November 28, 2009

Mesa Temple Lights

We have a tradition of going to Organ Stop Pizza for dinner and then to the Mesa Temple to see all the beautiful lights! Phil and I were laughing, because we always seem to go the day after we put up our own lights...and man ours look like a little sad in comparison! Well what can we honestly expect?! Hours of work and hundreds of people working on them vs. Phil taking charge outside by himself for a few hours! Ha Ha! But it does inspire us...we ALWAYS find some little thing to say, "Next Year" we'll do that at our house! This year it was the flowers made of lights! I even took a picture so that I could see how they were made. Phil could see the wheels turning in my head as I was taking this picture...then he just started cracking up! I guess I'm a little predictable!
Busted! Caught pulling a "Helen Keller" off my salad plate! It is pretty dark in the pizza joint, because there's this huge light and music show going on all around you. So I pretty much just blinded her with this shot! Ouch:)

November 27, 2009

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas...even Berlin!

Thanksgiving's over...time for Christmas! I'm sorry, but I am one of those that just LOVES to keep her decorations up all month long! It seems to take so long to put everything up, that it needs to stay around for a while! So we ALWAYS start taking down our fall decorations on Thanksgiving night, so by the next day...we're ready for Christmas!

We put up 3 trees again this year. I have to "feel" Christmas everywhere in my house! So we put one up in my front room, one in my family room, and the kids is up in the loft! I give them COMPLETE creative control on their tree, (so they won't touch mine!) They even put the tree together this year! Can you tell? It's not leaning THAT much! Ha Ha! We got this tree like 3 years ago on sale. If you would have seen the picture on the box of this tree, or the price they originally wanted for would probably win an award for "Most deceptive picture of a tree"...seriously! The picture looked so full and pretty...oh well, it really is the perfect tree for our loft! SO I'm very glad we got it...

I've been done with gifts for almost a month now! This year, Phil gave me our budget and I planned, shopped, and wrapped pretty much everything by Nov. 15th! I just HATE waiting until the last minute! I ALWAYS end up forgetting something on my list, so this year, when that happens...I won't have a bunch of other things to get too! I have to wrap my gifts when I get them or my older ones will find them! They are getting so smart! Plus, if I take them all over to Shavonne's house to be hidden, I'll just have way too many presents to wrap all at once! Ugh. The wrapping is seriously my least favorite part...unless I'm only doing 1 or 2 at a time...then I actually enjoy making them look pretty! My mom always put bows on our presents, so I've continued the tradition. I'm not nearly as talented in the bow department as she is, but I get an "E" for effort!

I'll even show off Berlin's new Christmas outfits she's been wearing, that her Nana sent her from Pinkbowtique! Aren't they so cute!?! Phil took this shot, so her headband was missing and he didn't notice:( The ruffles on the shirt and socks are just too cute!

She wanted to be held a lot today, so when I put her down...her world pretty much ended. I wish she was happier in this one! She looks so adoreable in her outfits! I LOVED the little leggings! She has the cutest candy cane legs ever!I'll need to get one of her shirt too, but her little bib was too cute! And EVERYONE that knows Berlin, knows she NEEDS the bib protection!!! Thanks Nana!

November 26, 2009


This year Thanksgiving brought a lot of "firsts" with it! It was the 1st time that we only had our family eating with us, it was the 1st time we didn't serve a turkey, and it was the 1st time Berlin joined us at the table (in her high chair of course:)
We have always had family over for Thanksgiving every year, but this year my parents were going to help bring Sky and Blake some "Thanksgiving love" in Utah, since they couldn't break away. I remember those days away from stunk!

