Geometric Yellow Shapes

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Finished Stocking


I forgot to mention that I finished the stocking for my step mom Rachel. She is such an amazing lady, and I'm so so glad she's part of our family and she makes my dad so happy. Honestly, he cries just about anytime he talks about her. Look at it next to the one my mom made my Dad over 20 years ago.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Friday, December 17, 2010

Traditions!

Every time I say "traditions" I can't help but think of the Fiddler on the Roof song, and I kind of have to say it twice.

Jon & I got married just over two years ago, but this will be our 3rd Christmas together. We have similar types of families, but we have very differing traditions. Part of the joy (and challenge) for the two of us, has been deciding what traditions we will use in our own families. While for now its just the two of us, I'm pretty BIG on Christmas & celebrate it the whole month of December... OK, and November too. Anyway, just wanted to let you know some of our joint Christmas traditions, because I love hearing it from others too.



Friday after Thanksgiving:
This is the day my family has always devoted to "deck the halls." We bring out the tree(s), all the ornaments, stockings, villages, etc. The holiday music is turned all the way up, singing is mandatory. We spend all day not only putting things up, but also rummaging through and remembering how much we loved that ornament, or remembered that picture. Its so fun, and helps us truly ring in the holiday.


All Month Long:
We are always listening to Christmas music. The good ones: Dean Martin, Elvis Presley, Perry Como, Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, Natalie Cole, Doris Day, Judy Garland, etc. This kind of overwhelmed Jon, it was too much festivity, so I've had to tone it down with him. Playing for the most part when he's at work, or just a little bit at night instead of 24/7. But he's also made compromises for me, when we drive to see family, or even just to the grocery store, he'll tune it to a Christmas station. I'm really lucky like that.

During month of Christmas
Jon's mom has this amazing tradition of making delicious candies with family. It all started with Derin & her grandmother. After Jon's great grandmother died, Derin continued the tradition with her siblings, and as they each began having families of their own, the party grew. Last year we had about 40 people in the Rodriguez home... no joke! It was insane, chocolate & frosting was everywhere, and I think everyone was a little hyper from the sugar fumes. Those delicious candies were not only a joy to eat, or share with neighbors, but it was also such a treat (no pun intended) to be together as a family.

Christmas Eve:
Jon's family has a program they do every Christmas Eve which is devoted to Christ's birth & why He came to Earth. Its titled "The Promise" and Derin wrote it. The script is so simple, pulling its truth from scripture and adding to its sweetest with well known hymns. It was such a sweet reminder of the real reason we celebrate. We often get so wrapped up in the silly little traditions, that we forget why its important. This year we read this with my parents, both sets. It was so moving, and meant so much to Jon. I'm so grateful for his example of celebrating the holiday around Christ.


Christmas Morning:
This one was a little difficult. We both have Christmas morning food traditions that we feel very strongly about (lets be honest about it, we feel strongly about food in general) Every Christmas my mother would make her famous Christmas granola. Its so so so good. Its a huge processes. It takes pretty much all day, but the end result is worth it. Fun fact about this, its a recipe that is completely secret & has been passed down to the women in the family, never to be shared.

So every Christmas morning we would unwrap presents and eat milk & warm granola. My mouth is watering just at the thought.

So, Jon's family also has a delicious family tradition. Christmas morning was fresh Tamales & Over Easy Eggs! It's seriously SOOOO good together. Last Christmas I had this with Jon & his family. They don't hand make the Tamales, but purchase them from the amazing chefs that sell them in the city, those things are amazing.

As you may have guessed, this caused a delema between our two breakfast favorites. The compromise? We have Christmas EVE granola instead of morning. I feel that its a perfect compromise. We'll all enjoy something sweet and milky before bedtime anyway, and those tamales are so good, cuz you're so hungry Christmas morning from opening all those lovely gifts.


Stockings:
This one is fun, because we both have traditions that do not affect the other, but just enhance it. My mother made all of us these adorable Bucilla stockings. I have already continued the tradition. My stocking is an angel, and Jon's is Santa on a motorcycle (funny I made that even before we got the Harley). They take a lot of time, but I really enjoy sewing them.

