Friday, January 21, 2011

5 Years and Going Strong

I just got my 2010 blog book and I am so excited!! Every year when it comes I am reminded why I do this. I now have 4 years of a photo/journal/family history (the blog books are the white books in the picture)! For me the blog is more of a journal. I love that I can write as much as I want and either post it for everyone to see or keep it private. It's wonderful!
Since this is more of a journal I don't post nearly as many pictures as I actually take. Which is why I started doing digital scrapbooks about 3 years ago. Right now I use Shutterfly, but if anyone has a company they like better I would love to know.
One last thing. I have had a lot of people asking me about how to turn their blog into a book. So to answer those of you who asked I use
It can be a little tricky at times so feel free to call or e-mail if you have questions.
And to answer the other questions I've been getting asked...yes I am still putting together blog books and scrapbooks for people. I have been doing this for quit a few years now and if you are interested or have questions please e-mail me I'd love to get one started for you!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

January Blahs

Every year January rolls around and I remember how much I don't like this month. It's cold outside and we're all stuck inside.
So we've gotten a little creative thinking up fun things to do.
After all, I can only play hide and go seek so many times a day.
Bella loves to dress up and she has been so excited that Bre loves it too. Syd wants nothing to do with it and she won't even let Bella come near her with a tutu or crown. But Bre on the other hand loves it! Here's just one example: One morning the school had mom's and muffins. That was a nice break out of the house. Claire even dressed herself. I wish I had taken a picture of the full outfit. She was so excited to be a part of Bella's school for one day.
The girls made a fort in the bunk bed. I think they were more excited about playing with the flashlights.
We've also spent many days cooking together. These are the aprons we made with sister Toolson last summer. Oh and that's pretty typical for Claire to have no pants on. At least this day she decided to ware underwear.
Here's to having a good attitude about all the cold months ahead!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Claire's 3rd Birthday

Claire Bear turned 3 today!!! (If you ask her, her name she'll tell you very matter of factly, Claire Bear Abigail Brown. She really thinks her name is Claire Bear. It's cute).
She has been looking forward to this day for over a month. It was pure torture for her to watch Bella have parties and open present and then get nothing.
But finally her day has arrived!
She woke up to find her door was decorated and there were presents and baby donuts waiting for her on mom and dad's bed.
The birthday girl wearing the crown and her new skirt.
(when will Claire's dad buy her mom a decent camera? Seriously this is ridiculous).
During the day Claire had a party. She has been looking forward to this since the day she announced she was having a party.
This came as a shock to me since, I wasn't planning on throwing a 3 year old a party.
She got to invite 2 friends. Her cousin Elysia, and her future husband, Wyatt. Opps, sorry. Seth says I can't talk like that since they're only 3.
The kids had so much playing at the play land, eating chicken nuggets and eating the cupcakes that Kim made.
Last Saturday we threw together a very last minute family party at Chucke Cheese.
Claire was in heaven!
She got to open a present from Bella and she was really excited about it. We were also lucky enough to have uncle Chad, aunt Beth, and Kelsie come along. Oh and Claire must be good luck because the package we paid for included 40 game tokens, but long story we ended up with 100!
The birthday cake
When I asked Claire what she wanted for her b-day dinner she said mac and cheese. So looks like we're headed to Noodles & Co tonight!

Happy Birthday Claire

Dear Claire Bear,

You are my little bundle of energy! Some days I think "how can such a little girl have so much energy and drive me so crazy".
But I love it!!
There are so many things I love about you!
  • When you tell me secrets. Like "you're my best friend", whispered in my ear.
  • You are hands down the best dancer I know! Especially when you shake your "booty" as you say.
  • You are also a wonderful singer. I love when you sing "I Love To See The Temple". Especially the part, "I'll prepare myself while I am yum, this is my sleeping beauty."
  • When we play hide and go seek and you can't help but giggle as you tell me where you're hiding
  • Watching you put together a puzzle you've never done before, in just minutes.
  • The way you play with your sisters

I truly am so thankful for you! I thank my Father in Heaven every day that you came to our family. It just wouldn't be the same without you.



