Sunday, December 28, 2008

Holiday Fun...

We have had a fabulous time at home with our families. It took a bit of an adventure to get here but we made it. Actually it was only adventurous for Nate. Cambri and I flew home early to spend some time with my family. Nate and a few other friends drove back and got stuck in Wyoming because of the snow and had to spend the night in Cheyenne. Nate's adventure continued on his way from Utah to Idaho. In an attempt to save some money I rod with his sister to Idaho but there wasn't enough room for Nate so he had to take the airport shuttle. Poor guy always gets the shaft:) The shuttle showed up an hour late, ran into a coke truck, which caused the window to break, which cut the man sitting behind Nate in the eye, requiring the whole bus to go to the hospital, leaving Nate to ditch the shuttle in Pocatello and call his brother to come get him. It took him about 5 1/2 hours but he made it.

Cambri loved eating all the Christmas paper.

Our newest play toy.

I got to play Mary this year in the nativity scene.
Nate got to play the donkey.
One cute donkey:)
It is impossible to get a family picture where all three of us are looking at the camera.
Yea for getting a sewing machine! Now I can pretend to be crafty.
Just because she is so darn cute. This is Cambri helping us celebrate our 3 year anniversary.

Hope you all had a great holiday season. Now it is time for us all to reflect upon the past year and see what we can do to improve this coming year. I hope we as a family will be much closer to our Savior in the coming year. I know we have lots to work on. But also a lot of great things to enjoy. We are blessed.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Going for a walk...

Today the sun was shining and it felt so nice. The cold weather has been a bit depressing so a day like today was very much appreciated. Since we spend most of our days inside our little apartment I decided to go for a run and soak up some much needed sunshine and vitamin D. The path we ran on was so beautiful. And the weather just perfect. It is amazing how rejuvinating the sunshine can make you feel. Hopefully no matter where we all live we can experience a few of these beautiful days scattered through the cold winter.

Cambri all ready to go for a run.

I tried... be a good citizen that is. I decided that I wanted to do some sort of volunteer work this Christmas to help me get into the real spirit of things. So I did a google search and found an opportunity to work at the gift wrap station at the mall where all proceeds would go to the Children's Cancer Program. I totally love wrapping gifts so this sounded fun. This particular group provides summer camps and such to help kids with cancer feel like normal kids. Definitely a worthy cause worth giving my time to. Anyway, I email the coordinator only to find out that all the shifts were taken but there would be other opportunities to volunteer if I was interested. A few days later I receive another email that a shift has opened on Friday night from 4-10pm...yes that is 6 hours of wrapping presents. I did say that I love wrapping presents but I thought it would be a 2 hour gig. I mean I want to be a good citizen but 6 hours seemed a little extreme. I agreed to help out with the shift. So last night I make the trek to the mall to start the present wrapping marathon. There are 2 other girls that I will be working with. We get the quick run down on how everything works. Seems easy so we get geared up to wrap presents and we wait for the first costumer. We wait a little longer. We wait some more. Okay it has now been and hour or so and we have yet to wrap a present. By this point we are all trying to make small chit chat. Definitely the kind that has little to do about nothing, but it is awkward to just sit and stare at each other. And finally our first costumer! Bummer it was only one present and I wasn't the one to wrap it. So we wait some more. Yeah more costumers! Nope, they just want to know where the nearest restroom is. A little while later, we have two guys bring all of their Christmas shopping which provided about 3 presents for all of us. Not bad. This was around 5:45pm. The excitement was over by 5:55pm. Wow, really, 4 more hours of this.

At this point I decide to use my sick baby as an excuse, asking the other girls if they would be ok if I took off at 8 so I can go home and see how she is doing. Cambri really is sick, but Nate was doing just fine watching her, but seriously I couldn't take it anymore. I left at 8, stopped at the Gap to buy some cute gifts, and headed home to hang out with my family.

Maybe next year it will be better.

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

6 Months and Loving it!

I can't believe Cambri is already 6 months old. Time is going by way too fast. I guess it is time to have another one:) Just kidding about that. Nate about had a heart attack when I even brought it up. I just love this little girl and want to express how grateful I am to be her mom (even though it is 10pm and she is screaming in her crib to get out. Oh wait, I think Nate just went in to rescue her. He is such a softie). We are working on teaching her she can't stay up late with the big kids. The picture of her above she is giggling at me shaking my head up and down. For some reason she finds it really funny.

This little one loves her food it shows. Chubby as can be!

My little stinker. Cambri got called a boy by two people when I had her dressed in this outfit. Not sure why people think I would dress her in tights and a dress.

