Bonjour!

Bonjour!
I’m a 45 year old mother of five amazing daughters and wife to a caring, sensitive AND sexy husband. I adore my family. I’m dedicated to my faith. I enjoy a good laugh. I'm nostalgic and love to reminisce. "Remember" is my favorite word in the English language. I love life! I’m passionate about music, food and travel. I’m fascinated with anything European. {PARIS! Hello!} I love celebrating anything and everything! I love to read, especially a good biography, mystery, Regency Era or Historical fiction novel. I love thoughtful gift giving. To me the gift wrap is almost as important as the gift itself. I love being creative…bolts of ribbon, coordinating scrapbook papers, producing a tablescape, or décor for a themed party etc. puts a smile on my face. I love the details! I’m a freak for anything theme oriented. I enjoy event planning, but oddly enough do not like to host or entertain. I enjoy fashion, but have to be really in the mood to clothes shop. I love purses and funky jewelry. I’d rather wear wedges or heels any day than flats. I enjoy decorating and searching for the perfect decorative pillow or picture. However, you’ll never see me frequent high-end stores. I'm more of a Ross, TJ Maxx, Tuesday Morning kind of gal. My favorite decor style is an old world rustic chateau look with a hint of bohemian, baroque and vintage shabby chic, like an English cottage. {confusing I know!} Autumn is my favorite season. I’d go through childbirth a million times. I enjoy biking with my man, Pilates, and jogging. BUT you’ll never find me in a gym working out. I love movies, whether watching them in the theatre or cuddled up on the couch with my family. I enjoy a good chick flick or real life drama! I'm a sucker for movies on the Hallmark Channel. I love the elderly. I love Disneyland. I love being in the canyon on a summer or fall evening at dusk. I love my friends. While I have some extroverted characteristics. I’m a self proclaimed introvert. I’m generally quiet, calm, reserved and pretty darn private. Why in the heck do I blog? It’s a creative way to record family history. I enjoy photography. I really don’t like to write, although I write in my journal almost every day. I love the beach. I enjoy WWII history. I love a clean, orderly house, but ours looks lived in. ;) PBS Masterpiece is my friend. I adore Jane Austen films. They transport me to another time and place. If I had to choose another time period in which to live, early 19th Century England would be my pick. "Sense and Sensibility" is my all time favorite movie. My favorite TV series is the 1950's Spanish Drama "Velvet." My biggest pet peeve is people who blow their noses in public. So gross! {Take it to the bathroom people.} I’d go on a wine tasting vacation if it wasn’t against my religion. I’ve always wanted to adopt a baby from a foreign country. I’m an avid BYU football fan. I love our campfires at Scofield Lake. I have a 'thing' for fairy gardens and Gallic French roosters. I love summer rainstorms and warm baths. I'm a Rush Limbaugh and Hannity Talk Radio Show listener. Also a fan of several Fox News shows. I hate when my kids have homework. I collect quotes, Madame Alexander Dolls, children's books and Disney pins. I always prefer sitting in a back row versus the front. {I'm sort of a seat snob..yikes} I also have high expectations for my lemonade, salsa, and french fries too. HA! I work well behind the scenes. I love a good Dateline Mystery and the genealogy TV show "Who Do You Think You Are?" I’m a night owl. I'd rather be cold than hot. I enjoy being a chauffeur to my children. I’m an Anglophile… love anything English! I would like to serve a church mission to England with Jaren someday. I'm queen of paper towel, used kitchen hand towels and dishrags make me squirm. You’ll rarely find me out of the house not ready for the day, except when driving the kids to school on the days I don't work. I feel naked without lip gloss. Pairing up white socks, chipped fingernail polish, chapped lips and brownie crumbs on the floor drive me nuts! I like to organize and BE organized..but not saying I always am. ;) I enjoy hiking to waterfalls, ATV’ing with my family and snowshoeing with the hubs. Although I enjoy collecting recipes and occasionally watch cooking shows... (Sandra Lee Semi-Homemade, Paula Deen, and the Pioneer Woman are my favorites) I’d rather not cook. Eating out is so much more fun. I live to eat! LOL Trying new foods and restaurants is a favorite pasttime. I love the joy of anticipation and the celebration of holidays. Family traditions are important to me. I'm a memory preserver. I'm a pathological picture taker ;) and I love happy lists!

My Fam!

My Fam!

Mr. and I

Mr. and I

My Girls!

My Girls!

Kyleigh Dawn (21)

Kyleigh Dawn (21)

Emma Abigail (19)

Emma Abigail (19)

Hannah Isabelle (17)

Hannah Isabelle (17)

Brielle Olivia (13)

Brielle Olivia (13)

Kate Evangelene Lyllie (7)

Kate Evangelene Lyllie (7)

My Man!

My Man!

Good Times!

Good Times!

What I Believe!

Our Missionary

Our Missionary

My list of favorite movies!

Learn more about Dyslexia!

