Thursday, January 28, 2010

9 Month Stats

Weight: 16 lbs 7 oz -- 10th percentile

Height: 26 1/2 inches -- 10th percentile

Head Cir: 45 cm -- 75th percentile

The Last of Our Disney Vacation

Day 6: Our last day at Disney was jam packed full of theme parks and rides. We started at Epcot again so everyone could do Soarin' but Morgan was too little so I stayed outside with her. I have done it before in California so I didn't need to waste time after everyone else was through to do it.

We split up and went to Animal Kingdom with Ron, Jo Ann, and Taylor so we could go on the Everest ride that we weren't able to do when we spent the day there. The line wasn't long at all so we were able to do it a couple of times. After the first time, Ron realized that the lanyard that held all of our park hopper passes broke and the passes were gone. After the second time we rode, we went to lost and found and our passes were there, then Ron realized that he left his hat on the ride. We ended up with our passes but without a hat. Poor Ron's head.

Next we headed to the Magic Kingdom to meet up with Robb and Mari, but first we needed the photo op with Morgan in the wooden thing that I have no idea why it is there.

We took Morgan on Pirates of the Caribbean and walked around to get fast passes for Space Mountain and Thunder Mountain Railroad, then Jo Ann, Ron, and Mari's family were ready to go so we gave Morgan and Lily to them and headed off to do grown up things with Robb and Taylor.

We did the car driving ride, which was cool for Taylor but the cars went about 5 mph and you just sit there and inhale fumes so it wasn't so cool for people who already drive real cars. However, it was fun to see her enjoy driving and prepare Robb for the years to come.

We did Thunder Mountain Railroad with Robb and Taylor twice because the line was short and we had fast passes. Then we gave them our fast passes to Space Mountain so they could leave and we went to the Haunted Mansion and got a pretzel while we waited for their much later fast passes to Space Mountain.

It was dark by the time we left and we saw part of the parade while we walked to the park exit.

We had such a fun time on our Disney vacation. It turned out to be a good week for Tom to not be at work (even though they called him a billion times and he probably was on the phone for about 10 hours of the vacation). We have a wonderful and generous family. Thanks Mari and Lenny for letting us come with you!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Jo Ann's Disney Birthday

Day 5: It was Nana's birthday so we decided to stay at the lodge and rest for the day. The girls started off with a 60 minute massage while the guys watched the kids. It was so wonderful. I had to laugh because when we got our robes, mine was uber short and Mari's and Jo Ann's were long (hence the picture on the right).

Later we went to the pool and let the kids play. Morgan had a fun time with her cousins and in the water. They had a nice little kid area that was shallow so Morgan could play in there without me.

For Jo Ann's birthday celebration we went to Downtown Disney to shop and eat dinner. We went to an Irish joint and had $19 fish and chips. It was delicious and they had a band and dancer for entertainment.

On the way back to the bus we took pictures in all the opportune places. Here we are with Pooh and friends and in front of the t-shirt store.

They also had a Lego store so I got my picture in front of the dragon made out of Legos.

Disney Continued

Day 3: Animal Kingdom -- really neat and probably our favorite park. There was a safari ride where we went in Jeeps and drove through "Africa" to see all of the native animals. We saw crocs, rhinos, hippos, giraffes, lions, etc.

We had fast passes to the Everest ride but it broke down right before we could go and we didn't have time the rest of the day, which was a bummer but we make up for it later in the story.

That park closed early so we headed back to Epcot to eat and watch the fireworks show over the lake.

My camera battery died so we only got a few pictures at Animal Kingdom.

Day 4: We went to Hollywood Studios. My favorite ride was there. Tower of Terror is a free fall ride but you don't know when you're going to fall. It's super-duper fun and if you want to know more, google it.

Morgan met the cast of UP and gave all of them kisses. I was really surprised. She just went right at the grandpa dude with an open mouth. We decided it is because he looks like her grandpa Ralph and she misses him.

