Thursday, July 30, 2009


I have to dedicate this post to three different people. First to my bestest girl Kate, who introduced me to Twilight before it was so "cool", to my dear friend Sarah, who is, I believe, an even bigger Twilight fan than I am and third, to my dear friend Rene, because she just couldn't understand why in the world I was driving to Forks. Her comment to me on Sunday as she grabbed my hand was, "Traci, you know Edward isn't real right, and he doesn't actually live in Forks!!" Yes, my sweet Rene, I know this, but I still had to go there and just imagine - him, me, the meadow. You get the idea!! Check out this sign.

So, on Thursday of our vacation my mom and I planned to drive to Forks and take in all the "sights". And yes, I know they didn't film the movie there, but that is where it all happened in the books so hush up!! My friend Lavonda decided to take the day of and join us when she found out we were going and it made for an absolutely perfect day!! Three adults with my three kids and off we went. Four hours later we made it to Forks and I am so NOT kidding when I say we were not alone!! When we pulled up in front of the visitors center there had to be at least 20 other cars there and guess what - they were all doing the exact same thing we were. It was unreal!! Everywhere we went people were there taking pictures and buying souveniers just like us!! It was crazy!! So, our first stop was of course, driving into town and seeing the welcome sign.
Then we went to the visitors center and got our map and took pictures of the replica of Bella's truck that they had parked out front.

Next, we drove to Bella's house, or what it might have been if they had filmed there. They had a sign out front that said - Home of The Swans. Too cute.

Then we went to Forks Community Hospital and got to see where Dr. Cullen parks one of his fabulous cars everyday before he goes to work. I couldn't resist lying down in his spot, just to be closer to him.

After that we headed to Forks High School, where of course, Bella and Edward go to school. This was definitely a highlight.

Then it was Forks City Hall, where the police department is housed and Charlie works. I even got a pic of a real Forks City police car!!

And last, but not least, was Forks version of what the Cullen house would have been. Not what I pictured at all, but I think it was the best they could do.

After taking in all the sights we ate at a local pizza parlor and hit the stores like crazy. They have a store downtown that is called Dazzled by Twilight that exclusively sells Twilight stuff and does Twilight tours. And every other drug store or hardware store touts all Twilight things for sale. Did I already mention there were tons of people there? I'm still flabbergasted by it. It was so full of Twilight fans on a Thursday in July. Awesome. After doing some shopping we had to head out to La Push beach of course, which is about 20 minutes outside of town. It was beautiful and the day was literally gray and cloudy, just like it should be in Forks!! This sign was posted on the road right before we crossed over onto Quilete land. Love it!!

And this is La Push beach. Looks exactly like I pictured it in my head. I filled my pockets with beautiful rocks from the beach and they will find a special place in my shrine to Twilight I have in my office.

When my husband saw this picture he thought I had done this on the beach. It took me a while to convince him that it was already there and I just stole a pic. It really was though!! I love it, but I didn't do it!!

And this was the other side of the sign when we were driving off the reservation.

And this is me and my Edward!! Don't we look good together!! We stopped at a gas station and this was sitting on the front porch of the store and the sign said to go ahead and take pics, so I couldn't pass this up. Eat your heart out Sarah!!

It turned out to be the best day of my whole vacation - stop laughing Rene - and we were so pooped out by the time we got home at 10:00 pm. We spent almost six hours in Forks, Forks people!! It was a blast. And I will forever remember it now with my bumper sticker that will stay on my van forever. It says, Twilight Mom - Forks, WA.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Bad News/Good News

You know how everyone usually wants to know the good news first? Well, I thought I'd try it the other way around and tell you our bad news first and then on to happier stuff once I get that out of the way!! Unfortunately, Todd lost his job here in Spokane. Hasn't been too huge of a shock because he and his boss didn't see eye to eye on a lot of stuff and Todd hasn't been happy for awhile. The hard part is that he signed a no compete clause in his contract which means we basically can't work for another doctor in Spokane for the next three years. So all of this means that we are looking anywhere and everywhere in the state of Washington for another job and any prayers on our behalf would be greatly appreciated!! The only way really to be able to stay in Spokane would be to do something other than chiropractic, but that just doesn't make any sense to me at all. That's what he does, that's what he loves. We'll keep you posted on where this adventure called life is taking us next!! Now, enough bad news. We just got back from a week and a half out at my parents house and we had a fun, relaxing time.

