Wednesday, December 17, 2014

With Grateful Hearts- November 2014

 We were so lucky to get to spend much of the month of November at my parents' house. My husband had to take the National Dental Boards (no biggie!) just a few days before Thanksgiving and rather than being a widow while he studied ALL day everyday for a month, we decided to go to Utah where I could spend time with family and he could study away to his heart's content!  I am so proud of how hard he studied and that he PASSED his boards! This is one thing I am so grateful for this season! I am also grateful that we could spend a few weeks with family and have so much fun!

To start off I thought I'd share a few of my favorite things from November - 

 First up: free printables! These are so so cute and I love everything she has on her blog! Seriously!

And how cute is this turkey sandwich from Jill Dubien at =)

As you know, I also love and all of her free homeschool printable activities and worksheets for kids! I use her stuff all the time to do preschool with my 2 year old and I love that it is themed into units! We loved her November themed activities this month!

And I loved these incredibly cute Thanksgiving crafts at! Super cute! We did a few and they were so fun!

As for our trip to Utah, we did so many fun things it would be impossible to give a re-cap of everything so I will just share a few of my favorite highlights!

At the top of my list, I am so grateful for the amount of time we were able to spend at the Salt Lake City LDS temple! My husband and I enjoyed a beautiful morning doing some ordinance work  and then having a delicious, warm and quiet lunch together at the Lion House afterwards. Yay for dates! And yay for Grandmas who babysit!

We also took our little family down to Temple Square one afternoon to show them around and walk through the Visitors Center and Joseph Smith Memorial Building along with the temple grounds.  

Then, the week of Thanksgiving we had the amazing opportunity to attend the sealing of my nephew Michael to his family. My sister and her husband adopted Michael from China last year at the age of six. He has been an incredible addition to our family and we are so in love with him!  

Each year my mom gathers her children together around the holidays and counsels us and gives us a theme for the year. This year (2014) our theme was becoming sanctified through the TEMPLE and I can't explain how cool it was to end our year by ALL being in the temple together! To sit in the gorgeous sealing room with my brothers and sisters and watch Michael become a part of our family for time and all eternity was one of the most memorable and celestial experiences of my life. 

One of the things I am most grateful for is the Temple. For the peace and beauty and power that resounds there and for my eternal family. 

I am also grateful for all of the fun time my kids got to spend with their cousins! We went to the Curiosity Museum, the Living Planet Aquarium and the Hogle Zoo to name just a few places!  And we loved every minute of the cold weather that we don't get in Arizona! 

On Thanksgiving day we enjoyed a beautiful meal with my family. I always love the little finishing touches my mom puts on everything, like her beautiful Thanksgiving china and the little after-dinner mints that she puts out each year. And I love that we gather before the meal and always have a family devotional. It always brings the spirit and helps us remember what we have to be thankful for. 

And I am SO thankful for this little girly who celebrated her FIRST Thanksgiving. 

We also got family pictures taken by my sister-in-law Caitlin! She is always sooooo nice to do these for us, especially since I have a little somebody that does NOT like having his pictures taken. ;)

More than anything, I am thankful for my little family and the opportunity that I have to be a wife and a mother. Nothing in this world brings me more joy than this family of mine. 

 Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving too!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Dia de los Muertos

   I thought it would be fun to just show you guys a few of the fun things my family did this year for our annual celebration of Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead. To learn more about what Day of the Dead is and why my family celebrates it, see my previous posts: 

Living away from home means that I don't get to take part in my family's annual Day of the Dead party. My sister-in-law Caitlin took some pictures though of the fun and festivities so we could try to feel like we were there :) 

Each year, everyone in my family dresses up for the occasion! Ah my cute family, I miss them so much!

My sister Jenn made homemade pumpkin donuts!

And my mom served a feast of delicious things including enchiladas, pan de maize, Mexican rice, and imported Mexican sodas.  

Although we were sad we couldn't be at the party, my little family and I celebrated in our way down here in Arizona. 

We read my favorite little book that talks all about this holiday in Mexico and has the cutest illustrations. We learned all about the traditional foods Mexico eats, and the flowers and other customs they use to celebrate this festive time of year.

We made some fun pumpkins and Calaveras de Azucar ("sugar skulls"):

And we stopped by our amazing Panaderia for some real Pan de Muerto (the traditional sweet bread called "Bread of the Dead") and of course some sugar cookies:

 I had to get a "piggy cookie" because it is so reminiscent of my childhood days in Mexico. We used to always get these cookies when we'd visit the panaderia where we lived:

Pan de Muerto:

Hope you all have a wonderful time celebrating this fun time of year in whatever fashion your family loves!

Happy Halloween and Feliz Dia de los Muertos!


Thursday, October 9, 2014


Here are links to my October posts with LOTS of fun ideas for celebrating the month of October with your children, friends and family. There are fun kid crafts and tasty Halloween treats, warm and hearty autumn recipes, Columbus days activities, and even suggestions for throwing a Harvest Dinner or celebrating Day of the Dead (Dia de los Muertos)! Take a look at the traditions that make my family's October so special and fun!