Monday, December 29, 2008


I couldn't help putting this on the site. Too funny! Wouldn't it be nice...(sigh)

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Summer Fun

Some pics from when my family visited this summer. My sis and me at the Aquarium of the Pacific. We don't look alike - but not many people can tell us apart over the phone! Love you, sis!
Joseph getting a good laugh in with Grammy.

My niece and nephew in an egg at the Santa Ana Zoo.

My nephew, Gabriel, my sis, Dawn, and my niece, Ileana.

Gabe and his daddy, Michael, playing chess.
Gabe after a particularly wild boogie-board ride! Get 'em, Gabe!

Me and sis with Jo-Jo-bear
Ethan ready to ride!

Joseph in the sand.
What being at the ocean for 5 days does to little ones!
My fam! Thanks for a great visit!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Delayed Wickedness

Well I know this is late in coming, but I thought I'd post some wrap-up commentary on the final round of the Wannabe Wicked contest this past August 20th. First of all, thanks so much to everyone who took the time out of your day to vote and send encouraging comments! I really appreciate all your kind words and support!

Anyhoo - here's the scoop: I went and performed and was able to give a strong performance despite having lost my voice days earlier from a bug the boys and Elliott had gotten. The judges gave good comments and I had a great time. I didn't end up winning, but it was a good experience!

We got some good video of my song on our 8mm video camera, but I'm having a lot harder time than I expected getting that converted to a digital format that I could post here. If I get get the video converted, I'll definitely post it!

WICKED RULES (just a little less without ME there!) :)

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

WICKED voting has started early!!!

Well, we're not sure why, but citywalk has changed the rules on the Wannabe Wicked voting. It was supposed to be you could vote as much as you wanted, everyday, up through the 19th of August (starting tomorrow, on the 13th). Well, we just checked the site (see below) and the voting has started AND you can only vote once a day. Anyway - PLEASE go vote starting today if you planned on voting.

Thanks in advance for any and all votes for me! :)

Friday, August 8, 2008

Wannabe Wicked Videos

Just a quick update. While we still think the link in the previous post is the place to go to vote for Holly on the 13th, it is not currently providing access to any of the finalists' video auditions. However if you go to SonicBids' Wannabe Wicked page (SonicBids is the video hosting site for the competition) they now have all the finalists videos available for viewing. If you want to check out Holly's audition along with her fellow finalists (the competition) here is the link:

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Help Holly Get WICKED!

Big news! Holly was picked as a finalist at last night's Universal Studios Citywalk Wannabe Wicked competition 4th round semi-finals!!! This means that she will be performing again on August 20th for the grand prize (which includes a walk-on appearance during a WICKED performance!) In addition to the judges' pick that night, there is a fan favorite competition that will be occurring prior to the final round. Here are the particulars:

Audition Videos of the Semi-Finalists for each round of the Competition selected by the
Judges will be displayed and accessible on the Universal website at on August 13, 2008. The Audition Videos will then be rated by anyone who chooses to log onto the site and vote for the “Wannabe Wicked Fan Favorite.” Voters can vote for the “Wannabe Wicked Fan Favorite” as many times as they would like between 9:00am PST, August 13, 2008 until 11:59 pm August 19, 2008.

Here are some pictures/video from the semi-final round last night:
Posing, pre-show, with a WICKED balloon
Getting some last minute info
The emcee, RoRoIn front of The Emerald City map for a photo
Opening intros for the 10 semi-finalists
Performance of "For Good" and Judges Critique
(sorry for the distortion, but this was taken with our little point and shoot camera)

Singing "Dear Old Shiz"

Cutting off RoRo, after she hit the high note at the end of Dear Old Shiz

Here's Holly getting picked as a finalist (Georgia's timing here is perfect - nice shot Georgia!). Holly says that her exact words in this moment were, "WHAT??? SHUT UP!!!"

Message of congrats from OZ

"Whew!!! Ok, now it's three more weeks..."

In the meantime, GO VOTE!!! Well, voting doesn't start 'til the 13th, so go practice voting. When the time comes just imagine you're in Chicago: vote early and often! It'll be a clickfest folks - you can vote as many times as you want.

And if you're available for the Wednesday, August 20th finals contest, then come up to Universal Studios CityWalk and get WICKED with us!!!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Water Slide

This summer we've been so fortunate to have a lot of visits from loved ones. We've recently had a great gathering with Holly's family, some of whom came from as far as Massachucetts. The boys have had a great time with their cousins Ileana and Gabriel, including a couple of fun afternoons at a nearby water slide. We'll hopefully get a lot more pictures up from the whole vacation, but for starters here's a great sequence of Jackson and Ileana and the end of a water slide run.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Summertime, and the livin' is easy...

