Saturday, November 29, 2008

Thanksgiving 2008

What a wonderful, fantastic, full day we had this year. We were so happy to be invited to Ian and Amanda's house for Thanksgiving this year. The house looked beautiful and the food was divine, but even better than all of that was the people we were with. We are indeed blessed to not only have the best friends in the world, but also their families who have loved us and taken our family into their hearts as well. Our hearts are full of thanks.

Ryan with one of the birds

The spread...YUM!

The boys hard at play

I could not get enough of this sweet baby boy. Eagan was born just a month ago and he is such a beautiful baby.

I wasn't the only one who couldn't get enough...

Ryan and Katie with their two adorable boys!

Dax being goofy

Lot of love to go around...

Thanks again Ian, Amanda and Finn! We love you guys!!

**Sarah took most of these photos. Sorry they are not the best quality.**

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

I am Thankful for...

Dax's Thankful List

Mom, Dad, Piper and Miss Eg
my cousins
my best friend Finny
my uncles
Zo-Zo "my girlfriend"
Grandma and Grandad

Piper's Thankful List

my family
my friends
my clothes
my house
my food
my own room
my school
my teacher
my country
clean water
my dog
my electricity
my books
the holidays
for everything

Matt's Thankful List
my wife
my kids
my talents and abilities
For the movie Elf
that Copeland and The Killers have Christmas songs
Mountain Dew

Sarah's Thankful List
my Mom
wonderful In-laws
my home
My van- Yolanda
Matt's job
My MacBook
the gospel
my cocomotion
my sweet surrogate daughters- Abby and Katie

We are indeed thankful for so many things today and everyday. I look around the family room as I type and my heart is full of love and thanks as I see my children and my husband cuddled up on the couch watching the Thanksgiving Parade. I am blessed beyond measure. I am healthy and so are my children and husband. I am warm and safe in my home. I am a daughter of royal birth, the daughter of a King. Indeed i am blessed. Happy Thanksgiving to all of you!!

Monday, November 24, 2008


We went to Grandma and Grandad's house on Saturday for dinner and s'mores. Dinner was amazing! We feasted on ka-bobs made with the best filet I have had in a long time, steak fries and of course "cob on the corn". After we were stuffed to our gills we bundled up (it was like 50 degrees!!) and sat on the deck in front of the mexican fireplace. The plan was to make s'mores, but we quickly realized that would mean taking our arms out of our nice warm blankets and working for dessert. Instead we roasted marshmallows while we listened to Copeland and snuggled the kids. It was a great night with some of our most favorite people.

Our roaring fire

Grandad and Piper roasting marshmallows

Dax took a bit more convincing, but eventually he and Grandma roasted a few marshmallows too

A look from above

There is nothing quite like a roaring fire on a cold night with a bag of marshmallows and small children. Joy is found is the small things in life.

I'll sing along, the whole day through

We had such a wonderful weekend! We started it out on Friday night with Miss Kelly and Copeland at the State Theater in St. Pete. We picked Kelly up at her office and then we stopped at Chipotle for dinner. Dinner was fantastic and made me wish for the 10,000th time that we had one here closer to home. Probably good that we don't though because I would be there all the time!

Anyway- once fed we went over the bridge and headed for one of the best venues to see live music. It had been years since we had seen a show at State and we were pleasantly surprised to find that you are no longer able to smoke inside. We had to park kinda far away and it was really cold, but no complaints here. The first band was called LIGHTS and they were impressive. Besides Copeland we were most excited about seeing Lydia and they did not disappoint! They were incredible and I hope they come back soon because we just didn't get enough. The next band, Lovedrug was just okay. I think by this time we were just really ready to hear Copeland. That and the fact that about 10 minutes after we got there Matt's right hip locked up and he was in major pain the rest of the night. State Theater is standing room only unless the top is open and it wasn't that night. So he basically tried to balance on his left leg all night. Poor guy!

Copeland was more than amazing though and it was worth the wait. They played a ton of their old stuff, which was awesome. I was really hoping they would play my song, California, and even yelled out a request, but it was not meant to be that night. They did play Kelly's favorite! How cool that my mother-in-law is hip enough to go to a show with us and know all the words. We had a wonderful time and look forward to our next show together.