One of Cambri's favorite pasttimes. Lately she likes to eat other peoples' toes too.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Thanksgiving Was a Success...minus the turkey:)

Happy Thanksgiving to all. Ours was wonderful! We are so lucky to have so many great friends in Des Moines to spend time with. It made it much easier to be away from home and family. We did first eat lunch up at the university. They put on a great meal and it was nice to have someone else do all the work. But the real fun came when a group of our friends came over to our place to munch on some more food and play games. We all brought food so that we could gorge once again and take leftovers home. The food was so good! Yes the turkey was two hours late and a little dry, but a little gravy made it all edible:). It was my first turkey and quite the learning experience for me. I tried making a 21 pound turkey. A little hefty for my first attempt. Pretty sure the middle wasn't quite thawed when I put it in the oven. I thought it was until I reached my hand in to get all the giblets out. It did look pretty which should count for something.

Nate and Cambri helping me get ready for dinner.

We just did dinner buffet style. The clear dish in front was some yummy dessert that Nathalie made and I am pretty sure I ate at least half of it. But then again I ate half of everything else on the table too:).

Looks like we need to get a bigger place.

I made everyone do a Thankful Turkey.

Nate and Caleb's true colors shining through.

(The lighting in this picture makes my walls look horrible).

Now it is time to start feeling the Christmas Spirit. Only 17 days until we go home!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Thought I would share...

I am always on the search for new recipes that aren't too crazy, but still a little different than my usual menu. I got this recipe from the Rachael Ray Show. It is just a turkey meatloaf but you put apples, celery and stuffing in it. And you serve it with apple cider gravy. It turned out so yummy! It does make a ton so if you aren't feeding many you may want to cut it in 1/2. Otherwise you are going to have to get really creative with left over meatloaf.
Turkey and Stuffing Meatloaf
2 McIntosh or Gala apples, peeled and cut into small dice
1 TBSP lemon juice
2 lbs. ground turkey
3-4 ribs celery finely chopped
1 med onion finely chopped
1 TBSP poultry seasoning
1 large egg
Salt and Pepper
2 cups chx stock
2 cups stuffing mix
1 TBSP olive oil
1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.
2. In large bowl add apples and lemon juice and toss. Add turkey, celery, onion, poultry seasoning, egg, salt and pepper.
3. In medium bowl add stock and the stuffing. Toss around and let stuffing soak up the liquid. Then add to bowl with turkey.
4. Shape into loaf or use bread pan. Coat with olive oil.
5. Bake about 1 hour.
Apple Cider Gravy
4 TBSP Butter
4 TBSP Flour
2 cups apple cider
2 cups chx stock
salt and pepper
Melt butter. Stir in flour, cook 1 min. Then whisk in cider and stock. Let thicken and season.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Friday Night...

In order to go on a few dates a month Nate and I have joined up with some of our friends to share babysitting nights. We end up babysitting once a month and get two date nights out of it. It is pretty crazy since the babies are all about 6 weeks apart. We only babysit for two hours and let me tell you it has made me appreciate those with twins and triplets. But the date nights are much appreciated. We do love our little Cambri but it is nice to be able to give my full attention to my hubby. And it is nice to have his full attention.
This last Friday we had lots of fun... We watched Nate make dinner.
And yes Cambri is only 6 weeks older than little George. George just went in for his 4 month check and he is under the 20% in both height and weight. And his head is in the 6%. Then there is Cambri who is in the 90% for height and weight. Not sure about her head but pretty sure it is huge. This picture just emphasizes their size difference.

We read books.

We played the piano.

We ate toys. And we ate George's head.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The Many Sounds of our Little Bunny...

This girl is complete entertainment! Last time we went to Cambri's well child check the dr. asked if she was starting to make consonant sounds...not even close. Instead she growls. She is a weird little girl but we love her.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Take a look at this...

Nate and I were watching David Letterman the other day. They had weird human tricks on. You have to watch this video. It gives me the willies really. But it is one of those things that you just can't help but watch.

Dealing with the inevitable cold weather...

I have been having a little (ok maybe a lot) of anxiety the last few weeks knowing that winter is on its way. It has not been long enough for me to forget just how cold and miserable last winter was. I still remember very clearly one night as I walked outside around 8:00pm and the wind pretty much cut right through me. Not even my big puffy coat could protect me. And let me remind you that I was pregnant and running on a warmer tempurature than usual. As I was walking to my car I thought- "He (Nate) can't make me live here forever. I won't do it." So I am doing my best to make winter bearable. In order to do this I have decided to start getting ready for Christmas early. What better way to deal with cold weather than pretty Christmas lights, yummy ginger bread men, and presents!

