Aspen Grove

After a week with my family we headed up to Aspen Grove for a big Damitz family reunion. It was so much fun! We had a blast with all the activities! And I only took about a million pictures so I’ll let them do the talking:

       

                   

Incredible surroundings, amazing company and being the Just Dance Champion, can you ask for a more amazing week?!

Sister Time

Um, Wow! What happened to summer!?! I cannot believe it’s almost gone. What a summer it was filled right up with family, friends, trips and even a few projects.

First Up: I was off to Utah for some much needed sister time!

I helped these guys in my dad’s office. I did some transcribing while they did the nitty gritty patient stuff. I still don’t know how Nichole does it! I so did not get the blood and guts tolerance gene! They are all pro and call him “Dr. Todd” and everything!

Gab was at cheer camp for part of the week so we went to watch her several times.

Brandon didn’t come until later, but Chris and Dad were awesome sports to come and support! Chris even parked like a dork just so we could have a good spot when we got there. He gets bonus points for all the funny looks people gave him (he was driving Nichole’s red bug:)

Go Gab Go!

Lots of time hanging out and enjoying dinners together! So bummed I live so far away!

 Oh, and doesn’t my family have the cutest animals ever! Nichole’s dog, Izzy, is so well trained and can do lots of tricks. My favorite though has to be when she “dances”!

Lucky for me Gabby came to visit in Texas a few weeks later, still bummed Steph and Nick had to stay behind!

You are one year closer to finding out!

That was the punch line to Brandon’s birthday card:)

With Puff French Toast (aka churros for breakfast), lots of great gifts, dinner at Ruth’s Chris (best dinner ever!) and lovely friends for Tollhouse cookie pie how could it not be a fabulous birthday?

Love you lots babe! Hope all your birthday wishes come true!

For Real

Are ready for the most awesome story ever?

Ok maybe not ever, but we think it’s pretty cool.

So a few months back I randomly entered this contest at HEB. All you had to do was try new recipes (from a list of theirs) every week for eight weeks and then log into their website and tell them that you did, then you were entered into a drawing. So I figured, “Hey self, you have to cook dinner anyways and you like trying new recipes so why not. You might even win a coupon or something.” They had hundreds of  prizes ranging from kitchen appliances, HEB gift cards from $5-$500, all sorts of things. I never win anything so I figured chances were slim but I’d give it a go, again I had to make dinner anyway. We liked some of the recipes, others we did not. Broccoli slaw was a big NO and that’s coming from a broccoli fan!

So a few weeks after the contest ended I still hadn’t heard anything and figured it was all over and we didn’t win anything and I was ok with that.

A few more weeks later I got an email from HEB that started out “Thanks for participating!” I figured it was just a formal way of letting me know I didn’t win anything, but I continued reading and discovered not only did I not lose, but I won the Grand Prize!

Wait, what?!?!?

Yeah I read that email like a million times! The grand prize was a year of free groceries ($5200 in gift cards), $1000 towards a kitchen upgrade and a tour with an HEB dietician. Um, yep you can read that sentence again, it’s nuts!

A few more weeks go by, paper work filled out, a scare with the post office losing things, notary and all sorts of other legal stuff (apparently they can use my name and likeness if they want so if you see “me” on an HEB something let me know!) and I was able to go pick up our prize last week.

We went shopping and it felt so weird to not be paying for our groceries, very cool, but weird! We had a hard time coming up with a kitchen upgrade and finally decided on a new big dinning table. I LOVE the one we have, but it really only fits the two of us and we like to entertain so bigger is better. So it’s moving to my craft room for more work space and I can’t wait for the new one to get here! Since the gift cards do expire in a year and that is way more than we typically spend we will be bulking up our food storage and trying some new fancy ingredients.

So there you have it, the crazy story about how I won free groceries for a year and a new kitchen table! Now go enter a contest, you might just win!

How to camp when…

you forgot to pack the cooler!

It was a sad moment when we had already driven 90 minutes and realized our cooler, full of food, was sitting in our kitchen. Here are a few survival tips if you ever find yourself in a similar situation:

#1 Find the nearest and largest Diet Coke for your wife before she has a meltdown.

(Seriously the food is the only reason I go camping!)

#2 Track down the nearest grocery store.

We found this itty bitty store that was only open a few more minutes for us to dash in and figure out what to eat for the next few meals.

#3 Come to terms with the fact that the sad cheapo hot dogs itty bitty store has are just not the same as the nice, juicy, polish dogs sitting in your at home cooler.

#4 Decide that unhealthy is better than nothing. Chocolate cobbler totally works for breakfast.

(breakfast was much harder to come up with since we had no way to keep things cold)

#5 Remember that you didn’t bring any utensils since all your food was already prepped. AKA you have no can opener so pop tops are all you get.

#6 As long as your bike doesn’t malfunction you can go on a little ride to see the pretty view while your breakfast cooks.

We were not so lucky. Broken bikes and burnt breakfast for us!

#7 Get over the fact that this trip just did not go the way it was planned and move on to having some fun!

Despite the challenges no food and water can bring to a camping trip we really did have a great time. The area was beautiful and the river was so perfectly refreshing. After we fixed my bike we even went on a great ride.

Note to self: next time grab the cooler!

Malaquite Beach

We took a long weekend to go camping at Malaquite Beach. We had never been camping on a beach before and it was very fun! We played in the perfectly warm water, rode bikes down the beach and enjoyed sitting around the fire with friends and yummy camp food. I’m pretty sure we will be finding sand until the end of time though!

So proud of his Angry Bird:)

Spring Show

Amazing job darling dancers! I’m so proud of you!

“Be My Little Baby Bumble Bee”:

“True Loves Kiss”:

“If They Could See Me Now”:

“Ding-Dong the Witch is Dead”:

This recital was so low stress for me and I was able to totally enjoy! I even got to sit in the audience! Thanks to all my wonderful dancers, parents and helpers for making this possible. I know I am so blessed to make something I absolutely love and is so much fun my job!

We had such a fantastic time in Utah and Idaho!!! Congrats to the happy couple! (I’ll post more about that later)

We had a spare hour or so before heading out with our families to a yummy birthday dinner and decided to have some fun on the trampoline. Man I miss that trampoline. Would it be weird to get one for a home with no kiddos?

Yep, definitely need my own trampoline!

Two Boxes of Candles

Everyone keeps asking me if I feel old and I really don’t. Except for the fact that we had to buy two boxes of candles to put on my birthday cake! Oh and I CANNOT move today after my weekend activities. So I guess I feel a little old after all:)

Friday night I went to a new dance class and the teacher was just a little obsessed with “drill team” style kicks. Oh man my legs just don’t move like they used to! On Saturday for my birthday Brandon loaded up my bike and we headed for a great ride at O.P. Schnabel. We had never been and it was a fabulous biking trail!

We finished off the night with the Muppets Movie and some yummy cake. That hubby of mine makes good cake!