Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Sarah Ellen Photography

I don't like to mix my personal blog with my business blog, however, I want to get the word out and since some of my blog peeps don't have a Facebook account, I thought I would reach  y'all this way.  I have a few sessions left, so hurry and book now! p.s. mention you saw it on my blog and I'll give ya a 20% discount. WOW!

Thursday, August 4, 2011


This is Jake.

Everyone one say "Hi Jake".

Jake is my cousin, who is single, kind, amazing, and has a nice truck. My kids love Jake. I think they have replaced Stephen (Bubba) with him. They love to see him, and hang out with him. When they see his truck they go CRaZy!!

Jake also owns a horse. Theron. My kids love Theron. They love to pet him, and ride him. A few weeks ago he let them ride the horses in the field next to their house. My kids now want a horse. Maybe. Someday. 

This picture makes me laugh! (Sidenote - this horse isn't Theron)

Future Rodeo Queen

Not quite sure about being up there alone.

Cousin Justin riding Theron....isn't he a beautiful horse?
I totally know that this was totally random. I think its because I have also been jonesin to ride Theron. Hmmm, me thinks I need to call Jake.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Cal-li-forn-ia Girls

So believe it or not, I have NEVER been to the beach. Well, we went to the beach in Texas, but that was more rock, and you couldn't go anywhere without shoes on, so I don't count that. Anyways, yes, me in my lame - never been to the Grand Canyon nor the beach self - decided that it was time to cross one of those items off the bucket list. Luckily, Aaron had to (serious arm twisting) go to San Diego and take some classes for his job. So, being the supportive loving wife that I am,  I decided to tag along. I mean heavens, I wouldn't want him to be alone during that long 10 hour drive over there.

We stayed in the Manchester-Grand Hyatt which, cha cha cha, was the life of luxury. It is right on Sea Port Village. I would sit in our 14th flour room and just watch the boats go in and out. One morning a ship pulled into the navel base on Coronado, filled with sailors standing around it....heavenly. Nothing like men in uniform..mmm...mmm...mmm.

When we first started planning the trip, I wasn't sure what I was going to do for the whole day while Aaron was in classes. I mean, I was stuck in a new town, with no transportation, thank heavens my Uncle Merrell had to attend the same classes, so his wife, my Aunt Blanche, and two of her kids, Natalie and Justin decided to join in on the fun. I tagged along with them. It was great!!

We went to Sea World for two of the 5 days. Justin, who is the same age as Elle, was so much fun to be around, even though his sister may say otherwise. His excitement to see and experience everything make me laugh, and really miss my kids.

We then spent one day at Imperial Beach....heavenly. All my friends said that they could spend a whole day at the beach and never get bored. I honestly thought they were nuts, I mean really, how long can you stare at the ocean?! Well, my friend, you can stare at the ocean for hours and hours. Probably the best nap I have had in a while, listening to the waves, smelling the clean air. It was heavenly, and I am jonesin' to go back!

We also cruised on over to the San Diego Temple, also a first for me, and then we made a trip over to Mission Beach. Once again, heavenly.

It was an amazing trip. It was nice to have some Sarah time without the little kiddos. I am SO thankful to my mother-in-law and to my amazing cousin Martha for watching my kids. Without their help, I would have been stuck home all week, and probably now living in a mental institution.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Popsicle, Fudgesicles Ooooone Dollar!!!

Okay, I lied, this post isn't about the family reunions. I decided to go in chronological order on how things happened. So lets see, we evacuate, get back, and then celebrated the 4th of July!!! First of all, 4th of July Celebrations are my favorite, but small time 4th of July Celebrations are da BOMB! Nothing better than a Parade, Rodeo, Popsicle, Fudgesicles ooooone dollar, and Fireworks.

Friday night, they had a little community party. They provided hotdogs, chips, cookies, and drinks. They also had some activities for the kids to do. Ashlee did the watermelon eating contest for kids, and then Elle did the hula hoop contest. Both did amazing, and were so cute. 

The parade was spectacular. No it wasn't all fancy smancy like the Rose Bowl Parade but it had the pride of being an American and living in a beautiful country, even though a good chunk of it is charred. I had made ahead of time some cute little bags for my kiddos so that they could catch candy and then put it in them, it was a hit. Abram loved just watching everything. We sat with my Aunt Blanche and her family, and I must say, the best part of the parade was when her brother-in-law came by on his high school reunion float and everyone pelted him with water balloons. Too much fun.


