Friday, January 29, 2010

Flashback Friday..

hawaii 2000

I have been thinking of this all month, but not able to post it because I was in need of the new software for my scanner so my Windows 7 would recognize it…

It all started with Macadamia Caramel Nut Clusters from Costco..  that and the fact that Merrill’s parents took a little trip to Hawaii.

I wanted to be there with them.

We went 8 years ago..  I still miss it.

We stayed on Oahu for the first three days.  They weren’t your typical laid back vacation days either.  We left Turtle Bay in the morning, and didn’t come back until bedtime.

turtle bay

Turtle Bay

We did find a shack on the highway (it was literally a shack) that served freshly made pizza and pasta, and shave ice..  of all things.  But it was THE BEST FOOD WE HAD THE WHOLE TRIP.


Laie Temple

(Don’t you LOVE Merrill’s shirt?  SO appropriate.)

We saw a lot of sights while we were there.

- Pearl Harbor

- The punchbowl (and Dixon would be proud..  “The solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the alter of freedom…”)

- Diamond Head

- The International Market

- Waikiki Beach

- The Dole Pineapple Plantation (mmmm…  pineapple ice cream…)

- BYU Hawaii campus

- Laie Temple

- Polynesian Cultural Center  (one of my favorite stops.)



We took off for Maui and stayed at the Maui Marriot Beach Club on the north shore for the rest of our vacation.  That is where we really got to kick back and enjoy the island.

This is also where the memory comes in with those nut clusters..

The first Sunday there,  we went to church (cutest babies there..  chubby, dark skinned, and black haired..  I was already baby hungry!) and then enjoyed a walk along Ka’anapali Beach.  We eventually got to the old whalers village where there are statues and stuff..  shops to look in.  Somebody discovered the Haagen Daaz ice cream shop.

Bless their soul for eternity.

They were giving out FREE samples of Macadamia nut brittle ice cream.

If I weren’t already in heaven…

We made frequent walks to the old whalers village for this ice cream.

I even paid $5.50 for a pint of it at the resort shop.

Thank heavens they had it at the Albertson’s when we got home..  that made the transition back to “real life” much, much more bearable.

The rest of the food sucked.

We even tried hiking through all the resorts to get a bite to eat at this burger joint up by the road only to discover it was a bar, and Clint was underage.  But we didn’t feel disappointed for too long.

We soon noticed a dead rat at our feet.

Johnny’s didn’t sound too great anymore.

We sent Jackie in to sweet talk Dixon into taking us to Lahina to hit up the McDonalds.

You see, we figured we were safe going there.  You go to church on the other side of the earth and it is the same there as it is here, why would Mc-E-Dee’s be any different?

It was. 

And it was awful!

We learned our lesson and bought us some groceries in town.  There was an interesting lady outside of the Safeway who was on a very important phone call.  She taught us all a few new words.

We spent most of our time on Maui on the beach.  Merrill and Clint got all into the art of body surfing.

mauibig wave

(Merrill will probably attach me with his fake gun over this little ditty..  but I LOVE this pic!!)

We were pummeled by huge waves and got more than our share of souvenir sand in our shorts.  It was January and the waves there at that time are incredible!


But this one is my all time fav…  we were all running.

We also took turns (fought) over who got to play with Sophie and all her rolls.

We visited Haleakala, a huge crater, that took us up and above the clouds.  That was really cool. 

Before we knew it, it was time to go home.  We crammed all 11 of us (+luggage) into our 8 seater minivan and made our way to the airport…

It was a sad parting.

But we knew it would be followed by more fun.  The 2002 Winter Olympics would be coming soon, just on the other side of our mountain, practically in our back yard.

And the year 2002 went on and  blessed us more than we could have ever imagined!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Being a woman..

I promise I love it.

I love it more than Cheez-Its.

(My latest love..)

It’s just one of those days, those fun, fun days when you are dealing with the fun of female hormones..  all the aches and pains..  cravings.

It’s just ovulation (TMI some might say..) but it can be bittersweet.

While I am in the throes of the cramping, I am thankful that I am a woman..  bugged that it is happening for no good reason.  Then my mind wanders..

If I were pregnant, this wouldn’t be happening.  I would be having fun with a baby moving inside me.

Or if we were trying to get preggers, it would be a happy dance day..  possibility is on its way!!

But nope..

