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Monday, November 30, 2009

.... adios to gobble gobble day

We're back from our wonderful mini vacation to Dallas. Home of my wonderful Sister in law & brother in law Tiff & Dan. Home to my two nephews & niece. Love them!

We got an early start (try 2:15 a.m.) on Thursday morning, and was on the road by 3:45 a.m. Slept for 2 hours on the road where I was rudely awakened by a man driving our vehicle telling me he wanted a bear claw at the gas station. ::grumble:: Was awake the rest of the drive.

Sadly, I was also in a big daze the rest of the day. No sleep = cranky Amy. Ate some delicious food, visited with family, and saw NEW MOON! Can I just get a SCREAM in here? OK, Twilight was good, not great, but good. New Moon, hated the book (total Team Edward here), but LOVED the movie! Walked in a Team Edward fan, walked out a member of the ever growing Team Jacob fan club. ::swoon:: I'm up to see it again... anyone? anyone?

Friday was the day of shopping. For an hour and a half. We didn't leave until 1:30 b/c we had to get the guys out of the house... with the kids. My two sister in laws and I went to Target and did some Christmas shopping. Yay! That night we had an awesome Mexican dinner in Fort Worth, and attempted to see the Parade of Lights that is a huge deal down there. We were a little late, and unless you were 7'9" you didn't see a darn thing! I saw a few lights. That was it.

Saturday was another day of shopping. We went for 3 hours this time! And had lunch out. Yummm! We also made it to Pinkberry!! My SIL Tiffany is in LOVE with this place. And after eating it, so.was.I! It's so yummy! I had the chocolate frozen yogurt. The others had the icky plain frozen yogurt. It tasted :shockingly: like PLAIN YOGURT!! GAG! But the chocolate is to die for! Topped with tons of fresh fruit. ::swoon:: Pomegranate seeds! Raspberries! Mangoes! Blackberries! Yumm!Then that night after dinner we played Sequence. Love that game! Came home Sunday morning (OK, we attempted to be home by 2:15!). However, everyone else who lives in Texas was trying to get home at the same time we were, and when you take two major highways and merge then both into two lanes, followed by rain and a car accident, you ain't going anywhere for an hour! And we didn't! I had flashbacks of this movie I saw where the girl was asking someone in an RV to use their bathroom when they were stuck in traffic. I seriously had to pee. Like BADLY! I made it though. ::whew::

Our catastrophe was Mike's "new" truck's alternator decided to die during our trip home. GWEAT! He watched the guages (always important to watch the guages ladies! I got a lecture!) and realized the battery was being used, and said "I think our alternator died". So, I prayed really really hard that we would find an auto parts store along the way (can't turn the truck off in case it won't go back on), and we found one. Whew! Yep, it was the alternator, and Mike had it changed out in 10 minutes. THEN I got to pee. At Wendy's. That was a sense of relief I hadn't felt since I had a baby! Whew!

Got home finally at 5:00.... 7 hours after we started! {should have only taken 4.5 hours!} AUGH! But, we were glad to be with family during this holiday of gratitude!!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Maddie + 7 girls + a spa party

For Maddie's 8th birthday, she wanted a Spa Party.
I said "OK".
What was I THINKING?

OK, it wasn't THAT bad, but between working full time, running a house, exercising my butt off.... I just didn't have time to do an "out of this world" spa party. But I think I did OK. :)

The morning of the party, I ran to the Dollar Tree store for goody bags. Whoever thought of handing out goody bags to thank kids for coming to their party should be shot, in my opinion. I mean, it's ONE MORE THING TO DO FOR ME!!!

I found some cute stuff to put in their bags pertaining to "bath" stuff. Then I ran to the grocery store for "healthy" food stuff (i.e. fruit, fruit dip, etc). I made sure to grab lots of different kinds of fruit, and boy was it yummy!

Then I ran home, got Maddie's favorite cake in the oven (two layer french vanilla cake with homemade chocolate frosting). Somewhere in between all this, I made homemade lip balm. That was pretty tricky. I tried melting petroleum jelly with honey, and the honey was just a big blob in the middle. Then I tried cocoa powder, and that worked. I tried Kool-aid, but I couldn't get rid of the lumpiness, and I tried sweetened Pink Lemonade, and still didn't work. So cocoa lip balm it was!

Before long, the little friends of Maddie arrived, and we set out for some fun!

