Monday, September 17, 2012

Fall Is In The Air!!

Okay, for those of you who don't know, or who haven't figured it out yet. Fall is my FAVORITE season. I love the colors, the smells, Halloween, Thanksgiving, all of it!!! This fall we've already started having fun. This weekend was Cody High School's homecoming, so we went down the street and walked down to the parade. It was fairly un-eventful, nothing like the 4th of July, however I liked it that way. Here is Addy showing her school spirit.
We also have been spending some time antiquing. I don't know if I have inherited it from my Grandma Cyphers or if Sean had something to do with it, but Cedar, Annie and I took a day last week and tried to go to the antique stores in Cody. We made it to all but one and I found some pretty nice treasures to take home with me :) I could have taken home all of this as well.
On Sunday, Ned and Lynette took the 4 littles so that I could have some peace and quiet for once during church. We had a special stake conference and Elder Cook from the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles came to talk to us. This conference really focused on the sacredness and importance of the family. They spoke about the influence of parents and our responsiblities to our children. I would say that grandparents are pretty important as well :) They also spoke about increasing our faith and sanctifying our marriages. Everything that was said was what I needed to hear. It has been a rough 6 months or so, but I know that it will get better. We only have to have faith that it will. I have to say that I am so grateful for my calling as a mother and that I am able to be with my little children everyday. It has been hard and pretty tight for our little family, but I know that this is right. I couldn't imagine a day without one of these precious little faces. They mean so much to me. It is such a great blessing to be a parent. It is the only time that you really have any kind of idea how our Heavenly Father feels about us. Well, I suppose it's time to continue with the fall merriment. I hope your fall is going along just as nicely.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

On My Soapbox

So, I know that usually everything on here is all hunky, dory, let's just all have fun. However, I also feel that it can be used as a personal forum for things that I find vey important. One of these important things is the education of our children.
As an education major who is also studying special education. I can't tell you how important I feel it is to get your children developmentally screened by a reputable facility. When we lived in Laramie, both of our kids were screened annually. That is how we found out that Ashlyn needed glasses. Now we have had Breckin screened and he is receiving services for certain areas and Addy is also being worked with. It is not that there is something "wrong" with my children. It is the fact that I want to receive all of the help that is available to them so that they can succeed. It is important to me that my children enjoy school and that they do the best that they possibly can. It is also important toe that if they need to work with any of the Title 1 teachers in order to do this, that their needs are met.
Recently I learned of a case of a child who was not receiving any help and who was obviously struggling. This child's mother is battling the school that is trying to help them and she is clearly in denial that anything is wrong. Now, I don't have a child with severe special needs, so I don't know how it feels. However, I have heard other parents of children with special needs compare it to dealing with the death of their child. They go through the grieving process, just as if they would have lost their child. I understand that it is a hard pill to swallow, but the sooner that you get your child the help and assistance that they need, the better off everyone will be. The situation above really hurts my heart because as a parent, I would do anything it took to see my children succeed. I understand the disappointment and guilt that is associated with the fact that there may be something wrong with your child. As I said, I have two children who receive services. The services they receive may seem menial and unimportant to others, but they are very important to me because I think of something that maybe I didn't do right, or something else I could have done. However, I have stopped blaming myself and I have gotten them the help that they need. As a future educator and as a parent, this is something that is very important to me. I hope it is important to you as well and that even if you have the slightest of questions about your child's development or if a teacher comes to you with any concerns, that you will take it to heart, not blame yourself, and help your child any way that you can. I know you will!!

I'll step down now ;)

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Busy, Busy, Busy

Well, we had a great Labor Day Weekend. I hope that you did too. Sunday was Breckin's 5th Birthday, so we had dinner and dessert and presents. It was so much fun! I can't beloieve how big my boy is now!! We spennt yesterday playing and cleaning house. I also got some school work done, but mostly messed aronund on Pintrest and tried to make plans for the change in decor for our house. I found lots of cute printables for fall on there, so if you're into that sort of thing you can follow me on Pintrest! School resumed for both the kids and myself and I just got a project put together and some assignments done. Now I have to go back home, make frosting, frost cupcakes, take the girls to Grandma and Grandpa's, go to Breckin's school for a little party there and maybe try to get to the library today. On top of that, Ava seems to be teething and thinks that she needs to be held all of the time. Did I mention that I was up at 5 because I had a bad dream about rattlesnakes? Yea, this is my life :) We will continue to be busy. That's what happens in a house of 6, with two babies under 2. I suppose I have become acclimated to it by now. Coming up this weekend we have soccer activity at the park, I have 3 dozen cookies to bake for our Ward Conference, and then we have Ward Conference on Sunday. I might see if I can work in between then. I also have plans to go antiquing again with Cedar. However, my house is clean and most of the laundry is done... That reminds me I have some laundry in the washer that needs to go in the dryer. I will leave you with some pictures on Breckin's birthday, instead of continuing the neverending To Do List :)

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

What happened to summer?!?!

Okay, this is really sad. I know that I said that I would try to do better this summer in staying up to date on my blog, but it just didn't happen. I don't know what went wrong. Perhaps we were just too busy having fun to pay devotion to the blog. Oh, well. Now school has started and it's time tp get back into the swing of things. Ashlyn and Breckin are both in school all day long. This is great because it gives their mommy a much needed break and it's easier to manage 2 kids than 4. I am going to school and I have 13 credit hours this semester. That's the most that I've taken since I had kids. Many of you might say that it doesn't seem like much, but keep in mind that I have 5 credit Methods class that I HAVE to have to graduate. There is a lot of reading involved and a lot of projects, so that will probably consume whatever amount of "free" time that I have. Jame is working for a private security group that guards and maintains the safety out at CertainTeed. He works mostly at night and sleeps most of the day, however he does get to see the little ones every once in a while. Ashlyn spent her summer writing back and forth to her friend Anna who lives in California. She is actually the daughter of a woman that I was friends with in Texas and just happened to run in to while we were visiting my family one time. She really enjoys having a pen pal. We also spent a good part of the summer reading for the library's summer reading program. Ashlyn, who is the luckiest person that I know, won a month membership to a MMA organization, it has since gone out of business, so she didn't get to use her prize but once. Breckin spent his summer reading and playing with his toys. That is his favorite thing to do. He spends more time doing that than anything else. He also learned how to use the computers at the library so he can play games there now. This is good for some of his fine motor issues that he has. He has inherited his father's tremor and his hands shake slightly when he is concentrating on fine motor skills. Using the mouse and the arrow buttons have helped him a great deal over the summer. Breckin is having a birthday next week and is very excited about it. He's going to have some friends over to play the Wii, also his favorite thing to do. Addy is busy driving her mother crazy. Anything the girl can get into, she does. Any button of mommy's that she can push, she does. However, I was helping her up the stairs the other day and I was filled with such unconditional love for her that I couldn't believe it. She may not be my best behaved girl, but she is very loved in spite of that. Addy is also missing her brother and sister while they are at school, so she gets to help me work on a few projects while they are gone. Ava is growing like crazy. I think that here pretty soon she will have more hair than Addy. She rolls around to get where she wants to be and she is working on getting her self up on to all fours. She is a very happy baby and brings a lot of joy to my life. She always greets me with a smile and some cooing first thing in the morning. It is the best way to get up! She is going to keep her blue eyes, and I'm hoping that her hair stays the brown that it is right now. That's what I wanted to begin with! All in all, we are doing well. We are facing some tough trials, but we have faith that we will continue to grow in love as a family and that we will continue to follow Heavenly Father's plan for our lives. We believe that everything happens for a reason, even the bad things. We trust that Heavenly Father knows the end from the beginnning and that he holds each of us in his hands with great care. We've been living by a quote from President Hinckley: "Keep trying, Be believing, Be happy, Don't get discouraged, Things will work out." Tara :)

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Fun at the Rec Center and Other Happenings...

