Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Books read in 2013

"Saphyre Snow" by Marcia Lynn McClure
"Born for Thorton's Sake" by Marcia Lynn McClure
"Married by Mistake" by Abby Gaines
"The Highwayman of Tanglewood" by Marcia Lynn McClure
"Divine Deception" by Marcia Lynn McClure

"True Believer" by Nicholas Sparks
"At First Sight" by Nicholas Sparks
"Naked in Death" by J D Robb
"The Wedding" by Nicholas Sparks
"And Then There Were None" by Agatha Christie

"Counting Stars" by Michelle Paige Holmes
"Hired by the Cowboy" Donna Alward
"Tell No One" by Harlan Coben
"No Second Chance" by Harlan Coben
"Not Quite Dating" by Catherine Bybee

"One Classic Latin Lover, Please" by Marcia Lynn McClure
"Nights in Rodanthe" by Nicholas Sparks
"The Whispered Kiss" by Marcia Lynn McClure
"Long Lost" by Harlan Coben
"The Heavenly Surrender" by Marcia Lynn McClure

"The Time of Aspen Falls" by Marcia Lynn McClure
"Three Weeks With My Brother" by Nicholas Sparks
"The Fairest Beauty" by Melanie Dickerson
"Shackles of Honor" by Marcia Lynn McClure
"Light of the Lover's Moon" by Marcia Lynn McClure

"The Last Song" by Nicholas Sparks
"I Can Barely Take Care of Myself: Tales From a Happy Life Without Kids" by Jen Kirkman
"The Jester" by James Patterson & Andrew Gross
"A Bend in the Road" by Nicholas Sparks
"Daddy's Gone A Hunting" by Marry Higgins Clark

"The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo" by Stieg Larsson
"Don't Breathe a Word" by Jennifer McMahon
"The Healer's Apprentice" by Melanie Dickerson
"The Girl Who Played With Fire" by Stieg Larsson
"The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest" by Stieg Larrson

"The Merchant's Daughter" by Melanie Dickerson
"Bonded: Three Fairy Tales, One Bond" by Michelle Davidson Argyle
"The Maze Runner" by James Dashner
"The Scorch Trials" by James Dashner
"The Death Cure" by James Dashner

"Beauty & the Beast": Faerie Tale Collection by Jenni James
"The Adventures of Tom Sawyer" by Mark Twain
"The Wonderful Wizard of Oz" by L. Frank Baum
"The Associate" by John Grisham
"The Face Of Deception" by Iris Johansen

"The Magician's Nephew" by C. S. Lewis
"Kiss In The Dark" by Marcia Lynn McClure
"The Last Juror" by John Grisham
"Count Down" by Iris Johansen
"The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe" by C. S. Lewis

"The Chamber" by John Grisham
"The Longest Ride" by Nicholas Sparks
"Midnight Masquerade" by Marcia Lynn McClure
"The Summons" by John Grisham
"The Husband School" by Kristine Rolofson

"I've Heard That Song Before" by Mary Higgins Clark
"Where Are You Now" by Mary Higgins Clark
"Play Dead" by Harlan Coben
"The Pirate Ruse" by Marcia Lynn McClure
"The Innocent" by Harlan Coben

"Before I Say Good-Bye" by Mary Higgins Clark
"The Testament" by John Grisham
"Blackmoore" by Julianne Donaldson
"Deal Breaker" by Harlan Coben
"Cowboy Dad" by Cathy McDavid

"The Chimney Sweep Charm" by Marcia Lynn McClure
"Take A Walk With Me" by Marcia Lynn McClure
"The Runaway Jury" by John Grisham

New Year's Eve 2013

This year, I decided to host New Year's Eve at my house. We invited Todd & Randi, Brandon & Kim and Andrew & Jessica. It was a little crowded, but lots of fun. Kim mentioned it had been 2 years since we had gotten the whole group together and that made me sad. Sad that it took so long to get together again and sad because Todd & Randi are moving away.

I didn't get any pictures. We had food on every surface in the kitchen and still had to get out the folding table for more food. We had 2 kinds of cheese fondue with lots of dipping stuff. We also made chicken wings in my new Ninja Cooker. Then we had 2 kinda if chocolate fondue and more dipping stuff for that.

After dinner, we played Guitar Hero. Then, at midnight, we went outside and lit off a few fireworks. It was awesome because we could see then going off all around us.

It was a blast. I'm sad to see Todd & Randi go.  I wish them luck as they head across the country and start new jobs and find a new home. I am going to miss them and all our fun times.

 I'm also excited for the new year and what it will bring.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Josh's 32nd Birthday

Josh had his birthday off, so I gave him two of his gifts in the morning. One was actually supposed to be in his stocking, but I had completely forgotten about it until the day after Christmas. Since his birthday was the next day, I decided to just give it to him for that. It was the soundtrack CD to "Jeremiah Johnson". He's been wanting it forever and was sad he didn't get it for Christmas, so he was thrilled to see he got it for his birthday. I also let him open one of his new Wii games so he could play it while I was at work. 

Dinner was one of his favorite meals from when he was young. He can remember having Swedish Meatballs on his birthday for like 3 years in a row. I cooked them in my Ninja Cooker and loved it! Then we had "almost" better then sex cake for dessert. He didn't want any candles, but he insisted I sing him Happy Birthday. 

After dinner, he opened the rest of his presents. 

I got him a new Levi jackets, two heavy duty shirts, an itunes gift card, the Jeremiah Johnson Soundtrack and two new Wii Hunting Games. He had pointed out on Christmas that he didn't get a new Wii game and I told him to wait until his birthday. I guess I have split them up over the two holidays in the past. 

