Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Modmum Contest!

I wanted to share a product link for Modmum. They have the cutest baby slings.

I think I would take a small and I like the Madison, Emma and Chole designs. They are all way cute. Check them out!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Thanksgiving getaway in Durango, Colorado

Man, Thanksgiving was awesome. Amy and I went to Durango, Colorado to an award-winning b&b called Apple Orchard Inn. It actually wasn't terribly expensive; the place was top-notch; and we were treated like royalty. Since Amy and I don't really have family here in Utah (other than a sister of mine and her extended family), we wanted to do something fun and unique without having to drive or fly all the way to Texas or Kentucky -- where our families both live.

We'd heard about this bed and breakfast and -- from the photos we saw -- we fell in love with it. It's nestled in the beautiful San Juan mountains of Durango, CO...it's as picturesque as can be. Lovely rocky mountains covered with evergreen-conifer trees, water falls, little rivers, streams, rapids, etc... and quaint & idyllic farms with fat animals and beautiful fruit orchards are EVERYWHERE. Durango is a snow ski/tourist town, and it's simply one of the loveliest places to visit in all of North America.


Here's the cottage Amy and I stayed in. It had a nice country front porch with a swing and two rocking chairs.



Our cottage was called "Wolf River".



Here's the view from our front porch. There are about eight cottages, I think. Ours was at the end of the cul-de-sac. Towards the left (but out of view) is a duck pond and the main house.



This is the view of the duck pond and the main house directly across from our front door. The dining area is there on the left side of the house behind that tree. It has floor-to-ceiling windows on all sides, except for the kitchen side. The owners, Celeste and Jon, live in that house, and they rent out several of the rooms in the house for people who'd rather do that than rent a full cottage.

Your breakfast or dinner is cooked for you right when you walk into the dining area and sit down. We had apple pie on Thanksgiving, as well as Belgian waffles topped with cinnamon apples that were grown right there on the orchard. There are apple trees on the entire premises, along with aspen and fir trees.

Everything is from scratch and is gourmet, as Celeste received culinary training in Europe.

While you eat, you can talk with other visitors and watch the ducks, mule deer, and hummingbirds feed outside right from the dining area.



This is the west side of the facade of Wolf River. There's a stony creek (that is connected to the duck ponds) that runs in front of each cottage.


Wooden bridges pass over the stony creek in front of every cottage. This place was right out of a Thomas Kinkade painting.



A duck pond and the "back 40" of the orchard behind our cottage. Mule deer were constantly playing, foraging, and bedding down back there. Elk and Black Bear sometimes pass through also, though not very often.



On the southeast side of our cottage was this cottage and the view of the main house to the right.



Apple Orchard Inn was perfect for just meditating and kicking back.



Amy's version of heaven was hanging out in a bath robe by the fireplace, her skin smothered in baby oil or lotion, and kicking back with a book on an oversized wicker easy chair. That fireplace was so warm we had to turn it off every hour or so. She was never far from her favorite chair. The girl was lovin' life.



See what I mean?



Just when you thought things couldn't get more perfect, it started snowing on Thanksgiving Day around 12:30 in the afternoon. The whole scene epitomized holiday coziness.





Amy and I decided to go out and brave the snow for an afternoon tea. Celeste bakes delicious cookies every day, and so we headed over to her kitchen to swipe a few.



About two or three hours later, this is what it looked like outside. This apple tree was completely covered about an hour before Thanksgiving Dinner. It continued snowing well into the night.



Awwwww yeahhhh! The private hot tub on the patio. Ours was the only cottage to have a private one. What a perfect getaway only six hours from home.



Amy was loving it.



She took many more pictures with her newer, nicer SLR. She'll be posting those soon, hopefully.

And finally, here's a video. There are more videos we took, but they need to be rotated 90 degrees...anyone know how to do that? Some are also over 100MB (Blogger only allows up to that size). Any suggestions for posting those?

video

More soon!

Amy's Halloween Costume


I'll let her explain.

BYU Football home games

So, Amy and I went to some BYU football games this season. We were 11 and 1 before we played Utah last week. Booooo!!!!

We were at the NM and San Diego games...and kicked trash. Nothing like BYU football home games.

Here we are in the north end zone for the SD game. I've uploaded a video too.

People kept asking me what I was doing in the stadium in civilian clothes instead of being in uniform with helmet and pads...I don't know what their problem was. I guess they saw that I was obviously all ripped up under my hoodie and thought that I should have been on the field sacking SD's quarterbacks. It happens...




video

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Oil Changes

Seriously, is it that I am way behind on getting an oil change that I have missed the jump in price? Does anyone know of a place that is cheaper than $30-45?

Monday, November 24, 2008

Tips for Healthy Snacking

I can't tell you how much I love this site. It is such a cute idea. You can just cruise the site yourself or do it for like an FHE activity or something.

http://www.licensetosnack.com/

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Gratitudes

*you are getting the short version, my journal gets the long version :-)

20th - learning opportunities

21st - a season that helps you to focus on what you are grateful for. it REALLY helps sometimes

22nd - friends who you know you can hang out with and you know they won't try to compromise your standards or put in situations that are uncomfortable

23rd- the Plan of salvation, forgiveness and hope that our Savior brings

24th- half days of work ;-)

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

I am thankful for......

