Saturday, May 24, 2008

High roller treatment Baby!

For our anniversary we decided to get out of the cold and head south where it was going to be nice and warm. We spent the first couple of days in sunny St. George and then on Wednesday, the morning of our anniversary we drove down to Vegas. A friend of ours has a sister who is the director of VIP at the Wynn hotel. She hooked us up and got us a discounted rate in one of the tower suites. This hotel is by far the best one in Vegas, and is the only 5 star 5 diamond hotel on the strip. It cost 7 billion yes I said billion...dollars to build, needless to say we had a great time.
Entrance to the VIP Lobby

The ceilings are as pretty as the floors!
Goldfish surround the walkways, and with the sunlight shining through the glass ceilings they seem to sparkle.

Room with a view!
When we got back from dinner our room was filled with fun surprises like this comfortable robe...
a chilled bottle of Sparkling Cider...
chocolate covered strawberries in a bowl made out of chocolate!

We decided since the room was so nice we would spend the rest of the evening in. With the push of a tiny button next to our bed, the curtains magically opened revealing a sea of white twinkling lights that stretch out for miles creating a very romantic view. We threw on our amazing satin robes, climbed into the most comfortable bed ever and....

watched the season finale of American Idol on our giant flat screen TV! ha ha ha It was an awesome night except for the fact that David Archuleta didn't win. I totally thought he was going to after he performed so well the night before. Oh well I really like David Cook too so I wasn't super upset about it, just a little sad for Archie.

Before we went to bed I put this sign on our door thinking it would guarantee us a few extra hours of sleep in the morning. Well it almost worked except for the fact that my dad called my cell phone bright and early (Vegas is an hour earlier than Salt Lake) to see if we were having a good time in St. George! I woke Pat and the neighbors up trying to talk loud enough in my cell phone so my Dad could hear me! :) I love my Dad he is the best!!! It's funny because it made me realize how much more I love him than sleeping in on vacation!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Just the two of us

        Happy 28th Wedding Anniversary Patrick!
                               May 21, 1980
Loving you is a piece of cake! (well most of the time)

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Happy 19th Birthday Kylie!

I pulled out the keepsake memory folder today that the hospital gave me nineteen years ago, and even though it shows considerable signs of age with its ripped corners and torn seams, the memory of it all is still very fresh and vivid in my mind.
I read the outside cover and noticed the list of items checked off by the nurse as they were placed inside...
Photograph - check
Footprints - check
ID Bracelets- check
Lock of hair (crossed out)
Born three months too soon her hair was not long enough to cut a lock and add to our envelope of monumental treasures.
As I spilled out the precious contents stored inside a wave of emotions that I was'nt expecting swept over me. My eyes filled with tears and my heart ached with sadness, as I was reminded of the significant loss of my sweet baby girl.

picture of Kylie a half hour after she was born

I wish I had a better picture of Kylie than this one. The hospital took it with a Polaroid camera. We didn't know we were going to be having our baby or we would have taken our camera with us to the hospital. Looking back we were pretty much in shock and not thinking very straight. She looks like she has brown hair but that is just a huge purple bruise. She actually had white peach fuzz all over the top of her head, its hard to see but it was the same color as her eyelashes. Even though she looked pretty beat up she was perfect to me and will always be my beautiful little angel.

This is how I found out Kylie had passed away. I got to hold her for a little while after she was born before the nurse took her from me since I was shaking uncontrollably and couldn't hold her any longer. A little while later she walked into my room and handed me this card.

We held a grave side prayer and dedicated her grave with a few family members at Larkin Sunset Gardens in the Babyland section. Even though Ashley looks happy in this picture she was pretty upset right before we took it.
When we arrived at the mortuary the funeral director opened my car door and set Kylie's casket on my lap and said "I thought it would be nice and peaceful for you to drive the casket to the grave site together as a family." Well the minute he shut the door Ashley started screaming and crying from the back seat..."I want to see my baby sister!" over and over again. Suddenly our small car seemed to shrink and I felt like I could barely breath. As we slowly wound our way through the cemetery with tears streaming down my face, I thought to myself... this doesn't feel very nice and certainly isn't very peaceful.

Justin was almost eight years old and Ashley was five and a half. My heart ached for them as well, since this was the fourth baby we had lost in the previous two and a half years.
You can tell in the pictures below that I was concerned about how they were absorbing the overwhelming reality of it all.

(worried about Justin)

(worried about Ashley)

Notice Justin's walking cast in this picture. He broke his foot in three places about a month earlier at his baseball practice. His friend challenged him in a race to the top of the backstop and back down. Game on... When Justin reached the top he noticed Logan was already on his way back down, so he jumped....Far! Technically Justin won (by cheating) but he also broke his foot!

I went into premature labor on Mothers Day 1989 and delivered Kylie early the next morning. I had just bought this new maternity dress the day before as a Mothers Day gift for myself.

Linda helped Pat pick out the grave site while I was stuck in the hospital for four days hooked up to antibiotics to help clear up the infection that was now in my bloodstream. We were lucky and got a spot right in front of this statue of Christ because they had just torn out a sidewalk that was right in front of it.
Below is a poem that I wrote on July 25, 1989.
It's a little sugary but oh well : )


She was my tiny angel sent from Heaven above,
even though her time was short, she taught us faith and love

Swaddled in a blanket, her warm body nestled mine,
knowing all the while she didn't have much time

I cradled and rocked her gently, and kissed her little cheek,
the pain I felt, the tears I shed, were truly bittersweet

Softly I whispered in her ear I love you,
and though she could not answer back I knew she loved me too

She came then left so quickly, It is hard to understand,
but for one brief solemn hour I held her tiny hand

My memories of her are very few but will never fade away,
she changed my life forever that early Spring morning in May

Each day that is filled with sorrow and empty loneliness,
I remind myself, I will see her again... and I feel humbly blessed

In response to a comment my niece left on this post, I decided to add one more picture. The picture below is of the darling dress and matching blanket my sister Linda made for Kylie to be buried in. She had to do a lot of the busy work for me since I was pretty sick and forced to stay in the hospital until the day before we buried her. I guess when you have an infection coursing through your veins it's probably a good idea. Anyway she had three little kids and Dave was out of town, but somehow she found the time to get it done.
Linda you really went out of your way to make kylie look extra special and I love you for it!!

