Sunday, November 30, 2008

Gratitude Day 25

Today we had my family up for a late Thanksgiving Day. When my mom told my sister I was cooking it, my sister stated that I don't cook. Well I didn't when I still lived at home. But that was then...Now, I make the best Thanksgiving dinner! I am GRATEFUL for my family and also for the great compliments they dished out all night! Yes, I am that good. I once baked a cake and a girl told me it was a "multiple piece" cake. When I asked her what that meant she said, "It was so good I couldn't stop at two pieces and had to have three."
I am also GRATEFUL for mother. After dinner tonight she offered to do dishes, but instead I had her look at our adoption profiles to check for errors. I just need to fix a few things and then maybe we can get them up and running!

Chickens in the Headlights

I just finished reading the funniest books! Well okay, I've read the first one before. Chickens in the Headlights, by Matthew Buckley, is a book about a family with 7 boys under the age of 11. SEVEN! Can you imagine? This book has me laughing from page one. At one point in the book I usually laugh so hard that Josh has to remind me to breathe. Here is just an excerpt to get everyone interested:
Dad opened the side door of the van and then began to give each one of us our assignments.
"I'll go inside," he said. "Simon, you stand here by the door and shoo them toward the van. Peter, Matthew, you stand here and here and make sure they stay in single file between the two of you. John, you stand here by the van and lift them up if there are any that can't jump that high."
His plan seemed rational and logical. I pictured Dad shooing the chickens out one by one. They would head straight out of the pen in single fine, and Simon would point them toward the van. The chickens would march between Peter and myself, and then either jump in the van or wait to be helped by John. Perfect.
The part that follows is where I just can't stop laughing. I guess I can visualize it so well because Josh's family has chickens and I can just picture this plan in action.
The 2nd book is Bullies in the Headlights, by Matthew Buckley, and it is just as funny.
We were a pretty special class because we had nine kids, seven of us boys. We were so special that for a while, before Brother Winston came, it seemed that everybody wanted to be our teacher. They took turns coming to our class, and it seemed like we had a new teacher every two weeks. I guess everybody wanted a turn to teach us. Or maybe they were auditioning teachers to see who was the best.
Then one day, in walked Brother Winston. He had an open bag of licorice in one hand. We had been bribed with candy before, and it often made some of the kids go crazy with anticipation.
As soon as all the kids saw the candy, their questions and comments started to fly.
"How many pieces does everybody get?"
"I hope it's not black licorice, because that tastes like the diarrhea medicine."
"I will need an extra piece for my brother, 'cause he cries when I get candy and he doesn't."
Ralph, who was sitting next to me, raised his hand and then lowered it, forgetting what he was going to say.
Brother Winston sat there staring at us until everybody had his or her say. Then he leaned back in his chair and said, "Listen up, I'm only going to say this once."
There was something in his voice. It wasn't threatening--in fact it was a bit raspy--but it had a commanding tone. You had to pay attention.
"We're going to have a discussion on--" He paused, looking at his manual, and then continued. "We're going to have a discussion on baptism. I'm going to lead the discussion, and you're going to participate in an orderly fashion."
Ralph raised his hand again but Brother Winston ignored it.
"If the discussion gets out of hand, I'm going to stop. I'll be bored, and so I will probably start eating this bag of licorice. If--" He paused so that we could all understand that there was a condition coming up. "If there is enough licorice at the end of the lesson for everybody to have a piece, then I will share. If there isn't, then you will get nothing. Am I understood?"
We all nodded our heads. And then everybody started talking at once.
"But what flavor is the licorice? If it's black, I don't want any anyway..."
"How fast can you eat licorice? Will you be eating it really quick or just sucking it?"
"How many have you got in there to begin with?"
"My dad can eat a whole watermelon. And he spits the seeds at our cat."
Brother Winston casually sat back, pulled out a plump piece of red licorice, and started to eat.
Within four seconds it was dead silent in the room. After a moment, Brother Winston put the licorice down and began the lesson.
He'd been our teacher ever since.
These books really are a must read! They are hilarious, but they also have a good message in them.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Gratitude Day 24

I actually kind of enjoy housework. I like doing dishes, I like vacuuming, and I like doing laundry. But I don't like doing housework when Josh is home. I just want to spend all my time with him. He is willing to help around the house, but I won't let him do much because I think I do it better. Needless to say, my house doesn't get cleaned very well unless Josh isn't home. Today he went with his uncle and grandpa and went for a drive to look for wildlife. He left at 4:00 this morning and he just called to say that he should be home around 6:00 tonight. Tomorrow we are having my family over for a late Thankgiving dinner. All of this relates to my GRATITUDES today. I am GRATEFUL for all the housework I got done while Josh was gone (I finally took down the Halloween decor in my bathroom!) and I am GRATEFUL for the cooking I was able to do today in preperation for tomorrow's feast. Josh will be cooking the turkey. I will be cooking everything else.

Our Infertility History

I feel like this posting should come with a warning attached. These are my most intimate thoughts and should not be taken lightly. Some things I want to say may upset some of those who read this. I am sorry if it does, but I can no longer hide these emotions and thoughts. Maybe it will give you more insight into why I have been the way I have been the last few years. I have read other posts like this and I want to scream "that's me they are talking about!" I've decided that maybe it is a part of the healing process that I continue to go through and maybe by putting these thoughts down they will help me heal more. Oh, and it will be quite a long post. I only want to have to do this once so I am trying to get it all out.

Looking back at how far we have come and how long it has taken has made me stop and realize just how long we have been waiting for a family now. I've seen several people that have posted their infertility journey. I have started to a few times, but it seems too heart bearing and I usually end up crying. So despite the feelings I may upset someone and the chance that I will be crying soon, here is our infertility journey and a few things that infertility has taught me.

