Monday, December 31, 2018

A Year for the Books

2018 was a good year. It was full of hikes, growth, change, love, trips, and happiness...

I turned 45. {May I also mention how much I miss that hair}?!

Randi became a Sundevil!!! After touring schools across the Northeast she decided to stay close. {And that makes my heart happy}.

She graduated high school...Cade grew like a weed...and I {for some reason} chopped my hair.

Mr. C and I spent some time in San Francisco and Napa. {Here we are at the beautiful Alpha Omega vineyard}.

Cade continued growing {6 inches and 25 pounds in 10 months} and playing baseball.

Randi and I did a quick {fabulous} girls trip to Portland. {Ok. Ok. The hair was kind of fun, but I am so ready for it to grow!!! And I am kind of missing those lashes too}.

Mr. C and I took 7 teenagers to Mexico and survived. We had never been to Rocky Point and not sure that we would return. Actually, Mr. C is certain he wouldn't return. I am on the fence.

My little beach bum. This kid could live on the beach. He loves it. However, Cali is his favorite. He even tells people he is from there!

Mr. C and I got to escape to Maui for a week. This was our third time to the island and we were able to do some different hike through the jungle!  {I still need to post our trip}!

I started my 16th year teaching for LA Fitness and began teaching at Elite Fitness as well. I LOVE it!

Our sweet Mia Rose turned 4 and is the reigning princess of the house.

I continued volunteering at South Mountain Environmental Education Center. A highlight was helping with their second annual luminary walk. It was a beautiful family event.

And, of course, lots of baking took place over the course of the year! This darling cake was donned with candy canes around the side and words written by Randi. 

In the last month of 2018, I began running again. It feels great! My dear friend and hiking partner {Erma} wants to do a marathon in her 50th year {which is now}. Being the friend I am...I volunteered to do it with her. "It will be fun!" "We can do it!" Yeah well...I'm getting a little nervous about it. {It's three weeks away}. However, mind over matter!! We will power through! We will laugh, complain, and laugh some more. The goal is to cross the finish line. Very doable.

2018 was a good year.  On to the next...

I have some big goals and plans for 2019. Things I have wanted to do for years, but THIS IS THE YEAR!  Yesterday Mr. C and I went to a hot yoga class. At the end of class we were all in shavasana and the instructor was talking in a calm soothing voice. She said, "Happy New Year to everyone. Let's kick ass in 2019! Namaste."
Perfectly said, right?

My motto for 2019: Kick ass! Namaste.

Saturday, December 22, 2018

Weekend Wishes

Happy Weekend!!!!
And it's the last weekend before Christmas!

I have a {large} handful of things to do, so this will be short and sweet...

The other day I was talking to a friend about goals and some things I want to do and personality types. She said her dad said it best...
"There are two kinds of people in this world. The 'whys' and 'why nots'."
True, right?
I am definitely a why not person. Hence the reason I have lots to do!!! Want an apron for a gift and it's three days before Christmas? Sure! Why not?! Need me to teach and extra class or two? Yes, why not?! Need a cake for Christmas Day? You got it! Why not?!

Buy the shoes! Lick the whisk! Take the job!

I have some exciting things I have been wanting to do for years and this is the year to tackle them! I don't exactly know what I'm doing, but I have reached out to those who can help...and I will learn!
Why not?!

Here's to a weekend of hot coco and Christmas lights, classic holiday movies {It's a Wonderful Life}, present wrapping, and licking the spoon!
Merry! Merry!

Monday, December 17, 2018

Two Words

Saturday morning, I sent a text to my friend. She had been on my mind. I knew her brother, who had been battling cancer, was sick again and I wanted her to know I was thinking about her and hoped he was doing well...and I was available if she needed anything. I hadn't talked to her in a while {other than quick texts here and there}. I thought he had been doing better, but through recent Instagram posts, saw he wasn't.

Several hours went by after I sent that text Saturday morning. My Saturday continued in it's usual manner...class, lunch, errands, laundry...
Just as I was pulling in to pick up my dry cleaning my phone pinged. I glanced down and saw two words on my screen. 

He's gone.

I caught my breath in my throat and my heart sank. Oh my beautiful friend! Her Saturday had been anything but usual.

