Saturday, November 29, 2008

Oh Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas Tree!!!

YAY!! I LOVE LOVE LOVE Christmas!! Last night we went and got our Christmas tree. I love the fresh ones! (Even though they are all dry and crusty by Christmas morning they are still so nice to smell and touch all month long!)

Our tradition is to get our tree the day after Thanksgiving and then decorate it together as a family that night. Well since Neil had to work this year we had to get the tree at night and then we waiting until tonight to decorate it. It's my favorite time of year when all the lights and decorations go up. I even did a little display outside in our front yard... don't come see it, it's REALLY pathetic!!

I was up until 2am last night putting up the decorations and finished them all today. I hung the stockings, laid out the garlands, set up the nativity, put the all the red, green and white I could find! It's taking everything I have to wait until I stuff the advent calendar for the kids. (I know they'll break into it early if I tempt them.)

I also have to share my CRAZINESS by letting you know that yes... I was up at 4am yesterday and on the road at 4:15 to get the good deals. My sweet friend Jenn F let me drag her out and we had SO MUCH FUN!! We avoided the crazy places like the plague! (ie: target, walmart, the mall!) We started at Old Navy and were 2 of the last 3 tickets given out in line for free MP3 players which was cool! (Chloe will get it for Christmas... gotta love a free Christmas gift right?!) Then after our 1/2 hour shopping there we headed over to Fred Meyer. The main thing I wanted they were out of. So they called the Freddy's on my side of town and low and behold... they had one left and they were willing to hold it for me!! So we emptied our partially stuffed cart and headed across town for the beloved item. We got there and it was SO MUCH less crazy!! The people were so helpful and sure enough the toy dept guy had stashed my item under the paint counter with name on it. (Gotta love it!!)

After 3.5 hours of our shopping madness and feeling pretty good about the items we bought we headed over to Rooster's for breakfast so I could introduce Jenn to the amazing cinnamon rolls the size of your face!

Happy shopping to everyone! Enjoy the blessings and meaning of this wonderful season!!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Thanksgiving cooking!

I have so much to be thankful for and could go on and on and on about everything that has blessed my life this year. So to sum it all up here is my generic thanks:
I'm thankful for all who have crossed my path, I'm thankful for our country and the men and women who serve to protect and defend it, I'm thankful for my husband and best friend who is there with me through good and bad, I'm thankful for my beautiful children and the blessing they are in our lives, and lastly I'm thankful for family, fun and FOOD!!

I LOVE thanksgiving! The eating all day, the parade, the football... it's my favorite! And I LOVE to cook thanksgiving dinner. We stick to a pretty traditional dinner of turkey and the fixin's. But the pre-cooking fun is the best part!

Here are a few pics of the "prep". Last night Chloe, Abby and I trimmed the beans to get ready to make the bean dish today (fresh beans are the ONLY way!). So Neil picked up the camera and caught the moment. As you can tell... I got a little sick of the camera. :)

And then of course the TURKEY!! This year I'm baking a 20lb turkey... I had to take a rack out of my oven for it to fit! So too bad you're not eating at our house! If you were your turkey would have herb butter spread under the skin and a blanket of bacon to keep it warm and moist... YUMMO!! Eat your heart out Rachel Ray! :)


Monday, November 24, 2008

Multiple tags by Jenn... come on share the wealth here!!

Okay so I have been tagged multiple times and I am now making the time to do this...sorry for the delay....I am going to do all three tags in this one:

7 Random or weird facts about yourself

1. I am perpetually COLD... it never ends! Joys of low blood pressure.

2. I HAVE to sleep in socks... yes weird I know!

3. Eating gluten makes me sick, but everytime I encounter it I ask myself, "Is this worth the tummy issues?" The answer depends on my mood.

4. I cannot wait until Friday... yes the day after Thanksgiving because that's when we get our Christmas tree up and the house all decorated.

5. I have to keep my toe nails rediculously short! If I can feel my shoe pressing on the top of them at all I get all freaked out.

