Saturday, December 20, 2008

I Farted on Santa's Lap...

video

A couple years ago I found this song about a kid who farts on Santa's lap and now he's all worried that his Christmas gifts from Santa won't be very good.

Until-

He catches Santa leaving his gifts when the man himself lets one rip! So the kid gets all these awesome toys because of the shared bonding farting experience.

Well, I was singing the chorus cuz it was stuck in my head and Monica got a kick out of it. So I taught her the chorus and here she is! She sort of lost the melody at the second phrase, but she's still cute! I don't know if it's just our monitor or not, but you might have to turn up your volume.

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Snow Fun!

Per Lesa's request, I have finally updated my blog! I love these pictures! We had so much fun playing in the snow the day after it snowed like 3 inches! Of course, it was all melted by 4pm the next day, but it was a blast!











There are a few more posts of blogging catch-up. Thanks Lesa and Christina for the push!

Decorating the Tree

Monica had a lot of fun helping me dress the tree this year. Most of her ornaments ended up on the left side of the tree. But it's Monica!





















This picture and the next are for Christina. This is one of my favorite rooms in the house. I LOVE how the sound bounces off the walls when I play the piano!

This is our house! We love it!!!

Thanksgiving-ish Pictures







Maggie and John came into town (my cousin and her fiance) and we got them to come over with Aunty Theresa, Mom and Emily to come over for lunch. Thank you Cristine for your Basil chicken recipe. It's a favorite!













Julie had fun playing in the girls' toy room. She's so cute!


We watched Julie for Emily a couple times and one time she and Monica were having F U N. I finally realized they weren't in the toy room anymore, and went to investigate. They were in the pantry. I asked if they were making messes and Monica laughed and said, "I'm not! Julie is!" And Monica was holding the camera taking pictures of Julie making said mess!!

Thanksgiving


Thanksgiving came and went and I got some cute pictures and then never posted them. Here are some of my favorites.








Monica and Grandma Kathy








Leah and Monica.







Monica and Julie. I asked Julie to sit with Monica for a quick picture and as soon as the flash flicked, she jumped up and ran from the stairs! LOL!










Emily modeling the dinner table.










Mom, Leah and Grandpa enjoying the feast.








Grandpa, Grandma, Emily and Julie




Dad, Elisha, and Ryan. Matt had to work...sadness!


All the girls. It's a dark picture, but you can still see how fabulous we are!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Say WHAT?!

Today after church was over, Bishop Lake came up to us and we got to talking with him. Monica traipses over and he bent down to talk to her. After a few seconds he asks her, "What can your baby sister do?"

Monica looks at him and says, "She can hold my finger and (pointing right at her chest) she can eat on boobies!"

Ahhh, yes. From the mouths of babes.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Giving Thanks

So this year I'm going to skip the obvious things I am thankful for and focus on the things I perhaps, take for granted. Like...

*Dirty dishes. I'm thankful for dirty dishes because they mean I had food to eat.
*Dirty laundry because it means I have clothes on my back.
*Phone bills because they mean I have people to love and who love me back.
*Gas and electric bills because they mean I have a warm place.
*Rent because I have a place to live.
*Glasses because they represent the ability to see the beauty of the world around me.
*Car payment because I have a vehicle to drive.
*The scriptures because God still speaks to His children.
*A clean shoulder because I have a healthy, happy baby.
*Messes around the house because I have a smart, curious 3 year old.
*A wedding ring because my husband loves me.
*A little extra weight to work off because I had plenty to eat throughout my pregnancy.
*Church because I have people who believe the way I do and want to worship together.
*The worst parking spot at Walmart because I have two feet that can get me from the worst spot to the front door without any problems.
*Sunny skies in the winter because even though I loved Germany, I don't have to shovel snow now.

I have so much more to be thankful for. My life is a blessing, and everyone and everything in it is a blessing.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Read It, Saw It, LOVED IT!




