Apple is Big Brother

I had to laugh when I looked at the table and saw our apple line up. Hailey and Karlie got itouches for Christmas and I got an iphone in October as an early Christmas present. Max I couldn't wait to finally get one. While Max has been singing Apple's praises forever, I had not fully jumped on the bandwagon. Sure our iMac was incredible and seemed more user friendly than the PCs I had used in school, but the iphone was just a fancy phone. Wrong. I didn't think a phone could transform one's life.
They truly are incredible devices that make life easier. I love that I can find an answer to anything anywhere. Just google it and answer found. Who needs to remember history facts. With the phone I can look up anything. Having a personal navigation system with me at all times is invaluable. I am lost soul for sure and this has helped me numerous times. When I go for a run, it talks to me and tells me my speed and how far I have gone. I can listen to Pandora as I walk to get the kids at the bus stop. I love all the apps that can help me decide if the shirt is really as good of a deal as I think or help me name that song. While many of the apps are silly or not needed for life, they make it more easy, amusing and just better.

The calendar system has transformed Max. The phone is forever giving him a little prompt of a meeting coming up or one of the kids' activities. I now have instant access to his schedule. No more, "Oh, I didn't tell you I was leaving out of town for a week on Monday?" That aspect in itself has earned the iphone a special spot in my heart. The calendar syncs with everything, so with just a touch, it is put in for me and his secretary to see. Fabulous!

Communicating with family has become so easy. We were forever thinking, aww, it would be so great to share this moment with Pops and Nana. Now with just a quick picture and a text, they are included in that moment. Hailey loves video chatting with Anna too. It has made connecting so easy.

But enough with the praises. Basically you have an iphone and you wonder how you ever lived without one or you secretly covet one, but don't really understand how impressive they are. Just wait, you will be converted too whether you want to or not.

I read this week that 2011 is suppose to be the big break out year for the digital wallet. Apple is rumored to be rolling out a program to allow the iphone to be used as a credit or debit card. Yes, you will be able to waive your phone to buy that dress or cart of groceries instead of pulling out your plastic card. The author of the article was saying that soon plastic charge cards will be in the museum with vinyl records. They are expecting 2011 to be the year it all started.

Everyone loves a good conspiracy story, so here is mine. Apple is Big Brother. Even though it didn't start that way, that is what is happening. Just think. They have made the most seductive device. The phone that all the carriers want and that is setting record upon record for purchases. They will in time, take over the market. Apple has a large, devout following (including my husband) of die hard supporters. To them nothing beats an apple and apple can do no wrong.

Through the GPS, they constantly can monitor where you are. The face time feature could enable them to see you all the time. They already know your interests and pursuits by what you search for. This year, they will also have your money. As the technology age advances everyone will have to have a phone to make purchases. As medical records also go digital, they too will be connected through your phone. In time we will have a digital ID.

"There was of course no way of knowing whether you were being watched at any given moment. How often, or on what system, the Thought Police plugged in on any individual wire was guesswork. It was even conceivable that they watched everybody all the time. But at any rate they could plug in your wire whenever they wanted to. You had to live—did live, from habit that became instinct—in the assumption that every sound you made was overheard, and, except in darkness, every movement scrutinized."
- George Orwell (1984)

They will have made life so simple that everyone wants it and cannot function in society without one. They won't have to carve it into your wrist, you will gladly wait in line to get yours. Just as the apple was the downfall of mankind in the beginning, it shall once again be the bite we just can't resist. I can see the operating system now: OS Serpent 6!
"The choice for mankind lies between freedom and happiness and for the great bulk of mankind, happiness is better."
George Orwell (1984)

With the government bailing out companies left and right, it is not impossible to see a merger between the two. Who knows, Apple may need to bail out Uncle Sam. Then Big Brother will be there to protect you. Protect your information. Protect your way of life.

