Friday, November 26, 2010

Do You Shop BLACK FRIDAY? I do.......

Oh yes, I braved the crowds at Target this morning at 3 AM and waited outside in the rain and somewhat cold weather for that blessed hour of 4 AM to come and open the doors to savings. OKAY, so it wasn't that cool, but I did get some great deals on the things I wanted and I was pretty much up towards the middle of the line, so when I got into Target there were still carts and the people weren't that crazy.
I about didn't go anywhere this year, because most of the things I have wanted I have procured during the past few months during different sales. But my little princess, Taryn, recently saw a Disney Princess Kitchen on TV and has decided that was what she wanted for Christmas. I about died because they have been priced anywhere from 60-100 dollars. HOLY COW! That is a little steep for me to buy something that expensive for a 2 year old. So, I have searched all the stores' adds for this little prize but to no avail, until yesterday before Thanksgiving dinner. I looked at Target's add and there it was, the prized kitchen for 40 dollars. I knew, right then and there, I was getting up early to brave the craziness of it all to get her that kitchen.
So when I pulled up to Target at 3 AM I thought I would be in good standings for the line. JEEZ! I was SO wrong. Luckily I beat the rush of people and ran to a spot and wasn't about to be pushed out of it. When I did finally get into the store I figured I would be out of luck and all of the kitchens would be gone. Lucky for me, I got to the section of the store where they were located and sure enough, 2 left. Target workers were handing out the merchandise from behind a little rope thing, (like that was going to save them from the throng of crazy shoppers). Another lady and I both asked them for the kitchens and luckily there were 2 left, one for me and one for her; otherwise I was going to have to show her how we WESTERN girls do things!!! HA HA HA. Actually I probably would have grabbed it and ran as fast as I could to a check out line before she knew what happened, but luck was on my side and I didn't have to show off my sprinting skills, which are not as good as they once were!
Now the coveted item it safely put away awaiting Christmas day and the excitement of my little one's face when she sees what Santa brought her. I LOVE BEING A PARENT!!!!
(on a side note, I also got board games for 2 dollars a piece and some great door buster items. I just love the rush of the sale)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

A Real Reason To Be Thankful

My sister and brother-in-law are going to have a baby!!!!! I am so excited. She is due June 13, 2010, and this soon to be auntie couldn't be happier! This is their first child and since they live 1 1/2 hours from my mom, grandma will actually have a grandchild close enough to see whenever she wants. I am just thrilled. This is the announcement she sent me over the email to tell me that she was expecting. I was so excited when I read it I yelled for joy! They will make such good parents. We are so excited for you two.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Turkey, Rolls and Randomness

Tyson's very own turkey. He had another project at school to make this turkey and decorate it any way he wanted to. He wanted to color it all first and then finish it up by using puff paint, and feathers. This project was completed all by him. I merely watched and gave support. I am so proud of him. Good job buddy!

HA! I finally have mastered the making of rolls. Now before all of this I have tried countless times to make rolls with much failure. They were either not fully baked, very very heavy or dry. Either way they were not good. But I kept trying. Well.....the other night at RS meeting the bishop taught us all how to make Lion House Rolls. OH SO EASY!! I love this recipe. It is made just for those like me who suck with yeast. I came home and baked my rolls, with the dough he gave us and they were good. So the next day I tried to duplicate the rolls again and guess what, I DID IT!! I really did it. I was able to make light and fluffy, yummy rolls. I am now off of the failure list of making rolls. Check that off the list.
Don't they look yummy?

Vaughn is such a sweet daddy. Taryn loves to be with him. He went to go and change the oil in the truck and she wanted to go with him. She loves him and gives him tons and tons of hugs. TOO CUTE!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

So Thankful

I know this time of year we are to think about the things that we are thankful for; which is something we should be doing all year. My little family has been so very, very blessed that I just have to thank my Heavenly Father for all the blessings, obstacles, and life that He has given me. Being in medical school wasn't the easiest thing in this world and not something we want to do over, but WOW, it taught us, and me personally, tons and I learned so much about myself and what I am capable of during hard times and good times. I am so thankful for obstacles and those "road bumps" that come into our lives. (Yes, you heard me right. I am thankful for the hard times) Those bumps and obstacles made me a better person and taught me life lessons I needed to learn. And I know that my Heavenly Father wouldn't leave me during those hard time, and that He was with me all the way, sometimes holding my hand.
We have been so blessed to have lived in some awesome places, and though they were and are far away from family back west, we have been able to see, do and be cultured in so many ways that we wouldn't have been had we stayed home.
In a nutshell, I am just so grateful for all that we have. We aren't millionaires, but we are a close family, who loves each other and finds joy in the small and simple things in life. And to me that is what counts, not the money or the fame, but family and love.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

