Wednesday, December 14, 2011


We have succeeded in a battle of wills with our 9 1/2 month old son. He is FINALLY sleeping through the night! Last night he went to sleep by 8:00 and slept until 3:00, nursed, went right back to sleep until 6:30, nursed, and slept until 7:30. This has been going on 3 nights in a row now! AWESOME. SO much better than him waking up every 45 minutes!! We are happy happy people around here.

We realized the problem with our method was that we weren't doing it right! Instead of laying him down in his crib, leaving, and checking on him/briefly soothing every few minutes, we were staying in there until he went back to sleep, then sneaking out. BIG no no. So we started doing it the right way, and he slept through the night the first night! Granted he fought pretty hard the first night (we were checking on him for an hour) but it worked! He slept 5 straight hours the first night.

The method is this: Half hour bedtime routine, EXACT same every night. Then we lay him down in his crib awake. We give him 5 minutes of crying then go in (when we go in, we simply lay him back down in his crib and tell him we love him and it's time to go to sleep.) then we give him 10 minutes, then we give him 15, and then we go in every 15 minutes after that until he's asleep. He rarely makes it through the first 15 minute interval before he's passed out. And he also takes much better naps because of sleeping through the night. Usually between 1 and 2 hours. He used to sleep for only 35 or 40 minutes for his naps. Also, since he started sleeping better, he eats A LOT more food during the day. Our little guy is growing up.

We are the happiest people alive. I feel like I have my life back. I'm a new person, and so is our little guy! I would encourage everybody to at least try this method. Every kid is different I know, but I know a lot of moms who this has worked for. And if my kid can do it, your kid most likely can, too. It took a lot of patience and commitment, but it was so worth it.

Good luck to everybody who is dealing with some battle of wills with your kids. I feel for you!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Puppy Love

I know that I must be completely insane for thinking of getting a dog when I have a 9 month old son who doesn't sleep. BUT someday, I would LOVE one of these babies. I grew up with dogs from the time I was a baby. We had many many breeds come and go in our house. Some I can't really stand, some I'm indifferent to, and some I LOVED. While this is not the time in our lives for a dog, someday we'll be ready to bring one of these gorgeous guys home and make him part of the family. I think dogs teach kids about responsibility, how to be kind to animals, and lots of other good stuff. But I don't think I'll be bringing home a puppy until my last child is sleeping through the night and can walk without being run over completely. So maybe like two or something. And also, the oldest has to be able to scoop up poop and take the dog on walks, etc. Anyways. I've been daydreaming about these beautiful dogs. A Blue Weimereiner. They're great with kids, great guard/watch dogs, very loyal. And smart. What more could you ask for?

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Weekend Project

Ok, so it's taken a little bit longer than a weekend. This was definitely a labor of love. We decided we would host a small Thanksgiving dinner at our house this year. SO, it got me motivated to finally get us a dining room table. We've spent 2+ years eating around our various coffee tables, so I decided it was now or never! We don't have the money to just stop at Pottery Barn and drop a few grand on a gorgeous table. But thanks to pinterest, I found some awesome DIYs for old farmhouse tables (my favorite!) Lucky for me, my husband has a constant itch to get his hands on saws, drills, any kind of tool and do some woodoworking. So I asked him if he would help me build a table (and by help, I mean let me drill some holes and use the saw, but I really have no idea how to do that sort of stuff-YET). So we set off on our adventure- we spent many hours at lowe's, lots of time drawing up plans, measuring, looking at pictures, etc. We finally got all our supplies and luckily, our landlords let us use their miter saw and drill press AND their huge empty garage. Here's a little photo log of our journey. . .

The wood set out the night before

getting ready to build the frame

Frame all built-Jared (Gideon's brother) did this part with Gideon. Thanks a million Jared!

All finished, ready to be stained

*We used pine*

Wet Stain

*I used dark walnut stain*

There is also a bench that goes with it, but in my prideful arrogance, I was SURE it should be the same length as the table . . . oops. Gideon now has to trim it down before I can stain it. I also have to finish weathering (beating with a chain) the table and the bench and give it a coat of sealer. SO when those finishing touches are complete, I'll post a picture of the final product in our house. But I have to say, I LOVE my table! I'm so glad I have a husband who is willing to take on these projects for me. All in all, we ended up paying about $130 for all of the supplies, stain, wood, etc. I'd say that's a success!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


So . . . we have started our "hard core" week with Finn and his sleeping schedule, or lack of. I just can't let him cry it out, so we are doing what has worked for my sister in law (3 kids) and lots of other people out there. A strict routine/schedule and no more in bed with us. Lots of other minor details (yet critical), so if you want to know more, you can ask me or read the source: The No Cry Sleep Solution.

