Monday, January 31, 2011

Healthified Pumpkin Chocolate-Chip Bread

I made this last night, and it is SO GOOD! So I thought I'd share. Now I just have to restrain myself from eating it all...that would defeat the healthified purpose. Ha!

1 3/4 C whole wheat flour
1/2 C sugar
1/2 C Splenda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp cinnamon
1 small can of pumpkin (I think it's the 16 oz. size?)
1/2 C skim milk
1 egg
1/8 C oil
1/8 C applesauce
chocolate chips

Bake at 350 for 1 hour. Makes 3 mini loaves.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Baby stuff: A review

There are a few things I wish I would have known about babies and motherhood and all that before having to go through this lovely trial and error process known as parenting. There’s plenty more I still wish I knew! I wouldn’t say that Emily is necessarily is a super difficult baby, but she certainly isn’t an easy, even-tempered one either! I’m not claiming to be an expert by any means, but I just wanted to share a few things that have really helped me. Many of my friends have recently had kids or are about to, so hopefully this might help.

Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child by Marc Weissbluth.  Although Emily and I have not yet mastered the entire sleep schedule yet, she is sleeping 12-14 hours straight through the night and has been since she was 3 months. Before that, she was only getting up once in the night and would go straight back to sleep. Now, we’ve just got to work on her daytime naps. But this book goes week by week and month by month on how to sleep train your child. 

I Am A Mother by Jane Clayson Johnson. A co-worker gave this to me when I quit my full-time job. I loved it! It has helped me deal with the overwhelmingness of becoming a stay-at-home mom.

Mothering With Spiritual Power by Debra Woods. Also helped with the overwhelmingness of motherhood in general.

There were tons of things that people told me I needed and also tons of stuff people told me not to bother with. Here are some of my favorites…

Burrito Blanket. I got this swaddle blanket from this website: and it is amazing! But the most amazing part is that it comes with a DVD that tells you how to properly swaddle and soothe a baby and teach her to self soothe. Emily has pretty much been able to do that since she was a few weeks old, and I’m attributing it to the blanket and DVD.

Playtex Ventaire Bottles. Emily hated bottles at first. We tried a few different kinds, and she loves this kind. It helps keep the air bubbles out of her tummy. The only downside is that they are a pain to clean.

Gripe Water. Helps with gas and hiccups.

Dark Curtains. Emily has been napping much better since we put dark curtains in her room to make it darker during her naptime. Her room was so bright! (OK, so I still need to make actual curtains. Right now we just have blankets up over the windows.)

BOB stroller. I LOVE this stroller. Yeah, it was expensive, but SO worth it. It’s easy to run with and awesome for everything else.

Changing Table. I wasn’t initially going to get one of these. I was just going to change her on the floor. But I’m glad I got one. It’s fantastic.

A few things that I didn’t really love were: a bouncy seat (she hated it!), one of those baby carrier things that wraps around you (too much of a pain to get her in and out of), a snowsuit (again, too much of a pain….a blanket works just fine),  Boppy (I just didn't like it), overalls (too much of a pain to change her).

Some things I wish we would have done: Started the Healthy Sleep Habits method sooner, waited a little longer to start her on solids, started the burrito blanket from Day 1.

Anyway…feel free to add to this list!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Typical Emmy

I was trying to record Emmy doing her little puppy dog pant that she does when she gets excited, and what does she do...spits in my face! She's been doing that a lot lately, and I don't like it. Especially when she has a mouth full of peas or some other vegetable. But eventually she did the panting thing, and I do like that. She just acts so excited. And then she gives me this sweet little face and I have to forgive her for all the spitting.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

6 Months

I can't believe our little Emmy is half a year old today! Time sure does fly. We have had a rough few weeks because since I started working from home, I have been trying to nurse Emily exclusively and not give her bottles of pumped milk like she was drinking when she was with the babysitters. Well, it has been a disaster! She was acting so fussy and getting off schedule, and acting like she wanted to eat ALL THE TIME but not eating well. Then I realized that she was losing weight.

And then I had the speculation that I wasn't producing enough milk for her and the poor thing was starving! So after a trip to the doctor, the lactation specialist, and an infant nutrition consultant, I have started supplementing her feedings with formula. So I nurse first, then give her a small bottle, and then baby food. Sometimes she'll want the bottle, sometimes she won't. And she has been SO MUCH BETTER. Thank goodness. I was going crazy. Of course the regular formula made her break out in hives, so we've had to do soy (holy cow, that stuff is expensive!), but at least she is happier. Which means I am happier too. I didn't want to do the formula thing quite yet, but a happier, more manageable baby is worth it. Kinda ironic we had to start supplementing with formula AFTER I quit work.

Anyway, she finally gained some weight this past week and is back on track. And I am restoring my sanity. :) At 6 months, Emily...

