Fruitcake Anyone?

So I got an email today that originated from my Uncle Jim. He was sending a picture out to the family of my Grandpa baking his last batch of fruitcakes. I guess he bakes a bunch every Christmas time to give to family and friends. I love that my Grandpa does this. He is 90-some years old (I can never remember his exact age), is practically blind and his body is worn down from many decades of hard work, but still bakes fruitcake! He also keeps his household running as well as finds time to get to the temple several times a week. I love his magnifing glasses. It reminds me of the scene from Toy Story 2 where the old man fixes Woody up. My G'pa (as he signs his emails and letters) is a good man, and I am grateful to be apart of his family.


I am blessed.

I am very grateful for this time of year. I love that Thanksgiving and Christmas are so close together. I am often reminded during this time how blessed I am. Even with all the craziness and drama that comes along with family, I realize that I am so blessed to have so many people who love me no matter my flaws and idiosyncrasies. I am grateful to have a ball of energy that calls me mom and runs to give me a hug every time I pick him up from Jenny's house. I love my wonderful husband, who puts up with me. His siblings might say that I put up with a lot being married to him, but he really does have to put up with a lot being married to me too. (I can hide my craziness from pretty much everyone but him.) Thank you to all you family who might read this. I love and appreciate you.

ps Don't you love the hair and glasses?


I Dedicate This Song...

I dedticate this song to my loving husband, who put our beautiful son to bed tonight, and to...


class blog and bad spelling

I don't know why, but I decided to do a blog for my class this year. Mostly stuff for parents, but we took a field trip up to the mountains and got some pretty pictures of the changing colors. I figured out how to make a movie/slide show on a pc which is nice, but I can't for the life of me remember how to get music on my class blog...it's driving me crazy!!!! Help me Johanna!!!!!


(ASH stands for the three teachers that teach our class...it's explained on the blog)

I also want to thank all of you who endure my bad grammar, spelling, mechanics, and so on, in my blog. I really do read over my writing before I post it, but things slip through. My grandmas would be ashamed. But I figure, if your reading this you love me and take me how I am...misspellings and all.


A Happy Little Bubble @ Comanche E.S.

The other day I was outside on the field during recess watching the student's at my school play. As I was watching, I noticed that there were about 10 games of catch going on, one kickball game, several games of tag, and a couple groups just sitting/standing around talking. This was all going on within half the size of a soccer field and all the games interweaving into each other. Kids were playing catch through the middle of the kickball game, and the kids playing tag were running through the kids sitting and visiting. The miraculous thing was no one was getting mad at each other. Everyone was having fun and tolerating everything else that was going on around them. If a football was accidentally thrown into the middle of a group of girls talking, the girls would just pick it up and nicely throw it back to whoever threw it. I was in amazed! I was ready to break up any fights of kids who would get mad for someone running through the kickball game, but I didn't need to interfere once. Now this doesn't happen all the time where I teach, but it does happen often. It made me sad to think that this is rare on a school playground (at least at the majority of the schools in Albuquerque). I wanted to freeze that moment so that everyone, young and old, could see this little piece of heaven. People can get along. We can all be doing different things and not get bent out of shape if someone else's actions briefly interrupt what is going on in our own lives. It was inspiring.


I'm Perfect, I Don't Have Quirks!

OK, so my sis, Becky, tagged me. Now I'm supposed to tell you 5 quirks about myself. (I actually like these things) Here I go:
1. The cloths in my closet need to be organized! I'm not that quick about doing laundry or folding it, but once it's in my closet, it drives me crazy if it is not organized (jeans, then khakis, skirts (short then long), short sleeve shirts (by color), polos (by color), short sleeve button ups (by color), long sleeve button ups (by color), sweatshirts and jackets, then misc)...who would have thought I was so neurotic about a closet?!
2. So my sis is obsessed with tweezed eye brows, and I'm obsessed with clean ears. People, have you ever heard of Q-Tips?

3. I still make weird "clearing my throat" noises when I brush my teeth that my siblings made fun of me for when I was younger.

