Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy Birthday Craigster


When I was a sophomore in high school my big Brother was a senior. We were good friends. It was lunch hour, and I was crossing the street with my friend Angie when I saw my Brother Paul with a super cute guy. They said hi to me, and I kept thinking how cute Paul's friend was for the rest of the day (typical 16 year old girl). After school I asked Paul what his friends name was, and he said "Craig Hall". A couple days later I was at my sisters house on Canal street, and her neighbor called to see if her son could bring something over. A moment later the doorbell rang, and I answered it only to find my dreamy new crush standing there, Craig Hall.
I asked him out.
He did the rest!
We held hands for the first time on his 18th Birthday on the chair lift...yesterday he turned 29. I can't believe it's been 11 years, and I thought I loved him then!

Craig, you are still my dreamy crush.
You make me want to be a better person, and you helped me discover my true dreams.
I Love you.
Yesterday I was BUSY! I did not make you a cake, or get your gift in time. you worked all day, ate a dinner you would not have chosen (and made me sick), sat on the very FRONT row of Avatar in 3d (which made me sicker), took care of me while I was sick in front of the toilet, picked up the kids all by yourself while I was home being sick in private, and got the front of the pathfinder ripped off on your way home with the kids by a car that ran a red light (the front of my 08 pathfinder is literally gone!). In anyones book, you had a bad day...on your birthday.
I can not believe the grace in which you handled yourself, and your day.
I love you, and I want to be like you.

Love, your girl

Monday, December 21, 2009

New Holiday

I happen to be a person that LOVES Christmas, the whole season really. I love the lights, the goodies, the songs, the joy, and most of all...the anticipation. It build. Bigger, bigger, and bigger. Christmas comes, and we play all week in anticipation of New Years Eve. It's exciting, it's fun, and then BAM...it's over!

When it all ends I always feel this sadness in my heart, because I don't have anything to look forward to until Valentines Day. This year I decided we need a new Holiday, one that comes near the end of January. So, I decided to make it a little game. Wanna play?

Here is what you do... leave your best new holiday ideas, how your holiday is celebrated, decorated, etc. The sky is the limit, and I even have a wonderful prize for the person that comes up with my favorite idea. The winner will get my Mothers brand new Cook Book, just published last week, you can't even buy it in stores yet.

Have fun, and get those wheels turning.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Christmas Letter

Merry Christmas 2009

Craig- working at Robert Allen in sales and as the finance guy. Serving as First Councilor in the bishopric (we think it's very funny), and getting an education in the real lives of people he thought he knew. Still the apple of Laylas eye.

Susan- Working part time for Dr. Davis, and developing First Impressions Handcasts into a MLM. Still the PP at church, which is a great place to be. Susan has also been busy baking...#3 is in the oven, expected to be perfect in July.

Carter- Loves to read books to anyone that will listen. Carter never stops surprising us with his intelligent questions and comments. He has been taking swimming, gymnastics, and martial arts classes, and he usually really enjoys them.

Layla- Is our little chatter box clown at home, and little quiet angel in public. She loves to sing and dance, and is getting very good at keeping her panties dry (We are especially excited about that last part).

We hope this Christmas season finds you happy and fat...or at least happy.
We have felt our saviors love in our lives, and are humbled at his mercy.
We send our love to you. The Halls

Sunday, December 6, 2009

idea help

Do you have Christmas Family traditions that are centered around Christ? I've been asked to help with enrichment this week, and share some ideas, but all I can think of is that we act out the Nativity every year. If you have, or know of any Christ centered Christmas traditions will you please let me know? Thanks in advance. Susan

Friday, December 4, 2009

Delish!



*This picture is not related in any way to this entry, but I love the look of intensity on Laylas face, so i simply had to see it again.

I have been a fan of www.realmomkitchen.com for a long time. I got this recipe from the website a couple of days ago, and made it tonight...DELICIOUS!!! I wanted to share the sweet goodness with you all, and hope you enjoy it as much as we did. Thank you Real Mom Kitchen!

Ravioli Casserole (a fast lasagnaish dish)

1 jar (28 oz.) spaghetti sauce
1 package (25 oz) frozen cheese ravioli, cooked and drained
2 Cups(16oz) small curd cottage cheese
4 cups (16oz) shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Spread 1@ cup of spaghetti sauce in an ungreased 13x9x2 inch baking dish. Layer with half the ravioli, 1 1/4 cups of sauce, 1 cup cottage cheese, and 2 cups mozzarella cheese. Repeat layers. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake, uncovered, at 350 for 30-40 minutes or until bubbly. Let stand 5-10 minutes before serving. Makes 6-8 servings.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

good list... or naughty list

Looking back at our pictures of Christmas' Past, Carter with Santa, I realize they have never had the most healthy of relationships.



