Just when I thought I couldn't love her any more...

she (finally) slept through the night!

It was a very happy morning indeed.


Weekend Update

One of the best parts of this weekend was finally meeting Baby Kirra.  Jilly doesn't quite know what to do with her baby cousin, but I'm sure once Kirra's moving around they'll have lots of fun together.

Both girls with Grandma

And with Uncle Chad

We had a few minutes of peaceful swimming with the babes before the boys got in and started a raucous water fight

She got nervous and wouldn't let go of Bry's hands when he threw her up

All these cousins had babies within a year.  Brandon and Tylee, Trevor and Kirra, Bryan and Jilly, Brett and Kaden

Uncle Chad brought the girls little Japanese outfits.  Jilly's working on her karate kid moves

Kirra is a little more docile and was willing to let Kristen put it on her the correct way

All the brothers back together.  It's very unusual to get a picture like this.

Usually they look more like this: 

Or this:


This Week

I have spent a lot of time in my kitchen.  I made:
- Baby food!  Sweet potatoes, blueberries, and avocado/banana
- Strawberry Freezer Jam- hopefully it will last us all year
- These Brownies- anything named the Tim Riggins Brownie is bound to be amazing
- Cake Mix Cookies- with butterscotch chips
- Chicken Pillows- I've made a version of these before with pre-made crescent rolls, but the homemade rolls made all the difference
- Southwest Pasta Salad- I could eat this every day, all summer long

When I wasn't in the kitchen, I was usually watching The Kennedy's on netflix.  Love love love love it.

And, we did take some time to chill at the pool.

 Jilly with our friend Emily

Tommy gave her a little faux hawk while she floated around

This weekend we're having a Martinez Extravaganza- it's the first time all 4 brothers have been together for 3 1/2 years.  Look out world.  


Chad is Back!

Bryan's brother Chad got home from his two-year mission to Japan on Friday.  We were so excited to see him again.

Waiting at the airport with Uncle Jeff

Meeting Uncle Chad for the very first time

There's nothing that says "welcome to America" like an In-N-Out burger

 Bryan grew a Mexican mustache as an extra special treat for Chad.  I was grateful when he shaved it off the next day

He wasted no time in getting back on the board

 Holding the peace sign in true Japanese fashion


I ♥ Harry Potter

There are not words to express my love for Harry Potter.  In my family, there is a wide variety of ages and interests, but Harry Potter is something that unites us all.  We love listening to Harry Potter books in the car.  In fact, it is the only thing that keeps us sane during long trips.  We love playing Harry Potter trivia, everyone trying to think of a question that will stump the rest.  My little brother even lost 6 months of his allowance in a bet with my dad over which house Snape was in.  (Before you call child services, I don't think my dad really took the allowance away, but he may have...)  I knew Bryan was a keeper when he called me and said that he had pre-ordered a copy of HP7 for us at the BYU bookstore.  Both brothers-in-law have been required to become HP fans before receiving approval to join the family, and they have enjoyed them just as much as the rest of us.  This year I re-read all 7 books and, as usual, cried my little eyes out at the end.

I did not see the movie last night.  We have a little girl who cannot adjust being back to Pacific time.  She has been going to bed at 4pm and waking up at 3am.  Watching a movie from 12-2 then waking up at 3 just didn't sound appealing to me, even for Harry Potter.  But you can bet we will be seeing it within the week.  I enjoyed getting texts from my siblings and parents who were there at midnight in full costume.  Someone even asked Katie if they could take a picture with her, she looked that good.  Even though we weren't there, we did celebrate by making butterbeer cookies- yum!

I would probably be sad about the end of Harry Potter, but it's definitely not over.  I am so excited to fall in love with the books all over again reading them with my little Jilly.


Beach Trip 2011

I love the beach, so you can imagine my delight to find we have a serious beach baby on our hands

She quickly learned that sand isn't very tasty.

Jilly loved playing in her little pool 

Happy Fourth of July

We loved taking beach walks with the stroller
 My sister said I look like such a mom in this picture, to which I replied, "well, I am.

Bryan and Jenn had fun surfing 

We also had some fun rides out in the kayak
 Jealous of those legs?

