Friday, August 29, 2008

Creature the couch potato

Sorry, this is another cat post. I realize I'm a freak about my cats - but I can't seem to help it! I can only imagine how I would be with a dog!

But this is really cute.

The tv was on Animal Planet and I was doing other things. I happened to look over at Creature and saw that he was mesmerized by the kangaroos on tv. A commercial came on and he closed his eyes for a minute. When the show came back on - he opened his eyes and watched it again!

Here he is. The shot is fuzzy because I was trying to be discreet. I didn't want him to look away. (Okay, the real reason is because I'm camera challenged).

(Isn't he the cutest cat in the world? And even if you hate cats, which so many people do, you have to concede that he is at least cuter than most cats. Right? You do agree, don't you? Come on, I can take it).

Thank you for indulging me in my cat-obsessed post. I will wait at least a week before I post about him again.
Do your pets do funny, almost human type things?

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Todd's hair-o-rama

I was inspired by Mother Goose's post and wanted to share the love. Here is my dear husband in all of his glory. Vote for your favorite hairstyle and while he's sleeping, I'll get out my shears...

Original pic...
I call this next picture Todd's wannabe "Snape" look...

Lookin' good, babe!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Good times, indeed!

Good things are happenin' around these here parts. Not only did the human-caused (grr) fire get doused (well, mostly)....

But my cute kids started school and liked their classes (for the most part)...

And, Connor got his braces off last Friday (can you see him just practically oozing with happiness and being more than willing to smile for me?)...

And, I love this next piece of good news.

But, please don't think I'm a horrible mother.

Oh, but I really was so horribly mean.

But to preface, Elora really deserved it! She takes full advantage of April Fool's Day and any other opportunity to scare, torment, tease, shock, or terrorize her family (especially me)!

Okay. So, the story goes like this. I was helping Todd trouble-shoot our failed air-conditioning unit (yes, failed! As in - failed in 100° temperatures - PFFT!) in the basement over the weekend (okay, actually I wasn't helping him trouble shoot - let's be honest here - I was just holding the flashlight). I happened to noticed the ugly creature (no, not the cat. And have you noticed that I'm the queen of parentheses today?) in the corner. I had forgotten about this ugly specimen and decided to put him to good use. See below....

Meet Bob.

Well, as luck would have it, Elora's room is in the basement. And she was gone with her friends. And wouldn't be home until about 1 in the morning - when it was very very dark.

You can probably imagine where this is going. MEAN, huh?! Sooooo cruel that it makes me giggle just thinking about it. Seriously laughing here.

When she came home from her outing with her friends, she went down to her very dark room and found good old Bob hanging in the doorway.

She said she screamed and karate-chopped Bob.

And again I assert - I'M NOT A BAD MOTHER!

(I should probably mention here that Elora declared war with me and scared me with Bob the next night - and I screamed louder - but that's beside the point).

Getting back to the original point of this post leads me to the most joyous event of all!!

My dear, sweet, wonderful husband has repaired the stupid air-conditioner and life has become wonderful again!

And Creature the cat is happy - and that's all that really matters!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Fire on the mountain - part 2

Well, the fires have died down - thank goodness!! It was very interesting for a while there. Apparently the fires came fairly close to some homes and people were evacuated. No homes have been destroyed but it was too close for comfort. Thanks for your phone calls and emails. Love you guys!

Here is a view of the fires tonight.

A few hours ago.


Apparently everyone driving down our hill was just as interested in the fires as I was.

Here is a view from Connor's school. (Yes, we really do live this far away from schools. Grrr!!)

Hey, I found the Microsoft Paint program which showcases my absolute inability to draw. Straight arrows are apparently too complicated! LOL.

But moving on....

I hate that the beautiful hills have been destroyed by fire but glad no one was hurt!

Waaaaay too close. This temple is still under construction.

View from Larissa's school.

Our community's fire station - under construction.

Oh, the irony.

Fire on the mountain

There is a fire burning on a mountain a few miles from our home right now. It has created quite the attraction as a lot of people in the neighborhood (including me, Elora, and Creature) are outside taking pictures. We are okay - it's still far enough away that I'm not concerned about it reaching our little hill.

Interestingly, I was working on something on the computer and decided to check the news. I read the story about the fire and Elora and I looked out our back window and saw this photo. The second photo is two blocks away from my home. I'll post more later - gotta go get my kids from their first day of school!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Blogging Slump and Change

I've been in a blogging slump, I guess you could say. Hopefully I'm back for good this time!

Do you ever blog slump? I suppose it's good to take a break every once in a while.

We've also been busy with back to school shenanigans - clothes shopping, cleaning rooms, cleaning the house, school supplies shopping, orthodontist checkups, registration, school tours, etc etc.

And we've been busy with non back to school shenanigans like exercising (Yep, I'm still going), job hunting (looks like a temporary job is in order), family get-togethers etc etc.

