Saturday, November 21, 2009

My Little Social Butterfly

I didn't think I would have to worry about Katie always wanting to be with friends until she was older, but alas, the fun has already started. On Wednesday morning she sat right in front of the door saying over and over again the name of the little girl I babysit (Piper) until she grew so despondent we had to go for a walk to recover her spirits.
We head out the door, and I was going to let her take the lead and I would follow her wherever she wanted to go. She grabbed my hand and headed across the parking lot. She led me across the parking lot, down two buildings, up the flight of stairs, and right to the door of her friend Lydia. She went right up and knocked on the door and yelled " 'ydia!." I didn't say Lydia once or even attempt to lead her at all. She took us over to Lydia's all by herself and by her own decision. I was so surprised that my little baby just barely one already knows the way to her friend's house and wants to go there without any prompting from me. The top picture is Lydia and Katie at the park, and the one on the bottom is Lydia and Piper at Katie's party.

Queen Frostine

Katie got into the frosting and this was the result. I had to take a picture. And the other pictures are of Katie in her hat and mittens her Aunt Toni got her for her birthday. She looks so cute in them. We have so much fun with this crazy little girl. We love her so much even though she keeps us up at all hours of the night.

Monday, November 16, 2009

"I did a dumb thing today"

When I did speech and debate, one of the lines in a competitor's selection was "I did a dumb thing today." Well, in the last month I have had plenty of opportunities to say this. I will only tell you the two best.
I was cutting out sugar cookies when the little boy from upstairs knocked on the door. He said that his mom forgot that he got out early that day and he needed me to watch him until she got home. He had to do his homework and needed all sorts of things from upstairs so we decided we would go upstairs for him for him to work on homework instead of hauling all the stuff downstairs. I got the bright idea to bake my cookies in their oven while I was waiting for Ethan to finish with his homework.
I turn on the oven to preheat and then I finish cutting out my cookies. Pretty soon I smell something smoking. I open the oven and smoke and dust come billowing out. The smoke alarms start going off and Ethan comes running out of his room yelling, "JILL, WHAT DID YOU DO?" After the smoke clears out I find an exploded bag of krusteaz pancake mix all melted down and toasted in the oven along with some pots and pans. Who puts pancake mix and pans in the oven? Obviously there are some people who do that. It gets even better. While I'm assembling the vacuum and starting to clean up the oven, Ethan's mom opens the door not expecting anyone to be home, let alone her downstairs neighbor bent over a mess of charcoaled pancake mix. I didn't really know what to say except "Go back to school." She said "What happened?" I then had to tell her the whole story and then we had a good laugh.

Next Story-
I love going to the library. Katie and I go quite often. I always, always put Katie in the stroller for our library trips because it would be a nightmare otherwise. On Saturday, I dropped Justin off at the temple, and Katie and I headed to the grocery store and then to the library. While we were at the library Justin calls for me to pick him up. I head to the check out, but I didn't have my card so I put the books, back and head out the door. By the way Katie is crabby by this point and very noisily signing for food. We get to the car, I pull her out of the stroller, throw her in the car, and we drive off to pick up Justin. Did you catch what I missed?
Yep, I left the stroller sitting on the sidewalk next to where I parked. The funny thing is I didn't even miss it until today (two days later) when I was again at the library this time with Justin and went to pull out the stroller out of the back. "Justin where is the stroller? Did you take it out?"
"No, I didn't take it out. When did you last use it?"
"When I went to the library on Saturday."
Then it dawned on me. Because I was in a rush, I didn't fold up the stroller and throw it in the back. We thought we would take a look at where I left it, and maybe by some chance we would find it. So we go over to the place where I parked on Saturday and there it was, in the exact position I left it two days ago. I'm surprised that no one took it, and even more surprised that it wasn't blown away at least. But I'm glad it was there, and I'm even more glad it was dark when we went to reclaim it, and no one was around to see us walking up to our abandoned stroller. We put Katie in and went on into the library.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Birthday Girl

Yay for Katie turning one. I'm happy that she made it this far. She loved her cake and playing with her friends at her little party. We took her to the park as well since it was nice enough to go, and she loves going down slides. We sure love this little girl and are so happy she is part of our lives.
Thanks everyone for the birthday wishes and presents.

