Monday, July 5, 2010

In Honor of the 4th

I saw this and couldn't resist sharing it with everyone. Gotta love the US!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

CA Final Day

Originally we had planned to spend the last morning at the beach but us Phoenicians have become wusses and the 60 degree weather was too cold for us to play in the water. (Hey, that is the coldest it gets here in the winter, I almost needed a coat :) ). Instead we went to the Maritime Museum, it was amazing! Basically, it is nine ships that you pay a small entrance fee and you get to explore all nine ships. The first was the Star of India an 1800s British Merchant ship that transported goods and people all over the world.

It was incredible to see how large the ship was and
then to imagine the number of people crammed onto
for months at a time. It gave me a greater appreciation
for what my ancestors must have gone through to
get to America from Europe, crammed into a little
room with lots of other people, sickness running
rampant, praying you don't run into any storms.

Lachelle and I did do the whole Titanic moment on the ship but I don't have a copy of the photo since I had my camera on me (I'm probably glad about that that I think about it...).

I think Colby's favorite, of course, was the Russian
submarine. Talk about living on top of each other! The
ship didn't have enough beds for all the men who lived
on it so they slept in shifts.
There were lots of great things to see and I tried to convince Lachelle to climb into the torpedo tube, this is as close as she would get. :)

They had several steamships, including this private yacht with a smoking room (Colby is holding a pipe because obviously high class individuals would smoke a pipe). It reminded me of the movie In Search of The Castaways, an old Disney favorite of mine.

After getting our fill of the Maritime Museum, we walked down the pier to the USS Midway aircraft carrier, it was HUGE; unfortunately, we didn't have enough time to tour it so we are going to have to go back to see it. We ate lunch at this great restaurant on the pier, with huge glass windows overlooking the bay. As we were eating there was a small ship with a large mat in that had a dolphin swimming along the side, every so often the dolphin would jump into the ship, the trainers would give it a treat and then it would jump back into the ocean. Our waitress told us that they used the dolphin to check for mines and bombs under the piers up and down the coast in the fight against terrorism. It was so amazing to watch the dolphin working with the trainers and to think about man and animal working together.

CA Pool Party

After back-to-back days at theme parks we were tired! After we left Sea World we decided to order pizza and relax in the hot tub, just enjoying each other's company instead of trying to find somewhere to eat. It was great! Not seen in the photo are Kim and Sharlene who sat at the other edge, just letting their feet soak and Rado who pulled up a chair and kept us company.

CA Vacation Sea World

On day three of our vacation we went to Seaworld. We went straight to the dolphin enclosure, hoping to see them feeding the dolphins and instead, the workers brought in their pet dogs to play with the dolphins. If you look closely on the left in the front there is a Border Collie that spent the whole time running back and forth in front of the glass trying to lick the dolphins. The dolphins loved it and kept tapping the glass to get the attention of the dog. It was great to see them all having such a good time.

I have always found the eels to be super creepy and have to admit I kinda freaked myself out while I was in the aquarium by myself, luckily my husband came along before my imagination took complete control.

Bentley, as you can see, had the best seat in the house for viewing everything.

Of course, no trip to Sea World is complete without watching the Shamu Killer Whale Show. Colby and I sat by ourselves because I refused to sit in the splash zone with the rest of the family. I know, I know, I am a party pooper but I just don't like getting soaked by water and walking around wet for the rest of the day (yes, the family used the argument that it was hot enough that I only would have been damp for a little while but nonetheless, not my idea of a good time). We had a great time I only got a little sunburnt when the sun finally decided to come out and play.

Friday, May 21, 2010

CA Vacation Legoland

On the first full day in CA we went to Legoland. I have to admit I was super impressed by the detail work and scale that went into the displays. You can see how large the Washington Monument is compared to my tall husband. Bentley loved the rollercoaster ride and wanted to go again and again.

There are over 2.5 million legos in the park and it is amazing the different displays. Here we were in the Castle themed portion of the park and you can see Kim's cute prego belly getting in on the action.

The park was great especially since Bentley was tall enough to go on most of the rides and they weren't too scary for him. The park also had a couple of more exciting rides for the adults that we were able to go on.

CA Vacation Day One

We were able to go to California this last week with Colby's family and we had a blast! The first day there we went to the beach and FROZE! Unfortunately, we choose a very cold week to be there. It was hard to leave the 90 degree weather in Phoenix for the 60 degree weather in California. After walking in the sand and ocean without shoes we weren't able to find a place to wash our feet so Kim and Lachelle made do with an outdoor hand washing facility by the bathroom. The crazy people at the beach were actually swimming in that overcast cold weather. I guess Colby and I have adjusted to Phoenix alot more quickly than I expected.

