Saturday, November 29, 2008

More Favorite Things

Heronim puzzles: I always buy these on Ebay. A few years ago, I got one these puzzles as a gift and they are the perfect size, perfect difficulty and great pictures. I own several of his Christmas themed ones and I get one out every start of the season and we all work on it all season long.

Lands End blankets and sheets: I hate having to stretch and pull to get my fitted sheets on beds. And I hate waking up every morning having to remake my bed because the sheets have come undone. Not with Lands End sheets and blankets. Their blankets and sheets have extra inches on them (I think 6 inches) and they NEVER come undone. I won't buy any other brand.

Elf on a Shelf: I bought this for our family this year and my kids have LOVED it.

Garmin Nuvi GPS: We have the 360 and love it. I don't go anywhere without it and it saved my bacon many times on a recent trip to California. Garmin really makes the BEST brand of GPS systems out there. Amazon currently has them for a great price.

Almay Eye make-up remover: I have transparent eyelashes and wear mascara everyday. I LOVE this eye make-up remover and will be crushed if they ever stop making it.

And, if you really want to shoot the lock off your wallet:

Emeco chairs: These are the greatest chairs on the planet. I don't have to worry about my kids spilling on them; when I am cold, I set them over a heating vent and they warm right up; I can put my kid's wet clothes to dry on them, etc. It really is embarrassing how much I LOVE these chairs. On a side note, they are used in every TV interrogation room scene. There must be a ton of these laying around Hollywood production sites. Anyway, they aren't cheap but quality furniture never is.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Handel's Messiah

Every year, dentist husband's family goes to the Abravenel Hall's Messiah Sing-In in downtown Salt Lake.

My first time attending this event with Dentist husband was a big deal. Dentist husband was just my "in Dental school boyfriend" at the time. While he and I had been dating for about 7 months, we hadn't done much with his family together. My cousin, an opera singer, just happened to be one of the soloist at that year's Sing-in, who had been flown in from California and had been filled in by many of my family members about how serious this relationship of mine was becoming. So, she contacted me and invited the whole crew to come back stage at the end of the evening. (There are nine kids in dentist husband's family.)

About a week before, Dentist husband and I had decided that we were crazy in love with each other and planned on getting married. Which happened, one year later. It was big deal and a super wonderful time for us. That Sing-in marked a glorious start to the Christmas season and the new season of my life. (How's that for poetry?)

Since then, we have attended as regularly as possible the same Messiah Sing-In but since we have had kids, we either take turns going or skip all together. This year ended up being a skip year because we didn't get our act together in time to buy tickets with the rest of dentist husband's family.

So tonight, knowing we would be missing the actual event, Dentist husband's sister invited us over for a practice Messiah Sing-In. We headed over with our four kids (they don't have any) and they put in a movie in their home theatre (we don't have one) and the four grown-ups went at it in their computer room.

It was as fun if not funner than the actual event. The four us stood in their office, in front of their computer with i-tunes blasting the music at us, while we sang along with music in hand. I had forgotten what a beautiful tenor voice my husband has and I had forgotten how much I love to sing in full voice those glorious high notes. My sister in law is a great soprano and my brother in law is a not too shabby baritone. I felt all warm and fuzzy about my husband again and refell in love with the Handel's Messiah too. What a great evening. I am thinking this is going to have to become a regular tradition.

Almost there

Starting on Thanksgiving day, I put aside all serious book reading and enjoy Christmas-themed romance novels. No, not sex novels but just romantic fall in love around Christmas time novels.

I've read some pretty intense stuff recently and I am looking forward to break from the intensity. Which is not to say that I haven't enjoyed or learned from the intense stuff I have read. But, I am needing a break from the realities of WWII, struggling farmers, the battles of the American revolution, abused children and selfish, mean people. The fluff starts on Thursday. I am really looking forward to it.

**If you need to find Christmas romance novels, I just type in Christmas novels in my libraries' search engine and see what comes up. I discovered some great stuff. My favorite from last year was "Christmas Wishes" but I can't remember the author.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Maybe it is because of The Twilight Books. . .

I went to the my husband's office a few days ago and the whole staff was laughing. It turns out that a patient, while sedated (my husband does sedation dentistry) looked at one of the dental assistants and said smiling and pointing at my husband, "I think he is a vampire."

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Book Recommendation--The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey

I have just been rereading this book after reading it a few years ago. This really is a must read book for everyone age 16 and older. It explains beautifully how to be financially solvent throughout one's life.

Dave Ramsey outlines what he calls the "Seven baby steps" to financial freedom. His first baby step is starting an emergency fund with $1000 cash.

We learned this principle when my husband was in dental school. We had a pile of dental school student debt but my husband and I both felt strongly about having emergency cash on hand for emergencies only. We had no money but we squeaked by for several months until we had $500 in savings to only be touched for an emergency. So, when our brakes went out on our 1985 Honda Civic, we had the money on hand to fix it. Once we used the money, our top priority was to build it back up once again ,going back to dinner of rice and beans until we had the emergency fund full again. It saved us more than once while in dental school and has continued to so. The emergency fund is a true lifesaver.