So, I think it's pretty good that it's only been 10 days between posts as opposed to more than 30 :) This past Friday, the Cody Rec Center celebrated their 11th anniversary, so I took the kids up there to have some good, clean fun. We started out with some of the outdoor games and I am proud to say that both kids hit the target on the dunk tank! They both have their mommy's athletic abilities! Then we did a little bit of slipping and sliding. When we went inside I was a little apprehensive to let them get into the water by themselves, but they begged and begged and they both know how to swim pretty well and they both were ready to wear live vests so, I went ahead and let them play in the shallow end while Ava and I supervised. They had so much fun. Breckin waited under one of the water toys that pour water out when it is full and there was a little incident involving a full moon of half of the pool. However, he did recognize what had just happened and pulled his pants up quickly and returned to playing. Ashlyn grabbed a floating lily pad and was kicking her little heart out. I see a future in competative swimming for her :) Ava slept, watched the kids, ate, and slept some more :) Later, the kids participated in some of the games they had out to play. They one some small prizes that are now lost in the deep recesses of their mess of a room! I'm sure that my vacuum cleaner will find them eventually. Last weekend, Ashlyn, Ava and I made a weekend trip up to Cut Bank, Montana for my great-grandma's 95th birthday celebration. My mom finally got to meet Ava and play with Ashlyn some. The first day,we picked my mom up from Great Falls and we just spent some time with family and then I took the girls back to the hotel so that they could get some sleep before the party the next day. The next morning Ashlyn and I both woke up at about 7:00 and Ashlyn (who was sharing a bed with Grandma Kathy) informed me that her bedmate snored. I busted out laughing, so did my mom. We got ourselves ready, ate breakfast at a cute, old restaurant in Cut Bank and then went over to see how we could help. We set everything up for the party and then entertained guests for a few hours, visited with family and had a really great family dinner prepared, in most part, by my grandma and my uncle. Later that evening, the kids wanted to go swimming and so my mom got in with Ashlyn and my aunt and cousin got in with my cousin's daughter. I opted out because of the questionable color of the water. No body contracted any disease though, so I guess I could have risked it :) Ashlyn saw the 11th hour, that last evening and my mom and I stayed up until 2:00 am just talking and catching up. I really miss her :( The next morning we had breakfast that my great-grandma made for us, which was great, and I took my mom to airport. Ashlyn and I stopped at Sonic and sugared up for the drive ahead. We finally came home, exhasted, at about 7:00. It was a fast but happy trip. Oh, and did I mention that we went to Sonic? :) Today, with the help of some really great tunes, I have gotten the fridge cleaned out and some much needed housework done. I did, however, sleep in until 9:00 which was really nice. I haven't slept that late in probably a year. I feel well rested and ready to tackle the day as well as some of the projects that I've pinned on Pintrest. I started in the kitchen by chopping up some veggies and whatnot for the jar salads I found on there. They are for next week when I'll be washing some windows and just want to be able to grab something really quick for lunch. Here's a pic of some of those. The rest of the day consists of painting Ashlyn's toenails to look like lady bugs and repainting my own finger nails a pale pink with black french tips, also Pintrest finds! There are also some little projects I have in the works. So, here's to sleeping in! P.S. Just for fun, I took this picture of my brother as a baby while we were at my great-grandma's house. Have you ever seen a cuter, fatter baby?!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Summer is Upon Us!!

Holy cow!!! I can't believe that it's been over a month and I haven't written anything!! That is really sad, considering that I don't have any school work to do right now. I do, however, have four kids, so I guess that it kind of evens out. Summer is here in Cody in full force. It officially begins when I start to get really annoyed by tourists who don't know how to drive :) Seriously folks, with inventions like GPS now, you should be able to navigate your way around our small town without going 10 miles an hour on Sheridan Ave! This summer we have several things planned. This weekend Ashlyn, Ava and I are going up to Cut Bank, Montana to celebrate my Great-Grandmother's 95th birthday. She actually turned 95 in April, but this is most convenient for everyone's travel plans. That is probably the only big trip that we'll take this summer. Updates: For those of you who don't know, Jame was let go from his job in March and has been doing temporary stuff to help pay the bills since then. He did have an opportunity to be the Chief of Police in Byron, but who really wants to be THAT guy?! Everyone hates him and after talking to the new Chief of Police in Powell and getting some advice from him, he decided that it wasn't worth all of the trouble and stress that he would have to go through. He would be away from us for ten to twelve hours a day six to seven days a week, he would have to work up to fourteen hour days during Byron days, they neglected to tell us that the house that they were going to provide was demolished and the land was sold earlier this year, he would be required to write a minimum of sixty citations every month and we would have to change our plates to 9 county :( So, after careful consideration and prayer, he decided not to take the job. Since then, it's been temp work and continuting to look for and apply for jobs. We're keeping our fingers crossed and saying our prayers that he hears something from somewhere soon. We've applied all around the states and right now would be more than willing to move if we found a good fit. Thank goodness we saved our tax return because that has saved our hide, that and paying our tithing :) Ava is growing big. She is awake most of the time and has quite a sweet personality. She is a happy baby and I am so excited for my mom to meet her this weekend! Ashlyn is pretty excited to see Grandma Kathy and her cousin Hailey too!! There's also a swimming pool in our hotel, so she's looking forward to that was well :) Mugga calls Ava, Avy and I have to say that I kind of like it. I might start calling her that too, before she's old enough to get confused :) Anyway, she goes to the doctor tomorrow for her two month check up and I'm hoping that she and I both do okay when she has to have her shots :( I hate that part! Addy is eighteen months old now and she can FINALLY go to Nursery at church! Can I get a Hallelujah?! The girl really knows how to push my buttons. She gets into stuff she's not supposed to, has quite an attitude problem and doesn't seem to grasp the concept of NO! It's a good thing that she's cute or she'd be out! Let's hope that since she entered the terrible two's early, she gets over them quickly because right now it's a battle of wits and I don't know how long I'll be winning when school starts again! Breckin got screened and registered for kindergarten. I met with his IEP team and the team from the Children's Resource Center before his screening and we went over his IEP together. He'll be seeing the Speech and Language Pathologist for some of his pronunciation issues and the Occupational Therapist for the tremor in his hands, it's hereditary, from his dad. He has been attending the Kindergarten Readiness Camp for the past two weeks and will continue next week and the week after. They like to give the Head Start kids a little more time so that they can become better acclimated to the environment and the rules of kindergarten. So far, things have gone pretty smooth, with the exception of the incident with the bus driver this morning. I just have a very low tolerance for rude people and when he tells me that we need to be out there waiting at 7:20 and by the time I get him on the bus and back up to the apartment, it's 7:21, I kind of lose my cool. Don't worry, he'll be hearing about it either this afternoon or tomorrow morning. He should be aware of his poor attitude! This is why I don't want my kids riding the bus, every bus driver I have ever heard of has been a jerk! Anyway, Ashlyn is bored. I told her she could clean her room, but that's boring! We have a list of things to do this summer, but it's been kind of hard to accomplish when there are naps to give, a house to clean, laundry to do, meals to plan and make, messes to clean up and a number of other things. Last week we had a water day with some of their friends and they loved it! This week we're going to Montana. I think I'll try to have a goal for each week. I would love to truck them all over to the park, but it's kind of difficult with only a one seat stroller. I need to find a double stroller so that we can get out of this house more! She is a great helper though, and I really enjoy the special time I get to spend alone with her. We have been reading some of the American Girl books for the summer reading program that the kids are doing. We went through one in a day and will probably finish another one today. That's good because we have to take our trip to the library tomorrow since we won't be here this Friday when we usually do it. Ashlyn also got new glasses! She picked some out that I really didn't think that she would like, but she loooooves them! It wasn't that big of a deal and she got a pretty good treat for being so compliant with the eye doctor :) Here are some images from our summer so far!! Finally, I have turned 29. I am officially going to enter my 30th year of life. I have been married for eight years, I have four children, I have moved a total of seen times in my life, I have taken trips across the country and I have had a very blessed life experience so far. I am so grateful for all of the family and friends that I am priviledged to have. I have learned so much from all of them. I am also very grateful for all of the experiences that I have had in my life, they have helped make me who I am. Through the trials of this life, I have found that I have become more optimisitc and hopeful. I feel that this is one of the divine gifts that my Heavenly Father has given me. I have always thought of spiritual gifts as more temporal things, but I have learned that my bright outlook and attitude in the midst of difficulty is something that I have been truly blessed with. I wouldn't give up this gift for anything! This year I was inspired by another blog to come up with a word of the year, a word that I would live by for the year, so until next June, my word for the year is DREAM! I have a lot of dreams and aspirations that I would love to see fulfilled, many of my dreams I have already seen come to pass. I have a beautiful family that I am close to and I love, I am able to live in a place that I enjoy and that I am comfortable in being in, I am able to continue my education in a field that I enjoy and I have passion for and I have a great support system around me to bouye me up when I feel low. However, there are still many dreams (big and small) that I have yet to fulfill and that is what this year is about! So wish me luck and come back here to join me on my journey to follow and fulfil my dreams!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Avalyn Noelle-The Gift

