to watch me cook. She was particularly interested in the turkey this year.

She even ate some of the turkey, despite her recent aversion to any type of meat. Of course I had to smother it in ketchup for her to eat it, but she is my daughter, who ate ketchup with her turkey until she was married. I can't fault her for it.

And for not the first time, I participated in the Black Friday madness. My friend Heather and I were out and about at 4am, living it up. If you've never been among other shoppers at four in the morning, then you have not lived. Just don't go to Wal-mart, where it is likely you will be trampled to death.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Bellingham Baby Co.

Bellingham Baby Company is the cutest baby boutique I have ever seen (well seen pictures of). It is in Bellingham, Washington and carries some of Bitsy Bear's products, including the onesies. They had a photo shoot for a holiday ad they are running and the awesome owner sent me these pictures from the shoot...

Cute babies, huh?

These pictures are by Jen Fox at Jen Fox Photography.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Little Miss Matched

We are planning on buying our first house (finally!) this summer, once we find out where the heck we will be living for the next five years. I can't believe we have lived in Iowa for almost four years and Jason is almost done with school... but back to my point. I feel like I will finally be able to decorate properly and (gasp) paint our house.

I haven't yet thought much of what I want Drew's room to look like, until I came across this amazing bedding at Little Miss Matched, which really has the greatest stuff ever. Right now her baby room is pinks and greens, which I really liked before she was born and before I knew her. But now that she is growing out of baby-hood and gets more of a personality every day, I realize she is not much of a pink and green girl. She is spunky, a litte feisty, and adorable all rolled into one... just like this bedding.
And I love how both beds in the picture are made up of the exact same bedding set. You just flip stuff around and can get a whole new look whenever you want. Fortunately for Jason, this bed set does not come in king size or else I might have to have it for myself.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Sneak Peek

This is a sneak peek of the flower girl dress that I am finishing up for Drew. I am too excited about it to wait until the wedding, but I can't just go show the whole thing yet. Two interesting things about this dress:

I may have cut up my senior prom dress. Don't get me wrong, Jacob Ash, I had a great time at prom... but what are the chances I would have the exact color of green fabric I need hanging up inside a dry clean bag in my closet that will never be worn again? It had to be done.

And another... I am worried now about it even fitting Drew after all the work I put into it. I made the pattern and measurements and I sware she has grown inches since I started making the thing. It is a snug fit and I can't afford her gaining any more weight until January 9. She will be laying off the Goldfish until then!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Cheese, Me No Likey

Drew likes:
  • bananas, apples, and grapes
  • Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes
  • reading books repetitively
  • bubble baths
  • brushing her own hair
  • giving 50 goodnight kisses to delay going to bed
  • playing rough with Daddy
  • making her bottom lip stick out in a pouty face and grunting, "mmm, mmm, mmm..." to signal she wants a kiss
  • Baby Einstein, still
  • making a mess or breaking something, then coming to tell you with her hands on her cheeks saying, "Oh no! Oh no!"
  • fist pumps and saying "yes, yes, yes"
  • babies
  • making the surprised face with eyes wide open and the tallest oval of a mouth imaginable on a tiny face, and making this face often
  • Minnie Mouse
  • learning new words
  • pulling every pillow off the couch to lay on while she watches Disney channel in the mornings
  • smelling flowers, real, fake, or pictured in a book
  • balls
  • We're Going on a Bear Hunt
  • pretties, or headbands and hair clips
  • webcam with Grandma
  • throwing things and saying, "hi-yah"
  • dancing
  • wa wa and joo, or water and juice, to carry around all day
  • peek-a-boo
  • brushing her teeth
  • hugs and sympathy when she gets ow-ies
  • saying "amen" in the middle of prayers to try and get them done faster
  • her own space and alone time in her crib
  • being clapped for and praised

Drew doesn't like:

  • playing by herself
  • meat
  • diaper changes
  • getting dressed
  • me blogging, when I should be giving her my undevoted attention

Monday, November 17, 2008

I am not a Christmas fanatic

Let me preface this post with the fact that we will be leaving out of town very early in December this year.

So we set up Christmas at our house early. Very early. But if you had a tree like our tree then you would want to enjoy it for as long as you can too.

Our tree is a snow tree. It actually snows! The snow machine pipe runs up the trunk of the tree (or metal pole in our fake tree case) and shoots up little snowballs at the top. The snow catches in the branches and slowly trickles down and gathers at the bottom to be sucked up to the top again. It is quite a tree.

So I will continue to ignore the fact that it is only November 17 today and continue to talk about Christmas (sorry Thanksgiving, but we will celebrate you too).

Drew almost couldn't contain herself as we pulled out all our Christmas gear and set up the tree. She had more emotions than she could handle. She managed to break two of our ornaments on the first day. And she was dying to get her hands on "Mimie" or the Mickey and Minnie ornament Jason and I got at Disneyland on our honeymoon. Let's just say that one is at the top, far from her little claw's reach.

I tried to get pictures of her by the tree and came up with many of the following... (she is the blur moving across the picture)

Did I say she was a little excited?

