Sunday, December 30, 2012


On December 2nd (my birthday!) we blessed Molly at our church in San Angelo. It was beautiful and special. It was too bad we couldn't have more family there with us, but we were lucky enough to be able to do it while Jay and Millie were visiting us. My dear friend Lori Barton (the principal at Fort Concho Elementary where I have done a lot of dance outreach) and her husband were also sweet enough to come, which meant a lot to me. So with Grandma and Grandpa Wardle and both of her "aunt" Lori's, plus our wonderful ward of people we truly love, we felt surrounded by family on this special day.

Molly was a little fussy before and after church (plus we were in a bit of a rush to leave the house) so I didn't get very good pictures. I keep intending on putting her back in the dress and taking more, but it hasn't happened yet.

The blessing was beautiful. I always feel a special love and appreciation for Bret when I get to see him exercise the Priestood. He is such a good husband and father. He is my best friend and I look up to him in so many ways. It was wonderful to watch him hold our sweet Molly and give her a blessing through the power and authority of God. 

I couldn't find a blessing dress in San Angelo and all the online dresses my mom and I looked at were kind of pricey, so I used that as an excuse to sew her dress (something I had secretly wanted to do but wasn't sure I was capable of). I already had the material for the bottom of the dress - something I got out of a remnants box at the fabric store for super cheap - so all I had to buy was a little bit of white cotton and some buttons! I found a tutorial online that was helpful, but it still meant I had to create my own pattern. It definitely quadrupled production time, but it was fun and I learned a lot in the process. 

My mom gave her these cute white shoes when she was born and they went perfectly with her dress. (Side note - baby shoes are so cute but it is so hard to keep them on!)

We love our girl.

Thanksgiving with the Jeppsons

The past two years for Thanksgiving we have gone to a potluck type celebration at the church. This year our "Texas family" invited us to a more intimate Thanksgiving at their home. Just two families. Best friends. In a home. Low key. Good food. Hanging out. Lovely. 

Now that we have moved away from San Angelo we are more thankful than ever for the Jeppsons who truly became the closest thing to family outside of family that we have ever known. We love them.

Lori - if you read this, my sister-in-law just walked by and saw this picture and said,
"Who is that? She's cute!" Couldn't agree more. You're awesome.

Little Miss Molly

I can't believe it has been a month and a half since I blogged last. Oops. Since then Bret's parents have been out to visit, I organized our ward party (which was super fun), my dad came to visit, we moved from San Angelo to Georgetown (20 minutes north of Austin) and we came home to Utah and now Idaho for Christmas. Talk about a whirlwind of a month. Whenever Molly fusses someone will say, "Oh I'm sure traveling has been hard on her. She'll be happy to get back to normal." This child has never experienced normal.

Molly is fabulous. She is growing like crazy and I think she'll be too big for her 0-3 month clothes pretty soon... she's not really a chunk, she's just long!

She is a fantastic sleeper and is usually going about 7 hours a night (the record is 8.5 hours!). She takes awesome (and many) naps too.

She is a good at eating, but she's a terrible eater. Let me explain... she can eat. In fact, she's a really fast eater with a good latch and suck, but she throws a giant fit during or after each feeding and acts really uncomfortable. Is been like this since Thanksgiving and we've been trying to figure out what's up, but no luck.

She's also starting to spit up a lot more, sometimes regular spits but often big gigantic, almost projectile spits. Yuck. I wonder if that has anything to do with the feeding issues.

The one other thing she HATES is tummy time. You'd think she was being tortured. Sometimes when she's on her belly she'll do little mini-push-ups, repeatedly smashing her nose into the ground. She's really strong but she just does NOT like it.

But to make amends for the food fights and tummy tantrums, she has learned how to smile at us and it absolutely melts our hearts. Once she's calmed down from an eating episode she's all smiles (and sleep) until the next battle.
She loves being held on her side with an arm along her tummy. She's starting to drool. She loves her dad. Tub time = happy time. Her changing pad is a mysterious place where she always gets happy and starts talking to us. 

She still loves being swaddled. Her blankets have magical calming powers. She loves her binkie too, but if she can't find it she'll gnaw on her hand instead. She comes dangerously close to getting her entire fist stuck in her mouth but she just can't seem to find her thumb. 

We love being parents. We love our baby. We love life. And just look at the girl... can you blame us?

Monday, November 19, 2012

Birth Announcement

It is really ridiculously expensive to buy/send birth announcements (at least if you order them from somewhere) but I ended up with an awesome coupon and got 25 announcements for almost free. But since 25 announcements doesn't go very far (we'll just get them to some extended family), here is a picture of it.

Photo Card
View the entire collection of cards.

We don't get internet at home anymore so I had to put them together really fast, but I think they're pretty cute. It was super hard to choose a picture of her, but this one won... all those little chubby skin rolls just make me smile. I think she's a doll and we love her to pieces!

