Saturday, December 22, 2007

Yes, a third post in one day!

What can I say? I miss blogging! If I were to write a play what should I call it? The blogging club?

Well, 3 became 9 one weekend. I went to Orem to visit my two cousins Sarah (see previous blog about her)and Mica. We are one year apart from each other and each have two kids, all 3 years old and younger. And while we gabbed and caught up w/each other, our kids joyfully ate, trashed Sarah's house and played well together! We had so much fun! Thanks girls!

Pre-Christmas at my parents!

These are just a few photos of the fun times we had at my parents house before we went to CO for Christmas. We celebrated Jocelyn's and my mom's Birthday early and had a nice relaxing weekend there.


Well, I went skiing yesterday for the first time in my life! Yes, my dad is practically a professional cross-country skier. Yes, I grew up in Colorado w/the most beautiful and popular ski slopes in the entire country. And no, I had never been skiing before yesterday. Nor really had the desire. But the Stoehr family all wanted to and Tyler convinced me to go. And I decided it was time to face my fears and just do it! Well, let me just say I never want to do it again. I seriously think child birthing was easer than skiing, physically and emotionally. Let me explain. Before Tyler and I even got to the bunny hill I had troubles just putting on the skis! Tyler and I couldn't figure out why my boot wouldn't lock into the bindings. Well, the heel of my boot had a chunk of ice stuck to it. Then, before we even go to the hill I slipped down a very minor hill. Well, it took like 15 minutes for me to figure out how to get up!
During my first run on a green slope I fell multiple times, came to tears nearly twice and trudged along long paths and inched down small hills and about twice fill the "thrill" of the wind blowing in my face as I whizzed down a hill, or rather, skied down a hill! So after it took me at least 1 hour to make it down this slope, I was exhausted, frustrated and saddened. I then went to the car to eat lunch and I didn't feel like going back for a 2nd run. I felt like I had been beat up (not that I would know what that feels like, I can only imagine) because my entire body was sore. Well, I talked myself into going down once more. And I did make it down a lot quicker and it was more enjoyable despite the fact that my head bounced on the ground on one fall and then a few minutes later I literally hugged a tree before I fell down into a thick layer of powdery snow. I'm a tree hugger! Then we sat in 3 1/2 hour icy traffic while I thought of my dear children and how much I wanted to be w/them instead of being stuck on a white mountain. So after all this, I have officially decided that I do not want or need to go downhill skiing ever again in my life. I have now been there, done that, and so on. Thank you very much. The end. Period. No questions asked.
BUT, I do need to add, that despite my struggles and frustrations yesterday, my love for Tyler increased again. I remember how patient he is and what a great teacher he is! He explained to me how to ski (I just didn't get it or was not coordinated enough for it). But he was incredibly amazing! He stayed by my side the whole time, picked me up when I fell and encouraged me the whole way! That was the best part of my day!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Visiting Teaching

Well, I thought I would never say this about my current visiting teaching route, but I really love it! I have not been one that has difficulty enjoying visiting teaching. Perhaps it's because I've been the Coordinator in two different wards, including Paris, and so I've had to be an example. And it's because of that calling that I've learned how important it is for our Church, especially the Relief Society.
But the reason I thought I would never enjoy this route is because the average age of my companion/sisters is 50. I visit one active sister who has recently been re-converted to the Gospel. I visit 3 inactive sisters and have a less active companion, who is also 76 years old and suffers from Dimensia. But the reason I love my route is because I see potential in every one of these sisters. Plus it is a challenge. To try and get my companion to visit w/me or at least write our sisters a note or something. Also, It is a challenge to even let me into some of their homes, w/beer cans and cigarette smoke. But it doesn't bother me. What bothers me is the complacency of some of the women. They knowingly don't come to Church and always have an excuse as to why they don't come. It's very sad to me. And because of this, I keep going. Honestly, I don't want my route to change anymore. I am learning a lot from these geriatric (no offense) women. We do have some things in common. Our boobs are sagging, our hips will never be thinner, we forget small or important things, and we love to sit and talk about our families. I never thought I would enjoy being called "kid" or talking about social security, but I do! I love visiting teaching and I love these sisters! I hope this doesn't change anytime soon!

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Crunch time

Okay, so I have this week to wrap presents, pack and clean my house before we go on vacation for two weeks! Yes, I have all my Christmas shopping done! (except for one more toy for Jocelyn--this whole birthday/Christmas at the same time thing is throwing me off).I am looking forward to the break but I feel a little stressed because I have several projects to get done before then!!!!!! Plus I've got social calls and visiting teaching to get done. Kris, can our Mcplay date happen at the new year? i still want to visit w/you!!!!But it is all fun stuff (except for cleaning) and for this, I look forward to it.