Matchy Black Day- Jenn and I actually have the same swimsuit

Lots of yummy beach naps

Ill-fated football game during which Leslie and I collided.  I got a terrible headache from her head crashing into my jaw, and she jammed/broke her toe.  Don't ask me how we injured opposite ends of our bodies.

Lots of fun in the ocean
We've been taking a 'hold hands while running to the ocean' picture for as long as I can remember

Jilly checking out the ocean with Grandpa

Every year we build some sort of creature in the sand.  This year it was the one and only Jimmer

All of our family except for sleeping Jilly and Katie and Neal, who decided they would rather go on their honeymoon to Costa Rica than come to the beach with the whole fam (lame.)

All 32 of us out on the porch of our beach house.

Tyler gives this vacation two thumbs up


8 months

I feel sort of like I came home from Virginia with a different baby.  She now crawls everywhere, pulls herself up on everything, says dadadadada, has hair(!), eats table food (I saw her eat pasta, apple, banana, ice cream, wedding cake, slurpee, popsicle, bread, ice, cheerios, and froot loops, and I'm sure she was given lots of other foods) and loves to play with toys (which we are severely lacking in.)  But, at the same time, she is still my happy, friendly, sweet, mischievous girl.

Evidence of her monthly achievements:


Home Again

This morning Jillian and I arrived back in Sacramento.  It's nice to be home, but oh do I miss those lovely people in VA.  Now I'm trying really hard to get back in the groove here and unpack everything, remember how to cook dinner and clean a house, and perhaps figure out what time it is (I woke up at 4am Eastern time, trekked across the country, and ended up at home at noon Pacific time.  I was ready to go to bed at 2pm!)  I'm in quite a funk, but nothing a Dr. Pepper and Harry Potter can't fix.  :)

Many many updates to come with many many many pictures.


four years

Four fantastic years together- what a lucky girl I am.


Recipe Book

As part of my sister's wedding gift, I put together a book of recipes from my mom, my grandma, and some of our favorites.  This was an excellent time for me to do some recipe reorganization of my own as well.

I used the (free!) templates from Prudent Baby for the cover and spine.  I went with yellow because we're a family of yellow-lovers but there are lots of great colors.

I thought long and hard about the divider issue.  First I decided my categories would be: appetizers, beverages, sauces, breads, breakfast, vegetables, soups, entrees, and desserts.  The next problem was dividers.  Since I wanted to put my recipes in clear pastic covers, I needed dividers that would be longer than the sheet protectors.  For some odd reason, these are nearly impossible to find.  I'm thinking about patenting my own and becoming a bazillionaire.  I found dividers with the tab on top here but they weren't very cute and they were $4 for 5 dividers and I needed 18 (9 categories for each of our books) and that seemed like an exorbitant amount.  So, I made my own.

I bought these cute file folders at Target- 12 folders for $5 then cut them along the fold.  I could only use the half with tabs that stuck out so I did have to buy 2 packs, but now I have lots of cute cardstock to use for cards and such.

I printed my labels and glued them onto the tabs.  At this point there is an optional step of spilling half a bottle of Rubber Cement on your carpet.  Looking back, I would probably skip this step next time, but I'll leave that decision up to you.  (If you do go with this option, mix 2 cups of water with a tablespoon of vinegar and a tablespoon of dish soap then scrub your little heart out and it will eventually come out.)

Since my tabs would get a lot of use I used contact paper to strengthen them.  I just cut a little piece, folded it over and cut off the excess.  Nice and sturdy.

Then I punched holes in the edges and voila! I had dividers.

This new recipe book will help with some of my recipe resolutions.
1. No more recipe book filled weird and unknown recipes.  In the past I've gone nuts cutting out recipes, printing recipes, etc.  This book is only for the winners.  I'll keep a "to try" folder but not transfer anything over until it makes the cut.  This way I won't be searching through a never-ending book of recipes I never use.
2. No more food spattered on the computer.  Once I've tried a recipe and it's a winner, I'm going to print it and stick it in the book.  This will save me time searching through my looooong list of bookmarks and save my precious computer.