Sunday, December 30, 2007

Blue Bird Day



It's beautiful here today.  These pictures are from last year, but it looks pretty much the same today.  Garrett has just been dropped off for another day on the slopes.  I did end up going out on Friday for a few hours, but it was starting to snow and going up the lifts with the freezing cold snow blasting against your face is not exactly my idea of fun.  I learned though, that I do like skiing on my own.  No pressure of how fast to go or which runs to go on.  I was imagining the snow as powdered sugar too to help take away the fear of falling that I have.  I might even venture to say that it was my best time out on skis!  I was going to go out for the second half of today, but I am now fighting a cold, with all my might, in hopes that it doesn't get any worse.
I have to tell you though that Mammoth in the winter has not always been my favorite place to be with the boys.  Now that they are getting older it is getting better!  The only reason it has not been my favorite is because typically the boys have a hard time sleeping here.  Whether it's the altitude or the cold, whatever it has been, it typically has resulted in sleepless nights and then me being tired throughout the day.  This is out first trip though where both boys are now older and sleeping well and able to play well together for most of the day.  Yesterday, since I was not feeling well, was a grumpy day for the boys and I.  I didn't want to go play in the snow and they were getting stir crazy from being cooped up all day.  But today I am feeling better and we are about ready to head outside for some fun.  Bob and Denise are on their way up and so tomorrow Garrett and I plan on skiing together (or maybe separate and meeting up for lunch).  We really wanted Kevin in ski school but he is refusing.  He's insistent that he will run into a tree.  I know he would have fun if he would just give it a try.
OK, gotta go get bundled up!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Skater Boy

video
Just had to share this from Christmas day.  Kevin got a skateboard from his Uncle Matt and surprised us all by actually knowing how to ride on it.

We had a great Christmas Eve and Christmas day.  The boys were great and liked seeing everyone open presents from them.  I will post more pictures when we get back home.  The computer is going slow up here in the mountains.

Mammoth

 I forgot the camera!  So there are no cute pictures to look at, but I will tell you that the boys looked awfully cute in their snow clothes.  We went out on the golf course this morning to find a little sledding hill.  We were checking things off of Kevin's list of things to do today.
1.  Go sledding
2.  Make snow angels
3.  Build a snow man
4. Have a snow ball fight
5.  Play in the snow

We accomplished the first two on the list.  We tried to make a snowman but it wasn't good snowman making snow today.  Then Zach was attacked by a cute puppy that was running around and he was ready to go in.  We'll have to go back out later to check the other things off the list.  So now we are back inside where it's warm and the boys had some hot chocolate.  Garrett has been out on the slopes since 9:00 and we are awaiting his call to go pick him up.  He's offered for me to go out tomorrow morning but I'm not much for skiing alone.  It has been beautiful all morning though, after we got snow last night.  There are some clouds coming in and maybe we will just get dumped on!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Christmas Eve

It's strangely quiet around here.  There are no kids asking me to get up and go downstairs with them.  There are no boys fighting and yelling at 7:00 in the morning....well at least not here, but maybe they are at Grandpa and Grandma Dee's house!  Yes, the boys had a night at the grandparents last night, that was promised to be full of movies and hot chocolate.  I am so thankful for that too, because I got almost everything done last night.  But as you can see I am not one for sleeping in, even if the kids are away.  I have a few more things to do this morning.  I am making my mom's mom's (my grandma Smith) recipe for spaghetti sauce and meatballs to have on Christmas day.  I hope it turns out yummy.  I know it's not the traditional Christmas day dinner and we're not even Italian, but it's all about the family coming together and enjoying each others company, right? 


As you can see the stockings are all hung.  At our house the stockings are always to heavy to stay hung once they are filled, so Santa sets them at the bottom of the fireplace.  You can also see the present waiting for me.  It's been sitting under the tree for a couple weeks.  I just can't imagine what it might be!  

Here's wishing you all a very Merry Christmas!  I will share pictures of our Christmas morning adventures soon.  Love to you all!!

