Sunday, December 16, 2007

Busy Sundays . . .

Two down, one to go on Josh's finals, but Janae is just getting warmed up on the tests. It's been a lot of work, but we're hanging in there. . .

We had some great diversions this weekend with Josh's brother, Adam getting married. Friday afternoon we went up to the Salt Lake Temple where they were married, and in the evening we headed all the way up to Logan for the reception. It was fun to spend time with family, eat some reception food, and celebrate the big day. The fun continued with another reception on Saturday in Lehi. More fun with family, and this one had a chocolate fountain. Good times, and congratulations Adam and Angie!

Earlier this week found out our Sundays would be changing when Josh accepted a new calling to be the second counselor in the our ward's bishopric. We're still feeling pretty new in the ward, but we're really looking forward to getting to know the ward members better as we serve.

Aside from all of this other action, we're most excited about how quickly Christmas is coming. More time with family, more time to visit, more time to relax, and less homework! Ainslie was feeling festive in a nice Christmas dress the other day, and she gave us a little run-down on her Christmas list:

Please let us know if you have any insight as to what exactly she's saying, she sounds pretty serious about things there towards the end. We really hope she's not asking for a pony, we kind of owe her.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Tickle-Me-Ainslie

This should make you smile . . .

But if that doesn't work, try this: http://hollywoodflakes.blogspot.com/2007/12/angels-from-heaven.html

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Making Snowflakes . . .

We're not sure if it was the snow that we got this weekend, or Ainslie's love of shredding paper that got her in the mood to make some snowflakes out of a napkin the other night. Whatever it was, she had a great time, and she even let us watch (part of ) a movie while she worked on her little "project."

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Now More Mobile than Before!

Ainslie's making progress towards crawling, but truth be told, she'd rather just have us hold her up by the hands so that she can walk where she wants to. Why crawl if you have to do it by yourself? Lately, she's been working on the commando crawl . . .

And yes, Janae's keys still appear to be the only thing interesting enough to crawl across the living room to get.

Snow!!!

This week started out a little rough for Ainslie. After getting her immunizations, she was feeling pretty crumby for a few days, but we're happy that now she's getting back to being her-happy-smiley-self again. We're also happy about the snow storm that rolled through yesterday. Janae says that if it's going to be cold, we should have snow to make it worthwhile, and we finally got some. Ainslie was all ready to take on the elements with the new hat that Grandma Jody made for her, but we decided to wait just a little longer before we start making snow angels.
We were also happy this week to find out that the little French Bakery in Orem that we've been trying to go to for a while now definitely DOES have real-deal French pastries, and they're great! We recommend the fruit tarts and chocolate croissants (the croissants didn't last long enough to get a picture):
It's great living close to family, especially when things get busy with school, and we're grateful to all of Ainslie's Grandmas & Grandpas and Aunts & Uncles who have helped us make it through the semester so far. And, we know that Ainslie loves spending time with all of her family. This week, Josh's sister Heather took a shoot at feeding Ainslie some oatmeal, and did a great job.
Our house is looking more and more festive each day as Janae puts up decorations and wraps presents. Christmas is just around the corner, and we can't wait!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Happy 7 Month Birthday Ainslie!

Our little girl is 7 months old today! We can't believe how fast she's growing up and how strong-willed she is getting. She's awesome, and we love her lots and lots. (We wanted to show off the shirt that Aunt Heather made. It's pretty cool!)

Friday, November 23, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving traditions: turkey, stuffing, pumpkin pie, football, and . . . balloon soccer?
This year we went to St. George for Thanksgiving with Josh's family. Grandpa Davee's birthday was on Thanksgiving, so we were excited to make the trip down south to be there.
It was fun to spend time with everyone, and the food was great. We all ate until we simply couldn't eat any more. Thanksgiving done right. Ainslie had a good time playing with Grandpa and Grandma and all of their toys!
She also made friends with the dog and worked on biting a balloon. Lots of fun.


The time off from school has been nice, but the threat of finals hangs like a black cloud on the horizon. These next few weeks are going to be a real adventure. We can't wait until Christmas vacation . . .

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

When Sweet Potatoes Attack!

Ainslie's working on real food these days (if you can call mushed up vegetables and oatmeal "real food"). So far, Janae is the only one brave enough around our house to venture towards little Ainslie with a spoon full of this stuff, and last night the challenge was sweet potatoes. From the picture above you'd think it was a pretty crazy experience, but these "before" pictures show that it wasn't all "Attack of the Killer Sweet Potatoes." Ainslie was having a good ol' time taking the spooon and eating on her own (and flinging food around the room just a little too).

