Tuesday, December 29, 2009

A gift for him...a gift for me.

Colin and I have made a lot of changes around our household! 2 days after Christmas Colin bought a new truck. It's a '05 Sierra Denali. It's SO incredibly nice to have a truck and not just 2 small cars. We're actually able to go to the hardware store without having to borrow his parents or Granny/Gramp's truck! AND, the most important part of the truck: It has heated seats. My next car will definitely have those!

Colin and I got completely spoiled for Christmas. We got a lot of stuff for the house. It's funny how you get gifts and you know it'll be useful, but then you don't realize how you ever lived without them after you've used them. For example, our Food Saver and Shop Vac from my parents. Who knew you could actually freeze dinners and not have them be freezer burnt a few months later? And that dust in the garage? GONE! Amazing. And the Cuisine Art mini chopper from Colin's parents, you don't actually have to get out a cutting board and knife. Genius!

Of course the most surprising gift I personally got was my new Nikon DSLR Camera. I really wanted one for a long time but never really thought I'd get one. Well, Colin and his parents got me one for Christmas and I absolutely love it! I may not have kids to take pictures of but I have 3 pretty cute fur-babies I love to take pics of! Colin's not a very willing model :( I really want to take a basic photography class but the one I found down here is conflicting with my work schedule. So maybe Spring time!

Speaking of my babies...here are a few cute pics I've taken of them. Doesn't Rissy just have the prettiest coat? I love it!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Christmas Henna

This year's Christmas was a little different from the past. Of course we did our family thing all day but this year after dinner we went to Laura's future mother in law's house to have bodiskis (I have NO idea how to spell that but they are a kind of sweet cinnamony rolls). There were many nieces and nephews there who got to open gifts and Justin's sister is hosting a foreign exchange student, Huma, who also got to join in on the festivities. This was her first Christmas since she's from India and Muslim. She really enjoyed herself and we really enjoyed her! She was so kind to do henna on my mom, Laura's future sister in law Dani and me! We'd never had it done before and it was such a cool experience!

Mom, me & Dani's henna

Huma working on my mom's hand.

Huma, mom & baby Evie

All done!

Huma working on my henna!

How beautiful is this! It stays on for a month or so. :)

Close up! So detailed!

Mom, Dani, Huma & Me
Thanks Huma! We love it! We can't wait for you to do it again at Laura's wedding!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


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Friday, December 11, 2009

Puppies Galore!

This week has been full of dogs. We're officially out numbered! Of course we have Rissy & Duke, and we've added Colin's parents dog Bella for the week. She's visiting to play with our dogs and she came with us to get our Christmas tree last Saturday.

Colin, the dogs and I went up to the mountain/hills to find a tree for Christmas. There weren't many to choose from but we did find one that looked okay. We brought it home and, well, it's a little Charlie Brownish. Okay, a lot Charlie Brownish. But it does the job and is actually kind of cute. Rissy has only damaged one of the ornaments, at least that we know of. I'm sure there are more hiding somewhere.

This week has been bitterly cold. It dropped down into the teens and even to 9 degrees one morning on my way to work. It's supposed to have a little frozen rain/snow today then rain the next several days. I'm thankful it will be heating up at least into the 40's because the 20's everyday is WAY too cold!

Hope everyone stays warm!

Miss Riss being spoiled.

Duke laying by the wood fireplace. His favorite spot when it's cold out!

Bella being the model for our tree. (She's a chocolate lab just like Rissy)

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Love...Kara, Colin, Duke, Rissy & Diesel

Monday, November 16, 2009

Update on this thing we call life...

It's been awhile since I posted so I thought I'd give an update on us. I have been horrible at taking pictures and really need to get back into it so hopefully I'll have more to post later.

Our animals...
Rissy is doing pretty good since we found out she has chronic hip dysplasia. She sometimes has a hard time getting up especially if she's laying on a soft surface (dog bed, couch etc). She absolutely loves Duke and Diesel and is really playful with them.
Duke is doing good. He somehow pulled a muscle in his leg recently (at least I think he did) and had a hard time jumping and getting up and down. He's better now and is back to "duking" it out with Rissy again.
Diesel got in a cat fight a couple weeks ago and had a big patch of hair pulled out on his chest. I knew it was a cat fight because there were 3 small holes in his chest which looked like little cat claws. Anyway, he ended up having an abscess that "blew" as the vet said. It looked like 2 big open lines on his chest that exposed his insides. Nasty. Than goodness our vet is amazing and also our neighbor. Just the nicest man ever! Diesel is doing good now. It will take a bit to heal but he was given an antibiotic shot so there would be no infection. What the heck is going on with our animals? Seriously?!?