6. I'm a totally and completely addicted to Dr. Pepper... can't even deny it!

7. If I have to say "put the I want monster away" to my children one more time this week I'm calling Santa and telling him not to come!! (And yes... I've actually threatened this!)

TAG #2

8 Favorite Shows

1. Grey's Anatomy

2. Desperate Housewives (I know!)

3. ER

4. Amazing Race

5. Dinner Impossible

6. John and Kate plus Eight

7. 17 kids and counting

8. Survivor

8 Things I did (Saturday)

1. Laundry, Laundry and Laundry!

2. Watched the Beavers win by a nose!!

3. Cleaned house

4. Hit Costco... milk, eggs, the usual! (Gas is only $1.79!!!)

5. Helped a client with a Shade Party by phone

6. Baked some GF yumminess! (cinnamon bread and pump choc chip muffins to exact!)

7. Tried to not beat my husband for wanting to clean my entire day off!

8. oh yes... cleaned

8 Favorite Resturaunts

1. Red Rock (Italian Eatery)

2. TGI Fridays

3. Olive Garden

4. Outback (LOVE their GF menu!)

5. PF Changs

6. Senor Sams

7. Wiley's Pizza and Pasta

8. Agave... SO GOOD!!

8 Things I look forward to

1. An actual whole day where there is NO WHINING!! (it may take decades!!)

2. Christmas...I just love this time of the's my favorite...

3. No insomnia... I hate sleeping pills!

4. A nice vaca with my hubby... we keep talking about a cruise but we'll see what the year brings... we gladly accept donations! :)

5. The Hoover playground makeover to be complete! We've been working so hard and I'm ready for some pay off!

6. Being 100% caught up on housework for more than 10 minutes. (Again... may take decades!)

7. Christmas morning and the joy on our kids faces.

8. Being with family for the holidays.

8 things on my wish list...

1. A good nights sleep without medication!

2. Someone to do laundry... I HATE IT!

3. Someone to massage away my stress for free! ;)

4. An elf that could come in everynight and mop my kitchen floor.

5. An endless supply of sanity... aka... Dr. Pepper

6. For my business to grow and bless more people!

7. My children's health to stay good

8. For the continued opportunities to serve and bless others.

Tag #3 - Husband Tag



HOW LONG DID YOU DATE? our first date was in February and we were married in May... you do the math!


WHO IS TALLER? we're the same height

WHO CAN SING BEST? He's completely tone deaf so I'll say me

WHO IS SMARTER? Book smart... him Street smart... me! ;)


WHO PAYS BILLS? Right now me


WHO MOWS THE LAWN? Definetly Neil!


WHO'S THE FIRST TO ADMIT THEY ARE WRONG? Me, however, he may disagree!

WHO KISSED WHO FIRST? He tried to kiss me but missed... I corrected his aim :)

WHO WEARS THE PANTS? Hmmm...depends on the event. I think the kids would tell you me, but when it comes to discipline him.

So I know that most of my friends have already been tagged so I will Tag all my "followers" who I have never met in person!! :)

Saturday, November 22, 2008


Last night I went with my friends Jenn and Jenn to see Twilight. We had a great time eating Dibs waiting in line to get our seats. The show started at 10:05 and I was in line at 8:15. When I got there there were already 60 people in line... some of which had been there since 3pm. CRAZY!!!
Anyhoo... I really enjoyed the movie! I thought they referenced the book in all important ways and loved the characters. I know that there are people who seriously disagree with me but I thought it was great and I'm already excited about the next one.. maybe next year?

Thursday, November 20, 2008

the friends...

And you know who you are... thank you for your comfort, support, prayers, friendship, etc. As stated in my post below I'm really struggling... which I DO NOT do! My poor friend Jenn must have heard me tell her that "this is not me!" about 10 times on the phone tonight. OI! (Thanks again for listening Jenn!!)

So I've decided that I'm done stewing and just need to kick my own butt...

So here it goes! My new afirmations:
1) I am a happy and healthy mother.
2) I am a good friend and surround myself with good people.
3) I work hard and enjoy the little moments in life.
4) I do not let petty things effect my feelings about my self.
5) I spend time with uplifting and supportive people and friends.
6) I am the luckiest woman in the world who is blessed with an amazing, supportive husband and beautiful healthy children.