*** Update ***
Josh tackled the sweet potatoes with Ainslie tonight. No casualties were reported . . .

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Carrying on . . .

A few nights ago we thought it would be a good idea to let Ainslie wear herself out in the crib a little bit before bedtime (lately it's become a battle of wills to convince her that it's time to go to bed). When we came back a few minutes later to take another shot at going to sleep, she had almost crawled out of the crib! So, we decided it was time to drop the mattress to the lowest level, and Josh went to work with his handy tool kit to make our crib a little safer. Now Ainslie can stand up all she wants, and we don't worry about her jumping out. At least not anytime soon . . .
This week Josh finished up the Rex E. Lee moot court competition, and he made it all the way to the final round. That means he'll be on the BYU team that will compete for a chance to go to the national competition in Chicago a year from now. This spring he'll probably be competing in a few other competitions as well for both the Moot Court team and the Trial Advocacy team. He'll be pretty busy, but he enjoys the competitions. Plus, we might get to go to a competition or two together in some exotic locations such as Minneapolis or Nashville!
Election night went well for Janae. After Josh's semifinal round was done, we all headed over to the exit poll headquarters, and Janae helped write up a press release to let people know what the exit poll showed. Vouchers didn't pass, Becker's the new mayor, and there were more Democrats voting in Salt Lake this election than the last. Interesting . . .

Monday, November 05, 2007

Not too Mobile

Ainslie still hasn't started crawling yet, but she's been giving it a pretty good shot. If you put the right thing in front of her, she'll give it everything she's got to move in some direction. Legs kicking, arms stretched out as far as they can go, fingers wiggling. . .

But, we're not too sad that's she's (for the most part) stationary. It's nice being able to put her down and not be too concerned about where she's going to scoot off to, and from what we're told, this stage won't be lasting much longer.

True to predictions, school is picking back up, and the intensity is sure to only build as we get closer and closer to finals. Janae has papers and tests coming up, and Josh is still in the Moot Court competition. Tomorrow he'll be in the Semi-finals, and Janae is going to be busy helping with the KBYU Exit Poll during the election. Should be interesting to see how the vote comes out on the Salt Lake Mayoral race and the contentious school voucher question, but we're mostly hoping that we'll be able to make it through this election night without having anyone fall off a stage . . .

Sunday, October 28, 2007

The Eye of the Storm

Things around here have calmed down over the last few days. Not too much, but just enough to feel like there's a little time to get caught up on things. Call the landlord about the tub, take an evening to get a hamburger together, and work on helping Ainslie figure out how food works. Janae's been working with some baby-oatmeal for some time now, and we think we're making some good progress. What do you think?


But, just to make sure we don't get too accustomed to having time for things, school is sure to get busy again. Josh is competing in the Moot Court competition, and everybody's finals loom on the not-so-distant horizon. For now, we'll enjoy going to bed as soon as Ainslie will let us (instead of staying up all night reading), and we'll keep cruising KSL.com, craigslist, and DI for baby bargains, like baby's first hightops ($1):

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Fall Photo shoot

The weather for the last few weeks has been pretty dreary around here on the weekends. It was stormy again this morning, and when we got up to go to church, there was snow and ice on our car. Crazy. We're looking forward to winter and all that it brings, but still, the cold weather and our busy schedules have left us dreaming of warmer climes and slower times. In that longing, we came across one of our videos from Greece the other day. If only there was some way to slip over there for a weekend . . .


But, since we're here in Provo, Janae decided to take advantage of the changing seasons and took Ainslie out for a little private photo shoot. Sure we're biased, but we thought these pictures were pretty great . . .
We've all enjoyed having Josh's brother Michael staying with us for the last week while the rest of the family ran off to some island paradise, but Ainslie has been especially fond of having someone extra to play with the last few days. We're not sure what we're going to do when the family gets back and Ainslie is left with just Mom and Dad again . . .

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

New Trick!

Look how quickly this little girl is learning new tricks! Standing up already. . .

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Junk food

Staying up all night to do homework can do strange things to you. You stumble through the next day trying to remember what it is you just barely did. Days start to blur together. And, most notably, junk food consumption tends to go through the roof. The current choice around here? Razzberry M&M's. Josh is no stranger to the "vitamin C" (chocolate) when it comes to late night papers, but Janae is starting to come around lately and is eating her share too. It's kind of nice having us both in school again. Josh used to get pretty lonely pouring over his homework till the wee hours of the morning while everyone else slept, but now we're both up (and for the first time in the last five months, it's not because Ainslie was crying).

