Sunday, November 1, 2009

Trick or Treat

Halloween has to be one of the best holidays! There is nothing better than playing dress up, so a holiday that encourages this behavior has to be my favorite. This year we started off the night at my Aunt Sandy's annual Halloween party. The party in itself is an event. It gets bigger every year and no details are missed. We had to take pictures at the beginning of the night because once the kids saw the bouncy slide and bouncy house along with the face painter and balloon guy I never saw them again! It was great to see the family, including my Aunt Wendy and Uncle Phil who live in Texas. Although there was over a hundred people there, it was nice to just sit and hang out with my family and catch up, so I didn't leave the table much (except to enjoy the yummy food)!

My mom talked me in to dressing up with her and since my entire wardrobe is black it was an easy transition to become a witch. Aiden was the Incredible Hulk (I miss the days when I picked out his costume) and little miss Anna was Strawberry Shortcake! She was going to wear a wig but she kept complaining that it itched so we sprayed her hair red instead. No one recognized her as a red head! My cutie pie niece was an elephant with a pink tutu! She was absolutely adorable!!

In past years the kids have been fine skipping the trick or treating and just staying at the party but this year they were really anxious to trick or treat with their cousins Madelyn and Brendan. So we left the party and went over to Grandpa Dan's. Our neighbors, the Cardons, joined us along the way and we trick or treated around the neighborhood. The kids got tons of candy and I couldn't help but be sick at the thought of where all that candy would end up. Sure enough they had eaten 1/2 of it before the night was through. At one point I could literally see they were on a sugar high as they bounced around like bouncy balls! As much as I prefer that they not eat it all I would rather have them get it over with so we don't have to keep the candy around! All in all it was an almost perfect night. The only thing that would have made it better would be if Trent was apart of it. It almost broke my heart when I talked to him and I could hear how sad he was to have missed it. He said it was one of the hardest days of work to date, as he had to wade in freezing water most of the day. Then he had the added burden of thinking about the kids dressing up and not being able to see them. He is making a tremendous sacrifice for our family and we are so blessed to have such a hard working daddy. This better be the last Halloween without him!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

HCG Update

If you read this blog a couple of entries ago you know in my last ditch effort, to drop the pounds that piled on top of me this last year, I started taking HCG. I was on the hormone drops for 30 days and lost 15 lbs! That was the easy part (well sort of easy was a really long 30 days) the hard part is keeping it off. Because I like to eat in times of stress, in times of sadness and happiness, in times of monthly cycles, and frankly all times, I am having a hard time maintaining! After you stop taking the drops you then continue to eat just fruits, veggies and proteins but you increase your caloric intake to 1500 calories and you get to add dairy. Well, there was something in those drops that made eating only protein and veggies doable, because now all I want is CARBS and CANDY! So I just ordered some different drops that you can take during maintenance that should help suppress my appetite and continue to burn fat. We will see if that helps. I know several people who have done this diet and maintained just fine but their husbands probably didn't move to Canada, and I am guessing they didn't start maintenance during mid-term week! So like my life in general I am taking this one day at a time and trying my very best!

Canada, Eh?

Just when I thought life couldn't become any more chaotic, with two parents in the house, one of them up and leaves for a job and Canada, and unfortunately it isn't me! Since returning from Hawaii, last summer, Trent has felt the effects of the economy and he has literally held on to a job for the last year by his fingertips. So it wasn't a huge surprise when his company ran out of work and he was laid off...The day he was laid off, in a desperate attempt to find work and support his family, he took off on a 4 day road trip around the western part of the United States looking for work. As a member of the line workers union, you have to sign "the books" in person, showing that you are available for work and when something comes up in that location they can call you out. So Trent, along with two other lineman, traveled through California, Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Utah signing "the books" in every union hall along the way. Trent and the boys came back to Arizona to sit and wait for any offer. Two weeks passed without a phone call. Although, we knew things were slow, I didn't think it was possible that no one needed a lineman (he installs and repairs electricity for goodness sakes) anywhere. Finally, an offer did come in. . . In CANADA! In fact he received two offers and they were both in Canada! At first I just had to laugh. Not only was my husband going to have to leave our home for a job, he was going to have to leave the country! I still held on to some hope, that as he waited for a Visa , something closer to home would be offered, but nothing else came. And because I have to most incredible, loving and hard working husband, he went all the way across the U.S. border just to provide for us. So Trent has been gone for almost 2 weeks now. He is going to be working in this incredibly beautiful area in Vancouver called Toba. He has to be flown in on a small plane and then he will stay there for 3 weeks straight. He will be working 7 days a week, 12 hours a day and sleep on a barge in a "man camp". The great news is, he will be very busy (leaving him less time to miss us) and he will work for 3 weeks straight and then come home for a week! He should be home for a visit around November 5th and we are counting down the days!

