Wednesday, October 31, 2007


Okay, so wonderful cyndi (she's another of my favorites in the ward) called me tonight and said "I was trying to figure out who I knew that would do something crazy with me to get free stuff and I thought of you". On Halloween if you dress up like a burrito and go to Chipotle you'll get anything on the menu for free!! Chipotle is kind of like the Toledo Cafe Rio. I actually liked the burritos better here even.

So, off we went with the Ericksens (dressed kind of like burritos...notice the tortillas and lettuce on us) to get free dinner! It was so much dang fun. Tons of people were coming in not knowing about the special deal so we made their days and gave them some of our tinfoil and whatnot to wear. Really if you had anything resembling a costume or tin foil, they'd give you free food. I bet we got free dinner for ten people (including a man dressed as a terrorist with a gun)!! It was so great and the food was astoundingly delicious. These types of things give me anxiety...I want everybody to know about it so they can get free burritos as well! I tried to get a hold of everyone in the ward whose phone numbers I have in my phone! I wasn't as successful as I would have liked, but oh well. Apparently they do this every Halloween so we'll be headed back next year for sure!

Enjoy the pictures! even Zeb got free food. He was our baby burrito.

The other family pictured is Cyndi and her family! Her husband was my MTC teacher! Thank heavens he doesn't remember me all that well. I got into some big trouble with him a few times (really).

Here is costume number two! I Think Zeb liked it a little better cause he could actually move around in it and we could hold him without him squirming all over! yet another great reason to be in a good ward! Lots of free costumes to choose from! the rugrat did so so well trick or treating today! and he even drank an entire bottle at the end of it all. three cheers for zebby.

Every year they do trick or treating down the main street in Perrysburg. Perrysburg is one of the little side towns of Toledo that is actually closer to our house than downtown Toledo. It was perfect today. The weather was FANTASTIC and there was lots of good candy. Too bad z can't eat it huh? We went for playgroup and there were tons of people from the ward. All of these activites aren't really for the kids! It's so nice to have something to do almost everyday.

Here are some of the little kidlets as we began our adventure! Z was the youngest little tyke there, but like I said playgroup is more for me than for him!

Here are some of the buildings and whatnot downtown. It's a quaint little street and is having a christmas parade and tree lighting in a few weeks. you can even see them putting up the christmas lights in the one picture on the left!!

Here is a picture with some of us moms. these are just a few of my favorite people here in toledo. The city is full of fabulous and "worthy of being called favorite"-- people!

splish splash

So the rugrat ate once yesterday (seven ounces) and then went to bed at seven! we force fed him at ten and thank heavens he took nine ounces! unfortunately he awoke at seven this morning not wanting anything to eat again. Let's hope its a tooth. I am hungry for him. Last night he much enjoyed his bath and probably got at least a few ounces of bath water to drink! I'd be super worried but he's still happy and playful as usual. Later tonight I'll post some pics of our adventures today! We are going trick or treating to old town Perrysburg.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

little swampy has been acting strangely

Yesterday the poor little rat would not go down for naps. He was so tired he could barely keep his eyes open. Here is a picture of him fighting sleep. He finally just put his head down in disgust and fell asleep (after 2 and a half hours of fighting it).

This morning he woke up at four play. He didn't want to eat, didn't cry, just giggled and rolled around. I am really not a happy camper at four. I just put him back in bed and he got back up at play. Kent took care of him at five. Again at six-thirty he decided to play. Luckily he sat in the bathroom while kent got ready and whatnot. This is a four am picture.

The strange thing is, it is now almost nine and he is asleep, but still hasn't eaten since last night! Little Z reminds me of his auntie metta with his strange sleeping and eating habits!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Happy Halloween

Tonight was the ward "trunk or treat Halloween chili cookoff". I really don't like chili and I don't know why it has to be served at every blasted Halloween activity. oh well. The activity was pretty great. Poor little Z didn't really like his costume much and all of the people and cacophony of sounds prevented him from sleeping or eating. He is so enamoured by what is going on around him. The very moment he got in his car seat and the car started moving he zonked. The above picture is Z with two of the first year's little boys! Zeb got his costume from Emilee in the ward who got it at Walmart for two bucks! He is a pea pod. Lots of people thought that he was a caterpillar (possibly because I was a ladybug and they thought he just needed to pupate). The picture below is Zeb with Sam. Niether of them wanted to be photographed at this point.