18th - getting to use gift cards on things that you want and don't really need :-)

19th - Advil, Kleenex, heating pads, hats, naps .....

*yeah, I know this is a lame one, but they are self explanatory and I really am thankful for them*

Monday, November 17, 2008

I've got some catching up to do...

OK I am behind on posting my "gratefuls" but I will give you the short version so you all aren't bored to death with reading a 25 paragraph post.....

10th - I am grateful for opportunities that surround us all the time. Sometimes it takes a little nudging from the Spirit to recognize them. Sometimes as we work really hard we finally see them. And sometimes, you see them all along. How great is it to know that you can "be-do-have" anything you want!

11th - I am grateful for such a wonderful family. I absolutely LOVE my siblings and parents and we are so close. I couldn't imagine life without them.

12th - the Internet. 'nough said :-)

13th - I can't remember if I said this or not but, whatever. I really am grateful for people who work hard at sharing their talents. There are so many wonderful programs out there from people to have followed their mission and passion and touch people's lives everyday.

14th - I am so thankful for long distance friends. :-) They don't seem so long distance when I can look at their blogs, call, chat, email etc. I love it!

15th - I love it that Dusty just chips in and helps when I need him to and even just because he wants to. He is so great about that. He never complains and really wants to share the load that's on my shoulders. There is nothing more sexy than your husband with an apron on or a vacuum in his hand. Yeah Baby!! haha Just kidding........kind of :-)

16th - Friends who feel comfortable enough to touch my husbands underwear, discuss it and then request that I go get mine so we can discuss that too. Priceless friendship.....you know who you are ;-)

17th - Pictures. I love having pictures that will tell stories and help you treasure memories for years to come!

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Sunday Gratitude

Today I am grateful for people who reach beyond what others would consider limitations. We had an amazing blind piano player in Sacrament today and it touched me so deeply. Not only the song and the Spirit that it brought but what it meant for the piano player to accomplish such a task and what it meant for his challenges and triumphs in his life. I learned a great lesson today and I am grateful for that.

I am also grateful to have no-pressure relationships in my life. I LOVE the kinds of friends where I can actually be myself. I love the kinds of friends where you can talk about whatever is on your mind and not be judged. I am thankful for laughter and wholesome fun. I am thankful for listening ears and empathetic hearts. I am grateful for the strong women in my life who teach me everyday. (just in case you didn't know if you are a woman and you are reading this blog, that probably means you!) I have been blessed with many people in my life where I can just be myself. They are spread out all over the country (and in other countries) and I know they are just a call, chat, blog away :-)

I am thankful for the great power and testimony that can come from honoring the Sabbath. I am thankful that even though nowhere around me had a hymn book on Sunday and I forgot my own hymnal that I knew the words to all the songs in Sacrament on Sunday. To me that was a real blessing. I LOVE to sing the hymns and I felt an extra need to sing on Sunday and was able to do it with ease.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Just Humor Me....

When ever you go to a restaurant (or at home) and you ask/get something on the side like salad dressing, butter, sour cream etc., why do you do this? Do you end up using all of it any way? Is it a way to still get the flavor but not intake as many calories? Is it just a habit? Why did you develop the habit?......

Like I said I really want you to humor me. Really take a moment to think about the psychological reasoning behind his. (I do it too so you will get my answer later.) I want to hear from you. I am doing a study of sorts and I think you all can provide some great feedback. Thanks!

Friday, November 07, 2008

Week of Gratefuls

I have to do this by the week.... So, here goes.

Saturday - I am thankful for the warm home that I have, the abundance of food on my shelves. I am thankful for a mindful Heavenly Father that blesses me even if I am not doing my very best...He knows my heart and my potential. I am thankful for that!

Sunday - I am grateful that Heavenly Father doesn't compare us to each other. I can't even explain how grateful I am for that. He loves me just as he loves you. Wow! I know that I am a special person with unique talents and gifts. I have a mission here on earth that is mine and mine alone. Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ are there every step of the way and they love me for me!!

Monday
- I am grateful for chapstick! Yes, chapstick. It feels so good when your lips are dry and cracked to put a good ol' coating of chapstick on them!! Ahhhhh

Tuesday - Good books that inspire. The library has been my best friend. I LOVE reading and am such a book nerd. I thoroughly enjoy visiting the library and spending a lot of time there. Of course, the best book can be read at home, the Book of Mormon. :0)

Wednesday - I was glad to be able to exercise my right to vote. It was a great privilege. Even though my choice wasn't picked, my vote did count. Probably more on this later....

Thursday - Cozy...I love Cozi, the online organizer (thanks Heather). I love KOSY 106.5. And I love getting comfy, cozy as soon as I get home and snuggling up with my sweetie after a long hard day.

Friday - I am grateful for the feeling you get after a great workout. I went to the gym everyday this week and it feels GREAT! Not seeing the results I want yet, ;-) but it's great to be taking the steps towards a goal.

Saturday - (skipping a head a day...) I am thankful for giving people. I want to be more of a giving person. I do my best, but I could do a whole lot better. I am grateful for the example of my mother and mother-in-law and so many others around me who are exemplary people and who serve with all their hearts. (someone gave us BYU football tickets for tomorrow's game...and it sparked the thought...)

