Sunday, January 30, 2011

A quick prayer request

Hey friends! Wow, the month of January has flown by in such a blur... I know I'm behind in visiting everyone's blogs and my own blog is feeling neglected. I'm hoping that February is a slower month and I can get on top of things and reconnect with everyone!

In the meantime, I have a favor. Can you guys cross your fingers, say a prayer, send well wishes and/or whatever you believe in for my little Mia? We have an apt with a pediatric cardiologist tomorrow to have a heart murmur checked out. Most likely it's fine and something she will grow out of but you never know. Her pediatrician heard it a while ago and thought she would have outgrown it already. I'm staying positive and believing everything is fine but I would love to know that there are people out there sending that little heart some love.

Thank so much XOXO

Saturday, January 29, 2011

4 x 12 January

I saw this idea over on Summer's blog, Crosbie Crew. The goal is to get all four members of our family in a picture together at least once a month. Last year I think we had a total of 3 pictures together the whole year! So I'm really going to take this seriously. I'm not in love with either of these but we're all in them at least!



Friday, January 28, 2011

So get this

Remember recently how I posted about the policeman who was shot in my neighborhood? Guess what the latest is...apparently he MADE THE WHOLE THING UP! What?!

They are still trying to piece it together and they don't know if he shot himself on purpose or shot himself on accident and made the rest up to cover his ass but either way, he falsified the whole thing. I am unclear about the witness, maybe she just saw him on the ground or something. Can you believe that?

Hundreds of people were affected that day. High school kids were locked in their classrooms with no food or water and having to pee in cups etc. It was crazy. And the money the city spent on the manhunt? They said it was one of the biggest manhunts in the history of Los Angeles. What is wrong with people?!

I'm so disgusted. The only good news is that there is not a crazy, cop-shooting guy on the loose.

Seriously people, what has the world come to?

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Mommy Madness - Favorite Recipes

I'm joining up with Mommy Madness today and the theme is "favorite recipe". Lately we've been taking advantage of the warm weather and having playdates in the afternoons. We don't get home until 6pm and of course by then I've missed the opportunity to cook dinner. (oh darn!) This means, I don't have any new recipe posts to share with you guys. What I thought I would do is recap some of my favorites that I have shared here in the past.

Favorite main dish: Lasagna with a healthy twist

Favorite Appetizer: Grilled Artichokes

Favorite dessert: Lemon Cheesecake Pie (my friend Nort pointed out to me that he didn't get credit in the original post for this tasty desert so I'm fixing that now!)
Lemon cheesecake

Favorite breakfast treat: Mom's Banana Bread
banana bread

Favorite Salad

Happy Friday Friends! Enjoy! xo

Don't hate me

My Saturday was a dream day. Couldn't have scripted anything better if I had all the resources in the world. Truly. It started out by waking up in this incredible house and having a delicious breakfast.


I posted a few pics of this place before. Here is a picture of the house slippers. I counted 15 pairs of Ugg slippers of all sizes for the guests to wear.


Then we walked out the side door to this little path and skied right out of the house to the most gorgeous mountain.


This trip it happened to be snowing, which I loved, haven't seen snow falling in like 15 years!


We skied to our hearts content and yummy dragon soup in the incredible lodge.


We skied back to the house and sunk into the pool sized jacuzzi with mountain views. Yep that's jacuzzi water and the walls peeled back.


Jacuzzi was followed but an in room massage. No pics of that. :) And then dinner at this amazing table prepared by in an home private chef. !!! The food was amazing. The wine was incredible and the company fantastic.


It was literally a dream day, so invigorating and relaxing at the same time. Just what the doctor ordered for this tired and worn out mama! I missed my kiddos but it was sure nice to get a break from the daily grind. Thank you so much to our dear friends Nort and Colette for inviting us and saving us for a weekend! 


Wednesday, January 26, 2011

My Button

Some of you may have noticed that I had some technical difficulites yesterday. They are all resovled but the code for my button has changed. If you are so kind as to carry my button on your site, you'll need to grab the new code for the button to show. Sorry about that! XOXO

Samantha's Day

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Dragon Soup


I know this isn't a great picture but it's the only one I grabbed of this delicious soup. I've never had anything like it. It has quite a kick but is so tasty, we ate it both days we were in Montana. Check back later this week for all the details on our trip, it was amazing!