Later that day my amazing cousin Martha and I headed on over to the rodeo to watch our cousins perform. Fun, Fun, Fun!! Only in a small town would they have such a fun rodeo like this one. First of all, the Boy Scouts, bless their hearts, were doing a fund raiser, and this sweet (annoying) one walked in front of the grandstands the WHOLE time screaming "Popsicle, Fudgesicles Ooooone dollar!!" I was fixin to give him $10 to sit down and shut up. Finally after his 20th pass, we all joined him in screaming "Ooooone Dollar". He got the hint and quit soon their after. While there we watched them do the Keg Race, which is basically musical chairs with a twist of rodeo. You sit on your chair at one end of the arena, with your horse in hand, when the buzzer screams you get on your horse, ride it to the other side of the arena, around a barrel, and then back to where the chairs are. While this is going on, one chair is removed so you have to fight to get one. TONS of laughs!! My cousin Ray came in 2nd, and it has motivated me to do it next year. I suggest you make plans to be there. It's going to be the 100th year of this rodeo, and it will be on Wednesday, July 4th. Be there or be square.

Later that night we went to the Fireworks show in Springerville, yes, I know what you are thinking, didn't ya'll just get done battling a fire? Yes, yes we did, however, you can't burn something that is already burned, silly. It was fun, next year, we are going to change our location, go early and totally tailgate. Be there or be square.

So that's how we celebrated. We had our fill of hotdogs, jalapeno hamburgers, chips, soda, cookies, brownies, otter-pops, it was spectacular.  I really can't wait until next  year!!

Monday, August 1, 2011

UPDATE - For Jessica (who is pregnant, and I don't want to mess with a pregnant woman)

How was your summer? Mine was filled with nothing less than excitement. Let me give you a quick breakdown followed by some pictures.....hold that, maybe I'll turn this little post into a few post, you know, to look like I blog all the time and such. Let me start with our most memorable event of the summer, the Wallow Fire. At first it was just this small little fire, several miles away, that would NEVER get close to our little town. WRONG. This little old fire grew to be the largest in Arizona history.

One of the smoke plumes

I have always seen the images on TV of other fires, where the sky is red, and very dark. I never thought I would in a million years experience it. I kept calling it horrifically beautiful. Seeing the red sun through the smoke and ash was beautiful, seeing the smoke plumes in the evening build up were breath taking, seeing the flames dance down the mountain a mile from your house seduced you, and wouldn't allow you to turn away.

This was the sun above my house.

When we started having community meetings about the fire, I just thought I would go to them because I had nothing else to do, little did I know I would soon start to crave going to the meetings, getting all the information I could, not because I was scared, but because this was a new adventure for me. I learned the lingo, and started to use it in my daily life, for instance, I was upset with the kids and told them they crossed my trigger line, they laughed, I laughed, it was a good reality check.

Air crane above my house.

I really didn't think we would be asked to evacuate. I didn't. However, I thought I would start cleaning the house and gathering things, just in case. I gathered our important documents, put all the loose photos and film negatives into one place, you know, just in case. It wasn't until returning from one of the meetings, and I saw the flames, less than a mile from my house, that I got scared. I knew. We loaded up the van and the truck. Moments later, we were given the official evacuation notice, I cried. We left.

This is as we are leaving town. Looks almost like a tornado instead of smoke.

As we were leaving town, I snapped more pictures, and cried. I wasn't worried about my house, I was more worried about the change in scenery. I knew the view would never be the same, and I didn't know how long I would be away from my home. I hate not being able to plan my life, and this was NOT on my agenda for the summer.

Once of the most memorable moments of the evacuation, was when Elle and I were driving and she said her eyes hurt, it dawned on me, we had been living for the past week in a dark cloud. It was like walking around with sunglasses always on. It wasn't until we hit clear skies that our eyes needed some serious shading, and go figure, I left my sunglasses on the counter at home.

We ended up at my in-laws that live an hour away. It was hard for me. I felt displaced. I felt lost. I wanted to go home.

Five days later, we got the notice we could go home. Aaron and I went over with the two younger ones to check it out. Aaron was more worried about our little plants, I was worried about the air quality. All seemed well, the plants were fine, and the air was no longer brown, but more white-ish, if that makes sense. We returned to the inlaws, packed up, and went home. Home sweet home.

Cleaning, washing sheets, vacuuming, dusting, and the reality of getting back to normal became part of my daily routine. It was nice to see our little town return to normal. It was nice to see cars on the street, people in the stores, and especially to see Sonic reopen.

It has been almost 2 months since the chaos. Some days it feels like yesterday, other days it seems like it was forever ago. This for sure will be a memory that will never be forgotten.


So what do you do in the summer time besides getting evacuated? I know REUNIONS!!! I promise you Jessica, you will get the 411 on the reunions tomorrow.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Guess who is TWO?!

I can't believe that two years ago I had this little guy!!!

May 20, 2009

I LOVE my little man! He is ALL boy. He loves balls, trucks, and especially beating up his older sisters. He melts my heart and annoys Aaron when he says "thank you mama." I know he is going to be a big ole trouble maker when he is older. *sigh*