Monday, December 28, 2009

Cookies!

Many of you have probably read (here or on Facebook) about my cookie quest. Zac and I have been looking for a good, chewy cookie recipe. And I think I've found it! I made some last Sunday and took them to a friend's house. They were, I thought, pretty good. I tweaked a few little things and came up with this recipe. And I think they're pretty flippin' awesome. :D Check it out!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Teething

I'm pretty sure that the babies are starting to think about getting teeth. ACK! These girls are doing stuff waaaaay sooner than Abby did. I'm not ready for all this....

Freaking out aside, I saw some jewelry in a store the other day and I think it's awesome. It's called Teething Bling. It's cute jewelry for Mom that's safe for Baby(ies) to chew on. Pretty cool, huh??

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Rudolph

The video's a little dark - but it's still pretty cute! :)


video

True love

Got this in an e-mail forward and wanted to share:
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It was a busy morning, about 8:30, when an elderly gentleman in his 80s arrived to have stitches removed from his thumb. He said he was in a hurry as he had an appointment at 9:00am.

I took his vital signs and had him take a seat, knowing it would be over an hour before someone would to able to see him. I saw him looking at his watch and decided, since I was not busy with another patient, I would evaluate his wound. On exam, it was well healed, so I talked to one of the doctors, got the needed supplies to remove his sutures and redress his wound.

While taking care of his wound, I asked him if he had another doctor's appointment this morning, as he was in such a hurry. The gentleman told me no, that he needed to go to the nursing home to eat breakfast with his wife. I inquired as to her health.

He told me that she had been there for a while and that she was a victim of Alzheimer's Disease. As we talked, I asked if she would be upset if he was a bit late. He replied that she no longer knew who he was, that she had not recognized him in five years now. I was surprised and asked him, “And you still go every morning, even though she doesn't know who you are?

He smiled as he patted my hand and said, “She doesn't know me, but I still know who she is.

I had to hold back tears as he left, I had goose bumps on my arm, and thought, “That is the kind of love I want in my life.

True love is neither physical, nor romantic. True love is an acceptance of all that is, has been, will be, and will not be. The happiest people don't necessarily have the best of everything;
they just make the best of everything they have.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

More updating...

I recently took a job as a substitute crossing guard for Draper City. It's not anything regular but every little bit will help our budget. And it gets my foot in the door in case any regular, 'full time' crossings do come open. When I was considering working full time again and started pricing daycare I realized it would be stupid for me to work. This is something I can do without having to worry about daycare (the girls come with me and stay in the van).

Last Friday was my first on-my-own crossing. I'd observed twice and Friday I filled in for a lady in the morning and afternoon. Zac only worked a half day Friday, so he came with me and the girls; he wanted to watch me in action (LOL) and take some pictures.

Had to bundle up - it was COLD here last week!! Don't you love my cute new scarf and gloves? Now I just need an earcover or hat to go with them....


My super-awesome, official Draper City employee jacket. LOL I'm technically a Draper PD employee. Oooohhhh.....


Waiting on kiddos....


Getting the kids across safely!! I had one lady that tried to inch her way through before all the kids were across. She got a very dirty look and then stayed still until I was done. :)


When I got done, it was still Happy Hour at Sonic, so we went to get drinks. In the span of 90 seconds (no joke), Abby told us what she wanted (Sprite), Zac ordered it and I turned around while saying, "Abby did you have fun being a crossing gua...."

Wow. Guess so. :)


In other news, Cami has decided to firm up her abs with some crunches. hahaha


LOVE baby smiles!!! Cami has the little asian-like eyes that disappear when she smiles, just like her Momma.


Emma decided to give Daddy's head a little spit-shine. Sweet Emma has the cutest lopsided grin! I think it looks like her Aunt Kendyl's smile.


Cami got bored watching me make cookies.


Abby is getting much better at holding the babies. Although earlier today, she did try to pull Cami off the couch by her neck. We're working on it....

I just realized there are waaaaay more pics of Cami than Emma in this post. I'll post more Emma next time, promise!!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Update...

Big kid in the bath, babies asleep, hubby still at work. Perfect time to update the blog!