Jon's family has always put an orange in the toe of the stocking. They said it was from Jon's grandpa, Renee Rodriguez, grew up in Anaheim California, and his family didn't have much, but they always had an orange on Christmas. I love these two traditions.

There is really so many more that I could mention, but I just don't have the time. These are the really big ones, the ones I remember the most throughout the rest of the year. I'm so grateful for an understanding husband who puts up with "the crazy Quinn women Christmas" as he puts it (Quinn is my mother's maiden name, my grandmother & all my aunts have always loved Christmas). How lucky I am to afford a beautiful apartment, and music, decorations, and presents?

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Christmas Ornaments


So Capone is a sweet funny little dog.
Last night she was messing around with my Christmas ornaments that hang below our tree. We have some inexpensive sparkly red, yellow, and green balls on our tree. I kept telling her to stop by saying "no" over & over. She seemed to listen for a moment, and then go back to the exciting tree. I eventually went over with the intention to pick her up and move her as far away from the tree as possible. I picked her up, looked her in the face to say "no" on more time, and started laughing. She had sparkles all over that cute little black muzzle.

Awww... don't you love Christmas?

Monday, December 13, 2010

New Puppy!

Meet Capone!

I'd like to welcome the newest & cutest member of our family! (No offence Gia) This is our new little boxer girl Capone, she was born Oct 11th & joined our family about a week ago. She's the sweetest little dog. A complete cuddler. But, she's very playful, especially with Gia. Gia turned out to be quite the sweetheart of a dog, playing gently with Capone & never leaving her alone.

When we first got her we were a little nervous that two dogs would be too difficult for us, but its turned out to be such a fun blessing! We've had so much training her, playing with her, and mostly watching her.

Christmas Crafts/Gifts

Merry Christmas

So, I have been trying to make this stocking before we leave for vacation this coming Saturday. Its been crazy! You probably can't tell, but this top of the stocking had lots of detail! Its been quite exciting to sew. Jon calls it the "ignore husband project" because of how in the zone I get.
The cutest part of the whole stocking is the adorable mini stocking that Mrs. Claus will end up holding above the fireplace. However, that stinking thing took me like an hour and a half to complete! Its a good thing I enjoy doing this craft, otherwise I would have quite a long time ago. I'll be updating you on my progress as this mini ordeal continues.

Friday, November 19, 2010

I'm Back

I'm back. And yes, I've been gone for far too long, but no moping about it, we'll just move forward. So this last little while has been sort of crazy. Our sweet little puppy Gia, who is now 7 months, broke her leg a month ago. Its been a long expensive month, full of doctor appointments, open wounds, and splints breaking. Frustrating to say the least. But yesterday we took her splint OFF! She's back to her cute little self. Unfortunately, we couldn't get the splint off in time for family photos, she'll be forever immortalized by her little stiff leg.
She's such a fun little dog, but its been so hard to keep her mellow and to keep her from running and jumping during this whole month. Keeping her confined has caused a few problems... lets just say that Jon had to buy a new phone charger, and I'm using the car charger because of an incident with an extension cord.
Life has been so great! I'm glad to get back on the routine of writing on my blog, because writing daily reminds me where the Lord has blessed me. Even though we've had some unforeseen expenses, I am so blessed to still be fine, I'm still able to pay rent, purchase food, and even get some things just for fun.
What a wonderful life!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Sorry

Jon & I got back from our Super Fun California trip and we have LOTS to do. We're moving, due to the addition to our family (we love you Gia) and so we've got to pack... by today! Sort of crazy! So I apologize I have been unfaithful in my blogging. Once things slow down a bit again I'll post about our fun trip.

This is Tank & Gia. Tank is Mike (my brother) & Brit (my sister-in-law)'s teacup chihuahua puppy. Gia is our boxer baby. We weighed them and Gia is 8lbs while Tank is barely 5lbs. Can't wait to take a picture in a year to show you their size difference. Haha.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Disney Fun

Hidden Mickeys

So I am going back to Disneyland, and decided to look up some of the hidden mickeys around the park, so we can find as many of them as possible. In my internet browsings I found this:


About 20 miles from Walt Disney World, just off the 27-HWY exists what must be one of the world’s largest Hidden Mickeys. Since this is in Florida, I imagine these are orange trees. But it’s hard to tell for sure.

