Wednesday, December 10, 2008


I LOVE traditions. Especially holiday ones!

For Thanksgiving every year my family goes to an early movie while the turkey cooks. Now that may not sound that cool to you, but this is the one day I am more excited to see a movie than any other day of the year! My first memory of this tradition was going to see "The Little Mermaid", which of course was FABULOUS. Ever since then I have loved this tradition. This year we got to see "Twilight" which I had also been looking very forward to.

Another Thanksgiving tradition was playing BINGO for prizes later in the evening. Silly prizes like gum, Slinkies, Silly Putty, and cheap toys, but boy did I look forward to it! The prizes were even wrapped, so it was like a precursor to Christmas.

Christmas traditions were pretty "traditional" in our household. Reading the Christmas story, musical performances, goodies, sharing experiences, etc.

Since I moved out of my parents' house, my family started a different tradition. Some friends of ours purchased elf costumes from the movie "Elf." Some of us dress up in these costumes, then we go to the hospital and visit patients' rooms to sing them carols and deliver goodies donated by the hospital. My dad or brother plays the guitar while we all sing. It's a great way to start the morning and feel the true meaning of Christmas!

My parents' gift to their friends also became a tradition. My dad made tons of home-made salsa while my mom and the kids decorated gift bags and loaded them up with tortilla chips. Soon enough people began talking about "Kevin's Home-made Salsa" and wanted it more often than just Christmas! I enjoyed going out and delivering with my family. Even more though I loved looking at all the Christmas lights!

My Dad organizes a program every Christmas Eve. Everyone is assigned to participate whether it's a story, an experience, or a musical performance. It really invites the spirit in and helps us reflect on the most important thing in life...our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. By the end of the evening most of us have shed a tear or two.

My grandma Wannie always makes delicious goodies, and when away from her, even sends them to us! Her Honey Candy is amazing. Cassie has even started making it the last couple of years. I don't even want to take on that task. Honey Candy is SO hard to make! I also love the home-made fudge (MINUS the nuts) and Butter Balls (Aunt Donna's favorite!).

This is how Christmas morning went at our house. We had to wait until 7:00 to get our parents up. I was usually the one to go wake up the siblings, then we'd go in together and tell them to get up! It's Christmas! (Of course before all that I'd go take a little peek under the tree. We'd all be in our jammies. The BIG gift, usually covered in a blanket, was from Santa. We'd start with that. Then on to the stockings, also left by Santa, then to all the wrapped gifts from each other under the tree. We would take turns opening presents, one at a time.

While we would clean up, Dad would make a big breakfast of his scrumptious omelets complete with onions, green peppers, tomatoes, avacados, and cheese. MMMMazing I tell you!

We kids would neatly lay our gifts on our beds and admire our new treasures. We'd call our friends and tell each other what we got for Christmas.

When I was a little older we got a ping pong table for Christmas. Inviting friends over and playing "Around the World" became something we started to do every year as well.

We couldn't end the day without a yummy honey baked ham, augratin potatoes, rolls, salad, and veggies. Oh how I love the holidays!

I remember the feeling of Christmas in my home. There was Christmas music humming throughout the house all day every day. The candles and baking goodies brought a sweet aroma, warm feelings and excitement. This time of year always seemed a little more peaceful and a little more filled with love.

I only wish I would keep those feelings with me all year long.

Tell me your traditions! I want to start more and would LOVE ideas!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Computer Hog

Due to Richie's recent hour long Power Point presentation, I have not gotten much computer time around here. I normally like to post when Mylie is down for the night (naps are too short--30 minutes tops!) but since Richie has been so busy with homework on the computer, I have neglected my duty.

There's so much to post about though!

On November 5, Mylie and I got to fly to Oklahoma to spend time with family. Oh how wonderful it is be at Mom and Dad's house! However, Mylie developed a condition called "Back-of-the-Head Hair Loss." I hear it's pretty common among babies though, so I'm not too concerned. Unfortunately she got a little cold as well, but not too worry, we treated her with a humidifier, saline nose spray, and a "nose-sucker." She didn't enjoy the treatment but is now healthy and happy once again!

She got spoiled with hugs and kisses,

24-7 attention,

new clothes new toys!

She met a new friend named Kenzie--my friend Robyn's baby. They got along so well that Kenzie allowed Mylie to suck on her hand.

Thanks Mom, Dad, Cassie, and Lisa for a wonderful time in Oklahoma!

Daddy and Mylie were so excited to see each other and hang out on the couch again! Yay for cool Dads!

When we got home we had to take Mylie to the doctor for another set of shots. Poor little Sweetie. She was so tough and did such a great job though!

Lucky us we got some very special visitors for Thanksgiving. Mylie finally got to meet her Uncle James and Aunt Michelle. They drove from Rexburg and Provo. What a sweet sacrifice!

Michelle and I tried to take Mylie swimming. Unfortunately the pool heater was not working yet, so we enjoyed the jacuzzi for a few minutes.

Mylie was always happy with James holding her. He even taught her how to Break Dance. (More about that in a later post).

