The Family Over-Achiever

M.D.?  Check.

Working on his MBA?  Check.

Runs barefoot like a crazy chicken everyday? Check.

0% body fat? Check.

Ran a 1/2 marathon with just hours notice?  Check.

Since the “over-achiever” spot is taken in our family, I’m happy to take the “please-help-me-get-through-this-day-without-a-melt-down” spot.

David ran his first 1/2 marathon on Saturday!  He and his friend decided to run it just a few days before.  Unfortunately, the roads were wet (which is very, very bad for barefoot running as it softens your skin and can rip it up easily) so he ran in his Vibrams.

He had a great time and ran it in 1 hour and 46 minutes.

Did I mention he was 1/2 way through his 1/2 marathon before I even rolled out of bed?

Yeah.  I felt super productive that day.

Is now a good time to mention that we’re running in the Ragnar Relay?  (It is a relay race where you and 11 of your sweaty friends will run about 200 miles over a 24 hour period.)


I blame David’s sweet talking ways and peer pressure for convincing me to run in this!  I have fun friends doing this!  It’s going to be a party!  I’m only doing for the socialization you know . . . you know I don’t run!

I am so embarrassed to admit how out of shape I am.

To stay in my target hart range, my runs are more like speed walks with bouts of running.

People, I’m currently running a 15 minute mile.

I know that doesn’t even make sense, because how can you RUN a 15 minute mile?

You can’t.  You literally have to WALK it.

Oh my.  Please don’t let any of my team members be reading this post!

I SWEAR I’ll get my butt in gear!  I have nine weeks to make it happen!

On a more random note . . .

I had David pose for me for one of my technical assignments this week.  Honestly, this image was one of the hardest assignments I’ve had at AAU!  My octabox is really big (it is 6 feet in diameter) so it is challenging to fit it in the right space.   The key light was relatively easy to set up . . . the back light however . . . was a nightmare!  Let’s just say that after about an hour of moving my back light all over and trying several test shots, and trying every angle, I know of 278 ways to NOT place the bounce light in my kitchen!  I ended up placing my light in the dining room (it also joins up with the kitchen) and I bounced it off the ceiling in the far corner.  Would you have ever guessed this image was that complicated to light?

Since we had the strobes set up, I took a pictures of Paris as well.

She is such a cute dog.  I can almost feel her soft fur on my monitor!

Even though Paris is like 110 in dog years, she’s still got it!  That dog will go to any heights for a treat!

There you have it.  Even my dog is an “over-achiever.”

How to Pierce Ears

Hannah has been asking to get her ears pierced for years.  And by years, I mean several months, but that is like years in little kid land.  Before David and I had kids, we decided that if we ever had a girl, she could get her ears pierced as long as she asked to have them done and she was old enough to be responsible for them.

Naturally, I thought eight years old would be the magic number.


Enter Hannah.  She is four years old going on 24.  Did you see the breakfasts she makes?  Or how she babysits Dallin and reads him books?

Unbeknownst to her, we decided to allow her to get her ears pierced since we knew she wanted them done, (I think asking 14 times a day to get them pierced counts) and we knew she would be responsible enough to take care of them.

I checked around at the mall to price “ear piercings” and my gosh it’s expensive!  Let me tell you, I USED TO PIERCE EARS at the beauty supply store I worked at for three years in high school.  I know I worked there like 12 years ago, but the store I worked at charged $7 to pierce ears.

Yes.  Only $7.

Do you know what the going rate is to pierce ears today?


Yes.  $40!

When I heard that, I tried to pull my jaw up off the floor, but it just wasn’t moving!

$40?  FOR WHAT?  The earrings are TINY!  It cannot cost that much!  Are you kidding me?  I thought, “Heck, I can do this for her!”

After a little searching online, I found some gold-plated-over-sterling -silver studs that came with a gun.  Grand total?  $10.

Yes.  It was $10 including shipping.  The package arrived during Hannah’s afternoon nap, so she woke up to quite the surprise!

First we told her she was going to get her ears pierced and she was thrilled!  Then we showed her the earrings in the gun and explained the process.

She was super impressed and couldn’t wait to get that cute earring in her ear!

Then, I marked the spot.  Here’s the thing, I’ve seen so many botched ear piercing jobs where the piercing is not centered and they are not symmetrical, so I was happy to have ultimate control over the placement of the earrings.

Next, we had her Daddy (who has never pierced ears before, but I think his resume’ qualifies him to do the job) pierce them!

She didn’t flinch.

She didn’t cry.

She just looked over at us and said, “That didn’t hurt AT ALL!  It was just like a (camera) flash!”

Oh.  Good.  I’m glad she thought it was painless because we pierced the ears one at time!

She is so sassy in her new earrings and she LOVES them!

She can’t wait to show the WHOLE WORLD.  You know what she’ll be showing you the next time she sees you!

According to “Daily Mile” I Have Five Friends

Hello!  I’m here!  Did you miss me?  🙂  I missed you!  ALL OF YOU!  Happy Valentine’s Day!  (Hannah has been spending nine hours a day for the last few days making Valentine’s Day cards . . . NOT KIDDING.  Each one is a totally new concept, so as you can imagine, one Valentine takes about two hours to make, and I’ve had to make a few runs to the store for more craft supplies.)