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Teaching Kids About $ Moola $

I think that this is a topic that our generation and every generation before us got gypped. I am not blaming it on our parents, cause they didn't learn it in the home either. I am a lot more aware of things that I want to teach my children as I grow. This is a great article that helps you break the topic of money, savings, value etc. down to children's ages and helps you see what you can be teaching and letting them experience them even as young as 1-2 years old.

I love any article that helps us take big topics and break it down into stages for parents and makes learning fun. Enjoy!

Friday, October 31, 2008

The Best Book in the World!

OK. So I might be a little biased! :-) I just wanted to share with you all a comment that Dusty received via email. It is from a customer that bought his book and emailed him with feedback. This is one of many emails that Dusty has received from people giving him positive feedback. I am so proud of him for just doing whatever it took to make this dream of his a reality. He worked so hard to bring this about. He doesn't give himself enough credit for all that he as done.

Dear Mr. Rhoads,

I received a copy of your book yesterday as a gift and had read the entire volume by night's end. Much like yourself, I became fascinated with Bogertophis subocularis as a child after reading Carl Kauffield's legendary Snakes: The Keeper and the Kept. For most of my life, however, I had neither the financial means nor the know-how necessary to acquire and keep this beautiful creature.

I recently welcomed into this world my first son—a son to whom I hope to impart a curiosity and compassion for all living things, and, in particular, snakes. Ultimately, I realized there would be no better species with which to introduce my son to the majesty of the serpents than a Trans Pecos Rat Snake; thus, approximately two weeks ago, I took possession of my first subocularis, a yearling female.

I would like to thank you for The Complete Subocularis. It is without question the finest species-specific text I have ever read, and I am already beginning to put many of the book's lessons—such as the creation of a naturalistic terrarium—to work. Your passion for the elegant snake we both love is evident throughout your book, and I'd like to thank you once again for publishing such an important addition to the snake lover's literary canon.

Best wishes,

Jason F.

Champaign, Illinois

Monday, October 27, 2008

Warning: It's very hard to watch

I was sent this video by a friend and battled a little on whether or not to post it. I had a hard time deciding because it was difficult to watch and listen to. I wept as I watched it but decided in the end it is the reality of the evils we face and courage needs to take the place of fear and to stand for truth and light. It is way past time that we each strive to educate ourselves on the issues of the world and work relentlessly in our own way to fight.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VIdbYjmbFzo

Friday, October 24, 2008

Argh Maties

Booty Call ….Whoo! Whoo! Oh. I mean Booty Re-Call

Shiver me timbers! This just in! Candy company recalls pirate foil-coin wrapped candy just in time for Halloween. Check your maties bags for these and toss them into old Davy Jones’s Locker. And when your little Buccaneers are up in arms and ask, "Blimey! Who be you to take away me booty? Blaggard!" Make it up to them by throwin' in an extra ration of grog and grub for the night :-)





Thursday, October 23, 2008

Country Table Cloth

Anybody got any ideas where I can find a real country looking/feeling table cloth? It's a little harder than I thought trying to find one. (even seasonal ones) If you have any ideas, please post them. Gracias.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

America, are you REALLY ready to go down the long, sad, self-destructive road of socialism?

♪♫ ♪♫ Oh when, oh when will Americans wake up? Oh, when will they wake the freak up? ♪♫

I'm staggered that Barrack Husein Obama is actually winning in the poles. Here's a person who is a Marxist, who wants to take our Second Ammendment rights away to own and bear arms, who wants to socialize America, etc. etc. and he's ahead?! Are you kidding me?!

Ya know, I'm really lucky that I had the oppurtunity to live in a country that was scarred by the devastating effects of socialism. I served a mission in Chile (formerly the Socialist Republic of Chile) for two years. The corruption just doesn't go away...it's as simple as that. Once a country starts down the path of socialized medicine, jobs, food, clothing, housing, etc. -- people collectively have a hard time going back the other way. The country never really seems to recover and people expect more and more and more ....of what the goverment says is "free".

It's like Jeffrey R. Holland said:

"Brethren, part of my warning voice tonight is that this will only get worse. It seems the door to permissiveness...swings only one way. It only opens farther and farther; it never seems to swing back. Individuals can choose to close it, but it is certain, historically speaking, that public appetite and public policy will not close it. No, in the moral realm the only real control you have is self-control."

But most people who live here in the USA are spoiled...they have NO idea what it's like to live in a socialized nation. They're completely ignorant of the social, political, and moral decay that comes from such a corrupt system!

Socialism is almost like a flavor of the month here...something new and "cool" to try out...it's like an EXTREMELY addicting, dangerous drug that an ignorant, naive teenager is willing to try.

So, since so many naive people seem to be just begging for a hit of socialism -- as a little taste, here's just one example, if you will, of the typical kind of oppression that those who once embraced a socialist regime experience every day of their waking lives. Just a recent news clip that I saw as I was at the airport recently...

****************************
For the first time ever, Cuban citizens can purchase personal computers. There’s only one model available and it’s priced too high for most Cubans (and it’d seem like a downright rip-off to most Americans), but this is a good start nonetheless.

