Thursday, May 21, 2009

Here's to Happiness

I saw this on another blog that my friend showed me ( and I just loved it. This has gotta me my favorite blog EVER!! So here's to happiness.

1. walking down a boardwalk at sunset with a light breeze
2. riding bikes along the ocean with baskets in front to carry 'discoveries'
3. rushing the court/field after a big game and having a HUGE dog pile
4. smelling the scent of my shampoo after showering
5. getting wedding invitations/graduation announcements
6. painting my toenails
7. singing (more like screaming) in the car with my best friends to our favorite bands or artists
8. getting woken up by my alarm on a Saturday at 5:00, only to turn it off and realize i can still sleep
9. rascal flatts
10. taking crazy pictures
11. the way it smells after it rains
12. rolling down grassy hills
13. smiley babies
14. eating ice cream after working out
15. sleeping on the floor with tons of blankets and pillows
16. old squeaky houses
17. remembering my amazing childhood
18. fresh cut flowers
19. good shopping days
20. knowing that my family is forever
What makes you happy?

Monday, May 11, 2009

Labor of Love

Every costume I've ever made for my children has been a labor of love, whether it be for Halloween (absolute best holiday), a school dress-up day or for a play. The year I made the three "50's" girl's skirts for my daughters was no exception. I planned to make each skirt with it's own design, so each one would be unique. Usually Brad helps me with my costumes when it comes to applying any kind of hardware or painting (like the Riddler costume we made Kevin...I made the green coat and Brad handpainted questions marks all over it). The year I made the skirts, Brad was living in Las Vegas studying for the Nevada Bar and I was left on my own to figure out how to apply the details to each skirt. The skirts turned out darling and the girls; ages 22 months, five and eight were a big hit at the school carnival. Fast forward through many ward 50's themed parties, and the skirts were not really being used very much anymore. Then when Meghan was in 2nd grade she didn't know what to wear for Halloween, so I pulled out the skirt that was originally Allison's and suggested she wear it. She did wear it and spent the entire afternoon trying to explain to her fellow second graders what a "50's" girl was. I don't think that she even knew. I was pretty sure we were done using the skirts, and even suggested last Halloween that we give them away as a set, so that another family with three cute little girls like mine would be able to use them together. The girls put up a collective whine, begging me to keep them for just one more year. Well, shortly after that day, Meghan had Spirit week at school and one of the spirit days was a "50's" day. I'm not even being prejudice when I say that she was the cutest, most authentic looking "50's" chick at the school. Looks like the labor of love paid off once again.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Mother Knows Best

With Mother's Day coming up on Sunday, I thought it was the perfect time to make a tribute to my mother. All my life, I have looked up to my mother in so many ways. She is strong, organized, smart, loving, NURTURING, skilled and so much more. To really tell you how great she is, here is a story:

Last year when Katy was going to her Senior Homecoming they were having a bit of trouble finding a dress. It was very last minute and they still hadn't found one. It is especially hard to find dresses with sleeves and that are long enough so that was one of the main issues. Finally they went to a normal department store and found a dress that fit Katy perfectly, was a really good deal and was perfect length. One problem: NO SLEEVES!! Being the skilled seamstress that my mother is, she had an idea. Buy the Medium size dress AND the Extra Small size dress. She used the extra small to make sleeves for Katy and a matching tie for her date, Matt. Of course it looked great and she did it in a matter of days.

So there we are. Even though we always make fun of my mom for her "When I was younger I walked to school everyday" blah blah blah stories, we love and respect her none the less. She always knows what to do, and like Grandma Reese always says, "Mother knows best" :)

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Fabulous Field Trip

Meg is 2nd from right on the top
On the ride there, note the beautiful scenery in the background :/