The photo below is an accurate photo of how the guys spent most of the trip, gathered around Colby's phone looking at something or other.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

New Life, New Messes

This Spring we were very excited to see that a Mama Hummingbird was building her nest in our carport. We checked daily to see if the little eggs had hatched. Every time we went outside the Mama bird would fly away so we have watched the nest through our living room side window. Finally it happened, we saw Mama feeding the baby birds. Slowly the birds have been getting bigger. If you look closely you can see two beaks sticking up out of the nest.

You are thinking "Awww, how cute!" right?! Wrong! What we didn't factor in and what most people fail to think about is that Mama bird doesn't leave the nest to take care of business, she just lifts her little hind end over the edge of the nest to make sure it doesn't land in nest. As the baby birds have gotten bigger, they have followed Mama's example very well. What does this mean? Well, my car is completely covered and I dive into every time I need to leave, afraid that I will be tagged getting in. If you look closely, all the white marks are from the birds. Oh the joys of new life.

Okay, I am embarrassed to admit that I drafted this post some time ago and thought I had posted it but I hadn't. A quick update on the birds, turns out hummingbirds have more than one clutch a year and she is currently sitting on new eggs and I anticipate that I will have a dirty car for the next couple of months.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Spring in the Desert

When we moved in our front yard was bare, except for a few desert plants. It has been pleasantly surprising to see the wildflowers flourish in our front yard. (Well, it was pleasant until we got a warning from the city that it is a fire hazard and we had to mow them down.)

I was able to go hiking with Erika and the boys a couple of weeks ago and it was crazy to see how green everything is. Granted, we have one of the highest rates of rain in decades so everything is growing like crazy. Haydn took his light saber and cleared the path for us. Thanks to him we didn't have any attacks from the enemy. :)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Study Assistance

Lately Smokey Joe has decided that every time I am studying he needs to come in and help me. Half the time he climbs onto my lap as I am sitting at the table, forcing me to scoot back further from the table and contort my body in unnatural ways to work around him. (Because of course I can't just kick him off my lap.) The other half of the time he just lays right down on top of my papers so I can't read them at all. If Colby is home I can usually convince Smokey Joe to go bother him but if I am home by myself than it keeps things interesting.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Refinishing Project

This weekend I restained a piece of furniture that I recently acquired from Dad. I am the third generation to own this buffet and it looked well loved before I fixed it. Old English makes a nick and scratch repair stain for dark woods. Because of the detail work on the front of the the buffet I didn't want to do a full refinish. I am very pleased with how it turned out. I was able to do the entire buffet, inside and out, using less than half of the bottle of stain. The photo below shows the difference between the two legs, one restained and one not.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Giveaway on

I am giving a novel and box of Godiva Chocolates away in honor of Valentine's Day. Just go to and leave a comment to be entered. Good Luck!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Jillian Junior Prom

I was able to go to St. George last weekend to help Jillian get ready for Junior Prom. She had a great time and looked amazing! The dress she was wearing is one that Jordanne got for a dance and this was the first time Jordanne would even let her try it on. (Jordanne said it was because Jillian would look better in the dress than she did.) Jill looked all grown up and beautiful!

Jocee was able to bring Mily and Cartr down to spend the day with us and help get Jillian ready for the dance. Mily was so cute! Mily loved watching us get Jill ready, she kept wanting to be in the bathroom with us, handing us the bobby pins while we did her hair. Jocee kept trying to get her to go play with the toys in the other room and Mily kept coming back to watch what we were doing. I pointed to the dress hanging in Dad's room and Mily, her eyes as big as saucers, said, "OHHHHH, it's SOOOOO pretty!!" Jocee is in trouble with her girlie-girl.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Botanical Garden

I realize I have shamefully neglected this blog lately, between law school and focusing on my book website (and not having anything interesting to post), I haven't posted anything for awhile. Recently, Colby and I were able to visit the Desert Botanical Garden in Tempe with the Snow family. It was beautiful! I had no idea there were that many different types of cacti (the plural of cactus, as I was corrected by Haydn) nor that the were that beautiful. I found out that the reason most of the trees here have green bark is because they don't have typical leaves, the bark will actually do photosynthesis so the tree can eat at all times.

