Thursday, December 31, 2009

Wow! 2009 went by lightning fast!

It's that time of year again and I'm ready to set some new goals.  I decided to take a look at the goals I set for myself last year at about this time and was surprised to see how few (ha!) I actually accomplished.  Here are last year's goals:
  1. Run a 5k in less than 24 minutes. Current PR is 25:47.  (FAIL! But did manage to get a new PR of 25:27! I'll be trying this one again this year.)
  2. Start running longer distances (5+ miles) at least once a week. (Check!)
  3. Play in a local mixed doubles tennis tournament with Will. (FAIL! This one is the one I'm most afraid of! I'm just so scared to lose that I won't even try. I'm sure this has something to do with my terrible high school tennis team experience, or lack thereof.  I'm still adding this one to this year's goals. I really need to get over it already.)
  4. Learn how to swim, like really swim- backstroke, breaststroke, etc. (FAIL! I thought I might want to do a triathlon but I'm not even remotely interested anymore. I'll leave the swimming to the fish...and the old people at the gym.)
  5. Save at least $500/month. (FAIL! Not even close. Ha!)
  6. Lose 10 lbs (or more) and keep it off! (I lost it but didn't keep it off. This one's a wash.)
  7. Refinish the 2 old dressers that are collecting dust in the garage. (Is it possible it's been over a year since I got those old dressers?! Geesh! Well, didn't refinish them but I did clean them up and they are being used so this one's a wash, too.)
  8. Reorganize and redecorate the loft upstairs. (Um, fail.)
  9. Spend more time working with Coleman on reading and helping Cooper with his speech. (Check! At least I have my priorities in line.)
  10. Read more books. Not to the boys. I read plenty of those. I mean actual grown-up best-seller list books. Then maybe I won't feel like I'm getting dumber with each passing year. (Check! In fact, I've read 3 books in the last 3 weeks!)
So, that's like 3 out of 10. Not very good. Heck, half of these goals I forgot I had even set!  I'm going to have to print out a copy of this year's goals and put them where I'll see them.  Will says he doesn't set goals at the beginning of the year. He just sets goals throughout the year as things come up that he wants to work on.  Not a bad idea. Then you never come back to a list like this and think, "What was I thinking?!" But me being me, I like to wax introspective at least once a year and come up with some things that seem goal-worthy. So, without further adieu-

My Goals for 2010
  • Running goals: first marathon (1/9/10!), 5k in less than 24 min, 10k in less than 50 min, and a half-marathon in less than 1hr55min.  All will require some work but all are totally attainable.
  • Be at church on time at least 90% of the time. This one will be difficult since church starts at 9:00am this year and I made it to church on time, oh, about 5% of the time when church started at 1:00pm.  Now's a great time to figure out a new Sunday morning regimen that will help us to be more prompt.
  •  Read my scriptures everyday. My reading has been inconsistent and I need to make sure that I read, even if just a little, everyday.
  •  Do something nice for someone everyday. Make cookies, write a letter, pay a compliment- be creative and be personal.  Surprise people with a nice gesture. Love this one and I'm thinking I'll get the whole family involved.
  • Play in a mixed doubles tennis tournament with hubster.  This year, I'm not letting this one beat me. There is a local tournament every year in June and this year I'll be the first to sign up!
  • Lastly, I wasn't even sure that I'd add this one this year, but I do need to lose a few pounds. To be totally honest, marathon training has led me down a path of, well, over-carbing and I'd like to be back to feeling like myself by spring. So, my last goal is to lose, hmm, let's say 10 pounds and get back to weight-training and feeling light and spry again.   
I'm liking this year's list! Makes me happy to have some goals written out.  Funny how last year I made absolutely no mention of running a marathon. It wasn't even on my radar back then.  Just goes to show that sometimes we just have to go where life seems to be pushing us. I'm certainly all for adjusting my goals as I see fit throughout the year. Heck, by the time 6 months go by, I may need to adjust my goal to getting to church on time to 50%. (Nards! Giving up before I even start trying!)

Really looking forward to twenty-ten!  Good luck to all you goal-setting fools and Happy New Year!!!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

32 ain't so bad!

Yesterday was my 32nd birthday and it's fair to say that it started out a little un-birthday like with news from the hubby that it would be $800 to get the car fixed. Yikes! I was on my way to go shopping when he called and I turned right around and went home. Amazing how news like that will make you just feel like not spending money. Oh man, right at Christmastime, too.  Anyway, I went home, checked the bank account and started to feel a little better.

