Sunday, November 30, 2008

Thanksgiving and Black Friday!

I was thinking last Thursday as I walked into my apartment stuffed full of Turkey and Pecan Pie with leftovers in hand, how interesting it is that Black Friday is the day after Thanksgiving. We spend a whole day hopefully being grateful for what we have only to spend the next day shopping greedily for material things. I realize that many people do their Christmas shopping on Black Friday, and I am in no way chastising those that do shop on Black Friday. I just think that it is a funny contradiction. A way that, if we are not careful, the Adversary can use to distract us from enjoying Thanksgiving in the right spirit.

I also think it is a funny contradiction that most people find it appropriate to stuff themselves full of food on Thanksgiving. Seeing as gluttony is greed rather than thankfulness. Perhaps there are better ways to show that we are thankful.

So, in light of the season, I'd like to hear what each of you are grateful for.

(Just some "food for thoughts!")




I know that I'm going to get a bunch of "hate" mail/comments for writing my feelings about this subject but I just plain can't stand it anymore!

I started reading the Twilight series about 2 months ago! I had seen the trailer for the movie online (which looked fantastic) and finally decided to read the series that everyone told me was so amazing.
I was truly impressed with the first book! I loved the idea of a human and a vampire being in love! I loved the story, the suspense, the action. I wouldn't have changed a thing!! After reading the first one, I quickly ordered the rest of the books, dying to know what happened next and expecting the same brilliance as the book I had just read. I waited for what seemed like months (but was only a couple days) for the next book to arrive at my door. As soon as it came, I dove in......... and fell hard!!!!

New Moon

Even in the first book I had a hard time identifying with Bella. She is just different than I am. She's anti-social and very self centered. In the first book it didn't bother me too much. The story was good, the characters had depth and I identified with her enough to enjoy the book without much distraction! But in New Moon, her true nature was revealed. Completely self involved after Edward left! Complaining here and there! "Poor me" this and "poor me" that! "Edward left, my life is ruined!!!" What made me the most upset was how she allowed her pain to affect everyone around her. Her pain was all that mattered! Charlie did so much for her and she never showed the slightest bit of gratitude! She hardly talked to him. She lied to him!!! She kept herself so distant from him! What kind of daughter does that?!!! What kind of relationship is that??!!!!
And JACOB! Don't even get me started on Jacob! "Her Sun"!!!! Whatever!!!!! She used him. She didn't care about him. All she cared about is how he made HER feel. Not how he felt! What a selfish Brat!!!! It disgusted me, the way she used him so that she could have her sick little fantasies!
Ok, so enough about how much I hate Bella! What's with Edwards voice in her head? I totally thought that they had some kind of special connection and it turns out to be nothing!!!!!! What the heck!!!! Why would the author lead you on to believe that, only to tell you "just kidding."?? Grrrr!!!!
Next, the most suspenseful part of the whole book was Bella running through the crowd to stop Edward. If that's suspense, just kill me! And of all the things for Edward to do, to show that he's a vampire seriously, WALKING INTO THE SUN!!!???? How lame!!! Couldn't he go pick up a few cars and throw them?? Run? Jump? Climb?? Eat someone !!??(Ok, maybe not that) But seriously just walk into the sun?? So stupid!!! He can do so many cool things and all he decides to do is walk into the sun!
Also, What's with Bella at the end of New Moon thinking that she's dreaming! It was so unbelievable! While reading a book you should never get the urge just to roll your eyes! What a Drama Queen! "I'm sleeping I'm sleeping. This isn't real!" What a load of Bull!!! And then, to not yell at him??? Seriously, of all the times that she is finally justified to unload, she doesn't!!! I was totally expecting (and looking forward to) a scolding for Edward! He deserved it! The way he left her was disgusting and terrible! He needed to be yelled at! That's what I would have done! (And I rarely ever yell! Ask Eric!) But like I said before Bella and I, obviously, are a different breed.
Lastly, The whole book they keep on building up that Victoria is after Bella. So naturally as a reader I expected for Victoria to show up sometime in the book and actually go after Bella! But nothing happened! Nothing at all! The only reason I kept reading was to get to THAT part and I got nothing. Nothing!!!!!!

