August 30, 2011

On Being a Stay-at-Home Mom

There was a saying I read in the faculty room bathroom of the old elementary school I taught at. It said, "If you want to get your child's attention, sit down and look comfortable."
I understand that saying firsthand now as I have a child of my own. 
Being a stay-at-home mom isn't glamorous. Sometimes it isn't necessarily fun either. Even with just one little baby to take care of, I'm surprised at how much of my time is spent picking her up, running back into the room that I just layed her down in,  consoling her, taking her in and out of her carseat, feeding her (again), wiping up her drool, cleaning off her spit-up, and holding her binki in her mouth.
Glamorous? No.
Important? Undoubtedly.
BJ knew long before he married me that being a stay-at-home mom was the one soapbox I would stand on til the day I die. I will never change the way I feel about how important it is for me to be at home with my children.
Ellie grabbed her toes today. I've been waiting for weeks for her to do this and I am so happy I was there the moment she did it so I could congratulate her, tell her good job and of how proud I am to be her mama. 
Yesterday brought the responsibility of paying hospital bills, calling about bank account overdrafts, denied credit cards, and revoked car titles. It included piles of laundry, washing the bed sheets, and sweeping the kitchen floor. It maneuvered a lonely baby on one hip while opening a hot oven with another arm to prepare a very mediocre dinner. I held baby during and in between phone calls, rocked her vibrating chair with one foot while I filled out checks and mailed them, and tried to take advantage of a baby's nap in order to steal a quick shower- only to be joined in the shower by said baby who had quickly realized my absence. 
When you're a mom, the length of any given task is easily doubled or tripled when a baby is around, because babies need attention and love. Actually, they need your attention and love...
And that is why I will be there.
I, like Julie B. Beck believe, "Home is where women have the most power and influence... Women should understand that no matter how many other people they enlist to help them with their home and children, they cannot delegate their role as the primary nurturer and teacher of their families." I agree with Ezra Taft Benson who said that, "children- not possessions, not position, not prestige- are our greatest jewels."
I am proud to be a stay-at-home mom. I have prepared my entire life for motherhood,
 whether glamorous, or not.

August 28, 2011

Dinner Out Back

Last night we had dinner in the back yard to celebrate the August birthdays. I've always loved eating dinner with family outside, and now that we live in California, we can do it year round. How lovely.
I hope you have a wonderful Sabbath day.
For spiritual enlightenment that I'm studying... go here.

August 27, 2011

Salt Creek

When Tanner invited BJ and I to picnic with him and Megan at Salt Creek, all I could picture in my mind was the Great Salt Lake, or possibly something like the salt flats (both geographical features of my former home state.) Well Salt Creek wasn't like any creek I've ever seen before, and in no way does it parallel the salt flats. I think California should consider renaming this destination. I think I'd call it something like...

We had so much fun it was sickening really. We proposed that this should be our Friday night tradition...  forever.
What are the odds that two of our best friends move down to Yorba Linda about a month before we do? Heaven I tell you.

Salt Creek was magic. We shall return...
View Megan and Tanner's blog here.

I Have Been so Anxious to Let You Know...

You may remember this post from way back in December. Well BJ and I just so happen to be living in that   beautiful home for the time being. BJ is looking for a job here in Orange County and since real estate in California is depressingly expensive, BJ's parents have been kind enough to open their home to us. We get to live in the apartment in the home with our own bedroom, bathroom, washer and dryer, kitchen, and living room. JaLayne knows how great my need to nest is, so she took down some of her decorations and let me put some of mine up. We're living the high life here, and BJ and I are both certain that we will never again live in a home as beautiful and nice as this one. What are your early twenties for. . . right?

August 24, 2011

Seahorse Sleeper

BJ's mom bought Ellie a few toys today. One of them is a glowing seahorse that plays relaxing music when it is squeezed. Well Ellie Layne used it shortly after we got home from picking it up, and I'll tell you what, she may as well have been the advertisement for it. It worked just like it said it would on the box. She was in dreamland after a few short  minutes of cuddling with it. Just as the music got softer and the light glowed dimmer, her eyes slowly closed and she was gone. Pretty adorable if you ask me. I always admired my nephew's glow worm that he loved to sleep with. Well now she's got her own glowing seahorse. . .
 How about that.