The computer is a QTECH PC and costs just under $800. It’s got a Celeron processor, 80GB hard drive, 512MB of RAM, Windows XP, CRT monitor, and a DVD drive. By comparison, according to the Associated Press, “For about $80 less, buyers in the U.S. can get a desktop with more than twice the memory, an 80GB SATA hard drive and 22-inch LCD flat screen monitor.
The Cuban PCs will be sold in government-run electronic stores and will primarily be used for limited gaming and things like word processing and schoolwork. Internet access is still a big no-no in Cuba, though. According to the AP

Except for some trusted officials and state journalists, most Cubans are banned from accessing the Internet at home. So many of these new computers may never be connected to the Web.
Some people buy limited e-mail access on the black market, usually sharing an account with the authorized holder, who usually works for the state. Even if they could access the Web, Cubans can’t shop on line because they don’t have credit cards.

Computers have apparently been available on the black market for a while in Cuba for roughly the same price, but those prices may fall now that buying computers is legal. The bigger issue is the price of the machines.

The average state salary in Cuba is less than $20 per month, although “most Cubans have access to extra income through jobs with foreign firms, tips from working in tourism or money sent by relatives living abroad.”
******************************
There you have it...now, does that sound like a flavor you want to try?

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Sicky Wicky

Dusty and I are both sick puppies! He got a cold or the flu last week and gave it to me and we are not good. It sucks when you are both sick. We are miserable! But, at least it's not something worse and we know it will pass; eventually ;-)

Marie-Therese Gown GIVEAWAY !!!!!!!

Marie-Therese Gown GIVEAWAY !!!!!!!

You HAVE to go and check out this blog giveaway. This lady is BEYOND talented and is giving away the most gorgeous dress / costume I have ever seen. And she made it! She put so much heart and soul into this dress just to turn around and give it away. So amazing. So talented.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Don't even know what to put htere....

I just read this article today. I am angered, disgusted and totally in awe that this would happen. A San Fransisco FIRST GRADE classroom was taken on a field trip. Where were they taken? Why would a field trip be so bad? Because they went to their gay teacher's wedding!!!! Yes. A first grade classroom took a school-sponsored field trip to their gay teachers wedding. The school said that they saw it as a good "teaching moment". I think what floors me most of all is that it was the parent's idea to go in support of their teacher. Only two children's parents wouldn't let their kids go. The other kids were there with Vote No on Prop 8 buttons on their shirts. The children were interviewed of what they thought of the wedding, marriage and love.

Typically kids love their teachers. They want to please them. Kids do their best for them. For the school system to take the same-gender marriage thing this far ( and it will ONLY get worse) is sickening. It only creates confusion on these innocent little children. As the article states, this is complete and deliberate indoctrination of our children. I am glad that I have been exposed to alternate schooling methods from books like Thomas Jefferson Education. I am in no way satisfied with just sticking my kids in a public school because that's the way it's been before. I have NO idea what I / we will do when our kids come along and are at that age but I want to really start researching all of my options now.

Dusty and I were talking over lunch today about this a little bit. We think that sometimes people think that because this time in our history has been prophesied about people think that it's going to come no matter what. It will only come if good people do nothing and stay silent. This issue is not about diversity. It's not about tolerance. Same-gender marriage is a perversion of our human bodies. It goes against the law of nature and fails to continue or sustain human life.

I am sorry about blogging so much about this issue lately. I am sorry it even has to be discussed. Here is the link to that article. I want to hear your thoughts!! I also want to challenge everyone again to support the church financially and with your time to help fight this battle.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

That old Devil Complacency

Now, I realized that -- before I even started typing -- this isn't going to be one of those posts that is popular. Nobody's going to be telling me how nice we looked in recent photos or how cute my unborn children will be...none of that nice, gushy stuff...but whatever. It is what it is. :-)

Turns out, Amy is asleep, and I couldn't fall asleep, and I've been awake just thinking about the present state of things going on in the world...basically, the human condition.

It started as I was thinking about Proposition 8 and that whole mess in California...you wonder how that is even a question. I mean, we need to define marriage? Really?! You know, I didn't think 28 was that old, but gee whiz, I don't even have kids yet myself; I'm not even finished with school myself, and yet, when I was a kid in the '80s and early '90s, such a predicament in our legislature wasn't even a whisper of a thought...and now look where we're at. Wow...my elementary education must really be stone age -- that is, if those who would vote no to Prop8 are right.

But that's not even where I was going with all of this...I wanted to talk about complacency.

I think complacency's older brother is prosperity, or at least comfortable prosperity. Of course, prosperity is intrinsically good, in and of itself. We all want it, and God has told us that He wants to bless us with it. But when we prosper, we as a human race, tend to forget Who it was who gave us what we have, and we take those blessings for granted.

In particular, I'm thinking about our current economical status in the U.S.A., but you can see the complacency everywhere, and I mean everywhere. Even in my field of study (conservation biology), I see how prevalent it is...we're losing clean water, clean air, healthy soils, many species of plants and animals at a pace 100 - 1000 times faster than the usual extinction rate -- including some very key species to our own survival (like bees and other pollinators of our farmlands, for example). Basically, we're chewing up many of the earth's resources before they have time to recover.

I wonder how this nation will react or respond if things get much worse, economically. In a way, I would almost welcome hard times...I see how people in this nation seem to expect prosperity. They expect to get x, y, and z every day of the week. It's when we start expecting things, be it "free" health care, a job, happiness, you fill in the blank...that we start to play with some dangerous slippery slopes of society (say that five times fast! :-) Ha!).