Merrill is too much of a chicken.

So I ovulate in pain, with no reward in sight.

At least I can satisfy my cravings..  anything salty, and right now Cheez-Its are closest.

January 28th..

28 007 28 010

It has been a day of girls at this house..  but then again, what day isn’t?

It is just the normal, every day run of the mill stuff around here..

Someone should inform my dear husband that I am totally capable of taking care of four little girls at the same time, only half of which are mine. :)

Does life get any better than this?

Lesson learned..

jan 26 010

Notice that case in the background.. 

THAT is where you can place your glasses so they are safe and your toddler doesn’t get their little hands on them and twist the arms attached to the eyewear until they cry for mercy.

It all went down on a Sunday before church.

I wasn’t too happy with the circumstances (who would be?), but what could I do?

It was technically my fault.

It was one of those goals I set for the year, more specifically the one about reading my scriptures.  So to help me do that, I have been leaving my scriptures out with my reading glasses conveniently placed atop the sacred book, to serve as a reminder of sorts.  Figuring the girls know to leave my scriptures alone, I assumed the protective force field of the “no-no” would be enough.

Not so.

Peyton had her way with them.

Remember this?  It wasn’t that long ago..  I still haven’t forgotten about the money I dropped for the new, updated prescription.  I have been praying that my frames could still be found so I had to pay for just one part of this pricey deal to be replaced.

The catch here is that I got these almost 4 years ago.  I thought it was a fat chance to find them.

But that wasn’t the only reason I put off this errand.

I got them at Sam’s club.

The best time for me to go to Sam’s club is after I drop off Miss Ashley at pre-school, but that is still too early for my type of membership.

That leaves me to find somewhere to go to occupy my time for one hour.

Somewhere nearby.



Both very bad places.

Pure, concentrated evil.

So I put it off for almost a month.

But I couldn’t put it off any longer, or should I say my eyes begged for me to just do it.

So I did.

It was a blessing I did when I did..  I found my exact frames on the display wall, one of the only pairs without the fake lenses in them.  I waited for them to help another lady who was mid-exam, she had just been given those super-fun drops.  Once the doctor took her back his assistant was ready to help me.  The girl working there was on her second day.  Okay, maybe not her second, but she was very (very) new, and she didn’t know the run of things very well, she admitted this to me.  I told her what I needed, and she said, “I can do this, I watched him do it yesterday.”

So she took my broken glasses, and the frames from off the wall, and put my lenses in the new frame.

I thought for sure they would send them all off to the lab to have them take care of it, then I wouldn’t see, or see my glasses for a few more days.

Nope.  I got them the same day.  Just a few minutes wait.

She wasn’t going to charge me for them either, but I made sure that was taken care of.

I can now see my handiwork, and read comfortably again.

If I had gone in as soon as this happened, would I be as happy?  Would it have been as easy?

Just the little blessings.

I did enjoy my hour spent at both Target and Joann’s. :)

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

January 27th..

27 005

Gun battles and such..

We still have some of our firearms doing well despite all of the bear (and people) hunting.

Our family has now become quite playful with our dollar store toys.

jan 26 001

(Don’t let them fool you..  they look friendly, but they are waiting to ambush Merrill..)

Peyton stabs me in my knee at least three times a day.

The girls will usually make me jump when they poke the tip of their pistol in my side, followed with a threat.

jan 26 003

(See that crazy look in their eyes?)

The guns usually find themselves placed strategically around the house, ready to be snatched for a gun fight, or placed in a good hiding spot on one’s person, ready to be pulled on another family member, say if they do not like the fare being served for dinner?

We often hold each other at gunpoint, and the threats get thrown around, then the inevitable happens.

“Bang!  Bang-bang!!  Bang!”

Fake blood pours, diving for cover takes place, and there is usually the mandatory 30 second play death on the floor.

jan 26 009

Sometimes instead of the fake death, there is an argument over who got the first shot off.

Most of the time, this involves only Merrill and myself.

It is quite fun.

I have resorted to stashing two guns in my waistband.  They are positioned just so..  I am able to reach in faster than fast, and draw them on him simultaneously. 

We do involve the girls, but they usually run and hide in their room, then one of us has to fabricate an elaborate story to draw them out of their room.

Then the fun starts all over again.

The dollar store has never been this good to us.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

January 26th..

jan 26 001

Should I be worried?

