Easter Talk

Easter Talk

We were talking to Stella about Easter. Specifically, what happened during the last week of the Savior’s life. In honor of Palm Sunday, we made a really pathetic looking “palm branch” by tracing her hands on green paper, cutting them out, and taping them to a stick she found outside. She was proud of it anyway and walked around the house cradling it and saying she was going to show Daddy when he came home. Then we watched a video of Jesus riding into Jerusalem on a donkey, and she rode on her own donkey, I mean dad.

Later, she recounted the story as follows:

S: Jesus rode on a donkey. Into “Jerusadem.”

Me: What did the people shout?

S: Lasagna!

Me: I think you mean, “Hosanna!”

S: Yeah!

Me: They said, “Hosanna, to the Son of David!”

S: “David! Stop it this instant!”

Me: No, not that David.

On Tuesday, we talked about how Jesus cleansed the temple.

S: Jesus was mad.

Me: Why?

S: Because the temple was dirty.

Me: Why?

S: Because of the sheep.

Me: What about the sheep?

S: The sheep pooped in the temple.

You can always count on poop to be memorable.

On Thursday, we made unleavened bread. It tasted gross.

Stella loves that song “Gethsemane.” It was probably one of the last songs she was really interested in before she started boycotting singing. Now she refuses to sing on camera or when we’re talking to anyone on the phone. But before she entered this downward spiral, I overheard her singing parts of “Gethsemane” to her stuffed pig. But instead of saying, “Jesus climbed the hill, to the garden still, his steps were heavy and slow….” she said:

“Jesus climbed the hill… [dramatic pause]

to steal cookies!”



A medley by Stella

A medley by Stella

Stella likes to sing/shout/blather herself to sleep at night. Sometimes it sounds like a mix of all the songs she’s been singing throughout the day:

Jesus came to…5 little speckled frogs, sitting on a speckled log, eating the most delicious…spider that wriggled and tickled and jiggled inside her…family here on earth, they are so…dumb, dumb, dumb, they chase anything that glitters, beginners, oh! And here they come, come, come, to…earth with power to choose, good choices bless me and my…foolish man built his house upon the sand, and the rains came tumbling down…to the edge of the water, long as I can remember, never really knowing why…at times I am tempted to…be shiny, like the treasure of a sunken pirate wreck, scrub the deck and…the Lord has shown me how I can…cross that line, will I cross that line? See the light where the sky meets the sea, it calls me and…what can I say except we’re dead soon?  Your granny LIED! The cold never bothered me anyway!



Bible Stories that my toddler tells to me

Bible Stories that my toddler tells to me

Today Stella was busy coloring on the table like I told her not to, when she paused and looked up and said, “Daniel in the lions’ den.”

Me: “Oh, who told you that?”

S: “Jackson.”

Me: “No, they must have told you that story in nursery yesterday?”

S: “Yeah.”

I showed her the picture of Daniel in the lions’ den from our book of Bible stories and again corrected the understandable misnomer (she had recently talked to her cousins Daniel and Jackson on FaceTime), pointing out that this wasn’t her cousin, but an old timey prophet. Later, she wanted to recap the highlights of the story:

S: “Daniel ate the lions. For breakfast.”

Me: “No, everyone thought the lions would eat Daniel but God saved him.”

S: “Lions were hungry.”

Me: Yes, they were hungry, but they didn’t eat Daniel because he prayed to Heavenly Father. Daniel was a good guy.”

S: “And Jackson.”

Me: “Yes, Jackson is a good guy too. So what happened to Daniel in the lions’ den?”

S: “Jackson ate him. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen!”


Speaking of (mostly) old timey prophets:

Stella & prophets 1

Stella & prophets 2



Our December went like this.

We went to Hobby Lobby and in the checkout line, Stella got excited when we approached the cashier. He had long hair and a bushy beard. She looked at him and said, “Jesus!” loud enough for the whole store to hear. His name was Devin. The other customers in line said, “Aww!” and told Devin that he’d just been given a nice compliment. I said I was sorry and we left as soon as possible.

Stella went to her preschool to sit in with her class that she’ll join in January. Two months ago, we started reading the Splat the Cat books. In the first book, Splat goes to school. His teacher, Mrs. Wimpydimple tells the class to welcome their new student and all the little kitties say, “HI SPLAT!” Stella’s teacher, Miss Nancy, told the class, “We have a new friend, say hi to Stella!” When all the kids said, “HI STELLA!” Stella smiled and said, “Wimpydimple!” Nobody knew what she was talking about, of course.