Colin has been working with his dad and doing really great. He's been seeing several patients every morning and afternoon. He's also been doing some continuing education with his dad which I think is nice for them to be able to do together. He's also been really busy in the garage. He has put up new wood shelving on 1/2 the garage and has also been working on a coffee table for the living room. He's also going to help a friend make a gift for someone this Christmas. Quite the craftsman! Thank goodness all those tools he has are being made useful!

I have been working my tail off this quarter! I've been working at 2 colleges, freelance interpreting and a video relay center this quarter. I have really full days and am exhausted by the end of them! I am however, very thankful to be working. Summer time is really slow for me so I was definitely happy to be able to get a ton of hours this Fall! This next weekend Colin and I will be going up to my parents house. My mom, sister, some of Laura's friends and I will be doing a 5k walk which the donations and entrance fees support a local food bank. Should be fun!

We also had a visit from my best friend Keana and her little boy Joey. I hosted a Pampered Chef party and Keana helped me out with that. Joey had fun playing like crazy with Rissy and Duke and also got to play with Colin's nephew Brayden for awhile Saturday night. Joey and Brayden were born on the same day 2 1/2 years ago so they were good playmates.

Our bathroom is almost completely done. We just have to paint the trim. I'll have to post pictures of before and after to show the difference. It really looks great and has so much more space! That's all for now, I hope everyone has a wonderful week!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween everyone!

Thanks Gale for the adorable Halloween card! How cute is this! (above)

This year Duke will be a hot dog, compliments of my sister Laura.

Rissy got a sassy new Halloween collar her too, but what she really loves is Duke's bumble bee costume from last year. She seems to find the head piece to it all the time after I've hidden it.

On Saturday Colin and I will be going to the OSU Beaver's game with a bunch of good friends. Hope it doesn't rain! Hope everyone has a safe and fun Halloween!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Update on life...

Well things have certainly been busy at our house! We've been working on remodeling our bathroom. It looks really amazing, but we're still waiting to show pics until we build a cabinet. Colin has been really busy at work seeing many patients a day. He's really been doing a great job and I get to meet some of his patients when I work at the office with him Saturday mornings. I do some front desk work while Colin is adjusting. There are some really sweet people whom I get to chat with each week! I've been working like crazy. I work at Oregon State Univ, a local community college, a video interpreting relay center, freelance interpreting and at Colin's office. I'm trying really hard to get used to this whole waking up early thing and I think it's finally settling in! The last 2 days I actually woke up before my alarm...now that's progress!

Colin and I recently have been noticing our baby dog (8 months old) Rissy having pains in her knees or hips after she plays really hard. Finally after a long night of whining, decided we needed to take her to our vet. Dr. Braat, who's also our VERY generous neighbor, checked her out and had us come back a couple days later for some x-rays. When I went to pick her up later that afternoon I was expecting to get her and leave. Dr. Braat met me at the front desk and took me back to the the exam room to explain what he found. Her knees looked just fine but when he showed me her hips it was obvious that there was a major problem. She was diagnosed with Chronic Hip Dysplasia. Basically what this means is that the hip joint isn't inside the joint's pocket. The only thing holding her hips to her body are ligaments and muscles. We'll be going to the orthopedic surgeon sometime soon to see what we can do about it. From what the vet said, our options are either letting it go until it starts to become bad enough that she'll either need surgery or we'll need to put her down. Or we can just go ahead and get the surgery now. The only problem is, it's expected to cost anywhere from $4,000-$5,000. We'll know more when we take her to the actual surgeon. Poor girl is only 8 months old so we hope we're able to help her out as much as we can.

Other than that sad news, everything is going pretty good. I'll be heading up to Seattle next weekend to see my family. I'm very excited to take a trip up there since it's been while! We're planning on doing some wedding shopping or at least looking for my sisters wedding next summer. Hope everyone is enjoying the Fall weather, food and pretty leaves!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Great Sugar Cookie Recipe!