Last night, we had a fun Family Home Evening. 

We made chocolate chip cookies, and likened the process to being obedient.  We talked about being obedient to the commandments and to our parents.  (Just a couple of scriptures used: Deuteronomy 12:32 and 1 Nephi 3:7.)

If we stray from the recipe, and add whatever we want, or omit whatever we want, the cookies wouldn’t taste very good.  They might not even end up being cookies.

But when we do what we are told to do, add the right amounts of ingredients, the cookies (and more importantly the dough in our house,) taste good, and we are happy.  Things are enjoyable.

Same thing happens when we are doing what is right.  We don’t have excess worry, and life is just better.  (I am not saying that trials don’t pop up..  they do.)   We focused on the commandment “Honor thy father and thy mother.”

The girls needed this, as they have been having some struggles listening to their parents.

You know, Us.

They participated well, and we thought that they got it.

Not so much.

As soon as some freshly baked cookies were enjoyed, the normal nightly routine began.

“Get ready for your bath (or shower) and make sure to put your clothes in the hamper.”

Do you want to guess where the clothes ended-up?

I bet you guessed right.  If you guessed anywhere BUT the hamper..

While they were in the tub, they were instructed to not get any more washcloths, they each had one, that was enough laundry for mom to do.

I turned around, and what did I see?

Ashley with two more.

She was grounded from the computer for the day today.  You see, there are consequences when you don’t do what is right.

Bedtime became an even greater adventure in the skill of not listening and being obedient.

I think that next Monday evening might be a re-run, minus the chocolate and sugar.  I think those just proved to be too distracting.

I Love Spray Paint!

I seriously cannot count the number of things that have been spray painted in my house..

Even in recent history, that would make a long list.

I love the stuff.

I finally finished my desk area in the loft…

spray paint 001

I am quite excited with how it turned out…

spray paint 006

The desk was the desk left with the house, the desk that I was practically praying they would leave!!

The chair was one of my thrift store finds.

Both were loved  a little more, and look a lot better because of it.

I used a latex bonding primer on the desk (thanks Brooke!) and spray painted it, yes, spray paint.

The chair was also primed and spray painted.

New hardware and a seat cushion finished it off for me!

spray paint 004

I wanted organization to be prime in this space, so I went to get a magnet board.  Roberts has my favorite kind..  but they were out. 

For weeks.

Being the kind of gal I am, I made my own.  It’s not perfect, I chose the knottiest wood I could find, and I sincerely love all the knots and cracks..

spray paint 005

I also made a fabric bulletin board, for those smaller items that I don’t want taking up space on the magnet board.

spray paint 003

This goodie was a re-purposed item from the craft room.  Wall space isn’t prime in there, and it got put away until I could think of a use for it..

I used the Storybook cartridge and the Cricut, and now I have a nifty new place for incoming and outgoing mail and notes.

spray paint 007

I had to have a recycle bin here, this is where I sort through mail and newspapers, ads, coupons.. 

I found this basket at Michaels, used one of those coupons I LOVE..

spray paint 002

Another item, from another room, that got a facelift was this bookshelf that I have had since I was 15.  I love the thing!

It was built by the same man who built my cedar chest.  Both have proved the test of time and my love for re-arranging furniture. 

It was in the nursery, and was white then.  It got the same treatment as everything else, and was painted black.

The metal storage containers are from IKEA.

(I love IKEA just about as much as I love spray paint..)

Now for my recently discovered tips..

First off, prime, PRIME, PRIME!!!

Latex based bonding primers are available at most paint counters.  They can even tint them to help in the painting process for the following coats. 

My sister-in-law Brooke, bought a gallon to use on her project, and she loaned me some of it.

Thanks Brooke!!

It is awesome stuff.

For my thrift store find chairs, I used Kilz which is not only a primer, but a blocker for stains and odors.  It comes in a spray can which makes the process of painting all of those spindles a breeze!

spray paint 008

As for the paint..

My new favorite is this type of Rustoleum.

(I am not paid to say this..)

I have used a lot, and if the color I want is available in this brand, and even more importantly, this type of can, I get it.  There are obviously some colors that aren’t available in this type of can, but I love this kind..

American Accents (also pictured) is another favorite.

spray paint 011

Gloves…  may I suggest, strongly, that you wear some?