*Start birth control when we married. Our parents thought we were "too young" to have kids. We just liked being married.
*After about 10 months I went off the birth control. It made me terrible sick. I decided pregnancy couldn't be any worse. We decided that if it happened great, if not, great.
*In 2005 we decided that we were ready to have kids. We thought all we needed was a lot of "lovin'" and prayer and our baby would come.
*Our 6th anniversary, we spent at the doctor's office getting Josh tested. Don't worry I soothed him over by taking him to Cabala’s.
*Before the results came back we knew that we needed to adopt. I think Josh knew before the test and just didn't dare say anything.
*February 2007 - we talked to our bishop about adopting through LDSFS. He said he would get a hold of the caseworker and get him in touch with us.
*May 2007 - we finally realized that you have to contact the caseworker yourself. All they need from your bishop is a letter of reference.
*The paperwork one has to fill out for adoption is overwhelming. They want to know everything about you and your family. And you have to do everything twice because they want to hear it from each spouse.
*Summer 2007 - We attended our first birthmother panel. It was AMAZING! Those girls are AMAZING! Adoption is such a wonderful thing. We also attended our first National Adoption Conference. That too was AMAZING!
*October 2007 – I set up my own “deadline.” If we can have a baby by the time the missionaries in our family come home that would be great.
*December 2007 - We had to hurry and buy a Christmas tree and decorate the house because our caseworker wanted to do our home study and we didn't want to look like a bunch of grinches. I was having a hard time getting into the holiday mood that year. It seems to get worse each year...
*December 2007/January 2008 - we found out that even when our caseworker approves our profile, headquarters in SLC still has to approve it too. That guy kept taking days off. It seemed to take forever before we finally received the letter that said we were "paper pregnant."
*August 2008 - I sunk down into another dark hole. Infertility can come out of nowhere and take you off you feet. I couldn't stop crying for 2 days. Josh suggested I get help. I agreed and joined the support group. They have been so wonderful and uplifting.
*October 2008 - Realize that my "deadline" is halfway over! Called our caseworker; no one has looked at us yet. But it was the incentive I needed to finish our website.
*November 2008 - our 1st adoption profile is now online.

Since then it seems like all we have done is wait. Each time our caseworker calls my heart stops beating. Could this be the call?!?! No such luck. It's time to update this paperwork, it's time to do your webpage, it's time for.... But it's never THE CALL that we are hoping for.
In no particular order here are some things that I have learned from Infertility:
*Sometimes prayer ISN'T enough. Sometimes you need to figure things out on your own.
*Patience is a virtue...and it's one that I've had to work really hard on.
*Even though cats think they are humans, they don't want to be treated like children.
*Sometimes you can do everything the "right" way, but that doesn't guarantee you the things you expected.
*It's hard to shop for baby showers.
*Some people are nice and let you hold their babies. Others are mean and think since you have no children you don't know how to handle one.
*Saying that you want to baby-sit doesn't mean that people will actually let you baby-sit for them. Probably has something to do with the above thought...
*When people treat you like you don't know what you are doing with a baby, it is probably best to ignore them.
*People will say innocent things...or at least that is probably how they meant it.
*People will say mean things...just ignore them.
*It's okay to cry.
*God will take the burden from you, as soon as you will give it to Him. He never gives it back unless you take it back yourself. And then He waits for you to give it back to Him, again.
*Being the only one married in both your families for 6 years doesn't mean you will be the 1st ones to parenthood.
*Being an aunt does not come naturally to everyone.
*Anyone can have a baby. Only special people get to adopt.
*Adopting is a lot more work than just having a baby.
*It's okay to get angry, but you shouldn't do it around friends & family.
*A good friend that will just listen can be the best thing in the world.
*People will try to make you feel better by only pointing out the "hard" parts of parenting and try to tell you that you are better off the way you are. It's hard to ignore them when they keep doing it.
*Infertility is something that requires going through the grieving process. It's a hard process to go through.
*Infertility really is the death of your children. You just don't have a place to go mourn over their loss.
*Being angry & mean will cost you relationships with family & friends. It's hard to build back those relationships to what they used to be.
*Not everyone will get excited when you announce you are going to adopt.
*My grandpa is the best. He told me to remember that ALL of his grandkids/great grandkids look like him and he knows our children will too.
*Sometimes the littlest moment can cause a setback on your healing. They come out of nowhere.
*You can think that you are okay with your infertility, but deep down I don't think one ever comes to complete terms with it.
*Everyone has trials and they are hard. Find others with the same trials and help each other through it.
*It's easier to mourn with those that mourn the same thing you are.
*On bad days you really should lock yourself up and not be around others or you will end up having your feelings hurt and hurting theirs as well.
*Not everyone loves Mother’s Day or any holiday for that matter.
*People will avoid talking about pregnancy around you. Others will talk with you about it like you should know everything they are talking about. It’s actually easier to be around those people who don’t ignore you. You just have to nod your head a lot.
*Arms can literally ache to hold a baby.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Gratitude Day 23

I love peaceful days and I am GRATEFUL that today was one of those days and that I got to spend it with such a wonderful person. This morning Josh & I took a ride up the mountain. It was so calm and peaceful. We also spent some time working on our adoption profiles. But other than that it has just been a trully restful, peaceful, just be lazy (we learned that from our cats) day. To celebrate we are going out to dinner and to see Twilight again.

I am also GRATEFUL the Zipper's leg is finally getting better. Last week we noticed that the sore was better, but there was still infection. Needless to say we made him very, very mad trying to get the infection out. But the local vet was great and gave us some medicine and his leg is almost healed up. There hasn't been any more infection since day two of the medicine and the hair around the sore is growing back.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

The quest continues....

Here's a few more pictures. We were working on our adoption profiles this morning and I am still not satisfied with our quantity of pictures. We are working on 2 different sites and I would like them to be different, but we don't seem to have enough pictures. The other hard part is trying to caption all of these pictures. I don't guess we could say "and here is yet another picture of Josh & Savannah." We can't put on huge descriptions (I think the limit is 250 characters), but we are having a hard time trying to caption 48 pictures so they don't all sound the same.

