Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Starry night

Tonight we got the kids ready for bed, then we all headed outside to look at the stars. In those few moments we found our piece of heaven. I love looking into the greatness of space and refreshing my perspective on life. I've got all I need to be happy for eternity right there in my arms- my Daniel, my Kylie, my Toast, my James, and my Ben. And to make it even more perfect- right as we started to head back in- a star shot across the sky. It was magical. Of course Tyler didnt get to see it, so he started crying, and Ben clawed my face as Daniel reached for him to get him off, so now my nose and upper lip are stinging, and the 8 feet that were nicely bathed became black from the dirt, but it was well worth it.

Monday, December 29, 2008


Christmas Eve jammies photo-op
Christmas with the Jacksons

Even puking her guts out wont stop her from reading. Thats my girl.

Call of Duty/Male Bonding

The evidence is on his face

Bennies first Christmas

Shephard ninja

My dear Utah delivered the goods this year! I got my white Christmas. Oh was it beautiful. And oh was it COLD! My blood must have thinned since living in the desert wasteland as I could hardly go outside. We spent a few days with Daniels family and a few with mine. We went sledding, went to the temple lights, and drank hot chocolate by the gallons. We did our traditional Christmas Eve dinner, followed by the re-enactment of the nativity, followed by the 4 minute DVD of Luke 2, then opened up our Christmas jammie's. Then we got to have the delicious traditional Ice-cream cake roll! Then we watched the reflections of Christ dvd, and then everyone left grandma and grandpas, and then my mom remembered the traditional Christmas Eve book. We read it to the kids, then put them to bed, and visions of sugar plums danced in their heads. We woke up with our dear little Kylie puking her guts out. And she continued to do so all day. Last year James puked all night and day for Christmas, so it looks like its becoming a tradition. Ben slept through most of his 1st Christmas morning. But he still got to shove handfuls of wrapping paper into his mouth once he decided to join the festivities. James was mostly interested in his CANDY- and couldn't care less about anything else. And he proceeded to eat candy for breakfast lunch and dinner the next few days. Ty was excited about his Knight gear, and his daddy was excited by his remote control car that drives on the walls. Sweet. We got to have Uncle Johnny and Lala there on Christmas morning and that was quite the treat as they are THE favorite aunt and uncle. Christmas night everyone came back to Grandmas for another tasty dinner and lots of mayhem as 20 out of the 25 grandkids were running all over the place. And the guys hooked a bunch of computers together and spent the next few hours playing call of duty. Boys. We got home late last night and I am already homesick for my frozen Utah. Well not so much Utah as the people there that I love. I really don't like being so far away from my siblings and most especially my parents. And I miss my moms new washing machine. For the first time in my life I really really enjoyed doing laundry. You turn that machine on and boy was that the most cheerful greeting ever! It made me smile every time I pushed the buttons. Such a happy washer. Now to get back to the routine.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Gingerbread night

Tonight the kids and I decorated a gingerbread house. It was quite the fiasco as James kept trying to eat the gingerbread while we were trying to frost the pieces together. And when it was time to decorate James thought his baby brother would like the extra frosting. He also decided it was super fun to throw the sprinkles on Toast. Tyler retaliated by whacking James with the box the gingerbread came in. My favorite part though was this conversation between Kylie and Tyler.

Kylie: Tyler you did a really good job creating this window.

Tyler: Yeah, I am the best cremator in the world.

Kylie: well dont you like the doors that I did?

Tyler: hmmm, yeah, those are pretty good. You can be the next best cremator in our family.

Looks like we know what profession our son is going into. We are so proud.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

ice-cream, cookie dough, and candy

This morning I found James all smiles with a dilly-bar shoved in his mouth. He was looking so proud of the fact that he was able to get himself breakfast. When I took it away the tantrum was tremendous. Ten minutes later, he is sitting on the couch shoving handfuls of cookie dough into his wide open mouth. I take that away and again- the tantrum was unbelievable. And then ten minutes after that he found my hidden stash of mint m&ms and then hid himself in the pantry so that he could eat in peace. So far this morning, nothing of much nutritional value has been consumed by my 2 year old. Just a bunch of sugar. And I wonder why he is bouncing off the walls like a rubber ball.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Yes I was THAT excited. Daniel got me a gee-tar for my b-day this year. I AM LOVIN IT. I made a comment to Daniel a while back about how I would like to learn to play the guitar so that when(really more like "if" but we will think positive) I record my album I can play the guitar myself. I guess this is also suppose to motivate me to get back into singing, and since tomorrow is my last day to teach preschool I might just have a little more time on my hands to do such. "LETS GET ROCKIN!"