Plus I look forward to the time that Samuel will stop asking to go to Papa's house or for a present every single hour of the day. What am I doing wrong? My son thinks Christmas is all about presents! I have tried to tell him the Nativity story and that we celebrate Jesus' birth but it seems like my words just hit his forehead and fall onto the floor. Perhaps I am not being patient enough about telling him the true meaning.

So today we made a paper chain and each night he gets to rip a link off and that gets us closer to when we get to go to Papa's house. I thought it was a little too late for an advent calender. But he still doesn't get it!

Let me just tell you that he has been a naughty three year old this week! a terror! What happened to my sweet little boy??? For example, yesterday, while Tyler was attending to the kids, Samuel dumped the entire soup can sized jar of fish food into the fish tank! Needless to say, Tyler was furious! He had a paper to finish up and instead he was stuck cleaning out the entire tank while Samuel sat in time out in the bathroom (for about 1 hour) while I was setting up for our ward party that night! He has been like this all week! Just little things like sneaking snacks, dumping his entire toy box into Jocelyn's crib while she's sleeping, etc. And Tyler and I are baffled! What should we do? Lock him up? Hide toys? Scream, slap, yell? Ahhhhhhhhhhhh!
Anyway, I know this is just a "phase" but I really hate it. Parenting keeps getting harder w/these new ages and challenges that come w/them! Remind me, why did I sign up for this parenting thing again?

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

I cleaned most of the front area of my apartment today! that's big considering it hasn't been done in over a week!

Monday, December 3, 2007


Okay mom's, especially those w/daughters. I am having a debate w/my indecisive self about what baby doll to buy for Jocelyn's first birthday, which, unfortunately for her, falls on December 27th. I seemed to have blasted to the past because I found these adorable mini care bears and bought her one for Christmas. But I couldn't decide on which doll to buy. I was debating b/w a cabbage patch newborn (which consequently has reddish brown hair and green eyes...looks kind of like me, or Jocelyn) OR a "little me" doll, just your basic stuffed centered doll w/plastic arms and legs and closing eyes.
Which one would you suggest I get????????? the cabbage doll is bigger and soft bodied and cute and sentimental and squeezable. But the other doll is smaller and truer to life. Let me know what you think, please! Should I live in the past, vicariously through my little girl (which is not really a good thing), or should I get her a more practical (and cheaper) doll?

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Blog Bandwagon

Okay, I am really tired and was just on the phone for, like, the last 3 hours (because it is Sunday=free minutes) and so now I feel kinda sick and I keep eating these scrumptious pumpkin chocolate chip bars from martha stewart because they are the best way to get rid of that other half of the pumpkin filling sitting in your fridge plus they are dang good! was that a run on sentence?

Anyway, onto another subject. Have you noticed that everyone who starts a blog starts out saying they felt "pressured" to do so? I know I did. But I think it's so funny how we, especially women, feel like we are pressured to blog. Like we've "given in" and succumbed to be on the blog bandwagon. I mean, seriously, why wouldn't you? It's not addictive or anything. It's not like it will hurt you or something. gosh. You have got to start one now!... if you haven't already. And if you have, well, start another one! No, but I am not pressuring you or anything (you know who you are) just because everyone is doing it! So get on! Get on the bandwagon!!!! ??? :) :) :)

Thursday, November 29, 2007

I love my kids...

...most of the time. Sometimes they just drive me crazy. I don't know if Jocelyn is just a dramatic female, sick or just plain needy. Half the time this is what my two kids look like, Samuel torturing Jocelyn:

In Paris we had a "pet" pigeon who flew into our window and ate the crumbs (that I hadn't vacuumed up yet) off our carpet. Well, Jocelyn is sort of the same way (except that she doesn't fly). She is our little vacuum cleaner. Most of the time it is the food she threw from her high chair, so usually it is edible. But she always seems to find the tiniest bit of trash in the corner where I missed w/the broom or vacuum. I'm not a bad mom! She just loves to EAT!

Samuel, on the other hand, is our anorexic child. He is so resistant to eating healthy food. And actually he doesn't even like all desserts like ice cream. He's strange. What have I done to my child? I'd rather him starve than eat an unhealthy snack. Is that right? Or should I let him eat fruit snacks if he absolutely refuses to eat fruit, even if he is starving? I don't know.....

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Those holiday pounds

I can already feel the weight of the holidays creeping on. My new jogging regime is needed more now that the holiday gorging has begun. What I don't understand is that I have been jogging for the past three weeks now and I think I've noticed a difference, visually. But I still cannot fit into my old size 12 jeans! Yes, I just admitted to everyone what jean size I am not! Which means I am bigger than size 12!

