Thursday, December 18, 2008


Growing up I loved Christmas... I still do! I would tell my friends that I was loved more because my brother and I had 2 Christmas'. You read right... 2. We rotated year to year between my dad's and mom's homes for Christmas Eve, then on Christmas day we would go to the other parents home. Yes, we were loved more! How could we not be?

Growing up in Utah in the 70's-80's there was snow. Nothing pathetic like we get now, I mean snow. So much that it would block the parking strips along our streets, and we would listen to the news report praying for a snow day.

We wore 'moon-boots', they always leaked and we would have to line the inside with bread sacks. We thought we were so poor. It wasn't until later that we found out everyone lined their boots with bread sacks. Wonder bread anyone? We would play until our winter wear was soaked through and we were shivering. My mom would make us come through the laundry room and strip down because she didn't want snow tracked through the house. We would make a mad dash for the bathroom, turn on the hot water and get in. Then with tear streaked faces we would cry our eyes out because the water BURNED. You all have the same memory, I know you do. I loved flocked trees growing up (they expensive) my mom would buy a tree, cans of spray flock and then stand outside for hours flocking our trees. Once she was finished we would carefully bring it in the house and place it just so. My brothers were always off playing and I would sit on the couch watching my mom decorate. We were NEVER allowed to help decorate for the Holidays (I am just like my mother, who is just like her mother). My mom's trees were beautiful, they always had a theme and matching ornaments. Never a 'hodge-podge' tree, that was and still is unexceptable. I am not ashamed... I don't want a 'hodge-podge' tree in my home. My mom taught me to weave CLEAR lights in and out of every branch, insuring the the perfect glow.

As the gifts would start collecting under the tree we would sneak under the tree and peak at the name tags, careful to keep tally of how many gifts each of us had. If someone had more than the others, we would be devastated. I remember one night just not being able to take it any longer so when my parents went to bed I snuck into the family room, turned on the TV (careful to turn the volume down)for light, and sorted all of the gifts. Each year my parents would explain that Christmas would be tight and that they didn't want us to be disappointed. We never knew what they meant because come Christmas morning- our family room was packed with gifts galore!

Christmas brought fabulous family parties with Santa in attendance and don't forget the token family member that no-one wants to claim- come on you all have one or two or more...

Christmas was magical growing up and I want to thank my parents for that! It is our prayer that Christmas can be magical for you and your family. MERRY CHRISTMAS!



This year we opted for fake trees (because we forget to water the live trees and then 2 weeks before Christmas we can't turn on the lights). I decorated the tree in the sitting room while Matt and Kade put lights on the trees in the family room. To my surprise I was really o.k. with letting them do this. You have to know me... I am a control freak and have to have millions of clear lights weaved in and out of every branch. Not this year, the guys got the family room trees all to themselves. They did a pretty good job too, except they didn't put the new decorations on.

Our ward had a breakfast and entertainment this year. It was nice and they had a wonderful turn out. Matt and I used to be over the activities committee and know how much time, effort and work go into these. This years committee did a great job.

Kade (don't know what this face he is pulling is all about) & Jace patiently waiting for Santa.

Kade was darling telling Santa: "I would love: cowboy boots, cowboy hat, belt buckle, farm animals, Nintendo DS, Scooter and whatever else you think I need". YES WE HAVE A COWBOY FOR A SON, not sure where he came from.

After the party we headed home where my sister-in-law and parents came and helped with 'neighbor' gifts: chocolate dipped pretzels, chocolate dipped peppermint sticks, chocolate dipped marshmallows, chocolate dipped cookies, you get the idea.

Then I made wooden stackables: the top was the snowman (seen above) that you stack on another piece of wood that says, 'let it snow'. They turned out darling!

We love Christmas! The feeling, the spirit, the reason for the season, the smells, the music, the food, friends and most importantly our family.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Gobble, Gobble, Shop

Happy Thanksgiving (LATE)

We had a wonderful day: slept in, Matt played football, I made pies, Kade played. This year we went to my mom and dads. The table was gorgeous, the company comforting, the food filling! Thanks mom and dad.

We are thankful for:

family health the gospel freedom job home education and more, and more...

Black Friday
Have you ever ventured out into this mess?
I used to every year... I LOVED IT. Not anymore, if I can get it online or pay a little more... I will. This year I hit the stores at 9 AM and got everything on my list. The people were kind, the store employees were helpful, and the other consumers were patient.

Friday, November 21, 2008

I like my men immortal and cold...

That's right fans, I was priveledge to see the movie at a PRE SHOWING. Last night at 7!!! I must admit that I loved the books, loved Edward, loved everything about them. Then I went online and saw who was cast and was so disappointed. Needless to say my expectations for the movie were extremely LOW.