Since Phil isn't a fan of turkey, and I obviously don't eat any of it, we decided to ditch the Turkey and stuffing for Prime Rib this year. I wanted it to be just as nice as if we were having company over...well almost as nice. I skimped on a few things like glass serving dishes...but I'll save those for when they are a little older and can appreciate it!
Ever since I could remember, my Aunt Joanie, always made sure EVERYONE had their very own bottle of Martinelli's. That was awesome as a kid! We could drink right out of the bottle at the kids table! Since, in actuality, Phil and I were joining the kids at "their" table, We made them drink from their glasses...atleast until dinner was over!
I also made the classic, cloverleaf rolls that my mom ALWAYS made for Thanksgiving dinner!
For dessert, we ALWAYS have pies from Village Inn, but this year, I asked the kids what kind of pies I should make and they said, "Apple and Chocolate". So I made an apple pie...and my own version of "French Silk"! I didn't know how it would compare to the original, but it so easy to make...and it turned out SUPER yummy! It's not quite as "rich" as the original, which makes it even better in my book:)

For Family Home Evening this week, we made a "Thank You" box, (the kids had full decorative control)and then we each wrote 7 notes. (1 for every person in the family, telling them why you are thankful for them) We thought it would be fun to read them on Thanksgiving...and it was! Okay, a few of them weren't so nice...but what do you expect from siblings?! Phil and I were cracking up most of the time! After a couple of "rude" notes, Phil asked me if it was turning out like I thought it originally would. Ha! Okay, a little more sarcastic than I thought it would be, but still sooo good to add their little personalities into it!

I think my favorite note of all was from Paris.

We had so much fun! I won't say we preferred it to having family over, because of course we LOVE to have family around, but I will say, it still felt like Thanksgiving, which is HUGE! I hope everyone had a HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

November 23, 2009

What's going on around here?

I can't believe how fast time goes by sometimes. Berlin is already 5 1/2 mos! Sometimes I find myself so busy with just the day to day stuff, I forget to just enjoy the "small" things in life!

Berlin is really a great baby MOST of the time. She loves to lay on her tummy or roll around on the floor and just play! I think she's a lot like Boston was! She sucks on her pointer finger knuckle instead of a pacifier! Go figure?! Geez...Phil went into the WRONG profession! We need an orthodontist in the family STAT! Overall we've had 3 Pacifier babies, 2 "hand" babies, and one that didn't take anything! So, I say forget what the books and pediatricians just figure out what they want by themselves! Since my house is NEVER quiet, she rarely get's bored! There's always someone or something close by to keep her entertained! You can tell she hates the flash...but she was playing so sweetly, I had to come and capture a picture!
My kids have this 6th sense about them...they have a way of knowing when mom's pre-occupied with something and pretty much jump on the chance to get into stuff! Why is that? They were watching Scooby Doo in the girls room, or so I thought...
Instead, these little "homeless kids" were down in the kitchen, attacking the pantry! Nice! You can see Madison was the mastermind behind this one...she's already trying to think of a way to blame it on Seattle...who, by the way, has no clue they did anything wrong! They looked so hilarious, I had to take a picture! Since I couldn't keep a straight face, Madison decided it was okay to crack a smile too. I'm not sure which one is worse?!!!? Ahh, just another day in the life of a kid....

November 22, 2009

Pumpkin Spice Roll...

I was in the mood to bake something yummy...but didn't want to go the store to get stuff. I'm sure you're all aware of that feeling, right? Or...maybe I'm just lazy! Anyway I decided to make the pumpkin cookies I made a while back, into a roll! The frosting was super yummy, and the cookies were really cake like already, so I decided to try it out!

I used the exact same recipe...didn't change a thing except, instead of dropping it by rounds on to a cookie sheet, I spread it out onto a lined jelly roll pan! I baked it for around 20 minutes (when a toothpick came out clean) and then immediately flipped it onto a towel dusted with powdered sugar and rolled it up!

I placed it on my wire rack to cool...but it was taking FOREVER to cool off! I know you're supposed to wait for it to be COMPLETELY cool before unrolling it...but I couldn't wait AND Phil was really getting impatient too. Soooo, I unrolled it early. You can see how it has a few cracks in it...but to be honest, our stomachs didn't care! It was delicious! So if you happened to try those cookies, it tasted like those only in a rolled up frosted way! So now I know that recipe works for both...Mission Accomplished.

November 20, 2009

New Moon with the Girls!