-weighs 14 lbs, 15 oz. (30th %)
-is 26 in. tall (80th %)
-has a head size of 41 cm (10th %)
-loves to suck on her 2 middle fingers
-loves to play with things that make crinkly sounds
-likes stories
-likes to put everything in her mouth
-pants like a little puppy dog when she is excited
-loves to be around people, especially small children
-can scoot backwards on her hands and knees
-can get up onto her hands and knees and rock back and forth
-can get herself into the pushup position on her toes and hands
-loves her baths
-doesn't like green beans or peas
-does not like to snuggle
-still spits up all the time
-rolls over onto her tummy to sleep while sucking her fingers
-is still wearing her 3 month clothes
-moans a lot (it's not really a cry, but a steady moan. Weird.)
-doesn't laugh much. She's only really laughed a few times. :( It makes me sad. Especially when my friends' babies seem to be laughing all the time. A little baby giggle is pretty much the cutest sound ever.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Emily eats and opens presents

Here's some videos I have been trying to post for days! I just think this is so cute how she opens her mouth like a little bird and then has to stuff it in with her hands. She loves all the food she has tried except for green beans and peas.She will even try to eat something right out of our hands!

And here she is opening her presents on Christmas. It was so adorable how much she loved the ribbons and paper!

Staying home: Week 1

My first week home was mostly good. I got up on time every day (except one), exercised, did my hair, and read scriptures every day, got everything organized, wrote 8 articles, got offered 2 freelance projects (which I am excited about), made dinner every night, and even invited our neighbors over to play games one night. I felt like that was a good week and a good start to my resolutions. I just need to keep it up!

I also got offered a part-time job at BYU. I have been wanting a part-time job at BYU ever since I decided to quit my full time one. But something about it just didn't feel right, so I turned it down. I hope that was the right thing. I also saw one of my students at the gym the other morning, and it made me slightly sad that I wasn't going into the office with her.

For the most part, I have enjoyed being home with Emily. I have LOVED not having to leave her in the mornings. It has been fun to play with her more and see her getting so close to crawling! (Yikes!) She has been quite cranky this week though, I am trying to figure out why. She could be long does that take? I also think she might not be getting enough to eat. She hasn't been gaining enough weight and I think my milk supply is going downhill. I also think she is allergic to formula because I mixed some in with her cereal when I ran out of my freezer stash of pumped milk, and she got this horrible rash all over her face. She's got her 6-month checkup here pretty soon, so I hope the doctor can help me figure out what is wrong with her.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011


My resolutions this year might seem a little odd. But with my transitioning from working full-time to working part-time at home and being a full-time mom, I need to set some goals to help in that transition. So here goes...

1. Learn how to be a good mother & enjoy and embrace motherhood. If I am going to give up the job I loved and worked so hard to get, I want it to be worth it. I want Emily to have a good mom and I want to better understand the beautiful role of motherhood. I do enjoy being a mom, but I know I could enjoy it a lot more. I realized this morning that I think part of the reason why I struggle with being a mom sometimes is because it's so unpredictable. I am a planner and I've always been able to do anything I wanted to because I could plan a way to accomplish it. But I need to learn how to go with the flow better and not get frustrated when my plan doesn't work out.

2. Get back in shape. I want to be able to do races again. I signed up for the Goldilocks Womens Bike Race on May 7. I'm aiming for the 60-mile distance. I also think I would like to do the Little Red Riding Hood Bike Race in June and maybe part of the Lotoja this year as well. I did get some cycling shoes for Christmas and I am excited to use them. I also want to be able to run at least a 10K again.

3. Enhance my friendships. I need friends. Ever since we moved to Springville I have not been very good at making or keeping friends. Most of my friends live in the Salt Lake area, and I haven't been very good at keeping in touch with them. I also haven't been very good at trying to make friends here. So my goal is to do something with a friend at least once a week. Even if that means talking to them on the phone. But it has to either be in person or on the phone. Email and Facebook doesn't count.

4. Stay mentally/intellectually challenged. I've got my writing job, and I want to improve in that. I also want to write for more than just the websites that I'm writing for, and get in with some different magazines that I haven't written for before. I would really like to teach at the college level. Just one night a week. I would love to teach a magazine writing class. I'm going to aim for next Fall semester to do that. I also would like to enhance my design skills. I got the Adobe Creative Suite for Christmas, and I want to learn how to use it better.

5. Don't become lazy, frumpy, or a recluse. I know this one sounds odd, but this is going to be a big transition for me. Up until now, staying home always meant it was a Saturday, I was sick or on vacation, which meant I could be lazy and not do my hair and stuff. When I was working full-time, I needed those days to not have to worry about those things. But now, I need to train myself to think that staying home does not equal being lazy anymore. I still need to get up early, do my morning routine, get ready for the day, and be productive even if I'm not going to be going anywhere. I'm still allowed one day a week to be lazy and not have to do my hair, but it just can't be every day. Plus, since I won't have a ton of social interaction with my work-from-home job, I don't want to become a recluse.

We also have a few family goals...

1. Attend the temple once a month.
2. Earn enough money between the two of us so we won't have to dip into our savings. (If we can do that, we will be able to buy a house when Matt graduates!)
3. Being positive and focusing on what we have instead of what we don't.