22 March 2011


Blogging has really taken a backseat in my life lately. It's not that I don't have things to say. There are certainly things I've been thinking about and would like to write about, I just haven't had the time. (Cliche, I know.) What could possibly be more important than keeping my blog current?
  • We closed on our house on Friday.
  • We're packing all our belongings into boxes and moving for the twelfth time in less than six years. For those of you who are not really great at math, that averages to more than two moves every year.
  • I work full time.
  • Plus I have an infant.
  • Plus Eric and I are watching all the past seasons of "30 Rock" on NetFlix. (Priorities, people.)
In addition to those things there have been family events, excessive basketball watching, (I guess you could say I've been Jimmered. Har.), enjoying the nice weather when it's been nice, sorting through things so we don't take junk to our new house, hanging out with friends, and fretting about paint colors (These are easily the scariest decisions I've ever made. Somebody should just tell me what to do. Even better, I should just hand over my credit card to somebody who will go to the paint store and come back and THEN tell me what to do).

I'll tell you what I haven't been doing: wasting time on Facebook, that's what.

12 March 2011


Because we've kept this plant alive since June.

09 March 2011


I've never celebrated Lent before. (I'm not even sure if "celebrate" is the right word.) As a Mormon, it is not part of my religious experience. I was taught (falsely, I now know) that the purpose of Lent was to help Christian observers begin to understand the period of 40 days in which Jesus fasted. I've always thought that was almost sacrilegious - as if giving up something that we shouldn't be doing/having anyway could really help us fathom any of Christ's suffering. I recently read the Wikipedia article about Lent, and it says that Lent is for preparation of Easter, through prayer, repentance, almsgiving and self-denial.

In some ways, I can really see the point. By giving of ourselves, we can draw closer to the Lord. Mormons certainly believe this, we are encouraged to fast at least once per month. I guess the problem I always had was that most people I knew were giving up something that they really shouldn't have anyway, usually in the form of a food - chocolate, coffee, alcohol, etc. Sure, this would be challenging for them, but how would it help them prepare for Easter? How would it strengthen their relationship with Jesus? But in reality, it's not my job to point out whose Lent sacrifices are worthwhile and whose aren't. Lent is a fairly personal thing when it all boils down to it.

About a week ago I decided that I needed to take a break from Facebook. It is a massive time suck for me. I go there when I have nothing to do. Then I get there and think, "Wow, I do not care about what most of these people are doing." Or else I think, "I wish somebody cool had something worthwhile to say." There are a handful of people that regularly say interesting things or share interesting links or who put up pictures I want to see, but on the whole I was finding that I was spending a lot of time on Facebook and leaving its pages very unsatisfied. So I've given it up for Lent.

Only, it's not really for Lent because it is entirely for personal reasons rather than religious. I don't expect that I will draw closer to my Savior through this sacrifice. (Unless I decided to spend all my ordinary Facebook time in service, scripture study and prayer, which, to be honest, is not really my plan.) The period of Lent just happens to coincide with a time when I need to be stepping away from pointless time-wasting things and focusing on more important things.

Plus, they say it takes about 30 days to break a habit (or is it 30 days to start a habit?). I figure that 40 days ought to be enough for me to stop habitually going to Facebook every time I'm bored.

Hopefully in the mean time I will finally write down the insightful blog posts that have been in my head for weeks. Maybe I'll get going on packing so that our upcoming move isn't 100% drudgery. I'll try to finally type up the notes I took last year on my great-grandfather's book. I'll cook more. I'll read more. All in all, I'll do things that actually matter.

06 March 2011

Three Months

I feel so stereotypical saying that I can't believe my baby is three months old, but there you have it. Ike smiles more and even lets out a short giggle-like sound sometimes. He has been known to fret a time or two over my leaving the room. He regressed a bit in his sleeping, but he sleeps pretty much all day while I'm working, so I can't complain too much. He still has blue eyes, and I think he will keep them forever (though I'm told they can still change for several months).

He spits up a lot, which is why almost all the pictures of him feature him wearing a bib. When I took him to the doctor last month we discussed his milk allergy. It turns out that he has a "milk protein sensitivity," and that it's fairly common among babies. He'll outgrow it. Meanwhile, I have the option of avoiding dairy or not. The pediatrician said that as long as it doesn't hurt him to spit up a ton, I don't really need to change my diet. But his spitting up is just so messy, that I'm still dairy-free. (And miraculously I have not keeled over dead; nor have I given up altogether despite the numerous thoughts I've had about doing so.)

Ike's newest development is his consistent ability to get his hands to his mouth to suck on them. He hasn't quite figured out that his hands belong to him, but I can tell he's on the verge.

When he rolled from his belly at three weeks, people told me he'd probably get too fat to keep that up, but he can still do it. He isn't as consistent about it as he used to be, but I think that's because he doesn't hate being on his belly as much as he used to. In fact, sometimes he has a great time on his belly. During tummy time he can lift his head very high, but his neck gets tired pretty quickly, and it's amusing to watch him try to keep it up. He likes to stand up with our support, but he doesn't last very long at that. He loves to be sung to.