Drove over on Thursday, the 16th, and I will admit my kids did really well. It's a six hour drive, so I stopped every two hours to go potty, eat, or just let the kids run around for a little and we had no major temper tantrums or breakdowns, so yay!! The traffic was really great until I got on I-5 going south and I swear it took us forever to get to Chehalis!! What's with all the cars people?!? But we made it safe and sound and my kids couldn't get out of the car fast enough when we got to Grandma's house.

Friday we went grocery shopping in the morning and then played outside the rest of the day because it was HOT!! While we were playing outside we had another what I like to call "Marcus Moment". As I was changing him from his shorts to his swimming trunks he told me he had to go potty. I told him to just go for it and he literally walked over to the fence around the yard and proceeded to pee all over it!! Boys are born gross. I didn't even tell him what to do he just went and did it, like it was instinctual or something. I swear. We laughed so hard I think we all pee'd in our pants just a little. For the rest of the week I could barely get the kid to pee in a toilet. He kept wanting to go outside and "paint" Papa's white fence a lovely shade of yellow. I took pics, but I can't sensor the naked butt so the hubby asked me to refrain from showing our son's naked butt all over the internet. Too funny!! Apparently my parents kiddy pool had a hole in it so we had to resort to this for our water entertainment!!
That night one of my friends was having an open house for her son that was leaving on a mission (Way to go Richard!!) so I headed over for the party. Forgot my camera, but it was great because tons of people from my old Adna ward were there and I got to visit and catch up with them. After the party was over my girl Clarissa and I headed out for some much needed girl time and let's just say, I didn't get home until 1:00 am!! I love you Clarissa! We had to squeeze all our visiting into one night because she was going to be at girls camp the whole time I was visiting. So fun!!

Saturday, we headed up to Olympia so the kids could go visit Lavonda and Annie and we could have some free time. We dropped them off and my parents and Todd and I went out for lunch and then did some shopping. (Since Todd wasn't working he joined us for a few days on our vacation and then headed back to continue the job search)

Sunday we went to church and I seriously sent Todd in early to save "our" row. Our family has gone to church in the same building for forever and we have sat in the same pew for as long as I can remember. Now that it's just mom and dad they don't always sit there and I was like, well, we are today!! I'm pretty sure that one of my siblings has carved the name Jarman on that bench somewhere after all these years!! After church Lavonda and Annie came down and we just ate and visited and played games and totally by accident Vonda and Raquel were dressed the same!! How cute are they?!?

Monday we took the kids to see Ice Age 3 and then Grandma took them home and Todd and I went out on a date. He took me to dinner at Applebee's and then to see Transformers 2. At dinner I told him we've been married too long. You see, we didn't talk to each other. We each had our magazine's that we wanted to read so we each read and didn't really talk until our food came. Either we are really comfortable with one another or we need help. I like to think that we are just comfortable and we don't have to talk all the time!!

Tuesday we took the kids to the Tacoma zoo. It was fun, but holy hecka really hot!! We were dying by the end of the day!! And so were the animals. A lot of them were hiding out in their pens to try and find some shade. The aquarium was the best because it had AC. We did it twice!! And the polar bears were just catching some zzz's when we first walked in but then it was feeding time and the guy was throwing the fish right at the window we were standing in front of, so that ended up being the best part of the day. Watching that huge animal eat fish and fruit right in front of us was pretty awesome. Before we left the park we let the kids ride the carousel and they loved it. I couldn't get Raigan off! She started screaming every time we tried to take her off so I think we went on the thing like four times in a row!!

Wednesday we had a play date at my friend Rene's house. Her daughter and Raquel are the same age and I brought Marcus along because the kid is permanently attached to my side. They played for hours and Rene and I visited and visited and laughed and laughed. At one point someone got Nerf guns out and there ended up being a horrible war. Pretty sure Rene and I won!! Thanks for the visit Rene!!

