Last night at dinner Mike asked the boys if they were stuck on a desert island and only had 3 wishes what would they be?

Here were Link’s

1. I would wish that the island was tropical.

2. I would wish for a house.

3. I would wish for a force field around my house.

I found it so funny that Link’s first priority was that he was on a tropical island.  It will be awesome to ask them this same question in a few years and see how their answers change.  Jack’s 3 wishes were..

1. I wish that the island was civilized.

2. I wish that there are skyscrapers on the island.

3. I wish that I owned all the ice-cream shops.

Both of their islands sound pretty good to me!


Tonight I wasn’t feeling too great, but the boys wanted nachos for dinner, so I told them I would sit on the couch and tell them all how to make them step by step.  They did a great job, each of them helping out, but the main conversation at dinner was that they were not as good as mine were.  I thought they were awesome and I kept telling them that.  After dinner while I was cleaning up it came up again and here is a bit of the conversation…

me: “I thought they were great!  What was so different about the way you made them?”

Mike: “They just weren’t the same.”

Link: “I know why, we didn’t make ours with love, we just did what you told us.”


I guess I’m happy they can all feel the love I put into making nachos!

He just makes me happy.

It’s that time of year again, word time!!  Having a word for the year has been such an amazing thing over the past few years and this last year did not disappoint!  The word for 2011 was GRATITUDE.  Once again I was surprised at how it played out over the year.  I thought that having this as a focus would make me grateful for anything and everything around me, instead, while I am grateful for many things, focusing on this made me intensely grateful for a few wonderful things in my life.  I feel like I discovered a level of gratitude that I didn’t know existed.  This past year has been a pretty hard one for both Mike and I, but throughout the entire year I was able to remind myself that I was learning and growing and going through this for a reason, which in turn made me grateful.  Being grateful for the hard things has brought a peace to my heart, I feel very lucky and blessed.  Gratitude was exactly the word I needed this year!  I realize I didn’t blog as much this year but in a way it was a really good thing because I slowed down and tried to just enjoy what was happening around me.  Things I remember most about this year are the smell of the ocean, the boys bouncing up and down as we walked down Main Street at Disneyland, the way the clouds looked as we drove to Denver, art blocks, dreams about my grama, the feel of jellyfish and sharks, Beatles Love, going to DC all by my self, being a room mom, science projects that include lots and lots of water polymers,  the way it smells and feels when Mike hugs me (my very favorite), watching my baby get baptized, playing with the scouts, seeing friends I haven’t seen in 15 years and it still being awesome to hang out,  and realizing Jack’s toes are as big as mine.  I am thankful for all we went through this year, good and bad.

David Bowie was my music man of the year, when I started adding a band I just thought that it would help me surround myself with good music that I loved and made me happy and that was pretty much it.  But I learned something from David Bowie this year, imagine that!  One day I was reading about all the things he has done in his life and I was shocked to discover that he has failed at more things than he has succeeded at.  It’s hard it imagine some one like David Bowie failing at anything, but he has, and I found that  inspiring!  Not that I inspire to fail, but I hope that I can live a life where I do what I love and I never give up, and more importantly, I hope that I can teach that to my boys.  The other thing I discovered about David Bowie is that the music of his that I like, I really, REALLY like, and the music of his I don’t like, I seriously don’t like, there is no middle ground for me and David.  And that’s ok, I still think he’s rad.

So, on to 2012.  Since picking my word for 2012 it has popped up again and again and I just love it when that happens!!  For the first time though, I picked a phrase, not just one word…


This is going to be great for this year and something I have discovered that I need to learn.  I have a tenancy to let things eat at me, and after all that we have had to deal with this last year, I just can’t deal with things eating at me and, even though it’s hard, I have to remember that I can’t please everyone.  For the most part the things that eat at me are things that I can’t do anything about and stressing out about them is just not healthy and not worth my time.  This year is going to be about moving forward, surrounding myself with people that I love and I know love and respect me back, and things that I can’t do anything about I will let be.  It makes me feel free and happy just to think about it.

Music for the year is another David or Dave rather.  Dave Matthews.  I have loved him for a lot of years and the reason I am picking him is because he is the soundtrack to the story of me and Mike.  From the very beginning Dave was there, when Betsy and I won tickets to go see Dave in Denver I bought Mike a shirt with the last of my money and then I used the cell phone of the drunk guy next to us to call Mike so he could hear the opening song of the show.  Mike proposed to me at Stewart Falls up by Sundance and on our way down the canyon “two step” was playing, every time I hear that song I think of Mike, his red truck, fall time, and the promise I made to love him forever.  It makes me happy.  Memories like that go on and on and I am so happy to have all of them with Mike.   In our 12 years of marriage we have seen Dave live 7 times and we can’t wait to see him again, I hope we can find a way this year!!

