Jillian is growing and learning so much everyday. She is 16 months old and smart as a whip. It’s crazy to see how much she understands and can act on. Jilly loves talking and singing and is getting quite good at both. She says the typical, “Mama,” “Dada” and “Daddy”, and “Baba” which is her general word for hunger. One of my favorite things to hear her say is, “Uh oh!” which is freaking adorable. And the most awesome part about it is that she knows exactly when to say it.
One of her funny stories lately is when my mom took her shopping at Central Market a few weeks ago. On the shopping carts, they have cup holders for your Starbucks. Well, my mom, being the ingenious Granny she is, put our little Tupperware container in the cup holder so that Jilly could feed herself Goldfish crackers. One would think this was a perfect plan, in which Granny could shop efficiently and Jilly would be entertained and not get hungry. I’m sure the Central Market employees soon found out, the plan wasn’t quite perfect. Granny Sam started feeling these little crunches under her feet while simultaneously hearing Jilly exclaim, “Uh oh!” Catching on to what was happening, Granny paid closer attention to Jilly. And sure enough, she made eye contact with Ms. Beans just in time to witness the Kid grab a fist full of Goldfish and then reach out, calling, “Uh Oh!” and then letting go to drop the whole pile on the floor. Ah ha! Tricky little girl.
Beanie Baby has also learned a couple more things to say. She loves to pick up ANYTHING and use it as a phone, holding it up to her ear, and saying, “uh-ruh”. It took a couple of times, but I eventually realized she was saying Hello. How cute is that?! And as of Friday, she now says “bye-buh.” She’s starting to say, “buh-buh” (which is different from Ba-Ba, or Bye-Buh) which is either Bunny or Bed, not sure which, since she says it when it’s time for bed with Bunny Lovey. But it works either way. ;-) Anyway, those are the words which you can understand. The rest of the time, she is chattering and babbling away, as if we understand everything.
Even though she only says a few words, she understands so much more! You can ask her to do something and she’ll do it. Or, as she just did to me, she’ll shake her head “no”. Sweet, eh? Now my kid can ‘back talk’ me and make it clear she’s refusing to do what I want. Great…. But really, it’s cool. She loves to share her food with everyone, and seems confused when you refuse the Cheerio that she just pulled out of her mouth and covered with snot. What a generous girl we have.
Jillian still loves music and singing as much as ever. If she’s fussy and cranky and not calming down, we turn on Baby Mozart or start singing, “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.” Almost everytime, she’ll calm down within 60 seconds of the music. Saturday, I started playing for her my Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat soundtrack. She started singing almost immediately and loved listening to it. Throw in the Raffi CDs and DVD Granny Sam bought, and Jilly is set for many years to come.
I’ve added another element to our bedtime routine, where I sing her favorite song, “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” as I lay her down. I’ve found there are three lines and we do something different each line. The first line, I just hold her. The second, I lay her down in the crib. And by the end of the third line, I’m walking out the door and closing the door. Saturday night, when I laid her down, as soon as I started singing, she flopped right down in my arms, ready to go to sleep. I guess she knows the routine and likes it. It really has helped her go to bed easily and quickly lately.
Jilly still isn’t walking all over, by herself but she gets closer and closer each day. She will take a few steps on her own, if we set her down and encourage her to walk to us. We’ve seen her take up to 8-10 steps, but normally she’ll take 3-4 steps in between things. I’ve got my fingers crossed that she’ll be walking proficiently by the time she starts Nursery at the end of the month. You’ll catch her walking around on furniture or using something to push around the room often, but if she realizes she’s standing on her own and isn’t near enough to something, she’ll plop right down on her butt. Silly Beanie Girl.