Friday, December 21, 2007

Feeling the Love

Today I have been surrounded by love.  I went to work and after checking my box I found a card in it from the boss.  Inside the card were gift cards more than replacing the ones that were stolen.  It was signed by the whole office and it just made me start crying because of how extremely generous this was!  It's always nice to feel loved and cared for!!
And just for fun, check out the Rileys as elves.

Merry Christmas and here's hoping that you all feel surrounded by love too!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

In The Spirit of Giving


Can you even read that picture?  I was going to take another one, but just realized I took my shirt off and put both the shirt and the sticker into the wash.  Great!  Anyway, in the spirt of giving I gave blood today.  I saw a sign up while driving around that there was an emergency blood drive today, so I decided that instead of running around mindlessly, not knowing what gifts to buy people because it's getting so close to Christmas and if I haven't gotten the gifts by now, what's the point..... I decided instead to take a break and do something more worth while.  
I used to love going with my mom when she would give blood because I got to sit and eat cookies while I waited for her to be done!  I always thought it was a great, easy way to give and so I knew that I wanted to continue it when I grew up.  I have not been nearly as consistent as my mom was.  The last time I gave blood we lived in Bakersfield.  But now that the boys are getting older and it's getting easier for me to get out of the house on my own once in a while,  I hope to continue the trend..... and the cookies at the end always help.


On another note, Kevin had his school performance today and did a GREAT job.  They performed once for the parents first thing this morning.  Then they did four more performances after that for all the different grades.  He said he liked the part where he ran around in a circle because it made him out of breath.  He gets so serious when he performs though.  He spotted me one time and tried really hard not to smile.  He's such a cutie!

Friendly Reminder


When you are running around, making sure all the last minute details are taken care of, please remember to take the sparkling cider that you are chilling in the freezer (because you have forgotten to do it earlier, so you want to make it cold fast) OUT!  (We can all learn from the mistakes of others)

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

We're Rollin'

video
Press the arrow to watch him roll!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

FUN!

Zach and I had some fun making cookies today.  I have to tell you about the easiest way to make sugar cookies...... from the Krusteaz box!  They give you all the ingredients for the cookies (just add water), PLUS, cookie cutters, icing mix, sprinkles, and food coloring.  I think I got it at Target for about $7.  Now that's a good deal!  Super easy fun!!


Also I had a nice surprise waiting for me when I got home from AWANA.  The books arrived from A Readable Feast.  It's always fun to receive packages, especially when it's something that you got for free!  So thank you, again, to A Readable Feast!!



Thanks To The Hired Help




Just thought I would share some pictures of how I got the old Christmas cards out this year.  I had Zach helping me on the assembly line of putting the return address stickers on (crooked, upside down, on the wrong side) but still was a big help.  I also enlisted the help of the toy dinosaur to help keep the envelopes pushed down, hoping that would keep them sealed.  The Costco envelopes did not want to stay closed this year.  Of course I also have to thank Garrett for writing the letter this year.  I had told him that I wasn't "feelin' it" this year.  So the next morning I woke up to find the letter all done......and it was a nice one too!  So, thanks to all the hired help in getting those cards out.  I couldn't have done it without you!
p.s. we LOVE getting christmas cards too!!  Everyday in December that is one of the highlights to see whose cards come in the mail.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Santa's Workshop

This little elf is gettin' busy.  I can't believe that Christmas is next week.  I don't even know what I've bought for the kids.  Seriously, I go to store, buy a bunch of stuff and then forget about it and end up buying too much in the end.  I have to take inventory before I go out again.  
Today I have almost the entire day to myself.  Garrett and Zach went to Disneyland with Grami and Papa.  We all wanted to go but Kevin has an extra practice for his little school performance this afternoon.  So I am here checking things off my list.  I don't really make a list, which is why I end up not knowing what I still have to do.  
It is strange though going into store with no purse and just cash in my pocket. Obviously, I haven't bought a new purse yet but I guess I'm not in a hurry since I literally have nothing to fill it with!  New things keep coming to mind about what was in my purse.  The worst things that I lost were gift cards that were from my birthday!  I guess next time I need to go spend them right away...... The nutcracker tickets were in there too, but luckily we have an in, with our neighbor being in the ballet,  so Kevin and I were able to still go and enjoy that on Saturday.  It was so cute.   Because I had never seen it before Kevin kept explaining to me what was going on.  The concept of whispering did not occur to him though!  
Ok, gotta get back to doing as much as I can before my "me time" is up!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Season's Greetings

Check out this site!  Keep an eye out for Kevin.  His den got to go to the local tv station and record this little video.  Happy Holidays from Pack 490, Whoooooooooooooo!