"To see what is in front of one’s nose needs a constant struggle."
George Orwell

You heard it here first. LOL :)

Sleeping Beauty

Karlie never ceases to surprise me. Last Monday she asked me if she could please try out for the Missoula Children's Theater's performance of Sleeping Beauty. It is a traveling theater production that goes to all 50 states and 16 countries to bring children's theater to local communities. Her best friend's family is really into theater and they always audition for the Missoula Play when it comes to town. They have been in numerous productions and are all talented actresses and singers. Our family on the other hand has drama queens, but never have they performed in public or taken acting classes like her friend. So, I agreed to let her audition and figured it would be good for her to try something and begin to learn the hard lessons of disappointment. I was really not looking forward to spending every night at the theater for rehearsal anyway. (See what a supportive mom I am.)
As her best friend's mom and I sat through the 2 hour audition, I texted Max that I thought Marley, her best bud, was going to get a part but that Karlie didn't have a chance. There were 140 kids for 40 parts and a larger number of young kids for the dozen caterpillar characters. As the directors began to call names I about choked when they called Karlie. Marley's mom began to get nervous as they did not call her name. I felt awful. This wasn't suppose to happen. Marley was suppose to get the part and we were suppose see that theater wasn't our gig.
Karlie on the other hand was beside herself with glee. She looked at me and said, "Mom! It's my first play!" I am thinking to myself, 'oh and I hope last.' After a week of rehearsals for two hours each night and all day on Saturday, I think our girl has the theater bug. As exhausted as she was after the two performances, she said she would definitely do it again and had so much fun. I asked her if she was nervous and she said, "No. The hardest part is not smiling when I am suppose to be grumpy. With everyone looking at me, it hard not to smile." She did a great job and I was surprised how good the play was with just a week of rehearsals. The Missoula Children's Theater really knows what they are doing. Karlie's teacher, friends, and family came to cheer her on. She loved all the adoring fans. Look out world, here comes Karlie!

itouch Beware

I think we have a budding actress. Hailey recorded herself with her itouch as though she was talking to like a person. In the video she attempts to talk the itouch into protecting itself from the ever present threat of little siblings. Pretty funny.

Cupcake Bites

Hailey celebrated her unbirthday at school yesterday since her birthday is in the summer. We decided to try something new and do cupcake bites. I had seen them on Bakerella and thought it was such a cute idea. If you click on the link, she provides a photo step by step.
You make a cake and crumble it and then mix it with cream cheese frosting. Then you make little cupcake shapes with a cookie cutter. Then you dip the bottom of the cupcake in melted candy chocolate. After the bottom dries, you dip the top in white or pink melted chocolate and add sprinkles. So basically it is a cupcake all wrapped up in chocolate. As Hailey said, "what could be better than chocolate covered in chocolate?!"
They turned out really cute. Not as cute as Bakerella's, but cute enough. Next time I think I will try making them cupcake pops. They were a huge hit with her class mates.
The only problem was we had only enough for her class, so I didn't get to sample them. Hailey tells me they were delicious and one boy said it was the best dessert he has ever had ( you know how discriminating a 9 year old boy is :) and that many kids wanted the recipe. So if you want to trust a bunch of nine year olds, then this one is for you!

Star Wars Everywhere

Kaitlin and Karlie were so excited to get a new pack of construction paper. Did they want to craft flowers or pictures of princesses? No, they created a Star Wars masterpiece. Kaitlin made the Millennium Falcon at the top and Karlie made Darth, Yoda and R2D2. Hank was thrilled as he watched the scene unfold. It is pretty much Star Wars everywhere, all the time around here. I think Max is pretty happy to change up the princess and horse scene we have been riding for a little light saber battle before bed and repeated movie nights with his childhood favorites. May the Force be with you...

There's a Lightsaber in My Pocket

Kids do the darnedest things. Max and I couldn't stop laughing at this Freudian comment Hank made. Max asked him what he was doing and he exclaimed, "I have a lightsaber in my pocket!"
He was so proud of himself for finding a holster for his "lightsaber" (better known as a bubble wand). He and Kaitlin put on summer swim hats so they could be Stormtroopers. You can see Kaitlin in the back holstered her shooter in her nightgown.
And Hank, well that's all I have to say about that one.