I tried to post a slideshow of pictures, but it didn't workout quite like I wanted it to, but I'm too tired to figure it out.

Katie's recent accomplishments:
  • Can climb up on the couch
  • says many words
  • folds her arms for prayer
  • hand actions to 2 new songs
  • tons of signs for words
  • working on sharing
  • animal sounds
  • rocks her baby and teddy bear
Things we are working on:
Still not completely weaned, but getting there. She HATES her crib these days. I'm thinking of switching her to a toddler bed already. She doesn't fall asleep on her own anyway, and I'm pretty sure she'd stay in a bed better than she does in her crib, and I'm getting tired of pulling her into bed with us. Any ideas?

Also, she still needs her pacifier to sleep at night. The only times she ever takes it is when she is tired. How do I get rid of it and when to do it?

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Pumpkins With Eyes Shining So Bright

1 Pumpkin + 2 dozen sugar cookies + 2 adorable fairies + nachos + friends= fun Halloween
We went to our ward party on Friday then Abbey's party on Saturday. Katie and Lydia were matching fairies and they were so cute. Lindalee and I were quite pleased with how their costumes turned out.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Fun Stuff

October is flying by for us. I love the fall and I was getting a little angry when the leaves weren't turning but were falling off the trees green because how darn cold it was. Thankfully the weather decided to behave and I'm enjoying the leaf crunching experience.
The top picture with all the babies is from thsi summer when we would do mommy lunch dates every wednesday with the other moms in our ward. The pictures below are from the last few weeks. One is of Katie and Piper (I babysit Piper MWF) asleep in the stroller and then the other one is Katie while I was trying to figure out her costume for Halloween.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Bring on the Leaves

September was definitely a very busy month for us. We had so much fun at Ken and Rachel's wedding and then loved seeing the Days in California. Katie got to meet her cousin Bella for the first time. They loved each other.
Katie is growing like a weed and I mean a great big weed. She took her first few steps a couple weeks ago and now she's walking across the kitchen and living room trying desperately to carry things as big as she is.
we 're having battles over socks and shoes these days as it is now cold enough for her to have to wear them.
we babysit a little girl three mornings a week and they are soooo cute together. They do the funniest things. This week just the two of them were playing peek-a-boo with each other and giggling like crazy. It almost made me cry it was so adorable.
Other than all those things we're just enjoying the fall leaves changing and trying to figure out costumes for everyone. any ideas?

Friday, September 18, 2009

Girls' Day Out

I know that I haven't posted in a long time...It's been a busy time for us. We've gone to and from Utah twice, attended a wedding, been babysitting, started up school again, and all sorts of things. Here's a few pictures of our day out with some of the other moms and babies in our ward. We went to the Nature Park to feed the ducks and then to the Spray Park to play in the water. It was good to break up the routine.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Katelyn's First Camping Trip

Bad News: We didn't go to Glacier National Park
Good News: We had lots of fun in Swan Valley

So as we were packing for our Montana trip, we were getting some bad feelings about going. We decided not to go and save the trip for next year...I thought we'd be devastated, but we felt so peaceful after making the decision that we weren't that disappointed. And we decided to go camping in nearby Swan Valley instead.
We camped at a little campground at Palisades Creek Thursday and Friday nights. On Friday morning we hiked four miles into Lower Palisade Lake where we saw a bull moose. The water was too cold to go swimming in, but we put our toes in. And that felt really good on our tired and hot feet. The hike was a pretty easy hike since it was not steep and was mostly in the shade, but Katie didn't like the hiking backpack very much when she was trying to fall asleep, so we ended up carrying her most of the way in. Luckily she did better on the return trip and stayed in the pack most of the time. Next time we won't pick such a long hike for her sake.

