Monday, March 31, 2008

The BEST Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe...EVER!

For years I have been on the search for just the right chocolate chip cookie recipe. Not too doughy, but now too hard...just the right amount of chewy goodness. It seems I have found it. I got the recipe off of and tweaked it a bit (I always do!). I used whole wheat flour, so it is a bit healthier, and it is surprisingly delicious! My dad ate the cookies and enjoyed them...and I'm not sure if he noticed the difference in taste...which means there isn't much of a difference! I also used more vanilla. So, in the end the recipe turned out a bit different. Feel free to try to recipe yourself!
1 c butter flavored shortening
2 eggs
3/4 c white sugar
3 teaspoons vanilla extract
3/4 c brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/4 c whole wheat flour
2 cups milk chocolate chips
1 teaspoon baking soda

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease cookie sheets.
2. In a large bowl, cream together the butter flavored shortening, brown sugar and white sugar until light and fluffy (beat them on med-low). Add the eggs on at a time, beating well with each addition, then stir in the vanilla.
3. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt; gradually stir into creamed mixture.
4. Fold in the chocolate chips.
5. Drop by rounded spoonfuls onto the prepared cookie sheets.
6. Bake for 8-10 minutes in the preheated oven, until light brown. Due to the fact that the dough is darker because of the wheat, it may be hard to tell what "light brown" is. Cookies will still be a bit doughy and light brown around the edges. DO NOT OVERCOOK! Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

Our first NEW couch!

On Saturday, after owning two used couches since we've been married, we bought a brand new couch...and it even has a chaise lounge! I love it! We got a great deal on it too...only $1,200. The store said it was worth $4,200. I don't know about that, but honestly, you can feel the quality when you sit on it. I'm so happy with it!

Friday, March 28, 2008

Did you know...?

Did you know that bananas can cause lack of bowel movement? Did you know that for young infants 2 oz of 100% apple juice (no sugar added) can clear that blockage right up? Now you know. (Now I know.)

Disclaimer: I'm sorry if that was TMI...but I'm a mother now and those details are just life.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

A Day in the Life of Jackson

Our little baby is becoming a little boy. He has started to eat bananas with his rice cereal. He rolls over whenever he gets the chance. He responds to his name. He shows so much affection to those he knows. He even pets Libby on his own every time she comes near him. He has a great personality so far! I love this boy so much! I know I'm getting all gushy, but I can't help it! Here are some more pictures for your enjoyment!

Jackson pets Libby. She loves to come sit on him because she knows that he will always be happy to stroke her. So, no matter what position she ends up in on him or near him, she is happy!
Jackson is a natural-born Angel Fan...he just doesn't know it yet.
Jackson spends some quality time with Daddy on his lunch break.
Bananas + Rice Cereal + Mommy's Milk = one happy boy!
Watch Jackson turn over... get some "tummy-time"!
Lately, he has been wanting to grab the camera when I am taking his picture.
He was wide awake when I was putting on his PJs...all smiles before bed!Hope you enjoyed them...I've been told that there can never be too many pictures of Jackson on this blog!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

For Dinda...

In honor of one of my most faithful viewers, here are some new pictures of Jackson!
Look at those blue eyes!

Jackson met Becky for the first time and, if you look closely at his expression, he was quite intrigued with her.

On Easter, Jackson opened a present from Great-Grandma and Great-Grandpa Rice...a cool new cement truck!

Of course, Jackson loved the toy had to play with it right away.

Jackson was all smiles in his Grandma's lap!

Jackson had a gangster look going on today. Don't worry. It won't be encouraged!

Jackson - getting some diaper-time! It was hot and he was just so cute...I couldn't put his clothes back on!

I hope you all enjoyed these pictures! Jackson is growing fast and getting to be sooo interactive! He is imitating people now. I love it...its sooo cute! He also is scooting when he is on his belly. I suspect that crawling is in the near future!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008


On Saturday, we bought Jackson a highchair. We had to because his car seat was no longer working for feedings. When he eats, he gets so excited that his arms flap and his legs start kicking ....needless to say, the food goes flying. At least with a highchair, his legs can't kick because the tray is holding him in place. He loves sitting in his new highchair!
When he gets excited about eating is when the food gets on his face. He can't contain his happiness!
"More, please!" He reminds me of a baby bird! So cute!

Kitty pictures

A new use for a laptop: a warm bed.Libby likes to "hide" in the bathroom reading material.

