Imagine what you could do if you knew you could not fail.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Happy Birthday Alexandra!!!

So, this post is dedicated to Alexandra - because she turned 4 on May 13th!!! On the morning of her birthday, I surprised her by taking her to Build-a-Bear to create a new little friend. This is the bear she picked.

This bear fits her personality exactly! It's very colorful with rainbow hearts all over it. I wasn't surprised that she went for this one.

Alex got to stand on the pedal to help the fluff go into her bear. She also enjoyed telling everyone how old she is. See her holding up her fingers? :)

After her bear was fluffy enough, Alexandra picked out a heart, gave it a kiss, and gave her bear the heart.

Nathan has afternoon kindergarten so he came with us to Build-a-Bear in the morning. We let him bring along his turtle and join in the fun. After fluffing up the bear, it was time to clean the bear. Here is Alexandra at the bathing station. She puts her foot on the pedal and the lamps blow air to help fluff up the outside of the animal.

Turtle also got a bath! Nathan was so cute about bathing his turtle. He carefully removed turtle's shell and then gently brushed and cleaned every inch of his turtle. I have never seen him be so gentle and loving! I enjoyed watching him! :)

Moving on - time to dress the bear! Alex knew exactly what her bear should wear and she went right to work shopping for the perfect outfit. She went right to the "kissing dresses" (wedding dresses), found the one she thought was the most beautiful, then marched on over to the accessories and busied herself matching this and that. She is quite the little shopper!

Finally, after the bear was bathed, dressed, named, had a birth certificate, and lots of little extra bows, we made it out of the store. Here is the finished product. TA DA!!!  Alex named her bear "Kissy" and ever since her birthday, Kissy has barely been out of Alexandra's sight.

For the afternoon on Alex's birthday, Nathan had "show and teach" at his school, so we went and spent the afternoon in his kindergarten class watching him teach his class. :)

I decided to give Alexandra a birthday party with her friends the next day, so after school I got to work on her cake. She picked to have a Tangled birthday party and birthday cake, so guess who gets to come up with something special . . . ME!!

I made her a special cake and it really didn't take as long as I thought it would to decorate it. I used ice cream cones to make a tower for Rapunzel and then just had to frost the tower, grass, and bushes. Easy enough. As I was putting together the tower, it kept leaning and leaning. I put toothpicks in at the bottom and attached the cones together with melted chocolate, but I wasn't sure it would make it through the night to the party the next morning. I left the cake here on the counter overnight and was worried about how it would look when I woke up. When morning came, Jeremy went out and checked the cake and came and told me ,"Well, your tower is still standing." Thank goodness!

 After I finished her cake in the evening, we had birthday dinner and let Alex open her presents from us and Grandmas and Grandpas. She was already in her pajamas, but I noticed that she transferred her birthday sticker from Build-a-Bear from her t-shirt to her pajamas. Cute!

I love the look of anticipation on Nathan's face!

 Ok. Next day. So, Saturday morning was the party. Notice my tower still standing? Woo hoo! It is leaning a bit, but still up! That's what counts. I added a couple little Rapunzel touches and Whalaa!

For the party we watched Tangled, painted fingernails and toenails, blew bubbles, opened presents, and ate cake and ice cream. This is the present portion of the party. It's funny because kids this age don't really understand the whole - I'm giving you a present because it's your birthday and you get to keep what I brought - concept. We had to explain this a few times throughout the session. Poor little traumatized girls.

Alex did love everything she received and I'm glad she got to have the experience of a party with her friends.

I had to include this picture because it made me laugh! We look so dumb!!! It was really bright outside. My 2 sisters, Lisa and Teresa, stayed at the party and helped out. I loved having them stay! It was fun to have a little extra help and some adult conversation. :)

Last but not least, we sang Happy Birthday and all enjoyed some cake and ice cream. For some odd reason, Alexandra wouldn't blow out her candles. We tried a few times to get her to do it, but she wouldn't, so I had to blow them out. I hope my wish comes true.
I did my best to make her birthday special for her and I think she had a wonderful time! :)

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Zumba Me!

In case you didn't already know - I finally became a Zumba instructor! I got licensed at the beginning of April and have been teaching ever since. :)

This past couple of months has been a whirlwind for me. I decided I wanted to teach Zumba in January and had a hard time getting into a training because they were sold out. So, I finally made it to the one in April and 5 days later had a job interview to teach my first hour-long class at Anytime Fitness. Lo and behold, I got the job and I absolutely LOVE IT!!! I teach every Tuesday and Thursday evening and in my "off" time I work non-stop on memorizing music and working on new dances. I wish I would have found it years ago, but I'm happy to be doing it now!!

It's fun to see the kids embrace what I'm doing too. As I practice my dances in the kitchen, they join in and work on my dances with me. Now they all have their favorite songs and they take turns picking songs on my iPod when we are in the car.

