Thursday, December 30, 2010


Christmas was definitely bitter-sweet this year. The kids got everything they wanted which luckily wasn't too much. I love my kids so much it was great to see them so happy. We got up at 7 and opened presents and then got dressed and went to breakfast and then just hung out the rest of the day and played with all of the new toys and goodies we got.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Christmas Lights

We went to see lights tonight as a family. I of course forgot the camera again but I wanted to write down some thoughts while they were freash in my head.

This time of year always makes me feel grateful for my family and especially those who have already passed on. This weekend I have felt Hayden and my Mom so close to me. I have come to love my family even more than I thought possible even my adopted family and children. There is one person in particular that I have come to love more than I think they will ever know. I would do anything for this person and I consider them one of my children.

Monday, November 29, 2010


This year was lots of fun. I didn't really feel like making it a family holiday so we invited our friends The Riddle's over for the day. They have been so amazing and have become our family. We had so much good food and a great time being together. I think that we'll continue to celebrate it this way from now on.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Like Grandma, Like Grandaughter

Last month I walked into the kitchen after cleaning the bedrooms and found this

Aurora used to sit with her Grandma and eat BBQ chips with sour cream. We were out of chips and she decided that just the sour cream was fine with her.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Happy Halloween

This year was the best Halloween ever! Sage and Aurora are seriously the best kids I could have asked for. We took them to a neighborhood over by Robert's work this year and they had a blast! The best part of the night was Aurora opening one the front doors mail slot and asking if anyone was home because she really wanted some candy. Sage was funny too, a few houses after Aurora's comedic moment Sage knocked on the door louder than he should have and said "Come on.... I need some candy!" I was so embarrassed but the home owners thought it was funny.

Their costumes this year were perfect and totally fit their personalities.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Just Like Dad

I snapped this picture yesterday afternoon. Sage is so much like his Dad that not even he can deny it.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Fall Festival

Yesterday was the Fall Festival at Sage's School. I remember attending his School's Carnival every Halloween as a kid and it's sad that it's just not the same as it was then. I guess it has to do with a lack of parent participation in his school, so sad. Robert and Lydia took the kids around to all the booths while I helped out in one for an hour. It was fun and I'm glad that the kids enjoyed it.

Hopefully next year Aurora won't fall and skin her forehead and knees while playing hopscotch with Gabby.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Jumpin' Good Fun

Last Friday was Gabby's Birthday. Becky rented a Jumper, so I took Gabs, Rora and Jess over and we spent the entire day jumping and being silly.

I caught some video of the girls being spazzy.

Eat Mor Chikin

Last Thursday night Sage and I headed out for some alone time. It was great to get away with my boy so he could have me 100% to himself. Our local Chick-fil-a was having a Mother/Son Date Night so Sage and I decided to take advantage of it.

We arrived and checked in and waited for our friends Marissa & Keenan who joined us. We were shown to our table where a menu and our names were waiting at a table for all four of us. The boys played games and did some art while we ate. It was so nice to be waited on for a change. After dinner we had some Ice Cream and played some games where Sage won a FREE Breakfast and a Chick-fil-a Baseball.

Saturday, October 16, 2010


Today has been one of those days that really makes you think. It hit me today that everyone really does grieve differently.

After the devastating loss of my Mother I find myself bring stronger than I ever thought I could be. It's amazing how well I'm doing actually, given my depression and other death issues. It it still a struggle to get up every morning and convince myself to be a mother and a wife. It takes making a chore list like a kid has for me to get household stuff taken care of, but I am coping the only way I know how. Others who shall remain nameless are moving way too fast through the grieving process for my liking. My Mom was and is the most amazing woman I have ever known and I don't uunderstand how people can just move on so fast.

It really hurts to know that people are already forgetting her. My goal for my children is that they never forget her.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Sea World

We've really had a great time with Jessica being on Fall Break. Today we went to Sea World so see some animals, ride a few rides and play some games. While we were checking out the Polar Bears we were lucky enough to catch this on video:

The girls even played a game where all three of them won a huge dolphin. After Sea World we headed to Souplantation for lunch before picking up Savannah and Sage.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Pumpkin Patch Fun

Yesterday after school I took all the kids out to Oma's Pumpkin Patch. I hadn't been there since High School and while it wasn't exactly like I remembered and some things had changed it was still a great afternoon.

 We started out in the Hay Bale Maze and lots of fun getting lost and then finding our way out a couple of times. Then we took so silly pictures and practiced milking cows. Next, we headed over to Cotton Seed Hill and slid down so many times that I lost count.