Things have been challenging without him here. If I thought things were chaotic before, the chaos level has just increased tenfold! Fortunately, for us we have a loving family that is extremely supportive and they are helping to raise our children! In all of the craziness the kids and I are doing well in school and are trying to find a life outside of all of our commitments. I am lucky to have very well-adjusted kids who can just go with the flow because we are definitely in the middle of a raging river! But we are taking each day at a time and doing our very best!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Anna's 5th Birthday

For Anna's big day we took her and 7 of her best girlfriends to Regency Beauty School for mini-makeovers! Each girl had her hair and nails done and they even had a couple of colorful extensions added to their hair! The girls loved every minute of it and they all acted as if they have done this a million times. Some of the girls even chatted with their stylists the entire time about everything from bugs, to girly things, to how they used to suck their thumb! It was very entertaining to watch each girl sitting there acting so grown up. The girls all chose very funky and colorful nails and each of their hair styles was as unique as they are. The all looked absolutely darling and they knew it too! It wasn't difficult to get them to pose for a picture or two. After we finished with the makeovers we went to Culver's for ice-cream. The girls all sat at a large table eating their sundaes and going through their goody bags my mom put together for them. They loved their groovy glasses, lipstick and blingy rings. After a little parade around the restaurant, to show everyone exactly how cute they are, we went home. All in all it was a wonderful party and of course the very best part was I didn't have to clean my house, set up, take down or cook! (The bear in the pictures is Birthday Bear. He belongs to Anna's kindergarten class and gets to tag along with each student on their birthday!).

Sunday, September 20, 2009

My First Day...

Every year we take pictures of our children as they head off to their first day of school. So on my first day going back to school, I thought it would be fun to be included in the tradition. Outfitted in my ASU tee and suited up with backpack and all, I had Aiden take a picture of me in front of the house. I had originally thought it would be a nice way to document my big day as I headed off on my new and frightening journey, but....then I saw the picture! YIKES! When did that 20+ I put on over the last year become so noticeable??? Did I swell up over night? And then my own Oprah moment of "oh crap, how did I let myself get here again?" Of course the answer was clear it was the fist fulls of candy and cookies, and bowls of comforting ice-cream, not to mention the inappropriate sized lunches and all day snacking that powered me through my new long working days...but gosh darn it it isn't fun to see it all piled on me like that. So as I thought about deleting the picture, I decided that instead I would keep the picture to remind me that I was oh so close to that really awful place one comes to when it is just too hard to do anything about it.

Since I have tried every diet known to mankind, some successful but most not, I decided to try something new (and radical even for me). Several people at my school have had great results with HCG. Yes, this is the one you have probably heard of and immediately associate with YOU ONLY GET TO EAT 500 CALORIES A DAY! But after listening to my coworkers I became less skeptical and more willing to try it myself. Now as I write this on day 15 of my 40 day HCG journey, I am even more hopeful and 10lbs thinner! I know what your thinking...eating only 500 calories sounds foolish and risky! But its only made possible with the magical liquid HCG. Something in this concoction actually allows you to live on 500 calories and function normally, and in my case better than normal. I really feel great. I am clearheaded and I have tons of energy and I am not even hungry. Now is this a miracle drug? Is this diet a piece of cake (no pun intended)? No! I miss food like I would miss one of the kids if I didn't see them for 15 days. I dream of days with m&ms and ice-cream (or at this point a piece of bread) but it is doable and the results make every lonely day worth it! I know, I know, everyone always says: "well anyone could lose weight if they ate 500 calories a day". But my rebuttal is yes, that's true but without HCG they would have no energy and they would also probably die! Plus if you did this without HCG you would never keep it off once you started eating normally again, and on this diet you do! (Or at least all of the guinea pigs at my school who did this before me have!). Anyway, at this point I am an advocate and I am trucking on through. Some days are better than others but overall, I am thrilled with how quickly this extra baggage is coming off. I will gladly keep everyone posted over the next 40 days!