Here is the family picture! I was a ladybug for the third year in a row! I really like it :) and we got some superb wings at Savers for super cheap. They attached to everyone and everything I walked by tonight. Kent didn't have a costume so we went costume hunting tonight and found some great stuff on clearance. Due to the controversy with the headmaster of Hogwarts we decided to lighten things up a bit. Kent went as none other than Dumbledore.

Full Moon Walk

On every full moon the park near our house hosts a "full moon walk". We had tried to go in the past but couldn't ever get the timing to work with our schedules and they were always on school nights! Last night was the perfect weather and timing so we decided to go with our neighbors. It ended up being a lot of fun! We had two guides who were two of the nicest people I've yet to meet in Ohio! They were such naturalists and loved their jobs. It really would be a dream job! working for the parks, giving tours, watching animals, and all sorts of great stuff.

We saw lots of deer, heard owls, spotted some glow worms (yes, they really do glow in the dark), and even thought we heard flying squirrels. One of the guides told us a story about a nature photographer at a nearby park who was charged by a deer and killed by antlers to the heart! Pretty intense huh? Lately when I'm running there will be deer really close to the path (sometime less than five feet away) and sometimes they'll jump across the trail right in front of me. I keep envisioning a hoof clipping zeb in the head and his brains spilling out or an eyeball being plucked out as they jump over the stroller. The story didn't help my paranoia at all.

At a really dark part of the trail the guides handed out lifesavers and we did the "spark in the dark" thing. I recommend trying it out for those of you who haven't. Just take wintergreen lifesavers and crunch them up in your teeth. They'll spark.

As you can tell from the pictures, the litte rugrat slept through the entire walk! Too bad for him. Near the end of the walk I asked the guides about the upcoming levy related to the metroparks and they sent me home with these great posters to put up in our yard! Elections are in just a few weeks :) Plus we talked to the guides lots about Utah! They'd both been and absolutely loved it! They loved that we'd all served missions and been around the world too. I love being able to meet new people. It really is one of my favorite things in the world.

Friday, October 26, 2007

chilly chilly fall!

I am so much happier in the cold chilly weather!! I love that I can see my breath and that Zeb needs to be bundled! I love being cold and warming myself up with a run! I love the gloomy gray skies and the crisp air. I was made for the fall.

Here is little Zeb's buddy and across the hall neighbor, Sam Dockter! I can't wait till Zeb can really play with him.

We tried to get a picture of them together but it just wouldn't happen! Poor zeb gets so frustrated watching the kids run around and play! he wants to chase them so badly. We also collected some leaves. I want to frame them and hang them in my living room. I'm going to go search for a good frame today. If it turns out nicely I'll post the finished product.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

He's GAY!??!?!

I don't mind being politically incorrect, but I certainly don't want to be rude. I cannot, however, contain my reaction to the fact that DUMBLEDORE IS GAY! We had the discussion at walking group this morning and I've been meaning to post it for awhile but kept forgetting.
This is an excerpt from Newsweek.
"In front of a full house of hardcore Potter fans at Carnegie Hall in New York, Rowling, sitting on the stage on a red velvet and carved wood throne, read from her seventh and final book, "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows," then took questions. One fan asked whether Albus Dumbledore, the head of the famed Hogwarts School of Wizardry and Witchcraft, had ever loved anyone. Rowling smiled. "Dumbledore is gay, actually," replied Rowling as the audience erupted in surprise. She added that, in her mind, Dumbledore had an unrequited love affair with Gellert Grindelwald, Voldemort's predecessor who appears in the seventh book. After several minutes of prolonged shouting and clapping from astonished fans, Rowling added. "I would have told you earlier if I knew it would make you so happy."
I first heard it from kent, but didn't believe it until I was doing some research on it this past week. My take is that it is kind of a slap in the face to all of the fans that have loved Harry Potter for it being family friendly, etc. I am not angry by any means, just a little disappointed. Luckily I didn't have the info before I read the books. Reading them again may be a little different with that idea stemming in my head. I don't at all like the fact that Rowling made reference to an "unrequited love affair" with Grindewald. I didn't want to hear about a heterosexual unrequited love affair of Dumbledore's, let alone one with Gellert.
I suppose they are her characters and she may do with them whatever she wants.