Tonight the Craigster and I took the Chickie's to the tree festival.
It was beautiful. Santa was there, but Carter didn't want to talk to him...at that moment anyway. We had a lovely evening, came home, finished decorating the tree, and tucked the kids in for bed.
After tucking them in I folded some laundry, and went back into the kids room about 20 minutes later to put clothes away. Much to my surprise, I found Carter laying awake in bed, with a very thoughtful/worried look on his face.
He said to me "Mom, I wish I had talked to Santa...I need to ask him something"
I asked with hidden curiosity "what do you need to ask him?"
"I need to find out if I'm on his nice list...or the naughty one" he said in his sweet, but concerned little four year old voice. I could almost see every single moment of not so niceness he has had the past month being replayed in his mind.
I did my best not to smile, and told him I was sure he was on the nice list, but he could ask Santa next time we see him just to be sure.
To that he gave me a kiss on my cheek, rolled over, and drifted off to a restful sleep.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

First Giveaway...ever!

I am officially a blogger mommy! This is my 100th post! yay for me, and for you...the people bored enough to read my blog. jk. I thought to spice things up a little I would have my first giveaway, so here's the deal, I'm giving away
two VIP tickets to "Rock the Runway" on December 12! I'm so excited for this event, because it's just going to be wonderful to see everyone, plus I get to work the cat walk (and pray I don't fall on my face). It will be in Pocatello at the Holiday inn from 1-3:00pm. They will have prizes, food, and eye candy for everyone. wink, wink.
For your chance to win you just have to leave a comment. You could tell me what your favorite thanksgiving tradition is. Good Luck! I'm going to say your chances of winning are pretty dang good.

In honor of Thanksgiving, I am going to re post one of my most favorite posts to date, because it took place last thanksgiving. Here's to hoping this year goes more smoothly then the last!

2008 Thanksgiving at my house

my thanksgiving "outpourings"

There are three facts you need to know before I go on any farther

Fact #1- Carter has a very bad gag reflex, and he can't handle any really bad smells...such as poop.

Fact #2- I am insane!

Fact #3- I had all the three year old cousins on the Hall side come over, and we had a "Diego Slumber Party". Thus confirming fact #2.

Everything started out great! We had the elders over for a nice lasagna dinner, played "Hide Diego, hide", and "Draw Diego, draw", and watched "Diego Saves Christmas". The kids had a great time, but our slumber party didn't have much slumbering. The next mourning was Thanksgiving, and this was the plan
wake up, feed the kids breakfast, dress them, Craig take the missionaries shopping, and I take the kids to the Hall family "Turkey Bowl" to return them to their rightful Mothers.

I knew something was off the moment we discovered that our cat had somehow gotten into our new(ish) Pathfinder.....the day BEFORE, and had been trapped in there all night. Cat + small confined space for extended period of time = LOTS OF POO. We got that all cleaned up, and by that time Craig had to rush to get the Elders, leaving me to finish getting the kids ready by myself.

All the 3 year olds were fed, cleaned, and dressed, so I went downstairs to Laylas room to get her dressed. A moment later I hear Carter from the top of the stairs yelling/dry heaving "mom, (gag) it looks (gag) stinky in here (gag)!" (he always says looks instead of smells)I rushed to the stairs just in time to see Carter vomit down the stair. I yell "run to the bathroom, HURRY", so obediently, he runs to the bathroom leaving a vomit trail behind him. (Did I mention he had toast and peaches for breakfast?)I followed him to the bathroom, and as I turned the corner I saw what triggered the vomit episode. His sweet little cousin was standing there with his underwear and pants around his ankles, and poo all the way down his legs, smeared all over the floor, and even a little on the door. (I really have no idea how that happened). At that moment I hear sweet little Layla come up the stairs, and enter the Kitchen. Remembering the mess in there, I ran back in the kitchen to get her. I got there just in time to see her pick up a chunk of peach from Carters mess, and happily pop it into her mouth. AAAAHHHHH!!!

Lets have a quick recap! I'm crazy...Diego...no sleeping...cat poo...Carter puke...cousin poo...layla gets a snack!

Basically, the moral of the story is.......Carter needs to chew up his peaches.

Happy Thanksgiving Friends, Love Susan

Thursday, November 19, 2009

moments

One pumpkin carving kit... $3.99
HUGE pumpkin from the pumpkin patch... $12.00







Moments like this... priceless

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

the patch

We have the cutest little pumpkin patch here called Swore Farms. They have a Little corn maze for the kids with agricultural questions, and you have to choose an answer to decide which way to go. they also let the kids feet the farm animals, have a tractor ride, make a bird feeder, and best of all, pick their own pumpkin. This has become a new family tradition for us the past couple of years. You know me and my traditions...love them.