Thanks to Nikki she helped to kick off the celebrations... A few of the girls got together at her place to decorate cookies and also help her decorate her Christmas tree. We also all brought cookies and did a little swap. Yummy! Nikki had the party because she wanted to help with the feelings of "homesickness" during the holidays. And thank you miss Nikki. It was the perfect way to kick off the holiday season. And I need to give her props for being the best hostess. She made delicious soup, rolls, and hot cocoa and gave all of us little favors. You can see them in the picture below.

I also spent some time hanging out at Hobby Lobby (which is now my new favorite store) buying some stuff to make fun Christmas decorations. Once I get them all done I will share the pictures with you. And don't worry I didn't forget about Thanksgiving. I bought a few things to spruce up the apartment for this holiday as well. And once the holidays are over I plan on using my newly learned skill of knitting (ok so I haven't learned yet but I plan to) to make cute scarves and beanies. I am going to make winter so much fun I will be sad to see it end:).

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Ok I will admit to being tagged...

I am not the best and following through with being tagged, but I have been tagged by two people now (Chels and Becky) so I figure I should do it. But I am going to make a few small changes. I am going to combine the two tags and I am going to decrease the amount of info I must share. So here it goes-

My 5 Favorite Shows-

1. Heroes (This is what Nate and I watch for Family Night)

2. The Biggest Loser (I would love to be Jillian!)

3. Desperate Housewives (I know I probably shouldn't admit to it but I am hooked)

4. What Not to Wear (We only have bunny ears so I never get to watch it unless it is on when I run on the treadmill. But since I never do that I pretty much never watch it:)).

5.The Today Show

My 5 Favorite Restaurants-

1. Zuppas (I will be a making a trip there when I am home for Christmas)

2. Trostel's Dish (An expensive restaurant I will probably never eat at again)

3. Olive Garden

4. Cosi (lots of good memories!)

5. Grandma Tucker's house:)

5 Things that happened yesterday-

1. Taught a BodyPump class at the gym.

2. Played with my baby girl. We got her laughing so hard yesterday that she was snorting. Quite possibly the cutest thing ever.

3. Braved Wal-Mart (which you should never do on a Saturday afternoon)

4. Helped my friend Nikki make cute aprons (I did more watching than doing)

5. Babysat baby Evan.

5 Things I am looking forward to-

1. December 17th because I get to go home for the holidays! And December 16th....Happy Anniversary to me (and Nate).

2. Next Spring. I am having anxiety about going through another miserable Iowa winter.

3. 2016- The year Nate will finally be done with school and his residency. At least we hope so:).

4. I must have short term memory loss because I am really looking forward to being pregnant again. Don't get too excited because it isn't going to happen anytime soon. At least not on purpose.

5. Owning a home. Due to item #3 I have a feeling this won't happen for a very long time.

5 Things I love about Fall-

1. Walking through the leaves that have fallen on the sidewalk.

2. All the yummy smells (Pumpkin, Apple spice, Cinnamon etc)

3. It isn't Winter

4. The anticipation for the holidays.

5. Seeing the colors of the leaves. Even though it happens every year it still seems so amazing every year.

5 Things on my wish list-

1. A new KitchenAid mixer. Mine just broke.

2. A vacation to somewhere warm and tropical.

3. Money to buy new clothes.

4. A Chi hair straightener.

5. Porcelain doll skin. I am so jealous of those that have smooth beautiful skin. Mine has gotten better since having a baby, but it will never be anything amazing.

5 Random facts about me-

1. I commented earlier about the show "What Not to Wear". I do love watching it but truthfully I want to be on the show. I even looked up the info on-line yesterday about getting on the show. I want one of my friends to nominate me (so feel free anyone that feels so inclined). If you are chosen to be on the show you get an all expense paid trip to NYC and a $5000 shopping spree to improve the wardrobe, hair and make-up. Pretty much a dream come true. To be honest I probaly would be a great candidate. I pretty much never get ready. My closet is full of a lot of ugly clothe. And the clothes I do have don't really fit me that well.

2. I am horrible at multi-tasking. Especially when it comes to being on the computer. Nate will try to talk to me while I am typing and either I completely ignore him or I find myself typing what he is saying. Usually I am ignoring him, but don't realize it until he gets frustrated. It is best I don't have a computer at home all day cause I find it too easy to get sucked into the internet even if I don't really have a reason to be using it.

3. I never finish reading books. I have started so many books but usually get bored about half way through them. And yes this applies to all the Harry Potter books and the Twilight series. I think I made it through a fourth of the first Harry Potter book. I did get through the first Twilight book and half way through the second one (I don't remember the titles), but just couldn't get hooked enough to finish. This pretty much banned me from many conversations as it seemed everyone was comparing themselves to the characters in the book when they first came out. The ironic thing is when asked to list my hobbies I usually put reading as one of them.