Anyway, I won't go into all of his baby steps (read the book) but I can tell you that I can't recommend this book enough.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

You Know You are Trying to Teach Correct Principles . . .

You know you are trying to teach correct principles to your kids when during the Sacrament prayer, your two year old shouts over and over and over, "Fold your arms, guys" to her older siblings.

Even if one of the purposes of "folding your arms" is to be reverent and everyone in the congregation hears her yelling it, destroying the reverence, you can pat yourself on the back for at least trying to teach correct principles.

At least that I what I was thinking while it was happening.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Favorite Thing

The Hanna Andersson "Power of a Great T" t-shirt is the best fitting, most user friendly t-shirt I have ever owned. I actually have it in many colors both short and long sleeved. It is wash and wear and looks great after many, many washes.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Favorite Things

In the idea of Oprah (even though I am currently not happy with her), I am going to be doing occasional posts on "My Favorite Things". Hopefully, they will inspire possible gift/Christmas ideas or just make your life easier. Today, my favorite things focuses on vacuuming.

For some reason, I can't move that picture where I want it but the Eureka Cordless Quick-Up vacuum has changed my cleaning life. It is lightweight and as a result is perfect for stairs and quickly cleaning out my car. I also use it in my kitchen, on my hardwood floors, after every meal.

I love my Roomba but unfortunately, it can't take care of all of my vacuuming needs. (But, if you don't own one, you really should own a Roomba.) So, between my Roomba and my Cordless Eureka, my floors are cleaner than they have ever been.

Oh, and for any of you men out there, don't buy either of these things and give them as Christmas presents without first finding out if your wife is "practical" gift lover or not. I don't want to be blamed for your wife being mad at you Christmas morning.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


I can't resist buying matching Hannah Andersson clothes for my girls. Here is this year's collection.

This is what the kids wore for our family photo. Toothsome #1 has since destroyed the sweater (He claims a stapler got caught on it and it is now beyond repair. He wore it three times.)
Yes, even their shoe's match. Dillard's (my favorite place to buy children's shoes) had them.

Monday, November 10, 2008


I was tagged a few days ago by Donald. I found his wife's blog through a friend of a friend (you all know how the blogging world works) and if we lived in the same ward, I am sure we would be friends. His wife makes me want to be a better mother, reminds me how much I do like classical music and makes me jealous that her daughter's hair always is so beautifully done. Donald and I have the same views on most things. Anyway, here are my answers to the tag.

5 Things I Was Doing 10 Years Ago
1. About to celebrate our one year anniversary being married to the love of my life, Dentist husband.
2. Working as an editor (yes, I know my editing in this blog sometimes is crappy) and answering phones for a local business.
3. Just found out I was pregnant with my first child and very morning sick.
4. Ate at Chipotle every Monday as a date and Family Home Evening with Dentist husband.
5. Lived close to my parents

5 Things on my to do list today
1. Jump rope. Thanks to an old friend, I have discovered this is one of the best work outs on the planet.
2. Laundry.
3. Organize a section of our basement.
4. Sit down and figure out Christmas.
5. Get dinner meat marinating.

5 Things I would do if I were a Millionaire

1. After making sure my kid's college funds were substantial, I would help family members and close friends who need a hand.

2. Go on great summer trips with the kids.

3. Own property in Newport Beach, my favorite place on the planet.

4. Give a pile of money to the Perpetual Education Fund.

5. Be charitable.

5 Places I have lived
1. Boulder, CO
2. San Jose, Costa Rica
3. Jerusalem, Israel
4. Buenos Aires, Argentina
5. Provo, UT (One of my favorite places because of the great times I had at BYU)

5 Jobs I have had:
1. Arby's--a cashier
2. Front desk at a real estate company
3. Various jobs at a Title Company--I worked in searching, typed loan documents, answered phones, did releases, etc.
4. Editor at a local business that took in outsourced editing needs. I read Master's thesis', personal histories, web articles, etc.
5. HR assistant

If you are reading this, you are tagged if you want to play.

Rules: Each player answers the question themselves. At the end of the post the player then tags 5 people and posts their names, then goes to their blog and leaves them a comment letting them know that they’ve been tagged and asking them to read your blog.

Friday, November 7, 2008

I'm So Annoyed . . .

I am hoping this is my last "political" post for awhile but I am currently so annoyed by the world around me.

1. We just elected a socialist and nobody seems to get that--including the Republican party I have supported since high school. Is there any place for conservatives anymore? Do people not understand when you make it hard for people who make money everyone suffers?

2. Proposition 8 in California: There are now wide spread protests about this. Why is it that people who want inclusively for everyone, really want it for everyone except for those they disagree with? Could this possibly be a moral issue and not a human rights issue?

