Saturday, February 28, 2009

{Doodling & My Day}

I woke up at 7am without the alarm (we keep it turned off during the weekends), and I saw the most beautiful sunrise. No pictures but it was breathtaking from my kitchen window as I filled the dishwasher with last nights dishes. Just stunning. Of course afterwards I got online and I found this article on yahoo about doodling and how it can help you stay a bit focused on your work. Below is a quick blurb from the article.

(Researchers in the United Kingdom found that test subjects who doodled while listening to a recorded message had a 29 percent better recall of the message's details than those who didn't doodle. The findings were published in Applied Cognitive Psychology.

"If someone is doing a boring task, like listening to a dull telephone conversation, they may start to daydream," study researcher Professor Jackie Andrade, of the School of Psychology at the University of Plymouth, said in a news release issued by the journal's publisher. "Daydreaming distracts them from the task, resulting in poorer performance. A simple task, like doodling, may be sufficient to stop daydreaming without affecting performance on the main task.")

It really was an interesting little blurb - see, there is a method to my doodling so I can focus better. Who knew I was helping myself focus!

Today I is my photography meet-up in Nampa - YEAH!! (yes, I will have pictures!). I am also going to be going to a "game night" with my friend Carla. I think the kids will have fun because there will be other kids there too to play with & William will be able to have some guy time. (he probably won't like it, but he's doing it for me - I really hope he has a good time.)

I finished Sam's b-day invites and will have them all printed out sometime today before I leave. I am hoping that before the meet-up that I can find the last party things I need for Sam's party. (super hero themed! which btw I found 5 superhero toppers for his cake (superman, spiderman, batman, ironman & the hulk)). He is going to be thrilled. I only need to find a pinata for a reasonable price and some "super hero masks" for the kids to decorate!

Anywho, my uncle is going to watch Patten, because he wouldn't like being in the car all day and yes, he will miss us but he's starting to warm up to Clay so it should be a good bonding experience. (let's hope)

I hope everyone else's day is good. I know mine will be, at least I am going to try to make it that way!

Friday, February 27, 2009

{All I want for My birthday is my two front teeth!}

Look at Aaron's new smile - even a little forced it's quite charming with no front teeth. His one remaining front tooth I pulled out because it was just dangling there like a limp limb and I just couldn't stand it I pulled it, quickly.

Aaron stood in front of the mirror for 30 minutes admiring his newly lost tooth and new smile. Sooo funny!




{Good News!!}

I have the BEST visit teachers! They visited me last night and I had the best visit with them. They really are the most sweetest sisters and I so enjoy them. I think they are the best visit teachers ever!! I always hate when they have to leave because we always have such fun and the spirit is always so sweet with them. (YOU GIRLS ROCK!!)

Well, today I had so much GOOD news that I wanted to share with you all.

* My mom is coming to visit from March 4th thru March 8th and will be here for Sam's birthday party! (YEAH, happy dance - loads of pictures I am sure will follow!!)

* William actually got his Social Security disability on the first try! (YEAH, happy dance!! usually most get denied first and then have to fight to get it appealed.)

* We got our tax return today!! (a week sooner then I thought! WHOO-HOO!)

* William got a new laptop and is super happy now. (Finally he has a computer that works for him and allows him to do what he wants and how things need to be done!! When he's happy, I am happy!)

* It was a B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L day!! (almost perfect, just a tad cold but blue skies are always a HUGE plus after rain and uncertain weather!)

* I had a great day with the kids. Even with all the trips to different stores - price shopping in boring computer stores! (this is rare!)

* I was given the link to A Year of CrockPotting by one of my visit teachers! (What a great site!! Check it out!)

* My Better Homes & Garden magazine came in the mail today!! (I love that magazine! It's got lots of great ideas and the bedroom I want! Well, the house decor I want)

* I have felt the best today then I have all month! (I think I am kicking this bugs butt!)

* I have lost 2 pounds so far! what a boost!

Thursday, February 26, 2009


I was asked to share my planners. I have a weekly planner that helps keep my days in order and more structured. I also have a monthly meal planner that I am using to help me plan out my meals.

You can download both HERE. The Weekly planner is a WORD document and is easily customizable for you. The Meal Planner is a JPG so you can print it out (letter size) and write in your meals for the month.

Here is what my weekly planner looks like: (I used clipart for the arrows & for the "craft" symbol)


And here is what the Meal planner looks like:


{Are you on a Budget?}

Are you on a budget when it comes to groceries for your family? Well I am. I am constantly looking for ways to provide good nutritious food for my family of 6 (my uncle eats dinner with us), without going over my alloted amount of grocery money.

