Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Sounds like Christmas!

Brooklyn had her first Christmas Music Program with half of the kindergarten. The kindergarten is so big, they split it into two nights. Sorry the picture is blurry. She's right in the middle in a white shirt.

This is her teacher, Mrs. W. Brooklyn loves her so much!

Here's a little clip of the program. I wish I were back in Kindergarten!

Happy Birthday Big Girl!

I know I'm a little late on posting about her birthday. It was Nov. 25th. Poor girl is going to have to succumb to the holiday rush. Hopefully we won't forget to celebrate her birthday altogether.

She got lots of fun things, especially this cute tutu made by Aunt Holly. She likes to wear it while she's playing by herself.

The funniest part was both grandma's gave her the same birthday card without even knowing it.
Silly grandmas.

A little shy at first . . .

. . . then she got the hang of it.

Happy Birthday little monkey! Hopefully you'll be walking by New Year's!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

What's the weirdest thing you've eaten?

This is mine...

It would be awesome if the 4 people who actually read this blog leave a comment in answer to the title question: What's the weirdest thing you've eaten? That way we can all join the disgusting fun.
I know Mike Rogan is doing pretty well already with chocolate covered scorpions. What else you got?

Friday, November 20, 2009

Mike's Christmas List (updated)

So this is mostly for Kristi and other family but gifts will humbly be accepted from all sources/persons.

First and Foremost:
A Guitar Center Gift Card (link). This is my "happy place". My wife has JoAnn, I have Guitar Center.

MXR Carbon Copy pedal (or another ANALOG delay):

Dress Socks:

I'm one of the few people who likes socks for Christmas. A lot of mine have holes and that stinks. I really would like some darker grey or black (argyle is always a good thing) and brown (not tan).

Graphics Tablet:

Since my degree program requires a lot of art on the computer, a tablet would just make everything easier and more natural.

The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks (for Nintendo DS):

I love all the Zelda games and the DS has not disappointed thus far.

Swedish Fish:

A Christmas classic for me. They're pretty much my favorite!!

NOTE: I am aware that some of these items are expensive. It is, after all, a "wish" list. It is not a "what can a particular person afford" list. I'm not expecting anything, just wishing.


I totally forgot to mention a few other things.

-Cutco Hardy Slicer (link)
-A cheap bass guitar
-Dinner with my dad (his treat)

p.s. - I just have to complain for a minute about how much I hate the fact that every time you add a picture to a post it puts it at the top and it totally messes up the rest of the formatting. GOSH!!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

All I want for Christmas . . .

For those of you who have drawn my name for Christmas, or my husband, or for whoever wants to buy me stuff, here is my wish list in no particular order:

Cuisinart Elite Collection 4-cup Chopper Grinder. Yes is has to be this exact one, color and everything. Unless you can find another 4 cup food processor with better reviews and all the same features. Lots of research has gone into this, can you tell.

The Body Bug Calorie Counter. I'm on a real health kick right now and could totally use one of these. It would be easier for me to keep track of my input and output.

I need a beautiful picture of the temple to hang in my home.

I would love a digital kitchen timer. I can't depend on my winding timer to do the job for 2 minutes and I can't always use my microwave timer, especially when I'm microwaving something.

I need this movie so I can cry every time Judy Garland sings "Somewhere Over the Rainbow."

Really anything Bill Cosby that I can watch or listen to would be great. He's just a part of my childhood that I could relive over and over again.

SMOOTH AWAY! I'm too chicken to buy this for myself, but I want to try it. Every time I shave I still end up bumpy and I think it's because of the razors I use. Every once and a while I get lucky, but this seems like it would work every time.

We always have oranges at christmas and nothing to peel them with so I go through about 3 weeks of winter with orange finger nails. This would definitely solve my problem.

I would also willingly accept gift cards to the following places:
Home Depot
Down East Basics

Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


Whatever was wrong with our camera (or computer) Mike found a way around it and I can finally post pictures. Sad to say, but we really don't have as much as some people do in a 3 month hiatus, but they are memories none the less. Welcome back girls to the world wide web. We got them matching monkey pajamas. We call both of our girls monkeys so it's only appropriate.

Could her eyes be any bluer? (Bluer? is that a word?)