I bought two boxes just like this at Sam’s club.  I bought them to wear while making salsa for cutting and de-seeding the peppers.

(It also helped me look like a paranoid lady, because when I bought them, it was the same week that Swine Flu became the freak out that it once was.)

Turns out they have another purpose in my house.

Wearing gloves prevents the spray from getting on your skin and/or nails.  They are also fantastic for when (or if) the nozzle on your can starts to clog, and a nice stream of paint trickles down the side of the can to your unsuspecting hand.

They are also a good thing if you are painting outside, and the breeze (or sudden strong gust of wind) blows it right back at you.  Thinking of this, wear a jacket that you don’t care about..

(Isn’t this a nice, humorous image of me?)

If you do get paint on your skin, this stuff is awesome..

spraypaint 002

A girlfriend brought some to me on Halloween.  It was by far the best trick-or-treat visit I ever had (especially considering the clown that came later that same night…)

I smells like butter cream icing and makes me hungry whenever I use it..

It is awesome stuff!

She got gum off of her little boy’s skin using this and a washcloth (with minimal scrubbing).

So that ONE time I neglected to put on my gloves, and got some on my hands, I remembered her telling me about the gum..

Paint came off.

No big deal.

Then, at the end of the day, when your project is all finished, take a hot bath or shower using it.

I promise, it’s awesome!

Monday, January 25, 2010


What to do with all that yarn, you know, just the remnants?
Not enough to make another beanie..
Not enough to make a sock..
Not near enough to make a whole afghan..
No probable scarves here..
You combine them all!
Here’s my afghan so far:
24&25 012
It’s fun working with all these different colors, textures, and sizes of yarn.
It is even more fun remembering what projects they were used on.

January 25th..

24&25 021

Call me weird, but I am in love…


January 24th..

24&25 008

Merrill might not be too thrilled that I posted this one..  he claims that he isn’t photogenic..


This is what we do on Sunday nights..  curl up together with treats and a good movie, and enjoy being together.

Clean House Monday..

I was so excited to get to it this morning.

Last week was my birthday, and I got yet another awesome gift.

24&25 021

I am in love!!

Some people might think I am weird, but I am really normal, to myself at least.

Last year, I got the Dyson.

Changed my life.

Some people might think that’s an awful gift.  Not me…

I am all about cleanliness, I get it from my mom.  (She’s a little OCD, you can’t dispute it mom..  you made me the way I am.)

As I hinted, researched, and hinted some more, Merrill admitted to me that he was looking for just what I wanted.

A Shark floor steamer.

(See..  I am kinda weird!)

Yes, it gets weirder as I am the one who went and picked it up..  I also had a coupon to go towards the purchase (I am in love with coupons..), and it was one of the best gifts I received.

(I have many more yet to play with..)

But today, I was in heaven.

I filled-up the extra large water tank twice, even though I only needed to once, and steamed away.

It was fun.

(Now are you convinced that I am weird?)

I would have eaten off my bathroom floor, it is that clean.

But we are teaching our children about the importance of family mealtime..  that would have been a bad example.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Friday, January 22, 2010

January 21st..

21 006

An Even Day..

