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Friday, November 30, 2012

Our "Give Thanks" Tree

Yes. I'm one of those people who, at Thanksgiving time, writes down what I'm thankful for.

This year I decided to do something a little different. Instead of posting everyday what I'm thankful for, I would make a "Thankful Tree". This is not a new idea. In fact in the LDS church, it's common among house holds to have a Thankful tree, I just thought I would add to the hype.

So, our tree. I found a dead branch one morning while out on my run and carried it home with me. I had 2 people come up to me and say: "Ma'am you have a twig attached to your stroller.." Thank you kind people. I am aware that a giant stick is clinging on to my stroller. If I hadn't noticed, I think there might be bigger issues at hand.

I cut out some leaves and we were all set. Dan and I wrote down something everyday that we were thankful for. It had to be something specific about that day... It felt more meaningful. Next year I hope to include on this little thankfulness activity.

  

Here is what the Lancaster's are thankful for: NOVEMBER 2012

LESLI
Day 1: Dan. Obviously. He's the coolest person I know.
Day 2: June. Again Obvious. She is my world and continues to be the coolest baby ever
Day 3: Electricity. Our power went out for an hour. I love electricity
Day 4: Parents. I had just received something in the mail from my mom and it made my day
Day 5: Dan's Job. He love's his job, and I'm Thankful that I'm able to stay home and not stress to much about money.... Who am I kidding!! No matter how much money we have I'm sure it will always be a worry!!
Day 6: Food. It makes me fat, yes, but it's so good and I love it so much. So if I'm fat, who cares.
Day 7: Gospel. I could go on forever why I'm Thankful for the Gospel, but to keep it short, It's such a blessing in my life and I'm so grateful to be a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints..
Day 8: Ranger. Our Puppy drives us crazy! But we love him and how no matter what he loves us.
Day 9: Nap Time. Nap times save my life sometimes. No not for me, for June! Naps in the day are for lazy people, Just kidding...
Day 10: Tooth Brushes. This day was our 5 year anniversary. I like have good clean teeth and fresh breath to kiss Dan and wish him a happy 5 years without smelling like Death. I have really bad breath in the morning.
Day 11: The Rain. It makes things beautiful, it smells clean, and I love cloudy days, where I get to have that cuddly feeling with June
Day 12: A Healthy Body. I really don't get sick, I'm not omega obese, and I don't smoke. I think those qualify as a healthy body. Do I have a belly yes, Do I have love handles? Yes, but well, I feel good and I'm active enough, so that counts.
Day 13: Washer and Dryer. Oh so thankful to be able to throw clothes into a machine that does all the work, and even better After they get washed I just throw them in another machine to dry them. FANTASTIC!
Day 14: Wii Fit. On day's when it's to cold to go for a run with June, I can still get a workout in with Wii fit or biggest loser.
Day 15: Hats and Gloves. Day's that we REALLY need to get out of the house on cold days. Plus it's super cute to get all bundled up!
Day 16: A Comfy bed. This day was CRAZY!! So at the end of a long day, I loved crawling in to bed and passing out. I felt like I had a buzz from the day. I've never drank a day in my life, but I kinda feel like that's what it would be like!
Day 17: Friends. We are so blessed with great friends. When you live farther than a 12 hour car ride from home and go all the time, It's nice to have friends who really become family. Thanks peeps.
Day 18: Church. Sunday's are days we go to church. I love our ward and the amazing people we get to hangout with. Church is a safe place and filled with love. It's something to be very thankful for.
Day 19: Modern Medicine. I broke my toe, and I'm thankful for medication that can keep the medicine at bay. Also allowed me to still walk and go shopping
Day 20: Airplanes. If it weren't for airplanes, my parents wouldn't have been able to come to Thanksgiving at our house.

