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Friday, January 29, 2010

Book #4

This is for all you Middle School Folk! I subbed yesterday for a sixth grade math class, and since I was BORED out of my skull, I read this book. Yes, I have another book that I am currently reading that is more grown up, but I am going to blog about all the books I read, so here you go. The Dog Who Thought He Was Santa by Bill Wallace and pictured above is a cute (very MS) story about a dog and his boy. One chapter is from the boy's perspective and the next from the dog's. The dog, Frank, lives with a family who thrives in a mining town where the mine may be shut down. This is stressful at Christmas, plus the family is struggling to hide that fact that Santa doesn't exist from the little sister, Susan. The dog gives his two cents on everything. The story wasn't great, but it was sweet. The plot and the storyline lacked gusto, but I guess that is okay for 12-year-olds. The biggest reason I am even mentioning it is because Bill Wallace has several other dog stories out there that might spark the interest of a reluctant reader. Just another author to add to that list of books that might hook kiddos.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Book #2 and #3

Okay, I blew through these next two books, and since they go hand in hand, I thought I would write about them together. I read Crank and Glass by Ellen Hopkins. If you can't guess, they are about crystal meth. That is not why I read them--no worries, I am not a user--but I read them because I like to know what things are out there that my students (real or imagined) are reading or may be reading or could be reading. These books are written as poems. Each new "chapter" is a new poem that flows together amazingly well to create this story.

The story itself is about a 17-year-old girl who takes a walk with the monster and falls further and further into its' clutches. At the end of the first book, she has a son. At the end of the second...just read it! I am still thinking about this story later. You get sucked in as fast as meth sucks people in. It is so real--so vivid. I can't imagine what life must be like for someone who has succombed to the call of this drug. Then you read that this story is semi-autobiographical because Hopkins daughter took a similar walk with the monster, and her family is still healing from the hurt. Such a scary thing.

I loved these books and I hated them. The story is brilliantly told, while the tale hurts to read, but I had to keep reading. I had to know how it would end. If you choose to read me after! I still need to talk about it.  

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Book #1

One of my New Year's Resolutions was to read a book a week. Well, here we are into week three and I am already behind! I will catch up though--don't you worry about that! I hope to post something about each book that I read, and I would LOVE suggestions from people for what to read next!

Book #1 Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

I love reading classics! Jane Austen is a classic herself, so I am determined to read several, if not all, of her books this year! I began with the one I knew I would already love! Despite having the A & E version of the movie memorized (oh Colin Firth! How do I love thee?), I have not read this book! So, when I noticed it sitting on the YA Lit shelf at the Saginaw Library, I snatched it up as fast as I could! I hate to admit that it took me longer to read than I expected, but every time I opened this book, it felt like I was sitting down with an old friend!

Jane, Lizzie, Darcy, Bingley and the rest of them warmed my heart to no end! I read with great anticipation the conversation between Lizzie and Darcy when he proposes to her the first time! I read and CRINGED at the insensitive and classless comments from Mrs. Bennet's mouth! I sneered at Wickham, stuc my tongue out at Miss Bingley, and laughed at Mr. Collins as they all played their part brillantly!

This treasure of a book does not currently grace my bookshelves, but rest assured, it will!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Birthday Weekend

My birthday was yesterday, and I am sitting at home coming down from a fabulous weekend. I hate the feeling I get after family and friends leave. Back to reality, right? Sigh! Here are some pictures from our fabulous weekend with Ashley and Lisa! SO SO SO SO glad they were able to come celebrate with me!

Ashley's flight got screwed up and she didn't make it here until Friday morning. So, we went shopping and then spent the afternoon napping before heading out for a wild night of BBQ at the Texas Pit and shopping downtown at Barnes and Noble! I seriously love those nights. This is us at the Texas Pit--it is a CLASSY local restaurant with pretty great food. We ate A LOT this weekend! I am going to need to live at the gym for the next few weeks.

We picked Lisa up from Love Field on Saturday and went to lunch at Potbelly's. The sandwiches were great, but in no way were they good for us! The paper surrounding Ashley's sandwich was clear from the grease that soaked through it. We sat tucked into a booth that just made me feel comfy and cozy! Ashley and Lisa are pretty darn cute!

Saturday night we headed out to dinner and dancing. We took the girls to Joe T. Garcia's Mexican restaurant. This is the same place we went with Nick's Dad and Step-Mom while they were here. Since it is actually cold here now, the patio is closed, but the lights are still on, the fountains are still running, and it is gorgeous! We took some pictures out there before we left. You can see the partially frozen fountain behind Nick and me. I love him! He was so great all weekend long!

Sunday before we had to take Ashley to the airport, we spent the afternoon walking around the Stockyards. It is always fun to take people down there and see what they notice and like about that area the most. The human maze, the shops, the food, the longhorns. I really like it down there. I am trying this new thing where I tell Nick when I like something in Texas because it apparently makes him feel warm inside.

This is really a random picture of Ash and Nick, but it makes me laugh. Ashley was making horse noises as they were making them run. I should have taken a picture of the creepy suckers with the scorpions inside them or the cheese covered worms we found in the candy shop. SO GROSS! Do people really eat these things?

