Sunday, June 27, 2010

Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder!

Here I go again! Learning a good lesson about myself again. I just looooove when that happens, not really, but I'll take it and run with it. As women, we all at sometime cut ourselves down. Well, I'm notorious for this. It drives the hubs batty, but I can't seem to help it. I feel bad with the way I look and can't seem to get past it. My eyes just see yucky, unbeautiful me, while my hubs and kiddos see me as pretty. I wonder why that is? I mean, I do have my days where I catch myself lookin' pretty dang cute, but most I just see as blah. Well I've learned to tell myself I'm pretty dang cute at least 3 times a day, because I need to learn to love myself and believe it. I have also learned that no matter what my size has been I have always been in disgust. See here I am now, 7 kids later with a lot of extra weight, and I've been disgusted with this photo of me. And here I am before kids and I was disgusted with my size then too. Now I WISH I looked this way again. I feel like this pic shows just what a cutie patootie I really am and could be again. Funny thing, I sooooo didn't feel this way back then. I need to just love ME! Whatever the size I am and I'm sure less blah days will follow. I've been inspired by others who have had horrific accidents or diseases that have left them scarred, but they still feel like a million bucks. I need to get off my pity, ugly party and be thankful for who I am and what I look like. All the extra weight and all. I don't judge others by their cover, so I need to not judge myself. You know that saying, "I'm smart enough, I'm good enough, and gosh darn it people really like me," well I will be repeating this over and over to myself until I whole-heartedly believe it! To all those who know to love themselves no matter what they look like thanks for the inspiration of what beauty is. We are all God's children and are all beautiful in His eyes and that's all that really matters! I am a child of God and I am one of His amazing, beautiful, daughters. Thank you so much, my Heavenly Father for another wonderful self-discovery and lesson in my life! Although, I'm sure I will be learning this lesson over and over again. It's a hard one for me to learn and remember always. It's my life-long struggle.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Father's Day 2010

I just love Father's Day!
Funny thing to love, I know, but I love to celebrate all the men in my life. This year was extra special and meaningful for me, because of all my dad's health problems that have come out of nowhere. I wanted to show all 3 men in my life just how much they mean to me, so out came my craftiness, and here is what I came up with...
For the FIL
I made him a lazy susan art piece. It has a bunch of photos of him when he was younger and a bunch of him in our life with us and our kids. He really does "make our world go round." He's been there ALWAYS for us and our crazy bunch. So what better way to tell him how much we love him.
Now for my dad the kids wanted to get in on the gift making so this is what we came up with...
A one-of-a-kind shirt, just for him. This is what the front looks like...
and here is the backside of the shirt...
I also gave him a basket full of his favorite treats along with a new card game that we introduced him to on his birthday. It's called Monopoly Deal, and he loved playing it. He loved it so much, he told our long-time family friends about it and they wanted to borrow it to play. Gotta love when you surprise your Daddy with just what he wants.

We spoiled the hubs and he LOVED it! The kids all made cards in their classes at school and primary and then we got him a bunch of his favorites. I helped the kids pick out something really funny... a gargoyle statue.
It's been a long, funny, joke between the hubs and me. He has always wanted one for the garden, but we have never gotten one. Well now he has one! And he absolutely couldn't be any happier with it. It tells him secrets, you know.

All he really wanted from me was some homemade lemonade, which he is enjoying in this pic, and chocolate chip cookies. He can never get enough of these two things. They are his fav. We also got him a black U of U shirt, along with a lunch tote filled with a few of his favorite treats for game time, or movie time. Whatever floats his boat. I think he really enjoyed being showered upon. We might need to do it a little more often, just so he knows just how much we love him and appreciate all that he does for us. Times have been hard and stressful, but he has always kept us laughing and smilin. We love him soooooo much!

And in tradition, I made him a card for Father's Day just to let him know in words just how MUCH I love and adore him! Hope everyone else had a wonderful Father's Day and took the time to let their men know how much they mean to them.

Our House Party!

So we had our fun Hasbro Game Night sponsord by House Party last week. We had a ton of fun even with our small gathering. It seems like summer should be the time to gather and have a party, but that's just not the case. Summer means everyone is SUPER busy. I guess this means we'll just have to have another. We had a belly-aching time. We laughed, ate, and had some mean rivalry boy vs. girl game action! We all tested out the new Trivial Pursuit, Bet You Know It, and had some good times. We played the boys against the girls, and us girls let the boys win! Haha =)! The kids were all itchin to dig in to all the good eats. We had sandwiches, fruit, treats and other tasty snacks. We ate until we dropped, just kiddin'! The kids, however, did eat until they dropped into dreamland. They love a good party!

We had to have us some balloons. The kids say, "it's just not a party unless there are balloons."