I recently started planning out my meals for the month so that I would know what I would need and that has HELPED a ton and helped save us money during the month. I scower the internet and blogs (I have several in the sidebar that I "stalk" for new recipes) looking for new recipes to help my "bean & rice" budget feel more like a "steak & lobster" budget.

I found $5 dinners yesterday while browsing Angie's blog (THANK YOU ANGIE). It has lots of recipes (mostly serving 4 but easily adapted for a larger family) for $5 or less. Many of which I can't wait to try!

Kara's blog has some wonderful recipes that I can't wait to try out too, like her outback chicken & her recipe for Macaroni Grill Bread. And that's just to name a few, she has loads of easy recipes that I am going to incorporate into my March menu.

There are a few more that I frequent quite regularly like The Brighton Kitchen which has some yummy recipes like The fudge pudding cake.

I can't wait to find out what I save this month trying out some of the yummy recipes I have found so far. Thanks again Angie for sharing the $5 meal blog. It is going to really help my budget stretch just a little bit farther.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

{Patten's new Do}




After a quick stop at "barber a-la Arya"






{Goals for the month of March}

I am putting together a few goals I have for March, since I totally blew February & January.

March Goals

* No eating after 7pm (this is a killer for me, I am such a night time eater)

* If I feel like eating I will drink a glass of water first and then wait 15 min to see if I am really hungry.

* exercising at least 30 min with those workout videos I bought (seriously what a waste of money if I don't use them)

* Go walking for 30-60 min during the day. (I have so much free time I really need to use it more wisely)

* Plan out the days like I used to w/my day chart. (this will make getting back into a routine much easier)

* Find 10 positive things during the day & blog about it for the entire month. (this will help me de-stress and not turn to food...I used to do it all the time and I really need to get back into the habit)

I hope that I can get into a routine quickly and stick with it. I am looking forward to seeing my changes by the end of March because by April we want to start trying for baby number 4.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

{Weight Gain...*sigh*}

I have fallen off the wagon so to speak and I am really ashamed of it. I have gained back 15 of those 25 pounds I lost! I have been so stressed out lately that I have begun to turn back to food for comfort and I am having trouble distracting myself from late night eating. (both are not good and I thought I had both under control but obviously not.) I am not working out like I did before either although, I am trying to get back into a routine, but it's soooo hard. I was avoiding my scale for the longest time and was so annoyed and frustrated with myself to find that all my hard work has gone down the drain!! This next month I am hoping to do better...

What do you do to keep yourself on the right track when you are trying to lose weight?

Saturday, February 21, 2009

{25 Things about Facebook}

Yes I facebook and no I don't particularly like some of the things on it. But I try not to be too demanding - although I am not sure I am succeeding. I found this on Jenni's Blog aka Mommy Bee. Enjoy!

{Lost Tooth}


Friday, February 20, 2009


I am not a morning person and because the kids must leave so early I am forced to be up before sunrise every morning. But really it's a blessing, I get to experience the beauty of the sunrise and have a quiet moment of reflection on the way back home. It really is a great experience.

Yesterday's sunrise was sooo pretty, but I didn't bring my camera with me but I did this morning and below are what I captured before heading home.








Thursday, February 19, 2009

{Motherhood: It's hard but worth it}

I have always wanted to be a mom ever since I was little. Whenever anyone asked me what I wanted to be I would say "A Mom". My answer never changed and even as I grew older and still got asked "What do you want to be?" I would still answer "A mom" and then a follow up question would come "No, Seriously what do you want to be?" and my answer would be "No, really I want to be a mom"

Even after living as a REAL LIFE MOM for almost 8 years now, I still would do it over again, knowing how hard and challenging it really is. They don't cover all the things you have to deal with or the struggles that you will face as a mom. The books don't cover all the advice and annoyance you will have with others who "only want to help you be a better parent" or the odd things you will catch yourself saying like "Don't look up the manikins skirt, I know she doesn't have underwear, maybe she can't afford any...No you can not put those underwear on her, they are not paid for...." or "Don't hug your sister so hard....No you cannot squeeze out her eyeballs"

Life with kids is much harder then I thought it would be. You think your prepared but really your not. It's about 75% hard work and under appreciation and only about 25% rewarding. I really do love being a mother and all the kids antics, ploys and lovable moments are sooo worth it. (the percentages vary from day to days it's more like 25/75 others it's 90/10)

I know my life would be way easier if I didn't have any kids but it wouldn't be more filling or enjoyable without them. Sure, William and I could do what we wanted when we wanted to but we wouldn't be laughing everyday at the silly things the kids say or enjoying a nice cuddle at the end of the day or experience the wonders this world has to offer thru the eyes of a child.