There you go YONF!! I'm overstepping the fears and taking the bull by the horns!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Feeling left out...

I've been really struggling lately and I need to just get it all out! I been feeling EXTREMELY left out by friends. I know I sound SO pathetic right now but it's been hard for me. I'm usually the one who jumps right in and plans things, etc. But lately I feel like when I plan, my friends don't respond... and then they go do the thing I was attempting to plan without. I feel like a teenager griping the "popular" girls but it's really starting to hurt.

I don't want to bring it up because then it's "oh my heck Jenn in whining and blah blah blah" I just can't handle the drama right now! I feel like it's "the group" and then everyone else... and I don't do well being the everyone else.

Blah! I'm really jsut ranting... who knows if I'm even making sense. I'm lonely and really would like some genuine girl time... not where people feel sorry and invite me out of pity... I would like to be invited because someone actually wants to spend time with me.

I REALLY am pathetic!

So please advise me and I being rediculous and emotional?

To end this rambling of "pity party paradeness" I would like to thank those that are always there no matter what! The my visiting teacher who just called and listened to me babble and hysterically cry about this very matter for the past 1/2 hour.

I'll cry it out and be over it!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

The new J-O-B

I started my new job today at Harry and David. I don't like the fact that I have to work the next few Sunday's but after training I thankfully get them off. :)
Training day one: an INTERESTING day full of giggles, grins and pure bordom! Seeing that I've been through the training before I pretty much knew what was going on and how things worked. I then get to sit and listen to people say "what's the alt key?" and "how do you spell Smith?" OMGoodness!

I survived... and consiquently asked to be transfered to a more "advanced" training class so I can get on the sales floor and make bonus money!


Thursday, November 13, 2008

No Opera for me.... :(

Well it's official! I did not get into the Opera workshop. But all is well! I'm bummed that I don't get that opportunity to learn from greats but will work on my skills and maybe try again next year. The biggest thing is that I actually tried which was an accomplishment! :)

Plus as my dear friend Staci pointed out.... it's one less "time zapper" on my schedule and as most of you know... I'm pretty full up of those! :)

So moving on to my next adventure! I'm preparing for a local bazaar this weekend... actually tomorrow and Saturday. So I'm baking up a storm and praying that the time I'm putting into this will be worthwhile.

Have a blessed day!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Table Rock

Today we hiked up the Upper Table Rock as a family. Neil wanted to go and was planning to take the kids knowing that I wouldn't want to go... but I went anyway! (See YONF moment post below)
Anyhoo... it was family fun with a few moments of fear and panic on my part but overall an excellent family outing. I think we conquered an interesting life moment when both little girls had to pee in the woods.... needless to say I now have 2 expert "squatters" on my hands! :)
Here are the pictures from the day... read the quotes they are all pretty fun shots.

Oh! and for the "kids say the darndest things" segment of this post here is Mason's quote of the day:
Chloe: "Dad why do they call it Table Rock?"
Mason: "Chloe! Because Jesus eats there!"
Out of the mouths of babes!! :)

Getting started up the path... Abby is cold and wants her jacket she refused to wear on now.

The big kids on huge rock next to the path.

Me and the kiddos taking a breather

These beautiful red barked trees were everywhere up there! The kids loved pointing them out as we went up the path.

The kids IN the beautiful red barked trees.

Daddy and the kiddos heading up the hill... big climb!

Me and my man.... taking a "cute" shot

Neil showing Mason how he could perish falling over the edge of the rock... notice that me yelling and screaming in the background that it's too far is not pictured!

Again... another child being educated to LOVE the edge and not be afraid of heights... GEESH!

My YONF moment

As many of you know I am participating in the YEAR OF NO FEAR challege. (Don't know what it is? Check out the blog links to the left.) Anyhoo... in my rash decision to accept this challenge I didn't think of the fears I would be facing over the next year. I'm an outgoing person who isn't afraid of much socially. But today I faced one of my biggest fears... Heights!

