Sunday, November 30, 2008

100 Random Things

I was tagged by Heather to do some "how you met" thingy, but man. That was a tough tag. I could hardly remember the details. So, Ryan and I saw this on Travis Alexander’s blog. We loved it, and decided to do it instead, and do it together. I think I started to get more and more sarcastic as the list went on. Together we only hit 52. Wow. We really need to go to Europe.

Copy the list and bold the ones you've done:

1. Started your own blog (Whitney did this)
2. Slept under the stars (Ryan: Once, on my mission, on New Year’s Eve, on top of our apartment building. I have no idea why. Whitney: Youth Conference, 1988)
3. Played in a band (Whitney: Does singing count?)
4. Visited Hawaii (Ryan and Whitney have been twice…the same number as Ainsley)
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than you can afford to charity (If you have more than them, it’s never more than you can afford)
7. Been to Disneyland (Oh yeah.)
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis (Whitney: had one the size of a soda can on my mission)
10. Sang a solo (Whitney: Not just the Tina Turner part of We Are the World at 6th grade graduation, but this weekend at the ward party!!)
11. Bungee jumped (yeah right.)
12. Visited Paris (Ryan: I’ve been to the Paris airport, but I don’t think it counts if you don’t unpack your socks for at least one night.)
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch (Whitney: I taught myself to play the guitar!)
15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning (Who hasn’t? Have you seen the ‘Dirty Dining’ report?)
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight (Ryan and Whitney. Too much information.)
22. Hitch hiked
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill (if anyone answers no on this, they are lying)
24. Built a snow fort (Ryan: Of course. I grew up in Utah)
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping (Ryan: When I was 7…in a storm drain at the Church…got caught by my grandma who watched it all from her window. Anything else is none of your beeswax.)
27. Run a Marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught yourself a new language (Ryan: not fluent in Spanish. Whitney: I speak Portuguese.)
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied (We shouldn’t have moved from Utah. Got greedy.)
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David (not the one in Vegas?)
41. Sung karaoke (Whitney: Oh yeah. Carnival Cruise. Like a Virgin with a 6 month prego Brittany Call. Not drunk.)
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant (Whitney: I just bought a kid a hotdog at Costco because his mom had no cash.)
44. Visited Africa (Ryan: I guess if you count a 2-year long mission a ‘visit.’ Also went to South Africa for a week)
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing (Whitney kicked Ryan’s butt.)
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling (I don’t have enough room to name all the places.)
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie (How about our ½ hour long infomercial for Hamlet homes?)
56. Visited the Great Wall of China (Ryan: That sucker is a lot steeper than it looks)
57. Started a business (Ryan: Just a bank.)
58. Taken a martial arts class (Whitney: Me and Melissa took a class with a bunch of 10 year olds. We were 23.) (Ryan: I got a fat lip thanks to that class.)
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Got flowers for no reason (Whitney: Once. Ryan: From who?)
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma (Ryan: I’m not allowed to. They won’t take my malaria blood) (Whitney: Actually he doesn’t weigh enough.)
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check (Whitney: Oh yeah. Lots. All before I married the balancing checkbook nazi.) (Ryan: We did it once after marriage too…the tithing check)
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten Caviar (Whitney: yuck.) (Ryan: Isn’t that bait? Why would you eat it?)
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job (Whitney: Casa (Dia)Rea hostess position.)
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone (Ryan: Three times…never had a cast.) (Whitney: 1 time. Had a cast.)
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person (Whitney: Nice hole in the ground. Can we go home now?)
80. Published a book (Ryan: Published one on blurb for the wife. Happy anniversary.)
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the newspaper (Whitney: My obituary. Jk. When I was 6 at a strike for bussing in kids to our elementary school.)
85. Read the entire Bible (Nope. Maybe this will be the year?)
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating (Ryan: Fish are animals, right?)
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone’s life (Whitney: Ryan’s. Trust me, he had no life without me.)
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous (Whitney: Where do I begin? I stalked Charlie Sheen at a store once.)
92. Joined a book club (Whitney. Ryan reads too slow to be in a book club)
93. Lost a loved one
94. Had a baby (Whitney: Twice on purpose. Once on accident.)
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake (Whitney: Yes. Disgusting.) (Ryan: Nope! Lived in SLC for 33 years. Why would anyone swim in that?)
97. Been involved in a law suit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee
100. Totally copied a post from someone else's blog to your own

Try this as a couple. I'd love to read your results!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Chirp! Chirp!