I made them eat first while we waited on more friends. Fruit, dip & chocolate (of course!).

We had three stations that rotated. One was a nail station (painted nails). The next was the foot station (soak your feet & get the nails painted). The third was the craft station as well as the "rest your eyes" station. That was a fun station! So thankful for Katie & her friend Vanessa that came to save the day & help me!

I also made smoothies (1 c orange juice, 2 c frozen strawberries, 1 frozen banana, and one small container of yogurt). I served them in little plastic wine glasses.
Those were THE hit of the day, it seems!

This little gal liked to lick her smoothie.

Now, here we have the "rest your eyes" station. As you can see, some took it seriously, and others couldn't control themselves & laughed the entire time. Most of the little girls kept lifting up the cucumbers and looking at me. Finally after 5 minutes I told them to eat the darn things.

We made bath salt (1 c epsom salt, 5-6 drops of essential oil, 2 drops food coloring). What fun that was to shake it all up (and me hoping they don't shake hard enough that salt goes EVERYWHERE!)

Ta - da! the finished product!

For some reason, almost all my pictures are fuzzy, but the only ones that turned out "non-fuzzy" are the ones you see.... predominantly of Tressa (Maddie's BFF) & Madison.

Ahhh... there's the cake!

Happy Birthday Madison!!
May all your wishes come true!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

what happens when you combine....

What happens when you combine:

a beautiful little girl all dressed in white
a GORGEOUS backyard full of beautiful trees & greenery
1 mom who is trying to capture the perfect picture

You get this.....

Yup.... both Maddie & I came home covered in mosquito bites even though we had applied TONS (and I mean TONS) of repellent.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

WAHOOO!! Back online BABY!

Didja miss me?!!

I missed my blog!! I missed my computer!!
I DON'T miss that virus that shut my computer down Sunday night!

Sad that I didn't get my quick shout out to Maddie for her birthday today complete with her pictures of growing up times. I WILL get to that.... someday. Maybe next year?

Anyways, a big shout out to my good friend Melissa & her hubby Matt for helping me with my computer. ::sigh::

All is well again in my home.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

,,,, sneak peek!

Finally did Maddie's baptism photoshoot today, but there are TOO many to pick from! Since I'm waiting on a few things before I post the final pictures that are MY favorites, here are a few sneak peeks! Granted, some of these are NOT going to be picked for a baptism announcement, but I still liked them.....
You should see the picture I caught of a mosquito on her chin.... priceless.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

..... a new way to camp

Finally.... I am adding pictures of our camping weekend from a few weekends ago.
We took a cargo trailer, filled with two ATV's, camping gear, flat top stove, fishing gear.... basically, our home away from home. Who knew that going away for a few days would mean we would need SO much stuff!

This was the big weekend that Katie learned how to ride an ATV by herself. No worries, Daddy ordered a kids' helmet for Maddie, and they had their helmets on the entire time.

Katie also punctured a tire with a branch. Daddy wasn't very happy.
I also broke the clutch on the other ATV. Mike wasn't very happy either. So, he swapped a tire out on the broken ATV with the ATV we could drive.
These girls LOVE to ride the ATV's!
Katie drives Mike around for a bit, then Maddie drives & pushes the accelerator/brake while Mike (or I) operate the clutch. Sometimes her feet were up on top of the ATV.
We also don't camp in the regular, old fashioned way. We slept in a cargo trailer, in which Mike made two screen doors and placed it on the big door, so air would come through (and not the bugs). It was perfect! It did get pretty stinking cold the first night. BRR! He did end up closing the door that night. Mike also brought the generator, so we brought all our electrical appliances we could, to occupy ourselves. Here, Maddie watching Beauty & the Beast. We also watched the new Transformers the night before, and Twilight the next night.

Katie played around with my camera, and managed to take a few decent pictures of me.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

.... photos with the Wheats

This past Saturday morning, my friend Jen & her little family met me EARLY in the morning for pictures of their little family.

At first, it was going pretty well, but then her little baby Tyler ended up a little cranky. What can I say? I can't blame him! It WAS cold! and I DID make him sit in the damp grass!

Enjoy some pictures or head on over to my photoblog and see more!
not to mention pictures look better on my photoblog than on here b/c I had to resize them manually! EEKS!

Monday, November 2, 2009


Maddie will be turning 8 in a few weeks.

To be 8 is.... well.... GREAT!

In fact, it's at an age that children in our church are able to be baptized.