Now back to my first day of school...well that isn't as lovely of a story as my 10 lb weight loss! School is hard. I mean really really hard. Its a lot of work and saying I am overwhelmed is an understatement. But I am learning a lot and really just trying to get through day by day! During our school orientation my supervisor showed a slide that listed our priorities for the next 3 years...#1 was our job (since we are getting all of our clinical hours on the job) and #2 was school. #3 was everything else and only after we finished school! Now that I am a month in, I see she wasn't kidding. Between my job and school there really isn't time for much else. So how am I being a mother and wife and fulfilling my calling in church as a counselor in primary, I DON'T KNOW! Some days I think I am not doing it very well, but other days I think I must be very blessed. There seem to be just enough hours in the day for me to give to all of these areas and sleep. It really is amazing what we can accomplish! I will say after getting a massage on Saturday (a gift from my mom!) I learned why I haven't felt like a complete stress case, and that's because all of that stress is being stored in my shoulders! But with the help of my loving husband and family, and with a lot of prayer I have to say I really am doing my very best!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Aiden's 7th Birthday!

Aiden turned 7 on August 22nd! He was so excited he could hardly sleep. I could hear him singing in his bed some song he made up about his birthday and turning 7! Since he didn't fall asleep until 9:30p.m. I thought for sure he would sleep in. But much to my displeasure I was woken up at 6a.m. to Aiden saying "I'm the birthday boy, it's my birthday! I'm 7 now!"Since his birthday was on a Saturday we planned his party on his birthday. Unfortunately, his party was scheduled for 4pm so it was a very long wait for Aiden. Although, we had planned on giving him his birthday present after his party we decided it would be best to give it to him in the morning so he would have something to occupy his time! Trent went and picked up the present from his dad's house and snuck it upstairs into Aiden's room. When Trent came back downstairs he said to Aiden "I think I heard a mouse in your room. There were some scratching noises coming from inside your walls." Aiden was freaked out and curious so we all ran upstairs to check it out. Aiden saw the cage sitting on his desk but since he didn't see his new pet he was just confused. Trent told him that he got the cage to trap the mouse and Aiden seemed to believe him. So we looked around for a mouse for a couple of minutes and then Trent opened up the cage and pulled a guinea pig from out of its tunnel. Aiden was ecstatic! He told us it was the best present ever! He named his new pet Bugsy after the guinea pig in Bedtime Stories and its his new best friend. We all took turns holding Bugsy all day long and we are all smitten! Now Anna wants one for her birthday!

For Aiden's birthday we planned a mini carnival! At Hobby Lobby I purchased carnival tent invites, popcorn boxes, tickets, hot dog holders, and all carnival themed accessories! I figured if we kept it small and made all of our own games it would be a reasonably priced party. But of course as the planning process took place I recruited Trent to make some more elaborate games and I went overboard on the decorations and prizes! We had a fishing game, and a ring toss, a golfing game, the toilet toss (in which you have to throw a toilet paper roll into a large toilet Trent made) and a lollipop tree (which was literally a large tree Trent made with holes for suckers). We also had Aiden's grammie doing face painting! The food was very simple as we just served popcorn, lemonade and hot dogs. But the exciting part was the hot dogs were served in the front yard of our home by a real hot dog vendor (my neighbor Shelly's brother)! My mom made the cupcakes (or bought cupcakes and then improved them) and she put them on a board she decorated to make the cupcakes look like a bunch of balloons! Of course Aiden got everything he ever wanted! He got lots of Baku-gan and transformers and a fishing pole! He also got a rip stick which is a skateboard with only 2 wheels which takes a lot of balance and core strength and hours of practice! Overall it was a great party. And although it was a lot of work for a 2 hour party it was worth it! Aiden thanked us a billion times and told us it was the BEST birthday ever!
Posted by Picasa

