Monday, January 26, 2009

Yay Me!...well, except for the burnt cake

Ok, the cake didn't totally burn, and it was my fault that it got just a little extra crispy, which if it were bacon would have been fine.

Here's the real scoop. As you know, I have spent much time researching and applying for many jobs. I have had a few interviews, but am pretty sure that I have received more rejection emails and letters than the number of jobs I have applied for. Thanks Economy, for that. It sure can make you feel like a failure when you receive several letters a day telling you that nobody wants you due to lack of experience in that field. I mean, all I needed was someone to give me a chance to see how wonderful I can be.

Well, as I was sitting in the kitchen waiting for the cake timer to go off (yes, I know...comfort food) I decided to go through my usual routine of email, facebook and blog checking, and much to my dismay, there was an email from an employer...and, what the dirty? it wasn't a rejection! It very simply said, "Andrea, I am interested in you for our events coordinator position. Please call."

So of course, I went running upstairs to Todd, laptop still open and in hand yelling, "Someone wants me! Someone wants me!"

This was a Saturday night and so I wasn't certain if I should call right away, but Todd urged me to. I had barely received the email, and so chances were that he was working. He was. He even wanted to interview me that evening, but was too busy. I did meet with him early this morning, however.

The job is working for a company that puts together conferences and seminars dealing with reverse logistics or aftermarket supply chain management. They are based right by my house and do conferences several times a year all around the world. Plus, they also do smaller seminars around the U.S., which would be officially what I could be in charge of. I think the interview went pretty well. We'll see if I pass the baptism by fire test of helping out at a conference this next week. I am going to Vegas to help with their biggest conference of the year. It will essentially be Friday to Friday. If I am fantastic...well, you get the idea. Wish me luck.

Now back to the cake. Yes, I missed the timer in all of my excitement, but Todd understood. We just ate the center out and avoided the crunchy edges.

Sunday, January 25, 2009


If you are wondering...Yes, I took the picture that is now the title of my blog. It is at Whangarei Falls in New Zealand. I took it while Todd was searching for the rental car keys in the falls.

This Crazy Mixed-up Kind of Winter

This has been a crazy winter and we have definitely gotten our fair share of the craziness. From heavy snowstorms, then rain and ice, and now fog. The fog is not your regular fog, either. It creates a frost that encases all of the individual branches on the trees, much like ice storms do. I have a few pictures from early morning, just after the fog had rolled away. The effect...a very ethereal feel to the outdoors, especially during the soft early morning stillness.

This tree is in our backyard; in the cow fields behind us. I wish I had been able to fully capture the feeling of that morning.

I have also included a closeup of the bush/tree in our neighbors part of the yard.

Monday, January 19, 2009

The Hill

Due to the amount of snowfall that caused us to get the truck stuck in the driveway a few times recently, we have had plenty of snow to play in. Our neighbor was a little more energetic about it and devoted MUCH time to building the ultimate kids sledding hill. He started from scratch shoveling snow from wherever he could find it. Todd even took pity on him a couple of times and braved the cold wet snow, filling the bed of the truck and taking it over to add to the hill.

In the end, it has turned into a fantastic hill that ends in a luge. The kids have all had a blast sledding down it. I think that Steve and Todd may have had a bit of fun, too. Heck, even the dog has had some fun sledding down the hill with the kids. So thanks Steve for your hard work that has lended to hours of fun during the winter holiday.

These are a few of the pics from last weekend. As always, for a better view, click the pic.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Happy Birthday, Denae


Thursday, January 15, 2009

Happy Birthday, Lisa

This is Lisa (and Steve). Lisa is my friend. Lisa is fun. Lisa turns 30 tomorrow.
Happy Birthday, Lisa.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

What have you done?

Stole this from Denae's blog.

Bolded ones are things I've done.

1. Started your own blog

2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than you can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyland/world
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sang a solo
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch
15. Adopted a child (step-parent?)
16. Had food poisoning
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight

22. Hitch-hiked
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon (still on the goals list)
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught yourself a new language
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David
41. Sung karaoke
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal in a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie (I'm assuming home movies don't count)
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Gotten flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood, platelets, or plasma
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten Caviar
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the newspaper
85. Read the entire Bible
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone’s life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Lost a loved one
94. Had a baby
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a lawsuit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee

Friday, January 9, 2009


I am SOOOO not a scrapbooker, so my version (which I am starting this year) is to make a book using iphoto on mac. There is a place to drag photos into a template, add writing and you can get it printed and mailed for like $35 total. Not a bad deal and a hecka hecka lot cheaper than actually scrapbooking...well, if you scrapbook the way my sister does. It is also a great way to create multiple books for all the children using all the pics from the past year.

For anyone who came to our wedding, we had a book made full of pictures as the guest book. People loved it because they could see all the different pics we had taken and could just sign in the book. We didn't have time to get that one made through mac and mailed out so we had that one made at Inkleys and they made it in an hour. How cool is that?