On Monday--my actual birthday--we met Nick, Mike, Chad, JB and Savanna for lunch. It was nice to have a birthday lunch with the family I have in Texas. I include Mike in that statement since he can be pretty important to me sometimes, and even Chad because I like him more and more every time I see him. We had a great weekend, and I can't wait for more visitors! So...come on down and visit the Sadlers! We would love to have you!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Gearing Up for My Birthday Weekend!

My friend, Ashley, made it and Lisa will be here a little later today. We are going to celebrate later tonight, and I can't wait to just hang out and have a little birthday fun! I am so thankful that some of the people I love the most and who love me back are here to celebrate this birthday with me! Here we go! Good-bye 20's! Hello 30's! This is going to be a fun decade!

Monday, January 4, 2010

New Year Resolutions

I once heard that if you write your resolutions down, you are more likely to actually accomplish them. So, here is the laundry list:

1. Read a book a week.
2. Lose all that weight that I need to and work out four+ days a week.
3. Volunteer.
4. Quit worrying and make things happen!
5. Take every opportunity to tell my husband, friends and family that I love them.
6. Learn to two-step (I do live in TX afterall!)
7. Finish my book!

I think that these things are totally possible. I am sure that my goals will change and develop and be added to as the year progresses!

Friday, January 1, 2010

2009 in Review

Whew! That is really all that can be said for this past year! It feels like I say that at the end of every year, and I am sure that I will say it again at the end of 2010. How much can happen in one year? A TON, apparently! Here is a brief overview of what has happened in our lives this past year.

January: Who would have guessed that I would begin and end 2009 in Texas! I was here last year to ring in the New Year with my boyfriend, and I ended it living in Texas and celebrating with my husband!

February: Since we still lived in different states, Nick and I met in Denver at DIA and flew to Las Vegas for my best friend, Kristie's wedding. Kristie and Ron were married Febraury 22, 2009! They are currently expecting a baby boy who I cannot WAIT to see! This was the first of two Vegas trips for Nick and I this year! We went to Vegas again in November for his step-sister, Jessie's, wedding ceremony!

March: This was a big month for us! I came and spent my Spring Break with Nick, and he PROPOSED! It was a very sweet proposal, and in addition to a beautiful ring, I got a custom Broncos jersey with my soon-to-be last name on it. Yeah!

April: Nick and I were apart again as I was finishing out my school year in Colorado (miss you, PVHS!). This month was much less about me and much more about LISA! She graduated from BYU, and most of the family was there to celebrate this accomplishment! Nick could not be there, but that was okay. We had a really wonderful time together as a family.

May: I know we just got engaged in March, but due to some extenuating circumstances (we discovered that we were going to have a baby) we got married on May 1, 2009 at the Adams County Courthouse with Judge Patrick Murphy presiding. It was a simple ceremony with Mom, Grandma, Stef, Chris, Lindsay, Aunt Cathy, Darian, Dante, Amber, and Brandon in attendance. We celebrated with friends and family that evening. It was perfect! Sadness hit the next morning when I woke up cramping and bleeding. No baby for us yet, but honestly, getting married when we did was the MOST right thing we have done all year! I finished my school year, Kelli and Darian graduated, and we moved me down to Texas at the end of the month--and all in the same weekend!

June: This month was all about settling into our little home. We are renting a house and creating a comfortable life here together. While this is not the house either of us would have opted to purchase, it is perfect for our needs now! We have room! COME VISIT!!

July: We were blessed by our first house guest! Nick's mom, Cindy, came to visit us for about five days. We were able to play out in the sun, make some new friends in Savanna's (Nick's brother JB's girlfriend) family, and get to better know that mother-in-law that I am so very thankful to have. She is one of the biggest supports to Nick and myself! Love you, Mom!

August: We added a new family member to our ranks the end of July. Right at the beginning of August, Elway got sick! This is him at the vet. Poor baby! He is all puppy and such a pill, but we love him! He joins a sister, Joey, and they are our current children!

September: This month means that the Mahan Family goes to Powderhorn for Labor Day weekend. Nick and I were able to fly home for this! Thank goodness! We had a wonderful time playing with my family. This weekend is better than Christmas for us. We look forward to the time spent here more than anything else the rest of the year! We have been so blessed to be able to go every year!

October: Apparently, October was a fairly normal month for us! This picture is of me and Michael at a hockey game. Michael is responsible for the entity that is Jen and Nick. He introduced us! Love him!

November: We were again blessed to have some houseguests! Nick's dad, Ed, and his step-mom, Rochelle, came and spent a weekend with us. We had a really great time playing games, shopping, and visiting with Nick's friends and co-workers. Again, I couldn't ask for a better father-in-law! I think Ed is one of my biggest fans! Well, he leads me to believe that he is anyway.

December: A trip to Nasville, TN, a crowded apartment for Christmas, and Stef and Matt! I couldn't ask for a better Christmas! Our first one together. Our first as a married couple. It was WoNdErFuL! Our New Year's Eve celebration was quiet at home with us once again toasting and promising to end 2010 with each other. I do love this man!

Best wishes to everyone for an amazing 2010! Let the good times roll!