December 21, 2009

Happy Birthday!

BD4-tn.gifHappy Birthday Elsa & Clara!BD4-tn.gif

Graphic courtesy of Pat's Web Graphics.

Today is the day that we celebrate both Elsa and Clara's birthdays. As a special treat, I made them a birthday cake. I found a couple of recipes online. The same few recipes are listed on several sites (1, 2, 3, 4, and 5). I made the Peanut Butter Delight Dog Birthday Cake. Both Elsa and Clara really liked it.

Peanut Butter Delight Dog Birthday Cake

1 cup white or whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup shredded carrots
1 tsp vanilla
1/3 cup honey
1 egg


Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C)

Mix together flour and baking soda. Add remaining ingredients and mix well. Pour into a ring mold sprayed with a nonstick spray for 40 minutes.

Frost this cake with low fat cottage cheese and decorate with carrot pieces. Store in refrigerator.

August 17, 2009

New Car

Clara now has health insurance. Yes, our dog has health insurance. It was cheaper to take out an insurance policy rather than pay the vet bill. The good news is that she is feeling better. She still has to finish out her antibiotics, but she is no longer moping around and peeing indoors. I think we finally have the smell out of Alex's room. If not, then I am just going to rip out the carpet and install hardwood flooring. Hardwood floors were my first choice for the bedrooms, but our builder didn't offer them as an option.

My parents left on Saturday. While they were here they played with Alex a lot. My mom ordered Kobe Beef Steaks. My dad grilled them while they were here. The steaks were pretty good. My mom and I made some candy. My $5.00 Wal-Mart mixer finally died after about 7 or 8 years of use. The candy was too thick and the motor started burning up. My mom decided to buy me a mixer and we headed to Wal-Mart. They didn't have a lot of choices and my mom wasn't happy with any of them. We went to Macy's the next day and I am now the proud owner of a Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer, Hand Mixer, and Food Processor (Architect Series).

Friday, while Gabe was at work, we all went to have pictures made. It will be my parent's gift for grandparent's day. They should be in around the end of the month. I also made five more Christmas presents and wrapped presents. Yes, you read that right, I wrapped Christmas presents. My Dad had some extra space in his suitcase, so he offered to take some presents back with him. This will save us money since we won't have to ship them. There are still some presents that we will be taking with us in December, but anything I can send back with someone helps. I told my Dad that if his checked bag was randomly selected for a search, the people would think he was crazy for having wrapped Christmas presents in his luggage.

My Jeep arrived on Saturday morning (we had it shipped from Illinois) along with the check for the new car. After everything was together, we went to the car dealer to buy Gabe's car. He ended up purchasing a Ford Escape. I will try to take a picture later and post it.

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Alex driving the Jeep.

August 11, 2009

New Car...Maybe

Alex and I picked up his pictures on Friday. I will try to post them sometime this week. These are much better than the 6 month pictures. Friday night Gabe decided to start looking at new cars. He is considering trading in my Jeep. We told my dad that he could have it, but apparently no one really uses it. He is happy that we might be able to use it to get a new car. So, that is how our Friday night was spent, at the car dealer.

Saturday afternoon was also spent at the car dealer. The only catch to the plan is that my Jeep is in Illinois and the car dealer is in Arizona. Every attempt that we have made to get the car out here has fallen through. At this point, it may or may not happen. We did manage to make it to Babies R Us to get Alex some more baby food and another sleep sack. He is outgrowing all of his current ones.

Sunday we did not go to the car dealer, but Gabe did work on the logistics of getting the car to Arizona. We went to Wal-Mart to look for a birthday present. Our great-nephew will be 4 this month and he likes the comic book heroes. Well, Wal-Mart didn't have an age appropriate toy or shirt, so I just ordered something online. Hopefully it will get here this week so my parents can take it back with them. They should be arriving tonight.

Yesterday was allergy shot day. The entire process takes 2.5 to 3 hours. While I was at the doctor's, Gabe ran an errand. We stopped at IHOP on the way home as well as AutoZone. I wanted to hit the grocery store, but Alex was getting sleepy and it was near his bedtime, so we just went back home.

I have a ton of stuff to do today. My parents are coming tonight and I don't know how much I will be able to get done once they arrive, I also have to take Clara to the vet. She has peed in the house twice since we returned from South Carolina. At first we thought it was Elsa. She did not get her bladder medicine while we were gone. This morning Gabe caught Clara peeing on the carpet and there was blood in it. I am assuming she has either a bladder or kidney infection and needs antibiotics.

April 14, 2009


On Saturday (April 4) I decided we were cleaning out the garage. We got a head start by working on it a few hours on Friday night. We finished it Saturday! We had a ton of recyclables, some trash, and a truck full of items that we donated to the local thrift store. Gabe had to wait until trash/recycle day to be able to park his truck in the garage, but it is there now!

My parents flew in on Tuesday evening. Wednesday we went to the mall and did some shopping while Gabe was at work.

Friday morning Gabe and my Dad dropped Elsa and Clara off to get their teeth cleaned and we all headed to Tombstone. We walked around the downtown area and had dinner at a local restaurant.

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Tombstone Sign

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Tombstone Carriage Ride Tour

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Bird Cage Theatre

We were stopped by the border police on the way back. I think that was my parents first border check. We came back and picked up the dogs. They have a follow up appointment in a couple of weeks. When we came back from Tombstone our yard was mostly finished. There are a few finishing touches here and there that should be completed this week. So, I am going to hold off on posting pictures of our yard until it is completely done.

We went out to dinner at Solaris on Friday night.

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"Air Alex". He likes to stick his tongue out when he "flies" through the air.