Thursday, March 13, 2008


The time has come. I can't go much longer without sleeping next to my husband! Jackson must go to sleep in his crib. There is nothing that can put a damper on intamacy in marriage like a child sleeping in between you and your husband. We are looking into the "Cry it Out" method that has gotten some bad publicity, but it really isn't as bad as it sounds. It doesn't involve you leaving your child in his/her crib to cry with the door shut. This article on sums the method up nicely. What do you all think of this method? Does it work? Is there another method we can try?

We have tried putting Jackson in the Bassinet, but with no avail. If he sleeps in it, he will only sleep for a couple hours, and then he won't go back into after a feeding. We are going to move onto the crib. So, with that, I must ask...plea...with all you mothers/fathers who read this blog to comment. Please share your advice, even if you've never left a comment before! We can use all the advice we can get! Also, if you have tried rice cereal with your child to get him/her to sleep through the night, let me know how it has worked out for you!

Our New Kitty

Meet Libby. She was rescued by our apartment's assistant manager. We adopted her on Tuesday of this week. She is about 6 months old and very spunky, but loves to cuddle. She also wants Cassie to play with her really bad, but Cassie just won't have any of that yet! Cassie is very good at tolerating her. So, Libby does the next best thing...she follows Cassie around and does whatever Cassie does! Of course, for Troy and I, a new baby + a new kitty = even less sleep!Libby is sneaking up on Cassie and Cassie is pretending not to notice.

Jackson's 4-month Check-up!

On Monday, we headed over to Kaiser for Jackson's 4-month check up (he's growing up so fast!). This time, Troy/daddy got to join us! We waited a while in the examination room before the doctor came in to see Jackson, so we had to entertain the little lad. Jackson enjoyed reading his favorite book while waiting!So, when the doctor came in, he informed us that Jackson weighs nearly 14 lbs and he is 24.5". His growing slowed down a bit, if you can believe that! He went from being in the 75th percentile for height and 50th percentile for weight (at his 2 -month check-up) to being 30th percentile in both at 4 months. The doctor said he doesn't look that small. Thanks, Doc. Also, the doctor said that he STILL isn't teething! If all this drooling, chewing, violent attacks on toys with his mouth, and occasional grumpiness aren't teething...I'm not sure I want to know what is! Troy and I were convinced Jackson was teething! Oh-well...that's first timers for you!
Another issue that I brought up with the doctor was Jackson's ingrown toenails...poor thing...I thought I had plagued him with them. Turns out, its perfectly normal for infants to have them because their toenails don't grow out...they grow up at an angle. So, I told the doc that I had been soaking them in warm water with Epsom Salt. He told me I was doing the right thing. (Yea!)Little feet! Flat and long...just like his Uncle Mike's!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Happy Boy!

Isn't he a cutie?

Weekly Passage (Review)

One night list week, I was laying in bed thinking about the passage below. I was thinking about how easy it is to "throw in your lot" among sinners (friends, peers, co-workers). This could be anything from joining in a gossiping session with the ladies at work, giving in to the pressures of materialism with the rest of the world (and for that matter, debt), peeking at the websites with scantly-clad men/women on them, kissing or your boyfriend/girlfriend at bit too much (or going farther than that...). The opportunities to join the world in sin are countless. May we take heed to the advice in these verses! My pastor preached a great sermon on this subject a couple weeks ago. He spoke on 1 Tim 4:12 (Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.) To be a good example in all those things listed in 1 Tim, we must stay away from those sins/sinners that tempt us to join in! I pray the Lord guides my path so I may do just that.

Proverbs 1:8-19
The Enticement of Sinners

8 Hear, my son, your father's instruction,
and forsake not your mother's teaching,
9 for they are a graceful garland for your head
and pendants for your neck.
10 My son, if sinners entice you,
do not consent.
11 If they say, “Come with us, let us lie in wait for blood;
let us ambush the innocent without reason;
12 like Sheol let us swallow them alive,
and whole, like those who go down to the pit;
13 we shall find all precious goods,
we shall fill our houses with plunder;
14 throw in your lot among us;
we will all have one purse”—
15 my son, do not walk in the way with them;
hold back your foot from their paths,
16 for their feet run to evil,
and they make haste to shed blood.
17 For in vain is a net spread
in the sight of any bird,
18 but these men lie in wait for their own blood;
they set an ambush for their own lives.
19 Such are the ways of everyone who is greedy for unjust gain;
it takes away the life of its possessors.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Double Date (+ 1)

On Friday night we went on a double date with Joey and Kirsty...and, of course, Jackson! We ate dinner at the Chili Pepper in Orange. This was my first time eating there. I really enjoyed it! I ordered Fajitas. They were very tasty and a great price! In fact, everything there was really decently priced!

