Saturday, December 27, 2008

Miya at 19 months

Here's our little baby Miya, looking (and acting) more and more toddler-like every day!

She did a great job posing for the photographer, though it took a little while to convince her to lay on her tummy.

We didn't get a family picture taken...I'm a little ashamed to admit that it mostly has to do with the fact that I feel huge. Okay, so I look huge, too, and I'm holding out for a family shot when these extra pounds take the form of a baby outside of my body. :) So stay tuned.

Christmas morning

Here are a few fun pictures of the Christmas morning present extravaganza. It sure is fun to see children get excited over new things. I love that Miya is such a happy little girl in general, but it was double the fun hearing her giggle and enjoy all the attention.

Almost all the presents under the tree were for Miya, and after a while, she got burnt out. So we finished opening the last few later in the evening. Evidently opening all those presents is a lot of work!

We were glad to have grandma and grandpa Nishida visiting with us as well. Miya is going to miss her favorite playmates when they leave!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Well, this is my first post on our family blog in quite some time. I completed my finals a couple of days ago and have been enjoying my time with Michelle and Miya. Watching movies, shopping, and eating yummy food...I sure love holiday break! Here is a picture that was taken at our church Christmas party.

Sunday, December 14, 2008


I thought I would let Jacob post this, but with finals looming, it looks like it may not happen any time soon. So to make the announcement, he has accepted a summer internship with Shell Oil in Houston, TX. He had some really great offers, and it was a tough decision. But we both feel good about this choice and look forward to a summer of fun in the hot and humid Houston sun!

Okay...maybe I'm not really looking forward to the "hot" and "humid" parts, but I'm warming to the idea.

Negligence... and Baby Updates

Talk about failure to blog on a consistent basis! It's been nearly a month, and I apologize for our negligence...time flies.

As for updates on the baby...I've had more Dr.'s appointments these past two weeks than I have had in the past 6 months. 6 all together, with 4 ultrasounds. Yes, you heard me right. Our little 3-pound 9-ouncer seems to be doing fine, but we're all keping a close eye on her. I went in for an appointment the Monday before Thanksgiving, and after an hour and a half of being hooked up to the machine for a non-stress test, the baby's heartbeat wasn't accelerating with each movement like they expected it to. This led to the first ultrasound, which lead to a second follow-up ultrasound 2 days later. Then we got to have a pediatric cardiologist do another one to look at the baby's heart, followed by another ultrasound to do all the measurements again. Those last two were on Friday, at which point they declared everything to be just fine, (good muscle tone, movement, heart rate, practice breaths, etc.) with the baby's size consistent with my due date.

So...I still get to have weekly non-stress tests, but probably not more than one or two more ultrasounds. It's actually quite a treat to be able to see our little girl so frequently, and to be able to really watch her grow and develop. Most women only get to have one, and I've had 7! I am grateful for a careful and thorough OB, and for insurance. :)

She often has her hands up by her face, but here are a couple of the most recent pictures. I've seen her blink her eyes, open her mosuth and swallow, empty her bladder, and turn over. Pretty cool.

Oh...and evidently she has "lots" of hair (according to the tech). I'm not sure what "lots" means, but maybe she'll be lucky enough to not be hairless for the first year of life like Miya was. Maybe...

Monday, November 17, 2008

Dinner Swap

I joined a dinner swap group a while back, which means that we get together and exchange several meals each week that we can just heat up at our leisure. It saves me from having to come up with and cook different meals each night, but it requires me to set aside a couple (sometimes more) of hours on Saturday or Sunday to make triple (at least) of a meal of my choosing. Last week I made beef and chicken fajitas. It was by far my most colorful meal, so I took a picture.

Beautiful, eh? This week I made Potato, Leek, and Cheddar Soup with bacon, with parmesan-garlic rolls as a side...from my new Wolfgang Puck recipe book, of course. Thanks Kathy! I've made this soup three times now, and it's one of Jacob's favorites. In exchange, I scored shredded pork with South Carolina BBQ sauce, peach and ginger chicken with a side of rice, and a build-it-yourself pizza kit. We already ate the pizza - fun idea for a swap.

Pumpkin Patch

We saw snow flurries yesterday, and I have to admit once again that I am not excited for Father Frost to come this year. I just love the fall, and I am already feeling like it's too cold to get out much.

These are pictures from another pumpkin patch Miya and I were able to visit last month. It's owned by Purdue, and all the pumpkins we picked were free. Can't get a better deal than that!

Miya picked lots of gourds...she must have liked the fact that they were more her size.

The hay ride, once again, was Miya's favorite part!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Fall leaves

Miya and I spent a lot of time outside this week. The leaves were beautiful, and the temperature has been in the 70s all week! I borowed a backpack carrier from our neighbors, and Miya has been happy to ride around in it on my back while we both enjoyed the beautiful scenery on some Indiana trails. Jacob was even able to take a break from school and come with us one afternoon (Yes Bekah...I stole these from your blog...I hope that's okay). Bekah came with us one afternoon, and I'm so glad she had the foresight to think to bring a camera!

