Saturday, February 27, 2010

Better than Cinnabon

This morning our kitchen smelled warm and delicious as these two, I mean three, men were hard at work. I tried to get Talmage to play with his toys in the front room so the two with the tags could work...but he is drawn to them. Elder A. is so cute and got down on the floor to play. Talmage was SO in heaven. (Elder A. also lets T chew on his tag whenever he wants, so obviously T adores him!)

The elders called a few days ago and asked if they could bake cinnamon rolls at our house. I immediately agreed, knowing that at least one (or two) of them would end up in my tummy. Elder Stewart loves to bake, and he promised that his cinnamon rolls would not disapoint. Let me tell you, that was an understatement! They were amazing. The perfect combination of spices, sugar and butter...and then there was the divine icing. I know you may find this hard to believe, but they were WAY better than Cinnabon. Elders, you can come bake at our house whenever you want!

Side note: Jim came down the stairs this morning with baby in tow and said, "I dressed Talmage up as a cowboy today." I was quite curious because I knew we had no wranglers, or boots, or flannel shirts. When I saw the kid I had to laugh at his silly dad. That white shirt with black moo-spots do make him look an awful lot like a cow-boy!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

My Brown Eyed Boy


I could stare into those deep brown eyes all day long.
Oh wait, I do! I love my job.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

i LOVE to SEE the TEMPLE

These two nice Guy's (isn't that the most convenient last name?)
took them
and us
and, of course, him
to the London temple


And I literally thought my heart was going to burst out of my chest.
Happiness, joy, elation...all over seeing that beautiful house of the Lord (and going inside!)
The Guy's let Jim and I enjoy the 4 pm session together.
And they had a little photo shoot with Mr. T.
We quickly swapped places for the 6 pm session, which Jim was in also.
T and I looked around the visitors centre, enjoyed looking at Jesus, and met the nicest senior missionary couple.
Then at 8 pm there was another switcheroo and Jim took his turn with the kideroo.
He was supposed to be sleeping, but Daddy was WAY too much fun.
When I got out of the temple (at 10 pm) they were both giggling and playing!

It was a really late night, we didn't get home until after midnight, but it was WAY worth it. We LOVE to see the temple, and we hope we can see it again soon...really soon.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Scripture Man

Once upon a time, in a far off land called Provo, a young undergrad named Jimmy James met a nice old man named Legrand Baker. Legrand and James became great friends, meeting together often to read scriptures and discuss the meaning of life (I'm serious...that's really what they did). When Jimmy James met his Princess (haha..ME), Legrand encouraged him to drop a class from his ridiculously over-achieving schedule to spend more time with her (leaving him with 16 credits instead of 19, crazy kid!) Right off the bat, Legrand Baker was on my good list! As a term of affection and appreciation, I started referring to him as "Scripture Man." It seemed fitting due to his incredible understanding of every verse, chapter and book of the Standard Works, plus in my family we give people we really, really like nicknames. So there you have it, I have never called him anything but Scripture Man since (he chuckles when he hears it) and my family only knows him by this name. He is one of Jim's best friends, and someone he can connect with in a very deep and real way. We love him.



Well, Scripture Man recently wrote a book about, you guessed it, the scriptures. Another book, I should say, he has written a few already. He is brilliant, and all of his books are full to the brim with scriptural references and interpretation. When this most recent book was not yet a book, Scripture Man sought Jim's help in proofreading and adding to the manuscript. A few months ago, Scripture Man announced that his book was published, and he gifted Jim a copy (and sent it all the way to England!)

When Jim started reading the book, he found his name listed in the acknowledgement section. He was really touched and honored to be associated with this man and his work. We want to send a special congrats to Scripture Man (Legrand!) for such a remarkable book. Thank you so much for sharing yourself and your knowledge with us!

I LOVE these pictures. I made him take two because I said no one would think he even enjoys the book if they only looked at the first one! He does enjoy it though, A LOT!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Some Nights I Live for Bedtime...

And some nights I wish T could stay up just a little bit longer.

See the cuteness for yourself.

video

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Pancake Day

When in England, do as the English and celebrate Pancake Day!



I started seeing signs a few weeks ago publicizing the occasion and I thought it was some kind of joke. Pancake Day? A holiday? Really? But it is no joke, my friends. Today all of England ate pancakes...and we did too. And they were good.