Day 21: Showers. It makes me smell good, and I can sing in it and it makes me feel like Mariah Carey... No one can ever judge you for singing in the shower.
Day 22: Family. This day was Thanksgiving. I already did Dan, June, and My parents. So this is to my siblings. I'm so grateful for them, and how close we are as a family, even though we all live so far apart from each other.
Day 23: Black Friday. I love this day. It really is so fun, and I love the hustle and bustle. It bugs me a little when people say how awful it is and selfish to go shopping after being so grateful... Well grumpy people, just because we like a good deal, doesn't mean we aren't grateful. You are just jealous because we scored and you are negative people.... (Sorry)
Day 24: Fingers. Oh Fingers. How great you are. We can do so much with them and I'm grateful that I am able to move them and do all sorts of things.
Day 25: Books. It sometimes is nice to just get lost in a book. To realize that you haven't moved from the same spot in an hour, or staying up until 2a.m because it's just so good, and you keep telling yourself "Just one more chapter"
Day 26: Forgiveness. I am so grateful for the atonement and the sacrifice of my Savior, so that I could be forgiven for my short comings. And that Dan is always willing to forgive me and my moodiness.
Day 27: Photos. I really enjoy taking photos. I love having that memory forever! I'm no professional! I just love taking pictures of family, events and really anything! There are very talented photographers out there and I know sometimes they get annoyed that just because people have nice camera's they think they are a photographer.... So I'm not trying to be a pro or anything!! So don't worry all you pro's!  No blog start up here.... i just really love pictures!
Day 28: Dental Insurance. Dan had his chip tooth fixed and got a filling. IT WAS FREE!! yay for FREE!
Day 29: Music. There is not a day where music is not in our home. I have music playing ALL THE TIME! I love singing, playing instruments and discovering new bands. Music can suit any mood and make your day better. I love it.
Day 30: LIFE. I am so grateful for the life I have. I'm so blessed with so much love and happiness, that I sometimes worry I am getting to much. Life is good!!

That's all from me!!

DAN
 (He told me, and I'm Repeating)
Day 1: Lesli. All the things that I do for him, and he gets bored without me. 
Day 2: June. These two really are best friends, and she is such a daddy's girl!
Day 3: Ranger. Again, best friends, he snuggles with Dan and is always happy to see him.
Day 4: Our House. It's awesome, and he is fixes things that make it that much more awesome. 
Day 5: Christmas. So many fun festivities and lots of candy! 
Day 6: Chocolate Milk. "It's so delicious"
Day 7: Baths. He loves being able to still sit down and read the news. It also keeps him warm
Day 8: Warm Weather in November. He hung the Christmas lights, and it was so beautiful outside. It made it very easy to hang the lights!
Day 9: No bed Time. Meaning he can go to bed as early as he wants and no one can judge him for it, because he's an adult
Day 10: The last 1,826 days. This was our Anniversary and this is how many days we have been married. ADORB, so basically he's grateful for our marriage... Good man. 
Day 11: Church. He feels like it starts the week off right, and he gets to see friends. 
Day 12: Snickers. We have a lot of them left over from Halloween, and he has been really enjoying them. It's a totally legit thing to be Thankful for.
Day 13: D.V.R. How else would we be able to watch our favorite shows whenever we want, and plus no commercials!
Day 14: My Book. He is reading "Red Mars". He love's a good Sci- fi.
Day 15: Not Teaching Gospel Doctrine. He got a calling this day, and he was really worried it was going to be Teaching Gospel Doctrine, but it wasn't and he was really grateful for that!
Day 16: Swimming pool. He loves how fun it is, and he makes for one sexy pool boy!
Day 17: Rabbits in the Morning. We have so many white tailed rabbits in our back alley way and Dan loves seeing them every morning, just hopping around!
Day 18: "The Walking Dead" Our unhealthy T.V. obsession. He has watched the series twice and we are about to hit the mid season finale... he doesn't know what he will do!
Day 19: Chicken Wings: Him and his buddies head over to buffalo wild wings all the time to catch a game and enjoy some wings. It's a total guy thing.
Day 20: Grandma and Grandpa. My parents came this day, and he was grateful to spend time with them and watch them with June.
Day 21: Sports. It's entertaining, and it's fun to actually have teams to cheer for
Day 22: Holiday's. This day was Thanksgiving. He loves not having to be at work, and all the food!!
Day 23: Left Over's. His favorite is a cold Turkey Sandwich and lots of left over pie!
Day 24: Top Golf. Him and his buds hit up top golf quite a bit. It helps him work on his swing and hangout with friends.
Day 25: Brand new baby P.J's. He is so sweet. He loves June in them and loves snuggling with her. Maybe this is why I have an addiction to buying her pajamas.
Day 26: Diapers. He loves that you can just throw them away and not have to deal with the mess. It keeps things confined!
Day 27: Beard Trimmer. His beard keeps him hip. his trimmer keeps it tamed enough to look professional, but also rigid enough to be taken seriously as a geologist.
Day 28: Dentist. He had his tooth fixed and a filler, and they numbed him good! He didn't feel anything and he is grateful for that!
Day 29: Bubble Baths. Him and June have so much fun! The bathroom is always covered in bubbles afterward, but its worth it!
Day 30: Free Breakfast. He gets free breakfast at work all the time from investors, and he LOVES IT! He told me he could live off of the food at work! if he were homeless.... He says just in case..