Yet another recipe

I'm always looking for new dinner/dessert or whatever, so if anyone has any great ones, I'd LOVE for you to post them or just send them my way. Really, I WANT RECIPES.

Here is another one of my tester dinners! the flash made the mac and cheese glow but it really was amazing. I loved it and Kent gave it a ten!!! definately a redo dinner. I love-love-love mac and cheese but it isn't really balanced or swimming with a plethora of healthy ingredients. This little recipe is a great way to enjoy the mac and cheese and add some tasty health and goodness. The veggies tasted really really good in it all. Plus, I am now a ground turkey advocate. I think that it even tastes lots better than ground beef! My mom always said, the fewer legs something has, the better it is for you! i.e., fish!

It is a Rachael Ray specialty, and no I haven't heard back from the show! I'll keep you all posted if I do hear anything.

Here are the ingredients. The directions are a bit longer so I included the link if you are interested! It was actually quite easy to make. I halved the recipe and we still had leftovers for Kent's lunch at school today.

Italian Shepherd's Pie
1 1/2 pounds mini penne or any mini short-cut pasta (I used whole wheat pasta!) Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)
3 pounds ground turkey (extra lean)
3 tablespoons tomato paste
5 large cloves of garlic, finely chopped
2 medium-size or 1 huge softball-size onion, diced
3 medium-size carrots, diced
1 medium zucchini, diced (even thought I halved it I still used an entire zucchini)
1 red bell pepper, diced (I put some orange and yellow in as well)
2 1/2 cups chicken stock, divided
1 tablespoon poultry seasoning
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup milk
2 cups shredded provolone (I used the preshredded Italian mix from Kraft)
1/2 cup shredded Asiago cheese (I used one of those containers that also had romano in it)

he's mobile and is getting hair

Here's some more baby news...pretty normal stuff but still good info for all you grandmas, grandpas, aunts and uncles, cousins, etc so far away.

After our park excursion this morning I jumped in the shower to warm up and clean up! I normally just stick the rugrat in his carseat and he'll hang out in the bathroom with me. He loves to watch the shower curtain (the bright colored squares fascinate him) and he likes the sound of running water. He normally makes a few noises and talks to me a bit. Today was no different than normal. I open the curtain and peek at him every few minutes to smile and whatnot, but he's pretty good to just hang out. Today I took a bit longer shower than usual because he was being so good. I turned off the water and opened the shower curtain to see THIS! He had his blanket on the floor and was laying on it. He somehow kicked off his blanket and then squiggled out of his seat to land on top of it without me hearing and without any squawks. Once again I am a delinquent parent. I've got to watch this little arthropod (it's his new nickname because of his rolly poliness) more closely.

here's a small photo of the rugrat's hair growth. It's starting to come in thicker on top. he's got these long little wispies that just poke out the top of his head. It's kinda hard to see, but I think he's going to get his dad's hair. It's coming in like a little helmet head. His hairline looks a lot like Kent's. I have no idea what the line through the picture is.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

music man

Never fail, the song "Tomorrow" can get Zeb to relax and smile! When he gets all wound up or gets too tired to sleep I will sing it to him. Lately I have been so sick of singing it. I don't know all of the words so I just sing the same parts over and over! Last week I logged onto my mom's blog to randomly find "Tomorrow" playing. Now I just plop Zeb in front of the computer and go to Nanny Annie's blog. Zeb loves it. He'll just sit and smile. The very moment that the song ends he'll squawk again.
I'm pretty sure he got his dad's musical affinity. He certainly didn't get any from me. Kent wanted me to remind you all that when Zeb was just one month old he would sit on his lap and listen to him play the piano (at my parent's house when we lived there for a few weeks). Piano music gives me anxiety a little bit. Let's hope Zeb turns out to be a musician like his papochka.

p.s. I went out with the sisters today and we taught a lady whose last name is Zeb! Spelled Zyeb. Nutso huh? She absolutely loved our little Zeb (she had two really nasty fat cats that she loved too).