4. I set my alarm 30 minutes before I need to get up because I know I will hit my snooze button at least 3 times before I really wake up.

5. Unlike my sisters, I don't like going to sleep without touching my husband. I'm not talking about in a kinky way...just, feet touching, spooning, hand on arm/hand, etc...I love having someone (mostly my husband) in the same bed as me.

Just for fun...
6&7 ...this is worth two quirks!...I like Miley Cyrus' music.

So now, Heidi, Johanna, and Tammy, "TAG! YOU'RE IT!"
If want to do it just follow these rules:
1. Tell about 5 quirks you have.
2. Tag 3 fellow bloggers and leave a comment to let them know



Last week Parker asked, "Mommy, can I have some spitting nuts?" I was so confused. I said, "What?" He said, "Some spitting nuts. Can I have some?" I was looking around trying to figure out what he was wanting. Then it clicked! A friend had some sunflower seeds...I bursted out laughing...kids are so logical when they come up with names!

Also last week, Parker was playing with one of our cats, Chester (an old grumpy male) under the table. I was in the back of the house and suddenly I heard, "OW! I'M GOING TO TELL MOMMY!", and then his little feet running to tell me that he got scratched from the cat and he added, "Go tell Chester 'No! No!'." Oh, the woes of being an only child. You have no one to tattle on, but the cat.


I Love the Summer Olympics!!!

So I'm sitting here watching some swimming events and I find myself holding my breath and taking quick breaths as if I was racing right along with the Olympians (of course, I would be half way across the first length when they would be finishing their 4th) Anyway, the swimming is my favorite, then the gymnastics and water polo are tied for silver.

I swam all growing up. I was never really good, but I loved it. I loved the rush you felt gliding through the water. I miss that feeling. Also when I was 10 and 11 I played water polo. Watching one of the Olympic matches brought back a flood of memories. I remember my first game. I got ejected because I did something wrong, but I remember breaking down because I had no idea what I did...I guess I wasn't paying attention while the coach was going over the rules. I also remember trying to play when I was 12 (which placed me in the older team), but everyone was starting to hit puberty and I hadn't yet (I've been the same height since 6th grade). So that pretty much ended my career playing water polo, but I loved coaching it the summer after my freshman year in college. If you haven't seen any of the H2O Polo games yet, try and catch one.


Check it out!!!

I saw this on someone else's blog and I had to try it. It's a website (http://wordle.net) that looks over all the words in your blog and displays them in different sizes, according to which ones are used the most. So I wonder who I report about the most in my blog?


Sounds like fun!

As a comment on my blog, leave one memory that you and I had together. It doesn't matter if you knew me a little or a lot, anything you remember! Next, re-post these instructions on your blog and see how many people leave a memory about you (if you already haven't). It's actually pretty funny to see the responses. If you leave a memory about me, I'll assume you're playing the game and I'll come to your blog and leave one about you.


Viva La Vida!!!!!

Well, I'm finally getting to reporting about our trip to Las Vegas. It was a great trip away from Albuquerque. I love road trips. I have grown to love the landscape of New Mexico. I know a lot of people might think I'm crazy, but I do. No, there is not a lot of green, and there is a lot of dirt, but there are so many colors in that dirt! There's old lava flows, layers of color, erosion that makes interesting shapes...OK, I'll stop. I know - I'm a science nerd.

Back to Vegas. We had a fun time being together. It was hotter than Hades, but LV has the best air conditioning in the world. We stayed on "The Strip" thanks to a timeshare seminar which was an experience all it's own. As much as they try to market Vegas as family friendly, it is not. We went to the Coke Factory which was fun, ate at the Rainforest Cafe in the MGM (Parker loved that, but not the "rain storms"), and took Parker to the Excalibur where he won a sword.
Sharing a milkshake @ Roxy's (The waitstaff sang and were good!)

Hangin' with the Coke Bear.

Parker and his dad...ha ha! Just kidding Chris. Love ya!

