29 December 2007

Christmas Vacation

I just LOVE vacation!

It's my favorite time of year...Christmas cards adorn the walls of many homes, sparkling Christmas lights can be seen in every neighborhood, Christmas carols are heard everywhere you go, and family members get a day or two off (usually) to spend more time with their loved ones.

This Christmas was particularly memorable because it was the first Christmas for Steven & me. Having heard of the hardships that could arise between couples trying to spend equal amounts of time together, I really tried my best to spend time with both families. And today, I can sit here and say "I had the best of both worlds"...

Christmas Eve was spent with my family during the day, and when the evening came, we went over to the Lambson home to join in their Christmas Family Traditions...it was a night filled with driving around looking at Christmas Lights, Singing Christmas Carols in the car (and man, we sure did have quite a Choir going on in Steven's car), and watching Scrooge to end the evening. Well, almost watch Scrooge...I ended up falling asleep and we had to leave early!

Christmas morning was spent at the Wiles house. We ate a heartly southern breakfast filled with eggs, country ham, biscuits, and...did we forget the fried potatoes this year? Yummmm...it was so delicious! Then, we opened gifts one at a time...I mean, my niece and nephew (Gavin & Lauren) opened our presents one at a time. What fun it was to see them so excited about opening gifts! Then, we started making lunch which consisted of smoked turkey, homemade sranberry relish, potato casserole, sweet potatoe casserole, green been casserole (yep...we love us some yummy casseroles in the south!!), roles, green jello, fruit...and I think I'm missing something, but there was so much food I just can't remember it all!

Christmas Evening was spent at the Lambson home. We went and opened gifts once again! That was fun...getting to open our own gifts this time and just getting more gifts period. That was fun! Then we snacked on some cookies and just hung out with each other. It was nice to see his family, play a few new games we'd gotten for Christmas (Domino's...Mexican Train version of course, & SLAP...the most funnest card game ever!)

So, this Holiday season was well spent and in dang good company, too. I'll take another one of those anyday...How about tomorrow, too?

I hope everyone of you had a safe Holiday and that it was filled with as much joy and laughter as your homes would have room for. I love you all, and appreciate you taking time to read and comment on my blog...it means a lot!

Merry Christmas (belated as it is)
Happy New Year (may it be filled with lots of bubbly goodies)
Happy Hannakkuh (don't burn down anything)
Happy Belated Birthday (to a few of you who recently had one around Christmas time...yes, that's you--Beesley & Nielsen...& yes, I know you're both married...I just wanted to do it for old times sake and for a good laugh)

17 December 2007

Memories & A Shout Out...

I went to one of my friend's wedding reception this Saturday. When I moved to Columbia, she was the first person to say HI to me at church. She was my first friend, and the first one to give me a calling....uggghhhhh! Just kidding. She happened to be the RS President, and how lucky was I to get to know her! ha ha

Anyway, it was a very cute and simple reception a few nights ago. She was all wrapped up in her new hubby, John. How cute they were, and how in love both of them seemed! It was great to finally see her get married. I know well of the frustrations and feelings of loneliness and wondering if you would ever find "Mr. Right."

I remember just how frustrating it was trying to find "the one" and getting nowhere, and having no luck. I would find great guys, and even go out on a few dates with them; but I always ended up heartbroken one way or another. It seemed as if I was doomed to live the life of a single young woman.

Then I moved to Columbia, MO. And things took a drastic turn for me. Not only did I find a wonderful job, but I found a man that would love me forever. That is more than anyone could ever hope for! I am so blessed to have someone in my life, and I'm grateful to have gone to the reception this weekend (even though there was quite a blizzard going on around me), and be reminded of the past. I was the last one to get married and have my reception in the same building. Shannon Bell (now Hufford) was helping my mother and a few other gals prepare for my reception. This weekend it was my turn to help her out, and I was glad to do so.

