life lately.

it's time for a little catch-up post of the last few weeks.

summer is already flying by, i mean we're days away from july for heavens sake. and it has been a HOT one lately. i don't know that i'm exactly complaining though - i mean, summer in utah is generally pretty toasty. gracie and i are trying to soak up all the sunshine and summer goodness while we can. i'm not documenting everything as perhaps i should or would want to, but sometimes life is just too fun in the moment with a toddler, it's hard to take two seconds to pull out the camera.
(ie, we've been to the pool at least once a week the last few weeks, and i haven't taken one picture while there. it's kind of become a staple of our summer so far, but i have nothing to say for it except gracie absolutely LOVES splashing and jumping off the side and it's just a good time.)

and actually, my phone camera is struggling at the moment, so that only makes it less likely that i take photos of everything. 


here are a few randoms from lately.

came out one day to run to the grocery store and found a very flat tire on my car :(
the tire place found two things stuck in it. i blame all the dang construction around right now. not cool!

i was making gracie something to eat and came out to find her, and she was just sitting on the rug reading her thomas the train book. it was just so sweet & quiet & cute. i had to take a picture. 
then i told her her food was ready and as i walked away i watched her get up, walk over to the toy/book bins, and put her book away (even in the right bin!) before coming to eat. she makes me happy.

this is a terrible picture, but i had to take it and post it. we are working on getting a walk in every day with zo (she needs to lose a few lb's), and most days, even though we go in the morning, it's still hot already and zo is totally over-heated by the time we get home, with that black body and all. as soon as we get to the garage, she plops down in that corner in the shade & gracie goes to sit by her and pat her back. it's as if she's giving her a pep-talk and telling her job well done, zo. they're funny.

just watching mom fold my laundry while i squish myself into this basket. because, why not?!

our first zoo visit this year. and this is the only picture i took. she wasn't so sure about sitting on that elephant trunk, and the sun was also blinding her. we'll take what we can get.

finally a date night for jae and i. it was simple - temple and dinner after. then we drove around for a bit with windows down, enjoying the summer evening and made a quick stop at the grocery store for last-minute sunday dinner items. i can't remember the last time we went out to dinner without gracie. and let me just tell you, it was so nice to eat my meal without little fingers grabbing or little girl yelling or jae and i taking turns to eat because we had to control the little person. 
love her, but man, that was a nice, relaxed dinner without her.

these last few are actually from our father's day celebration at my sisters house. my nephew has a drum set and gracie took a crack at it. i think it goes without saying, but she seemed to enjoy herself  ;)
(she would blink every time she'd hit a drum, it was pretty funny)


a birthday celebration in the park.

we celebrated jae's mom's birthday a couple weeks ago. it was a nice evening - we just got together at a park and all pitched in potluck-style, and it turned out to be a really fun time. i think karen enjoyed herself.

we just love karen, and gracie especially has such a great relationship with her. i don't know what we'd do without her. she takes care of us and is ALWAYS willing to step in and help out or watch gracie so we can go on a date or whatever it is. she is so good to us and we will forever be grateful for her!

here are a few photos from the fun evening. of course, i didn't get any that are actually with the birthday girl....(sorry karen!)...they're all of gracie. figures, right? she had an absolute blast.
(and those videos at the bottom!!!)

video video


lava hot springs.

we officially survived our first camping trip with a toddler. let me tell you - there were times during it that i really didn't know if we would!

we went up to lava hot springs in idaho. i knew we needed (ok, i REALLY needed) a weekend away, so i booked us a campsite a few weeks ago and off we went. i should've known from the whopping 15 minute nap gracie took on the entire drive up there that the weekend was going to be interesting.

we basically just ate, swam, hung out at camp either in the tent or by the fire or watching the river that was right next to our camp. it really ended up being a nice little getaway and something i'd do again, with a few minor tweaks.

the first night was pretty horrific. of course since it's still bright out and we're sleeping basically outside, gracie wasn't ready to go to bed until around 930 (normal bedtime is between 7-730). she went to sleep pretty quickly, as she should've since she hardly napped the whole day and spent lots of energy swimming and it was so late. but she only slept soundly for maybe an hour and then it was up and crying every...half an hour? hour? honestly i had no sense of time and no desire to look at the time to actually see how often we were getting up. she is quite a mover in her sleep normally so that mixed with the confines of trying to keep her covered so she'd be warm in a sleeping bag in between her parents in a tent........well it didn't all pan out. go figure. she kept inching her way up so her head would run into the tent wall, and she'd freak out, hitting the tent and wake up and cry and be uncovered so i'm sure she was cold. ugh it was no fun! she even ended up with about 4 little blisters on her thumb from sucking on it so much that night. that's how bad it was! at some point during the night, i was about 99% sure we'd get up the next morning and pack up and go home and say screw it to the second night. i really thought we would. but we didn't. we enjoyed our day as much as we could being fairly sleep deprived. we actually were all able to take a couple hour nap that next morning after an early morning breakfast, so that helped.