Thursday we went to Forks, but that deserves a whole post all on it's own so I will not say anything about that yet!!

Friday and Saturday we just played and read and tried to stay cool because it was REALLY HOT by then!! Sunday I packed and Monday we drove home. It was a great vacation, but I am pooped and ready to just be home for a bit. I have to get ready for my next round of guests though. My sister will be flying in from Utah to stay for a week and my parents will be driving over at the same time so we're looking forward to seeing them next Friday!!

Sunday, July 12, 2009


I realized as I sat at my computer tonight that I don't have anything to blog about!! I guess we've had a pretty boring week here. I don't even have any pictures on my camera - not a one!! The only mildly interesting thing I can think of was when I took Marcus in for his well child check up on Thursday. First of all, the doctor wants him in for more testing on his speech because he is very concerned that no one understands him except for me. He said by his age strangers should be able to understand what he says and I just laughed and told him that wasn't happening. I also told him I took him into a speech therapist through the school district who told me he was fine. But the doc says it's not okay, so we have to go to an audiologist and then probably another speech therapist. Yay. Anyhoo, that's not the funny part. The doctor had to check Marcus' private area to make sure it was all okay and for the rest of the day Marcus would crack up laughing and say - "The doctor looked at my weiner." The kid thought it was hilarious. I swear - boys!! Well, I might not post for a bit because we'll be packing this week and heading out to visit Grandma and Papa. Have a good one!!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Soda Free

I have officially been off soda (of any kind) for thirty days!! Yay, me!! I know that most of you that know me are thinking, yeah, we've heard this one from her before!! In fact I think this is my third attempt just this year to kick my horrible habit, but I just keep on trying. I know it's horrible for me and all the bad things it does to my body, but I still love it. So, this choice to quit drinking it is HUGE for me!! When I get stressed I swear to you just hearing a soda can open and that fizz sound can calm me down. So, I guess now I am never going to be calm again!! Everyone told me it would help in the whole weight department too, but I have yet to see the rewards of that little rumor!! So, tip one back for me because I can't and it's on to the next thirty days!!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Bike Riding Attempt #2

Okey, dokey. The whole bike riding thing is not going well. So, I am totally up for any suggestions anyone might have. I'm pretty sure it has something to do with all her dramatics (don't have any idea where she got that from), but she acts like it's some kind of punishment to be doing this and she hates it!! At least Raigan had fun this time!!

Happy 4th of July!!

Happy 4th to everyone and especially Happy Birthday to my brother Neil who also gets to celebrate on this day!! In fact, congratulations are in order because Neil and his girlfriend Suzanne got engaged this weekend while they were in New York City to celebrate his birthday!! Yay!! We had a really mellow fourth because you're not allowed to do fireworks over here and we definitely weren't taking Raigan out that late and just listen to her cry at one of the shows they put on. So, the extent of our fireworks were some sparklers in the backyard which of course Marcus had to go and burn his finger on and then was miserable the rest of the night!! My husband actually did buy some other fireworks, but I hid them. Yup, I did!! What is it with guys and their need to see things blow up!!?? I was just so mad because hello, we live in the city now and in a rental for pete's sake and what if something happened or someone called the cops, then what would ya do? So, I wouldn't let him light them off. I know, I know, I'm such a drag, but I have been around one to many "accidents" (Bubba) and I wasn't having any of it. They are still hidden and no one knows where they are but me!! Tee-Hee!! My sister informed me that I have the same complaint every fourth of July that my husband spends too much on fireworks and I hate it and so on and so forth!! Thanks, sis!! It's like watching my grocery money go up in smoke!!