He's gotten to be a little less expressive in his facial expressions, but he is a lot more vocal. Plus he smiles a lot, so it makes up for the lack of so many funny faces.

04 March 2011

A Day in the Life

Ike comes to work with me. It is awesome.

He wakes me up every morning. Once he's fed, he hangs out either on the floor or in his Bumbo chair while I get ready. These days "get ready" means putting on clothes, brushing my teeth, brushing my hair, maybe grabbing something to eat, and maybe considering putting on make up. Usually by the time I'm done getting ready, he is pretty sleepy again. I put him in the front carrier and wear him around the apartment as I finish getting ready. I check the diaper bag to make sure it is adequately stocked with bibs, clothes, diapers and wipes. I grab my coat and put it on. Then I put a hat on Ike, unless he's already asleep, in which case I let him go hat-less rather than wake him. If it's chilly out (which it has been most of the time that Ike has been coming to work with me), I throw a blanket over him and tuck it under the straps of the carrier.

Our walk to work takes about three minutes. If he is asleep by the time I get there (which he almost always is) I wear him until he wakes up. Usually it is only about two hours. I work at my desk, and if he starts to fuss, I remind him of how much he loves his pacifier, I swivel in my chair, or I tilt my computer screen up so I can read it while I stand and sway side to side.

When he wakes up, it is time to eat. I take him to the break room where I nurse him while reading a book. Most feeding sessions take about thirty minutes, counting the amount of time it takes for me to change him and finish reading whatever chapter or section I'm in. (Ike is a very effecient eater.)

I take Ike back to my desk where he hangs out in a bouncer that my boss brought in for him. The bouncer happens to be located underneath my desk. Ike kicks and flails in the bouncer until his eyes glaze over and/or he starts to get fussy. Then I swaddle him, tilt the bouncer to a flat position, stick the pacifier in Ike's mouth, and he goes to sleep. Sometimes his going to sleep requires me holding him and swiveling in my chair, but most of the time he just kind of drifts off in his bouncer.

On a good day he'll only be awake for about two and a half hours, counting the time it takes for me to feed him twice. On a rough day, he will demand to be fed four times, and he will be grumpy and unwilling to fall asleep. Most days are good days, and I get a lot of work done.

It's an awesome setup. I'm beyond grateful that my work is so accommodating. I know that at some point Ike won't sleep all day, and I won't be able to have him with me all the time, so I'm enjoying this phase as much as I can while it lasts.

02 March 2011


You would be surprised at how many problems the similarity of this packaging has nearly caused. Drives me bonkers.

01 March 2011

New House - The Backstory

I posted pictures of our new home roughly two weeks ago. Here's a bit more about how we ended up in a brand new home.

We started physically going out and looking at houses the week after we got back from visiting my family in Texas. Before that we'd been shopping online and felt like we had a good idea of what we could get in our price range. As we actually went out and saw the houses, though, we realized that we weren't going to find anything decent on the lower end of our price range. We'd definitely have to be in the upper limits.

Sometimes the houses had critical flaws, like absurd layouts that would make the house really difficult to sell later on. Some houses just needed so much work that we didn't feel like it would be worth it to us. (We didn't mind the idea of fixing up a house, but we didn't want to devote all of our free time for the next ten years to that one recreational activity.) Other houses were pretty decent but with lousy locations that would really bring down the value of the house.

At some point our realtor suggested looking at new homes, and that's what we ended up going with. The builder of our home had already sold pretty much all the homes in this community. They are a very large company and are publicly traded. That means they have some pretty strict criteria they have to meet to appease their shareholders. One requirement they have (and it is a perfectly logical one) is that in order to open up a brand new community, they have to close out another one. In other words, it would be unsound business to run around helter-skelter opening up new communities when there wasn't enough demand to sell out the homes in the other communities. This worked really well to our advantage. We are buying one of the houses in the community that is last to sell, so we got what we think is a very good deal.

Somebody else was commissioned to purchase the home, so they had chosen the layout and had elected for some of the extra features that we probably never would have splurged on: extra tall cabinets in the kitchen, a double-oven, canned lights in the living room, extended dining area and living room, tall ceilings in the basement, coffered ceiling in the master bedroom, cold storage under the porch, and a handful of other perks. In addition to those things, the builder threw in some incentives in regards to our options of flooring, lighting, cabinetry and such that further piqued our interests.

All in all, we are excited about this house. We're really happy to be getting into a brand new home even though that was not originally in our plans. While there are things I would have done differently had we started from scratch, they are fairly minor. And had we selected an already existing home, there surely would have been things in that home that I would have changed as well.

We've gone and checked out the house a couple of times, and it's fun to see it progress. I've got an album on Facebook with pictures if you want to see them, but I won't post a whole bunch of pictures here until we are fairly well settled. Otherwise you'd all be sick of pictures of a partly finished home. And I don't want to make you sick.

We're expected to close on March 15. We should be able to get the keys a couple of days later (when the papers have gone through all the county rigmarole). We'll actually just do some painting that weekend and then move in the following weekend. We won't paint all the house in one go, but we want to at least get Ike's room painted and aired out before he starts sleeping in it.