At our house, to prevent the arguments that naturally come with small children and who gets to pray, we have the rule (if you can call it that..) that whatever the date is, even or odd, then someone with an even or odd birthday, says the prayer. 
For example, if it is an odd day, Ashley blesses breakfast, Dad says bedtime prayer.  If it is an even day, Lynn blesses breakfast, Mom says bedtime prayer.  So when dinner time arrives, who ever didn’t bless breakfast, usually blesses dinner.  Peyton helps to fill in our gaps and sometimes, but only on those rare occasions when we are feeling generous and loving, will the girls give each other the dinner prayer.
Today was an even day.  Lynn’s turn to bless the breakfast and start our day.
As I get breakfast ready, we will talk about the coming events for the day, usually the news is on in the background, so there is a lot of talking and explaining going on.
Lately the news has been all about Haiti.  As I was crying yesterday morning watching the news while getting breakfast ready, the girls started asking questions.  I tried my best to explain the situation there.  What a hard thing those people are going through..
I even told them about a friend of mine who has been going through the long process of adopting a little girl there.  The hidden blessing in all of it, that they will get her sooner than expected due to this horrible happening there.
This morning, talk turned again, to the coming events of the day, and I told the girls that they would be having a little friend come to visit.  A friend of mine is experiencing some problems in her pregnancy, and we were helping out with her little girl today. 
We talked a bit more, then I asked Lynn to please bless the food and start off our day.
Before she started she asked, “Mom, what’s the name of that place again, where all the children are waiting..”
“Haiti honey..”  I was so touched that she still had that on her mind.
She started her prayer, thankful for many things, and then she asked her Father in Heaven to bless the people in Haiti.  “Bless the children that they can come here fast and be with their new families..”
She stopped praying for a second and whispered, “Mom, what’s that girl’s name..  your friend with the baby?”
I told her her name, and she prayed for her.  She paused, and then went on, paused again and acted like she had more to say.
I was feeling quite proud of my thoughtful little girl.
She ended her heartfelt prayer, and then acted kind of upset.  When I asked her what was wrong, she told me she was frustrated that she couldn’t remember my other friend’s name, the one waiting to get her little girl from Haiti.
We had another talk about how Heavenly Father knows..  He knows how we feel and what we think without saying it aloud.  He sure likes to hear it, but He knows.
“You don’t have to close your eyes, kneel down, or even fold your arms if you need to pray.  Did you know that?  You could say a prayer sitting in your seat at school, and He still hears.
Wow..  I love this little girl, the things she teaches me everyday!  The thoughts and feelings that she awakens in ME...  the things that I am still learning or am reminded of everyday.  
One of the many blessings of being a mother…

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Some jibber jabber for your enjoyment..

Here are some of Peyton's late night antics that keep us giggling..  (ignore my annoying voice please.  What is that scientific explanation for why we hear ourselves differently?..)
Peyton has recently learned how to say her own name (first and last), and the names of other people in our family.  She kind of gets stuck on Ashley, and Lynn is "Lou" due to our calling her Lynnie-lou all the time.. 
Go directly to 1:55 for the cutest part..  in my opinion.
(Sorry in advance for the poor lighting..)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Favorite cake: Mom's Chocolate Layer Cake

Well, one of my favs..
I had to have this one for my birthday today.
Like, really.

Mom's Chocolate Layer Cake

favorite chocolate cake (I like Devil's Food)
1small tub Cool Whip
2 bars Baker's unsweetened German chocolate
3/4 cup margarine

Bake cake according to recipe, cool, and cut so you have 4 layers.
Melt 1 1/2 bars of chocolate with margarine over low heat in a small saucepan.  Let cool in the fridge until spreadable, not too runny but not thick.
Start layering your cake..  bottom layer gets a coating of chocolate, then a layer of cake.  Cool whip goes on top, then another layer of cake.  Chocolate comes next, then the last layer of cake.  Top it off with Cool Whip and some shavings from the remaining half of the chocolate bar.  Let it set up in the fridge before serving.

This is also good for breakfast. ;)

January 20th..

So far..

It's pretty sweet..

Thanks to ALL who have made it such a special day!

Scrapbooking with your computer...

Just in case you weren't aware, Ali Edwards is doing an awesome feature this week.
She is doing a number of posts all about scrapbooking with your computer..  whether you want to do only digital, play with some hybrid, or whatever..  she is an awesome person to go to who knows just about everything!!
I know there are some of you out there...  she goes through every step.
It's good..
Really good..
Oh, and it's free.

You get what you give..

I have discovered the best way to kick off the 30th year of life...
Spending it in a twin size bed with two other small people (making that a total of 3 people in the bed).

my bed buddies

Not so great when my body hurts, due to age (I guess) and genetics.
It all began right after I was ready for bed, in my own, warm cozy bed, ready to drift off, when I think I hear a cry.  I immediately assumed it was Peyton, but it wasn't. 
You see, Peyton comes to me.  This cry wasn't coming to me.
It was Ashley.
Now to back up, just a little (okay, try 20+ years), I was a sleep-walker and a sleep-talker.
There are many stories that float around about me and my nocturnal ways.  They are all pretty good, but I feel bad about what kind of things my parents (but mostly mom) had to deal with in the middle of the night.
Some of those things that freaked her out the most, I did while wide awake.
(Sorry mom..  I understand so much better now.)
Ashley, is giving me a taste of my own medicine.
She not only walks and talks in her sleep, she cries.
It makes for some exciting (and very frustrating) nights.
I went in a comforted her twice.  Each time, her cries stopped, for a minute.  As soon as I was comfortable again in my own bed, the cries would start up again.  I told myself that she could cry there.  I would stay in my bed.  There was nothing I could do.
The third time, she was not only crying but calling my name as well, and she started talking...  kind of.  So I decided to go to her.
Since only my warm bed was interrupted, not my sleep, I took it all in stride, and had some fun.

