Saturday, December 31, 2011

New Year's Eve Cuteness

 Zoey wouldn't pose for me tonight. She is too busy getting ready to kick off 2012.
In her cute little leggings!
She is getting blessed tomorrow. A perfect start to the year :)

Friday, December 30, 2011


 The boys are out enjoying the beautiful afternoon.
They are on the trampoline.....
 .....and they are eating apple fritters.
  Boys are silly :)

Wait a second.....

Were you all aware that tomorrow is New Year's Eve and that 2012 is nearly here?
If you were, good for you.....I just realized :)

2011 has been an awesome year!

Highlights include:

moving into our house
buying new furniture
refinishing some old furniture
buying a new car
selling an old car
having a baby
hosting Thanksgiving dinner
taking the Palm Springs Tram to the peak
playing on the beach
Max mutton busted in the Spanish Fork rodeo
Max started first grade
Mia started Preschool
Zac split his head open
Zac got pneumonia
Zac rode to the hospital in an ambulance
Zac survived the year!
Mia starred in her first Christmas program
Ty turned 30
Ty got paid to work all year long!
we made new friends
we love our new ward
we have great callings
Ty and I celebrated 8 years of marriage

We have been very blessed this year! I really can't believe it is almost over! I am very much looking forward to 2012. I am excited to start the new year with my family in our home. I hope everyone has had a wonderful 2011. Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Food Blog Love

I love to read food blogs. I love looking at the beautiful food photography and drooling over the amazing recipes that are being posted all of the time! I love the way food bloggers write about their recipes and food in general. I was reading a post this morning over at Une Gamine dans la Cuisine about brownies. The author talked about her great love for brownies and how brownies just "Speak" to her. Brownies speak to me too! They say "Eat me! I am full of chocolate and butter!" 
These people who are so passionate about food seem to be passionate about other areas of their lives as well. They love their families and children, some are passionate about travel or writing, others are decorators or triathlon athletes. I think life should be full of passion. How much better life can be if we are passionate about what we are doing. 
Back to the brownies......Brownies can be simple. You can make a pan and post a picture labeled: Brownies, or you can write a post about the amazing chocolate that was used in the recipe and how the texture of the brownies is fudge like perfection. 
We all could use a little extra zest or zeal in our day. That is what these bloggers give to me. I am thankful for their passion.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Tuesday Tidbits

1. Christmas was grand! I can't believe it's gone away for another year. 

2. I am busy getting ready for New Year's and little Zoey's baby blessing. We have family coming into town for the occasion. 

3. Max, Mia, and Zac are loving the new trampoline. They are jumping from morning until night and playing all sorts of games out there. ( I am loving it too!)

4. The kids haven't seen Ty since Sunday night. He has been very busy at work and we are hoping to get a sighting of him tonight. If not tonight for sure tomorrow!

5. I am making pizza dough and roasting garlic. Looking forward to a yummy dinner :)

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas Morning

 Christmas morning began bright and early at our house. I didn't really mind. I was up and ready for the fun to start.
Mia was up first. She was so excited to come downstairs and discover what had happened during the night. She got to open her stocking gifts while we waited for the boys.
 When the boys were ready it was time to open the packages!
Zackary's favorite present was this Cars set with Lightning Mcqueen and Mac.
 Max got the Lego Batman game. He has been playing Lego Star Wars for months now so we thought he would love this!
 Mia got a playset for all of her Littlest Pet Shop animals.
Everyone was very happy with their Christmas. The big hit of the day was the surprise outside. Santa left a note for the kids telling them that he has left something for them in the backyard.
 A Trampoline!
 They were all out and bouncing by 7:00 this morning.
 Such a happy way to start our Christmas day!
After all of the bouncing and the presents I made hot chocolate. The kids played, I cleaned, and then we all went to church for a fabulous musical Christmas meeting. After church we had a big dinner with friends and family. We are all worn out and feeling so very blessed for such a wonderful day. 

I rejoice in my Savior, Jesus Christ who has made all of the blessings in my life possible. What a wonderful day to celebrate the wondrous possibilities we have been given because our Savior came and because He lives!