Although I'm not in a laughing mood come 3:30 am and still no sleep, we have been laughing pretty hard the past few nights at our little guy's personality. Since he can really crawl now, he lays there and cries for a minute, then he uses the crib bars to roll over, then crawl over to the edge of the crib, and stands up and screams at the door. Every time. We just go in over and over and lay him back down and stroke his head. It's so funny to watch him roll over, and crawl (wailing the whole time), eyes half closed, determined to not go to sleep. He reminds me of when I was a little girl; when I was about 3 or 4, I would stand at the top of the stairs at bedtime, stomp my feet and yell to my parents: "I WON'T go to bed, I WON'T go to bed, I WON'T!!" My poor parents had to deal with me, and now my little 9 month old son is doing the same thing to me. Funny how that works out.

This method is already working though! I lay him down to go to sleep totally awake in his crib just an hour ago, and he went to sleep all on his own, and he's still asleep. Yaaaay progress!!

We sure love our little guy though.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Giving Thanks

 What a crazy few months we've had!  For Thanksgiving, I decided I am most grateful that my sweet little Finnster is finally feeling better. The poor kid has had a double ear infection for the entire past month. He finally got better after his 3rd antibiotic, but not before his sleeping habits went out the window, along with my sanity. BUT, things are starting to get a little better. One step forward, two steps back, right? I just have to remind myself that a sick baby is not a forecast for the rest of motherhood.

I really am loving being a mom. It's awesome! Very very trying and demanding and exhausting, YES. But SO SO rewarding. There's nothing quite like getting peed on straight in the middle of your forehead during a delirious 2 am diaper change, and then laughing about it with your husband in the morning. Or when your little guy doesn't want anything except to snuggle his momma. I love it. It's so awesome watching him realize things about the world, about himself. And it's so awesome helping him realize those things.

Finn will be turning 9 months old on Sunday. I can't believe it! He is just growing up too too fast. He is 27 inches tall and weighs 17 1/2 pounds. He's a little guy, but his big personality is just bursting to get out of that tiny body! He babbles almost non stop lately. He is officially crawling and has also figured out how to stand up by himself (as long as he has something to pull on). Before we know it he'll be walking and talking. I am so sad to see his baby days go, but it's also exciting to see him get bigger and see his personality develop right before our eyes.

Well, our Thanksgiving was a fun adventure this year. Lynn and I made dinner for our two little families and Tammy. It was fun but exhausting! I managed to mess up both the things I made (as usual; I only make good food when it's only Gideon and Me. I always cave under pressure), but Lynn made some amazing stuffing and a gorgeous/delicious chicken! We had quite a spread. After dinner we all headed up to the Smylie's for some pie and family time. It was fun to see everyone and catch up! The thing I love the most about Thanksgiving is that it ushers in the beginning of the Holiday season. I can't wait to decorate and put up the tree, bake goodies, send out cards, etc. I really had so much to be grateful for this year. I have a wonderful husband who is so good to me and who is such a great Dad. And we have the gospel of Jesus Christ to give us hope, help us love, and make us stronger. We have everything we could ever ask for; all within the walls of our little apartment.

*We also had our family pictures taken in back in October. They turned out SO beautiful, and I usually tear up when I look through them. Special thanks to my awesome brother in law Jared Medley. Click the link to get your family pictures!*

Thursday, October 20, 2011

A Yummy Treat

I have some pictures I've been meaning to post for a while now. . .

My sister in law Sarah took these photos of Finn when he was 5 months old this summer. They are awesome and I love them so much. I have plans to get them up on my walls . . .eventually . . .

I'm so in love with this little guy. Can't get enough. Thanks for documenting him Sarah!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011


As I sit down and put my fingers to the keyboard, the scope of my emotions is almost beyond words. At present, I am overwhelmed with pride, sadness, gratitude, love, and above all, an overwhelming sense of Identity.

I just saw a few minutes of a new broadcast. It was an in-depth look at the modeling industry. The reporter followed a few girls around New York City for a few weeks, interviewing them quite candidly about the way things work in the modeling industry. What I saw on this television show in just a few short minutes astounded me. These young, let me tell you young girls live a life that they seem to somewhat enjoy, but it makes my stomach turn thinking about the way they live. They don't know where their next paycheck is coming from, they starve themselves to be thin (or use other substances), and their entire self image is bases upon how much money they can make from a photograph or how frequently they get booked. Most of all, what broke my heart was to hear the stories of numerous models using their precious bodies to get ahead. One young woman told a gut wrenching story about being persuaded to participate in a sexual situation to get a photo shoot signing. I will spare you the details that she shared, but needless to say I was sick.

