Saturday, December 4, 2010

I Am Thankful For...

Garbage disposals.

Aren't they wonderful? You can stick your plate right in the sink and rinse it off. Not worrying about food getting stuck in your drain and then the stink. Or cleaning out those drain strainers (which is gross). And you limit the amount of food that you put in your garbage under your sink. Because if after almost every meal you'r scraping your plate in the garbage, it begins to stink. And then every time you go to put anything in your garbage you hold your breath and open and close the door so fast. Except for when you forget and you get a lungful and then immediately push out the air and run away as fast as you can somewhere else.

Now.... if only I had one.....

Friday, December 3, 2010

So, We Were Still Snowed In

The next morning I went out and took some pictures of some drifts and the road.  I kept looking down the road thinking I was going to get ran over by some trucker going 70 mph.  Or at least a snow plow.  But none came.  Not until around 1:30 p.m. were we even kind of rescued. 

  Here is the road.  The only reason you can tell is the telephone polls and about 15 minutes before I came outside some nutso had his truck in 4 high and rammed his way through.  Lucky for him the snow had settled through out the night - if he had tried that the day before he would have been stuck.  

 Kind of like the guy that tried after him was stuck for over an hour until a neighbor came and helped him out.

Oh, thank you good Samaritan.   

I turned around and this is the road going the other direction.  Looks okay for a few 50 feet or so, yeah?  I had Jaren walk with me down to the drift you can see all the way at the top of the photo (little grey line).

Then I had him stand in front of it.  See?!  Touches his hiney!  Jaren is 6 feet tall.  So.. umm.. this one looks to be about... uh... half of that.  Maybe.

Then one of our neighbors rides up on a snowmobile.  Talking about the crazy guy who drove on through.  We were all shocked he made it.  And then...  I saw this little guy.

The poor soul has arthritis.  Not to mention the wobbly snow.  He lives in the house across the street from us.  Come on Buck!  I think that's his name....

King of the snow drift!

Few, good thing I had some momentum going from going down that giant snowdrift.

Oh, hey Whitney.  Just passin' through.  Would you mind gettin' out of my tire track?  I'm a little too tired to go off-roadin' today.

Then we went back to the house.  The most shallow parts were probably 3 inches (except the sidewalk) while the deepest was probably 4 - 5 feet?

Here we are.  During much happier and greener times.  When Jaren dug out half of the yard to level it out.  You're looking at the same front yard.

Then we had new grass.  New pretty green grass that Naomi was too afraid of.  She really didn't like touching the grass.  It was too pokey. 
See how there are railroad tie's behind her?  That made quite the nice drift spot.

Into the backyard/sideyard we go.  Where I dropped the exposure a little again so you could get some better dimension to this giant pile.

But then I would rather have Jaren stand by the post so you could see just how tall it was.  Even though he was 5-6 feet in front of it so the scaling was a little off.

So in I come.  All ready for a winter's walk.  Like I can do any better.

But wait!  I'll walk into it!  I got as far as my boots being completely covered before I decided that was as far as I go.  It was probably 4 feet deep? I didn't have a measuring stick!

Yes, yes, I know.  She's the cutest lady bug you've EVER seen!  Me, too.  But the point of this photo (besides to show off how adorable she is(right before that leaf went into her mouth and I dropped the camera) is the fence she is 13 feet in front of is the same fence in the pictures above. 

And here it is from the road.  So, from behind.  There is maybe 3 feet of the fence showing, but it's at least 5 1/2ish feet tall.  

Keep in mind this is all from just 2 days of snow.  And a whole lot of wind!  I really didn't expect Thanksgiving to look like Christmas.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

What's the Difference?

I lied.  Ok, not really, it's just that the "after the snowed in blizzard" post has so many pictures I'm going to take a little more time on it.  So, hopefully tomorrow. 

Today I have a game for you.

The two pictures below were taken on the same day in the same spot.  One was around 11 a.m. and the other was around 3 p.m.  Which is why the lighting is so different. 

Other than those things - can you tell me what is different?

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

That Time We Were "Snowed In"

One week ago yesterday.  So, last Tuesday we were technically snowed in.  A giant blizzard had hit Monday and the wind blew and blew and blew and it snowed and snowed and snowed for over 2 days strait.

I decided that was the day I really wanted to see Harry Potter.  We had tried to go once before.  Saturday, the day after Jaren's birthday but after Nae woke up at 10:30 p.m. vomiting giant amounts of whatever was in her tummy over and over again we decided we had better stay home.  Don't worry, she was fine after we changed her and let her take turns sleeping ON (she wouldn't sleep in our bed) us.  Needless to say we didn't sleep much.  Or at all.  Well, I did when Jaren had his turn because I brought out my own pillow out to the couch.  J-boy did not.

So, when you have plenty of big giant tractors at your disposal you can go anywhere!