Just thought I'd post a few pics of the kiddies enjoying some of what summer in So Cal has to offer. Our three guys enjoyed running around the sand with their cousins a couple weeks back. You can see the reddish pink light in the picture. Often the marine layer comes in at evening time and the sun "sets" early, but that day we got to watch it all the way down to the water.

Here are some closer shots of the Jones boys sitting on the grass on a school field trip...

clambering around a newly chalked climber...

and ascending a step ladder in the front yard during car wash time.

Moving back indoors, Grandpa had Jackson and Ethan enthralled with some vintage Lionel toy trains. Guess what Santa will probably have in his sack this Christmas...
More pics soon!

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Everyday Finance Contest

Hello everyone! Many of you know that in the last year and a half I've become very interested in learning more about the stock market and other kinds of investment possibilities. Nothing like an impending 40th birthday to make you think more about financial security. I've pretty much done all my reading online and one of the sites that I've turned to frequently is a personal finance blog called Everyday Finance. A link to that site has been in our Blogs of Note section for some time now. In addition to interesting discussions of the market, EDF has turned me on to and a more effective use of cash incentive credit cards. Everyday Finance is currently running a contest to celebrate its 250th post and, while I think the site is worth checking out for its information alone, I thought some of you might want to get in on the possibility of a cash prize. This blog post is serving as my entry into the contest, but you can enter with as little effort as an email subscription. Here's a link to the contest posting: Everyday Finance $250 Contest

One of the things that has drawn me into reading financial blogs is hearing about what other people are doing with their investments and why. So in that vein let me share that if I win any of the cash prizes I will either put the money into my lending account or I will use it toward the purchase of a stock I found out about on EDF: ticker symbol WWE - that's right, World Wrestling Entertainment. If I get that stock I would enjoy a delicious irony as well as a nearly 9% dividend yield...

Monday, April 21, 2008

An Experiment

So today marks the "National Turn TV Off" week - when people are encouraged to turn off/unplug and otherwise not use their TV's for an entire week. I knew this was coming up, but I actually thought it was next week (so as you can guess, I'm off to a great start so far!) NOT!

I'm a person who believes there is good that can come from TV/movies but that it shouldn't continually take the place of time spent together - but I'm also a mother of three young children who sometimes needs a moment to 1) get dinner made, 2) fold 2 pieces of laundry and put them away, 3) clean a gross toilet, 4) insert something here! It IS hard to spend the whole day, every day creating "moments" for your children. And I don't know that that is needful or even wanted every moment for the kids as they enjoy having time on their own here and there to play too. This all said, I DO turn to the TV sometimes as a way of getting a moment or two to clear my own head, get something done during daylight hours (rather than hoping I can squeeze something in once all kids are asleep and then having no energy to do it - and besides, my kids seem to know this desire of mine and do their level best to deter me from having said "moments" after bedtime to do anything), and as a way of recharging myself and my ideas of things I can do with them. I also wonder if teaching them about limits and moderation isn't possibly a better way than making them think it's all or nothing.

This all being said, I think it's a great opportunity to get creative, push the limits of my own imagination (and stamina) and see just what we can come up with as a family.

I don't know if I'll actually make it an entire week with NO TV ("Lost" IS a new show this week!) But then again, if I ask my children to go without "Curious George" then I should be able to cut something too! :) We'll see...we did have some great time today playing games and continued the fun into Family Home Evening!
Who knows how this will all pan out...perhaps it will be a raging success, perhaps we'll try some new things we've never done and discover something new about ourselves and each other, perhaps we'll strengthen the bonds of family love and affection...or, perhaps we'll just look like this at the end of the week:

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Three peas in a pod

Well, we decided to take photos of our family for Easter and per usual that was quite the experience! At least we didn't have to wait in line at some overcrowded photo studio, have our appointment be 1/2 an hour behind schedule, have to nurse the baby during the photo shoot, wait around for an hour after the appointment for our photos to be "processed", and in the end, pay waaaayyyy to much for them! :) Something good comes from getting all our own photography equipment!!!'s one of the pictures I just love - a "let's all cuddle together" (which, I might add, then did on their own without my coaxing them!) Joseph's face is particularly priceless as we're not sure whether he's annoyed or just about ready to laugh (if memory serves, I think he did giggle a bit after this shot.) The Jones boys...hard to resist! But biased I am...

