As ready as I am for John to be done with school, there are perks to the student life that I am going to miss, namely, month long vacations. I don't foresee four week breaks happening all too often, (read, ever), once he becomes a full fledged working dentist. And that's just seems sad.

We (I) have a list of things we (I) want to do during his break. First things first, taking little PJ to sit on Santa's lap. An essential you know.

I felt like we'd be bad parents if we didn't take him to sit on Santa's lap his first Christmas. I'm sure as a boy it's something he could careless about, but I felt like we'd have to chalk that one up to a major failure in parenthood if we didn't do our duty and place him on the jolly old man's lap.

And, he loved it!

I don't think I've seen a happier kid than him sitting on Santa's lap, all smiles of course. We'll see if the smiles hold true next year, when he's more keenly aware of what's going on. For now, I'll continue to think I have the coolest, cutest, happiest kid there is, and of course, ooh and aww over how cute he looked sitting on the old man's lap.

And while we were in Bass Pro getting our free Santa picture taken, we decided to have a little fun ourselves, target shooting of course. Free entertainment at it's finest. 

Check that one off our to do list.



My lovely mother pointed out that today is 12.12.12, a triple digit date. The next triple digit date won't be for another 88 years. 88 years! I won't even be around in another 88 years. Unless by some sure miracle I'm still kicking it at 115...but that sounds both painful and miserable. So, realistically, this is the last triple digit date I get to enjoy.  

I'm going to try my best to heed my mothers plea and do 12 acts of kindness today, which means I should probably leave the house...and get out of my pajamas...so this could get tricky. Join me, it could be fun.

And because some people think it's the end of the world today, why not indulge in lots and lots of deliciousness. Tis the season, right?



As of today, John has ONE semester left of dental school. One! Which means the number of months left in Oklahoma can be counted on ONE hand. One! He now has ONE month off of school. One! His last final was taken this morning. And, for at least another year or so, finals are over and done with. Done! Where has time gone?

Little PJ and I joined John and some of his dental school friends/professors for lunch today. While chatting with one of his professors I thought I should be a good wife and ask him how John does in school, and how we thinks he'll perform as a dentist. He looked at me with all honesty in his voice and said, "You picked a good one!" I felt like a proud wife. A classmate chimed in and said, "You know, four years ago, John was the most desirable bachelor in all our class." Lucky me, he's all mine now! 

We still laugh about the fact that four years ago John started dental school single as ever, and four years later he'll be graduating married, with a son. A lot can happen in four years, especially when you're Mormon! :)

Neither of us can believe the end is actually in sight. At least the end of dental school. But it's here, and then it's off to live the Air Force life for awhile before we have to make any real big decisions. Thank goodness for that, it makes these next few months seem a little less stressful.

At the end of all of this,  he'll actually be a doctor. Sometimes I forget he's actually in school all day learning to be a dentist. I guess I should now start trusting him to fill a cavity, should my sweet tooth ever lead to such a thing...


Seven months later...

Seven months later, and I still think I have the cutest kid around. I must be his mom, right? Oh, how we love having this little guy as part of our family. It's amazing to think he was once a whiny, often times unconsoleable baby, and now's he's full of nothing but smiles, laughs, and ok, an occasional cry here and there, but the cries are few and far between...thank GOODNESS for that.

I love getting to spend my time at home with this little man, even though I'm afraid I'm a rather boring mom. I make him watch the Today Show with me in the mornings, humor me on my runs in the afternoon, and if he's lucky, he gets to accompany me to the mall or the craft store for a little window shopping before John gets home from school in the early evenings. I'm pretty sure he already knows that shopping's a girl thing, and every time I say, "let's just look at one more store..." and I look at two or three, he lets me know that I have just lied to him. He's a quick learner, that one.

Everyone who see's my baby, and asks me how old he is, thinks I'm lying when I say his age. The other day at Michael's a lady asked me this, and when I said, "he'll be seven months in a few days" she laughed in shock and said she didn't even think her 11 month old is as big as he is. And he's probably not. He's already in some 12 month clothes, and even those are looking a little tight on him. In his defense, today he wore a 12 month shirt and six months pants...that were a little snug, but tight skinny jeans are in style for boys, right? Yes, we pick and choose which age range we make work around here.

He's a fast growing boy, and I'm ok with that. It just means I can be a little more reckless with him and treat him like the tough boy I know he's going to be. It also means when he gets shots, it's like no big deal to him. He's like what? You just shoved something sharp into my fat covered thigh, and it's supposed to hurt? Please! Where's my sucker? I'm pretty sure he screams harder when I walk out of the room these days, than he ever has for his shots. I think we're nearing that attachment phase...and for now I kind of find it endearing. John hates it.

