Thursday, April 10, 2014

Summer Has Begun

Not too incredibly surprising, but it seems that summer has decided to grace Arizona with its presence this week. We're already experiencing temperatures in the 90s :/ so it's high time we bust out the outdoor water activities!!!

Yesterday, one of our friends invited all of the neighborhood over to play on their giant inflatable water slide. Seriously, that thing was so cool. I wanted to play on it really bad. Fox wanted to enjoy it too, but there was a water cannon at the bottom that kids kept spraying each other in the face (and everyone else's faces), and Fox was not a fan of that -neither was I. I mean, we were fine with other kids getting sprayed, just not us ("Wa wa wa watch the hair" -Uncle Jesse). Plus, to get to the top of the slide, you had to essentially climb this inflatable rock wall -cool, but not quite where Fox is at yet. So we just partied it up on the super cool kiddie slide next to the giant inflatable one:)

Pools, slip-n-slides, splash pads, sprinklers, hoses on trampolines ...Oh, I'm getting excited.

Friday, March 28, 2014

How Many Weeks Am I At Now?

The other day, Camaron and I headed to downtown Gilbert, sans Fox, to take some "I'm a professional" / "Wow, that guy looks important" photos for Camaron's resume and work social media stuffs. I don't mean to brag, but I think I did a pretty good job. I mean, here's a direct quote regarding one of his photos that he posted online: "Who is this man, and how can I give him oodles of money?" See, nailed it.

After capturing as much of Camaron's professionalism as the camera could handle, I switched places with him and asked him to capture a few of me and my pregnant-ness. I sometimes feel guilty that I might not be giving this pregnancy as much attention as I did with Fox, so I've been trying to jump on as many photo ops as possible lately. So here I am in all of my 27 or 28 week glory! You see what I mean about not paying enough attention? I don't even know how many weeks along I am, sheesh.

sidenote: a couple weeks ago, my computer's hard drive had some problems (not too surprising as my laptop is pushed off the couch at least twice a week. Thanks Fox ...and me). So I ended up having to have it wiped when the techs fixed it. Unfortunately, I lost all of the photoshop actions I had accumulated over the years (along with a ton of other things I foolishly didn't backup). I was able to re-download a few, but as for the rest I was scrambling to find good-quality replacements. As luck would have it, mid-search, A Beautiful Mess tweeted that they just released their amazing new actions in mini sets that are only $10!!! I had been coveting their newly-released actions, but couldn't bring myself to pay $50 for photoshop actions right now. But $10? Done and done. Just thought I'd share that there are awesome and affordable actions available on their site right now:) Dang, I should get paid for this -I sound like an ad, but really I'm just excited.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Putting my creativity to work // Gold Foil Temple Prints

Inspiration came one day and I just couldn't shake it. So I made a big purchase on a whim with the reasoning, "Well, if this doesn't pan out, I can just return it." I am so glad I followed my gut and just jumped in (even though it was a bigger purchase for me.)

Designing a gold foil print of the Gilbert LDS temple paid off in more ways than I originally planned. Having creative projects to work on is one of the best medicines my mind could ask for (why does it always take me so long to realize this?). Life has been very crazy lately and having this outlet for my creativity has been such a blessing. So I just wanted to just send out a huge THANK YOU to everyone who has placed orders for temple prints so far. It's been fun seeing old and new friends pick up their prints. Having these orders to work on has definitely kept me busy, but it has truly been such an amazing experience.

As long as I'm getting orders, I'll continue creating these temple prints, so please let me know if I can create one for you:)

**email me at with questions on ordering, sizing, pricing, and custom orders

Thursday, March 20, 2014

I'm gonna complain. Here it comes...

Just when I start thinking to myself, "You know, this pregnancy really isn't so bad..." that's when I end up not being able to fall asleep until sometime after 2am because I have restless arms (aka the jimmies). Seriously, it's a real thing, and it's the worst. That was last night. And then Fox decides he wants to be up and wide awake at 6am today. And today is one of the days that Camaron has the car all day. And I really need a shower. And I'm just sooooo tired and I wish there were more seasons of Phineas and Ferb on Netflix because this is the fourth time we've seen this episode, Fox. I'll keep you posted if I have more complaints later...