So those things were neat, but not worth putting up with all the filth that is around. Thank goodness Parker didn't really notice any of that till the last night when he looked up and saw a billboard for a Vegas Showgirl show and said, "That gill (girl) is showing her bumb." So that was that, and he will not be going to "The Strip" ever again!!

While we were there, we got to see my bro & sis-in-laws' new home, and it is beautiful. We also were able to visit with the family for a little while, which was fun, but I wish we would have spent more time with them...next time!!!

Now for the highlight of the trip. The homemade potato chips at Roxy's...just kidding. They were good, but not the highlight. THE COLDPLAY CONCERT!!!!!

First of all, I have a bunch of shout outs for the people I thought about during the show:

Corey & Michelle: Chris and I are really sorry we didn't call you to come with us. We missed having you there!

Michelle & Becky & Brad: We missed seeing the concert with you too!!!

The Premies: (my little brother's band before he and the rest of the band went on their missions) I don't remember the name of the guy that was the opening act, but he did his whole gig on 2 digital keyboards with Macs on either side of him. While he played his music (trance) he projected this psychedelic animation behind him. I thought you guys really would have liked that.

The Giranimals: (Connie & Maury's band) You guys should have been the 2nd opening act. Not whoever was the 2nd opening act.

Connie H.: (favorite thing in the world besides Bret Farve & Tim McGraw is confetti.) During the song, "Lovers in Japan", there was confetti that dropped from the ceiling. Not just a little, but a ton! And it wasn't ordinary confetti. It was shaped like butterflies the size of your palm. It was beautiful. The first time they dropped it (Well they didn't just drop it. It was shot out of canons or something.) they shown white lights on them. Then the second time they used black lights, so the butterflies looked like they were glowing. Connie you would have LOVED IT!!!!!

(Please no one be offended if I didn't think of you during the concert...I still love you!!!!!)

The concert was great. Those guys are talented! I wont blog about every single song they did, but I will say that every song they did play was entertaining and fantastic. I am so glad I finally got to see them in concert.

So, all our little summer adventures are now over (except for the ward camp out...yeah!), and I'm starting to feel the pressure of school starting. I can't believe I only have 8 more days of summer. The good thing about that is between now and the first day I report back Breaking Dawn comes out, so I'll be busy this weekend!


Hello All!

I know I haven't updated my blog in almost two months. I'm sorry. I've gotten (is that a word?) caught up in the "Facebook" world. I have been re-acquainted with so many old friends..it's great. So every time I get online, there's another email from someone through Facebook, and I end up spending my computer time there instead of blogging.

So here's what we've been up to since I last blogged.
I've visited my sister, Patty, in Baltimore. I miss her, Malan and Nate. It was so good to see them and hang out for awhile. We also got the chance to visit Washington D.C.. It was great, but we forgot the stroller in Nate's car and ended up dragging Parker around everywhere. He was exhausted from walking everywhere, and almost tumbled off of Chris' shoulders from falling asleep up there, but I think he enjoyed it more in the end! Parker and Malan pretending to be pirates!
Parker LOVED this Elephant at the Natural Hisotry Museum @ the Smithsonian.

Patty was also nice enough to watch Parker for us overnight so we could go up to New York City. This was quite an adventurous mini-trip. If you're interested you'll have to ask me about the bus ride up and down (there were only 5 non-Asian passengers on the whole bus). We had fun trying to figure out the subway and making sure we got in the right line and got off on the right stop...we did pretty good. We saw two musicals, Mary Poppins (Awesome!) and Wicked (A MUST SEE!!!! It's going to be in Salt Lake City April '09...you HAVE to go see it). We also went to Carnegie Deli (Yummo!) and got a huge corned beef sandwich and the best piece of cheesecake I've ever had! We also shopped at F.A.O. Swartz (ya know the toy store in the movie "BIG"?) and just walked around and soaked in the atmosphere.
Thank you Patty!!!!!!