For those of you who don't know already, we had our little girl on April 12th at 12:52 in the afternoon. Here is her story: Avalyn, or Ava, as we call her was a surprise baby. We were using precautions and we ended up with a little surprise. We weren't sure how to handle it, having just had Addy, but the Lord knows better than we do, so we just kind of go with the flow. I let Jame have a say in naming this baby, more so than I have before, which is why her name is Avalyn and not just Ava. I decided that her middle name should be Noelle because it is French for "Christmas" and she is the gift that we have been given, a gift we didn't know we wanted until we got it :) The BIG day: The day Ava was born was stormy and rainy here in Wyoming. My parents were leaving on a flight to go to Texas and my father-in-law, Ned just happened to have the day off of work because they were going to go hiking, however, that didn't happen. I started having quick contractions at about 4:30 in the morning. I tried tossing and turning over, hoping that they would go away, but they didn't. I decided to get in the shower to try to relax, that didn't help either, but it did feel good to take a shower by myself, I just have to be up at 5:00 in the morning to do it :) I got myself dressed and ready and went and poked Jame, who was asleep on the couch, and told him that I thought I might be in labor. He mumbled "mmm, huh" and went back to sleep. I went and laied down on my bed and tried to relax again. Ashlyn came in at around 7 and saw me in pain, she went out and told her daddy that something was wrong, she actually got him to wake up!!! He told me that he hadn't heard me at all!!! He started running around nervously, making sure everything was ready to go and that the kids were all ready and dressed, just in case we had to go. At around 8:30, I thought that maybe it would be a good idea to go out to the in-laws house and drop the kids off. I had already called them and let them know what was going on and I had called my mom and dad, while they were on their way to the airport, and let them know. My dad said, "Are you serious?" Ha, ha!! They weren't expecting it, but neither was I. We hung around at the in-laws for a while and then at around 10:00, I thought that maybe we should head to the hospital. We go to the hospital in Powell because I like their doctors better and I just think that they give all around better care than the Cody hospital does. I called my doctor's office to see who the doctor on call was, because Dr. Bohlman conveniently planned a little Hawaiian vacation the week before my due date!! I was a little worried about who it was, I hadn't heard good things, and so I wasn't in any hurry to get there, Jame was however. He always speeds to the hospital and we always get there just in time, I think he just doesn't want to have to deliver a baby! We got to the hospital and got checked in. The nurses checked me and I was dialated to a 3, so they asked us to walk around for a half an hour. We walked around the hospital for a while and then I got checked again. I was dialated to a 6. They asked me how I had planned my pain management. I have never had an epidural, I've heard good things, it's just never happened. I decided to just get the Fentanyl that they usually give me. Jame warned the nurses about 3 times that when they gave me my pain meds, they should have the doctor ready because everything happens very quickly after that. They listened to him and soon the doctor was in the room. The attending nurse tried twice to get my IV in and finally had to ask for help. I had to sit still while I was in pain and then I was being poked multiple times on top of that. It was probably the worst part. The doctor told them to give me the Fentanyl and then he would be back. Jame warned him to not go too far because within about 30 minutes, I would be ready to start pushing. When they put the pain meds in I got a little sleepy, but it didn't seem like the pain went away all that much. Jame says that I had a better disposition after that :) The doctor got back just in time and I began pushing. He got ready just in time and I pushed for about twelve minutes before Ava was out. She weighed 6 pounds 7 ounces. She is our smallest baby. The minute I saw her, Irealized the great gift that I had been given. She has dark hair and opened her little blue eyes to me right away. She is so precious and we love her so much. Since Ava has been home, things have been a little crazy. I still had school to finish, which is now done!!!! I also have three other little people that need things like food, sleep, baths, attention and love. When I was younger, I didn't know how mothers with more than two kids could have enough to give all of their children. I have found a way though. Jame has been very helpful and willing to do almost anything that I ask of him. He watches the kids (all four) while I go work out or go to the grocery store. He also gives baths and puts kids to bed. It has been a juggling act, but so very worth it. I'm not sure if our little family is completely complete, we'll see what happens in the future, but for now our hearts are very full!!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012