6th grade beauties at the Food Court
Last weekend Meghan and I went to Reno with her middle school choir so they could perform at the Reno Jazz Festival, which is held every year at the University of Reno, Nevada. I was very excited to go because I haven't been on a field trip with Meghan in a long time. Although, I was a little hesitant about the eight and a half hour bus ride with 27 6th graders. All in all, it was a great weekend, even with the 40 degree dip in temperature and rain. The kids sang wonderfully as usual, and were rewarded with an "almost" perfect score (missed by one point). These are some things I learned:
1. There are still mean girl groups as young as 6th grade, and having cell phones to write nasty things to each other on makes it even worse. (Just another reason Meghan doesn't get one until she's 14).
2. My daughter is extremely polite in social situations where she is required to be quiet and attentive.
3. My daughter can be very naughty when left in a hotel room full of friends who are "also" jumping on the beds!
4. I'm definitely getting older....I had to sit right in the middle of the bus so that the screamers in the back, nor the gossiping texters in the front, got to the me.
5. I'm still young enough to have fun. Meghan's friends were great, and we had a fun time walking around campus and enjoying the shows.
6. Mrs. Ligon, the choir teacher, is still AMAZING!

My Son The Pilot

Just a quick "brag" moment. Kevin has been working on his private pilot's license for about nine months now. This was no small feat considering he works long hours at our business; and he and his wife had a baby in October, but after many long months of studying and "behind the wheel experience," he is a full fledged Pilot. We are so proud of him!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

I'm A Fan!

And not of baseball...of online shopping. Ever since I started working a few years ago I have found myself in a constant time crunch. Then I found a wonderful website called OVERSTOCK.COM. It has the best deals, plus, you don't have to pay any sales tax and most of the time they ship for $2 or free (if you're a "special" customer like me). Just a few things I've purchased are; my refurbished IPOD (works like a charm), bedding for all of our beds...three bed in the bags complete with matching pillows (twin, double and queen) plus a king down comforter, all for $80 or less, mostly less (around $50). I've also purchased clothing, not jeans-they are too hard to purchase online unless you have tried on a certain brand in the size you like. I've also shopped at where I found a 600 count (is that like 60 spf sunscreen, does it really exist at that level?) duvet cover that is well made and super soft for $39.00. I love Amazon.Com because I can find old videos, out of print books and CD's. I even like it when my kids shop online. During the Christmas season Allison found everything on her wish list from local stores that were listed online. She printed me a list of items she wanted (complete with prices and pictures) and when I got to the stores they had about 3/4 of the items instock at the sale price or lower. On another note, I wanted to share some information about a couple of stores that I actually frequent that have good deals. Amazingly enough Nordstrom has great deals in the Brass Plum area (also known as BP to the teen set), that rival the sales at Target or Kohls. Also, I have been taking Alli to Buckle to get her pants because she wears such a long length. I'm not recommending anyone spend that much money on jeans but the tops and blouses range from $22-$36 with much more original styles than you will find at other stores for the same price. Of course, both of these stores have sales racks which make the items even more affordable.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Super Fun Spring Break

We had a super fun spring break last week. We covered most of California (according to Brad) and saw lots of nature, friends, family and ate, drank and were merry! Thanks to everyone who hosted us and took time from their busy schedules to see us. Thanks especially to the Reese's and Gordon's for having our family stay in their homes. But, for the whole story you need to go to Meghan's blog at and see our pictures and read all about it. (She's quite the little blogger...really, that's a compliment.!)

Saturday, April 11, 2009

When Can You Break the Rules?

We have a rule in our home that you have to replace the toilet paper when it runs out. This probably sounds like a reasonable request, and everyone in the household obeys the rule except everyone but Brad and I. So, in my quest to always have toilet paper adorning every toilet paper holder, Brad is my only accomplice (or I should say, consistent accomplice, the kids make the "very" occasional effort). Then last Thursday, to my dismay, I walked into my bathroom, after driving 10 hours from California, to find the toilet paper roll perched quite precariously on top of the toilet paper holder. As I yelled to my husband that life had obviously gone to h-e double toothpicks in a handbasket (whatever that means), he assured me that he was too tired to replace the roll because he had spent the last two hours after work cleaning up dog throw up in every room in the house (seems our dog has pancreatitis) and finished by vacuuming the whole house and doing the dishes in grand anticipation of my arrival. Okay, I couldn't really argue with that kind of altruism and gave him a free pass. Then tonight I walk into my bathroom again to find my poor TP in the same predicament, nearly falling off it's pedestal. I would have yelled out something to my husband, my cohort in keeping the TP in it's place, but then I remembered that he purchased 14 plants to replace the ones that died in the great Vegas snowstorm of '08, dug the holes (with reluctant and scant help from our daughters) and planted all 14 plants today, complete with enriched soil and yummy nutrients hoping against hope they would now live in this arid climate we call home. I knew that if I pointed out the great TP inequity again that it would again be for naught and sometimes in life you gotta realize that it's better that the rule be broken than that you have to clean up dog barf in the whole house or dig 14 holes yourself.