Last month he weighed in at a whopping 21 pounds. I don't even know how much be weighs now, but my arms are getting nice and defined, so really, there ARE perks to having a heavy child. He's all boy, through and through, and I just love his chubby little self. Let's just hope in five more months he doesn't gain another 13 pounds, could you even imagine a one year old weighing 30 some odd pounds? Gross!

And I'll end here, even though I could ramble on and on about this cute little chunker a little longer. But, aside from select family members, I'm sure this is just another one of those boring mom post that no one really cares to read. 

Happy seven months little boy!


Treats make life better

This morning as my child was fighting his morning nap, after trying to get those yawns to turn into a snooze for nearly an hour, I walked to the kitchen, opened the fridge, and enjoyed a nice helping of a dessert I had made the night before. As I was indulging in some deliciousness, yes, I AM an emotional eater, and it tastes good, I thought to myself, how have I not gained 100 pounds since my child was born?!?!? I'm pretty sure every morning I tell myself I can hold off having any treat until at least mid-afternoon...today I said I could make it until dinner time, but who am I kidding? With my child, and the general unfolding of events around here, I'm lucky if I make it past 10. Today was 9:45am, so I know if nothing else, it's going to be a good delicious day.


Thanksgiving...a week later

Has it really been a week since Thanksgiving? I suppose it has, and it seems like it was just yesterday.

This year I put my best attempt forward at making the entire Thanksgiving dinner by myself, minus the rolls that my mom so thoughtfully made and carried on the plane with her. Thanks, mom! But, aside from the rolls, I did the whole shebang. I was about to comment about how pathetic I am for never having cooked an entire Thanksgiving dinner on my own, but then it dawned on me, that NOPE, that's not pathetic at all, that just means I've always had it with other people. But somehow, this year we were about to have a solo Thanksgiving, we're so cool! So, to avoid that lameness, I bribed my parents with my companion pass if they'd come out and visit us. My companion pass, a yummy Thanksgiving dinner, and a cute grandson to play with all they wanted..

My bribe worked.

With Thanksgiving out of the way, we ventured out to explore a few things in the city that we've yet to see, and yes, if you're wondering, my parents came with a list. They didn't want to get bored! :)

Martin Nature Reserve Park...

The Centennial Land Run Monument...

 Not part of the planned weekend, this little one getting his first tooth...

 We even ventured into the Stockyards for some tasty food at Cattleman's...

And, we even made time to go through the OKC Bombing Museum, which was really incredible, but oh so sad. Why are there so many lame people in this world?

Thanks mom and dad for coming to visit, you're welcome here anytime you'd like, especially when you demand your grandson from me in the morning so I can sleep in. Yes, come back anytime you'd like.

We love you! Xoxo



We ventured over to St. Louis this past weekend, a little visit to our new stomping ground if you will. We wanted to see what we were getting ourselves into, and had high hopes that a visit to STL would make us all the more excited for our move next year. It did. Even if we cut our four day trip down to two. Don't let that fool you and make you believe we aren't excited for the road ahead. We had fun, but, after one day in the city, we realized we saw what we came to see, and decided we rather sleep in our own bed then spend another night in a hotel room. Preston agreed. So, yes, the day we arrived in the city, we turned around and headed right back home a few hours later. But it was worth the fourteen hours in the car. Most definitely.

We now know that our options consist of whether or not we want to live in the middle of corn fields, OR the city. And for some reason this is becoming a tricky question, although, I can't really figure out why since I'm a city girl through and through. Oh yes, I'm not the one who would have a long commute every day. I suppose these things need to be considered when finding a place to live. Corn fields or the city? Corn fields or the city? First world problems right here. Also, why do Air Force Bases, or any base for that matter, always have to be in the middle of nowhere, or the ghetto?!?!

In other news, in case you ever run into the same problem pricelining a hotel, like say you book your hotel in the wrong state, or, decide you want to cut your vacation short, rest assured, you CAN indeed cancel your hotel reservations, even if they say over and over again you can't. You can. I did.  Three hotel rooms booked. Three hotel rooms cancelled. So much for planning ahead. It's so much easy to fly by the seat of your pants instead.


Our Daily

This pretty much sums of PJ as of late:

Full of giggles...

And our little chatter box...

This little boy cracks me up, and I have a feeling the fun is just beginning.


Nutella Popcorn

This popcorn is made way too often in this household. I came up with this recipe a few months back, and, well, we're a little obsessed now. We try to limit how often we make it around here, but sometimes we just can't help ourselves. Naturally, it's eaten during stressful times, namely the presidential debates as of lately. So, of course, while we're sitting in front of the TV watching the votes come in, we're eating a little bit of heaven to ease our anxiety over this race for the White House.

If you're in need of a quick fix to curb your anxiety, too, try it out. 