Music To My Ears!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

What's On My Happy List?

                                                     THURSDAY, JANUARY 13, 2011
Still no luck with my blog background mess. grr. Must wait until the neighborhood computer whiz makes a visit home for the weekend from college. {and that might be awhile.} In the meantime I'm going to keep post'in despite my non friendly terms with all things EDIT HTML.

Emma had her art show last weekend. This is one of the projects that she worked on this quarter. Grandma C. loves lighthouses. So Emma surprised her with this painting for Christmas. 
I think she needs to paint me the Eiffel Tower.

That same night of the art show we had a wedding reception to go to AND a work party for Jaren. As we were b-bopp'in from place to place, Kyleigh and Emma tended the younger girls. Kate wasn't cooperating and wouldn't go to bed. Instead she passed out on the living room floor. exhausted. They sent me this pic via cell phone...


Priceless

On to other randomness....
I'm not a huge New Year's lover. no secret there. I dread the day the kids go back to school from winter break and dad is back to normal work hours. How come the worst day of the year has to follow the best week of the year? huh, tell me? We had to have a "brave party" the Sunday night that the holidays were officially over. Served chocolate pudding with a dose of courage. no lie.
Now that we are two weeks in, and back to the routine, we are in the groove and things feel normal.
Which is very nice. 
With the brand new year and new start, New Years Resolutions are in order for many. Unfortunately, I'm not a huge goal setter kind of gal. I should be better at it. But fortunately, I know what works and doesn't work for me in my life and where I need to make improvements, so I kinda just go from there without being too official about it..... 

May I share a few things that have worked for me lately and which I'm going to try my darnedest to continue with into the new year? I'm breaking these insights, suggestions, tips {whatever you want to call them} into 4 categories. Home, Physical, Spiritual, and Beauty/Fashion.
 First off the THE HOME.
One of my favorite subjects...truly.
I love all things organization and am tickled when I come across something that actually works for my family.
A friend suggested this to me a few months back, and it has helped tremendously. It has to do with the LAUNDRY. my absolute nemesis.I actually think at times that I don't need to take a trip to Italy because I have the Leaning Tower of Pisa right in my very own laundry room! lovely. The tower is made up of clothes and lots of them. Naturally expected, of course, with a houseful of girls.
Here's the trick..get a different color basket for each member of your family to put their clean clothes in once they come out of the dryer. Brilliant. Its such a simple concept and why I never thought to implement this idea sooner is a mystery to me. But this folks will change your life,  unless you are already the type that folds and puts the laundry away after each load, EVERY TIME.  {Laundry queen you}
I know that ain't happen'in around here so these baskets at least help me keeps things organized until everyone has the time to put their own clean laundry away. These will help cut down on the piles and piles of clean laundry in baskets, and or on your bed etc. Not saying these baskets have fixed all my laundry woes, there is still always wash for 7 to do here, and we still have to have the occasional "folding party" {as I like to call them} when we get behind, but these baskets sure help.
Another suggestion.
Have your older kids be responsible for their own wash. Kyleigh and Emma, 14 and 12 do their own wash. And have for awhile now. Not that I don't occasionally help them but they are certainly old enough and capable enough to do it on their own. It lightens my load and the bonus....you don't get blamed for something that doesn't get cleaned in a timely manner. Win win situation for me.  

On to my second home organization tip.....the Food Nanny.
Just heard about  HER in November.
I don't have her cookbook nor do I do everything she does but I have adopted her basic plan for nightly family dinners. Once again, this will change your life. Has mine, even more so than the laundry baskets!  It has taken the guess work out of "whats for dinner? I love food but its never been my favorite thing to fix it day in and day out. And I certainly was never consistent. I thank the Lord for a husband who actually likes to cook. {And for Costco} Now, after implementing the Food Nanny's nightly theme nights, I half don't mind fixing dinner. seriously. Its also made grocery shopping easier for me as well. Now, on a side note, this plan is all about the food, no themed decor with any of this. That would be way turbo. 
This is how it works...On Mondays you fix something that would be under COMFORT FOOD. So whatever that means to your family. For us it would be a potato bar, soup with grilled cheese, a casserole like Shepherd's Pie. etc. Alot of Mondays we use leftovers from Sunday afternoon's big family meal with Jaren's side, as there is always a ton of food fixed at those gatherings. 
Tuesday is ITALIAN night. My kids finally will eat food with red sauce. YEAH! {however, sloppy joes and meatloaf are still on their steer clear list} Not that those are Italian anyway, but your basic Italian like spaghetti with meatballs, lasagna etc. are becoming staples and fast favorites at this establishment{its about time!}. Chicken parmesan and cheese & meat ravioli also make the weekly menu.
Wednesday night is FISH or MEATLESS..tilapia, salmon, tuna casserole are some of our fav's. This is also the night you could do breakfast for dinner. Which we all love, except for poor Kyleigh, who is not a huge breakfast food lover. I see nothing wrong with having pancakes, scrambled eggs and bacon for dinner. Some men might have a fit over that but mine doesn't.  Thursday is MEXICAN night. Bean and cheese quesadillas, crock pot burrito pie, tacos, and nachos, which are a huge favorite around here. 
Friday night is PIZZA night. Our first choice is to make our own with a ready made crust from Papa Murphey's. Sometimes we buy it from Papa John's, Caesars or have IV's pizza benders. 
For the Food Nanny, Saturday night is GRILL NIGHT. We kinda do whatever, {maybe a night out with the spouse} since we don't BBQ as much in the winter. Summer yes. Jaren actually rocks at grilling and just fixing meat in general. The nice thing about this whole Food Nanny thing is that you can adapt it to your family's likes and needs. Sunday is TRADITIONS..like I said, we eat with Jaren's side of the family every Sunday, taking a turn to cook every third week. We keep things simple and quick as possible during the week. but Sunday's meal is a little more special. Sometimes we will have themed dinners and even decorate if its a holiday or special occasion. 
Another useful tip at dinnertime: I'm all about presentation, but if its just an ordinary night, I'm all about the paper plate. Its more important to me that we are all sitting at the dinner table rather than a beautifully set table. Can't complain about less dishes to do. :)

