Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Bounty Hunter

Last night Jeff and I went to a costume party at our friends Christian and Amber's house. We couldn't think of a costume, so we went online and found the idea for a bounty hunter. It was so fun to make, and even more fun trying to walk/sit/go up stairs in my half of the costume!

So...I was a roll of Bounty paper towels and Jeff was a hunter. It was pretty funny. Anyway, here are some pictures.

Becky, Nicole and Ben

Rosie & Josh

Amber, Rosie, me, Nicole, Maria and Becky

Halloween 6 Days Early

Jeff's grandma Baumann lives in a real nice community for retirees - 2 culdesacs just south of the Jordan River temple - and the weekend before Halloween they always have trick-or-treating for their grand/great-grandkids. Jeff and I took Mason, and Jen too Malia and Cole (Ryan is in Malaysia, so she had to go alone).

Mason really loved trick-or-treating for the first few houses, then it just turned into a race to see if we could catch him before he scurried up people's stairs and into their houses! After we finished, we went back to Grandma Jennie's for chili and root beer. Thanks for inviting us, Jennie!

Anyone living in near us who's hung out with Mason lately knows that he's a real handful. I'd venture to say that his costume is very appropriate.

I've been TAGGED!!

I've never been tagged before, but Darci and Stephanie both tagged me...for different things, so here's Stephanie's:

Things of Eight!

T.V. Shows I like to watch
1. The Hills (if there were an episode on every day, I'd watch every single one!!!)
2. What Not To Wear
3. Design TO Sell
4. Grey's Anatomy
5. 24
6. The View
7. Ellen
8. Oprah

Eight things that happened yesterday
1. A WalMart employee helped me wrap my body in posterboard to measure for my costume
2. I made my "bounty" costume and Jeff's "hunter" costume
3. Deep cleaned the entire house (my in-laws' house)
4. went for a looooooong walk with Mason
5. Hung out outside for like 6 hours total while Mason played. It was so nice outside!
6. I drank a Mt. Dew
7. I learned "How To Say No" - from an article in this month's Cosmo
8. I went to a way fun halloween/house-warming party at Amber's!

Favorite Places to Eat
1. Olive Garden
2. Good Wood
3. Timber Mine Steakhouse (mouth of Ogden Canyon)
4. Claimjumpers (in st. george - not to be confused with the nat'l chain)
5. Cheesecake Factory
6. Chili's (for their chips and salsa)
7. KFC (cole slaw, baby!!)
8. Subway

Eight Things I'm Looking Forward to
1. taking Mason to the costume parade at his grandma's school tomorrow!
2. Halloween
3. Moving into our house this Saturday!!
4. Getting pregnant (if it EVER happens!)
5. date night with Jeff
6. Fitting into my size 6 jeans - (I think I can, I think I can...)
7. Vegas in January with my girlfriends
8. Girl's Night Out with my El Paso girls!!

Eight things on my wishlist
1. A job
2. money for decorations for our house
3. Plane tickets to Florida to see my parents
4. Flowers from Jeff
5. More time with jeff (just "alone" time would do)
6. A new purse/handbag
7. A new camera
8. Weightloss

Eight People I tag (if you want)
1. Jenn J.
2. Jen B.
3. April M.
4. Melea J.
5. Mary Ellen
6. Darci C.
7. Carrie C.
8. Bronwyn D.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Our Romantic Getaway to Park City

This past weekend, Jeff and I took a trip up to Park City - it was awesome! I'm becoming what Katie G. would call a "timeshare ho". Haha! We went to a 90-minute timeshare presentation, and got in return two nights free at a 5-star resort.

Anyone ever stayed at The Canyons before? We were in the Elk Lodge...and it was wonderful. Well, we actually stayed the first two nights (Thursday and Friday) in a less posh building next door because they overbooked the main building. The room was pretty small, but it was still pretty nice, there was never anyone at the pool or hot that was way nice.

So on Thursday we did some shopping at the outlet mall, then went to our presentation, then we just went out to dinner and hung out in the room. We both really needed to unwind and relax - life's been busy lately with the move and Jeff's job finishing up and all.

