Learning How to Sew and Make Leather Sandals All in One Day

Hannah asked me to teach her how to sew with a “real needle.”

Well.  I’m not exactly an expert on sewing, my skills are definitely in the “beginner” category, so I taught her one of two things I know how to do:

How to sew on buttons.

She loved it!  Her sewing skills almost eclipse mine!  After I teach her how to tie knots and sew a straight line  . . . our skill set will be the same!   Should that concern me?!

Next up:

David made some leather shoes for Hannah and himself.

The kids LOVED helping him.   (Dallin doesn’t want a pair yet, his Lightning McQueen boots fill ALL of his needs and he refuses to take them off, even for bed!)

Look at her cute little toes!

These extra flat sandals that will allow her to run, jump and play all day.

David made himself a pair as well for running and everyday use.  (Sometimes you have to wear shoes you know.)

We are crafting up a storm this week!  I am on spring break, but the weather is still a bit cold for any “spring-like” activities.

I’ll be posting more pics of our trip to Disneyland soon . . . my website has been having technical issues which has made it difficult to upload images . . . so check back!

While We Were Sleeping . . . Again

Well . . .

After the wildly successful breakfast she prepared for us the other morning, she decided to try it again!

On the Menu:

  • Apples
  • Walnuts
  • Kiwis
  • Lovely sandwich for David

This is my plate.  Very healthy, that’s for sure!

She made a special sandwich for David.  It was a three tiered broccoli, spinach, and kale sandwich.

See?  Broccoli and spinach on the first layer . . .

And then kale on the second layer.

YUM-O I tell you!  🙂  David was the lucky one that got to swallow that dry sandwich down!

Honestly, how cute is she?!

While We Were Sleeping . . .

While we were sleeping the other morning, we had a very busy elf in the kitchen.  I’ve mentioned before how Hannah is an early bird.  She usually keeps herself pretty busy for a an hour or so drawing, playing with her toys, or getting online (she only has access to two websites) while she waits for us to wake up.

The other day we woke up to a very, very special surprise . . .

Almost bursting out of her skin, she bounded into our room exclaiming, “GUYS!  GET UP!  I HAVE A SURPRISE FOR YOU!  YOU ARE NEVER GOING TO BELIEVE IT!”

Boy.  Was she right.

We walked into the kitchen-half expecting to see a mural painted on the wall or something-and she presented us breakfast!

OK, we were all speechless.

Need I remind you that she is only four and a half years old?!

She served us on her colorful plastic plates (they are within reach for her in the kitchen) and found all sorts of yummy things for us eat:

  • Bananas
  • Apples (Only for the adults, she and Dallin didn’t get one because she said they would be too full for them!)
  • Yogurt (hand selected flavors for each person)
  • Almonds (various amounts for everyone)
  • Strawberries (they never actually made it out of their container on the table, but they were for us to eat anyway)
  • Lettuce (YUM-O, right?)
  • Mushrooms (WHAT?!  I KNOW!  WE WERE ALL SCRATCHING OUR HEADS ON THIS ONE!)

She is posing in front of David’s plate.  (The blue plate was chosen for him since he is a boy.)

Don’t those raw mushrooms look SO DELICIOUS first thing in the morning?  🙂

My plate is below:

Not only did she remember to get spoons for everyone, but she also remembered to put napkins on the table.  (Um, for the record, I don’t remember to napkins on the table 90% of the time.)

Here she is explaining why she made us breakfast . . .

So we wouldn’t have to do “ALL THAT HARD WORK!”

Well, she’s a keeper and I think she really should start earning an allowance!

The View From the MGM Grand in Las Vegas

Gosh, this has been a busy week and it’s slipping right by me!  I’m a bit behind on posting these last few images from our trip to Las Vegas, but better late than never, right?

This was the view from our hotel room at night:

And this is the same view in the morning:

One morning, Hannah got up before the sun (surprise, surprise) and she leaned over to me and told me she was bored in our dark, quiet hotel room.  (Dallin and David were still sleeping.)  I told her to go watch the sunrise.