We went to Rancho Cucamonga for Christmas. Sophie had a blowout at an inopportune moment so baby Jesus was played by a teddy bear wrapped in a blankie, and Stella was supposed to be Mary in our Christmas Eve live nativity but instead walked around insisting that she was a wise man. Later she changed her mind and said, “I’m a wise woman,” after Daddy said so.

We wish you a merry Christmas, and a happy new year!

“Now where’s that middle C?”
Wise Woman costume by Kelsey and Skylie


Scary Stuff

Scary Stuff

Me: “Trick or treat, smell my…”

Stella: “undies!”

We did not teach her that.



We went to “Treat Street” on October 28th in downtown Lafayette. Businesses on Mt. Diablo Blvd welcomed trick-or-treaters so we stopped by a few of our favorite places, including Bel and Bunna’s Books, where Stella found Harry, Robot, and Sister.

We thought Stella would be all over the candy but she’s actually more interested in “scary stuff.” She discovered scary stuff when we went to Ross in August and found Halloween decorations on display (in AUGUST). When we couldn’t think of anything to do at the end of summer, we could always go to the store and push the shopping cart up and down the aisles of Halloween decor and that would entertain Stella for 10 whole minutes. Now we’ll know what to when we’re bored next September; we’ll go look at all  Christmas stuff at Target.


The best of Stella

The best of Stella

Speaking of “Stella,” who isn’t named Stella these days?! I swear, the only Stellas we knew were in picture books and on TV, but the second our Stella was born, it seemed like everyone else suddenly loved the name too…

Fortunately, our Stella is probably the only one who:

-says “dinosaurs eat rutabagas”

-will sit for 20 minutes in front of Google Images scrolling through pictures of cake

-laughs when we ask “Who is Splat the Cat’s teacher?” (Mrs. Wimpydimple)

-loves garbage trucks, playing in the dirt, Elsa and Sofia the 1st

-stops what she’s doing to stare at you when you sing the words to a song she’s never heard before (and then repeats the words to you a week later after you’ve never mentioned them again, thinking she forgot that she ever heard them)

-correctly identifies all 12 LDS apostles and First Presidency before age 2 (but could care less about counting 1-10 or correctly identifying colors)


Stella 2 mos [5].jpg
2 months
Stella 3mos 4.jpg
3 months
6 months




And these might be my two favorite videos of Stella

Raiding the cookie factory

“Maniacal” Laugh

Old news

Old news

Dear Stella,

You’re getting a sister. Everybody else knows, but you don’t get it. You know what a baby is, and that I’m a lot fatter than I was 8 months ago, and you point to my tummy and say “sister,” and give her hugs and kisses. But then you also kick me in the tummy when you’re in the mood, so there’s still some disconnect there…

Fortunately, you like to watch TV now (your favorites are “Frozen Fever,” Jesus, a 10 minute clip of garbage trucks making their rounds around town, and Olivia) and you’re getting better at playing by yourself (just in time!).

Unfortunately, you’re not potty trained yet. Mom was potty trained at 16 months, so the story goes, but when we tried with you at 16 months, you would NOT sit still. At 18-19 months, you would say “poop” and point to your diaper. That’s when we should have taken potty training seriously. But Mom felt too gross from growing another human to bother with potty training, and Dad was in Japan, or trying to graduate from Yale, or something…

These days, you can be lured to the bathroom with the promise of chocolate chips and a chance to sit on the “princesses” (the $6 potty seat we found at Ross). Sometimes you’ll let us know when you have to pee. Most of the time you’ll actually pee in the toilet, but other times, you cry “pee!” and just want an excuse to run away sans pants. The second we move into our own house and unpack your little potty, we’ll get serious about undies.

Fortunately, you learned how to sleep in your “new bed” on the floor. The pack n play as bed lasted about a month in California before you started climbing in and out by yourself. During naptime you threw out all the sheets and unfolded the velcro that attaches the mattress to the bottom, and then folded the mattress up so you were sitting on the metal frame. You were happy to sit there and play with the bedding for an hour instead of sleeping. It was very bad. So now you sleep on a mattress on the floor, and will probably not have a problem transitioning to a real bed when we move out of Granny and Poppa’s house.

When we found out you were getting a sister, we took pictures at East Rock Park in New Haven. We thought you would cooperate and be pleasant, but we decided to visit some friends one last time before the park. At our friends’ house, you ate a whole plate of cookies and got really cranky and unphotogenic. Fortunately, we had balloons and that helped a little bit.

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You have about 30 more days to have your parents and Granny and Poppa all to yourself. I hope you enjoy it.