So in other business Kylie had her Christmas program last night. The kid next to her was like a foot taller than her, and was super animated so he kept flailing his arms in front of her face, so I was a bit irritated, but thats kind of what you expect at these little functions right? I think I have to get a zoom lens for my camera cuz I tried to figure out how to zoom in to get a picture of my moo but ended up with this "wheres waldo" picture instead. Ah well. Such is life.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Birthday memories

So today is my birthday. I have one more year before I can claim I am old, so I am gonna really enjoy it. Last year was my most favorite birthday. here's why- since Daniel and I met, he started a little list in the back of his journal of things he noticed about me that he liked. He continues to add to it and its really quite sweet. He tries to be all sneaky when adding to it and not letting me see cuz he is afraid of coming off as sappy or something- but I love it. Anyway last year he took 100 of those things and compiled them into the gift in the above picture. It made me cry when I opened it and read it last year. I really married one incredible guy- how lucky am I? So thats my favorite birthday.
My worst birthday: when we got married, I moved to Mesa with Daniel. I got a job at a Dr's office, and it was quite the strange change for me cuz I went from working in an office where everyone was LDS to being the only member of the church in that new office. Which was fine- until some of the girls thought it would be funny to bring porn magazines and show them to me as if that was funny. They thought I was stupid for not having slept with Daniel before we got married, and thought I was crazy cuz I never went with them for "drinks" after work. It became a really uncomfortable place to go everyday and I decided I was gonna look for another job after the Holidays. SO on my birthday I go into work- (it was a Friday that year) and right after the crazy morning rush, the office manager pulls me into his office and tells me "you're fired"(try it in your best Trump voice-) cuz I am "not up to par"- his exact words. Now let me just say- being a receptionist is not that hard of a job, so for him to say that in the first place was pretty rude, then add to that the fact I was the one receptionist who was the one who answered the calls, checked people in, made the appointments while the other six receptionists sat around gossiping about Ross and Rachel. Top it off with the fact it was my birthday. And the "Christmas party" where they handed out bonuses was the following week. I was really bummed about that. (the bonus, not the booze fest) anyway I went home and cried cuz I felt like a failure and was confused as to why. Daniel and Michael made it up to me though- they took me to Claim Jumpers for dinner and that was quite the treat! But really what kind of a "boss" fires someone on their birthday. Harsh.

Anyway Daniel has made it a great day again- I will post pictures of my surprise once he lets me open it!(I must say I am really excited!)

Thanks to my family and friends for the kind birthday wishes- you sure know how to make one feel loved!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Twist on a tradition

Kylie loves to have pancakes on Saturday mornings. This morning I was in such a festive mood after a GREAT Holiday party last night, that I figured we should make this mornings pancakes Christmasy- we used cookie cutters to cut our pancakes into trees, stars, snowmen, gingerbread-men, angels, and candy canes. It was simple and yet the kids thought it was the coolest thing ever.
Then as I was cleaning the kitchen, Kylie whipped out one of the Christmas books, and started reading to her brothers. It was a tender little moment.
Can this day get any better? It just might as we have our wards Christmas party tonight and woo-hoo Santas gonna be there! Hooray! Bring on the Christmas Cheer!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Endorphins make you happy