And last, but not least...a SHOUT OUT to my husband who is at home sleeping soundly in the bed with an aching foot. I am so glad that I found him, and that he asked me to marry him. I am excited for our future together, and look forward when we will one day be parents and have our own children to teach, and watch them grow. What an exciting thing it is to be married. It has its ups and downs, just like anything else in life. But having someone there to hold you when you need it, rub your feet when they are aching, and someone to worry about you, and smile at you, and support you...well, life just doesn't get any better than this! Steven, I love you...and thanks for being you! I hope you feel better soon (can we cut off your foot yet?)!

15 December 2007

Christmas Time

Christmas is just right around the corner! Every year it seems to come & go so quickly! I look back on the times when I was a child and can remember how much fun it was to get presents under the tree (especially the BIG ones). But today, I sit here and think just how little presents really mean to me today. Don't get me wrong..it's nice to get a gift, but I really find more joy in giving a gift to someone else, and I get even happier when I'm deciding how to decorate the package. I love putting bows and ribbons on presents and making them look attractive.

I love looking at Christmas lights, hanging stockings, and all the little fun stuff that this wonderfuly holiday season allows me to do. I can't wait to get my own place where I can decorate and stuff up. I've decided I'm going to make our own stockings with my new sewing machine that my mother-in-law gave me. I'm not too much on making my own patterns, so I'll need a bit of help. Any one found a cute stocking that isn't TOO DIFFICULT to make, that would be something that I could make a few different styles of? I mean...I want them to all look similar, yet everyone's needs to be different. I'm not sure how many kids Steven & I will have, but I plan on making 5ish (maybe one more...you never know) and hopefully that will be enough. I'm kind of picky about what I like, though. Here are some samples of what I think is TACKY...

There are a FEW things I've found that I could consider, but nothing has really jumped out at me. What about something like these? I like a more modern type of stocking. I really detest the ones that everyone has...the typical red & green look with fuzzy stuff on the top. So, here's a sample of what I've found so far...I like them all, but I can't really decide how to do any of them AND I don't really have a clue how to start....any advice?

13 December 2007

YIKES...I got elfed!!

Check us out!

It's a SNOW day...

Look at my cool 'lil snowflake....& make some of your very own!.


Need a Snow Day?

Here's my snowflake # 5497052 , #5733470

Happy snowflaking!

05 December 2007

Here Comes The Snow...

Winter is DEFINITELY on it's way! Today, there is a wind chill like no other. I've forgotten just how cold my trailer can be to teach in, when the weather is so extremely cold! One of the students opened up a window this morning and suddenly a gust came from nowhere and blew papers off of several student's desks! It was crazy!
Bundle up, folks....'cuz here comes Jack Frost nippin at your nose. He certainly has nipped at mine already. I can't wait to get out of school for a day and cozy up to Steve by the fire (oh wait...we still don't know how to work it just right...bummer!).

04 December 2007

Monday evening

So life is pretty crazy right now. STRESS, STRESS, & more STRESS! Did I mention that I have tons of STRESS right now? ha ha So, if you are wondering why I haven't written in so long on my blog, it is because of that. I am trying so hard to be a good teacher, a wonderful wife, an acceptable cheerleading coach, a wonderful friend, and a hard-working counselor. Needless to say, I am failing in almost all of these catergories. I mean, I just can't seem to get my act together and it really is bothering me that I have so MUCH to do, and I never seem to have time to make any of them better!!! It is really a struggle for me.

So last night, for FHE, I had a great idea. Usually, Steven & I just sit around the house watching a movie, eating, or playing a board game (Scrabble, Skip-Bo, Sorry, or Domino's). But yesterday, we were both in the Christmas mood so I wanted to go shopping. We looked around Wal-Mart and shopped for our "future tree." It was lots of fun. This year, since we are still living with my parents, we don't have to worry about spending money on a tree, stockings, lights, etc. We are just bumming off of them. But, we went and asked questions like..."how do you feel about Nutcrackers, babe? ... If you were to pick one of these stockings to buy, which one would it be and why?" We discussed everything from styles of wrapping paper to types of trees we want to buy (I'm allergic to real trees, so it must be artificial, anyway!). One thing we both agree on--absolutely NO nappy blow-up objects in the front yard! ha ha