We just decided to go 2 miles to his parents house, where we would drop Nae off, and borrow their SUV.  Because from their house (closer to civilization) the roads are a bit better taken care of.

I took lots of pictures...

Leaving our driveway - can you even see the road?

See how it's already about a foot deep?  The dark you see on the bottom of the picture is ground level.  That is a ditch.

Ok... looks a little creepy.  Like we are in some enchanted medow with misty floors.  Except we are in a tractor....  Kind of takes away the romanticism of it all.
So I dropped the exposure so you could see the drifts a little more clearly.  You can see the road, then you can see the drift in front of it that a truck couldn't plow through. 
Then there was the time, or 90% of the time it was a white out and we kept on the road by following the telephone polls. 
And there was that other time that we went over a drift instead of through it and Nae and I were thrown to the side because Jaren's side of the tractor was 3 feet higher than our side.  That was weird.

These tree's look a little droopy.....

We made it to Jaren's parent's.  Dropped the kid off and took off again.
You can at least see some road.

We were driving along, just driving a long when we came up on this little fella.

We were so glad, because when it looked like this we could at least follow our friend up there.

I floated down this river with my Young Women girls this summer and suffered from a 1st degree sunburn.  Sigh..... 
And the closer we got to town the better it looked!  It usually does.

It didn't even look like the wind was blowing!  

Remember this?!

The long awaited tasty delicious Cardne Asada.  It's probably my most favorite Mexican concoction ever.  I kick myself often when I realize I grew up in an 80% (or something like that) Hispanic town and never learned how to make this and the rice!!  I think I'll call an old friend and see if her mom will teach me over Christmas.

And my studly date who let me get Rolo's at the movie.  He's fantastic like that.

I'll tell you what I thought of the movie.  It was the first Harry Potter movie that I walked out of happy with how they took it from the book.  There are only two things they left out that I wish they hadn't.  I don't want to spoil it for everyone... even though the 2 parts aren't that big of a deal.  Ok, don't read the next paragraph if you don't want to know what is left out...

1.  Dudley and Harry's goodbye.  I liked what Dudley said to him, and that Harry wasn't hated by him.  I'm a sap.
2.  The poster's in Luna's room.  Why didn't they show them?  The pictures of Harry and his friends with the word, "Friends".  Again... I'm a sap.
Both of these things combined would have taken all of 4 minutes.  And then I would have been 100% happy with the movie!  Instead I'm just 97.5% happy.

And also, on the way home we passed a truck who thought he was way too cool for the 3-4 foot drifts and plowed right into one.  He was stuck.  Poor guy.  And also again, when we were within 100 yards of our driveway we hit a particularly unruly giant drift that the tractor almost didn't make it through!  And also again again, Naomi loved the tractor ride.  Talking and singing the whole time we were bouncing and being thrown around.  Silly girl.

Tomorrow I'll post pictures I took the next morning before the plows came.  I know you're all on the edge of your seats!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

It Takes Two

And it does. Not just literally, but decidedly too.

To have a kid.

I was ready to get pregnant with Nae the summer of 2008. Jaren was nowhere near that. So I held out for October of 2008. That came and I was told no and had to wait another two months till Jaren felt ready.

And I'm so grateful I did. Having him excited and on board with the pregnancy made it that much easier. He helped with housework when I was feeling ill. He made me food the entire first trimester when I just laid on the couch whining and moaning about how, "I can't move, I'm going to throw up... I need to eat! I can't move!" I never threw up... But I really did feel like it.

And he was ready for her when she came. It was a huge huge adjustment. I babysat and have been around babies and kids my whole life. He has not. I felt totally comfortable with a baby. It took him some adjusting.

I guess I never considered that it would be this process  with each child. I figured the ice has been broken - we have one, now we can have more! Not so simple.

First, there is the issue of "do I want Jaren around?" If I have a baby anytime in between April and Mid October I run the chance of not having him available to help when I really need it. And I know I'd like his help for at least the first 2 1/2 months. Because that's the hardest time I think. Once I get that kid to 3 months I have a schedule built up with regular naps and feeding times and life is predictable. Not necessarily easy, but much more do-able than before. And in reality, I guess The hardest hardest part is the first month and a half where I'm healing from a C-Section and the kid is eating every 2 hours. Nursing for 45 minutes and then needing to eat again an hour later.

So, if I want him around ideally for the first 2-3 months I'd need to have a kid no later than January. And I really don't want to go that deep into winter. So, for me, it's November or December. Since we know I'll have to go 3 weeks early we have to plan for the 37 week due date and not the 40 Week one. Just to be safe.

So, that means the time to start trying again is only a few months away. I can't say I feel ready and Jaren definitely does not feel ready. But I know I want Nae and this kid to be around 2 years apart. So that means I have to either get pregnant this coming spring or wait till the next one. And I don't want them to be 3 years apart. I don't want to wait that long. Jaren seems fine with it.... I'm not.