I absolutely love mint m&ms. They only come out during the holidays, and once they start showing up at the store you can guarantee we add at least two bags to our weekly grocery run. So we noticed them a little earlier this year- right after Halloween to be exact. And since that time I have been eating them like candy. This daily indulgence is starting to show its consequences as my clothes are fitting a little differently. Last year I blamed the weight gain on my pregnancy. This year I dont have that excuse. Knowing full well I am not gonna stop eating this tasty treat, I thought I should probably get my rear in gear and pull out the old pilates/yoga routine. I use to do this daily, but since last years Thanksgiving, I couldnt do it effectively while being pregnant and even though I planned on starting back up after I had my little Ben, sleep has been too precious to give up. Truth be told I am just lazy. Well today I dont have any commitments until this afternoon, and Daniel took Kylie to school this morning, so I decided this was the opportune time cuz I didnt have to get up early and I could shower after working out. Perfect plan. I fed Ben, and got him and James toys to keep them busy, pulled out my equipment, and began. Not even 3 minutes into it all 3 of my boys were on top of me. I guess they figure this was the perfect opportunity to catch me off my guard for some wrestling. I gave them all loves, and got them distracted with some books this time, then went back to try to pickup where I left off. Several minutes later, same thing. I figured they needed to be in a different room. So I gathered some blocks in the front room, and then snuck back to the family room ,and tried to get back into the routine. Five minutes later they all were on top of me again. So I just tried to proceed with all of them all over me. Very difficult and ineffective as far as working out goes. So after a few more minutes I gave up. I got maybe 15 minutes of work out time, but it took me an hour to do so, and then I knew I had to get ready for the day. How the fetch does anyone exercise when they have kids around? I should try to get up early before they are awake, but its torture to drag myself from bed after having woken up just a few hours earlier to feed Ben each night. So thats not gonna happen until he starts sleeping through the night.(one would imagine he should be doing by now, but he thinks otherwise.) There is always the option of doing it after my kids are in bed, but by that time I am worn out from the day and just want to hang out with Daniel, so I dont think I can commit to that either. So really I should just give up the m&ms, but I have no power to resist their sweet temptations, so I guess I will just have to deal with the love handles. Of course I have this little voice in my head that says, "Exercise gives you endorphins, endorphins make you happy, and happy people just dont shoot their husbands." Not that I think my marriage is in peril, but really it would be nice to workout again, but after this morning I dont see it happening for a little while longer.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Answered Prayer

**Disclaimer**- I have debated about posting this post- I dont do it to be "seen of men" so to speak, nor for anyone to think I am bragging or trying to be all "look at us, arent we great" cuz thats not what we think at all- I write this because this is my journal and I hope my kids read this someday and know that what I try to teach them, I try to do by example. I want them to know that I know the Lord has had a hand in not only our lives but in the lives of people we dont really even know. And with that I share with you this years answer to a year long prayer-

Last year at Christmas Daniel gave me a book. He thought I would like it cuz its a Christmas story and he knows that I love Christmas. I had seen the little write up in the desert book ad, and wondered what the fetch a "Christmas jar" was, but didnt really intend to find out. SO when he gave me the book, I was like- "oh gee,... thanks hun...its what i always wanted(laying on the sarcasm pretty thick))" It was sweet of him to get me anything as we kind of have this thing where we dont really spend money on each others gifts, but Daniel never holds to that. Anyway I wasnt all that enthused about the book, but a few weeks after Christmas, Ky was at school, Toast was at preschool, James was napping and I had my house clean and laundry done, so I had some time to kill. I went looking for something to read, and saw the book and figured I might as well give it a try. So I read the book, liked it and thought it was a cute idea. So we started our own little jar and have been adding to it throughout the year. Well as it is the Holiday season, I have been praying for the past several months to know who we should give this to. I have been getting a little frustrated cuz I havent been receiving any inspiration and the thing is- I want to be inspired. Here's why- I think anytime anyone is in a hard situation, it is EXTREMELY hard to ask for help. I dont know if its pride or just embarrassment, but I think we like to put on a happy face for friends/family/neighbors and think we can some how manage to do it ourselves. Well thats how I feel anyway. But having had some "hard times" I have learned that my Father in Heaven knows of my needs, and has used family/neighbors/friends to offer love, kindness and support many a time over. How utterly grateful I am for those who have been in tune with the quiet whisperings of the spirit and without really knowing what personal fires we were going through, were there and in one way or another to answer a personal prayer. So I have really wanted to be in tune to be able to really help someone in need. I have been on the receiving end so many times, and I really want to be the one giving for once. Again- I have been praying- and praying and praying and trying to be in tune with this. I know there are so many people out there who are suffering, and I also know that sometimes the only one who knows is our Heavenly Father. Daniel and I have thrown around some names, but I wanted this to be something that I really felt. So Daniel came home one night this week, and started telling me about his day. He told me about this woman he talked to on a unexpected call. She just had her third baby, her husband is in another state trying to get into some kind of training for the field of work he is wanting to go into, and she is barely getting by. As he starts telling me about his conversation, I felt a physical heat rush through me and I got a little emotional cuz right then in that single moment I KNEW who this jar needs to go to. I felt so strongly the answer to my prayer. And this makes me completely joyful. My heart breaks for this little family that I dont know, but I am happy knowing that their needs are aware of by our Heavenly Father. And I am so happy to know my prayers are heard.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


