Thursday, December 3, 2009

jump jump

c'mon mom
give me a real challenge

typical 3 1/2 month old?

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

maximus moments

there is nothing sweeter than a sleeping baby, except one that is sleeping and smiling.
poor boy has lost all his hair on top since this photo was taken :(
max01web.jpg picture by joiester

love the extra chins
max02web.jpg picture by joiester

he actually doesn't take a pacifier at all, but I got him to chew on this one for a second just for a photo opp...there went his last bit of baby dignity.
max03web.jpg picture by joiester

that little turned down mouth looks just like his daddy's
max05web.jpg picture by joiester

daddy's nickname of the moment is the "hairless, toothless wonder"
max06web.jpg picture by joiester

my sweet, sweet 13-week-old boy who just weighed in at 17 1/2 lbs...we might be growing a linebacker over here.
max04web.jpg picture by joiester

Thursday, November 12, 2009

tickle torcher

this is what was missing from our life 3 months ago...

it's true Dorothy,
the world does turn technicolor
when you step into
munchkin land

{too bad this munchkin has to grow up so fast}

Monday, November 9, 2009


tonight for our family home evening we watched
Another Testament
Reflections of Christ

it is a documentary about the experiences
of producing beautiful photographs
depicting the Savior's visit to the Americas
as told in 3 Nephi.

this experience resonates with me
because of my own interest in photography.
moments of intense emotion are suspended in time
and we are asked to suspend our belief
and imagine ourselves in those photos.

for me the images communicate
a testimony of the Savior's divinity
just as forcefully as the mediums of
paint, sculpture, music, or the written word.

christ2.jpg picture by joiester

One of the historians pointed out
that the scriptures say
whenever the Savior was
blessing or healing he did it

one by one

until now
I had never truly considered
the impact of that
simple act

I am an individual
and our Savior
will never make me feel lost in the crowd.
christ1.jpg picture by joiester

the Savior isn't here
in person
to teach
and bless
and heal
so he sends the next best thing...

{yep, current Elders in our ward}

it's hard to believe
that these young men get anything done.
but the truth is
along with faithful, Christ-like members
are saving the world

one by one

over the past year
12 souls
have joined themselves
to the gospel of Jesus Christ
and we are honored to have crossed paths with them

Jamie | young, single mother of Jared
jjweb3.jpg picture by joiester
Marvely and her son Tyler
DSC_0289.jpg picture by joiester

Eunju who came here from Korea with her husband.
eunju.jpg picture by joiester

Irene{with Chester}, originally from New York City and formerly of the Jewish faith.
DSC_0465.jpg picture by joiester

Gwen{with Sam}, also a former practicing Jew. As a doctor of psychology, she was counseling a member of the church who ended up counseling her that she needed to be baptized by the proper authority--that patient later performed her baptism.
wp006.jpg picture by joiester

Mike & Meaghan--baptized the week after they were married.

Mallory{right}--originally from Alabama. Had only been baptized for a month when she attended her first General Conference!

in a tiny way I believe that
the experiences
Adam and I have had
in this ward
have undoubtedly given us
a glimpse
of Zion.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

not-so-common name

As a child
I was always so disappointed
there were never any products
such as
pencils, etc.
with my name

it never dawned on me
to blame my parents for pushing me
to the brink of depression
because the spelling of my name caused me to be an outcast
{how do you like that melodrama?}

as I got older I, obviously, matured
and embraced my name for its uniqueness

well, almost

I'm not afraid to admit that in cheap souvenir shops
I will always scan the "j" section--just in case.
Who cares that it's all flimsy, useless junk.
I always hold out hope that I will see my name
among the Jennifers, Jodys, and Julies.

Alas, in the 80s it was never meant to be.
Along came google.
All of the sudden my name
is know for good and evil in English and French.

Then a miracle happened.

On my birthday this year
my mom made up for all those years of disappointment
by giving me a whole breakfast cookware set with my name on it!

No, she didn't have them personalized for me.
There is actaully a store called

Joie Shop

and every kitchen gadget has
my name
on it.

They are just the cutest little pans I have ever seen! Thanks, Mom!

So take that...
you over-priced
massed produced by children in sweat shops
common-name souvenirs.

{however, thanks to a large explosion
of little girls named Madison in the 90s,
I can now check for my last name :) }

Friday, November 6, 2009

Joie, a party-girl?

for some of you who don't know me very well,
or maybe THINK you know me
i'll have you know
there is a party going on in my brain.


i've only been invited to this party a handful of times.
in fact, this party may have been
going on for years under(above/behind) my nose,
but it's hard to know really.

my first time to the party was was about 2 1/2 years ago
and it was pretty embarrassing
i convulsed violently
stopped breathing
came to in a zombie-like state for about an hour
fought with paramedics in my underwear
finally regained consciousness in the ER

luckily, i have no memory of going to party at all

--tragically, Adam does :(

some of you may have figured out
that the "party" i'm refering to is
my epilepsy.
i don't mean to be glib about a very
serious condition,
but sometimes it's hard
for even me
to understand what's going on.

i went to the party 5 times
over a two week period.
ironically, only at night.
when i finally got in to see a neurologist(special party-doctor),
he ordered a battery of very expensive tests
my knight in shining armor
sold his beautiful motorcycle
to pay for them

one of the tests was an EEG(electroencephalogram)
which basically measures
how the neurons in my brain
fire electricity back and forth.

to make sure they could capture the party at its wildest
i needed to be
deprived of sleep
given verbal commands and
have a strobe light going off incessantly in my face.
(no joke and all essential elements of a good party)

this is what a normal brain looks like:

apparently, my brain looks something similar to this:(not my actual test)
i was
promptly medicated
and haven't been to a party since.

well, last week i had the test done again
(blessing of insurance)
to see if the party was still going on...

it is.

keep waiting party people.
i don't plan on attending any time soon.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Saturday, October 31, 2009

my sweetie

Max's first big holiday
and he looked so sweet
that everyone at the ward party
wanted to eat him.

