Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Return of the Movie Review...

Yes, that's right. These movies were so impressive that I had to publicly praise them. They all pleasantly surprised me! I had a busy 2 days...


Wow. James Cameron did me proud, once again. And once again he did great with an almost 3-hour movie. Full and intense, exciting, nail-biting, and well-rounded. Great cast, especially newcomer (to me) Sam Worthington. I wasn't sure I was going to enjoy the story, thought it might be strange. No. I loved it. I won't say much else because I think everyone should go see for themselves. I don't know anyone who wouldn't love this. But this should be viewed in the theaters. It was epic.


I knew this would be cute and funny, but I was impressed. The story was not predictable, the acting and cast were fabulous. Nancy Meyers directed it, as she did with "Somethings Gotta Give" and it definitely has the feel. It's a story of a woman (Meryl Streep) who's ex husband (Alec Baldwin) somewhat comes back into the picture, and the struggles and laughter that come with it, including her 3 kids, a love interest (Steve Martin-always the best), and her ex's new wife. I especially loved John Krasinski of course, who plays one of the daughter's fiance. He is so funny and it was great to see him in a movie with a great cast. I laughed aloud many times, I would definitely recommend seeing it!


I know this is older, but I just discovered it. I hadn't planned on seeing it, I get "vibes" about movies and don't really pay attention to reviews unless they are from friends. But I found it on Netflix, and the user rating was 4 stars so I decided to give it a shot. It was a wonderful movie, heartbreaking and funny and hopeful. Unfortunately having the experience of astounding sadness a couple times in my life, I give a lot of credit when movies or television shows get it right. The list is short. The movie is about a recent widow (Hilary Swank) grieving so realistically throughout the movie, and who's deceased husband had planned out this letter situation before he died for his wife that takes her all over the place, holds surprises and gives us a look at the love they had. I was very moved by this movie, and it gave me a new appreciation for Hilary Swank. I haven't been interested in many of her past movies, but I now understand perfectly why she has 2 Oscars. Her performance was perfect throughout, playing all the emotions just as I would have hoped. Lisa Kudrow gives a refreshingly real but comedic performance as one of her best friends. There is also plenty of man-candy, with cute accents and rugged looks. Harry Connick Jr., Gerard Butler, and the adorable Jeffrey Dean Morgan (Grey's Anatomy Denny cutie). Great movie, feel-good ending!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

When You Become A Mom...

* Sleep becomes expendable, as do showers and makeup.
* The words "stinky" and "disgusting" take on a whole new meaning, like when your child poops in the bathtub.
* You become more protective than a mama bear.
* The greatest gift in the world can be a box of diapers.
* You learn to eat last and fast.
* Unless you love laundry, like me, you're in trouble.
* EVERYTHING your child does is cute, even if he just mumbles something unintelligible. And that's okay.
* You pray for new things, like 30 more minutes of sleep, or that you didn't forget a second change of clothes for the baby.
* Preparedness is expected. If you forgot the change of clothes, you can't go home when your baby has had a blowout. You have to go to Old Navy or wrap him in your coat. True story.
* You can never bring enough diapers.
* You don't get embarrassed in public. At least not until he's 3. Until then, it's just funny.
* You get to relive parts of your childhood, and to me, that's one of the greatest gifts about kids.
* You always have an excuse to leave.
* There's nothing like having your child say, "Cuddle?" and climbing up to snuggle you. That happened today.
* When you get to hold him those first few hours, you just feel like, Mom. Even though you've only held him for a few hours.
* You have a whole new set of knowledge. You know everything about humidifiers, Diaper Genies, car seat regulations, developmental goals, which diaper and diaper cream is best, what foods they can and can't have at what age. You learn to count their age in weeks, and then months, and then when they're 2, you sigh with relief.
* You miss them while they sleep and can't imagine living in a world without them.
* You thank God EVERYDAY for his most wonderful blessing.

Friday, December 11, 2009


Lets just get it out there.

