Friday, December 17, 2010

I am the worst blogger, I know! So here are some pictures.

I put up the tree a while ago, but am just now finding my camera cord so that I can show everyone how beautiful I think it is!
with no fireplace, the banister will have to do. Of course I got the whole thing up and THEN plugged it in. Only 1/2 lit up. Oh well!
My little santa collection
The tree is on the right of the photo, you just can't see it, but it's there.
Two is gone forever and Three is here (not with undies either). Sammy loved finally having HIS birthday since birthday parties are one of his favorite things! He loved every second of it.

November was a month filled with a lot of family and really happy days. I decided to do a little remodeling in the basement, which should be done next week. It's been a big job since it involved ripping down two large walls and ripping out a large tile floor. But, it was a huge waste of space and totally unnecessary, so a family room will be a much needed use of space. I'm so grateful to have family to help out when I need it. I couldn't do it all on my own, in spite of wishing that I could! I will post some pictures when it's complete. It's part of our christmas to the kids. They needed a family/toy room! (I did too - it was a HUGE homer gift)

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Last month was so good!

I don't make enough posts, but life just gets busy. So I decided to add some pictures from this last month.
A friend took some pictures of me. I realized that all the pictures I have are of the kids or me with slobber, food, or some other unwanted object smeared all over my face. Not so attractive.
Jane and her friend (in red and black) on halloween night. I think she is the cutest witch ever. I'm not sure what her friend is.
Well, I finally realized that Katy was a teenager. She turned 13 on Oct. 26th and I needed some serious leverage. So what does every 13 year old girl pine away for - a phone! I finally broke down and realized that not only did I need the leverage to use against her (how horrible am I), but I wanted the convenience of being able to reach her any time I wanted! I even made her sign a 3-page contract before she got her phone. It's worked so great and she loves it. We went to dinner and celebrated as a family. It was a lot of fun!
Mike (the girls dad) and his wife Beth joined us (I know, I'm an amazing ex-wife for making sure they are included). So that's their step-mom in that picture. I thought I was uploading a different picture. Oh well, now you can all see what a bad boob job looks like compared to a good one (and you know who has the good one).

Sunday, September 19, 2010

I know, I know, I'm a finatic (did I spell that wrong)

Anyone that knows me knows that I'm seriously crazy when it comes to my house. I should have been an interior designer, my true love and desire, but wanted to have a job instead! So, I choose to spend money on jeans and my house. I can't stand it when I finally get to a room, to decorate that is, and when all is said and done something is off. It doesn't happen very often becuase I can just see the room in my head and make it appear the way I want with a whole lot of work and a nominal amount of money. I'm really good at finding great deals, making inexpensive items look great, and putting my vision into reality. Once in a while though, there is just something wrong when I get done, and typically it's because I did something that one of the kids wanted.

It's kind of like decorating my christmas tree - when the kids have all gone to bed, or are at their dads, I rearrange the whole thing and do it "right". I hate that side of myself, but my christmas tree is AMAZING!!! Tangent, sorry!

So, I did Kate's room about a month ago. When we moved in she got to have a new bed and wanted a day bed. A friend of hers had one adn she just had to have one too. I hate them personally for the most part, but hey, it was her room and she is old enough to know what she wants right? WRONG. I bought the day bed of my choosing, which was a beautiful black iron pottery barn day bed I found at Downeast Home. It was fine. I bought the quilt of her choosing (which is also pottery barn from downeast that I never loved). She loves bright colors, I love muted soft colors. We have totally different taste. So to work I went and chose paint to match her quilt and did an amazing paint job. I loved the paint job, but when all was done, I hated the room and couldn't figure out why. Then it hit me, it's the bed. Once I realized it, I couldn't stand it and it was eating me alive. I know - a little psycho!

So to I went in search of what my vision was and I finally found it; a beautiful antique white and brass iron twin bed that looks like it has been drug across the plains! The second I saw it at this lady's house I knew it would be perfect. Luckily she just lived 10 minutes from me. It was meant to be. So, I spent the afternoon dismantaling the daybed, got it posted on KSL to sell, and went to work.