 We also went on a tractor ride where we got to see goats, donkey's, ducks and cow's. We also got to see the new baby heifer cow that was born the night before. The down side is that it was so stinky or as Gabby said "Cow's are yummy and stinky!" Before we left we made sure that each of the kids got a pumpkin, it was definitely a lot of fun and I'm sure we'll go back again before fall is over.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Haunted House

In our house whenever Sage gets 100% on a test we take him out for Ice Cream, but this weekend instead of ice cream he wanted to get this Haunted House Gingerbread Kit he saw at Sam's Club.

We went home and cracked it open. I put the house together but then he decorated it or told me what he wanted me to do. He was so proud of his Halloween House!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Stuffing Cupcakes W/ Cranberry Frosting

I had these amazing Stuffing Cupcakes at my friend Marissa's house yesterday and I enjoyed them so much that on my way home from her house I stopped at the Grocery Store and picked up the ingreadients so I could make some to go with dinner today. I tweaked the recipe a little bit, because I'm a picky eater. I guarantee that like me, after eating these you'll be in the mood for Thanksgiving.
Stuffing Cupcakes
2 boxes of Stove Top Cornbread Stuffing mix
2 Eggs
1/2 C. Milk
10 Sauage Links {cooked and sliced}
1/2 C. Flour
2 C. Water
1/2 Red Bell Pepper, Chopped {optional}
1/2 White Onion, Chopped {optional}
1 Stalk of Celery, Chopped {optional}
1 Can of Turkey Gravy or homemade gravy
1 Can of Cranberry Sauce

Mix eggs and milk together and set aside. In large bowl combine stuffing mix, sausage links, flour, and the veggies if desired, then add egg and water mixture.  Scoop into greased miffun tins and bake at 350* degrees for 45 minutes. You may have to loosen them with a knife so they don't fall apart when you take them out of the pans. Yield 14.

While the cupcakes are baking heat gravy and cranberry sauce in seperate pans until thinned out. When the cupcakes are finished top them with the thinned out Cranberry Sauce{frosting} and then serve on top of a little gravy.

These were SO good! I'm not a fan of those particular veggies so I left them out. I was skeptical at first because of the cranberry sauce but oh my Goodness, they were AMAZING!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Conference Fun


I've been really struggling lately with how to help my kids enjoy conference and at least be quiet so I can listen. I think I found the answer.

Conference Packets with activities to keep them busy and a rotating gospel snack tray. When the kids hear someone say they words above the snacks they get one of those snacks. My kids LOVE snack food so I really think this will work.

I'll get back to you after Conference to let you know how it went.

It worked like a charm! We'll defintely do this every time. They paid attention and were actually quiet.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Memories of Maxine: Balloons

Memories of Maxine: Balloons: "We decided to get balloons every year on Grandma's Birthday and write messages on them for her. It really helps the kids understand and rem..."

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Safety First

Over the last 3 1/2 weeks Aurora has been obsessed with Sage's helmet and has been begging for one of her own. I plan on getting her one but not until Christmas when she gets her first bike.

She has also been obsessed with my car accident that I got in last month. Yesterday when we went to get Sage and Savannah from school, she said...

" Momma, I'm gonna bring Sage's helmet for me to wear so if you crash again I won't get hurt."

At first I was a little irritated, after all It's not like I go around getting in accidents, in fact I've never been in one that was my fault except for this one and I've never gotten a ticket, so I think I'm a pretty great driver. But then I realized that she had one of her little mischievous grins on her face and then she started laughing and said...

"Momma, don't be sad. I'm just being a doofus."

We all started laughing, after all like she said she was just being a doofus.

* In our family, Doofus is not a derogatory term, It's a funny thing to say.

Ice Cream Bowl

A few years ago when my Brother Joey was visiting he bought this awesome Ice Cream maker that is a ball{literally}. We finally broke it out on Sunday after church and let the kids have some fun.

We had a blast rolling the ball back and forth and when we were done we had some really good Root Beer Ice Cream!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Football Day

Yesterday was Football Day at Sage's school and since he didn't have a Football Jersey we had to run to Target and pick one up for him. He LOVES his Jersey!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

It's a Pinkalicious Kind of Day

Aurora and Gabby are huge fans of the book Pinkalicious. They were fighting like crazy this morning so I pulled out a cake mix and dyed it pink and baked them in some Dora cupcake wrappers then we sat down and read the book a few dozen times while the cupcakes baked.