We loaded in our vehicles, went out to dinner (Texas Road House), and then headed to Jordan Commons. It was packed. There were 3 pre showings last night. One was a PROM themed showing. You would have been blown away by everyone dressed to the nines. It was crAzY. When entering the theatre we had our bags searched, we were scanned with metal detectors and if you had your camera you were escorted out to return it to your car. CRaZy. I had my camera, I didn't drive, it was cold, I am stubborn, so I threw my batteries in the trash so that I wouldn't have to do the stupid song and dance for security. Once in (sigh), we were given lanyards. When everyone was seated they did a HUGE prize giveaway. Book marks, gift cards (I won a gift card... thanks Gina), candy, etc. If your lanyard said EDWARD you received a sparkling blanket, ICE gum, and glitter body spray. If your lanyard said BELLA you received a red blanket and Bella perfume. If youR lanyard said JACOB you received a brown fuzzy blanket and Frebreeze Meadow spray.

Now for the movie... lights dimmed - the audence went screaming mad. Charlie was PERFECT, Jacob was darling but has a weird shaped nose, Bella was PERFECT, Jasper was icky, Alice was PERFECT, Rosalie was PERFECT (so mean), Carlisle was PERFECT (except for the 1st scene... his make-up was horrible... too caked on). Edward grew on me and by the end of the night I wanted the lady behind me's tee 'save gas, ride a VAMPIRE'. I loved the movie, I was not disappointed and I think it is because I expected NOTHING.

Ladies... how was that first kiss? AMAZING!
Because I threw the batteries to my camera away I wasn't able to get any pictures of my sweet friends. Hopefully they will send some to me so that I can post them. Until the next movie (which they have already started filming)...

Monday, November 17, 2008

Happy Birthday to you!!!

Our little guy turned 9 this past week! It is always bitter sweet for me. Birthdays are a BIG deal in our family so Kade had a 'friends' party and a 'family' party.

This year he wanted a 'FOOTBALL' party. So off I went to find everything and anything FOOTBALL: field goals, helmets, footballs, clappers, candy, etc. A good friend of mine helped me with the invites. We made TICKETS to the GAME. They turned out GREAT. However, I am having a hard time downloading it. The kids all came dressed for the game (we had 20 kids), we loaded up and headed to the NEW stadium. They were put into teams and played ball. Elise (Kade's cousin) was the only girl to play and she made the 1st touchdown. Next was pizza, cupcakes, ice-cream and presents. Kade, Carson, Kade, NicholasKieffer & KadeAustin & Kade Kade & Jace
Easton, Kelton, Kade & Austin Jordan & Kade Half the gang eating lunch


Kade's birthday was on a Monday and Matt had to work. I had planned on taking Kade to a movie and dinner before the family showed up but, when he got home from school he just wanted to relax and stay home. What an EASY kid. He played with the neighborhood boys and then family started rolling in. My little pyro wanted to light his own birthday candles so being the fabulous mother that I am... I let him.
After singing the traditional song we let all of the cousins help blow out the candles.
Gifts, Gifts & more Gifts. We have an awesome family!

Notice our fabulously HUGE TV? Ours went out and so we pulled the TV out of our trailer. For some reason no one ever wants to come over for movie night... go figure. I keep telling my dad that after a while you get used to it and don't even realize how tiny it is. He doesn't believe me... neither does Matt.
We are hoping Santa brings us a new one.
Happy Birthday big guy! We love you so much... to the moon and back.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Sick... who ordered this stuff!

Last week I had the opportunity to do what we as Latter Day Saints have been counseled to do by the brethern.... can!

I went with some FUN, GREAT ladies to our local dry pack cannery.
We had a BLAST!

First off... what are you ordering? Do you prefer: packs, cans, or bulk? How many can we order? Will we use it all? Does it work? Does it taste ok? Will kids eat it? These are just a few of my questions. Thanks to Becky- her counsel, 'fill what you think you will eat and as for the method of canning it is personal preference, don't worry what others are doing.'

Second step... we were dressed in fabulous attire. Aprons, rubber gloves (turn your head and cough), and hair nets. HOT MOMMAS WERE WE!
Back row: Emily, Ashlee, Rebecca, Karen, Me
Front row: Tana, Cheryl, Emily, Becky

We canned: beans, onions, carrots, apple slices, oats, drink mixes, and milk... WHO ORDERED THE MILK? My group got STUCK filling the powdered milk. It smells like urine, it sticks to everything, it doesn't pour nicely- it dumps, and you have to pack it down to meet the weight requirements. It was disgusting!
The Milk Maids: Madeline, Me, Karen, Rebecca (we were covered in MILK)

Halloween: class party, city party, trunk or treating, and more...

After carving pumpkins with the family, Matt wanted to carve more the following night. Our neighbor owns her own business and she was having a pumpkin carving contest. Kade was so excited. He gathered pictures of Sponge Bob and carved his own! I think he did an amazing job for being 8.
Unfortunately... he didn't win.

Halloween morning I hosted Kade's class party. I had a friend come in as the Wicked Witch! She was amazing. She made a brew and each time she added a portion of the recipe: earth worms, bat bones, ghost eyeballs, colored flies, etc. she would CACKLE! The kids loved her! Next Pumpkin Mummies. Each child pick out a pumpkin, wrapped it in 'guaze' fabric, and glued eyes on it. They were darling.