One of my favorite Christmas traditions is "the Book" each family in my family gets on Christmas Eve from my mother. This started many years ago and its something I really look forward to. Last year we got "The Last Straw" by Paula McDonald. Its the story of a little family who in order to have the Christmas spirit make a bed for Baby Jesus and when an act of love/service is given a piece of straw is added to the bed. My mom challenged all the grand kids last year to do this for this years Christmas. So as our 25 days of Christmas started yesterday, we kicked it off last night for FHE. We read the story again, Daniel made the little bed, and we drew names of the person we are to secretly serve this week. We stressed to Ky and Ty that its a secret so they cant tell anyone else and cant let the person know. And since James and Ben are both a little too little to draw names, we just made them bonus points/free for all. So at bed time I was trying to give them ideas of nice things we can do. Ty was trying really hard not to tell me who he had cuz he knew its a secret, but then he asked me," um mom...pretend I had my name, how do I do nice things for myself?" Suffice it to say he and I switched names. Anyway they kids could hardly sleep they were so excited and both were anxious to start their secret acts of service this morning. James however has other plans. He thinks the bed for baby Jesus is his new little fort. Hopefully the thing will last through this activity.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

CD madness

(this picture has nothing to do with the post but Daniel found Ben sleeping like this and it had us cracking up, so he took a picture. And yes, that is a big honking pile of laundry which still has yet to be folded and put away)
One of my favorite things about the holidays is the music. I have quite the collection if I do say so myself. Anyway as Buddy the elf says, "the best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear." We do this by making a little CD of some of our favorite Christmas songs each year to give to our friends. But as I was compiling the songs for this years CD, I realized last years was the BOMB- it totally rocked! Seriously. How can I possibly top it? I can't. This years is good, but there are several "dramatic" feeling songs, which are fabulous if you are in the mood for them. Daniel was not in the mood for them tonight, as he was helping me get them ready to "burn baby burn." So this had me second guessing my selections. But I have come to the conclusion that I am not gonna stress over it. I love the songs on there. Even if Daniel thinks some of them are "never-ending". They are some of my favorites. So there.
Really though- I must say, Daniel is so great! Even though he wasnt in the mood for Christmas CD making, he helped me out. What a guy. Now the trick will be seeing if he will help me deliver the goods.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Giving Thanks

One this wonderful day of Thanksgiving I just thought I would list some of the things I am so thankful for.
1-My Savior, Jesus Christ, his glorious gospel, and my testimony
2-My sweet Daniel and our marriage
3-Kylie, Tyler, James, & Ben
4-My parents and the way the taught, raised, and support me
5-My siblings, their spouses and their children
6-Our friends
7-Our dear prophet
8-Wonderful church leaders, locally and generally
9-My grandparents, who have all passed on, but whom I dearly love
10-My Aunts, Uncles and cousins
12-my education and the fabulous teachers I have had throughout my life
13-A comfortable home with AC in the dreadful summer
14-Food to eat
15-Clothes to wear
16-Daniels working to allow me to be at home with our kids
17-the scriptures
18-the priesthood
22-nature- especially flowers
23-The whole Christmas season
24-Good health, and the good health of my husband and children as well
25- prayer
26- vacations
28-the trials I have gone through and the lessons learned
29-Gift of repentance and the miracle of forgiveness
30-Tender mercies
31-Cars that function well
33-The miracle of life and the blessing of taking part of that miracle
34-My little job and the extra fruits of my labor.
And the list goes on and on. I have been so blessed and I thank my Father in Heaven for these blessings. May you all have a wonderful holiday dear family and friends. We love and appreciate you!!!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Festivous Miracle