We also went to a beach in Delaware for 15 minutes (there was a huge storm), and an Oreals vs Red Sox game (There were just as many Red Sox fans as Oreals!)

(I'll get more pics of the trip up soon...I'm getting tired, it's 12:45am...plus those pics are a different computer...)

Patty gets the best auntie award for helping Parker get all the way potty-trained! Yes, Parker is now potty-trained. YEAH!!!!!! When we arrived in Baltimore Parker was still having trouble with going #2. Anyway, when we were riding the bus up to New York we texted Nate to ask how thing were. His reply... "OK, Patty's a little stressed...Parker just [messed] in his pants...but Malan ate his yellow crayon, so we're even!" Chris and I almost died. I felt awful. Well, Patty made Parker clean up his mess by himself. Patty relayed to me later that Parker said while cleaning his shorts, "This is really yucky!" I am proud to say Parker hasn't pooped his pants since. So THANK YOU PATTY!

Independence Day was great. The Ward had a great pancake breakfast and flag raising ceremony. Then we went over to Jenny & Troy's house for a HUGE family (Navarrettes-elder and younger, Shepherds--elder and younger & two brothers with their family, sister-in-laws parents, and my dad) get together. We had a blast. Food, kids swimming, hanging' out, playing baseball and fireworks (Parker didn't like that). It was blast!

Lastly, Parker is taking swimming lessons with his two cousins that just moved down from Boston! It is so much fun to see him out there with a class. This is his first formal class where he has to listen and follow directions (well, besides Nursery). He cried at the beginning of class the first couple times, but then he finally figured out that I'm staying to watch and swimming is fun! He is going all the way under on his own, doing alligator walks like a champ (walking on your hands in the baby pool while blowing bubbles and kicking), can hold his breath for 3 alligators (1 alligator, 2 alligator...), and loves finding treasure at the bottom of the baby pool! It's weird to be on the outside of the baby pool fence...I've come full circle...I took swimming lessons, then taught them for 6 years, now my son is taking them. I love it! Notice the shirt...yes his skin is very sensitive (he's already gotten one really, really bad burn this summer) Also, I think his hair is getting blonder from being out in the sun so much...what do you think?

I hope you all are having a fantastic summer!

Next adventure? Coldplay in Vegas baby!!!!!!


The Zoo!

I LOVE our Albuquerque Zoo. It is one of my most favorite places in Albuquerque. Fortunately I get to work there over the summer as a day camp instructor. My sister Becky and her family, Brad and Eli, came up from Texas this past weekend. Saturday we went to the zoo to celebrate my dad's birthday early since I will be out of town for his real birthday. Anyway, we had a lot of fun!

Look! Same color hair/fur!

Becky made a cake for the birthday boy. YUM-MY!!!!!


My Husband Loves Me

So we have a tree in our front yard that is getting pretty big and unruly, and has a couple branches that hang over our flat roof. One morning last week, Parker and I heard Charlie (my cat) meowing outside my bedroom window. I thought that was weird, but Parker said he saw her so I didn't question anything. I just thought she found a new way to tell me she was hungry. Well when Chris and I were going to bed that night, we heard her meowing again outside our window, and Chris says, "I think she's on the roof." I yelled to have him go get her... a little side note, Chris DOES NOT like my cat. I don't know why he despises her so much, but he does...Well despite his bad feelings for Charlie and not so secret wish that she would stay up there and pass on into "Kitty Heaven", he climbed up a splintery board (because we did not have our ladder) at 11:30 at night, when it was beginning to sprinkle to get my cat that he doesn't like all because he loves me and wants me to be happy. I think I'll keep him!!!!

Picture of the week.

You've heard of car phones right? Well, what about tricycle phones? And no he is not pretending to talk on the phone. He is actually carrying on a conversation with his cuz, Madelyn.


He's Growin' Up!