The best part of the night was going to the dollar store. We each had $2 and a quarter for tax. We bought one serious gift, and a funny gift. Then, we went home and wrapped them up, wrote a letter to go with them, and exchanged gifts. How much fun we both had! Steven gave me a knight's sword (to beat him up with when he gets on my nerves...the thing is HUGE) and some Christmas cookie cutters (so we can bake cookies together, make fun icing decorations, and deliver them close to Christmas...exciting, I know!). I gave Steven a hamburger-mallow! Ya, it's just as disgusting as it sounds! His favorite food is a hamburger, and they had a huge marshmallow shaped like a burger...he even took a bite of it...so gross!!! Then, I got him a 500 piece puzzle of a wintry scene; something we can do together instead of playing the same 'ol board games...he LOVED it!

We had so much fun last night. Ok, so Steven had a limp b/c of his leg hurting. But he was a good sport overall. Check out his blog later today...we took some pics and he's going to upload them later today! You should definitely check out his blog (there's a link on the right)...it's quite hilarious, and of course his version is a lot different from mine! :)

24 November 2007

This is a pic of my friend, Lini, her baby, and me. I went to Kansas City on Friday night and met her at one of my all-time favorite restaurants, O'Charley's! She is such a funny girl, and I love her so much! Her lil guy is so cute! His name is Ezais (I think that's how you spell it)...it's in the BOM. Lini & I were friends from College...those were the good ol years! I miss those days sometimes, but it's good to catch up after so long, and see each other!

21 November 2007

All about ME

Here's a fun survey about me. When you have some extra time, fill it out and share it with me (& others, too).

  1. ARE YOU SICK OR WELL? I'm doing pretty good today. I keep having earaches and my voice comes & goes...but today is a pretty GOOD day!

  2. ARE YOU MORE LIKE YOUR MOM OR DAD? My mom. I wish I was as smart as my dad (but I'm not), but I get as worried and as bossy as my mom does a lot. Good thing I don't have her toes, though.

  3. HAVE YOU GAINED OR LOST WEIGHT THIS YEAR? Probably gained a few pounds. I should've lost more weight for my wedding, but I was in love and just enjoy eating...who doesn't?

  4. WHAT DID YOU LAST CRY ABOUT? feeling left out of the "loop" of two places...cheerleading and getting to be one of the first ones to St. Louis to see my new lil nephew when he was born this Sunday.

  5. A TV SHOW YOU NEVER MISS? American Idol

  6. A TV SHOW YOU WISH WERE CANCELED ALREADY? The Price is Right...they should've just quit when Bob Barker retired.

  7. WHAT WOULD YOU DO IF YOU HAD AN AFTERNOON WITH GEORGE BUSH? Not quite sure. Well, I do have a few questions...Ask him why he can't go to Iraq and fight for a while. Ask him why teachers don't get paid better. Ask him why gas prices are so expensive. Ask him to borrow some money.

  8. FIRST THING YOU WILL TELL GOD AFTER YOU DIE: Sorry I lied so much. Can I still repent of that NOW?

  9. THE SONG THAT KEEPS GETTING STUCK IN YOUR HEAD: "Hey there Delilah...." However you spell it. It seems that song is on the radio 24/7....UGGGH!!! I HATE IT!

  10. FIRST THING YOU DO IN THE MORNING ON VACATION: Sleep in, eat a hot breakfast from Hardee's and watch TV with Steve.

  11. WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT ROOM IN YOUR HOUSE? the kitchen & bedroom...everything a woman could ever want! Food & hubby time! :)

  12. NAME SOMETHING YUMMY IN YOUR FREEZER: ice cream and burritos!

  13. BRAND OF SHAMPOO IN YOUR SHOWER: Garnier fruit something or another...the green bottles that they had down in Chile, too. And KIWI that is rarely used, b/c it's so dang expensive!

  14. PLANS FOR 2008: Eat a bit less, drink a few more DIETS than regular Cokes, and go on a real vacation before having kids.