I can't wait to look for more of them. Check out this link to see a list of some of the hidden mickey's located around Disneyland! http://www.hiddenmickeys.org/disneyland/

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Life is Full of Little Gifts

So life is wonderful. Simply full of lovely little surprises that make the world brighter & better.
Last week Collette, a girl from work I just adore, brought me a beautiful lemon meringue pie, home made people!, for my gift from her blog. Please see entry "Surprise" It was just so sweet (haha, pun intended) of her, and made me feel special that day. Luckily everyone in the office was willing to have some of it, because I wouldn't be able to eat that on my own.



This week, Jon & I decided we're moving apartments, which you may not think is much of a gift... but that was just the prelude into something better: a puppy! That's right! we're getting a little fluffy bundle of joy! We picked her out this weekend, paid the deposit, and in 1 weeks (once she's 7 weeks old) we get her! She's a little brindle colored boxer! We only saw her for a little, but we've already named her: Gia! She's adorable, and already so obedient. She doesn't quite understand the commands "sit, stay, come" but she tries.




Thursday, May 20, 2010

One More...

Snow White's Scary Adventures

Disneyland Book

Through heritagemakers.com, my work, I've been making myself a HUGE book to fill up with pictures from the happiest place on earth... DISNEYLAND! I am slightly proud of this, and there are more pages to come. It's going to be kind of enormous when I'm finished. But here ya go, first look at it!

Main Street Page

Indiana Jones

Jungle Cruise

Toy Story

Soarin' Over California

Pixie Hollow

Haunted House Page Spread

Astro Blasters

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Saturday Yard Work

Mike's been unable to do the work himself. So we, and Mike's 4 brothers came to help out.


So the morning started, with lots of weeding.

I really wish I knew what Jon was saying here.

Dave worked hard too! And took all of these great pictures.

Mike seemed to be enjoying his morning with us.

Before we knew it we had 30+ volunteers show up! What would have taken us all day took us a matter of hours. I can't explain how touched we were by their hard work. It was amazing. The love of the ward for Mike & Derin was incredible.

All of these volunteers gave us a chance to rest!


All the brothers, like Tim, couldn't keep from goofing off.

After it was all over & the brothers left for their homes, Mike found this: his brother Rob's work boots (which Mike had been complimenting all weekend) with a sweet note saying "hope they fit." It was just an amazing weekend, filled with thoughtless service from those around us and family love.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Surprise!

My friend posted this on her blog and I couldn't resist so here it is:

The first five people to respond to this post will get something made by me! My choice. For you.
This offer does have some restrictions and limitations:

1. I make no guarantees that you will like what I make!
2. What I create will be just for you.
3. It'll be done this year. (I'll try to get it done soon)
4. You have no clue what it's going to be.
5. I reserve the right to do something extremely strange.

The catch? Oh, the catch is that you must re-post this on your blog and offer the same to the first 5 people who do the same on your blog. The first 5 people to do so, and leave a comment telling me they did, win a FAB-U-LOUS homemade gift by me!

*Oh, and be sure to post a picture of what you win when you get it!*

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Wonderland

Today I watched a film called "Phoebe in Wonderland." I feel like I am always intrigued by those make believe worlds created in books and movies. While they take me to other places, I always feel enlightened and wiser when I leave. In Alice In Wonderland they ask,

"Do you ever run so hard only to stay in the same place?"

Yes. But you still grow stronger from the running. Sometimes you feel so lost, so disconnected from who you wanted to become, you feel the hope that you will accomplish your dreams slip away from you. Yet somehow I always remember that the running makes me stronger. I'm not in the same place. Not really.

One of the biggest themes in Alice in Wonderland is "who are you?" Obviously, I am Savanna. But the bigger question is, who am I? And I think its safe to say that none of us really know who we are. Yet daily we decide what our actions are, we decide what decisions to make, we utilize the agency that truly makes each of us unique. How beautiful the world is when we embrace the opportunity to decide who we are.