Friday, April 3, 2009

California, California, oh how I miss thee. California, California, oh how I love thee. The Tatoms (well 4 of us at least) have left the building. Destination?? SACRAMENTO!!!!! :) It will be a beautiful reunion.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


Yes, it's true, I have a (practically-08) brand new car (see pix on post Alli did below). I am as excited as a 16 year old getting her very first car. This car does have all the bells and whistles, everything except leather seats. There are so many books to read about all the fancy things this car has and does, that it will take me half a day to get through them! Thanks so much to my loving family for doing this for me. Thanks to my husband who has always worked so hard to support our family and for investing in our St. George business and thanks to my amazing sons who have worked so hard to grow the business so I can have this wonderful car. I LOVE IT! Happy Birthday to me!!!!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Surprise, Surprise!!

So last night my dad and Meghan went to go birthday shopping while I went to a school function. I got home and Dad still wasn't home. I thought, "Dang it takes 4 hours to get some clothes?!" Well he got home and pulled me away from Mom and he said I got your Mom a car. We kept it a secret until today when Stephen, Kevin, Rachel, and Claire came down to Vegas. They walked in and Mom got excited to see them. Then my dad said, "What's all the water leaking all over the lawn and driveway?" So we went out there and this amazing beauty was out there on the driveway. Awesome. It has GPS, DVD player, moon roof, and all the cool stuff. Happy Birthday Mom, you deserve it!!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Happy Happy Birthday Marcy Dear!!!!

And Happy St. Patricks's Day!! Today is our lovely cousin Marcy's birthday. Growing up it was such a blessing to always have my family around all the time. Sunday dinners at Grandma's and every other family function was always a blast. Sometimes I can't believe how old we are getting! A few of my favorite things about Marcy:
-Her favorite color is green
-She has always been a great example to me and my siblings
-She is an AMAZING mother to Courtney and Megan
-She always has a positive attitude
-She is very generous
-Her kids are the cutest
We love you Marcy!! Happy Birthday!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Worst Nightmare

My worst nightmare has come true, yet again!! I learned last week that Meghan and I (Alli) would be taking piano lessons. This is my third time. JOY!! It's actually not that bad and from what I hear I will be glad when I can play in church....blah blah blah.

Monday, March 2, 2009


Huntington Beach

Huge waves!!!
Oh where oh where has my sweet summer gone, oh where oh where could you be?! Oh how I long for the summer again. I have to say my favorite beach trip with my family was the summer of 2007 when we went to Huntington Beach and rented a little house behind someone else's house. It was kind of a fixer upper but we loved it none the less. That was the best trip!! We rode bikes down to the beach everyday and just played in the ocean. Then at the end of the week our dear friends the Clarks came down and we saw WICKED. It was great. I love the summer. Summer means a lot of things to me: Katy comes home, volleyball starts, getting a good tan, swimming everyday, NO SCHOOL, swimming at midnight, beach volleyball, pre-season football and so much more. Summer is the greatest. I can't wait until June of 2009. It'll be the greatest summer EVER!!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Obsession vs. Addiction

Miriam Webster defines Obsession as a persistent disturbing preoccupation with an often unreasonable idea or feeling: compelling motivation. It defines Addiction as a compulsive need for and use of a habit forming substance.