After a little shifting around of funds, my headache was starting to dissipate and there was a knock at the door.  Sweet Anne Marie showed up with this little box of deliciousness.  I know, I know. Taking pictures of cupcakes is lame but this one really deserved to have a picture documenting it's existence.  It was packaged up so pretty that it instantly had me feeling like a birthday girl again!  The cupcake itself was yellow cake with a raspberry cream filling and lemon butter cream frosting. I told Anne Marie that it wouldn't last long and she told me I could eat it for lunch because it was my birthday after all. I didn't eat it for lunch but I did share it with the boys as an after-school snack. Yum! Thanks, Anne Marie!

Just after Anne Marie stopped by it was time for me to pick Cooper up from preschool.  The kiddos were all waiting outside on the front porch for their parents and I was treated to the preschoolers singing me the Happy Birthday song. SO CUTE! I wish I had been prepared for it and got it on video. Their sweet little faces were just too precious for words.  Thanks, Sandra, for that little surprise!

My financially-induced tears of the morning were distant memories by this point and I was just ready to spend the rest of the day celebrating.  I was thrilled to have the next couple knocks at my door bring me more birthday goodies.  This from the Relief Society Presidency

and this from my sweet neighbors, the Bartons.

Will made it home at about 4:30 pm and I was just starting to get ready for our night out when Will had the boys give me my gift.  He had taken them to Color Me Mine and had them make me this cute-ified plate for me. It says "Happy Birthday, Mom!" and has their little hand prints on it.  Coleman says that it's blue and red because it's their favorite colors. I think it's perfect! Love these boys!
We all got spiffied up and went out to eat at the Cheesecake Factory for my birthday dinner. Even on a Tuesday night this place was packed. (Crazy!) It was well worth the wait, though. The food was amazing! We had the avocado egg rolls as an appetizer and I ordered the Chicken Bellagio as my main dish. Pretty sure I didn't even make it halfway through my huge plate of food.  (Lucky for me, I get to have the rest for lunch today!) Will had this jambalaya-type pasta dish and the food was delicious all around. Sadly, I was too full to have cheesecake but I did buy a slice to take home. Red velvet cheesecake, why do you have to be so delicious?  I finished you off for breakfast and already miss you so...

Thanks to the Sisouthams for going out with us! (And for the Cheesecake Factory gift card that was very quickly used!) You guys are awesome! Our birthday dinners are becoming quite the tradition!  And thanks to my mom for the cutest measuring spoons ever!! Can't wait to get them!

After I got home, there were some super sweet messages on the answering machine and some yummy cookies from Smart Cookie waiting on the doorstep from my neighbors, Tiffany and Sandra. The cookies are calling my name but I've told myself I need to drink at least a quart of water before I can have any more sugar. Ha ha! Don't worry they will be savored real soon! I'm sure I'll have some help from Will and the boys, too...

One last surprise from BFF, Jenn. She came by after we got home and brought me a iTunes gift card! Thanks so much, Jenn! I could really use the new tunes for the marathon training. Can't wait to go shopping for some new songs.

Thanks again to everyone who made my birthday so special! 32 ain't so bad! In fact, I think I'm gonna' like it!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

We elfed ourselves!

There is Christmas stuff everywhere and yet I was unable to get in the holiday spirit until now!  Funny that it took getting "elfed" to do it! Ha ha!

Send your own ElfYourself eCards

Monday, November 16, 2009

Mr. McGillicutty?

So, Coleman has now decided he wants to be involved in TV production. He wrote his first script two days ago and we told him that for Family Home Evening he could assign parts and we would record it.  So, without further adieu, here's "Kingdom in the Door." Apparently it's part of a series called Scary Place.  :)

Cast of characters:
Mr. McGillicutty, the teacher- Dad
Tommy- Cooper
Eric- Mom
New kid- Coleman
A kid outside- Coleman