Wow it's been awhile since I've posted. I've been waiting to post pics of our bathroom remodel. But we aren't quite finished yet. I made sugar cookies today of Fall leaves and I dug out an old recipe I got from a magazine in college. I really don't care for sugar cookies because they leave a gross aftertaste in your mouth, but this recipe eliminates that with the use of cream cheese. Yum! Here ya go! And a picture of some cookies I iced for Colin's office.

1/2 c. butter
3 oz cream cheese
1 1/2 c. powdered sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 3/4 c. flour
1/2 tsp baking soda

Mix butter and cream cheese in a bowl with a mixer. Add powdered sugar and baking soda. Beat. Beat in egg and vanilla. Beat in flour. Chill for 1 hour. (They still turn out fine if you don't do this.)

Roll dough out on a floured surface and cut out into shapes.
Bake at 375 degree oven for 7-8 minutes.
Cook and frost.

You've GOT to try this if you like sugar cookies!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Nightstands & Doors & Paint...Oh my!

Look at these nightstands Colin made! Crazy huh? We'd been searching for some nightstands to match our bed for awhile, but they were so darn expensive Colin decided just to make some. He just finished them tonight - aren't they great!?! He's made so much for our house: our bed, new cupboard doors, mirrors, a vanity for me, and some cute little shelves. It's definitely saved us a lot of money!

We've also been redoing all our interior doors/trim the last few months. Today we finally started on the last 2! Yay! Those will probably be finished Sunday and I'm so excited to be DONE with them! (I never want to see another paintbrush, peice of trim, or unfinished door EVER again! I'm ready for a new project!) Next up: the bathroom! We will be re-tiling, painting, and putting in our new vanity and mirror. So excited!

This is what happens when you're a nosey little puppy and have to be in the middle of any and every painting project. Not only was her nose painted, but her tail and her side too! She didn't care though...until I gave her a bath. Then she just pouted by slouching down her head the whole time. :) Funny girl!

Now off to Eastern Washington to go white water rafting on Saturday! Pictures to come!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Rain, rain, go away...let the Beavers win today!

Friday & Saturday were some crazy rainy days here in Oregon. It absolutely poured, especially on Saturday morning....the same day as the Beaver game. We went to breakfast with Colin's cousins and as we sat in the restaurant it rained like mad outside. It continued to rain until right before the Beaver game started, then just a little through the first quarter. We completely lucked out with the weather, because we stayed mostly dry! The game was a really good one. We scored a touchdown within the first 12 seconds of the game. OSU's Beavers won 34-7. Thanks Jesse & Amber for the tickets! We're planning on going again with our friends Scott & Kristiina on Halloween.

Below are some pics of the game. Colin, his cousin Tarren and I all sat together. Tarren plays on a city league football team so he was really excited to see "the big guys" play. I think the people count was in the 44,000's. Pretty good turnout!

Reser Stadium

The boys goofing around...

This is Tarren's, "Please don't take a picture...if you do...I'll make a monkey face" look.

What's a blog entry without the infamous self portrait picture?

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Our last camping trip of the season.

*Warning* Lots of pictures!

This weekend Colin and I went on a little solo camping trip up to Green Peter/Lake Foster in Sweet Home, Oregon. Most people camp on the side of the road near the lake, but we decided to head up more towards the river and hike down a hill to a little remote camping area. It was so beautiful - the pictures really don't do it any justice. My thighs are not liking me today from all the packing in/out of our stuff! Totally worth it though! On Saturday we noticed our neighbors/my hair dresser camping out just around the bend. We hung out with them for awhile during the day and later on during the night. Colin's parents and nephew Brayden met us for awhile Saturday afternoon with their chocolate lab Bella. Here are some pics...enjoy!

The view to the West from our campfire.

Our camp all set up!

Rissy had the best time camping. Look how big she's getting!

And she's quite the swimmer too.

Another view of our camp. you can see our tent in the middle right of the picture if you look hard enough.

Down the road a bit we stopped to take this picture of Green Peter. Look how amazing the water is! It's a reservoir so the water is really fresh.

This just about sums up the dog's trip. :) The water was so clear we could see little fish swim and all the rocks at the bottom of the river.

Colin floating on our little rafting boats.

My camping buddy!

So pretty!

Mr. Brayden. I had to crop the picture because he was happy as a clam running around as a naked boy! He thought it was so hilarious when Uncle Colin and Papa Ron were throwing huge rocks into the water and making giant splashes!

Apparently Duke thought Brayden's Batman chair was just the perfect size!

