Sunday, February 24, 2008


I haven't abandoned my blog, I promise. The past 2 weeks have been nonstop of anything and everything. Ask me the date, I have no idea. Ask me what's next to do, I can choose from way too much. Ask me what's for dinner, look in the freezer or pantry. Ask me how I am, I may say good or I may start to cry. Ask me how much longer until Steve leaves, too soon.

Things are in turbo speed around here. I can't believe only 2 more weeks together. As I am sitting here I can hear the laughter of 3 little kids and their daddy wrestling. Then I hear Steve break out into a made up song about loving Preston, Taylor and Mason. Wish I had my video camera.

The closer it gets, the harder it gets. The more I wish we had more time, the more I think about the good bye, the more I think about how the "to do's" will be here in 2 weeks but Steve won't.

This whole experience has brought a new perspective to my life. I am so thankful for this wonderful country that we live in and for the freedoms that are ours and that I take for granite everyday. We pray for our soldiers every night and for their loved ones that are apart from them. Now we will pray for our dad and husband and will pray for his safe return. We know we will be blessed and are so proud of Steve.

Now off to go join on the fun I seem to be missing out on! More to come hopefully soon.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Comment Button!

We've had a busy weekend with Steve's parents here so I haven't had a chance to post and still don't have a lot of time so I will have to post later on about our weekend. I have a counter & map on the blog and in the past 3 days, the blog has had over 4o visitors! So what I want to know is, who are all of our visitors because I certainly do no have 40 comments? There is a little comment button after each blog entry so click on "comment" and let us know!!! We've even had visitors from overseas!!! Fancy me on this one and let me know!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Cupid's Arrow

After 9 yrs, Cupid's Arrow still has an effect on us! Happy Valentine's Day!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

A Great Day to be 5 & 7

It's great to be 5 & 7! Preston and Taylor had their Valentine parties today at school. A day early due to the next 5 days of no school. The excitement started last week with the careful selection of Valentine cards & pencils (I mean a marathon of trying to choose from too many options). We have spent the past few days writing names, carefully placing stickers and assembling cards. So you could imagine the anticipation for today. The parties were great, we had a fun lunch with Preston, all cards have been opened, candy wrappers have filled the trash and cute handmade decorations adorn my house.
Happy Kids = Happy Mom!

And one extra highlight for the day. The kids had an assembly today with the children's author Mark Ludy. If you like children's books, I'm a sucker for them, his books and illustrations are the WOW factor. Anyways, he choose Preston to come up to the stage and drew this picture of him. Notice the football uniform, the #5 on the jersey - which happens to be the Air Force quarterback Shawn Carney's # and a big smile. Yes, it's been a great day!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008


As we get closer each day to Steve's departure and my attempt at holding it together, the days together decrease and my need for support increases! So here are a few of my favorite support groups!

1. Steve: Today he came home and took all the kids to Preston's piano lessons. I said lets all go and he says "Why don't you just take sometime for yourself." So I did. I ran an errand, cleaned house really quick and started dinner. Guess I did need it.

2. My kids: They make me smile and give me strength to carry on each day
(What can be better than this awesome swing jacket I bought at Urban Outfitters during my retail therapy with Patsy, an awesome swing jacket totally on clearance)

3. Family & Friends far away from us: Our phones have been ringing, email inbox filling up, airfare booked and bags being packed. Words of appreciation and gratitude for Steve's service, words of encouragement that all will be well, willingness to help in anyway and promises of prayers and thoughts! THANK YOU

4. The spouses from Steve's work: We all got together last week and decorated V-day cookies. They were all so supportive and offered up help with free babysitting, playgroups, girl time, and anything we need. If any group knows how best to relate, it is the military spouses who have been there, done that and are amazing for it. Thanks for a much needed evening ladies !

5. Colorado Girls: They are the ones who have been there to cry with, to wipe my tears, wrap their arms around me and even offer to "kick Steve's butt if anything happens to him." Patsy helped me with retail therapy Saturday night. We hit up the Disney Warehouse. If you ever go to Disneyland or Disney World and cringe every time you pull out your wallet for purchases, you have to check out this website. AMS This company travels around the US opening stores for a few months. They actually sell the EXACT same merchandise as Disneyland and some from D World. For example I bought the character autograph books for $2 instead of $12, sweatshirts for $12, not $49, T-shirts for $2, mickey mouse and minnie mouse hats for $.99 not $8. As you can see we stocked up! And then stuffed up at The Cheese Cake Factory!

6. Our Church: We will be well taken care of!

7. Our Neighbors: Offers of shoveling snow, mowing the lawn, helping with home repairs, etc.

Did I say a few support groups, I meant a lot. Thank you everyone! I love you!

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Blonde or Brunette

After Steve and I were married he asked me if he would ever see me with my natural hair color! Excuse me.... I think the answer was as obvious as the look on my face.

