Thursday, January 20, 2011


This is the source of my joy today in this long dreary winter - see those 3 little sprouts? Well multiply that by 7 pots (and some have more bulbs than this pot!)...not to mention my flower bed as well. The point being, back in October I started a project.


I have always wanted to grow tulips. So I studied up. I bought all the right things. So finally, it was time to plant. This started in my living room. It was too cold and rainy to plant my potted tulips outdoors so I put a blanket down and went to it in the living room.

I had learned you can force the tulips to grow indoors during winter if you incubate them outdoors for the necessary amount of time. I wanted to make sure I could bring the pots indoors in rounds to constantly have flowers starting in February, so I went a little crazy and planted more pots than I have room for in my house. Then I watered them and put them outside to get cold.
The next morning it was surprisingly sunny, so I planted the rest of the bulbs in my flowerbed. Yes, 75 bulbs in all between the pots and the flowerbed. I also panicked the first morning because one of my pots had been dug in. I soon learned I had an enemy - Mr. Raccoon. Oh well, after that night I was smarter and kept my flowers safe for the remainder of the incubation period.
Today was a blessedly sunny morning. I went outside to check my flowerpots because it has been long enough to start trying to force the blooms indoors. I was overjoyed to see the sprouts. I brought two of the pots inside, so we will see what happens!!

A single bloom I found by surprise.

I'm obsessed with tulips...if you couldn't tell...

If you made it through my tulip ramblings, I commend you. I'm so eager for Spring.


The thrill of tulips/two lips together <3

Thursday, January 13, 2011


Photo credit: ECU Financial Services
 On Chianne's last post, she mentioned that we have one resolution, which is to attack debt head on this year. So far, we've started to make progress. This week, I made a cash budget, and Chianne made a spreadsheet from my budget that does automatic calculations, which I don't understand how she did it, but it works, and that's awesome. The budget that was made has everything on it, I mean everything, from play money, tithing and even when the USCG moves us, to gas and food, etc. It's going to be a big task, but with devotion, and accountability, we will be able to complete the task ahead. God's really been convicting us in that area, and we honestly don't have so much debt that we can be excused from our behavior. We only have $8,500 in debt (including the car note and Chianne's student loan, which equal well over half of that amount), we really think we could pay it off this year, God willing of course.
We have been reading The Total Money Makeover, watching Financial Peace University on DVD (which was thankfully given to us), and drawing encouragement from some friends of ours who just started their own website Mt. Debtverest.
We are currently trying to build our initial emergency fund, and then we can start attacking the debt. There was an error in my pay from several months ago, so this week my check will be bigger than usual, and that money is all going to the to the emergency fund.
Please keep us in your prayers that we will have discipline and stay faithful in this.


Monday, January 3, 2011

Goodbye, 2010! [photo dump]

I think it would be fun to pull some pictures from this past year - so here goes!
(click any photo for full size)

The highlight of January was Devin turning 21! Here he is enjoying his first beer with our friend, Lee. Lee gave him that beer stein as a gift! 


Devin swore into active duty on February 22nd and left for boot camp the 23rd.
This is a shot from his going away party our friends at church threw for him!

There was lots of dancing to be had at the party, as well as a slew of "Bromance" shirts with Devin's face on them as well as others.

My mom and brother came out to visit for the party which was really awesome! Mom has some serious dance moves!!

Devin swearing into active duty CG.


In March, Zombie, Taco and I were all by ourselves. We spent a lot of time take pictures to send to "Dad" at boot camp. We discovered Zombie favors "Dad" over me by a landslide. Zombie would tear up Devin's clothes if he found them (even digging through a pile of clean clothes on the couch!) to show his anger at being abandoned. He actually went bald on his head and after taking him to vets and doggy dermatologist found out that he has extreme separation anxiety. Yes, I had to deal with him acting crazy (and going bald) every time Devin left in 2010.


On April 16th, Devin graduated from Coast Guard boot camp in Cape May, New Jersey. This was my first time traveling farther east than Colorado, so it was a delightful trip. Not to mention, I had great company with the Evensons coming to show their support as well as Devin's little brother coming as a surprise. :)

Devin getting his certificate.