Last night I saw "Twilight" with Ryan, Matt, Elisha, and Elisha's sister, Sam, and absolutely LOVED it! I have to admit, I was already prepared for the film-making to not be utterly fantastic. I spent Thursday night reading up on all the reviews. But I think you just have to keep an open mind. I realized after the third Harry Potter movie, that if I wanted to enjoy a movie based on a book I loved, I had to accept that it would not be accurate. They can't include everything. And half the time conversations in the book get lumped together.

So I went with an open mind. I went with very low accuracy expectations and I was very pleasantly surprised! The chemistry between Edward and Bella was there, and for a movie, that's really all I care about! I LOVED the baseball scene. The movie got knocked for their computer graphics, but I thought that part rocked! I liked most of the casting decisions. And I think it said something that Ryan and Matt enjoyed it.

My favorite line was not in the book, but it's still my favorite. "Your mood swings are giving me whiplash." HAHAHA! Loved it.

So, in short...I cannot wait for it to get to the dollar theater. Ryan said he would take me to see it again! Isn't he the best?! I think it is worth it to see it in the big theater. Anyone looking for a starcrossed lovers romance --seriously-- watch this movie!




P.S. I ought to point out that Sam didn't get the fangs for the movie. They were leftover in her purse from Halloween.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Bedtime Prayers

Tonight was Monica's turn to say prayers and Ryan helped prompt her. Let's just say she loves her friends--A LOT!!

Ryan: Dear Heavenly Father
Monica: Heavenly Father thank you.

R: Thank you for this day...
M: Thank you today I play with my friends and have fun.

R: Thank you for our family...
M: Thank you for my family and I play with my friends.

R:Thank you for Daddy's job...
M: Thank you Daddy work hard.

R: Thank you for Mama...
M: Thank you Mama work hard on the computer.

R: Please bless the soldiers...
M Bless the soldiers and my friends.

R: Please bless the missionaries...
M: Bless the mish-uh-neer-ees and get the monsters out of my closet. And bless Daddy, he scare the monsters in my room.

R: Bless our family...
M: Bless I play with my friends and have fun and no monsters under my bed.

R: Bless our FA-MI-LY
M: Oh, bless our family and I play with my friends.

R: In the na--
M: In the name of Jesus Christ. Amen. I did it!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Bring It On!

I just had to write about a comment that was made in Relief Society today. (BTW- we are almost all moved in and out of the old house! YAY! But more about that later.)

We were talking about the signs of the Second Coming and how many signs were coming true already. Doris spoke up and shared an experience she had driving around with her daughter a couple years ago when her daughter was 17 or 18. They were listening to the radio and a newsflash told something eerie, that prompted Doris to ask her daughter if she was scared for the future, and she said Natalie turned and looked at her and said, "Bring it on."

I cannot even express how that hit me, because that is really how I feel. I am not afraid for the future. I have a theory about the smarts of the generation of children being born today. It seems like Monica and Leah even, are ahead of the game in so many ways, and I thank Heavenly Father for that. When Ryan blessed Monica as a baby, he blessed her to be stubborn in righteousness. For now, all I see is the stubborness, but I know that the righteousness will follow. We know what the last days will bring. We are living them. Ancient prophecies are being fulfilled-TODAY and it is up to us to teach our kids right and wrong. NOT political correctness.

I know there are a lot of people that are scared because of the outcome of the last election. I see it as another sign of the times. And yes, I know I voted for Obama, but I don't think I will ever regret it because I know that this fits within the Grand Design somehow. Things have to get worse before they can become gloriously better. The quote that has been circulating from Neal A. Maxwell talks about how the time will come when Latter-Day Saints will have to make a stand. So in a sense, I am making my stand. My stand is to be the best Anna Allred I know how to be. I will open my mouth. I will share my testimony with anyone willing to listen. I'm not going to be afraid of rejection or ridicule any longer. I will do what I know to be right and honest. The time has come for me to tell the world, "Bring it on!" I know I don't have to explain anything to anyone why I am doing this. But this blog is for me. My journal in a sense.

I love God. I love Jesus Christ, who is my Savior. I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I know we have a modern day prophet, because God loves ALL His children, past, present and future. I know that the sealing power that Jesus gave to Peter, to bind things on earth so they would be bound in heaven is on the earth again. That holy priesthood to act in God's name in service of His children is here. I am not ashamed to say these things in a blogosphere where anyone might happen on my site.