Gratitude Day 22

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!! Today seems like an appropriate day to say how much I am GRATEFUL for my family. And I should clarify that by family I mean the family I was born into and the family I married into. I try to not use the term "in-laws" because I personally hate that word. I think the term "family" is just more...perfect. I could really get on a soap box here about how when family pictures are done if Josh and I aren't both in them it's hurts my feelings because to me it's not a complete family picture. Thank you to my mom who always makes sure to get a family picture that includes Josh. And thank you to Josh for helping me keep my temper in check when she wants a picture of just her kids. And by the way when we have kids we will both be in all family picutres with them. How do you get a baby with only one person; that makes no sense! Oops, this is supposed to be a gratitude post; I'll get off that soap box now....

I am also GRATEFUL for nice people who let me hold their babies. I spent all day today holding one of my little cousins and I was in heaven. They were also nice to not belittle me like I didn't know what I was doing because I don't have any kids of my own. Dang it, I'm back on that box again...Thank you to Josh's aunt and uncle for being so awesome and having 5 adorable kids that you let me hold and play with to my hearts content.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Gratitude Day 21

I am so GRATEFUL for our website finally going online. That feels like such a big step for us. And it's got me on fire to get our other ones completed. But it has also brought on a whole new level of anxiety! We opened and email account just for these websites. I was checking it about once a week before now. I think I have checked it half a dozen times today. I need to remind myself that "a watched pot doesn't boil."
I am also GRATEFUL for the 4 day weekend coming up! Plus since I was sick on Monday I only had to work 2 days this week. But still I think I would have rather been able to work vs. being sick. YUCK!

It's Finally Here!!!

Our first adoption webpage is finally up & running! I just added a link to it on the sidebar. Be sure to check it out!
Oh, and yes, I did see a typo but we are going to leave it. This website is going to be replaced sometime next month with a new one. Each time you make a change you go offline for at least 24 hours, so we aren't going to mess with it. Hopefully we can finish up the new website over the holiday weekend.
You can also view our profile by going to and entering JoshandSavannah into the search by name.
I also want to share some close friend of mine in the adoption world who are looking to adopt. You can type in AndrewandJessica and BrianandElizabeth in the search by name to view their pages. I also have links to their websites a little lower in my sidebar. I think they would make just as great parents and Josh & I will so they deserve to be looked at by all.
Be sure to tell your family, friends, and everyone!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Gratitude Day 19 and 20

Sorry I missed yesterday. I was SICK with the flu. It was hard to be grateful for anything when you are leaning over the toilet. But, I did take the time to be GRATEFUL for a job that lets me have sick days and I was also GRATEFUL for the great movie collection we have built over the years so I could watch something entertaining while I laid on the couch.

Today I am GRATEFUL for the wonderful scents that Scentsy has on the market. I think they all smell so pretty. I think they are a wonderful and I love how they make my home smell so nice.

I am also GRATEFUL that in some places Customer Service is not dead... yet. For the 3rd time I had to take my car tire in today because it is still going flat. Each time I've been there they have been quick to help me and very friendly. On the down side they tend to forget about you when you want to give them money. But still they have been great to help me. I also had to take our truck in for some minor things they promised when we bought it (new wipers and a few chips needed repaired). They were great to get right on that for me and make sure we were still happy with our purchase. Now if places like Walmart and restaurants could catch onto this concept called Customer Servies consumers would be happy everywhere! I wonder if that is the real reason consumer spending is down? Of course money is part of it, but anymore I would rather purchase online because it is some much easier...

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Twilight Movie

Twilight was awesome! We went to the late show last night. It was crowded, but there was actually a few empty seats. Of course they didn't follow the book, AT ALL, but it was still very good. I think it will be better the next time I see it, because hopefully by then Josh won't be comparing EVERYTHING in the movie to the book.

Gratitude Day 18

Okay, I had these GRATITUDES yesterday, but since I had already posted some, I decided to save them for today.
I am GRATEFUL that we were able to spend some time yesterday helping others. It's nice to know we are in a position to do that. We are so blessed and we should use that to help others in need. I love how I feel after doing service for someone.
I am also GRATEFUL that we have reached a point in our life where we can have 2 cars loans at the same time. (YIKES!) We have come so far since we first married. It feels great to know that we have done it on our own. Family and friends used to give us such a hard time about marrying young. Yes we did, but we don't regret it. We are still madly in love. Nothing gives us greater joy than to look back at our trials and go "Wow, we survived it and we did it without getting help from people." Okay, I better get off my soap box now...

New truck

Here is it: The thing we committed to paying for over the next 3 years. Isn't it beautiful. I picked it out myself.

FSA Activity

Yesterday was our FSA (Families Supporting Adoption) activity. We decided to donate some Thanksgiving dinners to families in our wards this year. It was awesome fun. We brought 3 of the dinners home for our ward. Our bishop wasn't home to devilver them so I have 4 frozen turkeys sitting in my freezer (we bought a 22 lb. bird last night for our upcoming Thanksgiving dinner!) We did try to make sure they got a little of everything they would need for Thanksgiving dinner. The boxes, which we decorated ourselves includ: turkey, turkey roasting pan, frozen pumpkin pie, box of stuffing, bag of potatoes, can of corn, can of cranberries. I hope the families who get them enjoy them.