Anyway, perhaps the following picture explains why....

I need to curb my diet and not eat so many gosh dang sweets!!!! I made 5 batches of sweet breads in preparation for Thanksgiving! Yes, 5!!! That's approximately 15 loaves of chocolately, citrusy, fruity goodness. I gave several away to my visiting teaching group and Tyler's home teaching group, froze some and the rest went to Thanksgiving relish tray arrays.

But I did enjoy the holiday! It was even a little too short! Usually I am anxious to get back home, allow my kids to take their normal naps and be in a quieter place. But I enjoyed my time at my parents and didn't want to leave! Part of it was because Tyler was fully invested in this weekend. In other words, he didn't do a stitch of work or homework! I had him all to myself (and the family, of course!). Plus I was able to be a little lazy. We played a lot of games (and Tyler and I didn't even fight!)

and ate A LOT!!!! of yummy food. My favorite was my cornbread stuffing, Jennie's pomegranate jell-o salad, Marci's rolls, and the most interesting award goes to my dad--we had smoked lamb! Not the most traditional but yummy nonetheless. Plus we had yummy pizza on Friday night w/french bread and Italian seasoned olive oil. THEN my aunt and uncle Draper and their kids (my fun cousins) came over and cooked Persian food! Yum Yum!

Also, what made this weekend special is that we got to spend some more time w/ Jennie and Grant who are moving to Denver in a month....sad...and so we won't get to hang out w/them as often. PLUS, on top of all this, we had constant babysitters. Tyler and I were able to go the temple!!!!, a movie and a bike ride/run all by ourselves! It was so nice! ahhhhh. It was a nice holiday! I love my family! I love my husband :)

Monday, November 19, 2007

My cousin Sarah

I just wanted to send a shout-out to my cousin, Sarah Jane! I am so proud of her right now. Sarah is only one year older than I but I have always looked up to her. She has always been artistically inclined, something I only dreamed of being. She is an artist! A painter/graphic designer?/illustrator. Check out her art! She became an artist at a young age and studied at some famous academy one summer in the midwest--Interlochen???? and she painted me this kitty painting which is now in my bathroom:

But a little back story. Micaela, Sarah and I (all cousins)created this little club that we would re-visit each summer when we were young. It was called "the three dolphins club". We each bought a silver ring with two dolphins intertwined. And then we had a little box that had "valuable" things and we were going to make it into a time capsule and bury it in Grandma Knell's backyard. Did we ever end up burying it? I can't remember.

One of my favorite memories w/Sarah was when I spent time with her at her home in MD. We toured Washington DC (right--scary...). We watched the summer Olympics together and took walks in the forest behind her house. We also drew a lot, well, mostly Sarah drew a lot. We drew pictures of our favorite gymnasts, our favorite Olympic event to watch. I loved visiting her!

Below is a picture, though, of when her dad brought her on a business trip to Colo Springs.

I got to meet up with them down there and stay at the grand Broadmoor Hotel. a 5-star Resort Hotel. We thought everything was on the business's tab so we ordered in breakfast. We went all out. We ordered fresh strawberries, french toast and eggs. It was nice. But later that trip when Scott, her father, found out what we had done he kindly told us that he had to pay for that and not the business. Oh, we felt so bad. I still remember not wanting to buy anything after that. But then we decided to take this train up to Pikes Peak and they told us it would be cold. Well, it was the summer time and I hadn't brought any warm clothes. So again, Scott, had to fork out some money to buy us each a sweater from the gift shop. They were like $45 each! We're wearing them in the picture below. We had fun, didn't we? I felt so rich and fancy when I stayed there. We kept imagining we'd bump into a celebrity and practiced what we'd say to them. OH, the memories.

But since those childhood days she decided to go to the performing arts realm. And doing very successfully. She majored in Musical Dance Theatre at BYU and went on to the lead role of Mary in the Church's production of Savior of the World several times.

But after having two children she has stayed at home and been able to go back to her roots as an artist. She debuted her Etsy shop in October and as Micaela put it, her art is "flying off the shelves." I am so proud of her! And I know she is trying to balance her dreams of being an artist and a mom, and all at the same time! Go Sarah! I am so proud and happy for you!

Please check out her artwork on Etsy.

Here is one of my favorites. She illustrates children's art. I love it and can't decide which ones to buy!!! Check it out for yourself. I am sure you will see something that you will connect to and bring you back to your childhood!