This is a picture Renee sent us from daycare. The kids went out and "helped" Renee rake some leaves on Wednesday...I wish her eyes were open, but hey, that's the same face I pull sometimes when the weather is this gorgeous and I'm able to be outside enjoying it. I wish fall could last forever...or at least to the end of this pregnancy.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


Since I have been working part time whild Jacob is in school, Miya gets to go to daycare 2 days a week for a few hours each day. We love Renee, who takes very good care of our little Miya. In fact, Miya usually claps when we pull into Renee's driveway, and is always happy when I come to pick her up. There is usually only 1 or 2 other kids there with her (one is 2 months younger, and the other is 7 months older), and Miya loves playing with her friends there. I am so grateful we found someone whom we can trust with our baby girl!

This is a picture of Anna and Miya from this morning, eating pancakes together. Thanks Renee, for taking and sending this picture!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Visit from mom and dad Miller

My parents came out to visit last weekend, and we spent some time at the Farmer's Market, at Octoberfest, just hanging out, and seeing the changing leaves. Dad also helped us put in a screen door (yes, I finally painted our front more magenta-colored entrance, thank goodness!).

We went on a little hike on part of the Wabash Heritage Trail up in Battle Ground, and as you can see, it was beautiful.

Miya carried around a branch on the way up (Jacob carried her), and a flower on the way down. She would put it to her nose and sniff it every few minutes, which was precious, but we couldn't catch her doing it on camera, of course.

These pictures were all taken by my dad (thanks, dad), but since we don't have a working camera, we don't have any pictures of grandma and grandpa Miller! Also, dad, I want you to notice that I have honored your request not to post the picture of the two squirrels in action. Maybe in a future post... :)

MORE tomatoes

Another post about my tomatoes. It is going to freeze tonight, so I decided that I had better get outside and pick whatever was left on the vine. Well, this is what was left!! One large cookie sheet, 2 bowls, and 3 pots full...and yes, there are some green bell peppers in there, too.

We canned 12 jars of salsa when my parents came to visit last weekend, wiping out my stash of tomatoes. Now I have another stash that will have to ripen on the counter. I've already given some away, but I'm not sure what I'm going to do with the rest of them yet...more salsa?? Tomato sauce?? We'll see. As always, Miya was quite the helper, especially after she saw me throw one of the rotten tomatoes into the trees behind our house. Before I knew it, she was taking the picked tomatoes and following my example. I'm not sure how many tomatoes were lost duing the throwing episode... She also ate her fair share, and took only one bite out of multiple tomatoes. It's a good thing I had tomatoes to spare.

The high temperature was only 46 degrees today, so it was a bit chilly outside. Notice her pink nose and red hands (I did put gloves on her, but the first pair she soaked in a puddle of water, and the second pair ended up covered in tomato seeds and a squashed caterpillar...yes, I have yet to teach her how to be gentle with anything smaller than her hand...lots of grasshoppers and caterpillars have died due to my failure to teach her properly).

Miya periodically went back into the house to warm up since it took me an hour to pick all of these (my tomato plants grew into a jungle-o-tomato-plants, remember?). It was a lot of work!

Sunday Best

Our camera has not been working for the past couple of weeks, and consequently, I haven't been able to take any pictures...and evidently I can't blog without pictures! Then I remembered that after cleaning out the car a while back, I discovered an old camera that Jacob had found on campus when we were living in Auburn, Alabama. Long story short, he turned it in to the lost and found, and when no one claimed it, they gave it back to him. Nice, huh? It's not a great camera (as you can see from the pictures) but it'll have to do for now.

Here are some pictures of Miya in her Sunday best. She is posing, as you can see. Can she get any cuter?!

Sunday, October 12, 2008


Miya surprised me about a month ago when she followed a little girl up the steps to the highest slide, turned over on her tummy, and slid down feet first all by herself. She nearly fell off at the bottowm since it took me a minute to figure out what whe was doing.

I finally caught her in action this week. Such an accomplishment! Now she could spend all afternoon going down slides...

...with an occasional break for swinging. She loves the park (and so do I). I am going to be so sad when the snow comes and our daily park trips are interrupted. *sigh*

Double Jogging Stroller

We got a new stroller this week, and Miya and I (and her black horse) spent some time one evening putting it together. We won't need it right away, but I'm looking forward to being able to use it after our 2nd little one comes. I's hunter orange, but we got a great deal on a top-of-the-line stroller, and we just couldn't pass it up.

On another note...last week I (sadly) hit our other jogging stroller with the front car tire while backing out of the garage. took my neighbor's toolbox and his brute strength to bend the frame back into place, then some trial and error tinkering with the front wheel. But now it runs just great again! Thank goodness. Miya and I both need our daily jog to the park, and those few days without our trusty stoller were sad days indeed.


A family in our ward moved into a house with lots of apple trees, and they let people go over and pick them - free! So Miya and I went on an apple-picking excursion (through many-an-Indiana-corn field to get there) and had some good laughs as I tried to make the apple picker do what I wanted it to do. Miya laughed every time an apple fell to the ground or when I would duck or gasp becuase one was about to hit me...which was often, I'm sad to say. I don't think I ever really got the hang of that apple picker.