Last Thursday, the babies had their 4 month checkups. Both had to get shots...always sad! (And especially hard now that I have to calm TWO babies!!) Emma has now moved up in the world and is the reigning chubster in our house. She is 26 3/4" long and a whopping 16.5 lbs!! (About 95th percentile)



LOVE the thigh rolls!!!


Cami has given up her heavyweight title but not by too much. She is 26 1/2" long and weighs 15.5 lbs. Dr. Clayton kept saying, "They're just big babies!" This is true.


Not as rolly polly as Sister Emma, but still plenty of chub!


I found them sleeping like this a few mornings ago. Too cute!


We have a friend at church that gives us hand-me-downs from her girls (YES!!!) and this kiddie mirror was in the last batch. The babies have enjoyed it!


Through much coercion, including snacks and movies, Abby actually sat still to let me play with a hairdo. I think Santa might be bringing us some better hair accessories. Hopefully the bribery will still work after Christmas. :)


Nana, this picture is for you.
Zac's mom ordered a box of diapers for the babies (WOO!!!) and when Abby and I opened it, she was sooooo excited to see that there was a book included. She yelled, "Mickey Mouse Cubhouse, Momma!!!" She's been carrying it around and 'reading' it ever since.

Not too much going on around here. I got our Christmas cards addressed and in the van...now I just have to remember to go by the post office. LOL I still have thank you cards to write for baby gifts - I'm such a loser. Zac and I have been searching for the perfect, chewy chocolate chip cookie recipe. We'll let you know if/when we find it.



Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Before I forget...

Emma rolled over on Sunday! So now I have two babies that can roll from their backs to tummies - and then both get mad when they're stuck on their tummies!! They crack me up!

We have 4 mo checkups on Thursday; be on the lookout for weight updates and such.

Monday, December 07, 2009

First food

Saturday night, Abby & I decided to make pumpkin bread. The recipe only calls for 1 cup of pumpkin and a can has about 1 1/2 cups. I checked the label and pumpkin was the only ingredient - so I decided to give the babies some!! The first couple of bites didn't get rave reviews - Emma made a yucky face! So I added a little pumpkin pie spice to flavor it up a bit. They seemed to enjoy it! They probably only got a total of 2 tsp each...but we still had fun with it. :) We'll probably wait a few more weeks before we try food again, though....no need to rush things!!


Cami isn't sure what to think....


Neither is Emma! (Not sure why my camera is being so dumb and fuzzy...probably need a new one. Oh well.)


Getting a little more...


Abby, of course, had to help too...


...but we need to work on not sticking the spoon in too far! Oops!!

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Picture post

I know I haven't been posting enough pictures lately - gotta keep the Arkansas family happy! :)
So here are a few catch up pictures!


Cute sisters!! I bought Abby's shirt the night I got the positive pregnancy test; I also bought one pair of ducky pajamas...who knew I'd need another pair?!? :) Nana & Pawpaw bought the babies' shirts when they came to visit in March.


This is how I usually find the babies during/after their naps. :) One of them is generally kicking the other one, which is why the 'abused' baby wakes up.


When I'm sorting laundry or something similar, I bring the babies with me. The plan is to protect them from Abby - can't quite leave her alone with them yet. But, she usually ends up wherever we are. Fun times all day long at the Elliott house! :)


This is, according to Abby, her "Doctor Abby outfit." She cracks me up!


Doctoring one of her babies....this poor guy had a lot of things wrong with him! :)

Thursday, December 03, 2009

College admission essay

Most of you know that Zac has two teenage sisters, Kirsten (17) and Kendyl (14). When we got married, the girls were 8 and 11; truly ''little sisters," which was something new and cool for me. My "little" sister and I are only 15 months apart in age; so getting to be more of a big sister was pretty fun.

It's been interesting to watch the girls grow up. We can't do as much with the girls now that we live so far away but we both love taking them to do stuff and watching them turn into young ladies. We've both felt sort of parental at times, worrying about them and praying they would make good decisions as they got older (they have!).

