Saturday, March 28, 2009

Something to look forward to ... Where the Wild Things Are

My hubby sent me the this trailer the other day. This is a favorite book in our home. I love everything about it - my checks are even WTWTA.  And based on this trailer, I have to say that I am pretty excited for it to come out. Here's to hoping (major finger crossing going on) that it's as good as I want it to be!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Even a Princess ...

must shop. Here's our little Princess just finishing up her grocery shopping. Oh the fun we have on cold, snowy days!  :) 


I want CANDY!!!

Candy is a beloved treat in our home. So what better place to visit than a candy factory. Well, that's just what we did this morning. My good friend Mel invited us to join them on the tour that they had booked at Sweet's Candy factory a while ago. I'm so glad she did because it was so much fun (and Yummy)!

We saw how jelly beans were made, how the molds were made for the cini bears & gummy candies, how taffy is made (they whip not pull - who knew?), and how they stretch and package their taffy. It was pretty cool. Even though the chocolate waterfall conveyer belt was broken (booo), it rocked. Especially since we got to try fresh gumdrops from the line (they were still warm!), jellybeans before they had their hard shell on (they were so SOFT!!!), fresh saltwater taffy from the cutting table, and all the free candy offered in the candy store. Trust me, my kids are on a MAJOR sugar high right now. Even better - it was FREE!!!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Thrift Store shopping makeovers - Summer of 69 Thrift Store Refashion Frock GIVEAWAY!!!!

Summer of 69 Thrift Store Refashion Frock GIVEAWAY!!!!

Muy Fabulosa! I am SO going to the DI and Thrifttown tomorrow! Oh wait - I have a full closet of clothes that need a makeover ... hmmm. Here's Kathleen's amazing handiwork.

Before ...                      After ...

Spring into ... SAVINGS!!!

One thing that I LOVE about Spring (besides the AMAZING weather we are having) are the sales going on. Here are two of the best deals that I've partaken of (gone overboard might be another term) thus far:

1. Land of Nod Cube Storage (from Downeast Home - of course)
My friend Mel went to down east and found these for $75 each. When I went to go get some they were marked down again to $50 each. So I stocked up and bought 16 - yes 16 (Ryan's already commented on this) individual pieces (8 base bins, 5 bookcases, and 3 lockers). I have finally finished putting all but 4 of them together (those will go in the basement entry once we get that cleaned out/up). Here's the final look. I am still decorating them and re-arranging things so it's kinda a work in progress. All the blisters on my right thumb, pointer finger, and palm have all been worth it! My sis S. even bought some for their entry ... here's a preview of how they'll look :)

2. Puddle Jumpers Spring Warehouse Sale

My friend Liz fwd'd me an email about this sale. I'd never even heard of these shoes until I met her and saw her two little girls wearing them at church. They are so precious. I went the first day of the sale (yesterday) and got a couple pairs for Berlin for $8 each (they are normally $40). One of the pink pairs goes PERFECT with her little Easter Dress from her Auntie S. So this morning the kids wanted to go to the park and I thought, you know, I'm going to go check out what's left and see if anything got marked down lower. Then we'll go to the park. Boy was I rewarded. The little girl shoes that I liked were marked down to $5! So what the heck. I picked up a few more pairs so she's stocked now for the next 2 years (size 4-7). 

She wore her new orange ones today and she wouldn't take them off for her nap. Good to know that she loves them too! I would have gone into the big girl sizes, but those were still at $20? So I just got the bargain ones. 

I did learn a lesson at this sale: Don't got the first day. Why? 1. Prices are higher the first day 2. Nightmare crowds. Screaming, snotty nosed kids, gigantic strollers that took up any spare walking/standing room, and 
annoying UT moms (yes, I know I am a mom in UT, but I am not a UT mom). One lady approached me as I stood in the checkout line and asked if I would give her one of the pairs of shoes I had in my hand because she really needed that size ... ummm, no! Too bad for you sucka!

Primary Happenings

My Primary calling definitely keeps me busy with weekly meetings, monthly scout meetings & training, inservice, baptism, priesthood previews, quarterly activities, the Primary Program, montly Sharing Time lessons, conducting, etc. Luckily I can combine my hobbies with some of the things that have to be done. Like these baptism books for the kids being baptised this year. The pages inside have pockets to hold the testimonies of family & friends who attend the baptism, along with a bookmark and a spot for their own testimony and picture. So far I've made three (I forgot to take pics of the first one - sorry!) and I have one more for this year. Next year will be crazy with 8 kids being baptized. But I like it. It's fun to sit down, put on a movie, and just scrap away after the kids are in bed.