Addy is our third child and a joy to have around. The girl definently has a personality. She is very entertaining. Jame and I ofthen find ourselves watching her, even when the television is on. She is a good little sister and she is teaching Breckin how to treat women. She abuses him and messes with him and he just takes it. It's good practice for marriage :) Addy loves her new little sister...more about her in another post. She is always kissing her and wanting to hold her and touch her. We have to be very careful about her, but the worry that I had about her being jealous was just unnecessary because she loves her very much. Addy is very outspoken. She doesn't say much, but she lets you know that she is in the room. The girl definitely has a set of lungs on her. She is mostly a happy baby, unless she's sick or tired or hungry. Then she lets you know what she wants...NOW!! Addy is the most cuddly baby I have ever had. Breckin was cuddly for like a second, Ashlyn was to busy exploring her world and being independent to come and cuddle with mommy, but Addy LOVES to cuddle. The girl will have someone pick her up and she will wrap her arms around their neck and lay her head down on their shoulder. She will stay this way for a while. She just loves to touch and be touched. At bedtime, she cuddles up with Daddy on the couch in a special reclined position and usually falls asleep this way. Addy is a very compassionate little girl. I can see how she has already developed empathy and sympathy. Whenever someone is upset, she will approach them with her brow furrowed in concern and either pat them or hug them so that they can feel better. I remember one day when I was upset and crying on the floor and Addy toddled up to me with the look of concern on her face and climbed up into my lap to cuddle and make me feel better. She is such a sweet little girl. Addy fits perfectly into our family. She is a sweet little sister and a loving big sister. It is a gift to be able to watch her grow and entertain us everyday. She is one of the happiest babies that I have ever had or met. We love her so much!!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012


So, to continue the story of those three, almost four, perfect little things in my life, we have Breckin, or Brecky-Bear, or Baby-Breckin, or when he is particularly ornery, B-Rat!

Breckin is the only boy that I will probably ever have, unless Jame gets baby hungry. He is my special little boy. He is surrounded on all sides by girls and as a result has become ALL BOY.

Breckin is an amazing artist. He is constantly drawing, painting, sketching, whatever he can do that is artistic, he is doing it. He is so creative and smart. His teachers already have told me how well he can draw for someone his age and how his drawings really do look like what he intends them to look like. I don't have an artistic bone in my body and Jame's artistic abilities are limited to Spongebob animations, so I have no idea where he is getting this from.

Breckin loves music. He loves to sing and dance and he can hear a song a few times and know the general words to it. He really likes Katy Perry and Glee. He's silly that way. He also likes The Wizard of Oz. He can tell you every little detail of that movie and often dreams about the "scary Lion" and the "Witch" and the "Tin Man" and the "Scarecrow". He does get his musical appreciation from me, which I hope that he will pursue when he gets older. I think that if he can get over his shyness, he could be a great little performer. For now, we have to watch him perform when he thinks we aren't paying attention.

Finally, Breckin is very loving to his sisters, and he's going to have to be. I have seen how he loves Addy and puts up with her whacking at him and sitting on him and trying to wrestle with him. He tries to be as gentle as he can because he has this instinct that girls are fragile and need extra care. He and Ashlyn are best friends and worst enemies sometimes, but most of the time they are best friends. He loves all of his sisters, even the one that he hasn't laid eyes on yet. He kisses them and hugs them and cuddles with them. I know that one day there will be a very lucky woman that Breckin meets who he will treat with all of the love and respect that he has learned to treat his sisters with.

There are so many other things that I could say about my special little boy, but for me, he is just the perfect little boy. At times, he can try his mommy's nerves, but he is always so loving and caring that it is difficult for me to stay mad at him for very long. I am so grateful that I have this second little perfect person in my life.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

The First Perfect Thing In My Life

This is the first part of a four-part series devoted to each one of my children. Jame mentioned to me that there are four things in his life that he feels he has done perfectly and that is our three, soon to be four children. That got me thinking about each one of them and how absolutely perfect they really are, to me. They may not be well-behaved all of the time, but because Jame and I worked together with our Heavenly Father to create them, they are in some part, perfect.

Ashlyn: She is the most intelligent little girl that I know. I have proof too! She is so curious about everything. Her favorite book to check out at the library is a pop-out book called ALIVE that gives different 3-D diagrams of the human body. She spends a lot of time digesting and studying the "Body Book". She has also been asking about the Eiffel Tower and France lately. As a result, we checked out some books about France and the Eiffel Tower from the library. She sat at the kitchen table for almost an hour studying about France and asking questions about the culture in France and the Eiffel Tower. Later, I got on the computer and we took a virtual tour of the Eiffel Tower and Versailles. We also went on a tour of Mary Tudor's castle. I hope that one day she can experience these things in real life. It seems as though it would be so unfair if she couldn't.

Ashlyn is also one of the most compassionate little people I have ever met. She is very aware of other's feelings and is empathetic to them. When she was in preschool in Laramie, her teacher told me that she had a special gift for helping kids with special needs. She had a way of talking to them that would make them understand what they needed to do. I chalked it up to being bossy and the other kids not minding her bossing them around, but I've been able to see her interact with some of the kids in her kindergarten class and I have seen this gift at work. She has patience for them that other children don't and she is very empathetic to the fact that they need a friend and she is willing to be their friend. The girl truly has a heart of gold.

Ashlyn is like her mommy and her Grandma Kathy in the respect that she feels that everyone should be treated fairly and even if it is hard, you should always do the right thing. This is probably one of the greatest lessons that I can give to my kids and I am grateful that my parents gave it to me. Of course she had her episodes of telling lies, which is developmentally appropriate for all children, but she has a very keen sense of right and wrong and has a great desire within her to do what is right. Her Mugga wrote the Indian name that she gave her on the inside of a book, her Indian name is "She Who Chooses The Right" and it's true. The girl is only six years old and she tries to do the right thing in almost any situation that she is in. She also encourages and influences her brother and sister to try to do the right thing. We talk often about different situations that we might find ourselves in when we have to choose what is right and what is wrong and she always gives me the right answer. I am so blessed to have such an obedient and helpful child. I'm so grateful to my Heavenly Father, that he sent her to me first. All of my children have a very special place in my heart and I think because Ashlyn is so much like me, her place is extra special!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Recent Happenings

So, yea, it's been a while.
Sorry about that...I've been a little busy. Three little ones, harboring another little life, cooking, cleaning, school, busing kids around, etc. I guess things got a little away from me. Right now my house isn't even in order, but dinner is on! So there have been a few minor developments that have occurred in our lives.

1. I GOT AN IPHONE!!! I love it!! I don't know what I did before Siri entered my life, she makes things so much easier. I don't have to try to remember a million and one things because she does it for me! I also have Instagram, which I LOVE!!! Sorry Droid users, it's not available for you :)

2. I've instituted donut dates with my kiddos. These dates occur when kids don't have school for the day, which means Breckin gets one every other week. This week, however, Ashlyn and Breckin both had Friday off, so we went down to Peter's Cafe and had a cinnamon roll date instead. The weather was beautiful and it was a nice way to spend the morning.

3. Addy is getting big, and smart. I asked her to throw a diaper away for me the other day and she toddled over to the garbage and put the diaper in there. Just a little while ago, however, she tried to throw her brother's book away. I'll have to keep a closer eye on what is in my garbage can now.

