Sunday, December 27, 2009


Alot has happened this year. It's been a bit nuts for us. We started out the year at my parents house, then we moved into chris's parent's. This summer, Chris decided to become a pharmacist and started school this past fall to get all his prerequisites started. I started work at the YMCA in September. Taylor celebrated her 2nd birthday and we celebrated our 5 year anniversary with a trip to Florida in May. Maddie celebrated her first birthday in September. We had a great summer with our neice Katie here. There's been plenty of excitement in our extended family too, with a new sister-in-law, health scares, graduations, births...

2009 has been a full year for us, in so many ways. We have been blessed beyond belief this past year. And I'm so looking forward to next year.

Chris will be working closer to home.
We will be moving in the next few months (not far... don't worry!)
Chris will be taking spring semester off of school, but starting again this summer.
Taylor is turning 3 this may - old enough for classes of all kinds (music, gymnastics, dance, soccer, cheerleading... whatever we decide)
Hopefully we'll be finally making the trek out to Utah to visit family. (I'm working my tooshie off to save for it!)
I'm hoping to finally get my stuff together and really buckle down on getting routines together, and a schedule, and doing the home preschool.

I don't like to set new years resolutions... cause they're usually broken in a couple months anyways... But we do have some great goals for us, as a family, and as individuals. And I'm excited for it all. I hope you all have a great new years and are blessed this next year!

To 2010!!!!!!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Potato Candy

Can I start off by saying, "HOLY COW" it's been over a month since I last posted anything. Life has been nuts, and there will be lots of updates over the next few weeks. At the moment, everyone in this house is sick... very sick. Throwing up and pooping all over the place. Oh, except me and Maddie. So far we're the only ones who have not gotten sick. Weird, since I'm the one who's been cleaning up after Taylor since it started last week. But I'll think of it as a blessing, and try not to think about the fact that i'll probably finally catch it on Christmas eve.

Anyways - I thought i'd share a special Christmas recipe with everyone. When I was a kid, my Big Momma would make us Potato Candy. It sounds gross, but tasted delicious. I haven't had this kind of candy since my Big Mom passed away when I was 9 or 10. I always remembered the recipe... for the most part. It's simple. So last week, me and my mom got together to make some christmas goodies and baskets. We tried to make potato candy... but the potatoes would not turn into a dough... a very necessary part of the process. We'd try to cool them off good... add some instant potatoes... Nothing we did worked.

I came home VERY disappointed... thinking it might be the 2nd coming before I figure out what that recipe was. But I started searching online, and finally came across the recipe! It explained that the liquified potatoes were part of the process, and we just didn't add enough sugar. So i made some potato candy... Finally, After 15 years. It tasted just like I remember - it's a hard taste to forget, but delicious. So I thought I'd share the recipe with everyone. I'm interested to see who will ACTUALLY try to make some potato candy... cause it sounds so weird... But i promise that it is delicious and worth a try.

Big Momma's Potato Candy
1 small potato (I used a medium potato and cut it in half.)
Pinch of Salt
1 tsp Vanilla
2 lbs Powdered Sugar
Peanut Butter

Bake the potato (I cook it in the microwave)
Peel the potato and remove any miscolored(is that a word?) parts
Let the Potato cool off (I wrapped mine in paper towel and set it in the fridge for a while.)
Mash the potato with a fork, and add the salt and vanilla.(I actually forgot the salt and vanilla, and it tasted just fine.)
Slowly add the Powdered Sugar, a bit at a time. You won't need the whole 2 lbs... but probably most of it. LIke I mentioned in the post, the candy will liquify. Just keep adding powdered sugar and eventually it will become a dough. You want it to not feel sticky to the touch... Like cookie dough.
Once the dough is the right consistency, Roll it out like a pie crust to 1/4 inch thickness.
Spread peanut butter over the entire dough. Roll up like a jelly roll. Wrap it up and stick it in the fridge.
Once it has hardened a bit, take it out and slice it up into pinwheels.

The candy tastes better Cold I think, so I leave it in the fridge. It's super fast, super easy, super cheap, and super delicious. So let me know if you really try it. I'm interested to see who does.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Digital Predicament

I have recently joined an online scrapbook making thing. In order to do the scrapbooks that I want, I need to organize the images that are on my computer. Not a big deal, right?


There are well over 10,000 images on my computer taking up 35 GB of space(Just from the past 5 years!) How in the WORLD am I supposed to organize that many pictures plus a hundred or so videos in the next week???