Thankful Thursday ... 1 day late

I wrote this yesterday and thought it was posted, but apparently it has been sitting in my draft folder. Hmmm. 

Today I am thankful for:
1. new contacts ... it's only been 4 years since my last eye check-up. Sorry eyes. I promise to be better. 
2. broken glasses (thanks Fin). It means I get to buy some new cute ones! And the prescription won't be 4 years old :)
3. potty-trained kids. Now that Fin is done, it's time to get Berlin on the bandwagon.
4. tear-free shampoo. I feel less guilty dumping water over my screaming kids head at bathtime because despite them screaming, I know it doesn't hurt/sting.
5. friends in the "know" who share screamin' deals with me (see future post).
6. SPRING, SPRING, SPRING!!! And the nice sunny weather that's allowed us to go to the park twice this week ...  no jackets required!
7. These two ... 


We did it!

Finley has cause for celebration. Since we got back from our California trip, I've really pushed getting him potty trained. And it's finally paid off. Finley has been great about going on the potty the last week. So much in fact that he FINALLY filled up his Star Wars potty chart and was able to get his Galactic Heroes Millenium Falcom toy set. I had begun to wonder if it would just sit on the bathroom counter collecting dust forever. But he surprised me and has earned it. Not to say we haven't had an accident or two. But we are 100% underwear - except at night. We are still doing pullups until he starts waking up dry (we are hit & miss on that). My checkbook and I are ecstatic about it! 

Here's Finley placing the LAST sticker on his chart and holding his toy. It was the FIRST thing he went to this morning. He didn't even wake me up :)

Amazing Photography & Modern Pirate Frock GIVEAWAY!!!!

Modern Pirate Frock GIVEAWAY!!!!

Yes, the dress is so stinkin' cute, but my fave are the sets she created for her photoshoot! To die for. Apparently these are digitally made with a green screen? Not quite sure, but someday maybe someday,  I'll actually be talented (and lets face it, motivated enough) to make something similiar and then hang the results on my "always in progress" photo wall.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Happy Belated Bday

It's not today, not tomorrow, nor was it yesterday. It was actually the day we drove back from California to Utah with sick kids. What a fun day to spend a bday right? I'm a bad wife I know. Thus, I'm just putting my shout out to Ryan since I missed his Birthday Roast (Hot Seat) at his family FHE. As Berlin and I were both sick, Ryan took Fin and us gals stayed home. I hate the hot seat personally, but since I had to endure it on my bday, so shall he ... 

Ryan ...

1. is an amazing dad. He has always been willing to change diapers, give baths, babysit, cook, clean, etc. from day one. I count this as an amazing blessing because some dad's I know don't do these things at all (atleast not happily). He is always happy with a night in, watching movies, playing board games, going on walks, or reading books with the kids. He's very good at stepping in and dealing with tempertantrums when I've had it. And he reminds the kids to be kind and treat me with respect.

2. is pretty patient with me. Not always, but more so than I am sure most people would be. He puts up with my attitude, selfish tendencies, and lack of self-esteem and I'm grateful for it. He also knows how to calm me down when I tend to over-react and he's my voice of reason. He reminds me that it's ok to laugh at myself and not to take things personally (I need this reminder often). He's also patient with my hobbies, sewing, scrapbooking, crafting, etc.

3. is very supportive of my need/desire to lose weight. He let me buy a super nice and expensive elliptical (which I love) when most hubbies would have said, "No way JOSE!"

4. is a great artist. I love that he doodles for the kids. One of these days we'll get some of his artwork framed and on the walls. 

5. has great style. I loved it from day one and I still love it now. I also love his taste of music which is a big part of his style (atleast I think so). He supplies me with fun music & video clips to brighten my day.

6. is a fabulous husband who plans fun things for us as a couple: a trip to chicago for our upcoming anniversary (yippee!), date nights at Sundance Film fest, tickets to Flight of the Chonchords in May, season tickets to Real Salt Lake soccer games, fun movie nights, and more. He's just fun to be around - even if it's just playing guitar hero, the Wii, or watching our shows online (the Office, Flight of the Chonchords, 30 Rock, and more.)