This past weekend will go down as a favorite in the Jackson family history. We took off Friday afternoon and drove up to the Polar Express. We miraculously made the train as we got out a little later than planned, and arrived without a minute to spare- but that made it "just like the movie" as the kid has to run to catch the train on the movie and we had to do the same. Once we were all aboard, the wonderful elves danced down the aisles passing out hot chocolate and cookies. Then they read the beloved book. James was bursting with excitement. He kept saying "WOW, WOW, WOW!" about everything, and after every sip of hot chocolate he would nod his head and exclaim, "mmmmm-nummy!" then drink some more. We got to the "north pole" and saw Santa and his elf through the windows, then Santa boarded the train. While we were waiting for him to make his way into out cart, the elves told us we had to "believe" that Santa would come and so all the kids had to close their eyes and whisper "I believe." Then when Santa didn't appear the kids all started chanting "Santa, Santa, Santa" over and over and louder and louder and then HALLELUJAH the jolly old fat man appeared and made his way down the aisle handing out bells from his sleigh. He talked to the kids for a minute and asked Kylie if she liked having "all those brothers." She nodded her head.(I think mostly out of fear that if she said no that he wouldn't give her that prized bell.) After he made his way through and waved goodbye it was time for some Christmas Caroling. We sang and danced all the way back to the train station. Once we left, the boys fell asleep within 5 minutes after getting buckled back in the car. And I am willing to bet they had some pretty sweet dreams.
I have to say, I got a little teary-eyed after this little ride, not cuz I am some bawl-baby, but seeing how excited the kids were and their savoring of every little detail, and the wonder and magicalness of it all, well it was just very sweet and special and I just loved watching the expressions on their faces and the look in their eyes. I love the moments and special times like these. It makes me really thankful that I get to be a mom and be in this particular stage of my kids life, as it is just so magical. What a way to kick off the Holidays- Thanksgiving, Christmas, New-Years here we come!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Teeth, Teeth, Teeth

So my dearest darling Daniel went under the knife today. Well, not knife- more like pliers. I actually dont know what they used, but he got his 4 wisdom teeth pulled. He is now puffy as a chipmunk storing nuts in his mouth. Poor guy. He was a good sport though and even posed for a picture. Lucky for him, he got "put-out" during the procedure, so he remembers nothing.
10 years ago when I got mine yanked out, I was awake the whole time. And I had enormous clamps clamping my jaws open. I had bruises for two weeks following. And mine were all impacted so they went in and busted each tooth then had to dig around to make sure they got every piece. It was pretty traumatic and I still shudder thinking about it.
Toast also lost his first tooth today. He, however, is all smiles. He is strutting around with his chest all puffed out and singing songs of his own making about the tooth fairy, teeth, and storm troopers. Lucky for him he gets to make money off his little extraction, whereas his daddy had to fork over the moolah for his.
Heres to a week of soup, smoothies and smashed potatoes!

Friday, November 14, 2008


Daniel and I were ever so fortunate to have a get away this week. Daniels mom selflessly came down and watched the kiddos for us, and we headed off to Vegas for a conference for Daniels work. We were suppose to fly there, but Sunday we had a sand storm, which delayed the flight, making us miss the connecting flight. So Daniel decided we would drive. He made really good time on the way up, but in order to help him stay awake he got himself a caffeinated col-a, and then couldn't sleep once we got in.
He checked in for the conference Monday morning, then we went to get some breakfast at the Wynn Breakfast buffet, as I heard it was a MUST for Vegas. It was really good, but holy moly was it pricey, especially for breakfast.
While Daniel was doing the conference thing, I walked all over the place, and was astounded at the price of things in Vegas. I went into a kids boutique in one of the ritzy stores and almost had a heart attack when I looked at the price tags. I think this trip cost me years off my life not only from shock of prices, but also how freaking smokey that place is. Everywhere I went I was gagging from all the stinking smoke. And then the casino's try to make it smell a little nicer so they perfume the place and the combination of smoke and perfume was almost too much to take. I was excited to get back home and have some "fresh" air once again.
Tuesday night we went to Phantom of the Opera with the others from his office that attended the conference as well. I loved it. And so did Daniel. He was concerned it might be scary "like in the movie." He only jumped out of his seat a few times, so I was proud of him for being so brave. The cast was superb- their voices were magnificent!
I also got to go to part of Daniels conference that night. They had Ben Zander, the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra Conductor, do a session, and it was awesome.
Wednesday night Daniel and I saw Mamma Mia. The performers were all very talented and the dancing and music were so fun. I had to fight the urge to jump out of my seat and dance and sing along.
Thursday night we went to KA. OH MY GOODNESS-- IT WAS TREMENDOUS! Seriously. I was in shock with the stunts they do. The stage they use is out of this world amazing. The martial arts and choreography and costumes and special effects were truly incredible. I still cant get over how cool it was.
We went to the Fountains of Bellagio, went to Danielles and got our favorite "snowy popcorn", we visited our favorite hotel- the Venetian and considered the gondola ride just to take a trip down memory lane-(Daniel officially proposed on the gondolas there, and we spent our honeymoon there too-) but the wait was a bit long so we just reminisced while walking along side the little canal instead. We had such a great time and will forever treasure this trip.
We are forever in Daniels mothers debt. She and the kids got locked out and had quite the adventure getting back in. And since my little Ben still doesnt sleep through the night, she didnt get much sleep. We really appreciate her and the kids had such a great time with her and created lots of great memories too.
I brought my camera with us, but as you cant take it to the performances, I didnt get any good shots. Oh well- I have good shots in my head.
I really missed my kids and was so excited to see them and hold them today. I think they all grew a ton in just a few days. It was so nice to get away, but its so nice to be all together as a family again. Kind of funny how that works.