She was thrilled!  I mean, how boring could it be to watch the sunrise?

Turns out, more than 10 minutes of sunrise watching for a four year old is VERY BORING.  (Heck, that is 10 minutes longer than I expected her to sit and watch it!)

Bored out of her brains, she asked me for some art supplies: paper, markers, pencils, etc.

Sorely disappointed in the lack of supplies I brought, (does a pen count?  I had a pen on me!  That counts, right?!)  she picked up the hotel notepad and drew the view from our window:

Next time we take a trip, I’ll be sure to pack lots of art supplies!

Other highlights from our trip:

  • Spending $4.00 for a bottled water (yes it cost us $12.00 for bottled water one night for dinner!)
  • Going to the local Walmart and buying a case of water with 24 units for $2.50 (See?  I LOVE WALMART!)
  • Waking up to Dallin smacking my shoulder saying, “TAG!  YOU’RE IT!”

I can’t wait to go back to WPPI next year!

The Night We Showed Our Kids the Las Vegas Strip

Last week, I attended a conference in Las Vegas called, “Wedding & Portrait Photographers International”  (it’s known as WPPI).  It’s where professional photographers meet for a few days to network, teach, and learn.  We also get to see what’s new and up and coming in the in digital and print world.  It was very helpful to talk to other industry professionals, and can I just say how much fun I had at the Nikon booth?  Talking to an actual Nikon representative is a much more informative experience than talking to an employee at the local camera store.  After listening to the Nikon rep speak geek to me about the Nikon D3s, I’m 100% positive that is the next camera I need.

POSITIVE.

I’m not sure how/when that will be happening, but I NEED it.  🙂  (Too bad it’s like a million dollars!)

David and the kids accompanied me, and by “accompanied me” I mean, they spent some quality time at the hotel while I  attended the conference.

We stayed at the MGM Grand, and I had high hopes the weather in Vegas would be warm.  Does 50 degrees sound warm?  It did to me initially, so we got in the heated pool (it was heated to 75 degrees, which is NOT that warm by the way) and after 10 minutes were all suffering from mild hypothermia.

Mother of the year I tell you.  🙂

I’ve been to Vegas more times than I can count.  I used to fly to Vegas every other weekend when I was a district manager for Allyse’s.  One of our bridal stores was in Vegas, so I got to know the city pretty well, but it has been a few years since I’ve been there and it was the first time my kids had ever been.

I’d never really thought about it, or realized it, but Vegas is a very adult place.  🙂  I’m not talking about the obvious reasons either, I mean everything is catered to those 18 years and older.  Needless to say, we stood out like tall blond Barbies in the middle of China, walking around with our kids and STROLLER.

Music was playing everywhere, and naturally my kids had to dance in the middle of the hallway, with hundreds of people dodging them.  (I have a fun video of this . . . the looks on peoples faces is priceless!)

Among David’s many talents, he is also known as the “toddler whisperer.”  He got our kids to take a three hour nap in the hotel room (this was a huge feat considering how much Dallin LOVES sleeping in foreign places!) which allowed us to show them the strip!

Our kids are so innocent, they loved all the lights and had no idea they were in “Sin City.”

The lights at the Louis Vuitton store were very cool, (I’ll post a video from our phone if I can figure it out.  I’m technically retarded in some areas.) and guess who was there selling their stuff?  THE GIRL SCOUTS!

Oh, how we love Girl Scout season!  We bought a box of Samoa Cookies and we enjoyed their deliciousness during our jaunt down the strip.

Do you see this table?

It is hand carved.  AMAZING I tell you.

This chair was in the same store, and it was too interesting not to photograph.

Look!  We’ve seen the Eiffle Tower!

The water/light show at the Bellagio is a MUST. The water dances so beautifully with the music, it was the highlight of our walk.  (Buying Girl Scout cookies was our second favorite event that night!)

The kids were enamored with the water show.  It is incredible.  Really.  (I have a video of it and I will post it if I can figure out how to.)

