Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Portraits of Ireland

As most of you probably know, I've been teaching clogging here in Maryland at the Teelin School of Irish Dance. Every year they have this awesome production to showcase Irish culture called Portraits of Ireland. Last year the director had me choreograph a clogging piece to put in the show and this year I've been asked to perform in the number. If you are looking for a cultural arts event on February 23rd, you should come and check it out. This year it is being held at Towson University. Check out this Promo Video to get a glimpse of what the show will be like. Let me know if you plan to attend!


Last night Tucker was having a hard time winding down and falling asleep. At one point he was crying so I went in to see what his problem was. He was sitting on the floor trying to unzip his pajamas so that he could wear his Thomas the Train pajamas. I guess he has an opinion on what to wear to bed. Funny little boy!

Monday, January 28, 2008

God Be With You Til We Meet Again

Our beloved prophet, seer and revelator, President Gordon B. Hinckley passed away in his home last night at the age of 97. What an amazing man and prophet he was. He will be deeply missed. I know that my testimony has been strengthened by his teachings and words of wisdom. For more on his death visit here. For an inspiring book about his life, check out his biography, Go Forward With Faith. I'm about half way through it right now. President Hinckley was so Christ like. His example of following the Savior truly makes me want to be a better person.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Polar Bear Plunge

Today I participated in the Polar Bear Plunge held in the Chesapeake Bay. It is an annual fundraiser held where the proceeds go to Special Olympics. A couple guys in our ward, Clark Hartley and Haloti Ngata (NFL player) were our team captains, and as a team we raised over $8,000. Can you believe people pay to watch crazy people like us jump into freezing cold water? Insane. Oh well though, it was for a good cause.

Well, Bryce Carter and I drove down together this morning and nearly froze to death waiting to get in the water. The atmosphere surrounding the event was exciting. There were tens of thousands of people there. Tons of tailgaiters, barbeques and onlookers. Even the crazy drunk people were there, including the psycho duo of guys running around in nothing but a speedo and beer helmet. The air temperature was a frosty 31 degrees, and the water was a stinging 36 degrees today. You can see some video on the local news network if you like. Check out the link on the right for- Sky Team 11: Saturday's Noon Big Plunge (you can see our group running in with our white t-shirts. I'm one of the first ones to go running in).

Here is a picture of some of the ward members on our team about 5 minutes before plunge time. For all of you who wussed out, shame on you. For the rest of the courageous and valiant men who stuck it out, congrats! Remember, it's only 31 degrees and we are standing around in t-shirts and swimming suits right now.

Here is a view of the Bay with the Bay Bridge in the background. Check out all the police boats and divers that they had on hand in case of an accident.
This photo was taken immediately after the plunge, and I think we were all officially numb at this point. Getting out of the water was so hard because the muscles were no longer working, so Jeremy Skinner and I were falling all over each other just trying to escape the frigid clutches of the Chesapeake. Man, it was painfully cold.

Flex those muscles Bryce!

This is what a frozen skeleton looks like, in case anybody was wondering.

Friday, January 25, 2008

The Chosen One

I went and picked out Tucker's new booster seat today. The lucky winner was the Evenflo Chase Comfort Touch. It had good safety reviews and was super easy to put together and adjust. Tucker liked sitting in it and didn't mind while I buckled him in, but then I had this crazy idea to get the camera and he did not like that!
Too bad for him. He was locked down and what can I say, I'm the mom!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

What we did on our vacation

We had a pretty nice weekend. Cody and I went to a restaurant in Baltimore Friday night called Lemongrass. It's a Thai restaurant that has amazing food! I highly recommend it to anyone! The lettuce wraps were delicious (even Cody agrees) and the atmosphere is fun. Not really kid friendly, but get a babysitter and enjoy a great night out.
We hung out at home and with friends Saturday and Sunday. On Monday we cleaned our carpet. The below picture is what our floor looked like before. The pictures aren't the greatest, but our floor looked TERRIBLE! For any of you that have ever been to my place, you know that I usually vacuum before you get there and it still looks like crap. This is how our floor looked after. Much much better. There are still a few spots that will have to be hand scrubbed, but overall we feel as though a gray film has been lifted from our carpet. Much more livable and hopefully it will make less work for us when we move in May.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Brownies, Bath, Bubbles, Bed