Christmas Eve

We spent Christmas Eve at my parent's house in Redlands.
We had a delicious turkey dinner, watched Christmas movies, sang Christmas songs, and watched Zackary perform his own little show!
 We put together fabulous gingerbread houses.
 Ty is super talented when it comes to gingerbread architecture.
 My dad is pretty amazing as well.
Mia was working with him.
 She is such a good little helper :)
 My brother Jamison was working hard to keep up with the competition.
 Sadly his gingerbread house ended up the same way all of mine always do....all in pieces :(
 After the festivities we came home and put the kiddos to bed. Ty and I filled all of the stockings, put out the presents, and ate Santa's treats.
It was a very happy evening!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Our Little Sugarplum

It's Zoey's first Christmas so it is very important that I dress her in silly outfits and make her pose for cute photos.

 I just love this little Miss!
Merry Christmas Baby :)

Friday, December 23, 2011

Merry Christmas

It is hard to believe that Christmas will be here in 2 short days! It has been a wonderful holiday season for us. It was kicked off with the arrival of our new baby girl. She has made this Christmas very special for me. I have tried very hard to make our days merry and bright. We have made and eaten Christmas goodies, crafted Christmas decorations, visited lights, listened to and sang along to an endless stream of Christmas music, and wrapped gifts. I have tried to remind my children of the true meaning of Christmas. I have talked a lot about our Savior, Jesus Christ and His birth. I have tried to teach them that it is becaus e of our Savior that we have reason to rejoice. 
I am so thankful for the Christmas holiday and the constant reminder that Jesus lives! Jesus came! 
I am looking forward to the next few days and I hope I can be a little better as I strive to remember and follow the Savior.  We are so blessed. We have been given so much and I often think about what we can give back this time of year.
I found this quote by Howard W. Hunter and I think He describes perfectly what we can give.

“This year, mend a quarrel. Seek out a forgotten friend. Dismiss suspicion and replace it with trust. Write a letter. Give a soft answer. Encourage youth. Manifest your loyalty in word and deed. Keep a promise. Forgo a grudge. Forgive an enemy. Apologize. Try to understand. Examine your demands on others. Think first of someone else. Be kind. Be gentle. Laugh a little more. Express your gratitude. Welcome a stranger. Gladden the heart of a child. Take pleasure in the beauty and wonder of the earth. Speak your love and then speak it again.”   -Howard W. Hunter

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

cookies for Santa

In the past we have not left cookies out for Santa on Christmas Eve. This year, however, will be different. Little Mia has been constantly reminding me about Santa's need for cookies. Since I know "Santa" very well I picked a recipe I thought he would enjoy.....

I found these Sea Salted Dark Chocolate Chunk Cookies with Bacon on 

Ty, I mean "Santa", is looking forward to Christmas Eve!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

run run as fast as you can......

......We caught ourselves a batch of gingerbread men :)
 The kids have been asking to make gingerbread cookies for about a week now. Today we finally got around to it. It is, after all, Christmas vacation.
 Max and Mia were my helpers in the kitchen.
 I was very impressed with their skills.
 They are so cute :) My little bakers.
 The "baked" men. Hot and fresh from the oven!
At this point I made the frosting and set up the table with candy for decorating.
 We had marshmallows, mini m&m's, chocolate chips, dots, and licorice.
 We got down to business.
 I was again very impressed with the kid's work.
 And with Ty's! He made a gingerbread missionary!
Now we are all full of sugar and spice. We have a container full of gingerbread men and a floor covered in sprinkles. Cookie decorating is complete!

Monday, December 19, 2011

3 weeks

Little Zoey Brooke is 3 weeks old today!
I LOVE her tons :)
She is such a little love. I could hold her all day long.

on the first day of vacation...

We took the kids out to the Victoria Gardens shopping center today. It is one of my very favorite places to shop. I took the girls and Ty took the boys. Mia, Zoey, and I went to William Sonoma and sampled some hot chocolate. We stopped in at "Justice", which is very in if you are a little girl. I bought some new jogging shoes! I strayed from my usual Nikes and bought some Reeboks. We went to Crate and Barrel and found the cutest kid sized mugs. I bought 4 so the kids can have hot chocolate in their own little cups. I finally got myself a food processor. I can't wait to give it a try.
Ty took the boys to the Apple store. They visited the big Christmas tree and then bought caramel apples from the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory. They were eating the apples at the playground when we found them. They shared the apples. We were all very happy.
Next we all went together to the Bass Pro Shop. The kids love seeing the big fish and we always leave with lots of gummy candies.
I love doing a little shopping just for fun right before Christmas. We all had a great time.
Now we are home sitting in front of the fireplace and getting ready to put together all of our friend and neighbor gifts.
I love Christmas break :)

Friday, December 16, 2011

School's Out!