Things I hate.

1. When it's freezing but the sun is out. Don't ask. It's like an oxymoron to me.
2. How the news is always SO dramatic with weather that we have every year. Like, "Winter Storm 2009" and "Heat Wave 2009". It's either too cold or too hot. God must be giggling and shaking his head saying, "I can't make you happy!"
3. Medical insurance and insurance companies in general. My sister recently took her son to the ER for a gash in his lip. ALL they did was put super glue on it, no tests, nothing. They are personally being charged I think about $3,000.00. I don't get it.
4. Rudeness. I have been blessed enough not to have experienced it publicly for a while, but we all have had a time where you want to shake someone who is just plain rude to service employees or people on the street. Have some manners!
5. Christmas overkill before Thanksgiving. It's like the other fall holidays don't even matter.
6. People who aren't thankful for anything. Shallow, angry, selfish people who don't realize they have it so much better than probably 85% of people on the planet. I try to remember everything I have been blessed with, despite the hard things I have endured. It occurs to me that it's nothing compared with having no home, no food for your babies, or sickness. I am blessed.
7. I hate what happened to the many law enforcement officers and countless people, where their lives are taken without a second thought. No appreciation for the life they had built, or the family they would leave behind. It breaks my heart to hear so many stories of awful things that happen everyday, and I just wish there was more compassion in the world.

Sorry for the rant, I promise next post will be more positive. But I am thankful for all I have.

Funny Story...

This will make you smile. So, Tristan got up from his nap the other day, and I gave him a piece of cheese as a snack. He asked for another, so I said, "Okay, but that's it." Of course he replies, "Okay, thank you Mommy." So polite. So I leaned down and asked him if I could have a bite. Of course he says yes and I take a bite. Then he looks at me all serious and says, "That's it, Mommy." LOL Oh really?

It has been a recent problem that T likes to "feed the dog" when he's eating by dropping his food on the floor. Now I have learned to put Sebastian in the other room. But he did it yesterday, and when I scolded him, he said, "It's okay Mommy, Bastian's hungry. I feed him." LOL It's hard to argue with, isn't it?

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


So, you know when something profound and life-changing happens to you, and you don't know how you will get through the day, but somehow you do? That is what I am experiencing. Only I've realized I am much stronger than I thought and it amazes me how many great friends and family members I have. Despite the pain I have gone through lately, they have been there for me and I would just like to thank each and every one of them. I love you. You know who you are.

As for the issue, I have not been blogging (sorry!) because I really didn't know what to write. It does feel good to write something, and I really couldn't blog about anything normal right now. At least not until I wrote about the truth. The truth is, my husband Chris moved out. I don't want to discuss specifics, some of you know so I don't really need to. At least not yet. I am sad, and heartbroken, and am taking small steps to pull myself together and move forward.

That's all for now.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Jack In The Box = Yuck.

I usually don't ever eat JITB anymore unless it's Chris bringing us food for late-night snacks :) But Heidi and I went to our Mom's tonight and stopped by JITB to grab some food. I had forgotten how greasy their food is and literally 99% of the time they get my order wrong, not matter how much I make sure to confirm it. Tonight was no exception, they put cheese on my burger and smothered it in mayo. Yuck. It was sloppy and nasty. I had to take it back and even the second one was not good. From now on I will resume my no-eat-JITB. I had to eat a bowl of steamed vegetables at my Mom's to get some particle of nutrition in my stomach. Heidi and I have always joked when we've eaten JITB, " Mmm...this looks like a stomach ache! Yum!" Not so funny now. Remember when you were young, and you could eat whatever the heck you wanted? Greasy, sugary, high-caloric food and never have one side effect? Now I eat one greasy burger and am so affected that I have to blog about it! Crazy.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Dinner Time!

Tristan's dinner: Grilled chicken with barbecue sauce and oranges. Yum! (He's not too good with vegetables, I try but he only likes peas). So I give him V8 juice. And he loves it.