Sorry, this was taken through my broken windshield.

Arrival in Astoria.

CGC Alert...little did we know Devin would be leaving less than a week later on this same boat to go to Canada and Alaska.


May was relatively uneventful. I was very overwhelmed with adjusting to military life and was trying to make friends. Luckily, the Alert was parked in Everett, WA for a weekend, so I drove up to visit for a couple days before he went underway again. This is us at Pike's Place Market in Seattle.


In June, the boat came back to port for one night, and the same night there was a dinner to go to.

This was some of Devin's shipmates from CGC Alert at the dinner.

The Alert was able to participate in the Rose Festival's "Fleet Week" festivities in Portland. I went out there for the days and got to see Devin here and there throughout the week. The last day, I got to ride the Alert from Portland to Astoria - a whopping 8 hour cruise downriver. (It takes about 2 hours to drive it). The small boat from [formerly] Sector Portland caught up with us for some fun during the cruise. The sector actually got moved to [formerly] Group Astoria, so we are apart of the new "Sector Columbia River".


The Alert came home at the very end of July. Here it is turning around to pull up to the pier.

Happy Devin is home!


It was pretty chilly all summer, but that didn't stop Devin from learning to surf!

I love these little heart shaped shells. We celebrated 2 years of marriage in the beginning of August.

Our friends from Utah, the Trerises, as well as one of Devin's best friends, Daniel, visited in mid-August. This was such a great visit as we were both so homesick for our friends!


Devin got a tattoo covered on his forearm and replaced it with this before he set sail again to go from the East Coast, to the West Coast, by way of the Caribbean and the Panama Canal.


I went to the Astoria spouse's association's annual tea. It was fun because I got to dress up like the 50's!

On Halloween, I was Sweeney Todd. My friend, Tiffanie, was a kitty. My neighbors had a party that was really great!

A day before Halloween, I attended another costume party as Devin. I think I nailed it pretty well. I would have worn this on Halloween as well, but no one had met Devin at that party so I decided it wouldn't have been as funny.

I also grew a year older in October. It was pretty uneventful. Tiffanie and her husband, Nate, made me dinner and we had ice cream cake. Devin says we will "make-up" for my birthday, and I'm living in suspense as to know when/what we will do! :)


In November, I met Amanda. I feel like I have known her forever! Her husband is named Devin as well and is also on the same boat as [my] Devin. (Which is very convenient!) We got to spend a night in Portland in November, and we had a blast.
Conversations are confusing as we constantly are specifying which Devin we are referring to. It's pretty funny!

Abby took this when Devin came home! The boat came back a few days early so Abby was still visiting when he came. Don't mind my broken was so rainy and windy that day....and insert me running down the dock because the boat was early and viola - recipe for a broken umbrella.

Abby drinking a [root]beer at Wet Dog Cafe which is a brewery here with awesome food!


We sent out our first ever Christmas card since this was our first Christmas away from family and friends. We wanted it to be "Oregonian" so we decorated a tree in a forest next to our house. We hope to take different styles of pictures for each place we live every Christmas.

We went to the Sector's holiday party, and that was so much fun! I got to wear a pretty dress and dance and dance and dance until I was sore!

Christmas was bittersweet. This was our first time not being with family for Christmas. The dogs loved opening their little stockings.

For New Year's Eve, we went to Long Beach, WA to watch the fireworks over the beach. Devin was trying to nap while waiting because he had to work on New Year's Day. It was chilly that night and we were crammed in the back of Nate and Tiffanie's Explorer while waiting.

In the end, the fireworks were much less eventful than the advertising seemed to say they would be, though still enjoyable. Here's a New Year's kiss to end a very busy year.

I'm glad we are on to 2011. We have lots of "hopes" for this year. We hope Devin will get airman orders sooner rather than later. We hope he will complete the airman program quickly and get to go to a-school. We hope that he would graduate a-school this year and we would get to transfer somewhere new, but since it's 5 months for each program he has to complete so we can move, he would need airman orders ASAP, and it's not likely we'll get them until Spring. We have only one hefty resolution this year, which I will share in a coming post since this is such a big one. Blessings to you in 2011.