5.16.2011

Listen up here, kids.


I've got exciting news.

My NEW BLOG is finally finished! I went through about 5926781 designs before finally settling on the one that just "fit". Then it took Tyler just a few hours to code it and it was live last night! Ta da!

I've switched to wordpress, but not entirely due to the technical glitches Blogger had last week. Tyler has been trying to get me to make the switch for months now. I was amazed at how easy and quickly it moved all of my posts and comments over. 

If you'd like to keep following along, simply bookmark our new address (blog.doublejones.com) or you can still "follow" me through blogger (just add me using my url- blog.doublejones.com, and if you're still confused there's a super-short tutorial right here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RHyU4ETEb-I). For those of you using a reader (i.e., google reader) don't forget to resubscribe your RSS feed with the new URL.

I'll be making some changes to the new blog. 
First, I've made things easier for you to find. I've noticed the google search in blogger doesn't work efficiently, so Tyler added a new and improved search engine to my new blog that should help. 
Secondly, I've also added links at the top for popular topics, if you'd like to browse certain posts. 
Finally, hopefully in the few weeks or so I'll start doing a few regularly scheduled posts. Ideally, I'd like to do a recipe post, design post and family post, each once a week.

Let me know what you think of the new changes! I'd love to hear feedback (good and bad!) and I'd love for you all to keep following along. :)


5.13.2011

friday the thirteenth

Please excuse my absence from the blog. I've been quite busy lately, and blogger has been down for a few days. You know what? We'll just go ahead and blame it on blogger.

Here's what you missed:

1 | Jack has had terrible acid reflux. The wake-up-in-the-middle-of-the-night (or his nap) screaming in pain type of reflux. Poor guy! But instead of resorting him to the doctor-prescribed $185 medication ($185 a month!! youch!!) I decided to do some trial runs myself. What ended up working was cutting out everything except formula, green beans, and peas.
[I'm not sure where I go from here, though. Do I just feed him green vegetables for a few months? The best part of summer is the vibrant fruits in season, and I feel bad depriving him of that entirely. I think I'm going to tinker with vegetables for a while longer and slowly add in fruits again.]

2 | I'm almost finished with my new (really simple) website. Tyler just needs to code it for me and it'll be live hopefully next week! Cross your fingers, kids. I also think I'm going to revamp the blog a little, and organize it more. Changes will be made for the better I hope. :)

3 | I made a really good, creamy chicken & dumplings soup the other night for dinner. Thank you, Rachael Ray. (I don't usually like her recipe combinations but this one was yummy comfort food!) I also made chocolate chip and mascarpone cupcakes, which would have been even more delicious had I not burnt the bottoms. Sad, right? (I'm blaming our prehistoric oven on this one...I've been suspecting a temperature glitch for months now.)

and last but not least (and most importantly),
4 | Tonight I babysat five kiddos five-and-under all by myself, including two 6-month old babies. (Yikes! To think I wanted twins once upon a time? How did my mother do it?!) Needless to say, everyone was very well-behaved and we had a blast.

See you Monday! Have a fantastic weekend!

5.09.2011

Weekend Recap


How was your Mother's Day? Mine was fantastic. 

I got breakfast in bed, a happy, well-behaved baby, a leather kindle cover, and chicken saltimbocca (see below) with roasted asparagus and potatoes for dinner. Then Tyler watched a non-action movie with me (Mona Lisa Smile) while we snuggled. It was perfect.





I can't even begin to describe how grateful I am to be a mother, participating in the most essential work to be done on earth. I feel so incredibly blessed, and want to cry all over the keyboard when I think about it. Thank you to my own beautiful mother who taught me firsthand that "no other success can compensate for failure in the home" (David O. McKay).

5.06.2011

Happy Friday!


Here's A Field Guide to Typestaches to celebrate the weekend! You know how I love typography. (Scroll below for a funny story about that.) I think my favorite is Mr. Wide Latin in the upper right corner. I can picture him with large, aviator sunglasses and a plaid shirt.

Buy an 18x24 poster here. I'm trying to persuade Tyler into letting me have one. (As a birthday present, perhaps?) We wanted a mustache mirror from Skymall a while back, and never ended up getting one. Glad we waited because this is even better!



