Wednesday, April 29, 2009


For as long as I can remember I have loved making cookies. I have always considered myself a pretty good cookie maker. Even back when I was 10 and made a monumental mistake with basic chocolate chip cookies, I still thought I had what it took. Who knew you could mix up vanilla and maple flavoring and still have "edible" cookies. At least the construction worker bachelors thought so. Or maybe they were careful with the 10 year old ego.
Each year as our "fall fair" came around I spent some time in the kitchen coming up with some spectacular cookies to bake for the baking competition. Every year I got a second or third place ribbon. But that did not deter me! I was GOOD at making cookies, no ribbon was going to change that!
It all came crashing down today as I was quickly throwing together a batch of gingersnaps while chatting with my sister on the phone. After putting all the spices in I realized that I had put in dried mustard instead of ginger! That is not an okay substitution! And these cookies were to be taken to neighbors who are going through some tough times right now! If they weren't sick before, they certainly would be now! I had to throw out the batch and start over, this time without talking on the phone. And I always thought I was a multi tasker too!
To add to my crushing ego day, as I was mixing cornbread for dinner I had a great conversation with Tate. It went something like this -
Tate: "Mom that looks like throw up!"
Mom: "Tate, that is not very nice to say, it is cornbread and it is good."
Tate: "Sorry Mom, I meant that it looks like banana throw up."
Mom: "Oh, that is so much better. Thank you!"
I may have to find some new talents - no more baking or multi tasking.

Friday, April 24, 2009

It's coming...

The temple is soon opening ... only a few more months and it is looking sooooo good. We have watched this from day one being built just a few blocks away from us. The boys are so excited to be able to go in and Ryan and I are going to be able to help with ushering and parking and all sorts of fun things. Once in a lifetime. So we drove by today and snapped a few pictures.

Kindergarten Bound

Watch out kindergarten! Tate is on his way, he went to kindergarten orientation tonight and enjoyed himself immensely. He figures he starts regular school on Monday and now knows everything he needs to know to start AND finish his first year of school. He quickly found his good friends from the neighborhood and played with them. He was careful to pick out his own nice clothing for the event, have his hair combed and gelled. He is going to be a hoot this fall when he really does get to go.
The teachers spoke to the parents while the kids drew pictures, frosted cookies, etc. One teacher talked about separation anxiety and what we can do to help our kids through it. Hmmm...I think I won't need help with that one. Tate is pushing me away in public and ready to venture out on his own. Can't decide if that means I am a good mom or a bad mom, depends on the day!
I love you Tate and I am excited for you to start school and I think I will even miss you when you are gone.

Kids say the #$#% things!

Well, I would love to say that my children are so well mannered and never say anything rude or inappropriate ... but then you wouldn't believe that they are really my children! The apple doesn't fall far from the tree ... sigh... sorry Grandmas!
This morning I asked Tate to scratch my back, which he is always so nice to do. In his generosity he quickly offered to even scratch my chubby part, aka love handles. How nice of him, I had temporarily forgotten that I had those, thank heavens he reminded me. He is also so great to remind me that he loves me, but "loves dad more because he is nicer and doesn't ground him from xbox." Good to know, but it's not going to change anything. Now I feel like grounding him more!
Gage lately has been "freaked out" about everything and things everything is "freaking funny". I don't even know where he picked up that freaking word!
Connor on the other hand knows exactly what he is saying now. As I got after him for not having done something I had asked him several times to do, he went back downstairs to clean his room, and shouted out "blah, blah, blah" as I was still harping on him. Well, that didn't go over very well with me. Until the next morning when I found this note:
Then I had guilt and a little pride in him at the same time. What's a mom to do? Keep a great record of all these funny things of course! I love my job, my co-worker and our four subordinates.

Thanks to Sewing 9...

Way back in Grade 9 (or 9th grade for all you Americans) I chose Sewing 9 for an elective course. Oh the beautiful outfits I had planned to make in all those great 1990 styles, if only I had pictures... My dreams were crushed when my mother was the one to choose the patterns and fabric.
I started with a great mid-calf corduroy skirt with an extra wide waste band and to top it off, thick straps. Man was it gorgeous! Oh, and it was burgundy corduroy!
The next outfit I attempted was a very fashionable one piece jumper. This fashion statement had balloon sleeves AND legs, with cuffs at the end, in a coordinating color of course. But the crown and glory of this outfit was the sailor collar, with satin ribbon and lace trim - GORGEOUS!
Unfortunately, neither outfit made it out of the closet after being graded. For some reason I was way too cool to wear them, I think it was the ankle cuffs.
Anyway... at the end of the school year I was surprised to be named "Sewing 9 Student of the Year" in the awards assembly. I was sitting near my sister Jana (a senior at the time) when my name was called and I was instantly surrounded by the jeers of her and her upper class friends. Apparently it is not the most desirable award to win... It was a great day, and the last day of my sewing years.
But you will all be glad to know that I have rekindled my love/hate relationship with sewing. Fabric stores are so much fun to peruse and imagine what I can create ... only I have only done a limited amount of creating.
This is what I came up with today ... why are little girls more fun to sew things for? We have family pictures coming up and I think I will base all the outfits around this little skirt.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Spring has sprung...