So my overall feeling of New Moon is " It Sucked!" The only bearable part was Jacob whom I loved!!


Overall Eclipse was OK. Bella is less bratty because things, once again, are going her way (for the most part. She's so self centered). There is actually a climax, which is a plus! Victoria FINALLY comes for Bella. There is tension between the two boys (Edward and Jacob). Not only b/c they like the same girl but also because of their natural instincts to hate each other. ( I still find it hard to believe that two awesome guys like these can be so infatuated with such a brat. Am I the only one who sees her for what she is??) But in the end we get to see some action! (though I would have liked to have read more about the fight between the Newborns, the Werewolves and the Cullen family. But overall, I was satisfied enough to go on to the last book, thinking to myself "New Moon was just an in between book. A setup for Eclpise."

Breaking Dawn

The Last book "Breaking Dawn" was ok.
Surprisingly enough though, I found it to be relatively predictable. I was glad to have Edward and Bella married. But I knew that once they were married, naturally, the next step was for Bella to get pregnant. So when she started eating a ton, I knew what was coming. But was definitely interested to see how their baby would turn out! But I also knew, once Bella was pregnant, that Jacob would imprint on the baby! Otherwise, they would not have talked up imprinting so much. So that also came as no surprise. I was excited to see Bella in action as a vampire and enjoyed her first hunt. But for some reason thought that she and Edward would be able to talk to each other back and forth in their minds. I was really hoping that the voice in Bella's head (in New Moon) was foreshadowing some power that she would have as a vampire. I guess I just couldn't let go of the idea. I did think that her ability to block was really cool though! The fact that she could protect so many at once was great. I also liked meeting all the other vampires. And that Renesme had her own powers as well, which was pretty cool. (fun fact: Eric told me that Vladmir in the book is actually Dracula. I thought that it was cool the Stephani Meyers did that.)

In the end however, I found the book to have a very weak climax. No action, No fight the way that Stephani had led me to believe. They simply met with the Voltroli and talked. To write a book, a series and make THAT the end. Well, it was thoroughly disappointing. I realize that Stephani wanted the book to end happily. That's great!. But in order to have a book end happily AND good, sacrifices need to be made. Take Harry Potter for example (SPOILER ALERT for anyone who hasn't finished reading the Harry Potter series) Sacrifices are made. JK squeezes you heart and nearly tears it out when Dumbledore dies, and especially at the end when Fred dies and Tonks and Lupin too! I nearly cried!!! But I FELT something!!! An even deeper attachment to those characters even after they had died. The whole Harry Potter series is heart wrenching and wonderful. Why? Because JK knows how to make sacrifices! I'm not necessarily saying that Stephani should have killed off some main characters, but to not fight at all, for no one to even get a scratch? It was just .... boring!

My overall feeling is that Stephani Meyers is still very obviously an inexperienced writer. She knows how to write to keep you intrigued. She knows how to develop characters, but she doesn't know how to finish a book. She is unwilling to make sacrifices for her stories and therefore, has a very difficult time writing a climax that is as good as she built it up to be. I think that in the long run Stephani will become a great writer once she realizes this, but for now it is clear to me that she is still very new at this.

The Twilight movie.....