Saturday, November 3, 2012


Chicken-Lickin. Princess Pat. Cutie Patootie. Peanut. Little Tease. My Pretty Girl.

These are just a few of the weird names I find myself calling our sweet baby. Why do we do that, by the way? Bret mostly calls her Molly or Cutie. And I call her whatever comes out of my mouth. 

Bret is the best Dad ever. He is head-over-heels in love with her and has the magic touch. He is also the best husband and is very sweet about making sure that I'm recovering and adjusting okay. I love him more than ever as we step into our "parenting" shoes together.

She has long, skinny feet with talon-like toes. Her fingers are long and skinny too. I don't know where she can possibly be storing 8 pounds, but probably at least a pound of it is in her cheeks.

Her fist bath... not too bad! She always cries a little when we bathe her, but only because she gets a little cold. I think when we can actually put her IN the water she'll love it.

Bret always says that Molly and I are becoming a good "team." I didn't realize how much teamwork it really takes to mother a baby. Surprisingly, all the weight isn't on my shoulders to make sure she eats and sleeps well. She and I have to figure it out together, and while every day presents new challenges, we are learning fast and loving it.

She REALLY enjoys going cross-eyed. I don't like it so much... kinda freaks me out and I worry that she'll get stuck that way! But it is pretty funny!

My mom arrived about an hour after we got home from the hospital. Perfect timing. It was such a blessing for her to be here. She helped me gain a lot of confidence in my ability to be a mom. She has always been the perfect mom to me and I can't believe that she's now a grandma! It is crazy to think that someday I'll be watching Molly become a mommy too... I just hope time goes very very slowly. 

It is crazy how long we can sit and watch her do nothing at all. We love the faces she makes while she sleeps. And sleep is pretty much all she does, so we get to do a lot of watching!

We love you pretty girl, and can't believe how blessed we are to have you in our family. Our hearts are melting and we just can't get enough of you!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Stay at Home (not-quite) Mom

Friday was my last day of work. I'll go back and teach a couple classes a week after Thanksgiving (for like three weeks) and I have some at-home lesson documenting to do, but otherwise I'm DONE! 

Here are a couple pictures from my last day at Fort Concho Elementary. Love these kids. I have (had) the best job... although I have a feeling that motherhood is going to trump even this one! I feel so blessed. Don't you wish you could jump an roll around with these cuties each week too?!

Baby Stuff

 This baby is going to be SPOILED. We have been so lucky to have people give us their old baby stuff and so many people eager to shower the baby with new gifts. First let me share my gift to baby... BEDDING! The crib is from our awesome friends, the Liveseys, but I made the pillows, comforter, and bed skirt.

To those who are concerned... I know that it is not safe to use big comforters/quilts with newborns and that there should not be pillows, bumpers, and other "stuff" in cribs. The pillows are for the chair and the comforter can be for a play mat until she's old enough for it. (We had a friend from our ward over who is a pediatrician and she saw the bedding and hesitantly said, "Just so you know..." Ever since then I feel the need to clarify to people that I do know the safety standards and plan to follow them. :)

These next pictures are some (yes, just some) of the generous gifts I brought home from the showers that were thrown for me here in San Angelo. I hope they don't come across as "look at what we got!" but I feel like somehow I need to convey how incredibly generous people have been to us. We heard that Texans had great hospitality. I'm learning just how true that is. People don't do this because they feel like they have to; they do it because they are honestly kind-hearted and want to help and celebrate and encourage. I tried to talk my way out of two of the showers, but they were determined. 
Seriously. So. Nice.

The last shower was thrown by one of the schools I work at, Fort Concho Elementary. It is the best elementary school I've ever been in. They do so much extra for their kids and try really hard to make a difference in their lives beyond academics. The staff has the best attitude about their jobs, each other, and the kids. I always leave that campus feeling uplifted. Almost the whole staff showed up at the principal's house for the shower, including a handful of people I've never actually met and a lot of people I've met but don't know very well. I have never felt so overwhelmed by the kindness of others.

The second shower was thrown by the San Angelo Civic Ballet and was a small group of ladies who work for the ballet. Again, some women I hardly know at all were there to support and encourage me. They were all so kind that by the end of the night I felt like we had been good friends all along. I realized afterward that some of them know me a lot better than I know them (I've taught their kids, etc) but I still felt like they were so incredibly generous to come and to shower me with gifts!

 The first San Angelo shower was thrown by my sweet friends Lori and Aimee (and many others who called and offered to help) and was attended by many of the women in my ward. Aimee is a decorating queen and even though I begged that she not go to a lot of work for this shower...
 it was stunning and done to the nines. I love the women in my ward and look up to them so much. They were so kind to come and celebrate with me. I'm lucky to have such wonderful friends.

I know that this blog isn't really read by anyone except my family and Utah friends, but I'll send out a big "thank you" anyway to all the fabulous people in San Angelo who have made Bret and I feel so very loved these past two weeks. I think I'm being converted to a Texan. The kindness can't be beat.