Friday, November 7, 2008

100 things

This is my 100th post, so I decided to do a hundred things list. Just kidding. I tried that once. But I have been enjoying the stage Ben is in right now oh so much and thought I would jot down 10 things I am really going to miss about the baby stage when my babies are grown.
1- The little sigh babies makes after they sneeze. Oh I love love love it.
2-Snuggling- need I say more?
3-The laugh. Hearing my babies laugh brings me complete joy.
4-The smell after baths. I could sniff them FOREVER.
5-The roly-poly chubs on their legs, and their cute little butts. Only something a baby can pass off as cute.
6-The way they talk. I love the "ba-ba-ba" jibberish.
7-A sleeping baby- I love laying next to my baby and marveling at every precious feature of that face.
8-The way they hold your finger with their little hand, like they never want to let go.
9-The full body stretch when they first wake up.
10- I love when their face lights up instantly when I walk in the room, and they beam at me like I am their favorite person ever.

With that said, I am just gonna add I love being a mother. It brings me a satisfaction and joy like I never knew was possible. Thats not to mean that I dont find it frustrating sometimes. Its hard work, unbelievably hard some days, but truly the most worthwhile thing I am doing. I love these babies I have been blessed with. I honestly dont know how anyone can deny the existence of God after bringing a child into the world. Their spirits radiate with love that can only come from God. And the miraculous birth process anyway should testify that life is God given and so extremely precious. Thats what I feel anyway. -Enough said!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


So Daniel and I are gonna load up our flocks and herds and seeds of every kind and build a boat to take us to some cute little island promised land where we can set up our own government based on our beliefs. We shall work by the sweat of our brow and build up our home and we shall have peace and joy! So long sad sad world. I hope you can survive the next 4 years!

Monday, November 3, 2008

A Favorite Weekend

We headed to Sandy eggo this weekend. Thanks to priceline and craigslist we got a smokin deal on a hotel room, and an even smokiner deal on Legoland tickets! I seriously love a great deal!
So Legoland was fun. We literally walked onto every ride. I really enjoyed people watching and the kids enjoyed all the Lego creations. Saturday night we went swimming at the hotel pool, which was heated but not quite warm enough to keep us from shaking after a few minutes. There was a cool fire-pit next to the pool, so after we were done swimming we sat by the fire to warm up. While sitting there together I thought "this is bliss". Cuz it was. I had my Daniel, holding my Jamesy, and my Kylie and Tyler snuggled on either side of me, while I had my Ben snuggling on my lap. The night was so peaceful and clear and the stars were shining. Not to mention the beautiful palm trees silhouetted against the dark sky. Then Kylie said "this is the best vacation ever. I love our family!" Just like Dash. Then she and Ty started showing us their dance moves, and that got Jamesy movin and grovin as well. I treasure those moments!

We decided to check out Julian as I would love to have a cabin in a mountainous region to escape to on weekends(someday), and we want to scope out areas to get the defining picture in our heads. We decided that Julian is NOT the place for us. My future cabin must have pine trees- and Julian was not pine-treeish. Not to mention the fact I got extremely car sick on the windy road leading to the pie-famous town.
Not a treasured memory, but at least we know where we dont want to go ever again.

We stopped in Viejas as well, and I was SO EXCITED to see that ITS BEGINNING TO LOOK A LOT LIKE CHRISTMAS there. Minus the snow of course. But now that Halloween is history- TIS THE SEASON! HOORAY!!!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Tricky Treats

Last night we went to the "tricky treat," as Tyler called it. I didnt dress my Ben up, cuz he wasnt in the mood, so I didnt worry about it. But now as I look at the pictures I feel bad cuz he isnt in them. Ahh! My poor 4th child.
The kids had a great time, and were ever so happy "Sams dad gave us giant candy bars!" I figure Sams dad is really trying to rot some teeth out so that in a few years my kids all end up at his office for some root canals. Tricky guy.
And the fun didnt stop there- James decided to have his own sweet tricky treat today. He got the nesquick and dumped it all over the floor, and then decided to eat the powder as he was playing with it. Who needs milk? That was such a nice treat for me to clean up. I tried seeing if Sabras therapeutic method of picture taking would work for me, but unfortunately I am still a little irked. My little James is really making the most out of this lovely 2 year old stage. Happy "Tricky Treats" dear friends and family!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