I think I'm a little sad that it's time for school to start - which means the end of summer (and warm weather). When my kids were younger I couldn't wait for school to start so I could have some order again. But my kids have been gone a lot this summer and I haven't had enough time with them. (I never thought I'd hear myself say that one!). We haven't played enough games or had enough heart-to-heart talks.

'Tis life, I suppose. Time rolls forward and we make the best with what we have. We learn to welcome the change that comes with the seasonal winds and stop wishing our children were younger.

As mothers we hope for the best for our kids, don't we?! We hope our kids will do well in school. We hope they will be involved - and busy (so they will stay out of trouble). We hope they will want to come home and give us hugs. We hope they will drive safely!! We hope they will stay strong against peer-pressures and will make good friends. We hope they will develop talents and gain confidence in themselves. We hope we taught them well.

School starts Monday and then I will only have 4 years left until my youngest graduates. Connor starts high school this year. Ouch. He's learning to drive. Double ouch! He may go to his first homecoming or prom. OUCH!!

I will take a deep breath, say lots of prayers, give lots of hugs, and hope they have their best year yet! I will try to embrace these changes - but I make no promises!

Are you ready for school to start?

Friday, August 15, 2008

Catching up

I've missed my blogging friends terribly! I feel so out of sorts when I'm not posting about 'stuff'.

Here's what's been happenin'!

Todd's cute nephew Chris got married. It was sooo beautiful up there! He and Toni looked so happy.

Monday was Todd's competition shoot-out. It was Corporate Games at his work and they took bronze. You go husband!

Check out my husband's mad shooting skills.

*The author of this blog would like readers to know that her husband would never shoot furry, cute animals. He's a 'target' man.

I'm thinking a Corporate Games men's calendar is in order. Here are January, February and March.

We registered Connor for HIGH SCHOOL on Wednesday. Holy cow - he only has three years left. My smart kid has some awesome classes!

Wednesday was also Connor's 16th birthday. Yeah, a bragging blog will be heading this way soon.

I LOVE this picture!

And he received a very nice birthday present - he gets his braces off next Friday! Woot!

The dentist strapped his mouth closed for the last two weeks. It's been nice.

Yesterday I had lunch with my hilarious and fun friends Lorrie and Michelle (MCF). Of course, I left my camera in the car...but you can check out MCF's blog here.


Todd just called with a notable tone of interest to his voice as he told us about some breaking news. Apparently Big Foot and his clan have been found.
See this story for more fascinating details.

We're heading off to the hills again for another camping attempt. Hopefully we'll stay for more than an hour this time.

I'll be sure to blog if we spot the infamous Big Foot. Have a super weekend!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Mastering the subject

As a young girl I was quite imaginitive, as most girls are. I loved dress-ups and dolls and stories and making shapes out of clouds while staring at the big, blue sky.

I was also easily distracted. One day I would decide to clean my room - spotless! It was going to be sooo clean and make my mom so proud. But my mom would usually find me watching a Brady Bunch marathon instead. Oh, but then Gilligan's Island was on the other channel so I would have to flip back and forth between the stations. Then a friend would come over to play. And the Jones' had open plunge at their swimming pool that I couldn't miss. Then of course, I had to play on my Lite Brite for a while. By the time I would finally make it to my room, it was time for bed.

Where did the time go?! Remember those lazy summer days as a child?

It seems that I haven't quite grown out of the "distracted" phase because my time escapes me daily and I find myself asking "What did I actually accomplish today"?!

I seem to be drawn to the internet like a mosquito to a bug zapper. I'm drawn to the light!! Ooooh. The pretty pretty lights.

I have projects that I have put on the back burner for a while now but it's become critical that I finish them.

I once received advice to "Master the subject at hand." I think I'll heed those words this week.

So, I'm grounding myself from the computer (mostly, not completely....don't be silly) until I get some of these pressing projects done.

You may not find me blogging this week. I'll try to be back as soon as I can because your blogs make my day!! I have more fun reading your blogs than I do posting on my own blog! My husband thinks it's funny that I just laugh and laugh at some of the things my blogging friends write about.

Be back soon!!

Wish me luck on getting stuff finished! Have a super week!

Thursday, August 7, 2008


Remember how I blogged about getting ready to go to the Grand Canyon and even left a few oozy comments on your blogs about my excitement?

Friends and family may recall me saying something like, "Golly, I've always wanted to go to the Grand Canyon. I can't wait!"

Reservations were made, maps purchased, and the route was planned. Wayyy in advance.

Here is a picture of our Grand Canyon trip.....

That's right. We didn't go. We used the trip money for a family gift instead.

Literally the night before we were supposed to leave, Todd and I bailed. We started thinking that since we combined two families when we married - why not get a family gift?!

So there you have it. And now I really really want to go to the Grand Canyon. Soon you'll hear me say...."Golly, I've always wanted to go to the Grand Canyon. I can't wait!" But hey - my kids are happy.

In all seriousness - I just didn't feel like going. Weird! Me not wanting to go on a road trip is just downright strange.

However, we did make alternate plans.