Christmas 2013

Our first Christmas in our new home.

Santa even left a gift under the tree for the pets. A new toy and bone for Sage and two catnip toys for the cats. 

Gaby was more interested in the bone than anything else.  

Before we let Sage out of her kennel to go outside, I put her bone at the top of the landing for her to see. She immediately picked it up to take with her. 

 We like to open our stockings first before starting breakfast. 

My stocking included a new water bottle, a new necklace with matching earrings, itune cards, a memory disk and lots of chocolate. 

Josh's stocking had cologne, the newest "Game of Thorns" book, an itunes card, candy cane peeps, chocolate and suckers. 

I saw this Cherry Cream Cheese Coffee Cake on Pinterest and had to try it out. The recipe called for enough to make two. The first one didn't turn out and ended up just being straight. And it made way to much for the two of us. Next time, I will cut the recipe in half. 

 After breakfast, we opened our gifts. 

 Josh's gifts included a work vest, a hoodie, 2 long sleeve shirts, a calendar, nine pearl snap button shirts and a new float tube. 

Josh got me a Ninja Cooking System, a digital picture frame, an oil diffuser, a cake leveler and a nice thick floor mat for the kitchen. I love it all!

Christmas Day with Josh's Family

On Christmas Day, we went to Josh's parents for dinner. 

I had wrapped the nephews gifts into three packages each. First, we opened our John Deere shirts. Preston was less than thrilled to get clothes, but Tyler loved his shirt. And I told Preston I had saved his best gift for last. 

Before we opened gifts, Barb brought some games out to play. When I saw she had the same game I had bought for Preston, I got after her to put it away. It confused her at first, so I tried to explain it needed to be  a surprise for a little boy. I hope its a good game since there is now one at her house and at Preston's home. I had never seen it before, but it was highly recommended on Amazon. 

Tyler was a little confused when he opened his plate and place mat. So I immediately had them open their last gifts. Those were the silverware for Tyler's gift and Rock 'Em Sock 'Em Robots for Preston. Both boys were thrilled!

Tyler played with them for a few minutes, then he told us he was hungry. We had just finished dinner and most of it was put away, he just wanted to use his new plate and silverware. 

Preston was so excited for the robots game, he "helped" his dad put it together. 

I was nervous to buy something besides clothes. They have been such an easy gift for me, I was worried I would screw up and buy something they wouldn't like. But both boys seemed thrilled with all they received. 

I remembered to take a picture of the nephew gifts, but I forgot to take a picture of the other gifts. We gave Barb some new Tupperware bowls and a square container. We gave Matt a new work vest. I had Natalie's name and gave her a perpetual calendar and a Pampered Chef cooling Rack. Josh had Colter's name and gave him a Sportsman's Warehouse gift card.

Josh's parents gave us new pajama pants and cash (which we plan to save for our anniversary). Melanie had my name and gave me a Maurice's gift card. Dallon had Josh's name and gave him a Sportsman's Warehouse gift card. 

I need to insert a funny story here. The day after Christmas I noticed a friend on Facebook was trying to sell something on the Orem Yard Sale Group Page. It was an arcade style basketball game. It has 2 hoops and keeps score.  I immediately thought of Preston and Tyler. Then, I remembered Josh had mentioned going to Orem to get something this weekend. So I texted Melanie to ask her what she thought. She thought they would like it, so I decided to get it and it will be their Easter present. One day after Christmas and I was already shopping for Easter. I can't help myself, I love being an aunt and am always looking for the next opportunity to spoil them. 

Christmas Eve with Savannah's Family

This year, we spent Christmas Eve with my family. We had our traditional dinner of Marinated Meat and Fondue. After dinner, Josh and I had to run a quick errand. Now that Melanie lives in town, we volunteered to do grandma & grandpa's "Santa run" while they were there so they could see the excitement from the inside. Barb had dropped off the gifts earlier, so all we had to do was go leave them on the porch. I didn't get any pictures, but it was fun. I watched from the car while Josh played Santa. He sat the bag on the porch, rang his bell, laughed "Ho Ho Ho" and rang the doorbell. Then he ran as fast as he could back to the car. We saw the boys open the door, look around and then see their gifts.

After that, we went back to my mom's to open presents. 

Well, open the rest of the presents. Before dinner, I was too excited to wait. When I noticed neither boy was dressed, I decided it was the perfect time to open one of their gifts. I had wrapped their gifts into 5 packages for each. I un-taped a few corners until I could find their John Deere shirts, then re-taped them and took them to the boys. They were both excited to get to open a gift. Having presents under the tree has been a huge temptation, and my sister had waited until that morning to put them there!

 Daxsen loved seating in a big chair by the adults. 

I forgot to take a picture of the gifts we gave to my family. For my mom, we got her a vanity mirror that attaches to the wall and has a hinge so she can move it to where she needs it. For my dad, we decided to put money on his electric account. I had Alden's name and he actually got  his gift early. He needed to register his car last month and was short on the cash, so I chipped in to help him. I wanted him to still have a gift to open, so I gave him 2 car air freshener's on Christmas Eve. Josh had John's name and gave him a huge coffee thermos. 

My mom got me a rolling scrapbook tote and she gave Josh a gift card to Sportsman's Warehouse (it included enough money for his birthday present too.) Alden had Josh's name and made him a plate of treats. Vanessa had my name and is still working on it, but included new paintings from the boys. 

My dad was sick over Christmas so we didn't see him until today. I tried to surprise him by driving to his house on Christmas Day, only to find he wasn't home. He had decided to go to work so he wouldn't share his cold with anyone. He got us a Kelly Kettle to use when we go camping and also a gift card to Cal Ranch.