Tuesday, December 30, 2008

On a First-Name Basis

It's the strangest thing when your child starts calling you by your first name.

Owen has recently traded in "Mommy" and "Daddy" for the occasional "Bridgette" and "Mark". I think it's due to the fact that he's been hanging around older cousins who call us by first name, and it works for them. Why not do the same?

Still, it creeps me out when he walks into the room and exclaims, "Hi, Bridgette!"

Monday, December 22, 2008


So here's a little piece of information you might be interested in.

And it may also explain my lack of posts lately. I've been super sick this time around. It's all I can do to keep up with the basics in my life such as taking care of my firstborn. Luckily I think I'm turning a corner just in time for Christmas. I have felt pretty good all week and have just reached the beginning of my second trimester. If all goes according to plan, we will have a new addition by 07-08-09.

Mark your calendars, people!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


It's embarrassing really. My poor little blog hasn't had a post in over a month. I'm still here...just barely. The entire month of November was spent crafting. I created over 30 craft projects to sell at a holiday boutique. And by the end of this week the holiday boutique will be over so I can move on with my life. I wish I could say I made some cute projects for family and friends as well, but I've got nothing. I've barely begun Christmas shopping at all. And on top of that, I planned another church Enrichment Night which took place last night. I forget how much work it takes each time I coordinate an event. But the evening was lovely and I can now check it off my list.

Other items on my list of things-to-do:
1. Clean my house!
2. Attend a bazillion holiday parties (well, three this weekend alone)
3. Host a family of five who are in the midst of moving back to Utah...we are so sad!
4. Find time to Christmas shop
5. Paint our living room
6. Paint my toenails (they are in need of some serious polish)
7. Attempt to put together a family Christmas card (may not happen this year)
8. Eat my weight in holiday goodies

Saturday, November 01, 2008


Maybe it's his age. Maybe it's his personality. Either way, Owen was firmly against wearing any sort of costume this year. And no amount of coercion or bribery could convince him otherwise. Trick-or-treating went a little like this.

First house...lose the feet
Second house...remove the headpiece
Third house...shed the outfit altogether
Fourth house...relegate the treat tote to Mom

And so it was that he trick-or-treated with no costume and no treat bag. He just couldn't be bothered with anything.

Yet he very much enjoyed trick-or-treating. He paraded around the neighborhood with his best buddy, Trenton (who kept his cowboy costume on the whole time, by the way). He greeted each and every dog or child we came across. He ran. Full on ran, from house to house.

In the end, we stuffed him into his suit just long enough to snap a few photos.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Real Roadtrip

Last week we took our first real roadtrip with Owen. I guess any extended amount of time in the car could qualify as a roadtrip, but in my mind it has to be at least 6 hours. And in this case it was 13. 13 long hours.

The purpose of our trip was two-fold. Work and family. Mark had to travel to Seattle for work, and that just happens to be near my family. So I decided to tag along.

We were skeptical about the long journey considering Owen's opposition to his carseat. He has been known to escape even the tightest of buckles when he wants out. Once he even opened the car door while I was driving. (But that's another blog altogether.) We decided now was as good a time as any for introducing him to the roadtrip.

Amazingly, he did not try to escape once. He was a very good little passenger, except for that one time he puked all over. Then there was the time he puked again. Oh, and after a change of clothes and a wipedown of the seat he puked a third time. So if you discount the faint smell of vomit for the remainder of the trip, it was really not so bad.

The good news? We survived our first family road trip.

The bad news? Every time we get in the car Owen thinks he needs his blanket, pillow, milk, snacks, a fistful of toys, and a show to watch.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Costa Rica

THIS is where we decided to go. And it was amazing!

Before I get begin I must admit I nearly sabotaged our trip by forgetting my passport at home. We made it as far as SLC before we even noticed. There was no way we could leave the country without it. So with the help of Kim and Caleb breaking into our house, retrieving the passport, and shipping it to us, we were saved. Two days late and two hundred dollars later, we were on our merry way to Costa Rica. Honestly, I remembered everything down to the very last detail...except for that teensy weensy blue booklet!

Now for the trip! We traveled with our Oregon friends, Heather and Brad, who created a lovely itinerary for us. You'll find that I don't include them in many of the pictures I'm posting, and that's solely because they are tan and we are not. They make us look bad. And as for the dog Heather is holding...I'll get to him later.

The first part included a stay in the jungle near an active volcano. Literally this is what we saw when we gazed out our cabin window in the morning. We loved watching the lava ooze down the slopes and the steam drift from the summit. Once in awhile the volcano would spew hot steam. Scary? Yes! It felt like we were in Jurassic Park with roaring dinosaurs in our midst.

And the waterfalls, oh, the waterfalls. This was the first of many on the trip. I can't say I did more than dip my feet in. But they were beautiful nonetheless.

This waterfall was the grandest, and the guys couldn't resist climbing around it (even though the posted signs clearly stated "No Pase").

All geared up for a zip line adventure through the jungle. A-MAZ-ING! This was the best day ever.