***UPDATE: My super-human mom came and saved the day (as usual). And Natalie offered to save the day, so she comes in at a close second. And Fox took a nap so I was able to shower (you're welcome, world). Now I love everything and just wish I could be as awesome as these people some day:)

Monday, February 24, 2014

The way weather like this should be enjoyed

The weather lately has been nothing short of MARVELOUS! -As is to be expected Nov-Mar in Arizona. And for some reason, all I've wanted to do for weeks was to go as a family to the park and feed the ducks. I think they did it in an episode of Curious George or something, and the image of it just stuck -Curious George has done that before. One time, he gave me a huge hankering for grapes because he was using a bunch of them in one of his curious adventures. Basically, we've been watching a lot of that trouble-causing monkey around these parts lately.

Obviously (I mean, we have photographic evidence, people), we were able to find time to take our fancy-Valentine's-french-toast-bread leftovers to a nearby park and make my monkey-induced dreams come true. And it was wonderful. I loved watching Fox throw in his little bread pieces and quack at the ducks. Pretty sure the ducks loved it too -more and more kept appearing from nowhere. The experience wasn't quite as relaxing as I imagined though, as Fox wanted to get in the lake so bad. We had to keep a very close eye on him. 

We've been spending lots of time outdoors each day and it is so great -mostly because it wears Fox out and he's ready for a nap as soon as we get home (#lazymom). But I'm also just trying to soak in as much of this nice weather as possible before the sun decides to scorch our faces off in a few months (AZ summers ...why you gotta be so hot?).

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Starting Nursery and Hitting 21 Weeks

Believe me, no one is more surprised than myself that I've already passed the halfway point in this pregnancy. Wahoo! It finally feels like speed is picking up (why did the first trimester feel sooo long? And now that whole sicky-time feels like forever ago?).

We had the gender ultrasound a few weeks ago, and I stuck to my guns. The tech turned the screen off during any shots that would have revealed anything:) And she let me know that since I didn't want to know the gender, then no one would know -she didn't write it down anywhere so that there's no worry of the doctor or a nurse accidentally letting the surprise slip. ...So there's no going back now (unless of course I wanted to schedule another ultrasound, but I don't see that happening).

Mostly just feeling lots of tiny kicks and fitting into less and less outfits now. Oh yeah, and I literally cried from happiness when I finally made it out of an hour and a half long traffic jam on the freeway Friday night (only going the distance of one mile in that whole hour and a half!!!) So, hormones are working just fine.

Fox went to his second week of nursery on Sunday. He's rocking it. One of my new favorite parts of church now is peeking through the little window in the nursery door and seeing Fox sitting at the tiny table eating snacks with the other 18-month-olds. Technically, Fox has a couple more weeks before hitting 18 months, but Fox's nursery leaders are good friends of ours, and Fox knows them well, so we went ahead and tried it out. I'm so glad it's going so well:)

Thursday, February 06, 2014

Homemade Valentine Donuts

Donuts have always been one of my favorite treats (can you blame me?). I definitely have a few favorite spots to pick up a dozen glazed with sprinkles, but sometimes it's extra fun to make your own.
Since I was pretty young, my family has had a pretty simple trick for making our own delicious donuts at home:

Biscuit Dough!

It fries up amazingly and you can make your own dough or simply use a can of the Pillsbury kind -or Trader Joe's makes delicious ones as well. That's what I used this time.

I just used a heart-shaped cookie cutter to shape the dough into Valentine hearts. I flattened the dough out a bit first -if it's too thick, your donuts may end up doughy in the middle. I then placed them into a frying pan with about an inch of hot vegetable oil. The hardest part was getting the temperature just right. If you have a candy thermometer, you'll want the oil to be about 350 degrees. If you don't have a thermometer, use any extra dough (or weird shaped donuts) to test the heat of the oil. My stove worked best set at med-low. Cook each donut for about 45 seconds on each side (I flipped mine using tongs) until golden brown on each side.

Place cooked donuts onto paper towels to soak up extra oil while they cool. Once they have cooled off, you can decorate! I sprinkled some with powdered sugar, frosted some with Nutella, but dipped most of them in chocolate glaze.

Chocolate glaze recipe:

1/4 cup butter
2 tablespoons milk
1 1/2 teaspoons light corn syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup chocolate chips
1 cup confectioners' sugar

Combine butter, milk, corn syrup, and vanilla in medium saucepan and heat over medium heat until butter is melted. Decrease the heat to low. Add the chocolate and whisk until melted. Turn off heat. Add the powedered sugar and whisk until smooth.

Final step: Enjoy with a glass of milk (and be sure to save me one! You know I already ate all of mine)

p.s. do you spell it "donut" or "doughnut"??? I'm pretty sure I go back and forth

***my doughnut/donut making memories all came back to me when I saw this post
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