A New Look/ A Free Day at The Knoxville Zoo

(bad picture)It doesn't look that different in the picture, but believe me when I say it is very different. A few months ago I needed a hair cut. I have not known where to go and decided that since I just needed a trim the Great Clips place would suffice. NOTE TO SELF: NEVER DO THAT AGAIN! Needless to say, it was a disaster and I ended up coming home crying at the butcher job the lady gave me. Vaughn had to take some of his surgical scissors and try to even out what the so-called hairstylist did. It was a nightmare and it has taken me this long to feel comfortable to go to another stylist. I talked to a lady at church who has darling hair and found out who she goes to have her hair cut and styled. I ended up calling "Pure Luxe" Salon and booked me an appointment. It was WONDERFUL! The stylist, Kristie, was so nice and really listened when I told her what I wanted my hair to look like. The whole place was so inviting and luxurious. I could have stayed in the motorized, massaging, hair washing chair the whole time. Everything was so professional and nice and I knew that I would like what ever it was she did. I ended up keeping my bob and just shortening up the back. She also gave me some soft bangs, which at first I wasn't too sure about, but now I love them. AH!!! I feel like a real, pretty looking mama again. Thanks to my mom for sending me the money for the hair cut, I can actually enjoy doing my hair again. (There is just something about getting your hair done for a woman. It can make you feel so much better about yourself and your appearance)So, after the enjoyable hair cut, I went home to find out what we were going to do for the rest of this fine Saturday. Vaughn actually had the day off. YAHOO!! What family activity can we do that is reasonably cheap, but fun too, the ZOO! And come to find out that today was the Zoo's annual Free Day. Yes, we went on the free day and I can honestly say I will not ever do that again. However, it was enjoyable and crazy and funny, but it was SO crowded!
The zoo gate workers informed us that there was about 13,000 people there at the time we arrived. YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING! Holy crap! It was like sheep herding back home. Just wall to wall people, and Yes, we saw Knoxville's Finest! HA HA HA. I have never seen so many missing teeth and heard so many southern drawls as I did that day. It was just a sea of people, and to look at an exhibit meant we had to push our way to the front.
Luckily for us, the kids were in good spirits and loved seeing the animals among the throng of people.
This is one of the zoo's pride and joy; the red panda. Kinda looks like a cross between a fox, small bear and a raccoon.
We got to see the zoo keepers hose down the female elephants for a bath. Then we came outside of the exhibit to see the giant male elephant. Taryn wanted to go for a ride on him. HA HA HA.
Taryn with her daddy. So cute. She has that daddy wrapped around her little finger. It is only going to get worse with age.
My little monkey boy. This actually fits Tyson. He still has a trace of those kissable, chubby cheeks he used to have as a baby.
The white tiger was not up for the mass of visitors and so decided to sleep for the duration of the day.

Two happy parents with two happy kids. Even though it was the most crowded place I have ever been to, we had an enjoyable time and have been talking about it all day.

Monday, November 8, 2010

The Smoky Mountains

Here we are at the Smoky Mountains. I have always heard about them in Country songs but never thought I would be able to see them with my own eyes. Very beautiful.

Cute family picture by this pretty little pond outside of Cades Cove.
He is preparing to skip rocks. He is in the "ZONE."
Miss Cheezer herself. If there is a camera snapping, she is all about being in the picture with the biggest grin you have ever seen.
These two really love each other. Vaughn and I lucked out with our kids. They hardly fight, they love each other so much that when the other is gone it is a sad time until they reunite. I am so grateful that they want to play and be with each other.
Look at this picture perfect scenery. It is just breathtaking, and it looks like home....
The trees were acorn trees. Everywhere we walked, the kids were bending down to pick up acorns. Tyson's pockets were full of them. And Taryn kept trying to call a squirrel over to her to feed it.
The first thing we did when we got to the Smoky Mountains was eat! I mean, who can walk around these vast and beautiful mountains on an empty stomach. So we BBQ it up and cooked some hamburgers, hot dogs, chips and drinks.
Then it was off to drive the Cades Cove loop. I heard it was pretty awesome and had some of the best views in the mountains. What do you think?
An original log house off in the distance.
Smiley me, loving the trip.
And then there was Vaughn..........poor guy was sick the entire time we were there. He slept through most of it. So I took over the driver's seat and not only drove the whole way but I took the pictures and ran the video camera. You could say I am multi-talented. HA
This is just beautiful. I was taken away by all the trees and colors and just the shear beauty of it all.There are the mountains. They aren't as big as the Rockies but they are still mountains and after not seeing those in 2 years, living in Michigan, it was so nice to see.
I love red leaves. I think they are magical.
Another original cabin.
I love how the light shines through the trees.
We tuckered out the little munchkin. Love it! This is exactly what I love about trips. The sleep on the ride home.
The last beauty shot of the day. We stopped off on the side of the road to see these amazing little waterfalls. It was a great day and I loved every minute of it, and being with our friends the Kabonics made it that much better. They left the day after we went to the Smokys. It was such a wonderful, fast paced weekend. I wish it would have lasted longer, but Wendy and I decided that we need to have yearly family vacations with both families. Yippie! Can't wait to see where we go next year.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

The UT vs Alabama Game with the Kabonics

Every game, this BIG rock on the UT campus is decorated to match the event. It makes for a cool picture. We were fortunate enough to have some girls take our picture in front of it.

The cute Kabonic girls. We waited at this statue for about 1 hour while the boys looked for a parking place. We had fun watching the "Vol" fans walk about and strut their orange and white.We had Avery take this photo of Wendy and I. We were hoping for more of a head shot than a chest shot, but hey.....we take what we can get. Always makes for a good conversational piece.
Then there was this guy. All of the sudden, like he was dropped from the sky, this preacher man whipped out his bible and just starts preaching hellfire and brimstone right there in front of everyone at the Vols game. He told us, in a lot more words than what I am going to tell you, that we were all sinners for going to the game and would rot in hell. Ya, uh huh! Okay. Well I am still here and not rotting in hell, so....................... Let's go on.....
The walk of the VOLS was about to begin and so people were lining the street to watch the parade.
The K-town kids.
The Jackson Crew.
The boys, mixed in the sea of orange.
Cute gals enjoying the festivities.
Here they come......
The UT band played a few pump up songs to get the crowd geared up for the BIG game.
Look at these two boys. They are so cute. Tyson is a ham...
The kids climbing up the painted rock.

Paul and Vaughn went to the game while Wendy, the kids and I stayed to watch the UT Football players come and walk down to the stadium. The hype was well worth the wait. Lots of yelling and a mass of orange and white. Good times. I am glad we got to experience it.