Needless to say, I'm overwhelmed right now.

So I've been googling (I love to google!) Organize digital images. There's tons of websites that talk about using the right folder names, and tags or keywords... all that jazz. But as nice as that is... I'm still a bit lost - maybe just from the mere SIZE of this project I'm about to take on.

I've read about Free image organizers that I guess you can download, or use different websites. But if you read the fine print, some of them "reserve the right" to use your images and pictures any way they want. No thank you.

There are programs you can buy too, that can make the job easier, but I'm already trying to save every little penny right now so Christmas will be nice.

Anyways - Here's how I "THINK" I'm gonna do it.

I'm going to arrange folders by Date The year... Then the month... Then the day - and then try to include a description of what the images in that folder are. Then I'll put tags on all my images - who's in the picture, where it was taken, any other special tidbit I feel the need to include. That way, the images will be easily searched.

Then I can just click on November from this year, search for taylor, and I can see all the pictures I took of her this month. I can even click on Taylor, thanksgiving, and I'll be able to find the pictures of taylor from thanksgiving.

This will definitely be a HUGE undertaking. It'll mean hours on the computer I'm sure. But It'll be nice to see these images of the past few years again. And it'll be nice to have this awesome system in place for all the new pictures I'll take.

So, I'm off to organize my pictures. I hope it doesn't take too terribly long. We'll see. I'll keep you updated!

For my Friend Tiffany's Comment about Picasa!!! Here's a little website I think you should read!
Kinda scary if you think about it.

Now open to the public

That's right... I got a bit sick of not posting anything... and I was trying to figure out why I'm not posting anything anymore. I think it's the whole private thing. It made it harder for others to look, so I was wondering, Who's Looking? Also, some family members and close friends weren't able to see the blog even when they were logged in and after many invites to be able to read the blog. So i gave up. I did however make it so that my blog is completely hidden from the rest of the world, unless you specifically come to this blog! No searches can find it (I think) so we're pretty much off the radar that way.

Anyways... be on the look out for more posts. I've got lots of things here to talk about... and the next 3 days off of work!!! Woohoo

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

"Soup"er Man

Me and Taylor have the oddest conversations sometimes!
Me: I've got the two prettiest girls in the world.
Taylor: Maddie's a baby.
Me: I've got the prettiest little girl and the prettiest baby in the whole wide world.
Taylor: I'm a big girl. Daddy's a big girl too!
Me: Daddy's not a big girl. Daddy's a man.
Taylor: Nuh uh!
Me: Yes he is. He's a super man!
Taylor: A "soup"er man?
Me: Yes.
Taylor: Soup! (holds hands to mouth like sipping from a bowl of soup) Slurp!

Taylor's Daddy is a "Soup"er Man

This also reminds me of the time Michael and Leeann went out to eat... The waiter asked michael "Soup or Salad?" and michael asked "What's a Super Salad?"

Taylor's Dino

Taylor had been coloring a picture last night. Chris and me have gotten so used to scribbles all over paper that we hardly look at them anymore. Chris had gotten ready to toss this one, but he looked at it before he did. We were both pretty suprised at this awesome Dinosaur taylor drew. She is talented when it comes to drawing, but who knows if she meant to draw this. She does love to draw eyes... and is usually great at it. So... Here's Taylor's Dino!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Maddie Vs. Elephant

it's been so long since I posted something, and this is too funny not to post...

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Maddie's First Birthday

Her actual birthday... The girls had ice cream for breakfast. I put chocolate rice krispies on it to try to justify it. It's like cereal and milk, right?

The girls LOVE taking baths together... they're always playing.
In her first outfit... so... it's a super sweet dress, but i wanted something more fun.
So this is what she wore... I also snapped this picture at 9:17am... Exactly one year old... to the minute!
This is a blurry pic, but I love those smiles
Passed out in the car on the way to have lunch with dad.
Taylor's excited to have lunch with dad
Maddie's Birthday cup cake that me and Taylor made
She had like 5 of them!!!!
Trying to touch the candle... didn't want to blow it out... just play with it.
Yum... Chocolate.
Shoveing it in.
At her birthday Party

I LOVE this picture. She's so sweet.
I think this is too funny... same face... 20 years apart.
Opening gifts
She enjoyed ripping the paper
she LOVES shoes
new clothes... thanks leeann
reading her cards
the deco and everyone... almost
her M&M cake (the M's for Madison!)
blowing out the candle on HER cake
Maddie, showing that cake who's boss!
Her party wore her out!
It was a great party. Thank you everyone for your wonderful gifts and for coming to celebrate maddie with, and for all the birthday wishes from everyone. We appreciate it.
I'll be posting more up soon about what she's doing now. I've also got tons of random pics and such to post. one day...