When it was all done and complete I stood back in awe of my work. I LOVE it and hope that she does too. She is at her dad's this weekend, so it gave me all the time to get it done the way I want, without her saying a word. I'm telling you, the picture is beautiful, but it is so much better in person. I don't love the dresser, but it's fine. I don't love all the stuff that Katy insists on having on the dresser either, but lets face it, she's almost 13 and I can't very well control that much of her life any longer. I can live with organized clutter I suppose.

So, I was right, the day bed was a poor choice and my choice was ideal. I LOVE her room now and just hope that at some point she will figure out how to actually keep it clean so it always looks as lovely as it does in the above picture!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

I need the advice of an attorney!

Ok, so I am really upset and frustrated. I have been wanting to incorporate exercise into my daily routine, which that alone is really hard to do. Anyway, last week, I got the valpak mailer, which includes so many coupons/deals, etc. that usually all end up in the trash. Not this time my friend! There is was, my golden ticket and answer to my exercise dilemna; a coupon for Lady Fitness for only $18/mo, and 3 mo. free. WOW!! I even read the ENTIRE coupon to make sure that I wasn't missing any fine print. Nope, no fine print about anything other than an expiration date. So my friend and I head over there this evening and I show them the coupon. They show us around the gym and then it comes! The catch. To get the $18/mo you have to sign a 3 yr. contract. WHAT! So I do what I do when I feel like something is wrong and tell them that the coupon does not say that there is a contract to sign to get that price anywhere, of course nicely, and that I expect them to honor the coupon. They of course won't and try to tell me that on coupons you have to call for details, but the number for some reason this time it was printed didn't get put on there with the phrase "call for details", but that they still stand by that the coupon doesn't have to say that the price is only good if you sign a three year contract and that we will need to sign the contract if we want that price. So, I told them that I felt that it was really wrong and that I was really disappointed, and that we were leaving, and we left.

So here's the thing, am I wrong? If I'm wrong I will drop it and not be upset or push the issue, if I'm not wrong though, I want them to honor the coupon. I think that legally, they cannot offer a price and then not honor the coupon unless you sign a contract when it doesn't say anything like that anywhere! I don't know an attorney that I could call and ask them this very important question, so I need anyone's expertese that can offer it - is this legal? I won't let it drop until I find out if it's legal and if it isn't, they WILL honor the coupon. They sent the coupon to the wrong person cause I WILL NOT sign a contract and I absolutely expect them to honor the coupon and will push it until I'm either told that they don't have to, or they honor the coupon!

Sunday, August 15, 2010


I was scanning facebook and a friend of the family (Reed Gunnell) had posted this. I was moved to tears and was very touched and wanted to share it. There are SO many times when we are lifted up by not only our Heavenly Father, but those around us that love us. It's something that I needed to be reminded of.

Friday, August 13, 2010

I guess some of us are meant to work!

As a small child when someone asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up it was always the same answer "a plain old mom". That never really changed. I went to college to get married (obviously a poor mind set) and when my marriage to Mike was not successful, I found myself back in college getting a teaching degree so that I could support myself and my kids. However, I was deeply remorseful that I was not going to be at home to be a plain old mom and felt like I was robbing my children of what they needed most - me. There was a A LOT of guilt while I was in school full time just thinking about working, which led to poor decision number 2. I married Casey, in part so that I would be able to stay home with my kids. Bad idea.

Anyway, here I am, 37 years old and last year, after my divorce from Casey in 2008, I went back to work. I was really angry that I was in this position and had to leave my girls to fend for themselves each morning and get themselves off to school. I cried daily for weeks each time I dropped Sammy off at the babysitter and the guilt was overwhelming. It almost killed me.

However, I soon realized that the girls were doing just fine in the mornings getting themselves up and ready, and that Sammy was having fun each day playing with his little friends. I started to let some of the guilt go and by mid-year, had realized that this was my life. I could go through it punishing myself with guilt each day, or I could accept what was my life and be grateful that I was able to work and support my children and that I had kids that were so responsible and a good babysitter for Sammy. I realized that teaching was no longer a transitory position where I was just waiting for marriage to come along again, but it was now a career for me. My teaching changed and my attitude about being a working mom changed.