No More School for 2 whole weeks!
Yesterday was Mia's last day of school before Christmas vacation. Her class celebrated by singing carols and having a little gift exchange, followed by a special lunch. Max finished up today. His class did a little performance to Josh Groban's "Believe" at the flag ceremony this morning and then they spent the day eating candy and reading the Polar Express.
The kids are home now and I am thrilled about the break!

Here are some of our plans for the next week before Christmas:

Visit Victoria Gardens for a fun filled shopping trip
Pass out our Christmas cookies

Make some more fudge and caramels for Ty to take to work

Make gingerbread houses and gingerbread men to be decorated and enjoyed

Trip to Trader Joe's

Trip to Micael's

Checking out all of the local Christmas lights

Visiting the Mission Inn

Making candy sleighs

Buy some more stocking stuffers

Make powdered donut snowmen

Make gumdrop garlands

Dip candy canes and marshmallows in chocolate for hot cocoa

I would like to thank my many blogger friends and the Pinterest website for inspiring me with all sorts of fabulous Christmas ideas!

It's going to be a great Christmas Vacation!
What are your plans?

Thursday, December 15, 2011


Today we are making these Peanut Butter Fudge Brownies from Becky Bakes.

Mostly because I wanted to eat some brownie batter.

The brownies are in the oven right now and I am hoping they turn out awesome!

Happy Thursday! aka....Almost Friday :)

All Your Life - The Band Perry

I am loving this song right now. 
That's all any girl really wants right? Just to be loved by one man for all their lives?
I really like my man :)
So glad he likes me too!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

5 On Tuesday

1. Last night Mia starred in her very first Christmas program. She played an angel and she did a great job! It was a very sweet experience to see all of those preschool aged children singing about the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ.

2. Tonight is Max's Christmas program! I am looking forward to another wonderful event. I am also looking forward to tomorrow when this year's Christmas programs will be over :)

3. Zoey is the cutest baby ever.

4. I have spent a lot of the last week in the kitchen baking cookies and making candies to give away for Christmas. It has been a delicious week!

5. Fresh squeezed orange juice is one of my favorite things about living in southern California in the winter time. Oranges and Christmas are a nice combination!

Happy Tuesday!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Breakfast with Santa

 Yesterday morning Max's school hosted a breakfast with Santa. Max had been talking about going all week, so we planned for Ty to take him for a special outing.
 There were pancakes, cinnamon rolls, eggs, hot chocolate, and juice.
They had some fin craft activities for the kids to work on while they waited for Santa to arrive.
Max got to sit with Santa and Mrs. Claus for a little photo shoot. Max has a long list of Christmas wishes this year. Surely this little visit will help them come true :)

Little Miss

 Our little Miss Zoey will be 2 weeks old tomorrow!
She is beautiful and sweet. We all just love her.
I love walking by her crib and finding her all awake, just lying there looking around. Her peaceful personality provides a lot of balance in our home.

Friday, December 9, 2011

These Chocolate Chip Cookies from Dishing the Divine are seriously amazing!
I made a batch to go out with our cookie plates later this month, and today I am making a batch just for the kids and I to enjoy.
This one's a keeper :)

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Classroom Gifts

 Today I put together these little gingerbread man candy holders for Max to pass out to all of his friends at school.
They were super simple to make and I think they turned out great!
(I also have lots of leftover Ghiradelli peppermint bark. Happiness all around!)

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


It is 5:00.
Everyone has their own blanket and a cup of chocolate milk. I highly doubt these three will be making it to bedtime.

Tiny Trees

 I finally bought some powdered sugar and we were able to make our little sugar cone Christmas trees.
 We used marshmallows and coconut for the snow.
 And mini m&m candies for the ornaments on the tree.
This is Mia's tree, while she was still working. She wanted to take advantage of every open space. Mia loves crafty activities and really enjoyed this project. Zackary decided he likes marshmallows and stole as many as he could before running away to watch Toy Story :)