We’ve had a couple things change with Steve and myself this past month. When we returned from our vacation to Texas, I started working full-time in the Service Department at work. That meant Jilly started going to daycare. My friend Jenne will drive up each morning and pick Jilly and me up, then take me to work, and go back to her house with Jilly. Then Steve picks her up after work. It’s certainly been an adjustment, but we’re all working with it and it seems to be going all right. I am loving the new job, it’s way different than what I was doing before and I’m enjoying the challenges. It’s so nice not being tied to phone calls, but it has taken away from my myspace and blogging time. (If you hadn’t noticed. ;-)) We’ll see how things continue to go.
Steve however got quite a surprise when the High Councilor for our ward called Sunday morning, three weeks ago, asking to meet with us after church. It seemed we flip-flopped our normal reactions. I was calm and all, “Well, whatever. We’ll find out what this about soon enough and it will be fine, whatever it is,” while Steve fretted and wondered over what it was about. We hypothesized lots of possible callings, ranging from Stake Young Women for me to Bishopric member for Steve to Stake Young Men for Steve. Church enough and we met with Brother Hartup. He quickly got down to business and said right to me, “Well Sister Hall, let me assure you, this isn’t a call for you.” Hehehe. Phew. That only left Steve. Turns out, he was called to be an Assistant to the High Priest Group Leader. Uh, shock! Most of the high priests in our ward are somewhat older than us. Like they have kids our ages, or older. The youngest high priests in our ward are the bishopric, who are a couple years older than Steve. So, like I said, this was a surprise. We were told that the sustaining would happen in a couple weeks and we were to keep it confidential until then. But….. Steve knew his friend Shawn was having a similar meeting with Brother Hartup, so they talked and found out they were both getting the same calling. I think it relieved Steve a little bit, that he wouldn’t be the only one. But it was still blowing our minds a bit; Steve a High Priest at 28, and me, a High Priest’s wife at 23. Yikes!
This past Sunday, March 30th, Steve was sustained and the ward found out about the new callings (the Elders Quorum presidency was rearranged as well, since Steve and Shawn left vacancies there). For the next hour we heard a lot of, “Well, know you can fall asleep in church and no one can harass you about it!” as well as, “You’re gonna be a high priest’s wife! How do you feel about that?” Well, let me tell you, it makes me nervous!!! I had just started to feel like I wasn’t the youngest person in the ward, which I pretty much have been since I was 18. And now, I’ll be going to High Priest socials, where pretty much all the other women are old enough to be my mother or grandmother. I feel young and inexperienced all over again. But I will still be serving in Primary, with Heidi, Michelle and Kati, so I’m still with my friends. Plus, the bishopric’s wives are about my age and we have kids within a couple years of each other. So Stacey, Somphien and Kim, tell me I won’t feel too weird! ;-)
Because this is a new office in the Priesthood, Steve needs to be ordained to this office. For every other priesthood office, (deacon, teacher, priest, and elder), Steve’s dad Mike has ordained him. But I was bummed when we got the call, 5 days after we got home from Texas, because Mike isn’t here to do it. Had we known before we went, that could have been done on our vacation. And chances are, Steve will keep this office for the rest of his life, so it would have been really nice to have his father do it, and keep the same Priesthood lineage. We called Mike anyway, to see if we could work it out for him to come. Well, that weekend was about 2 days before Mike, Karen, Becky and the kids were set to leave for a vacation in California. They looked at flights, but it was just too expensive. We were bummed. The day everything became official, the bishop told us that Steve could have a couple of months to take care of the ordination and see if his dad could come up, since it was important. That was really nice and we let Mike know. The other night we got a call saying Mike was coming! So Grandpa Mike will be coming up the last Saturday in April, flying in that afternoon and going home early Monday morning. It will be a short visit, but so very worth it! Thank you Mike and Karen for making this possible!!! It means so much to us all. Plus, who can turn down a visit with Jilly? ;-)
So those are our updates. I know, I know. I’ve been shamefully neglecting my blogs! I’ll get better, I promise. Until then, bear with me. Love y’all and blog-stalkers: don’t forget to leave a comment!