Rissy found the perfect napping spot. On our suitcase covered by the tent.

We were by the campfire one night and we looked over and saw her hanging out in our blow up rafts. I can't say I blame her, they are really comfortable!

This trip was so fun. The weather was beautiful and it was just really nice to get away just the 2 of us. (with a couple of visitors of course!) We did a lot of relaxing and even played a competitive game of rummy. We made bets and OF COURSE I won, so I get to have Colin take me out on a date night next weekend! I think one of the best parts of the whole trip was toasting bagels, cooking hot dogs and smores over the fire. We didn't bring anything the required a grill...just the good ol' campfire!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Wow - What a week!

This week was pretty busy for Colin and I. He's been having an increasing number of patients and I've been working at a video relay center being the "middle man" interpreting between hearing people using a telephone and deaf people using a video phone (think web cam). The people there are great and it gives me some work during the summer when freelance is few and far between!

Last Friday Colin and I took the dogs to the river to swim and play. When we were ready to leave, they were soaking wet so they rode in the pick up part of the truck. Duke isn't used to this and was on the side of the truck too much and fell out while we were driving about 15 mph. I saw it happened and completely lost it. (If any of you know me, Duke is my baby and I think I'd just die if anything happened to him!) He was okay, but got scuffed up pretty badly. After seeing that he was bleeding all over me we noticed a big gash under his chin. We took him to the vet's office at 8pm and thankfully our neighbor (the vet) was just about to leave. He examined Duke and found that he did need stitches. So, 5 stitches, antibiotics, and a couple numbing shots later, we were headed home. Amazingly, he doesn't seem to be sore and his stitches are in a spot that he can't lick/scratch at. Poor guy. Here are a couple pics:

Despite the trauma of this all, (well, probably more to me than Duke really.) we headed over Saturday morning to Waldport, OR to go crabbing with some friends/family. The dogs came along too. We crabbed Saturday and got 7 total. This morning we packed up and headed to the beach to let the dogs de-energize before the car ride home. I was so excited to get this picture of them:

The whole ride to Waldport Rissy couldn't relax. She was WAY too excited, so I whipped out the camera and took a picture of us.

Next weekend we're going camping for a night just the two of us and the dogs. Then, the weekend after Labor Day we're off to Eastern Washington to go white water rafting with my parents and Laura/Justin. We're super excited about that! I'll be sure to take lots of picture and post them. :)

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Our little Nepali spunkster...

If anyone wants to read more about Gita, read my sister's blog. It is very descriptive and gives great perspective on Gita's past and present life. And how cute does she look in her new dress?!? And with her sticker book? AND with her photo album? Ok, I guess she's just cute in general. :)

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Our little Gita...

I wanted to share this super sweet picture of "our little Gita". That is what our family has officially been calling her. When Laura went to Nepal last month, she met and fell in love with this cute little girl. Her zest for life and spunkiness won over her heart, which in turn has won over ours. When Laura met Gita, she had 2 changes of previously worn (by other kids) clothes like most the other girls. This is the brand new dress Gita picked out to start the new school year off. To me, it's amazing how a $4-$6 (American money) dress can make a little girl so giddy. It's unbelievable the things we take for granted.

A little background on Gita - she was rescued from slavery from another family she had been working for. Her parents sold her into slavery to be able to afford a better life. After selling Gita, her parents then moved to India with Gita's brother who is worth more because he is male. Two weeks prior to Laura arriving in Nepal, Gita had been rescued by the place Laura volunteered at. She and other slaves are known as the Kamlari girls - aka - the slave girls. Once rescued, Gita lived at an orphanage in Narti which provided her with a roof over her head, food and an education. Gita has recently been moved to Kathmandu 12 hours away, to be given better schooling and living conditions.

I'll keep everyone updated on this beautiful little girl! We get updates through the Volunteer Nepal owner Michael from time to time so I'll be sure to pass it on! Please keep your fingers crossed that Gita transitions to Kathmandu well and enjoys living there.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Let them eat Cake!

I Just wanted to share a couple of the cakes I've done recently. Colin's family friend Kelly taught me how to lay fondant last month so I could make a cake for my mom's 50th birthday party. She's so skilled and I was so lucky to have her help me out! Thanks Kelly! The other cake was done for a friends anniversary get together. Those Dahlias were fresh from my flower garden!

Mom's Cake

Anniversary Cake