I know who I am, where I came from, why I am here and where I am going.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Moving Day at last!!

Tonight is the first night we started moving into the new house. EEEK! And I thought everything was smoothly organized. I have to think again. BUT- we got a LOT done, thanks to the help of Mary and Travis Scrivner. Mary helped pack boxes and watched the girls for us while the rest of us ran back and forth unloading and unpacking. I think Ryan wore Travis out with all the big-taking-it-apart stuff. So we still have a lot to do tomorrow when everyone comes to help. I have a few hours left til I need to sleep to be able to function. But I think I can get my goal accomplished of all the rest of the junk thrown away or boxed so that ONLY the big two-men-needed stuff is left.

I'm taking bets.

Think I can do it? I'm pretty bushed, but I am quite sure I can make it. It will take a Herculean effort, but I'm the little train that could.

I think I can. I think I can. I think I can...

zzzzzZZZZZzzzzz

And oh yeah. I'll be out of the loop until we get our internet transferred. Hopefully it won't take too long. But the good news is I will have unpacked my camera by then and can have lots of fun pictures. Weeeeeeee!

Yeah, I know. I've lost it. This is what moving does to me. Even when I don't have to do the packing. But hey...tomorrow we will be in a new place!!!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Happy Veteran's Day!

Two years ago, yesterday, Ryan came home from Iraq on his second deployment. This is what Veteran's Day means for us...



A HUGE thank you goes out to all veterans, past and present. And especially to those who stand in harm's way today. Thank you to their families. You are in our prayers as much as the soldiers.

I am thankful for the experiences I have had to be a part of the Army family.

First to fight for the right,
And to build the Nation’s might,
And The Army Goes Rolling Along.
Proud of all we have done,
Fighting till the battle’s won,
And the Army Goes Rolling Along.

Then it’s hi! hi! hey!
The Army’s on its way.
Count off the cadence loud and strong;
For where’er we go,
You will always know
That The Army Goes Rolling Along!

Happy Veteran's Day!

AND-- Happy Birthday Mom!!!

Friday, November 7, 2008

HECK YEAH BABY!

I CANNOT WAIT! Elisha, I am so buying your ticket for this movie. Thank you thank you thank you for letting me borrow the books!!! I read them all within 3 1/2 days. The dark circles under my eyes and the inability to focus ought to be proof enough of that...watching the scenes behind my eyelids as I sleep.

Yeah, I've been somewhat obsessed.

I normally don't read vampire stories, because, to be honest I find the concept quite disgusting. BUT- good vampires? Romance? And Robert Pattinson, (who I so didn't think was that good-looking in Harry Potter) is playing my new literary crush, Edward, is P-E-R-F-E-C-T for the role. As a vampire, he is HOT! He might be my Hollywood boyfriend. LOL! Just kidding. But I am excited to see this movie. I haven't looked forward to a movie like this in a looooooong time!

I repeat:

HECK YEAH BABY!!


Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Election Day has come and gone...

I realize as I type, running on adrenaline because of the lack of sleep the last few days, I just might not make any sense. But in any case, I do have to say that I am looking forward to a new presidency. I find myself in an obvious minority who don't hate President Bush or think of him as the worst president in our history. I believe that time will tell whether or not his popularity, or lack thereof, was warranted.

This was my first election to vote in. (I voted on Halloween.) I'm a bit touchy on that subject because the last election I was registered and ready to vote and then I never received my absentee ballot in Germany. And neither did a LOT of people. Anyways, I felt a rush of different emotions as I cast my very first vote. I was fully planning on voting for McCain. Up until the day before, I was pretty decided and excited to go cancel my sister's vote that she had just cast. And then, I looked at Obama from a different perspective, a view I had been avoiding. Sure, I had a lot of hangups with the guy...but mainly because of a few very liberal views that I was pretty conservative on.

And I took into account Sarah Palin having a special needs baby at home, and I couldn't vote to take his mother away from him more than she already would be as governor of one of our smallest -population-wise, states. It went against my family values that I hold dear.