We left the show with smiles on our faces and songs on our lips. But Matt was still in incredible pain and the walk ahead seemed daunting. We hadn't walked very far when we saw a guy on a bike pulling a little bench thing behind him. Perfect! I asked if he could give us all a ride back to the parking garage and he told us to climb on. I had to sit on Matt's lap, but we were all nice and cozy and there was even a blanket to put over us. A nice Florida sleigh ride through St.Petersburg on a chilly night. It was the perfect ending to a great night.

Our ride in pictures...

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Twilight Premiere

I am a big fan of the Twilight series and have been eagerly awaiting the movie. I was excited when they changed the release date from December to November, but bummed when I saw that opening night was the same night that one of our favorite bands was playing a show. As much as I love Twilight, there was no way I would pass up seeing Copeland at State Theater. So I figured I would just have to settle for seeing it the next night and hope no one ruined it for me before then. All that went out the window when I saw that they were playing it at 12:01 am on Thursday night/Friday morning. WOOHOO! My friend Ana and I went together and had a blast!

We made a stop at the Cheesecake Factory first and shared a couple pieces of cheesecake. I highly recommend the chocolate coconut cheesecake...YUMMY! We got to the theater about 10:30 and figured we would have to wait in line, but a few of the theaters were empty so we were able to go in early and get seats. The movie was good, but I was frustrated to see some of my favorite scenes in the book changed. Overall it was a good movie and I am sure I will enjoy it when I go see it again tomorrow. What?! Well Amanda didn't go on Thursday night so I need to go again. Maybe I can take my Mom next weekend ;)

Friday, November 21, 2008

Our Star

Piper and I were approached about being in a Steak and Shake commercial yesterday as we were walking into Target. A nice girl came up to us and asked if we liked S&S and if we wanted to be in a commercial. Well, you know Piper was all over that! After we finished shopping we headed over there and she was so excited to see the hair and makeup and wardrobe. I swear this reaction was better than any Christmas or Birthday yet! They were running behind and asked us to come back.

We came back a couple hours later only to find out they were still behind schedule. Any other kid and I would have said forget it, but this is Piper we're talking about. We came back for a third time after dinner. They seemed to be slowing down and close to wrapping everything up, but a couple of the girls remembered us from earlier and talked to the director. Next thing you know we are in hair and makeup. I say we because they asked both of us to be in the commercial together. Piper loved the star treatment and I gotta admit it was pretty funny having my makeup done.

We walked over to the set and it wasn't long before they politely asked me to step out of the picture. HAHA! I know full well who the star is in our family and was only too happy to allow her to shine. And shine she did! We were told that they would ask us our favorite thing about S&S and then we would be done. Well, they shoot film of Piper for 20 minutes. They loved her and I say that unbiased, mostly. I guess next year is Steak and Shake's 75th birthday so they had her wish S&S a happy birthday, etc. The director would feed her a line and she would deliver it back perfectly. I was so proud!

When they were done filming her everyone there clapped for her and wished her good luck in her future in film. It was pretty cool and she loved it. The casting director asked the photographer if she wanted to shoot one more person and she said she wrapping up. The c. director promised her she wanted to take Piper's pictures. She was glad she did. Piper did her thing, which means she posed and hammed it up like it was her j.o.b. The photographer laughed the whole time and couldn't believe that this was her first photo shoot. Piper told her that her Daddy was a photographer and when the lady asked what kind Piper said, "the real kind!". Everyone roared at that. All in all I think they took well over 700 images and shoot for 20 minutes.

While Piper was having her picture taken the casting director talked to me. She asked if we had ever thought about putting Piper in the entertainment business. In truth it is something we have talked about before, but it is hard to know if we see things one way because we are her parents. The woman told me that Piper has "it" and of all the people she was that day she only passed her info onto one other. WOW! She works for a company in Orlando that casts people for commercials, print ads and movie and TV extras. She said it would be the perfect place for Piper to get a start. She was confident that it wouldn't be long before Piper was ready to have her own agent and start booking bigger things. I was pretty impressed and obviously very proud. We exchanged info and I have already looked into the company, they are very legitimate and we plan to go ahead and pursue this and see what happens. As long as Piper is having fun and enjoying it, we will let her do this.

We are hopeful that Piper makes the final cut and is used in the commercial for Steak and Shake. If so it will air in January. In the meantime here are a few pictures of our star.