This is our trip to Greer from yes, way back at the end of August. We got to go fishing in Grandpa Val's boat. Mike caught a fish, Brooklyn caught a fish, and yet again, I didn't catch anything. Oh well, maybe next year.

Too bad Taylor couldn't come with us on the boat. I'm sure she had fun with grandma and grandpa anyways.
These whoppers were caught by Mike's dad. Sorry you didn't win the contest this year. If I remember correctly they were just over 18 inches long. Good Job!
We ate here one day for lunch out on a deck. The weather was so beautiful, much like we're experiencing now. I think the high that day in the valley was in the 110's. I love this yearly get-a-way.
Mike thought he would be funny and feed Taylor some pickles. She actually wanted more!

On to Halloween! I was an angel (Walmart special!) Brooklyn was a cat and Taylor was a pig.

Mike got bundled up and then decided he looked like a Harvard Professor or Robert Langdon. Nice cop out!

Unfortunately those are all the highlights from our camera. We're not that big on taking pictures, but we have fun. We've had a lot to learn in the last few months. We actually went through a month of unemployment which was stressful, but I feel it brought us together and gave us confidence that we can make it through hard times. Here are a few tidbits of things I learned about the "unemployment experience."

1. First thing you do after losing your job: file for unemployment.
2. Lower your bills to as little as possible.
3. Plan all of your meals and only shop for that. Don't buy anything that's not on the list even if it's on sale. The food bank every Friday has a special to buy $40 worth of food for only $15.
4. Soup and spaghetti goes a long way.
5. Learn to make bread.
6. Powdered milk doesn't taste any different in food you have to cook or bake. Instead of buying 2 gallons per week, we went down to 1 gallon per 2 weeks.
7. Pay tithing.
8. Use your food storage
9. Dip into savings
10. The only other purchases you need to make (after bills) are for food and gas.
11. Watch your movies rather than rent.
12. Don't snack so much and only eat serving sizes. (Also a good weight loss tip!)
13. Being angry doesn't help anything.
14. Being happy helps everything.
15. Pray pray pray

I'm so grateful for the gospel and it's teachings of provident living. We may not need our food storage or savings for natural disasters, but they sure are helpful during financial disasters. So many people are going through a difficult time in this economy. We were very lucky and blessed to have only gone 1 month without employment. I know that if we trust in Heavenly Father in everything, he will help us as long as we are doing everything we can to help ourselves. We have to show him we are willing to work for the things we want and not expect them to be handed over to us. Mike thinks I'm stubborn and won't ask for help, but I know through challenging ourselves to do hard things on our own we come out stronger. I have learned to ask for help when it's really needed. We were very blessed to have gone through this time with out asking for money from family or going into any credit card debt. Number one lesson learned: Always save and prepare for whatever lies ahead.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

My apologies . . .

I'm so sorry to everyone for not updating my blog recently with the oh-so-cute and adorable pictures of my beautiful daughters. Unfortunately, our camera is refusing to upload any recent pictures so I have nothing real fun to post. Sure I could tell you everything we've been doing, but it just is never enough unless you have pictures to prove it. I could tell you about our trip to Paris, but you wouldn't believe me unless I had pictures. (which you shouldn't believe be because we haven't been to Paris, are you kidding me? In this economy?) As soon as we have our "recent" pictures uploaded there will be a gia-normous pic post to catch everyone up. Thanks for understanding!

(Post inspired by our FHE this week. Read about it HERE.)

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Mary Kay Product at 50% off!

Confession . . . I am a Mary Kay consultant, but I'm really doing it for the discount. I actually signed up about 2 or 3 years ago (sad that I don't even remember) and I love everything they have and it really does what it says it does. However, because I'm not the best sales person I have some left over inventory I'm trying to get rid of. Here's a list of those products and the discounted price. If you click on the item it's linked to the Mary Kay website and will give you a description of the product. Comment on what you would like and leave your email address so I can contact you on how I can get you your product, even if you're out of town! Thanks! And spread the word!

(Shade 2)
(Ivory 200, 204 Beige 304, 305)
Lip Gloss - $6.50
(Berry Sparkle, Sweet Raisin, Beach Bronze, Pink Diamonds)
Lip Stick - $6.50
(Apple Berry, Mocha Freeze, Apricot Glaze)
(coral, dusty pink, neutral)
(Desert Bloom, it's discontinued, but it looks like Sunny Spice)
Eye Color - $3.25
(Vintage Gold, Copper Beach/now Amber Blaze, Double Espresso/now Espresso, Hazelnut)

If there is something not on this list but you would like, let me know. I'll be putting an order in at the end of October. Get 'em now while they're hot!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Happy Birthday Handsome!