I took into account family members, older and wiser than me, who were seeking a change. And I remembered my pledge to vote for the guy who helped pass the new GI Bill for post 9/11 OIF/OEF veterans that directly affects my life today. I was shocked it wasn't McCain.

So I voted Obama. I filled in the bubble. I filled in for the representatives in Congress I wanted. I turned in my vote and went back to my car.

And I cried.

Not because I felt patriotic, but because I acted on an impulse, and I wasn't sure I was right. I begged Ryan, who had pretty much chosen to not vote because he didn't like the idea of either guy being his commander-in-chief to go cancel my vote. Which he did, an hour before the polls closed. Isn't he a great husband?

Anyways, as the day went on after casting my vote, I realized I didn't have to be scared. We have a democracy set up of checks and balances. And then, the inital feeling like I had betrayed every Republican that breathed passed, and I relaxed and started to get excited. I'll never be able to explain how my fear changed to excitement. And then the rollercoaster began, the endless debating. I supported McCain until 5 days before Election Day. And then things were pointed out to me. And I was willing to listen open-minded.

Then I felt a surge of patriotism as I came to the conclusion that I didn't really care who became president. I voted! I made a statement, even in haste. This country is the greatest country in the world. Even at our worst, we are still pretty darn great! I love being an American. I am grateful for my citizenship. I will never take my freedoms for granted. I may not be a liberal Democrat. And I'm not an extreme conservative Republican. I lean to the right mostly, but can see some good liberal concepts. Imperfect as our government may be, our country has spoken.

And I was a part of it.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Trunk or Treat, smell my feet...

Tonight was our ward's Trunk or Treat Spooktacular Event. Monica picked out the pirate costume weeks ago and has been dying to play with it. I picked a lamb for Leah because it seemed like it would be warm just in case it got cold.



It didn't. PERFECT weather.


My pirate...Captain Mo























Anna had a little lamb, little lamb, little laaaaamb























Monica thought I was a grandma. I was going more for the retro, Austin Powers era.



















Captain Mo and Princess Katie held hands on their way to get their candy!



















So cute!








The Cottams had this awesome fishing booth at their trunk. Monica loved it!



















Monica fished out some candy and spiders...oooooh!























Not only do they match perfectly as a family every Sunday, the Cordrays also had the best costumes!

Mary Poppins
























Her chimney sweep guy type friend... ( I don't remember his name. But I remember he liked flying kites. Um, right?)
























Then the Popes had this cool cemetery setup at their trunk.















I forgot to get a picture of her final count, but Monica was ecstatic over her candy. I told her to take one piece in with her to go inside and she grabbed a big handful. Our conversation:


Me: Monica, I said one piece of candy.
Mon: But Mom! I need to share with my friends.
Me: Ok, that works.
Mon: Friends! Friends! Mom, where did my friends go?

Laughter is the BEST medicine!

Last night while Ryan was at school, Monica, Leah and I shared about 10 minutes of pure laughter. I had gone to the laundry room to change a load when I heard Monica laughing hysterically. I found her doing this. Leah would smile real big at her between peek-a-boos, and wouldn't you know the moment I turn on the camera, the smiles ended. But it was still fun. You'll need to turn on your volume for this. Monica's laugh is too contagious!

video

Monday, October 27, 2008

Windows to Their Souls

As I sit here updating my blog, adding a few pictures of my beauties, I study these pictures and wonder what it is that makes me and seemingly so many other people, so captivated by these two little girls. And I think it is their eyes. I am mesmerized when I look at their eyes. Monica, with her thick, long, and dark lashes and full, round chocolate brown eyes melt me when she gets so excited about the world around her. They are so full of interest, curiosity, and genuine happiness. Leah, with her almond-ish shaped eyes, gives you a glimpse into uncharted territory, so full of excitement and wonder. Poor thing, she inherited my short lashes, but I am mesmerized nonetheless. They haven't turned to brown yet so they are this deep shade of brown and green. I am overwhelmed when I take the time to look into my girls' eyes and see beautiful spirits gazing at me, and I wonder how I was ever entrusted to be their mother. It's a constant reminder of my great responsibility as such. I really feel like I am looking into the windows of their souls, and am permitted, if for but a moment, to gaze upon their divine potential as true daughters of God.

