Friday, August 29, 2008

I LOVE America!

Last night I had one of the greatest experiences of my life. I got to go to Invesco Field and hear Barack Obama give his acceptance speech and it was the most exhilirating, exciting, historical, momentous moments of my life. It certainly wasn't just the speech- which by itself was unbelievable- but the entire experience- begining with the LONG line to get in: Seriously, it took about 2 hours to get in- I have never seen such a thing! The line was backed up for miles, the lightrail wouldn't even take us to the Invesco stop but rather to the stop before- we were told the crowds were too big to go all the way and the line was backed up to the Auraria stop anyway. The line was back even farther than that!! It was insane!!!!

Then seeing all of the protestors:

I thought this one was hilarious, because I am pretty sure Jesus loves all of us, and we don't have to "earn" his love- his Grace, perhaps, but certainly not His love!

Then I got to eat disgusting American food:

This was NOT my favorite part of the night- I am not a hot dog fan- but I didn't want to wait the 15 minutes for the pizza to finish cooking. The lines for food actually were not that bad, but concessions food is never going to be great!

Here is a picture of me waiting for everything to begin- not the best seats, but definitely good enough! The way the credentials were handed out, I only got one, so Ben wasn't able to go with me, which we were both really sad about- I would have loved to be able to have experienced this with him, but at least he got to see it on TV.

Then, they had a TON of fantastic speakers and performers. Sheryl Crow and Stevie Wonder sang. Then the son and daughter of Martin Luther King spoke- seriously, when will I ever get to be in the vicinity of such amazing people again? Some of the best speakers were the governors of Virginia and New Mexico.

I tried to find as many "stars" as I could. Ben said it was ok if I kissed Ben Affleck (but nobody else- just him), so I kept trying to find him but never could. I didn't see any stars, though apparently several were there including Oprah. Oh, Shawn Johnson (olympic gymnast) gave the Pledge of Allegiance and Jennifer Hudson sang the national anthem (she has an AMAZING voice!!! She is on the jumbotron picture above) and so that was pretty cool, too. They handed out flags to everyone, and it was really cool to see 80,000 flags waving at Invesco. The Fourth of July has always been my favorite holiday, and this year we missed it because Aud was sick, so this kind-of made up for it. We are so blessed to live in such a great country!Then, of course, the keynote speaker- Barack Obama. Of course, he gave one of the most sincere, honest, riveting, unbelievable speeches I have ever heard- but that wasn't a surprise- public speaking is definitely one of his greatest talents. I think I missed half of his speech, however, because we were all hollering so much! It was hard not to, the excitement was so great. It was seriously was one of the most memorable and almost spiritual experiences of my life. I know that sounds strange, but the only thing I can compare it to is listening to the Prophet live. Now, I am not comparing Obama to Hinckley, but the atmosphere is similar- like something so special is going on that you will remember it the rest of your life. It was indescribable. I really think he is an amazing man- and leader. In fact, he has the exact same amount of experience as Abraham Lincoln- two terms as a Illinois senator- before he became president, and he turned out ok! Really, truly, I know some of you will never vote for Obama, and that's ok- that's what a democracy is all about, differences of opinions- but if you are unsure, I would strongly encourage you to do some good research to figure out what he is all about. I think you will be impressed with what you find!

And for those of you who just think I am a "flaming liberal," here is a picture for you to chew on:

I'll let you decide who I enjoyed listening to more!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

She's Just So Cute

Ben bought Audra this baseball cap and she just looked so cute in it I had to take a picture! We had just come in from a walk to the mailbox, and she knows she needs to take her shoes off when she comes inside. This is the progression of her taking her shoes off:

At this point, she always get a little stuck- she can't quite actually get the shoe off after she unvelcroes, so she kind of swings her leg around hoping it will fall off until Ben or I eventually intervene.
Now she is ready to run around the house, getting into everything- her favorite thing to do!
What a cutie!

Friday, August 22, 2008


Three posts in one day- WHEW! I guess I need a house to unpack or something...