....was terrible!!!!!! I was so sad about the movie! It seemed like it had so much potential! I was excited to go see it, ever since I saw the trailer for it! It looked soooo good! And after reading the first book it knew that it had the potential to be really great! So what ruined it for me? Bella couldn't deliver her lines! At least not in a believable way! The movie had very little dialog. Which is too bad because there are so many great lines in the book. So many interludes that could have developed their characters, that could have been funny, that could have been fantastic! But I honestly think that they cut out so much dialog because they knew that Bella in particular couldn't deliver her lines. Instead of dialog they tried to replace it with really loud distracting music! Music is great for movies, but it needs to be picked to help the movie on, not distract form the movie entirely! It seemed to me like they just googled some popular music for their target croud
(teenagers) and used it without really caring whether it would help the movie or hurt it. But Eric pointed out that it is also possible that they purposely picked this music to distract from the bad acting.

One way or another it was a waste. Sure everyone looked the part but unfortunately, not everyone could act the part! So unless you are going to solely look at "Edward" for 2 hours, it's not worth your time or money!

Ok I'm done ranting and raving! Go ahead send me your arguments. But I still stand firm. Everything aside from the first book could have been done a little better! I give the Twilight Series as a whole a C+. End of story.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Trick or Treating

This was the first year the girls did some real trick or treating (besides trunk or treat)

I loved that Lucy actually got it this year! Normally she is scared of strangers, but once she realized that they gave her candy she had no problem running up to each door with her bag in hand!

Evey as usual stuck with dad, especially at the end (she was getting pretty tired). But she loved looking at all the pumpkins and was thrilled that she got to put things in her bag!

Of course before bed I allowed them to have one piece of candy! It took them forever to finish these! And Evey kept complaining about being messy! (She has a thing about being clean. She gets that from her dad. No wonder they are two peas in a pod!)

Halloween Party

We had a small Halloween Party with a couple friends.
I love this Picture. Evey is so unaware!

Eric drinking "blood" (aka grape juice). Isn't he a fantastic Vampire?! My very own "Edward." lol! He's got the teeth and everything!

We had the kids paint pumpkins instead of carve them!
Lucy got really into it! I loved Lincoln and Orions costumes (Batman and the Joker!) I want boys!!!

Bates Nut Farm

We met some friends at "Nates Butt Farm" this year. We thought it'd be a fun experience for the girls to see all the pumpkins and the animals!

This is a attempted family picture! The girls really just wanted to run around and play!

Evey for the most part stayed with daddy though. She is a true daddy's girl! She wasn't as excited as we thought she would be, but I attribute that mostly to teething. She wasn't much herself that day!

Lucy on the other hand had a fantastic time! She found this huge pumpkin and decided that she was going to play there most of the time! She would run around it and then stop to play the drums! It was so cute!

Here's Lucy and her buddy Ella chasing each other around the pumpkin! They are so cute when they play together! She named all her dolls "Ella"!


Eric and I like to be a little more creative with our pumpkins! We figure that stencils take the fun out of pumpkin carving and should be considered as cheating!

he's supposed to look relieved...

...after doing this ( I know its gross but we couldn't help ourselves. It's a BUTT Pumpkin!!!! ~ the poop is fudge with candy corns in it, in case you were wondering.)

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Silly Husband!

These pictures need no words...

I thought the red eye was a nice effect!

Yep! That's Eric for you!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Binky Fairy

The time has come for the beloved and dreaded Binky Fairy to visit our dearest little Lucy! Lucy has had a Binky since her first week of life. When I discovered she had colic I gave in wanting to do anything that would comfort my poor, screaming, little baby! I thought that we would be rid of it over a year ago but when I had Evey, that idea went flying out the window. During that time though, we decided that Lucy would only be allowed to have it at "night, night time" which worked out fantastically. In fact she looked forward to going to bed! (That is part of the reason why Eric and I have been dreading this. Will taking the Binky result in "night, night battles"?) But Alas, the dreaded day came! For about a month we built up the idea of a Binky Fairy coming in the middle of the night to take Lucy's Binkies. But we emphasized that when she come to take her Binkies she would also leave a present for Lucy. She was pretty excited about that! So last Saturday we sneaked into her room, took all her Binkies and left a present by her bed. It took less than a half hour for Lucy to realize that her Binky was gone. I could hear her searching around her bed, saying "Binky? Binky? Binky?" It nearly brought tears to my eyes. So Eric and I opened the door and as excitedly as we could we explained that the Binky Fairy had come. She then broke into tears and said, "Binkies all gone?" "Yes" we said to Lucy. "The Binky Fairy took your Binkies to babies who need it. BUT... she left you a present!!!" Lucy didn't perk up the way I had hoped she would. But after a few minutes of sobbing she reached for the present.