4. Speaking of smart, Ashlyn took an aptitude test at school a few weeks ago and we got her results this week. Apparently she is above the average for both her age and her grade level, so we have decided to investigate the StarGate Program that they have in the school system to see what is available for her.

5. I have Spring Break this week and I'm planning on using this time very productively. I'm going to try to get ahead in some of my classes so that when this baby comes in a month, I won't fall behind. I also plan on completing some of the crafts that I've gathered materials for, but haven't started yet.

Well, there's the brief recap of what you've missed. Nothing to exciting, except for the IPhone part :) I should be updating more this week, seeing as I have the time and I hope to be able to post some of the projects I've done.


Monday, February 6, 2012

La, La, La...

Two songs huh? I don't know if I can do that. My taste in music has changed so much over the years. There were the years that I was OBSESSED with the boy bands and then my friend Ricky enlightened me and took me to a Weezer concert and I really got into their music. I also really loved Dashboard Confessional. Now, I listen to a little bit of everything. If you've read any of my earlier posts, you know that I have a little bit of a crush on Bruno Mars so one of his songs is obviously in my top two:

2. Bruno Mars- "It Will Rain". This is a great song!! One of my favorites of his. He's super talented and there is something about his hair too :)

1. Lady Antebellum- "Just A Kiss". When I hear this on the radio I turn the volume up and sing along at the top of my lungs. I'm just as good as they are right? :) This is currently my ringtone on my phone and I really love it. It's sweet and romantic.

There are so many songs that I like, but some of the artists I'm digging right now are, of course, Lady A, Gym Class Heroes, Neon Trees, Katy Perry, Cobra Starship, The Black Keys, etc. Check some of them out if you like good music :)

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Let's Go To the Movies!

Okay this one is actually really simple for me. I have had the favorite three movies for a very long time! Here they are:

3. Hot Rod. I know, you guys may not get my affinity for Andy Samburg, but this is one of the only movies that actually makes me laugh out loud! There are just so many funny things about it and laughter really helps my mood when I'm not feeling well. My friend Ricky and I went on a rampage one day on Facebook and just had a conversation completely quoting Hot Rod. It's the kind of movie that my mom would say is really stupid, but she didn't get Napoleon Dynamite either :)
-"You know, pools are perfect for holding water."
-"I needed to think about last night. So I galloped into a wooded glen, and after punch-dancing out my rage and suffering an extremely long and very painful fall, I realized what has to be done"
-"You have only to believe if you wish to achieve. That rhymed. Unintentional."

2. The Blind Side. I have read Leigh Anne Toughy's book and I'm now waiting for whoever has Michael Oher's book to return it so that I can read that too. This is just a great wholesome story and the best part of it is that it could have so many bad endings and it has a happy ending. I saw this in the theater with my sister-in-law and I didn't start really tearing up until the end when Michael Oher was drafted into the NFL. What can I say, that's my upbringing.

1. Remember the Titans. Jame hates this movie, for reasons unknown. I LOVE it!! It is definitely number 1. There is a lot to say about perseverance and overcoming adversity in this movie. I think that all of us have different adversities that we face and it's only through working through it together that we are able to come out alive. It doesn't hurt that the movie is also about football :)
-"People say that it can't work, black and white. Here, we make it work every day. We still have our disagreements, of course, but before we reach for hate, always, always, we remember the Titans."
-"I'm a winner. I'm going to win."

So, I've posted nearly every day now and I don't know what I'm going to talk about when I get done with this challenge, I'm sure I'll think of something though. Now I think I'll lay down and relax and see if Hot Rod is on :)

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Four Books

As you all know by now, I LOVE to read. If I could have my ideal vacation, I would be by myself, on a beach, with a stack of books. I would spend my days reading and tanning. It would be great. Anyway, I live in reality and I'm lucky if I get to read a book that I actually want to read, i.e. not a textbook. Between school, kids, hubby and home there really isn't much time for me to relax and read. Here are a list of books that are my favorites though:

4. The Standard Works: The Bible, The Book of Mormon, The Doctrine and Covenants and The Pearl of Great Price. I have to say that I'm not as diligent as I should be about reading the scriptures, but every time I do I notice something I didn't before. When Jame and I were first married we would sit down after work and dinner and study our scriptures together. It was a special time that we were able to connect spiritually and I miss those times. Now, we try to sit down as a family and read from The Book of Mormon stories so that our children can get a general overview of what is going on. As a convert, I never grew up with the Book of Mormon stories that my kids are growing up with, so it's even more important for me to study my scriptures so that I can answer the "hard" questions that will inevitably someday come.

3. Night by Elie Wiesel. I'm really not a downer person, but for some reason, ever since we learned about the Holocaust and tolerance in middle school, I have been fascinated with that time in history. The story Night is about a young man who lives through the Holocaust. It tells about his time before, during and after he entered the concentration camps. In 1986, Elie Wiesel received the Nobel Peace Prize. I enjoy this story because it tells about adversity and that the night really is darkest before the dawn.

2. F in Exams: The Very Best Totally Wrong Test Answers. My brother and I were perusing Target over Christmas break and we stumbled upon this little beauty. It is HILARIOUS!!! As a student, planning on becoming a teacher. I am able to really appreciate this. One of the actual questions is: "Give a reason why people would want to live near power lines?" Actual answer: "You get your electricity faster." Ha, Ha, Ha!! I love it. There was an answer in there that was reminded me of my brother and so, I had to get it for him for Christmas. It was great. Check this book out!

1. The Alchemist. This is definently number one. The book is about a person finding their own destiny. The main character is diverted many times on his way, but his destiny isn't what he originally thought that it was. I learned so much about myself after reading this book. My mother-in-law was kind enough to share this book with me and I'm very grateful to her for that. If you haven't read it, I promise you will learn more about your self after you read it.

*These are just four of my favorite books. Maybe not my top four, but the four that I could think of right now :) There are some books that have the potential to take their place though:

-In Defense of Food
-I Beat the Odds by Michael Oher
-The Pioneer Woman
-The Hunger Games series
-The Outlander series
-The Hymn of the Tiger Mother
-The Last Lecture
-The Work and The Glory series

Monday, January 30, 2012

I LOVE TO EAT!!! Five Foods that Rock My World!!!

Okay, for those of you who don't know already, I'm about 7 months pregnant. When I am pregnant, it is not unusual for me to eat, or try to eat, everything in site. If it looks or sounds good, I'll try it! I really should just put that I love anything that my mom cooks for all 5 items. She is the best cook EVER!! I think that's one of the main reasons that my dad met her. I cook nearly every day and someday I hope that I can be as good as my mom. I KNOW that's one of the main reasons why Jame married ME :) Anyway, here are my 5 FAVORITE FOODS: I can't believe I can only choose 5!

5. Mint Oreos. I know that you would expect this to be higher on the list, but I have to leave enough room for my mom's food :)

4. Blair's Long Johns. These are the most magical donuts! I have fond memories of having these on a Saturday morning while watching cartoons in the living room. They were a special treat that my parents would give us every once in a while. For my birthday one year, I specifically asked for these donuts and my mother-in-law was sweet enough to get me some!