Friday, December 14, 2007

Could Be Better



Yes, those are pictures of the passenger window on my car.....
Last night I went to a party for work.  We had a great time, ate great food, had a gift exchange, and a cookie exchange.  I walked out with a friend and as I went around to my side of the car she said, "This is your car, Tasha?"  I thought she was teasing me about the minivan factor, but instead she said, "Your whole window is smashed in!"
I left my purse in the car, under the console, as I often do because I hate carrying it around.  Well, somebody felt free to smash in the window and help themselves to my purse.   I was the only one it happened to.  My friend had her purse in her car too, but they probably just took mine and drove off quickly.  
The police came, I told the story, they took down info but there's not much they can do.  If any of you have seen the movie Superbad that's what came to mind as I was talking to the police.  Anyway, we have a guy out front right now putting a new window in.  All the credit cards have been cancelled.  I got a temporary license today.  I was really hoping out of all of this I would at least get a new picture on my license, but no they are using the same old one!  Garrett's been very helpful getting everything taken care of.  It's nice to have someone to do that!  
So, yeah I could be better today, but life goes on.  I gotta go get myself a new purse and not leave it in the car next time.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

A Readable Feast Continued

Guess what e-mail I got this morning?
Tasha:
Congratulations! You won the gift basket.

A big thank you to The Readable Feast and the people at the Little, Brown, and Company!!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Zachary's Preschool Performance






He did it!  He stood up in front and actually sang with the other kids.  He looked so cute in his little sweater vest.  We were so proud of our little guy!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Christmas Memories


I've been thinking of Christmases past and thought I would share some of the memories that have come to mind.
People always ask what's the best Christmas gift you've ever gotten.  I don't have a great memory when it comes to down to it.  My friends Vicki and Rochelle remember everything and when they ask me, "Remember when...." I often times can't remember any of it.  Anyway, I do remember the Christmas I got a hamster.  Both my brother and I got one and I loved it.  I keep waiting for Kevin or Zach to ask for one because I would love to have another one.....but they'll be the ones cleaning out the cage.  So, we got hamsters and the best part was when the hamster got one of the chocolate balls that were in my stocking and ate it tin foil and all.  It had a huge ball stuffed into it's cheek.  
Another Christmas, at least I think it was Christmas,  (and correct me if I am wrong, mom) but was when my brother had a paper route so we went out to deliver the paper before opening presents.  At the time we had a van and in order to speed up the process my mom drove us around from house to house, with the van door open and then my brother or I would hop out and put the paper in the box or throw it in the driveway.  Well, that morning we went around the first corner and out goes Tasha, rolling out of the van door and into a ditch....at least that's how I remember it.   (I didn't say it was a good memory!)
I also have lots of good memories of going up to my Grandma and Grandpa Trettin's house in Oregon.  I used to love playing the piano there and sleeping upstairs in the room where my Aunt Sharon and Aunt Kathy grew up.  I would go through their old things.  I loved it when it would snow for Christmas!  I even loved it when it would snow on the way there, although I am sure that my parents did not.
I loved caroling around our neighborhood with my dad playing guitar.  What I love about it now, is that it was part of our neighborhood's tradition, and I looked forward to it.  I loved that our caroling group grew as we got to know more neighbors and that it was during a time when that caroling was cool (or maybe it wasn't, I just thought it was).  
My first year in college my roommate Michelle and I wanted a real Christmas tree for our room.  Neither of us had a car, so we took the bus to the mall, bought a little tree, brought the tree back to the dorm on the bus and set it all up in our room.  It turned out that we couldn't even keep it though because we didn't get it fire proofed, but it is an adventure I will never forget.
And I can't leave out Garrett and my first Christmas being married when he so lovingly got me a huge can of bread mix......and that's it!  Christmas gifts can only get better when you have that as a starting point, right?
Now that I am parent I am trying to make lots of memories for the boys.  I am trying to remind myself that it's not all about the toys because those things will be forgotten probably by next year.  I am excited to get to spend a week in Mammoth after Christmas this year and do lots of fun things in the snow.  I am excited that they enjoy decorating so much and I hope it lasts for years and years.  I am excited that Kevin and I get to see the Nutcracker, as it will be a first for both of us.  I am excited just because they are excited about everything!
And now it's sharing time, what's your favorite Christmas memory?

