Friday, November 2, 2012

Halloween 2012

Happy Halloween!  Er...2 days ago....  But we just can't let the oppourtunity slide to talk about candy!  Or pumpkins!  And did I mention candy? 

We had a wonderfully fun time this Halloween!  We carved pumpkins, we made Halloween decorations, we dressed up and let children run wild!  It had been a very busy few days so mine and Josh's costumes were thrown together last minute.  I ended up being a 50's housewife (I don't know how well I pulled it off but it was fun wearing red lipstick!) and Josh decided to be an angry BYU fan... yeah...anyways, if you can't figure out what my kids are then we have a problem!

A few weeks ago Evalyn and I made fun Halloween decorations.  We got a cute little kit at Target for like $5.  Can't beat that!  I really wanted to cut out bat shapes to put in the windows and this kit had little foam bats you just punched out and tape up.  Easy peasy!  It also had stuff to make a little Halloween wreath and Eavie just loved helping me glue eyes and decorate with glitter!  She kept calling the big bats the Mommy and Daddy bats and the little ones were the babies.  She is so cute.

Completed wreath!

So funny story about the wreath...  The day we did it we were so proud and of course we wanted to display our amazing artistic skills to the neighbors (note the sarcasm) so I hung it on our wreath hook on the front door.  We were very proud and then promptly forgot it was there.  Fast forward a couple hours...  A storm blows in.  And I mean BLOWS.  I was momentarily afraid a tornado was coming it was that strong.  And then the thunder crashed and the rain poured and the wind is going berserk and leaves are flying willy nilly.  We are staring out the window (duh storms are awesome and rare here) and something goes skipping across the yard.  A full 3 seconds pass before I realize what it is!  Our wreath!  Oh heck no I say to myself, we worked too hard!  So I charge out into the storm after it.  Evalyn has locked me out before though and she will open the door if you go out and let the cats out so I made her stand on the doorstep (it has a cover) in the rushing wind and rain while I ran like a lunatic after our little cardboard masterpiece.  I rescued it and came in soaking wet.  It has hung here in the kitchen ever since...We also hung bats in the windows and colored lots of pictures!

We carved our pumpkins a couple days before Halloween, and I really wish I had taken pictures then as the pumpkins are rather sad looking now.  For what it's worth here are the pumpkins.  Mine is a witch riding a broom (it looked awesome I promise) and Josh did a wonderful job on a University of Washington W! 

And we have the requisite black demon cat Momo or Memo if you are listening to Evalyn!

And then on to Halloween night!  We headed over to Grandma and Grandpa's neighborhood to get in on the trick or treating action.  Grandma made a delicious pre-trick or treating dinner of chili dogs and we chowed down.  We had a really fun group going out.

Our family, Aunt Savannah and Kennidy, Olyvia and her friend Jessie and the new Jensen clan (minus Joe, he came back later)  Kenna came a little later too and looked great as a witch!  She couls have come straight from Hogwarts, I was so jealous of her costume!  Grandma and Grandpa also took turns out with us to see the crazy kids have a blast.  And man they did!  Eavie and Kennidy were so funny running at full speed after the big kids.  Jack was blowing raspberries in Daddy's face most of the time, but don't worry we got his candy for him ;)  And now the required photo dump!

Can you believe they are letting us get candy!?
Baby Cooper is getting big!

Cooper met Darth Vader and about passed out!
Lovely little lady bug!

Ferocious lion and fanatic Josh!
Don't worry I got this.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Falling Leaves

Have I mentioned lately how much I love Pinterest?  There is such a cute craft I pinned for fall.

"A Falling Leaf Is Summer's Wave Goodbye"  Summer has it seems like Fall is waving! Fall is by far my favorite season and it always has been.  Growing up in central Florida made this a little difficult, but ever since that Fall trip to the Smoky Mountains of North Carolina in elementary school I have been hooked.  The LEAVES people.  I am a major leaf person.  Trees.  Just love them.  We walk down the street and I am mentally planting trees in my imaginary yard based on shade or the magnificent yellow color the leaves turn. 
  Here in our new place we've seen early Spring (moved in March 1st) through now mid-fall.  There is an LDS nursery song that goes

"I looked out the window and what did I see?  Popcorn popping on the apricot tree"

We have an apricot tree outside our living room window.  We watched it pop with white blossoms this spring.  Excitement was an understatement. 