I wanted to give my opinions on some books I have recently read- both from Stephanie Meyers (I know you are all shocked that I have an opinion:))

Breaking Dawn (if you haven't read these books yet, you may not want to read these critiques- that is my fair warning!!!) Pros:

1. I really liked the ending- it didn't try to set up for a sequel which was nice

2. Total mind candy, fast, easy read

3. For a better part of the book it kept you wanting to keep reading- not the whole time, but most of the time


1. I hated Edward always calling her "love"- I don't know why, but everytime he did, I wanted to vomit

2. I HATED the way Bella became obsessed with sex- it was like that was all Bella could concentrate on- how wonderful it was, etc. and when 16-year-old girls read this, they will think, "oh, sex must be really special, I am so excited to have it with my 16-year-old boyfriend, I just can't wait

3. It does bother me that Bella will give up everything- college, mortality, her family, everything for this guy she is "SOOOO" in love with at age 17. Here's why: I taught high school for 5 years, and EVERY girl thought they were "SOOOO" in love with their boyfriend, and freshmen girls honestly thought their freshman boyfriend was "the one" and therefore it was ok to have sex with them, etc. While Edward and Bella remain chaste until their very young marriage, it glorifies giving up all for love when you are a teenager. Unfortunately, many young girls do and they end up pregnant without a daddy for their baby and little hope for a happy future

4. Along with #3, it glorifies having a baby at a super young age. Again, I am looking at this from a mother of a daughter who I don't want being pregnant at age 16, and I don't want her to idolize somebody who is able to find such great happiness NOT going to college, NOT ever seeing her mother again, having a baby at a very young age, and getting married in lieu of fulfilling her life's ambitions.

5. I HATED that Jacob imprinted on a vampire (ok, I guess she was only half-vampire). I thought that was totally way out of character and not something that was congruent with the rest of the story, though I do realize it made for better story telling at the end to have the pack in line with the Cullens.

Overall: An enjoyable read, but I am very uncertain as to whether or not I want Audra to read the series when she is a teenager- I really don't think Bella is somebody I want her to idolize

The Host


1. Again, mind candy

2. Great theories, and I am not a big fan of sci-fi, but I still found the idea of the book quite compelling


1. Way too long- I really think she could have taken out about 20 chapters and been fine

2. I HATED HATED HATED HATED HATED (did I mention hated?) the epilogue and continued epilogue- I thought all she was trying to do was set the book up for a sequel and it totally detracted from the books actual ending, which was actually quite good

3. I don't know how she distinguished this as an "adult" book- not that I wanted sex or anything, but her writing was the exact same style as the Twilight series, and the topic in this book was no more adult than a human drinking blood to feed her baby

4. Even though her theories were great, I don't think she utilized them to the full potential

Overall: Again, it was an OK book, but not one I will read again

I would really LOVE to hear all of your thoughts on these books, especially if you disagree with me!!! I know many of you have read them, so let me know what you think!

Sorry I Am Bringing This Up Again

I can't believe I didn't think of this before in my previous rant, but I looked it up and found a picture of ALL of Obama's plane, and it indeed DOES have an American flag. So, he did take it off of the tail, but it IS on the plane (wow, that really makes the e-mails I got the absolutely most retarded things I have ever gotten in my life...)

But I did read an interesting article in the paper- what if McCain chooses Romney as a running mate? I actually think that would be a really smart move on his part- than I am certain McCain would win the western states (CO, NM, NV, UT- though UT is a given anyway). That could really make for an interesting race, and I think people would be really excited about having somebody who knows A LOT about money and the economy. Could be interesting!

The First of Many

This is probably not the most exciting news of the world, but Ben got to mow the lawn for the first time this last weekend. He has been excited to have a yard to take care of, and our yard is pretty small so it only takes about 20 minutes to mow. You'll notice we got an old fashioned reel mower- no gas, no spark plugs, no electricity- just good old fashioned pushing. People told us not to get one because they are so tough to work, etc- NOT SO! This thing is awesome- you feel like you are pushing air! They are a ton cheaper and super easy to work, so if you are in the market for a new mower, we would highly recommend this type! Even I am willing to go mow the lawn with this, and that is saying a lot, because I defintely believe that mowing the lawn is Ben's job. Sexist? Perhaps, but hey- I make dinner every night.

This is Audra looking out the window (this is HER window- she can stand here and look outside for hours) watching Daddy cut the grass. What a sweet girl!