I made some tasty party favors for everyone who came. I thought they were really cute and Lana decided she would copy them for their party game nights too.
Laughs, fun, rivalry, and good times were had by all. The best thing for us is we now have 3 new games for our family and friends to play with us. I just love our free game package from HOUSE PARTY and all the fun we have had with it!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

God, MORE lemons, REALLY?

It seems that I keep getting lemons thrown my way. You know the saying, "if life gives you lemons, make lemonade," well unless life is going to give me the sugar and water I need, all I have is lemons. I went away for 5 days, yep only 5, and came back to my baby Noah covered head to toe with the worse case of eczema I have ever seen and my dad barely living. I checked on my dad when I got back, he hadn't been feeling well before I left, only to discover he had swollen up, could barely move without having to catch his breath, and he even said he was no good. Knowing my dad, he's mister positive man, I knew this was NOT good. He went to all these doc appt. and discovered his bp was through the roof(240/190), his kidney wasn't functioning all the way, and the poor guy's heart was enlarged. When he left his appt. his bp finally came down to 195/100, but this still is no good. They think that the high bp is the cause of it all, but won't be sure until he's been on his bp medicine for at least a week. He gained 35 lbs. in water weight from all this too, but now has lost 10 of it since being on water pills and bp meds. So, knowing me, I'm going out of my mind CRAZY! He's the last family member I have, at least that lives close by. I have some cousins and 2 aunts and uncles, but no one really close. Because we don't know what is going to happen with my dad, the hubs and I have decided to keep the kids in traditional school for the next year. I'm nervous, seeing that no man in my dad's family lived into his 60's except his dad-but he had major health problems, all of them died of heart problems including his own mother. So, to make my life a little easier I'll just be supplementing the girls' education so they don't get bored at their school. Isn't it funny, everytime I go planning away, life throws me another curve ball, haha! Not really though. I would REALLY like for life to go smoothly just once.
And for the concern over Noah, apparently we have to slather him in some potent steroid cream 2x a day to help his poor skin. We have been doing it for a week now and he looks SOOO much better. He was so itchy and not feeling well, he wasn't eating much. Now, he's back to his cheery self. I really hope next year will be better. After all the medical scares, the A.C. breaking down, our car needing an overhaul, us barely floatin' on fumes since the hub's pay cut, the school drama, and now my dad's medical scare-I could REALLY use a break from life. I want just a nice, smooth, ride next year-PLEASE! Can you request life rides from above? Just my luck and you probally can't. Oh well, they say "what doesn't kill you, only makes you stronger, " right? By the time I'm done raising my crazy bunch I should be THE strongest woman out there! =)

Saturday, June 12, 2010

ARRGH, Y'MATEY! Happy Birthday Christian!

Today was a special day for our family. The time has come once again to celebrate our son's birthday. We try to do something that our little guy loved and this year we came up with pirates. We don't like to be home and dwell on the sore feelings we have and think of how we miss him tons-although the hubs and I still do think of all that we are missing with him. We wanted to do something big this year, because our boy would be 10 today. WOW! Enter in this new, fun, adventurous place...It's a fun themed restaurant in Orem and the kids ABSOLUTELY had a blast!

This was our very last birthday with Christian, and lucky him, the Make-A-Wish foundation combined his wish with his birthday. He REALLY, REALLY wanted to go to Disneyland and have a party with Goofy, and poof- they made it happen. The best time ever! This year it was really hard to celebrate and realize he would be 10. Trying not to cry and be upset, I wanted to be out and doing some fun, big activity. We even got the grandparents in on it. The hubs' parents came with and seemed to enjoy hangin' with us. We of course went up to the cemetery first and took our boy some balloons. The weather was nasty, so we just let them go and got back in the car due to the rain and wind, but at least he got his birthday balloons.
This place was so cool. They don't call it Pirate Island for nothing. Pirates EVERYWHERE, and a huge pirate ship in the dining area. The kids were in complete awe, as was I. I love when my ideas turn out and everyone has fun. There were cannons going off, an ARRGH cade, pizza, pirate playground, pirate shootin gallery, and games galore! Poor hubs, he's soooo tired now. He took the kids to the games and fun while I fed Bella and finished eating myself. He's all tuckered out!
This is part of the pirate playground. It had 2 slides, a climbing wall, steering wheel, and a bunch of other things to do. Noah loved it and we couldn't get him to leave it without a little protest. I had to bribe him with getting him a prize with tickets from the games we played.
The canons on the big ship that fired off 3 times while we were there. Maybe more, but I only noticed it that many times.
Miss Kaleigh bugs just needed a pic with the pirate statue sooo bad. It greeted us as we walked in. The entrance alone was crazy. The kids were in awe and then more so once we were escorted to our table.
This is the backside of the ship where we were sitting. Fun, fun. Lanterns, music, pirates singing, cannons going off, crickets chirping-it was great!
The kids all got some balloon animals too. They all loved them. Alexis got a crocodile, Logan and Noah got monkeys, and Kaleigh and Laney got parrots-perched on their shoulders and everything.
Pirate on the plank-loved it. His eyes glowed green when the pirates started talking and getting ready to fire the cannons.