Friday, March 28, 2008

Lost Blues

Okay, so we're all set to get our weekly fix of LOST last night, and we realized nothing new was on the DVR. It seems we were the only folks in America that didn't realize Lost was taking a month-long spring break. I guess filming in paradise can really wear a cast out. Yeah, sure, writers strike, yada yada yada. Is anyone else cheesed off about this? I can't get by for a month on Dancing with the Stars!

Okay, I feel better. By the way, speaking of Dancing with the Stars, I think a Star Trek reunion smackdown would be a serious ratings machine. It's high time the question of "Best mambo - Kirk or Picard?" be put to rest. Who's with me...

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Doin' the Time Warp...

We had another glorious stay at the beach cottages, this time at the Painters' Cottage, just as we had last month for an evening. Our other two stays last year had been in the Long Board Lodge, which we also love - but it was soooo nice to be 20 paces or so from the actual sand, as opposed to dealing with the brief but sometimes annoying stair hike from the Long Board. As Douglas, a friend of Elliott's parents, said when he stayed over one evening at the cottage: "It's like a time warp." Too true, too true! The boys love any cottage stay and this time was no exception! You just have to love living in Southern California when you can hang out on a beach, and with the exception of just a few other people, be the only ones there! So choice!

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Days of Whine & Poop

Over a month ago, while vacationing in Phoenix during the holidays, I jokingly mentioned to some family that although I was woefully behind on my blogging, I may just have a suitable post theme to add. Well, time went by and I had hoped to NOT have cause to post my original idea - but alas and alack, I DO - and it revolves around POOP! (At this time, any readers with weak stomaches may choose to visit another blog instead of continuing to read!) :)

In mid-December, Joseph got an ear infection and despite the antibiotics used, acquired another one (and another one) over the course of a month and a half. He had 3 rounds of meds, each stronger than the last, and with rounds 2 & 3 began to have a LOT of pooping - as mentioned in the title (the D-word really is more appropriate, but I'm trying to be considerate for those with delicate feelings on the subject.) As family around us can attest, it became so bad that along with a flamming red bottom, Joseph also had to deal with fissures. On a side note, I believe if we had stock in any one of the following companies: Viva paper towels, Balmex, A+D ointment, Costco diapers, Costco wipes (pre-Viva paper towels), and Neosporin, we would have secured our retirement and the financial well-being of our children for life!)

The "Whine" referred to in the title of my post really has come more from me. Joseph, ever the love, has done remarkably well considering all of this. With the exception of actually having his diaper changed, he has continued to be very loving, charming and while in Phoenix even progressed from belly crawl, to knee crawl and started pulling himself up! What a boy!!! :) But I digress... My whining has come usually this this: "Ok, little man - you've just had your diaper changed for the 8th time - so no more for awhile, Ok?" To which Joseph would respond with a giggle, a twist of the head and the most charming smile...and two minutes later proceed to grunt, strain and, yup, you guessed it - POOP yet again! "AAAAARRRGGGGHHHH!!! Stop POOPING, little man!!! I just can't TAKE it!" Yeah, that's me. Ever the example of grace under pressure...(pressure, get it?) :)

Although he has THANKFULLY been without an ear infection for a couple of weeks at the writing of this post, he has, however, continued with his FREQUENT pooping (and from time to time RED bottom.) We had hoped that his little gut would return to a normal schedule since coming off the 3rd round of antibiotics - but not much luck there. At the suggestion of my sister we even tried some probiotics, which seemed to (somewhat) work for a short time, but after a week and still having fairly frequent poops, we took him off that and have just kept up with lots of nursing and some solid foods back in his diet. Honestly, I can't even remember what his "normal" bowl habits had been prior to all of this. :) Yesterday his bottom started to look a bit "miffed" again (not ANGRY, mind you) but clearly a little peevish. I've got to run and get some more Viva and A+D ointment again - butt (he, he, he) in the meantime we're doing what we can to keep him happy in between diaper changes. He really HAS been a trouper! He even was awesome yesterday at Disneyland and napped for an hour and a half while we ran Jackson and Ethan around. (More on the two older Jones' to come!)

Anway - just an update to let one and all know what we've been up to, why we haven't done much in the way of posting, and if you should see/talk to us any time soon, why our eyes twitch and our voices warble as if on the edge of sanity!

For those reading with diaper-aged children: May their bottoms be happy and your supply of ointment never fail!