We watched a sidewalk show with a bunch of different characters from Disney and Pixar movies. I think some of A Bug's Life and Toy Story are behind us.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

The Magical World of Disney

Last week we had a partial family reunion at Disney World in Florida. Tom's sister, Mari, has a Disney timeshare and they reserved the biggest condo (you know, the one that is $10,000 a week) at the Kadoni Village in the Animal Kingdom Resort. Our balcony overlooked the African Safari with zebras, giraffes, ostriches, and other African animals. It was amazing.

Day 1: Everyone went to the Magic Kingdom except for Tom, Morgan and myself. We stayed at the condo and watched The Brett Favre Show (aka the Minnesota Vikings football game). When that was over we went to the pool and let Morgan play. She is now old enough to enjoy the water and I think she had fun. I even took her in the hot tub and she loved that. Look at the smile on her face.

On our way back, there was African drum time going on in one of the rooms by the lobby. We took Morgan in to see what kind of rhythm she has. She didn't quite get it.

Day 2: We went to Epcot where there is a world display. We got to experience different cultures from around the world and watched a couple of videos on Canada and France. The first one we went to was Canada because Morgan's papa Ron is from there so he wanted to make sure they got it right. The picture on the left was taken of us in Canada.

Morgan got to go on the Finding Nemo ride and to the Finding Nemo musical. She was enamoured by the lights of the moving fishies on the ride and really payed attention to the musical with all the pretty colors. The picture on the right is on the Nemo ride. The one on the left is in this little garden where kids could play. I think she looks a lot like the squid with her little piggy tails.

The other three pictures from day 2 are of us in Germany with the kids (minus Nana and Papa), Morgan pulling Robb's hair, and Morgan kicking back in her stroller. She kept putting her feet up while she laid there.

Going Sugarfree

Tomorrow is the beginning of a new adventure for Tom and me. We are quitting sugar. I decided to do it a while ago because a bunch of people that I know are doing it and it just sounded like the right thing for me to do. Tom decided to join in on the fun when he saw his brother and sister last week. They are both not eating sugar and have dropped 20+ pounds. Seriously. I saw his sister after 6 months and got a little jealous (in a good way). She looks fantastic! So anyway, we are going for it and today we (and I mean I) baked all the cookie dough that was in our freezer (from all the school fundraisers) and delivered plates of cookies to people in our ward.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Say No To Bankruptcy

Have you ever heard of Dave Ramsey? He is a money management dude that has a radio show and has written a few books. He teaches how to get out of debt and save money. Tom and I used to listen to him religiously and we even went to a live event a couple of years ago.

Because we listened to him we changed our way of thinking. When we started, we owned 5 houses and of course they were all mortgaged to the max. We were pretty much in debt way over our heads and had very little in the bank but we thought that was fine because the company we worked for was teaching us to do that. It was so far from fine that I want to puke! It is the fastest way to bankruptcy imaginable. Anyway, because we listened to Dave, we sold 4 of the houses, paid off our cars, and got out of debt (with the exception of our student loans and the last mortgage).

We then started following a budget and saving like crazy. We have focused on saving just in case something happens.

I wanted to do this blog post because I have a feeling that there are at least a couple of people who may read this and need a new plan. His website is My favorite book of his is called "The Total Money Makeover."

The Church teaches us to get out of debt and have our lives in order. Dave Ramsey gives a step-by-step plan to do exactly that. So, all that said, go get out of debt and save money!

Morgan Update

Morgan is 9 months old next week and we are doing something special all week long. Pictures will be posted soon after. Here are a few of her that were recently taken.

This is her first real encounter with a dog. She would hold still and flutter her eyelids while he sniffed her, then she would let out a little squeal that sounds more like a cough. I think she liked Bandit, the dog.
She loves standing up. Here she is using the recliner to steady herself...

...but here she is standing by herself. She'll stand for a few seconds before she sits down.
A couple of days ago she started crawling. I was hoping for her to wait a while but I realize it is more fun for both of us to have a little action around here.

We finally had a decent day with no inversion, fog, rain or snow so I bundled her up and took her for an hour and 45 minute jog yesterday. She loves being outside. She always has.

A few other things about Morgan are:

She is such a mommy's girl but she is getting better with her babysitter. They only watched "Baby Signing Time" twice the other night, which sure beats five hours straight like last month.

