Tag Archives: arizona

A look at the wedding though one of our photographer’s eyes…

For the wedding we knew we needed to secure as many photos of the event as we could, but we didn’t have the budget for thousands of dollars for a wedding photographer, plus we weren’t really looking for someone to provide us with prints of the photos from the wedding… So we hunted around for people looking to launch their photography business (on craigslist!), who had photography skills and a unique take on wedding pictures.

Nathan has a funny story about the craigslist ads we placed, several stories actually. He should blog them… But to sum it up, we got a bunch of headaches and hate mail resulting from the ad and we also found many talented and passionate candidates.


Continue reading A look at the wedding though one of our photographer’s eyes…

Way to go Scott MacIntyre of Scottsdale, AZ!!

Back in the day (we are talking like 2001-2003) I sang in a choir and was working towards my music education degree. You see singing has always been a passion of mine, shoot all the performing arts are!

Anyway I had the pleasure of meeting and performing with a ton of people who have gone on to do great things with their musical talent.

At one of the many choir concerts the MacIntyre family, 4 of the many musical lovers that came through my life, had the opportunity to perform one of their pieces in a concert. Here is a video of the song I remember them doing at a concert:

They were all amazingly talented musicians and were all so genuine and kind to everyone. They took care of each other and loved making friends, best of all they had a huge passion for music. You see the tallest guy there second from the left? That is Scott MacIntyre. He is blind but his musical talent has sort of taken the place of his eyesight with reagards to his senses if that makes sense. Whenever I heard him sing or play the piano I was lost in the magic of it. It is hard to explain.

His sister Katelyn is first from the left, his mother Carole is to the right and Todd is on the far right. They are all super talented huh?

Well Scott MacIntyre just advanced in the American Idol audition yesterday. Now before you run screaming because you despise the show or whatever I want you to hear me out. I am not an Idol fan, I watched the first season briefly but got bored. Anyway, the show is significant now because someone I know is advancing and because his story is so heartwarming. Here it is: Wait Fox news is having every single video of American Idol removed (even the ones people shot with their own cameras of the TV set playing the footage) so the video wont play. However, if you follow this link you can read about him. I’ve also got some images of the footage to share:

I cried when I saw the video from his audition (that I still think you can see here) and I am so stoked for him. He is seriously amazing guys, the video does not do him justice! Thanks to my mother in law for informing us of this info (we don’t watch the show and wouldn’t have known it was indeed him unless she had asked up about it.) Yay Scott! You rock and will blow everyone away.

Now go back to my previous post Better late than never- Delurking Day 2009, delurk and read about my 6 unimportant facts okay?

Oh and if you have noticed my site timing out now and then be advised I know about it and am very ticked off with my hosting provider. I have contacted them about it and am waiting for a resolution. Sorry about the inconvenience dudes.

Some insect ate my face and we had fun sightseeing in Tennessee!

I got to attend my prenatal visit at The Farm with a giant swollen bump on my face from a spider or something! It was swelling and itching and I even had itchy red eyes for part of the day. Add that to the giant cold sore on my lip and I was a walking face full of nasty!

Other than the prenatal visit and the face of nasty we did have the pleasure of sightseeing throughout Nashville and neighboring areas of Tennessee. We stayed at a cheap Red Roof Inn Saturday night and had linner at Whole Foods that day (linner is a combo of lunch and dinner. A un-word N uses for fun).

We were both really beat by about 5pm-6pm that day. After all we did wake up at 5am to make the trip out to Summerfield. So we checked in to our hotel after our linner and then we laied down for a nap after the prenatal appointment. I got to put a hot compress on my spider bite before napping and we also got some natural cortizone type cream for the bite at Whole Foods.

We have no Whole Foods in Evansville (or any decent natural food store for that matter) so hanging out at the Whole Foods in Tennessee was a treat for us. We also stocked up on my favorite breakfast item, Strawberry Hemp Granola! 2 pounds wont last long but it sure is a great treat!