I should also mention that Josh and I have been asked to be the new Head Chair people of our local FSA chapter. I was excited until the previous ones started unloading all the boxes from their car, now I feel overwhelmed. But I get excited about anything adoption related so onward and upward! We don't have a lot of people that come. I'm not sure how many members our group has, but we only get 2 other couples besides ourselves to these activities. Our goal is to get a better attendance to our activities. FSA is wonderful. It's like a support group family and I can't imagine going through the process of adoption alone.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Gratitude Day 17

I am GRATEFUL for the online support groups I have found. I now belong to three. One is for infertility, one is for LDS adoptive families, and one is for PCOS. I seem to fit so perfectly into them. It's wonderful having a place to go to where I can truly let my feelings out. I find even on this blog that I tend to keep something off that I want to talk about, but it's easier to do it among friends who are going through the same thing.
In the infertility group I have learned that even though I don't ever want to get pregnant, the fact that we can't bear our own children is still going to hurt.
In my PCOS group I am learning some things I need to do to better deal with my PCOS and get it under control.
I am GRATEFUL for the discussions we have had this week in the LDS adoptive families group. We have had some very eye opening discussions that have helped Josh & I make some big decisions. I have wanted to mark a boy only on our profile. I feel like with adoption I have lost all control and I thought that would be a way to get it back. But I better understand now how that will affect our chances of getting selected so I have resigned myself to the fact that I can't choose. And since I refuse to buy "neutral gender" things for our future child I also realize that when our child does come it will be a mad dash for us to get everything we want. My daughter will have pink stuff and my son will have cute little boy things. I hate using yellows and greens to prepare for either gender.
The other big decision that we have reached thanks to this support group is that we are going to be open to any race. I am totally nervous about that. It's not like we only want a Caucasian baby, we are just nervous about how to raise a child of a different race and I am afraid of how others will treat my child when they can obviously see they are different than us. I expect all families and friends will be accepting (they better be or they won't be a part of our lives!). But I worry about as they grow up and go to school. Personally when we first started I wanted a half mexican/spanish baby because I think they are beautiful. And if anyone ever tells me "Oh, it's too bad you couldn't have any of your own" I will punch them. They're not children on loan. They are our children, signed, sealed, and delivered. Or I guess in our case it will be delivered, signed, and sealed! We are in for some long discussions. If you adopt a child of a different race, what do you teach them about their heritage?

Friday, November 21, 2008

Gratitude Day 16

I don't care what Josh thinks, I am GRATEFUL for my new hair style. Sometimes I need a change and my hair is the best thing to mess with because I know it won't be life altering. Sure I've had some bad experiences, but if I wait long enough my hair will grow back in to the way it used to be. That's why I didn't consider a cut this time. I can still remember how long it took to grow back from the last time I cut it. I loved that short style, but I also love being able to throw my hair into a ponytail (and take off my bra - you know a man invented those as a torture device!) after working all day.

I am also GRATEFUL that I have learned to love to cook. I didn't care for it when we first were married. I didn't hate it, but it didn't excite me like it does now. I am GRATEFUL for a great mother in-law who got me excited about cooking. My mom tried; I can remember fighting her on it. But something about Barb's cooking made me want to be a great cook. And I know I do a good job because Josh has told me on several things that I cook it better than his mom! I wish I didn't work full-time so I could cook more. I also wish that I didn't enjoy cooking sweets so much.

New Hair Style

Here it is! I am very happy with how it turned out. It took the gal 2 hours to roll my hair in the curlers. When she was about half way through she realized she didn't have enough solution so she called her friend who happened to be in town picking up their kids from dance and had her pick up a few boxes. I'm glad she did! We tried to count the curling rods as we pulled them out, but her kids are way cute and I was paying more attention to them. I think there was about 65 curlers in my hair. Josh thinks it's "nice" which really means he thought I should have left it alone. He suggested I get it cut like Alice in Twilight, but I had to remind him that he doesn't like me with short hair. We're going to the movies tomorrow night. He can't wait!

New dinner dish

I got this dinner idea from a gal I work with (she is one of the editor's of Taste of Home). It was pretty good. It's not often I will cook something without an actual recipe in front of me and without at least seeing it in a pictures, but it sounded good.

Josh dished us up before I could take a picture. Isn't my new pan beautiful!
Waffle Fry Casserole Dish

In some butter (okay a lot, I love frying with butter) fry some diced onion, peppers (I used red, yellow, & orange), mushrooms and ham. Cook waffle fries at the temperature on the bag for half of the time as indicated on the bag. Spoon ham mixture over top and cook the remaining time. Sprinkle with cheese and cook 5 minutes longer. Serve with Salsa.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

A word from our kittens

Thankyou for getting this chair for me to sleep in. Thank you for this chair too.

Please don't burn my box. PLEASE!

Fine, burn it. But you're going to have to tear it apart around me.

Momma, what are you doing in there? Momma, let me in. You know I don't like being alone.

Hubby Tag

Where did you meet? In the church/city park parking lot. I had just started dating his best friend. I thought he was totally hot!
How long until you got married? 17 months
How long have you been married? 3 months short of 8 years.
Your favorite physical quality of his? His shoulders. I love a buff man. Oh, and Wrangler butts drive me nuts! I think he is so sexy.
Your favorite characteristic quality of his? His easy going temperament. It's hard to get him mad.
Does he have a nickname for you? Sweetheart.
His favorite food? Venison steak.
What is his favorite sport to watch? Hunting.
When was your first kiss? 2nd date (but he will try to tell you it was the 3rd).
How did he propose? There wasn't one big moment. The first time he told me he was going to marry me was March 31st, 2000. We were saying goodbye one night as I was leaving his house. I asked him what he was thinking and he told me that he wanted to marry me someday. He probably did that half a dozen times more before we finally decided to set a date.
What is your favorite thing to do as a couple? Cuddle and watch movies. We are going to Twilight this weekend!
Do you have any kids? 3 kittens - Pyro, Missy, & Zipper. Pyro is his favorite.
Does he have a hidden talent? He can sing.
How old is he? He'll be 27 in a month.
Who said I love you first? He did. I can't remember when, but it was early on in our dating. We were at the school parking lot saying goodbye. He gave me a big hug and whispered it in my ear. I cried. He still tells me everyday.
What do you most admire about him? How much he loves me and does his best to make me happy.
What is his favorite type of music? Country
What is something unusual about him? He has a girly side: he likes to cook, watch Rhythmic Gymnastics, listen to Celtic Women, and he is the biggest Twilight fan I have ever met.
Sweetest thing he has ever done for you? Married me for time & eternity in the Jordan River Temple.