T is displaying my delicious pumpkin spice muffins that I made. I got the recipe off http://www.foodnetwork.com/ and made some changes that made it a little healthier, thanks to a lot of the reviews on the recipe. They are so tasty, and yes, those are pumpkin seeds on top. The recipe calls for them and they look very fall, but I'm not fond of eating them.

He is so trying to steal one while I take a picture. Sneaky!

My dinner. Mmm...chicken enchiladas! Only 40 more minutes till I can eat them...

And this is the mess I made to get them. I've been planning to make them for a week but alas, I have been lazy-dinner-girl. Living off my sister's leftovers and eating Chinese food (lunch). Shh!
Maybe if I get bored later I'll post the recipe.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Pumpkin and Salsa

I am being Betty Schmocker today and freezing cups of the fresh pumpkin that Chris baked and pureed for me. Apparently you can freeze it up to a year and use it to make a number of things. Like shrimp! (Forrest Gump). I will attempt my first homemade pumpkin spice muffins later today so hopefully they'll turn out great! Thank you to my imaginative husband for giving me an excuse to be Julia Child, and I'm sorry I laughed at you when you brought home 3 pumpkins and said you were going to gut them and bake them.

Thank you also to http://www.thepioneerwoman.com/ for easy instructions on the best way to freeze and use fresh pumpkin!

Husband Salsa!! Chris makes REALLY GOOD spicy salsa that we both love. Unfortunately, not many on my side of the branch enjoy spicy spicy, so we have to eat it all ourselves ;) Chris came home from work last night, blended some of the good stuff and made this really yummy brownish salsa that's warm because he roasts the peppers first. Oh, it's good. My mouth is watering right now...I would tell you what he puts in it, but I don't even know. From the looks of it he put our whole produce section in there! But he definitely knows what he's doing. I came in to taste it and he said,"Put 6 twists of the freshly ground pepper in there for me. No, 8." Lol...


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Nothing Like Learning To Make Your Brain Hurt

I have been re-learning how to use my Nikon camera on manual. I have gotten pretty lazy over the years and have just used the automatic button to take my pictures, and have let my photography knowledge go out the back door. I took a couple black and white photo classes at Green River when I first got my camera and did great. My sister led me to this website where the pictures were so beautiful, it made me want to go out and shoot the grass. To my pleasant surprise, she had short blogs with basic instructions on how to go manual. I have a new-found love for my precious Nikon, although I wish it were digital so I could upload pictures right away, but that'll be a new toy for next year ;). So if you are feeling brave or just want some tips on how to use the manual settings on your camera (ahem, Nicole) you can go and make your brain hurt too! Here is the link:
Happy learning!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Skype and Other One-Liners

I have just discovered Skype! I didn't know it was free and now I have a new computer with a built-in web cam so now I can chat with anyone! It's so cool you should all join.
My best friend Jessica and I used to write each other all the time in school through a journal and we would write one-liners about what we were thinking/doing. It was really funny so I will continue the legacy...
* I love my new computer but now am afraid of slacking on other things because I am on it so much!
* My house looks like a tornado hit it, because of a certain two year-old who chooses to remain anonymous
* I started my Jillian workouts back up and am now paying the price for my "holiday". I hurt.
* T is sleeping and I now have to decide what to eat. Soup sounds good.
* My husband bravely gutted a pumpkin and pureed it so now it is up to me to make homemade pumpkin stuff. Mmm...
* Today is Voting Day!!! Get out there and make your voice heard!!
* I watch so many medical shows that I am convinced I am halfway through medical school. I could take out your appendix or start an IV no problem.
* I can't wait for Lost!! It comes back for it's final season in January. I will most certainly cry throughout most of early 2010...
* Even closer is the New Moon premiere!! Soooo excited!!
* Tristan loves to wrestle with Chris and I on our bed. He loves to head-butt me even more. I could have a concussion.

Jelly Face!!