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Discount on Disney on Ice

Okay, so I found an even better deal... Here's what you do... order your tickets online at Type in VALPAK in the promotion code area. Your tickets will be $10 a piece instead of $22. Hope that helps!

As a YMCA of Middle TN employee, I get a nice discount on tickets. They're only $13 for any priced tickets. We also have a coupon for $10... wonder if we can combine these! $3 tickets would be nice. Anyways... I was going to say for anyone who would be interested in going, I can get tickets. Let me know if you'd like some!

I have to order the tickets by TOMORROW... so let me know!

Monday, September 21, 2009

New Blog

I am going to start my own little HomePreSchool tomorrow with the girls.  Here's the Website:
Teaching Taylor and Maddie

For anyone else out there interested in doing this with me (getting together for projects, field trips, activities, library story times, etc,) let me know!  I know Krystin was interested... I thought Devrie might be too.  I'm planning on getting all the "curriculum" together every week.  The website will have links to all the activities/projects/games/worksheets I plan on using so it should be easy to keep up and go along with me.  Just email me or comment or something and let me know if you're interested.

Thursday, September 17, 2009


Should say Incrompetence!

After Posting this and looking it at, I feel kinda bad... It's not this guys fault right?  Maybe, Maybe not... I don't know, but i still feel pretty bad for the guy.  Maybe next game will go better...  I hope. 

Go Vols

For Lee, The vols lost their game last week.  Crompton (picture above) played just awful.  The person who created this "Incrompitence" Poster was incompetent himself/herself, cause he/she spelled it wrong.  Kinda funny.  Kinda sad for crompton though.  Hope he does better this next week.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

You're Invited

For Friends and Family,

We're going to be having Maddie's First birthday party this weekend before the UT/Florida game (too goofy to have to base a party around football, but we do!!!)

You're invited!!!

Because I'm afraid of putting the official Evite Invite Link here on my public Blog, I'm going to ask that you send me an email or just comment on here, and I'll let you know personally the details or the url to go visit the evite!


Saturday, September 12, 2009

Neat Ideas

So for all those money saving types out there, and the do it yourself-ers... Here's a blog post I saw and thought you might be interested in... Just thought I'd pass it along!!!

One of my favorite ways to trim money from my spending is to find simple little substitutes for my regular expenses. If I can trim a few bucks from the cost of household supplies, routine purchases, and other things like that, over the long run, that can add up to a lot of money with virtually no change in my life. Here are twelve of my favorites (not including my “infamous” homemade laundry detergent).