By the end of the year, however, I was ready for summer and ready to be at home with my kids. That is no longer the case I'm sorry to say! I CAN'T wait to go back to work next Monday. I LOVE the structure that it provides in my life and realize that rather than just surviving each day with my kids as I have done this summer, when I work, I LOVE being with my kids when I get home and look forward to just sitting down with them at the dinner table to enjoy their company and hear about their day. I eat better, I sleep better, I take better care of myself and my kids, and I am happier when I am actually with my kids.

I'm sure that most stay at home moms aren't like me, and probably enjoy their kids most of the time, but I guess I'm not one of them and need that time away from them each day to really love being with them each evening. I love going to work and feeling like I am part of society and maybe, just maybe, helping some of the kids I teach. I enjoy the challenge of trying to be a better teacher and get those kids to want to learn. I don't love getting up before the sun, but you know what, there are a lot worse things.

So the guilt of having to leave my kids each morning has completely gone. Now I just feel guilty that I have accepted that I am a better mom when I go to work!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

No more Mr. Nice Guy

Do you ever get the feeling that you just want to grab your hair and rip it out because your kids just won't keep their rooms clean, and it trickles out into the hallway and the towels that you just washed are found lying on the bathroom floor in a puddle of water and foot long hairs? I am SO done just ignoring it and asking nicely. I am SO sick of walking upstairs to put Sammy to bed in his extremely tidy and perfectly clean bedroom and having to step over crap. There is just crap everywhere and I am SO SO SO sick of it!!!!

Anyone who really knows me knows that I spend a considerable amount of time and money decorating my home. Because I have so little money I have to be very creative and work a lot harder than I would if I just could go out and buy things or have them done. But, the last two weeks, I put my creativity to work and Katy and Jane have amazing rooms, minus drapes since they are totally out of my budget at this point! I'm not kidding when I say that other than milk and bread, I didn't buy food so that I could buy paint. Pathetic!

YOu would think that they would take care of it, knowing how much time was invested and the sacrifice involved on my part financially - WRONG! They don't care. I think that they actually think that they are entitled to a beautiful home because it's all I have ever given them. Their rooms have always looked like they could be from a Pottery Barn catalogue and they think that that is the expectation. They think that everyone's dresser is bursting with clothes and I'm tired of. I'm tired of giving them so much and them not taking care of it. All I have asked them for this week is to clean their room and do their simple chores. Do you think that they have done that? Ok, Jane has done a number of her chores, but mediocre at best! Katy, nothing, and the room that I so tirelessly worked on last week, you can't even see the floor.

So, this weekend when they are off at their dad's and leave their rooms a mess, like they do daily, I will go in and take everything that isn't put away. If their bed isn't made perfectly the way I make it, the bedding is gone. If their shoes aren't strait in their closet, they are gone. If clothes are not put away neatly (folded), I'm taking them. I'm taking everything that they don't seem to care about. If they cared, they would put it all away and take care of it right? I'm tired of feeling like I sacrifice to give them beauty and comfort and nice clothes and have it all thrown in my face when I ask them to just take care of it. I'm done being Mr. Nice Guy and just turning a blind eye saying that if they want to live in a pig sty that's their problem. It isn't their problem, it's mine when I have to go and buy them new clothes cause the ones they have are thrashed. It's my problem when I spend hours and hours and what little money I have to decorate their rooms, and then can't even see them. It's my problem when the bathroom begins to smell like rotten clothes and water and when the hallway has more garbage in it then carpet!

This is my problem and I'm fixing it come Saturday. I would do it today, and maybe I will, but I don't want them to see it coming. I'll take a picture of everything that I take away from them and post it!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Mazatlan was great!

Funny. I looked forward to this trip for MONTHS! Don't get me wrong, it was fabulous. Parasailing, boat rides, lazy days on the beach, music festivals, and on and on. It was all great, but by about day 5, I was ready to come home to my kids. I missed them so much. I think that the only things that would have made this trip better were three little things called Kate, Jane, and Sammy!