If you are reading this, consider yourself tagged!

Gratitude Day 15

I am GRATEFUL to live in America. Even though I have never left this beautiful country, I know that it is the best place to live. And I am GRATEFUL for the men and women who have fought in the past and who are still fighting today to keep our freedoms. I am sick of hearing about the riots in California because of Proposition 8. Several people are actively using their freedom of speech to make a great outcry. I would love to ask them, how many of them also excersided their freedom to vote; I would bet that several of those protestors didn't vote. I feel that if you didn't cast a vote, you have no right to cry about the outcome.

I am also GRATEFUL for my heath and my physical abilities. I can read, write, walk, talk (sometimes too much), drive....well you get the point. Even when I do complain about health things, like my acid reflux, I know that I could be worse off. Because of these two GRATITUDES I enjoy a very good quality of life and I am GRATEFUL for that.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Gratitude Day 14

I am GRATEFUL for my dad who fixed my tire rim; well we hope it's fixed. I am still holding my breath. I figure if the tire is still full of air in the morning than I am probably safe.

I am also GRATEFUL for this blog, that I stumpled onto. I started reading it at work, but I was laughing so hard I had to stop. Now I am reading it at home and I am just about to bust a gut laughing at it. Everyone needs to check it out!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

More Pictures

I had a water proof disposable camera that we packed around all summer. We finally finished the roll so we could print the pictures and hope for something more to use on our webiste. I guess they are okay, but I know my camera would have done a much better job.
This was another leaf picture we took to finish off that camera. Josh's neck looks funny so I don't think I will use it. This is Josh on his Float Tube; I think we are up Rock Creek.

This is me in my float tube. Josh recieved his as a Christmas gift and I couldn't stand the thought of fishing on shore while we was out in the lake. Once I made him realize he would be constantly rowing in to take a fish off my line, he caved and let me buy one for myself.

Just a picture of me, but I don't care for it

Picture of us on the church lawn. We were trying to use up the roll of film.
Here is the flowers I grew this year. Last year my porch was lined, but this year I just never got around to buying more. It was the kittens favorite place to sleep when it was hot and I was being mean and making them spend the day outside.

This is the trail up Rock Creek, our favorite place to go. I was thinking about posting it on the adoption websites and talking about how it is our favorite place to go.

More pictures of Rock Creek.

Gratitude Day 13

Today I am having a hard time think of some Gratitudes. It wasn't a bad day or anything like that. My mind is simply drawing a blank. When I asked Josh what he thought I should be grateful he made the following suggestions.

I should be GRATEFUL for the nice lunches & dinners I have at work. He's just jealous because today we had our Thanksgiving lunch at work. It was wonderful and there is leftovers to do it again tomorrow! I took a cranberry salad that was pretty good and I got a recipe for a carrot dish that I am going to try. I also gave my "yes" today that we would be at the Christmas Dinner next month. It is always good. Oh, and on a side note, work is doing a drawing for some Michael Martin Murphy tickets for the Saturday after Thanksgiving. I hope I win!

Josh suggested that I should be GRATEFUL for all my clothes. I do have some nice clothes and since my last shopping trip this summer I haven't looked into my closet and decraled that I have nothing to wear. What can I say, I love the Dress Barn!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Gratitude Day 12

I am GRATEFUL for the big home purchase we have been able to make since we were poor, young newlyweds (now I am married to a poor college student - it's about the same!). Our first big purchase was a washer & dryer. I was so excited! When we first got married, we had an old washer and a clothsline. In the winter when it was cold I would hang the clothes in my wash room, but they took forever to dry. Our 2nd big purchase was our chest freezer. When one is married to an avid hunter that is a must! Our 1st aparment (which was actually the 4th place we lived, before that we rented hoouses) was so small that we had to get rid of our used couch (I hated it so that was okay) so we could fit the freezer in the frontroom. For 3 1/2 years we only had banana chairs and a bean bag to sit on. Then we moved to our 2nd apartment and we finally had some room. After we got the computer desk out of storage I realized if I got rid of it I could have a couch. Since we didn't have a computer anymore that was an easy decision. I probably sat on 75 couches at 4 different stores trying to find the perfect one. When we bought this one, the salesman thought its best selling point was the hiden bed. "If you use that only once, it will pay for itself." I wanted to say "If I only need it once, they can suffer a night on the floor!" But actually we quite like it. When we have a really lazy, lazy day, we pull it out and watch movies all day. Our last major purchase for our home was our bed, but as you can recall it is so wonderful that it got a Gratitude all to itself!

I am also GRATEFUL for my kittens. I like to think that I am their mother and that they really love me, even though I don't think Pyro does. They bring such joy (and chaos) into my life. I love having them sleep with us at night. Pyro usually curls up by her daddy's head so he can give her an ear rub. Missy is beside me on her pillow and Zipper is usually curled at my feet (or ON Josh's feet; he hates that) sucking his toes. The best part is on days I get to sleep in and they all cuddle close to me to enjoy the moment of extra rest.
"A house is not a home without a kitten."

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Gratitude Day 11

I would be ungrateful if I didn't express my GRATITUDE for the gospel. I am so lucky to have been born and raised in the LDS church. It means so much to me. I have felt the love of my Heavenly Parents several times over the last two years as I have struggled with our ability to not have a family.

I am also GRATEFUL for the time Josh and I have had to be just the two of us for so long. We have been able to grow so much and get to know each other on a new level that you can't reach when you are dating. That time has been very important to me and I think we have used it wisely.