Can you spot me on the course? We were high, seriously high. And the zip lines were long, the longest stretching a half mile. I was freaking out at the beginning, having flashbacks of my tramatic sixth grade ropes course that triggered an unusual case of shingles. But by the third platform I was sold. One of the best things I've ever done!

Relaxing at a hot springs resort wasn't all that bad either. This place was a garden of Eden. Breathtaking. The water was naturally heated by the magma from the volcano. Does it get any cooler (I mean hotter) than that?

And then there was the beach. Our final destination. The water was warm, but the beaches weren't as pristine as imagined with it being rainy season and all.

Pura Vida, baby! This was at our resort by the beach. It doesn't get much better than chicken nachos and tropical drinks while lounging at the pool bar. Swim a little, eat a little, swim a little...

This is Freddy Acuna. We discovered him on the roadside near the town of La Fortuna selling his wood carvings. He was so nice and kept telling us (in broken English) to check him out on YouTube. "My history," he said, "My history." You're curious aren't you? Check him out here.

We bought this super cool wood carving from Freddy Acuna to bring home to Owen. It is a coati; an animal we saw a lot in Costa Rica and part of the raccoon family.

We also picked up some Costa Rican hot chocolate. Britt is actually well-known for their coffees, but since we don't drink the stuff we were delighted to settle on chocolate instead.

Even though we brought home some pretty sweet stuff from the trip, I think Brad and Heather's souvenir trumps ours. Meet Tico. Heather found him at the beginning of their stay and instantly fell in love. Nevermind that he was dirty, malnourished, full of ticks, and missing teeth. He was a homeless dog like dozens of others we saw throughout the country, and he needed help. She saw to it that he was fed, cleaned up, and tick-free in no time. Now I'm no dog lover, but he is seriously cute and very well-behaved. You'll be happy to know that he now resides in a loving home in Oregon. That's one less homeless dog in Costa Rica.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Just for the Record

Number of days Mark has been OUT of town so far this year: 70
Number of days I have been OUT of town (without Owen) this year: 5
Number of days we have been IN town hosting visitors: 30
Number of days Mark and I have had "quality time together" this year: virtually nil

Are you getting the picture?

Mark and I have spent roughly one quarter of the year apart, have hosted visitors another 10% of the time (no offense to our visitors-we love you!), and have never left little O alone. So we decided it was high time to get away.

Where did we go?

Check back and see.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Night Walk

It was the perfect evening for a night walk. So Owen and I put on our jackets and made our way outside.

First we had to gather the necessary supplies for the excursion.
Flashlight...check. Cup of milk...check. Mini pancake...check.

On the lookout for lizards. None tonight.

A trail of ants? You bet.

Mail from the postman? Not at this hour.

A fortuitous airplane sighting. Does it get any better?

Anything lurking in the pool? Not unless you count that drowned bee.

Was our night walk a success? Oh yes.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Enrichment Night

So I know I have been slacking on posts lately, but there is a very good reason. I have been up to my eyebrows in crafting and decorating for the past few weeks. Serving as the Enrichment Leader at church, I was in charge of putting together the annual craft night. Now that it is said and done, I think the evening turned out pretty well. Aside from the organizing of classes and gathering of supplies, I prepared a demo on "setting a holiday table" (as if I'm an expert on the subject...please!). Anyway I showed how to create six different holiday tables using one set of dishes. I really wish I had pictures of the finished products, place settings and all. But I only managed to take a few pics during the planning process. Mark is SO glad the planning process is over, by the way. Now we can use our dining room table again and he doesn't have to watch Owen every night while I make a trip to the store to buy "just one more thing, honey!"

These paper lanterns were used as the centerpieces on the dinner tables. They rested on a pretty piece of autumn paper layered with burlap.

For this Thanksgiving centerpiece I used metallic paints to give the gourds a lustrous look.

I love the pop of colors in this centerpiece. Fall fruits and vegetables sound so yummy right now.

This is for a kids' table. I just love the tiny pilgrim hats on candy sticks (thanks, Kim, for helping to glue all those little pieces together!)

Peppermints! It would be fun to incorporate other classic Christmas treats with this.

I used my cupcake stand as a holiday tree by placing shiny ornaments on it. Super easy!

Guess you know what I'll be using on my Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner tables.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


My brother graced us with his presence a couple weekends ago. So I will grace you with some pictures of his presence.

We spent a day up in San Francisco seeing the sights. What's not to love about the Golden Gate?

I have never been to the bridge on a more beautiful day. Perfectly visible. Perfectly warm.

We also visited the Oakland Temple grounds where Owen found a friend.

And a girlfriend.

And a pet.