Friday, June 4, 2010

Not the way I wanted to end my day Yesterday!

So I found a BBQ on KSL for $50 and have been looking for a decent gas grill since I moved. This fit the bill so I borrowed Sam's truck and Katy and I headed off to get it. All was well and I returned the truck to Sam around 9pm. Anyway, after seeing Sam's amazing job of finishing the basement (totally impressed by the way), I headed home.

I was tired, of course. I don't know how many of you do this, but when I pull up to a red light I look a the little blinking cross-walk sign to see if the little man is there or if the hand is blinking. If the hand is blinking I know that the light will soon change and at 9:30 or so I was wanting to just get home and go to bed. So I pull up to this light needing to turn left onto the main road in Roy (utah). I was the first car there, so nobody was infront of me unfortuntely. A police car was right next to me turning right. Of course I noticed that and then looked at the cross walk symbol to see how long I was going to be at the light. The red hand was showing, but not blinking. What does that mean? Who knows?

All of a sudden I heard a crash and sparks were flying down the street. Let's just say that I sat ther motionless trying to figure out what had just happened. Have you ever wondered what you would do or how you would react if you witnessed an accident? I have and I now know. After about 30 seconds of bewilderment, I backed into the seven11 on the corner and jumped out of the car. I was SO happy that the cop was right there and saw the whole thing with me and got to the victim before me. I ran over there to the man that was foolishly riding a motorcycle without a helmet. The cop and another man that was on the phone at the seven 11 were attending to the poor man who lie there in a crumpled mess with his face mangled and his head spewing blood. His motorcycle was at least 20 yards away from him down the road destroyed with pieces shrewn from the point of impace DIRECTLY IN FRONT OF WHERE I WAS AT THE LIGHT all the way to where the bike lay. The car that hit him while turning left (motorcycle turned left and car was coming through the intersection) didn't even realize what had happened. It was two teenage boys that luckily pulled over and didn't quite know how to handle the situation. I almost felt more sorry for the driver who couldn't have been more than 17. I think he was vomitting from shock. The passanger looked as though he had seen a ghost, as I"m sure I did too.

I sat and had to watch as the sirens all started gathering and the paramedics worked on this poor man crying in pain. I was glad that he was at least conscious. It took them quit some time to get him into the ambulance and then he was gone. I, of course, had to fill out the statement and tell the cops what I saw, which was absolutely nothing. I heard the impact and saw things flying and then saw the effects of what all happened so quickly. I was shaking and couldn't drive myself home for about 20 minutes after it happened. When I finally got home, I just broke down and cried. I felt so horrible for everyone of the poor people involved. For the man that now lay in a hospital getting fixed or pronounced dead, his family getting the dreaded phone call after wondering why there husband and father hadn't come home when expected. For the poor boy that hit him wondering what just happened and how he had just hit a man and now had to live with that and his family trying to figure out how to handle the situation and comfort their son and legal ramifications that come with all of it.

I sat there and had a few thoughts as I cried and tried to collect myself. First, how life is so fragile. That man and his family had no idea that that may have been the last day of life for him. I'm sure he was just out on a nice evening ride and heading home and never made it. Second, how incredibly grateful that I was okay, that the motorcycle went strait down the road rather than right into my windshield, which the cops were shocked didn't happen. I was grateful to have made it home to see another day with my children. Third, I thought that I never wanted my dad to ever get on his motorcycle again and was certain that if he had seen this man that was just about his age lying there in a pool of blood with a broken body, he would immediately sell his harley, no matter how much fun it was. Sex is fun, but I don't do it because it's a bad idea for my moral and physical well-being at this point in my life. Sometimes we have to give up things that we love to protect ourselves and our families. I also vowed to NEVER get on a motorcyle again and to the best of my ability will NOT allow my children to ever be on one either, helmet or not, you are TOO exposed and just go flying down the road with broken legs, arms, and more. No thanks, not on my watch! And lastly, I went to bed and said a prayer, praying for everyone invovled, that the man would be okay, that his family would be comforted, and that the boy that was driving the car would also be comforted along with his family. Then I went and found 1/2 a valium that I had left over from a recent surgery (my tummy sure looks nice) and went to bed. As soon as I woke up the thoughts of what I witnessed came pouring back into my mind.