Posole

When I took the kids to school this morning, it was -5 degrees. Nothing warms you as well as a hot bowl of Posole (Mexican soup). The spice will keep you warm long after you have finished your bowl!

Posole

Serves 4-6 people

- 1lb of pork cubed and browned

- 1lb of Chorizo browned and drained (rinse lightly to remove excess grease)

- 2 - 30oz cans of hominy

- 2 - 10oz cans of Rotel mild

- 1- 4oz can diced green chilies

- 1 pkg onion soup mix

- 1 tbsp ground cumin seed

- 1 tbsp oregano

- 1 tbsp coriander

- 1 tbsp cilantro

-1 can of chicken broth

Combine in crock pot for 6 hrs on high or low for 8hrs. You can also use a standard pot and simmer on low 3-1/2 hours or until the hominy is tender.

I like to serve it with flour tortillas, shredded cheese, sour cream, diced avocado, diced jalapenos, diced red onion, and fresh squeezed lime juice.


If prepared in the crock pot, it creates an amazing aroma that makes you eager for dinner all day! It is a great soup to make for company as all the prep is done in advance and it creates an easy, beautiful meal. Enjoy.

Girl Scout Cookies!

Karlie wanted me to do a post letting you all know that it is time to get your Girl Scout Cookies! Shoot us an e-mail or give us a call if you would like to order from her. This is her first year in Girl Scouts and she is very excited to sell cookies. She has already hit up all her teachers and neighbors and they have only been allowed to sell since this morning. She would love to tell you about the cookies and how much they are and what her goals are. :0)

Make Your Own Baby Maya

Kaitlin came up with her own Maya wrap with the scarf we got her from Paris. Karlie was quick to catch on. They have been loving wearing their baby dolls. Seeing them do this with their dolls reminded me of when I used the Maya. The Maya wrap was as essential to diapers to me with Kaitlin and Hank. Oh how I wish I had it for the first two as well.
Babies love nothing more than to be snuggled against Mom or dad's beating heart.
Often putting colicy Kaitlin in the Maya was the only thing that would soother her. Even Max put some miles on the Maya. It was so good for us to be able to wear the babies and get stuff done. Ok, I need to go hold a baby now. :0)


Star Wars ABCs

While Hank may be slow learning to potty train, he learned his ABCs through Star Wars in no time! This is a wonderful board book for your budding Star Wars fan.




Only the true Star Wars fan or professional toddler speaker can decipher all of the words.

So here are the Star Wars ABCs for the rest of you:
A is for Anakin
B is for Bobo Fett
C is for C-3Po
D is for Darth Vader
E is for Ewok
F is for Force
G is for General Grievous
H is for Han Solo
I is for IG-88
J is for Jedi
K is for Kaminoans
L is for Luke
M is for Millennium Falcon
N is for N-1 Starfighter
O is for Obi-Wan Kenobie
P is for Princess Leia
Q is for Queen Amidala
R is for R2-D2
S is for Stormtroopers
T is for Tie Fighter
U is for Ugnaughts
V is Vulture Droid
W is for Wookie
X is for X-Wing
Y is for Yoda
Z is for Zam

It's That Time Again...

With a fresh year in front of me, it is time to make those goals for 2011. I should check my 2010 resolutions to see what needs to get rolled over. :0)


Last year's resolutions:
1. Do at least one Triathlon.
Yep, did two!

2. Floss more.
Nope. Guess I will look for more floss in 2011.

3. Drink at least one glass of water a day. More water, less beer in 2010. ;0)
Strike 2! There is always room for improvement.

4. Read some more challenging literature, dare I say non-fiction.
Certainly no doctoral pieces, but I did graduate to adult fiction and read a travel book about Paris. So I guess I can slide that in the yes column.

5. Carve out a little personal time.
I forced myself to work out the first 8 months of the year and Max and I went to numerous concerts this year. We had lots of time together as a couple, which was great.