Friday, August 15, 2008

We Got To Pray Just To Make It Today

A few weeks ago we started doing family prayer with Audra as part of her evening ritual, and now it is the cutest thing- when we say, "It's time for prayer" she folds her arms- what a cutie!
I know, I know- not the most amazing skill, but I am a first time mom so I am allowed to be excited by just how cute she is when she does this!

Rain, Rain, Stay All Day!

Last night and today we have finally got a respite from the un-ending heat- it is thundering and pelting rain, and it is wonderful! I am sure everybody here agrees that it is a welcome relief from all the record breaking heat we have had!

Anyway, because it was much cooler today, I put Audra in this cute Olympics outfit- I think she is just adorable!

She is ready to join the Olympic Team- she is cuter than Shawn Johnson any day of the week!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Martha Stewart

Awhile ago I used an idea from a Martha Stewart magazine (what a homemaker I am!) and made grocery bags out of t-shirts, and I wanted to share the idea because they are awesome, free (if you are like me and have a million t-shirts sitting in your closet), totally eco-friendly, and I actually make money every time I use them! (Every store I go to gives a 6 cent discount for bags, and I usually bring 6 bags, so that's $0.36 a week, which works out to be $18.72 a year- go me!!!)

Step 1: Choose your t-shirts- smaller sizes work best because they don't seem to stretch as much and are therefore more durable.

Step 2: Cut out the sleeves and cut your neck whole bigger (sleeves are the handles, neck whole is the opening to put the goods in) (sorry the picture is sideways)

Step 3: Turn the t-shirt inside out and sew the bottom.

Simple as can be! And, you definitley make a statement when you go to the grocery store- all the check-out ladies know me as the bag lady now! But, when to buy a reusable bag costs anywhere from $2.00- $30.00, I think these bags are the best!!! Let me know if you decide to make some and how they turn out!

Then, on a completely different note, I wanted to throw this picture in- this is our backyard, and this bunny was chasing two squirrels- who knew the suburbs had such nature? There are often bunnies in our yard running around- I hope they don't try to get Audra!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Almost Home Sweet Home

Well, we have most of our 3 million and four boxes unpacked- this has been a long and stressful week, but it is almost done! Audra is adjusting well to the new house- she loves running around the house where the main floor makes a big circle around the kitchen, family room, and living room. She could do that all day! Our neighbors seem really nice, though we haven't met too many of them yet- it's not like when we were young and we would always bring brownies or something to the new neighbors. I guess I shouldn't say that- one neighbor brought us a beautiful plant and she and her husband have been really kind to us. They are older and have grandkids and have said Audra could come play with them whenever she wanted (she is still a little young for that, however). That was very nice of her, and they will be great- but we haven't even seen the neighbors on the other side of us- very strange.
Anyway, I will try and post some pictures later today, but for now I just wanted to give everybody a quick update that we are in the house and starting to enjoy it- even if we can't remember where we unpacked half of our things....

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Ignorance is NOT bliss

I had to respond on my blog because I received the same totally ignorant e-mail twice, and it is so rediculous and ignorant, that I can not believe anybody is naive and stupid enough to forward such crap on! I don't care who you are voting for or what political affiliation you are, ignorance is ignorance, and it must be stopped!!!

The e-mail had a picture of Obama's plane (see below)

and then goes on to explain that Obama replaced the American Flag with his symbol and he is therefore anti-American and we should all be ashamed of him etc, etc, etc.

So, I looked up McCain's plane:

Do you see an American flag? Zoom in all you would like- you won't see it becuase it is hidden underneath the wing and is smaller than the "M" in "McCain." It may as well not be there, and if they are going to hide it and be "ashamed" of the flag by hiding it and making it non-existent, then they should be ridiculed MORE than Obama!!!

OK, but here is why I am really ticked off- are we as Americans really stupid enough to vote for our next presidend based on what a plane looks like, and not on issues and ideals we individually hold dear??? It is the lowest form of intelligence who basis their opinion on a piece of machinery!!!!! I can't believe people are so ignorant to pass along that crap!!! First of all, if Obama is anti-American because though his symbol looks like the American flag but it is not, then McCain is just as repulisive because he hides the American flag! Either way you look at it, it is not justification to vote or not vote for somebody!!!!

If you want to talk issues, I would love to talk issues, but PLEASE do not send me ignorant propoganda that has NOTHING to do with anything!!!!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Love it or hate it??