4. I am going to learn how to knit. At least I am going to try. There is a lady that comes to the Silver Sneakers class that I teach on Mondays who is going to help me. She made Cambri the cutest sweater that is just now fitting her and I love it!

5. I was homecoming queen in high school. I do realize that many of you already know this. I do not share this to brag because lets be honest it really isn't that cool. Let me say that when I first found out that I had been nominated I was really bummed. This meant that I was going to have to get up in front of the whole school and do a bunch of dumb things to try and win votes. This was unappealing for many reasons. A- I hate being in front of people when I am supposed to make them laugh. I am so not good at this. B- There were a lot of girls in my grade that loathed me. I perferred to not give them anything to make fun of. C-I had already attempted to run for class vice president and lost. I felt like I was going to have to relive that whole situation. Turns out the day of the assembly when I was supposed to get up in front of the whole school and make a fool of myself I was in California with the volleyball team. So one of the guys in my grade put on a wig and pretended to be me. I do remember that the night it was announced that I won someone bent the antenna on my car. Gotta love high school!

And there you have it. A lot of useless information about me. I am tagging all my sister-in-laws because they always say they don't have anything to blog about. And I want to get to know more about you all. The fact that you are a part of the Rencher family I know that you have a lot of fun stuff to share. So Janelle, Jenae, Mindy and Michelle tag you are it. And since i know you probably won't read this I will make sure to put it on your blog that you have been tagged.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Halloween Parties #2 and #3

We had such a fun Halloween. I think it helped to have it fall on a Friday. Last year I am pretty sure I was home alone while Nate was studying for a test.

Our cute little care bear family at the church Halloween party.

Here is my contribution to the party at Annie's house. I saw this idea on the Today show.

The cutest Care Bear ever! Cambri is always so intrigued by the camera that she is rarely smiling for pictures. She always looks like a deer in the headlights.

Favorite part of our costumes.

My friend Nikki made the cutest bee costume. This picture doesn't show her wings very well or her awesome yellow shoes! And yes that is Nathalie in the middle. Her costume was hilarious. Again this pic doesn't show the best part. She stuffed her bum to make it look like she had some junk in the trunk. And I should never be laughing in a picture. I look like a cheese ball.

Saturday night we went to a murder mystery dinner. Nate played the role of a singer. I was an aspiring actress. I finally had a reason to wear the leather pants one of my friends gave me.
Bunny finally has hair!

Monday, October 27, 2008

So do I pass as a brunnette...

I have been getting bored of my hair but not quite ready to cut it so I went to walmart got me a box of hair color and went to town. What do you think?

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Thanks Annie!

Annie Pinegar took these amazing pics of Cambri. They really turned out great. Of course it helps to have a cute baby!:)
Posted by Picasa

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Halloween Party #1...

Last night we went to a Halloween party that our friend Liz had at her apartment. It was a pumpking carving/caramel apple party. Nate and his friend Caleb turn everything they do into a competition so of course that is what happened with the pumpkin carving. When Caleb showed up with a carving kit complete with stencils to make really cool things Nate knew he had to get really creative to win. Even if it meant tormenting his child. It was a fun party and of course I ate way too much junk food. So the holiday season begins! I went a little crazy on costumes for Cambri this year so this is one of three that she will be sporting at all the parties this year. Nate and I have a few more up our sleeves as well. Be very afraid!

The cutest pumpkin ever! This picture makes her look even longer than she already is.

Apparently she was done being tormented by her parents. But thanks to Cambri her daddy won the pumpkin carving contest.

All the excitement tired out our little Eeyore.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Voting Encouragement

I thought you might need a little more persuasion to vote in this upcoming election!

click here

Thanks to Matt for finding this.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

A few nights ago Cambri was hanging out in her Bumbo chair while watching Nate do the dishes. She found everything he did hilarious. At one point all he did was pull some tupperware out of the cupboard and she starting giggling so loud. I decided I wanted to be a part of the fun. I went over and started singing songs and making faces at her (pretty much the same things Nate was doing to her). And the response I got?...She just opened her mouth as big as she could and tried to eat me. She again looked over at Nate and started giggling. I try again...same thing. Leans towards me and tries to eat me. This went on for a while. Nate and I are laughing at this point because it is obvious that Cambri has figured out that Daddy is the funny one and Mommy is the one that gives her food. If she wasn't so darn cute about it I might feel bad that her dad is so much better at making her laugh. Apparently I am doing my job of providing the food. So many of the people we meet say "wow she likes her food!"