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Gabe & Alex at Solaris

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Stephanie & Alex at Solaris

Saturday night was a lot of fun. We played Wii and had prime rib. Yummy! They left bright and early on Sunday morning.

We worked on organizing things in our house Sunday. Gabe managed to hang one of our two outdoor ceiling fans and we rearranged our patio furniture. We had some leftover prime rib, so we had it for Easter dinner. If things weren't so busy, we might have invited some of the other people from Illinois that are living in Arizona over for Easter dinner. Maybe next year.

We didn't take Alex to have his picture made with the Easter Bunny this year. So, I snapped a picture of Alex with one of our decorations.

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Alex and bunny.

Yesterday we dropped my car off at the dealer. I need a new fan belt. I received a phone call this morning and they informed me that they don't have the part they need. So, I will be without a car until Wednesday evening. I was going to the post office, grocery store, drug store, and Wal-Mart today, but it is a little difficult without a car. I guess we will be running a few errands once Gabe gets home from work. At some point I will post some pictures of our house. Most likely it will be sometime next week. We are getting ready for our party this Saturday (the one we previously canceled due to illness).

I have recently started using Google Reader and I love it. Instead of having to look at all of the blogs I read, I can quickly go to the blogs that have new posts. An added plus, I can post to blogs that only allow individuals with blogger accounts to comment.

I hope everyone had a great Easter!

January 24, 2009

New Camera

I have a new camera! Gabe ordered one for me. I still miss my old camera.

We are still working on our house. Today the furniture repairman came today. He stayed from 9:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. repairing the damage to most of our furniture. Quite a few items were deemed non-repairable and we were given cash for them. I even helped repair a few pieces. The pieces I worked on were items that were not damaged by the movers and so he did not have to repair them. He gave me the supplies and showed me how to do it. So, I worked on a rocking chair and ottoman as well as a table and chairs set. He is out of Phoenix. If anyone is looking for a great furniture repair guy in the state of Arizona I can help you out. He actually covers the entire state and he is very reasonable.

Alex in his swing.


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This is off of the prickly pear cactus from our front yard. It was broken and apparently you can just plant it and it will grow. We will have to wait and see.

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We used a gift container from Christmas to serve as our time capsule. We will open it on January 1, 2010.

February 5, 2008

Cookies, Candy, Chocolate, & Clara

One more day until a day off! I have not been keeping up with my to do list today though. I have been getting up earlier in the mornings to get a few things done. Today I managed all of the laundry and picking up a few rooms.
Clara has not been the best dog lately. This past weekend, while my parents were visiting, Clara decided to eat the food left out on the counter in the kitchen. We have left food on the counter before and she always left it alone. She basically had to stand on her hind legs to reach the counter with her head and front legs. She managed to eat about two dozen cookies, an entire package of valentines candy (including aluminum foil), Godiva chocolate covered raspberries (I bought them for Gabe for our anniversary) , and some other things that I can't remember. She threw it all up in a pile, red aluminum foil and all, that my dad described as "a three inch tall pile". We hoped that she had learned her lesson. So, today when I went to work I decided to give her another chance and let her roam free around the house. That was my mistake. When I came home tonight, Gabe informed me that Clara ate a package of chocolate covered blueberries, fudge, oatmeal cookies, sugar candy, and a cookie from Ron Paul. She must really like chocolate, cookies, and chocolate covered fruit. Somehow she managed to stand up on her hind legs enough to remove a bowl with batter out of the sink and then proceed to lick the batter out of the bowl.
We just finished watching American Idol. I am getting tired of the auditions. I think that they are getting on with the "real show" next least I am hoping. Currently we are watching Welcome to The Captain. It is different. I will probably give it another week.
I just finished P.S. I Love You by Cecelia Ahern. It is about a girl named Holly and her ability to cope when her spouse is taken from her by an illness. She must put her life back together. It is not my normal type of book, but it wasn't terrible. I will probably watch the movie to see how it compares to the book. It will probably be a renter since I doubt that Gabe will be too interested in watching it. Cecelia Ahern is also one of the creators of Samantha Who?, a show that I like. Well, maybe I should get back to my list.

July 1, 2006

Ahh...the pool

Today Clara thought that it would be fun to bark out the sliding glass window at 6:00 a.m. Normally this wouldn't bother me, but I was really looking forward to sleeping in today. The barking apparently only bothered me, and I went downstairs to quiet her. Gabe stayed in bed asleep. Finally the curtains had to be drawn to keep her from peeking out the window. At least here she will go outside. The sound of the fireworks in my neighborhood in Chicago scare her so much that she won't go outside anymore. She has managed to use the bathroom twice in our apartment because she really just doesn't want to go outdoors. The noises don't phase Elsa at all.
We ordered Mimmo's pizza and while we waited on it to cook Gabe and I hit the pool. It was pretty relaxing.
My mom's kitchen is pretty well finished. She just needs to organize some things. So, my sister and I went through about 5 boxes of kitchen items that she no longer wants. It was like Christmas. We just went through and took what we wanted. Unfortunately there isn't really room for us to bring it back right now, so we are going to get it next time we are down.

May 26, 2006

On my way to get the dogs

We left Chicago around 5:00 p.m. Since it is Memorial Day weekend there is a bit more traffic than normal. Gabe said that he heard a report that this would be the busiest travel day ever. Well, we started to leave and decided to wait a few hours since the way that we take to get to my parents had a travel time of an hour and twenty minutes for three miles. I could run it faster than that! We arrived at their house around midnight and my dad was on his way to bed as we walked in. Both Elsa and Clara were pretty excited to see us. We are going to bed.