Mr. McGillicutty- "Today's lunch menu is meatlarf.  Let's sing a song about it. Meatlarf, yummy, yummy,
Tommy (raising his hand)- "Mr. McGillicutty?"
Mr. McGillicutty- "Yes? Uh, not good. Not good."
Tommy (still raising his hand)- "Mr. McGillicutty?! Does 2+10=19?"
Mr. McGillicutty- "No."
Tommy- "Oh."
Mr. McGullicutty- "What's this?"
Eric- "Huh?"
Tommy- "Hi!"
Mr. McGillicutty- "A new student? I should have known."
Eric- "Who is he?"
Mr. McGillicutty- "I don't know."
[New kid walks in to classroom.]
New kid- "Hello!"
Mr. McGillicutty (angrily)- "You broke the door!!!"
New kid- "Sorry."
Mr. McGillicutty- "Why don't you sit..."
Tommy and Eric (bamming the desk next to them)- "Over here! Over here!"
Mr. McGillicutty (pointing)- "...with those two."
New kid- "Okay."
Tommy and Eric- "Tee, hee, hee."
Mr. McGillicutty (angrily)- "Boys!"
New kid- "Hi guys!"
Tommy and Eric- "Ha, hee!"
Mr. McGillicutty (angrily)- "What are you doin'?!"
All 3 boys- "HA!HA!HA!"
Mr. McGillicutty- "Now..."
Eric (looking at Mr. McGillicutty)- "Is he dead?"
Tommy- "No, why would he?"
Mr. McGillicutty- "...and..."
All 3 boys- "HA!HA!HA!HA!"
Mr. McGillicutty (angrily)- "STOP!!!"
New kid- "What? Hee, hee!"
Mr. McGillicutty- ""
All 3 boys- "HA!HA!HA!"
Mr. McGillicutty- "What the heck?!"
New kid- "La-l-la!"
Tommy and Eric- "HA!HA!HA!"
[School bell rings.]
A kid outside- "Come on out!"
All 3 boys- "Hooray!"
[All 3 boys run over Mr. McGillicutty.]
Mr. McGillicutty- "Ow!"
[The boys are playing ball outside.]
Eric- "Downsy! Downsy!"
New kid- "Upsy-daisy!"
Mr. McGillicutty- "Oh come on!!! Man, man!!!"

Obviously, we didn't practice it much at all before recording but I'm pretty sure it wouldn't have mattered. :) The important thing is- Coleman couldn't have been more excited to have it all acted out.  I'm sharing it here not because of our magnificent acting (although, it is!) but because Coleman wants everyone to see it. Hope you enjoy!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Coleman's big stage debut!

Coleman has been interested in movies for a long time.  He's like a walking calendar for movie premiere dates. A couple of months ago he began asking me how movies were made and what he needed to do to make his own movie. Sufficeth to say, I really had no idea what to tell him. I only got as far as telling him to write a screenplay. And he did write a couple "screenplays" and then when I told him that we could video he and his friends acting it out he asked, "Then they will play it at the movie theater?" Uh, not exactly, bub.  He's so not interested in making movies unless it's going to play at the local Cinemark. :)

So, in order for him to learn exactly how much work goes into a real production we signed him up for his first musical theater production.  We told him that he could learn things that will help him when he goes on to make movies- stuff about sets and stage direction, etc. He was all about it.

The local arts council does a couple of plays a year for 4-8 yr olds to star in.  This go round they were putting on 101 Dalmatians.  Coleman auditioned (every kid was awarded a role) and got the part of Chihuahua #4, perfect part for a first-timer! He continued to go to practice every Mon and Wed from 4-5pm for 7 weeks. He learned all the songs and dances and was ready for his debut performance last Thursday.  He was a little nervous the first night but it played to his advantage because it helped him to be more focused.  (Well, as focused as Coleman gets anyway.) Coleman did his very best that night and the two subsequent nights and we couldn't have been any more proud. Go Coleman! Our very own li'l actor.

Here's part of the song "Twilight Bark" where the Chihuahuas were center stage.  He may have been a bit off-beat but we think he stole the show! I say he just added his own flare to his character. :)

Here's Coleman posing by the truck on set.

Getting our photo-op with the star.

I also want to mention that Coleman had great support in the audience every night as well. June and the kids came on Thursday night. Jenn, Madi and Jackson came on Friday night and Jenny, La and Talon came to see him on Saturday night.  We love and appreciate all of our supportive friends and family. You guys are the best! Coleman is so lucky to have such wonderful people in his life.

Here's a bit of the final number.

By the way, Coleman says he never, ever wants to do another play. Too much practice, he says. Ha, ha! Next up for Coleman? He wants drawing and writing classes. That sounds about right.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Catch-up post!