Sometimes God calms the storm and sometimes He lets the storm rage and calms His child.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Gratitude Day 10

I'm GRATEFUL that I haven't thrown up today. I don't feel good. I woke up with a stomach ache that has come and gone all day long. I know that was probably TMI (to much information), but I have no energy and I can't seem to focus and think of something else to be grateful for.

I am also GRATEFUL for a wonderful husband who can't tell me no. I'm trying to get some scrap booking done and I wanted to go get some things in the next town over, but I didn't have the energy to drive there. I asked Josh thinking he would say no, but he told me to get out of my PJ's and we could go. He is so sweet.

Update on my hectic life. We looked at a few trucks today, but they were out of our price range. We have looked at one off and on for a month that we are thinking about making an offer on, but we can't decide. I looked on EBay last night for a tire rim, but so far all I can find is rims sold in sets of 4 (I guess that makes sense, but I only want 1).
I called the vet clinic this morning. They were open, but the doctor's weren't in. The lady pretty much told me that if I took Zipper down they would put him in a cage until Monday when the doctor could look at him. I would never do that! So we are trying to keep a bandage and some antibiotic cream on it. He tore off the 2nd one we did, but so far the others have stayed on okay. Maybe we can get it better on our own and then I won't have to pay the vet.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Home Improvements

Right now I am going through a big kick trying to make my home prettier and more uplifting. Part of it is because after Halloween, my house is so dull! But also because I want our home to feel more, well homey! In my quest I have managed to find a few things that I really like.

When my mom bought her house a few years ago the previous owners left this wall decoration in the home. Last year she made all of her kids get together and she did new family pictures and pictures of her kids. We then earned the right to replace this on her wall and I asked if I could have it. I love it. It made my hallway go from drab to fab! Today was the Holly Fair. It is where anyone who has talent (and also some who think they do) get together into 3 centralized locations and try to convince you that their stuff is better than the next persons. There is a ton of booths with jewelry, baby blankets, food, home decor, anything you can try to sell is there. I bought a few things that I think will add nicely to my home.

Ever since we moved here I have been looking for a coat rack. But I could never find the right one until I saw this one. It's perfect!

Then my mom and I saw this one and we knew that Josh had to have it. I'm not sure where I will hang it yet. Maybe above his gun cabinet or maybe I'll cave and let him hang it in the front room...

One problem in my home I am trying to correct is our lack of communications setup. Earlier this year I decided to move the computer to the kitchen so I could set up my scrap booking stuff in the spare bedroom. But to use the Internet we have to run the cord across the floor and up the wall. Every Sunday when my mother in-law comes up to email Dallon she trips on this cord and it jerks out of the wall. I thought this rug was way cute and I am hoping that it will hold the cord down so no one trips on it. Oh, and if I was ambitious enough, I bet I could make these. She just tears up old bed sheets and then crochets them into a rug.

The newest addition to my home that I am the most proud of is my memories/picture board. I have been looking for one of these for quite some time. I saw it a few weeks ago and a different craft fair. The lady was super sweet and custom made one for me. I had a hard time of thinking what to put on it. I thought about "The Christensen's" or something like that. But then I remembered the theme from last years National Adoption Conference and it was perfect! "love makes a family".

I want to have one more sign made up, but I need help finding the quote. I think I saw it on a blog recently, but I just looked through the ones I follow and I can't find it. It went something like "Sometimes He calms the storm and sometimes He calms the child." I think that was what it said, but I want to make sure I get it right. Has anyone seen this quote? Please help me find it!

It's time for a change

When I get bored with life or want a change, I do something to my hair. I figure that is the safest thing to do because it grows back. I have an appointment next week, but I'm not sure what to do, so I want to hear what everyone else thinks. Should I perm it? Highlight it? Color it? What colors should I consider? What style of cut should I consider? I don't want to go too short. I like being able to pull in into a pony tail. What about bangs?
Please take a minute to post a comment of what you think would a great idea.

Blog Header Design

I have had several comments on my new header. Thank you, I love it too! I used a website (it's free), It is kind of slow to upload picture and to browse through all the choices they have for backgrounds and accessories, but it is fun. I just make sure to have a good book to read while I am waiting on the pictures. I am trying to put together a few more scrapblogs together to place in my sidebar.

Gratitude Day 9

After the past 24 hours it hard to look at what I am grateful for. We have to buy a new truck because our's finally bit the dust (we knew it was coming) and I need a few hundred dollars to make some car repairs - it's driveable, but I have a donut tire on. Anyone want to donate a rim for my car? Anyone? Well, I can always dream. Oh - and tomorrow morning I have to take Zipper to the vet because we think a fox attacked him.
So after today I am GRATEFUL for leftovers, because I don't have the energy to cook. And I am GRATEFUL for Netflix because as soon as dinner is heated up we are going to veg out in front of the TV and ignore the world (and dirty house) for the rest of the night.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Gratitude Day 8

I am GRATEFUL for my home. It is the nicest place we have ever lived. There's plenty of room and everything seems to work well, for the most part. We have had problems with leaky pipes in the past. Here's to hoping we don't have any this year!

I am GRATEFUL that I finally finished the Twilight Series and that I don't have to wait long for the 1st movie to come out. Now if only we could do something about the crowds that are expected. Our little po-dunk city movie theater is doing a midnight showing on Thursday, 3 shows on Friday and four shows on Sunday. They have never, ever done that, so I take that to mean they are expecting a huge turnout!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Gratitude Day 7

Hmmm, I'm only to Day 7 and already I am having a hard time thinking of something to be grateful for... It's just been an average day so it's not like "oh, I'm so glad for that", or "I wish I had that."

But it is a beautiful day so I guess I can be GRATEFUL that we don't have snow yet. I can still remember last year and it was horrid! But, on the other hand, if we did have snow that I would have to be GRATEFUL for the water it would provide for us in the spring when it melted. Which to wish for?!?