Moving on to PHYSICAL HEALTH...
Can I just share with you that I am 50 lbs lighter than I was the day I delivered baby Kate. woot! woot! It's been a journey. I wasn't able to nurse Kate, as my milk supply was extremely low, so that didn't help me in the weight department. Since Sept. I've made a concentrated effort to drop some pounds. 20 of them! Basically by being very conscious of what goes in my mouth. Eating foods with more protein and fiber so I feel fuller and eat less. Sweet consumption has been cut drastically. Self control and determination have been my buddies. {Even maintained during the holidays}, but I didn't necessarily deprive myself either. Words from Dr. Oz got me motivated. He says if you cut out sugary soda, {which I don't drink much of that anyway}, not eat past 8:00, move 10 min/day, not eat snacks larger than your fist and track your weight daily {I weigh myself only once a week} you will loose pounds. The last two weeks I've found a way to sneak in 20 minutes of Pilate's on weekday mornings and I know that has huge benefits for me too. I hate to exercise {not kidding there} so Pilate's and maybe some jogging in the spring and summer is about all you are going to get out of me. I've made progress yes, lost the weight I gained with baby Kate, but still need to loose those pesky pounds that crept on between baby #4 and #5. Wish me luck, I'm going to need it, {because its more than a few!}

On to BEAUTY and FASHION
If you haven't tried this lash blast fusion mascara from Cover Girl, you are missing out! This is our current favorite. Not looking back. It's a keeper.

Also hoping some of the latest trends don't go away anytime soon. Love the big chunky rings that are in. We've got a few...
the patterned tights...love them!
picture courtesy of Fashion me Fabulous

The long boots that go to your knee....love, love these!
 As well as the belts that go around your upper waist that help your figure.  {Please don't go away any time soon}....
Lastly SPIRITUAL....
I just have to say that I love the Book of Mormon! My day goes so much better when I take the time to read and or study them. Even if it's one verse, but I make a goal for five. {okay, okay so I do set a few goals} haha. But the one single thing that has helped me the most when reading them is using a study companion. The church's approved Student Manual is an excellent choice. Or, when reading those hard to understand "compare to Isaiah chapters" I use the "Isaiah Made Easier" from the gospel study series. It truly is fascinating to me as Isaiah's mysteries are unfolded. You won't be afraid of Isaiah ever again. Honestly love it! Our Stake President has encouraged our Stake to read the Book of Mormon within six months. We've decided to do this as a family. What a feat with little ones to be consistent in reading it every night. So far right on track..I pray it continues.
Another spiritual tip for the new year. Try to do something nice for someone every day. Even if its sending a smile someones way, or a quick text or email to say HI. It will make your heart smile. We call them warm fuzzies at our house. I ask my kids at the dinner table all the time, {its become a ritual} what they've done nice for somebody else that day. Love the responses I get. 

Hope everyone's year is off to a great start....
Would love to hear your ideas for improvement in 2011!
 

2 comments:

  1. OK...your Laundry Foldin Party sounds like my house! I HATE folding laundry! I wash it..thenit sits in my room as a huge leaning tower of clean clothes...just waiting for it to be folded! Inevitably, the tower falls, the kids pick through it, then step all over the clothes...Do I need to wash 'em again? If it's mine -'YES'...if its theirs -'NAH!' Love the organizational tip...however my laundry room is tiny...so I would need to set up shop in my bedroom!
    Happy New Year! I loved reading all of your "tips". They are great! You are great!

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  2. This was my favorite of all of your posts. I can't wait to try the new mascara, my laundry... well I am a laundry queen, the food nanny s a good idea.. that is a goal I will never reach, and I'm so happy to know about the scripture helps. Happy new year to your family!

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