Yesterday I had to get a new military ID because my other 2 have somehow managed to disappear. The lady was asking all the common questions similar to those on a driver's license. When it came to the color of hair she said "Blonde?" I laughed and said "naturally brown but always blonde." She smiled back, handed me my new card and the color of hair.......BLONDE! So I guess if the United States Air Force can consider me as blonde, I am one. 9 years later Steve can now say he has seen me with my natural hair color...blonde.

Friday, February 8, 2008

The ABC's Of Me

I've been tagged by my friend Samantha. T is for tagging but I am tagging everyone who reads my blog and wants to learn a thing or 2 about themselves. Make sure you comment if you're going to do it so I know to look for it on your blog

A- Attached or single: Defiantly Attached

B- Best Friend: Steve Hendricks, most days!

C-Cake or Pie: for sure cake with cream cheese frosting

D- Day of Choice: Friday, date night. Just got back from one!

E- Essential Item: MAC make-up

F- Favorite Color: turquoise

G- Gummi Bears or Worms: Gummi Bears, you should see the big bag we devoured the past few weeks

H- Hometown: Hacienda Heights (outside of LA) like for sure a Southern Cali girl

I- Indulgence(s): shopping for home decor, bubble baths, hotels and massages

J- January or July: July, I'm not stuck inside

K-Kids: 3- Preston, Taylor and Mason

L-Life is incomplete without: my family, friends and the Gospel

M- Marriage Date: August 7, 1999

N- Number of Siblings: 3 total - 2 Brothers and 1 sister

O- Oranges or Apples: Gala Apples and the Oranges off my parent's tree

P- Phobias or Fears: enclosed places and losing my kids

Q- Quote(s): "Mom, you should be on American Idol, but I think you're too old" Preston "You're the bestest Mommy in the whole wide world" Taylor "Mommy, Mommy, Mommy, Mommy" Mason

Reason To Smile: Steve, Preston, Taylor and Mason

S- Season: Spring, things are starting to turn green, the snow usually starts to disappear, I can open my windows and summer is right around the corner

T- Tag Six: if you're reading this, consider yourself tagged

U- Unknown Fact About Me: I was Prom Queen and Homecoming Princess

V- Vegetarian or Oppressor of Animal: Just had a great steak tonight!

W- Worst Habit: Getting to bed too late, I'm a night owl

X- X-Rays or Ultrasounds: Ultrasounds, they usually mean I have a little one growing inside me

Y- Your Favorite Food: Does candy count? If not, my Mom's tacos!!

Z: Zodiac: Taurus

The Sacrafices We Make

Not to make light of a situation that's really not funny, but it's either laugh or cry. I have to start the blog with this bumper sticker that our friend was telling us about the other night. WARNING..... you all know I am not crude, I am politically correct and there are certain things I don't randomly talk about..............but this I can't resist sharing. Steve says "things are always funnier when they have some sort of truth to them" maybe that's why this hit a funny bone for both Steve and myself.

So those Iraqi's better appreciate our sacrifices for them!!! Steve has volunteered to serve in Iraq for 6 months. He will head out March 9th for 4 weeks of training here in the States. He will then be in Iraq from the beginning of April until the end of September. He'll be gone for a total of 7 mos. Here is an article about where he will be and what he will be doing

This somehow feels like the right thing to do at this time. We thought he would never be deployed, the majority of his career field jobs are here stateside. But I am proud of him and his willingness to volunteer to go above and beyond to serve our country. This is one of the many reasons why I married him, he is amazing. My grandma said to me "Why am I not surprised."

I know this will not be an easy journey for our family. We are so close and we all idolize Steve. He is really the greatest husband and dad, they don't come any better. As a matter of fact Taylor's teacher was saying the other day that she loves the way Steve is with his kids and that she doesn't see many dads like him. We will do everything we can to make life as normal as possible in a not so normal situation. If anyone has suggestions, we'll take 'em.

I know the Lord will bless us during this time as we prepare for his departure and our absence from each other. We have to remember that we are not alone and we aren't expected to do this alone. We appreciate all your thoughts and prayers, we'll need them

We have already felt so much love and support from family and friends, thank you!! We will keep you updated. We love you all and are so grateful to have such a great support group around us!!


Tuesday, February 5, 2008

The Air Force Academy

I think if Steve were to bleed he would bleed the color BLUE. Steve LOVES the AIR FORCE ACADEMY. It's his alma mater, he played football there, he spent 4 years there with school and a 5th year working with the football team, he has lots of great, and some not so great, memories of the Academy and of course because of the Academy, he is still an officer in the Air Force.

I didn't really understand how great the Air Force Academy was until Steve was brought back here to teach. Since we have been here in Colorado Springs, we have been able to enjoy the Academy as a family. We love sponsoring our Cadets (the students are called Cadets). They are great young men and women who are respectful and driven. We couldn't ask for better role models for our kids. We have fun attending the sporting events.. football, basketball, hockey, gymnastics, boxing, track & field, soccer, baseball, softball.. to name a few. We love the parades, visiting Steve's work, participating in events and interacting with the cadets and other officers.