We got a decent size load in the end, and I decided to try my hand at apple pie and applesauce. I froze a couple of ready-to-bake dutch apple pies, and then used the rest of the apples for applesauce - which turned out to be delicious (even if I do say so myself)! I used a mix of 4 different kinds of apples, 2 sweet, 2 tart, didn't have to add any sugar, and it came out a beautiful rosy pink color.

I froze most of it (since I don't have a canner), but I'm enjoying having a little apple goodness every day...I enjoy it alone most of time, however, as Miya will have nothing to do with it. Hmmph...I'm trying not to be offended.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

MacArthur Communicative Development Inventory

Since I'm a speech-langauge pathologist, I'm all about speech and language, especially when it comes to my Miya. But I don't think I really grasped how many words she actually knows until I filled out the MacArthur Communicative Development Inventory. Miya has participated in some infant language studies at Purdue, and they sent me this parent report form as a follow-up to one of the studies. It turns out that she is able to say 64 different words!

Yes...64. And that doesn't include words like "please" that she will sign, but not yet say. My newest favorites are "ight" for light (she points out every lamp, ceiling light, headlight, flashlight, and street lamp we pass during the day, by the way. It's actually quite amusing to see how fascinated she is by seeing lights), "tut" for cut, "outs" for ouch, and "boop" for scoop. She also says "eyes" and "ears" remarkably clearly, and that's pretty cute. What a good talker she's becoming!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

It's a GIRL!

Of course it's a girl. I used to say (growing up) that girls were too high maintenance, and consequently, I was having all boys. Well, it looks like all girls might be more like it!

We are very excited for Miya to have a baby sister. We had the ultrasound this morning - I am officially 20 weeks and 2 days along...more than half way through, and doing great so far.

In fact, I can feel her moving right now...she must sense that I'm writing about her. Or maybe she just likes the hot fudge sundae that I just ate.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Ukrainian Borsch

We've been getting beets for a couple of weeks now from our share of produce, so I decided to make some borsch for old times sake. I haven't made it in a really long time, actually, and I decided to use a slightly different recipe this time around - one that I found online. This recipe used sausage (though I usually use beef) and I actually was really pleased with the flavor. This makes me want to make some more Ukrainian food ...maybe I'll be ambitious this week...we'll see.

Here is the recipe in case anyone is interested (this makes a LOT of least 10 servings):

1 (16 ounce) package pork sausage (I used half this amount)
3 medium beets, peeled and shredded
2 celery stalks, chopped
3 medium baking potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 tablespoon oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
3/4 cup water
1/2 medium head cabbage, cored and shredded
1 (8 ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained (I used fresh tomatoes...from my garden, of course!)
3 cloves garlic, minced
salt and pepper to taste
1 teaspoon white sugar, or to taste
1/2 cup sour cream, for topping
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley for garnish

Crumble the sausage into a skillet over medium-high heat. Cook and stir until no longer pink. Remove from the heat and set aside.

Fill a large pot halfway with water(about 2 quarts), and bring to a boil. Add the sausage, and cover the pot. Return to a boil. Add the beets, and cook until they have lost their color. Add the carrots and potatoes, and cook until tender, about 15 minutes. Add the cabbage and tomatoes.

Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, and celery, and cook until tender. Stir in the tomato paste and water until well blended. Transfer to the pot, cover and turn off the heat. Let stand for 5 minutes. Taste, and season with salt, pepper and sugar.

Ladle into serving bowls, and garnish with sour cream and fresh parsley.


Pumpkin Patch

We took a family trip to the pumpkin patch on Saturday, and are so glad that we went! It was the first day they were open, so they had a special running where you could go on a hay ride out to the pumpkin patch, pick a pumpkin, and ride back to the farm, all for $2!

Miya loved the ride, and didn't want to get off when we made it back to the farm.

So for a mere $6, we had some good times riding behind the tractor and traipsing through the pumpkin patch. Not to mention the fact that we got 3 pretty big pumpkins!

Miya sure liked playing in the corn as well...she probably would have stayed there all day if we'd let her. Plus she kept sampling the corn...I guess she kept forgetting that it wasn't edible. Good times in Indiana!

Friday, September 19, 2008


I pick the tomatoes about twice a week, and I get at least 50-60 each time. Needless to say, we are eating a lot of tomatoes, and I'm happy to report that Miya eats her share. She also picks the green ones...I can't seem to convince her to ignore that color yet.

She likes to sit and pick them right off the vine. The seeds get everywhere, but she just loves them. Oddly enough, she will rarely eat a tomato that is cold, out of the fridge. Only straight off the vine for Miya, so I have to make sure I leave some out on the counter for her after we bring them inside!

Every Thursday when we pick up our share of other veggies at the Farmer's Market, the ladies get a kick out of Miya asking them for a tomato, and then happily eating it like an apple (seeds getting everywhere, of course...I finally wisened up and started bringing a bib).

Hopefully she remains a veggie lover for many years to come!