August 23, 2011

Check in Later... I'm Busy

I'm nesting, organizing, unpacking, and mothering. I'm taking care of my husband, and learning about life in California. Ellie is dancing.

August 22, 2011

Newport Beach 8.22.11

We took Ellie to the beach today. It was windy and cool. It felt nice to be next to the water- it always does. 
There is something about the waves that seems healing to me. Ellie enjoyed it all: sun, sand, and ocean breeze. 

BJ and I went to Newport Beach together the day after he proposed. I was on cloud nine that day. That memory always replays in my head when I'm near an ocean now.

Moving Day(s)

Just when we felt like we were making some headway...
We are living out of boxes again.
I'm emotional, BJ's stressed, and Ellie hasn't skipped a beat.

August 19, 2011


BJ and I are bewildered. How on earth, in our short time together, have we acquired so much STUFF? We have also been baffled, day after day, at how long it takes to pack. . . then at how long it takes to clean. . . next we'll be shocked at how long it takes to drive across the western United States. . . and then again at how long it takes to unpack and organize all our STUFF. And then of course there's the possibility that we may be relocating to northern California after a month or two. It is all so. . . fun?
Finally, after several hours of packing and cleaning, we were rewarded some sweet relief. Tonight was Kyle and Breanna's wedding dinner and it couldn't have come at a better time. We enjoyed pizzeria 712 catered in the park, great friends, pretty decorations, and of course. . . one adorable baby.

We're Outta Here in Just Two Days

I'm gonna miss them so much.

Packing is not glamorous. There is absolutely no redeeming quality about it. We have spent hours each day for over a week now packing up boxes, taking trips to the the consignment store, dumpster diving for more boxes and newspaper, and trying to get things organized and clean. It feels surreal. No more Utah. No more Sunday dinners with my parents. I sure hope Ellie likes California!

August 17, 2011

To Our Dismay

She's not happy all the time. . .
but we think she's cute either way.

A Decision Had to Be Made

JDawgs won. . . even my dad said so.

Beejer's Birthday

I never actually call BJ- "Beejer" as the blog title alludes. I call him rather: Beej, honey, BeJota, dear, babe, and soccer star. I thought the title "Beejer and Me" had a tad more of a ring to it than "Beej and Me" did. Today his title however, is "birthday boy." And for that I am grateful. His mom called and left him a delightful, personalized birthday song message today. She chanted "bum bum bum" at the end of each verse. We smiled and laughed as we listened to the song and I made sure that BJ did not erase that message. Those kind of messages are exactly the type you need to have in reserve for a gloomy day.
My favorite part of the message though took place after the singing. She simply wished BJ a happy birthday, wished that big Elle and little Elle would treat him well on his big day, and then said,
I have always loved you, and I always will.
I felt emotions on all levels as I listened to those words. I understand them now that I have a child of my own. I have always loved Ellie and I always will. It touched me to think that JaLayne loves my husband like that- cause that's a heck of a lot of love. And I was touched by how much BJ
to be loved like that.
He is a wonderful father. He is the most sensitive and caring husband. He is a soccer star. He is a sincere, honest, and kind man. He cares about others. He works hard. He is handsome. 
Happy birthday honey. You are spectacular.

August 16, 2011

Our Heart of the Home

It has been said that the kitchen is the heart of the home. However, I think that for us, our bed is the heart of our home. Since Ellie Layne came along, our bed has become somewhat of a communal thing. We eat pizza in there at night and chocolate chip pancakes in the morning. BJ brings his fishies and fruitsnacks with him to bed at the close of each day. Waterbottles rest on our night stands. We read there, pray there, listen to music there, watch "The Office" there, surf the internet there, and play with baby there. Our bed is not exclusively ours, but the little one's as well. We use every pillow we own and the sheets look as if a tornado hit come morning. We love our bed. We love our slow mornings and afternoon naps in there. 
Although Ellie started sleeping through the night at 6 weeks, she has taken to waking up multiple times a night lately. Last night after feeding #1, I was taking the munchkin back to her crib. In a tired daze her arm swung around and all of her sharp-nailed fingers found their way perfectly into my right eye. I wandered my way around the dark apartment blinded from my throbbing, watery eye. The next time Ellie woke up fussing and not accepting her bunny and binki as the correct method of soothing, it was into our bed she came. We woke up slowly after a long night of feedings, fussing, and eye poking... all three of us in a row.
I love the family bed, and I think I always will.