Here's a list of fun things we saw on our trip:
  1. bull moose
  2. beautiful lake
  3. Falls Creek Waterfall
  4. Golden Eagles
  5. hummingbirds
  6. a snake
  7. natural springs
  8. snail shells

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Fun Things

We have done some pretty fun things in the last few weeks.
To celebrate Justin being done with the semester we went to Ashton to a cute little old-fashioned restaurant and had the best pizza ever and some good ice cream. Then we went swimming in the river. Katie loved the river. When we pulled her out, she was trying to wiggle out of our arms to get back in.
We had a fun Pioneer Day. We went to St. Anthony with Toni and the Ostlers and watched a good parade (Being a Stevens girl, I just love a good parade). We collected a whole bag of candy from people throwing it out. In fact I thought we got more than kids get at Halloween.
After the parade, we went to Ashton Reservoir and played in the river. Ethan caught a fish and ate it, and Justin, Emma, and I floated down the river several times. Ainsley made a lot of progress from last year. She actually put her feet in the water and wasn't scared of the mud. Katie and Linay were sick, so they chilled out in the shade with Mary and Toni. Then Emma and I played against Don and Ethan in a game of water balloon volleyball.
Earlier this week, we went to the International Dance Festival Parade and then the workshops on Thursday. The Chinese were our favorites in the parade, and it was a hoot watching Emma, Ethan, and Ainsley doing disco.

On Friday, Justin and I roasted marshmallows at a campground, and yesterday we hiked "R" mountain which is really a butte formed by an extinct volcano. Next on our list of things to do is Glacier then on to Trout Creek.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

New email

Due to the fact that I haven't been a student for over a year now, my byui email account has been deleted. I tried to import all my contacts to my new email address, but our internet was being temperamental and I only got half transferred over before I couldn't get into my inbox anymore. I can get all my family's email addresses from Mary, but friends....I'm not really sure how to get to all of you. So if you would like me to have your email address, leave a comment. Sorry for the inconvenience...And Reanna, I think I remember your email so I'll be emailing you back as soon as possible.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


Melody and Katie

A girl in my ward is taking classes this semester, and she needed someone to watch her baby while she took a final today. So Melody (the 6 month old baby) came over to play for a couple hours. Katie loved Melody, but Melody didn't love Katie. In fact Katie scared her. Katie wanted to be friends...she even tried to hold Melody's hand, but Melody didn't want to hold hands. Katie was content to sit and wave at her. Then Melody started crying. Now it was Katie's turn to be scared. both of them were scared by each other, but both wanted me to hold them, but not together. How do you solve that one?
Well, both were getting tired. I put baby 1 in crib and let her cry until I got baby 2 to sleep in living room on couch and barricaded with pillows lest she roll or crawl or move somehow. Then took baby 1 (she had only been left to cry for 10 minutes, don't worry, I don't let babies cry for too long...I'm too soft-hearted) and rocked her until she fell asleep.
I know, I am amazing...

Update on the Days

So while Justin is feverishly working on take-home finals and slacing away at work...I'm hanging out with Katelyn who is currently taking a nap (thank goodness). She's teething pretty hard-core right now so the last week has been up and down. She had such a rough day yesterday. We went to the store to buy some biter biscuits, and I showed her this stuffed bear that giggles. She fell in love with it, and when I put it back on the shelf, she had a meltdown. Considering that I've only ever bought one toy for her (a dollar store doll), we decided to splurge and buy the bear. She snuggles it and laughs with it, and it is so cute to watch her. I was afraid the doll would be like Woody in "Toy Story" and get left in the dust, but much to my pleasure, Katelyn still loves her doll. (In this video, she is a little more interested in getting the camera from me than she is in showing us her new toy.)

Justin is finished with school tomorrow until September and I am counting down the minutes until I get to play with him. We're planning some fun stuff for Pioneer Day, and then cmaping in Montana sometime in August. And I am looking forward to getting so much doen since Justin can play with Katie in the evenings instead of doing homework. Woot woot.