Maddie has been looking forward to this age for a long long time.

Probably because #1, she gets her ears pierced.

#2, she picked out a beautiful white dress to wear in which I will take pictures with her in it soon for her baptism announcement

and #3..... she's looking forward to the dessert bar I'm planning on having after her baptism {she requested the cake with a hole in it... aka bundt cake... I never make bundt cake!}

Now, there are other reasons, but those stick out for her.

So, in preparation for this day, our bishop called her in to his office yesterday at church to talk to her about this very wonderful, yet important event that will take place.

When our bishop talked to Madison, he basically talks to her about what is baptism, how we are baptized (by immersion), what color we wear to be baptized in (white for purity), who will baptize her and the important thing that Daddy holds so he will be able to baptize her (he holds the Priesthood), and after the baptism, she will receive a very very special gift. This is the conversation:

Bishop: Madison, after you are baptized, you will receive a very very special gift. Do you know what gift that is?

Madison: yes, I will get scriptures and a Bible.

{me: snorting & laughing under my breath}

{Bishop is trying to not smile & laugh}

Bishop: Yes! Some people do get those gifts and they are very special. However, there is another special gift you will get, and that is the gift of the Holy Ghost.

Oh dear... what else will this child think of that will make me want to crawl under a rock when asked these kind of questions?! I'm not even going to touch the conversation about "slugvans".
{slugbugs... volkswagons.... '80's vans.... you do the math}

Sunday, November 1, 2009

.... been busy

Last week I took a break from blogging.

I had much to say (don't I always?), but no time!
What have I been doing?

Well, I just started working out with

We're shooting for two times a week, 30 minute sessions with me doing 4 cardio activities on the other nights. Hopefully we'll say "bye-bye-bye" to my butt as well as other flabby parts on me. I won't miss them, and they WILL be gone.
However, Mandi killed me the first day. OK, I mean, I killed myself. She just told me what to do! I couldn't walk for almost 3 days. Getting up from a chair, sitting down in a chair. I waddled, OK?! Squats & lunges are NOT my friends. Hate 'em!
Shhh....Don't tell Mandi, otherwise she'll make me do more of them.
The family went camping last weekend. We drove SIX long, boring hours to a property that belongs to a friend of Mike's. It was so incredibly beautiful. So green, pine trees everywhere, fresh air.... four wheeling with the girls.... watching movies each night powered by the generator....watching Mike try to light a fire for an hour using ... what else? .. gasoline on wet wood (it rained for 2 days before we got there)... yep, the good old Eagle Scout in our family does it the safe way "everybody get far back", and stomp on all the little fires that spread w/ the gasoline....peeing in the open space with the meadow full of wildflowers swaying back & forth just for you (yes, I made sure Mike had a portable toilet for me)... OK, that wasn't so fun, but you get the idea.
I have some pictures I uploaded, but I'll make another post about it shortly.
I have to tell a story first.
While I was driving one of the ATV's w/ Katie behind me, (Mike had Maddie w/ him), we were riding in a huge meadow. I had my camera with me for some DUMB DUMB reason. Well, we were going through bush/grass that was about 5 feet tall, and I got this brilliant idea (or was it Katie's?) to take some pictures of Mike & Maddie in front of us. So, she starts taking pictures. We get to the top of the hill, and I said "OK, where's my camera?" She handed it to me, without my LENS CAP! "WHERE'S MY LENS CAP???" I about screamed at her. She said "I dunno, I dropped it back there". ::breathe in:: :: breathe out:: Then I lost it. I mean, how hard is it to tell your mother "mom... I dropped your lens cap!" and I would've stopped! No, this meadow is like 20 acres! So, we went up and down this meadow searching for a black lens cap for what felt like hours. I finally gave up. Katie was so upset. I've given up teaching her anything about thinking things through (i.e..... 3/4 cup of cinnamon, remember?). Common sense missed this girl somehow.
Well, Katie went four wheeling by herself, and managed to get a branch poking in the tire. Great... flat tire. So, this kid is not having a good day here! Finally, I took the girls and said "we'll walk the meadow". Maddie took off and went WAY ahead of us, and freaked me OUT! I mean, surely there's a copperhead just waiting to bite us or something! Well, I told her to come back to me, and within a second of turning around, she found my lens cap! Wahoo!! Now my pricey lens will be protected!

Part two with pictures to come soon......

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