I love you Sarah!

little trickster

First of all....a funny little story. So, I was downstairs, at about 9pm, visiting my friend, Melissa, and I heard some footsteps above. And I was a little surprised because I knew Tyler wasn't watching TV (he was playing his computer game instead) but I decided not to worry about it. When I came home I found this:

It was Samuel's footsteps that I had heard above! When he wants to eat something or knows he is in trouble, he hides underneath the table. And so he must have gotten out of bed (and no, Tyler, didn't even notice....typical...), found his favorite, poppy seed bread, and hid under the table to sneak his little treat. He eats the center out of this bread because it is the best part--the gooiest and sweetest part. But he did not do a good job of cleaning up his mess. He left a trail of evidence. He also left his juice cup, empty, next to the fridge. So then I knew who was the culprit! Silly boy!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007


Back in the day when I was an acting student at BYU we were taught to use tactics to achieve or goal or objective. One of the popular tactic choices of use was "to guiltify" which is obviously not a real word. But we used it as an easy way to say "to guilt trip" someone.
Well, today, I had an experience with this woman who was almost a pro at it. I went to Ikea to do some Christmas shopping but first I needed to return something. I saw the huge line and could tell people had been waiting a long time and were growing impatient. Well, I went to take my number and had found some extras laying on top of the little machine that people had either left because they didn't want to wait anymore or some kid pulled too many out and they were placed on top. Well, the number I chose was 14 before the one next out of the machine, and about 5 numbers away from the next in line. So, obviously I took the one from on top, #600. For a second, I thought to myself, "I should give this to a person already in line." But I dismissed that thought because I didn't know what numbers everyone else had anyway. There were people in line and scattered among benches so I would have had to ask everybody what their number was which was which would have been dumb. So I kept my number and took my place on a bench in line to wait. It did take a while. Well, when I was about 2 numbers away from my number being called and this lady, we'll call her lady #1, turned to me and asked, out of curiosity, what my number was. I told her "600" and she looked at hers and hers was "608". She then looked at me strangely and asked "How did you get a number before ours? Weren't you in line after us?" I said, "Well, perhaps." And then she asked, "Well, how did you get it?" I told her, "I found it on top of the machine." and then another, nicer lady in line said, "someone probably left it on top because they didn't want to wait." Then lady #1 asked, "So you haven't been waiting as long as the rest of us?" and started asking everyone else what their number was. And then she looked at me, not knowing exactly what to say next but without any tact whatsoever. She came up with this, accompanied by another very nasty glare, like worse than any of my glares, "Would you actually feel good about going ahead of us?" WHAT THE HECK!?!?!? Did she just say that? Oh, that made me mad (and sort of embarrassed for her and me at the same time). So, I said, "Well, yes. Who would I choose to give it to?" and trying to avoid any contention but wanting to keep my number in line. I was thinking about giving it to the nicer lady with a child, but honestly, would that be fair to everyone else? And do I need to be fair? And honestly I thought I deserve to keep my number because I was smart enough to look at the ones on top and realized they would come up quicker than 614! Wow! When my number was called about a minute later I could feel her eyes burning into my back. Just glaring at me thinking I was such an uncompassionate person for not giving her my number 600!!!!! I got over it quickly but was afraid I would have to confront her in the monstrous Ikea and that I would be trapped there to face her amongst the piles of rag rugs and handmade baskets. Ugh. Well, I don't feel guilty now. I think I handled the situation quite well. I only hope she got over it.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Before's and After's

Top picture: Before when I was a little frumpy and pastey looking, didn't wear make-up and didn't get out much.

Bottom picture: After I lost some weight and after I started caring more what I looked like and actually did my make-up and still have some color left over from the summer.

Before: Left: the sippy cup lid.

After: Right: the sippy cup lid after it fell from the top rack of the dishwasher. And after I called my neighbor, Melissa, asking her if she had left a candle burning because I smelled this awfully sweet waxy smell. Come to find out it was melting plastic mixed with dish soap! oops!

Before: Jocelyn's little mullet and overgrown bangs.

After: Jocelyn's first haircut!

Top: Before I left Tyler with the kids.
Bottom: After I came home from leaving Tyler with the kids.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Which blog do you like best?

Do you like this blog site better? or the old one:

Please, leave your comments and let me know!

Friday, November 2, 2007

I got tagged!

10 Years Ago: Tyler and I started dating. This photo is of our first dance. Homecoming, October 17, 1997. And I was in the school's production of The Tempest, my first official lead role.

5 Years Ago: October 17, 2007. I got married! It was a beautiful day. I was nervous and very excited at the same time. But notice the solo picture. I'm thinking, "What have I just done?" Looking back, I realize I really didn't know what I was getting into. But I am grateful for that naivety because if I had the choice, I probably wouldn't be brave enough now to get married.