Ok. Just taking a minute here (after midnight!) to catch-up a little on my blog. I've been posting about once a week on my other blog and I guess that's all I've really had in me to write lately.

First of all let's catch up a little on Coops. I just love this redhead so much. I just want to eat him up some days! He has been so affectionate lately always giving Mom and Dad lots of hugs and kisses and "I love you's." Will has really been appreciating this because Cooper has typically given Mom all the love and Dad all the kicks to the head. Oh, and he just finished up his very first season of soccer. The Purple People Eaters had a great fall season.  Cooper has gotten better each week and even scored a goal a couple of games back! Even so, I'm not entirely sure that soccer is his sport. While he enjoys playing, when they ask if anyone needs a break, he is always to first kid to volunteer. He really just likes sitting on Mom's lap, drinking some Gatorade and cheering for his team. We're thinking he may be more of a baseball guy, as he's been excited to watch games with Will and has begun asking lots of questions while he watches.  Since t-ball won't be until next summer, we've decided to sign Cooper up for some MMA (mixed martial arts) classes until then. Starting that in a couple weeks! He's a natural fighter so I'm sure he'll do really well.

Now Coleman. My sweet Coleman. He is such a great boy! He consistently does as he's told and always without complaining.  He loves to read and going to the library is the highlight of his week.  Lately, he's been obsessed with writing (and illustrating) chapter books of his own. He will work on them for hours at a time, breaking only to think about what his next book will be about. Sometimes, he'll go and pace around in the back yard "acting out" what he wrote. And yes, he does look a bit crazy walking around talking to himself but at least he's being creative, right?!  Coleman has also been enjoying a bit of fame this month from his appearance in the Friend.  It seems like everyone and their brother has seen it. Every day he comes home and says that someone else mentioned they saw him. I think he's really enjoying his 15 minutes of fame. He plans on extending his fame by appearing in the Lehi Arts Council's performance of the Kidz Musical 101 Dalmatians at the beginning of November.  Watch out because Chihuahua #4 just might steal the show! :)

As for Will, he's been busy working.  Being an asst. principal at a jr. high is no easy task!  He's so blessed to have a job that allows him so much time off, though. We really love having him home on the days that school is out.  Of course, work is not all he's been up to. He has been taking ukulele lessons for the past few weeks. Ukulele? Really?! Yes! He has always wanted to learn. He says he just loves how calming the music is.  He's determined to do some mean strumming at the beach next summer. I've been listening to him practice and he's getting quite good. He can now play the Happy Birthday song and Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star. Gotta' start somewhere!  Will is also training for the marathon along with me. He had a brief spell with a swollen ankle but all is well now and he's training at 100%. So proud of him!

As for me, it's same ol', same ol'.  I am keeping myself pretty busy lately shopping for the perfect new flooring for our downstairs. I've narrowed it down to either hardwood or laminate. Still trying to decide what will look best with our maple cabinets. I'm terrible at making these kinds of decisions. Too indecisive.  And absolutely no clue what looks good. I need some help! Other than the floors, I've been running (a lot!) and doing all the busy mommy stuff that I do everyday. Gotta love it!!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

My Marathon Blog

I thought about calling it or but AliciaRuns seemed simple and to the point. Just training updates and random thoughts. I actually just really wanted to keep some kind of journal to remember it all but thought others might enjoy it, too. Or maybe not. But, either way, it's out there.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

How do you eat an elephant?

One bite at a time!  This past Saturday our elephant came in the form of a half-marathon that Will and I signed up for on a whim back in July. I hadn't really considered running that far before. In fact, I had only ever run 6 miles at one time but Will's sister, June, and her husband, Steve, convinced me that we could do it so I signed up for it quickly before I could change my mind. (It's funny how sometimes we don't believe in ourselves until someone else does.) Anyway, there was no backing out. We paid our money and had no choice but to go for it. As soon as we were home from vacation I found a training plan and we got started.

The training was challenging but never more than we could handle. We did all of our long runs on the Jordan River Trail which made those runs really pretty nice. It's so quiet out there and you can feel secluded but without being too far from civilization. I actually look forward to my long runs because of that trail. Even though I saw at least one snake cross my path every time I ran out there. Creepy but it usually put a little extra pep in my step!