I came in to the kitchen where Chris was feeding Tristan lunch, and Chris says,"I'm glad we got that whole, one of us feeds him and the other cleans up. Turn around."

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Meet The Cutest Dragon Ever

Yes, I have not blogged in TOO long...but I have fabulous news-I got a new laptop! It is super -fast and I can now take it anywhere, without the pains of an ancient computer. So I promise to blog often. More pictures to come...these are obviously from Halloween ;) We went to the Seatac Mall with Missy, Ryan, Heidi, Marty, and various grandparents and children. First time trick-or-treater Tristan was very courteous with the candy-givers, but had a hard time understanding why the candy had to stay in his bag. Each time he would get a piece, he would reach in and try to get it out. We had loads of fun. I did have to bribe him with chocolate raisins or candy corn (pictured above) to get the costume on though. SOO worth it....


While we took a break from treating, Tristan loved this helicopter so much it was hard to get him out!

Me and my little bug! Yes, I dressed up as a princess. It was fun.

From left: Sydney the Bee, Missy, Rylie, Braden, Tristan and I

They are so cute!

This was right after T and I walked into the restaurant. T ran to Sydney and gave her a hug. I am tearing up now just looking at it!! He loves his cousins so much.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Back Pain and Getting Old...

As I previously blogged, I am doing Jillian Michaels' workouts, and have been very sore the past week 1/2. After Stefanie's comment, I am now very scared of moving to level two. I thought level one was hard enough! And it's only 20 min! It sucks being out of shape but it's a good sore. Now today, my back is either very sore, or I twisted something the wrong way and now I hurt. Now I can relate to those with regular back pain, because it is nonstop and makes Allie a whiner ;)
If that wasn't enough to make me feel old, I took my niece Sydney out today for her birthday to get our nails done. She will be five on Friday, but sure knows what she wants when it comes to girly things! Right after we were done she proclaimed, "I can't wait to get home and change until I find a pretty dress that matches my nails!" So cute. So back at my sister's house, we were talking about birthdays and that mine is next. Sydney asked how old I would be and Missy told her to guess. She looked nervous and finally said, "Umm, 41?" Ouch. We laughed and I said, "No!" So she guessed 42. Ahh, through the eyes of a five year-old.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Jillian is Kicking My Butt

I have finally gotten on the path to a "healthier me" and purchased 3 Jillian Michaels DVDs. It was only $30, which is not as much as I was paying for my gym membership. I'm only on one of the DVDs, called 30 Day Shred, but I'm already feeling the burn (pain). It has a fierce 20 min workout that is nonstop and I love it! The only sad part is that I've realized how out of shape I am LOL. I could hardly make it up my sister's steps tonight without groaning. No pain no gain, I guess. Ugh. More to come as I explore the agony of the 2ND level.

Friday, July 24, 2009


So sorry to everyone that I have been lacking in the blog department!! There's so much I want to say!! Apparently I've been too busy to post, but I'll show you what we've been up to since May :) For starters, we went to Arizona to visit my Dad at the end of May, soaked up the sun, and had the best vacation. It was HOT but felt great! Tristan had more fun this year, he was able to run around, eat a lot, and get root beer from Bompa. Below are some pictures of what Tristan did on his vacation.

This one is my favorite. So cute! It was taken at my Uncle Curt's house, where we spent a day BBQ-ing and swimming. Tristan did great and had so much fun with Auntie Velora

We also spent time with Doug and Lisa and their little man Dylan, who is not much younger than Tristan. This is the cutest pic of them watching a show before bedtime and sharing a snack ;)
Playing before bedtime...
Swimming at Doug and Lisa's, poor kid got sunscreen in his eye AS Lisa and I were talking about Dylan getting sunscreen in his eyes "this one time...". But he was a trooper and had fun anyways!
Aah, the watermelon. My Dad cut Tristan up watermelon everyday, and this day he seriously ate 1/2 of a big watermelon I think. It was a bowlful.

