Tuesday, August 28, 2012

2nd Grade and Kindergarten

Jansen and Natalie have both been very excited to start school. Nothing but happy anticipation the last couple weeks. As Jansen was going to bed last night the emotions finally hit him though. He was sad that he wouldn't be with me all day, and that he couldn't have Annie's shells and cheese for lunch like we often do. There were some tears, but he finally fell asleep feeling okay about things.

Natalie woke up on her own about 6:15, and I had to wake Jansen up around 6:30. Last year we took our sweet time getting ready, eating breakfast, watching a cartoon, but this year it was all business. I didn't feel too hurried or stressed thankfully.

Here's Natalie in her first day glory, albeit with some legging issues:

Jansen was happier than he appears, but a little more reserved than usual.

A convincing thumbs up? 

After dropping Jansen off I took Natalie to kindergarten. I didn't cry or get emotional at all. That may have to do with the fact that she is done by 9:55. We still have the whole day to be together.

Natalie had a good day, but I think she was a little overwhelmed by all the rules. That first week of school is all about training the kids, so I think she will enjoy things much more as the weeks go on. I asked her if she liked her teacher and she said, "Yeah...but she's not the best." I have been impressed by her teacher so far, and I think it will be a great year.

Jansen bounded in the door after school today and said, "Mom, 2nd grade is great!" I was so happy. I can hardly believe he is in 2nd grade. That is the grade that I taught for a year, and I was pregnant with Jansen the last half of the year. To look at where we are now just boggles my mind.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Last "Summer" Post and a Great Sunday

Well, school starts tomorrow, so I guess this is a last summer post.
Emmy continues to be a pretty poor eater at the table, so she misses out on dessert a lot. That means I have to tell the kids to go eat in the laundry room so she won't see them.

I said poor eater AT the table. If it's on the floor, she does much better.

Just a cute picture I took last week as we were walking into church. 

A few trips to splash parks lately...MY DO IT she tells me as she drags the cooler across the playground.

We had some rain. You never think to take pictures of your neighborhood, but when I come across ones from my past I am so glad to have them. Jansen actually took this one.

And oh my! This 4 year old lost a tooth last week! It was loose, so we knew it would fall out soon. 

I felt the Spirit strongly several times at church today. Nate was working an ER shift, so I had the kids by myself.  Not the circumstances that allow me to get much from sacrament meeting usually. A piano solo of Nearer My God to Thee was especially touching though. It's amazing the things a song can allow you to feel...that you can know without a doubt that your Savior lives.

The most memorable part of my Sunday was in Relief Society. A woman that was baptized about 16 months ago shared her incredible story. Before joining the church she had really been struggling...feeling that something was missing in her soul. She had fasted many days and prayed and prayed. One morning at about 3 am she pleaded with God that she needed help and needed to feel peace. She said she felt Him tell her that  there was another book that was missing from her life. Upon hearing this she said, "No. No, no, no. I am not going to be a Mormon. I am a black woman, I am not going to be a Mormon." We all had a good laugh. She continued her story by saying that she told God that if that is what He wanted she needed something TANGIBLE and she needed to really know. 

The next day she went to work tired and a little angry. She found out when she got there she needed to train a new nurse and that just worsened her mood. She went about the day and trained the new employee. At the end of the work day, they were out in the parking lot together getting ready to leave when this new nurse grabbed her wrist and looked her in the eyes and said, "I have no idea why I am doing this, but God wants you to know YES. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints." They both burst into tears and hugged and cried. So much so that security came over to check on them...just a funny little side note. This amazing woman did some reading and studying and research and was baptized. I felt the Spirit so much as she spoke.  I do believe the Book of Mormon is another testament of Jesus Christ.

Friday, August 24, 2012


LOVING: Nate having some 2-12 shifts. I know, I know, still a pretty crappy schedule, but it means I can go running in the morning. And I can go to the grocery store by myself sometime other than at night. And he gets hours with the kids instead of one hour or minutes. Oh and I also love my immersion blender.

READING: Just finished The Greatest Quest. It's about four college students who set out on a quest to find God and His only true church. I'm actually using a lot of the scriptures mentioned in the book to direct my scripture study now.

WATCHING: SO SO SO embarrassed to admit this one. BUT we just got Netflix and I've been alone at night all week...I've been watching just a little bit of Animal Hoarders. Sometimes a lot bit.

ANTICIPATING: Fall. Aren't we all? I'm excited to have highs in the 90s instead of 100s!

LISTENING TO: I like a guy named Lee DeWyze right now. Jansen loves the song Home by Phillip Phillips so that's been on a lot lately as well.

PLANNING: Oh this is easy. Birthday parties. Jansen and Natalie. So glad we only do these every other year.

WORKING ON: My drive to do this always comes in waves, but I have been "decorating" and "creating." Using three separate pieces I put this mirror together:
WISHING: Surprisingly, this one is making me think the hardest. Is that good? That a million things don't come to mind when I ask myself what I'm wishing for? I guess I'm wishing I didn't worry so much. Had a small freak out session last night when Nate was a little late getting home from scout camp. Faith not fear, faith not fear, Jessica!