So my little boy is now a big 03. I can't believe it. He is growing up so fast. We had a baseball birthday of course. It ended up being in two places because of the weather. We started out at Conchas Park (by Lexington Apts) grilling hot dogs, eating chips and the kids playing on the play equipment. We were there because we wanted to play a game of baseball...
Parker's been talking about doing that since my birthday...but the weather had other ideas. As we were finishing eating when the wind started to blow something fierce and it started to sprinkle. The kids didn't seem to notice, but the adults did. (I've never seen Grandpa Bob run so fast!) So we packed everything up and went to the house, and the kids headed straight for the backyard while the adults took cover inside. We sang and had baseball cake and ice cream and opened presents. When the weather was nice enough, we played a mini baseball game outside. Everything didn't go as planned, but Parker didn't notice. He had a blast with his cousins, aunts, uncle and grandparents.

p.s. I'm sorry there's no pics...I accidentally deleted them from my camera...I hear my bro-in-law knows how to rescue them. I hope so!


Wow! Really?

I am Elizabeth Bennet!

Take the Quiz here!

What's Next? **Beware of spoiler for Twilight Series**

Oh WOW! I finished Eclipse last night while Chris went to a Rush concert with his bro, David, and nephew, Isaac. I like this series alot. I laughed and cried (alot) and I can't wait till August for the next book, Breaking Dawn. I admit I'm a nerd about this whole thing, but haven't gotten into a book like this, well, I think ever!!!!! What's going to happen next? I really hope it's a happy ending. I want Bella and Edward to marry, Jacob to be happy and imprint, and some magical thing to happen so that Bella and Edward can be together forever without Bella needing to be a vampire so that they can have kids (but I thnk that's my own desire for more little ones). If Bella does become a vampire I realy hope that Edward's the one to do it. I'm glad that Bella and Edward didn't "go all the way", but I am very interested to see how Stephine addresses that promise in the next book. Chris kept telling me that I should slow down my reading so it would last longer, so that I didn't have to wait as long for the fourth book. but I kept telling him that it was too good to put down. Plus, I wanted to finish them so that I could just move on with my life and stop thinking and wondering about what was going to happen next to Bella, Edward and Jacob (who I really like and am very sad that he and Bella didn't work out even though I wanted Edward and Bella to stay together too.) I know, I'm weird, but whatever.

Back to reality. Last night while Chris was out at the concert, Parker and I went to Target (a family favorite, even for Parker). Parker loves to get one of the small tricycles and ride around the whole store with us. It keeps him busy and he keeps pretty close. Anyway, I was showing Parker these cute sippy cups that were in the shapes of lobsters, fish, and monkey faces, and he looked at me and said, "It's too girly." What? When did my little boy start thinking things were "too girly", let alone saying it?


Like I Promised!

So I finished New Moon last Friday (oh, I like those books!), but I haven't started Eclipse yet, because I promised myself I would do some projects first. Life is good as usual. Nothing to really complain about. Yesterday, Chris and I took the day off and went to an Isotopes day game with Parker. It was a blast. The Isotopes played a horrible game, but it was a beautiful day and the hot dogs and nachos were tasty...what more could we ask for? Parker ran the bases after the game. It was so cute to watch him! I am a proud Momma! He only took a detour to the pitchers mound once and ran the whole way. The only time he got nervous was when he thought he was going to meet us back at first base where we dropped him off. When someone tried to direct him the right way he got scared and started to cry, but in the end it did not give him a complex against baseball...at least I don't think so.

On a different note...

...sometimes Parker and I get bored at home without Chris. So here's what we did one night.


I promise!

So I know I haven't blogged in a really, really long time. You can blame that on the book Twilight. I've been spending all my free time reading instead of on the Internet. I finally finished Twilight, but now I'm on the 2nd book and I'm having a hard time doing anything else but read. I am constantly having conversations with myself, almost out loud, telling myself to get the dishes done, grade, go to bed, etc...I love these books. It's been a long time since I've been so into a book. It's kinda fun. So I promise I'll blog more later...don't get mad at me.


A Little of This and That

Here are some pics for you to enjoy.

The cousins cozying up together by the fire after celebrating Isaac's baptism and Chris' birthday. It's always fun to have the family around.

