Monday, March 24, 2008

Funniest Tag Yet

Ok, I wasn't even tagged with this but Charlotte posted this tag and it cracked me up so I'm doing it even though she didn't tag me.

This is what you do:

1. Pick up the nearest book (at least 123 pages)
2. Turn to page 123
3. Find the 5th sentence
4. Post the 5th sentence on your blog
5. Tag 5 people

My book is 1001 All-Natural Secrets to a Pest-Free Property by Dr. Myles H. Bader and the 5th sentence on page 123 says:

"In hot weather flies can multiply in 2-3 weeks, especially if they have a good supply of fresh warm excrement from a family pet."
(I think that goes well with Charlotte's - don't you agree?).

Now I tag Alisha T., Corrie, Layne, Jenny M., and Amanda.

Have fun! :)

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Eden Pictures: Easter

Here is Eden playing on our family room floor with the sunlight coming through the back door. She is playing with her rubber ducky (a faithful VM baby).

Eden with ponytails (kind of). She doesn't keep things in her hair long and we have to remove them before naps or she'll try to eat the rubberbands (not a good thing).
Easter 2008.
When she first saw her Easter dress she said (for the first time) "priii-tee." The rest of the day everything she saw (flowers, my skirt, pictures) was "priii-tee."

She spends much of her time with her tongue out. I think she is still figuring out what those teeth are (all 1.5 of them she has now).

Handsome daddy, adorable baby, tired mommy.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Stimulus Act of 2008 - Do Not Throw Away!

Today in our mail we received notice 1377 from the IRS. It informed us (as if we didn't already know) that we will be getting a nice check from the IRS sometime in May. This is not to be confused with any money that may be owed to us as a tax return. This is, in fact, part of the Economic Stimulus Act of 2008. You probably got one of these notices too. In a big red-outlined box and in red capital letters it informed us what was enclosed - a message from the IRS - and exclaimed (I know they exclaimed it because of the exclamation mark), DO NOT THROW AWAY!

Funny, that is exactly what they are hoping I'll do with the actual check. They want me to go out there and spend it (throw it away) so that I can do my part in stimulating the economy.

Ha ha! I'll fool them. Phil and I have decided that the money allocated for our existence may go to stimulate the economy but we want to take the $300 allocated for Eden and save it for her. So, here is my question to all you money-savvy readers. What would be the best way to take $300 (it will likely be a bit more because we are giving her a portion of the tax return too) and save it for the next 18 years? Savings bond? Mutual fund? CD? Keep in mind that we aren't what you'd call "active" investors. We would prefer something that we could leave alone for a while and watch it grow (after the economy has been stimulated sufficiently, that is). So, give me your advice!

Food Friday - Fudge Sauce

In a small sauce pan combine:
1 can of Sweet and Condensed Milk
1 C of Chocolate Chips (milk or semi-sweet or dark - whatever you like)

Heat over medium until everything is well mixed.

If it is too thick you can add some regular milk or cream.

Serve over Ice Cream

"it is so easy!" - Heidi
"and yet so much better and more rich than the other stuff!" -Phil

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Dating Diaries - Entry 2 - Puffs Plus Please

About nine years ago I had been introduced to a very nice man by a mutual acquaintance. This guy had a great smile and seemed like a really great guy. We talked a few times and then we decided to go do something together. At the time, I was a really big fan of hockey (yes, hockey!). USU had a great team. Through my job, I knew most of the hockey players (something to do with academic qualifications... let's not go down that stereotypical road though) and they had even presented me with a hockey jersey (not that I could be bought or anything). So, this really nice guy and I decided to go to a college hockey game. He had never been to a hockey game and was trying hard to be enthused about this plan.

He picked me up and we drove to Ogden. We got our hockey tickets and then went to eat at a restaurant. All the way down to Ogden and through the meal our conversations went along these lines:

Him: So, do you like cats?
Me: I really don't. In fact, I'm extremely allergic to cats.
Him: I love cats! I own a cat. [He than proceeded to tell me all the funny things his cat had done that week, month, year.]
Me: I knew a funny cat once ...

Me: So, one of the things about the hockey games that I love is that they play classic rock every time there is a break in the action. I love it!
Him: I don't really like loud music. I enjoy classical not classic.
Me: Yeah, classical is nice, I love Chopin.
Him: I never really understood the allure of Chopin.

Me: So, another thing I like about the hockey games is that everyone gets up and boogies when the music is playing. It is awesome to just cut loose.
Him: I don't dance.

You get the picture.

After dinner we went to the hockey game and arrived just as the first period began (hockey doesn't have quarters or halves, it has three periods). I was pumped and immediately saw many of my friends. We joined them - one of us enthusiastically and the other with great reluctance (I'll let you guess which was which).