My little semi-relevant story: You know how I hate comic sans? Jack has outgrown his 6-9 month jammies and I had to find him last-minute 12-month jammies. So I picked up a pair while I was at Walmart that wasn't too terrible (meaning it had no licensed characters on it), and when I opened them up, the pants looked like this:
It was my worst nightmare! Tyler just laughed and laughed. Needless to say, they're being returned. (I promise I'm not a snob - I'll just be the first to admit I'm persnickety about that typeface and where it is allowed to appear.)

5.05.2011

Cinco de Mayo Meal

image via foodnetwork

If you're still looking for a good "Mexican" dish to serve for Cinco de Mayo tonight, I'd highly recommend Rachael Ray's Mexican Lasagna. I made it last night for Tyler and we both loved it!

It's a bit healthier than your traditional lasagna because it uses ground chicken instead of beef. I was hesitant at first, but I didn't even miss the beef, or hardly notice the difference! I also used what I had on hand - instead of hot sauce, I used medium salsa, and instead of spinach tortillas (which I am definitely using next time) I used flour. It was super easy and we'll definitely make it again. (Also, her recipe says that it serves 4, but it really serves a heaping 6 portions. Probably more like 8 if you have a side dish.)

Happy Cinco de Mayo! (I think many of our neighbors behind our complex ditched school today to celebrate. How fun!)

Xylophone in the Forest

I snatched this from DesignMom today. I couldn't resist sharing how cool it was!


The music starts a little after the 30-second mark.

5.04.2011

Recipe: Two-Minute Chocolate Cake

image via gildedlady.com

I don't know about you, but I love me some warm, gooey chocolate cake. And tonight I happened to stumble upon this recipe from Food Network that promised me delicious cake in just two minutes! How could I resist?


Instant Chocolate Cake
Whisk 1/4 cup flour, 5 tablespoons sugar, 2 tablespoons cocoa powder, 1 egg, 3 tablespoons milk, 3 tablespoons vegetable oil and a dash of vanilla extract and salt in a large mug* until smooth. Microwave until puffed, about 2 minutes.

*Just use a regular mug. I also microwaved mine for 1:48 instead of 2 minutes, resulting in a warm, gooey bottom of the cake. Mmmm.

What a perfect night. It was delicious and perhaps the easiest dessert I have ever made. I whipped up one for me and one for the husband and we sat down for a cozy snuggle on the couch to watch Modern Family. (Anyone else love Modern Family? Tyler says I am exactly like Claire...)

{update}


My dear friend Alicia let me know that all those wonderful photos of our engagement/honeymoon that I had never known about were indeed lost once again. But this time in cyberspace. {I blame Picasa for this.} 

If you'd like to see them, I fixed the post and they're all right here.

5.03.2011

Baby Gear

In honor of Jack's six-month birthday (it's like a half-birthday...people celebrate those, right?) I've compiled a list of baby gear that (I feel) was worth every penny. This list only contains things I deem really awesome.


The Boon Spoon
One on my list is the fabulous Squirt (the boon spoon). G-E-N-I-U-S. I had a giftcard and took a chance on this one, and now I love it so much it's now my go-to baby shower gift. I tell everyone I know about it on a daily basis. Husband is sick and tired of me raving about it but I just love it!! From Boon's website:
Genius. (There. We said it.) Squirt isn't just a spoon; it's a revelation. It takes baby food, removes the jar and the mess, packs it into a single utensil and with one squeeze—boom! You get easy, one-handed feeding. Pop on the cap to seal food on-the-go. Caution: May cause gobbling and an uncontrollable appreciation for anything delicious.
It's easy to clean (even days later) and your baby won't be tempted to stick his hand in the jar (been there, done that). The BoonSpoon even has a cover for the spoon so you can take it on-the-go. Comes in orange, blue, and pink. (Note: we have the orange and it's the same color as the picture, so I'd expect the colors to be accurate.) Buy it here for around $6. Image from Bed, Bath, & Beyond.com.