So we are stuck. And it was starting to be a source of emotion between us. Or, more like a source of emotion for me. Like always. I know it's months away. But that comes fast. And we would have to wrap our mind around it now in order to be ready when that time comes.

I think communication is the most important part of marriage. Or for any relationship. You can get nothing absolutely nothing accomplished if you both don't talk. If you don't talk about your feelings and the why's and how's of it, things get left unsaid and then come back later to bite you in the rear.

Sunday (2 weeks ago) Jaren and I sat down and discussed the why's and how's of it. In the end we came to the conclusion that it's okay if I have a kid in June or July. I have plenty of help available and Nae would be that much older and easier to handle. She would be able to understand me and me her. Which would make the not being able to move because of the C-section or nursing easier when she needed something. I don't mind 2 1/2 years apart or so.

Just the knowledge that I'm not stuck on only 2 months out of the year to have a kid ever takes a huge weight off my shoulder. I know Jaren still wouldn't be as readily available as he would if it were winter. But, I'll take that over the alternative.

And the thing is - we don't know if it will be easy to get pregnant this time. We were so fortunate last time. I don't expect it to be as easy. Apparently when the doctor who did an ultrasound to check out my uteri's found out how easy it was for us to conceive he let me know that I was abnormal. Not just because of my innards, but because women with my "condition" usually don't get pregnant for months to years and a lot of times need help to do so.

I'm prepared for it to take time. Which doesn't play well into my "can have kids" months and "can't have kids" months. In the end, I wont care when if it's going to take time. All I'll care is that it happens.  And having Jaren totally ready is the most important thing.  Talking yesterday made me feel so much more at peace with it.  Free somehow.  Free to choose.  I've always been free to choose, but with my guidelines and wants I really am not as free as I'd like.

After a few weeks has since gone by when I wrote this I feel even more calm about it all.  That in the end when we know it's right for us to have a baby, we will try.  And when he/she comes it will all work out.  Even if it might be hard for the first bit.  I mean, my mom had 3 summer babies and my dad farmed.  If she can do it - I can, too.  

Monday, November 29, 2010


So, before I start on this post I'm going to set a goal.  My goal is to blog every day this week.  Hoping this will get me in the right mind to write more!

I've been a little obsessed with pictures for the past year.  I think you can guess why.

Because of this I want to put them up all over my house.  I already did a picture wall in my dining room and now that we are making our downstairs into a nice family room I'm aching to do something similar, but different.

I found a whole bunch of frames at Porters (a craft store) for 40% off, so they were only a few bucks a frame.  I bought black, white, blue and pink.  Weird colors?  I don't know, I wasn't sure what I wanted to do with them, but now I'm seeing a theme come together with some fabric I had on hand.  I put them into a few of the frames.

And then I have this amazing picture of Naomi I had blown up and framed.  The best frame to match it was a bright pink and blue one.  Coincidence?  I think not.  I think it will match the other frames and such beautifully.

And then I came across a girl who is doing water color paintings to raise money to take her sister to Disney Land or World.... one of the two.  Send her your photo and she will paint it and take whatever you choose to donate.  I had her paint two.  One of Nae and one of myself.  I think it will make a good picture for our bathroom - where I get ready.  It's not often that I find a picture where I think I look pretty, but with these I do.

I sent the money and as soon as I get them I'm going to frame them and then I'll share them and the pictures they were painted after.

I'll definitely have her do more for me in the future.  I think they could make a beautiful present.

If anyone knows of any artists who will paint/draw/anything like that to one of my photo's let me know.   I'm looking to fill my home with more than just photos - I want paintings of photos :) 

Sunday, November 21, 2010


I love Photoshop.  I love that I can take a pretty picture and make it beautiful.

I also love some of the black and white actions I have.  Here is a color of myself and then the black and white.

My favorite thing?  The clone and content aware tools.  Because with them I can do fantastic things.  Like this:
Notice anything?  Like how Mommy is in the first picture with little sister and not in the second?  There may be easier ways to accomplish taking them out.  But I had to super zoom in to where I could see each individual pixel and rebuild the sidewalk, bush and even some of the grass.  And I took care of what you could see through her hair.  I'm not really good yet.  I hope that with more experience I can get better.  But this little firecracker was everywhere so fast and so this picture was a good one.  With a pretty background, except for the legs sticking out of her arm.  So, being able to save it was really a necessity.  And I was particularly happy with myself when I finished it.  It took me over an hour and a half.  I think if I were to re-do it, it would take half that time since I have become more efficient.

I can take a picture that I love and do fun actions that change the color a bit.
Here is the original and below is the change. 
Not too drastic, but enough to make it feel different.  

And those are just a few of the reasons I love Photoshop!