Here are some before and after shots of the painting. The brown ended up being much darker than we wanted, we wanted a nice warm tan color, but we like this color anyway. Once we get our furniture in we think it will help soften the brown a bit and just be nice and warm. Our painter told us that a lot of the new builders are going with this chocolate color, so I guess we are just being is definitley a polarizing color, either people will really like it or think we are crazy for choosing such a color. I guess it is good that we like it!
Front room before...And after....
The red color is the same that we had in our old house and we really liked it and it matched our furniture and everything already so we just kept it.
Here is from the front door looking up: (a before picture)
Here is from the top of the stairs looking down: (after)
Here Audra is playing with Gizmo in the backyard at Grandma and Grandpa's- trying hard to be "gentle":
And, Gizmo quickly running away from her attacker:

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Dryer anyone?

Before I get into the saga of the dryer, here are some cute pictures of Audra. Above is when we were back in the townhome and she successfully climbed on top of some boxes. She is angry once she got on top of the box because she couldn't figure out how to get back down.
Here she is attacking Gizmo- Mac and Ann's cat- while Gizmo is doing her best to run away from Audra. Audra isn't very nice to Gizmo- but she sure does love her!!!!

On to the dryer. This should not be complicated- to get a dryer. We bought a nice washer/dryer combo on Craigslist for $150- quite a good deal, I thought. We brought them to the house and Mac spent about 6 hours on the dryer only to conclude it was broken. After some thinking, he thought maybe the electrical outlet was busted. We went back to the house to discover that he was right- the electrical outlet going to the dryer was completely disconnected. I called the previous owner of the house who informed me that they used the electricity that would have gone to the dryer to power the remodel of the basement that was done years ago. Gee, that really would have been nice to know BEFORE we bought the dryer and Mac spent about 7 hours total trying to get it to work.

So, off to Sears Ben and I go. We spend a ton of money on a gas dryer- they are quite expensive, and while we could have bought one on Craigslist for 50 dollars, we wanted to make sure we had professional installers and a quality dryer as gas is nothing to mess around with. We schedule the delivery and install- again, costing us a pretty penny.

Yesterday the two most incompetent delivery people in the world came. Well, only after they called me totally and completely lost- they had no idea where Highlands Ranch was. HELLO! For you Seattleites, it's like having no idea where Belleview is- anybody with a brain knows where these major suburbs are, or at least the general area. Talking on the phone with them, they start getting mad and being rude to me because I can't understand where on earth they are and how to get them back to where they need to be. (For you Coloradans, they started out at Wadsworth and C-470 and ended up in Golden- no joke- when where they needed to be was Santa Fe and C-470- obviosly, these guys should not be doing delivery).

Finally, they show up. My friend Fawn was with me and we ended up leaving to go pick out tile while Mac stayed with the supposed installers. They come in and tell Mac that we don't have any of the right parts (even though we bought them from Sears when we bought the dryer) and that we needed to go to Home Depot and buy all sorts of different parts. Then they told Mac we needed to hire a plumber to install our GAS dryer- how on earth does that make any sense???? Apparently Mac was so livid with their incompetence that he almost sent them back with the dryer. But, Mac dutifully went to Home Depot, and the guy at Home Depot was like, "I don't know what these Sears guys were telling you, but you have all the right parts and all you need to do is this and this." So, Mac went back to the house where he attached the dryer parts that came with the dryer and they fit perfectly, thus convincing all of us that Sears sent us people who did not have a clue what they were doing. Mac didn't do all of the plugging and sealing because we want professionals to do the install- gas is dangerous, we want somebody who knows what they are doing to get this all together. Plus, again, we paid good money to have it professionally installed!!! So, we called Sears and very angrily told them our story and tomorrow they are sending out 2 more guys. Mac told them they had better send people who knew what they were doing! What a nightmare!

On the plus side, the painting is almost done and we have carpet cleaners (my wonderful cousin Clint) coming in Thursday night to clean the carpets. We bought a king size mattress, which Ben is super excited about- he has been wanting one since we went on our cruise and were spoiled with one a couple of years ago.

We hired a tile guy and bought the tile, but he hasn't called me back to tell me when he could get started. I am glad we are doing all of this before we move in- this is all such a pain!!!! But, Friday is our big day and we are really excited!