Lately, my life has been extra full, and extra dull at the same time . . . not a good formula to get my blog on.

But, I’m back!

Did you notice the new widget on my sidebar?  Um.  Yeah . . . so I started running.  Sort of.  I felt so GUILTY sitting on the couch watching House Hunters International day after day, while my husband ran mile after mile.  It doesn’t help that he’s lost a total of . . . wait for it . . .



I’m not sure, it really is a conundrum.  His cheeks lost a bit (both sets!) and also his waist is all I can figure!

Not one to be left out, (Hello, did I not mention he lost weight while watching TV and movies?)  I decided to get my butt off the couch and enjoy my shows on the run.  As you can see, I don’t really run fast . . . but I’m getting my heart into shape, and soon, I will be picking up the pace.  As a little side note for any of you “runners” or “exercisers” out there, David just read a book by another doctor who was a runner and it was fascinating.  (To him of course, I didn’t actually read it. I’m just the messenger!)  This doctor stated that you should only exercise your heart between 50%-75% of your maximum heart rate.  So basically, my maximum heart rate is 187 (you take 220 minus your age to get your maximum heart rate, or you can get a more accurate maximum heart rate with a cardiac stress test) and I keep my average heart rate during my runs between 140 and 152.  This is well within the 50%-75% range.  Why is it important to exercise and keep your heart rate in this range?


Hello.  SIGN.  ME.  UP.

Anything more (like if I were to have an average heart rate of 170 and up) and you burn up your glycogen reserve.  THAT MEANS YOU BURN ENERGY.  Please, do not sign me up for that one!

David talked me into signing up for Daily Mile, which is like a watered down version of facebook.  I have five friends on it.  TOTAL.   I know three of them personally, and two internet friends.

What I’m saying is . . . PLEASE JOIN ME!  I have no friends!  I mean, facebook tells me differently, but apparently, I have no exercise friends on Daily Mile!

And I would like to leave you with this last little nugget of info . . .

David came across this video about sugar (specifically fructose) and how it is “Pure, White, and Deadly.”  Even if you don’t think you’re eating sugar, you are!  IT IS IN EVERYTHING!  This lecture is so interesting, it held my attention for 30 minutes at one time, which is like 1/3 of the way through the video!


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.


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!)

Mrs. Texas 2005 and Why My Husband is Cool . . .

My husband is cool.  Really cool.

I could name a million reasons why he rocks, but for now, I’ll just mention reasons 27,834 through 27,847:

#27,834: He voluntarily watched Miss America with me this weekend even though watching it was the equivelant of drilling a hole in his head.

#27,835: When the GPS on the iPhone crapped out on my way to a baby shower, I called him in a panic while I was on the freeway.  He pulled up google maps and talked me through the directions turn by turn for about 40 minutes until I reached my destination.  That’s love I tell you.  🙂

#27,836: He always knows when I need a little bit of raspberry sherbet, and a bowl magically appears in front of me when I need it most.  🙂

#27,837: He supported me when I wanted to compete in the Mrs. Texas Pageant in 2005 even though he HATES pageants.

After my post on Miss America, I decided to dig up my Mrs. Texas pics in my archives.  This pageant happened like 100 years ago.  Gosh, this pageant happened before David started and finished medical school, before we moved out of the country, before we sold our house and our business, before I birthed two kids, before we moved like 35 times, before I knew ANYTING about photography (I had never heard the term SLR before!) and twenty pounds ago.


Here is my previous life; the one where I worked like 100 hours a week, and suffered from unexplained infertility.

This was the opening number.  As I recall, the opening number was quite a complex dance number and even one of my competitors, who was a former Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader, commented on how complex the dance number was to learn in one evening!  (OK, so the pics only show us walking, but trust me, I got my dance on!)

Evening gown portion . . .

I designed this dress specifically for this pageant while I was in Taiwan on a business trip.  It’s sort of hard to tell from these teeny tiny pics (sorry, I don’t have bigger ones to upload) but the dress has like a million beads and sequins on it.   I won the evening gown competition, but received first runner-up to Mrs. Texas 2005.

Ah, look at David . . . we are so young!  We’re both still in our twenties!

OK, note to self, gold/ivory washes me out.  END OF STORY.

Turquoise, is MUCH better.

This was the interview portion.

See?  GOLD is not my best color.  UGH.

This was rehearsal for the opening number.  Seriously, it was a little more advanced than many of us expected.

When I look at this picture I think, “What the heck happened to that purse?  I love that over priced Louis Viutton knock off bag I picked up in Hong Kong!”

Too many moves I tell you.  Maybe I still have it in storage . . . who knows!

And did I mention this pageant took place in San Antonio, which was about five hours away from our house in Dallas?  My sister and two of my employees came to support me, as well as our BFF’s, Daniel and Lydia.  I felt so supported.  🙂  (Especially when I could hear one of my employees screaming my name over the entire audience.  AWESOME.)