Neil wanted to take the kids and hike Table Rock... umm ok?! So I decided that I would get off my butt and join my lovely family on a trek to an eventual panic attack with the hopes that neither myself or any member of my family would be dialing 911 because someone fell off the path or mommy totally flipped out.

Well with little more than the grace of God we made it to the top... Neil didn't even have to drag me!! I did it all on my own accord. We get to the top and Neil is like "let's go look over the edge!" ummm..... HE-L-L NO!!! But he proceeds with the kids while I'm pleading with him to help me keep my hair and my sanity and not go any further.

"But Jenn it's so beautiful! Let me take your picture on that rock"... yes the rock on the EDGE of the table rock! He had to hold my hand while I'm white knuckling it to said rock. I sat down and holding my tears back smiled for the camera.

So thanks to YONF and Mrs. B's little voices in my head repeating: NO FEAR NO FEAR! I DID IT!!!

Here's the picture to prove it! YAY ME!! :)

The edge that my sweet husband so nicely perched me on.

Can you see the panic in my eyes... YIKES!!

Thursday, November 6, 2008


OK OK OK!!! I'm sorry that you've been agonizing over my audition experience! I hope that you've been able to step away from my blog and are giving your refresh button a rest. TEE-HEE!

I think it went really well. I arrived what I thought was 10 minutes early to warm up, fill out papers, etc and the guy at the desk says, "you're next go on in"... ummm ok!?! So I walk into the room that has the pianist, the head of the Opera, the artistic director and the head of the university music department. I'm not intimidated at all.... NOT!

They ask me what I'm singing, I tell them, they ask me to sing the more emotional piece for times sake instead of both pieces that I've been slaving over. No biggie right? So I sing my song... in italian... I'm so proud of that... and they smile and nod and write notes on their papers, and them I'm done.

"Thank you for coming in!" Are the few parting words I get and I'm left to percilate and stew over my pending addition to the Rogue Valley Opera.

Heaven only knows if I'm in or not... well actually Willene Gunn is who knows so I guess my possible future in the opera in dependant on this really sweet talented lady.

OI!! I'll keep you posted! :)

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


That is my comment for today... NO COMMENT! I'm so excited that all the political CRAP is no longer bombarding my life through the mail, TV, yard signs, tshirts and of course... stupid people...that I'm taking a non politics day. Yay for me! :)

Maybe I should make it a no politics for the rest of the week! Well considering our country is up for quite the adventure starting in January... who knows! If Canada didn't suck so much maybe I would move there!

Ok... enough of my rant! YAY election is over even though I think it's screwed us majorly... IT'S OVER!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Opera Adventures...

So to expand on previous posts and explain to those that have asked. I've been invited to audition for the Rogue Valley Opera "Voices in the Valley" workshop and concert series. I'm very excited and VERY nervous about it all! I talked myself into it and out of it NUMEROUS times but landed on going for it. I need to do something for me that will lift me and help me use my talents.

I haven't auditioned or performed in a venue like this in about 10 years. I'm hoping to be one of the 16 chosen but who knows! I guess there are 30 people auditioning with skill ranges from new student to professional paid opera singers. I hope to be somewhere in the middle! I've been told that they choose a range of abilities and voices. The BEST part about this whole thing is if I make it, I'll be participating in a 12 week workshop with some the most talented people in the Rogue Valley and West Coast. I'd be working with Laurie Hunt and Willene Gunn... both amazing women! Then 2 performaces in March. One in Medford and one in Ashland.

So wish me luck! I'll be singing two arias, both in Italian with hopes that I'm good enough to hone my skills with these great women!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Dancing Queen!

Our Stake road show was last night and we had SO MUCH FUN! The relief society sisters in our ward did a dance to "dancing queen" by Abba. TOTALLY BLAST!!

Here are a few pics of the crazy "dancing queens"!

Me and our wonderful "So you Think you can dance" host... isn't he fabulous?!

Do you LOVE LOVE LOVE my hair? And yes... it's my REAL HAIR!