I'm not writing this to tell their story. It's not mine to tell. I just wanted to remember this moment because of the incredible family behind it.

This family is the one we all envy. They are big and loud and fun. And so close. You don't have to spend much time with them to feel the love they have for each other. Oh, I'm sure they have their moments. I'm sure they fight and get mad at one another, but they would also be the first to stick up for each other. No matter what. 

They are picture perfect with their big family dinners...set up in the backyard with white lights strung about. {Think Parenthood} Homemade foods and cakes adorn the tables. Kids and dogs running around the big grassy playground. Wine. Laughter. Lots and lots of laughter. They celebrate each other in every way. 

They are a beautiful family and I feel lucky to know them. Although my heart hurts for them,  I know he was loved more than humanly possible and his memory will live on. Every time they have their heart warming, laughter filled, loving family dinners he will be there.

"The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you lived and lived well." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Weekend Wishes

{my beautiful south mountain}

Happy weekend!
I am so glad it's the weekend and I will be even happier next weekend when Cade is out of school!
{Sometimes it is so nice to not have a schedule}! Randi is already out of school and back home!!!

Well the holidays are in full swing and I love it! Our home is twinkling and my kitchen always smells of sweet goodness. And the Christmas carols! All of the classics are constantly being played at home, in my car, and I may even sing a little here and there. :)
Shopping is underway, but not completed. However, my lists have been made and I know what I need and who has been naughty and nice!
It's also that time in December when I start to get a little anxious. Will I be able to do and see everything I want? Will I miss any wonderful holiday event? I'm not ready for it to be over!!

I have a little more baking to do and a few craft/gifts to make. Hopefully, I will attack some of those things today after my class.  {I teach cycle today and tomorrow, but I have the rest of the days to tackle some projects}.

What else...
I have once again become obsessed with the thought of lash extensions and microblading. I have had lash extensions off and on three times. I love them...then get tired of the upkeep. But once I start looking at them again or see people with them I want them!!! And the microblading. I like my brows ok, but the microblading would fill them in and make them {almost} perfect! Hhhmmmmm....

I am also madly in love with my job at Nordstrom!  I know. I need to post about how I even ended up there and I will. I promise. But for now I will tell you...I'm in love! The company, the management, the clothes, the make-up, the's all wonderful! 

Here's to a beautiful weekend! May it be filled with finishing projects, singing Christmas carols, and lots of holiday magic!


“Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful.” ―Norman Vincent Peale

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Happy (Busy) Heart

{Randi watching White Christmas}.
 How has it been ten days since I decided to reunite with my lovely blog? And write at least three times a week? I have been so busy. Blogging does cross my mind for a fleeting moment, but then I'm on to the next thing!
My days are so full. Happily, richly, gratefully full.
I continue to teach four regular classes a week. A position at Nordstrom has made me over the moon happy. One day a week I still volunteer at South Mountain. And. I still run this household and relish in being a wife and mom.

Randi has come back home for the holidays and I love it. The other day she suggested we have a baking day. So. Monday we put on Miracle on 34th Street, heated up the oven and baked and baked and baked!  {We may have both cried a little during the movie too. Who doesn't tear up a little when they shout out the news that Santa Claus is real}?!  We also watched a little Bing Crosby and Rosemary Clooney in White Christmas {love}.  We made sugar cookies. {Randi did the beautiful poinsettias}.  We also made fudge, candy, and peanut butter kiss cookies. It was such a fabulous day. I was exhausted by the time I went to bed, but I wouldn't have traded it for the world. My daughter is a pretty awesome person. I love being with her!

I feel like I'm behind on a few things, but everything will get done. And if it doesn't? Life will go on!

I will try and make an effort to find a few minutes to blog. I really need to document Hawaii, new job, volunteering, and every day life.  {I just received two hard cover books I ordered of my blog. I
 now have five books of my printed blog. What a great documentation of our life}!!

Until next time...