And we made a trip to the beach where the boys skimboarded their little hearts out.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Happy Birthday to Me

And what a birthday it was! It is refreshing to know birthdays can still be exciting post adolescence. The festivities included a half day at the beach, a long Owen nap in the afternoon (freetime for me), a lovely dinner out, and decadent chocolate cake...not to mention a showering of well wishes (thanks to Facebook alone). I have such great family and friends!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Hotel Solomon

Coming to the Bay Area? Need a place to stay? We offer very affordable rates. We also provide free cable/internet access and a continental breakfast (cereal, mostly). Our luxurious (kind of) pool and hot tub add to the amenities.

Seriously, we love having visitors! And August has already brought two sets of visiting friends and family. Take a look!

Mark's parents and nephew (Chase) came to visit just in time for Owen's birthday. And we made our first trip down to Monterey while they were here.

Our day was mostly spent at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. A very cool aquarium! And although Owen liked every little thing we saw, my highlight was the jellyfish exhibit. I have been fascinated with jellyfish ever since I wrote a research report on them in elementary school. They are amazing creatures!

Then came our Connecticut friends, Justin and Randi. We spent a beautiful day in San Francisco seeing the sights. And believe it or not, we spent the majority of our day at a rooftop park. Coolest slides I've seen in a long time. Owen was LOVING it! We also managed to see the MOMA, Golden Gate Bridge, and Wharf.

As always, the beach came into play. It involved burying Owen in the sand, relaxing in the sun, and hanging out on the boardwalk.

Tempted yet? Call me.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Birthday Boy

Guess who turned two this past week?


Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Flower Class

On Saturday I took a floral class offered by a very talented girl up in San Francisco (psst...she's done flowers for Martha Stewart Weddings magazine). She taught us the techniques of working with more modern flower arranging. The class was amazing. I can't wait to start playing around with some beautiful buds!

Here's a sampling of what we made:

Want to see the class in action? Go here.

Monday, June 30, 2008

The Hulk

I think it's time to let you in on a little secret. (whispered) Owen has a FIERCE case of the Hulk. This may not be news to some of you. I've mentioned before that he was a struggle in Italy, but there were other circumstances that brought out that beast. And then yesterday. Yesterday he made me cry.

It began a couple months ago. At least that's when I started to notice that my sweet little one wasn't as sweet as I once believed. First came the frustration. Then an escalated pattern of grunting, crying, and the like. Soon Mark and I said to ourselves, "Oh, it looks like our little guy is having a hard time expressing himself. How cute. But he'll talk soon enough." Then came the incessant head banging. Anger, and a quick search for the nearest hard place to bang his head. Not enough to really hurt, mind you, but just enough to cause a minor bruise. We tried our best to ignore the dramatics and pay attention to the cues so a tantrum wouldn't dare show its ugly little head. And that's when he kicked it up a notch. High-pitched shrilling screams were followed by thrown objects. So Mark and I said to ourselves, "This is more serious. Perhaps our little guy needs time out from the situation to calm down. Yes, time out," we both agreed. Thus began the hitting, headbutting, and hair pulling. If we tried to pick him up, we'd make sure to grab hold of his arms to avoid a hit, headbutt, or pull of the hair (usually reserved just for me).

And then yesterday. After a couple of particularly hard days I was tired of dealing with the twos. My spirits were already low. And a tantrum began. Only this time he managed to add something more. After a particularly hard hair pull, he just sat there and laughed. Laughed at my futile efforts. Laughed at my weakness. Laughed at me. So I cried.

And wouldn't you know, today he has been just shy of angelic. He's probably harnessing his special powers for the upcoming weekend when we are with large crowds of family. Then, and especially then, he will unleash the beast.

Monday, June 23, 2008


Summer is in full swing, and I couldn't be any happier. The weather, the family and friends, the outings. Here's a rundown of it all.

Owen and I spent a week in Utah with family, while Mark traveled to Germany for the launch of two new products. Owen liked hanging out with his cousins, Chase (pictured above), Ryan, and Cooper too. We went on a lot of outings, but one of our favorites was the Hogle Zoo. We got to see a rare white alligator, which is one of only 10 of its kind in the world. So cool!

We also enjoyed a visit with our long time friends, the TurleyBensons. We celebrated Father's Day together and made some awesome candy bar posters for the resident father and fathers-to-be. We went to the Santa Cruz Boardwalk for arcade games and deep-fried Twinkies. But mostly we just lounged by the pool and ate summer treats like homemade "Benson Berry" ice cream.

And of course, we've made good use of the beach since the weather has been so f-a-b-u-l-o-u-s! We went to Rio del Mar with our friends, Kim and Caleb. Sunshine and sand castles. Warm weather and water. Need I alliterate longer?

And this fine foot photo comes complete with story. During our day at the beach, I looked down at Mark's flip flops and noticed one of them read Roxy...as in the girls' brand...as in my flip flop. Wait, why is Mark wearing my flip flop? Turns out Mark had been wearing one of mine and one of his the entire time at the beach. Apparently he was in such a hurry getting out the door that he didn't even notice he grabbed two different sandals. And he still didn't notice after wearing them for a couple hours! I can't figure this one out. What's even funnier is his refusal to acknowledge it even happened. Needless to say, he's not going to like this post!