Friday, February 27, 2009

Papa & Nana Visit from Arizona

My parents came to visit last Saturday and left for home (Sun City, Ariz.) on Wednesday. We had a wonderful visit, and the girls really enjoyed their "Nana & Papa time." Eric and I enjoyed going out two nights in a row with free babysitters at home watching the girls. : )
One night we took my parents to our favorite restaurant in Ojai, The Farmer & The Cook. On the way home, we were at a stop sign and three cars drove by. My dad (who is a good jokester) said, "Three cars, it must be rush hour!" Ha ha!!
My mom brought her wedding dress and gave it to the girls to put in the dress-up drawer. It is old and fragile and ripping in places, but Amber loved wearing it and has worn it every day since. It fit her well, too, except that it is too long. Enjoy the pictures!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Partners in Crime

These girls looked so innocent as babies.

What happened?

Our good friends from San Jose, the Frazees, are in town and we had them over for our traditional Ojai Pizza and deep conversation. The five children played so well together. In fact, there was not one squabble or even a little disagreement the entire night. With that being said, the two 3-year-olds, Autumn Brooke and Harley Joy, were awfully quiet in the bedroom and we knew that was not necessarily a good thing. This is what we saw when we investigated.

The girls had dumped all of the dirty clothes out of the clothes hamper, and then proceeded to take down every single hanger-full of clothes from the closet. Heidi and I had to sort out the clean clothes from the dirty ones and then put all of the clothes back on the hangers. We also noticed that some of the hangers suffered casualties.

All in all, it was such a fun evening, and we even got a good group photo.

New Life

Today is the year-anniversary of my brother Steve's death. As the date approached, I really wanted to do something special to remember him--not that I'd forget my brother. However, I wanted to do something to memorialize the wonderful man that he was. Steve loved the outdoors. We camped a lot as children and he carried on that tradition with his own family. So I decided I would plant a tree in his honor. I called Tom at Ojai Trees, a non-profit group of volunteers that works with neighborhoods to plant trees at a low cost, promoting healing of the environment. Because of my extremely black thumb, I was going to plant a tree in downtown Ojai. Tom convinced me that I could plant a fruit tree in our back yard and actually see it grow. We decided on a Beverly Hills apple tree and found a perfect location--the place where a frozen orange tree resided. Tom said the orange tree should have never been planted there in the first place and that an apple tree would flourish there with little effort on my part. He sold me! He also added, "Every time you eat an apple, you will remember your brother."

I wanted the tree to be planted on or near the year anniversary, but I waited too long to get the process started. The date for the tree planting is set for March 21. I actually won't be planting the tree. I will assist the experts--volunteers who transport the tree and stake it and plant it. The labor is free and the cost of the tree is only $75. I really like this organization, (

Meanwhile, we need to remove the orange tree and the morning glory that has taken over. Eric traded car repair with our gardener, and guess what day they decided to remove the orange tree--today--on the anniversary. I love how God's timing is always perfect. The tree couldn't be planted today, but the process began. I think that is so cool.

I am excited to have a remembrance of my brother and also to eat yummy apples in the future!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Camping out in our own home!

A few days ago, our refrigerator started making some very loud noises. We suspected the worst--the compressor was going, going, gone. The fridge is at least 9 years old, probably older because it came with the house. It looks about 20 years old! Anyway, we prepared for the inevitable--buying a newer fridge. We decided we would look online for used ones. Meanwhile, I needed a place to put our food before it spoiled, so yesterday I called my neighbor--who is on vacation--on her cell and asked if we could put our food in her fridge while she is gone. She said she removed the hidden key (makes sense) for the week. No worries, I told her. Then she said if we could wait until Friday when she returns, we could have her extra fridge she has in the garage--for free! Wow! That is awesome, and we feel very blessed to not have to spend money so unexpectedly. So, I went to the store today and bought lots of ice. I moved the freezer items into the big freezer we have outside and then put the fridge items in two large ice chests. After dinner tonight, we had leftovers, so I had to get our smaller ice chest and put the leftovers on ice in there. I feel like I'm camping in my own house. Maybe I'll get the sleeping bags out and sleep in the living room--just kidding! Ooh, but we could make s'mores in the fireplace. I have the chocolate bars, I just need the...never mind, I'll just eat the chocolate!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Guess Who Lost Another Tooth?

This morning, Amber was eating an apple before school, and PLINK, her third tooth fell out, on the top this time. She's already grown two new teeth on the bottom where the others fell out. She was so excited, she jumped up and down. Now she's anxiously awaiting the Tooth Fairy's visit tonight. Hey, maybe she'll even go to bed early!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Six BRAND NEW random things about me, because I was tagged!

Okay, so my friend Lisa Hester tagged me and I am supposed to come up with six ransom things about me. I already did this last year on my blog and just did 25 random things about me on Facebook, but I am up to the challenge to find six new things that I have not published before. Here goes:

1.) I could eat a quesadilla almost every day for lunch and never get tired of them. I eat them about 4 days a week, but I cook them in the toaster oven and not on the stove top to cut down on the fat. I normally eat them plain, but sometimes with ketchup or guacamole or salsa if I have them in the fridge.
2.) Which leads me to my second random thing: When I was very little my brothers used to put hot sauce on their quesadillas (we called them "cheese crisps" in Phoenix) and I wanted to be like them so I would put ketchup on mine because the hot sauce was too hot. I still enjoy ketchup on my cheese crisps!
3.) When I was a kid, I used to dip my saltine crackers in water at eat them. I do not do that anymore, but recently I saw Autumn doing it. Hmmmm....
4.) Okay, a non-food related random thing: I was Princess Leia for Halloween three years in a row when I was about 8, 9, & 10 years old. My mom made the costume and I even had the hair buns on each side of my head.
5.) I wanted a family of seven, then 5 boys, then twin boys and two girls, then I decided two kids was just the right amount, but I still wanted boys (don't tell my girls). Now, I wouldn't have it any other way. (And to dissipate the comments I may receive on this one, NO WE ARE NOT GOING TO TRY FOR A BOY. WE ARE DONE!)
6.) Okay one more...hmmm: I have tattoo on my...just kidding. Geeze, I can't think of anything...Oh yes, I used to beg my brothers to let me play with their G.I. Joes (that was when G.I. Joes were the size of Barbie dolls) because my Barbies needed boyfriends and I couldn't afford to buy the new Ken doll. My brothers never even let me touch their G.I. Joes.

There you have it. I won't tag anyone this time.