Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter!!

We hope your day was filled with family, friends, bunnies, chocolate and eggs!!


Heather, Danny, Aspen and Gracie

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Happy 4th Birthday Aspen!!

I still remember when Aspen was a tiny little guy, when we brought him home he weighed a mere 14lbs and was only 9 weeks old!! This may not seem small to some of you but now that Aspen is 88lbs it is small to me. Well to further add to what a big boy he is, 2 days ago he celebrated his 4th birthday!!

I miss my little puppy Aspen. I still remember the first day I met him like it was yesterday. We sat and played with him and his brother deciding which one would be right for our home. Aspen was the bigger and more calm of the two, his brother was crazy hyper but so cute (I wish we could have taken both, it broke my heart to leave his brother behind. I hope he ended up with an equally loving home). I loved how when we took him home to our apartment, he had his favorite little corner that he would seek out for comfort, it was his den. All he wanted to do was sleep and all Danny wanted him to do was be awake. Danny even told the vet something must be wrong with him because he slept all the time! The vets response, of course, “he sleeps all time because he is a baby!”


He spent his first week with us at our apartment and then the three of us (Danny, Me and Aspen) moved into our first home together. His favorite toy when he was a puppy was peoples keys, he was always stealing them from people, so I found him a set of puppy teething keys that he carried everywhere with him. The keys had a good run as his favorite puppy toy, until he wasn’t so puppy anymore and the big dog in him destroyed them!! Now it is only the toughest toys for him and those have an average life span of a few months.


He has always been a good dog with his own personality. When we took him to puppy training he was the star of his class…of course (he takes after me)! The teacher always used him as an example and when other dogs would get snappy Aspen would just look at them like what in the heck is wrong with that dog. People always remark about how mellow he is for a lab, we can have a house full of people and he will keep to himself unless you invite him over. The other thing that surprises people about Aspen is that he really could care less about eating. Before we had Gracie (Chub, Chub), we would just fill up Aspen’s bowl and he would munch on it all week, taking bites here and there as he got hungry. How lucky were we?!


Even though I miss my puppy Aspen, I love my big Aspen even more! I love how when we take him to the dog beach, even though you can see his leg hurts, he plays as hard as he can until we tell him that is enough. I love how on the weekends he will curl up with me in bed and nap until I decide it is time to get up. I love how when Danny is at home working his favorite spot is to be curled up in a ball under the desk, with his head propped up on Danny’s feet. I love how he can destroy a toy in a matter of minutes, but that he has a favorite stuffed animal toy that he is so gentle with and is careful not to destroy, he treats it like his baby. I love how he is fiercely independent but at the same times thinks no number of kisses is too many. And I even love how the dog that doesn’t care about eating won’t let me sleep in on the weekends because he needs to eat by 7:00am and won’t rest until I feed him. He usually wakes me up with a kiss to the face and when I ignore that, he paws at the bed until I relent, get up, go down stairs and fill his food bowl only to watch him take one bite and then walk around for 10 minutes before he takes a second bite. Yes we do this EVERY Saturday and Sunday.

So of course since I love him so much we had to celebrate his birthday!! I had work and school on his birthday but that doesn’t mean he can’t get presents. On Sunday I made Danny go with me to PetSmart in order to find what I thought would be the perfect present. What I wanted to get him was a raised food stand, I always feel bad because he looks so awkward when he eats and I worry that bending down to his dish hurts his bad leg. No luck…the only ones available at PetSmart were too short and too expensive, however I do have my eye on a hand made, personalized one I found on Ebay that is very reasonably priced. As a back-up I wanted to get him a “natural bone” which is his favorite. I went to TWO Targets looking for these but both were out, so sad. So what did Aspen get instead? He got a football t-shirt (sooo cute), a doggy pizza that he shared with his sister, a bag of strip beef treats and a tug toy!! All in all I think he made out!!





Happy 4th Birthday Aspen!! I love you, thanks for being such a great doggy!!

Monday, March 10, 2008

The World's Ugliest Dog and the World's TWO Cutest Dogs!!

I think that when the phrase, "a face only a mother could love", was made, it was with this dog in mind. I have seen this dog before but EVERY TIME I see it scares the crap out of me!! I mean what is this thing...a dog...a cat...or did someone spill water on Gizmo!! He is actually a Chinese Crested Chihuahua mix, which now hold on to your pants for this one, is a popular breed in the World's Ugliest Dog Contest, I know shocking. Hehehe.

This poor little guy is so ugly it makes me feel sorry for him and almost makes him cute (I said almost!).