A Readable Feast

I was checking out the clubmom blogs that I often do and saw this site, A Readable Feast, that is having a contest to win a big basket of books.  Go check it out and enter to win.  (and if you do win and are part of the family it would make an extremely cool gift for the boys!)

The Beginnings of a Busy Week

Yesterday the boys were in a little Christmas singing performance at church.  Kevin did well, standing up on the risers and singing what he knew of the songs (until he saw Grandpa and decided it was more fun to act silly than sing).  Zach we could barely see because they had all the little ones sit down in front.  He told us afterwards that he wasn't singing anyway.  This was the first of our many activities this week.  Tonight Zach has another performance at his preschool and we'll see if he'll sing at this one.  We were remembering last night about Kevin's first preschool Christmas performance when all the kids were standing up front, the room was silent, and Kevin from the stage yells, "Mom, after were done singing, we get cookies!"  It was so cute and everyone laughed.  I highly doubt Zach will be yelling anything tonight.

The little girl that Kevin is standing next to is one of his many girlfriends.  They went to preschool together and now see eachother at AWANA and church.  Last year we were going somewhere that she was going to be and Kevin said, "I'm gonna see my cutie pie tonight!"

I found this picture on my camera this morning.  I think the boys were having some fun with the camera!

p.s. Thanks for all the great suggestions of songs.  I'm gonna have such the cool playlist!

Sunday, December 9, 2007

"I'm Too Sexy"

You can tell a lot about people by their playlist.  Since I have not yet gotten an ipod of my own I used Garrett's again yesterday.  His playlist includes a variety of songs, including rap, Eminem, 80's songs by Prince, and yes, "I'm Too Sexy".  As I run along listening to the songs, oddly enough I find myself liking some of them.  And then I think, "If only the people that I am running by could hear what I am listening to."  So, Garrett says I can make my own playlist of any and all songs that I like.  The problem is I don't know names of songs.  I listen to the radio and just try and sing along with whatever is on.  I don't have a favorite artist or even a favorite type of music.  Any suggestions of good music to listen to while running, would be greatly appreciated here. And, by the way, I ran 9.5 miles yesterday so I need a good long list of songs!!

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Santa Visit




We had a visit from Santa tonight at our party.  All the kids were very excited.  Zach didn't want to get too close, but felt safer in his box!   Kevin quickly drew a picture for Santa and told him he wanted a marble maze for Christmas.  

The Best Part



Everyone knows that the best part of making cookies is getting to lick the beaters afterwards.  The boys agree and that's why they always want to help.  Today we are having the MOMS club holiday party and cookie exchange.  Everyone is supposed to bring 2 dozen cookies, along with the recipe and then we get to trade and go home with a plate full of a variety of cookies.....all that will probably end up right in my tummy.  I have another party next week where I'm supposed to bring 3 dozen cookies.  Luckily it was cut down from when I first started at my job, we were supposed to bring 6 dozen!  Anyway, I found a recipe on the back of a magazine that looked delicious.  They are the Ghirardelli Ultimate Double Chocolate Cookies.  I was going to post a sign saying, "Definitely not a diet cookie!"  Turned out to be quite a mess to make and I haven't tasted them yet, but they look really yummy.  The party is here, so Zach and I are spending the morning cleaning up the house.  Better get back to it!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Because I Just Couldn't Wait