Sunday, October 21, 2007

here's for all of you in the snow!

After Kent talked to his dad we decided to go for a walk and enjoy the little bit of warmer weather that we have! I guess you all had quite a good snowfall today in Utah. I am as jealous as ever but we enjoyed our little stroll at the park! Unfortunately our camera ran out of batteries as soon as we arrived so the cell phone pics will have to do.

The fall here has been a little disappointing this year we've been told. The weatherman said that due to the late hot temps the leaves missed their peak and have kind of just fizzled to dullness. There are some really great colors but not as abundant as I'd like to have seen them.
We found a really cool vine thing hanging on the trail today so I got Kent to hang on it like Tarzan. We were a little worried something was going to come crashing down on Zeb so we moved him out of the way and had our fun. The temps today are actually quite nice, in the 70s I believe! I think that the colors of Toledo are going to be pretty dull in about a week and then stay dull till next May! Sorry to all of you potential visitors! You may have missed Toledo in its splendor. I guess we weren't really expecting anyone for awhile anyway. Next year it will come around again.

Check out this Sunday hottie

The little rugrat is adorable in his new ties. They serve well as chewing toys too. His tie was sopping wet by the end of church today.

pumpkin carving party

This weekend was the quite the adventurous one! we attended a pumpkin carving party thrown by Kirsten and Kyle and hosted at Jake and Jenny's place! They have quite the party apartment and I was very surprised to see how many people fit comfortably with their pumpkins and lots of knives! Zeb was pretty pooped and slept through many of the festivities. He was really interested in getting the pumpkin guts into his mouth. He has turned into a scavenger. Anything within rolling distance is fair game for his mouth (and if he gets your fingers it KILLS! his teeth are razor sharp). We didn't get a picture of our finished product until we got home! So here I am posing with "Happy Hal".

Kent is our pumpkin connoissuer and did the carving honors.

I can't wait until next week for our "stew in a pumpkin"! It will be sad to miss out on the tradition with everybody at home! Thankfully we won't have anyone (mom!) trying to scrape pumpkin side guts into our stew this year though!

Saturday, October 20, 2007

short story made long

Here's a long story that could have been made short, but I am grateful for good honest people and the charmed life that I live, so I'll tell the story anyway.

On our lovely road trip out here to Toledo we were driving through some podunk town in Illinois (it may have been Carthage, I really don't remember) when we hit a bump. My dad was driving the Penske in front of us and apparently hit the same bump. It was one nasty bump in the road. My dad and Daysa said they took the bump so hard that everything in the back of the trunk shifted at the same time with one collosal thud and the "check engine light" popped on. When we hit it we thought we'd dropped the transmission or something. We weren't shifting properly so we pulled over and restarted the car and everything seemed to be working in proper order so we continued on out way.
A little while later (here in Toledo) our car started squealing, only ever so often, when we'd first start it and accelerate, or accelerate after a traffic light. There is NOTHING worse than that pit in your stomach that comes when you hear a strange noise coming from your car. I had one too many of those experiences with the rickety bucket of death (the infamous Dodge Caravan of 1999-2002). I learned it isn't a wise idea to ignore the noise, but I thought since this noise wasn't constant, that I could see if it went away(don't tell my dad I said that). It didn't go away. It, in fact, become less sporadic and more dependable with each car start. I didn't want to take my car somewhere and simply tell them that it was squealing (I abhor looking completley uneducated and helpless) so I did some internet research and luckily stumbled upon a car guy while out with the sister missionaries. I deducted that the problem was a belt, probably the serpentine belt. We just had it replaced 3000 miles back so it was most likely the tensioner associated with the belt.
One large problem was that with Kent so busy I was the one that was going to have to take the car in. Sometimes I act like a child and want Kent to make my appointments for me and do that hard stuff. This morning after the park I unwillingly went to Midas (thanks to a referral from lindsay).
The man at Midas was so nice it was ridiculous. I explained my hypothesis and he told me he'd take a look and let me know. He was back in just over thirty minutes and told me that my motor had fallen out. I think my face went white. Then he started laughing. He said we must have hit something hard enough for the belt to be whacked out of place (the evil Illinois bump I suspect). He readjusted it and sent me on my way, no charge. Plus gave me some "special card" that gets us fifteen dollar oil changes and 10% off any work we need done. Really I was just happy not be taken advantage of. He could have replaced the tensioner and charged me and taken me for the car dunce that I really am.
Moral of the story--go to midas. I even went online to the website and wrote an e-mail thanking them for their help.