"Babe!  Do you see the blossoms?!  Do you see the apricot tree??"

Later in the summer...

"Babe!  Look!  Look at the little apricots!  Aren't they cute?!"

Two weeks ago staring out the kitchen window...

"Babe!  Look at that yellow!  Can you believe the color?!"

Everyone meet Florida girl who never got Fall...

Everyone meet Washington boy who thinks this doesn't compare to Washington's beauty.

He's not impressed :)  Happy Fall everyone!  Unfortunately all our beautiful fall colors are blowing across the street.  Some trees are already bare and will stay so until next April.  Bare trees make me sad :(  That's okay, just wait until it snows.


"Babe!  Look!  It's snowing!!!!!!"

I am not impressed with the slush and ice for 4 months but the new, fresh, falling snow can't be beat :)

Love you all!!  Now photo dump...

Crappy phone pics...

A little Fall flavor

Most of the leaves gone :( But yay Halloween bats!!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Back on track

  So we hiked the Y last week.  The whole. freaking. thing.  Now I know that doesn't seem that impressive to some people (I have a friend who hiked it EVERYDAY for like 3 months), but we (read I) am so out of shape and I'm not that athletic anyways, that it took 3 hours total.  3 hours.  But we did it!  Oh and did I mention that Josh and I took the kids with us?  And at one point he was actually carrying both of them and they were both passed out?  Yeah, he's pretty amazing.

   For those not familiar with it this trail is a series of 12 switchbacks and a steep climb.  It's a 1.75 mile hike and you gain about 1100 feet on the climb.  The hike up was hard but doable (lots of breaks of course and I nursed Jack twice on the side of the trail), but then the sun came out from behind the clouds as we neared the top of the trail.  Brutal.  Even in October.  You can actually feel the rays cooking you alive.  We are several thousand feet above sea-level so that makes the rays even stronger. Unfortunately I have always been very sensitive to the heat.  I don't sweat properly.  I don't know why, even at a healthy weight I just don't sweat like a person should and therefore my body can not cool itself efficiently.  I get red people.  Like people think I am going to die red.  (I've been asked on more than one workout if I was okay)  Embarrassing yes, life-threatening?  Not unless I can't find some shade, water, and a wet towel.  You want to know how to ghetto cool yourself?  Wet and a towel and act like you are a prize-winning boxer mopping your face after a fight...

Y Mountain in the background
   The next day I went to my second consecutive Weight Watchers meeting.  Tomorrow is my third.  I lost 2.2 lbs my first week on program.  I'll take it.  I am still nursing Jack (10 months as of yesterday!) so that inhibits my weight loss a bit.  I am one of those people that don't lose weight easily while nursing, but I have shown that I can.  I am ready this time.  I have thought that in the past, but now I am truly motivated.  Not by any external means, just for the joy of being healthy and having the energy to live my life.  Josh, as always, is amazing and taking strides to not tempt me and eating healthier with me.  I love him.  He's pretty great.

   I am going to post a picture of me at the top of the trail, the white behind me is the Y on the mountain that stands for BYU.  We live like 5 minutes from the trail head.  It's not a pretty picture, but as Josh said I'll want to see where I started from.  We went again on Monday and went to the third switchback, a much shorter climb and easier on the kids.  We have plans to do a few switchbacks every week just for the exercise and because it's FUN and BEAUTIFUL up there. The next time we climb to the top we will leave the kids at home until we get better times, which we will as we get more fit and lose the weight!    Huzzah!
I know...  Very unattractive but this is the before pic!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Where has all the motivation gone?

So I have been lacking in the motivation department lately.  And by lately I mean since my birthday in June...... (awkward pause while you all realize that was 2 months ago)  I blame the heat.  I like to blame stuff on my own personal shortcomings.  Makes it easier.  So anyways Josh is trying like mad to drop like 20 pounds before his boss does.  He is extremely confident in his ability to do this and to do it quickly.  Why you may ask?  Because he has done it before!  Oh, this sounds familiar!  Let's recap....  I've always been a chunky gal...went to more chunk....halfway through college...start losing chunk with best friend....lose 50 pounds.....look and feel great and everyone is amazed that I'm so stinking cute and to end of college.