I first read her the card. In case you can't read it, it says:
"Lovely Lucy,
You are growing up to be a beautiful little girl! But you are not a baby anymore! So the time has come for me to take your Binkies to little babies who need them. I hope you love your presents! I picked them out especially for you!
The Binky Fairy

Inside she found two new stuffed friends. A grin grew on her face as she pulled out the Elephant!

I picked it out because she has been coveting her sisters for the longest time. I also felt the music would help soothe her when she misses her Binky at night. (When she pulls it's tail, it plays music.)

It has been 3 days since she was visited by the Binky Fairy, and they have gone by surprisingly well. The first night she was fine. She seemed to think that the Binky Fairy was coming again that night. The next night she cried for only a minute but then simply stated that the Binky Fairy came and gave her Binky to a baby and that she got a present. She then took her Elephant and pulled its' tail. Every now and again throughout the day she will state matter-of-factly "Binkies are All Gone!" Or she'll run up to me and say "I got a present!!!!" Thankfully, bed time has never become an issue either. It's seems that she is so grounded in routine, that she hasn't even given it a second thought...yet... So all in all, it was a success! And our fears were just that. Fears.

Soap Crayons

Last week I decided that I would try this out! So I invited a friend over and together we made soap crayons for our kids!

They are incredibly easy to make!

1 cup Soap Flakes (just grate a bar of soap with a cheese grater)
Food coloring
2tbsp of hot water

Have 1 large bowl and several small bowls (one for each color), An ice cube tray or other small molds.

Put Soap Flakes in a large bowl and drop the hot water into the soap flakes stirring constantly (it will be very thick and difficult to stir)

Spoon some of the soap into each small bowl and color each separately. Mush and stir until it is the desired consistency and color. Put some colored soap into each mold. How much soap in each mold is entirely up to you!

Let dry (this can take 5 days to a week)

Have Fun!

Lucy and Evey seemed to really enjoy themselves and even though the color wasn't as vivid as I had hoped it would be, it sure killed the morning!

Big Smile!

Don't expect to get your kids incredibly clean this time! Prepare yourself for very dirty looking water. Keep reminding yourself it's soap with food coloring, not dirt. That helps...a little.

And of course as every little kid must do, Lucy drinks the disgusting water (YUCK!!! "It's only soap!! It's only soap!!!")

Monday, September 8, 2008


Sorry guys, I have been so terrible about keeping up my Blog. Lately, it seems like the days haven't been long enough. (Wait a minute!!!!...It IS almost fall, so the days are getting shorter! Haha)

So things have been fun and a little crazy around here. Eric just got a new job! It's the one that we have been waiting for! He is working with a program called Comprehensive Autism Services and Education Inc. (C.A.S.E., Inc.) It's an agency that specializes in the behavioral, social and educational needs of children with Autism. Eric is being trained to be an ABA interventionist. He basically gets to play with kids all day using games and activities that will help change undesirable behaviors (behavior modification). This job is such a blessing to our family because Eric will get experience in his field, Psychology. (which will help tremendously as he applies for a PhD program.) It is full time with benefits which is fantastic for our family! Plus, he gets to play with kids all day! So far Eric loves it! It's everything he wanted all meshed up into one job! I am so proud of him for working so hard for our family, but never settling for a job that was not exactly what he wanted! He will be so good at it, I just know it. He is soo great with kids!