After finishing up our Mexican food, we headed to the Orange Circle and had an ice cream sundae at Watson's Drug Store & Soda Fountain. This sundae was no ordinary sundae. It came in a salad bowl. Yes...that's right. A salad bowl! We couldn't finish the sundae between the four of us! Overall, we had a great time and enjoyed hanging out with Joey and Kirsty!

Jackson got his first balloon from a waiter at the Chili Pepper.
Kirsty with our GIGANTIC ice cream sundae!
Jackson discovered another baby in the mirrors at Watson's.The family at Watson's.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Jackson is 4 months old today!

I can't believe it...4 months ago today God blessed us with this beautiful baby boy! He has been more of a blessing than me or Troy could have ever imagined! At four months, he is sitting up with a little assistance, playing with his feet all the time, rolling from side to side, laughing, and talking every chance he gets. He has also started to show affection by leaning into Troy and I when we are holding him and cuddling with us when he wakes up from a nap. Just this past week, we started feeding him rice cereal. He has done an AMAZING job of responding to the spoon. He immediately got the concept of eating off of it! He also does a great job at swallowing. Jackson also types on the keyboard whenever there is one around. I think we may try to find one that we can just give him to bang on. Does anybody have one that is extra or that doesn't work? Let us know! Anyways, it has been a tremendous blessing to see this little boy grow and I look forward to all the growing he has yet to come!

Here are some "four month old" pictures!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

More NEW Jackson Pictures!

There can never be too many pictures of Jackson, right? :)

Lately, typing is Jackson's favorite thing to do.

Cousins Andrea and Ray came by to see Jackson for the first time.
Oh! The excitement!
Look! I'm a big boy!
Jackson and his daddy hard at work!
...and play too!
Jackson's first (and last!) mugshot.
Hope you all enjoyed the photos! I sure did!


So, Robyn "tagged" me today...

1. Link to the person’s blog who tagged you.
Life in Blissfulness

2. Post these rules on your blog.

3. List seven random and/or weird facts about yourself.

a. I was born in Loma Linda University Hospital in 1984. My mom was transfered there from Riverside because they were the only hospital in the area that handled premature babies (My mom was 31 weeks pregnant when she gave birth to me and my twin brother.)

b. My bedroom is decorated in lavender and sage...the same colors I had in my wedding.

c. After high school, I lost 60, if only I can do that again!

d. I grew up in Moreno Valley, which was actually called Sunnymead until 1984 when Moreno Valley became a city. So, if you do that math, I am the same age as Moreno Valley.

e. My favorite ice cream is Thrifty's Black Cherry Ice Cream. Coming in at a close second in mint and chip. I had fond memories of eating ice cream cones in front of the Thrifty's in the Von's shopping center on Sunnymead Blvd. I don't think either store is there anymore. Sigh.

f. Ever since I was little, I would lay in bed and look up at the popcorn ceiling and try to make out shapes in the ceiling. In the last apartment I was in, I found Abe Lincoln in the ceiling! Now that is random.

g. My favorite book when I was a child was "The Giving Tree" by Shel Silverstein. I also loved "There's a Wocket in my Pocket" by Dr. Suess. My aunt bought me "The Giving Tree" when I was little, so I still have that book, but I need to buy the Wocket book for Jackson because I don't have a copy.

4. Tag seven random people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs.
Seven...thats a are four.
Troy at Troy Story
April at For His Glory and My Good
Kimm at Life with Littles
Lori-Lynn at Life.. on and off the road!

5. Let each person know that they have been tagged by posting on comment on their blog.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Jackson's First Blog

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By: Jackson

NEW Jackson Pictures!!!

We got our camera back from Best Buy tonight and I am celebrating by posting new photos of him. He is almost 4 months in these photos. Enjoy!

My bright-eyed baby boy!
Jackson and his favorite toy! (He is currently reading up on animal sounds.)
He is happiest when he has one hand in his mouth and the other on his foot.
We call this his furrowed -brow look. I'm not sure what it means. I'm not sure he even knows what it means.Jackson loves to be tickled, especially by his daddy!