3. My mommy's Tuna Noodle Casserole. She puts a special touch on it. She uses sour cream and cheddar potato chips instead of regular potato chips on top and then she puts cheddar cheese on top of that! It's the BEST!

2. My mommy's four layer dessert. Now, I could literally eat an entire pan of this stuff. The first layer is a pie crust with sliced almonds in it. The next layer is chocolate pudding. The next layer is a whipped topping and cream cheese mixture. Finally you top it off with some more sliced almonds. I want some NOW!

1. My mommy's enchiladas. She makes her own enchilada sauce from scratch, she puts black olives and cheese all over the place. What's not to LOVE! I specially requested this for dinner while we were visiting over Christmas break and Breckin and I at nearly the entire 9X13 pan by ourselves. It was great!!

So, the top three things are things that my mommy makes that can't be duplicated to perfection by anyone, myself included. I guess she's gonna have to live forever so that she can keep feeding me!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Location, Location, Location-Six Places

If I were to have unlimited means and resources, here are the 6 places that I would go. Some of these places I have been before, but I would like to share these places with my family. Some of these places I dream of going...

6. Washington D.C. I would love to go to D.C. again. They have created some new monuments since I have been there and I would like to see them. I went twice while I was in high school and we went to many of the big attractions. I've seen the Lincoln Memorial, The Jefferson Memorial, The Washington Monument, Union Station, two of the Smithsonian Museums, The Holocaust Museum, Arlington National Cemetery, oh and a little place there called The White House. Frankly, after spending nearly three hours in the basement of the White House waiting to sing for the First Lady, it looses some of it's appeal. I would like to share some of the things that I saw with my family, but I think that we'll skip The White House.

5. San Antonio, Texas. Jame served his mission in Houston and for a while he HATED Texas. If that was the only taste of Texas I got, I'd hate it too. However, San Antonio has a charm all it's own. The people there are incredibly friendly, the Riverwalk is beautiful, especially at Christmas time when they have lights all around it. The Alamo is interesting if you like that sort of thing. The food is AMAZING!!! When I was visiting my mom and dad we sat around and talked about all of the food that we missed. When I was in college in Wyoming and my parents were still living there they once overnighted some tortillas from a very special Tex-Mex restaurant. Yea, the love me! I was on cloud nine for like a week! If we ever had the chance to move back to the San Antonio area, I would take it in a heartbeat. I love that place!!

4. New York City. I dream of going here someday. It's on my Bucket List to be in New York City on New Year's Eve in Times Square. I just thrive on excitement and to me this is one of the most exciting places that you can be. I don't know how my husband would like it, but I'm sure he would come along with me just to make me happy. I would love to see Central Park and go to a Broadway show. I would also love to see the 9/11 Memorial and go to the toy store FAO Schwartz. Hopefully, one day we can make a little trip out there.

3. Ireland and England. I wish that I could have been there when they had the Royal Wedding, but hopefully someday I can go. I love the culture in London and the variety of people. I would enjoy seeing all of the historical landmarks and teasing the Queen's guards. I have had a kind of fascination with all things English and I think that this might satisfy my curiosity. I would have to take a little side trip to Ireland to make my husband happy. He has a dream of going to "the home land" someday.

2. The Holy Land. When I was young, my grandparents took a trip to The Holy Land. They went to Jerusalem and Golgotha among other places. They saw where they believe Jesus' tomb is and they walked the same streets that he walked on. My grandmother also told me that she got trapped on a camel while they were there. The camel just wouldn't let her off :) I remember playing with the Nativity that they got there that was made out of olive wood. Ever since I was little I have wanted to go there. Maybe I should start saving my dimes like they did :)

1. Italy. I don't know what it is about Italy that makes me want to go there. Maybe it's the ease of life, maybe it's the beautiful waters. Maybe it's the history and the cobblestone streets. Most likely, it's the food. The rich, savory food. If you know me at all, you know I LOVE food!! Especially now that I'm pregnant. Perhaps now would be a good time for me to go :)

There it is, 6 places I dream about either going to or going back to. Thanks for reading my list. Now where do you want to go?

Friday, January 27, 2012

Seven Wants!!!

I feel very fortunate that I really don't need for anything. My husband has a great job that provides for all of our needs and allows us to have some of the things that I want. Most of my wants are simply dreams that I hope to obtain one day. I learned from my parents that you take care of your kids needs and wants first and then you worry about your own. Seeing as we're about to outnumber the amount of my parents kids by two, we have a lot more wants around here. But if I was going to dream, and dream big. Here are the seven things that I want:

7. Opportunity. I hope that someday my kids can have all of the the opportunities that I had and more. When I was in high school I was given a myriad of opportunities.
My parents always made our needs and wants a high priority. I appreciate that about them. I was able to got to Washington D.C. twice, swim all year round, travel to swimming events, travel to Renaissance festivals, I went to three proms and I was able to focus on my studies and extracurricular activities. I hope that I can provide similar opportunities for my own kids.

6. My own home. I already know what it will look like and how I would want to decorate it. Although it is nice to be able to call someone to fix something that has broken and I don't have to pay for it. It would be nice to be able to decorate a home the way that I want to and paint walls the colors I want them. If I have to wait though, I would like to be able to have a bigger space for our kids because we are about to grow out of our small apartment here.

5. To be a positive example to my kids. As a mother, I feel the incredibly responsibility for how my children turn out. I know how profound my influence on them is and I have seen the fruits of it already. The other day when we were leaving to go to school Ashlyn mentioned that we had not said our prayers yet. We had gotten into such a routine of getting ready for school, saying our prayers and then going to school, however this morning we were running late and our daily prayers had simply been forgotten. I was grateful for the reminder from my daughter and so we said our prayers while driving to school. I hope that I can still have an positive influence on my children when I'm not around

4. A weekend away with my husband. The hubby works very hard. He usually puts in nine to ten hour days at work and then he comes home and entertains our children and helps me. I think he needs a break! I want this for him as much as myself. It would be nice to be able to have the means and the time to just be able to go away and spend time together and maybe get eight glorious hours of uninterrupted sleep :)

3. More time. I would love to be able to have more time to watch my kids grow up, spend time with my family, learn all that I can, read all of the books on my ever-growing list, play, craft, sleep, eat, etc. There just never seems to be enough of it. I would love to find a way to accumulate more, but there are only 24 hours in a day, so why not make the most of what I'm given?

2. A graduate degree. I know that I'm getting a little ahead of myself, but right now I would love to just be done with school and begin working. I hope that one day I can get my Master's degree in Special Education and I'm actually working on it right now, along with my Bachelor's degree. I just hope that someday I can have that little piece of paper with the recognition that I worked hard academically and now I am being rewarded. Hopefully, it won't be too long.

1. Happiness. I am happy about 90% of the time and that's not too bad. However, thanks in great part to my mother, I am a worrier. I would love to know what it feels like to not have to worry about anything. At least not the temporal, unimportant things. I suppose it is just a weakness that I am going to have to learn how to overcome. I look forward to the next life when I won't have this characteristic trait. Right now, however, I try to make the choice every day that no matter how the day turns out, I am going to be happy. Sometimes I wake up and stub my toe, or we start running late, but I don't have a whole lot of control over what happens to me. I do have control over how I react to it. I choose to be happy!!