Last night we went to the pumpkin patch. It was very similar to Kylies schools fall festival which we attended on Friday night, except it was less crowded and cheaper! We ran into friends, relatives and neighbors at both events. They had tractor rides, bouncy-castles, and carnival games. Before we left we let the kids choose their pumpkin. Who would have figured that finding the perfect pumpkin would be so intense. I swear Kylie had to look at every single pumpkin there, before she made her choice. Toast would find one and when he couldnt pick it up would move on to the next one, and repeated this until he finally decided a small one was "cutest." James found a small one too and carried it around while softly patting it like a baby doll.
We ran into my cousin Shami and her family, and enjoyed visiting with them for minute. We live in the same small town, yet the last time we saw them was at Sams Club last November. Crazy.
I got a bit homesick last night after we put the kids to bed. I started thinking of my childhood memories of Halloween and Fall. I loved the crisp feeling in the air. I loved the crunchy sound of leaves, and the sometimes eerie rustle of the wind blowing through the trees. I loved looking at the mountains as they were blazing with color. I miss coming home from school and smelling freshly baked bread, and actually enjoying a warm house. I am having a hard time feeling all fallish when we are in the 90's. It feels off and mixed up! I just really miss "home" and will probably continue to feel homesick until February rolls around and we are in the 70- 80's while my beloved Utah is still frozen over.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Weird Tag!

Tina has tagged me, so I guess I shall fill you in on my "weird" things.

1- I have a phobia of making phone calls. If at all possible I make Daniel call people for me. For some reason I get all tongue tied and feel "like a fool, like a fool." If I get a message from someone, it takes me quite a while to get around to calling them back cuz I have to summon the courage first. And by that time my kids have created some kind of disaster, and then I kind of forget about it.

2- I hate lipstick. And lip gloss. I will only put chapstick on my lips.

3-I add salt to everything- except desserts. Really- everything. And its not like I just put a little dash on- I put a TON on. I really like salt!

4- When a "love song" comes on in the car and I am with Daniel, I sing to him. And not just la-de-da sing- I belt it. And I make up some pretty cool dancing action moves too. So if you ever pass us on the road and it looks like I am having a seizure, take heart- I am only giving Daniel a little LOVE concert.

5- The smell of coffee makes me physically ill. I have puked a few times just after walking through the coffee aisle in grocery stores. Same thing for the flavor. Jelly bellys or ice-cream flavored like coffee is vile in my opinion.

6- My hair picks up the lingering scents of food, which in turn makes me sick, and therefore poor Daniel doesnt get bacon or eggs, or fried foods or anything really(just kidding-) unless I am in a fairly self sacrificing mood and it is in the evening and we can open all the windows and turn on all the fans so it will "air-out" the house quicker. I really hate smelling like food.

I tag Christie, Kristy, Allison, and Lala.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Know the saying "silence is golden?" Not really the case when you have a 2 year old. As we were wrapping up preschool on Monday, I gathered the boys for reading time until their moms came. James usually tries to be one of the boys, and he did start out with us, but then said something about "melmo" and ran into the other room. I figured he was just gonna play with his elmo toys. I didn't hear a peep from him during the last two books. After we read I told the boys they could play until their ride came. As they all booked it into the other room with the toys, I started to gather the books up, but then heard the boys scream my name. Confused I rushed into the other room, and there was my little 2 year old grinning ear to ear while playing in his make-shift sand box. Made with the entire contents of a newly opened and very pricey 24 oz can of Bens "special" formula. GRRRRR. I was first upset cuz its $30 bucks a can, and I didn't have anymore in storage, nor did I want to take my boys to the store to get some. And with James plopped down right in the middle of it, all over the kitchen floor which hadn't been mopped since before leaving on our unfortunate waste of a trip on Friday, i couldn't salvage any of it. Then I was upset cuz that stuff is so sticky and James had it matted all over himself. This now meant I was gonna have to give him a bath to get it all off. And then the whole cleaning it off the floor was just another thing to add to my "have to do but really dont want to nor was I planning on doing today to do list" I swept the floor three times before I felt it was now ok to mop. Then I had to ponder on the best way to mop as the swiffer would only stickify the remnants further. I ended up just dumping water all over the floor and got out an old towel and danced my way back and forth until I thought it was clean. It dried and to my frustration it was still sticky. SO I repeated my previous mopping job, but once again the floor felt sticky. Once more I mopped the floor, and only then realized maybe the problem wasn't the floor but my feet which I hadn't washed off yet. Smart. Anyway I initially was frustrated with James but as he gave me his popped eyeballs uh-oh face followed by his mischievous smile and his growling weird laugh that he does and then threw in a big hug and a "ow-we"(sorry) I couldn't help but laugh at this little punk. 2 year olds!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Weekend Woes