First Day of School

As difficult as it is to believe, Anna had her 1st day of Kindergarten and Aiden started 2nd grade. The summer just flew by and so has the last 7 years. Anna has been waiting to go the kindergarten since Aiden started school, so it was very exciting that it was finally time. That first morning they woke up at 5:30am got dressed, brushed their teeth, made their beds and came downstairs ready to go! I woke up to Aiden saying "what time do we leave for school". He was a little disappointed when I told him, not for 3 hours! With that much time we were able to have a great breakfast, watch a show and make sure they looked their very best. I took them in to school so I could get lots of pictures and make sure that Anna was going to be okay. When I took her to her classroom she found her desk, sat down and said "bye, mom". I was shocked! I expected a completely different scene which included me having to pull each of her arms off from around my leg and convincing her I would be back before she knew it. But instead she barely even acknowledged me as I tried to pull myself away from her! I waited at the door for a few minutes just to confirm that she was really okay and that she didn't change her mind that she still needed me but she was completely fine. I walked Aiden over to his room and his class was all lined up. In front of the line were 3 boys who reminded me a lot of Aiden. They had plenty of energy and were goofing around with each other as they waited for the teacher. Aiden saw them, walked to the back of the line and looking at the ground whispered to himself "stay away from them, stay away from them"! He knows the expectations at his new school are high and he has been preparing himself for a great year! He has even memorized the first few classroom rules; including following directions the FIRST time given, keeping hands and feet to himself, staying in his seat and only speaking when called on (all areas he struggles with :) So I thought it was remarkable that he decided first thing that he should avoid all temptation to goof around!

It was a long and difficult decision to choose where they were going to school. I wanted them to go to their home school, Entz, so they could go to school with kids in the neighborhood, but I also loved the idea of having them at Highland Park in Gilbert where I work. At the same time I had heard amazing things about Challenger Basic School, a charter school in Gilbert. The advantage for taking them to Challenger was their cutoff for entering kindergarten was the end of September where the other districts was September 1st. So with Anna's birthday being September 26th it would be easier getting her into Challenger. Or so I thought. When I contacted Challenger I found out they had a very long waiting list. Since we didn't expect them to get in there we decided to do early testing for Anna so she could go to Entz. While we were waiting to hear back from Mesa, we got a call that Anna had been drawn in the lottery for admittance to Challenger (later I found out there were over a hundred names on that list). They still didn't have a spot for Aiden, but I went ahead and signed Anna up. Aiden was going to have an incredible teacher at Highland Park, a young, new, male teacher that everyone wanted so I was okay with having him go with me. But just a week before school started Challenger called and a spot had opened up for Aiden. We left the decision up to Aiden and he wanted to go to school with Anna so we enrolled him at Challenger as well.

Even though it has only been a couple of weeks, I know that everything happens for a reason. Challenger is an amazing school and we are very fortunate that Aiden and Anna are able to go there. Anna has learned so much already and she has made lots of new friends. She loves her teacher and art class! The first few days I picked her up she was beyond exhausted. It is a very long day and with everything they do she is drained when she comes home. But after a quick snack she is ready to do her homework and always finds the energy to play with her friends. I have been concerned that she will have some difficulty because she is only 4 but her teacher emailed me after the first week and said she is doing great! Aiden is also doing amazing and is absolutely thriving in school. The very structured enviornment and back to basics academic approach is a great fit for him. He told me on day 4, "I love my new school, I never want to leave. I love the math, writing and reading!" But even with all that love he was still struggling with following the class rules. Unfortunately for Aiden he was given my gift of gab and he has a difficult time sitting still and not talking to everyone around him. In his class when you break a rule you have to turn your card. So for one offense you turn it to yellow, for a second red, etc. He was able to get a green card the first day (I found out later that it was probably because the teacher didn't turn any students card the first day :) but then every day after he came home with a yellow or red card. I knew he was doing his very best but a lot of it is just his genetic makeup. So on day 6 I took him into my bedroom before school and had him kneel down with me and we said a prayer that he would be able to do well, stay still and focused and be able to control his need to talk. When I picked him up that day he was beside himself. He ran over to me and shouted "I got a green card"! On the way home we talked about what he did differently and he said "I prayed". He truly had a testimony of the power of prayer. He knew he was successful because he asked for Heavenly Fathers help. In that moment I was just as grateful for Aiden's abundant faith as I was for his green card. Everyday since he has reminded me that we need to have our morning prayer together. One morning we were in the car on the way to school when he remembered. I told him to go ahead and say his prayer while I was driving and he thought that was just great. Last week he got 4 out of 5 green cards! That's better than most of last year :) Each and everyday I asked him why he was able to do so well and he answered the same, "because I prayed".