The SuperBib
Two on my list is also a feeding product: the Bumkins SuperBib. I originally looked for those plastic pelican bibs, but had a hard time finding them. My sister also said hers cracked, so this also prompted me to look elsewhere for a bib. I ran into this SuperBib and fell in love with the Dr. Seuss print (I have the set of 3.) The reviews on Amazon were outstanding, and though I didn't want to spend $20 on a set of bibs, I'm glad I did.

They are large, and cover Jack's entire chest plus more. They will easily fit him until he's about two, if he needs it that long. They are made of a waterproof and stain-resistant material that easily wipes off. After he's done eating, I just rinse the entire bib off in the sink and set it out to dry (which takes about an hour), or wipe it down with a baby wipe. They are also machine washable. I love that they are very thin and flexible, and could easily fit into a diaper bag, where as a pelican bib could not. The pouch at the bottom is excellent at catching any spills. I love this bib! Buy it hereImage from the Bumkins website.

A Play Gym
Three on my list is our playgym. We love the one we received as a gift and would highly recommend it to anyone. The kid never runs out of activities and could play under there for hours if I let him. And we use it every.single.day and the batteries are still going strong. Baby happily playing = Momma getting stuff done (today it was the dreaded dishes.) 'Nough said. Buy it here. Image from Amazon.






phil&teds Dash Stroller
Four. Okay, I didn't spend my pennies on this one - we received it as a gift. And it's the best gift we've ever received in our entire lives.


This baby rolls like a dream. It's the rolls-royce of strollers. We use it (without the doubles kit on the back) for jogging  as well as walks and it's fantastic. Graduation weekend I had to push my sister's other double stroller (not a p&t) and it sucked. That's when I was told pushing the crappy stroller was to make me evermore grateful for my p&t stroller. And guys, it worked. I'm hooked.


It's kind of funny because graduation weekend we also saw a lot of these babies on campus. I was kind of confused at first (I'd never seen so many in one place in my life!) and then Tyler made the comment, "It's because we're all business students and we know what a good investment is." Bingo. My sisters are going on five years with theirs, and they still could pass for less than a year old on wear & tear. This stroller will last you through all of your kids, not just one or two. Find more about it here and purchase one here (or the best deal is at Costco right now). Image from Amazon.






The Lamp
Five is a touch lamp. We love this lamp. We got is for $5 at the local thrift store and I painted it orange. It's kind of tacky, but it's the most useful thing in his nursery! 


Before Jack was born, we wanted to make sure we didn't turn on the ceiling light in his room in the middle of the night, which would further wake him up. So we found this touch lamp with three light settings that works like a charm. Now every lamp we have in our baby rooms will be a touch lamp - no fumbling for switches or anything. The lowest light setting is perfect for changing a quick diaper with just enough light for you to see but not wake up baby too much. I wish I could point you in a direction to "buy one for yourself here" but I can't. But just trust the Joneses and their handy touch lamp. Image from me.







The Kindle
Six isn't exactly classified as "baby gear" but it really has come in handy. I don't know about breastfeeding (I would think you would need one hand to hold the baby but I'm not really sure here) but with bottle feeding it is nearly impossible to read a book while doing so. Hence, the one-handed Kindle. I usually try not to watch tv when I'm feeding him, so I read a book instead.  It's also very babyproof. They show a dog licking the back of one in the commercial! Buy one here. Image from the Kindle customer photos gallery.




The Car Mirror
Seven. We bought a plain grey car mirror similar to this one (I'm not big on frilly baby stuff, okay?) and Jack loves car trips because of it. He just laughs and smiles at "the little boy in the mirror". We couldn't have survived our holiday trip from Utah to California without it! Buy one similar to what we have here. Image from Amazon.


I think that just about wraps up my baby gear list! I'm sure the list will grow and grow (babies have a lot of stuff!) so I'll try to keep adding if I find anything else really awesome.

5.02.2011

Today I am One Hundred and Eighty One


...days old, that is.
Yep. I'm now the proud Momma of a six-month old.

What can I say? This mothering thing is turning out to be easy-peasy (bahaha.) He poops, he sleeps, he eats, he plays. Ninety-nine percent of the time I know exactly what this little guy wants.

video
How can you not be thankful for every.single.day God gives you when you have this little giggly boy around? The kid is genuinely excited about life and I love that it rubs off on our family. { Yeah, and guess who he gets his laugh from. Just guess.}

I'm even more proud to say this little boy loves to eat his veggies. So far he loves carrots, squash, green beans, and sweet potato. He also thinks bananas, pears, and apples are quite tasty too. (I'll admit some of the time it goes like this: Jack gets a bite, Mommy gets a (tiny) taste! Jack gets another bite. Why don't my veggies taste this good?)