Monday, December 3, 2018

hello lovelies

ok. the break up is over.
i missed you, dear blogging world.

after sifting through years of posts and ordering printed books of all my online journaling...
i realized how much i have enjoyed it over the years and how great it will be for my children and future generations to have and read.

a few things have happened in the hot minute since i last wrote {over two months ago}. mr. c and i spent a week in maui. randi changed majors and moved dorms. cade grew. a lot! and, oh yeah, i had a mid life crisis and applied for about a million jobs and started working at one of them.

i know the suspense is killing you, but i will save all of that exciting news for upcoming posts. for now, i will tell you...i am still teaching my classes {as you can see above} and loving them. i am 100% in the christmas spirit and love waking up to my decorated home! our december weather is looking to be beautiful. cold, but not too cold and a little rain. just enough to wear cute boots and scarves and have a fire roaring in the fire place. winters in arizona may be one of the greatest things in the world.

happy, happy monday!

"every moment is a fresh beginning." - t. s. eliot

Friday, September 28, 2018

final thoughts

{paris 2012}

here we are. friday. the lovely weekend is upon us.
and with this "happy weekend" post comes lots of thoughts and a decision.
the decision? to take a break from blogging. maybe temporarily, maybe permanently. 
{i'm leaning towards permanently, but you never know...i may have a reunion. you know, like my date with wine after our break up}. why? i think i would rather document my life in a more private manner {journals and scrapbooks}.  would i come back to blogging in a different form? maybe. not sure how i feel right now. the whole social media phenomenon is annoying to me {and this falls in to that category}. don't get me wrong, social media has it's place in the world. i'm just not sure how much i want it to be in my world. this is not new thoughts or feelings for me. i have previously posted about my dislike for facebook, instagram, twitter...not my thing.

anyway. since this could be my last post i thought i would clear the air. share a few thoughts. get some things off my chest. say what i really want to say. {some of this has been said before}.
here it goes.

{la jolla 2017}

 hhhhmmmmm....where to start, where to start?

let's just start with the big guns, shall we?

yeah, it's not my thing and i do not believe in organized religion. however, to each their own. if it gets you through the day and brings peace to your heart - have at it. enjoy. but. don't try and save me. i'm good. i was raised in the mormon church, but had my name officially removed a few years ago. {that was an interesting experience. gives you everything you need to know to leave that institution. and when it was finally official, a man - who i didn't know - called to tell me it was official  and that i was losing the gift of the holy ghost at that very moment. as we spoke on the phone. true story. crazy town right there}. i have tried other churches, but it really does not bring peace to my heart. what does bring me peace? what is my church? the mountains, nature, my home, my family.

i am proud to be an american. i'm proud of my heritage. i'm proud to live in a country where i have the freedom to speak, salute, stand, kneel as i wish. athletes kneeling during the anthem? i fully support their peaceful display. {actually, kneeling is a respectful act. we kneel in prayer. we kneel in proposals. some kneel in a greeting}.  and you know what? it doesn't affect me at all. it is their life. their choice. government has no place telling a player what he should or shouldn't do during the anthem {or anyone else for that matter}.

i am pro-choice. my body, my choice. women should have have the right to make choices regarding their bodies and health. we do not know what is going on in a women's life for her to make such a difficult decision, nor is it our business to know. women are not having abortions as a form of birth control. i promise. it is a difficult decision. although i have never had one, i did lose two pregnancies that resulted in d & c's. it was a horrible, emotionally straining experience. after going through those losses and turning 40, i made the decision to have a tubal ligation. it was not an easy decision, but it was my decision. not long after, i had a woman question me and my ethics for making such a decision. it was wrong to mess with "god's plan". i don't need anybody judging me and i for sure as hell do not need some white man in power making a decision about my body.

it has already been said how much i support equality in love and marriage. this goes for bathrooms too. seriously. relieve yourself where you are comfortable. {i've been known to find an alley, bush, or tree that does the trick}! you be you and allow others to be who they are too. a transgender person using the restroom they identify with is not going to hurt you.

we are all human beings. we should be treated EQUALLY. men, women, people of all color and ethnicity,  gays, heterosexuals, transgenders...everyone. it's not that hard. just be kind. {and don't hide behind your god saying gay marriage will hurt your marriage or tell me you are not racist because you have a black friend. ridiculous statements}.

global warming.
it's real people. just look at the facts. listen to the scientist.
recycle. reuse. buy a reusable straw. use reusable bags. use less water. eat less meat.