Todd had Friday off from work (yay), so we decided to do the version of camping that works for our family of little ones right now. And that was to put up the tent in our back yard and pretend that we were sleeping somewhere else!! Hey, don't knock it - the kids had a blast and I got to sleep inside in my bed because somebody had to be inside with Raigan!! We built a "fire", made smores and Raquel begged her daddy to tell her scary stories. It ended up only being Raquel and Todd outside and I ended up inside with the other kids, but they all had fun playing in the tent for a couple of days. And that will be the extent of our camping for this summer!!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Marcus & Raigan Playing Together

Typical mom post, but my two youngest were playing in Raigan's toy bin the other day for a LONG time and just being all around cute together so I of course had to snap some pics. For some reason they wanted to be in the bin and they wanted ALL the toys piled in on top of them. Hey, they were bottle fed, okay, give them a break!! They're such weirdos!!

New Vampire Series

I just wanted to let all my fellow vampire lovers out there know that I stumbled across a new series that is really good!! I was looking for something about vampires, but of course I didn't want to get anything that was too violent and gross. So I bought the first book in this series at Target to see if it was any good and hello - they had me by the end of the first chapter. Now, if you are super sensitive about some things then it's not for you. There is a lot of cussing and some shall we say questionable moments, but nothing that's gonna make you blush or anything. So you were warned and you can't come back and get after me if you read them. I understand my threshold for the inappropriate is probably much higher than most, but I told my mom to go buy them for heaven's sake so I think you'll all be okay!! Anyhoo, enough blabbering - they are called The House of Night series by authors PC & Kristen Cast. There are five books out so far and the sixth is coming out in November (hello, best month ever - New Moon!!). The books are called Marked, Betrayed, Chosen, Untamed and Hunted. It's kind of a cross between Twilight and Harry Potter. You've got teenagers, vampires, a vampire school, magic, and so on. Now, the cheapest I have seen them is at Costco for like five bucks. Next best place was WalMart and then Target. So, go check them out and if any of my ladies in Spokane wants them I have all five and you can borrow!! Happy reading!!

One Year Anniversary

I can not believe we have lived in Spokane for a year!! Time has sure flown. I personally, have learned a lot about myself and my family in this past year, so I thought I would bore you with the details. Try not to enjoy!!

1. I can in fact, survive without my mother living two minutes away from me. I don't like it, actually, I hate it, but I have survived. I can take all my kids with me everywhere I need to go and somehow get done everything I wanted to get done. I didn't use to have to do that cuz they could go to Grandma's house any time I wanted to ditch them.

2. I can survive my husband working way more hours than he has ever worked in our whole marriage and be extra appreciative of the time that he is home with us.

3. I can go from having "it all" to having "just enough" and be totally happy about it. Sure it has been hard, but I think my whole family has learned to live with less and enjoy finding more affordable ways to entertain ourselves, shop, etc. We have even learned in a pinch you can sell all kinds of stuff on craigslist to take care of unexpected things!!

4. I have definitely learned that what we have is enough. We have a job, our kids are healthy and happy, our cars run (for now), our bills are paid and the pantry is full. We have enough.

5. My relationship with my husband is of the utmost importance. Without love and communication and utter devotion to one another I am positive the things of "this world" that we have had to go through over the past two years would have done us in.

6. I can make new friends!! This was a scary one for me because I had such a fantastic group of friends back home that I was actually so nervous about moving to a new place and trying to fit in. But there are good people everywhere and we always seem to find each other, don't we? I am so thankful for the church for that. How scary would it be to go somewhere where you don't know a soul and not have a bishop you know you can call and a ward to become a part of.

7. The weather here is way intense. Since we have moved here we were within blocks of having to be evacuated because of a really bad wildfire, we have seen wicked thunder and lightning storms, we have had over two feet of snow accumulate within 24 hours and basically been snowed in, we have experienced below zero temperatures and seriously crazy wind storms. We have also heard that emergency broadcast thing on the TV tons of times. And not the test thing they do people - the real deal!! So much so that it doesn't even phase me anymore. I just get pissed because they are interrupting my TV watching.

8. I know the best thing I have learned in this experience is that my Heavenly Father is aware of me and my family and He does love us so much. He takes care of us and knows our needs and wants us to try our best. And He forgives me and loves me for me - and all the faults I carry around daily. I am so grateful to Him.

I'm sure there are tons more things I have learned, but those are the ones that have been floating around in my head for the past two days, so I thought it would be fun to share. Here's to year two in Spokane!!