I may be a little partial on this one but I happen to think that living in my house are the World's Two Cutest Dogs!!

Aspen, who is going to be 4 in just a week, is my little baby. He is so independent and doesn't need anyone. He is an expert at slamming the door to his bedroom (otherwise known as my closet) when he just wants some alone time. When the family is cuddling in the bed at night I have to beg Danny not to touch him, because for whatever reason, this makes him mad. If you touch him while he is trying to sleep he gets up, gives you a dirty look, promptly jumps off the bed and heads straight to "his bedroom"! He is also sure to let you know when you have done something he doesn't like. The first time Danny and I cleaned his ears, as soon as we were finished he ran into the bedroom, jumped up on the bed, turned around to look at Danny and I, making sure he had eye contact and proceeded to open the flood gates! That is right... he peed all over our bed!!

At the same time he is such a smart guy! You can tell him to go get a specific toy and he will run upstairs and pick that toy out of all his toys, and he has around 30 toys! Ever since he was a puppy he has loved to lay on soft things and prop his head up on a pillow, I swear sometimes I think he is human. Hehehe. He also loves to give kisses more than any dog I have met. This is great if you are having a bad day because he is always there to make you feel loved!!

Now Gracie on the other hand is the exact opposite of Aspen!! She has to be the most needy timid dog I have ever met. In fact she can't go to the vet with out Aspen because the stress would be just to much for her to handle. She needs her big brother. I feel obligated to mention that Gracie came with her name and there is absolutely nothing graceful about her! She will run at you with all her love and excitement and the only way she knows how to stop is to crash into you with all 84 pounds! You can't yell at her for the this because anytime you yell at her she just crumbles to the ground, looking up at you with her puppy dog look and it just breaks your heart. When it comes time to cuddle in the bed Gracie can't get close enough to you!! She cuddles up right along side me so we are spooning (yes me and my doggies spoon), the whole time wiggling to see if she can get just a tad closer to you. Gracie rarely hands out her kisses but it makes them all that more special when she does.

My favorite thing about Gracie is her eyes. Danny and I always say that when you look into her eyes there is just something special about them. You can feel her loving you, if you are having a bad day you can feel her wanting to take the hurt away. She is so sweet and pretty that even after having her for only a couple months there wasn't even a question to spend a crazy amount of money to take her to see a specialist out in San Diego.

I can't say enough how much I love both my dogs, simply put they are perfect!!

And no you don't need to tell me, I already know I am obsessed!!

One Time For Everyone!!

Ok, so in honor of it being the first Monday of Daylight Saving Time my friend Josh and I have come up with a brilliant idea!! Being that we technically had to get up early by an extra hour we were EXHAUSTED! Coffee didn’t help and it was determined that we HATE switching times!!

It would be fairly reasonable to say that the VAST majority of the United States would like to pick a time and stick with it; in fact some smart states resist this movement of switching times (shout out to Arizona and Hawaii). Now I personally prefer Daylight Saving Time but I would take either time if we could just commit to one!! I am not knocking Benjamin Franklin, he was a brilliant man, think bifocals, lightening rod and the flexible urinary catheter (hey don’t knock it…many people would be hating life if he didn’t invent it), plus he is on my favorite bill! But come on B.F.,…Daylight Saving Time…not one of your best ideas. There have been studies that show Daylight Saving Time saves the states money but for every study that says it saves us money there is one to contradict it. Blah, blah, blah!!

Through our half sleep daylight saving coma this was the plan that was hatched!! (And by the way don’t try and steal it…this blog post is proof that the idea is mine and Josh’s). We are going to take our idea of keeping just one time to the current Presidential candidates and sell it to them! We will position it as we have the one idea that will win them the Presidency! We think that no matter who takes this idea of “one time for all” and makes it the foundation of their campaign they will win!! It doesn’t matter if they are black, white, old, young, male, female, smoker or non-smoker...this is the wining idea and we are going to sell it!! It is time for American to stand up and fight for one time, we are so sleepy. Hehehe. Hey…everyone has to make their Benjamin’s some way and this is the way we are going to make ours!

So Happy Daylight Saving Time (I am celebrating by barbequing steak tonight)!! Get outside and enjoy your long summer evenings!!

