Thursday, July 30, 2009


Brianna saw Meredith's swing and insisted on sitting in it. I told her she's too big - but then I saw the weight limit was 25 lbs. So I told her she's too old. Obviously she didn't care.

The acquisition of this swing is a pretty remarkable story. Meredith and I were driving downtown to pick up her car on Saturday morning, and talking about how the only (material) thing she still needed was a swing. A few minutes later we passed by a yard sale and saw....[drum roll].... a baby swing! In excellent condition - just needed a good cleaning and some batteries. Meredith had me do the price negotiating (which I really do not enjoy doing - I think haggling is a headache and people should just be upfront about what they're willing to sell items for) and we walked away with it for ten bucks. If only Meredith would just DELIVER the baby now...

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Claim to fame

Is it weird that I'm really proud to be from the city with the smallest LDS temple in the country?!

FB family

This is Meredith on the comp joining Facebook. Brian also joined just yesterday. They're both fascinated with it and amazed at all the people "on" there. With these two now on board, I'm at about 80% of my immediate family on my friend list. Makes me feel so warm and fuzzy inside. Brian is the second to last member of his family to join - only his Dad remains. And if he's anything like my dad, there's no chance he'll hop on.
It's not that big of a deal, honestly - I mean, it's just a social networking site that happens to have 200 million + participants. But it's helped me get in contact and stay in contact with a lot of friends. Speaking of which...I'm nearly at 700. A little ridiculous, I know. But I attribute FB to my reuniting with Nadia and Cheyeanne this week! Two of my HS friends I hadn't seen in 7 (!) years.
I did a phone-tutorial with Brian as he was learning the ropes of Facebook-world. It made me feel a little...odd... to be explaining the difference between responding to someone's comment, updating your status, writing on a wall, and sending a message. I haven't even told him about joining groups and becoming a fan of various entities. Maybe I won't. I'll spare him from getting in too deep. My guess is that he'll give it up completely when we're finally reunited in a couple days! This separation thing is no fun. Meredith needs to hurry up and have this baby. The pitocin is dripping at this very moment.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

mommy-daughters date

Before Mere delivers, Mom wanted to take us out together. So Dad babysat and we headed downtown.

Toes were pampered at Digits, tummies were filled at One World Cafe, and puppies were played with at some yippy pet store in Northtown.

My nails were painted neon green courtesy of Meredith and her boredom during our twenty minute wait. Pretty sure you're not allowed to use their polishes without permission... but that's what they get for making us wait so long. Fact: this is the first time my nails have been painted in at least 5 years. No joke. Nothing against nail painting... it's just not the way I roll.
Ever heard of One World Cafe? There's one in SLC too. It's a fascinating concept you must read about.

See that little puppy I'm holding (in the pic where you must turn your head sideways cuz I'm just too lazy to flip it)... I want that puppy bad. Not $700 bad, but I was in love.


I'm so grateful Lindsay's son Cougar is here with Nonny and Papa for a month. Brianna is enamored with him. Within seconds of waking up each morning she starts asking for "Koo-gur." When she finally sees him, she just shakes with exitement, yelling "Eh Koo-gur! Eh Koo-gur!" He finally told me today, "aunt Chehsea, I'm tirewd of sayin hi back to Bweanna."
That made me laugh.
But not as much as I did when I found him in the kitchen on this rug. He was totally just hanging out by himself. When he finally looked up and saw me he said, "Wook! I'm on my magic cahpet!"

The Garden

Not mine (I wish) - my Dad's. I think it's just amazing.
Especially considering his limitations - a forest full of pesky deer, having to bring dirt in, not having a ton of accessible garden space (despite living on ten acres)...

But he sent a big TAKE THAT to those mangy deer with the fence he put up. Not just some chain-link WT fence...a pretty one.
He planted beans, peas, BLUEBERRIES, raspberries, squash, watermelon, carrots, lettuce, a pear tree, zucchini, tomatoes...yeah, he could open a produce stand.

Just call him Farmer Steve.

The cute path going through the grow-box garden was painstakingly created rock by rock. He decorated the path by smashing up large slabs of desert-colored concrete and placing them as stepping stones.

Cougar, Brianna and I have spent a lot of time out there this past week. Brianna eats everything straight up. She's my bunny rabbit. Cougar just stares at her in fascination...and maybe partial disgust. He's more of a nuggest and fries kid.
On an unrelated note - this picture shows what Brianna does when she is asked what the DINOSAUR says. raaarrrrrrrrr

Cantaloupe makes Brianna happy

So when we brought these deformities home, she was twice as happy.
She kept saying "melon! melon!"
But for some reason, others were calling these something other than that...

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Sitting in theater with Mere and Cougar for G-Force. Now i remember why i hate going to theaters. It cost thirty bucks for the 3 of us. Sick. We could've brought home a Redbox and $29 of snacks instead.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Pics from Nonny's camera

Just another reason I love my mom - she always has the camera handy. Here's what she captured during the past week:

This must have been Brianna's reaction to waking up from her nap to Nonny instead of mom or dad. Dazed, confused, but happy.
Playing with chalk on the driveway. Shoes removed, as usual. Brianna has finally started using the chalk for it's intended purpose - not just as another chew toy. Same with crayons. I'm very happy about this milestone. Though I might miss the colorful diapers it produces.
Brian told us he was taking Brianna on a stroller ride, then disappeared. He wasn't anywhere down the driveway or the road to the house - where could he have gone? And then he appeared on the hill above the house (my parents live on 10 acres) and reported that he and Brianna were off-roading.
She loves her "cawh."
At the Cherry Picker's Trot. Nonny's holding the first finisher of the Tot Trot. I'm holding the second to last finisher. Brianna was obviously ok with that though, since she still got her bag of cherries.
Prepping for the race. Cougar was so happy to wear his bib number. Brianna stubbornly ripped hers off and hid from us.
Despite the expression on her face, Brianna really does adore her aunt Meredith. Every outfit she is wearing on this trip is from her. The shorts she's wearing have little cherries on them!
More hanging out in "the loft" (Nonny and Papa's 4th floor playroom). That thumb-in-mouth and glazed eyes indicate a sleepy bebe.
Three dolls at a tea party
Getting treats from Aunt Meredith. I was not present during this indescretion nor do I condone it.
Family four-wheeling. There are some fun trails around the property. And in the neighboring farmer's property :)
Cougar and Brianna, BFFs on this trip. Kindof. They're both an "only child," so definitely not used to sharing the spotlight.
Brianna adores him. She asks for "Koo-gur" all day. Til he gets in her way, or vice versa.
That's all for now. More to come.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Nonny recounts the traumatic events:

This is a tale of high stakes and quick action. A little perspective:
Who: Nonny, Cougar, Brianna & Elmo
What: A normal shopping trip to the local grocery market
Where: Yoke's Market (the cows "MOO" in the dairy isle - it's quite kid friendly)
When: This morning - approximately 9A, while Chelsea was away

Brianna, Cougar & Elmo were abroad the kid kart - normal shopping - one lost shoe, random Brianna selections making their way into the cart, free cheese sticks at the deli. Who could have guessed the trauma ahead?

We checked out and were loading the car when Brianna looked at me with an inquiring face. She asked, "Elmo?"

Eyes wide, I did a quick search. She must have sensed my obvious panic and she started crying out ..."Elmo, ELMO, Elmo!" It became a desperate search. I knew my nonny-of-the-year award would surely be revoked if I made the unthinkable mistake of losing Brianna's most prized companion. I scooped her up, told Cougar to stay close and we hurried back in. I moved quickly to Customer Service and looked the first employee I saw directly in the eye (it's important in emergencies to make sure you have the full attention of those you need to communicate with). I proclaimed, "Elmo is MISSING and we have to find him now!"

Yoke's employees are quite amazing - almost in unspoken synchronization several fanned out at the front of the store, moving slowing with searching eyes and focused attention on their mission. At the same time the voice over the loudspeaker rang throughout the store, "Elmo is missing - has anyone seen Elmo? Elmo, if you can hear this..."

The voice was interrupted when one employee triumphantly called out, "Is this Elmo?!" He raised the small red towel/blankie Elmo head high in the air, waving him triumphantly.

The world seemed to go in slow motion as Brianna locked eyes on her Elmo. She ran towards him as fast as her chubby legs could move. They embraced. It was a joyous reunion.

Lesson to be learned here, all you Moms & Dads - NEVER TAKE YOUR EYES OFF THOSE PRECIOUS LITTLE ONES! And your children too!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Millions of peaches, peaches for free

"If I had my little way, I'd eat peaches every day."

Guess who owns this cup...

Mom texted me this picture the day before we arrived here with the words, "We are ready!"
Mom's sweet. 
And Brianna loves her personalized sippy cup!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Meredith's mommy practice

I know these pics aren't the greatest, but I had to have something to go along with this post topic.
The main purpose for this extended trip is to be here for Meredith's baby's birth. She is due on Thursday (so basically any minute now - very suspenseful) with her own little girl. Without getting into details of the less-than-ideal circumstances of this pregnancy, I want to say how impressed I am at the efforts Meredith is making towards preparing for motherhood. She is reading the books, going to the classes, asking questions, and making physical preparations for the child up to age 5. No joke. Containers of baby girl clothes are neatly stacked and labeled, alongside diapers up to size 4 and every accessory a child could wear. Enough for octuplets.
But what I'm personally most happy to see is her interaction with Brianna. Though caring for Brianna right now is quite different than an infant, she has jumped in - confident and eager to aid my little girl in everything from playing to snacking to bathing (as pictured above). Brianna is smitten, becoming quite attached and very content to leave me for her aunt Meredith anytime. And I'm rarely hesitant to LET her take over! Last night Brianna even got a lotion massage. I just have to make sure Meredith knows the boundry lines when she starts talking about "doing" Brianna's hair. Ponytails and bows are ok - scissors and highlights are NOT.
I'll keep ya'll posted on the baby arrival - hopefully SOON!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Cherry Picker's Trot

Brian, Brianna, Cougar, Meredith, Papa, Nonny and I spent Thursday evening on Greenbluff at the Cherry Festival.

We had Cougar with us while his mom was working. He competed in the Kid's 100 m trot and WON! Before the race, I did extensive mental prep training with him, explaining the importance of a "game face." He was growling at the start line, ready to burst. He told me "I'm even wearing my fast underwear!"

Brianna wasn't quite as speedy as Cougar...but being the youngest competitor on the field deserves a little credit, right? And she gets points for doing it by herself - no hand-holding. Brianna just sauntered down the course, smiling and watching all the people cheering "for her" (because the world revolves around her). She refused to wear her bib number, but still got her ribbon and little bag of cherries. She gobbled those down, pits and all.

After I crossed the finish line, I grabbed Brianna and walked back to finish the race with Mom. Brianna again tested her hypothesis that saying HI to every single person she passes will result in that person smiling and saying HI back. Mom did the trot speed-walk style, finishing the 4-mile course well under her 60 minute goal time. This random lady was so proud of her that she made a sign. Just for my mom. So sweet.

p.s. - This is one of my favorite things about NOT being in Utah: seeing recycling containers at public events instead of just trash recepticles.