1 Year Ago: Halloween. Look how good I looked! I was 7 months pregnant and I look fatter 10 months AFTER Jocelyn was born. Oh, sad.

I cleaned my house all day in preparation for my mother-in-law coming. Then the kids, my sister Jennie, bro-in-law Troy and Grandma Stoehr went to CornBelly's at Thanksgiving Point! It was cold but really fun! I think I traumatized Samuel by subjecting him to the giant blown up dragon. It was scary even for me. Oh, sad again.

5 snacks I enjoy:
anything chocolate, graham crackers, yogurt w/granola on top, applesauce, cheddar jack cheesz-its.

5 things I would do w/a million dollars:
buy a house, go on a shopping spree at the GAP and Gymboree, travel to Europe again and again, go to NYC and see a bunch of Broadway shows, and give my family some nice presents!

5 places I would run away to:
if only....:) Paris, somewhere in nature when it is warm outside and quiet and I could be alone, Mt Pleasant (my parents), my bedroom where I could sleep for a LONG time, some exotic place like the Caribbean w/Tyler.

5 TV shows I like:
HGTV's--Designed to Sell, Design on a Dime; PBS--Curious George, TLC--Baby Story, Man vs. Wild

5 Things I hate doing: getting up in the morning, restraining from eating junk, cleaning, fighting, losing my patience

Biggest joys of the moment
: my kids, wearing make-up, having a clean house, seeing my husband happy!

Tag--You're it!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween! With tradition, we made doughnuts this year. I invited Melissa and another neighbor, Leanna, over. They each brought their boys Parker and Dakota over and we had a fun doughnut making session. The boys helped roll out the dough. And Samuel was the biggest advocate for cutting them out and putting the holes in the center. He did a pretty nice job of centering them too. But mostly the boys just messed up every room in the house by dumping every toy out. But we ladies were able to sit and chat and eat and chat and eat some more. What are your Halloween traditions?

I love this time of year. The crisp air. The crunchy leaves. The oranges, yellows, golds, reds and purples. I love the smells and the foods and the overall feeling of Autumn. But I have realized for the past three years that I find myself sort of depressed. And talking it over with my awesome new friend and neighbor, Melissa, last night, I think I have a difficult time transitioning from the summer to the fall. In the summer we vacation, school is out, the evenings are cool the sun is shining. It is a carefree time of year, for me. And then the fall comes and it creeps in but leaves so quickly. And then it is winter. ugh. BUT so many good things in my life have happened in the fall. For example, Tyler and I were married in October. And the weather was PERFECT! Samuel was born in September. I learned how to overcome depression in the fall. We did a lot of sightseeing in Paris in the fall. And the holiday season begins in the fall with Halloween. So, I love Autumn. And here are some pictures proving my children love it too!

It's starting again!

Well, with the encouragement and peer pressure (j/k) of friends and the desire/need to write my thoughts down and to show off pictures of beautiful kids, I have decided to start blogging again. Plus, maybe I'll spend more quality time blogging instead of eating!!!!
This is my first one since we left Paris. So, I suppose I should say goodbye to that phase of my life, change the title of this blog and move on with things. Ah, "Pah--r--ee". My little heavenly haven, but more so looking back on it than it actually was. At times I really didn't like it. But more so than not, I loved it. I am reminded of it in some small way at least once a day! And I don't even try to! It just pops into my mind. A thought, an image, a time, an experience. It's wonderful. And sometimes I feel very nostalgic over it. And then on those really bad days that I throw little pity parties for myself I wish I was there again. Only to escape my real world that I live in here. Sad, but true. As Tyler would say, I am trying to "escape reality". But it's true. Sometimes I wonder what I am doing and what I am thinking. If I am at all. When is the last time I truly thought deeply about something? Let's I helped in the nursery w/my new calling--"nursery song leader" singing songs w/hyper 2 year olds. At least once a day I am reminding Samuel how to count and recognize colors. so--toddler level thinking-getting deeper.....ummmm.....I thought about what I was going to wear today....ummm...I bought the same lotion at 2 different stores in 2 days forgetting that I'd already bought it the day now I have 2 brand new Sauve cocoa butter lotions (oooh--new scent to try!) So, in other words, my brain is dwindling. I think I need to read. Maybe I'll attempt to finish Eclipse, even though I am still upset that there is a 4th one coming out!
And what's w/Dumbledore being gay? Stupid....pointless....
Well, this is why I have a hard time blogging...I ramble.
See ya soon!