Jeff and I went horseback riding in Ensenada, Mexico on our honeymoon, and it was totally lame, so Jeff did a lot of investigating and found a ranch owner dude in Park City who took us out. It was so much better than Ensenada! We got to ride for two hours, and actually were allowed to run the horses and stuff. Much better than walking nose-to-tail for an hour!! It was so much fun. Jeff and I both love horses, but he's we spent the rest of the afternoon relaxing by the pool while his eyes de-swelled. haha poor guy. That night we drove around and looked at all the rich people houses that Park City is full of...amazing that so many people can have houses that big!!

On Saturday we checked out of the one place that was free, then went and spent the rest of the morning and part of the afternoon at the Utah Olympic Park. It was so awesome!!! We went on a guided tour and learned all about the ski jumping, the downhill, freestyle, luge, bobsled, etc. It was so interesting. Then we went on the zipline, which was freaky but so fun!! I'm so scared of heights...but as soon as the door opened and we started to fly, i was having a blast!!

Saturday at 4 we were allowed to check into the nicer place that we actually paid for, so we did that, then went into town in Park City and walked up and down Main Street. I love that little town - so much history and such charming buildings. The shopping stinks, but the overall experience is great.

We checked out Sunday to come home...but man was it a wonderful trip! I love Jeff so much, and I'm so glad we had a few days to reconnect and just be with each other. We're so grateful for Kathy (Jeff's mom) for keeping Mason while we were gone!!

Pumpkin Carving

This past Monday Jen and Ryan came up to Jeff's parents' house and we had Family Home Evening together. The little kids painted pumpkins and we adults carved them. It was way fun!!

By the way, you know you're married to a perfectionist when he returns to "fix" the eye you just carved on the pumpkin. haha I love Jeff. He's great.

Mason was creeped out by the pumpkin guts - he wouldn't even touch it...until this one time when we all walked away, and turned around and he was poking it with his finger. Until he noticed that we saw, then he quickly stopped and acted grossed out. He had a blast painting his pumpkin though.

Thanks for the suggestion, Jen!

Amber Treated Me to a Concert!!!!

So my bff Amber took me to the Reba McEntire/Kelly Clarkson concert a couple of weeks ago, and OH MY GOSH, IT WAS SO AMAZING!!! I would venture to say that it was THE BEST concert I've ever seen...after NKOTB when I was 10 yrs old, of course. :)

First of all, thank you so much Amber for taking me! Being married with a kid and on a limited budget, concerts aren't really something that we can spend money on. I'm glad Amber wanted to go so badly that she felt the need to pay for someone to go with her, and I'm grateful that 'someone' was me!!

The concert was part of the "2 Worlds 2 Voices" tour. Usually with country shows, you have an opening band, but not with this show - Melissa Peterson (Barbra Jean on the "Reba" show) opened with a HILARIOUS comedy act that had us all laughing our heads off.

My favorite two songs were Reba's "Does He Love You" - where they sang the opposing parts AT each other, and it was very believable that they hated each other during that performance!! And Kelly's "Since You've Been Gone". I'll include the videos in this post that I took if I can reduce them in size enough.

Oh, and Amber and I were very entertained by some dude and his wife who were 2 rows down from us. Seriously, she must have promised him something amazing after the show...or he must really, really love his wife...cuz he stood up for the ENTIRE show and appeared to be having more fun than any of the teenage girls in attendance. In fact, during the slow song "Because of You", he was up dancing still...pretty devoted fan. He knew all the words to every song...both from Reba and Kelly!! If you look at the slide show, he's "the guy who left his cajones at the door".

First Snow

On the 12th of October, we all went up to Bountiful for the blessing of Mindy and Cory's new baby boy Cole. We woke up to snow that weekend, and Mason was just loving watching it out the car window on our drive up to the blessing Sunday morning.

After it was over, we were waiting for someone to move their car that was parked behind us, so Jeff took advantage of the opportunity and taught Mason how to catch snowflakes on his tongue. It was the cutest thing to watch!!! I just love how much Jeff enjoys interacting with Mason. And Mason eats up every second of Jeff's time that he can get.

