Monday, January 28, 2013

Family - One of those posts I started last year and who knows why I didn't post it!

We went to my nieces wedding last year. 

My mom, both sisters, brother-in-law, nieces and nephews all live in a small town in Oregon.  
We only get to see them once or twice a year.
I sure miss these guys and cherish the times when we get to see each other.  

It is always fun.  It is always crazy.  We always leave with great memories.

This is my nephew "Sumo".  He is fun squared.

This is my niece Becka's baby Ellie.  What a doll.

Chloe got to visit her cousins.  
She loves it and acts like she has she has been around them her whole life.

My beautiful niece Miranda.  She is my sister Jami's youngest daughter. 

Courtny getting ready for the wedding.

My sister Holly. She is a blast!  Everyone gathered at her house to get ready for the wedding.
Well...everyone gathers at her house for everything!

My sister Jami made these beautiful flower balls for the bridesmaids to carry down the isle. 
Jami is amazingly creative.

Me and Holly waiting for the wedding to start.  Unfortunately my sister Jami was at home changing.  
She was in the car with a crock pot full of chili on her way to the wedding when her son-in-law turned the corner and the pot of chili poured all over her ivory dress!  Can you imagine?  But within minutes, Jami was changed into a new dress and at the Armory as if nothing ever happened.  This is one of the best stories of the weekend.  Jami,  I hope it's been long enough for this story to be funny.   :)

My nephew Layton and his best girl Gloria.  Their wedding is coming up next year.

Holly and Sumo.

My nephews Landon and Sumo.  Two of the cutest guys I know!

My niece Brianna came with us from California to the wedding.  Bri, Cali and Becka are best friends!

Holly's second oldest son, Logan.  This dude rocks!  He played music for the wedding march.

Courtny was directing traffic.  haha

Becka's older sister Jocelynn.  Jocey was married the month before Becka.  
Sadly we were not able to attend her wedding.

Here she is...the woman of the hour.  Our bride to be, Becka.  She was crazy getting everything ready for the wedding and reception...

Ran to change...

And was truly beautiful.  She had a great time at her wedding.  As it should be.

Talk to you soon.


(Mom, Auntie, Gamma)

Monday, January 21, 2013

Morning Smoothie

Four years ago I randomly picked up a book while browsing at Barnes and Noble.  I love to buy books. I like walking aimlessly through a book store hoping that a great book will catch my eye.   I always have at least 3-4 books that I am reading at once.  Probably not the most efficient way to get through my pile, but as my husband would say, "it is what it is."

Anyway, I picked up the book Clean by Alejandro Junger. I wasn't exactly sure what it was about when I took it home but the idea of feeling better physically and having more energy sounded appealing!  I had heard of cleanses where you only drink grapefruit juice for a week or tea but those just never sounded healthy and not really that good for you.  They sounded more like a drastic weight loss system rather than a formula to for getting healthy and your body back on track.

The Clean Program is a 21 day cleanse that helps to restore your bodies ability to heal itself.  Although it can be a challenge if you don't already like healthy food, it is so worth it.  By the end of the 21 days you feel energetic, have more clarity of mind and actually clean from the inside out.  The basic meal plan is a smoothie for breakfast, a solid meal for lunch from the elimination diet and then a smoothie or soup for dinner.  Basically you are giving your digestive system a break from working so hard.  I rarely feel hungry while doing it.

This is my 4th year of doing this cleanse.  I love it so much that I have shared it with many many people.  I'm sure I have given away at least 20+ books to people who were interested in it.

I think the best way to be successful at this cleanse and have good results has a lot to do with your mental attitude.  The first few years I would tell myself,  "I can do anything for 21 days!"  If you think it will be hard, it will be hard.  If you go into it with excitement for how great you are going to feel, then you will notice how great you feel.  So, pull up your boot straps, put a smile on your face and jump in!  Give it your all.  You won't regret it.

Last year, Tom decided to give it a try with me.  He isn't a big healthy food eater, so I wasn't sure if he would really stick to it.  Well, he decided ahead of time it was going to be great and he loved it.  We are doing it together again this year.  One of the things he likes best about this cleanse  is the smoothies we have in the morning.  They are really good and we have them for breakfast long after the 21 days.