This is the Venetian Hotel which is also really beautiful.  Each hotel is like a city: massive and self contained.

The artwork in the Venetian is really incredible.  Walking the strip is a must at least once in your life.  Just know that Vegas was made for walkers, not for strollers, so you might spend some time looking for elevators.

The highlight at the end of our walk was finding the tram and letting our kids take a train ride.  They were BESIDE themselves and I was SO HAPPY I didn’t have to walk our overly tired kids back to our hotel which was like 10 miles away.

I have a couple of funny stories to share still, but they will have to wait till tomorrow.  Come back!   🙂

One Little Monkey Jumping on the Bed

After sitting patiently in her car seat for 4.5 hours on our drive from American Fork to Las Vegas, David mentioned to Hannah that as soon as we arrived at our hotel she could jump on the bed.

Looking at her face, we thought she might explode with excitement!  Only 30 more minutes of driving before she could be in bed jumping bliss!

We told her, “HOTEL BEDS WERE MADE FOR KIDS TO JUMP ON THEM!”

The extra soft beds did not disappoint!

She jumped . . .

And sank into the bed . . .

And jumped some more . . .

And more . . .

And sank.

She even jumped the next day . . .

It never gets old, I tell you.

She told us repeatedly, “THIS IS THE BEST VACATION, EVER!”

I think jumping on the bed sealed the deal.  🙂

I have more to share on this trip, so come back soon!

This Week in Pictures

Last week I mentioned the train show we went to as family.

Oh.  My.  It was kid heaven.  Dallin thought he’d hit the little boy jackpot . . . everywhere he turned, there were more trains!

This one was very intricate and make out of Legos.

OK, moving on . . .

I drove past this ice castle in Midway on my way to a food shoot.  OH.  My.  HECK.  It was incredible.  Amazing really!  I can’t wait to take the kids there and take pictures!  It looks like freezing cold temperatures are good for something!  ICE CASTLES!

OK, moving on to my darling, hilarious kids . . .

My parenting skills have gone on auto pilot since Hannah learned how how navigate www.sproutonline.com, www.nickjr.com, and www.starfall.com.  The motherly-older-sister in her guides Dallin online as they discover shapes, numbers, colors, and dinosaurs.

It’s pretty awesome really.  (I really should start paying her an allowance!)

Hannah takes her computer time so seriously, she asked us for her very own password to login.  A PASSWORD PEOPLE.

I was all, who in the heck is going to mess with your account?!  (She’s four!  Her account has software protection!)

Well, she is four and half and would like us to respect her request, so she is the proud owner of a password.   Need to log off, change users, shutdown the computer, or restart it?  Just ask Hannah, she can help you.  Want to find out what her password is?  Just ask her and she will give you a lecture on how you never ask what someone’s password is!  (Trust me, you never want a lecture from this kid!)  A few days ago I made Hannah take a “time out” from the computer and she acted like it was the WORST thing  that could ever happen to her.  EVER.

Then she asked me when she was going to get a REAL computer and she made sure I knew what a real computer was, “Mom, you know, like I need to get online and check Sprout.com and do my reading on Starfall, and I need to help Dallin with his letters.  So . . .I need a  REAL computer.  Mom, my pink computer that I got for Christmas last year is NOT real.  It just plays games and it is NOT real.  Mom!  Did you hear me?  I need a REAL computer!  Not a fake one!”

“OK, I think I got it, let me see, you want a REAL computer?”

Next up?  Self portraits.

Dallin really can’t stand waiting for his pictures on the LCD screen.  He thinks they should be there in real time, so as you can imagine, pictures are very frustrating to him.

But . . . we just figured out how to take self portraits on the iPhone where you can turn the camera around to see yourself before you snap the pic.

This is Dallin’s new favorite feature.  I have 235 more pictures just like this one.  🙂

This is Hannah’s ballet class through the looking glass.  (She is in the very middle with the pony tail.)

Looks like all that stretching is working!