Like most kids, Tucker loves to lick the beaters from the mixer and get all the chocolate out of the bowl. We made brownies last night and Tucker taught Aubrey the art of chocolate licking. Then we tossed them in the tub (not literally).
This was Aubrey's first bath out of her baby bath seat and she loved it. She'd go from sitting on her bum to being on her belly to her knees. She loves freedom!
I had to show off their bath towels. A friend of ours made Tucker's when he was a baby and since then I've learned how to make them on my own.
I cannot even tell you how hard it is to get both kids to look at the camera at the same time. It doesn't matter how goofy I am trying to be, I usually only get one set of eyes in my direction. I guess it didn't help that Finding Nemo was playing in the background behind me.

For those of you that don't know me well, I absolutely LOVE a good deal. The Disney store in our mall is closing it's doors Sunday and although that is very sad, especially for our ghetto mall, the deals that were found yesterday are awesome. Everything in the store was marked down and then you received 50% off everything at checkout. We went a bit overboard with the clothes, toys, and accessories, but I just couldn't pass up the bargains. We've got plenty of time to space the presents out and I just love the fact that it was all so cheap. (FYI-For you Old Navy shoppers, they are having their 75% off clearance sale right now. I bought cute socks for a quarter each this morning.)

Monday, January 14, 2008


Sorry for all the posts at once. I guess we were kind of boring last week and decided that all the exciting things happened in the past couple days. Anyway, on to the title of this post. I'm training to run a half marathon the end of March. I got rid of my elliptical with intentions of finding a treadmill on craigslist or the pennysaver. I had told myself that there is no way I would run out in the cold. Well, last week proved to be nice and I decided I would give it a try outside. I reconfirmed to myself that I love running outside. Treadmill running is boring and monotonous. I told myself that I would run in the mornings as long as the temps are above 32 F. This morning I think it was 34. As I was running along I passed 3 junior high students. After I passed them I heard them talking and the word "freak" being repeated in my direction. I didn't have to turn around to know they were talking about me. I'm going to assume I'm a "freak" because I was running in the cold. It's moments like these, that are going to make me REALLY miss good ole Baltimore!

Fun Saturday

On Saturday Lisa, the kids and I were invited to attend the baptism of the daughter of one of my patients. The mom, my patient, is from Argentina and the husband is from Mexico. The mom came to me needing a ton of dental work, and was actually my first patient in the clinic. I ended up pulling several teeth, restoring those that remained, and made her an upper and lower partial denture. For those that want to know what those look like, I included a sample picture of an upper partial denture.
It was a very difficult case, but well worth the stress and struggles when I saw her smile on Saturday at her daughters baptism. I must say, I did a good job and those teeth looked so natural. It was awesome to see her smiling because when she first came to me, she would never smile and was so embarrassed of her teeth. What a big difference.
The baptismal service was conducted in Spanish, so Lisa was probably a little bored but still felt the spirit that was present. I loved attending it and had so many memories of my mission in Mexico come rushing back as I sat in that room, singing hymns in Spanish and conversing with the members and friends that were present. There was definitely a very sweet feeling there as the spirit attended that service.
The Hispanic culture is one of the greatest in the world. They are such a loving and giving people. After the service, the husband (who cooks at a Mexican restaurant) made some tamales and tacos for all that came. I loved it. Real, authentic Mexican food makes me weak in the knees. It is so good! We enjoyed the food and company that was there and had a fun Saturday night out as a family.

Wild Thing

Aubrey is now 9 months old. It must be the second kid syndrome because I can't believe how fast time has gone by. With Tucker I remember all his different stages and Aubrey is obviously going through them, but because she has an older brother that requires attention, I feel like she is growing up way too fast! We started doing pigtails this weekend. I love how fun and mischievous she looks. She is constantly crawling and pulling herself up on anything she can get her hands on.
She has the cutest laugh, (if I ever bust out my video camera, I'll get on film) and it is so easy to make her smile.
She's recently started happy squawking and screaming. It's cute the first couple times and then we wish she'd stop. She's pretty loud.
Here's her 9 month stats for those that are interested.
Weight: 17 lbs 7 oz. (25%)
Height: 29.5 in. (95%) I'm not sold on this one. I saw how the nurse measured her and I bet they are off by 1/2 to 1 inch.