The photo above is a beautiful glass sculpture located outside the garden that they are trying to purchase from the artist. We really enjoined the walk through and are planning on visiting again when the flowers are blooming in the next couple of months.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Jordanne and Jillian Visit

In November I found out about a killer deal being run by Southwest Airlines, fly anywhere in the US roundtrip for $50.00. So, Jordanne and Jill bought tickets and came to spend the last week of freedom from school with me. It was great! We went shopping, visited the Snows, and went hiking. The girls were excited that it was in the 70's the whole time they were here. One day we went hiking in the McDowell Sonoran Cactus Preserve. It was gorgeous! We all had a great time and before we blinked they were boarding the plane to go home. I'm so glad they were here to hang out with me.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

New Years Resolutions

It's that time of year again. New Years Resolutions. Why is it that I start off the year doing so well and then get worse as time goes on? Also, why is it I seem to have reoccurring resolutions. I mean, everyone has the repeat "lose weight" goal but I seem to go in patterns. Two years ago I had a resolution to go to the Temple every other month, that year Colby and I did well and the beginning of this past year we did well but we haven't been since before we moved to Arizona.

This year's resolutions are as follows:
1- Go to the Temple at least every other month.
2-Get down to that size six.
3-Survive my first year of law school.
4-Finish the projects for the blog forwarding I posted last year and get them mailed to the individuals who posted. (I have two mostly finished so I am on my way.)
5-Keep track of the books I read so I know how much I really read.

Recap of 2009:
I decided to do a recap of the highlights of 2009. Getting into law school was the biggest for me. Moving to Phoenix, I'm not sure I would call moving a highlight but it definitely was a big deal. Passing all my classes in the first semester of law school. It is amazing how a person's standards can drop. I started law school with the intention of being in the top 10% of the class, having been to school and taken the finals, my intention is now to just pass the classes, regardless of what standing I have in the class. Colby was laid off two days before Thanksgiving and found a new job this year. Dad got married again and I obtained four great new siblings in addition to a great new step-mother. Life is good.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Hiking New Years Day

New Years day it was 70 degrees so we decided to head out hiking with the Snows. A couple of weeks ago, Erika took some amazing photos of Colby and I at the Sonoran Preserve. It was incredible to see the many different types of cacti and to see the weird cactus. It was a great hike and the preserve is set up so you can hike as long or as short as you like. All of us enjoyed the hike but I think Haydn's favorite part was the Icee after the hike was over.
The boys were troopers until the very end and then they needed rides. (Of course, Wyatt got a ride for the entire hike and he enjoyed being outside with all of us.)
We have decided we all need to get outdoors more while the weather is so good (good in Phoenix being below 100 degrees).


This year was the first Christmas with the now combined Lamb-Schmutz (or is it Schmutz-Lamb?) family. All of us were there, and by all of us I mean the nine children Dad and Tia have between them, (Myself, Jocee, D.J., Josh, Jordanne, Courtney, Jillian, Taylor and Jaycee) the three in-laws (Colby, Zorn and Rachel), three grandchildren (Brejden, Amilya and new little Cartr) and Matt, our cousin who has basically lived at Dad's house since high school. (Impressed I can name everyone? I am!) Needless to say, chaos abounded, there definitely weren't enough beds and at one time it was hard to find a free bathroom. But we all had a good time. The tree looked insane with all the presents under it (as Jillian said, "This is what happens when you leave two presents unattended under the tree").

I don't think anyone was disappointed and it was great to see how excited the kids got. Brejden woke us all up at 7:00 a.m. by running down the hall shouting, "Wake up everyone, it's Christmas! It's Christmas!" Mily and Brejden made a killing since every single Aunt and Uncle got them each a present. Jocee and Zorn couldn't fit all the presents into their car to go home and DJ and Rachel had to take some of the presents up with them on their way to spend the New Year with Rachel's family in Wyoming.
Cartr got passed around a lot but Tia really liked to hold him and he loves his Grandma. After opening presents with my family, we headed over to Colby's for the traditional big breakfast (of course I forgot to pull out the camera for that) but the food was fabulous and the company even better. Grandma and Grandpa Squire came over and Bentley showed off his moves on the Big Wheels he got from Grandma and Grandpa Williams. (I couldn't decide who was more excited about the Big Wheel, Bentley or his Dad and Grandpa.)

Saturday, Kim, Lachelle, Sharlene and I all spent some quality time together getting pedicures and then met with the guys for lunch. Later we went to the Squire Family Christmas party and were able to get caught up with everyone. The entire group played Christmas Charades and here is Lachelle and Bentley acting theirs out. :)
After the party, we played games with Colby's family and we laughed so hard that Colby and Lyman cried.
We had a great time with both of our families and enjoyed the holidays. I hope you all did too!