Lastly, I straightened my hair over the weekend.  I only do it like every five years, so as you can imagine, my kids were speechless when they saw me.  Seriously, SPEECHLESS.  They both wanted to touch it.  I sort of felt like a blond haired woman in Tokyo.

They were intrigued with my straight hair, but after looking at this picture, I think all they could see was my forehead.  Dang!  I need some bangs!

Happy Birthday To Me!

So . . .

I am one year older, and hopefully wiser too.  I just turned 33 this weekend.

THIRTY THREE, PEOPLE.  I used to joke about “thirty something” people who could shop at Eddie Bauer (and just for the record, I had to google “Eddie Bauer” because the 12 different ways I spelled it was not recognized by me or spell check) because you had to be thirty something to shop there.

Well folks, looks like I am officially thirty something, but I still cannot bring myself to shop there!

Hannah picked out the most beautiful cake she could find.  She LOVED this cake and David said there was no other cake that even came close to being as beautiful as this cake in Hannah’s opinion.

Brian called (for you new readers, that’s my twin) to wish me a happy birthday and we talked about our birthday plans over the phone.  They were so similar, it was erie . . .

Me: We went to a model train show at Thanksgiving point.

Him: Took a private plane ride around San Francisco.

Me: Spent the afternoon watching Modern Family with David while the kids napped

Him: Attended the Apple convention in SF.

Me: Ate dinner with David at Rubios (they now advertise their calories on the menu . . . it was eye opening and shocking all at once!) and saw the movie, “The Tourist.”

Him: Ate dinner at the Ritz Carlton with some friends and probably a few A-listers.

See?  It was like WE PLANNED THE SAME THINGS!

This is what he looks like now at the ripe age of 33:

And this is me and my family on my birthday:

I can’t get over how darling Dallin looks in the pic below . . .

And now he’d like to show you his orange . . .

And now Hannah would like to love him to pieces  . . .

Where’s David you ask?  He was running barefoot on the treadmill.  He popped out 8 miles like it was NOTHING.  Is now a good time to mention that he dropped 25 pounds recently?  Yeah.  I know what you’re thinking . . .WHERE DID HE HAVE 25 POUNDS TO LOSE?!

I know.  My thoughts exactly.  Somehow, his body found 25 pounds to drop and he is sporting a six pack and runs about 30 mile a week–barefoot of course.

David and the kids made my birthday very fun, low key, and special.  I have a wonderful family, and for that I am happy I get to celebrate 72 more birthdays!  (Remember that age calculator?  This is how I know I have 72 more to go!)

Family Christmas Party

This year, my family rented a big cabin up in Aspen Grove (it’s just above Sundance for those of you not familiar with Provo Canyon . . . Sundance as in Robert Redford and the Sundance Film Festival) for our family Christmas Party.  It was a one big sleepover with lots of fun things to do . . .

We didn’t sleep over though . . .  it was the night of Hannah’s performance in the Nutcracker, so my little family didn’t join the party until the morning.

Honestly though, it sounded like no one got much sleep in the big cabin with lots, and lots of bodies.  (He! He!)

We braved a big snow storm to get to the party.  It was a “chains or 4-wheel drive required” kind of drive.

It didn’t stop snowing ALL DAY LONG.  The kids didn’t care though, Hannah LOVED sledding!  (And do you think I was responsible and brought my camera?  No.  Pics courtesy of  the iPhone.)

This hill is really quite long and steep.  I heard through the “Probst family grapevine” that my nieces and nephews (the older ones, like eight and up) were up until 1:00 AM sledding on that hill.

Oh.  My.  No wonder no one got any sleep!

I know it’s practically impossible to tell in this picture, but those little ant size dots on the snow are skiers at Sundance.

David and both let out a sigh when we saw them, skiing on fresh snow.

Seriously, we haven’t skied in 12 years.

TWELVE.

Not that I was a big ski bum or anything, but it is fun.

We had a lovely family party and it’s nice to have some of my family nearby to share the holidays with!