Oh and P.S. John, Hillary or Barack if you are interested you know where to find me…just leave a comment on my blog!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Cupcake Repertoire Expansion…Attempt #1

If you are a regular reader of my blog then you know that back in February I stated my goal of expanding my cupcakes repertoire. Well last Friday was my attempt #1 at this goal. In addition to being cupcake obsessed I am also blog obsessed and one obsession help the other obsession as I have a few cupcake blogs that I frequent. After careful research I decided to combine two of my favorite things, cupcakes (of course) and SMORES!! I mean who doesn’t love Smores?!

I started out by making chocolate cupcakes with a little crushed graham crackers. This is where something happened that has never happened to me before…my cupcakes tasted horrible!! I thought maybe it was just me so I brought Danny in for a taste test, he said, “they have no taste”, which is exactly what I thought. Panic time, should I remake them or just hope the frosting made them better? Danny’s response…“well it depends on if you care what people think and want them to like them!” UMMM…OF COURSE I DO!! It was back to the store (at 8:30pm on a Thursday night) to get stuff to make a second batch.

I returned and made batch #2 of cupcakes and they tasted so much better…they actually tasted like chocolate!!

Ok…cupcakes down, now time to start the frosting. Remember I am making Smores cupcakes so what would the frosting need…MARSHMELLOW of course!! Well technically it was Fluff which is AWESOME for baking treats.

I mixed the Fluff, butter, powdered sugar and vanilla and it tasted like heaven!! It was time to frost the cupcakes and while I must admit the frosting tasted perfect, it didn’t look as good as I wanted. The frosting in the picture was so perfect and went up in a little spiral frosting mountain. While mine did this at first as soon as the frosting warmed up a little it fell down to look like regular frosting. It is ok….it was just attempt #1, I will get better. Oh and on a side not frosting made with Fluff is very sticking and not what I would call easy to get into the frosting bag. I was a sticky mess, the counter a sticky mess, my cupcake apron was a sticky mess and anything with in a 10 foot radius was a sticky mess!!

I put the finishing touches on the cupcakes, crushed graham
crackers and a piece of Hershey’s chocolate! They looked so
cute, not spiral mountain cute, but cute. I packed them up
and headed off to work.

They seemed to be a big hit at work, two of my friends EACH had TWO for breakfast (I won'tmention any names **cough, cough...Josh, **cough, cough MC), my boss loved them and my AVP and Finance Manager said I needed to make cupcakes every Friday!!

SO I guess all in all attempt #1 at expanding my cupcakes repertoire was pretty successful. Stay tuned for attempt #2!!!

Am I Really Lazy or Really Tired?

Ok so in my own defense I swear I was just really tired when I did this!! I am the first to admit that I can be on the lazy side, my idea of a good Sunday is spending the day snoozing in bed with my dogs…they love to nap just as much as I do. For me that is a hard quality to find in a friend.

However on Friday I was just plain tired. I must admit the last two semesters of school have kicked my butt!! Three classes and full time work is a lot to take on, I envy the “kids” in my classes that take four classes, live at home and have no financial worry other than paying for their night out. Plus we are going though some major changes at work, yet again, and everyone needs to take on extra work. I don’t mind, I really do like working and I am just thankful to have a job.

I probably shouldn’t be telling you this but on Friday, being as tired as I was, I found a way to drive home by just using my thumb!! That is right…JUST ONE THUMB! I think most people might be embarrassed by this but I think it is an accomplishment and shows that I am a very resourceful girl!! I think I am like the MacGyver of sleep deprived/lazy situations.

I found myself on the toll road driving comfortable speed thinking to myself, “man if I didn’t have to push my foot up and down this drive would be great!” As a little gleam of sunshine hit my cruise control the idea struck me!!

You might be thinking to yourself, “Duh, just turn on the cruise control…” but that wouldn’t be enough. While the toll roads flow pretty smoothly there is enough traffic (and IDIOT drivers) to where you speed needs to be adjusted here and there. This is where I thank the makers of my fine Chrysler Aspen for their thoughtfulness in putting in the accelerate/decelerate button. Yep that is right; with just a push of my thumb I can speed my car up or slow my car down.

On the right side of my steering wheel is a button where if I push it on the top my speed “accelerates” and if I push it on the bottom my speed “decelerates”. While this isn’t the best way to drive as the button doesn’t change at Ninja speed and I think Chrysler designed it for slight adjustments to your cruise control speed, it worked for this tired girl on her Friday commute. I was able to finish the toll road portion of my drive home with just using my right resourceful is that!?

If I had some duct tape, I could fix that.

I might suggest staying of the toll roads on Fridays at around 5pm as this is when I am the most tired and therefore the most likely to engage in “thumb driving”. Hehehehe.