the days were fun, swimming and just being with our little family and not having any cares or time restraints or anything. i loved that part of it. the weather was a little on the cool side for most of it (of course it was beautiful the day we left), but we enjoyed ourselves anyway. the hot pools were a major bonus for the cooler weather. gracie was a very scared, very timid swimmer last summer so i was a little worried about it, but she LOVED swimming this time. totally had a blast splashing. no fear or reservations about it at all, so that was way fun.

and after all that, the second night, she went to bed again around 930, went to bed pretty quickly, and actually slept pretty solid through the entire night, hardly even moving an inch. i think she was just soooo tired. i can't complain about that. although my body is not made for sleeping on the ground, that is for sure. hello sore hips and shoulders and knees and neck and back!! good times!

it must not have been that bad, since a day after we got home, i started looking into planning our next camping trip. what am i thinking??!

a few pictures...

new elmo sippy on one side, bottle of milk on the other, toys, blankie, and shoes off...she was ready to go!

setting up the tent: all she was worried about was the (small) amount of sand/dirt on her feet. 
she's a little OCD, have i mentioned that before?

early morning play time with dad in the tent, and saying CHEESE for a picture

just some randoms from camp.


5 things & a photo.

because lists are one of my favorite things in life........

.1. i love being home during the day with gracie. i hate being gone late into the night at work. it's a constant internal battle to find the balance and appreciate it all.

.2. jae takes such good care of gracie. not that i had any doubts that he would, but i see friends that have babies/toddlers and their husbands that seem so not as "involved" as jae is, and it makes me appreciate him that much more. he does SO much, especially since i'm at work 3-4 nights a week. we're a lucky bunch of girls, gracie girl, zo pup, and me.

.3. i love spring. even when we have torrential downpours out of nowhere, like today. the hail! it was amazing! i was driving around in it today and thinking i don't even mind it's slowing me down. i'm glad it's been a rainy week.

.4. speaking of work, i just realized i never blogged about my new job. people ask me how it is, if it's better than before, if i like it, if it's all i wanted. and honestly, i'm not sure how to answer. in some ways, yes. in some ways, i feel burned out already. which is a little frustrating. but perhaps i should still write something up about the job and put all my thoughts out about it in it's own post. that might take awhile. it is what it is - a job. and jae is so great and reminded me last night when i was especially struggling, to just try to be positive. and he's exactly right.

.5. i've been super sentimental about gracie lately. today, i was going through old videos and pictures on my phone to delete some of the not so great ones and make room for...anything else (i have a lot of photos...). i just got looking through all those old pics of when she was a little one, and got all teary eyed. she is growing up into this totally awesome little girl, which i absolutely LOVE. she is seriously so much fun. but also, it kind of breaks my heart to look back and remember that little baby girl. i've decided that being a mom means that life becomes one giant bittersweet moment after another.

and for a (very poor quality) picture, because it's too awesome not to share....
jae got home from work and was feeling pretty beat, but gracie really wanted him to get on the floor and play with her. so he first sat, but then gradually made his way to laying down. and gracie continued bringing him finger puppets and stuffed animals. and he seriously nodded off for a few minutes and she continued to play around him. it was hilarious.


surprise birthday bash.

(yes, i started this post in february, and yes i'm just barely finishing it and yes i'm still going to post it anyway).

well it happened again.
we had another year go by and another birthday to celebrate!
jae's on the 21st, mine on the 22nd.
but this year, jae turned the big 30!!!

he was less than thrilled about that number. but i have a feeling it'll be a good year for him :)
i decided it was a good year to do something a little extra special for him. i've never tried to surprise him for his birthday before, so i wanted to try it! i was so nervous it wouldn't work out - either he'd find out or no one would show up or something. but it actually turned out pretty perfect and i think he really enjoyed his night, which made me super happy too :)

basically, i had one of his besties help me out by spreading the surprise info to all the other friends. i told him specifically who i definitely wanted invited, and then told him to just invite anyone else who i'd forgotten or who he thought jae might enjoy seeing. we did this about a month in advance and then another reminder the week of. i was just so worried people would forget or not show!

after throwing around a few different ideas, we ended up just meeting everyone at the Garage in SLC. yes, it's a bar and we don't drink, but we've heard rave reviews on their food, so it's somewhere we've had on our list to try for a long time. plus it was a good central location for everyone that was coming so it worked out perfect.