This time is fleeting with the kids and I want to enjoy it fully because soon they will be all grown and starting families of their own...really that time isn't soo far off 10 more years Aaron will be 18...

Not long ago, 10 years seems so far away and now 10 years seems way tooo close for comfort.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

{Portrait of my children}

Imagine that your most wonderful and happiest dream is rudely interrupted by the darn alarm clock, harping and buzzing that YOU need to get up.

Imagine that when you go to wake the boys with whom your alarm was telling you to get up for were snuggly sleeping soundly and grumbled and swatted away your hands while mumbling for you to "LEAVE ME ALONE".

Imagine waiting for the water to boil for 20 minuets only to discover you forgot to turn on the burner.

Imagine kids cranky because all they got was toast & scrambled eggs instead of oatmeal w/raisins.

Imagine trying to help one boy get dressed while trying to help the other with 3 days worth of homework because he forgot he had it stashed in his backpack.

Imagine trying to get your stubborn boy to just put on a pair of shoes - ANY shoes so he won't be late for school all the while he is running around looking for the mate to HIS favorite shoes.

Imagine ridding in a car with 2 boys who are crying because life isn't going their way.

Imagine accidentally getting smacked with 2 backpacks while the boys pushed past me to get away from me and get into their classes.

Imagine riding back and seeing a beautiful sky that was brilliant colors while the sun rose above the clouds.

Imagine walking into the house to a screaming little girl...

Needless to say my day started off a bit wonky but here is what the kids looked like by the end of the day....




Sunday, February 15, 2009

{Have Faith in the candle light}

During the Sunday school lesson the teacher said something that just stuck with me.

"We all have candles flickering in our hands, we can either have faith that the candle will be sufficient light and move forward in the darkness or be stalled in our faith that the candle will not light our way and never move forward on the darkened path."

He was talking about the phrase "Jesus is the light of the world" and how we need to have faith to grow and move forward in our spiritual journey and not become stalled by fear of what we don't know or see.

It really was a good lesson.

(well it's always a good lesson when I get something out of it and use it on my

Saturday, February 14, 2009

{Eagle Eye - Have you seen it?}

I saw Eagle Eye tonight and I have to tell you, I LOVED IT! (meaning I will be purchasing this to watch again and again) It was full of action, drama and yes, even a bit of humor. It really picked me up out of my mood today. No one came to the party and the kids were simply put, monsters.

Ruth had a complete melt down and the boys just wouldn't listen. So we did nothing, except eat the ribs I made for dinner, with vegi's of course and then I sent the kids to bed so the 'grups' could watch this movie. If you haven't seen it, check it out. It really is a good watch and not a waste of time.

Hopefully the kids will cooperate and we can do the stuff I had planned tomorrow after church.


Movie Description: Jerry Shaw and Rachel Holloman are two strangers thrown together by a mysterious phone call from a woman they have never met. Threatening their lives and family, she pushes Jerry and Rachel into a series of increasingly dangerous situations--using the technology of everyday life to track and control their every move. As the situation escalates, these two ordinary people become the country's most wanted fugitives, who must work together to discover what is really happening--and more importantly, why.

Movie Trailer:

{Happy Valentine's Day}

"May the love that you have for one anther be felt all over the world!"


Friday, February 13, 2009

{All ready}

I am all set for my valentine party, not sure if anyone but William, the kids and I are going to be here but either way it will be fun.

(why do I put all this work into these mini parties? No one will show, they never do. It's always some excuse...*sigh* I know why I do it, because the kids love it and really, that's all that matters, right?)

Sam's party was sooo much fun - stressful, but fun. I was the only parent volunteer. I let Aaron's teacher know I wouldn't be there and she was ok with it because she had too many parent volunteers. Sam's teacher was so happy, I think it would have been more stressful for her if no one had showed. The kids had fun though and I enjoyed it despite the awful headache I had afterwards.

I got a call while I was putting up the last of the party decor about my taxes...we are getting money back, nothing like we have gotten in the past but at least it's not like we have to pay out money, which is a blessing! It's all going into savings...

William's dad really misses us, I think we may go see him during spring break, but we will see. The roads may not be so kind up North. If we can't make it we sure will make it during the summer!! We sure do miss him, he is a terrific grandpa and it's always nice to hear from him.

We got a small manila envelope in the mail today from William's mom - no note inside just pencils w/child valentines attached to them. One for each of us. I am sure she got my letter and I guess this is an olive branch for her. William was just annoyed. The kids liked the pencils because they had Star wars and Cinderella on them. They sharpen horribly though.