  16. NAME SOMEONE YOU WISH WOULD GO AWAY: My lil sister Becca...isn't it time to go back to BYU-Idaho already?

  17. FIRST PLACE YOU'D GO IN A TIME MACHINE:Back to to time when women wore those fun dresses that were so tight your boobies bounced out the top....MAN, I'd be getting all the men then!

  18. FIRST PLACE YOU'D GO IF YOU WERE INVISIBLE: To Australia, to the beach, and then I'd go visit Steve @ work and find out what he REALLY does at work....or is it even work?

  19. SOMEWHERE YOU ONLY LIKE TO GO ALONE: potty when it's time for numba 2!

  20. SOMEWHERE YOU WOULD NEVER GO ALONE: heaven, out to eat, or vacation...it's just not that much fun to do any of those if someone isn't with you!

  21. NAME SOMETHING YOU ARE AFRAID OF: Steven dying before I do, or not being able to have children.

  22. NAME SOMETHING YOU ARE NO LONGER AFRAID OF: teaching middle-school kids, or MOVING to another city.

  23. A BAND YOU WOULD GO ON TOUR WITH: Kenny Chesney (just to feel his head & chest....whew hew), Martina McBride...she's the woman, & Usher...he's got all the dance moves...maybe he'll teach me a thing or two!

  24. A FAMOUS PERSON YOU WOULD HANG OUT WITH: don't know anyone who's cool enough ;)



  27. SOMETHING YOU FIND IRRESISTIBLE ABOUT YOUR SIGNIFICANT OTHER: His knowledge of crazy things, his hugs, and his care for me.

Thanksgiving Day

Happy Turkey Day,

Eat now...Diet later

11 November 2007

neonred t H A a sigN Parking K
y O U

This goes out to Jeanne Lambson, my mother-in-law. She is such a neat lady, and I really do admire her and look up to her for her many talents and the great mother that she has been, and is today.

Friday night, after attending an "all-school party" at work, I went over to her house. Steven had planned on going to the party with me, but soon found himself a bit "bored" and went to visit his parents just down the road. I love going over to her house...it's so welcoming and inviting...it just makes you feel at home instantly!

I was so stressed from the week, and there were several things that were weighing heavily on my mind that evening. I found myself complaining and venting quite a bit to her that night. She was so great. Not only did she offer wonderful advice, and share with me about the "Theory of the peaches", but my soul was fed, and I became enlightened as to what I should do and how my attitude needed to change...quick! It's amazing how a burden can become so much lighter after talking to such an amazing woman!

I really did get lucky when I married Steven. That luck has blessed my life in so many ways, and this is only the beginning of our entire lives together. I am so excited to raise children that will call her grandma, and be able to be blessed by her wisdom. I'm thrilled that she will teach them things that I can't. I'm happy to have her in my life, and blessed that she will be the one to bless the lives of my family as well. I can only hope to become as great a mother as she is today.

Thank you, Jeanne!

Stressful week!

The Letter S o R_McElman_070718_3101 Vintage LEGO Letter R Y

This past week was just plain tough! It seemed to go on and on and on and on....just like this sentence! I have been rude, sassy, tired, and just acting like an old crabby lady. So, this is to apologize to anyone whose feelings I've hurt or anyone whom I've neglected during the past week! I'm truely sorry!
p.s. - Try out this website that will let you create these cool messages with funky letters....http://metaatem.net/words/

Cheerleading update...

Cheerleading has officially started! With at least three practices a week, we will be ready for our first basketball game after Spring Break. The girls are pretty good, I must admit! The second day of practice, I had us a little meeting that I like to refer to as a "Come to Jesus" meeting. This is where I laid out the rules and told them just exactly what it was going to look like to be an Oakland cheerleader. Some of them, of course, didn't like all the rules (esp. not the consequences) but these girls need to learn responsibility and what it means and what it should look like when you are representing your school. I have to say, there were only a few complaints. So far, so good! Tomorrow I have to order warm-ups, so we'll see how that goes!