Skull cave that was the entrance to the Arrghcade. Such great detail to everything. We were even served by a pirate that took great care of us.
Pirate shooting gallery. Alexis had some great fun here!
More of the shooting gallery

Even the bathroom hall was decked out. I'm crazy! I needed to get pics of everything.
More of the entrance. Love the detail!
The end of our evening, we had to get a pic of all the kids. They all were so tuckered out they fell right to sleep when we got home. Fun was had by all!
Logan and Noah even got to ride on a train. I think this is where Noah was finally ready to go home. No nap makes for one tuckered out Noah.
Bella on the way home. What do ya think? Think she had fun? I can't believe my baby is big enough now to sit forward in her big baby car seat. Ahh, time needs to slow down. I had a lot of fun with my little family today and I didn't cry once while we were there. It's kinda hard to see my other boys without Christian, but at least I know he's still mine. Logan will be older than Christian was when we lost him at the end of this month. That's something that stings, but hopefully the sting will get easier over time. Boy do I sure miss my Mr. C! May God take care of him until I can again! Love you my dear boy and Happy Birthday!!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Some more pics I just thought were adorable

Here's some more cute pics, all of them of Bella with everyone. I will NOT be posting any pics with me, simply 'cause I look horrid and don't want them on here. Although, my lovely cuz decided to post them on facebook for all to see. Let's just say-Shamoo anyone? Anywho, this one you can totally tell Bella was LOOVIN' Christina and vice versa. Aren't they just sooo caaute, to boot!Bella always happy when she was with Christina, as long as she didn't see me, then not so much.
Loved, loved, loved the cell phones. She even has a "new" one that was sent home with us. It's her new toy-and yes it really is an old one with the battery taken out.
I love that this face was finally caught in a pic. She does this ALL the time and it is the funniest thing ever. She puckers and brings her bottom lip over the top one. She was havin' a good ole time crawling discovering new and fun things.
Isn't this just precious? She really did enjoy everyone she met, well maybe not Micah that much. She had a hard time warming up to the guys, except Dan. She really liked him. Funny that he doesn't like holding babies, but looked like he was in love with Bella while holding her. She has that affect on people. My cute lit'l babe with her cell phone and her kitty. The real, black one scared her to death when he jumped up on this chair on the arm and hopped up onto the back of it. She learned how to say "moew," now we need to teach her it's "meow." Cute baby, cute aunt, and VERY fun trip. Will remember it ALWAYS!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Washington Trip

Bella and I had a blast on our trip to Washington. I went for my cousin, Christina's, graduation. I couldn't be there for the actual graduation-this Friday, but I went for her family party and to visit them all. I last saw my cousins when Eric and I got married 12 1/2 years ago. I saw my aunt 5 years ago at Christian's funeral, so it's been a long, long, long time. My cousins were little kids and now they are all grown up. Man, time flies when you're having fun. Funny story about the pic below. This is my cousin Dan. He's 21 and refuses to hold babies. He scared to DEATH that he'll drop them. He loved Bella, and as you can see, he held her. Awww, so cute.This is my aunt Sue-Sue. That's what I called her when I was little. Now, it's just auntie Sue. She was smitten with Bella, but then who wouldn't be with this adorable, beautiful girl. She pulls everyone in her who comes across her.
Eventhough it rained, a lot, it was beautiful in Renton. It stopped raining just in time for Christina's party, which was good, cause it was outside. I'm in love with their house, because the backyard is actually a forest. LOVE IT!!! It has a grass area, but then behind it are huge, big, trees and into the forest you go.
Here's all three of my cousins. Christina, Dan-holding Bella again, and Micah-the oldest and he's married now to a cutie-potootie gal, Becca.