"Yum! That was so good! I'm really glad I ate all that!"
"Ugh... not so glad anymore. Too much watermelon!" He sat like this for 30 min no joke. "Get outta my face!"

Every year In University Place they have a Duck Parade that is really cute, it's just a smaller parade of kids and businesses and schools that go down Bridgeport Way and throw candy out. They have fun activities afterwards and it is literally on my street so we went up, like last year, to watch the parade.
We stopped by the fire station to visit, and to our surprise they were serving everyone a FREE LUNCH! Yummy BBQ and cake, it was nice and a lot of fun. Tristan got to sit in a fire engine, and you can see how much he enjoyed himself.

This picture makes me giggle. He looks like he's ready to fight if someone were to take away his sucker.

Fortunately, still not afraid of animal-people.

Saving the best for last, this is my favorite. Just pure joy.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Current Events...

* We are going to Arizona next week to visit my Dad. SOOO excited to get away and into the sun!!!
* I have been trying and trying to De-clutter my home and make it pretty and cozy. I have made progress, organizing one thing at a time, but doesn't it always seem like once you throw something out, there's always something new to put in it's place? Arg!!
* Tristan is THE cutest little man ever. He is talking so much, saying most of the words you ask him to, and trying his best at the ones he cannot pronounce. He calls chicken strips "fries" and can sing parts of the alphabet. We have so much fun, even when he tests me and has to go in a timeout. He is very polite, saying "peese?" and using the sign language for thank you. This makes me immensely proud.
* Working out has been an issue. I got a membership for T to the kids place, but he has anxiety right now so he screams when I leave and spends the whole time clinging to the lady. I really need the workout, but I can't stand to put him through that each time. So I'm trying to find time when I can leave him home or go early. Still thinking about the early early a.m. thing. LOL
* I am stressed trying to rent apartments right now. It seems like the only prospectives I get are people who aren't qualified, or the ones who are "just looking". This is the only time my job gets stressful, so I like to keep it fully occupied. Anyone looking for an apartment? :)
* I watched all the season finales I love, and of course, LOST was my favorite. SO crazy! I wish anyone I knew loved it the way I do. Thankfully, I have gotten my Mom hooked so I can get excited with her, but she gets confused a lot.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


You can see a lot more Rylie photos on Missy's Facebook page.

Friday, April 17, 2009


Ever wonder what I buy weekly at the grocery store? You're about to find out. I have nothing else to blog about right now, so I decided to pull out my receipt and give you all a real treat ;) This is a normal list of what I buy every week, week 1/2 for our family of 3:
instant rice
2 cans of corn
whole grain penne pasta
pasta shells
small Dr. Pepper (treat for me!)
big bag of shredded cheddar cheese
coffee creamer
frozen broccoli
12 pack of light yogurt-Me
pint of organic vanilla yogurt-Tristan
1% organic milk
organic whole milk-Tristan
1 1/4 lb flank steak
1lb ground beef
brita filter
baby wipes
head of lettuce
green and red peppers
and...pesto sauce.
This week's list was smaller, but I usually spend around $70 a week, and I've been trying hard to make as many meals as I can to send leftovers with Chris for lunch, and save some money. So far, I think it's worked.

Spring Fair Fun!

Heidi, Marty, Jo and I took the boys to the Spring Fair in Puyallup today. We walked around, went in to see the animals, which I am not a huge fan of but Tristan loved it, and ate some yummy food. The weather was good until we were getting delicious scones, about to leave, when it started to pour. As we were leaving it seemed as though the parking lot was filling up. Guess people didn't mind the rain. It WAS pouring. Welcome to the Northwest. Here are some cute pictures for you to giggle at.

Tristan likes to share. And then he wants it back. Probably before you can do anything with it.
We watched Dockdogs for a while. I didn't know what it was either... Apparently it's a bunch of cute dogs that practice jumping into water, and then they have a contest to see how far they can jump. It was really cute, Tristan sat on my shoulders and giggled.

This is it.

I discovered he is not terrified of big furry people.