Happy birthday to my one true love! We've known each other for over 10 years and I love you more each day. I'm so lucky to have you forever! You're my best friend and the best father to our little girls. I love you so much. Have a Happy Happy Birthday!
(P.S. Don't drive the blimp!)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Calling all EA-ers

Hey everybody! I just found out that Kameron Haban just passed away last month. He died from complications from lupus and left behind a wife and son. There is a benefit concert next friday (the 25th) at EA's Auditorium in Thatcher. Tickets are $10 and the concert starts at 7:30. Lots of people are performing as well as the current EA Acappella choir. To find out more information about ways to help the Haban family visit THIS site. This is the first time I can go to a concert down there in 3 years so I'm absolutely going to be there!

New obsession

My new obsession is my new diet. Weight Watchers! I can't say I'm an actual member, but my mil lent me some of her stuff on how to get started and keeping track of points. The first day I "tried" it I just ate like I normally do and wrote it all down. At the end of the day I added up the points. Woah! I can see where my problem is. I'm a snacker! I'm glad I have the points to keep track of everything now and if you know me, I love to make lists. This diet is right up my ally. Since starting on Sept. 1st I've lost 5 lbs already! I'm not going to meetings or weighing in anywhere, but I've got some friends who are doing it online so we are always talking about it and I've signed up for free emails from the WW website to help me with recipe ideas. I'm nervous about the holidays, but I'm glad I'm getting used to it now and not in the middle of the 6 month candy rush (Halloween to Easter). Wish me luck and check it out!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Nine months and Noisy!

Taylor is now 9 months old! I took these pictures of her today playing with her favorite toy, a giant stuffed bear. She has two teeth no although you can't really tell in these pictures of course.

Here are a couple recent videos of her. She's so entertaining and surprisingly noisy. This little girl is so much fun. (sorry the first one is so dark)

Things that make Taylor happy:
chewing on stuff
face plants into pillows other soft stuff
other people clapping
baby einstein
waking up
playing with faces
making loud noises
shopping with mommy

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Butterfly fly away

First day of Kindergarten . . . it came way too fast. I put her on the bus this morning and as it drove away (faster than it should have) I was just about ready to fall apart. I didn't think I would be so emotional about it, but apparently I can't help it. I thought I was prepared for this. I was waiting for the day when I could do what ever I want in the morning, watch my shows, do my own projects without having to find a project for Brooklyn to do, not listening to her saying "I'm hungry" every 10 minutes. Now that's gone and I'm not sure what to do with myself. I remember my first day jitters, but this is multiplied by 10, mostly because I won't be there with her. I've had all this anticipation building, and now I just have to wait.

I know she'll be fine. She has a great teacher. Her teacher is the principal's sister for goodness sake. How could it get any better than that? Mrs. W is her teacher and Mrs. V is the classroom aide. Their classroom theme is all ocean life so there are fish name tags, fish hanging from the ceiling, and a fish bowl billboard. It looks like so much fun in her class.
Taylor even had fun during meet the teacher.
There were lots of chairs for her to crawl in and out of.

Well, on Monday (I don't know why I didn't wait until Tuesday) I thought we would do some fun things, but I have to say going to see Hannah Montana at the movies was the most fun. Now I can't get the song "Butterfly fly away" out of my head. It was stuck in my head when i went to bed last night and it was stuck there when I got up this morning. It has the best lyrics and probably is why I'm so emotional. Here they are for your poetic pleasure.

You tucked me in, turned out the light

Kept me safe and sound at night

Little girls depend on things like that

Brushed my teeth and combed my hair

Had to drive me everywhere

You were always there when I looked back

You had to do it all alone

Make a living, make a home

Must have been as hard as it could be

And when I couldn't sleep at night

Scared things wouldn't turn out right

You would hold my hand and sing to me

Caterpillar in the tree

How you wonder who you'll be

Can't go far but you can always dream

Wish you may and wish you might

Don't you worry, hold on tight

I promise you there will come a day

Butterfly fly away

Butterfly fly away, butterfly fly away

Flap your wings now you can't stay

Take those dreams and make them all come true

Butterfly fly away, butterfly fly away

We've been waiting for this day

All along and knowing just what to do

Butterfly, butterfly, butterfly, butterfly fly away

Butterfly fly away

Butterfly fly away

I'm learning to let go.

