Sunday, July 31, 2011


It's hard to believe that this little boy has grown up and is already 12, in Jr. High and has a 1st Dan Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do!  He's worked hard over the past 3 1/2 years.  Lots of hours spent on lessons and sparring and practice and reviewing questions, but it was all worth it.  Asher's Black Belt is registered with the World Tae Kwon Do Federation and is recognized in 197 countries.  We are so proud of him!!!!!
To celebrate this accomplishment, Mamita took him to SeaWorld!  They were able to spend a whole day at and they had a GREAT TIME!!!!!  They enjoyed the rides, the shows and the fireworks.  They (YES, they....I just don't have a photo of Mamita!) even enjoyed the face painting that was offered at the company dinner!
This did startle me a bit this morning!  
Asher's were so proud of you!!!!

Thursday, July 28, 2011


With less than 8 weeks of summer, it really does fly by fast!
Introducing....Colton our Sophomore!
(SOPHOMORE....when did that happen?!?  It goes by too fast.  And sadly, all I can think of when I say Sophomore is a line from Sixteen Candles "sophomore, dude, sophomore.  Fully aged sophomore meat")
 As scary as it is to have a's been much more emotional to have my second son be a 7th grader!!!!!  It took me by surprise (don't know how since I shopped with him, filled out his paperwork and took him to the school to shadow a 7th grader last spring) when he came into the kitchen in his uniform.  Don't tell Asher, but I even cried after I dropped him off at school!!!!!  (and yes, I'm fully aware I have frames above the chalkboard with no photos....maybe that could be a project for me this weekend?!?)
 Finally my baby!  He's already in 2nd grade and look at how serious he is!
 That is until we let him hold Asher's mace.  I'm just thankful that our arsenal of weapons is mainly made by nerf!  Wasn't I just at girls camp making friendship bracelets, flying sock monkeys and decorating paper mache letters?  Now I'm back home with boys and weapons!
Here's to a successful school year!


I was able to go to girls camp again - that makes 3 times out of the last 5 girls camps!  We don't have a lot of girls, but they are all wonderful!!!!!  Instead of a hike, we went to the Snowflake Temple. 
 I love the beautiful grounds - waterfalls, grass, trees, benches and flowers.
 Our theme this year was There's No Place Like Home from the Wizard of Oz.  Every day had a theme - Knowledge (the scarecrow), Courage (the cowardly lion), Love (the tin man) and that last day was Home.  I asked if I could give the devotional on Home since I had a great idea for my handout - yes, handouts are that important!!!  I decided to give them each a ruby slipper!  Here's how they came together:  First, buy some clear plastic shoes.  I've seen them at the dollar store for years....but as I finally needed more shoes at the dollar store!  I bought these at JoAnn's craft store - with a coupon!  You can find them in the wedding favor section.
 Second, they needed a base coat of red.  Enter - spray paint!
 Third, after letting them dry overnight, I painted them with regular white glue (Elmer's glue) and then glittered them!  I have LOVED glitter since I was a little girl and I don't think that will ever change!!!  It makes me happy!!!!!!!
 I wish these pictures would have turned out half as good as these shoes!  They were PERFECTION!!!!!!  I packaged them in some little chinese take out boxes I have and they fit perfectly.  I couldn't wait until I could unveil them on the last day.  Finally it was time to give my devotional.  After my talk, I told them I had something to give them and it was already in a "to go" box since we were packing up to leave.  Then I pulled the little glittered shoe from the box and I heard a collective gasp!  They were so cute and LOVED their ruby slipper!  I love serving in Young Womens!!!!!!
 Before you knew it, it was time to hit the road.  It was a first for me to drive in a van with a canoe on top of us!  But I do think it's a perfect "camping" adventure picture.
Thank you, girls camp......There's really no place like home!!!!!


We had a wonderful discovery this summer....BAHAMA BUCKS!!!!
Who knew shaved ice could be this delicious?!?  I didn't, but we quickly found out.  The only regret...we didn't discover it until early July.  We are taking every chance we can to get this delicious treat.  Kyler already has his "usual" - 1/2 watermelon, 1/2 strawberry, no creme.  Asher loves orange with creme (orange is also his stand by slushee flavor).  Colton has tried out lots of flavors....only Dr. Pepper was a thumbs down.  One of his favorites is coconut cream pie with is delicious!!!!  I've tried lots of flavors (I always get two flavors and I try Tony's flavors too!) and recommend - coconut cream pie, strawberry daiquiri, pina colada, dreamsicle, banana daiquiri, birthday cake, black cherry, and blueberry cheesecake.  I DO NOT recommend pickle juice...yes, that's a flavor! (to be fair I haven't tried it, but I can't imagine liking it!)
 These boys LOVE Bahama Bucks!
So does Cookie!!!!!

Monday, July 25, 2011


In an effort (late effort) to have the kids get their well check BEFORE starting school, we decided to see a different doctor.  Our Dr. (Dr. Burke) is always busy and wouldn't be able to see the boys in time, but she has many associates and they are all wonderful too.  So I made the appointment and we went to visit Dr. Namjoshi.  He was really nice and thought Kyler was hilarious.  Here he was getting his blood pressure taken.  The nurse warned him it might not be comfortable, he looked at her with no expression and said "I'm 7, I think I can handle it."  Kyler was making us all laugh that morning.  
A couple more highlights of the visit.  Kyler left a sample in the bathroom and asked if he could keep his urine when they were done.  He told the nurse before she measured his height that he grows 2 inches everyday.  The best was when the doctor had to check his boy parts.  The Dr. counted - "one, two, you've got both of them" to which Kyler replied "Really, I could have done that!"  Dr. Namjoshi couldn't stop laughing and thinks Kyler's "trending to be an attorney, he's got a answer for EVERYTHING!"  That's when Kyler said "I'm not going to be an attorney, I'm going to HAVE an attorney!"  I don't doubt this!!! (just hope I won't be paying for it!)