Hair and makeup!

On the set!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Clean your rooms!

Piper had the day off from school on Tuesday for Veteran's Day. I thought it would be nice to get out of the house and do something fun, so I surprised the kids and took them to see Madagascar 2. The movie was pretty cute and the kids enjoyed dancing and singing along...we like to move it, move it!

When we got home I asked them to clean their rooms since it looked like tornadoes had ripped through them. There was a lot of moaning and groaning, but not a whole lot of cleaning. After asking/yelling for the 7,000 time I locked them in their rooms. The people that lived here before us must have had kids because they installed eyehook locks outside the kids! The locking them in went over great, er not so much. After about an hour I heard Piper call me and ask me to come check her room. I walked in and found this...

I wish I had taken a before picture so you could fully appreciate how wrecked her room was. I love how when she cleans her room she has her little "stations" that she likes to make fancy. Don't you just love all of the blankets, nap mats, sleeping bags, etc. on her bed. I swear under the brightly colored 1970's sheet there is a shabby chic quilt that matches her room perfectly. Anyway, she was very proud of her accomplishment!

I realized that I hadn't heard much of anything from Dax's room for a while. I unhooked the lock and attempted to open the door. I didn't get very far and had to stick my head in to see why. This is what I found...

Not much was done in Dax's room...

I am kinda stumped on why he chose to fall asleep on the floor when his bead was relatively clear. Funny kid!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Sweet Maggie

Matt worked on a new painting this weekend for our friends new baby girl. Sweet baby Maggie was born on October 27th to her adoring parents. Like all babies she is loved beyond measure by all that know her and that includes her big sister, Jolie. Jolie was born premature in on July 7, 2007. She was too little to stay in this world, but she is in heaven watching over her mommy and daddy and her new baby sister. This was a special painting to us and we hope that Maggie and her parents love it as much as we do. We plan to present it this weekend.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

The Right Stuff

On Sunday night I saw the New Kids on the Block with Amanda and they were AWESOME!! I was a huge NKOTB fan back in the day, but was never able to see them in concert...until now! Our seats were great! I was so excited when the lights went down and we saw this on the huge screens on the stage...

Oh.My.Gosh! I was beside myself with excitement. Forget the fact that I am a 27 year old married woman with children, I felt like I was 10 years old again! I was screaming and jumping up and down like a crazy person, but I was far from alone...

The highlight of the night was when the boys walked right by us and we were able to reach out and touch them!! AHHHH!!! I mean cool is that? I was too excited to get my camera out, but trust me it was awesome! They played all the old favorites and some of their new stuff as well and they looked and sounded great. A childhood dream come true.

I heart Joey Mac!

I'll be lovin' you forever!

I am so happy I was able to go. I'm even happier I was able to go with my best friend! Thanks Amanda!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Peter Pan and Tinkerbell too!

In the month of October Disney has a Halloween party on certain nights at the Magic Kingdom. You buy a separate ticket and from 7 p.m. to 1 a.m. you get to trick-or-treat throughout the park. People come in costume and the characters are also dressed up in costume. It sounds like a lot of fun and something we will probably do with the kids when they are older.

Anyway, the day we went the park was closing early for Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party. Around 4:00 people started coming in for the party dressed in costume. I was pretty impressed with some of the cool costumes we saw and felt that some (adults) should leave dressing up to the kids. I'm just sayin'....

As we were leaving the park we passed by a couple dressed up as Peter Pan and Tinkerbell. I pointed them out to Amanda and she started getting all excited. Turns out the guy dressed as Peter has a whole website devoted to his love for dressing up. The website was even recently featured on Basically we were in the presence of celebraties! We decided we had to have our picture taken with the famous couple. Matt and Ian were horribly embarrassed and walked away and left us to get out picture on our own, luckily we found a nice stranger willing to take one for us.

So Amanda asked "Peter" if we could get a picture and although normally he doesn't allow pictures, he said okay for us. I think it's because we are so! Here is our picture and if you would like to learn more about "Peter" check out his website here.

Monday, November 3, 2008


I have so much to blog about, but I need to blog about Disney since it has been a week since we went!

We had such a great weekend. We left on Friday night and checked into the resort around 10:30. Check-in went smoothly and we headed up to our room to get the boys to bed. After we got the boys to bed the adults stayed up for a while but before too long we were all asleep.