Thursday, November 12, 2009

Halloween In Boise

We went to Boise for Halloween weekend, and got to hang out with the Boise fam. The Craigster was working that weekend, and my mom and dad were heading that way, so we hitched a ride with them...in my car. I LOVE visiting my sisters in Boise. Joannes family, known as the Wilcows (Wilcox + Rowe = Wilcow)treat my chickies like royalty. Actually, they just play with them...lots.
When we go to Boise Layla is so excited to see her Abby and Dillon that she never sleeps the whole way there. Carter also loves the 7 Wilcow kids, but his true Boise love is his Auntie Annabeth. He adores her. In fact, she is the only person he has ever wanted to marry, other than me.









Friday, November 6, 2009

The Sicken or the Hicken

Mr. Craig decided our sweet little Chloe needed a real Chicken Coop, so he used his manly tools, and construction began. Soon he had erected this fine little chicken house. After the hard labor was done we were all enlisted to paint. As we (Me, Craig, Carter, and Layla) painted the coop together, Craig and I realized there was some debate about what kind of animal our little Chloe was. Carter insisted we had a "Sicken", and Layla was determined we had a "Hicken", so they had an extensive discussion as to whether it was a Sicken or a Hicken.
Classic.
It has been written "A Sicken or a Hicken" for all to debate, and these words can be found on the front of the coop, above the main entrance.







The chicken gives us EGGS.
It's true.
Carter made this discovery a couple of weeks ago, and came running into the house yelling "The Sicken gives us eggs Mom, the Sicken gives us eggs" with the most excited voice you can imagine from a four year old boy. That kind of excitement is contagious, and soon we were all equally exited and amazed. Not sure why we were so amazed and surprised about it, but we were. I had the camera out, the kids took turns holding it, and the doorbell rang. It was my hand appointment, they were slightly confused about why we were all so excited...even after I explained to them "our Chicken layed an egg". Anyway, all the excitement came crashing down (or crushing down)as the cute little egg fell in slow motion to the hardwood kitchen floor. Layla was devastated! Lucky for us all, our Chicken is fertile in the egg department.
Now collecting eggs is a highlight in our daily routine... hope it keeps its magic.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Most Amazing Swim suits Ever

Most amazing swim suits ever! These Swimming suits can make anyone look AMAZING, and the proof lies within the blond model chic....me.
Frankly, I'm a little embarrassed to put these pictures on my blog, and really debated with my inner self if I should do it or not. I actually asked The Craigster if I should model them...because I couldn't wear my G's, and wondered if it was appropriate, and if I would have to have a talk with the Bish, and if he would be embarrassed for me to model a swim suit...of course his answer was "Heck yes, you should do it, and it's a swim suit, so your not supposed to wear G's with it" Okay, so I am a BIG DORK, we have previously covered that...but I confirm it again. I decided for it, but only so you know about these suits that I know you are going to LOVE, as I love them.
As you look at the following pictures you must agree to two things:

1) be kind
2) tell me what suit you like the best

My Incredible sister Judy called me a while ago, and she told me about these swim suits she was designing. I was really excited for her. A short time later she called again, and this time she asked me if I would be one of her models. Naturally...I began to hyperventilate! I mean wouldn't you if somebody asked you to put on a swim suit, and not only do you have to stand there while everyone stares at you...but you have to stand there while they take pics of you. Awkward! I mean hello, I've had a couple babies, one by Cesarean, and I've got the tummy to prove it.
However, I am a compulsive pleaser, and can't figure out how to say my 2 year olds favorite word. N.O. So of coarse I said "oh sure, that would be great". Little did I know that it actually would be an incredible day, and that I would feel great in her Swim Suit!
These suits have these secret little pockets and pleats designed to hide, or accentuate, in the appropriate places. If I could define them in one word it would be "LOVE".










The online store isn't all the way up yet, but go check out her website for more pictures and info at www.sunsafeswimwear.biz, tell your friends too, because these swimming suits are going to be the next big thing in your local watering holes.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Sweet Followers Discovery


I am sure none of you (except the two that are my followers. yay for you) have discovered the magnificence and ease of being a blog follower, because I just discovered it my self. I was looking at my dashboard, and there was this little tag that said "2 followers" (thanks mom and sister), and at that moment I realized something very important...I'm a little blogger loser with my two sweet little followers. Yeah that's right, but the thing is I'm okay with that. Because I'm good enough, I'm smart enough, and dog gonnit people like me...or at least that is what my mama always told me (thanks again mom).
I actually just a moment ago noticed the tab in the upper left hand corner of my screen that says "follow", so I clicked on it, and like magic I became a follower of a good friends blog. I gave her a little self esteem boost, and made it easy for me to be her web stocker all at the same time. Don't feel sad, because you too can easily become a blog stocker of your fav blogs (aah hummm...like mine). You just have to click that magical little "follow" button at the top of the screen.
Easy peasy lemon squeezsy.
Happy weekend to you.