6. We have two relatively small (anything would seem small next to Max's school loans) private loans for medical and nursing school that I want to pay off this year rather than the current payoff scheduled for 2012.
I made a conscious decision to buy a piano instead. So, hopefully I can stay away from criagslist long enough to make it happen in 2011.

7. Continue with our family Bible study and if school schedules work out, start back up with the ladies Bible study at our church.
We have done our family Bible study, but not every week and I wasn't able to hook up with a ladies study. So on to 2011.

8. Take a vacation where Max can't work. No iphone or pager. I don't want to share him for at least 3 days!
We went to the mountains, to Paris and California. While I did have to share him some, I mostly had him to myself. I am sure I had him for at least 3 days.

9. Take a family vacation. Ugh, I see road trip.
We went to Steamboat and California!

10. And for the worst of them all.... Catch up the baby books. Why me?!?! I must be a gluten for punishment.

Imagine me doing the Micheal Jackson's moon dance! Oh yeah baby. I got them ALL caught up. When they grow up and look in those puppies they are going to think I recorded every special moment as it happened (as long as they don't read the blog too). Yes!

Not so hot. 60% I guess I will have to work harder in 2011. I made 10 resolution for last year, does that mean I have to make 11 this year? This could get dicey as the years fly by.

New goals are:
1. To try the Warrior Dash with Max. This is my kind of race. They hand out beer instead of water! Might interfere with goal #9.

2. Since I got the baby books all caught up it is now time to organize the giant box of random photos and school work.

3. Get more involved at church. We recently changed churches and it is time to get more plugged in.

4. Go on a beach vacation. It has been 7 years and I am ready.

5. Reduce my craigslist and gymboree investments by 25%!

6. Take a class. I want to learn something new this year.

7. Make our family more fit from what we eat to our exercise.

8. Get Hank completely potty trained! I sure hope his slow learning in this area doesn't transfer to other areas.

Now for the goals I just can't seem to meet.

9. More water, less beer.

10. Floss.

11. Pay off school loans.

I think those last three will be my companions for many years. But at least they are there to remind me to try harder. Hoping 2011 will be a Christ centered, fit, organized, diaper free and fun year.

New Year's New

We were going to go up to our friends' cabin in the mountains for New Years but the first real snow storm this winter was blowing in with extremely low temperatures and created very icy roads. So we canceled the trip and had our friends come spend the night with us. They are always so much fun to ring in the New Year with.
We started the night with Posole and margaritas. The boys graduated to scotch and the ladies to wine.
We played Just Dance on the Wii. I haven't laughed that hard in a long time. Watching everyone dance was as much fun as dancing!
All the kids but Hank made until midnight where we toasted with sparkling cider and poppers.
For New Year's day we always play a new game. This year it was Guess Who Mix and Mash. This a fun game for kids and adults alike. Even Kaitlin could play it even though it says for 8 and up.
On New Year's morning we went sledding and snowboarding in the 10 degree weather.
Our friends bought snowboard sleds for their kids for Christmas and brought them along. Max decided to bring his snowboard and try it. He makes it look so easy. Must be rough to be good at everything.
He put Hank on the board and went down a few times with him. Hank loved it (mama was nervous)!
Hailey was so determined and got back on until she figured it out. She can't wait to go for real.
Crash Karlie also loved it and wanted to keep going long after all the other kids had turned into popsicles and were warming up in the car. Karlie just kept on going and going.
Our new food to try was Sushi. Luckily for us, only Hailey liked it. These kids are expensive enough, we certainly don't need them to like Sushi!
For our something new to wear:

Max wore a new sweater, I wore a new necklace that Max gave me for Christmas, Hailey wore new earrings, Karlie wore a a new outfit, Kaitlin wore a new necklace and Hank wore new big boy Star Wars underpants -too bad it was over his diaper!

I can only hope 2011 will be as much fun as the first day of it was. Here is to new adventures of MKHKKH in 2011!