Sunday morning after a good nights sleep we awoke and headed out to sight see. We took a guided tour of the Carnton Plantation in Franklin, TN and had a blast. For some reason we enjoy guided tours of old historic places. While in Flagstaff, we attended a tour of the Riordan Mansion in Flagstaff, AZ that we also really enjoyed.

Anyway the Carnton Plantation is not only cool because it is an old plantation house with tons of history. It is also noteworthy because it was a civil war field hospital during The Battle of Franklin and is now a final resting place for 1,481 men who were killed during the Battle of Franklin.

Carrie McGavock, wife of John McGavock who resided at Carnton Plantation was in the midst of The Battle of Franklin on November 30th 1864 when the Army of Tennessee passed around her home headed toward battle. Carrie took in hundreds of wounded and dying Confederate soildiers during battle and the day following battle. The florrs of the home are still stained with the blood of those who were treated there.

It was a very educational and historic place for us to visit and we had a great time learning and reflecting upon the history of our country. We even kind of like the outlying areas of Nashville and would consider living there.

It was an amazing place for us to visit because as natives of the west coast we never really got to visit and take in all of the sights and locations that played such a huge role in civil war history. Sure we are well aware of the way Native Americans, Cowboys and Hispanics have shaped the west coast’s history but we’ve never been face to face with civil war history so we really enjoyed the day.

Oh and I got the stress cracks on my MacBook fixed up at the Nashville Apple Store. We didn’t have an appointment with the genus bar because no appointments were available during the time we were going to be there, so we talked with a concierge about the cracks and explained we were from out of town. They were nice enough to out us on a waiting list, in case someone was late for or failed to show up for their scheduled appointment.

We waited about an hour in the store but they managed to squeeze us in and they even fixed my cracked MacBook at no cost, right there in the store. It only took them 15 minutes! We figured I would have to send my Mac out for repair and that they couldn’t fix it in store. Amazingly they did and were super friendly about it too!

So all in all the trip was lots of fun and also a great success. We found a place to have our natural birth, got to have some fun while learning about civil war hisstory, got the MacBook fixed and we may have even found the place we want to live after N’s 3 year contract is up here in Evansville. Productive don’t you think?

KNAZ-TV/ Channel 2 goes off the air…

Flagstaff, AZ is officially loosing it’s local news coverage. KNAZ-TV/ 2News is being taken off the air, it was officially announced to employees the afternoon of August 6, 2008. KNAZ-TV/ 2News will do their last broadcast August 15 2008 at 10pm.

If you are interested in seeing the coverage channel 2 did on their own shutdown you can follow this link to view the report. Don’t expect to read about it in the local newspaper, they are slow to the punch.

Northern Arizona will still have a minimal news presence as KPNX Channel 12 plans to broadcast on Channel 2 from Phoenix with some Northern Arizona related news. Locals will still get to see weather and possibly a local story on the Channel 12 news but it just wont be the same as having an operating station and several news personalities residing within the area.

Unfortunately this has been coming for a long time now, in my opinion. Ever since they announced the station was being put up for sale back in November 2005 we knew something bad was coming we just didn’t know what or when. We all figured the station would sell and continue operating under a new owner like it has in years past.

After 3 years of the unknown it seems the fate of 2News has been decided. The station did not sell and the staff is simply being taken off the air. The loss is a big one for the the community, Channel 2 has been around since the 70’s.

“Channel 2 was the first television station in Flagstaff, Arizona. The station made its debut on May 2, 1970, and was originally owned by Wendell Elliot.

Channel 2 is an NBC affiliate. It was originally located in downtown Flagstaff and moved to its current location in 1984. The original call letters were KOAI-TV, and were changed to KNAZ after the sale of the station to Capital Broadcasting in 1981.

In 1988, the station was sold to Grand Canyon Television Company, Inc. On May 23, 1997, Gannett Broadcasting purchased KNAZ-TV.”

(from: http://www.azcentral.com/2news/about2news/articles/knazhistory-CR.html)

Gannett Broadcasting owned and operated KNAZ-TV/ Channel 2 for 11 years. After a 9 years they tried putting the station up for sale back in 2005. Today, 3 years later the doors to the station are being closed permanently.