Immediately following the crowning, I packed up my things and we drove five hours through the night in order to catch my early morning flight out of Dallas to Taiwan.  We got home safely, and with just a few minutes to spare for me to pack my bags and drive to the airport in time to catch my flight.

That last paragraph would be reason #27838.

Funny Internet Finds

David came across a “life expectancy calculator” online this weekend.  He answered all the questions and guess what?  His life expectancy is 97 years old.

I was super impressed.  🙂

I was curious what my life expectancy would be after learning of his long, long, life, so I filled out all the questions as well.

Guess what my life expectancy is?

105 years old.


105 years!  I seriously don’t know how it’s possible that I am projected to outlive David . . . he’s the one who runs a 10k every night on the treadmill!  I’m super pleased with the two miles I run every other day!  (I know you are all curious now too . . . go check out your life expectancy here!)

David also found this funny video of Saba from 1937 . . . seriously, this island we once called home has changed A LOT in the last 70 years!  You must watch it, especially if you are a current or former Saban.  It is hilarious and it’s not meant to be funny!

Oh, how I love a good chuckle.  🙂

DIY Toy Storage!

I’m nesting.

Not in the “pregnant” or “I just had a baby” sort of way . . . it’s more like “the kids’ toys have taken over our house and I’m pretty sure we don’t meet fire hazard standards.”

I really, really, really, really hate storing toys all over the place.  Did I just say “store?”  Because that is a joke.  We have NO TOY STORAGE.  We really don’t have any way to ORGANIZE toys, so you can only image a neat freak like me, sort of freaking out about now . . . it’s been two weeks since Christmas (which brought an influx of new toys) and I’m at my tolerance max.


I really don’t know how I (or anyone for that matter) could survive without Google.  Let it be known:  I LOVE GOOGLE.  🙂  Thanks to Google, my husband now has several projects on his “honey do list.”  🙂  After doing a few searches for “toy organizers” I came across and oh my goodness . . . I haven’t left her site yet!  She posts DIY projects with tutorials and let me tell you . . . it is addicting!  It’s super easy for me to pick out lots and lots of DIY projects because I’m not actually the one that will be doing them! It’s like shopping without a budget!

It’s so liberating to shop this way.  🙂

I saw this “Playhouse Room/Bed” and FELL IN LOVE.  Heck, I could sleep in a bed like that!  Think of all the toys that would magically have a home right under the bed!  🙂  I love the plans with the stairs.  Oh my.  Hannah needs this STAT!  To see a detailed project description, check Sherri’s blog at

You can find the plans for this playroom/bed here.

I’ve been wanting to buy Hannah a beautiful timeless kitchen set.  (Also read as: a kitchen set that doesn’t look cheap and plastic . . . a kitchen set that looks like furniture, and something you’d be happy to have displayed in any room in your house.)  I’ve seen some beautiful kitchen sets, but they are all like a million dollars, so this DIY kitchen not only fits the bill aesthetically, but it’s cheap to make!  (I don’t pay my husband for labor, so yes, it really is cheap!)

Plans to make this kitchen are here.

The above images are from Cat at Constant in Chaos.  Her husband made this kitchen.  You must check out her post to see more photos.  WOW.  You are going to want to make this kitchen too!

I really liked this bed too . . . the plans for this simple bed are here.

OK, WE NEED THIS BOOKSHELF.  No question.  Plans for this bookshelf are here.

I love this idea!  Hannah needs a place to store, and play with her Barbies, Poly Pockets, and all of her other trinkets.  This doll house will be perfect!  The plans for this doll house are here.

Not to leave Dallin out, he has his share of small toys– lots of trains and cars to be exact– that need a home.

I’m very excited for my newly organized playroom!  Dang!  I can hardly wait!

A New Day, A New Hairdo . . .

I shaved his head.  He trimmed his beard.  This man has sported more looks in the last six months than the previous 10 years.  🙂

We were sort of able to trim Dallin’s long locks too (his long curly hair was making little girls jealous) which was a like trying to shear a cat.  (Note to self: Let the hair grow!  Who cares if he looks like a girl!)

Hannah also visited my bathroom salon for a trim.  I even gave her layers.  After her haircut, she asked me, “Mom?  Is daddy going to cut your hair now?”


As talented as David is (and trust me, this man can do anything, he is a Jack of all trades) I’m just a little too particular about my haircuts.  🙂

Winter Running Gear

It turns out . . .

That this is a good look for David.  🙂

After David didn’t shave for a few days, I encouraged him to grow out a beard for fun, you know?  He’s never grown one and seriously, why not?

I also like the way his hair curls when it’s a bit longer, so his hair is getting longer too.  I have a real mountain man on my hands!  (Which, you know, is totally fitting since we actually LIVE at the base of the mountains.)

Lots of people have asked us why he is growing out a beard and because we are quite literal people, we always tell them, “Because he can.”

Plus, a beard is excellent for winter running.

It also turns out that I’m not the only one who thinks he looks dapper this way . . .

He was asked to model as an extra in a Christmas commercial for the LDS Church which was filmed last week.

The commercial was shot in downtown SLC and will air at the end of November through December.  I’ll post a video when it becomes available!