August 15, 2011

Today was Good

Today was nice. We made a lot of headway on the packing. Packing up an entire house isn't a job for the faint hearted- I'll tell you that much. We were able to spend time with my mom, my sister-in-law, and a few very dear friends. 
I sit here and type while BJ stands and bounces the baby. She is getting much pickier about how she prefers to be held. Her wiggly body doesn't want to lay down nearly as much as it used to. We still love her though. We'll bounce her all day if she insists.

August 14, 2011

I remember well the first time that Ellie looked at me. She knew who I was. I could see an understanding in her eyes- she knew I was her mother.
I've been thinking a lot lately about the relationship I have with my daughter, about the relationship I want to build and continue to have. I just finished reading "The Help." In that book I read about a woman that was too lazy and selfish to give her daughter her time and attention. She relied on another woman to love her daughter and tell her how valuable she was. This situation was unnerving to read about. It reinforced my desire and insistence to devote my time and my life to my children.
I am so grateful that when my baby girl wakes up from a nap and stirs- I'm there. I'm grateful that when she's hungry and needs to eat- it's my face that she sees. I'm grateful that she knows me and wants me when she's upset. I will forever appreciate the way that she calms down when I put her bunny in her arms and kiss her eyelids. She is my girl. I am her mother, and no one else can take my place.
I started reading "Glimpses," a biography about Marjorie Pay Hinckley. I read this book once in college. If you need a pick me up, read it. A quote from it that I would love to make my life's motto is this:
"We have a lot to learn about simplifying our lives. We have to decide what is important and then move along at a pace that is comfortable for us. We have to develop the maturity to stop trying to prove anything, to be what we are. With all of these decisions we have three responsibilities: We have a great responsibility to our husbands. I know it is hard to believe, but almost before you can turn around the children will be gone and you will be alone with him. You had better be sure that you are developing the kind of love and friendship that will be delightful and enduring. Let the children learn from your attitude that he is important. Encourage him. Be kind. It is a rough world, and he, like everyone else, is fighting to survive. Be cheerful. Don't be a whiner.
We have a great responsibility to our children. Find joy in them. Don't overschedule them or yourself. You may not be able to take them on exotic vacations. It doesn't matter. When the day dawns bright and sunny, take an excursion to the canyon or park. When it's cloudy and wet, read a book together or make something good to eat. Give them time to explore and learn about the feel of grass and the wiggliness of worms.
Now to our homes. Your home is your own private temple. Keep it clean. Put something beautiful in every room for your family to look at. Create a feeling of order and spirituality. Your home can be beautiful without being elaborate or expensive. I am touched by a woman's desire for beauty.
Have joy in your home.
Have joy in your husband.
Have joy in your children.
Be grateful for the journey."

August 13, 2011

August 9, 2011

Focusing on the Bitter

BJ and I are moving to California very soon. He has a few different job possibilities down there and we're biting the bullet and relocating. While I am very excited about California and the plethora of wonderful things it has to offer, I can't help my nostalgia from setting in every now and then. There are so many things I love about Utah.
First and foremost, that it is my home. I have lived here 21 out of the 24 years of my life. My childhood home and my parents are here, so naturally a portion of my heart is here as well.

Autumn. Come October my heart longs be in Provo Canyon drinking in the beauty of the colored leaves and crisp fall air. Fall in Utah is my favorite season hands down. Fall in California and Arizona just feels like an extra long summer.

Our first home. BJ and I had such a great first apartment. We spent two and a half years together with just the two of us, and three months with the lovely new addition. 360 E. 1420 S. was a perfect place to start our little family.

My friends. Although I don't see them much but I love 'em all. And being ten hours away will only ensure that I see them less. I'll miss them. I wish I had more photos to include all I'm thinking of.

My spectacular walks will continue on, and I'm sure I will find scenery I love, but undoubtedly I will miss my Utah surroundings.
California will be terrific, but I will never forget you Utah.