The only snag in training came for me 3 weeks before the race when I wore some new shoes out for a 9 mile run. By the time I made it back, I had strained a ligament in my foot and was out of training for a little over a week. Not smart! Injuries are certainly a part of training, though. And I'm learning to work through them and  not get too down when it happens.  After all, it always gets better, right?!

Race Time: I was really anxious/excited the day before the race. I spent the whole day doing the two things I do when I'm nervous- cleaning and baking. I really get a lot done when I'm anxious about something.

That night I made pancakes for dinner (a little carbo-loading) but I really had to force myself to eat it. I just didn't feel like eating but knew I had to so that I would have fuel to burn on the run. So, I ate a pancake but wasn't able to eat anything else the rest of the night. Will's sister picked the boys up at about 8:00 pm and took them to her house to stay the night (yay for awesome sister-in-laws!) and Will and I got to bed early to get some much needed rest. Well, I should say we both got to bed early only I wasn't able to fall asleep until past 11:00. Pesky anxiety.

So, finally we made it to race day. The day that I would become a bonafide long-distance runner. I was so excited that I jumped right out of bed when my alarm went off at 5:00 am. I ran downstairs to eat half a waffle with peanut butter and 1/2 a banana. Again, I didn't want to eat but knew I had to.  Will and I were out the door by 5:45 and on our way to Spanish Fork.

It was dark and rainy when we arrived but once we got our race packets, put our race chips on our shoes and pinned our numbers on our shirts, the sun was starting to come out and the rain stopped. It looked as if it would be perfect weather for a run.  I made a pre-run trip to the loo and met a bunch of friendly ladies while waiting in line. People are super friendly at long-distance races. I even met and talked with a few people while running! It's like some kind of "we're all in this together" attitude and it's infectious. I love that.

Will and I made our way over to the starting line. We were both feeling confident and ready to go. The race started and we were on our way. Knowing we didn't want to go out too fast, we stuck to our race plan and ran at about a 9:25 min/mile pace for the first 6 miles. Our plan was to run a negative split (basically run the 2nd half faster if we felt like we had the juice to.) Around mile 6, we hit the big, mile-long hill.  No kidding, we ran uphill that entire mile! The Garmin beeped when we hit mile 7 and I realized that we had run our fastest mile yet! That's when I knew we could pick it up a little. Miles 7-13 we averaged a little under a 9:00 min/mile and finished the race in 2:00:45, a 9:13 min/mile average pace. Wahoo!! It's great when things work out the way you plan them to! Of course, I would have loved to have finished in under 2 hours but I was just happy to have finished. Under 2 hours can be my next goal. :)

As soon as we crossed the finish line, my legs locked up. I felt it right away. I had to run around for a couple minutes just to keep loose as I cooled down. Will seemed fine. He was just happy to be done I think. Let me take a minute here to talk about my husband. I basically forced him into running this with me and I think it was the best training decision I could have made. What a huge support he was for me. He was right by my side the whole time, giving me gels when it was time and gentle encouragement when my IT band was acting up. I loved sharing this with him. I just love him.

Anyway, we congratulated ourselves, had some water and fruit, and walked around until they handed out medals. We finished 108 and 109 out of about 270 runners. No awards for us although we were hoping maybe Will would finish in the top 3 of the Clydesdale division. That's for guys that are 200+.  But alas, he didn't. We sat through the billion different raffles hoping to win an iPod or a camera or even a chicken dinner but it wasn't in the cards for us. It's okay, though, because we had already gotten our award- the feeling of knowing that we had finished the race was enough for us. And finishing easily, without a single thought about stopping, was our reward for all the hard training.

All in all, a great experience and way easier than I expected. I'm feeling completely confidant about training for the full marathon. Training starts next week!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Super Cooper is 4!

It's been particularly hard for me to let this baby boy grow up. I have been seriously sad that he isn't 3 anymore. Three was such a good year for him! He has been such a Mama's boy. I've gotten lots of love and hugs and kisses from him. I think I am just afraid that as he gets bigger I'll get less and less of that cuddly time.  Kinda makes me wanna wrap him up in a blankie and start moving in reverse. Alas, I know that my efforts will be futile and I have to embrace the 4-yr-old Cooper which has so far proved not to be so bad. He's had plenty of love for Mommy today, even though he's 4. So, little boy, I'll let you grow up. I have no choice...