(picture of Kylie's dress on Ashley's baby doll)

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Photo 101

After years of wanting to take a photography class to learn how to use my camera and take better pictures, I'm finally doing it! To be perfectly honest the first class was a little overwhelming and for the most part sounded like a foreign language. I mean we were throwing out words like aperture, Iso's f-stops and shutter speeds just to name a few.
Just when I thought my brain was not capable of absorbing any more information the class came to an end and a homework assignment was given. Our cute talented and very very young teacher, Nicole, asked us to take pictures using some techniques that she had taught us that night. These were pictures involving the rule of thirds, capturing motion, juxtaposition, panning, etc... all without using the good old trusty flash! That's right we were told to take our camera off the automatic setting and switch it to manual!
The pics below are a few of the many I had to take in order to get some photos that weren't too over or under exposed. Hooray for digital cameras! If I would have been using film, this assignment would have cost me a small fortune! ha ha ha
About the last picture...Karli asked me nicely not to get her in the panning shot, but Hurley wouldn't run without her. He kept looking behind him and would slow down so she could catch up. Sorry Karli but this picture wouldn't have been as good without you!
Rule of thirds

Rule of thirds
Negative space Framing
Capture motion
Capture motion

Thursday, May 8, 2008

My Beautiful Mother

Happy Mothers Day Mom!
I am so greatful to have you for my Mother. It's funny how when you are growing up you don't realize how nice you have it or how blessed you are to belong to such a wonderful family.
Don't get me wrong, I knew I was happy, living in a comfortable home with great parents and four awesome siblings, (well they were awesome most of the time) but there were so many things that I thought everyone had or did when in reality I was just extremely lucky!
For example... I thought everyone had a mom who stayed home while they were at school, cooking and cleaning and sewing cute cotton, velvet, chiffon, sear sucker, & gingham dresses to wear. I wont even get into the incredible Halloween costumes or Christmas and Easter dresses that were sewn each year. (My best friend from high school still talks about how jealous she was of my red velvet dress that I wore in the fourth grade!)
I also thought everyone sat down to the dinner table each night at six, table set with a pressed tablecloth, nice dishes, and a delicious meal. I'm not talking casseroles here, but a variety of delicious dinners every night. Sunday dinners were the best! We always ate around 1:00 and it was usually a roast, or a whole chicken cooked on the rotisserie, complete with potatoes, gravy, and always homemade rolls. Most Sundays Mom would also make homemade cinnamon rolls which we would bake two to three hours after dinner and then eat them while they were still warm. The perfect Sunday night treat!
My Mom was so good at what she did that I thought everybody grew up in a perfectly clean house with fresh clean clothes pressed and hanging in their closets at all times.... silly me!
Mom sure did know how to make our house feel like a home, warm and cozy with always the right lighting!
Yes I knew I had it good, but its funny how it wasn't until I was married and raising a family of my own that I truly understood the love a Mother has for her children. So I just want to thank my mom for all her hard work, it didn't go unnoticed. I have tried diligently to follow in her footsteps but have simply paled in comparison, and when I look back on my life I am in awe of my beautiful Mother and realize just how lucky I am.

I Love You Mom!
Love, Lisa

The picture above is of my Mom when she was around twenty one. It was taken after World War II as a gift for my Dad.
She signed it...To my darling sweetheart Love, Norma.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Discover Utah

My ward has a focus group that meets once a month called Discover Utah. It is basically a field trip for grown ups! Each month we explore one or two places that are fun and interesting, then afterwards we go somewhere yummy for lunch. The group has visited places like museums, graveyards, consignment stores, secret gardens etc. Last Wednesday we met at Marilyn's and then carpooled down to Highland Farm Nursery. This place was awesome! They have huge flower pots and hanging baskets that are simply gorgeous for really good prices. I bought a couple of them, one for my Mom and one for my Mother in law for Mothers Day. On our way to the nursery we drove right past Dear Lizzy. It is the cutest boutique/bistro where my niece Courtney works. I was going to suggest this place for a future Discover Utah trip, but since we were just around the corner from it I suggested we go there for lunch. If you haven't been to either place, grab your girlfriends and go asap... you will be glad you did. I forgot to take my camera with me, but I have already been back (that is how awesome they are!)
Proof of which can be seen below

Highland Farms
Sooo pretty!

Dear Lizzy
Oooh baby!
Lunch anyone?

Let's share a Dizzy Lizzy!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Where's Spring?

This morning when I woke up it was snowing!!! Blahhh Now don't get me wrong, I LOVE snow. Its just that I only love it on my terms. Which are.... I think it should start snowing the weekend after Thanksgiving to help get us in the mood for Christmas. I also think it should snow a lot throughout the month of December, and of course it needs to snow at least a foot or two on Christmas Eve. 

January - Snowy

February - Snowy

March - Rainy

April - SPRING!!!

Well it is May 1st and it still feels like March!
This commercial is looking pretty good to me these days.

I would consider "finding myself" there, if only they had our... warm Summer nights, our crisp Autumn days, and yes even our snowy Winters!!