Girls Camp

When I purchased the Cricut with my hard earned birthday money I promised a portion of the machine to my mom as her Mother's Day present! Well, she cashed in that promise when she asked me to help her decorate pillow cases for her young women going to girls camp. We had seen on an infomercial that the Cricut can cut fabric. So I googled for tips and found a nicely made You Tube video demonstrating the "how to". For the Cricut blade to cut the fabric you need to iron on "Seam 2 Seam" (iron on transfer paper) to the wrong side of the fabric. Depending on the fabric it typically works best if you put the fabric side down, as the blade cuts smoother through the iron on paper. But if you do this than you have to flip your image. Of course when cutting over a 100 letters there were plenty of mistakes and costly errors along the way but we eventually found what worked best. The fabric type we chose had a hard time sticking to the Cricut mat so we had to do the transfer paper down and fabric side up. In order for this to work we had to replace the needle twice because once it became dull it snagged the fabric as it cut. After completing this project (28 pillow cases total!) I have officially decided that the Cricut should not be used to cut fabric in bulk! One little cupcake or lady bug here and there is fine but it wasn't made to reproduce a 150 fabric letters!

Their girls camp theme was "In Tune" and each ward had a musical for their ward's theme. My mom's was Annie. She came up with the very clever "The sun'll come out tomorrow..." to add to the pillow case. For that we used the Cricut to cut the words on freezer paper (found in the aisle next to foil and plastic wrap). The shiny side of the freezer paper acts as a temporary adhesive when it is ironed. So I cut 24 stencils with this quote and the girls ironed it to their pillow case and then painted it. After it dries you just peel off the stencil and throw it away. Again this was time consuming so unless you have lots and lots of time (as I was fortunate to have since I was off work for the summer) it is not recommened for large projects!

My mom also had us make drawstring backpacks for each girl. She brought me one that was done by the previous YW president in her ward and I also googled and found step by step instructions on a very helpful website
The backpacks are very simple to make and turned out darling. I may make these again as a gift bag for Anna's birthday. To add the name to each backpack we used fabric iron on transfer paper than can go through an inkjet printer. We were able to print each girls name on this paper and then cut them into little squares. After we ironed them onto the backpack I just stitched around the name. I am not the best seamstress so if I can do this anyone can.

All in all I was so excited to have the time to help my mom and of course I love crafting so it was fun to have a project. I know her girls appreciated everything she did for them and of course that makes it all worth it. My mom is a great example of fulfilling her calling to the max and I know she gave her girls a memorable camp expeirence. She is the busiest person in the world and she still goes beyond what is asked of her. The theme of my blog "Our Very Best" comes from a talk given by President Hinckley when he said "When I say do your best, I mean your very best. You are capable of so much more." I know my mom follows this advice as she always 110% to everything she does.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Best of Summer 2009

So as my summer begins its, much to quick, descent to my life being over I am reflecting on how amazing it has been while it lasted! As you can see by my previous entry San Diego was definitely the highlight of the summer; however, I can't underestimate the days filled with absolute nothing! My number one goal this summer was to be useless. Like one big relaxing vacation at a Spa minus the facials, massages and pedicures and plus the energetic, sassy and bored kids.

Some of my favorite useless moments of Summer 2009:

1. Reading, reading, reading! I haven't read much since last summer when I finished up the Twilight series. Although, those books were written for high school girls they were the most captivating books I had read for awhile and it was difficult to find anything else that held my attention. My favorite books are typically historical fiction (i.e. The Red Tent, The Other Boleyn Girl, Memoirs of a Geisha and Pillars of the Earth to name a few) but I haven't come across any lately that are worth my time. My father-in- law, Dan, introduced me to Harlan Coben (suspense novelist) and although my life is not enriched by these books I can't stop reading them! I have read three of them in the last month! They are definitely page turners and although some of the books struggled with a well correlated ending they are still entertaining!

Presently, I am reading the sequel to Pillars of the Earth, the World Without End. So far it is pretty good but just a warning to those interested, the book definitely has rated R content so I should probably not be recommending (or reading) it! However, the story takes place in the Medieval times and they didn't know any better! Hopefully you will agree that the offensive material can be overlooked...???