That being said- let's celebrate my little Cooper. Here's a little about this special boy.
  1. He is incredibly goofy. A total ham who just eats up the attention he gets from anybody. This is pretty much proved by every photograph that I ever take of him. He loves to pose and be silly.
  2. Many, many times Will and I have retired for the night only to find this little fella' (and his older brother) in our bed.  We've successfully been able to lock our door to keep them out for a long while. However, just last week we went to bed only to find them in there again! The next morning I asked Cooper how he got in my room and he said, "I used the key!" Ha ha! I have to admit I kind of love it that they want to sleep with us. It's comforting to have us all together at night.
  3. This one is obvious to anyone who knows Cooper. He loves is totally obsessed with superheroes! In fact, he can name a couple dozen superheroes and villains off of the top of his head. He has also learned the real names of his favorites- Peter Parker, Tony Stark, Johnny Storm, Dr. Bruce Banner, Ben Grimm. He can go on and on.
  4. He's been boxing since he was 1.  For some reason, he has always just taken to it. He's got a natural ability that's a bit uncanny. I, for one, am not thrilled about this but he does seem to love it. He doesn't hit when he gets angry. So it hasn't made him aggressive. He just seems to love sparring for fun. Here's a pic of him in one of his first sparring matched with his cousin Amy back in 2007. In fact, he moved through all of his cousins that day!

  5.  To counterbalance his tough boy image I have to mention this- Cooper helps me make cookies every single Sunday night. He puts on his little turtle apron and promptly pulls everything out of the pantry that we need. Mom measures and then he adds everything to the bowl. He even knows how to gently tap the bowl until all the flour has been added to the Kitchenaid. Once the dough is made he always gets to lick the beater and has seconds and thirds of the cookie dough. Usually, he's full of cookie dough before the cookies are even done. I love having him as my cookie-makin' bud. Love this little tradition of ours.
Just a few of the things that we love so much about him. Happy birthday, bud! We love you! Here's a few pics from his first 4 years.
We love you little guy!

Friday, August 21, 2009


How can it be time for school already?! I never even got a chance to post all the fun summer stuff we did this year! Oh well. I'll have to come back to that later. Just wanted to jump on here and mention that Coleman says that, "2nd grade is awesome!" and Cooper is thoroughly enjoying his time in preschool. And I am thoroughly enjoying time to myself two mornings a week.  (Yay!)

A little about Cooper's 1st day in his new preschool: I dropped Cooper off at his preschool looking like the top pic and picked him up 3 hours later in his Flash costume. 

What happened, you ask? Dang kid ran home and got his costume when he saw a toy that reminded him of it! You see, Cooper's preschool is right next door taught by my sweet neighbor, Sandra. The whole group of preschoolers were outside playing when he took off towards home (30 ft. away.) The door was unlocked. (I was not at home.) By the time they went to get him (pretty much immediately) he had already grabbed his costume and was on his way back. Sandra, bless her heart, allowed him to wear it and even helped him to put it on. I couldn't help but laugh when I saw him but had a very stern "talking-to" with him soon after I picked him up. He won't be doing it again. Goofy kid. He is obsessed with superheroes.

Coleman's a 2nd grader! He was so nervous last night about going into a new class. In fact, it made me nervous to see him nervous. By this morning, though, he said that he was just excited and by the time he got home he said he had a great day "other than the ride home." Ugh! The bus ride home. He didn't get home until 4:45 today! School lets out at 3:30 so that is a dang long time to be on the bus. Granted he does go to school in another town but it should never take more than 1/2 an hour. The bus driver got lost when he tried to backtrack his morning route and ended up restarting his route from the furthest point. Huh?! What kind of idiot do you have to be to drive a school bus?! Sorry. That was uncalled for but I was just livid that he was on the bus that long. Thankfully Will is friends with the head administrator over transportation (perks of having a school administrator as a husband) so tomorrow this guy better get it right. Oh, that sounded threatening, huh? I can be a beast when it comes to my kids.

Anyway, here's a couple pics of Coleman before school this morning. He was stoked to wear his new Star Wars tee.

He's not really one to pose for pics. Ha ha! Love this kid!

Worth mentioning, too, I hosted a back-to-school donut party yesterday morning. You can read more about it on Jenn's blog. (Click here to see.) I really need to get to bed!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

A couple videos from Park City trip.