Laundry Softener -> Vinegar
Instead of buying expensive laundry detergent, just use half a cup of white vinegar to the “softener” cup in your washing machine. It accomplishes the same effect as softener – it makes your clothes really soft – plus it breaks down the laundry detergent, making the clothes much better for people with sensitive skin or allergies. What about the smell? Once the clothes are dried, you smell nothing at all. You can buy four gallons of vinegar for $6, meaning the cost per load is about $0.05, while a load’s worth of Downy costs about $0.15. You save a dime per load and your clothes are less chemical laden.
Ziplocs -> Reusable Containers
Ziplocs – especially the small ones – usually wind up in the trash after one use. On the other hand, a reusable container can last for years. Since a typical Ziploc costs about $0.10 and you can get a reusable Rubbermaid container for about $1.00, you break even on the container after about twelve uses or so (the cost of washing the container in the dishwasher is estimated there) and everything thereafter is pure savings.
Dishwashing Detergent -> Simple Homebrew
Instead of using liquid or powder dishwashing detergent (and paying a stiff premium for it), just take an old milk jug, put two teaspoons of liquid dish detergent and four teaspoons of baking powder in it, then slowly fill the jug with warm water, sloshing it while you do it (even better, just slowly add the soap as you’re adding the water). Then put that jug under the sink. Each time you do a load, fill up the cup with the homebrew. It works like a charm. The jug will provide enough for eight to ten loads of dishes for about a penny each, compared to about thirteen cents per load for ordinary detergent.
Knife Set -> Chef’s Knife
You’re just getting started in the kitchen and you think it’s time to get yourself a big ol’ knife set. Don’t. Unless you’re doing crazy things in the kitchen, all day every day, you really only need one knife – a chef’s knife. Head down to your local retailer and check them out. One good chef’s knife will make kitchen work easier than an entire block’s worth of other knives. It’s really all you need – I can’t even remember the last time I used a knife besides that one. Just learn how to properly hone it and sharpen it (both are easy – check out this YouTube video).
Windex -> Vinegar
Seriously. Just use vinegar instead of Windex when you clean your windows. It cleans off almost anything on a window and doesn’t streak and, more importantly, doesn’t leave a film behind as Windex often does. Just put some vinegar in a spray bottle – maybe that Windex one that you didn’t buy a replacement for – and just wash windows as normal. You’ll be quite happy with the results – and you’ll save about a penny per squirt.
Paper Towels -> Reusable Cotton Cloths
Cotton cloths work better, absorb more, and you can get a five pound (!) box for about the same price as a jumbo pack of paper towels. But what about the WASHING? It’s easy – just keep a ton of them in a drawer in the kitchen and use them for spills and filtering and other purposes until they’re dirty, then just toss them into any load of socks or underwear or towels. Even a big handful take up barely any room at all and before you know it, you’ve refilled your supply. Better yet, you’re not buying any more paper towels and you’re reducing your garbage.
Drain Cleaner -> Baking Soda and Vinegar
Remember those nifty volcanoes that kids tend to make for science fair projects in grade school? The basic mixture that made them bubble up was baking soda and vinegar – it expands nicely and pushes itself into everything. Perfect for clearing a clogged drain, no? Just put in a quarter cup of baking soda, chase it with half a cup of vinegar, then cover the drain and wait fifteen minutes. Once that’s done, chase it with a gallon or so of boiling water. This will clean almost any drain and save you from blowing unnecessary amounts of money on a big bottle of Drano. This also works as a toilet bowl cleaner – it’ll foam up like crazy at first, but after fifteen minutes, you’ll be able to scrub your toilet with a brush with ease.
Television -> Old Computer
If you need a new television somewhere, why not just use an old computer instead? A computer that’s five years old with a ‘net connection can easily be a substitute for a television. You can watch tons of programs full screen on Hulu and many channels offer a full screen stream, too, plus it’s simple to watch DVDs on a computer as well. Even better, you can stow the box somewhere out of the way (in a cabinet, perhaps) and just leave the monitor somewhere easy to access. This can be a great solution in a kitchen, where you can watch television on it or use it to call up YouTube videos to tutor you through a meal prep – plus you don’t have the cost of buying anything to get it working.
Oven Cleaner -> Ammonia
If you cook at home, you’ll eventually have to clean your oven – and it can be a nasty job. There are lots of products out there that claim to be able to make this process easy, but the easiest way I’ve found is far cheaper – and far easier. Just put a cup of ammonia in a glass bowl in the evening, put that bowl in your oven, and close the door. Let it sit overnight. The next morning, get rid of the ammonia and you’ll find scrubbing down the inside of your oven is suddenly quite easy. The burnt-on drippings from spilled dishes will come right up with no problems. Plus, a jug of ammonia is far cheaper than some spray-on solution.
Soft Scrub -> Baking Soda and Dish Soap
Soft Scrub does a great job of cleaning up serious stains all around the house, but you don’t need to drop four bucks on a small bottle of it. Just put half a cup of baking soda (cost: about a quarter) and then add a little bit of liquid dish soap and stir. Add a bit more liquid soap and keep stirring until you have a paste that’s about the consistency of frosting – and you’re ready to go. It costs about forty cents to make more than enough to clean anything you want to clean – far cheaper than Soft Scrub and with the same results.
Air Freshener -> Baking Soda
I actually don’t like most air fresheners – they usually make a room smell like chemistry. Fortunately, there’s a much easier solution – just put out a saucer with some baking soda sprinkled in it near where the odor is and it’ll go away. Got a baby diaper pail? Just put some baking soda in it. Baking soda just eats odors.
Carpet Cleaner -> Baking Soda and Peroxide (or Club Soda)
Got a nasty spot on your carpet? (I could tell you a horrible story about a blood stain on a couch, but I’ll spare you the details.) You don’t need carpet cleaner to get rid of it. Just dump a few spoonfuls of baking soda on it, rub it in, then put some hydrogen peroxide (a capful) or club soda (as much as you want) on the soda and rub it in as it bubbles. This gets rid of almost any carpet or upholstery stain you’ll face – it literally saved some microfiber for us that seemed to have a permanent stain on it. Plus, it’s cheap – baking soda is really inexpensive and even club soda is something inexpensive you might have in the cupboard.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