I give you,  

Nutella Popcorn:

2 bags popped popcorn
1 bag mini marshmellows
1/2 a stick of butter
1 cup nutella
1 cup butterscotch chips

Pop popcorn and place in large bowl. Melt 1/2 stick butter with 1 bag of mini marshmallows. Once melted, add 1 cup of nutella and stir until fully incorporated into marshmallow mixture. Pour over popcorn and gently mix until nutella mixture covers popcorn, add butterscotch chips and mix. Enjoy

Side Note: This popcorn is also good if you replace the nutella with peanut butter, and the butterscotch chips with chocolate chips. But, in this household, the nutella concoction wins our vote every time.

I never said this was healthy, but it's SO worth the indulgence, promise!

Warning: This popcorn is addicting.


Half a Year

This little boy, this cute, chubby, happy little boy is six months old today. Yes, six! Half a year old already. It seems like just yesterday we were driving home from the hospital with him in the back seat, screaming the entire way. It was a long 10 minutes. I'm glad we're not doing that all over again. Little did we know, he was just preparing us for what the next three or four months would be like.  Crying, crying, and more crying.

But, here we are, six months later, and we survived the colic, the short naps, the constant need for bouncing, and all of the other hectiness that comes with a new baby and being first time parents. Yes, we survived, and I'd like to think we survived with flying colors. Flying I tell you.

This little boy has given us a run for our money, and I fear the "fun" has just begun. From the day he was born hes set the rule around here. He's stubborn, demanding at times, the most attentive little kid, and, if he doesn't want to do something, don't even think about making him do it, like napping. When the boy wants to nap, the boy is going to nap, but don't you dare think he's going to do it a second sooner.

He's full of personality that little one is, and I just love seeing him learn and grow every single day. Being a mom is kind of fabulous.

At six months old this little boy:
Talks up a storm.
Loves food of all kinds...are we surprised by this one? Just look at his thighs.
Sleeps  from 6:30ish-5:30ish, wakes up to eat, and falls back to sleep until 8.
Scoots around, mostly in circles.
Loves sticking out his tongue.
Loves laughing
Sits up like a champ.
Smiles whenever I walk into the room. He's a momma's boy in the making and I love it.
Loves to put any and everything in his mouth.
Loves being around other kids.
Takes two naps a day, a 45 minute morning nap, and an afternoon nap that can be anywhere from 45 minutes to three hours. We never know what we're going to get, but when we get those 3 hour naps, it's a little of heaven to my day.

I'm not sure how we lucked out with this little boy, but he sure makes us happy around here, and is always making us laugh. Six months into this whole parenting thing, and I think I'll keep the job, I kind of like it, and him for that matter.


Meet Me in St. Louis, Louis*

Three years ago I knew that coming to Oklahoma was only temporary. In fact, I wasn't too keen on coming here at all, but I knew my soon to be husband would be worth the less than ideal location, and anything is possible for a few years, right? Now, three years later, and of course I'm swallowing my words, and, dare I say, I'm getting sad thinking about leaving? Funny how that always happens.

After all, Oklahoma is where my new life as a married woman began.

It's where we owned our first home.

It's where I met some of my dearest friends.

And, it will always be a place I look back on with fondness, because it's where our little family began.

How can we not love Oklahoma just a little bit?

We're down to six months left of being Oklahomans. Six months. Half a year. And then we're gone. I'm having a hard time believing the end is really in sight.

And where would we be going after our Oklahoma adventure is over? That remained a mystery. For months and months that remained a mystery, as we sat and patiently waited for the Air Force to tell us our new destiny.

Well, as of Friday, the wait was finally over, and we were given our orders for where we'd be headed for twelve short months.

I don't know if it was shock, the fact that it was our 9th choice, or the fact that I thought for sure we'd be heading to the east coast in six more months, but on Friday afternoon, when John and I read where we'd be headed, I had to hold back the tears. We're going WHERE, is all I could say. Tell me this is a joke?! To say I was disappointed would be putting it lightly. And ok, maybe I cried...just a little. I was so sad. I had been dreaming of going back to the east coast since we put our requests in, and I had high high hopes that our second, or third, or fourth choice would have been honored. D.C. needed a Candrian back in it's presence, right?


Instead, St. Louis is where we'll be calling home for twelve months, until we're shipped off somewhere else for four years. Our fingers are crossed it's across the Atlantic!

Three days after finding out where we'll soon be calling home, and the anger and tears have thankfully disappeared and been replaced with excitement for the new adventure that lie ahead. I mean, this DOES look kind of pretty, right?

Sure it wasn't one of our top choices, and let's be honest, we're ready to be out of the mid-west, but we have no doubt this is where we're supposed to go, and good things will be in store for us. If nothing else, John got into the AEGD program he was hoping to get into, and that's all we were hoping for anyway, awesome location or not. So, whose to say St. Louis isn't an awesome location except me? After all, at least I'll have a Costco and Trader Joe's close by, and that's enough to be excited about right there. Not to mention there is a temple close by, direct flights to SLC, and professional sports teams to enjoy, that are apparently a religion around there, so they may not love that we're Giants fans. But that's neither here nor there. The few people I've talked to have done nothing but praise this city, and it makes me think, just maybe we're going to enjoy it after all.