She still does not sleep through the night. She goes to bed around 8:30 and is up again around 11:30 for some mommy time, then up again sometime around 2:30. That's when I usually bring her to my bed and Tom goes to the guestroom. We all probably sleep better that way.

She does well in her car seat, as opposed to when she was younger and would scream anytime we would go anywhere. Now she just waits until we get to where we're going before she wants to get out.

Last, but certainly not least, she gives kisses when asked (or begged) by her mommy and daddy.

That's my little girl -- the big 9-month-old.

New Blog

Today I paid my entry fee to participate in the Ironman 70.3 Boise. I also started a new blog to talk about how my training is going ("I. Am. Ironman."). Feel free to check it out and offer any helpful training and nutrition advice in the "comments" section.

Sunday, January 10, 2010


Our December gas bill... $363.73.

Number of days we were gone... 11.

Temperature to which the heat was set... 67.

Having a warm, empty house for 1/3 of the month... priceless.

(Next time we leave we will not forget to turn the heat down to 50)

Saturday, January 9, 2010


Congratulations to my gambling husband who won the Nielson family college football bowl pool!

Everyone that wanted to put $2 in for each entry and went down the list guessing who would win each bowl. He got all but 6 right and won a grand total of $78! Great job, Tom.

I tied with Wendall for 2nd, missing 9 and Kay took 3rd, missing 11.

Monday, January 4, 2010


This year I have decided to have trackable goals for my resolutions (instead of just trying to be better at something). We had such a blessed 2009 that it made me think of ways to help other people in 2010. To start that charity resolution we are going to purchase a whole bunch of winter coats when they go on clearance in the spring so we can donate them next winter. It would be super if anyone reading this did it too. Hey, if every reader bought one coat to donate, that would be like 3 coats! Think about it... three warm, happy kids next Christmas. No really, we could all help a bunch of people at a minimal cost. Its all in the planning. I bought Morgan a heavy winter coat on clearance last year for $10. So anyway, WINTER COATS EVERYONE!!!

My fitness resolution is to do the Ironman 70.3 but I already blogged about that. I don't have to make any weight loss or body fat goals because that should all come with the training of this monster.

For my monetary resolution I want to start a business. I've talked with my partner already and we are going to make bow making videos. Who knows if we'll make money, but I need to follow through with it. So let it be written... so let it be done.

My spiritual resolution... hmm... be on time for church is a good one. I should probably read the Book of Mormon too since I don't think I've finished it since my mission (but boy do I have 1st Nephi down).

Tom and I have been going on dates once a week and I think for my relationship resolution I will resolve to continue with that.

My travel resolution (I could think of a resolution for any category) would be to either get another stamp on my passport or to do an Alaskan cruise.

Well, I think that about covers it. Don't forget your clearance coat to donate next year.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Happy New Year!

We were at Tom's mom's house for the new year. On New Year's Eve we had fondue cheese, meat and chocolate (oh my gosh it was good). I read a book and Tom got a lot of Super Mario playing in on the Wii.

Ron's son, Trevor, and family came over for dinner and to ring in the new year.
Morgan fell asleep around 9 so she dreamed in the new year...
...until we started on the gazoos.
Then she was up and ready to party.
The rest of the week was relaxing and fun. We went to all of our favorite restaurants (Mekong Cafe for Thai, Cafe Rio, India House, and Tom got sushi at Tsunami). I read "Shattered Silence" about the life of a serial killer's daughter. It's a true story by Melissa Moore.

Tom and I also got to go to a movie. We saw "Couple's Retreat" at the dollar theater that is now $2 per person. It was pretty funny but very predictable. When we got home at midnight, Jo Ann and Morgan were outside wrapped in a blanket because Morgan woke up and cried for 40 minutes until Jo Ann took her outside. Thanks Nana for giving us a break and taking one for the team.

We also saw Jer and Brit's new house (a great find), Jenn from my mission, BJ from Tom's mission, and Super Target (there are none in Boise).

Morgan has been moving around a lot while she's asleep. Here she is against the backboard. Apparently she couldn't move up any farther.