Earlier last week Daniel decided we should drive up to the grand canyon. I thought about it for a minute and concluded it would be nice to get out of the house, and seeing as how I really enjoy being in such close proximity to Daniel for hours on end, thought it was a good idea. So Friday night we started our little trip. Note to self, dont go on road trips with Daniel when he is grumpy, it will only make me grumpy. After a long and grumpy drive we stopped and spent the night in Flagstaff, then got up on Saturday and drove the rest of the way. Once we were there, the kids were impressed for maybe a minute, and then ready to move on. Another note to self, taking a two year old to the grand canyon where there isnt much in regards to keeping hyperactive toddlers from running right off the edge into the thousand feet drops into the grand canyon is NOT a good idea. A few people even pointed out how they thought I was a negligent mother in the fact I didnt have him tied to a leash. SO after a couple hours, we started the drive back home. upon which I concluded that this was not a favorite trip in the history of the Jackson family. I think its safe to say this weekend I will be perfectly content staying at home.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Polar Express

Daniel heard from a friend of this terrific little experience called the polar express. The grand canyon railway up in Williams AZ has a little event where the kids get to ride the train in their pjs and come have some hot chocolate and cookies on the way up to the "north pole" where they get to meet Santa. Daniel was so excited and told me about it, which got me all excited and we looked into it and luckily enough found a night that wasnt sold out yet- granted its before Thanksgiving, but figuring I get geared up for the Holidays right after Halloween, I think its perfect timing! So we are gonna head on up there and make a little weekend of it, and I think I might just make my paper chain countdown for the polar express tonight!!!

Monday, October 13, 2008


2 weeks ago I wrote about our little streak of bad luck. Many items of ours broke, most unfortunate- my camera. I have since been on the hunt for a new one, and after much research, decided on the one I want. Since I always LOVE a good bargain, I have been bidding on ebay, but also have been searching various sales fom different camera sites. Ebay was getting a bit frustating with people bidding at the last 8 seconds and then the sales price of a used camera was even more than you can find it brand new. So upon my seaching other sites, I happend to find my lovely camera listed for $29 bucks. $29 bucks for a brand new SLR digital camera? Knowing full well this was definately a mistake, I decided to see if it would let me buy it for the listed price anyway. Lo and Behold it did. I got my confirmation email and my card was charged the $29 plus shipping. SO for the past two days I have been waiting not so patiently for someone at this company to recognize their mistake and call me up to say "sorry, but no can do." I didnt get a call, but an email, asking me to call them. Darn it! Of course this was just too good to be true. If I were a cusser I pobably would have cussed with disappointment. GRRRR!!! OK I am over it.
So now as I have searched and compared and found a respectable price somewhere else, I went ahead and ordered it. At least this one comes with free shipping.

--PREPARE TO BE AMAZED--(movie trivia?) at my soon to be awesome photography skills! Actually, better give me a couple months to learn how to use this new piece of high tech equipment, then you will be amazed!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Birthday Boy

(Since my camera is broken these lousy shots are from my phone)

My Jamesie-boy turned the big 2 today. Its crazy to think that he was born only two years ago. It seems like he has always been a part of our lives. James is our special guy. He has added such an immense love to our family. His birth was one of the most special and sacred experiences I have had in my life. I am eternally grateful to be his mother.
This morning he woke up to his pile of loot and found a little diego trike. He has been on that thing every chance he gets. We went and got Daniel and some take-out and went to a park for lunch, and while it was still hot, it was nice to not be suffocatingly so. (amazing how 102 feels great compared to 112.) He has been obsessed with Elmo lately, so Kylie and I made him an Elmo cake, and he was so excited. He wouldnt wait for us to sing the birthday song before blowing out his candles. All in all it was a pretty fun birthday for my boy!