I think he thought that the witch might really eat him.

Adam couldn't resist telling everyone
that Max was a toosie roll factory
and that he was probably making one in his diaper
that very moment.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

son of a beach

we took Max to the beach for the first time sunday afternoon.
he was not very happy about it. i think it was an assault upon his senses
--the salt air, the waves crashing,
dogs barking, the bright sunlight--
it was just all a bit too much for his 10th week in this world.

this is our first family photo outside of the hospital.
the photographer doesn't get in front of the camera much.
what a trio!

Max wasn't the only one to have an assault on his senses that afternoon. all i wanted to do was take a nice snapshot of the beautiful bridge, but when i began editing this photo my sense of morality was under fire.

{click on the photo below for a better view--if you dare}

i'm not going to sit here and criticize heavenly father's children
and how they choose to live their lives
(perhaps my feelings are apparent in my observations, but it is quite unsettling)
all i can say is that if the Savior had been walking
down the beach that afternoon i think he would have been saddened.

Monday, October 19, 2009


i think it's a bit of a toss up...
the DNA hasn't decided which way it gonna swing.
we shall revisit this comparison in a few months,
with some older baby photos,
and see if there are any new developments.

what do you think?

Saturday, October 17, 2009

playing catch-up

so i finally got a new battery in my camera, but i have been horrible about taking photos lately. max was even blessed last sunday and i didn't take a single shot. i don't dare try to stuff him back into his blessing clothes again. he barely fit into them the first time...without the bowtie, that is. just imagine a mini john travolta from saturday night fever--minus the greased-back hair and white boots--that was Max in his little white tux with open shirt. he is growing so fast that i can barely keep him in diapers, let alone clothes.

like any good madison/sheffer he is already enamored with himself...

it's pretty amazing when i think that just two months ago i was standing in the hospital parking garage ready to go inside and be induced.
as you can see he was no small guy then...and 5 pounds later he is already wearing 6-9 month clothes. my aunt marsha said that Max was so big when he was born because he would need to be strong to live his life in these days. i don't know what all is in store for this big, strong boy, but watch out world--you won't keep this redhead down!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

All Things New

the battery in my camera met an untimely demise after 3 wondrous years.
it no longer holds a charge for more than a few minutes.
i preemptively went on and ordered a new one over a month ago, because i knew that with Max coming i would be taking a lot more photos than usual.
in my haste, i didn't check where the order was to be shipped and now the battery rests nicely at adam's parents house two states away.
luckily they will be bringing it out when they come to visit next week.
in the meantime, i have overhauled my photo blog.
please...go...check it out and let me know what you think about the new blog design and new watermark on the photos.

just click the new button i made below!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Best Face Ever

I'm a self-indulgent mother and I couldn't resist posting the best reaction I've gotten out of Max. If he gets any cuter he just might burst{or I might}!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


Max is just over 5 weeks old for those of you who have lost count. Lately we have affectionately been calling him BUBS--I don't really know where it came from. His nicknames always seem to organically evolve from some babytalk that would likely embarass him if he realized that his parents were constantly speaking to him in very high-pitched tones with a lot of irritating inflections.

Another origin of bubs could be this character from Homestarrunner. It's an online cartoon that is very funny. Bubs runs a concession stand and has the voice of the cliche, token black man. One of his lines is, "Nice trick, liar." We often attribute this to Max because everytime we attempt to give him a pacifier he will take it for about 5 seconds and then spit it out and we just know in his mind he must be saying, "Nice trick, liar" because he was sucking and sucking and no food was coming out. Other than that I can only hope he doesn't grow up to be large, blue and sell hotdogs for a living.

Like our friends Dani and Nate(who had a little girl the day before Max was born) we too, often catch Max smiling, but it isn't quite voluntary yet. I'm often sitting in front of him with camera in hand waiting for him to pass gas and hoping for a smile. Yes, this is my life and I love it. It is totally worth the wait, because there is nothing better than a smiling baby!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Max the Movie

This is mostly for the Grandmas and Grandpas, but who doesn't want to watch a cute little baby and get a Beach Boys song stuck in your head for the rest of the day?

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


This is Sienna...her mom and I were pregnant at the same time. Sienna was born in May and has been anxiously awaiting the arrival of Max(aka. Bilco). Since she is 3 months older than Max we always tease her parents that Max likes big women.

Sadly, Sienna and her parents moved away this last weekend, but Max and Sienna were able to have a proper introduction and spend some quality time together...

It was a little awkward at first. Neither of them knew quite what to say. Max thought maybe a gentle nudge on the arm would get the conversation going.

He must have broken the ice, because he got the courage up to ask for her number.

He threw up his hands and waited for rejection...

He was so nervous that he even threw-up a little in his mouth...hopefully that wasn't her favorite blanky.

When this made him upset, Sienna reached over and let him know that everything was okay.

Their eyes met and it was precious baby love...ahh, how sweet!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Where did my newborn go?

He is a long way from sitting up on his own, but putting him in his Bumbo seat gives me a glimpse of the future and I just don't know if I am ready to let go of my sleepy, little newborn so soon.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

3 weeks

In this corner:
Maximus Riley Madison

weighing in at 10 lbs 8 oz & 22 3/4 in. tall

ready for any number of sports including boxing(mittens), baseball, and anything requiring sneakers.

The Contender:

weighing in at...a lot more & being a big, tall man.

donning the appropriate ARMY shirt that he thought would give him super powers.

....however, both are down for the count.