All of us have things or ideas that we become more interested in than others. Our interest in these things wax and wane, so we rarely become truly obsessed or addicted. In my early years of being a wife and mother I am embarrassed to admit that I was obsessed with keeping a very clean house, especially my bathrooms. In a relief society lesson I told everyone about how I wouldn't leave my house to run errands if it were dirty, because if I were killed while I was gone, then people would know I was a bad housekeeper. Obsessive? Probably, but I have gotten over it, luckily! Every obsession or addiction is geared to make you feel better. It will make you feel better about yourself, your circumstances and sometimes even the people that you associate with.
Recently, there are two things that I am very obsessed/addicted with. The first is a store in St. George called Urban Renewal. When I walk into this store it holds as much fascination for me as a five year old who finds herself in the middle of a candy store. The pretty colors; different shapes; old, new, and painted furniture; the second hand and designer's rack clothing straight from New York; the dishes, tables, couches, armoirs, and dressers; fabrics in bright prints and cowhide; sunglasses, earrings, rings, coats and cowboy boots; lamps that are new and lamps reconditioned; paintings and posters; roosters and pointed shoes; all arranged in an artsy, clever fashion. I have something from that store in every room of my house. I can spend hours browsing through the merchandise and never see the same thing twice, fantasizing about a purchase that would look just perfect in a particular part of my home. My children assume that I am lost in the lure of the store if they can't reach me on my cell phone while working in St. George. They know the siren call this place holds for me, yet, I prefer to think of it as an obsession, due to the fact that it is harmless. I beautify my home with my purchases (which are very reasonably priced) and except for a few small clothing purchases, I buy reconditioned pieces, which makes me feel a little noble about my contribution in keeping the world "green."
My second obsession/addiction is a very special candy. This candy only comes out at Easter time, but, bless the retailer's pointed heads, they start stocking it in the stores as early as Valentine's day. This candy is the Cadbury Mini Egg. I love this candy. My husband bought me two (count them, two) 24 oz bags for Valentines day last year. This is one of the reasons he is a keeper. I love the hard candy coating that crunches when you bite into one. I love the chocolate inside that I always promise myself to keep in my mouth until it fully melts, but then I lose control, and chew and swallow it before I know what has happened. I love that you can have 12 whole candies for a mere 190 calories and that they are larger and more satisfying than any
M & M. I love these candies so much that when I saw a large display in Smith's the other day, I let out a little squeal and punched Allison to show her how beautiful it looked.
I know which of these things are an obsession and which is an addiction. All I can say is that it's a good thing the candies only come out once a year, or you would find me in a darkened room, sitting in a circle with several other people sharing my story in hushed tones of late night runs to the store for those beautiful purple bags that are hidden all over my house so I don't have to share them with anyone!

Friday, February 20, 2009

I Miss My Family....When's the Reunion??

Everyone's a Hottie to Someone!

About five years ago I realized when I went out in public with my daughters, that I was invisible. People looked right through me, or around me to look at my girls. Sometimes I was forced to get their attention when it was a 40-year old man looking at my 15-year old daughter, and give him the death stare, but generally I was just invisible. It seems the older my daughters and I got, the more invisible I became. Then the worst thing of all happened. I didn't even need to have my daughters with me to be invisible--horrors! I took to crying on my husband's shoulder about my waning youth, etc. He was a sweetie and always assured me that for my age I looked great! Thanks, honey. Recently though, I went to wal-mart and spent the morning being greeted warmly by nice looking, well-dressed men. One started a conversation in the laundry soap aisle about the benefits of non chlorine bleach on colored fabrics, another smiled a warm, friendly smile, clearly showing I wasn't invisible. One nice gentleman struck up a conversation in the checkout line about politics and finally another practically wore out his brakes stopping his truck so I could cross the parking lot to my car. All this attention prompted me to text my best friend the following message: "I finally found the age group that still finds me attractive...60 year old men." To which she replied: "It's ok, 60 is the new 40." And that, my friends, is the reason I will always be best friends with Margo, and the reason we will be so competitive on The Amazing Race when we try out,because she is brilliant!!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

CITM Explained

For any of you who are actually following this blog I thought (Susan-here) I might explain what CITM is. This is the "thing" Alli said I was dealing with in the very first intro blog. Well, it's not communicable, it's not african, malaysian or against the law. It's a phase Allison coined to describe a state of being that she thinks I am in all of the time. When I told her she couldn't exclaim things like "you're crazy!" when we were out in public anymore she decided to coin the phrase CITM so that people wouldn't know that she was still calling her mother crazy. It stands for Crazy In The Mind. So there you have it. I am constantly dealing with CITM but I blame the kids, wouldn't you?