However, Eric's new job has taken some getting used to for the both of us. After school ended, Eric was home almost all morning and now he leaves home as I am getting out of bed. I've been soo spoiled! I've gotten used to having Eric to talk to for half the day. Now it just seems like the mornings are too quiet. ( aside from the girls shrieking up and down the hall chasing each other)

His new job has also left me car-less, which has taken some getting used to. Now I have to find more clever ways to keep myself and the girls entertained. I am so lucky to be in walking distance to both the store and the park. We go on a lot of walks. Our outdoor adventures usually contain sliding, bug catching, flower picking, and bird/airplane watching. But besides the slide, Lucy and Evey’s favorite activity is ball hunting.

There are always little tiny airsoft pellets all over our apartment complex. Lucy and Evey love them for there bright colors. It's funny because I have never seen one kid in our complex playing airsoft and yet there seems to be an endless supply. Sometimes I feel that they are heaven sent, simply to entertain my children. Anyways, if any one has any ideas for fun activities for toddlers I am all ears! I’d love ideas for crafts or kid friendly recipes.
Another one of Lucy's favorite activities is Play Dough!

I made a batch about a week ago and it has been great. Lucy will sit at the table for at least an hour making shapes with cookie cutters. Evey on the other hand, is only interested for about 10-15 minutes. (I didn't add any food coloring so it would be the same color as my carpet, just in case we have a messy day)

Heres the recipe for anyone that wants it!...

Homemade Play Dough!

2 cups flour
2 cups warm water
1 cup salt
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
1 Tablespoon cream of tartar (optional for improved elasticity)
optional- food coloring (liquid, powder, or unflavored drink mix)
optional- scented oils


Mix all of the ingredients together, and stir over low heat. The dough will begin to thicken until it resembles mashed potatoes.

When the dough pulls away from the sides and clumps in the center, remove the pan from heat and allow the dough to cool enough to handle.

If your play dough is still sticky, you simply need to cook it longer! Keep stirring and cooking until the dough is dry and feels like play dough.

Turn the dough out onto a clean counter or silicone mat, and knead vigorously until it becomes silky-smooth.

Divide the dough into balls for coloring.Make a divot in the center of the ball, and drop some food coloring in.Fold the dough over, working the food color through the body of the play dough, trying to keep the raw dye away from your hands and the counter.Work the dye through, adding more as necessary to achieve your chosen color.
(If you used unsweetened drink mix for color, test on a small ball first- it won't go as far as the "real" food coloring.)

Play with your play dough- I really don't need to help you there. It's entirely edible, if a bit salty, so it's kid-safe.

(When you're done store it in an air-tight container. If it begins to dry out, you can knead a bit of water in again to soften the dough back to use-ability. Once it's dried past a certain point, however, you'll just have to start over; thankfully it's not terribly difficult.)

So yep that's that...
Once again, if anyone has any ideas for fun activities let me know!

Saturday, August 23, 2008


Last Wednesday was our 4th Anniversary! And I am still in awe with how time flies! It's funny how it doesn't seem like all that long ago since Eric and I started dating and yet it feels like I have known him forever! How is that possible?

cutting our wedding cake

Walking out of the temple together

Eric and I met at the Institute of Religion at Palomar. He was up in Utah the semester I enrolled to Palomar and while he was gone I made friends with his friends. So naturally when he came back he asked me out, "to get to know me better". Needless to say, we connected immediately! It was very obvious to the both of us, within a couple months, that we were going to get married. We both felt that neither one of us had dated anyone so easy to get along with, who had similar priorities, tastes, and interests. We both prayed about our relationship and knew that there was no point in waiting to get married. So Vuala! Four years (and 2 kids) later, our love for each other has only magnified. We are very happily married!!