A favorite quote of mine is from Aldo Leopold. He said that "there are two spiritual dangers in not owning a farm. One is the danger of supposing that breakfast comes from the grocery, and the other that heat comes from the furnace." Boy, was he right!

On the other hand, I fear that the present climate of this nation isn't spiritually prepared for devastating economic troubles.

All of this expecting this and that from the "government" can be heard everywhere. And that's just it! People say that "the government should provide free health care". I'd like to ask those people just who (or what) they think the "government" is...well, I can tell you. It's YOU! We live in the freest nation in the world, but we're losing our freedoms because people somehow think that the "government" is some sort of detached all-powerful entity (almost like a parent) that feeds us and clothes us -- and does everything else for us -- when we whine loud enough.

And by thinking that way, the people, in essence, hand over the deed, the keys to their home -- and every other power that is theirs -- over to the "government". In a nutshell, the master (i.e. the people) ALLOWS the servant (i.e. those whom WE have elected to serve US and to make and uphold OUR laws) to waltz in, take over our property, and take command, and we then become like the dependent baby who has to whine to get what used to be his.

And when a nation begins to expect "free" health care and other services, socialism starts looking really enticing to many of those people, and too often, the people hastily choose to do what appears as easy, as opposed to what is right. If I hire someone to manage certain affairs for me, I'm not asking him to take charge and responsibility for my life, but this is EXACTLY what people do who think the government is something more than what it was originally "hired" to do.

In conclusion of writing this, my main hope is that we strive to live in a way that doesn't shirk our stewardship or forfeit our freedom and responsibility to mere hired servants...every person's own conscience is his or her own best conscience.

'Nough said for one late night...

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Best Way to Donate?

Below are some links and resources for you to read and really try to understand the implications of Proposition8 and the ramifications of same-gender marriages. I still try to understand how and why our world has gotten so backwards. But the time was told when good will be called evil and evil be called good. Even though it is hard for me to understand I do realize that it is my duty as a "mother" and family member to stand for truth and fight for righteousness and freedom.

I truly believe that we have been held back to come forth in a time where our strength as Children of God would be tested beyond comprehension and our faith tested to the very end. If we stay silent and ignorant we forfeit not only blessings that come to the faithful and righteous but we forfeit the opportunity that could have come to us if we would but stand for something! When you are involved in a purpose greater than your own you grow and mature spiritually in indescribable ways . God is on our side. In the end Truth will prevail but it is our chance now to show our faith and strength and protect the family, protect the innocence of our children and fight for Truth.

Below are some resource links and one video (thanks, Heather and Robert). There are also many ways to volunteer. Join Facebook groups like "Protect California Marriage". Commit to being a volunteer through organizations like http://www.protectmarriage.com/volunteer, your Church, community etc. Seek out ways to be involved, there are many!

I have one question for you. We have been asked to impart of our means and time in any way that we can give to help protect the family and fight against Prop8. If we were to donate on our tithing slips, which would be the category that you would donate to? Or is there another way that is better? I challenge all of us to donate our funds and time to fight this battle. It's only the beginning. Now is the time to commit to stand for something and have your actions back up your words.

What are some other ways that that you have found we can fight in the battle?

http://newsroom.lds.org/ldsnewsroom/eng/commentary/california-and-same-sex-marriage

http://www.preservingmarriage.org/


http://www.protectmarriage.com/

http://www.whatisprop8.com/

Video
http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid1815820715?bctid=1822459319

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Quote from unlikely sources...

I heard a powerful quote yesterday from an unlikely source, Jim Carrey. We all know him for his crazy antics but he is a big believer in positive thinking and the power of the mind.

"You put out what you think you deserve." ~Jim Carrey

I can't agree with this more. We, as a human race, are the ones that limit ourselves. We limit our success. We don't allow ourselves to dream and think big. Even if you are asked to dream up your "perfect life" scenario we tend to dream big, but only what we think is possible to actually achieve. Why do we do this? Are we afraid that if we dream big and come short that it is a message loud and clear that "the voice" was right. Ya know, that "voice" that tells you you can't, that you're not good enough or that you are undeserving.

It takes time and continuous training to let your mind think big. This quote listed above is very real. If we think that we are undeserving our actions will inevitably lead us to underachieve and bring to pass those negative thoughts. Then we tell ourselves, "See. I told you so. I'm not good enough. I shouldn't have even tried."

However, if we take the mental approach of acting as if. Acting as if you are already where you want to be. Acting as if you already have that nice lifestyle, awesome job, business etc. Acting as if you have already accomplished whatever it is that you wanted to. I don't mean to spend money that you don't have or anything even remotely close to that. Just the opposite. Successful people think different than mainstream America, a lot different. Think successful thoughts. Treat yourself with more respect than you currently do and respect your time as well. Allow yourself to be conscious. Be conscious of what and how you eat, where your time goes, where your money goes, what is important to you, what your goals are etc. Live and act with a conscious purpose.

If we "put out what we think we deserve" and we think we are undeserving, then our actions will make us fall short, live unconsciously, have self defeating and berating thoughts or just live in plain confusion.