2. Cricut, Cricut, Cricut! For my birthday I was able to get a Cricut Expression. This is the best invention ever! If you are a school teacher or scrapper you have probably used the lovely die cut machines with the blocks where you press down the handle and it cuts the paper one shape at a time. . . Well, the Cricut cuts the paper electronically with just the push of a button! Cutting shapes and letters onto paper or vinyl isn't even the coolest part. By Googling Cricut ideas I have discovered on other blogs it also cuts fabric and you can make these cool stencils using freezer paper and then use the stencils to make cute custom shirts. (I will attach information on these tips and techniques or show you myself at a later date!). I have learned so much cool stuff that I have yet to finish one project before I start another (hence useless moment #2). Fortunately, my "bat cave" as Trent calls my craft room, is right next to the playroom, so my overly dependent kids will play for hours so long as I am nearby and I can just craft away! Plus when they have friends over I get to eavesdrop on all of their conversations because they think I am too busy to be paying attention!

The only problem I have with the Cricut is I have to do stuff for other people (mom) because I told them all the cool things it does. So my only non-useless moments all summer have been spent cranking out crazy projects for my mom to take to girls camp (more on that later).

3. Swimming, swimming, swimming! I have never had a swimming pool before and since I am not much of a swimmer anyway I haven't ever cared. But now that I have children I know that having a swimming pool is the best thing ever! Thanks to great swim teachers (and living at the beach in Hawaii) my kids are awesome swimmers and they love it! So whenever they start whining about how bored they are and how they have no friends (thanks to the Cardon's being in Del Mar for 3 1/2 weeks) they are easily swayed when I let them go swimming. And this actually helps me reach my goal of absolute uselessness because I have no intention of getting in the pool myself and since I have to be out there to supervise I have another opportunity to sit around and read (while I watch them of course!).

4. Grey's, Grey's, Grey's! I have been listening to people talk about Grey's Anatomy for the last 5 seasons and I have felt very left out! So I decided to take action. Since summer began, I have rented the series, one disc at a time, starting with season 1. My first impression was, what is all the hype??? But I can't stop watching it! I am now on season 4 and like all those that came before me, I am hooked. I have wasted more time on this show this summer than probably anything else so this should have been useless summer moment #1!

5. Food, food, food! What else goes hand in hand with laziness then getting fat! Not that I can blame all of my latest weight gain on this summer (I was already at a steady incline since moving back to AZ last summer) but this summer has definitely added the last 5 okay 10 pounds! The ironic part is I actually started the summer on Weight Watchers and lost 6 pounds, than Mission Beach happened and a pound of peanut M&M's later and I am right back up where I started plus some...OHHHHH the frustration of being a yo-yo dieter. I have long come to realize that of all of the problems a person can have in their life being chubby is probably one of the better ones. After all I still have a really hot husband who thinks I'm not so bad, we have amazing healthy children and a roof over our heads. Plus the eating part that makes me fat is really fun. All in all, a lot of the memories and useless moments of this summer included food! I will always remember that our family went through 8 (1 lb) bags of peanut M&Ms in a week! But as the summer comes to an end hopefully so will my binge eating (or at least I will try my very best :)!

Thursday, July 16, 2009


This year we spent the 4th of July in San Diego! We went with my parents, Christian and Emily and their cutie pie baby, Paisley. My parents rented a beach house (thanks mom and dad) just a few feet from the beach and we spent pretty much every minute living as complete beach bums. It was very relaxing and went by way to fast.