I am also GRATEFUL for our wood burning stove. Working for the electric company, I am starting to see some high energy bills come in and I'm glad I'm not amongst them. Of course I wouldn't be because our house is heated by propane (YIKES!) and that is even worse. But I don't have to worry because of our stove. It keeps the house so nicely warm (ya, we opened the window for 15 minutes last night to cool the bedroom down before bedtime!).

Oh and by the way, I am not going to bed until I finish Breaking Dawn. It's so good I can't seem to put it down.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Gratitude Day 6

I am GRATEFUL for the world's most comfortable bed. A few years ago we scraped together all our pennies and bought a Tempur-Pedic mattress. It is like sleeping on air. I used to have problems sleeping all night without waking up several times in the night. Ever since we got the bed, if I get up at all, it's only once in the night now, instead of 4 or 5 times. Of course it's also the world's greatest bed because Josh sleeps in it too. Everyone should have a Tempur-Pedic (sorry, everyone can't have Josh, I don't share well!). But in the same breath, I hate the Tempur Pedic pillow. Josh loves his, I hate mine. I've had it for almost 4 years now and I bet I have only used it a dozen times.

I am also GRAFETFUL for where we live and the views we have. We live on a little dead end road so we don't get a lot of traffic. The only traffic we get is when the neighbors cows get out. They love my lawn, but they don't leave a very nice thankyou gift! I do have to travel to work, but it is still worth it! I wonder if it would increase our chances of adoption if I posted a picture of our views on our profile? Hmm, that is something to think about. I wish I had thought about it this summer when the field was green.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Gratitude Day 5

Yay, it's Monday! I'm sure most people don't get excited for Monday's, but at our house we do. That is when Josh's brother gets to email us from South Africa. I am so GRATEFUL for the wonderful technology we have that makes that possible. If not for that we would have to rely on snail mail and it takes at least 2 weeks for letters to go through the postal system.

Another weird thing I am GRATEFUL for that I'm sure most people aren't, is my job. They have great benefits and most of the year we work four-10's so that we can have Friday's off. I love that, but I think I mentioned that a few days ago. I also work with several wonderful people. I have been here almost 3 years and I still find myself comparing it to my old job (that one sucked!).

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Gratitude Day 4

After seeing the pictures we took today I am once again GRATEFUL for my camera. I think it always does an awesome job! I bought it quite a few years ago and I keep thinking about upgrading, but it really is a nice camera. If I ever do upgrade, Josh can use this one as his hunting camera. I'm pretty protective of it and won't let him use it much now.

I know I already said I am grateful for Josh, but I will probably keep thinking of differnet things about him I am grateful for. Today I am GRATEFUL for a good husband who helps around the house. I don't let him do much housework because I am so picky about everything, but I do let him do dishes. He really does a good job. I tried to let him mop once, but I had to stop him. I thought he was missing spots on the floor because he wouldn't mop in the same pattern that I do. That's also why I don't let him vacuum.


Today we went to Josh's parents and had his mom snap a few pictures for us. They're not professionally done, but I think I have the world's greatest camera, so I knew they would turn out well. I just don't think we have enough pictures for our websites. I feel better about it now, but when it snows I think we will get some more.
I think this next one is our favorite.
Josh was in this picture too, but he looked funny so I cropped him out.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Gratitude Day 3

I try to not be big into "material things," but sometimes there is something that I just have to have. When I look around my kitchen, my biggest GRATITUDE is my Bosch mixer. I love it! When we first were married I had a Kitchen Aid and I hated it. About the only thing it could mix was water. Anything thicker and it would jam up. So a few years ago I started asking for a mixer like my mother in-laws. She's had it for like 20 years and it has never given her a problem. My wonderful husband listened to my complaints and bought me one for my birthday.
As I sit here all alone on a beautiful weekend I am actually okay with that. Josh went with one of his college classes today to plant trees. It has been a lot of work and a lot of sacrifce for him to go back to school, but I am GRATEFUL that he did. Even though we feel poor and we hardly see each other anymore, we both know that when he is finally finished with school that it will improve our lives.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Cat Naps

Our kittens think that we buy everything for their sleeping purposes. Josh's parents gave us their old recliner a few weeks ago and Pyro was the first one to sit in it. She also likes the rocking chair. As soon as I get up in the mornings, Pyro moves to my spot of the bed and lays her head on my pillow. She also loves the closet. Our last place didn't have doors on the closet and we couldn't keep her out. She especially liked sleeping on Josh's pants. But as we like to say "No outfit is complete without kitten hair."
Missy thinks that boxes and bags where ment to be her personal caves. When we lived in our first tiny apartment in Duchesne (where we had a freezer instead of a couch in our living room) we brought home pizza one night. We set it on the freezer while we went in the kitchen to grab our plates. We came back in and she was on the box. She just loved us for getting her a box that was heated! And she will try to get in any box or bag no matter the size....
A few weeks ago I decided I needed a nice big basket to keep in my frontroom to store blankets in. I checked a few stores in town, but couldn't really find anything. Then at the grocery store I saw one in the produce section. It wasn't a display so I wasn't sure if it was for sale. It was above the employees doorway. I found a worker and he went to find another worker. The 2nd guy said I could have it if I wanted. So the first guy went up the ladder and had to unload all the floral and junk out of it. When he finally got it down I thought "oh, it's smaller than it looked up there." Baskets are expensive and I didn't know if I wanted to spend a lot of money on this one if I wasn't going to be happy with it. I asked the worker how much and he said to make an offer. I told him $5. He told me that most baskets that size sell for $25 at least. But he sold that one to me for $5!!! I couldn't say no to that.

I think it looks so cute in my living room. But I had to wonder - how long until the cats discover it and who will be first?