After the timer went off we let them cool and made some pink cream cheese frosting then frosted them and had a completely un-healthy Pinkalicious lunch. There's nothing more than Pinkalicious and Dora these two love more! They haven't fought yet, but we'll see how the rest of the day goes.

Now, I've got to come up with something to distract them everyday since pink cupcakes aren't going to happen everyday.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Mom's Funeral

I already posted about my Mom but never about her funeral. It was a horrible day but in ways it was a wonderful one. I have the most amazing family most of whom are more like brothers or sisters to me than cousins.

Here's the program.

Opening Song: Master the Tempest is Raging
Opening Song: Heather Vallieres
Eulogy: Debbie Spangler
Musical Number: The Test by Cula Parker, Diane Dering & Juniper Riddle
Speakers: Dan Vallieres, Joseph Vallieres and Cula Parker
Musical Number: Jake, Trever & Sid Vallieres, Sage & Aurora Parker & Jessica & Savannah Rinder
Musical Number: Spangler Sisters
Closing Remarks: Bishop Leavitt
Closing Song: I Stand all Amazed
Closing Prayer: Robert Parker

Pallbearers: Dan, Joseph, Jake, Trever & Sid Vallieres, Robert and & Sage Parker, William, Robert and Jason Bigler

My Mom loved music and wanted her funeral to be filled with it. I'm glad that she had the foresight to plan it out with me years ago.

Monday, August 30, 2010

My Mother, My Friend

I've been putting off writing this because it would mean that this horrible tragedy was real and I was really trying to avoid it. Here's it goes.

Those who were close to me knew that my Mother was undergoing her third round of Chemotherapy. She had been fighting Cancer bravely for 8 years and lost her battle earlier this month on August 18th, 2010.
My mother was the most amazing woman to ever live on this planet. She was the perfect example of Christ-like love and service. She never put her needs first and always took care of others. My close friends also know that my Mother was my best friend in the world. We loved to be together and laugh together. She was there for me at the major points in my life. She would hold me and let me cry about boys who broke my heart in high school, she was there after I got engaged and when I got married. She was there when Hayden died and helped me mourn him. She was in the room with me holding my hands when both Sage & Aurora were born.

She was also Sage & Aurora's second bed. She loved to take naps with them and hold them in her chair. They knew they could always come and sit with her and most times talk her into letting them sleep there at night with her

Her favorite place to be was with her children and especially her grandchildren. They all loved her more than anything. She will me missed by our entire family and many friends.

This is the only picture I have of her with me and Aurora. She was not one who liked having her picture taken. She taught me many things and unfortunately for me I never learned to sew. I want to be just like her and hopefully one day I will be able to make her proud of me.

I miss her everyday and think of her every second of the day. In fact, she is what keeps me going.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Two Utah Trips

Wow, it was a crazy 3 weeks! I traveled to Utah twice, once with my Mom and then once with Robert and the Kids.

The first trip was a Girls Trip for my Mom and I. I spent my days at the Stampin' Up! Convention and the evenings with my brother and his family. It was a great 5 days!

Me, Jenn, Megan an MJ at the Stampin' Up! Offices

Fireworks with my Brother and Nephews

For our second trip we went for Robert's Parent's 50th Wedding Anniversary. It was a great weekend!

We took the kids to go see Hayden and some of Temple Square. It was so fun to see they're reaction to all the beautiful sights.

It was busy but a great 3 weeks of travel. This next year we're going to have a Staycation, I'm really looking forward to it.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Summer of Travel

Life has been crazy busy this summer. We're leaving tomorrow for our Third trip to Utah this year and Second trip this summer. Next year we're just going once. There's just been so much going on these last two months that I haven't really had time to blog about it all. I promise that when I get back I'll post all the pictures and adventures from the Summer.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Happy Birthday Sage

I can't believe that my little boy is six today! Sage has brought so much joy into our lives. I can't imagine life without him. He's growing up so fast in the last few months and I look forward to all the growing he'll do in the next year.

6 things he loves:
1. Spiderman
2. Chocolate Milk
3. Hayden & Aurora
4. His Girlfriend, Analia
5. His Grandma a.k.a. Sleeping Buddy
6. His stuffed dog Peter Parker

6 things he severely dislikes:
1. Tomatoes
2. Food touching on his plate (he gets his OCD from his momma)
3. Losing at anything
4. The Purple People Eater
5. Going to bed without a song
6. Being away from his girlfriend

Monday, July 5, 2010

Family Day

We got up bright and early today and headed to Sea World to spend a few hours riding some rides and see some animals. We arrived at 9am when they opened and stayed till 11:30 just as it was getting busy. Sage and Robert rode Shipwreck Rapids, Wild Artic and Sage's personal favorite Journey to Atlantis.