  Here I am minding my own bizness when someone walks into my life I was hoping for but not expecting or really looking for at that moment.  That's right, Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ!  They were re-introduced to me through Josh and the missionaries and well that was the best thing that ever happened to me.  Within a few months I was in love with the gospel and baptized and a couple months after that I realized I was in love with Josh too....  It took awhile longer for Josh to realize I wasn't going anywhere so I flew out to Utah to meet him and go to General Conference... and 10 days later I left practically engaged.  And this trip is where my amazing weightloss came to a screeching and sudden halt and reversal!  This was fall 2008.  I moved to Utah December 30, 2008, married Josh in the Manti temple on May 1, 2009, and then promptly got pregnant with Evalyn that summer....

When I came to visit Josh

  Let me say I love my children and would never trade them for anything, but I can't figure out how to lose the weight now :(  I ate lean cuisines all the time in college.  I hate them now and they are expensive anyways.  I really don't like to cook but I know I have to.  And my husband hates most things that I cook that are healthy anyways.  It is so hot out that I have trouble getting out and moving because I can't cool myself efficiently through sweat and whatnot so I turn into a beet and people think I'm about to die... literally I've been asked on more than one occasion if I am okay after exercising and it's embarrassing.  All I need is some motivation.  And a good routine.  Why is this so hard for me to do?  Being at this weight is miserable and embarrassing.  I don't want my kids to have a fat mom who doesn't want to be in pictures and has meltdowns Sunday morning because none of my nice clothes fit...  They deserve an active, fun mom who can destress with a good run and not feel like a marshmallow replaced her face in every picture.  I want I want I want...  I tell Josh all the time I'm just talk.  I have so many grand ideas for doing this or that or making this better, but nothing ever changes.  I want to change this. 

  Oh and as more motivation is better I am making Josh buy me a new diamond ring when I hit my goal weight.  I love me some shinies.  So 145 pounds may seem fat to many people but that is my goal weight.  I was there before so I know I can do it and it felt good.  We'll see when we get there about more or not.  145 pounds.  That's what I weighed when I first met Josh.  He doesn't care about my weight, he just wants me to be happy and he knows I am not.  I couldn't have picked a more amazing man to share eternity with.  Now if only Jenny would come be my jogging partner again I'd be set ;)   Love to you all.

Oh and if you come visit my page I'd love for you to leave a comment :)  Thanks!

Saturday, June 16, 2012


Thanks to my Jenny for keeping me honest and reminding me to post!!

Okay, so honestly, I just looked at the date of my first post and was shocked to see June 4th on there!  Seriously?  I could have sworn I just posted it.  So anyways, here we are almost 2 weeks later.  It's been a crazy couple weeks, and I was totally doing great keeping myself on track until the day that our dear friends (you know who you are) called and said they'd made enchiladas and were bringing them over.  I'm sorry.  It's so totally rude to say no to enchiladas!  And the resulting mind-blowing brownies we made to accompany said enchiladas was also impossible to avoid without being rude................

Is anybody buying this?  Anybody?  Didn't think so.

We had delicious enchiladas and brownies that we all wanted to make out with and then I made them play "Sorry" with us and it was a really long, awesome game.  So like I was saying... that day was the start of several (read almost a week) of bad choices when it comes to food, and drinks, and snacks, and exercise.  Like any good woman I am shaking it off and getting back on the proverbial horse.  And did I mention it was my birthday yesterday?  And my husband and family threw me a surprise party?  Yeah, it was as awesome as it sounds and I will have a full post on it once I steal some pics from one totally awesome sister-in-law!  Keeping it honest, I had lost 1.5 lbs as of Tuesday morning, but this being Saturday night I'm not counting my eggs and all that.  I have a two year old to put back in bed.  Tomorrow is Sunday and Father's Day.  I am making Josh pancakes after letting him sleep in for as long as he likes.  That is my gift :) Sleep.  Oh and being 26 comes with hair changes.... apologies for the bad phone pic.  <3

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

December 16, 2011

And almost 6 months after the fact...

I have two amazing men in my life and they both have the same birthday.  How awesome is that?  They also happen to be father and son.  This is Jack's birth.  Enjoy.