With the bad economy and its effects on the Bevier household, we tried to make this trip as cheap as possible! The kids were pretty good about just hanging out around the house and on the beach but there were a few "I'm bored" moments. Fortunately we have the internet and a fabulous tool named Google. We found some places nearby that we had never been before. One such place is the Birch Aquarium in La Jolla. It is very reasonably priced and there is plenty of interesting sea life to check out. The kids loved seeing the sharks and learning how shark babies are born. Anna was a little disappointed that she did not see an octopus but we were told the chances were slim considering its a nocturnal animal. She quickly recovered when she saw Dori and Nemo. Another day we ventured over to the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center in Balboa Park. It was something to do but I don't think we will go back. It is a little pricey and it only entertained everyone for about 30 minutes. We were going to go to the history museum while we were there but its also very pricey and we weren't sure how many exhibits the kids would actually be interested to see. Trent and I thought walking around the Park (which is free!) was the best part of the day. The grounds are beautiful and the architecture is amazing. The kids whined the whole time to go home so next time we will definetly go without them! To make it up to the kids for that "very boring" outing we took them to Belmont Park (located on one end of Mission Beach).The area has changed quite a bit since the last time I was there and the kids loved the overpriced 3 minute rides. We also met the Rodriguez family (friends we made while living in Hawaii) at Belmont and that was very cool! We all pigged out on "carnival" type food and played games in the arcade. Trent and Roslyn (age 11) rode the roller coaster while Olivia and I supervised the younger kids driving bumper cars. I was very disappointed that I was unable to ride the roller coaster because I love rides that were made in the early 1900's, make lots of noise and go really fast...not.

All in all this is one of the most fun times we have had as a family in a long time. The kids had so much fun flying kites, feeding the birds and making sand castles. We also took a kayak (one of the many things provided by the rental we stayed in) over to the bay. Although its hard work, its very calming (that is until Aiden tipped it over and I fell into the freezing water). My parents, Trent and I spent nearly every night playing dominoes (Mexican Train) and I won almost every hand (fun for me not so much for anyone else). And of course the highlight of the trip was having little miss Paisley Belle there. She is absolutely adorable and has such a darling personality. We couldn't get enough of her. I think Christian and Emily thought the novelty of having a baby around would wear off but none of us could keep our hands (or lips) off of her!

As awesome as it was to be in SD with our newest Fluhr it did not go unnoticed that there was another Fluhr missing. Last time we all went to SD together Clint was there. He was always so quiet and just chilled (typically had his Ipod in his ears) but he was always there. That last trip we had stayed in this tiny 2 bedroom and Clint had to sleep on the couch. He had absolutely no space of his own as the kids watched TV on his "bed" first thing every morning and everyone hung out in his "room" until late at night. He was such a good sport about it and never complained. One of my fondest San Diego memories is having Clint on that couch. During this trip I kept imagining Clint would be on the couch when I came downstairs (which was where he would have had to sleep since we took all the rooms again)!

In memory of Clint, Christian had shirts made with the logo Clint designed of his initials (he had it tatooed on his back). Christian thought it would be cool if we all wore our shirts for a family picture. I wasn't crazy about the idea but I am really glad we did it. It was the best way we could include Clint in our latest family photo.

I am really proud of my parents for planning this trip. There have been and continues to be many firsts without Clint and this was our first trip back to California as a family without him. I know it is not easy for them and they work really hard to find joy after their loss. I can say they are definetly doing their very best.

So I caved...

I was kind of against this whole blog idea for many reasons but after blog stalking everyone else and finding all sorts of good ideas, funny stories and recorded memories... I caved. I don't know how often I will update this and I can't promise it will be exciting or enlightening but I now concur (always trying to find a good time to use that word) that its a fun way to record all of the craziness around me (like one of the kids screaming in the background as I write this) and compile everything in one spot. So since this is my first day of this blogging stuff I thought I should do a quick update/bio...

1. I just turned 30 (some may think that's sad I think its whatever).
2. I am married to literally the best guy ever...Trent Bevier.
3. We have two kids: Aiden-7 in August and Anna-5 in September
4. Aiden is going into 2nd grade and is funny, sensitive, energetic, dramatic and very clever (not always a good thing).
5. Anna is starting kindergarten and is also very funny, sassy, dramatic, cuddly, cute as a button and she has an accent like she's from back east.
6. I am working as a Speech Technician (lame title for a bachelor's level speech therapist).
7. I love love love my job!!!!!
8. I am going back to school in August to ASU to get my masters in Communication Disorders (then I will lose my lame title and get my cool new title- Speech Pathologist!)
9. I love to do lots of typical things like read, watch TV, talk and craft.
10. I am definitely not going to win mother of the year any time soon, I often speak before I think, I don't always return phone calls, nothing I craft is ever good enough to sell, I swear occasionally and I gossip too much but overall I am in a place in my life where I feel like I am doing my very best and that's good enough for me!