Monday, August 3, 2009


Saturday was my birthday and at this age it almost feels like just another day. Well, Mike did a good job at making my day feel special! First, he let me sleep in a little and took care of the girls while making breakfast for me. We ate French toast and sausage together as a family. Mike is not much of a breakfast eater so this is kind of a big deal for me. For those of you who don't know, my husband is a great cook. I love eating his food.

After breakfast we got ready to go see "Up." I loved this movie! It's so fun and works well with both old and young. We saw it as a family, Taylor too! We've never braved the movies with an infant before so this was a first for us and she did great. We even got compliments from people sitting around us after the movie at how well she did.

Another surprise during to movie was Taylor's first tooth! She finally got one out on the bottom. She's still quite fussy so I'm sure others are soon to follow. It's hard to get a picture without a screaming fit so you probably won't see one.

After the movie we went to Joe's Fresh Farm Grill. Warning: The Fried Chicken Tender Basket might as well be the Four Fried Chicken Breasts Basket! They were huge. I only got through two and had to take the rest home. However, like many things on the menu, they were delicious. I don't do fried too often so this was a nice greasy treat. Higley and Ray if you're interested.

After lunch, we took the girls home and Mike gave me birthday money and sent me shopping BY MYSELF for 2 blissful hours. After visiting 5 different stores, I ended up with 2 shirts, 4 pairs of earrings and 4 necklaces. It's been a long time since I've gotten any stylish jewelry so I stocked up!

I got home and got all fancied up with my knew jewelry and we headed off to a surprise dinner. Mike wouldn't tell me where we were going so I tried to be calm and patient about it hoping it was something I would like and not something he's been dying to try. We took the girls to Ted and Stef's (cousins) in Scottsdale. The only clue I had was it was near their place and I had never been there before. We swapped cars with Ted and Stef (which they had just washed their beautiful black Tacoma and we had our dingy dirty Pacifica) and used GPS for the first time ever to get to our destination. Where did we end up?


This is a picture of one part of our four course meal! It started with a cheese fondue appetizer with breads, vegetables, and green apples. Then we had a salad. Then came the entree with 5 different kinds of meat (filet mignon, sirloin, pork, chicken, and shrimp) and more vegetables (as seen in picture). Then dessert! Pure milk chocolate fondue with rice krispie treats, pound cake, brownies, cheesecake, bananas, strawberries, graham cracker covered marshmallows and the favorite of the night . . . oreo dust covered marshmallows. We've already decided to figure out how to make the Oreo marshmallow. They were delectable! I was absolutely stuffed, but so happy and in love with my food. Thanks so much Ted and Stef for watching the girls. We really appreciated it and they had such a good time. Brooklyn is still talking about Lola!

I give all the credit of my beautiful birthday to my wonderful husband. He takes such good care of me and puts up with a lot. I am so incredibly blessed to have him in my life. We've been friends for 10 YEARS now! Best friends just shy of that, so it's very hard to imagine life without him. I'm so glad I married my high school sweetheart and that we have two beautiful girls to show for it. We have a blast and still laugh at each other almost everyday. We may have struggles just like any other couple goes through, but I will forever love him. After such a wonderful day I've got a tall order to fill for his birthday. Hopefully I don't mess it up!

Here's a list of some things we got on my birthday (or planned to get) for free or special priced:

Free popcorn at Harkins
$10 of your meal at Joe's Fresh Farm Grill
A dozen donuts at Krispy Kreme (missed this one)
special love and attention from those who love you :)

Friday, July 31, 2009

Love the Photoshop

Hey everyone, Mike here. For those who don't know I am in a degree program that is a mix of graphic arts, web design and printing. I get to learn cool stuff that I really enjoy. This wasn't a school project but I thought I would share it with you. I learned some really cool techniques from a tutorial and turned this photo......

Into this...

I didn't "draw" any of it. It's basically a compilation of 12 different pics or so. Just blended together so it looks relatively seamless.

Cool, huh? Well...at least I think so.