all i told him was that we were going out on a special date. his mom came to babysit and we headed to SLC. he tried guessing a few different places of where we might go to dinner, but he failed. just as we were about to pull up to the Garage, he guessed it and i told him yes. he was surprised, but excited.

we walked in and i kind of pulled jae behind me to the back patio (neither of us had ever been so he was kind of confused where i was going, but i just acted like i was checking out the place). we got out back and i pushed him ahead of me to the patio area and everyone was there and said surprise! haha nothing was really actually planned for that part but it turned out great and he was super surprised! yay!! there ended up being around 20 people come and i was so happy. since being  married and then having a baby, jae doesn't get to see or hang out with his guy friends a whole lot, so i really wanted to make this something fun that was all about him and something he would really enjoy doing. it was so fun for me to just kind of hang back and watch him just hang out and talk and catch up with everyone. it was super laid back and casual, which was exactly what i was going for.

and yes, after all that planning and scheming and work behind the scenes, i only took one picture the whole night. i guess that just means it was too fun to worry about pulling out the camera :)

happy 30th my love! you're amazing and handsome as ever and i love you most.

PS...i have to add these in at the bottom since they are birthday-ish related.

these were taken at our Horrocks birthday lunch. gracie with her cousin jack (who's only 9 months older than her but a giant next to her!) and her super fun uncle jaron. aren't they cute? (i realize the picture quality is pretty terrible, dangit)

for our birthdays this year, we went on an IKEA trip and bought ourselves a couple of new dressers as well as a shelf and drawers/storage for gracie's accumulating toys, books, puzzles, etc. happy birthday to us! gracie was getting sick of IKEA (it can be a rough, long trip even for an adult) so this was the only way to help her stay pleasant for the rest of the trip.

my co-workers really went all out :)

and my cute message waiting for me on the bathroom mirror. love mirror messages.


easter 2015.

this year was a little more exciting than last year, mostly because gracie is older and starting to enjoy the holidays and fun things that go with them more. obviously she still doesn't really "get" it, but it's fun to start doing more things with her anyway.

we had a couple egg hunts this year - a smaller neighborhood one with some of her little friends, and the big farmington city one (jae has to work it, so we tag along) with hundreds of people. she's not the biggest fan of tons of people and gets super sidetracked and a little anxious and unsure sometimes, but it was fun to get out and help her find some eggs!

i only took pictures at the neighborhood hunt, none at the city one.

and then for the actual Easter day, we spent the afternoon having a picnic at the park. the weather was beautiful and we had to take advantage. even zo pup got to come!

i had to work in the evening, so i missed out on dinner, but jae and gracie got to spend the evening with my family. it was a lovely day spent together, listening to the leaders of our church give wonderful messages & remind us of the important things in life. i kind of loved having easter and conference end up on the same weekend. less eggs, more Christ :)

and of course, the little lady in her new Easter outfit!
(i totally forgot to get a picture of her in her dress before i went to work, so my dad was nice enough to snap a few)

(hello, teething!)


life lately.

a few quick catch-ups from the last month or so.......

ME...i started a new job. it was supposed to be replacing my other two but instead i decided to stay on PRN/on-call for my staffing job at primary's just for the extra hours and ability to pick up and make some extra money if i need or want it. i just can't seem to stick to only one job. seriously, what is wrong with me. i'll have to post about the new job.

JAE...he already has a tan from all the sunshine and warm weather we've been having. i think he's got the right idea - working outside every day.

GRACIE JANE....is growing like a weed!! (well, as in she's getting so grown up. physically, she's still pretty tiny). she is so dang smart and says pretty much anything and everything. she's got 8 teeth and is working on molars now (not any fun for anyone). now that it's warmed up, she has LOVED being outside and gets really mad when we try to bring her back inside. i think this summer will be full of outdoor adventures!

lately gracie has been getting sick of riding in the usual spot in the cart, but she also didn't want me to hold her and i didn't want her to run around. so i stuck her in the back of the cart at target one day
and she was loving life! 

helping mom make banana bread.
(read: "mom another picture?")

one day, jae came home from work and declared he was going to make a fire in our backyard. mind you, we do not have a 'fire pit'. well, now we do. literally, on the grass in the middle of our backyard. 
and we love it!

afternoon family walk.

the two littles lounging (being bored) while i got ready for work.

enjoying the nice weather with grandma karen! i love that she sends me these 
random little gems throughout the day :)

gracie and i went on a little hike with our gf's emily and zoe. the view was awesome.

just a silly little cheesy gracie girl. got some new clothes & sandals for this girl, we can't wait for summer!

went on a little sunday afternoon hike. it was really windy ;)

this is very exciting for everyone - gracie girl got a new carseat!! 
she is loving it and so is mom.