After the girls left for their mom's house, Todd and I decided to go camping in the Uinta's and scout out some wild animals - our favorite pasttime! We are crazy about finding animals in the wild. We would never hurt one - we just like to boast about them (like - "I remember back in 2003 when there was that there pack of wild, snarling hedgehogs circling us. We barely made it out alive!") and post gazillions of pictures of them on this blog.

Before we left, we stopped at the store for supplies - spotlight, lighter, fattening and sugary treats, ice, and drinks. Then we hit the road and headed up Mirror Lake Highway.

No, we didn't stop here along the way.

We found a dirt road off the beaten path and happened upon two park rangers.

Us: Hi. Are there any good campsites up ahead?
Them: Oh sure. There's plenty. But do you know about the bear?
Us in unison with our ears suddenly perked up: A bear, you say?
Them: Well some ATV'rs spotted a black bear near here earlier today.

Our car spewed gravel and dirt as we sped off in search of a campsite and a bear.

I had the camera ready. Todd was in eagle-eye mode.

We searched. And searched. And searched. No bear. I started to get cranky.

So what did we do?

We set up camp....

...and realized we forgot a few things like the firewood and the tarp that goes over the tent that protects against rain. Todd launched into survival-mode and started looking for firewood for a campfire.

We couldn't get the lighter to work. Todd's attempt at alternate flame sources failed miserably.

Then we noticed the rain clouds ahead. While I really wanted to see a bear in the wild - fears of a possible bear attack in the middle of the night haunted my thoughts.

So, after being at the campsite for less than an hour, we packed up and went home.

A weird weekend of indecision and changed plans for sure!

But we did go hiking up to Dog Lake and Lake Catherine the next day and saw a total of FIVE moose. We didn't realize they were sitting 20 feet away from us while we ate our sandwiches. Cool!

The girl moose kept checking this guy out. Hot stuff, I tell you.

So, no Grand Canyon, no bear, and no camping, but I spent the weekend with Todd - which made it fun!

Tell me - would you camp out knowing there was a bear in the area?

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

He's home!

Connor came home tonight looking tired and jet-lagged and hungry and showed us souvenirs and gave us hugs and pet the cats and had a bite to eat and admired our new tv that replaced our Grand Canyon trip (a blog in the making) and then said he was tired and was going to bed.

But the whole point of this short little post is found in the first three beautiful words of the run-on sentence above. My Europe-traveling son is home. Now maybe I can get some sleep and stop worrying. Life is good.

Good night all.

Monday, August 4, 2008

A decade together

Ten years ago Todd and I got hitched. Ten YEARS! Wow, time has really flown by because it certainly hasn't felt like a decade to me.

This is one of our first pictures together as newlyweds. Sorry for the poor quality, I had to scan it.

Connor and I lived in a little two bedroom apartment in Salt Lake when we met Todd. I'm not exaggerating when I say he swept me off my feet. I was enamored by his passion for life. He loved boating and flying and was mostly raising three children by himself. And they adored him! That spoke volumes to me. Connor and I fell in love with him and his kids (Darren, Elora, and Larissa).

Interestingly, Connor and I were alone for 5 years and all we knew was each other. When I married Todd we went from a quiet family of two to a bustling family of six!

This is one of our first family pictures.

We are nothing if not goofy.

We had some interesting times the first few years. Like the time I opened the freezer and found a dead snake. Darren found roadkill and wanted to skin it. Yeah, that was fun. NOT!

And living with little girls was a new concept for me. One night I tucked Larissa into bed (she was 4 at the time) and she said she wanted to talk. I asked her what she wanted to talk about. "I want to talk about butterflies and sparklies and glitter and rainbows." I'm sure I had a 'deer in the headlights' look. Connor usually just wanted to be tickled. I didn't know how to talk about glitter!

There were hard times too. Todd's business went under and he found a job that worked him graveyard shifts. I worked days. With four young kids at home and Todd and I never seeing each other - it was rough at first. One night Todd was at work and the kids and I were home alone. It was raining and lightning outside. I couldn't sleep but thought the kids were sleeping fine. I heard knocks at my bedroom door and found eight scared eyes looking up at me. We went into the living room and said a prayer. Then we sang songs together. This was a very special night for me and went a long way toward us all bonding together. I'll never forget it.

Life has gone on for us through the good times and the bad. I love my family so very much and I'm so thankful that Todd and I found each other.

Another goofy picture of the fam. We are with Todd's parents in this picture.

We celebrated our anniversary with the girls. We went to one of our favorite restaurants, Tepanyaki's. Mmm!

My dear husband gave me pearls. He said that he has been wanting to give me pearls since I had my thyroid removed last December. He said that he hopes the pearls will detract from my scar and I won't feel as self-conscious. Sweet!

Todd is a wonderful husband to me.
He is never unkind. Always caring, loyal and hardworking.
He is logical when I'm emotional. Serious when I'm goofy. Steadfast when I'm impatient. Motivating when I'm discouraged. He is my rock and makes me so happy!

He even loves Bryce Canyon. What more could I ask for?! I am the luckiest gal, indeed.