Tuesday, November 10, 2009

How the Mighty Have Fallen

As a personal disclaimer before I start, Audrey chose the title of this post.  With that out there, here goes…

It has always been a fact of life that I win at board games.  I don’t mean to; I don’t know how to lose without making it obvious.  (Ha! you let your queen fall right into my hands!  Wait a minute…) And even in such situations, when I am determined to lose to let someone else feel good about themselves, something snaps in my brain, it sounds like this: Pop! look at the board, I’m massively down, but they’ve left a weakness right there.  If I take advantage like so while at the same time attacking point A, I’ll come back and win in two turns!  That’s too good to pass up!!  And Audrey ends up not talking to me for the next 30-90 minutes, depending on how underhanded my idea was.  It’s been that way as long as I can remember.  I don’t know why.

catanSo with that in mind, perhaps you can understand what a blow to my ego it was when first my mother-in-law, then sister-in-law, and then wife beat me at the famed board game “Settlers of Catan” in recent times.  With my mother-in-law, it was easily passed by with a “Well, both I and Audrey were helping her.  In all reality, her win was a result of my and Audrey’s intellect combined.  Then when Andrea beat me, the justification was a little more difficult.  “She has been gunning for me for a while now.  Everyone finally teamed up and shut me down.”  But when Audrey beat me, it was an all-out shutout.  Her roads and settlements dotted the board while my miniscule empire was practically forced to pay tribute at the hands of her well-fed knights.  So I decided a pay-back was in order, and we went home to play stratego.

strategoI can’t remember ever losing at Stratego.  I could beat my dad since before I was baptized.  (If Dad is reading this, please understand that any possible losses that may be slipping my mind are due to my inheritance of my mother’s memory, you can blame her.)  So when Audrey outsmarted me on three crucial battles and snuck her general to my back lines, I was worried.  In a mad race to find the flag, I made a wrong turn, she made a right one, and boom!  I now have a memorable loss.

I don’t take such losses easily.  Saturday, I dragged Audrey to Target to buy Trivial Pursuit.  trivial The only time she has ever played, she fell asleep.  What a perfect game to flex my intellectual muscle and recover a piece of my now broken ego.  Target didn’t have it, so we went to Toys R Us (I was determined.)  We bought it, took it home, and I immediately set it up.  For those who are unfamiliar with the new version, it keeps track of the number of questions answered correctly by each person.  What to my surprise when my marker had moved two spots and Audrey’s had moved nearly 20.  Searching the depths of my game-playing soul, I came back, and at game end, while we had answered the same number of questions correctly, it was Audrey who answered the final “In the center to win-it-all” question first to win the game.

After such a series of defeats, I now stand before you with a bruised and broken ego.  I don’t know what is left for me in life.  Maybe I need to rethink the board games I play.  Perhaps I need to start challenging Audrey in “Hungry Hungry Hippos” or “Candy Land.”  Oh how the mighty have fallen!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Halloween Scariness.... BOoo-oooo!!

This is Dan's pumpkin! Isn't it Amazing?
I guess working with all those dental tools
all day has given him 'Artist Precision'!

OOOooo Spooky :D

Halloween Treats! YUM! yum!!

Carmel Apples!

Do some of the cupcakes have eyes?

Anyone for some brain?

Our Special Halloween Dinner!

Pumpkin Carving!

Gardening 101

Our 1st Pepper!

Orchids are Blooming!


It looks like they're trying to help
us in the canoe doesn't it?
WRONG! They are trying to tip us!! HELP!!

The NOVA YSA Gang!!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

With an Eye Single to His Glory ;)

We are having an investigator, a new member and the missionaries over tonight for dinner and a lesson. I am excited! I love missionary work!! Once we were called to the Nova YSA branch I didn't think I would get many opportunities to share the gospel because I was married and they were all single... different worlds. But as I pray every day for opportunities I recognize them and take advantage of them.
I carry pass along cards in my purse now too. haha I'll let you all know how tonight goes!

I absolutely love the lyrics to this EFY song:

"I've never been the kind to testify.
I don't have the words His truth deserves.
But it's a simple thing He asks:
a worthy heart and willing hands.
He says if I'll make the choice,
He'll help me find my voice.

He calls me to serve and I cannot fail Him-
the One who has given me all that I have.
I place my trust in Him alone.
He knows the yearnings of my soul.
Because He believes in me,
I will go willingly.

How can I keep this gift to myself
when I can lift somebody else?
I'll be a witness of His miracles and His mercy.
I put my future in His hands,
knowing He's made me all I am.
I put my faith in Him and truth begins to speak.
His power is real.
It moves me until I will not be still.

Lifting the hands that hang down in sorrow,
strengthening knees that bend in despair.
Reaching the hopeless hearts that do not know His love.
Seeing their lives begin to change,
I know I'll never be the same!

How can I keep this gift to myself
when I can lift somebody else?
I'll be a witness of His miracles and His mercy.
I put my future in His hands,
knowing He's made me all I am.
I put my faith in Him and truth begins to speak.
His power is real.
It moves me until I will not be still.

His power his real.
I trust in His will.
I will not be still."

God is real. The Savior lives and loves us. We are His children. He has provided His gospel through prophets, even living prophets today, to help us be happy in this life and return to live with Him and our families again after this life.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Where should we live? Take a Poll

The last two days have been absolutely beautiful! We had a cold front come through that dropped the temp to 55 degrees! yahoo! It reminded Dan and I how much we love cooler weather and the seasons.