I am currently expanding my sewing horizons. I have decided to make Katelyn a jean skirt. So far I have it cut out and one seam down...two seams to go, the waist band, and the hem. I'm hoping to finish it tonight after Katelyn goes to bed. My next project is Amber's quilt. I've never made a quilt by myself so that should be interesting. My visiting teacher sews quite a bit, and she volunteered to help me if I need it, so hopefully it will turn out well. I like to sew, but sometimes, I'm not very good at following through with projects.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Eight Months

Katelyn turned 8 months today. In the last week she has moved from her inch worm crawl that started last week to full out crawling. She also pulls herself up on the furniture and is beginning to cruise along the edges. And today she learned to clap. She's so proud of her accomplishments that she has a hard time stopping them for bedtime. We play the stand up/put down game for an hour before she settles down to sleep. And then during her nap today she started clapping in her sleep. It was so cute. And the other night she was talking in her sleep not moaning or crying but telling a story and smiling. It was adorable.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Time to Catch Up

Thanks to having the computer in the repair shop and being on vacation, I feel like I haven't blogged in forever, and I have so much to catch up on. So here goes...

June went by so fast, I think I can still feel my head spinning. We had so much at the family reunion. I can't believe all 12 kids were together in the same place for once. It was crazy with all the people and adults around, but it was fun. Some of my favorite quotes from the week were:

"Oh, my trusty ol' golf ball."- Cole, age 3

"You who, Ethan, come out of the bathroom and play ball with me." Cole

"Does everyone in here know that Jesus created all this [the planets and stars], or do we just know that?" Elise, age 7

"It's okay Katie, I do it too all the time" Alexus said this to Katie after I told her that Katie was crabby because she was tired and hungry.

"Everybody just calm down" Ainsley, age 3

Some of my favorite parts of the reunion were:

Watching Alexus's face when she crab walked
Playing kickball and volleyball
Singing "down by the banks" with my nieces and Tyse
Staying in the tent with Haleigh, Elise, and Emma
Watching the planetarium show with all the kids
Going fishing with Justin, Jordan, and John
Sending my husband off on a fishing trip with my brothers
All the girls dragging Shane out of the house for the picture
Our taboo game on the way back from Basin Creek
The impromptu talent show at the Museum of the Rockies

Independence Day

We went to Toni's in Orem for the 4th of July. It was lots of fun. We went to the zoo, watched the parade, and had a BBQ. Katie liked the zoo even though she didn't last very long in the stroller, and she liked the parade. She was scared by the fire engines, but once the floats started coming by and she could wave back at the people waving to her, she loved it. We watched the fireworks from a little bit of a distance so that she wouldn't be scared by the loud noises, and so she enjoyed those too. It was a fun holiday for us.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Saturday, May 30, 2009


Katie slept through the night last night. She slept from 10:30 pm until 9 am without waking up once! She has never done that since she was born. From 2 to 4 months she would sleep from 10:30 to 4:30 without waking up, and since she turned 4 months she hasn't slept more than 3 hours at a time and that would be a good night if she did three hours.

I still woke up every couple hours just out of habit, and Justin went in around 6:00 to make sure she hadn't died. Hopefully we'll have a repeat.

Last night we had a BBQ with Mary and the kids while Don was at a basketball camp. Then we went to the Spray Park and played in the water. Katie slept most of the time at the Spray Park, and when she woke up and tried out the water, she didn't like it very much. Maybe another time when she's more coherent we'll give it another go.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Memorial Day Weekend