Monday, October 19, 2009

a hard days work


In what often seems like a previous life, I worked at a Dental Office. Spent a total of 8 years there actually. I worked up until seven hours before I had Carter, and planned on not going back...but I'm a sucker, and went back. When Carter was 18 months old I decided it was REALLY time for me to stay home, so I drummed up the courage to tell the Dr. I was quitting. He gave me another raise, and said "pretty pretty please will you stay?", and because he asked so nicely, I agreed. When I had Layla a year later I was Absolutely Positively sure I was not going to keep working at the Office, but one raise later....yep, back again with a different title and job description. I Finally ended the long relationship on February 1, 2008, and have not been back ever since (except to get my pearly whites cleaned of course).
I was secretly scared that if I went back, I would get sucked back in, so I was 'busy' whenever anyone asked me to fill in for them. Until today, I braved the saliva ejectors and cotton rolls once again. I am happy to report that I am still a strong woman that loves to be home with my children.
I am so grateful for a husband that supports me in my decision to stay home, and actually praises me for the work I do here, in our home. What more could I ask for than a constant flow of peanut butter on my shoulder, and lovely children in my arms.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Sucking

Ever since Layla was this big....




She has done this....

Now she is this big...

and still doing this...

HELP!!! We have tried reminding her, and she would smile at us and pull the fingers out...until we turned our heads. Smack, right back in they go. I picked up some of that nasty fingernail paint that is so very foul in flavor, and she just sucked really hard to get it off faster. Craig taped a Popsicle stick to her fingers, and that actually worked...until she figured out she could just suck her other hand.
So now here we are, out of ideas, with Popsicle sticks stuck to all of laylas foul tasting little fingers...OK, so just 2 of her foul tasting little fingers. We are desperately hoping our blogging friends will have some wisdom to donate to a great cause.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Singing continued

If you didn't read the post before this...do. This is kind of part two.
video
video
I hope he Never stops singing from his heart...love it.

my fav singer ever

Carter LOVES to sing, and I have been lucky enough a couple times to catch him in action. I can not even tell you how many times I have heard him in his room playing, and singing a melody to himself. I think it's the cutest thing. Enjoy
video

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Fall Time Fun At My HoUsE


I LOVE to decorate my house for Fall time! The colors are so natural and lovely, it's simply irresistible...as a great musician once put it.

Growing up, my Family had a tradition of making place mats using the most colorful Autumn leaves we would find, and I always loved it. This fun tradition has carried over to my little family. The Craigser and I loaded the kids, four wheelers, and the In Laws up, and we all went for the most BEAUTIFUL Autumn ride EVER! Is was simply magical! The leaves were the most vibrant reds, yellows, and oranges I have ever seen. I love my Mom and Dad in law, so it was wonderful to have them there for that amazing afternoon. When we got home we assembled our new place mats for the year, and I decided to add the photograph element this year. It's fun to see the kids as they climb up my tall kitchen chairs to find where their place mat will be. They each actually put the leaves and pictures on themselves...and then, of course, I moved them around when they weren't looking. wink, wink.

Another night we made about 30 caramel, and while chocolate apples. The apples were all off our tree out back, so they were extra wonderful:)
We made a TON because I wanted to take them around for ALL the primary workers in my awesome ward. We had our program (as previously noted), and they did a great job of keeping the kids focused, so they deserved a reward of their own. I packaged them all cute in these little Chinese foodish take out boxes. cute, cute.

Lay love REALLY enjoyed her apple. She worked on it for about 2 hours...seriously! Such a mess!

Friday, October 2, 2009

28






Now I know a true lady never reveals her age, but we all know I'm not a true lady...and I don't mind revealing my true age. Today I turn 28 years old, and I'm good with it. I feel like I have received so many blessings, and this is a beautiful time of my life. I am in just the place I want to be, with the people I want to be with. Sure, I would LOVE to see more of my perfect, sweeps me off my feet, best husband in the world, but I know those days will come.
Last night the kids and I were playing around with the camera, and I was just thinking "Man, I love my life" while they tried to make me laugh...not a hard thing to do. How is it that one person can be so blessed?