"Ashley..  are you okay?"
"Uh-huh.  I need your heeelp.."
"What do you need my help with?"
"Do you need me to tickle you?"
"Do you need me to lick your nose?"
Can you guess how this conversation (sort of..) went on?
It covered a wide range of silly activities and a range of bodily functions, all followed with Ashley's response of, "Uh-huhhhh.." .
Finally, all of the silliness (and tickling) had her awake, and she asked if I would come and snuggle with her.
I had to go and get my down blanket (remember MY comfy bed?) and we got right to the snuggling. 
I was still asking her questions and I could tell that she was really awake now.  I asked her if she was going to remember this in the morning, and I was a little worried by her answer, "Uh-huh.."
Right after we were settled, Peyton started to cry in her bed.
That is where the third body came into play.
What a way to start your thirtieth year..
My body hurts.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

January 19th..

Homemade bread..

I love warm, fresh, homemade bread...
Talk about fond memories from my childhood.
The girls and I made some today for the fun of it, you know, no school and all...
I used my favorite recipe, one that my best friend's mom used.  I loved being at their house.  We had a blast there, and it was a bonus if it was bread making day!

I like it the regular way, but it is really good making it the whole wheat alternative.  I usually half the recipe, my family is not as big as theirs was, and I do love my carbs, but if I ate four loaves of bread, with butter....
Let's not go there.
And a slice of whole wheat, fresh out of the toaster with butter..  forget about it.....

LeAnn's Bread

2 tablespoons yeast
1 cup warm water
13 cups flour
1 1/2 tablespoons salt
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup oil
3 1/2 cups milk (may use dry milk, I like to, it's how you can use what you store!)
2 eggs, well beaten

Dissolve yeast in warm water. Put in large mixing bowl and add milk, sugar, salt, and oil.  Stir to dissolve.  Add well beaten eggs and mix.  Add flour, four cups at a time, mixing well after each addition.  Add enough flour to make a stiff dough.  Knead 15-20 minutes.  Place in an oiled bowl and let rise until double.  Punch down and knead five more minutes.  Divide into four parts, shape into loaves, and place in pans.  Let rise until double in size, again, and then bake at 375 for 30-35 minutes.

WHOLE WHEAT:  Use six cups whole wheat flour and six cups white flour.  3 1/2 cups water instead of milk, and brown sugar instead of white sugar.

January 18th..

January 17th..

January 16th..

She thought the glue stick was lip gloss....

Not too frumpy...

It all started when Lynn and I were going through her closet, discussing which dresses were okay to wear in our wintry weather. 
We came upon these dresses that I bought her at Target.  It is hard to find dresses that fit her.  She is so tall and skinny, but her legs are so long!  I can get something that is her size, but looks so short and immodest because her legs are so long.  If I go up a size, it is too baggy and falls off.
These are both problems.
I bought these dresses thinking they were perfect, not as fancy as she would like, but she could even wear them to school, because they weren't fancy.
She has worn them only a couple of times and I asked her why, assuming it was on the account that they weren't fancy enough, but her answer to me:
"They are too frumpy."
That was a laugh.
We decided to go on a mother daughter date to find her a suitable dress.
"High-heeled shoes" were also a planned purchase.
That girl was too funny to shop with!  She is like a little butterfly, flitting here and there, to every rack and dress in the store.  She would walk on her heels and snap her fingers..  you could see the over-stimulation in her eyes.
She was in fancy heaven!
We settled on a dress and hunted down the perfect shoes.
Coming home and showing off her finds only motivated Ashley more (who was already upset that we were leaving without her to buy a new dress..) to book our date together.
Ashley was just as much fun to shop with, but she knew what she was going after both shoe and dress wise.
She picked out her "fancy dress" and even got a bonus in a matching dress for her American Girl doll.  She is thrilled with her shoes and wants to wear them everywhere!
I just loved having the one on one time with each of them.

Couldn't leave out little Pey...

I bought this dress for her, she had no complaints. ;)