Things have been very busy this last week, but we're making it. We still managed to squeeze in a little bit of celebrating for Janae's birthday last week (finally caught back up to Josh), and we're doing our best to get all of the other important stuff taken care of as well. Things like bath time . . .

But, as crazy as it is, we're having a good time. We're still proud to be studying at BYU, and we're grateful for the chance to live such busy, busy lives. It's great to know we're all in it together!

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Couches!

It was a bit of an adventure, but we finally got our couches! The weather report for the weekend was looking pretty grim, but Josh and a friend headed up to Draper early Saturday morning and managed to get the furniture home without getting caught in too much rain.

With new furniture in the living room, we've been able to get the "office" set up as well, and Janae has been working away on her new computer.
And it's a good thing that she's got her own computer these days because both of us have been busy lately. Janae's coming up on midterms and papers, and Josh had a mock trial competition last week. It's been crazy, but we're making it.
Ainslie's been understanding with everything going on lately, letting Mom and Dad get things done (sometimes).
And, she's been working on some new tricks too!

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Peek-a-boo

We finally managed to get a video of Ainslie laughing. She always gets distracted by the camera . . .

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Sitting Up!

Ainslie's growing up fast!

Family Pictures

On Friday, Josh's Dad came up to take some engagement pictures of Josh's brother, Adam and his fiancee, Angie. They were looking for a spot with some nice fall colors and ended up going to Hobble Creek Canyon. We tagged along and ended up at the spot where we had our engagement pictures taken almost three years ago. While Davee was taking pictures of the soon-to-be-marrieds, we got Breezy to take a few family pictures of us on a familiar fence (above). We think she did a pretty good job (must be in a photography class or something . . .)
A long time ago:








Not such a long time ago:
After the light ran out in the canyon, we had everybody over to our apartment for some pizza and a little birthday celebration for Josh. We always like having everyone over, and it gets to be even more fun as our place gets to be a little more "equipped." We don't have much for sitting on in the living room, but Ainslie's room is coming together very nicely:











The kitchen is looking pretty good these days with the table that Janae refinished and painted, and the Swiss cow adds a nice little touch of "welcome":









We've also been busy getting our apartment set up with a wireless connection, so now we can work from any room in the house! Josh has been loving the washer and dryer that we got from Jenica and Justin. What more could we ask for in an apartment? Maybe something to sit on in the living room. Ainslie doesn't mind the floor too much . . .
Coming soon: Couches!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Still here . . .

When we got home from Europe, we were committed to continuing the blog and posting about the things that we're up to. We were convinced that life at home would still be worth blogging about, and although the pictures are far less exciting, life is still plenty interesting. So why haven't we posted?


Well, we started school (Josh and Janae) and moved into a new apartment, and we've been pretty well consumed with everything else that goes along with school and apartment stuff since then. But, things are going well for us, and they just keep getting better.
Janae started her class work in the Masters of Public Policy program here at BYU. Josh started classes a week or so before that. We've been able to work out our schedules so that we can watch Ainslie most of the time. She gets to come to a class or two doing the week, and we're very grateful to Josh's mom and our sister-in-law Karrie for their help in taking care of Ainslie a few times a week. It's great to be close to family that supports us with our school work.

Aside from school and packing we've been busy with other things too. Like trying to find new furniture to replace the pillows we've been sitting on in the living room (we decided with the help of our volunteer moving crew that it wouldn't be worth it to move our rather hefty couch to our new second floor apartment, and off to the dump it went). Ainslie's been working on sucking her toes, and we've all been enjoying a good episode of Antiques Roadshow when we can (we don't have the fancy cable anymore).

We also decided to give in and start paying for an internet connection at home to make homework easier to do. Now we can google, email, blog, and everything else from the comfort of our own living room. So, now that we're connected, there will definitely be more to come. Stay tuned . . .

Friday, August 24, 2007

Ainslie's Weather Report

We're still new to this blogging business, but we wanted to see how uploading videos works.

Here's a little weather report from Ainslie when we were in Florence . . .

Monday, August 20, 2007

Home at Last

It’s good to be home! We’re still adjusting to the time change and recovering from a few sleepless nights on the road home, but we couldn’t be happier to be back. At church today, someone sat down next to Josh and asked if he had a good week. Josh just said, “It was kind of busy, but yeah, it was good.”

And, the business doesn’t seem to be dying down at all. Now we need to find an apartment and get moved out of our current place by the end of the month. We’ve had a few promising leads, but nothing concrete yet. If you know of any nice places . . .