Oh and Jansen blogged again. Such a funny kid. http://jansensblog.blogspot.com/

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Checking on Natalie's Heart

When we lived in Ohio our pediatrician heard something irregular when listening to Natalie's heart during a visit. He referred us to a cardiologist, and we were told Natalie had an ASD, or atrial septal defect. It's basically a small hole in the heart, but with many children the defect closes on its own. To make a long story short, the other day we took Natalie to Children's Heart Center here in Las Vegas to check up on things.

She was SO good. I knew she would be. She is very well behaved in these types of situations. I actually really enjoyed having some one on one time with her. 

Good news! No sign of any ASD. No need for any follow up at all. It must have closed on its own.

I think for Natalie the hardest part of the whole afternoon was choosing a treat after the appointment. Just TOO MANY CHOICES. She went with good old M&Ms...they have always been her favorite.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Up Close and Personal

Of Natalie
They are usually pretty good about asking to use the camera. But not perfect. I think these were taken without mom knowing. 

Of Jansen
He reminds me of a Dr. Seuss character or something similar, but I can't quite put my finger on it.

Of Emmy
Not quite as up close and personal, but I had to include one of her.

Of the fish...who has lived so much longer than any of us expected it to.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

All Instagram

Sometime I wish I "journaled" more on my blog. I wish I spent more time writing about what's going on in my mind and how I feel about this stage of life. You know, the details that are fun to recall later. But when I sit to do that, my mind goes blank. I have no idea what I did last week. I can't remember why I was mad yesterday. I'd have to really think about what I wanted to write, and I am too impatient for that.

And I guess that's why I love pictures and why I love Instagram. They give me a place to start as I try to recall what we have been up to. And I "feel" something when I look at these filtered photos. They are different than a regular picture to me. So here goes some of the latest phone pictures...

A fun morning at Flip n Out and then a chaotic lunch at Subway. It is rarely worth it to eat out with kids, but when you share the craziness with a friend, it is.

Washing dad's hair...add that to the list of things they will never get me to do

Jansen's dollar store purchase

Sweet sister moments

Growing and maturing in my knowledge and understanding of the temple

Heading to the school to get Natalie switched to morning Kindergarten

Finger painting at a friend's house

 Making the pie Natalie has been begging to make for weeks

Watching her for a few minutes and being thankful for her imagination

Monday, August 13, 2012

A Little While Ago

These are all pictures from a couple weeks ago, but I wanted to include them on the blog. This little one is quickly approaching 2. I think she communicates better than Jansen or Natalie did at this age, so I am often tempted to try potty training her. She has some interest, and went to bed tonight with some My Little Pony underwear over her diaper. 

She happily goes to nursery, finally. She has improved drastically as far as leaving her with a babysitter goes. It's so nice to be able to leave on a date and not hear her screaming as we walk out the door.

We recently got Netflix and she has a new found love for Diego and Strawberry Shortcake. It's really funny, all 3 of my kids are loving the Strawberry Shortcake episodes right now. It's nice when they all want to watch the same thing.

A few weeks ago Nate had a Saturday off and the day was wide open. Rare and awesome. Except that one of his patients went into labor. He ended up being gone the entire day and part of the night. A few days later the sweet woman who had just had a baby gave Nate some gift cards for our family. She felt bad to have taken him away from his family for so long...and she also wanted to thank him for being such a great doctor. There were a couple gift cards to go to dinner and one for the BX (Base Exchange, a shopping store on base) with instructions for the kids to pick out a toy. They had so much fun picking out something new.

There were some great deals as well so I snagged a few extras. 

Our stake's annual Pioneer Day celebration was held at the end of July. Words cannot describe how hot it was. But maybe Jansen's face can.

There were games and activities...enough to keep us distracted from the temperature for about an hour.

We no longer buy sidewalk chalk.

Just a cute summer picture...we always get a lot of use out of cardboard boxes! Good thing I like to shop online. :) 

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

One Last Bit of Fun

Here's the lowdown on the last part of our drive back to Las Vegas.
We had a delicious dinner and homemade ice cream with Steve and Jody when we stopped at their house in Salt Lake. We had just a few hours with them and although the time went quickly, it was a really great visit.

Jansen insisted I take a picture of this fireplace Steve is building, and I'm glad I did. On one of our family hikes a few months ago we collected some rocks and gave them to Steve. He used some of them as part of the fireplace.

From Salt Lake we headed down to Orem to spend a couple hours with my family. My grandparents rolled up in this car I hadn't seen before. I wish I had a better picture. The best part was the shag carpet inside. 

I love when I catch one of these kinds of moments.

And this kind too.

Ah, the magic of jump roping in the culdesac. These little moments mean so much to me.

We slept at my mom's and packed up in the morning. We had one more fun thing planned: a little meet up with the Scotts at BYU. How it happened that we were both in Utah and had a free morning I don't know, but I was thrilled.

It ended up being the perfect place to walk, talk, and reminisce.

Future Cougars maybe?

I didn't even go to BYU, but I still have a lot of memories of that campus.

Ice cream all around...

A lot has changed even in the few years we've been away from Provo.

And just in case this place isn't around much longer, we took a picture of where Nate was living when we were dating. He was in the basement apartment. 

And that's it. 5+ hours later we were back to our home and the suffocating heat! :)