I know that things go on in the world that are awful. I know that there is little respect for our bodies and almost no respect for the sanctity of intimacy between a man and a woman. But to see it so raw really pulled at my heart strings. I feel so very very grateful to have a sure knowledge of who I am. I don't need to be a size two or have my picture strewn about in the media to feel good about myself. I know that I have come from a loving, glorious, wonderful Father in Heaven. I know that my spirit can remain beautiful and strong, even when my body fails and becomes weak and unattractive. I have the most beautiful, precious gift of having a wonderful, amazing loving husband who also sees this. And, together, we have used the sacred gift that God has given to man to create the most beautiful little boy. To me, in my life, he is the embodiment of everything good in the world. I am so much happier at home with him, changing poopy diapers and looking into his eyes as I rock him to sleep, than I could ever be at a job where my peers respect me and think I'm so accomplished. No greater love and sense of pride can be felt than by that of a mother and wife who loves her family and nurtures them with pride and love.

This sense of knowing who I am can be traced back years and years to the teaching I received as a young girl. I have since felt a great, calm and overwhelming reassurance through personal experiences that I am in fact a daughter of Heavenly parents and that I have infinite worth in God's eyes. But these words have always spoken strongly to me and seem fitting for how I am feeling tonight.

We are daughters of our Heavenly Father, who loves us, and we love him.
We will stand as witnesses of God, at all times, in all things, and in all places,
As we strive to live the Young Women values, which are:
Divine Nature
Individual Worth
Choice and Accountablity
Good Works
Integrity and
We believe as we come to accept and act upon these values, we will be prepared to strengthen home and family, make and keep sacred covenants, receive the ordinances of the temple, and enjoy the blessings of exaltation. 

What a sweet, peaceful reassurance these words bring to my soul.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Sunbeams and BYU

Gideon and I received the calling in our new ward to be the Sunbeams teachers. We are so excited about it! We team teach about 5 little ones, and we switch off every other week with another teacher.We taught our first lesson today titled, "I Can Be A Good Friend." It was an awesome two hours. Sharing time was such a blast, trying to keep the kids reverent while holding the girls on my lap, Gideon wrangling Finn, and amidst it all I had a little girl sniff my fingernails (I was wearing pink polish-she thought it might be scented??). We sang scripture power during singing time and man, did I miss that song! It's so refreshing to hear the simple truths of the gospel that are taught in primary. It's good for us to be in there and here those simple testimonies and gospel principles. On our way to class we did a potty/drink break. While in the bathroom one little girl pulled off her socks and shoes sitting on the floor waiting for the other girls who were actually using the restroom. So, of course, the other girls want to take off their shoes. I wasn't going to fight that battle; I said go ahead as long as you carry them back to class with you. In class we had a good discussion about Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead, and how that was a kind thing to do for his friend. We also talked about the loaves of bread and the fishes that were dispersed among the 5,000 and how that all happened because of the little boy who shared what he had with the Savior. Other topics that came up randomly (mid-sentence) were Darth Vader hot air balloons, the fact that Jesus lives in the sky (and is also magical), the fair, and a couple "the gospel" answers. It was such a blast. We have the cutest group of kids. We are so happy to get to serve the sweet little kids in our ward and to feel a part of the ward.

In other news, Gideon just finished his first week at BYU. He got pulled over on his bike for riding during the break on campus (always a rebel ;)), which I really don't know when else you would ride your bike. During class?? But he loves his classes and is really enjoying being on campus where you can really feel the spirit and just enjoy the positive vibe. He is currently re-evaluating his degree options, so we'll see where we end up. Right now he's thinking of 3 options: Accounting, Information Systems, and Actuarial Science. If anybody has advice/insights to either of these three fields, we'd love to hear it! We will hopefully be done in about 3 to 5 years, depending on his major. I know, it's a long road. But we really are enjoying the good ol' days right now.

Other than that, I am officially addicted to spray painting stuff; Finn rolled over for the first time COMPLETELY on his own and on purpose today in the middle of sacrament on the floor; we don't sleep a lot, and we've been vegging out on candy corn. Can't wait for fall to get here! I think it's time to bake some pumpkin chocolate chip muffins this week.

That's our life as of late! Sorry for the outpouring of random factoids, but there you go. Happy labor day to everyone!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

So Long Sweet Summer

So I've been a horrible blogger and not blogged anything all summer. To my defense, it's been a crazy few months. Along with caring for a wild baby boy, we have also moved 3 times this summer, visited 3 states (for a total of 4 flights), driven 16 hours round trip along the north coast, along with many other day-t0-day events. It has been a wonderful summer. Busy, but awesome. We visited my parents in Seattle, then Gideon's family in California, then finished off our travels with a trip to Arizona to see my brother and sister in law Zach and Caitlin and their 3 gorgeous kids. We didn't get any pictures that trip but we did take finn to the water park and had a blast the entire weekend just relaxing (as much as you can with all of our kids!). This was the first time since we've been married that Gideon has had a break from school. Man did we love it!! He heads back to school monday and we are mourning the loss of our together time. We really have had such a blast spending so much time together, visiting family, and most of all watching our beautiful little boy grow and grow. Finn is 6 months old today!! I can't believe it. It's like I went to sleep one night and woke up to this huge little boy. In my mind I still picture him a tiny little newborn. Hard to believe he'll be crawling and walking before I know it. Well, I am sure to get back into blogging now that Gideon will pretty much be gone all of the time and I'll have more "lonely" time. For now, here are some pictures to highlight our summer.