Sage is defintely a roller coaster lover, just like his daddy. I'm glad he has someone to share it with.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Mormon Battalion

We took the kids to the Mormon Battalion this week and they had a blast! After we were done playing we had a picnic across the street at Heritage Park. It was a great day!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Sea World Adventures

We wanted to keep busy this Summer, so all the kids got Sea World passes. Here's some pictures form our first two trips.

Our favorite part was defintely the NEW Dolphin Show BLUE HORIZONS. It's amazing!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010


My little big boy graduated from Kindergarten. I am so proud of him! Here he is with his entire class, his teacher, Mrs. Patrick and his partner in crime, Andrew.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Kindergarten Farewell

Today is Sage's last full day of Kindergarten. He has come so far and learned so much in the last year, I am truly proud of all he has accomplished. He has a Class Party today and I'll be taking the Cap Pops I made yesterday to pass out to his classmates.

Here's what I made his Teacher.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Grad Cap Candy Pops

A few weeks ago I was blog surfing and came across THIS POST from Bakerella. I knew that I had to make them for Sage's Kindergarten Graduation Party. So today, I tackled what seemed like cake, but it turned out to be very involved and time consuming, but all in all totally worth it.

I LOVE them and am happy with how they turned out. I just hope that Sage's Teacher and Friends are happy with them.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

If You Can't Beat Em'... Join Em'.

Due to some comments that were linked to very inappropriate websites, I will unfortunately have to go Private as of Monday. I'm tired of monitoring these nasty comments. If you would still like to keep up with my family please send me your email address to culaparker at yahoo dot com and I will send you an invite to view it. Make sure you check your spam folder as blogger messages almost always go there. Thanks and sorry for the inconvience.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Wonderful Weekend

It all started a few months ago when talking to my Bishop. He asked me if I had ever considered volunteering to work in The San Diego Temple once a month. I told him that I have always wanted to, but was never sure of how to go about it.

Fast forward to 5 weeks ago, I got a call from the Temple President's Secretary asking me to come to the Temple the next morning for an interview. At first, I  freaked out and couldn't figure out why the Temple President would want to talk to me, then I remembered my conversation with the Bishop and immediately calmed down. I got up and drove to the Temple and met with the President and He asked me to serve at the Temple the First Saturday of every month from 11:30 - 5:30, I accepted.

This last Saturday June 5th was my first day. While it was a little nerve racking at first, I quickly felt at ease as soon as I met all the wonderful women with whom I would be serving with. I've only know them for two days now, but they all feel like Mother's and Friends to me.

It was an amazing experience and while there were a few incidents it was easily the best day I've ever spent in the Temple(besides my wedding day). If your ever at the San Diego Temple on the first Saturday of the month, come and find me I'd love to see you!

The weekend just got better on Sunday. I was asked last week if I could teach the 7yr. old Primary class of course I jumped at the chance. I haven't been in Primary for 2 years now and it is next to Young Women's my all time favorite place to be in Church.

I had a blast with my Class. We went on a Treasure Hunt looking for various treasures and ended with the ultimate treasure the Scriptures which represents the Gospel. We then went back to our classroom and had a great time learning and sharing our treasures with each other.

After class we went to Sharing Time where we sang songs and played a game. I was also privileged to hear the new song the children are learning this year for the Primary Program. As I sat there listening to the children I was moved to tears to hear their sweet voices singing about our Heavenly Father. CLICK HERE to listen to the song and click on the words and music mp3 for I Know That My Savior Loves Me. If you haven't heard it already I guarantee you will be in tears by the end.

I am so grateful to my Heavenly Father for giving me exactly what I needed this weekend! He truly knows us all and loves each of us more than we could ever comprehend.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Field Trip

Last week Sage had his very first Field Trip. It was also his very first time riding a bus. He was really looking forward to it. His class attended the local Fire Station and Museum. I was lucky enough to tag along.

His Class in front of the bus

My goofy son, thinking it was so cool that he didn't have to wear a seat belt

The firemen suited up and turned out the lights so they kids would know what to look and listen for in a real emergency.

The chief turned on the lights and sirens for the kids

Sage is just barely taller than the tire.

Sage got to show the other kids how little kids back in WWII era Lemon Grove would help out in the General Store. He thought that was so cool. He has been bugging me for a sliding ladder ever since.