We had such a fun weekend. Paulette, Justin's mom, came to visit and we loved having her here. Our weekend was packed with fun things. First on the list was going to Mesa Falls where we had a picnic lunch and a walk around the falls area. Then we went to Warm River (one of our favorite fishing and camping places) where Justin and Paulette caught a fish each, and I went for a nature walk with Katie strapped into the hiking backpack. Then off to Big Judd's, one of Rexburg's famous restaurants where you can order a one pound burger... We ended the day with ice cream at G's Dairy, our absolute favorite ice cream place.
Sunday, we went to church and then relaxed and chatted.
Monday we made a ginormous breakfast which was absolutely delicious. Gotta love french toast with coconut butter syrup and all the side dishes. Mmmm.... then we headed to Idaho Falls for a quick visit at Mary's then lunch at Johnny Carino's. Katie's little gums were hurting so we gave her a piece of licorice to gnaw on (i don't usually give Katie sweets), and since the licorice was blue she ended up blue too. After lunch, we said goodbye to Paulette as she was heading back that afternoon.
We ended the long weekend with a trip to the Zoo and then smores with friends at Beaver Dick park next to the Henry's Fork River.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Teething Trouble

Katie hit the 6 month mark on the 9th. her milestones have been rolling over, sad attempts at army crawling, and sitting up all on her own, and drum roll please.....she cut her first tooth this week. needless to say we have had sleepless nights and days of nonstop screaming. But it seems like we have survived round one.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Public Health Mom

The other day at Wal Mart I saw the adviser I had for my last two semesters of school. He commented on how he wished there were more opportunities for me to use my degree in this area while Justin finishes school. I don't want to work right now because I think it's great to be a stay at home mom. And the more I thought about it, the more i realized that I do use my degree every day.

I majored in Public Health. Public Health is defined as the practice of improving and protecting health through health promotion, prevention of disease, injury and disability, and preparedness for new health threats. Let's look at some duties of a public health department:
1. the signs in bathrooms that say "Employees must wash their hands before returning to work."
2. restaurant inspections to ensure safe food prep and handling (ie: thawing, sanitizing surfaces, cooked to right temp, etc.)
3. prevention of illness aka swine flu, etc (cough/sneeze into a tissue or into your sleeve)
4. injury prevention (fit and fall proof courses for the elderly, publications on how to child proof your home)
5. mold sampling
6. pest control (insects, rats, mice, etc)
7. vaccination promotion
8. Monitor and control noise pollution
9. Promote healthy food choices
10. Promote physical activity

Now let's look at some of my duties as a mother:
1. I wash my hands about a gazillion times a day between food prep, using the restroom, changing diapers, etc.
2. I wash and sanitize food surfaces, eating utensils, and dishes.
3. I thaw food nearly everyday using appropriate methods
4. I cook food to the right temperatures using my meat thermometer
5. I get rid of mold.
6. I have ant bait, and regularly sweep to deter ant infestations
7. Not only do I have my daughter up to date on her vaccinations, but I know what each vaccination is for, the type of vaccination (toxoid, attentuated, weakened live, dead, etc), and I know what reactions to look for and the risks of getting my child immunized vs not. I also educate others on the importance of vaccinating children and help clear up their concerns.
8. I practice regular injury prevention with Katie now being able to roll over and sit up, etc.
9. I know that with my screaming child my noise exposure sometimes reaches above the permissible limits, and must do something about it to ensure hearing conservation.
10. i try to find recipes including veggies (even though I don't usually like them) and that are low in fat
11. I encourage Justin in his goal to work out, and I myself try to go walking, do sit ups and push ups.

If you ask me, public health was a perfect degree

Friday, May 8, 2009


My sister Ann and her family are moving to Maine this summer. When I found out they were moving to Maine, I realized that I didn't know much about Maine other than it's supposed to be beautiful, they have lots of lobster, and some of my favorite characters from the movie Gettysburg were from Maine.
So I did some research and here are some fun facts about Maine:
  1. Maine produces 99% of all the blueberries in the country making it the single largest producer of blueberries in the United States.
  2. 90% of the country's toothpick supply is produced in Maine.
  3. The coastline boasts so many deep harbors it is thought all the navies in the world could anchor in them.
  4. The State seal has a moose on it.
  5. Maine has around 5,500 miles of gorgeous coastlines and about 2000 islands.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

