Saturday, September 28, 2013

through the eyes of a t3i

I've been feeling a little down lately. I heard the song "When you were young" by the Killers a few weeks ago at work, started listening to it on repeat, started remembering a lot of things I really didn't want to. Subsequently, I felt like I was struggling in all aspects of my life: being a good nurse, being a good friend, being a good mother, being a good wife, being a good child of God. "Good" being in all-encompassing word, right?

I got my canon t3i this week, and I think it's really help me heal. I've been focusing on the beauty in the world, and it's so refreshing. In all aspects too. My life is pretty beautiful, and I am really blessed. I post my favorite photo of the day, here.


Tuesday, September 17, 2013

amelia at fifteen months


sleeping: Amelia sleeps for at least 12 hours each night. Bedtime is 8 pm, and she usually wakes up between 8 am and 10 am. We are currently transitioning between 1-2 naps a day, and mostly it's whatever makes Amelia happy. I love sneaking a peek in the mornings, because she's usually doing something silly. I also love her giant smile when she realizes I'm watching her.

eating: For breakfast, Amelia switches off between oatmeal and a fried egg every morning. In addition, she gets a yogurt and a smoothie. She can maneuver her spoon well; when she gets frustrated trying to scoop up food, she will pick up a bite with her other hand and place it on the spoon to feed herself. She blows on all her meals (whether or not they are hot). For lunch and dinner, she gets a plate of broccoli and carrots. Recently, I've started blending half of her veggies into her smoothie, and giving her half fruit and half veggies on her plate. What's in her smoothie? strawberries, blueberries, spinach, orange, yogurt, bananas, broccoli, and carrots. She gets 4-5 sippy cups daily, and water too when the smoothie is gone, so that's why the sippy is in all her pictures. In terms of breastfeeding, we're down to just one feeding in the morning. I keep telling myself we'll cut it out soon, but obviously I've been reluctant.

play: Amelia has so many toys to keep her busy. Our home gets cleaned daily, but it always looks like a disaster. Blessings that come with a toddler, right? Amelia loves feeding/carrying/reading with/loving on her dolls, dancing with her elephant (not pictured), puzzles, shoes, balls, practically everything. Her favorite is her dolls, we practice body parts on those babies all day long. She also loves puzzles; watching her find and place pieces where they fit is insanely exciting for me as well. I love her guts.

Amelia is currently a little inconsistent with her naps. Sometimes she'll wake up chattering to herself, other times she'll wake up screaming bloody murder. It's a little tricky, good thing she has her Nemo. :)

Amelia loves popping bubbles, coloring, the mirror in my closet, slides, swinging, walks to the park, watching the and yearning to be elementary students, and getting the mail. I love anything that will make her giggle like crazy. We try to get out of the house everyday- groceries, classes, library, anything to keep us from going stir crazy. After her nap, we'll usually play around at home or around our neighborhood. Every time we go outside, the kiddos on our block run over and yell, "HI AMELIA!" and try to hold her hand. Adorable, right?

At her 15 month well-checkup, Amelia was 18.7 pounds (3%), 29.1 inches (15%), and 17.2 inches OFC (5%). I'm usually not too paranoid, but her pediatrician always, always comments on her weight. Whaddya do, right? She can say 10+ words appropriately, use a spoon/feeding herself, draw strokes with a crayon, point to various body parts when asked, dances to music, feeds her doll, "helps" around the house, eat three healthy meals, etc. etc. What more can I ask?

In the afternoon, we read 10 verses of the Book of Mormon together (currently in Mosiah). Depending on the day, Amelia will sit on my lap, turn pages, or play quietly. I really love this routine we've started together, and how peaceful she becomes. This is also the time we wait for a text from Dad, telling us he's on his way home.
We love waiting outside for him. We live by a municipal airport, so we see up to five planes within a half hour from our front porch. Amelia use to point to them and yell, "DOG DOGGGG!!!" We've been working on "plane," accommodation development, right? Anyways, Amelia loves watching that cute little gray prius drive up, climbing in the front seat, and riding up to the garage with dad. She waves to me, like "get outta here, mom!" It's our most favorite time of day. :)
I'm so grateful that I'm a mother to my favorite girl in the whole world. The hardest job in the world, but Amelia babe makes it worth it.

Friday, September 6, 2013

hello basement entrance, it's been a long time coming

In March, when I finished capstone hours and was finally wrapping up nursing school, Jeremy and I started plans to finish our basement. As in, plans and framing done, electrical done, heating and air done, basement entrance and fencing plans sent in to be approved by our HOA. Ah, if only we had been more experienced Daybreak homeowners, we would have just said, "to hell with the HOA, we do what we want." Instead, we attempted to follow all their rules. We hand-drew plans of our lot and where we wanted to add our fence and basement entrance.

We were denied. We fixed what they asked us to. We were denied again. We fixed what they asked us to. We were denied again. We went to the city to clear up questions of where the easement was. We were denied again. We took pictures of neighbors homes who had 6 foot fences exactly where we were asking to place ours. Denied. Over and over; this madness was killing us. (May I mention? Meanwhile, our neighbor put up a fence for their yard, right before our eyes. "Oh didn't you know? You should never try to get anything approved, if you want to get it done?") With neither of us being artists or having any architectural talent, Jeremy and I had to learn a different level of communication.  After months and months of frustration, we had considered just disregarding the idea of a rental, and finishing the basement for ourselves. It wouldn't be so bad, there could be enough bedrooms for our 6 kiddos?

But we just couldn't shake the fact this isn't our dream home. Our babies' bedrooms in front, and a looooooooong hallway in between? And then having the rest of our babies downstairs...? What about the backyard? We can't even have a fence? The hardest part was that we are homeowners, and we have no say in what we want to build? to plant? (yes, that is why I have a planter box, and not a vegetable garden).

Through all of this, we were also dealing with stress from finals, studying and passing boards, Jeremy transitioning to a new job, me actually finding a job, Amelia's birthday party, Jeremy and I never seeing each other, our state tax return never being returned, my body wacking out, our ward callings, new teeth, etc. etc. etc. We didn't get passports or buy plane tickets to Taiwan (planned graduation trip with my parents), so we could be financially prepared. We (okay, I) spent many nights in tears, as we watched our summer slip away.

In the end, we had to change where had we hoped to put in our entrance. In a spot where we had to tear out part of our deck, in a spot that is costing us over $2K more. A spot that we'll have to readjust our framing and electrical for. We hired my friend, Jeff, who saved us and drew a perfect plan, got us approved through daybreak and the city. We got a decent quote from Armando. Jeremy and his dad and his brothers tore up our deck.

Yesterday, they started digging, our door was cut out. Today, we were approved for the footings, and concrete is being poured as I type. Monday, our walls will be approved and poured. Tuesday, stairs and drain. I think the entrance should be done by Wednesday. Hopefully, the basement will be completed by November, and we can have some renters by the new year. Hallelujah!

I'll apologize for a lot of this post being negative- I am more than thrilled that our plans are finally moving along. I also believe in trusting my husband's judgment, and trusting that everything will work out. It's just been a long time coming.

PS. Daybreak is great! I love my neighbors that I can call my friends, especially the ones on my street. I love my ward, I love the community. I love the free splash pool, free pool, free gym, free canoeing, free parties/festivals, the beautiful lake, the running trails, all the beautiful homes that are well kept. We are grateful to call this place our home. And when it is no longer our home, we will probably be sad. Until then, we'll just keeping living it up!

Thanks everyone for your love and support!