I did some research, and found out that Pancake Day occurs on Shrove Tuesday, or the day preceding Ash Wednesday (the first day of Lent). Originally pancakes, made with sugar, fat and eggs, were consumed as a last feast before the restricted Lent diet. Now, however, I think Betty Crocker makes a pretty penny and the event is more about eating and less about religion (they call it Pancake Day for heaven sake).

My opinion, breakfast foods should receive a little more credit. Yum, yum, double yum to morning foods (eaten all hours of the day!) They are, and always have been, and always will be, my favorite!



I vote that Pancake Day become a regular holiday in the USA.

And waffle day.

And of course, french toast day.

Eggs benedict day for Jim (his favorite).

And hot chocolate day?

How about cinnamon toast crunch day.

And omelet day.

Maybe someday this will be on the ballot (weirder things have happened).

But for now, happy Pancake Day!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

T's New Moves

Talmage has learned how to shoot hoops (brings a tear of joy to my eye!)

video
And walk around with his walker.

video

And here's another one of T playing with his Daddy.

video

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Our First Date

Jim and I went on our first date last night. Our first date in Cambridge, that is. And really, only one of a handfull of dates since Talmage was born. You see, Talmage has not been the easiest of babies (understatement!), and we didn't have the best of luck when we tried leaving him before (except the time my Mom watched him for our Father's Day date...why don't we live next door to family again?) BUT...that being said, he has gotten much better and we finally decided that it was time for our first Cambridge date...a Valentine's date!
A friend from the ward (who Talmage adores) watched him for us. I knew he was in good hands, but I still cried as I shut the door to leave. My heart ached. Pathetic, huh? I have become quite attached to that little guy--we are NEVER apart. I was a little worried about how he'd act, but he was an angel for her. They played, there were no tears and at 7 pm she put him to bed without a peep. WOW! When Jim heard the news, he started planning date #2!
Jim and I had a phenomenal time. We walked and held hands. We twirled in the center of Cambridge. We laughed and talked and hung out--just the two of us! We saw a play in a small, amateur theatre. (Just in case you were wondering, we saw Macbeth. Definitely not the most romantic Valentine's Day performance...but it was really good!) We ate dinner and we just enjoyed each other's company. We came home feeling so refreshed, relaxed and in love! It was a great first date and a wonderful start to a Valentine's day weekend.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Pink Frosted Sugar Cookies

Yesterday I spent all day making, frosting (and testing) sugar cookies.
I found a recipe for Granny B's cookies.
If you've never tried a Granny B pink frosted cookie, try one.
Pronto. It'll change your life. Promise.
Or go to Walmart and buy Lofthouse cookies, they're delish as well.
Or follow the recipe below and prepare to be impressed.
They are soft and chewy and practically perfect in every way.
Secret ingredient=sour cream.
And the frosting.
I'm speechless. Really I am.
Sugar Cookies
1 cup butter
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
3 cups of flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup sour cream

Cream Butter and sugar together, then slowly add eggs, and vanilla.
Sift dry ingredients together, then add dry mixture to the wet mixture along with the sour cream, mix until smooth.
Chill: 2 to 3 hours
Roll out to 1/4 - 1/3 " thick depending on your preference and cut into shapes.
Bake at 375 degrees for 6 to 8 minutes or until golden brown on bottom and let cool.


Butter Frosting
4 Tablespoons butter
2 1/3 cup powdered sugar
milk
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
for chocolate frosting add 3 Tablespoons cocoa

Put butter in bowl and beat with electric mixer until fluffy. Then add about half the powdered sugar. Then beat in 1 Tablespoon milk and the vanilla. Slowly add in the rest of the powdered sugar. Add more milk if needed. Add food coloring if desired.
Add pink food coloring for a life-changing experience. What can I say? Pink frosting tastes good.

Yesterday I was cooking.
Today I was sharing the LOVE.
And if you lived closer, there would've been some on your door too.
Happy Valentine's Day!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Laundry Day

Monday is laundry day in our home.

Laundry definitely tops the list of my least favorite household chores. I think I mostly don't like it because it is NEVER done. I mean, as soon as I empty the laundry basket there is something new to put in it. Bummer.

So, I make sure ALL Wiggy laundry gets done in ONE day...and then I live in bliss for six days. It works for us.

Talmage, on the other hand, has a growing fascination with the washing machine and has requested on numerous occasions that everyday become laundry day.

See evidence below.

"HUH. What the heck is going on in there?"

"Now, where did Mommy put that liquid soap. Oh. Aha. I've got it!"

Heaven help us!

"Whoa, I better get down low and check out the action."