A New Niece

Linay Mary Ostler (I think that's how they are going to spell it) was born this morning so I have a new niece. I don't really remember all the details so you'll have to talk to Mary for those, but she's a cutie.
Emma and Ethan were a little disappointed not to have a brother, but once they saw the little girl, they loved her and said she was a keeper.
Mom was pretty proud that this was grandchild #21. Ainsley said of the new little bundle, "Her so cute."
By the way, Ainsley fractured her tibia so she has a cast on for a few weeks...poor little thing is tired of wearing a cast. She doesn't really have pain anymore, but she asks "when is the little girl going to get better?" and she is always telling Mary, "My leg is better. we can cut the cast off now. " Toni bought her some stickers to put on it. That made her feel a little better about it, but a half hour later we found Katie with her back plastered with stickers and Ainsley's cast clear of them. When asked where her stickers went, she said "I gave them to Katie."

Monday, April 27, 2009


that "nearest dumpster" wasn't that close was about 4 blocks through campus.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Why is Everybody Looking at Me?

So I've had several why is everybody looking at me moments in the last month or two. So I thought I might share a couple.

1. I went to a store the other day with Katie, and while I was trying to put her in the shopping cart, I put her pacifier in my mouth so it wouldn't fall on the floor. well, I forgot that it was in my mouth and walked around the store for who knows how long with it in my mouth. I couldn't figure out why everyone was staring at me. I thought that they just might think Katie was super cute and they were really staring at her. But then an older lady came up to me, and asked Katie "Did your mom steal your binky?" I instantly turned bright red. No wonder I was getting weird looks from all the shoppers. What crazy lady walks all over a store with her daughter's pacifier in her mouth?

2. Our dumpster is ridiculously far away from our apartment so when we have trash we just set it next to the door until we drive somewhere. then we put the trash on top of the car and drive to the dumpster, throw it in, and go on our way. Well, one particular morning, I was going to drop Justin off at class and we needed to take out the garbage so up it goes on top of the car. WE go on our merry way and forget that we have trash to dispose of at the dumpster. We drive all the way up and around campus at the busiest time of day, and pull into the parking lot. Justin gets out and sees the trash bags sitting on top of the car. Both of us are too embarrassed to think clearly, and so neither of us just simply puts the trash in the car in the, I leave Justin and drive with a red face to the nearest dumpster I see and deposit my trash.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

You Know You're a Stevens Girl When...

  1. You get really silly when you're tired.
  2. you hit your brick wall after getting silly
  3. Your favorite place is either Trout Creek, a place with mountains, or your bed
  4. You love your treats
  5. Food is a major motivation in life
  6. People look at you funny when you say the words bag, dragon, wagon, etc...
  7. Apparently people also look at you funny when you say pants, Ann, and fan etc
  8. you get feisty
  9. you still get homesick even though you've lived away from home for a long time
  10. you grew up playing buffalo jump and love lifted me.
  11. you asked to be dropped off a block from school because you were embarrassed by the van
  12. smashing cans was a saturday chore
  13. you fold your towels in thirds and then in thirds again
  14. your face swells up horribly when you cry
  15. you know what it means to "shake the handle"
  16. parades have a special place in your heart
  17. New Years Eve better involve lots of snacks
  18. you know the words to Burglar Boy, Kentucky Home, and An Eastbound train
  19. You've participated in a sock matching party
  20. You wear more make-up than your mother

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter

Happy Easter! Our Easter has been great. What a great time to remember our Savior and what He did for us. We had our Easter ham dinner and watched the clip of Elder Holland's talk from conference that the Church's media department put images and and music to. here's the link for those of you who want to watch it.

Katie turned 5 months on the 9th. She's getting so good at sitting up by herself, and she just can't get enough to eat. She eats so much, I can hardly keep up with her.

She also learned how to scream. Not crying scream. Oh no. This is "let's test out my lungs and vocal cords full capacity" scream. She let loose one of those during Relief Society today during a quiet moment. Literally every head turned. As one put it "I didn't know that big of a sound could come from one so little." Yep, that's my girl. I'm thinking of buying some ear plugs.