My friend Colette asked if we could have the recipe of this soup that they were serving at the lodge. A few minutes later, our server walks out with a hand written card with the recipe on it. We were really excited and it wasn't until later that we saw the proportions! I'm giving it to you here just as we got it. Once you read it through you'll realize you need to cut it down. Way down, unless you are serving it at a huge party. :) Seriously though, this is my favorite soup ever!

Dragon Soup

salt and pepper to taste
1 carrot julienned
3 celery julienned
2 onions julienned
1 tsp ginger diced
1 Tbs garlic minced
1 red pepper, 1 yellow pepper and 1 green pepper julienned
1 gallon of beef stock (!!)
1 quart teriyaki (!)
1 cup hoisin sauce
3 Tbs chili garlic sauce (or Sambal)
1 lb thin cut beef
1 1/2 cups rice (they used brown)

There were no further instructions so I'm assuming you throw it in the pot and let it cook? In writing this I realized that he left broccoli off the list but that was included. I'll let you know if I make it. I'm already dreaming of beautiful Montana and this yummy soup!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

A few things I learned

while in Mexico:

Chocolate milk is a tasty treat after a long matter what country you're in.

Mustard packets are better than any fancy toys

You're never too young for a little bling

It's not true that only boys are climbers

There is such a thing as love at first sight (or at least BFFs at first sight)


Saturday Playdate

Woohoo, I got invited over for a blog playdate! Come play with us over at The Life of Rylie... and Bryce, too! LeeAnn is so sweet and I feel really honored to have been asked.

While my bloggy self is over at LeeAnn's, my real self is in Montana seeing snow and relaxing with my hubby. Yay! See you next week!


Friday, January 21, 2011

Lions and Whales, oh my!

Animal rights activists will probably want to shoot me for giving money to these people but seriously, who could walk past baby lions and not want to hold one!? They make the most amazing sounds, like nothing I've ever heard. Unfortunately they stunk really bad from basically rolling in their own pee but that didn't stop me.

Btw how blue are my kids eyes? I'm jealous! :)



Taking small children on a boat into the open sea for whale watching is not for the faint of heart. Both Mia and I were seasick and we had to hang onto Nate for dear life cause the boat was really rocking. These things combined meant that I never grabbed my camera for what was one of the most incredible experiences of my life! Our driver found several groups of whales and one of them hung around our boat for over 30 mins. We ended up leaving them due to the time and they followed us a little ways home. They literally swam from side to side of the boat, popping up only a few feet from the side. My hubby was able to catch some of it on video. Check these out, sorry for the moments where the camera is on me instead of the whales and pardon any baby crying (poor Mia) or obnoxious commentary from the driver!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Crazy times

Wow yesterday was a strange day. I had really high hopes for it because both my kids decided to sleep in. This is a small miracle because for weeks now, Nate has been waking up around 5am. Ugh! We bounced out of bed, had a lovely morning at home in our pjs and headed out around 11:30 to get Nate's hair cut. On the way, I noticed several police cars speeding by with their lights flashing but didn't think too much of it.

After the hair cut we went to the mall where Mia proceeded to be a little terror and cry hysterically the whole time. She didn't want to be held, but didn't want to go down. Didn't want the stroller. I was sweating and practically in tears myself by the time we finally left. Mission accomplished tho, both the kids got new shoes for their growing feet.

I checked my phone once we were in the car and saw I had 9 missed calls. Turns out a man in his 40's had shot a police officer point blank in the chest just a few blocks from my house, outside our local high school. The shooting was not school related, the guy was trying to break into cars. When confronted by the cop, he opened fire on him. Luckily the officer had a vest on and survived the shooting! Our whole neighborhood was on lockdown all day and into the night while they searched. Children were stuck at school and families were separated. Luckily we were on the perimeter and were able to get out and spend the afternoon at a friend's house.

The police indicated that someone who is willing to shoot at a policeman in broad daylight like that is really really crazy and dangerous. The whole thing left me shaken, scared and really sad! How does someone get that messed up? At what point in your life does shooting someone become ok? I felt so bad for all the families who couldn't get to their children and the suspects who were all erroneously arrested. What a mess. And the worst part is that he got away.