I just loved the pictures of him runnin around in his shirt, tie, diaper and socks too...reminded me of Tom Cruise on Top Gun. :) Minus the diaper, of course.

Fun With Cousins

Since we moved back, we've been able to get together a lot with Jen and her kiddos - Mason's cousins Cole and Malia. I'm so glad they're relatively close, because I get pretty bored during the day with nothing to do and it being so cold outside. I have a couple of friends who live nearby that I could hang out with, but it's SO hard to take my child to a person's house who doesn't have kids...most people don't understand what it's like for me to take him places where he doesn't have play things to keep him entertained. He's so into everything.

So while I'm on that tangent, I think I'll elaborate. Everywhere Mason goes, he stops to investigate everything. But not just check things out - he really has to figure out how each thing works before he will move on to the next thing. When we go to people's houses, he doesn't just hang out in the room with me. He'd explore/destroy the entire house if I didn't follow him around. If there's a kid room with toys, he'll stay in there and play. But if I go to see friends who don't have kids, and I have to take Mason, I might as well not even be there because I have to chase Mason around the whole time and don't even get to talk to my friend that I went to visit.

Anyway, so last week Jen and I took our kids to South Towne Mall to ride the carousel. Mason LOVED it!! This past Monday, I kept Malia and Cole while Jen and Ryan went house hunting, and it was soooooooo much fun over here! We pulled out Mason's pop-up tent that's supposed to be used for sleeping, but him and Malia had so much fun in it! Cole wasn't too sure about it, so he resorted to kissing his reflection in the fireplace glass. Mason and Malia play really, really well together - Cole likes to follow them around, and I'm sure he'll be joining in on the trouble-making soon enough!

Witch Hunt at Gardner Village

So a couple of weeks ago my sister-in-law Jen (Jeff's brother Ryan's wife) invited Mason and I to go with them to Gardner Village for the annual Witch Scavenger Hunt. They have really cool witches all over the place, and a list that you search from. Once you find them all, you take the kids to get them a cookie at the Village Bakery.

There were all kinds of witches - witches playing baseball, one hula-hooping, a frequent flier witch on a zipline thing with another witch across the parking lot directing her with the orange light sticks that they use on the tarmac at the airport. It was a lot of fun, and it's just so cool to finally have Mason near some of his cousins!

No personal updates. Just the way it is.

Since we've been staying at the in-laws' house this month, I haven't had access to my own laptop until today...I just unpacked it and all the cables to upload pics from the camera, so stay tuned. I'll be posting lots of entries today and lotsa pictures too. :)

Friday, October 10, 2008

Fun, Friends & Becky's Humor

I had such a fun night last night! I was down in Lindon for a women's group thing that I attend every week, and since I down that way, I decided to go by Nicole's (my cousin/friend) to see her and Ben's new house in Lehi. Sooooo pretty, and Nicole's decorated it so beautifully (of course). Our friend Becky was over too, and we all had so much fun laughing and reminiscing on old times. But to explain the title real quick like...Becky says the most hilarious things sometimes, and last night she said some things that even had Nicole's hubby Ben squirming in his seat. We were dying and I really can't remember the last time I laughed so hard.

It's pretty crazy to think that we've all been friends for almost ten years (lots more girls are included in this group)!! We were talking last night about some of the fun times from years ago, and we couldn't help but die laughing. Back in the day, our crew consisted of me, Becky, Nicole, Rosie, Joy, Becka, Natalie, Kaycee, Melea, Maria, Crystal...and I'm sure I'm forgetting someone or some-two.

So once upon a time there was our "condo situation" in Orem - it was me, Nicole, Becky, Laurel and Carly. We were all a tad bit crazy, but it all got crazier when we all started dating a group of friends (one of whom Nicole married - Ben). Becky reminded me last night about the morning when Laurel woke up and told her that she had a - I'll use the term "lesbian dream" - about her. haha!! That's when Becky and Nicole decided it was time to move out. We also remembered a hilarious phase Carly went through where she wore crazy clothes and rolled around the condo in roller skates, imitating her favorite movie character at the time. Hahaha!!!! We won't mention the name/movie her ideas stemmed from.