Gratitude Day 2

IT'S FRIDAY! That is my GRATITUDE today. I love Friday's. I get to sleep in with my kittens and we get up when we just feel like it. I didn't sleep in as late today because I have a big day planned, but it always feel so good to hit the alarm clock, kick Josh out of bed, and then sprawl across the entire bed and cuddle with Missy or Zipper (Pyro won't cuddle; she thinks love is torture!).

I spent some time last night working on our adoption profiles (we are trying to get 3 different sites up for everyone's viewing pleasure and to help us find our child). I've been working on the one for several months now. I just couldn't seem to get the pictures right. But last night I tried something differnet and it worked! That is my second GRATITUDE of the day. I just need to scan one more picture and I think that webpage will be ready for approval from our agency.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Gratitude Day 1

Well my fist Gratitude is easy. I'm so glad I didn't get in a wreck last night and that my car wasn't hurt. I still can't believe that I didn't collide with that deer. Josh and I looked all over the side of my car last night and couldn't find any proof. I am very grateful for that. I love my car and this is the 2nd time I've "almost" hit a deer with it. A year ago I had a deer run into the backside and whack her head on my trunk. Josh was with me and we both heard the thump. But she ran off and we couldn't find where she had hit.

The biggest Gratitude I have is that Josh chose to spend the rest of eternity with me. We've been married for almost 8 years now and I am still amazed at the way he loves me. He told me he loved me on one of our first dates. I was so scared that all I could do was cry. He takes such good care of me and I love him so much. Three cheers for eternity!

30 Days of Gratitude

First off I have to admit that after posting a Halloween thing everday was really draining on me. It was hard to find new information that I hadn't already shared. But it was fun. Then on the morning of November 1st I was visiting a fellow blogger's site and she mentioned that it is National Blog Posting Month which is celebrated by posting a blog everyday for 30 days. I looked at my October History - I did 63 posts in one month. Needless to say this was a challenge I didn't think I needed to undertake. Until today.
This morning (very early this morning) one of my fellow bloggers Inky Smiles posted a challenge to list something we are grateful for over the next 30 days. Since I have been feeling down lately I knew that I needed to take this challenge to uplift my spirits. I am also going to try and go the extra mile and list 2 things a day I am grateful for; something simple and something more profound.

I invite all of my family and friends to also accept this challenge. Everyday take a minute to think of something you are grateful for.

The sun shines all day long, even when there are clouds. What a great role model!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

I hit a deer...I think

I think I hit a deer on the way home tonight. Doesn't that sound better than saying "Honey, I hit a deer!" But I can say it with pure honesty, because I'm not sure if I hit the deer or not. I had just topped out over a hill headed toward home when it suddenly jumped from the bar ditch to the center of the road. I hit my brakes and swerved left. Probably not the smartest idea, but it was a big drop off to the right and there wasn't any oncoming traffic so in the split half a second I had to decide I decided staying on the road would be safer. This put the deer on my passenger side, but still headed the same way I choose to swerve. I think I heard a thud, but it was pretty quite and I never felt any impact. Since it was dark I decided to just drive the 7 miles to the house and overview my damage there. I pulled in backwards so I could better see with the porch light. I can't tell for sure if there is anything different on my car. It is pretty dirty because I haven't washed it for a few months. As far as I can see there is a few scuff marks right at the bottom of my passenger front door. That's it. Nothing else. No blood, no fur, no big dents I can't afford to fix. I think Heaven is watching out for me and hopefully with so little proof of a collision he is watching out for deer also.

New Additions

I just wanted to take a minute and remind everyone to keep an eye on the sidebar and the bottom of my blog for new features. I've added some world clocks so we can see the time difference between home and South Africa where Dallon is serving his mission.
I also added a bookshelf with some of my favorite books (I own over 250 books so it was hard to keep it short) and I've also added some of my favorite songs to play for your listening pleasure while you read my blog. I have it on shuffle so that the same song doesn't play everytime you come to my blog. If you don't like my style of music you can pause the player at the bottom or you can turn your speakers down. I will continue to add to my playlist and my reading lists so stay tuned!

Monday, November 3, 2008

New Church Calling

Well the word is out...

I am the new Primary Piano player. Or is that the old? Not sure since this is the calling I had before Relief Society. Either way I am way excited to have it. I love watching the kids and it's not YW's! And for those of you who don't think it is an important calling I think you are wrong. It is important. The children learn more than singing. They learn basic principles of the gospel through music. When not in class they spend most of their time singing.


We rescued Missy from the vet about 5 years ago. She was deathly skinny and everyone told me she wouldn't make it, but I knew that all she needed was a little love. Oh, and the vet thought she needed tons of kitten booster shots. He gave her 5.
Missy is our meek kitten; she's also the biggest softy. She does not like to go outside. We only throw the cats out during the day and only when the weather is nice. She doesn't leave the porch! Well she does to take care of business, but she doesn't go far. She just sits at the door all day and cries to come back in. And she will only come in the door on the side of the house. I think she is afraid we will forget the food dish and so she stands right by it. She also won't fight any strays that come on the porch. She just stands there and lets them eat her food. Pyro and Zipper will fight anything that comes on the porch.

Missy also gives in easily. She doesn't put up a fight. She doesn't like water, but if you put her in the bath she doesn't try to get out. She fights and fights but once she is wet she just gives up.
Missy loves boxes and bags. But only the cheap kind that you want to throw away. I've spent money on nice cat sleeping boxes and bags and she won't use them. But bring the groceries home and she is the bag before the food is put away!
She has her own pillow on our bed. She used to be really bad about wanting love in the middle of the night so we would put her on this pillow. Now we can't get her to sleep by us! We'll move her by our side and she will hurry back to her pillow. I think the funniest thing about Missy is that she has no respect for Josh. When she walks across the bed she will around my head, but walk over the top of Josh. One morning as we finished our morning prayers she came up and used his bum as a scratching post!