I love kitchen tools, bakeware, dishes, tableclothes....any accessories for the kitchen or table!  Here's my new toy (thanks, Mom) a trio lasagna pan.  I broke it in with three different lasagnas. (I could even see just one lasagna, roasted veggies in one and bread in the other)  1st: regular meat and cheese with red sauce; 2nd: meat, cheese and veggie with red sauce; 3rd: veggie, cheese and alfredo sauce.  They were all delicious!
 Next up - Panzanella Salad!!!!!  Oh my heavens this was good.  I toasted up 1/2 a loaf of french bread cubed and tossed with olive oil.  Then I cut up a red bell pepper, yellow bell pepper, zucchini and tomatoes and cooked them in a little olive oil and balsamic vinegar.  This was poured over the toasted bread cubes....DELICIOUS!!! 
 Here's our simple green salad with homemade balsamic vinaigrette. 
 Everyone ate plenty and the best part of leftover lasagna in this pan.....they transfer from this pan to containers much easier than a normal 9x13 pan.
This meal will needs to reappear on our table soon!


I love, love, love this mini, mini, mini loaf pan.  The other week I had some extra little boys over and needed to make lunch for everyone.  I was wishing I could make some baked corn dogs when I had an idea about this pan.
 I made some cornbread up and added a little to the pan.  Then I put 1/4 of a hotdog on top and added a little more cornbread to the top of that.
 These are not the normal corn dogs on a stick, but I liked them!  So did the kids!  We even cut them into 3 pieces each and they dipped them in ketchup. Maybe next time I will dip 1/4 of a hot dog in the batter (with a toothpick to hold it) and bake them on a cookie sheet.  It couldn't hurt to try!
 Corn Dog Goodness!

Thursday, July 14, 2011


We put out our junk extremely valuable and loved items on the drive way Saturday morning.  The signs were up, the kids were up, we were ready to sell.  It began at 6am (and was probably close to 90 degrees...and humid!)  We had two refrigerators, a range, microwave, TV, light fixture, shower chair, walker, cane, two couches, new DVD player, shoe rack, 6 chairs, curtains & curtain rods, stereo stand and one table full of miscellaneous junk single items.  By 8am we had sold EVERYTHING!!!!!  (Well, not everything on the misc. table, but pretty close!  We only had one little box only 1/3 of the way full to drop at the thrift store)  These were the last items to be picked up and we were HAPPY!  Who ever heard of a 2-hour-everything-sold-garage-sale-in-the-AZ-summer-heat?!?  (one more note before we go down memory lane:  notice how our garage doors are shut......I was so afraid if we kept them open people would want to "shop" in there! I'm cleaning out toys and holiday decorations in there and will have another garage sale in late Sept/early Oct....just waiting on cooler weather)
It sold......OLD YELLER SOLD!!!
The lady that bought it didn't even haggle with the price.
Mita had this yellow sofa special made in the 60's.  She placed it on top of bright, sunshine yellow shag carpet in her living room.  She LOVED it!!!!!  I have spent countless hours sitting here listening to albums like: The Chipmunks Christmas Special, Sonny & Cher, and the Sound of Music.  We have been photographed on or near it almost every Christmas of my life.  When Mita and Papa moved to Gilbert, they could only keep one couch.  Guess which one Mita took.  She ditched the neutral sofa for Old Yeller (new nick name I just made up.....I thought it was appropriate since this couch needed to be put out of it's misery) and never looked back.  Just when I thought no one would love this yellow beast, a woman came by and bought it....without haggling!  She loved the vintage feel (and that it's upholstery had no holes) and snatched it up.  When she came to pick it up later that day, I told her about our Christmas photos with grandkids and eventually great-grandkids on here.  She looked at me and smiled then said "I bet we'll have lots of family photos on here too"  
Mita's couch wasn't going to the was being rescued and was starting a new life, with a new's just like the ending of Toy Story 3 (sniff, sniff)!!!  I love that movie!  
Bolster pillow, I think I'll miss you most of all!
(Wizard of Oz reference)
Thanks for the memories!

Friday, July 8, 2011


First, our 4th of July BBQ! Just look at that delicious burger - grilled onions, bacon and avocado! It was soooooo good, so was the corn. Then the boys went out front to set off fireworks...nothing too big. That is until a neighbor brought something out and said "I don't know what this is, but I got it in Mexico" Everyone's OK now.....enough said.
Moving right along, Kyler has given up his room to my craft room. He's currently sharing with Colton....yes, you can imagine how happy the 15 year-old is to share with a 7 year-old. It's good for him! Well, we moved Kyler in but none of his stuff. It was finally time to tackle Kyler's stash and get him moved in once and for all. We brought everything to the family room and he started to sort.....then a friend came over......then Kyler "paid" his friend to "help".
Then they got distracted....that's what happens to 7 and 8 year-olds.
Note: Trevor's payment was this unopened box of blue bunny peeps from Kyler's Easter basket. All the toys were just a bonus!
Now I'm off to help Kyler clean up the family room.
I hope he doesn't pay me!

Monday, July 4, 2011


Summer's in full swing.
Boys are tired and crabby and fighting.
I am wishing for school again.....
until I found a haiku I wrote during last semester.
Ash procrastinates
Frustration sets in with Mom
Do homework now please
Summer fighting vs. Homework frustration....
Which to choose?!?