"Hey, I want to play with those bubbles too."

"See Mom, laundry makes me really happy. Please, please, please can we do this more often?"

Monday, February 8, 2010

Who Dat?

Who dat Saints fan? Who dat?
After 25 long years as a Saints fan, my Dad's football dreams have come true.
THE SAINTS WON THE SUPERBOWL!
31-17
Being the righteous man he is, he waited until 12 midnight (Monday morning) to hold a Superbowl party.
There was lots of food, TONS of screaming and in the end...
A VICTORY!!!
Who dat?

Thursday, February 4, 2010

LOUD.

Monday was Christa's birthday.
We went to dinner, and our dear Mr. T screamed.
LOUD.
So, Jim took him home and I brought Jim a doggy-bag.
And thus it began.
Christa is not eating sugar in 2010, so Katherine and I made her fat free frozen yogurt and apple bread for dessert...beyond delicious. Happy Birthday to her!
***
Now back to the screamer.
***
Tuesday we went to the Zimmerman's in Ely.
He screamed, all day.
LOUD.
He screamed in the car to her house.
He screamed during nap time (poor Max couldn't sleep!)
He screamed during playtime, while eating snack, and in the car back to the station.
He screamed while I fed him on the train back to Cambridge.
And then he choked on his dinner, and I couldn't get him out of his seat, and everyone on the train rushed to see the commotion.
Mother of the Year Award was thrown out the window onto the train tracks.
By the time we met up with Jim, T was screaming...
...and I was crying.
Oh, what a day.
***
Yesterday me and the kid ran some errands.
While walking through the grocery store Talmage decided to start screaming again.
LOUD.
I must tell you,
the screaming to which I'm referring is not crying.
He's not hungry, sad, or uncomfortable.
His pants are clean, his feet are warm, and most of the time he's in my arms.
There are no tears with this screaming.
Nope, it's just for the fun of it.
And believe me, it's fun.
As I was carrying him through the store (and pushing his stroller full of groceries) an older store clerk said, "Wow, quite the set of lunges that little one has, huh?"
That comment was way better than the dirty looks everyone else gave me.
I couldn't help it, I started laughing.
LOUD.
Talmage looked at me, shocked at my outburst.
And then he screamed some more.
We were quite the scene.
Him screaming, and me laughing.
LOUD.
***
And now it's Thursday.
I'd like to tell you that there was no screaming today.
But there was.
T screamed most of the morning, and the afternoon for that matter.
LOUD.
Today I didn't cry, and unfortunately I didn't laugh.
Today, I was wishing (and sincerely praying) for communication skills to increase, and crazy screaming to stop.
I'll be honest, I was super frustrated.
***
Sadness, Entertainment and Frustration.
All from the screaming of an almost-one-year-old.
Being a mom has taught me, is teaching me and will continue to teach me SO much.
And just in case you were wondering.
His screaming is really, really, really
LOUD.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Month of Enos

Bishop McKee (AKA Dad) is doing a really cool thing in his ward this month. It is called "The Month of Enos" and he has challenged the ward members to read the whole book of Enos in personal study each day, and also focus on a specific verse (it works out pretty well since there are 28 days in February and 27 verses in the book of Enos).

video

Today everyone was supposed to talk with their father, husband or a father figure, and if possible hear them bear their testimony in a foreign tongue (Enos was taught in the language of his father). My dad asked me to post a video of Jim bearing his testimony in Russian that he can share in FHE. Enjoy!

Dance through the Decades

On Saturday night our ward hosted an AWESOME event: Dance through the Decades. I LOVE to dance, and I definitely don't get enough opportunities to shake what my momma gave me, so I was stoked. PLUS, we got to play dress-up, nothing better!

We decided to dress 40's. Our friends Mitch and Niall had these clothes in their closet (they have incredible vintage fashion taste) and we put on make-up and did our hair to fit the era. I thought the picture above (which is kind of fuzzy and dark) looked straight out of an old movie.

Here are some of our fellow party-goers. Doesn't everyone look awesome! You have to click on this picture and look at Talmage's face up close. I guess he wasn't as excited as we were about the music, dancing and costumes.

And here's our 40's family with Rob's fabulous camera. Of course we had been dancing so please excuse my sweaty make-up face and T's pink cheeks! We learned how to do a whole new rendition of the Hokey Pokey (you should have seen all the American's faces when the whole circle rushed the middle) and a new song called The Music Man (or something like that!) It was SUCH a blast and I hope we can do it again soon, very soon!