I drew this about a month ago, thought it was appropriate.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Welcome Back Sunshine

Jon & I have been going to the park everyday and playing soccer together. I just love the sunshine and being outside and even exercising a little. I'm really not very coordinated, luckily they don't ban klutz's from the park. Yesterday when we were playing there was a birthday with a pinata and they were grilling hot dogs. I love parks, and living less than a block away has been a blast. We even played laser tag with 6 other people in that park last week. Its best in the dark.


Today we also went to watch our adorable niece Isabel play her last team soccer game. She's honestly the tallest girl on her team, and the best kicker.

Last week Anna came over to see me and we caught up on all of our freshman year together. We were laughing at our pictures and Jon got my camera and secretly took pictures of us. Aren't we cute.



On Thursday Jon & I made some delicious food! We had buttermilk battered chicken & Garlic Roasted Eggplant Mashed Potatoes, they're SO good! Jon also made a really good sauce for the chicken.


On a separate note I made my 3 neices, Emma, Rachel, & Abby shirts for them to take on their Disney trip. They were Sleeping Beauty, Tinkerbell, and Cinderella. Their mom made their adorable skirts for them. Its so fun being an aunt.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

My husband is an Amazing Chef!


Sunday night my husband made delicious salmon, I made yummi rosemary potatoes, Derin made delicious garlic spinach, and Jon put all of these on top of his own apple reduction sauce. It was delicious. I am seriously spoiled. All this hearty food is making it difficult to get my tight & fit "summer bod". lol.

Tonight I made a Ginger Carrot Soup. Sounds weird, but honestly was a good subtle soup. Jon especially liked it. Its supposed to simmer for 3 hours, we didn't have that kind of time, so I'm sure it just gets better.

This is what Jon made! Shish-ka-bobs! Steak, peppers, cheese, and mushrooms. Beneath the ka-bobs are GRILLED PINEAPPLE! Jon smothered the pineapple in vanilla and brown sugar, which gave them a perfect caramelization on the sweet fruit. Mike especially loved that.

Tonight Dave is spending the night, and we are going to "Par-Tay!" I gotta get back, we're watching a Street Fighter cartoon. Woo-hoo. I'll post how the partying went tomorrow. See ya!

Face Painting Fun




Saturday was my adorable nieces 7th birthday, and she asked if I would paint her & her friends faces! I had such a blast! It was a fairy themed birthday and each of them had a different butterfly painted across their cheeks and noses. Isn't my niece just beautiful? I know! The blue eyes are piercing! Not only that but she is tall, skinny, and gorgeous. I just know Isabel is going to be a heart breaker!

I used to paint faces at birthday party's and ward events when I was in high school. I had forgotten how much fun I had. If anybody is interested, I don't mind doing these more often. I can paint pretty much anything from dragons to kittys to dogs. Seriously though, kids are the best. They were so appreciative of the paint and it made me happy to see them feeling so pretty.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Haircut!


I was brave yesterday. I cut off a good 8 inches off of my hair resulting in... BANGS! My hubby just loves it, which is good because I was very nervous.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Food Glorious Food

Jon & I have been eating quite well lately.

On the menu:

Mexican Soup with Sour Cream & Cheese


Aubrey came over and taught us how to make a delicious hearty soup. Complete with tomatoes, onions, garlic, beans etc.



Clam Chowder in a Sourdough Bread Bowl

Disney's own recipe. This was the first time Jon had ever seen what a clam actually looked like, and the first time I had ever had home made clam chowder. We bought $4 bread bowls that were so big nobody could finish them.


It was fun how many people associate places with clam chowder. Mike, Jon's dad, couldn't help but sitting in a cafe in San Francisco eating a bowl, while I grew up eating it on the corner of New Orlean's in Disneyland, and my mom always had it in a little eatery at Pismo (a little beach town in California).

Chowder, like so many types of food, bring people together I think.

Goat Cheese Chicken with a Beef Tomato Sauce

Last night Jon realized that we had frozen chicken breast in the fridge and made us this amazing dinner. We didn't eat till about 9 and I was so hungry I just chowed down without really tasting the food at first. Jon pointed that out and said, "so what did you think?" how rude of me to just eat and not be grateful for the hard work my husband had put into it. And just for the record, it tasted sublime!


*Note: I always write this blog and Jon tells me I haven't named it right. So, in most cases its just my best try :) So please excuse the food titles!