I will be cooking an extra big turkey this year to make up for this early Christmas crime.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Love this Lady

A really cool tour went through Iowa City yesterday. And it's called the Gingerbread Friends Tour so you know it's cool.

I may have waited in line for three hours to hear this lady speak and get her to sign my books:

You know Jan Brett, right? She is only one of the most popular and talented children's author/illustrator EVER. Ever heard of The Mitten? I thought so.

I may have been a little over-excited to see and meet her, but at least I did have her make the books out to Drew and not me. As tempting as it was.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Wedding Dont's

Jason and I have been married five years this month and with that in mind and helping Shawnda plan a wedding, I can't help but think back to our wedding day five years ago. Most things I wouldn't have changed, but there is a lot I would go back and do differently if I could. These are the things I will try to help Shawnda avoid.

First of all, the photographer is the MOST important thing. Do not let your dad put down a nonrefundable deposit on an old friend of the family photographer before he has even consulted you about it. He has probably never heard of Photoshop before. Your pictures will probably be nothing special. And you will probably not even see those pictures developed by photographer until after your first anniversary.

Please do not pose the "hanging and leaning from the temple gates" pose. Jason and I told ourselves we would not take that picture. But when the photographer asked us to do the pose, we did it anyway. I would post that picture, but Jason might kill me.

Try to eat some of the food at your reception. One strawberry dipped into the chocolate fountain is not going to cut it. You will end up having to drive through Wendy's fast food afterwards and order a cheese and broccoli baked potato because you are starving.

Touch up your hair and makeup before the reception or else you will look back at your pictures and wonder why you have hair whispies flying everywhere and your eyes look like you are half asleep.

And after everything realize that the next five years will be the best years of your life... and I'm sure even longer than that.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Substitute Teacher

I may have mentioned before that I recently went back to teaching. Only substitute teaching, so I can work as often or as little as I want, and pretty much where ever I want. But as far as I'm concerned, being a substitute teacher is the same no matter where you go.

As a substitute teacher you will:
  • get eyed very suspiciously when the kids walk in in the morning. Some will say, "oh man, a substitute." Others will say, "YES, a substitute!" with a malicious look in their eye. Neither of these is good.
  • be asked a million times throughout the day where Ms. so and so is, as though you have abducted her so that you may teach her class.
  • probably have a long day full of recess duties or have to stand outside for 45 minutes in the freezing cold for a school picture, because mysteriously these are the days the teachers get sick.
  • always have a student (or two or ten) who will tell you how everything should be done because that is the way Ms. so and so does it.
  • be tested by students who want to see just how far they can go with you before getting in trouble.
  • sometimes get a note at the end of the day in really cute handwriting that says, "Mrs. P you are the best teacher I ever had."

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Meet Bobo

This is our fish Bobo. He became a member of our family a couple weeks ago. I have learned that when I leave Jason at home to be Mr. Mom for the day, I never quite know what I will come home to. Such as a new fish sitting right next to our computer. A fish that is named Bobo none the less (by Drew). And a fish that likes to stare at me while I am sitting at the computer.

Just one more person/fish to clean up after.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Sister Bowden gets engaged

Do you remember when my sister was going on a mission?

It turns out she has better plans! Her and Nathan are getting married on January 9. I can't wait for this wedding.

I am Behind

Am I the only one that has not yet tucked my pants into my boots?

I just bought these for my birthday:

I called Shawnda before I bought them and asked her what exactly I should wear with them (because she dresses cuter than me and I knew she would be aware of what boots Target had on their shelves at that moment). She said that I should wear them with my pants tucked in.

Well I just taught a class of 5th/6th graders last week at a wealthier school where every single girl in class was wearing their pants tucked into their Ugg boots. I really mean every girl. It was really funny. This tells me two things:

1) that I am not sure I am ready to follow this fashion trend of giggling 12-year-olds

and 2) what's the deal with 12-year-olds owning Ugg boots before I do anyway?

Sunday, November 2, 2008

And I meant to say earlier...

...about the runner's up of the PPCC:

Mariachi Miguel was carved by the four-time pumpkin king, Jason.

Pumpkin Mario was carved by my bro-in-law, Ben.

Ms. Pacman was carved by my sis-in-law, Alicia.

Thanks for entering guys, the race was VERY close.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Fashion and Wardrobe Consultant

Because we are entering interview season and things are going to be a little tight around here for a while, Drew has agreed to help the family out by offering her best services for pay. What she will do for you:

1. She will assist you in putting on your make-up by handing you each piece you need in the order you need it. Although you may have to wait for the eyeliner because she likes to pretend to put it on herself.

2. She will pick out your jewelry, which will probably be one of her bead necklaces she got from the Fourth of July parade.

3. She will pick out your wardrobe. Just sit back and relax. Tell Drew what you need. Oh, you need a shirt? Ask Drew and she will rummage around in your closet and bring you one. Pants? No problem. One at a time she will bring you each article of clothing you ask for. If your lucky you will get two shoes that match. (Jason loves to put on everything she brings him, even if he's already wearing clothes... see above.)

If you are ready to look better than you've ever looked before, Drew is your girl.

Friday, October 31, 2008

And the winner is...


By yours truly.