Dad Mendenhall 
The lancaster Family. My dad added a leaf to our tree. He's awesome!

So there you have it. The Lancaster Thankfulness for November 2012!

I hope you were all EXTRA thankful this month!!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Thankful for Thanksgiving!

This year, Thanksgiving was splendid! simply splendid, like Martha Stewart. Now if only I could cook like that lady.... Stupid Martha Stewart making us look bad.

My Parents flew in from Idaho on Tuesday, so we were able to celebrate all week! It was so amazing having them here. June seriously loves my parents.... She didn't even hesitate going to them, and became instant best friends. It was so adorable how excited she got when she saw them!

June and my mom started this new game and now June feels the need to "tip over" every time she's on a bed. These two are going to cause nothing but trouble! 

This is a little video showing their little game.... 


Wednesday we spent the day showing the parentals around the city, walking,eating and catching up. 

We all went for a morning walk around the green belt and played at the park. 

My Parents are seriously the coolest! They aren't just sit on your butt kind of people, they are all about getting on the ground and playing with the grandkids... They are so much fun and it's never a dull moment with them!

I mean really... My dad can put a smile on anyone's face! He's Hilarious!!!

We went and had lunch downtown and spent the afternoon walking around. The weather was perfect. In fact we even got a little toasty walking around! Thank goodness for Texas and it's beautiful weather.

We played a couple games of Risk. It's a very addicting, frustrating game that could definitely end with people not talking to each other, but it was really fun playing and no one ever got too upset... Except maybe me because everyone was always ganging up on me!! 

My dad expressing his true passion to be a pool boy.... Oh wait no.. Ha ha he took a sweep at cleaning the pool for us. I'm lovin the pose. 

Cleaning out my first Turkey. This was my first Thanksgiving to cook, Thankfully my mom was here to help and well, really do all the work. haha I don't think I would have been able to do it without her. I now realize how much work she does every year when she is usually cooking for a family of 20! 

The Man of the house cutting his first Family Thanksgiving Turkey. 

 My Table setting. We had us four and then we had a friend (Phil) join us too! It was great! my parents bought me a new dish ware set,as a house warming gift, and they worked perfect for Thanksgiving! 

 We cleaned up dinner, turned on the Cowboys football game.. because we are Texans, and fell asleep with very full stomachs!

It wouldn't be a Thanksgiving night unless we spent time looking through Black Friday ads. I know some people hate Black Friday, and I do understand why, but I LOVE IT! I love the rush of finding the one Item you want, and seeing people go crazy! ha ha It seriously is so fun!


Once the food had settled we decided to go bowling! Keeping the tradition alive!! We go bowling every Thanksgiving and this year was no exception. I even bowled a Turkey my very last turn, and won the game!!