He is great in his highchair, and still loves to take naps. This boy averages anywhere from 3-5 naps a day, and then goes on to sleep from 8pm to 6:30am! What a champ!


He can almost sit up by himself. We're working on it, grandma&grandpa. He can make it about ten seconds before his little sausage fingers reach for a toy, and then bam! the kid's down. He's had quite a few face-forward tumbles, but so far he's still alive.


Happy six-months, Jack! You We made it!

Come back tomorrow for a post of my favorite (priceless) baby gear.

4.30.2011

Best night ever.


Well, almost.

Okay, maybe not even close. But you must admit it's pretty darn cool when you plug in your husband's camera and find a treasure of goodies. Like pictures from the night he proposed, our honeymoon, and our first apartment that I didn't even remember we took.

A couple of things:
1) Um, also because of these pictures I decided the short-hair look just isn't for me. Sorry, husband, I'm growing it out.
2) And Mom - you never thought you'd hear this from me but you're absolutely right. Now that I've got straight hair, I actually miss my curly hair. Is there a way to get it back that doesn't involve pregnancy? (Pregnancy made my hair stick straight - no joke - but I'm not ready for that phase again, just to see if it would go back curly. I'm not a crazy person!) Help me.


K, mates. Now that we've got that settled, anyone want to meet pre-baby, pre-wedding/newlywed Alie & Tyler? {In my own words, "Aww. Look how cute I am!" Can we just rewind two years and give me back my youth? I know I'm not old by any means (I'm twenty-two) but just look at us!! And my hair. Just look at my hair. Gah.}


That's a fat marshmallow in my mouth. Date night roasting marshmallows on the BYU belltower lights. Kind of successful and very buggy.

I remember knowing something was up that night because Tyler insisted on taking a picture at Cold Stone. Hmm...

And then he proposed to me an hour later. :)

One of many BYU football games.

Cold Stone. Again. (Can you tell Tyler spent a lot of time outside that summer?)

Ugh, would ya look at that red hair. One of the many mishaps before our wedding where I tried to (professionally, might I add) get the red out of my hair, unsuccessfully.

Ryan Shupe and the Rubberband concert, still with red hair.

Fast forward to our honeymoon! I think we're sitting in a jazz lounge on the cruise ship?

"Formal Night" on the cruise ship.

We picked snorkeling for our excursion. We had a blast! (I still remember we tried to fix Tyler's crooked sunglasses several times this trip...)


I think this was in Ensenada but I'm not sure.

I wasn't going near that thing.

But Tyler got pretty cozy with it.


It was pretty chilly our entire cruise, hence the jacket. (It was December, after all.) We decided this rastafarian singer was the best part of the entire cruise. We made sure to tell him that. :)

I think this was before a show.

And I have no freaking idea why we would have taken a picture with this crazy lady. Maybe because it was ridiculous that she was part of the kid show?!


Tyler always picked the best restaurants on our trip.


Nothing really to comment about this one except that apparently neither of us looks good in sunglasses.

We loved the molten lava cake so much that our waiter snuck us the (secret) recipe. Go Icky! 

This was our first apartment's kitchen. No countertops and only one usable cupboard. I'll never complain about a kitchen again!



... which kind-of-sort-of-doesn't-really-but-we'll-go-with-it brings us to where we are today:

We look really different. I don't even really recognize me!

 But we are so happy. :)

4.29.2011

Hi, I'm Jack.

I'm kind of a big deal around here. And I'm a little punk.

I like to splash my parents during bathtime.

I think I'm too cool for school with my Derek Zoolander haircut.

I'm also too cool for that silly bib they insist I wear when I eat.

See? I can eat neatly if I really try.

But I don't try. 'Cuz remember? I'm a little punk.


I'm almost 6 months old now and can almost sit up all by myself. I'll keep practicing with Momma and promise to show you when I do!