The announcement to take Channel 2 off the air came 10 days before the actual turn off date which isn’t much notice for employees. However, employees were offered severance packages and other positions within the company during the meeting on August 6th 2008, they were given 48 hours to decide their futures.

Regardless of what staff members decide the lights will permanently go out at KNAZ-TV/ Channel 2 August 16, 2008 after the 10 pm newscast. For more discussion on the situation you can check here, over here and also here.

Updates and breaking news!

I am home today and am enjoying the weekend. The colorguard camp ended Saturday and it went very well. They kids learned so much and were a blast to work with. Now I am ready for some rest this weekend and to make some progress at home!

N and I looked at a Winnebago Saturday afternoon that was another great option for us! It was in great condition and was at a reasonable price! We are strongly considering it as our “winner” but are planning to have it inspected by a certified mechanic first.

We spent the afternoon trying to get stuff done for the yard sale and the move. N painted up some of our older gardening furniture and planters for the yard sale.

I thought it would be a good idea to sell the gardening bench and plant holders with some of our smaller plants and some cuttings included. It will make us some extra money and will help us have less to move!

So he was a painting machine and I spent time transplanting herbs, taking mint cuttings and planting stuff to sell. We could really manage to get rid of some plants, especially the ones that aren’t bulbs since those are going to be the heaviest to move!

Here is just a glimpse of the plants we have on the porch, as you can see there are too many!

I guess there was a major helicopter crash in town today at the hospital… Here is the footage from today.

Also, a major fire started today south of us and just north of my parents, out near crown king. N might be heading out that direction tomorrow. It is so sad when awful things happen like this, they seem to come in waves too. Both the crash and fire happen today and I just hope tomorrow is calmer. Hopefully the breaking news will calm down soon!

N needs to get some time off at the end of the week, he has been sick all week long and his sister is visiting us for the 4th of July.

Oh and Blogger hates me today! I am trying to make the blog rounds and am attempting to comment but I keep getting this silly error:

Here are the comments I was going to leave:

@ louceel: “What a lovely description of the relationship you have with Francis and a touching story.
I am sorry you are losing a friend, it is always a difficult thing.”

@ pipper: “I totally had the same type of situation happen to me. I wrote my opinion about something that happened at my old high school, someone didn’t agree with my opinion so they tried to get everyone all fired up about what I wrote, just to cause problems. Some people are just not strong enough or open enough to be able to hear/ read someone else’s opinion and accept that it is their own right to share it.

My blog is like my “this is how I want to be all the time” reminder. I try to write positive stuff and I reflect upon the hard times to see how it all got me to where I am now. I generally have a tendency to be negative if I am not careful how I view things. I do have a separate blog for my ranting and bitching, everyone needs to be able to get that stuff out too! ;-)”

@ hyphenmama: “This is a superb blogging topic and I am absolutely LOVING the photos and the little pee pee star! This is greatly educational for me, when I finally have kids I’ll have all the potty training answers!”

@ over-thinker: “Nice blow up doll, now did you have to suck harder with the penis straws? Those photos of your sight seeing are amazing! I have never been to any of those places. Maybe during our week long journey to Indiana we can see some interesting stuff.. You have inspired me now.”

@ xbox4napyrash: “Awesome sauce, ha, ha… Love it! Keep us posted on the outcome after your 2 week wait. I am crossing my fingers and toes for ya.”

RV shopping and contemplation…

Yesterday we looked at some RV’s within our price range. The first one we saw was in good shape but we didn’t get to test drive it because it needed new tires. The second one was a death trap with a rotten back end and it died on us during the test drive. The third one was a vehicle and a trailer thing (not sure of the correct term) that needed to be hitched to the vehicle. The vehicle wouldn’t start though.

We really like the first RV we looked at but the tire problem makes it questionable, buying 6 new tires at $80-$100 each will mess up the budget! Hopefully we can talk him down to account for the lack of working tires. We also have many other RV options to consider, maybe we will find something better next weekend!