The bowling gang

 Friday was shopping, shopping and more shopping. My mom and I headed out while the boys went golfing. I love spending one on one time with my mom. It doesn't happen to often so it was great just spending time with her. 



June's first year writing to Santa at Macy's. Oh my gosh I have the most beautiful baby! 

 
We met up with the boys and continued shopping. The boys were good sports to have tagged along with us

Later that night, we went to ABE's and ate some delicious sushi. 


The next day was time to pack up and take my parents to the airport. June went to go help grandma pack the rest of her bag. 

After some trouble with flights at the airport, we ended with all smilies and a little bit of sad hearts to see them leave. 



It was such a great Thanksgiving and I'm so grateful that my parents were able to come and celebrate with us. There is nothing better than being with family during the holidays....
Now time to get ready for Christmas! 

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Back 5 years ago

Today, Dan and I celebrate our 5 year anniversary. We did the big celebration last weekend with our trip to Colorado, but I needed to write something on this day, since I have every year since we have been married. 

I started this blog in 2008 right after we got married, so I never posted about our wedding day. Since these blog posts turn into books, and I don't have anything from our wedding in them,  I thought I would rewind the past five years, and go back to that day. So here is our wedding, and some of our wedding pictures.

asjkghaokgjskgdh (that's the rewind sound..... going back 5 years) 


Dan proposed September 14, 2007, and we got married November 10, 2007. 

We were married in the Idaho Falls Temple at 10:00a.m. I woke up in my bed alone for the last time, feeling nervous, excited, calm... all emotions balled into one. My sister Megan did my hair and helped me with my make up, and made me feel so beautiful, more than I ever have. I felt even more beautiful when Dan saw me, and I saw the expression on his face. I can honestly say, I will never forget that moment. 

The ceremony was beautiful. Full of loving words, and surrounded by friends and Family.

 we became husband and wife. 



My sister's were my bridesmaids. I loved their dresses. We had a difficult time picking out bridesmaids dresses, and at the end of it, I was being called Bridezilla, even though I NEVER said anything! It all worked out and they were gorgeous! My sister Michelle, Megan, Me, (SIL) Shay, and my sister Brooke.



I can't believe how young we look here. I was 20 and Dan was 23. 








We had our luncheon at "The Loft" and it was delicious and set up so great! 

My mom was so incredible planning my wedding. I seriously didn't have to lift a finger. She had her trusty pumpkin book (Inside Joke) and she planned the whole thing! It was a fall wedding, full of pumpkins, leaves and fall floral! So beautiful!


My parents are AMAZING people! They both did so much for my wedding and I don't know if I will ever be able to repay them! My mom was so incredible with all she did, my dad made a pumpkin fountain too! Seriously it was amazing!



I don't have many pictures of the actual reception but this was what our center pieces were.

I was exhausted by the end of the night! It was so great though to see so many people! 

our family did a nice job getting our car! Funny thing though... We were taking my parents car on our honey moon! haha so my sisters had to drive our car to get it cleaned! LOVED IT!

That day was so fun! Really exhausting, but clearly a day we will never forget. 

5 years later and we are more in love than this day 5 years ago. So much of our lives have changed. We have moved 6 times, graduated from BYU-Idaho, and Baylor University, and now we live in the huge city of Dallas, in a house, with our most amazing daughter, and dog. We are not perfect. Our Marriage is not perfect. We look back and laugh at the things we used to think were important, and what we fought over, but I'm still so in love with my man, and I couldn't imagine my life without him. He really is my better half. 

So there you have my wedding in a nut shell! 

5 years down and millions to go!  

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Surprise 5 year anniversary

Well. I was just blown away when Dan came home one day and sat me down. He handed me a green binder and told me we need to look through this. 

This year we hit 5 years of marriage. A big number. Dan and I decided our very first year of marriage that we want to go to a different place for each anniversary instead of getting each other gifts. It has been awesome traveling place to place each year, and it's been way better memory wise, than some gift. Though I do like gifts.... No, no traveling is much better. 