We got back from Park City on Friday after spending 3 nights at the Westgate Resort. Nice to get away for a few days. Will says this was our "appetizer" vacation since we are leaving this Saturday to go back East for nearly a month. That must be the main course. Ha ha! Anyway, I spent my time in Park City keeping the boys entertained while Will went to his meetings, etc. Just wanted to post a couple videos of the boys that I captured while we were there.

Monday, May 25, 2009

A Life Like Mary's

This past Monday, my dear grandmother (my Maw Maw) passed from this life and went to be with her Father in Heaven once again. I thought that I was prepared for her to pass. I knew that she hadn't been herself for a long while and that her health had been deteriorating quickly. I told myself to be prepared but nothing prepares you to say goodbye to someone who has meant so much to you.

Maw Maw was everything that I want to be in my life- a loving mother and grandmother, a tireless hostess, and just a completely selfless human being. Her life was centered around her family and making sure that those around her were comfortable and happy. It was difficult to be anything but happy around Maw Maw. She was one of the funniest women I've ever known (whether she meant to be or not) and we spent a good part of our time together as family laughing about funny things she would say. She always really enjoyed the attention.

Maw Maw was also a fabulous cook and I called her often to ask for recipes and cooking tips. About 5 years ago she sent me all of her most used recipes in their original forms- 40 yr old newspaper clippings, splattered note cards and yellowed pages right out of old cookbooks. These are the most treasured items I received from her. She told me that she knew I would use them and it means so much to me to know that I'm able to carry on her legacy by cooking all the things that she so lovingly prepared herself.

She was something special.

I love you, Maw Maw! You will be missed.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Living Traditions '09

It's that time of year again! Today we went to the Living Traditions festival in downtown Salt Lake. It's a festival that showcases dozens of cultures- the food, the crafts, the performing arts. We love it and have gone every year for the past five years. There is just something about it that marks the permanence of warm weather. No more snow. No more back and forth weather. Just sunshine and warm weather for the next few months. Gotta love that.

Anyway, this year was great as always. As soon as we got there we made a beeline for the food stands. We bought the boys some fried spring rolls from the Thai stand to hold them over while we looked around. When it was all said and done we hit the Thai stand, the Tahitian stand, the Vietnamese stand, the Swiss stand, the Bolivian stand, the Pakistani stand and the Hawaiian stand. We took our food and sat under a tree by the south stage to watch the Hawaiian dancing. Great performance although the drunk guy that hung out in front of the stage facing the crowd and dancing was a bit distracting. Was pretty funny, though.

After that we went over to the kids area and found that they were doing a demonstration of Brazilian Copeira, which is like a type of dance that incorporates gymnastics and some fighting moves. It's really cool. The kids were all invited to learn a couple moves. Here's Coleman trying out what he learned.

I don't have pictures of Cooper but he loved it even more than Coleman! We are even thinking about finding lessons for him.

After the festival, we went to Lollicup and had some bubble smoothies and then to the Asian store before heading home. Great day and lots of fun family togetherness!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Happy Birthday, Coleman!

Coleman is 7 and I don't know where the years have gone! He has grown into a terrific kid. Such a sweet boy, always looking to make a new friend, a terrific big brother and can often be found trying to comfort Cooper when he's upset and just an all-around sweetheart. I don't think this kid has a bad bone in his body! (Of course, I say this as his mother but others will agree with me!) Today, he asked me if I'm going to miss him when he's grown up and I told him, "So much my heart will hurt, bud." He seemed satisfied with that answer. I tell you, there's not a day that goes by that he doesn't remind me why I love him so much! Happy Birthday, Coleman!

One year old

Two years old

Three years old

Four years old

Five years old

Six years old

And now he's seven!!!

Coleman celebrated his 7th birthday at Build-a-Bear this year and he had such a blast with his cousins and friends. I thought I'd post some pics of all the fun.
The party leader, Kylee, was cute as a button and really fun.

Got their bears all picked out!

Everybody hold your hearts up high!

A pic of everybody there.

Almost everybody, had to get Jenny, La, and Talon in another picture.

All done! A picture with their new friends! Check out Cooper's face.

A close-up. He was sad because he just got in trouble for biting Coleman. Guess Cooper was a little jealous of all the attention the birthday boy was getting.

The birthday cake. He was so excited that he got to eat the bear.