Christina cutting her grad cake from Costco. Bella was in pure heaven because she just loves, loves, LOVES cake.
Bella, just lovin' finding new "toys" to play with. She also loved their cat, Cole, unless he came right up to her face, then, not so much.
This is what I woke up to one morning. Yep, those are deer in the backyard. Right smack out the door. My aunt sent me out to scare them off, because they were eating her flowers, but they WERE NOT scared of me. They just stood there starring at me. I have never seen deer in a backyard before. Bella loved them and crawled right up to the door talking away at them. She had a blast. I was so sure she would be scared because it's a new place and a whole lot of new people, but she loved them all. My family loved her to death and were sad to see her, I mean us, go.
We went to the locks in Seattle, the neatest thing ever. I have never seen this before, but they lower and raise water so the boats can pass through. This was one of the big fishing boats that they raised the water for. So cool! Bella just loved trying to climb over the fence, and Christina, well, she just loved holding Bella. They were best buds the whole trip. It's funny, Christina's baby pic looks just like Bella. Cutie Patootie girls.
And here's the cutie patootie newlywed couple. I call them that, because they are only reaching their 3rd Anniversary this summer. That's Becca, Micah's wife. She's real nice and sweet. Good match for my cuz. They've been together since 8th grade, WOW!!
The boat as the water raises up. Very cool to see and watch the boat raise up over you. Big fishing boat. Oh yeah, side note, I saw one of the Deadliest Catch boats docked in Seattle. Those are some big boats, whoa! The Time Bandit apparently comes into Seattle quite a bit.
A trip into Seattle wouldn't be complete without a pic of the space needle. It was a rainy day so we just drove by, but man, the city is an awesome place. Loved it and we had a blast. I can't wait to go back in a year or two with my whole clan. My aunt is gonna put us up and probably go a little crazy with my wild bunch, but it will be a fun time to let them all see all the kids.

Sweet Bella all tuckered out by the crazy, fast trip. She was so good and was an excellent little flyer. On the way there she played with the window, ate a snack and had some juice. She didn't squawk at all. On the way back, as soon as the plane took off she fell asleep and didn't wake up until we touched down in SLC. Good times and I was very glad she was so good and proud too cause there were 3 other babes on our plane that didn't do as well as her. Quick trip, but had tons and tons of fun. Hope to go back soon!

Christian's Garden

For the last few years I've had a really hard time getting up to the cemetary to visit my little boy. It brings me nothing but anguish and pain, so I really hate going up there. I decided about 3 years ago we would do a little garden in memory of our Mr. C and we finally got it done. It has been done for 2 weeks now and everything is really growing fast. I had a little kid size bench I wanted to put in his garden, but it needed some sprucin', so enter my BFF, spray paint. Love the stuff, and his bench is gorgeous. I painted his name on it and placed it in his garden. We planted some forget me nots, bleeding hearts, hostas, and some pretty foxgloves. I thought all the plants names fit real well in his garden. We placed the statue we got shortly after he passed away. The lovely in-laws gave it to us and it fits perfectly. We placed all the stepping stones we made and they bring some more color and love to his special place. The kids all love it and they love to see his plants growing more everyday.

It was a long FHE project that took us a good 3 weeks to complete, but well worth it. Everyone had a part in it and the kids loved prepping the area to make it nice and clean, and rock-less, for Christian's garden. They took great care and pride for their brother's special place. They miss him tons, but enjoyed making a lasting place for him in our yard.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

House Party Hasbro Game Night!!

It came! It came! It came!I signed up with House Party to try and host a Hasbro Game Night and I got picked! Woot! Woot!
This is all the stuff they sent us for free for our party night on June 17th. It's so we can try out Trivial Pursuit's new game "Bet you know it." We also got electronic catch phrase, taboo, triscuits galore, wheat thins, and some yummy hershey's candy. We also have coupons for all our party guests that gives them $5 off for one of their games. So, don't forget all you party guests, come on down and party at the Game House. If you want to come and somehow didn't get your invite just email the hubs or me and you bet your booty you can come on down!

Oh for the love of STRAWBERRIES!

Being that it was Bella's actual birthday yesterday, I just HAD to make her a birthday treat. Eventhough I was way behind on packing and the many other items on my list that needed to be done before this afternoon's flight, I decided to make this glorious beast of strawberry heaven. Ain't she a beaut!Bella just loves, loves, loves strawberries! If I would let her, I think she would eat a whole 4 pound container of Costco strawberries, if I would let her. I don't think so. I like to keep the diaper changes to a minumum thank you very much. Anywho, I thought what not better treat than a homemade strawberry pie. It turned out so good that I can give Marie Callendar's Fresh Strawberry pie a run for its money. I like this one way better and our crazy, sweet-loving bunch finished an entire pie. Good thing I made two, the rest of the clan can have some more tonight when Bella and I are in Washington.
Here's what the yumminess looked like all sliced up and undressed in all her glory. YUMMY! Makes me want another piece right now!
And here she is all dressed in her white, creamy goodness. Best pie ever and very easy. I made my own pie crust then baked it. Then I filled it with a ton of fresh, washed, Costco strawberries, and then I made my own glaze. Now, you can buy the glaze at the grocery store, but I personally think it is nasty. So I made my own with jell-o! Super easy...
1 c sugar
1c water
3 T cornstarch
3 T strawberry jell-o(I personally didn't have any so I used raspberry instead, still sooo good)
Bring to a boil in a saucepan and boil for 1 minute. Take off heat and and 1 teaspoon of lemon juice.
Pour over strawberries in the pie crust and let set up for at least 2 hours in the fridge. Eat and Enjoy, we sure did!