Monday, February 16, 2009

Tribute to a Crazy Little Lady

Meghan is my favorite person in the entire world. I (Alli) love her so much and she is the most amazing person I have met in my life. Okay so that might be a little over dramatic but I felt bad that I left her out in the last of '08. I really do love Moose though. She always tries to do everything for others and since Katy has left we have become closer. I try really hard to be nice to her even though it never seems that way. Meghan loves being in Middle School. She loves choir and she is learning to love volleyball. ;) I will be so sad to leave her in a couple years. It'll be hard!!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Taking a Look Back

So we have a new project at the Tatom household. We have been sorting through all of our pictures to have them in specific boxes for each kid. This has been really fun for all of us re living the memories. We will find a picture, then take a picture of it on our phones and send it to a sibling. So we came along this picture and we started talking about Stephen. You see, Stephen has ALWAYS loved babies. He always wanted babies around and he was very good with them. Well here is the proof. He LOVED Alli when she was born. Although she was adorable so it couldn't have been that hard!! (kidding!!) As you can see he has not stopped loving little infants. He loves to play with Claire all the time. This picture is from this weekend. Everyone came down except for Katy. Alli had a volleyball tournament so they watched and we hung out. It was great!! We love family. And we love Stephen!! :)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Catching Up On the Last of '08

With everything of 2008 we just thought we would catch up. Alli had a great season of volleyball this year, they went to La Jolla and played in a HUGE tournament there. Brad went with her and they had a ton of fun. The team was pretty good, they were number 1 in their division. We can't wait til next season!!

Katy's graduation was great and everyone was able to come down from St. George for that (except Rachel, we missed you!!) It was great to see Katy graduate with Honors and be able to speak also!! We were so proud of her :)
2008 was a lot of fun, especially having the new addition of Claire into our family. We were very blessed and so far 2009 is going great!! We can't wait to see what's in store for us!
So the week before everyone got out of school for Christmas Break, it snowed in Vegas!! Yes that's right people, it SNOWED!! It was so much fun to be able to play in the snow. Alli even called her mom to ask if she could ditch her last period. Being the loving mother she is, of course she said yes. :) Well on Monday it snowed pretty hard but then on Wednesday it was even worse!! Alli went up to her friend's house and they played in the snow til about 1 in the morning!! It was a blast for everyone. They got Thursday off as a "Snow Day" Ha!! It didn't even snow on the day they got off. I think the county just freaked out a little bit. With only 4 snow plows in the county alone, with 2 of them on the mountain, yeah they definitely freaked out. Oh well!! It was super fun and now they have to make up the snow day on a Staff Development Day, yahoo!!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Our Pride and Joy :)

Claire Elizabeth Tatom was born on October 31st, 2008. We love her oh so very much as you can tell. She is adorable and our new pride and joy.
Just chillin with Daddy
First time her smile was caught on camera
Favorite picture of all time
Smiley as can be!!


Monday, February 9, 2009

Starting Out

So I discovered this whole "blogging" thing a little while ago and thought it was kind of cool. I don't really know what I am going to write about our insane family, but I thought I might give it a shot. This is Alli by the way. Not Susan (she's currently dealing with CITM, that's a story for another post :) but maybe she will pop her two cents in every once in awhile. But for now, we will just catch up real quick. Kevin and Stephen run our business in St. George and they are doing a rather fine job with that if I do say so myself!! Mom goes up about once every two weeks and helps with...I actually don't know. haha! Kevin and Rachel just had Claire who is adorable and we all love her. Katy is doing the college thing up at Dixie State in St. George so she is close to home and close to family. Meghan and Alli (me) are loving Vegas and volleyball. As for Brad and Susan, they are doing great as well, Dad is still the bishop, coming up on his third year in June. Ta ta for now!! (if anyone even reads this)