Friday, October 19, 2007

take a look at these!

I got a pair of fun little ballet flats at target a few weeks ago and I really like them. Both Laney and cousin Amy got them as well.

Tonight while Kent and I were out and about at the mall I found a copycat pair! Only this pair was at Macy's. They were Coach and cost 138.00 big ones! I nearly died when I saw the price on them! Mine were at Target for only $12.99.
The question of the day is, which pair is which? Is the top left Coach and 138.00 buckaroos or is that one the one on the right? which is the target pair? and which do you like better? It may be pretty obvious but I still think I got quite the steal if some people are paying alomst 140 dollars for one of these shoes and I paid twelve.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Today at the Doctor

Zeb had his four month check-up today (just a little bit late). He wowed the doctors with his charisma and charm. Almost immediately after the doctor asked if he could roll over, he did so! and then looked right at her and smiled. He absolutely loves his stomach and won't stay on his back for anything. He giggled, showed off his teeth, and did everything right on. We've deducted that he is happiest when completely naked (totally takes after his dad).

He weighed in at 15 pounds and 4 ounces, is 25.25 inches tall, and has a 42 cm diameter head. He is almost exactly fifty percent in everything. They told us he is perfect and quite precocious. Okay, not in so many words, but it's what they meant :)

The shots, of course, were torture. He simply isn't a crying baby so when the screamings, wailings, and gnashings of teeth come out I just don't know what to do! luckily he is a very easily consoled baby and he calmed down almost instantly after picking him up.

I've posted some before, after, and now shots of the little rugrat. Notice the "before" happy shots are with me! the sad "after" are with kent, and the "now" are with tigger and his blanket (so desperately clutched in hand)!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

I just got a call from the Rachel Ray show!

I check the Rachel Ray website daily for great recipes and whatnot and I wrote in on a few "do you want to be on the show" topics! This morning one of the producers called and asked me a few questions about everything. We'll see how it all goes! I was talking really fast (I tend to do that when I get excited or nervous) but I was super excited and gave her lots of info! The topic was about the Holidays and being nervous. I wrote in about heading home for the holidays with a little aprehension about how the time-sharing is going to go. They asked about the new baby, where we are going to stay, what I'm worried about, etc. It may be a little too boring! lets hope not. I'd LOVE to go to the Rachel Ray show!!!! I've gone over everything I said a zillion times in my head and keep thinking of things that I should have said! it's making me crazy! oh well huh? I've got nothing to lose! I love the food and rachel ray!
I'll keep you all posted.

yesterday was the first day I haven't posted anything in quite sometime! I just kept putting it off and then got home at 11:30 from book group and was just too pooped to blog. I know, I know, too pooped to blog you question? maybe I'm not as obsessed as I profess to be.

At book club we read Uglies. It's a book I read initially when I was teaching at Orem Junior. It's in a series of three and I like the first book far more than the others, but I finished them all. I'd recommend them for a fast read. Book club is one of my favorite activites. We meet once a month and just talk...very little about the books we read! last night went pretty late but luckily little zeb goes to sleep when I leave and Kent gets extra studying in :) I don't feel as bad leaving cause I know kent is busy! I need more books to read though! If anybody has any suggestions, please send them my way.