(have you noticed how pencils just are not made like they used to be? Seriously, what's up with sharpening a pencil only to have the lead break when you start writing or drawing?)

Sam's friend came home with us from school. They played their hearts content out, although with three boys in the house it just got sooo loud I had to force them all outside to play - literally. Once they got outside & I had some peace for a moment they started having fun outside too and it was hard to get them back in for dinner.

(why are boys so much louder then girls? Is there a volume knob that I just can't find? Seriously where is the remote to turn 'em down a notch?)

Sorry for the ramble but I am still up due to the fact Ruth had an accident and woke up screaming because she was laying in pee. So off to the bath for her while I changed her bedding and pulled out some new undies.

(really I am happy she is in "big girl" panties but wish she would wear a pull up to bed until she can remember to wake up to go potty at night.)

Well, I better go...I am sleeping on the couch, listening to make sure no little ones wake before I do in the morning. I am going to make heart shaped pancakes for the kids. I think they will like that.

Night all...or morning depending on when you read this...

{Party time}

Today is Sam & Aaron's school valentine parties! whoot-whoot (is that even a form of hurray? either way I like it!) I am going to volunteer in Sam's class but I can't do the same in Aaron's due to the fact that Sam is having a friend over for a sleepover today and it wouldn't be fair to leave two very active boys with hubby while I spend the rest of the afternoon in Aaron's class. Besides that Aaron's class always has lots of volunteers during parties and won't miss having me there.

Well I gotta run, it's time for school. I wonder if when I get back I will have a message saying I won someone's OWOH give-a-way....I know I won't but it's always nice to hope, right? lol

Have a great day!! and happy Blogging!!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

{OHOW: Give-a-way Winners}

That's right I said Winner(s)! As in TWO, I choose 2! The first winner will receive the items listed in the give-a-way and the second winner will receive and 8x10 matted print from one of my current photography projects.

What you need to do to claim your prize:

Send and Email to with your Mailing Address!

And the FIRST winner is:


And the SECOND winner is:


Monday, February 9, 2009

{Winners of my PIF give-a-way}

You can find the post HERE. That talks about the Pay it forward Challenge give-a-way.

It really is so much fun to give. And the Winners are:

MyJourneyBack, Kathrine & Todd


Please email your mailing address to:

Thank you for participating!

{It's snowing!!!!}


I am rather annoyed! It has been beautiful that past few days and I thought "Punxsutawney Phil" was wrong in the fact that winter was still going to happen for 6 more weeks. Well, I guess he was right because when I stepped out this afternoon to pick up Sam from school I was met with frigged wind and a bluster of snowfall.

darn it! I didn't want more snow but spring to start and it to WARM up! *sigh*

Anyways, yesterday my dad and his wife came over and the kids just loved it! They wore him out and William and my dad had a battle of bowling. It was neck and neck all the way. Well it didn't start out that way but it ended up being very close. I think the bowling is my favorite.

They stayed for dinner, I even made brownies for dinner...yummy food that is easy to fix and everyone can enjoy.

As a side note I am not sure I am liking the behavior of my new ward (people in the ward not so much the ward). The primary does a program for those kids who are going to be turning 8 soon called "Great to be Eight" and it's geared towards letting them know what is all entailed in getting baptized. Not a bad thing, but here is where my annoyance comes in. Not only did several people tell me about it but they kept telling me about it and then mailed me 2 invitations to it. Well that's fine and dandy. I just let it slide - I hate being told things over and over and over again and having to repeat things over and over and over again. I really am trying to be civil.

Next thing I know, Aaron's teacher calls up, yesterday (Sunday, when my dad was here) to say she is sorry Aaron wasn't in church today. (very nice I know and I do appreciate the attentiveness, what I didn't appreciate is coming up next) Then she proceeded to ask "if Aaron would be going to the class?" I told her "No, because we had family over." Of course she didn't like that answer and said "well, I could just come by and pick him up so he can go by himself"

UH, HELLO, I just said NO. (of course, I didn't say that) instead I said, "No we have family over." and said goodbye and hung up.

I understand most who are in the church want EVERY eight year old to be baptized and I want Aaron to be baptized too, but he didn't want to go to the class he wanted to be with his grandpa, who by the way, doesn't come by that often. Plus Aaron said he isn't ready to be baptized right now. Can't people stop being so darn pushy? He will do things at his own pace and ONCE maybe TWICE is plenty to tell me something - NOT ten million and one times! I am not so far gone as to need constant reminders.

I DO like my ward, I really do but some of the members are so gosh darn pushy. Never taking NO as an answer.