Every time there was a break in the action I would remain standing (because let's be honest, you don't sit during a hockey game) and boogie to the classic rock. He would slowly stand but he was right, he didn't dance. I was beginning to feel badly about dragging this really nice guy to something that was so out of his interest and comfort zone.

Finally the first period was over. Attempting to ease the moment and provide some hope for an end in sight, I loudly exclaimed (while shaking his shoulders in a pseudo boogie move), "Be happy! You just survived your first period!" I should have left it at that, but realizing what I'd just said and how it could be misunderstood I lamely added: "...of hockey, your first period of hockey!"

I don't think we stayed to the end.

When we got in the car our noses began to thaw and therefore drip a little. He handed me a tissue. What was this? Puffs Plus????? I LOVE Puffs Plus, it is the only tissue I'll buy. Then in one of those moments that are best left silent, I exclaimed, "Finally, something in common!"

There was no second date.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Big Fish (alternative title: "Sta, you are going to be so jealous and totally going to want to come visit us now!")

I love this picture because it captures how engaged Eden was during most of our time at the Georgia Aquarium (and her funny cowlick on the back of her head - no, I haven't dyed my hair, just weird lighting):

Big Fish Tank:

That's what I'm talkin' 'bout:
So cute (us, the fish is actually kinda ugly):
I think this was my favorite fish it totally looks like Pixar created it:
What is a girl to do when daddy is saying "look at the camera" and mommy is saying "look at the fish!" (obey the daddy, of course!):
I LOVE this photo. It isn't just the cheesy grin on Charlotte's face or the stud she married. It isn't even my pathetic attempt to jump in the picture. It is the disgusted look on the face of the girl in the middle of the shot. Classic!
Beluga anyone?
Ooooh.... Ahhhh....

We had so much fun at the Georgia Aquarium on Saturday. It was the day after the tornado hit the Georgia Dome and there was certainly evidence throughout downtown . Kinda crazy.

My favorite part of the whole experience was watching Eden. It may sound cheesy and cliche but experiencing things through the eyes of a child is truly amazing. She was absolutely captivated the entire three hours we were there. She did really well in the car too. What a trooper!

To see other pictures you can check out Charlotte's blog here.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Oh What A Night

Friday, March 14, 2008

Go to bed after a fun evening with the Cantwells. (We watched Martian Child which I totally recommend as a clean-good-message-family-film.)

As we are lying in bed, Phil and I begin to hear some rustling outside, or is it on the roof? or is it in the wall? or is it in the attic? The very loud rustling moves quickly around the house and then subsides.

More rustling. This time we get up and Phil finds the flashlight and goes out on the deck to see if he can see an animal on the roof or in the bushes. Nothing. The rustling continues but then stops.

The NOAA alert system blares. Phil gets up to turn it down so it won't disturb the Cantwells or Eden. NOAA informs us that there is a Severe Thunder Storm WARNING (which is the first of the warning/watch/alert system).

A thunder storm comes with all its noise and lightning. It lasts about a half hour.

The NOAA alert system blares again. This time we are informed that we are having a Severe Thunder Storm WATCH. The rain, lightning and thunder do indeed return for about an hour (this is the same system that ripped through Atlanta).

All is finally calm.

Eden cries. I go in and put her binky back in her mouth and she is quiet. I decide to use the restroom. While I'm in the restroom, she cries again. Phil goes in and, forgetting that he is not to lift her, gets her out of the crib and begins to rock her. I come in but my eyes have not adjusted from the light of the bathroom to the dark of her room. Finally I see where they are and go to take Eden from Phil. Unfortunately, Eden turns her head to see me just as I clumsily go to take her and she gets a thumbnail in the eye. She SCREAMS in both discomfort and (especially) betrayal. Although I am now holding her she wants nothing to do with an abusive mother and continues to scream. Phil sits back down and I place her in his lap. I sit in the chair next to them and make up with my daughter. After a few minutes, I take her (ironically, Phil pokes my eye when he hands the baby to me) and she comes willingly. Phil goes back to bed and I feed Eden a bottle and then lay her back down.

The whole family (and guests) are all in their beds. Eden, however, is not sleeping.

Eden has finally fallen back to sleep and so have her parents.

The alarm!

Friday, March 14, 2008

Zucchini Chicken

This looks like a complicated recipe but it is really yummy. You can buy the "flash frozen" breaded chicken breasts and cut out some of the steps. Try it - you'll like it!

4 Chicken Breasts
6 T Olive Oil
Medium Onion - diced
1 clove of Garlic - minced
2 Cans Tomato Sauce
1 t Salt
1/4 t Pepper

1/8 t Oregano (ground)
1 Egg - beaten
1/4 C dry Bread Crumbs

1/4 C + 3 T grated Parmesan Cheese
1 C Mozzarella Cheese
2 Zucchini - sliced

In a Sauce Pan mix:
3 T Olive Oil, onion & garlic - cook until clear.
tomato sauce, salt, pepper, & oregano - cover and simmer over low heat for 1/2 hour.