I started a photo project last year with the theme of yellow.  I only took a few photos of yellow things so when I first started thinking about it I thought I had totally dropped the ball on that project.  But then I was taking a look at my professional work for the year and I noticed something…  for the most part my work is all filled with the sun and beautiful flare, when shooting into the sun what color do you get?  That’s right, yellow.  So even though that project didn’t go as planned I am considering it a success!  Yay me!!  My project for this year is going to be a fun one, instant film!  Mike bought me a huge pack of film for my birthday and I am going to attempt to stretch it out over the year.  The photos at the end of this post are from Thanksgiving.  We had our last hurrah at Disneyland and then Mike surprised me by driving us up to Zuma Beach, the beach of my childhood, I loved it!  I had my little camera and 10 photos for each place, these are few of my favorites.

Happy 2012!

Lincoln: “Once I saw Santa shopping at Wal-mart for toys because his elves were tired.”

me: “really?”

Lincoln: “no, that would just be weird.”

This year Jackson is in 5th grade.  He is doing well and loves his class and teacher.  He is doing a lot more writing this year and Mike & I have been getting a kick out of some of his school work that he brings home.  Recently he had to write a few paragraphs about his favorite holiday food.  I am just going to type it all out (typos and all) because it just made us laugh, we are happy we could pass along our love of pumpkin roll to both our boys.

My Favorite Holiday Food

By Jackson Ouzts

My favorite holiday food is my moms homemade Pumpkin Roll.  At the end of Thanksgiving diner, my mom lets us eat that delicious, most scrumptious, very delightful, even rich, Pumpkin Roll!  Just thinking about it makes me craved.

My mom makes it with a lot of pumpkin bread and a special cream that is the best part of the Pumpkin Roll.  She rolls it up and puts the ingredients together, then, she puts it in the fridge for two hours or so.  Then at diner time, we eat like pigs

If you don’t have any clue what I’m talking about, you’re missing out.  I wish you happy Holidays and Merry Christmas.

If you would like your own pumpkin roll here is the link to the delicious, most scrumptious, very delightful, even rich recipe. 🙂

Every year the day after Halloween we hit the halloween store bright and early to stock up on props for the photo booth for the year.  I always poke around and see what I can find for the boys for the following year.  This year there were no ninjas left over but I found something better!  Next year Jack and Link are going to be Captain Kirk and Spock!  They seemed excited about it when I showed them what I found, especially Link who will be Spock.  He was playing around all dressed up and I was trying to get him to do his homework, but first we had this conversation….

Me: “so, this year you have to practice the hand thingy.” (everyone, except for me, can do the hand thingy)

Link: puts his hand up and says “live long and prosner”

Me: “it’s ‘prosper’, Link, ‘prosper‘”

Link: hand up again “live wrong and prosper”

Me: “Link!  ‘live long and prosper‘!!”

Link: “Live long and prosper”

Me: “awesome, now come read your book.”

Link: “Hang on mom, Spark needs a candy bar!”

That was the point where I hung my head in the shame of failure.


This year all four of us were hippies, it was rad!  Although, we did have to teach both the boys the right way to do a peace sign! sheesh!!

Remember that time I put up a bunch of free art?  I know, it was a long time ago, but not to worry I have more!!  Actually, I have started a whole new blog just for my art.  It won’t all be free but some of it is!  Head on over to HAPPYWELL STUDIO  and grab these new art pieces!

Yesterday Jack went home from school with a friend in his class, he told me as they walked they found a board with nails sticking out of it.  I asked him what they did with it and this is what he said…

“We picked it up and found the closest garbage can and put it in there.  We just thought we should do something about it before some teenager came up and threw it in the street.”

heheheh, I can’t wait to meet teenage Jack! 🙂

The ocean pulls, pulls, pulls me in and then it spits me out salty, sandy and happy.  The beach is therapy for me, I don’t know what it is but I always feel better when I’m there.   We will be going back soon and I just can’t wait!  These photos are from Newport Beach at the beginning of September, we had so much fun just sitting on the beach all day long.