On the other hand. If we "put out what we think we deserve" and we know that we are deserving, great things happen. Our actions will lead us to success over time. Jim Carrey actually wrote himself a check for $5 million dollars. He made the check out to himself and carried it around in his wallet. When we got turned down or feeling low, he would pull that check out and he believed it.

Another quote is "energy flows where attention goes"...I want to say this is from James Ray. But it all relates to the same thing. If we concentrate on falling short, not being "good enough" and our attention is focused on the negative, we will get negative results and energy. However, the opposite is true as well.

I honestly believe that Heavenly Father wants to bless us beyond our comprehension. He tells us that in the scriptures. He wants us to show gratitude and recognize abundance. Begin this cycle of gratitude - abundance - blessings. Put it to the test. "....prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not dopen you the ewindows of heaven, and pour you out a fblessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it." ~ Malachi 3:10

You deserve it. I deserve it. Live consciously and see what will unfold. Dream big dreams. Think big thoughts----think HUGE! Stop listening to the voice and stop limiting yourself. You are worth it! Heavenly Father already knows it....He is just waiting for us to catch on!

Good Read

I just wanted to share this link from Oprah.com about the current financial crisis. I think we may know what it shares already but for some who might be a little confused or unsure, Click on the link and take a few minutes to read it.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

London and Scotland

This is a Church building in Hyde Park, London, England. I have always wanted to go to Hyde Park. It is so rich in history in and out of the Church. We all showed up at the conference late so we could go to Church service. We took a train and then walked, a lot, but finally arrived. We only stayed for sacrament meeting but that was enough for me. I felt so blessed that day.


This is a picture from Scotland from one of the main streets. Look how gorgeous the typical street it. I absolutely loved, loved, loved Scotland. I would rather go there than London any day. Both were fun but Scotland captured a place in my heart. Everything is old. Everything. The "new city" was built over 200 years ago. It was truly a magical place for me. My jaw literally dropped when I walked up the ramp out of the train station and saw the absolute beauty of Edinburgh. I will

Who doesn't love red phone booths?! You saw people taking pictures of them ALL of the time. This was in London. I took the picture and then messed with the colors to make it look like it was an animated picture. This totally reminded me of Harry Potter and made me more excited to go and see Platform 9 3/4 at Kings Crossing railway station. This picture was taken right before we got to Big Ben.

This is one picture of Edinburgh Castle. I took so many pictures. There are some that are much better but I just this one up as a teaser :-) The castle was so big. I had no idea it had so much in it; including the Crown Jewels. What a gorgeous place. I always like to take a moment and think about the people who were there when it was new so many hundreds of years ago. The castle has so much history and tradition.


So this is Big Ben! It was so cool for me to get to see it in person. I have seen it countless times in movies, plays and read about things that happened there. It is in Westminster, London and is even bigger than I thought it was. This is an extremely high traffic tourist spot but was a lot of fun to be in the mix right there in the middle of it in London.


This was a typical scene in Scotland. Real men wear skirts :-) It felt like I was back in time seeing men like this all around.


This was a sidewalk chalk artist (do they have an actual title?!) at Trafalgar Square. There was a huge celebration going on that day we were there and it was crazy!! People were everywhere. This totally reminded me of Mary Poppins. He was really good and was real animated with his talk and was singing. It was great.


This was the last full day in Scotland. It was such a wonderful way to end the trip. I remember walking up and down the beach in the open, cool air thinking about the fact that I had traveled to England and Scotland, two places I had always wanted to go but never thought I would visit. I had such amazing experiences. This was a great time to stop and meditate before the trip home. A perfect ending.

........more pictures to come.......

Labor Day at Mount Timpanogos




Yeah this is late but here are a few pictures of our time at Mt. Timp hiking. The whole area around there was so beautiful. We went for a drive afterward and it reminded me of Colorado. It was gorgeous.

Friday, October 03, 2008

Where do you look when you can't find your cell phone?

Why you look in the bottom of a cup full of water of course! Duh!

Yeah. I have no explanation for this. We couldn't find Dusty's cell phone one morning this week and he happened to pick up a cup of water and look in it and there ya go.... It had to of been in there all night. It was completely ruined.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Question of the century

OK. To all the girls out there, I want to hear from you. When I was doing that tagged thing I made a comment about not having a brand of jeans that I like. PLEASE tell me if you have found some jeans that you like. I used to be in love with Gap jeans but now I can't find any that I like. They discontinued the ones that I loved. Go figure. They discontinued my favorite bra too. The last one I had was cut off of me in my car accident in 2001. It was beyond repair. I saved it for weeks trying to fix it and I just couldn't because of how they cut it.

So, back to jeans:

Do you have any tips for jeans shopping?
What brands do you like?
What brands do you hate?

You are required to leave a comment :-)

Tagged

So I used to hate being tagged to do things but I don't know what has happened but I don't mind anymore. So, below is in response to being tagged by Marcie.

