Shaylee 4th Birthday

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Little miss Shaylee Ash Jackson celebrated her 4th birthday last week, and boy has she grown! I haven't known her for her whole life, but i have known her for the last year and a half and she has grown dramatically sine then! She is getting so big and learning so much! We love her so much and were so glad we were able to celebrate her birthday this past weekend. We had a pink and white princess party for her and a bunch of her cousins were able to come play. We played musical pillows (like musical chairs, only with pillows), with play dough, pin the tiara on the princess (think donkey), and she was able to receive some very generous gifts from her loved ones. We had a bit of a fiasco with the cake, but it was a really really great day. Shaylee had a lot of fun and wanted to tell everyone thank you so much for coming!
Story about the cake: so Josh and I have this little dunky 3/4 stove in our apartment and the oven works like crap. Pizza crust is always doughy and such. Well, we tried baking the cakes the night before and they were golden brown on top and liquid on bottom. DANG! So we bought new cake mix and took it to Josh's parent's house to make before the party started. They turned out nice and fluffly.... TOO fluffy. They crumbled when you touched them... and I forgot to grease the pans so getting them out of the pans was terrible. We finally salvaged what we could and got the two cakes on top of each other. I wish I would have taken a picture before I frosted it. There were cracks and crumble places all over. We got the pink frosting on, but we couldn't hide the cracks. Josh had the great idea to make them a river with blue frosting. YES! so we made a river and a waterfall (over the crumbling side) and a pathway for the carriage and put the Cinderella toys we had bought on top. and Vioala!!!! you get the cake you see in the pics above. Really was a hilarious thing to go through. thanks Tiff for all of your unfailing support, even when Josh wanted to run and get a store bought cake. :)

Valentine's Day Weekend

Ya ya, I know I'm a little behind in posting. But here you go! Valentine's Day weekend was a ton of fun for us. The 12th was our 9 month anniversary, so we celebrated all weekend! Josh planned Saturday and we went to eat at Olive Garden and then went to temple square to see the Joseph Smith movie. It was really fun. We got stuff to make shakes and went home and watched a movie and had yummy Oreo shakes. Sunday I got to plan and I amde sure all of our food was "red". We had crepes with strawberries and raspberry jam. And chicken quesadillas that had red peppers and such in them. I also had planned a dinner but we were so full ! On Monday, since it was President's Day and we didn't have to work, we went DI hopping and ended up with a Cranium game, a baby carrier (for the future - no I'm not pregnant), a hand weight (main reason we were going), and some shoes for Shaylee. It was a fun relaxing day. For dinner we made my planned meal of tortellini and salad. YUM! Overall we had a really great weekend! Here are some pics!


Thursday, February 11, 2010

Josh and I are on the lookout for fairly inexpensive (or free!!) bunk beds. Also, we are beginning to decorate the room for Kim and Shay and are needing bedding for thier new beds. If anyone is getting rid of these items or knows where we can find these items, please let us know! Thank you!

Suberbowl Sunday

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

This past weekend we had a really great time! On Saturday we loaded up and took off to see some apartments. Our lease is up the end of April and we are needing a place to move to. Preferrably with room enough for Kim and Shay to have thier own room and so we don't feel so cramped. We saw some good ones, and some really good ones out of our price range, and then some that work perfect - except that they don't allow pets. UGH. Apartment hunting is kinda frustrating. But Josh saw one by himself earlier in the week he wants to take me back to. They aren't open on Saturdays, so I may need to take a long lunch or see if they can stay late a day. We also stopped at my parents house and dropped an organizer off to my sister for her beads. She is into making some awesome jewelry with her work and she made Kim and Shay a necklace for Valentine's Day. She also made me a necklace with a black stone in it, I love it! Totally wearing it now! Later on, we met up with Josh's family and his sister Jamie was in town with her three kids. We sent all the kids off playing and had fun catching up with family. Jamie bought the McDonalds special of 50 chicken nuggets for $10. Yep - FIFTY! Between about 9 of us we ate them all. HAHA. A few of Josh's aunts came over, and by direction from Heidi we made a really fun Valentine's Day craft. We kicked the men out and made them go watch a movie, eat pizza, and watch the Jazz game (poor babies!) Then we gt started on our craft. It is a styrofoam heart and you take squares of fabric (we used a couple different patterns of red and pink) and push them into the styrofoam with a pencil and glue. It turned out really really fun. Some ladies did larger squares so thier hearts were bushier, some did smaller squares and it gave the effect of roses. I started mine with the larger squares, then finished with the smaller ones. It looks super cute. I love it! That night we crashed at Jordan and Heidi's house with the girls. We were all exhausted. On Sunday we got up and got ready and went to Josh's parent's ward. It was fast and testimony meeting and Josh's dad got up (which they say is rare for him) and bore testimony of his love for the gospel. I'll eave out the spiritual stuff, as it is too sacred to write here, but I thought it was great how he said that usually he is not a fan of the superbowl and hasn't ever really supported watching it, but that five of his six grandchildren were in the congregation right now, and if the superbowl is the reason for them all coming together and him getting to spend time with them, then he is thankful for the superbowl this time. He also made me cry because he talked about Josh and I getting ready to go get sealed in the temple and how much he loves me. Yep, cried. Darn father in law - making innocent women cry. HAHA. The rest of Sunday was great. We all gathered at Heidi and Jordan's house to eat food and watch the game. the food was really yummy and it was really fun to have everyone together. We left for about 40 minutes to run Kim and Shay to meet thier mom, and as always it is sad to see them go and miss them for another two weeks. We went back up to Heidi's and spent the rest of the evening with the family. We had a great time and loved being there with everyone. I'm thankful for the superbowl as well, and hope it always has the power to bring families together.