Oh, N and I were arguing about the best time for a yard sale yesterday. I thought 10am -5pm was perfect for the sake of our own sanity but he thinks people go to yard sales early in the morning… We saw a sign that said 6am-noon for a yard sale yesterday. What do you think the best time for a yard sale is?

The last thing that has been on my mind is my garden and the move. Obviously we can’t take ALL our potted plants, this makes me sad… I am thinking about digging up all my potted bulbs, storing them for a few weeks to dry them out and make them go dormant then I’ll just move those suckers without soil. That will make them less bulky and they wont need sun while they make the 1500 mile trip.

I was also thinking about various ways to transport rootings or cuttings of my larger plants to conserve space but to also keep my plants alive during the move. Got any ideas on this?

I am home, woho!

Last night we got back to town at 1am. Our time on the party bus officially had ended! It was an interesting time. The party bus was so cool but not conductive to an 8 hour drive, things were a bit tight and uncomfortable but it made for some great memories. We had a great driver, Kevin, who took very good care of us despite the fact that one of our students hit the “dump” button instead of the “flush” button in the bus bathroom.

Our transportation was provided by InTheSceneLimousine, an Arizona Based transportation company for those of you who are wondering. We had a very positive experience with them on this trip, besides aren’t the vehicles awesome looking?

The kids played movies on the bus, guitar hero, they could hook up their IPODS and play music, there were outlets under the seats so you could use your computer, charge your camera and so on.

The entertainment was endless but I have to say the most entertaining thing for a group of kids was a deck of cards. They played BS for hours and hours!

The most memorable time while at Disneyland was being run over by the stroller mob while trying to exit the park Friday night. We were wearing flip flops and I was ran over several times by strollers, those moms just mow you down!

The students got to play on stage in Disneyland on Saturday, that is always a super cool experience for music students and all our kids were well behaved on the trip. It was a good time and I am glad I went, I am beat now but I have today to recuperate!

I’ll share more pictures later, but for now I need to shower and drive down to phoenix to pick N up and bring him (and Dixie) home! Oh, gas is $3.99 a gallon now, before we left for the trip it was $3.89… It has increased $1.50 in the last two months, it is sickening.

Oh, Keep your fingers crossed for us, we are expecting to hear back about N’s job interview next week!

Mothers day weekend – part 2, snakes, oh my!

Several years back we got my mom these two chicks. They were a mothers day/ birthday gift (her birthday is very close to mothers day) and she was so surprised. Turns out we got her silkies (a specific breed of chicken), a male and female. Years later she has a whole bunch of chickens. Her silkies mated and reproduced, some died, new chickens were introduced, the mated and reproduced. She has quite the flock going. Problem is she has too many roosters.

A rooster need to have about 10 hens to himself and multiple roosters in a small space with limited hens means fighting over mates or overly abusing the few mating hens. My mom is facing the “too many roosters” issue right now.

She lives in a community called New River here in Arizona, it is in the heart of the desert. We were heading out to the chicken coup to see the hens who were suffered from overly aggressive/ frequent mating. Their wings were plucked bare and the roosters spurs were had dug hole in the hens sides.. Anyway, my mom was taking me out to see the flock and as we approached the coup I spotted this.

It is a very young rattle snake resting under a rock! As a native Arizonan I have been conditioned to always look at the ground and to scan several feet in front of you as you tromp through the dessert. Snake bites are not a fun thing to experience and if you aren’t aware of what you are walking near or on then you will get bit.

So I spotted the snake under the rock as we were approaching the chicken coup and stopped dead in my tracks. If I hadn’t been looking I would have stepped right on top of the rock the snake was resting under. This might have resulted in a nasty bite, not a great way to spend mothers day weekend!

I reached out and stopped my mom from walking any closer, burned my hand on her lit cigarette and we called for the men to come move the snake from the chicken coup, not before taking some photos and videos though!

I entered a contest for my mom over at lifetime.com. If you have a moment would you head over and vote for her photo? I would really like her to win! Thanks. http://www.mylifetime.com/photos/mothersday/rate.php?id=202848

Being a renter in Arizona kind of sucks!