38 weeks
   Josh and I arrived at the birth center, Birthing Your Way, about 5:30 pm on Thursday, December 15th.  We were there for a scheduled induction.  We were not, however, going to the hospital to have pitocin, which is why I was up for it! (pitocin is not fun for me) My wonderful birth team included my midwife Heather Shelley, a midwifery student Mollee Mansfield, two wonderful amazing doulas-in-training just needing more birthing experience Carrie Valadez and Jennifer Gundersen, and of course the reason I was large with child to begin with! (love you babe) I seem to remember another midwife there very early in the evening but she was not staying for the birth, and I *think* another staff person from the birth center, but things get fuzzier as the night went on.  Well not fuzzier, just more focused :)

  I don't remember everything perfectly so bear with me.  I knew roughly what the plan was as far as trying to get my labor started and was a little apprehensive that it wouldn't work.  I was very ready to meet my little boy though so we gave it all we had.  We started with a check and I was a 3 (cm dilated that is), pretty thick (as in effacement) and no contractions to speak of.  I was not in labor!  But I already knew that!  So my midwife started us off with some pressure points and rubbing essential oils onto my big, 9 month belly to try and get contractions going.  The oils were warm, Clary Sage and Fennel, and smelled like black licorice.  Josh and I had been doing the oils on my tummy for a couple weeks to promote contractions and such so this felt just like home!  I was lying in a beautiful room in the converted Victorian style house that is now the birth center.  There was a fire going, candles warming the room, dim lighting, and a CD playing soothing nature music and Native American pipes.  It all felt very natural.  Women helping women to birth a new life.  This is why I had chosen the birth center and my midwife and I was very content in this moment.

  After awhile the dreaded words came about.  "Now go walk for an hour."  Gulp.  Seriously?  I had trouble walking around the mall and they wanted me to walk for an hour outside on a December night?  Yes.  Yes they did, so out the door we went.  We walked around the block looking at the pretty shop windows, the colorful Christmas lights, listening to Bing Crosby sing "White Christmas" on Pandora on my phone.  It was like a mini-date and we talked about how we couldn't believe our son was almost here.  I was toasty in a sweater and poor Josh was wrapped in a blanket (because why would you bring your jacket when leaving the house in Utah in mid-December when it's in the 20's out?)  We walked solidly for an hour.  I believe that the cold air kept me going as I overheated so quickly in the mall and felt great walking that night.  I walked and talked and mentally saw my baby descending, willing my body to cooperate so he could come.  When our time was up we walked back to the birth center and I was praying we would find progress as I still was not contracting regularly.

  "A 5!!", my midwife said surprised, "And he's right there!"  I was elated at my progress in just an hour.
  "So do you wanna break your water?" The answer was an excited yes!  And we were off.  To be continued... Here's a spoiler it ends with a beautiful, healthy baby :)

Monday, June 4, 2012


So I have this baby weight I need to lose. I said goodbye to my extra poundage in January and signed back on with trusty Weight Watchers and prepared to watch the pounds melt away. Fast forward ahem...almost 6 months?! Is that possible?! $42 buckaroos a month and no weight-loss to show for it? Only one word to describe it. Sucks. Bad. And the worst part my friends? I have no one to blame but myself. Okay so enough self-deprecation. Onto the reason for this post. I (as we already know) have like a total crush on Pinterest (like for real) like.... valley girl impression over. They have lots of wonderfully motivating things on there and one of them was this.

This blog Yes, You Can is about a few girls and their amazing journey towards healthy bodies and minds.  Healthy.  That's all I want to be.  For my children, for my husband.  And if I look great on top of feeling great, then that is just a bonus.  I woke up this morning with a new mindset and it's refreshing.  I have been trying to get back in the swing of weight-loss for months, but just couldn't seem to find a reason to say no to the sweets and constant snacks.  Then last night at my wonderful mother-in-laws house we had our usual delicious Sunday dinner.  I was perfectly contented with my portion and when they broke out the fudge-swirl ice cream with caramel AND fudge sauce (my FAVORITE) I felt fine saying no.  At first I surprised myself by saying no as I sipped my water, but then it felt GREAT and WONDERFUL and LIBERATING!  I had conquered the sweets this time!!  So this may not seem like a big deal to most of you but it was a turning point for me.  I woke up ready to get back on the program.  Another epiphany came while I was saying a blessing over my breakfast, I asked Heavenly Father to bless my food to keep me full and not want to snack before my next meal.  And not another bite entered my mouth until my carefully portioned and accounted for lunch.  Amazing.  :)  So I am going to chronicle my weight-loss journey here.  Complete with pictures.  I will take pictures weekly but may not get the nerve to post them right away, but I will put them up eventually.  And don't worry, I will be wearing my shirt in my pictures ;)  Keep me honest folks.