We always have some sort of combination of these ingredients: 

apples, mango or pineapple (whatever is fresh and in season)
coconut meat and water 
almond milk 
protein powder (I prefer the vanilla flavor)
chia seeds and flaxseed 
frozen blueberries. blackberries, peaches
Use as many organic ingredients as you can find

I like to have fresh coconut.  So I purchase the young coconuts, drain them and then take them out back and chop them in half with an ax. (Tom thinks this is hilarious!) I scoup out the meat and add it to the coconut water and keep it in a jar in the fridge.  I am not sure how long it stays fresh because we eat it up too quickly.

I add in a brown rice protein powder (you can't have whey protein during the cleanse)

Chia Seeds and Flaxseed.

 I also like to make my own almond milk.  It is so easy and tastes great!

We also take a multitude of supplements with our smooties.

And there you have it.  Not the most appealing color, but believe me, it is delish!

Well, off to drink my breakfast!

Talk to you soon.



Monday, January 14, 2013

Pattern Remix DIY

I found this post I wrote a while back, but for some reason I never posted it.  And since I have been spending more time sewing lately, I thought it would still be fun to put up on the blog.

Here is a DIY for you sewers out there.  I made a little dress for Chloe for her first birthday.  You can see how her party turned out here on my daughter Brittny's Blog.  It was the cutest 1 year old birthday party.  

I found a basic McCall's Pattern.  

I wanted to switch it up a bit so I cut the pattern to give it an empire waste. When you do this, you have to remember to give each peace a seam allowance.  I added the seam allowance with some white pattern paper I have.  

Next, I wanted to give it some ruffles, so I cut four pattern pieces the width of the pattern plus an  extra 6 inches to make a ruffle.  This is the white rectangular shaped paper sitting on top of the pattern pieces.  

I cut the base of the dress out of a white cotton lining fabric with a cute Amy Butler fabric for the top.  I added the ruffles out of a white on white plaid voile fabirc to the basic dress.

Instead of using store bought bias tape, I made my own and added it for the band at the bottom of the empire waste and at the straps.  

I also made a matching bunting.  Here is the Post for the making of it.  

Awe, look how little Chleo was.

One year old birthday parties are a big deal.  We should be having another one hear in a few months for Claire.  I better start working on her first birthday dress.

Talk to you soon!



Saturday, January 12, 2013


I love traditions!  
I love them!  

There is something so meaningful and comforting about them.  They remind you how important family is.  They take you back to your childhood and let you share your favorite memories with your kids and your kids, kids.  Most of our tradtions happen around the holidays.  One of our traditions is opening one gift on Christmas Eve and it is suppose to be a surprise, but everyone knows it will be Christmas jammies.

One of my favorite traditions that I continued from my childhood is making Christas Cookies.  This year, Chloe and Claire helped me make the cookies.  My two teenagers were too busy to make cookies this year.  It's ok, I know in a few years, they will realize how much they love our traditions and won't want to miss them!

Chloe picked up on the process rather quickly.  After showing her once, she was rolling out the dough, cutting the cookies and putting them on the cookies sheet all by herself.  She hardly needed me there, except to make sure she didn't eat too much dough.

Claire wanted to be a helper too.  She picked out the cookie shapes she wanted.

I ate so many of these delicious masterpieces, that I had to do a cleanse immediately after new years.  I am pretty sure a week straight of Christmas cookies for breakfast, lunch and dinner is a bit excessive.  I may have a problem.
My mom spent years as a daycare provider and preschool teacher.  She figured out a way to make decorating the cookies easy for kids to do.  She thins out the frosting so the kids can simply dip the cookies into a shallow bowl of frosting.  I still do it this way.  My kids and now grandkids have done it this way too.  They don't look as pretty as some of the beautiful sugar cookies that I have seen, but believe me, they taste amazing!  They really are the best sugar cookies I have ever had.

Chloe said, "I'll eat the cookie after I eat the candy off the top.  Smart Girl!

After all that hard work, Chloe needed to take a break on her favorite cushion!  :)

What are you favorite family tradtions?

Talk to you soon!



Tuesday, January 8, 2013

I'm back!

Hi All,

Well it has been about a year since I last posted to my family blog on a regular basis.  This makes me sad and at the same time, I feel like I needed the break.  I love having a way of recording my life with family and friends.

So... I think I will  catch up on some events we had in 2012 and interject them in between current post.  I am not sure how often I will write, but just wanted you to know I haven't left for good.

During 2012, I did write about one of the most important things that happened in our family.  We went from 6girls3boys to 7girls3boys.  The boys are highly outnumbered around here.   Claire Noelle  joined our family on May 2.  She is 8 months now. Time flies so fast.  Enjoy the little moments.

See you all soon.