So chances are, unless of course you've been living under a rock for the last year or've heard of the "Twilight Series" by Stephenie Meyer. Of course, being a girl, I'm totally into it! Phil bought me the first book in the series about 2 years ago. I finished the first 3 books in about a month...then had to wait with what seemed like the rest of the world for the 4th and final book to be released...Breaking Dawn! It seems like forever ago now! Geez!

So now that the second book of the series, New Moon has been released in theaters, of course I had to go and see it! I personally am not one of those that bought tickets weeks in advance. Nor did I spend hours waiting in line to see the midnight showing Friday morning, or spend gobs of money to meet the Twilight and New Moon casts. I haven't been dreaming about it. (I'm not knocking the people who did...because I know and love several people who have done all of the above!) It's just not my style, but I did make plans a couple of days ago to see it on opening night! Yes, that's an improvement from last years, "Day after the Premier... Afternoon showing"!

Brooklyn, Paris, and I went with a friend of mine, Amy and her daughter, Madison. We thought it would be fun for us all to have a little girl time with the saga! (Not to burst Phil's bubble...I'm still dragging him to the theater, I'm just going to wait a week or two...until the hype dies down!)

It was fun, we decided to go to the 6:15pm showing so we could grab a little grub while standing or sitting in line. We got there around 4:45pm and were about 40th in line or so. Not too bad. We called and ordered Islands to go and Amy was sweet enough to go and grab it while we held our places in line. Unfortunately, we only had about 10 minutes to scarf down our food! It was soooo yummy though! We snuck the fries and ranch in...via my huge diaper bag and continued to snack once we got into the theater...we're such rebels! Ha!

We actually got perfect seats all together, 2nd row from the back! So we were very pleased:) Aside from the childish acts of shushing during the beginning of the film...girls SCREAMING every time Jacob took his shirt off, (which is a ton, btw) and all those screams were usually followed by some guy yelling..."He's gay!" Oh there's always a Jealous Loser around! Seriously! I have to admit...I felt like I was in a 9th grade auditorium watching a high school play sometimes!

Anyway, without giving too much away...I totally liked the film! I thought it stuck pretty closely to the book, and I have to admit...Jacob is pretty hot in the film! Hee Hee! SO I don't care what "Rotten Tomatoes" says!

We had a great time! Thanks Amy and Madison for sharing the laughs!!!

November 13, 2009

Nana's Here!

Since my mom was here for only a few days, and Madison was doing much better, we decided to have a Girls Night Out...we even invited Brooklyn to tag along! She was so excited to hang out with the "Big Girls" while Phil and Greg scored pizza and the rest of the gang at home!

We found this store, new to us, called "Home Goods" over off of Estrella Pkwy. It's attached to TJ Maxx, but it had lots of super cute things! After we found a few sweet things for ourselves at the "Home Section" we crossed over into the regular TJ Maxx. I'm terrrrrible to shop with! Seriously, especially at stores where you have to "dig around" to find a good deal! I always end up finding the most horrible outfits and items in the whole store! Which ends up in me making jokes, having people around us feeling dumb because they thought it was cute, which in turn makes me move to a new area, where I find more "awesome"'s a vicious cycle! Here's our fun at the Sunglass Hut area...oh, these beauties were all "Name Brand", way over priced, (free would have been a stretch), and they all had these HUGE tags that were supposed to deter people from stealing if the styles alone weren't bad enough? WoW!

After shopping, we stopped off at Olive Garden to feel like family...and it worked! Ha! Our poor waiter...who needs kids when you got all of us there? Shavonne knocked over a glass of water in like minutes, which fell all over my mom! Luckily, she was quick and started scooping the water and ice off of her and onto the floor before becoming too soaked! We couldn't stop laughing! Oh I love hanging out with my mom! Sky and Sarah you freaking missed out! Move closer already!! It will be fun to hang out with you both around Christmas again!!! Oh the fun we'll have!! Shavonne got this Pumpkin Dessert...YUM!!! I don't think I would have ordered it...but now that I've tried it, heck yes! It's good!
They have the best Lemon Creme cake ever! I even brought one home for Phil...since he wasn't having quite as much fun as me...I'm sure!