I am: cold
I think: about fitness a lot. To bad thinking about it just doesn't take care of it :-)
I know: everything will work out ok
I want: to learn how to use my new camera
I have: big dreams
I dislike: having to check the pockets of cargo pants that have 50,000 pockets before doing laundry….did I mention Dusty has a lot of cargo pants? Dang Nature Boy! ha ha
I miss: being around family and ALL my nieces and nephews
I fear: I will fall short of reaching some of my goals
I feel: like I am moving onwards and upwards
I hear: the crunching of ice. I HATE hearing that all day……
I smell: some yummy black raspberry vanilla oil spray
I crave: some white bean pasta soup and cornbread!
I cry: when I actually let myself feel my emotions
I usually: use humor to lighten things up
I search: ponder and pray
I wonder: what my life and family will be like.
I regret: not going after what I really want a little sooner
I love: fall weather
I care: about creating healthy habits
I always: have a to-do list. Seriously. Everyday. Ask Anyone.
I worry: all the time……
I am not: a quitter
I remember: having a WONDERFUL childhood full of family and laughs and smiles
I believe: that all things will work for our good
I dance: all of the time
I sing: to my husband
I dream: BIG
I argue: only if I feel REALLY strongly about something
I write: to understand what I really feel
I win: when I play Dusty in Uno and checkers! HA HA HA
I lose: at the stupid shocker game
I wish: I knew how many kids I will have and where we will end up living and and and and and ……..
I listen: to my instincts (and the Spirit)
I don't understand: why I can’t find a brand of jeans that I am in love with or even remotely like
I can usually be found: with a to-do list in my hand!!
I am scared: going hiking with Dusty and finding cougars or rattlesnakes or anacondas or whatever and he goes to play with it. (just kidding, but I am scared of hiking sometimes)
I need: to date my husband a lot!
I forget: things that happened like yesterday but I have great long term memory. So if you need to ask me something that happened yesterday, just ask me in a month or so
I am happy: because I know I am a Child of God

I tag: Melissa, Chauntel, Charla

BTW....

All of those lame little posts that I did were just to earn extra points for a blog giveaway that I didn't win!!!!!!! Thanks for getting my hopes up, Angela. Just kidding. Thanks for lookin out fo a sista!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

We all need help every now and then

I have noticed that some of you are in need of help in this arena and I want to give you a resource that is sure to give some tips and advice on how to control your young! lol Positive discipline for children is so important and we all need a little help every now and then. It's OK. Click on it.

Does this sound familiar?

"What do you want to do?"

"I don't know. What do you want to do?"

Take more initiative and planning with your time together and check out some original date ideas to put some spark back into your weekends!

Skincare

I know a few of you that read this blog are avid proactive users. I have always wanted to try it but haven't. Have any of you ever heard of obaji products?

Can't think of what to do?

I have discovered a great site full of family fun activities. Take some time to browse around and find something that you and your family will love!

Get out your water colors!

Dusty and I tried our hand at painting each other's faces completely for our date a few weeks ago. Many of you reading thought it was a great idea. We don't have children yet so we tried things that were a little more difficult and just plain random.

Here are some great tips for childrens face painting for those of you that have kids and would like some help on how to get started.

Vanilla Joy's Giveaway

OK. I know you have all heard me talk about how much I love the MiniBox from The Original Scrap Box but you are going to have to hear it again!! Vanilla Joy has the most amazing blog giveaway ever and is giving one away for a blog giveaway!

Being a home organizational consultant I understand the value of the MiniBox. Not only is a beautiful piece of furniture and the ultimate space saver, it is the most versatile and functional item you can own in your home. I love it so much I want 2 of them!!

I had the opportunity to be in a focus group, as you know, where the creators of the MiniBox came and showed us how it works. It was definitely love at first sight! They brought in a vanilla bead board model and that was the one I wanted. I knew I had to have it.

The MiniBox is for my Cricut and scrapbooking --and all things craft--supplies and the Work Box is for my home office. There are a million different uses for these! Scrapbooking is just the beginning!! Wish me luck :-) and head over to Vanilla Joy to enter for your chance to win!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Dirt Cake

Here was my first stab at a dirt cake. I must say it went quick and it was gone within minutes. I went and bought a ceramic pot on clearance and lined it with foil inside. I also bought a spade and served it with that it turned out great. It was fun and easy to make and it was the talk of the party. ha ha

How cute is he?

This is Dusty's little nephew Zac. What a cutie!

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Zum Zum Zumba!

So Dusty and I are taking a night work out class together. We went for the first time last Thursday and thought it was going to be a Turbo Kick class. It was the same instructor but they have changed the format this semester and on Thursdays they are going to do zumba. Zumba is a like a 60 min salsa / Cuban workout. I was bummed at first because I thought Dusty wouldn't want to do it. Lo and behold if he didn't shake what his mamma gave him and had fun!! I love my husband!! He did SO GOOD! He and another guy took the back corner but he could have been front and center as much as he was shakin it and workin up a sweat. It was AWESOME! So, Tuesday nights will be Turbo Kick and Thursdays will be zumba and Saturdays I will probably go to by myself cause it's 1/2 Turbo and 1/2 step and I don't even like step that much and the teacher is just OK and her step routines are next to impossible to catch on to.

Anyway, props to Dusty for doing so good at the zumba!

Friday, September 05, 2008

Blog Week Giveaway ending soon!!

Don't forget to go over to the Pikes Pickles for the Blog Week Giveaways! Drawings are tomorrow :-) http://pikespickles.blogspot.com/

Good luck!