03 November 2007

Ear Candles

Have you even heard of these crazy things? I had heard of them, but had never tried them before. Since my ears are still infected, and haven't been getting much better the last few weeks...I finally resorted to trying these things out.

It was quite the experience, let me tell you. I went to the Natural Food store in town, and bought two of them, one for each ear. I read the instructions, and after hearing my mother say, "I wouldn't do that if I were you"...decided to try them anyway. You place the candle through a paper plate, light one end of it, and stick it in your ear. Every now and then, you have to "unclog" the candle because too much wax and debris gets in the way.

As strange as it was, it was kind of neat! I'm not quite
ready to go for round number 2, but my ears feel a bit different today. Stay tuned for an update on how it goes. I've read the research about them, and to say the least...most of them say they don't do anything at all. But I've heard several say on talk shows and from other conversations, that they get pretty good results. We'll let you know if a few days how it went.

New Do

I got a new haircut yesterday. I will try to take a picture soon and show it to you all. For now, go ahead...and make your predictions....
  1. short, medium, or long?
  2. colored (what color?) or al natural?...
  3. layered or straight?

What will the new Tamara look like? Feel free to share your thoughts....

Bummer...or NOT??

This weekend my family, Steven & I were supposed to travel to Kentucky to attend a wedding ceremony of my cousin. It's one of those things you just feel like you should do. And it always happens at the most inconvenient times. We were going to drive to Louisville, KY this morning, attend the ceremony and reception this evening, and drive back tomorrow. OR SO WE thought...

Yesterday, mom told me she was sicker than ever, and she wasn't going to go after all. My sister and her two kids decided to stay home as well (they weren't going to be thrilled about the whole 6 hour drive there and back, in only two days anyway). So there we were, My dad, Steven & I and the mini-van.

Since I went to the doctor on Monday, I really am feeling less stuffy, so that is a good thing. However, my ears are still hurting and that has put me in a grumpy mood lately. It's just no fun being sick, and I keep waiting for this to go away...but it doesn't. It's just one of those lingering sick things!...YUCK!

Anyway, we decided not to go. So, today will be a different kind of Saturday. One where I can relax and sit on the couch and actually watch a movie with my husband, who is usually working hard at Ruby Tuesday's trying to earn a little extra money so we can do fun things together. So, here's to a weekend off...with a bit of sorrow for not being able to make the wedding.

01 November 2007

Too funny NOT to share...

From my good 'ol friend, who is always full of laughter and surprises......


31 October 2007

Trying something new...

How do you like the new & improved blog? What about the colors? I figured it's time to let the fall in my life and into my blog! I just love BROWNS, it really is one of my favorite colors, you know! Let me know what you think....is it ME?

30 October 2007


So, many of you will probably wonder where the heck I've been. I've been everywhere except in the world of blogging. Life has been crazy, so to sum it all up:

1. I've been sicker than SICK! Yesterday I finally went to the Doc and he gave me an injection of cortisone. My arm hurt like no other, but I finally had a decent night of rest. Thanks, Dr. Bynum for helping me on my way to recovery!

2. Steve & I went to a crazy lil Halloween Party on Friday evening, and the food was crazy. I ate the green "iris" rings off of the cupcakes that were supposed to be strange eyeballs. They were good, they were those "apple gummy rings"...yummy! The horrible thing is that we left early due to a prankster who thought it was all too funny to crank up the fog machine on extra thick and keep it going after asking him to "simmer down now"...obviously, he thought I wasn't serious. So, whoever you were in the SCREAM mask...thanks for making my sickness go back into recession and keep me from going to church on Sunday...I blame only YOU!

3. Steve's sister, Emily had a really cool baby shower last weekend, the weekend of silence for me. Her sisters put it all together and I put on my happy face even though I felt like I needed to be at home, in my own comfy bed, having everyone feel sorry for me. But it wasn't my place to be selfish. It is Emily's first baby, and she is so excited that I really wanted to be there. As bad as I felt, I wouldn't have missed it for the world! Great food, fun company, and she was lookin like a hottie.

