livin' country

Living up here is pretty good - there's beautiful mountains all around us, practically no crime at all, and best of all, we get to have a few horses with us! I think it's a great little life up here and I just wanted to mention that I love it in a small town. I grew up in Sandy where there is almost no open space, but great shopping everywhere you go, so when Joe mentioned that we should move up here about 3 years ago, I was a little scared! It did take a solid year to really fall in love with this town (there really isn't much shopping at all up here!), but nothing can compare to the security I feel and the fact that my kids can run around in our field for hours without making me nervous. Joe is out of town a lot, and in Lehi I would get really nervous when he was gone even though I had neighbors literally 10 feet away. Now it takes a lot to really get me nervous because nothing very scary ever happens up here! So, this is my little dedication to the joy of living in a small and happy little community!We love horses! This is Joe's horse, Bo.

Joe would just die if he saw the kids playing on the fence even for a minute, but he was out of town! Here's Chloe, Sam and his best buddy, Branson.

We discovered that horses really like Quaker Quick Oats. A lot.

Happy 1st, Jake!

I just love birthdays, can you tell? This year, I found something fabulous! Christina Miller.
She made the birthday cake of my dreams for baby Jake! A few of you have already commented on the cakes, and though I love the idea of letting all of you believe that I threw these together, that wouldn't be honest. So, go look at her blog and you will be absolutely AMAZED by her cakes! As soon as I saw them, I just knew had to have one. When my kids get married (in about 20 years!) she is totally making the most ENORMOUS cake ever for us!! I can hardly wait! The big cake was made with fondant (which is so pretty, but usually tastes awful) , but this cake tasted awesome! It was like a candy-coated cake masterpiece! Then, for Jake (crawl-through cake, seen below), she made it with the soft and squishy frosting so that it could easily fit into all the tiny baby-corners like toes and ears, etc. We had so much fun with these cakes, and I think I'll have to one for every birthday!

Jake didn't really understand what was going on and why the cake was on fire . . .
. . . but he enjoyed eating it!

Since his birthday fell on Thanksgiving, we had his party at Grandma Jackie's house and we got to have a "Turkey Bowl" football game.
At Grandma's, I wanted to get a few shots of his new trick - walking! BUT, he fell on account of the stupid new shoes he got for his birthday! He fell hard, and only used his face to land on!

He was sad, but daddy gave him luvs . . . and then he was happy again!
I can't believe it's been a year! The older I get, the faster the days go by, and he is growing up way too fast! Jake has been my wildest, heaviest, sweetest, smiliest, and funniest baby! He is always cracking "baby jokes" with his silly faces and all of his "tricks." He really thinks he's funny, so he just keeps making the funny faces over and over and over again to keep me laughing. Weighing in at around 26 pounds, he has completely messed up my back, but he's such a cuddly teddy bear, how could I resist holding him every minute of every day? They just don't get sweeter than Jake.

Chubby cheeks are a MUST for the "2008 squishy baby" look that Jake pulls off so well!


Yummy and not naughty!!!!


1 small can of pumpkin,
1 box of a spice cake mix,
1/2 of a bag of chocolate chips

Mix the cake mix and the pumpkin together, add the chocolate chips, then bake in a preheated oven at 350 for about 12 minutes. They are so moist and good - even my kids gobble them up!


Happy Halloween!

Whew! Halloween was nuts! It's definitely my 2nd favorite holiday, so we have lots to do! The night of Halloween, we met up with a bunch of friends so all the kids could do the "business trick or treating" that our darling little town does every year. All the businesses hand out candy to the kids. I'm pretty sure the ENTIRE town came out for this one because the weather was so fabulous! They even shut down one of the streets to let the kids run around and visit game booths and do pumpkin carving contest and things. There was a spook alley and the town even did an outdoor dance and outdoor movie for everyone. I just love small towns!!!
My little Ariel couldn't stop eating the candy while trick or treating!
I let go of all the rules, and let Jake have an ice cream cone (and sure enough, most of it ended up on his costume!).
Chloe thinks she's pretty hot stuff!
Jake was a tree frog! I just need to get a good shot of him with the feet on - it really makes the costume, but those long orange toes were just too much for him to stop playing with.
Colten and Sam got together this year and were Jango Fett and Boba Fett from the Star Wars episode movies.

Chloe isn't really into orange, so . . . .
Colten's 2nd grade class put on a Halloween play for the parents. The kids got to make up their own dances to it, and they worked really hard for about 2 months!
Sam was very proud of his favorite person in the world (big brother, Cole!).
Colten was a ghost. I'm tempted to put the video up on the blog - it's so cute to see the dance these 4 boys came up with!
This Sam and Branson swinging at the park. The weather has been so wonderful, I thought I'd hurry and get a few more trips to the park in before the town turns into the north pole!

I love pudgy baby hands!
Jake tried out the swings for the first time, and he LOVED it! I couldn't get him high enough - he thought it was the best thing in the world!We found an enormous pile of leaves, and Chloe and Jake went crazy in them.

I took the kids to the neighbor's annual pumpkin carving/homemade soup-eatin' party. Since I was short-handed, the boys had to carve their own pumkins this year, and they did great!
Chloe was pretty intrigued/grossed-out by the whole pumpkin carving process.

We even made a "trick-or-treat" house for family night! Jake was sad that he couldn't chew on it.
My favorite fall treat is caramel apples. They were so pretty that I had to take a picture before we devoured them!

Jake's been very messy with his food lately, and he's taking more and more "quick-sink baths" these days!

After Halloween, I let the kids get into their stashes, but this was Chloe's first real experience with having her own candy stash. So, she had A LOT of fun!
One question - why do people still buy sour candy?

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