So here's what our lights look like.  I hung them up today, by myself.  Since we didn't get it done over the weekend and Garrett is away for work now, I just wanted it done.  You will notice I did not get them hung off of the roof as I wanted, but I figured that would not be a safe feat on my own.  I am definitely NOT a perfectionist in some areas.  (no more discussion on this controversial subject)
Speaking of Garrett being away...... the joys of technology have allowed the boys to talk to AND see their dad over the computer both last night and tonight.  We have been using iChat to talk to him and the boys love it.  Much better, for them, than talking on the phone.  I rather prefer the phone, so I don't have to look at myself in the corner of the computer while I am talking.  Can't really get up and walk around with iChat either (well, unless you have the laptop.)  
Also, another thing I've noticed when Garrett's away is that I am always getting the boys to bed earlier.  Maybe because I am that much more ready for some time to myself.  I shouldn't be complaining though.  I had all morning to myself today and I spent it shopping.  Not running, not cleaning the house, not grocery shopping..... I went shopping for Christmas stuff and for myself.  Yes, I finally got to use one of the gift certificates that I got for my birthday!  I did pick up Zach right after lunch though instead of having him stay for nap.  I feel guilty leaving him there when I am not working.  Especially since he doesn't ever take naps at home.  Anyway, the boys are not in bed yet tonight, so it's time for me to go read some stories to them.  

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Whew!

The weekend flew by, like Santa and his reindeer.  We did a lot of decorating around the house, we got our tree, but we did not hang the lights outside yet......we still have time, right?  The boys had a lot of fun getting all of the decorations out.  We stayed in our p.j.s most of the day while decorating, until about 4:30 when we finally went out to get the tree.  The past two years we've gone to a place just around the corner from us where they have a christmas tree farm.  The first year we even cut our own tree down, no actually the guy there did it for us.  Anyway, it was a fresh cut tree.  Last year the ones that were growing just didn't look very attractive so we bought one that was pre-cut and trucked in from who knows where and we paid too much for it.  So this year, I suggested Home Depot.  By the time we finally got out the door I was feeling done with decorating but I really wanted the tree.  We took a whole five minutes, maybe less choosing a tree, had the guys wrap it up and we threw it in the back of the van.  Not the picture perfect way of getting a tree, but it worked for us, and now the tree looks beautiful all decorated and lit up!
Here are some highlights from the weekend!

This thing is gonna be gone way before Christmas!



In addition to all the fun on Saturday, Susan and Namie came up today and watched the boys while Garrett and I got to go on "a date".  We don't do dates often so we didn't even know what to do with ourselves.  We were going to see a movie, but I didn't think I would like any of the ones that were playing.  So we ended up going for a nice hike.  There are so many trails around here.  Next time I am going back to the same place and doing the 6 mile one.  Today we just went 2.  The boys had fun making some wreaths for us while we were gone!


I didn't think to bring the camera, but Garrett is never without his iPhone so we got these from our hike.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Good Morning


I woke up this morning, in Zach's bed by the way (after having him wake up two or three times during the night, finally at 5 I just crawled into be with him).  Anyway, I woke up this morning and came downstairs to find Kevin reading to himself.  I love the fact that he is becoming a reader and he likes it.  He used to come into our room each morning to wake me up and tell me he wanted to watch t.v.  Now, most days he quietly goes downstairs and either colors, plays by himself, or reads.  He's growing up!  

I told the boys we would be decorating for Christmas today.  As soon as I walked downstairs one of the first things Kevin said was, "ok, let's decorate!".  I knew that would happen, but I told him I need a little time to wake up.  After breakfast I will be ready to face the upstairs closet that is a disaster area, in order to find our boxes full of Christmas decorations.  I am also determined this year to hang out lights from the roof, so wish us luck!  I love decorating day though.  We get our tree, we hang up the lights, we put on Christmas music and the boys have fun looking through all the stuff and saying, "oh, I remember this from last year".  It's cool and crisp outside too, which makes it nice to stay inside and maybe light a fire.  So, I guess I better go have some breakfast so we can get this day started.