Last week we were at the Air Force vs BYU basketball game. Where else would my kids be able to go on the court and have their pictures taken with the cheerleaders. Preston left us half way through the game and sat with some of his cadet buddies in the student section. I can't believe how many athletes he knows and how many know him. It is just a great atmosphere for our family. I am so thankful that we have the opportunity to be here for a few years and really enjoy a place that means so much to Steve. The Air Force Academy is the #1 tourist attraction in CO. We love visitors, so come stay with us and visit the Academy. And, if you give us advance notice, we have 8 season tickets to the Football games.... there is nothing like it!

Monday, February 4, 2008

Happy 100th Day

The kids had fun in their classes today. It's the 100th day of school. Taylor celebrated by making a necklace with 100 fruit loops, each student brought in 100 of the same item, counting to 100 by 1's, 5's and 10's, reading a fun book about the 100th day of school and the best part of her day was having her daddy in her class helping.

1st grade didn't celebrate as much but Preston did come home with a cut-out 100 and they did a few activities as well.

100 days of alarm clocks, making beds, quick breakfasts, rushing out the door, 100 Pledge of Allegiances, 100 lunches, 100 nights of homework and reading. And 100 days of fun memories!
Happy 100th Day of School Preston and Taylor!

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Congratulations Nicole and Kelly

I am a proud Auntie Jo Jo again. Mylie Makanalani was born yesterday afternoon. 6 lbs 15 oz and 20 in. She was right side up so Nicole had a C-Section, her first after 2 kids. Nicole and Mylie are doing great and Hunter and Kora are excited to have a baby sister. We are so excited for them and can hardly wait to hold and cuddle the newest addition to our family in March, not soon enough. Congratulations Kel, Nicole, Hunter, Kora and precious Mylie! We are so happy for you.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Rockin' Out

Patsy and I took our older kids today to see The Hannah Montana 3-D Concert. We didn't have to deal with long lines or sold out shows, we must have gone at a good time. It was lots of fun. I'm glad I took Preston and Taylor to see it.
Growing up I listened to music all the time. My parents listened to oldies and light rock. I don't remember them having to change stations or records because of language or content. Today is different. In Virgina, Preston's favorite song was Beautiful by James Blunt. When I bought the CD, the version of Beautiful used the F word. I was shocked and upset! Since then I have been so careful to censor the music they listen to. Lets face it, at age 5 and 7 they don't want to listen to the Wiggles or Barney. Because of Hannah Montana, High School Musical and other Disney sounds tracks, they both have really come to enjoy music and I don't have to stress about what they are listening to.

If anyone has recommendations for clean, hype, upbeat, catchy music for kids, let me know. Preston and Taylor love to pump up the volume. We've had our fair share of rocking out sessions in our household, including a good one today. It's fun to watch them sing and dance and love music. Here they are pretending they are rock stars, striking a pose. I have to admit, I love that Preston could care less that he was the only boy amongst 6 girls! He is his Father's son!

Friday, February 1, 2008

5 Games of Dodgeball!

Last night I played 5 games of Dodgeball! You should have seen all us of women going at it! It was a blast, no pun intended.

The game of Dodgeball proceeded a great and very inspiring talk by a woman from our church. The evening was titled "What to Dodge and What to Catch." In other words, there are so many things coming at us in our daily lives, we shouldn't try to do it all. We have responsibilities with our children, spouses, work, volunteering, activities, homes, serving others, church callings, and so much more. And lets face it, we cannot do everything. Well, maybe we can but at what expense. When our plates are too full we suffer and our families suffer in return. My Dad refers to this situation with a great analogy. He often asks how I am doing and if I am taking care of myself. He says that when you lose oxygen on an airplane, they tell you to place the oxygen mask on yourself first and your children second. At first thought it sounds selfish, but in reality if you don't have the oxygen yourself how can you help others.

Often times we find ourselves in situations were we can't say no to others and this sometimes causes us to feel overwhelmed and overly stressed. She quoted Tony Blair as saying "The art of leadership is saying no, not saying yes. It is easy to say yes." And John C Maxwell, an American Euntraprenuer, said "Learn to say no to the good so you can say yes to the best." What great quotes and so very true. Dallin H Oaks is an apostle in our church. He gave an excellent talk titled "Good, Better, Best." Just because something is good doesn't mean it's the best for us. It is a must read no matter what your beliefs are or your stage in life.

Our speaker said we often have the "Disease to Please." Have you ever felt this way, I have. I made the comment that there is a time and season in everyone's lives. My season for doing things will be different from another ladies whose children are grown and out of the house. We cannot fall into the trap of comparing ourselves to others. Our best will be different from our friend's best. Our tries will be different. Our lives and circumstances are different. That is life and that's okay. We cannot fall into the trap of Satan. He wants us to feel discouraged and that we are underachievers. When in actuality, if you are doing the best you can do day to day, you are actually achieving a lot more than most. And remember best does not mean perfect. We are not perfect and never will be (at least not in this life time).

I was so glad I was able to be there. I felt that I couldn't not pass this great advice on to my friends. We really need to know what our priorities are in life so when those balls are coming at us full speed, we will know which ones to dodge and which ones we'll catch. And we can make those choices between good, better and best.