Well, this was going to be an auto post for tomorrow since we are heading down to my moms house but I am just raging mad right now and have to share this shit with you guys!

Yesterday I mentioned that our landlord informed us that the home we are renting was being put on the market and that we would need to show the house to potential buyers, this is not good news to us!

We looked over our lease and had a family member and real estate expert, Jerry, look over the lease. Nowhere in the lease does it say that we are obligated to show the home to potential buyers and agents (like it did in the previous lease we signed for another home) but it does state the landlord must provide 48 hours notice of intent to enter.

We only have 3 months left on this lease and we would prefer to not be showing the home in addition to trying to plan and research a cross country move. Plus we have a medium sized dog, who is not friendly to strangers and we have inside cats who have to be prevented from escaping the house so allowing strange people into the home when we are not present isn’t really an option. It is barely possible when we are home!

So I went online to do some research. I found this page which outlines that in Arizona according to A.R.S. § 33-1343
“the purposes for which a landlord may enter a rental premises are to:

• Inspect the premises
• Make necessary or agreed repairs, decorations, alterations or improvements
• Supply necessary or agreed services
• Exhibit the dwelling unit to prospective or actual purchasers, mortgagees, tenants, workmen or contractors”

So it seems like we are going to be forced to show the home we are renting even though it was not agreed to when we signed the lease. Apparently that is the crappy law here in Arizona that favors the f*&kers landlords.

I emailed the landlord about how this is an inconvenience for us and I warned that our dog was not friendly and that entering the home without us being present was a very bad idea for them since our dog is not nice to strange people. I also stated that we were not agreeing to anything at this time because we were waiting for more information about our rights.

The landlord responded that we had nothing to agree to and that the only right we had was the right to a 48 hour notice of intent to enter. He also went on to say that after the 48 hour notice was given we could not refuse the showing and that they could enter whether or not we were home.

Then my phone rings and it is our landlords secretary stating that they were trying to schedule a showing for Saturday, which is 2 days/ 48 hours away. We wont be here for the showing but I am sure they will just do what ever the hell they want to!

I am now wondering if the landlord can “check keys out to possible buyers and their agents” and allow them to show up here unaccompanied while we aren’t present, I was under the impression the landlord had physically to exhibit the dwelling under this law, can they just give keys to anyone who comes by and allow them to enter after giving us notice? What if we aren’t able to be home, can they enter the home anyway? What do you think?

If they do enter the home they will be unpleasantly surprised and possibly bitten in the ass by our very protective dog.. Maybe we will leave some sex toys out around the house! Bet that would cut the visit short huh? I am so flipping MAD!

It is wildfire season, boo!

Last night N got sent out to cover breaking news. He drove out to the fire that started out near Tusayan and The Grand Canyon about an hour before he was supposed to get off work.

He phoned in for the 10 pm news (they didn’t have a camera or a way to transmit video), he did his report and then drove back home. They headed back out to the wildfire today and are staying the night (and possibly more nights if deemed news worthy). This morning he left the house in this snazzy looking fire suit.

Notice how the pants are a lovely olive green and the shirt is like mustard yellow, stylish huh?

If you are interested in seeing his work online let me know in a comment and I’ll send a link your way!

Hopefully all the buildings and people near the fire remain safe and unharmed. Wildfires can be devastating and very sad to witness. I remember when state route 89A out of Sedona was closed due to a wildfire. I worked at a resort miles from the scene, we were all just shocked and devastated.

Oh, the "death spin" or whatever it's called…

The things we do for greatness is crazy sometimes! My students and I are are working on fine tuning our show for our state championships. We are tweaking the end of our show per the judges suggestions but want to end the show with a BANG so I have one of my experienced members attempting the “death spin” as it was referred to on the show Your Mama Can’t Dance.

I often have LifetimeTV playing as background noise while I cook, clean or whatever.. Then this show came on and because I teach dance I was mildly intrigued. The first dance number had the “death spin” in it and I was all excited becasue a few weeks earlier I was teaching that exact move to my students and wanting to put it in our show.