Dip the thawed out chicken in egg, bread crumbs, & parmesan cheese then brown in 3 T of Olive Oil.

Place chicken in a casserole pan and layer tomato sauce & mozzarella then zucchini, then remaining sauce and mozzarella, then sprinkle with parmesan.

Bake uncovered for 30 minute at 375.

Recipe for Fun

Start with:
2 Best Friends (preferably roommates for 9 years)
2 Devoted Husbands
1 Adorable Baby

Plenty of leisure time
Lots of laughter

Lots of fun, good memories, and deeper friendships.

Charlotte (and Eric) and I (and Phil and Eden) have had a great week together!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Food Friday

Sorry that I didn't get a recipe posted this last week. We got home from the hospital Thursday and it just didn't even cross my mind.

I'll try really hard to remember this next Friday but I have a BIG day that day. Charlotte and Eric will be here (yippee!) and my brother Mark will be coming into Anniston for breakfast that day (he is in Atlanta this week for meetings). After breakfast, Phil, Eden, Char, Eric, and I are heading to the Talladega Speedway for a tour (yes, Mr. Anonymous, this could be YOU if you visit us!). We are looking forward to a fabulous week with our friends (we are going to the Georgia Aquarium on Saturday). So much fun!!!!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008


Things went great today "better than hoped for" according to the surgeon.  They were able to remove the tumor and repair the hernia. We are so grateful! Eden is getting along great with Merilee and is having quite the week.  She finally got her first tooth (with others making their way soon), has begun to wave hello and good-bye, is nearly crawling (she gets up on all fours and will move a hand or knee and then chicken out), and is transitioning to formula (I quit pumping!).  She is such a cutie!  But I digress, this post is about Phil.  He has been up walking and is eating and will likely be able to go home tomorrow.  Thank you for all your prayers and faith and good thoughts.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Too Early for Me!

Well, we have a "report time" for Phil's surgery tomorrow (he is having his right adrenal removed - we hope it is the last of the cancer-removal surgeries). We have to be at the hospital (an hour and a half away!) at 5:15 a.m.! Last time we had to be there that early and then waited ten hours before they even started the surgery. I'm hoping it isn't that way this time!

Maybe if they had a more efficient check-in method people wouldn't be bringing in tents!

I'll keep you posted on how things go with the surgery. For now I'm headed to my bed for an abbreviated sleep.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Kinda Rough

This weekend we finally tackled our hall bathroom! Those of you who have seen it know that this was no small task. The walls were painted purple but had bleach streaks making the walls purple AND blue. There was a hideous wallpaper border. The worst thing though was that the previous owners had put in an exceeding amount of metal anchors which had to be removed and then patched. We spent most of Friday and all day Saturday tackling this project. It is now a beautiful off-white bathroom. I did the patching and I have to say that I did a pretty good job (18 patches on one wall!) but it is a little ROUGH in a few places. At this point I don't even care.

Since we spent so much time on our bathroom, I didn't spend as much time as I like (I was told by a fabulous teacher/stake president to spend 10 hours of prep for every hour of teaching). Therefore, my lesson didn't go as I'd like. In fact, it was pretty ROUGH. It was on eternal marriage (again) and there are a couple of girls already planning non-temple weddings. I was informed by a couple of the girls that I am too critical of them and that I just don't love them. This is good for me right?

During Sunday School Eden fell and bonked her head on the chair in front of us (she was sitting on the floor). She screamed quite loudly so I took her out - like all the way outside. As I was walking around outside, one of the branch members told me the following: "I was sayin' to my wife the other day that you sure have been lookin' ROUGH lately. You are a beautiful woman so I figure it must be the little one here that is making you look so ROUGH." I thought to myself, "wow, you only ever see me on Sundays when I've actually put on makeup and tried to look nice. You should have seen me yesterday covered with paint and grime and without a shower!"

Yeah, it was a ROUGH weekend...

So, now it is on to a new week which includes my sister, Merilee, arriving (tonight) for a week and Phil's surgery on Wednesday. I'm sure it will all go smoothly. In fact, Phil received a fabulous Priesthood blessing last night from our home teacher and branch president. Smooth is definitely the order for this week!

I'll have to post pictures of the bathroom when I get them.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Phil's Brownies

Phil is famous for his brownies so I've asked him to do a guest post for this week's Food Friday.

Preheat oven to 375.

In one bowl:
1 C melted butter
4 eggs
2 C sugar
add: 2 t vanilla

In another bowl:
1 1/2 C flour
1/3 C cocoa
1 t salt

Add flour mixture to butter mixture and mix until all is moist. Grease/flour 9x13 pan (I use that flour spray). Spoon batter into pan and cook for 20-25 minutes (or until toothpick comes out clean).

Cool, cut, serve (don't eat them all by yourself).