We saw "Twilight" Thanksgiving Day. Seeing a movie while the turkey cooks is one of my family's Thanksgiving traditions. I liked the movie a lot. I liked Bella, but did not like Edward. He was quite a disappointment to me. I also really liked Alice and Charlie. The rest of the characters were fine, but not fabulous!

We had dinner at the Dinsdale's home. We were also joined by Ryan and Schuyler of course. Thanks for the yummy food everyone! I made our traditional Sweet Potatoe Pie or Yummy Yam Casserole and Strawberry Pretzel Jello Salad. Mmmm yum. Let me know if you want either recipe. They are delish!

We got to go on a little hike with James and Michelle. Okay, it was more like a desert stroll. But we had fun anyway.

The sign "Stay on the Trail" kind of confused us. The trail went left and right. Which trail was it talking about?

BIG Cactus!

What else you ask? Aunt Rachel sent Mylie an adorable hat, and Aunt Michelle brought her some tights/leg warmers. Check out our stylin' little chica!

Lastly...more about Mylie. We LOVE this little girl! She's such a sweetie! It's amazing to see how much she learns every day. She can roll pretty well now. She often rolls from back to tummy and right on to her back again. We call it the double roll. She coos and babbles a lot and LOVES to interact with Mommy, Daddy, and even strangers. She's a little smiler and has got darling chubby cheeks, dazzling dimples, and a contagious smile! She's sleeping through the night and even falling asleep on her own. She's still a horrible napper, but I'm happy to have the nights free of wakings and feedings.

This is often what I do with Mylie while I put on my makeup. She likes to eat the faucet. Must taste like milk or something.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Sweetheart Tag

What is your husbands name? Richard Newman Whitaker

How long have you guys been married? 2 years 3.5 months

How long did you date? We dated for 6 months and were engaged 6 months.

How old is he? 25.

Who is taller? Richie by a small margin!

Who can sing best? Richie hands down!

Who is smarter? Richie by far. I always tell him he's smart and I'm a dummy.

Who does laundry? Mostly me. Sometimes when we're out of whites though, he throws them in.

Who pays the bills? Bill pay pays the bills. Easy as pie.

Who sleeps on the right side of the bed? Facing the bed, Richie claimed the right side long ago.

Who mows the lawn? We don't have one, but when we do, hopefully Richie (even though he loathes yardwork!)

Who cooks dinner? Me, which is too bad because I'm not a great cook, but Richie's even worse. Lucky me though, he does the dishes every night!

Who is the first to admit when they are wrong? Hmmm. We're both stubborn and usually just agree to disagree. I boil a little longer while he's ready to hug and make up.

Who kissed who first? Richie kissed me, but I gave him all the signs that I was ready!

Who wears the pants? It's shared, but some things Richie just WON'T bend on.

I tag everyone who wants to participate!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Fright Night! Read on if You Dare!

Tonight we went to an outrageously spooky Halloween Party, mostly with friends from the ward. Richie was an attractive Magician and Mylie was his sweet little rabbit in a hat. ADORABLE!

At the party we voted for best costume. The Merrell's dressed as Star Wars characters, and the vote was unanimous for their winning...except for one vote...the one vote that Richie voted for Mylie. I got a good laugh out of that one!

We also participated in festive games like a Candy Corn Catching contest, a couples Who Could Eat the Doughnut Fastest contest, and a Find the Reeses Pieces in the Pile of Whip Cream contest. I guess all the games were little contests. I accidentally cheated at the Candy Corn game by throwing extra Candy Corn that wasn't my team's to throw.

Richie was mad that I didn't put more effort into eating the doughnut more quickly...goodness we made a game plan right before that I would hold the hanging doughnut in place while he gobbled it up!

Richie won the Reeses Pieces contest hands down. He threw his face in the whip cream and came up with the Reeses Piece in .08 seconds flat. Pretty amazing if you ask me.

To top it all off we had delectable goodies that everyone brought, from taquitos, egg rolls, cookies, and caramel popcorn, to jello eyeballs and pretzel fingers with green cheese fingernails.

Thanks Slivka's for the most funnestest Halloween party EVER!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

October Lessons

I've learned a couple things this month. DO NOT carve your pumpkins at the beginning of October in Tucson. I thought I was being all good, gettin' mine carved, ready to show off on our front porch. After day 3 or 4, they were good and ready to throw in the garbage. Molding, warping, collapsing little jack-o-lanterns. Ewwww.

One would also believe that October would bring perfect weather to visit the pumpkin patch. Think again my friends. Not that it's so unbearably hot that you melt like a pop-cycle or fry like an egg on the sidewalk...just uncomfortable enough that you would choose to wear nice, cool, clothing and wear eye protection. But did I think of that? Not so much. I choose a three quarters arm length sweater, dark jeans, shoes and socks. And because I thought this would be an ideal time for a family photo, I also made Richie wear a long-sleeve button up shirt, dark jeans, shoes, and socks. Poor little Mylie was also dressed for a cooler day. It was so bright we couldn't keep our eyes opened very well for a picture. So much for a cute family pumpkin patch picture. Here's the best we could get. Just look at those squinty, watery eyes!!!