Wednesday, January 5, 2011

This Article Just Spoke To Me

Recently someone brought this article to my attention. It hit so close to home that I just had to share it with everyone.
I guess you would call it a bait-and-switch
My husband and I met on a six-month study abroad program where we had no access to television.
Years later, we dated, married and honeymooned all in the football offseason. So you can imagine my surprise when I woke up that first crisp fall morning of our new married life together and was introduced to "College Game Day.”
Oh, OK. So he likes college football, isn't that nice? It’s wonderful he likes to cheer on and root for our alma mater. Go Cougs!
I had no idea how deep the obsession ran.
My first error was to utter the words, "It's just a game," after an excruciating loss for the home team.
Rookie mistake.
To a true fan, those four words are the harshest in the English language. I was young and foolish and had the audacity to expand on the idea.
“You didn't loose anything. You didn't sweat and bleed on that field. You didn't blow out your knee taking one for the team. You didn't drop the ball,” I said. “They lost, not you. You are taking this way too hard. Let's have a little perspective, huh?"
"You're not a true fan," he whispered after the defeat took all the bravado out of his voice.
I can't help but think, if the reverse were true — if I had some intoxicating, time-consuming, behavior-altering hobby for four months of the year — my husband wouldn't stand for it. Not for one face-painting second.
I've been racking my brain trying to come up with a good comparison, but even at my most obsessed season of "American Idol" watching, the episodes were only an hour long, and I never once texted the word “vote.”
So for argument's sake, let's say there’s a reality TV show all my girlfriends and I are crazy about. It's a four-hour program, and it's on every Saturday August through January.
The excitement and hype couldn't possibly be contained in only one episode each week, so there's a pre-show show that same day, featuring packages on the various participants, stats and ex-contestant's in-depth analysis on what they think will happen on the show. Then, of course, a postgame show, where fans would call in, we would all re-live our favorite moments in slow motion, and the crazies would rant on and on about how horrible the producers are. You get my point?
Now let’s pretend that during this six-plus hour affair, I was not to be disturbed. All my duties as wife and mother were to be suspended until the pre-show show, show and post-shows were all over. Not only that, but all other conversations and concerns would have to stay on hold until I could rehash the pre-show, show and post-shows with my mother and sister over the phone. This could take several more hours because I have free night and weekend minutes.
Now let's pretend that depending on the outcome of the show (who got voted off,) my entire mood and outlook on life would be altered. If the person I was vying for (a complete stranger in real life, mind you) was booted off the show, I would become ornery and depressed over the next 24 hours at the very least.
Such penitence and contrition would be an outward reflection of my true devotion to the show. If my favorite contestant stayed on, my joy and elation would be at a decibel so loud and jubilant, it would frighten my own children.
Online websites dedicated to the mania would give me my weekday fix. I would spend countless hours Monday through Friday educating myself on what the weekend held in store. These websites would also make me feel better about my own addiction because some of the women who post are even more zealous than I am.
I haven't even gotten to the money part yet.
What if I needed to own several fan club T-shirts, hats and sweatshirts? Now consider the cost of tickets, snacks and gas while traveling to the different locations where the show was being taped. My hobby would need to be allotted its own piece on our budget’s pie chart.
I ask you, would my husband, my wonderful, pragmatic, productive, hard-working husband, stand for such a crazy hobby, one that left the family out in the cold? Or I could tell him he could watch it with me, but then, who would take care of crying children, change the diapers, do the laundry and the dishes? Get my point?
No. My no-nonsense, straight-arrow husband would not stand for such a silly hobby. He would refuse to compete with it. The TV would be gone. The cable would be cut and the credit card rescinded. No “show” would take his wife away from him.
But there is no six-plus hour reality TV show for women that's on every week, season after season and year after year. Instead, there's just one multi-billion dollar Saturday-sucking conglomerate out there, and it wears pads, helmets and very tight pants.
How do they do it? What makes the allure so powerful? Maybe I'm missing something. Maybe these husbands are seeing something I'm not.
After all, 10 million "true fans" can't be wrong.
-Margaret Anderson