So now this realization has raised a problem for us and we need all your help: Where should we live? Here are the options. We have about a year left to decide. :D
1. (Well since we're already so close) SW FL. It's gorgeous and lots of old people's teeth to fix. ;) Not to mention some really amazing people live here. :)

2. Seattle WA. Also a beautiful place, that secretly has great weather- despite all the tales you've heard about it raining all the time.
3. Asheville, NC: Could this be the middle ground we are all looking for? Mountains, Forests, Country festivals and fairs, The 4 Seasons and relatively close to some family... Did I mention it's gorgeous?

4. Abroad: Asia? Hen Hao!! Dan is currently applying for the army to help repay our loans. And if we get the option we want, we'll be banking! ya! We could also choose to work abroad for those years he works as an army dentist.

So there are the choices! Let the battle of wills begin!! Please post your ideas, suggestions and choices! Who ever makes the best argument will help decide our fates!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Our Garden

Our Avocado plant has really shot up!
Dan grew it from a seed!

Our Pepper Plant has also done well...
our Topsy Turvy though is not Pepper approved.
All the stems and leaves are twisting in crazy directions trying to get sunlight;
all the blossoms died but one and now it's growing one giant Pepper! haha

Our orchids are also getting ready to bloom.
The first buds on our big orchid
should bloom next week.
The smaller Phaleonopsis
should bloom next month.
It's red-green bloom leaf has come already!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

I took them to the vet last week and she asks me "How old are they?" "3 1/2 months." "Really?" She asked. "yes". "Let me check the records." She comes back from the other room and says "The humane society must've gotten their birth date wrong. They look at least 5 months." And I said "no its right they were tiny when we got them and they couldn't eat and we had to potty train them." "They're huge then; they are going really fast. They will be very large cats." AHhhh she made me so happy! I would love for them both to be as big as comet! :D
TWO HOTTIES.... meeeee----ooooowwwwww!

look at my boys... ahhhh

LUMP in the COVERS ;)

Aren't they so cute?

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Split Pea Surprise

So one of my favorite meals growing up was lentil stew.  I always say that I can understand why Esau was willing to give up the birthright.  One day, I discovered split pea soup, also good.  Kinda gross looking, but tastes good.

Anyway, lately I have been craving soup.  So I bought some split peas at Target and made some good split pea soup, it was great.  Worked so well we bought some more for future soupage.

In the meantime, Audrey had bought some lentils to surprise me with lentil stew last week.  Surprise dinner came, I came home to smell a house full of sausagey odor and veggies….yum!  I was all excited for my lentil stew.

The dish was served… I didn’t see any lentils.  I dug to the bottom of the stew, and mush came up to the top.  Audrey said, “I don’t remember lentils being this green.”  I said, “They usually don’t break down like this, that must be why.”  Audrey, “Well, I did stew it all day.”  End of story. 

I take a bite of stew.  “Well, this tastes different.  Audrey says, “Oh shoot, I forgot the vinegar!!”  Adds vinegar.  In the meantime, I sneak into the kitchen pantry and find two full bags of lentils, unopened.  I laugh to myself and eat the rest of my “lentil” stew without saying a word. 

About 3 days later, after eating most of the left-overs, Audrey stumbles across the lentil bags.  Confused, she checks the “open bag basket” to find the bag of split peas.  Priceless.  She’s too cute.  She got really sad that she messed up a recipe.  But here’s what I don’t understand… I mess up a recipe and it’s completely unedible.  (I ran out of flour for cookies and substituted cornmeal.  Did you know that cornmeal absolutely will not rise in cookie recipes?)  Audrey messes up a recipe and it still tastes great.  Is that fair?  So whenever we experiment a little with our cooking we can always remember our “Split pea surprise” and know that even if we don’t use the main ingredient it can still turn out alright.  (As long as Audrey’s cooking at least.)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Sleepy Time

Fred (blue collar) & George (black collar)
are cute all the time.
But I especially love how absolutely adorable
they are when they sleep.
And check out their hilarious sleeping positions!

Look at our little spooners haha
Is Fred smiling or is it just me? ;)

haha how did they get in here? They're tiny...

Can you see the poka-dots on their tummies? ahhhh

Play Time

Fred and George have lots of games:
the ball of yarn, balloons, and tag.
My favorite to watch is hide and seek.
They take turns hiding in the funniest places-
behind me- ahh!, pillows, wall corners, their toys...

Here Fred is hiding behind a curtain
while George stalks him. haha

Friday, August 7, 2009

Key West Rocks!

We took a day trip to Key West FL
this week for a mini-vacation.
FL has the most beautiful sunsets in the world!
The new Pirate Museum was our favorite!
So many ancient pirate artifacts!

Help ME!!

Can you say you've been to Mile 0?
Where the US of A begins...

Welcome to DownTown Key West!

Ahh! Look out for the Sponge Man!!!

Key West Key Lime Pie on a stick!
Yum! These are the best popsicles ever!!

Bouquets of flowers made of shells!
Very Cool!

Malory's Square has a ton of cool shops.
Our favorite is the shell store in the Sponge Market.

The Shipwreck Museum was interesting-
Did you know Key West was a town
of wreckers and salvagers?

Here's some views from the tower
of the Shipwreck Museum.

Our Red Headed Twins!!

We adopted two American shorthair kittens from the Broward County Pound yesterday!
Here are their original ID info.
We changed their names to Fred and George.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

We played so much we fell asleep....
Ahhh my boys... how cute!

Our little kitties! Aren't they adorable!
They're from the same litter and are brothers.
Both are orange tiger short hairs
and have green eyes.
Which is Fred? George?
Can YOU tell?