Yesterday in Sacrament Meeting was the Primary Program. They sang, "I Am A Child of God" at the beginning and at the end, with two beautiful little solos. During the end solo, Monica got real close to my ear and sang "I am a child of God..and me here...parents dear...hmmm hmmm hmmm hmmm walk beside me, help me....the way". So in a meeting jam packed with the Spirit, to hear my own little tot singing along these words just really hit home. My responsibility is to make sure my children know without a doubt who they are, earthly and spiritually. It is my job to help them find their way by walking beside them for the little time they are in my care and to teach them everything they need to know about who their Heavenly Father is so they can live their lives to return to live with Him again.

I am thankful to be a mother, but truth be told it scares a whole lotta something out of me. As exciting as it is, it is equally gut wrenching. I am scared of failing to be there in the way they will need me. I am scared of letting them out of my sight where I cannot protect them from every possible threat. But I am also excited to see them take opportunities when they come. And excited to see them learn and grow. I am excited to watch them build relationships and grow in strength and knowledge. So it's no wonder to me that moms go gray before dads. For us emotionally driven moms, it is quite the rollercoaster!!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

We're MOVING!!!

We are soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo(get the picture?)oooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo excited!! We have been looking for another house to rent for about 6 months. We like this house, but there is one major drawback- no closetspace!! And kind of a crummy backyard. So- Ryan is at work one day and decides to look around the neighborhood and see what's out there. Two turns and Voila! He sees this house and makes the call and it's actually available! So what's so great about this other house???

#1. two full closets in the master bedroom
#2. Two sinks in the master bathroom (SCORE!) plus another closet!
#3. Twice as much sq. footage in the master bedroom.

#4. 2-3 linen closets
#5. A coat closet

#6. A formal dining room (we can actually have space to invite people over!)
#7. Two family living areas
#8. good sized kitchen
#9. two car garage

#10. A fully landscaped HUGE BACKYARD!
#11. A tool/shop shed
#12. A big concrete slab for playing basketball, or holding a dance party
#13. 3-4 times as much grass space

#14. Spacious bedrooms
#15. large closets in the bedrooms
#16. Built in a hacienda style

In case you can't tell, we are soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo excited!! Ryan checked his messages as we were leaving church today and found out. WOOHOO!! I was so excited I did my Molly Shannon "Superstar" right there in the hall. YES!

We'd like to thank Congress for passing the new GI Bill, Ryan's boss for giving him work, for Moms and Dads and their support, and for all the other little people who made this happen. We ESPECIALLY have to send a shout out to our new landlords for approving our application and offering this beautiful and spacious home to us for such a great price!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Das Wienerschnitzel ja!

So what do you get when you combine a hankering for German cuisine and an aunt who flies to Germany regularly?

HOMEMADE WIENERSCHNITZEL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The best in the west! Dude, seriously. The sauce, the breading, the yogurt (around 10 euro)- handcarried from Germany. The only thing missing? An open fire oven and french fries (2 euro). The trip down memory lane- priceless!!!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

We found our camera!

Ok, so it's time to play a little catch up. We didn't lose our camera, as we had fretted. It had fallen out of the backpack and rolled under the stroller. YAY!! So, here is the last week and a half in review.

We saw our friends from Germany, the Keils and the Prices! It was so fun to see you guys again!!














Previously said sweet picture of the girls at the balloon fiesta fireworks show...













Then Leah helped Ryan do his homework. She looks so tiny in the arms of her daddy!











It's officially cookie-making-decorating-and-giving-them-away season!




























Here's Leah on the day she rolled over from back to tummy 8 times! It has now increased to everytime she is on her back. She falls under the "baby may EVEN be able to..." in the what to expect book. Genius maybe?




























And now here she is in action. She's much faster now.
video

My decorated cookies...



























A fun photo op with the girls last night...

































Miss Monica took this picture!


































Monica took decorating her cookies very seriously...especially since she could use the princess edition of cookie icing!