I haven't been able to shake the somberness of the situation and still feel the effects of witnessing that last night. I wouldn't wish that on anyone. It's a horrific thing to be the witness to an accident like that and I hope to never see anything like that again.

However, I now know how I would react if I witnessed a bad accident. I did just what I hoped I would after the few seconds of shock. I did the right thing and if that police officer hadn't been right there, or the man that had been on the phone, I'm sure that I would have been the person right there trying to comfort a man broken, lying there in pieces.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

I am in a new home and have had to really tighten my belt. It's been a difficult transition, and for anyone that knows anything about me, I have some flaws (shocker I know). One is that I love shopping and another is that I HATE dealing with money. I'm just one of those people that feels like money is a necessary evil that should just always be there rather than a source of stress. So, I never really balance my accounts, and just always kind of know what I have and am usually about right. But, this month has been hard since I have had to face two of my weaknesses, shopping and money. I can no longer shop freely and can no longer ignore my money because I need to know that it's going to be there to pay the bills the next month! I've been looking for way to REALLY save some money so that I don't feel the pinch so much, not so that I can shop more oddly enough.
About 18 months ago I started couponing and at first was really into it. It did save me money and my stockpile of groceries was getting pretty big. Then I started working and quit, for the most part, couponing. Yeah, I would still use them if it was a spectacular deal, but life got busy so couponing fell to the wayside. Not any longer my friends. On my blog there is a link to freebies and deals - yes it's a blog that is no longer updated, but the links on the left hand side link you to a world that was previously unknown to me and has become somewhat addicting. I now get free samples in the mail almost daily and print amazing coupons and learn all sorts of cool things. I check it a few times a day while I'm at work and it's no biggie at all. I had convinced myself that I just wasn't the coupon type until this last week when I started reading peoples experiences that take it seriously - I mean REALLY seriously. They save about $10,000 a year with couponing! Couponing! REALLY?! I started to read more and learn more and want to know more, after all, who can't use an extra $10,000 a year? I can. I would be happy if it was just $5000 a year. Heck, I'd be happy to have an extra $1000 a year. So I decided to once again try this couponing thing seriously, not just 1/2 way, but all the way.
So, I ordered a book that the "Krazy Coupon Lady" wrote that is actually very good and has some amazing insights, and here goes the really crazy part for me - I just subscribed to recieve 5, yes 5 sunday papers. It's only $20 a month and I figure I can easily save that much using the coupons. So, as the Krazy coupon lady put it, is it worth spending an hour once a week, and taking a little more time grocery shopping to save an average of $700 a month? I think it is and I'm going to try it.
So, I'm going to start growing my little money tree and am curious and excited to see how it will work and how much money I can really grow :)
I will keep you all posted, but if you see me in the grocery store with a huge binder of coupons and looking ridiculous, just ask yourself, would you walk down the aisle looking silly if you knew it was going to save you thousands of dollars? Heck, I would do a lot more for a lot less!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

SO SO SO Yummy and Naughty

The other night Jane wanted to make a snack. Let me qualify this by saying that Jane is like me and always wants a snack that is a dessert. So, as usual I was exhausted after working all day and didn't want to either help her make something or clean up a huge mess that she inevitably would leave behind. So to we went to find a simple peanut butter bar (the good thing about having a daughter that wants to make treats is that I can convince her that she really wants to make something that I want without her realizing it). Into the kitchen she went and 30 minutes later, heaven was born! I have to say that these peanut butter bars were the BEST treat I have EVER had and we, as a family (Sam did more than his fair share) had no problem eating an entire 9x13 pan of them in about 3 days! So here is the recipe for you all to enjoy as much as we did.

1/2 cup margarine
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
2 cups powdered sugar
1 1/2 cups peanut butter (creamy)

Mix and press that into a 9x13 (we used a little smaller pan to make them thicker, but I would make it in the 9x13 next time - they were too thick in the smaller pan)

In the microwave melt 1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips with 4 Tablespoons peanut butter, stirring about every 30 seconds until it's smooth.