So, we all know about that intermittent ear drum piercing chirping sound that smoke detectors make when the batteries die, right? You know, that noise that can slowly drive a person insane? (I've heard the army uses them to break down captured Iraqi forces them to tell their secrets every time.) Well, for the last two nights in a row we've had to deal with them. It's a big problem because our vaulted ceilings are like 40 feet high and our ladder is only 8 feet. Why do the batteries always die at night when I'm in my deepest sleep? My favorite part is trying to figure out which one it is. It sounds like it's in Brandon's room...wait...wait...chirp, the hall...wait...wait...chirp, definitely in the kitchen...wait...wait. What I conclude is that it's NONE of them...until the CHIRP CHIRP happens again. I know they are designed that way to motivate the homeowner to quickly get out a ladder and install a new $14 9-volt battery into them, ensuring safety and protection for the entire family. That's great in theory, but in practice, that noise actually motivates the homeowner to back over them in the driveway with his or her car. That, of course, is not recommended, as it wouldn't be safe, and would, in fact render your fire insurance policy null and void. I wonder what is more of a risk; me dying in a fire because I didn't have smoke detectors or me falling off a ladder and plunging to my death on the tile floor as I try to climb in a half-asleep delirious stupor at 2 am. I bet more people are killed trying to replace batteries in smoke detectors than die in actual fires. Ironically, when Whitney filled our house with more smoke than a Las Vegas casino a few weeks ago, not one of the darn things went off.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Great-Grandma Funnies

My grandma is here to stay for a month and get out of the Utah cold. The children quickly recruited her to play UNO every waking moment. As they were playing, Brandon said, "Grandma, how many years have you been alive?"
"Almost 86."
"Wow, that's a lot. Did you watch TV when you were little?"
"No, we didn't have TV. We didn't even have a radio."
"Oh, I see! You were born back when TV's were called books!"

Saturday, November 22, 2008

You've got to be kidding me!

Not only is it November 22, but it's 5:30 pm. Ainsley and her friend Rebecca came to me in their swimming suits. "We want to go swimming." Are you kidding? I had them go in on the step first, thigh high. "It's SOOOO warm, mom!" I figured it was fine as long as I had the camera and towels nearby!

It was short-lived. 3 minutes, tops.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Flashback Friday

Ryan's dad came to visit this week, and the kids had a ball playing UNO with him. It was a short visit, but we were glad to see him! I told him I would post a pic of him. I chose this one because I LOVE the outfit. The hair is good, too. I think Ryan's mom was prego in this...

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

New Website I LOVE and my table is full

I found this new website that I love, thought I would share. It is It is a FREE photo editing site. Way cool for those of us who can't afford Photoshop. Seriously awesome. The collages are better than picasa, too. Try it!!!

Every time my kids take a test and get a 100% score, we put their test under a piece of glass on the kitchen table. We have had SOOOOO many 100% tests, that I can't fit anymore under the glass and I have a pile to add to it. So, I am taking a picture before I toss all the wonderful spelling and phonics test we've got. Great job to my smarty pants! (WHO do they get it from? Most likely dad.)

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Yep, It's Really Here

Wedding Day - do we look as cold as we are?

Day we got engaged - SO young!!

After Ryan wrote his diddy, anything I say will sound lame. And after the present he gave me, my CD gift to him is lame. I was outdone! He's awesome, what can I say?

Well, I CAN say happy anniversary!!!! I love you tons and suds!!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Happy 11th Anniversary!

Here comes the Anniversary Post...November 15, 1997...the best day of my life! There are no pictures because Whitney and I got married way before digital cameras were invented and we haven't scanned our old wedding photos yet. So, how did I get Whitney to marry me? Well, it wasn't easy, and it took me doing the bravest thing I've ever done.

