Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Vacation Rundown

8 Days at the "Happiest Place on Earth" involved

Losing my voice the day we left!

Watching parades
Going on 'scary' rides
Taking a break to visit with Family.
Getting my voice back *Yay*

Character Dining
Becoming a Princess
Learning that "It's tough to be a bug"
Losing my cell phone :(

Children crying because they don't want to go on a ride (Caden), and other children crying because they can't (poor Sydney wasn't tall enough)
Seeing it "snow"
Baby with a fever, but such a trooper - gotta love Motrin
Clogged milk ducts...sorry no picture, and probably TMI...but why the heck does stuff like that have to happen on vacation!!?? Luckily it didn't develop into an infection.

Candlelight Processional with John Stamos :)
Overall we had a great time. Disneyland is so much fun during the holidays. I can't imagine the time it takes to decorate that place! It was a crazy thing to do right before we moved, but it had been planned and paid for before all the house stuff came along. We came home on Sunday morning, and moved the following day! Things are finally starting to settle down. We have settled on having our 3 ft Christmas tree, although Caden isn't too happy about it. This year Christmas is very simplistic. I think I was lucky enough to get any shopping done.
Note to not move during the month of December.
I have been way behind on pretty much everything. I think I am going to have to clear out my Google Reader, and start clean. Hopefully I will be back to blogging and commenting soon!
I hope you all have a very wonderful and Merry Christmas!

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Friday, November 28, 2008

Got Plans?

Hey All you Arizonians...I know Monday is FHE (Family Home Evening), but it is also the day we are moving. We have been enjoying the California Sun, and in the meantime our house FINALLY closed! (Great timing right!?...not really but what can you do)

Anyhoo, We are getting a moving truck at noon and will be carting stuff in until we are done. If any of you would like to would be really appreciated. Let me know if you are available so I can plan on how much of this I am going to have to do by myself :)

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Monday, November 24, 2008


Since some of you have asked to see they are

Front View

Entry/Stairs up to Loft

Living Room

Dining RoomI LOVE this Kitchen! View of Family Room from KitchenFamily Room Something I can't wait to use!
I am soooo excited!

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Sunday, November 23, 2008


As you can imagine things over here have been crazy...yet in the middle of it we still have been having fun. Here is a taste of what has been going on lately...

Thomas is the proud owner of his very own first tooth. (His second one just cut through today--I just hope the top teeth are far away...nursing and teeth...not a fun thing to have together.)
It has been 3 years since my baby girl was born. 3 years I have loved the fact that she has had so much hair. I finally took the plunge and went and got it cut! We cut off about 4 inches, but it is still below her shoulders.
On Friday we 'surprised' one of my best friends Robbie or 'Rob' for his 30th birthday! Today is his actual birthday, but Julie tricked him by having the party early. Robbie is such a great example to me. I am so thankful that he and Julie got married. I have always admired him, and I am so thankful that I am blessed to have met him. I hope that he has had a wonderful birthday because if anyone deserves is him.
Saturday started early... I went and did this...
I am really happy with much for growing it out. I needed a change. I just wish I could style it as well as she did...instead I get this.
Not bad, just not the same as she styled it on Saturday. Maybe one day I will be rich, and someone else can style my hair daily. :)
Caden had his last soccor game that afternoon. He was so proud of his trophy that he snuck it in his church bag today to show to people.

I don't have any pictures of my evening (I had my camera, but forgot to take it out for a pic)...but I was able to meet up with friends for a matinee showing of Twilight, and dinner! I was excited to see the film. I have to say I liked it, but don't know if I loved it. Books are almost ALWAYS better than movies. I thought parts were a bit cheesy. I never pictured Edward being so awkward. But overall I liked it, and hope that they make the subsquent movies. If you have seen it what did you think?

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Thursday, November 20, 2008

The Details

For those of you that know me well, you know that when we bought our current home our plan was to never have to move again. Honestly, I really like our house. The layout is different, and we have plenty of room. The only thing that I would like to change is our kitchen. I don't like the cabinets, and the layout of the room is not ideal. It is fine when it is just my little family, but when we have gets small real fast.

