Sunday, July 26, 2009

"HAPPY DOO!" Jonah Turns 2!!

Jonah celebrated his second birthday yesterday. It was a day of laughter, tears, rain, sunshine, tantrums, and hugs and kisses. What more could you want for your second birthday?
We started the day by making banana-chocolate-chip-pancakes.

Jonah did a great job of sampling the chocolate chips and smooshing the bananas.

After breakfast, Jonah opened presents from Grandma Jo and Grandpa Black, who tuned-in via Skype. Jonah wasn't as excited about his cute new outfit from GAP as I was.

He did get pretty excited about the dress-up doll book my mom made him (It's very manly I assure you; firemen, baseball players, tennis players, army guy outfit...). And, he got even more excited when he opened the biggest toy fire truck I have ever seen. There's even a "fire guy" to stick on the ladder.

Jonah got a cute card and big birthday money from Grandpa David and Grandma 'Nita. That means more choo choos and maybe a pool for our new backyard.
Mom and Dad's big gift was a tricycle. A tricycle with streamers and a bell. I had one just like this when I was little.

Jonah hasn't quite figured out the pedals yet. He kind of just scoots around and gets frustrated with himself. It will be a bike he will grow into love with... we hope.

Mike and I wanted to make Jonah a cake covered in M&M's, Jonah's favorite candy. I made a chocolate zucchini cake with a sour cream chocolate frosting. So yummy! If anyone wants the recipe, let me know. Then, we spent nap time covering it with M&M's and eating a few as we worked. One for for the cake. We bought a 3 pound bag of M&M's from Sam's Club for decorating. We still have over half of it left. Any takers?

Mike and I were pretty proud of how it turned out.
We invited friends to Bryan Park to eat cake and ice cream.

I didn't get to take any pictures of Jonah eating his cake at the party, so I took some today when he ate some of the leftovers.

We sure love Jonah, and we feel so blessed everyday to have him in our family.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Urban Foragers Unite!

Back in May when we were visiting the Lowes in California, Jeanette told us about an emerging food trend called "urban foraging." Urban foraging is basically living off the land, finding food that is growing wild and taking advantage of the natural bounty Mother Nature provides. Sounds kind of weird if you imagine hippies running around digging for roots and funky looking mushrooms like I did. Watch out locally grown/organic foodies everywhere; urban foraging is fun and the benefits, taking the form of wild blackberries in our case, are both economical and tasty.
After talking to some friends at a Sunday picnic who know all the right places to find wild blackberries, we tried our hand at urban foraging. We found tons of wild blackberry plants growing alongside a public park. While picking, our friends told us about the anecdotal effects of jewel weed on a poison ivy rash and how one can actually boil cattails and eat them...only if you have to though, I guess they don't taste that great if you can believe that. (I can.)

Today, we found even more wild blackberry bushes lining the forested area near our apartments. I showed Jonah how to only pick the black ones. He learned that blackberry bushes are poky, but eating the berries is well worth it. Every time I turned around he was stealing handfuls of blackberries from the bowl and shoving them in his mouth and saying "mmmm". Pretty funny.

The Daddy Bowl, Mommy Bowl, and (empty) Baby Bowl. :)
We are definitely going to be making some blackberry cobbler and blackberry ice cream at our house this week. Happy summer and thanks to Nate and Jenn, our urban foraging heroes! :)

Friday, July 10, 2009

It's About Time

I'm not even giving excuses for not updating our blog. Suffice it to say we've been pretty busy traveling across the country, trying to plan a move, and buy a house. I lied; I guess I will give a few excuses :)

Without further ado, I'd like to catch ya'll up on a few things. I get to say "ya'll" again, even though I'm not officially a Texan yet.
First off Mike graduated with his MBA in early May.

But, before he did, my parents came out a week prior to graduation to celebrate with us.
Here are some of our adventures with Grandpa and Grandma Black:
Fishing at Lake Monroe. We didn't catch anything, but we all had a good time being outside in beautiful Indiana.

Riding a train in French Lick. Jonah loves trains, and he loved this hour and a half train ride through French Lick, Indiana. French Lick is home to tomato juice and Larry Bird. Who knew?

We loved having my parents here.

A week later, Mike's parents came and he graduated!!

Here he is an all of his graduation regalia

and with the family. Mike's parents came out for graduation, and then treated us to an awesome trip to Nauvoo.

We were all able to go to the temple, go to Carthage jail, and visit downtown old Nauvoo.

We had a wonderful time with Mike's parents and are so glad they came out for his graduation.

We celebrated Mothers' Day in Nauvoo, and Mike surprised me with tickets to see Mary Poppins in Chicago. Anita stayed a couple extra days so we could make the trip up to Chicago without dragging Jonah along for another 8 hour drive in the car. It was a fabulous show with some of the original cast members from broadway.

A few days later, we all hopped on a plane and headed to California to see the rest of the Lowes. We were able to stay two whole weeks and could've stayed all summer. The weather was gorgeous and we spent a lot of time outside.

We went to a Stanford baseball game with all of the older grandkids,

to the beach,

to L.A. to visit Mike's grandparents,

to a Giants baseball game with Joe and Meg Field (we had rockin' seats by the way. What can we say other than: we KNOW people)

and celebrated Charlie Drummond's fourth birthday with a Cowboy-themed birthday party. Here's Jonah in his Cowboy attire. He learned to say "Hee Haw" ... we'll have to work on that one a little more.

After visiting the Lowes, we headed to Utah for another two weeks of family and fun. While we were there we went to the Orem Fest Carnival. Jonah rode lots of rides. He was pretty serious about the whole thing.

The only way we could tell he was having any fun, is that he cried when we had to take him off when the ride was over.
Here's Jonah checking out a helicopter with Dad.

Jonah loves helicopters, planes, any type of truck, buses, trains...basically anything that goes.
We also went to an aquarium. Jonah loved watching the fish. Here is with Uncle Nathan, or "Nah-Nah". Jonah LOVES "Nah-Nah"

We also had family pictures taken by Amanda Peterson while were in Utah. They turned out great. Here's a few:

We're now back in Indiana with tons of free time on our hands. We're enjoying spending time together, especially because we know that we won't see a lot of each other once Mike starts school in August.
We took a trip to the Indianapolis zoo on Wednesday.
Jonah rode on a train,

saw lots of animals,

and even got to ride a horse.

He is the greatest little boy.

He makes me laugh everyday. I can hardly believe he is going to be turning two on the 25th of this month.

We've bought a house in Texas, and will be closing on August 6th. It's a great little house and we feel so blessed that it fits our needs and is in our price range. I'd love to post pictures, but I'm lame and didn't take any when we went to Texas to look at it. You can go to this website though and check out a slide show:

Until next time!