But, before we start moving forward, we wanted to give a little wrap up on how things ended up for us in Europe.

Things ended wonderfully in Italy. We had two and a half days in Rome, and we enjoyed every pizza and pasta filled minute of it. As great as the pizza was, the real magic of Rome (and Italy in general) is a little thing called gelato. So rich, so creamy, so much.
There was plenty to see in Rome besides the gelato stands:
The Roman Forum:The Spanish Steps:The Colosseum:The Trevi Fountain:The Pantheon:The Circus Maximus (where Ben Hur raced):St. Angelo's Castle:Even though we ate mostly ice cream, we also stopped at a few restaurants while we were in Rome. We avoided sit-down restaurants most of the time we were traveling because Ainslie gets a little bored when we sit around for too long, but in Rome the food was just too irresistible. Ainslie was great while we were there, and she spent most of the meal charming the waiters.
We had great luck with all of our hotels on our trip, mostly staying in Best Westerns that we could book online before we left Leipzig, but our hotel in Rome seemed to go above and beyond. Janae didn’t take Josh up on the dare to ask someone for a hug at breakfast, but all of the staff at the hotel definitely “ispired” us the most beautiful emotion while we were there! And Ainslie ispired them. She was pretty popular in Rome too.

In fact, Ainslie got us to the very front of an incredibly long line at the Vatican. We estimate that it would have taken at least 2 or 3 hours had we waited in line, but with the help of a sympathetic security guard, we walked right in. But, even if we had waited, it would have been worth it. The Vatican was great.
We saw lots of spectacular art works as we twisted our way through the maze that is the Vatican museum on our way to the Sistine chapel, but Michelangelo’s work tops everything else there. The chapel is awe-inspiring. Inside the chapel we were constantly reminded by an Italian guard who forcefully told everyone in the chapel “No pictures!” and “Quiet!” So, we didn’t get any pictures, but it was amazing.

After we got out of the Vatican museum we ducked into St. Peter’s Basilica for a few minutes. It’s hard to believe just how big the cathedral is.
We passed on the opportunity to rub St. Peter’s foot, but apparently lots of people seemed to still believe in the promise of a former pope that anyone who rubs the foot will receive 50 days worth of indulgences.
Outside we got a few glimpses of the Swiss Guard before we had to find shelter from the rain. We even got to see ourselves on the “Vaticam” in the square where the Pope speaks.
We were able to see a few of Michelangelo’s other works as well while we were in Rome. The Pieta inside of St. Peter’s was absolutely beautiful, and the sculpture of Moses was fantastic as well.
On the way to Venice, we decided to take a day in Florence, seat of the Medici family government during a significant portion of Italian history.
The skyline in Florence is dominated by the huge Florentine Dome, which is impressive for its exterior decoration as well as its size.
Behind the cathedral we found a museum that housed many of the sculptures that decorated the fa├žade of the church (they had been replaced by replicas so that the originals could be preserved). The museum had an unfinished Pieta by Michelangelo and several sculptures by Donatello (Josh’s favorite Ninja Turtle of years past).
Florence is also remarkable because of its beautiful architecture.
That evening we moved on to Venice. The next morning we caught a bus out to the islands and spent the day walking down the narrow streets and along the canals of Venice. By this point all three of us were pretty much exhausted, but we still enjoyed the chance to see what we could.
Gondola rides were about $140 for 45 minutes around town, so we opted for the view from a bridge rather than the view from the water.
We thought about asking the vegetable boat guy for a ride.From Venice we flew back to Leipzig to take back the computer cord that Josh has been using and get our luggage from the Fingerle’s home.
Our flight to Frankfurt left Leipzig at 5:50 in the morning. We were a little worried about public transportation going out at 3 in the morning to get to the airport, so we decided to rough it at the airport for the night. From Frankfurt we flew directly in to Las Vegas. 11 and ½ hours seemed almost too much after the flight in from Venice and a nearly sleepless night in Leipzig, but Ainslie was a real angel for us again and the time went by quickly. In Vegas, Josh’s Dad was waiting for us at the airport, and after a quick stop at In-n-Out for some good ol’ American hamburgers, we headed north to Provo.
Josh's beard had a ways to go before he could catch up with Grandpa Davee, but that won’t be happening now that we’re back in Provo. School starts next Monday for Josh, and Janae starts the Tuesday after Labor day.

The excitement hasn’t slowed down much now that we are home. Ainslie rolled over on her own for the first time this morning! And, there’s sure to be lots of other news coming up, so keep watching for more stateside updates in the future . . .