4. Car trouble. Steven's car has had this rattling sound for quite some time. And although I told him months ago to have it checked out, men never listen to women (and it sure doesn't change after marriage, either). ....(sorry, Steven...I still love you)... So, he finally had it looked at, and due to both of our dismay, it has been parked in various parking lots and side streets since then, waiting for different estimates and appraisals. It seems that he needs a new engine, and it will end up costing several thousand dollars...yippee! Just what every newlywed dreams of, right? We certainly didn't. The good part is that I had the chance on Saturday to go car shopping, and looked at several deals around town. If your interested in the Ford Focus, they are a great deal. Although it's a car I would never picture myself owning (not even in my dreams), $10,000 for a new vehicle with a warranty isn't too shabby...I had to at least test drive it to make sure I wasn't dreaming.

5. Cheerleading madness. So, practices start next week. Emails are coming in from everywhere....I have to order warm-ups soon, I have to make schedules, I have to plan and organize a pep assembly, I have to make all these decisions and I am definitely NOT prepared for this. So, wish me good luck....
6. Primary Program. It is next Sunday. When I got this calling, it was like a ton of bricks hitting me all at once. And this is my responsibility...to write the script, arrange some sort of seating chart, and put together the order of everything! Thank goodness for Steven and his ability to write...he helped me a ton! I've missed the first practice (due to my sickness from the fog machine) and I feel horrid. The second and final practice is this Sunday and I will miss it because of my cousin's wedding. UUGGGHHH!!! I spent so much time writing it and worrying about every detail, and I won't even see it until it is performed on Sunday, the 11th.

So, that's my last 2 weeks in a lengthy blog entry. How's the past weeks been for you? I hope better than mine! Happy trick-o-treating, and have a great week!

19 October 2007


Have you ever tried being silent for an entire day? Well, try being FORCED to be silent! It's not so fun, especially when you LOVE to talk!

I started getting sick on Tuesday, and it's slowly gotten worse. Yesterday, during my 7th hour class, I went completely silent. I mean, I opened up my mouth and all that came out was a lout squeak! Ya, the kids had a good time w/ a "teacher who can't speak"...but not me! I could get a little out yesterday, but woke up this morning w/o even a squeak or squawk! It's really bad!

Good thing today I don't have any classes to teach...it's an entire day devoted to planning! YIPPEE! Those are always nice to have, especially when you get paid for it! And without a voice, I can actually get things accomplished b/c I'm not tempted to go next door to my colleague's trailer and chat about life and get the latest gossip!

So voice...CHAITO for now...but I miss you a little bit...could you come back soon? Steve misses you, too (Not...I'm sure ALL husbands wish this upon their wife every now and then). So everyone...enjoy it while it lasts. 'Cuz when it comes back, there is no stopping my voice from reaching wherever it wants to go!

13 October 2007

Check out my Slide Show!

This is my amazing sister-in-law, Emily, and her hubby, Joe. They are so much fun and have so many talents! Last night, Steven & I went to his parent's house for a small bonfire. We grilled out hamburgers, had some AMAZING chips & dip (that was a day old, so the avocados weren't so fresh, but still quite tasty), and some campfire pies...right in their backyard! What a wonderful and warm family I have married into!

One of the highlights was receiving a CD and book with all of Steve & my wedding photos in it. The book is absolutely amazing!!! Emily included every photo she took of us, and she used her great artistic talents to make it look amazing! This is a book that we will treasure forever, and is something that is unique. I love it so much! Bad news...we had to PROMISE not to print copies at Wal-Mart. Everyone knows how much I love that place, and how convenient it is to make one stop and get anything & everything you could ever need. Oh well, her professional pics deserve to be printed in a professional place anyway. I guess I can take a few extra minutes and a few extra pennies to capture the true colors and excitement of such a wonderful day that I'll treasure forever!

So, here are a few more pics, and I hope you enjoy them as much as I do! Emily, thanks again...you are so amazing!