3. Obama is our first biracial president.

4. Nancy Palosi now wants to forgive up to 40% of people's personal credit card debt? She wants to "help" the credit card companies? Excuse me, they sent out the cards. They didn't deny those people. And folks, don't buy things you can't afford.

5. The McCain camp is now turning on Palin? The very person they used to "rescue" their crappy election campaign?

Deep breathes. Deep breathes. Deep deep breathes. Relax. Crap, I can feel the annoyance coming again. Deeper breathes.

I'm serious, I feel like I am living in the days just after 9/11. I have to constantly remind myself that I only do what I can do. I have to try and raise moral, hardworking children and teach them the values and principles this nation was founded on. Unlike Michelle Obama, I have always been proud to be an American even today when I am shocked by what is going on around me. This is still the best country in the world, regardless of the stupid people currently running it.

I'll try to just get back to posting about my family and kids now. I'm off my soapbox but man I am still so annoyed.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Favorite Foods

Recently, on a long car drive, my husband and I started talking about our all time favorite foods. This was not a "if you were stuck on a desert island" conversation but just a "list the top five favorite foods you love to eat."

So here are mine. They are in no particular order.

1. Guacamole: This has to be fresh. But honestly, I could and have eat it daily.

2. A hamburger: I'm not even that picky about one of these. McDonalds will do but of the major chains, I love a Wendy's Single. The $5 dollar basic one from Carls Jr. isn't bad either.

3. Blue cheese: One year for my mother in law's birthday, she got about four different blue cheeses from different places around the world and we sat there with crackers and taste compared them. It is a great memory and cemented my love for it.

4. Diet Coke with fresh lime: Ok, not a food but the amounts I consume make it a food for me. My habit is a bad one but there are few things better than a fresh from the tap (which I prefer but I am good with cans too) ice cold Diet Coke.

5. Potatoes: I love them baked, twice baked, raw, fried, whatever.

What about you?

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

On a Lighter Note . . .

We are having a major snow storm today. It is days like these that I realize my Swedish heritage rules me because I love a good snow storm.

Anyway, on days like these, after the kids have had their fill playing in the snow, I am so grateful for having "office" supplies on hand for my kids.

For my oldest daughter's birthday a few years ago, I purchased every type of office supply I could think of and gave them to her. She had envelops in various sizes, paper clips, lots of different post it notes, pencils, pens, ink pads, folders, notepads, tape, etc. I can't tell you how great this has been for everyone. The kids spend hours playing office and have so much fun doing it. Recently, when my husband's office went paperless, we acquired these in every letter. Now, I find papers all over the house with kids names on them, or notes written in them. They have been great.

So, if you have a child with a birthday coming up, I can't recommend giving them their own office supplies enough. We have loved it.

Election Part 2

Back in my BYU days, when Bill Clinton beat George Bush, I was so upset, I wore all black the day they announced he won. I did the same four years later.

However, this election has been different for me because I have watched the current president, one I firmly believed in, one my brother worked for (in the EPA), slowly become more socialist. It got harder and harder for me to raise my voice in support of him. The bailout bill about killed me. We can point fingers (and yes, I do largely blame Bill Clinton's policies that created the over loaning of money) but a Republican president approved the bail out.

I am a hard working American as well as my husband. We have lived without and with less until we could afford what we do have. We don't have debt. We own our cars and our property. When has this idea that "I deserve what I want" become a national policy?

So, this election, I wanted change but I didn't want the change being offered from either side.

I didn't like John McCain but at least he and his running mate seemed to have some pride in America and believed in capitalism and I think believed in protecting the constitution.

I am not so sure about Obama and his wife seems even more sketchy to me. I hope I am wrong. I hope the change he brings is good and follows along the lines of what the founding fathers had in mind.

I woke up this morning sad and disheartened. I so hope I am wrong.


God bless America. We are going to need it.

Monday, November 3, 2008

In Case I Haven't Been Clear Enough. . .

I think my writing is clear enough that I am very conservative. But, just in case, I haven't been clear, I am voting for McCain/Palin tomorrow. In reality, they aren't conservative enough for me, but they are better than the other choice. Please bless that they pull off a come from behind (if you can believe the drive-by media--thanks Rush for that terminology) win.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Pinewood Derby

This past week, our ward had the Pinewood Derby. Our ward only does it every 3 years, so it is a big deal when it happens. Here is Dentist husband and the kids.
Our stake doesn't own its own track, so we "rented" one from a nice man in a neighboring stake who donates all of the money to the church's missionary fund. He let the younger siblings press the start button. Toothsome #2 loves photo taking opportunities.

Me in my yellow den mother shirt and toothsome #1

For car design, toothsome #1 won "Most innovative."

And, out of 17 cars, he placed 4th!
When we got to the ward building, his card was too heavy. After lots of messing with it, Dentist husband ended up removing a wheel, that wasn't touching anyway. A grand time was had by all.