on our honeymoon

To celebrate our Anniversary we both decided that we would drop off the girls at my moms and spend the day at Six Flags! I have been dying to go there for about 3 years, but haven't been able to go because I was either pregnant or injured (both of which happen quite often to me!!! hmmm....) We were all ready and excited to go until Wednesday night when both of us began to get "that feeling". We pushed it to the back of our minds but eventually when neither one of us was able to sleep, we decided to talk about it! I was really scared to mention it to Eric because, 1, I didn't want to miss out on Six Flags just for some "mom" feeling and 2, because I thought that he might think I was being silly or something. But as soon as I said something, he told me that he was feeling the same way and that he didn't want to say anything because he knew how set I was on going. Knowing that we both felt that way, we knew it would be really dumb to ignore it. So we came up with plan B. We decided that we would drop off the kids for the day at my moms and just go the beach! And let me tell you, I haven't had more fun in my life! I am sooo glad we decided to do that instead. It was soo much better than standing in line for 2 hours for a minute and a half ride! Too bad I forgot the camera!

But nonetheless, Here is how our day went:
The girls woke up at 9!!! Normally they only sleep til 7, so we figure it was their Anniversary present to us! On the way down to my parents we stopped by Smoothie King for breakfast ( I of course ordered my fav: Caribbean Way, but the girls ended up drinking most of it, so Eric shared his with me!) After we dropped off the girls, we headed to La Jolla Shores but found it difficult to find parking so we decided to go out to Islands for lunch instead! Eric ordered his favorite, the Kilauea Burger, and I ordered Buffalo Wings, which I have been craving for forever! (...And just because I'm craving something does not mean I'm pregnant! ....I know some of you were thinking it!) Then we went to The World Market and just browsed. ( I could buy everything in that store, but I resisted) We were actually looking for a present for a friend. Then we went to Deseret Books to buy a Willow Tree figurine!. (Every year on our Anniversary Eric and I pick out a "Willow Tree" carving. We bought one on our honeymoon and that started the tradition. We are determined to someday to be married for more years than they have figurines! collecting figurines may seem silly but it holds a great deal of importance to us because it symbolizes not only the years that we have been married but what happens along the way! )

This is the one we bought this year: "Our gift"

These are the other "Willow Trees" we have gotten over the years starting with the one we got on our honeymoon in order all the way to our 4th year together!!!

After that we went back to La Jolla Shores and sure enough our patience payed off. We ended up getting a spot right next to the beach! So we set up our stuff, played frizbee for a while and then set off for the waves! The waves were Huge!!!! They were literally crashing over our heads! It was great! I haven't gone boogy boarding for such a long time! We played in the water for a long time swimming, splashing, and catching waves. It really took me back to the days when we were dating! When it was just us! When we were finally beat from the waves, we laid down and napped under our umbrella for a while. When we woke up we decided, what the heck, lets go to Seaport Village. So off we went! On our way, we passed a street fair. So we parked at Seaport Village, got some Ben and Jerry's ( to validate our parking ) and walked over to the street fair, ice creams in hand! There were many "interesting" people and things at the street fair, but nothing really worth buying for twice its value, so we walked back to the village and continued to look for our friends particular present! And after wondering around for awhile we finally found it! YAY!!! We walked inside a lot of different shops, but my favorite was the Wooden Toy Store! They have so many little Knick Knacks that I know my kids would get a kick out of. I love toys! We were kinda tired and sat down on the bench for awhile and talked as the sun began to go down. As we watched a little toddler with curly hair run around (with her mom chasing close behind), we began to miss our girls and decided that it was time to head back. After all ,we were still really full from lunch! So hand in hand we walked back to our car and drove to my parents only to find two, tired but happy little girls wearing T-shirts that went down to their ankles for PJ's! Both were very happy to see us! On the way home, Evey feel asleep and Lucy sung I Am a Child of God quietly to herself over and over again. And as I listened to her sing, I felt overwhelmed and so blessed to have such a wonderful family.

The day I chose to married Eric I began a new chapter in my life and I have never been happier!!!