I am also a bit frustrated that I have been asking and asking to find out what my visit teaching route is and who my companion is but have never been told or given a list. (they always forget it and say they will get it to me, but never do)

Imagine my surprise when I got a call at the end of the month asking if I had done my visit teaching for January. Seriously, how can I do any sort of visit teaching when NO ONE will let me know who I am supposed to be visiting or who my companion is?

Did I mention, I do like my ward? Well, I do. I just don't like the pushiness that I have been experiencing and it's beginning to be a real turn off for William too. We were sorta cornered in Wal-mart a few weeks back by a gentleman from our ward who, seriously hounded us to come to some dinner for the Couples in the ward. We told him we were not going to go and he just wouldn't let it go. Even when we gave him very good reason's - one main one being William hates social events since coming back from Iraq. He just hates crowds and wouldn't have enjoyed it at all. But this guy just wouldn't let it go and then the Sunday afterwards I got cornered again by another guy asking if we were going to go and how we SHOULD go.

Seriously, I do like my new ward, it's 100 times better then the ones we have had in the past, but the pushiness...*sigh*

Saturday, February 7, 2009

{Sam's Friend}

Yesterday I brought home of of Sam's friends from school. They had a blast painting, watching "Ben 10" & "Spiderman" as well as running around the property pretending to be hero's! I captured a bit of their outside fun. Ruth wanted to play with them but they were a bit too quick so she played with Patten when he wasn't chasing the boys around.

We are going to have Sam's friend over again next week for a sleep over! Aaron was bummed be missed hanging out with Sam's friend but he is Sam's friend after all. Enjoy!

{Scrable Tile Pendant}

I ordered 4 tile pendants from Word Designs. I received them yesterday in my mail box and was happy to see them. I will have to remember the next time that I order that I will need to leave more room around the images so stuff doesn't get cut off (part of Sam & Aaron's head were chopped a bit).

They turned out rather nice. Now I am just going to have to get chains/cord for them so they can be worn. I do find the small bubbles in the resin they use to be a bit distracting but you only see them if you look really close. Which most people don't do. These are great for gift ideas for that special someone who has everything but a scrabble tile pendant!


Friday, February 6, 2009

{Pay it forward: it's a challenge}

I got this from April's Blog. Thanks for sharing such a fun idea!

The Rules:

1. Be one of the first THREE bloggers to leave a comment on this post, which then entitles you to a handmade item from me - something crafty or yummy, who knows?!.

2. Winners must post this challenge on your blog, meaning that you will Pay It Forward, creating a handmade gift -anything!- for the first THREE bloggers who leave a comment on YOUR post about this giveaway!

3. The gift that you send to your Three Friends can be from any price range and you have 365 days to make/ship your item. This means you should be willing to maintain your blog at least until you receive your gift and have shipped your gifts. And, remember: It’s the Spirit and the Thought That Count!

4. When you receive your gift, please feel free to blog about it, sharing appropriate Linky Love!If you are not one of the Top Three Commenters on this post, you can still play along. Go ahead and start your own Pay It Forward chain, and encourage your blogging friends to do the same!

SO, REMEMBER... it is good... :) Pass it forward.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

{Jumpin' Spider}

We found a jumping spider hanging out on the dogs water dispenser. He was quite larger then some of the jumping spiders we have seen this winter. I don't have a problem with jumping spiders - other spiders I can't stand. (I know double Anywho, while Ruth and William were enjoying the spider and discussing the spider and what name he should have I whipped out my camera and snapped a few images before we let the spider go hang out in a window to catch other spiders and nasty bugs. They are better then a fly strip any day!

Besides that, I like that jumping spiders show alot of personality when you stare at them. They have excellent eye sight and they just make me giggle. not sure why, they just do.










{beautiful sunrise}

When I stepped out the door this morning I had to run back in to grab my camera before taking the boys to school. The sky was just stunning!!

Of course due to the cloud cover the I never actually saw the sun peek over the "mountains" but the light was just a spectacular red. Don't you agree?

I could never have gotten this shot in Aloha due to all the buildings around where I lived. I am loving it here!!

(side note - Ruth is officially potty trained and no longer needs diapers/pull ups! HURRAY!!)








Wednesday, February 4, 2009

{Suicide Birds too!?!?}


I just watched a pigeon fly head on into the side of a semi-truck this afternoon. He fell out of the air and hit a passing car - I am sure freaking out the driver of the small red car...(it would freak me out!)

What's up with the animals here? Is this happening everywhere? or perhaps this pigeon was fine and just wanted to freak out the "humans"....

Monday, February 2, 2009

{New Haircut}

I just got back from getting a haircut...the gal put hairspray in my hair...ugh had to brush it all out when I got home...what do you think?




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