we are all immigrants.
to separate children from their parents as they are trying to find a better life is despicable.
to treat people with such hate and disrespect is inexcusable.
i have written about this topic before and i still feel the same way. you can read that post here.

our president.
with every fiber of my being...i hate our president. and to be honest, feeling that way makes me sad, angry, and sick to my stomach. he is the most narcissistic, hateful, idiotic person. i think he is the epitome of power hungry and, even worse, he doesn't have a clue. he is a stupid person with power. {a dangerous combination}. his actions and words make me sick and i struggle to understand why anyone would support him. i have never felt this way about a president. i may have disagreed with beliefs, but i have never had such disrespect for a president as i do with this one.

he said, she said. who to believe? why did she wait so long before speaking about it? these are valid questions. however, studies show that most victims never come forward and if they do it takes time, strength, and courage.
seventeen years ago i found myself in the middle of a sexual harassment lawsuit. within that same year i also divorced, quit my job, moved, and started a new job...all with a one year old daughter. the sexual harassment mess was, hands down, the hardest thing i have ever endured. in my life.  the lawsuit was against my director who had stalked me and confessed his love to me. he wanted to run away with me. he gave me gifts and special treatment. i had documentation when i went to my human resource director. {before i get too far in this story i have to say i did not want to come forward. it was the hardest thing i have ever done. i came forward because my husband at the time threatened to do it if i didn't}. my HR director was female. she and i were the only females in management positions within this organization. she was shocked. she went to the city manager {a white male}. he in turn, called my husband since he was the man of the household. i am not kidding. he met with him before meeting with me. i was outraged and called him out on it. he finally called me in. he informed he would be handling the investigation himself and would not get the city attorney involved. {my position was within a municipality}. how this was allowed baffles me. he interviewed my coworkers, my boss, my husband and when he finally got to me he said, "if all of this really happened the way you said it did, i feel more would have happened." {sound familiar? trump tweeted something very similar regarding dr. ford}. ummm...what?! so because my boss didn't rape me i'm lying? yes. that is how he felt. i was lying because i had not been attacked by my boss. in the end, my boss had to write an apology to my husband. it was suggested that i move from my office in a beautiful historic building to a trailer with the public works department. my boss could remain in his office. he received a very small slap on the hand and i was ridiculed and down graded. of course women do not come forward. we are already dealing with this crap...why make it any worse?  my stomach is churning as i type this. this all must change. it has to. our sons and daughters must be raised to treat everyone with respect. our daughters have to know that when someone makes you feel uncomfortable, whether it's verbal or physical, they have to speak out. don't just smile or laugh it off like it's a compliment. it's not. if it makes you feel uncomfortable it is not just an innocent compliment or boys being boys. our boys must know how to talk to and treat girls. no means no. and speaking in a lewd, disgusting manner regarding females is not "locker room talk" as our president would have you believe. it is completely and utterly unacceptable. and when a woman does find the courage to come forward she should be heard, respected AND a proper investigation should take place. {yes, the FBI should be investigating the kavanaugh accusations}. you have no idea how hard it is to come forward unless you have been there. shame, fear, confusion, and remorse fill that person's soul.

it's stressful, exhausting, difficult, and the best responsibility in the world! i love being a mom. i love the heartache that comes with the rewards.
i believe in open communication and complete honesty with my children. we have had some raw conversations around the dinner table and i am grateful for every one...even the ones that made me choke on my asparagus.
i also believe in hooky days. {as we are having one today}! i saw this quote in the paper the other day and, well, it spoke to me...
"a child educated only at school is an uneducated child." -george santayana

happiness and kindness.
peanut butter and jelly. hand in hand. if you choose happiness you will share kindness. if you choose to be kind you will exude happiness. it's all a choice. my kids have heard this more times than they care to tell you. life is all about choices...make good ones. choose happiness. choose kindness. it really is that simple.

okay. i think that's it. of course i also believe in exercise and the power of being healthy. treat yourself right. have a good attitude and your day will be better. have a little fire in your soul.

i know there are those who completely disagree with me and that is fine. the beauty of this glorious world is we are all different with different beliefs. respecting our differences makes the world a better place. make love not war.

peace out.