7. loves to travel. I love to travel. That makes us a very travel happy couple. He is the best traveling partner ever. When we travel we eat, shop, and relax at the best places - known & unknown to the rest of the world. Who needs Samantha Brown? Not me - I have Ryan. He's better looking and way less annoying!

8. is a great soccer player, tennis player, sand volleyball player, basketball player ... need I say more? Fin & Berlin are two lucky ducks to have such an athletic dad. It's fun for us to go and watch him play.

9. is a great provider - both temperally and spiritually. He works hard to provide for us and I appreciate that. He works hard around the house as well to make it safe, clean, and look the way I want it too. He's a wonderful example of a worthy priesthood holder and helps bring the spirit into our home.

10. he's my best friend. I tell him more than I tell anyone else. Which is probably more than he ever wants to know, but I'm grateful that he is there for me to talk to.

Thankful Thursday

So I got a little side-tracked on my thankful Thursdays with our trip to So Cal. Here's to catching up ...

I'm Thankful For:

1. little tulip stems peeping out of the ground hinting at the Spring to come.
2. brand new tires on my car
3. DayQuil with Vitamin C for my stuffy achy head
4. a bed that is all my own and not shared with my children 
(my kids are back in THEIR beds now that we are back from Cali!)
5. indoor hide-and-seek & outdoor tag with Finley
6. photographers who take great pics of our family in the freezing cold snow (see below)
7. my kids naptime

(here are just a few of the shots - thanks so much C from Studio C photography)


Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Lovin' the So Cal

Our trip to California was the best! Finley loved the new over-the-headrest tablet DVD players we got (one for him & one for Berlin). They definitely made driving easier. We stopped in Vegas and stayed at the Excalibur one night and in the morning we walked the strip & the shops in the old Aladdin casino (whatever it's called now I don't know). Then we drove the rest of the way to Cali. We spent 4 1/2 days at Disneyland, a day in Laguna Beach, a day in Long Beach at the Aquarium, and then a few days in San Diego with my sister going to Mission Bay park, exploring tide pools, and relaxing. 

It was a great trip, despite the fact we had to leave a day early thanks to Berlin getting croup the day after we checked out of our hotel.  

Here are some fun pics from the trip. 

The first day at Disneyland was iffy for Berlin. She wasn't sure about any of the rides and she burrowed into me on each one, closing her eyes and whimpering. Finley was so brave the first day and rode tons of rides - even Splash Mountain & Space Mountain (would have ridden the Matterhorn, but it was closed the whole time we were there). It was fun to see him and Ryan hang out. By the end of our Disneyland park days, Berlin was loving all the rides (and is still talking about them today) and Finley was sick of them. He just wanted to play with his Star Wars Legos back at the hotel. 

My favorite day was the day at Laguna Beach. We got there about 11 am and just lounged the rest of the day. In all honesty, the kids were having so much fun in the sand & water (FREEZING) that we didn't bother walking to the tide-pools. They were so happy to just run free for the day - no lines, no rides, no one telling them to stay near, not to touch that, no we can't buy that toy, blah blah (all the things we parents say that kids hates). It was great. I love the beach. It's the ONLY thing that I miss about California. It's a good thing that my parents & sister are still down there. 

Our least favorite day, though it had it's fun moments, the Aquarium in Long Beach. My kids were so tired and it was so hot & crowded that the temper-tantrums were unavoidable. When one finally stopped, the other started. The only time they were happy was when they were trying to pet the sting rays, crabs, and watching the sea lions in their tank (they were super active & friendly). Once they realized their arms were too short to reach to the bottom of the petting pool, they were done and they made sure I knew it. When we were in one of the inside rooms looking at the exhibits, Finley told me he wanted to leave and go home. When I asked him why he didn't hesitate and cried, " This place is dumb & stupid & I hate it! There is nothing to do. It's so boring." Hmmm. Who knew my almost 4 year old could be so eloquent.

The trip back was depressing, not just because Berlin threw up in her carseat in St. George, but because it meant leaving 75 degree weather for 30 degree weather with snow. I HATE SNOW. I think my SADD kicked in yesterday as it kept snowing and snowing and snowing. I guess I'll just have to pull back out our winter coats - drats! But other than the snow, it's good being home. especially since Finley ended up throwing up in his bed twice between the hours of 1 am - 3:20 am the night we got home. Being sick sucks, but it's a little easier to cope with when you are at home.