This one is for Jenny. That's a bunny in the cage, and it appears Tristan is trying to bust it out.

Easter Fun!

On Easter we were at Heidi's for dinner and Tristan loves their lab Dasher. So they got into a 15min tug of war. As you can see, Tristan put up a good fight, but Dasher won.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Introducing...Rylie Marie Collins!

Rylie arrived after a short labor at 3:41pm on Good Friday, April 10, 2009. She weighed 7lbs 11oz, 20 1/2 inches long. Beautiful, looks a lot like Sydney did when she came into the world. I was blessed to be there the whole time and witness her first moments. She is adorable, quiet and sweet. Mommy is doing great.
Excited Big Sister Sydney Anne meets her little sister with love

Tired little bundle of joy...

Brave Missy was a champ, I was so proud of her! Her first moments holding her new sweetie

Proud Auntie Allie!

New daddy Ryan with his second little princess


This is Tristan's/Braden's Easter basket! Chris's parents gave it to Tristan last year and it is so cute I decided to give it another turn. Heidi and I thought it was kind of silly to get them "A basket" since they can't have all the candy and stuff you'd put in one, but then we thought we could fill some eggs with coins, crackers and a couple of matchbox cars :) . I did find a cute Easter book also, but they only had one, so the boys will share. Sadly Chris must work, so T and I are having dinner at Heidi's with my mom. We went to church this morning and I'm very happy to say I think I finally found a church I could love that's right down the street! Tristan did great in the nursery and I liked it. So Happy Easter everyone! Count your blessings this day and give extra hugs and kisses!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Don't Say COOKIE!!

Wow. It's snowing outside right now. Anyways...
So, Chris made a mistake earlier today. He was in the bedroom getting ready for work. Tristan always wants in our bedroom to get Chris's phone, guitar, or some other prized possession of ours he deems worthy of investigating, and we are always trying to corral him out. So I assume he was trying to get him out when Tristan came running to me, staring at me intently. Chris yelled out laughing, "I said Mommy had a cookie for him," thinking he wouldn't understand but would go out curiously. No. No, Chris. You have failed to notice that our smart little man not only knows what a cookie is, he knows what chocolate is, as previously observed in Leavenworth. We don't give him cookies all the time or anything, but he has had one, and anyone knows, one is enough to get you hooked. You also learn as a parent, that when you promise something to your child, you'd better be prepared to deliver. So here Tristan is, staring at me desperately, and I tell Chris, shaking my head, that he'd better give him a cookie since it was promised. I tell him that Daddy will get him a cookie, and that sends him confused signals and he starts to get emotional. He just wants his cookie!! Lol...so finally Chris comes out and gives him a cookie in his chair. At this point, Tristan has tears in his eyes and is saying, "Peese? peese?" The whole thing was hilarious knowing how emotional he got fretting over the cookie dilemma. If you give a kid a cookie...he'll just want another one to go with it.

Movie Review: 4th Edition

This weeks review is on Fireproof. I watched it last night with my Mom and it was fantastic. I had heard great things about it and I always loved Kirk Cameron. The movie was about Caleb (Kirk), a firefighter, who is having trouble in his marriage and is considering divorce. His father asks him to wait 40 days, and gives him something that might change the way he thinks about love. It truly is moving and intense and suspenseful at times. I do love holding my breath in suspense while my fingers clench into a fist...

The movie has so many lines that really force you to think about how to conduct yourself and what God really meant marriage (and love) to be. I was afraid before I watched it that it wasn't going to be "real" enough. That the issues that the couple faced wouldn't be severe enough to be believable. I was wrong. I was pleasantly surprised at how "real" the arguments were. Anyways, I won't say anymore because I want everyone to see this. Whether you are married, happily or not, engaged, dating, or single, this movie will teach you something. I wish they would show this to people before they marry. Then maybe a few more would take the commitment more seriously. I was also very impressed with the special features. REALLY hilarious outtakes!