PS - I would LOVE to have friends come and join my class. Let me know if you want to come and I'll give you the details!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Quick Family Home Evening Activity

We were at a loss for something fun after we finished our lesson for Family Home Evening, so out came the eyeliner and little clothes!

The kids took turn singing the primary songs in their new characters and had a blast! 

Samantha is on the left and Athena is on the right.

The funniest part to me is all the extra faces they make with their chins! Nathan was laughing so hard he could hardly sit up!

After Athena and Samantha had a turn, Nathan and Alex had to give it a try. This is Nathan. :)

We tried to give Alexandra's character some hair, but she ended up looking like a balding woman who couldn't keep her gangly long hair out of her face.

Overall it provided the much-needed entertainment for the evening and gave us all a good laugh!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


It's sad, but true . . . these pictures really do sum up the excitement at our house lately! I went through all my recent pictures on the camera and this is pretty much it. Let's discuss . . .

Athena has been really excited about helping me in the kitchen with all my cooking. I was on the computer the other day and asked her to boil some water. She took a picture of it when it reached that point and came to show me that it was boiling. :)

I really do love her excitement with cooking lately. It's wonderful to have a partner in the kitchen and to be able to teach her all my secrets!

Next, This picture of Alexandra.
See her awesome soda can insulator? Jeremy has been so ultra absorbed with going to the BYU games and this was his latest treasure to bring home. Can holders for all! Really, the perks are amazing. We now have 6 soda can insulators sitting in the drawer of our downstairs kitchenette.

Other than that, we are patiently (or not so patiently) waiting for this cold weather to leave once and for all so we can enjoy playing outside again.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Saaaaan Diiiiiiii-ego!

We went to visit my sister, Cynthia, for Thanksgiving this year. It was one of those "quick trips" that turned out to be a lot of fun!  We decided to keep everything low budget and found some free things to do in San Diego for a day.

We started out by going to the Mormon Battalion Museum. What a neat find! It was really interesting to learn about the Mormon Battalion and the kids loved it.

The kids immediately had to explore the wagon.

Who knew this was sitting in the middle of San Diego? A pioneer wagon?

Inside, the LDS missionaries did a little presentation about the Mormon Battalion and it was actually quite interesting! I never even really knew what all they did and their amazing contributions to the area. Ethan jumped up at the first chance to volunteer and was more than excited to wear the "gear". I think this was his 3rd time being picked as the volunteer. Funny!

At the end of the tour, the kids got a chance to pan for gold.

As you can see, they all really got into it. :)
So did the parents.

Here is Athena finding her share of the gold.

Everyone made a pretty good haul on the gold. Too bad it wasn't real! I'd go home and pay off the house!!

Each kid was allowed to take home one piece, so they took awhile and picked out their VERY BEST one.

We were inducted into the group of honorary members of the battalion. SWEET!
Our next free activity (after lunch) was to go see the beautiful Coronado hotel and beach. We drove over this huge bridge that goes out to the island and on the way we happened to pass the famed Carnival Splendor ship, the one that was left drifting out in the ocean with all its passengers aboard and no power. It was interesting to see it because when Jeremy and I went on our cruise last year, this is the ship that paralleled our ship all the way down the Mexican Riviera. Only it was working at that time.

This is the hotel we wanted to see. The "Somewhere in Time" hotel. Isn't it beautiful? I got some better shots of it from the back view, this is just our first view of it. It's an amazing building!

After finding a place to park on a very full street, we let the kids loose on the beach. They were happy as can be just to be out of the car! It was pretty cold, but the kids all insisted on taking off their shoes. Oh well.

We got there right at sunset. Isn't it beautiful?

Something she found . . . is it a shell? A rock? I can't tell, but by the look on her face it must be pretty exciting!

I'm not sure what exactly happened, but while we were there, Callie's head just got too heavy for her neck! We tried to help her but there wasn't much we could do.

And Cynthia got stuck holding all the shoes. It was pretty hard on their family.

Here is that great view of the hotel I was telling you about. If we didn't have kids with us I would have gone inside.

With all the sand, and water, and tide pools, and rocks to climb on, and beautiful sunset to look at - Alexandra chose to play right beside this cement wall. Why go to the beach?

Cute sisters!

Another view of Coronado Beach.

Pretty me with pretty hotel. Thanks Jeremy for the photo op!

We left the beach as it was getting dark and drove to the next free spot on our list. The San Diego temple. I have to say, I think this is the prettiest temple of all of them because it looks like a palace.

My eternal children in front of the temple. :) I'm glad I got to show them this temple. It was their first time here.

And this is my eternal family in front of the temple.

We shared our wonderful day in San Diego with Brett, Cynthia, and their children. It was a fun day out - and did I mention it was free? Except for lunch. We don't very often get to come here and we RARELY spend a day with Brett and Cynthia, so that was a real treat for all of us!
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