A bright spot in the story is a local woman who witnessed the shooting and ran to the policeman's aid. She got on a police radio and called in the incident. How terrifying for that poor woman to witness that but she was so brave and smart. I'm happy to hear that even in the craziness of this world, there are people who will run towards someone in need instead of away.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Cabo edition

A few of my favorites that didn't fit into other posts.

Me and my guy

Sickie and her daddy

I love this suit

No he didn't smash his head into the side of the pool, he actually did a flip!

Looking cool with his shark tooth necklace
In her Mexico dress and jewelry

Not loving the life jacket

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


After days and days of intense mothering to a sick baby, two weeks of 5am wake-up calls, piles of laundry etc, I needed a break today!

I started the morning with a phone session with an old therapist of mine. Have you ever been in therapy? I think if you have the right person counseling you, it's amazing. She nailed so many things that I'm struggling with in a matter of minutes and put my confused feelings into words. She gave me guidance and support and helped me feel put back together. I struggle with giving and giving of myself until I'm stretched so thin I feel like I'm going to snap.

After that I went for a little body therapy...mani, pedi and neck rub. Oh boy was that the best money ever spent! And have you heard of this new gel nail polish? I don't really love the color I chose but for a few extra dollars it lasts for 14 days and is instantly dry. With little kids, I never have a manicure that isn't ruined so I was pretty excited! I'll let you know if it really lasts the full 14 days. Check out my toe color, it's from OPI's Burlesque line. So much sparkle! How can you not feel great when you toes are twinkling? haha

Sunday, January 16, 2011

vacation kicked my ass

If you had seen us getting off the plane yesterday you would have thought we had just been kicked off Survivor island instead of coming back from a week of vacation. Dirty clothes, runny noses, bags under our eyes.. a word of advice, if you or your baby are sick when you are supposed to go on vacation...consider staying home!  Poor Mia ran the gamut of illnesses this week - from ear infections and raging fevers to an upset tummy. We went armed with tissues and came home carrying barf bags and more tired than when we left.

Despite the sleepless nights, visits to the hotel dr, four trips to the pharmacia for medications and a delayed flight coming home with a baby burning a 102 fever, we had some awesome moments. Actually when I look back, Nate had an amazing trip! Haha! Here are some of his highlights:

Getting a tattoo:

Going fishing for the first time and catching a huge tuna:

Afternoon naps:

Daily smoothies:


Going on the big slide (video)

I'm going to try not to bore you to death with vacation posts this week but it's going to be nearly impossible. Sorry! I have some really neat video of real whales that we saw and of course some pictures of my little sickie. I've also put up some pictures over on my photo site, I chose 7 for my 365 Project.

I hope everyone had a great week and enjoyed the guest posters. I was able to pop in here and there but missed visiting all my blog friends daily. I can't wait to catch up with everyone! XO

p.s. If you are confused about the Montana pics I posted a while ago, we are actually headed there for our adult get-away this coming weekend. It could not be better timing, I needed a vaca from this vaca! This past week we were down in Cabo San Lucas, Mex.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Red Vines for Breakfast: Wardrobe Essentials

I'm really excited about today's guest poster! I found Valerie's blog shortly after I created mine and fell in love with it. I love the name, don't you? And her radiant smile always makes my day. And best of all, she's a style guru and helped me motivate to get out of my mommy sweatpants and put on some cute clothes! Her style is on trend but not over the top so I feel like I can take her advice and apply it to my own wardrobe. On top of being beautiful, she's incredibly sweet and posts fabulous recipes, and you all know I love food. :)
Hi, I'm Valerie from Red Vines for Breakfast.  I'm happy to be guest posting for Ashley while she's away on vacation.  Thanks for having me, Ashley! 
As the new year begins, I'm continuing to "shop my closet" and revamp the items I already have in order to save money and take advantage of the clothes in my closet.  Of course I love adding items to my wardrobe, but I've recently decided I have more than enough and shopping my closet has forced me to get creative with outfits to make them feel new again.  These are a few of my wardrobe essentials that I wear repeatedly-mixing and matching in different ways.  What are your wardrobe staples?

pretty dresses in fun colors
great fitting jeans

button down blouses
a classic pump
over sized sunglasses
denim jacket
the perfect maxi

great fitting jeans
pretty dresses in fun colors
ballet flats
classic pumps
button down blouses
basic tees
flat boots
denim jacket
over sized sunglasses
the perfect maxi dress
an over sized handbag
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