Often times I have these grand ideas and the kids tell me I am crazy and sometimes those ideas just cannot be done in the amount of time we have to perfect them. My “death spin” move was beginning to look that way but when I saw it in several dance numbers on TV I recorded it for my students and we decided it was indeed doable.

Yesterday I demonstrated the move and worked with my students to get it down, it’s going to happen after all.. But man am I sore from demonstrating it!

The death spin in another dance tonight

The death spin!!

What do you think of the move? I am crazy huh? Well I am lucky cause I have students who are always willing to think outside the box and try new stuff, even if it is scary and unfamiliar. They know they can do anything they set their minds to! 🙂

Today is a snow day!! It's still snowing!

dsc03102.JPGWell, school was canceled today! It’s a snow day because the roads are not clear.. They are very snow packed. It’s such a pretty sight! When we first move into this house (we are renting) we didn’t think we would be her for the holidays because we are renting on a month to month basis since the house if for sale. We figured the house would sell soon and we would have to move out. Surprise, the house has not sold because it kind of over priced and the economy is not doing so well so we may not have to move for a while!

This house would be a nice started home for if it was not so over priced. It’s a 2 bedroom, 2 bath little home outside of town. We want to live outside of town because we enjoy the wildlife and the forest living. Maybe when the housing market drops more so will the asking price of this place!

We put up or store bought Christmas tree (we could not make it out to cut or own down in the weather) last night with the fire roaring. The fire is still going and we are keeping warm while looking at the tree.

I also published the December edition of Motivational Writing over at Gather. If you are looking for some advice or tips on getting through the holidays while staying positive and happy you should check out the article!

So today I have to figure out how to get sweat stains from the arm pits of shirts. I have a few shirts that are pretty awful looking and I am afraid they have gotten so bad that they can’t be cleaned. I have tried soaking them in bleach and also in peroxide.

 Now I am turning to my online friends for advice.. What is you best homemade remedy for pit stained shirts? Please help!

Oh, if you want to see a video of my doggie and boyfriend shoveling the snow you can by visiting this link that takes you to my gather contributions.

Our weather is here! Woho!

I woke up to something other than sun this morning! This makes me very happy. It’s raining and I have tons to do today, I love the rain so this is good! Tomorrow I am selling at a local craft show so I have spent the week getting my products ready for display and sale. Also I have been working with my high school kids to design and teach our next routine for the 2007/ 2008 Winterguard Season.

It’s supposed to snow tonight and tomorrow which may be good or bad for the craft show sales. I think the snow may get people more into the holiday season but it also may keep them from leaving their homes to come out to the sale. Oh well, we will see!

Oh, thanks to everyone who stopped by and congratulated me on becoming an Auntie! I really appreciate your words!

Well, I need to go get dressed and get into to town to teach and run my last min errands before the show tomorrow. Take care and think snow for us okay?

My butt is sore….

Okay, so yesterday we took our dog and set out to hike to the top of Mt. Elden here in Flagstaff, AZ. When we first moved up here we tried but only made it half way… We vowed to make it to the top before we move away and we finally accomplished this yesterday.Taking a break on the way up

The hike up really kicked my butt but N and Dixie were doing fine. I made them stop for breaks very often (I was having breathing trouble). We really had no idea what a hike it was till it was over.. turns out we hiked 6 miles in about 4 1/2 – 5 hours (with all our breaks) and we went from 6,900′ to 9,295′ elevation.

You can read more information about the tail specifics by visiting: the Elden Lookout Trail #4 page at the forest service website.

We took forever to get up to the top but our hike down was a ton faster!! I got stuck in some thigh deep snow near the top of the mountain and our dog almost broke my leg pulling me down the trail while I was stuck…

It was strange to have 60 degree temperatures in town and when we reached the top of the mountain we found very deep semi packed snow. It just shows how high up we really went!

Once the hike was over our knees and ankles hurt so we grabbed tons of junk food, brought it upstairs to the bedroom and we laid in bed while munching junk and watching the 40 year old virgin.

This morning we can walk (amazingly) but I have sore really sore butt muscles..

on our hike up Mt Elden