The desire to change our kitchen, along with Shawn's desire to acquire a pool sent us on a search. Back in April or May we began toying with the idea of moving. The market, as we all know, is great for buyers. The thing is, we had a very specific search for what we were looking for, so our options were very limited. I just figured that because we were so specific, we would never really find something we liked and it be for the right price. Over time we found a few that we were willing to put an offer in on, but nothing ever came of it.

Then in September a house came on the market, and it was directly across the street from my sister Nancy! The realtor had listed it so high above market, so we lowballed them with an offer. Counter offers ensued for months. I had practically written the thing off, and figured that the bank would never come down to our price. Two months, 14 counter offers, (and a lot of drama) the bank FINALLY accepted our offer.

The house is beautiful. It is still in a cul-de-sac, has a pool, and is perfect for entertaining. It has a beautiful kitchen and cabinets that I like (ie. no remodeling). All it needs is some paint in some of the bedrooms, and a good carpet cleaning! It is much further south, but I love the fact that it is close to lots of shopping and entertainment! (And I can't lie...I am so excited to live so close to my sister...and so are my kids...they think it is soooo cool that we won't have to get in the car, and drive a "LONG" way to see their cousins)

We are now in a speed race to get everything done. We will be renting out our current home, but have to have everything ready before we leave on our vacation! Because this whole process has taken so long our vacation is right smack dab in the middle. Talk about bad timing! In the end, everything should work out okay. I plan on having everything done and ready to go before we leave, and we will move right when we get back in the beginning of December! Just in time for Christmas! Yay!

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Tuesday, November 18, 2008

What I have been up to...

Details soon to come

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Monday, November 10, 2008

Before it's Christmas...

I thought I would post some pics of our Halloween Festivities. We went to my parent's Trunk - or - Treat on Tuesday, Shawn's work party on Wednesday. Then on Friday Caden's school had a "carnival" during class, we went to a neighborhood carnival, and then hit the doors in the neighborhood. The kids had a blast, and ate more candy than I thought seriously possible. I have been super busy with some stuff that I will soon tell you about soon... but until then enjoy the pics. (This picture was actually taken at the beginning of the month. We went to an event downtown where the kids got to get dressed in their costumes, and trick or treat store to store.) I hadn't gotten Thomas' costume yet so he was the traditional Pumpkin.Thomas the Firefighter! I wanted to get him a Flounder Costume to match Sydney (who was Ariel, but opted fore the FREE costume borrowed from my sister Cathy.) Caden and Thomas...Caden was Bumblebee the Transformer. He hardly ever wore the actual mask though. This was Sydney at Shawn's work party. I had bought red hairspray to use for Halloween, but didn't want to use it all before the actual day. So I just did her hair up for this day. I actually think I liked it better this way, and it didn't get RED stuff everywhere! (note to self...don't buy that stuff again!) A view of our little Ariel. As much as I hated this stuff...Syd LOVED it. She loved the fact that her hair was RED just like Ariel's. Our Mermaid... a funny little story about when we got this costume. When she first put it on she looked down at the shells and said with a grin on her face, "I have boobies." We of course laughed, and I said "Yes, I guess you do have little boobies." Then she said "Nooo Mommy...they are BIG boobies!" Caden's YLK class on Halloween. He had to be a fireman at school because he needed something that he could go to the bathroom by himself. They had a carnival where they got to play games, and jump in a bouncer. The kids had alot of fun. I also found out that Caden has a little "friend". Apparently these two ALWAYS want to be next to eachother. Her mom was telling me about how her daughter comes home everyday talking about Caden. It is amazing at how young they start!

This was Thomas about 10 minutes into the Neighborhood Carnival. He ended up sleeping through the whole thing! I took him home, and put him in bed...he didn't even go to one house!

I know you all had fun filled Halloween's because I think that everyone and their dog has posted about them except me. I haven't had time to comment on many blogs, but I thought the costumes I saw were adorable! Halloween is so much fun...can't wait until next year!