Every night since the party Coleman has thanked Heavenly Father for it in his prayers. And he says he wants to have his party there again next year. I'm so glad he had fun. He really deserved a special day just for him. I love you, Coleman!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

10 Memorable Things About our Trip to So.Cal.

1. I realized after a day at Newport Beach that I am not always tuned in to my mommy radar. My instincts can be downright off! How did I realize this you ask? Because Cooper looked like this for the next 3 days.
I was sure that everyone at Disneyland must have thought he was there because of the Make-a-Wish Foundation. "Look at that little boy with the nasty skin disorder." I now know to apply sunscreen over his whole face not just his nose and cheeks like most of us with normal skin tones. Good news is that it never seemed to bother him. He was a bit annoyed that I applied sunscreen every 2 hours the rest of the trip, though.

2. Coleman is all talk when it comes to roller coasters. He talked for weeks about how excited he was for all the roller coasters but when I asked him to ride with me, he mostly refused. Even on the ones he did ride, he was scared to death the whole ride and only after the ride was over would he talk about how awesome it was. Funny kid.

3. It pays to talk to the locals. Will stopped a guy on the beach to ask him where some good seafood places were and it led us to food like this-
and this-
at The Crab Cooker in Newport Beach. (We ordered pretty much everything on the menu- salmon, scallops, shrimp, crab, raw oysters and clams. We were determined to eat all the seafood we could find since it's hard to find fresh seafood in Utah.) Jay (that's our new friend's name) also led us to our new favorite sushi place called Tommy's in Tustin, CA. I had the poke bowl and it was awesome. I would go back to CA just to get one of those. And Jay gave us his phone # and told us we could call him for recommendations any time we're in town. Nice guy!

4. Seth and Charya! Old friends of ours were visiting So. California (they now live in D.C.) at the same time we were. What a nice coincidence! We were able to get together with them for a couple of meals while we were there. It's always fun to see them. They are that couple that when we all get together, there is tons of laughter. And I mean like the kind of laughing that makes your belly hurt. So much fun!
5. Overall, we had great weather while at Disneyland but the 3rd day it just wouldn't stop raining! It rained pretty much all day long and even poured in spells. We were not letting anything get in our way of having fun, though. And that day turned out being the day we had the most fun. Soggy shoes and all! We kept telling the boys that it was an adventure to be out in the rain. And, believe me, it was!

6. The only time we weren't having fun was when Coleman would get one of his roaring headaches. Twice we ended up at the First Aid building in Disneyland so Coleman could get some Tylenol and lay down. That's gotta be a bad headache if you want to lay down while at Disneyland. He was such a trooper, though. And once his medicine would kick in, he was back to having fun. Here's a snapshot I took while he was resting. Poor guy!
I have to say that the nurses there were really fantastic. It was so great that he could find a quiet spot to rest there. They were really accommodating and sweet to him.

7. The very first ride that we went on was Big Thunder Mountain Railroad. To our surprise, Cooper was big enough to ride so we all went on. That was probably a huge mistake on our part because Cooper refused to ride pretty much everything else after that. Note to self: next time start with It's a Small World.

8. Perks! Before we left, I found out that since we have a Disney Rewards Visa card we would have some perks while at the park. Free stroller rental, cardholders only character meet 'n' greets, discounts and Disney dollars to spend. May not sound like much but after paying $6 for a corn dog, you really start to appreciate the freebies. Oh, and another perk- the guest assistance pass. We told guest services that Coleman can get a bit over-stimulated and may need a quiet place to wait for rides. They handed over a pass that allowed us to go in through the exits on many rides and get right on! Sweet! Although, I have to say we didn't really need to use it that often. The lines were short already so we didn't want to use it unless we really needed to. But it was nice to have and we did use it a few times in Fantasyland. The lines are always long for Peter Pan.

9. I got to run twice in the early mornings while we were there. It was so fun. Maybe the most fun I had on the trip. There is just something invigorating about running in new towns. It's such a fun way to explore.

10. Coleman and Cooper crack me up in pictures. Coleman always does some sort of weird forced smile, if you even want to call it that. And Cooper always makes faces and overposes. Let's see how many pics I can find from our trip to support this.

I wonder where they get it from...I saw children everywhere that knew just how to pose for pictures. Their mom would say "Smile!" and they would smile and the camera would flash, their sweet little faces saved digitally perfect and scrapbook worthy. Not so much when I take a picture. But I have to say I love the things about our family that makes us unique, bad pictures and all. And who likes to scrapbook, anyway?!

So, that's our vacation in a nutshell. Can't wait to go back!

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