Friday, January 2, 2009

And Of Course...

Some Temple Square pics. It wouldn't be Christmas or the Christmas Season without them. We didn't take our tripod...this season has helped us realize the extras we need to purchase for the camera (or at least keep with us), but we had some pics turn out pretty ok. The one big change in the scenery this year was that there was a small nativity "floating" in the middle of the Reflecting Pool. It was pretty cool. I will try not to put too many pics up here.

This is a lighted fountain that is in front of the Temple, just by the statues portraying the receiving of the Priesthood.

One of the few pics I put up that actually had some lights in it. I know, I know...aren't the lights what the whole trip was about?

I thought that these lights hanging down the side of the old Conference Hall looked pretty cool.

This is the start of our visit. As you can tell, Jessica isn't too happy that she isn't allowed to play with the cell phone her mom got her while we are visiting Temple Square.

I just thought this was a great candid, so of course I couldn't resist putting it in.

Family Christmas Party

We also had our annual Smith Family Christmas party, hosted by yours truly. We do it at my parents' house every year and the main event of the party is sledding at Rock Canyon Park. It is the perfect place to sled with small children because it is a large basin with no obstructions. Here are some more pics of the party.

*Also, I would like to note that there are no collages of pics because I am using Todd's computer where we downloaded all the pics and he lost his photoshop when his last computer got stolen.

This is the last run of the night. Watch out for the great race, and no, they didn't collide at the bottom.

Yes, the dog came sledding with us, and yes, she went down the hill. No, she didn't stay in the sled the whole time. Instead, she would jump out and race the kids (or Todd) down the hill and lick their faces at the bottom.

We found it quite amusing that Austin and one of the cousins had the exact same coat. They had a blast sledding together.

I'm not sure if you can see the dog, but she is laying in a black coat that had been discarded. This was after running up and down the hill many times and she sure was tired. However, she is convinced that she is human and needs a coat to lay on when she is in the snow.

Jessica...lounging in the snow and doing the usual posing for the camera...what else?

Austin's Redskins Room

I have to admit that Austin's room was the easiest room to do. All I had to do was create a Redskins theme and both he and Todd would be happy. A little Redskins Red wainscot and a bold gold stripe above it. We actually ordered the bedding on this, which made me very happy as it made my workload a little less. We got it from the Redskins' website, which ended up being the most cost efficient that we could find. I was very impressed by that. Now we have a place to put all of the football paraphanalia and Austin is very excited to add to it. He is already planning his second nicknack shelf. Wait till he sees the magnet board that I am going to paint black and have Todd paint a game plan on. He will love it.

Unfortunately none of the pics that I have do the room justice. We have realized that we need a wider angle lens as we couldn't get a full pic of any of the rooms. However, you can see how much Austin liked his room by the very fact that he is smiling. I was very glad because I worry that he gets the raw end of the deal by being the only boy and by being quiet in his opinions.

Kailey's Bedroom

In a continuation of my last post, here are a few pics of Kailey's bedroom. I will admit that I am impressed that it turned out as well as it did. I was a bit worried when I painted a big sillouhette of a yellow flower on the back wall and it looked like poo. Well, not literally, but it was a letdown when it didn't match the vision in my head. Kailey's room was a hard one for me to design because she loves yellow and flowers, but I still wanted something a bit modern in there, even though that combination usually lends more towards a country feel.

At the last minute, we ended up coming up with a completely different design and spending the last 2 days straight redoing what we thought would have looked good. A bit of a stressor, but Kailey loved it and it matches her personality perfectly. We were extremely conscious about matching the rooms to the different personalities of the girls because they are so different in so many ways from clothing and style to temperaments.

Here's the final result:


Get ready for blog-a-palooza. I have spent a lot of time working on some projects and so admittedly my blogging has been somewhat lacking in the past month. Well get ready to catch up. I have got plenty of pics to show. This first blog is pics of the bedrooms that I have been working on. For Christmas we finally got around to decorating the kids' bedrooms, and boy was that a project. Seriously. I spent about a month working on the bedrooms. LOL...actually, I spent a good week and a half working on Jessica's bedding. We took a basic white eyelet bedding set with the bed skirt and all the pillows and dressed them up with two shades of pink costume satin. We sewed several layers of ruffles to create a "flamenco dancer" skirt effect. We painted the wall with a two-toned green wainscoat and did the top half in a light pink. Add a mini canopy and some sequined pink curtains and you have Jessica's personality. We still have a few things to put up on the walls, but you are definitely able to see the effect. It is bright, loud and pink...but not so pink that she looks too princess-ee...or whatever it was that she was worried about. Here are a few pics, unfortunately, Todd didn't think about the labor intensive ruffles that I feel really make the room, so I will have to post a pic of those later.