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Tuesday, October 28, 2008

My Favorite Christmas Books

Christmas is one of my most favorite times of year. It is always filled with lots of gatherings, and many opportunities to celebrate together as a family. This year I want to establish more traditions that my children can look forward to each year. Last week I asked you all to "Tell me your stories." Some of you have already shared your favorites in the comments....Thanks! Here are a few of mine. The Tale of Three Trees (also one of Lindsey's fav): I came across this book a few years ago. It tells of 3 trees who all aspire to be something great only to be cut down, and used in a way they think are less than "great"...yet in the end their purpose is more remarkable than they could imagine. I don't think I have ever gotten through this one without tearing up.

Punchinello & the Most Marvelous Gift by Max Lucado: This is a sequel to the original "You are Special" (which is probably more my favorite), but it has a "Christmas" theme. Everyone in the town of Wemmicksville are preparing for "Maker Day," and all are trying to 'out do' the other with what they think is the best gift. It teaches a great lesson about giving, and where our 'focus' should be. (I actually found out that they have made this series of books into DVD's! I am going to have to look into that!)

Christmas Oranges by Linda Bethers: "This illustrated gift book for all ages tells the classic story of the "Christmas Oranges," in which a young orphan girl named Rose discovers the spirit of generosity that lies at the heart of the holiday. When Rose is eight years old, an epidemic forces the closing of her beloved Greenwoods Orphanage, and she is shipped to Irongates, an austere, loveless institution run with Dickensian cruelty. Headmaster Crampton punishes Rose severely for a tiny infraction, decreeing that she miss the special treat of an orange on Christmas morning. How the other children circumvent his instructions to safeguard a glorious Christmas for Rose is the sweet message of this story, which is beautifully illustrated by Ben Sowards." Growing up we always had an orange in our stocking so when I found this book I thought it was a perfect addition to my collection.

A few more classics
The Littlest Angel by Charles Tazewell
How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Suess
The Night Before Christmas by Clement C Moore (I have my eye on the Illustrated version by Mary Engelbriet)

Now if you have written a post about your favorites just click on the "Mister Linky" below, and add your link so we can visit each other!

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Monday, October 27, 2008

FREE Photography Session!

Check out this AWESOME giveaway! You can get more details about it here!

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Sunday, October 26, 2008


Last night we were able to go to a benefit concert for
It took a little convincing because Shawn didn't even know who Mindy Gledhill was. I had listened to some of her stuff on YouTube, and thought it was worth it. Besides we were helping out The Nielson's. I am so glad that we went. It was a great evening. Claire and Jane (Christian and Stephanie's girls) even sang with Mindy. It was the sweetest thing ever. This isn't the best quality, and I move around a bit, but you will get the idea.

I continue to think about their family each day. CJane just posted an article that was in the AZ Republic. It gives a lot more insight to their situation, and makes me admire their family even more. They are such a testament of strength amidst adversity. Tears streamed down my face as I read.

I know many think about how awful this whole situation is....and yes it is...yet at the same time there is so much to learn. It could have been much worse. We could have lost 3 wonderful people. I keep thinking about the post that Lisa (a sister in law) wrote. About how we can look at this the wrong way. The hills this couple have climbed are remarkable. Yes, their lives will never be the same. We are all changed forever.

We now are starting down a new path with new possibilities. I am admire the fight that lies within them. The road is long, but promising. If anyone can make the best of is Stephanie & Christian.

For now, I continue to keep them in my prayers.

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5 Before 5

Every Friday The Arizona State Fair has a deal. Entrance fee is only $5 if you enter before 5:00 pm on Friday's. Last minute, Shawn and I decided to take the family down for some fun. The food is overpriced, and so is the rides...but there is alot of stuff to do that is FREE. It is definately something that we enjoy going to every year.

While walking through some of the exhibits I walked past this and had to take a double take.

I can't believe that people actually pay for this sort of stuff.

The fair is open until November 2nd...go and have some fun!!!

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