Last but not least was GREEN SLIME!

Later in the day I found myself back at the school for the parade. Kade had 2 costumes this year and wanted to be a banana for school. The kids thought he was hilarious!
He is soooo his dad!

Next stop... the city party. Each business in our town set up a table/booth and the kids got to trick - or - treat! It was a huge success and the kids enjoyed it.Kade & the skeleton driver from Halloween Town.
Hayden, Jace, Kade & Easton

After the city party, it was off to dinner, trunk or treating, and Grandma/Grandpas house.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Halloween decorating and Partying with pumpkins

Kade and I had a great time getting the house ready for the ghost and goblins to come out. Poor Kade, he says 'my mom doesn't decorate scary'. So I went out and bought skull heads big and small, some that light up and some that make sounds. I also bought skelital hands. They are awesome, we filled a large glass dish with the small skulls and hands. It turned out great... however, it is still not scary enough for my 8 year old. I am more into the vintage Halloween and gourds (for some it may be boring but, I love it). Below is just a sampling of what we did. We decorated the main rooms in our home and the porch, then called it good.

The ALL HALLOWS EVE sign was a lot larger than I thought it would be. But, I love it!

I forgot to take a picture of our front yard to show that we have over 30 pumpkins! I am the room parent for Kade's class and we are going to be decorating the pumpkins (I will post pictures after the party). Kade and I are so excited for the activity. They should turn out darling. Everyone that comes asks if we grew them... well ours didn't come up this year so while at our neighborhood grocer I asked if they would be willing to donate them... and they said YES! I love living in a small, home town community!

Last night my family got together for dinner and Halloween fun. We haven't seen my family in 2 weeks so for us it was a treat. We had a yummy dinner of taco soup, and the most delicious homemade cake that Jen made! Then we gave the kids the carving tools neccassary and set them loose (they carved their own and did a great job I might add).

The kids were so excited! They quickly got to work. Elise, Nicholas, & Sadie were excited to save EVERY seed as they were going to go home and roast them. YUMMY, you will have to let me know how they turned out!
Silly Sadie, her pumpkin has a flower top, triangle eyes & nose with a crAzY zig zaggy mouth! The headless Nicholas displayed his triangle eyes, mini trianlge nose, HUGE mouth pumpkin! Kade's started out as a 'hill billy' with his HUGE front teeth, then as the night progressed it just got down right crAzY, silly. Elise did some research on her dad's iphone when she finally came up with this half moon eyed, HUGE nostraled, slant smiled Aurthur looking pumpkin


Sunday, October 26, 2008

Run Bambi Run

We started out on Skyline Drive (which is gorgeous this time of year) but it was so cold... freezing cold. It rained and snowed the whole time we were there. So much so that my mighty hunter called it quits Saturday (the opener) at 6PM. Kade was so upset. He would have toughed it out! We left the trailer and headed for home... aaaah home sweet WARM home.

The last 3 1/2 weeks have been filled with: Hiking Boots, camp fires, four wheelers, dust, Jeans, Jackets, and 'Deer Hunter' Orange. Matt & Kade-Skyline Drive

Monday we were back up there hunting and finding nothing but; mud, squirrels, and more mud! But the scenery was gorgeous!
We spent the majority of the deer hunt out West. Matt and his broAdd Imagethers love it out there. I think it is UGLY. Nothing but, dirt and sage brush. We had a great time, the weather was perfect, the company was a blast and 4 whelleing was terrific. Our first day out on the opener the 2 dogs in our camp got into a scuffle, which led to one dog having the top portion of her ear bit off! The kids kept looking for the portion of the ear that was bit off but, could never find it. Later that afternoon I was sitting on the 4 wheeler when I looked down and there it was! So naturally we picked it up (I would NOT touch it), took it back to camp, wrapped it and gave it to Klint as a birthday gift (I know we are sick). We now call the canyon, Dog Fight Canyon.

Matt, Marc, Klint, Jordan, Karlene, & Ted all checking out Sadie's chewed up ear!
I have heard from several that there are tarantulas in the West desert. Well... we saw 2, they are SICK and SCARY. They were both the size of an adult palm, and furry.
Matt made Kade get down by the sick creature. If you double click on the photo you will see it more clearly... aaaagh

Taylor after a long ride through the dusty trails.

Each night while around the camp fire I brought something up for everyone. Dessert or toys. The girls loved the glow sticks.
Try with all our might... we could not keep our eyes OPEN. Our flash is crAzY bright. Klint & Steve wrapped their glow sticks around their glasses. We all laughed out guts out! Jordan was the glow stick princess! She loved these things. I think by the end of the night she ended up with most of them.

Me & Kade hiking My hot hubby surveying the land Marc & Kade Kade taking aim at a soda can. He was an amazing shot! I think his dad and uncles could learn a thing or two from him. Jordan & Kade after a LONG 4 wheeler ride.

Nobody in the group found Bambi, or his dad, or his uncles! Maybe next year mighty hunters.