I think spring is finally here! We enjoyed the most beautiful weather this weekend and we spent most of it outside, as did our neighborhood. Parks were filled with families enjoying picnics and playing on the fresh green grass. The lake paths were full of bikes, scooters and walkers. It was so nice. So we donned our helmets and jumped on our bikes to take a good bike ride around the lake, it was beautiful. Of course, being the first warm day of the year I forgot all about sunscreen - as evidenced below!


This has been a long time coming. I have a new nephew, he was born way back in February and I am a negligent auntie! But finally I snapped a few shots of the little fella and am getting around to posting them.

He is such a little cutie, and I am so jealous of his beautiful locks of dark hair, having a beautiful bald girl makes me LOVE hair! Welcome to life little Rykken, we are so happy to have you!


Wow, April has been a slow blogging month for me, but that is only because it has been crazy in every other way that I have not had time to blog! I have been having a great time with friends and family visiting and getting photo shoots in whenever I can! So much fun.
We did have a great Easter. Grandpa and Grandma Gulbranson arrived on Easter Sunday. The boys were thrilled to have new people around to show off to and display all their newest tricks they have learned. My parents hadn't been here more than five minutes before Tate had them seated on the couch listening to him read. It was painful but they were good sports for the tortuous beginning reading sounding out of words...
We left Grandma and Grandpa to take a much needed nap while we went over to Grandma and Grandpa McCoy's for an Easter Egg Hunt! Grandma must have spent much of her day stuffing Easter eggs for all those little boys - and MaKenzie! The kids had so much fun finding eggs and eating the contents as quickly as possible.
Here are a few pictures of the fun we had.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


Oh what a grand time! My parents came to visit this weekend and we had so much fun together, Gage particularly enjoyed his day in the sun with just him and grandma and grandpa. But the highlight of the trip for me was going to see Wicked!
We went last night, my dad gave us tickets and we went together and had a great time. I LOVED all the costumes, songs, cast, props, etc. It was so much to take in all at once that I am going to have to see it again! Seriously, did I mention the costumes? They were FABULOUS! All so unique and fun, full of character and detail, wish I could have seen them up close and tried a few on :)
LOVED, LOVED, LOVED IT! Thanks Mom and Dad!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

More spring Photos

I had a photo shoot up at Temple Square yesterday and it was so absolutely beautiful I just had to take the kids up that evening to do one with them. I LOVE SPRING!

I Love to See the Temple

I snapped this shot yesterday as well, then played in photo shop - I could get used to this new gig!

Friday, April 10, 2009

McCall - Update photos

McCall enjoyed her first outing in the stroller with the family, perhaps that pale skin needs some more sunlight. Or not, she will just look like her Canadian mother and brothers, fair and delightsome!

Four month update, 16.8 lbs, 24 inches long. That puts her in the 96th percentile, down from the 99th last time, the exercise program is paying off :) We love the "little" girl and she is so stinkin happy all the time, we've decided to keep her.

Spring Walk

YAY for spring! We went on a family walk this evening and enjoyed the sun staying up longer, the flowers just blooming and even some green grass! Of course we took the camera along with us!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Lifelong friend

This is "Pooh Bear"

He has been a member of our family for just over 7 years now and he has been loved immensely. Connor fell in love with this little fella when he was just 3 months old and this bear hasn't left his side since.
My favorite thing about this bear is the lessons he has taught our children, and ourselves, on the power of prayer. Several years ago Connor lost this little treasure during a snow blizzard, he fell out of the car at my sister Jana's house. Russell, good old uncle Russell, dug through many a snow bank looking for him, but to no avail. Connor was devastated for a few hours, then decided he would just pray about it and Heavenly Father would send him back. This went on for three days, praying morning and night, all the while searching. Connor specifically prayed that his dad would find his bear. On the third day Ryan came home from work and went on his nightly search for all of us hiding around the house. As he entered the boys room where we were all hiding he exclaimed, "You found Pooh Bear!" Well, we hadn't found Pooh Bear so we had no idea what he was talking about, we came our from our hiding places and there was Connor's precious little bear sitting in the middle of the room, upright with his little furry arms folded.
To this day we don't know how he got there, well, on second thought, we do ... thank heavens for answered prayers. Something so small has forever blessed my child with a firm testimony of prayer.
Connor still must sleep with his little friend, he tried valiantly to give him up to his little sister a few weeks ago, but when sleep eluded him, he had to be reclaimed!

Fishing Anyone?

This is how I found Gage in the garage yesterday... he was a little upset that he was stuck in one place, but other than that it didn't phase him whatsoever. I don't know what to do with him, if it's not one thing it's another with this little fella. It's been several days since I have blogged, been too busy cleaning up after this guy.

bummer that it ruined a nice shirt! Don't worry, Gage certainly didn't care, "I have lots of shirts mom!"

Friday, April 3, 2009

This made me feel good...

When I woke this morning and saw this ... it made me feel good ... like I could do anything.

And I am so looking forward to conference weekend.