The Bravest Thing I have Ever Done

Once on an unusually warm Spring day in 1997, Whitney actually set me up on a date with a girl named Melissa from her singles ward. A group of friends all got together at the park and played a few Frisbee games. We had a fun time, but there was something else weighing on my mind that day. At this point, I had been thinking for a long time that, at least in my mind, things had changed with Whitney. I wanted to be more than friends with her, and I was really starting to develop a strong attraction to her. The problem was, she didn't have the same thoughts. After the "date" with Melissa in the park, we dropped Melissa off at her house, and found that the evening was far from over, so, not unusually, Whitney invited me to hang out with her at her apartment. It was really common for us to spend time together like this, sometimes alone, sometimes with other people. On this night, we were alone, back at her apartment in Sandy. I don't remember at all what we talked about, but we had talked for a long time, and it was late at night. Finally, I got the courage to do the bravest thing I have ever done. We were sitting next to each other on the couch, and I remember putting my hand on her back, and saying "What am I going to do with you?" She was kind of confused by that comment, and kind of turned and looked at me with a strange look on her face. By taking the conversation down this path, I had gone past the point of no return. I had to follow up on my thought. The next thing I told her was that I had fallen in love with her, and I just had to tell her what I thought about her. I was probably hoping for some kind of Sleepless in Seattle moment where sparks would fly, and we would fall into each others arms and immediately kick off the relationship of the century. Nothing like this happened. Her reaction was "It's really late and you must be really tired, because I don't think you know what you are saying." With that, she literally pushed me out the door. We didn't talk for a few days while she thought about things, consulted with her dad, and just tried to deal with that bombshell in her mind. Her dad's advice to her was that she should try out a relationship since we both knew we were best friends with each other. She agreed to try and date me but it also came with a warning. She made it clear from the beginning what her position was by saying: "If things don't work out, I will dump you, and then we can never be friends ever again. Is that what you want?" We had a great time spending a lot more time together, this time as "boyfriend and girlfriend." It wasn't too long after that she was asking me to marry her.

Happy Anniversary!!! I love you!

Flashback Friday

I thought this one was cute. Exactly 5 years ago we stayed with Ryan's dad and step-mom while we were building our house. Ainsley looks exactly the same, but Brandon? Hardly!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Naughty Girl!

So the other day Ainsley asked if she could have a roll of toilet paper. Thinking she needed for the usual duty, I said sure. Later that night, the entire front yard was COVERED in toilet paper, ripped to shreds. Big Mess. Of course, I made her (and her friends)clean it.

A couple days later I found these pictures on the camera...

Playing mummy?

Here's another good one.

Remember the days of prank calling? We all did it. "Hello, is your refrigerator running? Then go catch it!"

Well, life is not as fun now that we have a world full of caller ID. Really! Ainsley and her friends called MANY numbers, but they called back later and got mad at Rebecca's mom. Here's the clincher.

A few minutes later, a police officer comes walking up our driveway. hmmm. That's never a good sign.

Turns out they prank called 911 while they were at it. Brilliant! Hope they've learned their lesson!

I don't know what I am going to do when this 7 year old turns 12. ahhhhhh!!!!!

Daddy Daughter Bonding - by Ryan

I have been meaning to have a little daddy-daughter bonding time with Ainsley for a while now, so I took advantage of the Veterans Day bank holiday and took her on a hike. I learned about this hike when I took the scouts there. The boy scouts whined and complained the whole time. All I had to do to get Ainsley's competitive juices flowing was to tell her that the big, tough boyscouts complained. She never said a word of complaint the whole day. We hiked for about 4 straight hours, up and back, and the girl never slowed down. We stopped for lunch for a few minutes at the top, and I treated a blister on her foot, but other than that, she was going the whole time.

After we got back, I was pretty sore (and the next day, I still am). I collapsed onto my bed...and she ran across the street to play with her friends. I guess that's what playing soccer three times a week and going to gymnastics will do for you. I learned that this girl is going to be even harder to handle than I thought she was. Heaven help her future husband. Nothing really stands in her way. On the trail, we encountered some desk sized boulders, with the path going around to the left and to the right. She had to make a choice as to which way to go. Her choice was to go straight forward, up and over the top of the boulder. That's the kind of kid she is.

I also learned that I seriously need to get my lazy butt in better shape. It was great to spend so much time with her away from friends, just talking about whatever she wanted to talk about. She really loved having that much undivided attention.

Saturday, November 08, 2008






Some of those didn't show up. Here are a few more.
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Family Pics





Here are a few of the family pictures we just had taken. Any thoughts?
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Friday, November 07, 2008

Flashback Friday

I was thinking this shot was about the same time of year. Hannah, Lydia and Ainsley colored all over themselves while we were having dinner. We asked Ainsley, "Who colored on Hannah?" "ME." "Who colored on Lydia?" "ME." "Who colored on you?" "ME."

We should have known she would be the mastermind of all trouble!

And I love situations where you have to act stern and mad, when in reality you are laughing so hard.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Family Elections

Being Election Day, we held our family elections this morning.

I wonder if the kids will be surprised at what won:
tie for asparagus/corn
tie for chips/salsa and rolls
Root Beer Floats

We don't usually have smoothies and root beer floats in the same meal, but what the heck. It's election day and full of surprises!

Thanks for the idea, Tiffany!!!