Wednesday, November 17

Shutterfly for the Holidays

I love Christmas cards, sending and receiving. This year I am going to use Shutterfly. I have done other stuff in the past but not this year. Shutterfly has the cutest designs and an awesome promotion going on right now for all you bloggers. I am caching in right now by writing this post-you can ask me about that later. What I am excited about are their new folded cards so I can put a bunch of pics on the card and share a little story about my family's adventure this year. It is going to be awesome. You have to go check out the designs.

I also did some research on calendars- making one for the Mother in Law- and Shutterfly had the cutest ones hands down and a great price. I am super excited about it.

I have used Shutterfly to make really cute photo books for myself and for gifts as well and they usually always have a great promotion like free shipping or half price on duplicates.

This year I am thinking about sending out Valentines Cards too. I have always wanted to start that tradition.

So make sure you check out Shutterfly before you do anything else for the Holidays.

Tuesday, November 16

Primary Story


J..h’s primary teacher shared this cute story with me.

She asked all the the children to stand up if they wanted to be Disciples of Christ.  They all stood up but J..h who half stood up then sat back down then looked kind of nervous.  Her teacher asked her why she was not standing up, “Don’t you want to be a disciple of Christ?” J..h shook her head “ I want to be a paleontologist.”   

Over Due

I know it has been weeks and weeks since my last post and you have probably all been dying to read about my birthday surprise and see pictures of the girls on Halloween.  Sorry it has taken this long.  I was sick with a really bad case of Bronchitis and then my laptop got sick too and had to be sent the Dell doctor. Now we are all better and here are the long awaited posts.  Enjoy!

Monday, November 15

30th Birthday Surprise

I have the most amazing husband on the planet!  He loves me so much.  I also have the best family in the world not to mention incredible friends. Because of the wonderful  people in my life I had a birthday weekend that was beyond anything I could have dreamed. 

Since we moved away my birthday has always been kind of a let down.  My Dad and I share a birthday and I miss celebrating with him.  I love parties and presents and people making a big huge fuss over me and it just hasn’t happened the past few years.  Last year was a particular low point.  We didn’t do one single thing on my birthday because we were moving.  I thought I might get a card or something but nothing…..  I decided I better give Burke fair warning that I had some expectations for my 30th birthday.  He had some work to do to make up for the last few years. 

Then we moved and his plans for a huge party fizzled.  All my friends and family were miles and miles away.  He told me that he would spoil me with presents instead and asked for a substantial amount of money from the budget.  I handed it over with great trepidation.  I am the type that picks out my own presents since I know exactly what I want and like to get exactly what I want.  Burke didn’t even ask for a list!  I spent months worrying about what he was going to get me. Would I be disappointed?  Would it be a waste of our money?  Don’t get me wrong Burke is a great shopper.  I just don’t love surprises.  So I shared all my worries with my Mom, Sisters and a few of my friends hoping they would ease my mind, and they did for a while.  But with my birthday just days away my mind would not stop racing…”what in the world is he going to buy me with all that money!!”  

I was in this state of anxiety when I casually went to get the door, (probably another meat salesman), on Wednesday afternoon.  As the door opened a chorus of “Happy Birthday” rang out.  I stood there in disbelief.  My Mom, Dad and  sister Jennie were standing on my front porch adorned in birthday hats.  As the reality of the situation sunk in my shock turned to raw emotion and I burst into tears.  Jennie attacked me first, enveloping me in a hug.  Then my Mom and Dad wrapped their arms around me and I cried even harder.  They were really here!  Burke had realized my hearts desire and given me a priceless gift.  He got a big hug too. 

It took me a while to truly understand the magnitude of what Burke and my family had done.  It had taken months of covert planning. To cover the cost of the flights Burke used my birthday money and my parents donated their birthday money( both having October birthdays) , then he sent an e-mail to my friends and I couldn’t believe how many of them sent  in donations.  Jennie sacrificed so much to be there and Morgan took work off for the weekend to watch their three boys.

Burke knew I might be embarrassed if the house was not in order when they arrived so to help me un-knowingly prep for their arrival he enlisted the help of our friends by having them fake a plumbing emergency at their house.  I was expecting them to stay with us for the weekend so I had already cleaned the bathrooms, changed the linens and finished the girl’s Halloween costumes.  They did such a good job fooling me that I panicked just a little when my family showed up and whispered to Burke “Where are they going to sleep with our friends staying here!”  He just started laughing and then it hit me “You made it up!”

The girls were equally shocked to have their Grandparents suddenly appear.  They could not stop laughing and grinning and talking to them.  Even biddy was giving out hugs in no time at all.  It was my family’s first visit to TX so we had tons to see and do. Burke planned an itinerary for the weekend and took extra time off.  It was amazing!  

That night we had a celebration dinner at a True Texas BBQ Restaurant. 


We toured the Missions on Thursday

















I love this picture..











                                     It was just a tad bit windy:)

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Mission Concepcion













Friday was mine and my Dad’s birthday and it could not have been more perfect.

We visited the Alamo. 


Then we had an authentic Tex-Mex lunch on the River walk. 

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We had so much fun at our ward’s Trunk- or- Treat.


That night they made a big fuss over me with a cute family party.  057

The girls gave me a darling apron and J..h, who knows how much I love fabric and sewing, made me an embellished fabric panel to “sew something cute with”.  She collected the fabric and taped it together all on her own.  It was so sweet.


We spent Saturday enjoying the gorgeous weather and scenery at the Japanese Tea Garden

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We had lots of fun hanging out at home playing, sewing, talking and enjoying the precious time we had together before they flew home on Sunday.













It was a birthday I will always treasure and definitely one that will be hard to top.

Sunday, November 14


We had so much fun this Halloween. It was made extra special by the fact that Grandma, Papa and Aunt Jennie were visiting.


The Ward Trunk- or- Treat



The girls loved their costumes which I purchased and then hand embellished.  I was really pleased with how they turned out.

“Liddy” Bug


Monarch Butterfly


Tinker Bell


For Halloween we went to the Air Force Base to have dinner with the Hart's and then trick-or-treating. 


J..h drew the design for this years pumpkin all by herself.


Practicing their flying


The weather was gorgeous and the atmosphere on the base was amazing.  People were so friendly and complimentary and even the teen age kids were chaperoned by their parents. In addition uniformed service men were paroling the streets with McGruff the Dare Dog. 084 

At 6:30 they played the National Anthem and everyone stood at attention with their hands on their hearts.  There was such an awesome sense of community, respect and patriotism- I had to remind myself it was Halloween not the 4th of July!  If we could, I would move on base in a heart beat. 


The girls loved the houses that got into the spirit of Halloween and decorated to the nines. Seeing the Colonel and his wife dress up as George and Martha Washington and hand out cotton candy was really fun. 


It was a great Halloween.