We remembered the nights when they'd all come visit me on my grave shift at the American Fork Denny's - and when my then-boyfriend (and friend of Ben) showed up at Denny's ON MY SHIFT after a football game with a lot of his teammates...and some girl he was hooking up with. I had to serve the girl my boyfriend was cheating on me with. Sadly, that was just the first of many straws placed on that camel's back before it broke. I put up with a lot from that clown, but I learned a lot, and those days with my girlfriends were so much fun!!!

Last night we talked about how so many people we know never really get to experience the fun "college years" - have all the crazy fun times, and make the mistakes that come with the territory. I'm SO grateful that I did, and that I did it with such awesome friends. We made some incredible memories together - from the many parties at The Branbury, going dancing at Club Omni or up at Club Axis multiple nights a week, 4th of July parades camped out on University Ave, fireworks in the intramural fields ont he 4th of July, all the girls attacking the cake straight from the cake pan with forks on each one of our Birthdays, VEGAS TRIPS with everyone crammed in one tiny hotel room...oh my gosh, we had so much fun. Oh, and who could ever forget Natalie and Nicole in their leopard print pants walking bow-legged down The Strip in Vegas?!

I couldn't have asked for better friends. We've all had some rough patches, and I've made lots of mistakes - broken some cardinal rules of "girlfriendship" - but I'm so grateful for loving, forgiving girlfriends who have always been nothing but supportive. As we've always said, " a bra...wrapped up all nice from Victoria's Secret".

I love my girlfriends!!

And tonight I get to go to the Kelly Clarkson/Reba McIntyre concert with my other BFF Amber...thank you for getting me a ticket, woman!!! I feel so blessed that I have such amazing friends. Not sure what I'd do without the support system/laugh factory/memory making.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

I forgot to mention...

I miss Saint George. I know, I KNOW! I complained about how badly I wanted to come home (to the Salt Lake Valley), but now that I'm here, I really miss St. George. It could be that it's been so cold here, and it's so warm in St. George. It could be Mason's "ere Bebba?" (where's Becka) every morning. I miss my St. George friends!!! But I really, really miss my hubby. As soon as we got here, he had to turn around and go back to do some more work at the credit union, so I'm all alone at Jeff's parents' house this week.

It's been a little bit of a challenge trying to figure out what there is to do here for Mason. I take him to the daycare at the gym each morning...mainly so he can interact with other kids. Then we come home and nap, and then I have been trying out different parks with him. The tricky thing takes so dang long to get anywhere up here!! I totally took for granted how close everything was in St. George. I could walk to the most incredible park in less than ten minutes. I'm gonna need a job just to pay for all the gas I use trying to keep Mason entertained and not locked up in the house!

Anyway, all-in-all, I'm grateful to be back. But I really do miss everyone and everything in St. George. *xoxo*

Park City

It's been since Mason was a few weeks old that Jeff and I have been away together without the little munchkin, so I'm sooooooo uber-excited for the trip we're taking next weekend!! It's not really a "trip", but it's getting away, so that's good enough for me!!

My friend Rosie set us up for this timeshare presentation deal in Park City, and we get 2 nights free for sitting through a 90-minute schpeal. Not bad, especially since Jeff's so good at telling those guys "no, no, NO!". So we are heading up next Thursday and coming back Sunday. We listen to the timeshare presentation Thursday evening, then get to stay that night and Friday night for free. Since we were planning on this trip, we're gonna spend some money and stay Saturday night too. I'm SO grateful Kathy volunteered to keep Mason for us!! I'm not sure she's totally aware of what she's gotten herself into though...she may need a vacation when we get back!!

So, now I need ideas. We're heading up 4 days after they close all the fun "summer events" like the Alpine Slide and Alpine Coaster...anyone familiar with Park City and have some suggestions? We want to do some mountain biking and hiking (if it doesn't snow up there this weekend, which I'm afraid it might). If it does snow, I could learn to snow shoe. Anyway, I'd love some suggestions!!! Places to eat, museums, plays/musicals to see, whatever.