We woke up Saturday and had delicious McDonald's for breakfast! YUM! The boys were thrilled with our view from the balcony. They wanted to know if the workers were going to be there soon. Good thing we have two little boys who love construction!

The boys spent a good part of the morning on the balcony surveying the work that needed to be done and trying to decide if they should go to work that day or not.

They opted to skip work and watch Pirates of the Caribbean instead. They wanted to get their "Argh" down before our trip to the Magic Kingdom the next day.

We had a nice, lazy Saturday. We put the boys in the giant jacuzzi tub, but when we turned on the jets they had quite the meltdown. They took naps and then we went down to the pool for a little bit. It was freezing!! We are after all Floridians and once it hits about 65 degrees I am pulling out sweaters. The boys played in the cool kiddie pool until their lips were blue and they were shivering. We went back to the room and warmed up and then headed to the playground to burn off some energy before bedtime. Ian and Amanda went on a date and Matt and I fed the boys dinner-macaroni and cheese without broccoli- and then attempted to put the boys to bed by 8:00 so they would be well rested for our big day. I say attempted because it took hours for them to fall asleep. Ian and Amanda came home with a delicious steak for Matt and I and some yummy desert as well.

We all woke up early on Sunday morning and headed to the Magic Kingdom. I am a disney nut and wanted to get there as early as possible. The park opened at 9:00 and Matt, Dax and I were there about 9:30. We rented a double stroller for the day for the boys to share. This stroller was amazing and the boys looked sooooo cute in there together.

The boys got to meet Pluto and have their picture taken. The line was really short and they were so good! Finn was pretty excited, Dax was a bit more reserved.

After Pluto we headed over to the town hall so we could get Dax a birthday button. The cast member that wrote his name on his button was from Japan and she wrote his name in Japanese on the back of his button. Pretty cool, hu? Dax only wore the button sporadically through out the day and for the most part it was on my purse strap, so a lot of people wished me a happy birthday that day. Do I look like a Dax? After getting our b-day button we had breakfast and by breakfast I mean pastries loaded with sugar and icing!

Matt's giant cinnamon roll!

Dax's french toast. He needed help finishing and Matt and I were only too happy to oblige.

I had a pain (pronounced pan) au chocolat (chocolate filled pastry). I thought it was pretty good but Matt was quick to point out it was nothing like the ones he enjoyed on his mission in France. Rub it in why don't ya?!

Now that we were full we were able to start our day. We headed over to Tomorrowland and went on our favorite ride...Buzz Lightyear. The ride is like an interactive video game where you have to use your laser gun to shot the bad guys and you rack on points. Matt beat all of us, but in my defense I was taking all the pictures.

From there we headed over to the raceway. Amanda and Dax challenged me and Finn to a race. They talked all kinds of trash talk but in the end Finn and I kicked their butts!

We went on the Teacups right after we ate churros and I was pretty sure I was going to puke. The boys loved it though, the little boys that is, the big boys refused to ride---sissy's!



We had lunch at the Crystal Palace which has become a family favorite. While you dine on the great buffet, the Winnie the Pooh characters walk around and come to see each table. It's great! You get a chance to come in and sit down, eat and have face time with the characters. Finn has long been a fan of Piglet and was so excited to see his favorite character. Our waitress brought a cupcake and a card signed by Pooh and the gang. And did I mention how yummy the food was? I am still thinking about the pumpkin cheesecake.

After lunch we headed over to see Captain Jack. We walked right onto the ride and Dax loved pointing out all the places where Jack was hiding.

Like here...

and here...

After we got off the ride we were treated with a visit from Captain Jack himself. Dax was too shy to go up and join the other kids when they took the oath to be pirates under Captain Jack, but Finn was ready to accept the challenge and pledge to serve faithfully under Captain Sparrow.

We ended the day with the biggest, cuddliest Stitch we could find. Grandma and Grandad gave Dax money this year and told him to use it to get whatever he wanted at Disney. This was it...

The day was wonderful! The weather was perfect and the park was practically empty, I think the longest wait we had for any ride was no more than 10 minutes. That is pretty much a perfect day at Disney. Throw in some of your favorite people in the world and you really can't ask for more. I know this post is already full of picture and super long, but here are a few more of my favorites.


A love like ours...

Our happy family, minus our fairy princess