and in response to many of your questions/comments regarding the little rugrat, he really is nearly perfect, honestly. the kid smiles and giggles at himself he's so happy! sure, we make faces at him and make all sorts of weird sounds at him, but if you just crack half a smile at him he smiles back and gets so excited he shakes. In the last set of pictures (with the tie) we think he was so happy cause he didn't have any clothes on. He's a happy naked baby. I'll try to get a nasty picture of him! I do have that same "ugly baby" fear that my sister has though so I am very particular about the pictures that I post. I'm not one of those moms that will just post any picture of my baby. He lives so far away from most of my blog readers that I need to post the very best pictures that I have of him!

yesterday at school Kent had a fun little adventure. They have started patient practice sessions now and each week he meets with patients and deals with certain prediciments, scenarios, etc that he may find later as a doctor. It's very similar to the TRC at the MTC. They go in and are recorded and/or watched and then they get feedback on how well they work with patients and whatnot. Yesterday he went in and was told that his patient didn't speak English and that he would be working through a translator. When he got his patient form he realized that her name was Cvetlana! She was Russian! He said the look on her face was priceless when he started speaking Russian to her. He obviously still needed the help of the translator for much of the conversation regarding her "health problem" but they gave him rave reviews for his performance!

Monday, October 15, 2007

"once upon a child"

I'd had a few friends and strangers tell me about this place here in toledo, so today we ventured out to take a look! basically the store is the same thing as "kid to kid", only a ZILLION times better. Most families out here have fewer children and/or don't really do hand me downs, so this store is OUTRAGEOUS! the prices are amazing and the clothes are either brand new or barely used. I went with my neighbor friend Lindsay today and I found quite a few steals. I've wanted ties for the rugrat forever now, but I haven't found small enough or inexpensive enough ones yet! My problem was solved today! I got two splendid ties for a dollar a piece. The one in the pictures is the classic blue/white/navy striped one, and the other we got in honor of his dad. It has little fighter jets on it! we can wear it to any air force events :) oh, and aren't these pictures freaking adorable? yep. he's a keeper.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Yet another reason to love Toledo

Leisy (and the rest of her sisters) had the Ohioan accent down before we moved here! Leisy would often tell people that their mom had called - "Hey, your mom called!" But she would say "mam" and not necessarily mom. Zak can attest to this because whenever he was over Zak's "mam" was "canstantly" calling. (Hey Zak! Your mam called - she told you to blog more.)
The other day we were at Target and Leisy desperatley needed chapstick but we were having such a hard time finding it. She became quite distraught and kept saying "Where in the world could the chapstick be?!?" A very helpful shopping mother with three kids said, "I think we saw chapsticks over in that direction. The kind you eat with right?" Leisy gave her a very quizzical look and stated "no, like medicated chapstick, for your lips." Understanding spread over the mom's face and she said," Chap Stick! Oh - I thought you said chaapsticks!" She prounouced the two words identically.

We recently had another ohioan jargon mix-up. We were having a conversation at my birthday party and Natalie, a wife of a fellow med student, was talking about how her son was being ornery...pronounced "oar-ner-ee" and that it was so cute. Leisy couldn't figure out how that was cute. It turns out the word ornery (yes, they pronounce quite exactly as it is spelled) means mischevious or sly here in Ohio, not crabby and mean. Weird Ohioans. We really do love them.

Saturday, October 13, 2007


Tonight we went to an authentic brazilian churrasco! aka Brazilian bbq. I will admit that the food was astounding! Some of the best meat I've had in awhile. And the BEST beans and rice. I told Kent I could have served in Brazil if it weren't for the temps and humidity.
We had all of the real brazilian stuff; grilled cinnamon and sugar pineapple, farofa, guarana, guava paste, brigadeiros, and lots more! I feel terribly bloated but it was worth it.

This great guy in the ward put it all together and gave out assignments and whatnot. Not a single real Brazilian but it was still pretty authentic! There were four members who had served missions porteguese speaking, a couple who had lived in Brazil teaching English, and a bunch others who had some sort of brazilian connection. I am just married to a Brazilian connection.

We forgot to take pictures at the beginning! This is the meat AFTER 15 people gluttoned through it. All of the pineapple was gone quickly so no pics of it. It was quite the evening :)