Spread it over the bars and refrigerate for an hour, then get ready to dive in.

They are really rich, but you won't have any problem shoving them down!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Maybe I finally have made it in this world!

Before is above and below is after

For those of you that don't know, I recently purchased and moved into a townhome. It's a whopping 10 minute walk from my parents house. Any of you that know me well, know that I am not content in my own home unless is perfect and fits the picture that I have in my imagination of what it should look like. So, I have repainted the entire main floor and part of the upstairs, and have done a lot of work. The sellers were finishing the basement into a master bedroom suite, and I told them not to bother getting a formica top for the vanity, that I was just going to use granite. So, I had the granite people come and asked them about remnants. Well, it turns out that it was such a fabulous deal that I figured I would get them throughout my entire house. That of course meant that I had to have a fabulous sink rather than the dorky $50 stainless steel one, which of course meant that I needed an amazing faucet to go with the fabulous sink and the gorgeous granite countertops! Well, they installed the granite Friday. I spent Thursday night ripping out all the old countertops with some help from a friend and a neighbor that was kind enough to come unhook the disposal (he's a plumber and in my ward). It's Sunday and the plumber can't come until tomorrow night, so we are without sinks other than the one upstairs in the kids bathroom that I was able to rehook up and install. My basement sink needs some pipes and the 1/2 bath sink hole cut in the granite is too small. So, the table is stacked with dirty dishes and I can't wait to get the sinks all hooked back up! However, I LOVE the countertops. Now that I have granite I guess that I have finally made it in this world! It doesn't get any better than granite countertops!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

I'm turning 37 tomorrow and quite frankly have been a little down. However, my view on how bleak my life was changed drastically last night when I was given some bad news about someone else's life. It put things in perspective as the tears rolled down my face hearing this sad news. I no longer felt sorry for myself, but wondered how in the world I would cope with this tragedy and my heart went out to the sweet family that is going through it. I am so grateful for my healthy children and so grateful that I am healthy too. I have a lot to be grateful for and sometimes I get so busy and caught up in my life and the chaios that can surround it, that I forget to see the beauty of my own life. Then something comes along that slaps me in the face and once again I become balanced - if only for a few days. Life is sweet and every day is something to cherish. Every minute I spend with my kids, whether they are driving me nuts or not, is something I need to be so grateful for. When I get in my car each morning and it starts, rather than being bummed that I have to go to work at 6:45, I need to just be grateful I have such a great car and that it turns on every single morning. I have a beautiful home and I bought it myself - how blessed am I that I can earn enough money to buy my family a home. So it's not a mansion, but it's beautiful and it's mine. I'm grateful that I just wake up each morning. And when I walk up the stairs to get Sammy and the girls up for the day, the beauty I see in each of their faces is something to treasure. My life is so good. I have so much to be grateful for and I need to express it to people, to God, and to my children. Thank you everyone, for enriching my life and helping me get through it. I couldn't do it without your help. My life is beauty.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Oh the fun of a Mac and boredom!

It's pretty funny what a little boredom and a Mac can create! We were laughing pretty hard. It's amazing how ugly and deformed we look! We are almost unrecognizable.

Friday, February 5, 2010

My boy is never farther than 3 feet away from me after work and insists on sitting on the counter while I make dinner. This particular night I was using shredded cheese, which he happens to LOVE. It's a good look for him, don't you think?
This is SO Katy. She pulled some other choice faces, but I thought this one captured her very well.
It may look like the boy is asleep, but he isn't. We were laughing and playing and Katy took this.
He is the BIGGEST hambone and this is his picture face. I wish that he would just smile!
I accidentally added this twice. Good thing he's so cute!
This happens to be one of my all time favorite shots! It was christmas day and he was waiting to go to his dads so he's wearing his little backpack that he always takes, his yellow hat that he always wears, and then wanted his basketball hoop, so hooked it on the strap across his chest from his backpack. It was very clever and so cute! He never missed a shot!