*On a more materialistic note, here are some additional things I want:

-A pink Kitchenaid mixer
-A craft room
-The Pioneer Woman's two cookbooks
-An Iphone
-Some cute fabric to make flowers out of
-Mint Oreos
-The Willow Tree Angel Nativity set

*Just so you know, my birthday is in June :)

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Eight Fears!!!

I really had to think about this post because there really isn't that much that I am afraid of. I have read a lot from one of my church leaders, Russell M. Nelson, about fear and faith. He has such a great perspective about fear and how fear is the opposite of faith. He says, "He teaches us that we need not fear, but rather, have faith. We have a purpose here on this earth. Have faith in the plan and know that the Lord loves you and will always provide for you. He will deliver you from bondage when you exercise faith." Here is a little video clip that was shared about fear and faith:

With this in mind, some of my fears might seem silly and unreasonable to you, but they are things that I'm afraid of.

8. The dark. I have always been afraid of the dark. I always have to have a hall light on or a lamp on so that in case I have to get up in the middle of the night I can see and I don't have to worry about anything lurking in the dark waiting for me.

7. Being alone. Jame is not allowed to die before I do, because I don't think that I could handle being alone. I am an extrovert by nature and so I need social interaction like I need air. I thrive on it! I actually will call my mom at least three times a week because I need it so badly!

6. Murderers and Thieves. When I was young, my parents let me watch Unsolved Mysteries and so ever since then I was afraid of logical things like murderers and thieves. I was never afraid of monsters or ghost, but I have always been fearful of things that are REAL and can REALLY hurt you.

5. Someone stealing my children. I have a very rational fear of having someone take my children. It happens more often than we realize and living in a small town doesn't make us any more exempt from having it happen than living in a big city. When Ashlyn was a toddler and Breckin was a newborn baby I was in a store and I was paying more attention to Breckin because he was fussing. I turned around a second later and Ashlyn was nowhere to be found. The clerks and other patrons and I searched around for her for about 5 minutes and I was just about to call the police over when I found her hiding in a clothing rack. Nothing has scared me more in my life. My children know now that you don't lose sight of your parent when you are in a store. I make them walk along side the cart with one hand on the cart now. They won't be lost on my watch!!

4. My children becoming seriously ill or losing one of my children. My kids are so much a part of my life that I really don't know what I would do if I lost one of them. I would never be the same, I know that. I would never wish this on my worst enemy, and that is all I have to say about that!

3. I will never finish school. I feel like I've been in school forever. I sometimes feel like I'll never be done! Because of my area of study, I know that I will be in school forever, but right now I just want a piece of paper that tells me that I have achieved something!! I love to learn, but I would also really love to be able to put that learning to work.

2. Snakes!! I don't care if they are poisonous or not, I HATE snakes. I can't even watch the on T.V. I purposely avoid the mountains because I just know that I'm going to encounter a nest of rattlesnakes. If every snake fell dead at this very moment I wouldn't be upset. I really don't see their value and I feel that there is great worth in the fact that Satan took the form of a serpent in the Garden of Eden. They are just PURE EVIL!!!

1. Disappointing others. I have this innate need to please everyone. I thrived on the pride that my parents had in me. My mom told me that she was proud of me frequently, but if my dad told me that he was proud of me, that was something because it wasn't something that he told us too often. I think he was trying to keep us humble. He does, however, tell me that he is proud of me a lot more frequently. It's mostly because I do well in school and because he thinks I'm a good mommy and that means a lot. I would never want to disappoint my parents or my family so I sometimes stress myself out trying to make sure that they are all happy. It's a good kind of stress though.

So, that's what I'm afraid of. If any of you have any bright ideas about putting snakes anywhere near me on April Fool's day, I would think again! Otherwise, see you tomorrow :)

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Nine Loves!!!

I feel like there are a lot of things I love. If you've read my blog before you have seen, and maybe been confused by the "Things that I Heart". I know when my mother-in-law first saw the pictures of Zach Galifianakis and Andy Samburg, they were a little confused, but what can I say. They are people whose work makes me happy and laugh so "I Heart Them!!!". Here are some more things that "I Heart!!"

9. Reading. As I've said before, I could and sometimes do spend an entire day just reading a good book. When I find a book that really interests and intrigues me it is hard for me to put it down. I just want to find out what happens next.

8. Sleep. Maybe this is because I didn't get any last night, but sleep is a beautiful luxury. It is a time for our bodies to rejuvenate themselves so that they can complete the tasks of tomorrow. I know that I don't get enough and one day when my kids are all grown up I am going to sleep in past 8. I can't wait!!! Maybe I'll just run away with Jame and leave the kids behind and we'll spend an entire weekend sleeping!!

7. Mint Oreos. In my opinion, this is the best Oreo EVER!!! I think that maybe Nabisco should pay me in Mint Oreos because I consume so many and I also do so many free advertisements on here for them. There is something about dunking them in milk and making the cream even creamier that just makes me happy, no matter how much sleep I haven't gotten the night before.

6. Antique stores. I have actually just discovered this love. My brother also loves antique stores, in fact they joked that on his wedding night he was going to spend it relaxing in the tub reading an antiquing magazine. Addy and I went into an antique store yesterday and I was just in a state of peaceful bliss in there. It is just so interesting to me how well things used to be made and how long they have lasted. I am also interested in the stories that are behind the items that you purchase. It really is a fun little hobby if you give it a try.

5. A clean house. Right now, I'm not terribly happy, my house is a mess!! It could be worse, I understand that. However, there are dishes in the sink, donut crumbs on the floor, boxes in my hallway that need to go to the second hand store and my bed hasn't been made in over a week. I HATE clutter and mess. I know that it's only going to get worse when we have four children instead of three, just as things changed when we had three children instead of two and two children instead of one, but is it so much for me to ask that my house just be orderly and clean for just a week or even a day? I don't think so. Maybe I'll take that weekend devoted to sleep and clean the house too :)

4. Halloween. I don't know why, but Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. Maybe it's because there really isn't any pressure to find the perfect gift or contribute the perfect dish to a meal. Maybe it's because Halloween is just meant to be fun! I like to dress up and now I have three little people that I get to dress up too!! I also like candy and I always have, so that little contribution to the holiday makes it even sweeter :)

3. Summertime. I love that you can walk outside barefoot, go camping and not freeze, run through the sprinklers, play softball, cook outside, go for family walks in the evening, go to the drive-in and many other great summer activities. Not to mention, my birthday is also in the summer :) I love the ease of it and the memories that I have from having many enjoyable summers with my family.

2. My kids. Well of course I had to put this in the top two :) They are some of my favorite people! Ashlyn reminds me more of myself everyday. She is very sweet, a little bit bossy and incredibly smart and perceptive. Breckin is a very affectionate and sweet little boy, probably the only little boy I'll have, and he is very artistic and helpful. Addy is my baby, for the moment. She is also just like me and Ashlyn. She is sweet and happy. Many people have told me that she is the happiest baby they have ever seen, she always has a smile on her face. My kids are the reason that I live. They make me smile, cry, laugh and worry. I could never imagine my life without them.