This year seemed to sneak up on us. We had talked about different places we wanted to go, but with so much going on we thought we would just go somewhere small, like to Austin, or even go up to Oklahoma and spend a weekend at the lake. Dan told me to not worry about it, that he would figure something out. I honestly didn't think anything of it. Until the green binder. 


He sits me down Tuesday night, and said we need to look through this binder together. 
This is what I opened. 
Dan is great at surprises, but I never expected him to go to great lengths. 
As the pages kept turning, I got more excited at each page, until the page came to where we would be staying. Then We hit the page to where we are going. Dan says. "Pack your bag lady... and June's, we are heading to:"
The Rocky Mountains. 
We headed to the airport Thursday Morning. 

Dan even took care of all the bags, and June in the stroller. Don't worry I totally helped. But we did get some interesting looks at the airport. 

We drove through the mountains for about an hour and a half. A beautiful drive. Then we turned a corner, and seriously started climbing up the mountain. I was worried the Rental Car wasn't going to make it up. It was pretty steep. 

But then we came to this. Our Cabin! It was all ours for 4 days. It was so nice inside and there were other cabins around us, but you would never know, it felt so private. I was kinda glad to see other cabins around. Just a peace of mind, incase with zombies..... to much "Walking Dead"
It was fully stocked with anything we would need! It was so great! 

Literally, sat up in our bed and this was our view. Windows surrounded the bed room, so it was perfect view of the mountains. 

Dan and I enjoying some very quite time with hot chocolate 

We did bring June along, and we are so glad we did. She was a trooper, and Dan and I still had our alone time. We loved shopping down in the little shops. We bought June these wood stacking blocks. 


Like I said, we had our own quiet time. It was great, just getting away from everything. We had no cell service up at the cabin, only a land line. It was so refreshing to be away from media, cell phones, and constant distractions. We really had some great heart to heart talks, and what our lives have been like the last 5 years. What's changed, what's good, what's great, and what we can work on. Oh I love this man with my full heart. 

We went on little hikes around the cabin and around the town. 









We had to climb a hill to get back to our cabin from a hike, and I was really struggling carrying June up it. Ha ha. Dan offered numerous times to take her, but I was bound and determined to get her up that stupid hill. I was a little soar the next day... Can you say out of shape?

           Out collecting kindling for our fire. I sat and watched him, because we had so much wild life outside of our cabin I was worried Dan might get eaten.

           We had lots of deer and elk come right by our cabin. It was so fun!


I can't help but post pictures of these two. She loves me, yes, but man this little girl is 100% a daddy's girl!

After June went down for the night, Dan and I were able to enjoy our view! It was so beautiful!

We didn't have a high chair for June, so we managed to feed her just sitting on the counter. I am very grateful for a high chair. She's a squirmer and it was difficult to feed her.

Also. The Bath tub was downstairs of the cabin, in the third bathroom clear at the end of the hall. We didn't want to lug her up and down like that with all of her stuff upstairs. SO.... we put her in the sink! The sink was huge, and well she had a great time in it!

                   This little guy ran across the street right in front of us. Gave me a little bit of a heart attack!

We went to the Rocky Mountain National Park. A lot of the roads were closed due to snow, so we didn't get to see the whole park, but it was still really pretty. It made us miss home for just a minute having the mountains surrounding us like that. Until the wind picked up and we realized we love the warmth in November. 





She get's the best of me. I swear she knows she isn't supposed to have her pacifier during the day. Only to go to bed at night, and I hate her having it, but SOME HOW, she finds one and sticks it in her mouth, and gives me a little look saying "Ha ha mom, in your face" Ah! I'm so excited to get rid of that thing, but for now it keeps her happy.

I'm just so in love with this man. It has been an incredible 5 years. It has been imperfect, stressful, we have struggles, but it's also been so full of love, happiness and laughs. I'm really love, and I can't wait for the next 5.
 The trip was so amazing and so needed! We had a great time and it was so much fun and I love my family so much!