It's fun to compare the difference between what Tucker was and what Aubrey is now. They weighed the same at their 9 month appointment, although Tucker was in the 5-10% percentile because he's a boy. We feel like Aubrey is a lot bigger, but maybe it's just because of her height. Anyway, now we are in the market for a new car seat either for Tucker or Aubrey. Tucker might graduate into a 5 point booster seat so that Aubrey can enjoy his deluxe throne. Any of you know any boosters that have good reviews on them?

Saturday, January 5, 2008

The Ultimate Gift

If you are looking for a GREAT family movie with wonderful life lessons, then you definitely need to rent "The Ultimate Gift". It wasn't heavily publicized but has huge actors in it like James Garner (the Notebook), Abigail Breslin (Little Miss Sunshine), Jason Stevens (Army Wives), Brian Dennehy and Bill Cobbs. We rented it at RedBox, so I know it's out there. Enjoy the movie and let me know what you think.

Thursday, January 3, 2008


We headed to Utah for 2 weeks on December 19th. Cody's and my parents live 10 minutes away from each other so we spent the first week sleeping at the Calderwood's and the second week at the Fosters. We were lucky enough to get a bunch of snowstorms while we were in town, so we spent lots of time playing outside.
Cody's practicing his gymnastics skills with a toetouch off the porch into the snow.

Tucker and Trevor went sledding at the park right behind Cody's parents house.

How often does Santa Claus come flying through the air in a hot air balloon and land right behind your house?!

Cousin pictures. Tucker, Aubrey, Beckham, Trevor and Caeden.

My sister Heather, me, Aubrey and our cousin April. (Christmas Day)
If you've been following our blog this past year, you might have noticed a trend in our family of always getting sick when we go to Utah. Well, this trip was no different except that we didn't have to go to the Emergency Room. Aubrey woke up the 23rd with a horrible barking cough. The diagnosis: croup. She was pretty bad for a few days and then started improving. The rest of us caught a cold later in the week.
Christmas Eve we spent with my side of the family and had a great dinner with my grandparents and family. We opened presents that night and then headed back to the Calderwoods for the night and Christmas morning.
Despite being sick we had a great time visiting on our vacation with family and friends. We saw National Treasure 2, went to a Jazz game, ate at great restaurants and enjoyed our time. Sorry that there are so many posts in a row. Rather than posting a bazillion pictures in one post, I thought I'd spread it out a bit.

Christmas Morning

We spent Christmas morning with the Calderwood's. Tucker was completely happy with his airplanes and cars he received. I got Cody a Navigation GPS for the car. We used Carson and Marisa's while we were in Seattle and loved it.
Cody surprised me with tickets to Celine Dion's concert next year. I have to wait until October to go, but I can't wait!
Carson, Cody and Kristin - Calderwood Siblings
All the kids wanted to play with Aubrey's new barnyard.

Foster Cabin December 29-31

Every year we head up to my grandparents cabin to enjoy the mountains, clean air (Salt Lake has horrible inversions), snow and snowmobiling. Unfortunately Cody, Tucker, Aubrey and I all had colds, so we didn't go out to play in the snow until our last day. This is Aunt Heather, Aubrey and cousin Halle (she's 1 month older than Aubrey)
Uncle Spencer and Tucker blowing on the fire.

Tucker and Parker (9 months apart). My kids are lucky to have cousins on both sides of the family close in age.
One fun tradition of mine that I used to do with my cousins is slide down the shag carpet stairs. We got creative and realized you could go much faster in a slippery sleeping bag.
Tucker sees people do things and wants to copycat. He's trying to throw a marshmallow in his mouth in this picture. You can see it in the top left corner of the photo. He was not successful this year.
If you can't find Tucker and it's quiet you can usually find him in the bathroom either washing his hands or brushing his teeth. Not bad habits, but at this age, they definitely need to be supervised.

Aubrey liked her first snowmobile ride. She would ride around and kick her legs.

My parents and all the grandkids.

New Year's

We celebrated New Year's Eve with our good friends, Mike and Leah Dyer. Leah and I were clogging duet partners all growing up. We had a ton of fun playing games and catching up.