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Pikes Pickles Blog Week Giveaway

I love the blogging community where you find people you instantly click with through your likes and interests. This is one of those blogs over at http://pikespickles.blogspot.com/. Just found her blog today through a giveaway and she is just great.

Blog giveaways are so awesome. The prizes are always awesome and people are so generous with their time and what they give. I want to do one soon....I just need to figure out what to give away.... Maybe one of Dusty's snakes....

Check it out for your chance to win. Although I really want to win, I will wish you luck too! ;)

New Additions to our Home

We have been slowly actually decorating our house. We only have really been concentrating on the living room, next is the kitchen etc. etc. We are really happy with what we have done. (more pics soon) Here are a few pictures of our tv armoire and new quilt. We are doing a rustic country theme in our home. It's amazing the feeling that you get even when you make just a few changes. It's fun actually creating a home with a homey feeling :-)

Hot Momma Comin Through!

I LOVE Melissa's new hair cut. She is sssssssssoooooooooooo hot. She looks like it is perfect for her. She was so ready for a change and she couldn't have picked a cuter style. Thanks Chauntel for inspiring us all to chop our hair off; even though you are growing yours out already..... I love my short hair but there is some moments where I miss it being a little longer.

Anyway. Here are a few before and after pictures. Everybody tell Melissa how cute she is :-)

Ohhhhh. It Ain't My Fault.

First off that title is in reference to a rap song. There are many of those throughout this blog so, just read it and move on knowing that you are not as ghetto as me :-) You can take a girl from the south but you can't take the south out of the girl!

Anyway. I realized than on my last trip home that my picky eating habits is NOT my fault. I grew up thinking that my parents ate a variety of different vegetables, fruits and adventurous foods. Um, what crack was I smokin? I tried to go home and fix meals for them and help out and I had a hard time figuring out what to make because they are PICKY!! Way picky. So I am relinquishing my guilt and resigning to my victimhood that my parents did this to me and it's not my fault. I think out of all of us Melissa is the one who will eat the most variety of fruits and veggies.

I will admit that I have been trying harder to expand my food vocabulary and I do eat peaches and black beans now. My parents have never even had black beans! Dusty has played a big part in helping me try new foods. Oh yeah and the other day I had fried pickles and delicious spinach salad. The pickles were just OK. Ranch overs anything up :-)

What is your most adventurous food you have eaten? What do you suggest I try next? (and you can forget about cherry tomatoes. Marcie could tell you I almost threw up in her kitchen....)

Saturday, August 23, 2008

My first post here guys...

Since Amy and I recently rechristened her old blog as our new blog, it's now the Amy and Dusty Show, so I need to get postin' on here! ...Or go postal...or whatever...one of the two. :-)

Recently, Amy and I have been making an effort to take one of our Sunday School Teacher's advice to heart, and so we've started trying to date on weekends, where each weekend we take turns picking what we want to do. The rule is that at least one of us (the person whose turn it is to pick) has to really like what they're doing, and so neither of us have told each other what we're going to do until right when the time arrives...because we don't want the other person to dread the rest of the week. :-)

We paper-rock-scissored for the first go-round, and I won, and so naturally, I picked something with animals. We headed for the Tracy Aviary in Salt Lake, but on our way there we heard on the radio that it was "Ice Day" at the Hogle Zoo, so we went there instead. They brought out blocks of ice -- some filled with fruit -- for the animals to play with, lick, suck on, etc.

Here's an orangutan doing just that.













And here's my shout out to the Logsdon boys...a monkey giving his buddy a (for lack of a better term) proctology exam. Thought Jason, Jeremy, and Michael (and Nathan) could appreciate that. :-)













I've always enjoyed bird shows. When my family and I went to Sea World growing up, the bird show they had there was my favorite part of the entire day. While the rest of my family went to watch a ski show with stunt people from Baywatch, I went and watched the bird show again. They've trained these birds to do all sorts of tricks and fly over your head, inches away from touching you -- huge birds too, like Greater Horned Owls (think Harry Potter) and a variety of eagles and condors.

They had this going on at the Hogle Zoo. We got a kick out of it. Amy freaked out when a flock of white doves flew over her head (even after the showman told everyone to be still).

This hilarious Cockatoo was taking wildlife conservation donations after the show and dropping them in the slot.














Overall, it was a good visit, and Amy even bought herself some zoo paraphernalia before we left.

And so next week it was Amy's turn to pick our date. Nothing could have helped me guess her idea -- face painting. I have to admit it was kinda fun. She picked an idea for my face out of a book that she checked out from the library...

her book...

and the end result.

Then I went to work on Amy...I used my own imagination and decided to make a checkerboard out of Amy's face...it was cool. As I went through the photos, I just busted out laughing because you can see all the sides that Amy has to her personality. So, here we go...

First, the serious Amy.


The cute Amy.


The sad Amy.


The scary Amy.


The poser Amy.


The crazy, psychotic Amy.


The sleepy, tired Amy.


And finally...

The joker Amy.


Ya know, it's funny...Amy wasn't consciously trying to make all of those random faces...her "little person" just kind of came out in the photos. It was a lot of fun...she didn't even know what I was painting on her face until I showed her at the end. Same with me. I told her that her face was paybacks for kicking my trash at a game I taught her how to play (i.e. checkers).

More soon!