1. The hubby. If I didn't have him I wouldn't have my kids :) He has gone through so much and still keeps trying. Sometimes it takes some prodding, but he keeps trying. He does things for me willingly and lovingly. He makes me laugh and cry. He supports me with my dreams. He tries to do the right thing in a tough situation. I know that he is the man that I was supposed to marry. He helps with our children willingly when I ask, he loves us unconditionally, he works hard, he tries to make me relax when I don't really want to but I need to, he tries to distract me with silly stories during labor, he sometimes takes out the garbage and he cooks the steaks in the house. He's good for a lot of things, so I think I'll keep him around for a while :)

*I have to add one more love, I know I only technically get nine, but I have to add one more. My family. I love my in-laws very much. I also love my parents and my brother very, very much! They are the reason that I am the person that I am today. My parents taught me how to work hard and how to be honest. My dad taught me how far hard work can actually get you and how to be logical in the most difficult situations. My mom taught me how to be selfless. She is the epitome of being selfless and giving herself to her family and children. She really is an angel. My brother taught me the absolute importance of laughing, especially at yourself. He taught me that you can't take yourself too seriously and that even in the midst of trials and hopelessness, there is a reason to laugh. I am so very blessed that I was given the family that I have.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Ten Day You Challenge

Okay, I know that it's kinda weird to hear from me two days in a row, but I think I'm trying anything productive to avoid doing the homework that I have looming in front of me. Anyway, I came across this little post on one of the blogs that I follow and I thought I would see how many of you were wanting to join in the fun. If you have your own blogs it would be fun for you to just leave a link to them in the comment box so that I can check them out, or you can just read and enjoy. The first challenge is sharing Ten Secrets. Here it goes:

10. I have never failed a class in my life, I have however gotten a D in my life. One was in Algebra 2 when I was a senior and it caused me to be ineligible for swimming for part of the season. I was LIVID!! I couldn't believe it. I just wasn't good at math and I hated it. I had a nice enough teacher, but I just didn't get what was going on. Now, however, math seems to come to me a lot easier. Who knew!?

9. I watch Jerseylicious and The Real Housewives of Orange County. I can do without the other Housewives, but Orange County is the original and it is my guilty pleasure.

8. I have been to see the Backstreet Boys twice and I have seen N'Sync once live in concert. I was such a boy crazy teenager and they were the perfect boys!! I would actually go and see the NKOTBSB tour now if I was able to :)

7. Speaking of being boy crazy, I would reconsider my marriage if I had a chance in the world with Tim Tebow or Bruno Mars! There is just something about the wholesomeness of Tim Tebow, not to mention he plays for the Denver Broncos! There is also something mysterious and appealing to me about Bruno Mars, and I LOVE his music.

6. I HATE mayonnaise!! It is disgusting. All I think of when I look at it or think of it is cellulite.

5. Sometimes I let things go by the wayside and I actually allow my house to become a HUGE mess! It kind of is right now. I desperately need to vacuum, dust, clean the bathroom and a number of other things.

4. I secretly wish that I could sew as well as my mother did and still does. I wish that she had taught me what sides are the right sides, what a basting stitch is, how to thread a sewing machine. It has been a whole lot more difficult to try to figure these things out on my own.

3. When I was young I wanted to be a gymnast and a ballerina. Maybe it was my inner girly girl fighting against my outward tomboy, but every time the Olympics would come around I would watch and then go out into the front yard and try to reenact what I had seen. I did hurt myself more than once and I knew that it was way too expensive for my parents to pay for lessons for me so I thought I might just teach myself. I am still no gymnast, but I did take a ballet class when I was in Laramie and I found it quite fun.

2. Before I have a serious conversation with someone I talk myself through it first. I often do this in the car by myself or with Addy falling asleep in the backseat. I find that I am much better prepared for the conversation when I do this. My mom talks to herself too, so I don't think I'm completely crazy...yet :)

1. I spend way too much money on books. I have all of these books I want to read and the best intentions of reading them, so I find them on Amazon, at the second-hand store, or on sale at Target or Wal-Mart and then I never touch them again. I have gotten better about checking the out from the library lately because I have talked myself through a purchase before I make it, but still it sometimes gets a little out of hand.

Well, there you have it friends, 10 secrets about me! I hope I can stay up with this and keep you updated on the other Challenges. I also hope that you will share your challenges with me!

Monday, January 23, 2012

I'm Addicted!!

Okay...I have to admit it...I'm addicted to reading!!! I never thought that I would be again, but I am. When I was young, I remember sitting in my grandma's library downstairs with a pile of pillows, a blanket and a good book that I had searched for on her numerous shelves of books. I would stay down there for hours, neglecting my brother and his pleas to play with him. I would devour one book after another and in between I would wander upstairs for some Ramen Noodles or a PB&J sandwich. Otherwise, you wouldn't see me for the entire day. Well, it has started again. I spent the ENITRE weekend lost in stories. The first book that I read was A Stolen Life by Jaycee Duggard. It was a little graphic for me, but her optimistic attitude through her entire ordeal was remarkable. It was also so interesting to me how similar we were when we were young. We actually had a lot in common and I can remember reading her thoughts and thinking, "I felt the same way at that age." However, the events in her life and my life are drastically different! She still has hope though and that is remarkable given what she went through. After that bit of dramatic reading, I went on to read The Pioneer Woman by Ree Drummond. If you don't know who the Pioneer Woman is, you need to find out. She is so comical and interesting. The book is about the drastic changes that she made in her life so that she could be with her love. The way that she describes her husband makes me super envious!! I have a great husband, but her husband is pretty perfect!! It was a really good book and I found myself super entertained.
Even though I read a little over 600 pages over the course of the weekend, I still managed to clean the house a little bit, do the laundry, run some errands, get two papers done in addition to the other homework I had to do, and go to church. I did not have the time to make my fabric flowers or do some of the other crafts that I had planned on completing, but it was totally worth it. Now I have BIG plans to read Tim Tebow's book and Michael Oher's book. I don't know what's going on right now, but I'm really into biographies. I read the inside jackets of Tim Tebow's book and I was interested right away. I also have read a book by Leigh Ann Tuohy, Michael Oher's adopted mother, and I think that it would be interesting to hear the story from his side. That and The Blind Side is one of my favorite movies!! So, now I guess I'm off to the library to pick up some new books. Let's hope that I can fit in some homework into my busy reading schedule :)


Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Addy's First Birthday

Addy is now one year old and it is so amazing to see the little person that she is becoming!! She is such a joy and a blessing to our family. Right now, she is walking everywhere and opening drawers and pulling out EVERYTHING!! She loves her brother and sister very much and just wants to be a part of their lives and the party that they seem to constantly have going on. She points at everything and everyone. I can tell that she is going to be just as inquisitive and smart as her sister. Addy brings joy to my life everyday and she is one of the three reasons that I have become the person that I am. I could never imagine my life without her. I am so grateful that I am able to spend all day with her and watch her grow and learn. For your viewing enjoyment here are a few pictures of my sweet girl on her 1 year birthday