One of Parker's favorite movie's is Mary Poppins, and he loves the song, "Let's Go Fly a Kite." So that's what we did, we went to fly a kite. Parker had great fun...

...UNTIL he found the baseball field with a little league team practicing, and he had no interest in the kite anymore.

"Throwing signs" in the duggout.

This is the first, but I'm sure not last, black eye. I guess that's what you get for playing with a plastic drawer with your cuz.


How Do You Do That?

So just a quick note to my blogger friends...How do I get the cute backgrounds, and change the fonts? I finally figured out how to get music (yeah!), but I want it all! The cute banner at the top with my name, fun fonts of different sizes, and different backgrounds! Help me!!!


A Pinkilicious Party!

I had a great birthday this year! My niece, Lyndsay and I share a birthday. In the past I've been kinda selfish and insist I have my own party. This year I thought it would be fun to share a party together. Lyndsay and I had the idea when reading the book, "Pinkilicious". Its about this girl who really likes pink and eats pink cupcakes, and then becomes pink. So we decided to have a Pinkilicious Birthday Party with pink cupcakes, pink decorations, and everyone had to wear pink. Well, it was a blast. I had so much fun getting together with my family and the Navarrette Family. We played a matching game with words that described Lyndsay and myself. Then when someone would get a match they would get some candy that went with it (for example the match was "fun" and then the person got Fun Dip candy) Anyway, some of the candies were Dum Dums and Airheads. Can you believe that? I'll embrace the title of "Airhead", because I know I do some airheady things, but "Dum Dum"? I don't think so. Anyway, thank you Chris and Jenny for getting it together (and thank you also to Ryan and Troy for helping set up and Bob and Lu for helping cleaning up). It was Awesome!!!!! (The last sentence is to be said like DJ Lance Rock on Yo Gabba Gabba.)


Writer's Block

I know, I know, I have not blogged in a long time (about a month and a half), but I have an excuse...pick your favorite...(1)I've been to busy to blog. (2)Nothing has happened to report about. (3)I don't have any cute pics to show off. (4)I don't know why I haven't blogged.
Things are well at the Shepherd household. Chris was sick in bed for a week (literally). That was one of the most boring weeks of my life. I realized that I rely too much on Chris for entertainment. I did, although, go to a NDI Dance-a-thon that weekend to see old students and friends dance. I brought Parker and found out that he is quite the dancer. It was so much fun. I got a video of Parker dancing on my phone, but I don't know how to get that to my computer.
The weekend after Chris felt a little better I made him take me and Parker out. If was a beautiful day so we went to the duck pond over at the UNM campus. We fed the ducks (of course) and played baseball (of course). It was nice to be outside and play together.
February is my birthday month, and my teacher-partner' birthday in February as well. So a wonderful couple, Susanne and Grandpa Al, who volunteer in our classroom threw us a small get together last weekend. It was so nice and the food was SOOOOO GOOD! I've never had anyone throw me a party like that. What a memory.
So that's the latest news. Not much more to report about. Boring I know, but that's life sometimes. I hope you are doing well. Thanks for reading!

Here's a short something to laugh about. Lately when Parker is finished with his food, he will put his dirty dish in the sink. The other day Parker was eating some ketchup with his nuggets while I was getting ready for school. When he was through I heard him put his plate in the sink, then I heard the water turn on. As I walked into the kitchen, I asked Parker what he was doing, and he said, "I'm washing my plate." I thought, "Oh, how responsible of him." until he turned around and I saw his face. Then I just laughed.


President Gordon B. Hinckley

President Hinckley was and is an amazing person. I loved listening to him speak. He has a great sense of humor and never ceased to amaze me with the many things he did. I loved watching Pres. Hinckely with his wife. They were so cute! He was always kind and has so much love for her that you could see in the way he looked at her, how he treated her and talked about her. You could tell that his wife's death took a toll on him. Although I will miss hearing him during Conference, I am glad that they are able to be together again!