Kirsten is now in her senior year of high school and applying to nearly every college in the contiguous United States. :) We were pleasantly shocked when she e-mailed us the following application essay for us to read. After spending a good ten minutes crying, we decided to ask if we could post it on our blog. She said yes. So....please enjoy reading! (Note: Zac changed the spelling of his name in college - that's why Kirsten spells it Zach in her essay)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Being fourteen years apart, one would guess that my brother Zach and I would have little in common or know little about each other, but just the opposite is true; he has always been my best friend. Even after he moved out for the final time when he married Sarah, not much changed…for a while.

When my dad opened his present from Zach and Sarah on Christmas day in 2006—a t-shirt that said “World’s Greatest PawPaw”, I was completely shocked; up until that point, my sister and I had been the only “girls” in Zach’s life. Because of the age difference, sometimes we were kind of his “kids”, and I was not thrilled about losing the closeness my brother and I had. When August came I got over it though, and I fell in love with Abby and being an aunt. It is pretty hard to not love a big—twelve pound, thirteen ounce—bundle of joy. Even as a baby she caused me to learn more than I would have ever thought. I learned how to make bottles and then I learned how to feed those bottles to a baby. I learned how to change a dirty diaper and how to give a baby a bath. I learned that I had a lot of growing up to do. But beyond those practical life lessons, I learned to have patience, to be more responsible, and to persevere.

Rather than attending Arkansas Governor’s School this summer and pursuing my own academic enrichment, I moved in with my brother’s family who had relocated to Draper, Utah—a suburb just outside of Salt Lake City. While I wanted to spend some much missed time with Abby, I also wanted to go to help with some daily tasks that were becoming impossible for Sarah to perform. Bending over to pick something up off the floor or even just walking through the grocery store becomes a little difficult when you’re carrying twins that ended up weighing almost nine pounds each at birth. Knowing that Abby was about to face a lack of attention from her mom and dad, I wanted to make sure we spent lots of time together doing things she wanted to do. Because her cousins have played soccer for years and also the fact that I started playing this past year, Abby has been captivated by soccer basically since birth. All she could talk about when I got off the plane was “Kirsten, we go play soccer now?”, so we started on fulfilling this dream right away and headed to the park to learn how to kick the ball. This lasted all of about twenty minutes at which point she decided she wanted to go color with mommy, which was okay with me. Forcing a three-year-old to learn does nothing but make them hate to “learn”. Instead, we tried other things like scrapbooking, cooking—also known as eating the food before it can be cooked, and swimming, all of which she really loved. As a self-proclaimed nerd though, I just couldn’t resist trying to teach her things I wished I could have learned at her age. Sarah had taught her the alphabet and her numbers one through twenty, and Abby always jumped at the chance to recite, or sing them to others. One day when Abby was counting out her numbers to me I said, “Would you like to learn a new way to count”? She curiously looked at me, so I started counting. At first it was just recitation, “uno, dos, tres…”. I taught her some colors in Spanish, too, though those never seemed to stick as well as the numbers. After my month in Utah she still retained her Spanish numbers uno through diez, but I assumed it was because of repetition. In September my nieces came home, and to my surprise when I asked Abby what color her Nana’s red shirt was she replied “rojo… red”. She then counted with me in Spanish, holding up the corresponding numbers on her fingers. I could have cried. I really, actually taught her something. She wasn’t just copying me. She was learning.

While this accomplishment may not seem like a lot, and certainly isn’t anything that would fit on an academic resume, it is one of the proudest moments of my life. My hard work didn’t benefit me. It benefited her. If people keep working on it with her, she could be bilingual by the time she’s my age, and to me that’s success. I wouldn’t trade the world’s biggest trophies or awards for that moment. It was pure bliss.

At only three years old, my niece has had more of an impact on me than almost any other person in my life. Because of her, the world has taken on a new, clearer image, and I’ve changed how I live my life. Winning feels amazing, and accomplishing a major personal goal can be extremely gratifying; however, I learned that for myself, neither of those things were what fulfilled me. What is fulfilling to me is seeing my hard work translate into amazing things for others and seeing them grow and prosper from it. Somehow in that summer, she taught me that the smile of a child was worth missing a paycheck from a summer job. It was worth missing out on an enlightening summer with my peers. Those things can be replicated, time after time if I seek them out, but there will never be another time that I can shape her life. After a few turbulent years of living for others, living for the future, and living without a purpose, I found myself and began to really live.