Annie Photography

You have to check out my friend Annie Pinegar's blog. She just started up her own photography business. We did a little photo shoot with Cambri the other day and the pics turned out really cute.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Hidden Treasures

It doesn't look like much but this little box brought a lot of joy the day it arrived in the mail. My wonderful Grandma found it amongst all her recipes and sent it to me a few weeks ago. It belonged to my sweet momma. It is stuffed full of all her favorite recipes. I felt like I got a little peak into my mom's life as I read through each recipe card. I had originally inquired about my mom's cooking because the theme for the recipe club I attended was "Childhood Favorites". Sadly I couldn't remember much more than the chocolate chip cookies and apple turnovers my mom would make for afterschool snacks. And I am prett sure the turnovers were just the Pillsbury kind. I am sure we were fed many wonderful things but for some reason I don't have many memories of my life prior to age 8. After asking my grandma if she remembered any foods my mom made she dug this recipe box up and sent it to me. I had to laugh when I pulled out the section for salads because it was full of Jell-o salad recipes. I honestly didn't know you could put so many twists on Jell-o. I also found it interesting that some of the recipes called for MSG. I honestly don't know what that seasoning is I just know that all the Chinese restraunts have "NO MSG" painted on their windows.

For those of you who don't know, my mom died almost 19 years ago. Somedays I can't believe it has been that long. As time has passed it isn't painful to think about her. Rather I love remembering her any way I can. I still see her through the eyes of a 7 year old. Which means I place her on a pedistal. A few memories I do have of her are being a room mother at school. I remember her making "units" for me. Not sure if any of you remember the day of "units". Lets just say it is a good thing that fad did not last. I remember her doing my hair and me screaming that it hurt me. I remember singing Madona songs with her in the car. She could do no wrong. I am sure she had her weaknesses but not very many people remember any of them. Because of this I sometimes feel like I will never be as good a mom as she was. The more I learn about her the more I realize she was a very simple women. I wish I had more of her attributes. Whether or not she was perfect she will always be someone I will look to as I learn my role as mom.

About a month after Cambri was born it dawned on me that my mom would have been about the same age as I am right now when she had me. I was home alone with Cambri and I just started crying. I can't even imagine only have 7 short years with my baby girl. I can't help but think that my mom left this world kicking and screaming-because I know I would.

I sit here smiling as I think about her. If you are still reading this entry I want to say thank you for allowing me to reminisce. Hopefully it will get you thinking about your wonderful mom.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Rugby Scars...

This would be one reason why I was scared to have Nate play rugby... I can't get the picture to go the right way but you get the idea. Nate played rugby this last Saturday. I told him he shouldn't because he had so much homework. He promised he would only play the first half and be back in an hour. At 2:30 he calls me and says "We have to go to the hospital". This sends my imagination running. Obviously he isn't dying since I am talking to him on the phone, but the word hospital leaves me feeling nervous. Not to down play his battle wound but I told him next time to please say "I think I need stitches". Maybe not as dramatic, but better for my nerves. Luckily there was a clinic open til 4:00 which saved us from hanging out at the ER all day. The injury ended up requiring 18 stitches.
Just because this picture is much cuter to look at than the first one:)

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Back to Blogging...

We finally got the internet set up at our apartment so I am back to the blogging world. It feels so good! I have missed you all.

Am I a boy or a girl?

I was visiting a friend at work when one of her co-workers stopped by because he saw that there was a baby. He cooed at her and then asked "boy or girl?". I understand that her bald head can be deceiving but honestly who dresses their little girl in a purple shirt?

Family Campout...

Last weekend we took a little trip to the woods for a family campout. It worked out perfect because we were at one of those camping sites that had a bathroom and running water (the way I like it), but we were the only ones there so it felt isolated which satisfied Nate's needs. It really was a pretty place. We hope to use it much more next summer. I do have to say that I will be bringing a cot to sleep on next time. I forget that I am getting old and can't sleep on the hard ground anymore. I woke up to feed the baby feeling very ready for the sun to come up so the sleeping part could be over but it was only 1:55am. I took another peak at the clock at 3:00am, 4:00am and 5:00am. Nate was up about this time too which is definitely not his style. You know it was bad when Nate got up at 5:45am to make breakfast because he couldn't sleep anymore. So despite the sleeping part we had a great time.
All bundled up in the tent together.
The hard ground didn't seem to bother the baby at all. She snoozed the whole night.
Nate in all his glory. Nothing makes him more giddy than eating yummy breakfast foods that were cooked over the campfire. He was like a little kid at Christmas.