I'm not sure how we're ever going to keep ourselves entertained when we go out to dinner...without Mason there to throw food, break glasses, and scream. Have I mentioned that I'm pretty excited for this break?!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Last Hurrah

My Uncle Derek gave Jeff and I some free passes for Tuacahn, so we went last night with Jeff's best friend Christian and his wife April. We got lucky and went on their official "date night", so we got 2 free drinks and free popcorn! We were able to leave Mason with my friend Darci, so it really was a relaxing evening!

We saw "Big River - The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn", and man was it incredible!! For those of you who've never been to Tuacahn in Saint George before, the amphitheater is set back in the red rocks of Snow Canyon. The backdrop is a man-made waterfall and river that flows down the rocks and behind the stage. For "Big River", they actually flood the river and the water flows down over the stage, so it looked like Huck and Jim were really floating down a river on their raft. It was by far the most light-hearted musical we've seen at Tuacahn, though there were some pretty serious historical parts too (like the issues with slavery and people treating them as property - such a dark time in U.S. history). We totally loved it though!!

We leave on Saturday for SLC, so it was nice to have one last night out to enjoy this awesome place where we've lived for the past year. Enjoy the pictures!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Final Plans

After being so excited last week that we're leaving, it's finally hit me that I'm sad too. I've made some great friends here, and am a little bummed that we're leaving. I feel like such a mean person for having to take Mason away from his friends that he sees every day - I know that next week he's going to be asking me "ere bebba?" (Where's Becka) like he does every morning when we get home from the gym and leave to go to the park with Becka and Patrick (w/Rachel). These changes are fairly easy for me since I grew up moving around, but I'm a little worried about how Mason will react when we never come back to what he knows to be his home.

I'm not sure if most 18 month-olds are as attached to home as Mason is, but each time we pull up to the townhome, Mason starts to cheer "Yay, ome!!" (Yay, home!) He LOVES being here. When we go up to Jeff's parents' house in Sandy for a visit and come back home, he always gets so excited as soon as he can see the house. I'm just a little worried for him. Any pointers on how we can make this transition a little easier on him? Especially since we'll be living with Jeff's parents for a month until our renter is out of our house.

So, we actually have real moving plans. The credit union opened this past Monday, so Jeff's just taking care of some punch-list stuff (I say that as if I really know what the "punch list" involves...). We pack up the moving trailer on Friday, and then say our 'goodbye' to Saint George Saturday morning sometime around 11 probably.

Sunday was sad, by the way. Saying goodbye to our Primary kids that we've taught for almost a year was so hard, but it was also way cool because it was the Primary Jeff and I got to see the kids in our class participate in that. It was so adorable, and I cried my eyes out!! To see these sweet (usually) 7 year olds reciting their memorized parts and singing songs about Jesus was such a wonderful experience, and I can't think of a better way to remember these children who have been such a big part of our lives since we moved here (the kids we taught last year, and then the ones we have this year). I know that Jeff and I weren't the world's best teachers, but we're both so grateful for the time we had with Thomas, Janey, Hallie, Connor, Landon, Paden, Ashley, Ethan, Derek and Sage (I think I got them all!). We have learned so much from them, even though they're only 6 and 7 years old! We love you guys and we'll miss you!!

Also, I've had some personal struggles since being down here in St. George. So I'd really like to thank the girls who became my friends...even though I wasn't really emotionally available to be a great friend back. Thanks for your examples, smiles, compliments and smiles...always at the right time. Thanks for helping me out with Mason, for keeping me motivated to be a good wife and cook good dinners (rachel - your recipes), for listening, and for humoring me! I always kinda felt like I didn't have way close friends in Saint George, but now that I'm faced with moving, I realize that I've been blessed with wonderful friends, and I'm pretty sad about parting.

Now, once we move back into our house in Riverton, we won't have tons of space - it's only a 2 bedroom, but we've got a futon and a huge couch that comfortably sleeps 3, so if anyone wants to come visit, COME ON UP!! And don't you dare think for one second that you're getting rid of us, because I know we'll be needing to escape the cold winter weather for a visit down here.

Love you all!