Laurie, Jill and Sara... a few of the other "queens"


A, B, C.....easy as 1, 2, 3....
Do, re, mi ..... I can't for the life of me remember any more of the words of that song. With the amount of headache meds that I have pumped into my system and the fact that I should be ASLEEP now instead of listening to my bear (aka DH) snoring... I needed something trivial and simple to write about!!

A- Attached or Single?

ATTACHED!! 7 years and counting

B- Best Friend?

My wonderful husband who earns that title most days, my best girl Staci and my other best girl Stacey... I know weird huh? I would have to count my mom and my lil' sis on this list. And my favorite people to cause trouble with... Kesha and Nina ;)

C- Cake or Pie?

ooooh... I LOVE pie but GF crust is "interesting" but I can make a MEAN GF cake!

D- Day of Choice?

Thursday! It's almost Friday, good TV, and the last night of the week that I have to have the homework battle with children.

E- Essential Items?

Camera, Dr Pepper, a good book!

F- Favorite Color?

G- Gummy Bears or Worms?
Bears, definitely.

H- Hometown?

Campbell, Ca is where I spend most of my "growing up years"

I- Favorite Indulgence?
Dibs ice cream... I can't stop eating them!!!

J- January or July?
January... new year, both girls birthdays, snow, warm fires and hot cocoa

K- Kids?
3 of the most beautiful kids you've ever seen! Check em out on the side bar. :)

L- Life isn't complete without?
Music, laughter, family and friends!

M- Marriage date?

May 26th, 2001

N- Number of brothers and sisters?
1 sister... my pippi!

O- Oranges or Apples?
hard to choose! A nice crunchy apple or a really juicy orange!

P- Phobias and Fears?

believe it or not... the dark. Heights!!!

Q - Quiet time, what do you like to do?
"Quiet time"? What's that?

R- Reason to smile?

my family, my great friends, the opportunities I have to bless the lives of others.

S- Season of choice?
Actually, I think I like the fall best. I love the colors, and the smell of rain, and SWEATERS!!

T- Ticklish?
I plead the 5th!

U- Unknown fact about me?

I'm auditioning for the local opera company.

V- Vegetable?
squash.... I LOVE squash!

W- Worst Habit?
truthfully... picking my nose. :(

X-ray or Ultrasound?

Hmm, well, I think I've had enough radiation in my life! But x-rays are goop free so we'll go with that one.

Y- Your favorite food?
I love pasta! I'm a huge fan of BBQ ribs and mashed potatoes... but my favorite meal of all time is a classic turkey dinner with all the trimmings... I cook it about 3 times a year!

Z- Zodiac Sign?

Now to spread the joy... if you are reading this for the first time, or if you just recently started following my blog, it's YOUR TURN!!!


We had a great Halloween night with the kids and my dad! The kids love to go "power" trick or treating with their papa John out in Eagle Point... and I tend to think that he loves it just as much if not more than they do. After Neil got home from work we dressed up and flew out the door to papa's house. We ate a yummy dinner and then headed out into the dark of night.
Beyond the few houses that I had to yell "small children coming... PLEASE don't jump out!" we had a great time. After the first 45 minutes Abby could barely carry her candy bag, Chloe was whining about carrying her broom, and what was Mason doing? "HURRY UP GUYS!" "LOOK at the COOL house!" "Oh my gosh, MOM I got another sour thing!" The kids had more energy than a whirling dervish.

The best Mason moment... We had to have a little chat about saying the trick or treat poem... you know "trick or treat, smell my feet, give me something good to eat..." He FINALLY stopped saying it to the nice old people who live in the golf course. Then the next house: Mason-"trick or treat!", guy inside-"smell my feet!" Mason turns around and screams:"MOM... I didn't say it that guys is the one that broke the rule!" I could not stop laughing!!

Here's some pics of the fun night out. Happy Halloween!! (well happy November at least)

5 minutes after we got home they were OUT!

Eating candy with daddy after the big Haul!

FINALLY have their first piece of candy!

Ready to go to papa's house.