A brick wall

I was so productive last night, and this morning. I was super me. I stayed up and did laundry, organized my desk, got stuff done, woke up took care of throw up on the bed, bathed both girls, got ready, did some laundry, went to the zoo... came home and now, I've hit a brick wall. I'm stuck. I know of a few things I need to get done, but I can't get up to do them. I want to lay down but can't cause there are no sheets on my bed at the moment. I want to read my book, but my eyes hurt, i want to play x-box but it's a total waste of time, and I'd feel guilty if I did any of these cause I have two pages front and back of to-do's that I should be up doing. I can't get motivated, I can't focus, I can't think at all... WHAT SHOULD I DO?

Darn you brick wall... I want you out of my way. I was enjoying my day, I enjoy being productive, I enjoy getting stuff done... Then you come along and ruin all the fun. You cause me to panic and become overwhelmed and then I can't do ANYTHING. Darn you to heck!!!

Well, Maybe after a little nap downstairs on the couch, I'll fell better... after all, the girls are napping. Then after my little nap, I can jump over that darn brick wall with ease. If that don't work... maybe a couple trips to the Dr might help... Dr Pepper, that is!!!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Where Can I Turn For Peace?

Where can I turn for peace?
Where is my solace,
When other sources cease to make me whole?
When with a wounded heart,
Anger or malice,
I draw myself apart, searching my soul.
Where when my aching grows,
Where when I languish,
Where in my need to know, where can I run?
Where is the quiet hand,
to calm my anguish?
Who, Who can understand? He, only One.
He answers privately,
Reaches my reaching.
In my Gethsemane, Savior and friend.
Gentle the peace he finds
for my beseeching
Constant he is and kind,
love without end.

This is one of my favorite Hymns. It has helped me through so much over the years. I read it again yesterday during sacrament and it was JUST what I needed. I love love love these words.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

random pics

My awesome friend Tayna took a pic like this and I've been jealous since I saw it. I had to borrow some stilettos from Cayce, and they're too big, but I still like it!
I straightened Taylor's Hair! And she's got her UT cheerleading outfit on! GO VOLS!!!

Taylor's Hair!
Taylor and Crap-pa!
(She misses you grandpa!)
Maddie had M&M's on the way home from K-Roger.
Chocolate is like magic for my girls. It can cure ANYTHING!
Which is funny, Cause I don't care for it... usually.
Me and Maddie and Taylor went to Steak & Shake with some good friends of ours (Lynne, Sarah, and Mitch - it was fun to see y'all!) and Maddie wore this hat for like 10 minutes! Too cute.

Friday, September 4, 2009

My fun little family

We love to laugh in our family (all of them, both sides!) and we do it ALOT! Here's some funny little things I've laughed at lately...

The other day I was getting ready in the bathroom with the girls. Maddie was babbling away and I thought I heard her say "Thank You." I just kinda looked at her astonished and Taylor said, "You're welcome!"

Today Taylor (who is usually TERRIFIED of the vaccum) walked up to it and said, "Oh, Hi baccum! Whatcha doing?" (This is even more funny if you know she follows her grandma and grandpa around ALL day long asking this... and they had just left for memphis! Who else was she supposed to ask?)

Taylor does this weird little fake laugh all the time. Earlier today she started doing her creepy little fake laugh, and started slapping her knee while she did it. I have NO idea where she got this from, but I about peed my pants laughing so hard. (Maybe it came from chelsea... I think she may do this!) Anyways, I've got my camera handy for the next time she does it.

We LOVE the Kings of Leon! LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE them! I listen to them ALL the time in the car... In fact, I haven't really listened to much else in the past year (since we went to their concert last october!) Taylor AND Maddie can now sing their songs. Taylor has been walking around the past two days singings "Yo-oh-oh, You're text is on fire!" No, those aren't the right lyrics, but we'll let her think they are. And she can also sing "Use somebody"... Maddie can sing this one too... the "Wo-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh"'s. We were all in the car one day thinking it was taylor singing, but nope... it was maddie... and she was on key too! My talented little girls :) Oh, taylor also sings crawl, four kicks, day old blues, charmer, and a few other ones. It's so funny... maybe I'll get videos of it and post.

Anyways, I love how funny my girls are. They get it from their daddy... and their grandparents, and all their aunts and uncles. I love that we all love to laugh! And I love laughing at my girls. They're the best!