**I'll post some pics later today, as I'm missing some and I want to be sure you see our fun!**

Las Vegas Baby!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

At the end of January Josh and I got the opportunity to go to Las Vegas for virtually nothing. YAY! We had attended one of those timeshare dealios and jumped through all the hoops in order to go on this trip. The original accommodations were plane tickets late on Sunday, two nights stay at the Wild Wild West Casino, and then early plane tickets home Tuesday morning. Luckily, we got cut a deal. In exchange for our plane tickets, we drove to Las Vegas and got to stay in a really nice hotel that is only about 4 years old, The South Point. No big deal, we love road trips! So Sunday morning we packed the car and took off for Vegas. The road trip down was fun and relaxing. Main points of interest were probably listening to Twilight book on tape, seeing the sunrise over the eastern mountins south of Nephi, seeing the contrast of the snowy peaks against the red rocks of southern Utah, discovering that veggie chips are Mmmm Mmmm Good!, Josh experiencing Virgin River gorge for the first time, and coming up over the hill and seeing Las Vegas beaming in front of us! We got in at about 11:00am Las Vegas time and spent the next few hours hanging out on the south end of the strip. At MGM Grand we saw the Lion exhibit and they even have a baby cub! Josh loved Excalibur and we found this awesome Jackson family Coat of Arms. Maybe next time we will stay there, cause he loved that hotel! We visited Mandalay Bay for the first time, and also New York, New York. I took Josh to the M&M World where we got $6.00 worth of M&Ms (hehe) and then the Coca-Cola Store where we got these yummy floats. They also have a shooters thing you can get with 16 diferent flavors of soda to try. Maybe we will try that next time. It was pretty cool. We checked into our hotel and grabbed some dinner at Panda Express. Sadly, I will admit I fell asleep... four a few hours... and Josh was wide awake just bored out of his mind. He told me he went and played a game of bowling and walked around the casino a bit. I feel so bad, but I was exhausted!!! Once I woke up, we checked out the casino and I showed him how the slot machines worked. We spent abuot $15.00 is all. Good thing gambling isn't our thing, we sure saved a lot of money other people may have spent. Josh was curious about the poker tabels more than anything, but as a newbie he was intimidated to jump right in with the pros. So we just watched. It was fun though. At midnight, our hotel had a bowling alley, and games were $1.00 each after midnight. We payed $4.00 and played a couple games. By then, Josh was super tired (having not taken a four hour nap) and so we got cuddled into bed. Best pillows EVER. The next day we did a LOT... so I'm just going to throw out the highlights.... First, we went to NY, NY and spent some time at the Coney Island area. We got some little silly prizes for Kim and Shay there. We had a boring timeshare meeting, but they played CC bingo and we totally won a gift card to Olive Garden. HAHA. We ate lunch at the buffett at our hotel YUM and then started working on the rest of the strip. YAY. Caesars Palace, Bellagio, Mirage, Treasure Island, Palazzio, Venitian, Paris, Flamingo, etc etc etc... we hit them ALL and saw all of the shows - Ballagio water show, Mirage Volcano, Sirens of TI... we even stopped at the Palazzio and saw this million dollar car show - Josh's favorite! But I did find my dream car there, see below! We found our way back to the Forum Shops at Caesars and to Planet Hollywood, where we had a gift card from the timeshare people. My southwest salad was GOOD! and josh had a guac burger. YUM. Loved eating there. YUMMY. After that we walked back to Caesars where we had left the car and drove up to the Stratosphere. This was really awesome! Did anyone else know there is a ride tat hangs right off the side and the whole point of the ride is to make you feel like you are falling off? Yep, gave me anxiety. I could never do it. But it was neat seeing the whole valley like that. We tried to go find Fremont Street, but by then I had blisters and we were tired. We peeked down the alley's from our car, but didn't park. Last sto was Circus Circus, just to see the Adventureland. Darn it, it was all closed down. All well, next time. Day two was definately a ton of fun! On Tuesday, our last day. We spent the morning being lazy. We walked around our hotel a bit more and checked out early. Before leaving we ate brunch/lunch at the buffett with more free coupons and then headed back to the main part of the strip. There were only a few things on our list today, but they took a long time. Frst, was the Secret Gardens and Dolphin Habitat at the Mirage. This was my absolute favorite part of the trip. I loved it. The dolphins were - no joke - 5 feet from me. There was a low wall we could sit or kneel on, a short 4 ft platform that the trainers walked on, and then pool! sigh... it was so great. There was a 1 year old dolphin named Bella and she was so cute!They also had lions, white tigers, leopards, llamas, and some garden areas. There were baby snow white tigers too that were out playing. We got some small trinkets from the gift shop before heading out. We stopped at a huge gift shop on the strip and found a couple more things. Some bracelets for me and a picture frame, then something for Tracy that was funny. the lat stop before heading back home - I had to go visit one of our centers from my work - out in Henderson. The ladies that work there are so fun, and I told Sally I would come. It was good to meet her and see the center. After replacing Josh's blinker light and finding the freeway again, we got the joy of sitting in rush hour Las Vegas traffic... YAY. haha. that took about an hour, then we were on our way. The drive home was not as fun because it was dark and I couldn't see the scenery, but we still had fun. We stopped for chili fries and josh got a burger at a Carl's Jr. in Cedar City... shortly after that I was asleep. Josh got us safely home and we grabbed the necessities from the car, greeted our poor Keoke kitty we got left by himself, and fell into bed. It was a really great trip though, and we had a ton of fun. Thank you timeshare people!