Twelve months. One year. Starting August 2013, St. Louis, here we come!

* What's with me moving to places with musicals named after them? Meet me in St. Louis, anyone?



I say it every year, so, it should come as no surprise that I don't love Halloween. I normally find any and every excuse out of Halloween parties, because I don't want to dress up. Now that my days of playing pretty pretty princess are over, Halloween just doesn't do it for me anymore. Ha!

I've heard once you have children Halloween becomes fun. Well, I have a child now, but he's too young to care for the holiday, so, lucky me, I have a free pass out of any real celebration this year. And hopefully next, too. Maybe the year after that? We'll see.

Despite being less than enthused about this here holiday, we made it out to our ward Halloween party anyway. Free dinner people! It gets me every time. And since I put next to zero thought into what we (and by we I mean Preston) should dress up as, we went with what was easy. Thanks to our beloved San Francisco Giants for making it into the World Series, and my bro. and sis in law for supplying us with the goods a few months back, our baby was quickly turned into, Pablo Sandoval, aka Kung Fu Panda. And we followed suit, as a Giants fan and Tim Lincecum. We're so original. I hope Halloween is this easy every year.

And just because I have no interest in a particular holiday, don't think that means I pass up an opportunity to make cute treats. I don't pass up free meals, and I certainly don't pass up opportunities to make treats. Ever!

Last night it dawned on me that today is Halloween, and we had two pumpkins just sitting on our front porch untouched.  When I causally mentioned this to John, I didn't quit expect him to jump right up, set everything up (Christmas music included...yes CHRISTMAS music) and get to work.
So, our pumpkins got a makeover after all. And I now have Christmas music, in October, stuck in my head.

I'm neither the artistic one or creative one in our relationship, so, instead of doing some fancy shmancy pumpkin, I went with what was easy. I consider this "doing my part" in the upcoming election. 


Halloween, I don't hate you, but I don't love you either. But that doesn't mean I don't at least TRY to enjoy you. I've definitely been enjoying all of the candy I bought for our cute little trick-or-treaters. Thankfully, they're all coming by tonight to take it off my hands. What sweethearts. They just better not wake-up my sleeping baby, who goes to bed at 6:30, or, the porch light goes off, and I'll continue to eat the rest myself. Which I'm not opposed to doing mind you.

One more Halloween (almost) out of the way, and the best time of year just around the corner.

Happy Halloween from our little panda to all of you!


Oh Utah

I'm still waiting for the day when leaving Utah is easy. Why oh why is it so hard for me to leave Utah behind when I have no desire to stay there long term anyway?  I love being away from Utah far too much to ever go back, yet, whenever I'm home, it just feels so comfortable to be there. I know it has everything to do with my parents being there, and less to do with Utah itself. But there are those mountains, oh those glorious mountains, with their fall foliage and all, and I miss them whenever I'm away, especially this time of year. And, maybe the fact that I grew up there might play a small role. It's home, it will always be home, whether I like it or not.

Little PJ and I just spent the last week in Utah hanging out with family, preparing for a wedding, and relaxing as best we could while on vacation. Now that I have a child, relaxation and vacation no longer belong in the same sentence, especially when you add a wedding to the mix. But, we still tried the best we could, and I'd like to think there was a little bit of successful relaxation involved, even if it was in the smallest of doses.

There were too many highlights of this trip to name. But the biggest highlight of all, my sisters wedding. And let me tell you, the entire day was next to perfection. Perfection! Oh, I wish we could go back and relive that day all over again, and it wasn't even my wedding.

Low point of the trip, the flight back. Bless the man who sat next to me for being so understanding of a whinny, sleepy child, it was semi-rough. But on a happy note, I have now successfully completed my first round of flying solo. It feels good to have that under my belt. Note to self: the complimentary bag of pretzels is just as good a toy as any. And here I thought I needed to pack all of his prized possessions. 

Even if it was hard to leave Utah behind, again, a simple reminder that snow is in the forecast is all I needed to hear to remember why it's not so bad to be away. Away in Oklahoma where it's 80 degrees. I'll take it. At least for seven more months anyway.


Family of Three

Five months after his grand debut into our lives and we finally got around to capturing this little family of ours on camera. My only requirement for our family pictures, they had to have an Oklahoma feel to them. I'm fully embracing where this family of ours started, Oklahoma glory and all.

Thanks to one of my friends out here for capturing us just perfectly. I'm in love with how they turned out, and I'm totally biased, but I think I have some fine looking men on my hands.