Tuesday, May 24, 2011

86 Days of Love

Finn turned 3 months on Sunday. I am hurrying to type this as he is cooing in his swing, feasting on his hands. He is so time consuming these days, but I love it. I'm usually covered in puke by 10am, and by noon we've both gone through a few wardrobe changes. He smiles and gets excited when we play with him now, and it's so much fun! He is getting to be quite the little ham. He holds his head up amazingly well. I think we're going to be getting him a bumbo this week. He now cries a faint, annoyed cry most of the time before falling asleep. It's really funny except that I feel bad for him when he does it. He weighs about 12 pounds and is about 25 inches long. He's so big! He also sleeps through the night MOST of the time. Although there are days. . . or nights. . . you get the point.

Things are busy around here the past few weeks as we are moving AND painting our entire new apartment. All I can say is thank goodness for instructional paint videos on the internet. And diet coke. Here are a few before shots of the new place (sorry for the poor quality. . . from the iPhone).

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Evolution of Finn

I have been neglecting the blog . . . it's apparent. But I have good reason. I've been binging on baby. Big time. This adorable little boy is like my favorite chocolate cake, a foot massage, and a good chic flick all wrapped into one. When I shove my face into the folds in his neck, the world melts away, and nothing bad can come into that tiny spot. He smells like a baby spit-up-and-heaven cupcake. We've been hiding out. Staying away from any moment that I might have to disperse his beauty into the world; I've been keeping it all to myself, gobbling it up. He's my best kept secret. He's like a new spring hat, and everyone will want to try him on. So we've been sitting in our rocking chair. Neglecting house work, forming not-so-great eating habits (at least on my part-he doesn't really have much of a variety now does he?), watching hulu and snuggling each other like there's no tomorrow.

I've been obsessed with watching him change. He's learned how to suck on his hands. He keeps them in little tiny fists wrapped so tight that I have to wash them out because his spit causes it to smell quite "musty" in there. It's the funniest thing to me. And he also loves classical music, courtesy of Gideon. He plays it on Pandora for him when he's in his swing and he'll stop crying, just sit and smile as he listens to the melodies. It's a beautiful thing. This kid is such a daddy's boy. When Gideon walks through the door at night, Finn bursts into the biggest smile at just the sound of his voice. And daddy knows all the right games to play to get him to quit fussing when he's tired, and his marching through the living room puts him to sleep without fail 100% of the time.

But we do get out. When we feel in the mood. Yesterday we went to Nordstrom and he was so good in his stroller the entire time! He smiled at all the sales ladies and they all "oohed" and "aaah'd" over him. Then I decided to push my luck and try one more store. As I am half naked putting on a skirt in the dressing room, he looks at me funny and simultaneously I smell something fishy. I lean in closer...closer...closer...yep. Code brown. And he starts crying, because, of course, who wouldn't cry if they were sitting in their own slimy poo? So I hurry and slip off the skirt and pull him out of the car seat. Good thing I have a changing pad in my diaper bag, since the bench in there was 100 % concrete. I undo his clothes to find the poo is all the way up to his shoulder blades. Yellow, slimy back-mess. Yum. By now the whole room smells and the sales lady is checking in on me. "We're. . .fine. Thanks," I reply when she asks me if I need a new size. I wanted to say "YES! A new set of baby clothes would be awesome right about now. And some sweats for me. I'm tired of these jeans that are not forgiving of the mommy pooch." So after wiping the poop off of the wall that got there who-knows-how and picking up his binky about a thousand times during his diaper change, I got him all cleaned up and dressed in a spare outfit I had (first time I had to use it!), bought that skirt and got out of there as fast as I could. Do I even need to tell you that I drove through McDonald's on the way home for a large Diet Coke?

And PS: Today we stopped at a garage sale with Finn. They were selling a beautiful piece of furniture for originally $100, then marked down to $45. So I told the lady we could do around $30. She made a wary face and came over to look at it with me. "Well, maybe, you guys are a young couple . . ." and then she saw Finn. He was smiling at her and that took the cake. "Oh, MY GOSH!! Look at that beautiful baby! Oh yes. Yes yes yes. For YOU I will do $30." She then proceeded to call her entire family and all the shoppers over to gawk at our "gorgeous little baby." Finn, I am taking you shopping with me every single time!! Way to go little buddy.