Thursday, December 17, 2009

Holiday Traditions...

Holiday traditions are something I believe every family has. From what you eat to opening a Christmas present before you go to bed on Christmas eve, there is something that is done every year.

Growing up, I remember eating fondue and bread on Christmas eve. Ham for Christmas dinner, and being able to open our stocking before everyone else got out of bed. My mom would buy each of her children a Christmas ornament to put on the tree every year, and years later, we still put those ornaments up.

When Konnor was born, I wasn't sure what tradition I was going to start. Wanting something that could be a tradition forever, I pondered the thought of ornaments. Nah, that had been done. Specific foods? Not possible since my grandma still insisted on us being at home for dinner.

It didn't occur to me when I bought Konnor Christmas-themed pajamas in 2006 that this would be my tradition from year to year. To be honest, 2007 came and went and I didn't realize then what I was really doing. Not until I went shopping for Christmas jammies in 2008 did I realize that there was a theme. A yearly routine that I had started. A tradition.

That was it. I adopted it. My tradition was now buying Christmas jammies that Konnor could wake up wearing on Christmas morning to open his presents. Something that could go on until he was older, seeing as there are jammies for all ages.

This year, I already have Ariana's Christmas jammies, and need to get Konnor's yet. This tradition is something that is unique. And totally me. While I can't find 2007's Christmas pictures, Konnor wore Disney's Cars themed Christmas jammies. They were his fav!!

What are your holiday traditions? I would love to hear them! I find it fascinating how everyone celebrates the holiday in their own special, unique ways. :)

From my family to yours: Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and please be safe!!!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Wordless Wednesday.. Blast From the Past!!

How did we go from this to this???

Love you K-man!!

Find even more Wordless Wednesday fun at 5 Minutes for Mom, Extraordinary Mothers, HUB, and Momspective

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

I Miss My BFFFE!!!

During the holidays, I get a bit depressed. Halloween especially. The Civil War games. Christmas. New Years. Okay, so October through January is especially hard. Then again during my birthday and hers as well.

My best friend and I used to be inseparable. Amazingly enough, we did almost everything together, in sync. We worked together at a couple different places, and there was a point in our lives where she lived with me. It was some of the best days of my life.  Have I ever mentioned the mountain trips?  Sledding.. those were days to die for (almost!).

Now, we barely talk. Missing her comes and goes, I'll admit, but when it comes in, its like I hit a ton of bricks. Lumps form in my throat, and going through our pictures on MySpace becomes almost unbearable. The pain of us going our separate ways, leading different lives, has taken it's toll on me this year.

The biggest reason being Ariana. Jenny was around during most of Konnor's firsts in life, including Halloween and Christmas. When he started crawling, cooing, and cutting his teeth, she was there. That is his Auntie Jenny, and nobody else's, thank you very much! He adores his baby sister, so something tells me that he'd probably share with her.

However, there hasn't been much Auntie Jenny in the last year or two. It sucks. It hurts. I miss her. I miss us. We had crazy silly adventures. So I put together this slide show. That's what I tend to do when I get all sad and sappy. Relive the memories we shared.  Easy to do when you have over 10,000 memories in the form of pictures just sitting on your computer.  With that said, here are a few of our memories (in no particular order).  Sorry it's so big.  I will fix it later. :)

We just need a new spark. Maybe someday she'll see this. Maybe someday we'll reconnect. Honestly, no one can replace her as my BFFFE (best friend for f*cking ever), and I'm pretty sure that anyone who knows "us" knows this to be true. Crazy, dumb, silly females. Man, we are the duo that you don't want to mess with!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Monday Mingle -- Farewell 2009!!!

Welcome to the final Monday Mingle of 2009 here on The JAKA Files!!  This was done in a rush as Ariana was fussy and ready for bed.  None the less, enjoy. 

Have a safe and happy holidays and a great New Year!!  I may throw together a video or two due to my sheer joy of doing my weekly mingles, but we shall see.  Lately, I have been busy girl with the approaching holidays, so no promises!

Last but not least, please visit 80 MPH Mom to see all the other minglers.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

A Not So Wordless Wednesday....

So I understand this is suppose to be Wordless Wednesday, but for the love, I can't help myself.

You see, I had this amazingly adorable picture of my kiddos passed out on the couch.  It was adorable, and I knew that it was my WW picture.  No doubt in my mind.

Until I was uploading pictures onto Shutterfly and Ariana was getting really pissed on the floor.  Picking her up, she sat contently on my lap at the computer.  For a moment.  Then, she decided she wanted to Tweet too.  And Tweet she did, that little bugger. :)

After her keyboard bashing, we may or may not have had to restart the computer to get the monitor to work correctly.  And I may or may not have to figure out how to fix the internet screen size.  Still wondering why I don't get a taskbar for my different windows at the bottom of the screen.

Whoops!  Bright side?  Daddy can't get mad at his little angel!!

Want more Wordless Wednesday?  Check out 5 Minutes for Mom, Extraordinary Mothers, MomSpective, & J. Leigh Designs.

Testing... Technorati

Sorry for the random post, all.  Just trying to get my blog verified with Technorati.


Monday, December 7, 2009

Monday Mingle 12/7/2009

Mwahaha! I recorded this video last Thursday so I wouldn't be late.  It's a good thing too considering I was called into work yesterday thanks to the lovely wind storm that wiped out power to over 15,000 homes.

As per usual, please visit (or click on the button above) for more fantastic Monday Minglers!  This really is sooo much fun!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Something Is Up...

These two have a bond that I have never, in my twenty-two years of life, witnessed.  At least not that I can recall.  Love love love them!!

Konnor has on his Halloween costume (best $25 investment I've made, thank you very much!) and Ariana was, far as i can tell, trying to eat it?? I don't know.. I suppose they understood what was going on, even if I didn't.

Life Without A Man....

Seems weird to say it, but it's rather peaceful with Justin visiting family on the east coast.  Sure, taking care of the kiddos all by myself sucks, but it isn't too much different comparing when he's here.  He will pick them up from daycare, but for the most part, I tend to do all the work.

The most enjoyable part is that I can clean and not get frustrated that I am the only one cleaning.  Having the bed all to myself was great, until I realized how hard it is to sleep without Justin by my side.  I don't think I have been awake so much during the night since the first week Ariana was home.

Speaking of which, Ariana turned 6 months old yesterday! Wow.  Hard to believe she has been with us for one half of a whole year.  It's hard to remember life without her at this point, and that girl can tug at my heart all day everyday.  Loves to my baby girl! 

Justin called me yesterday to chit chat.  Having him so far away reminds me of how things were before he moved out here.  Sure, it sucked because he was so far away, but now it's kind of a relief.

Okay, I'm done rambling.  Really, I just needed a good starter post.  Something is bothering me, and I'm working on figuring out just what that is.


Friday, December 4, 2009

We're Going to the Rose Bowl!!

Woooooooooooooooooooooot!!!! I'm so excited the Ducks won last night and we are flying south for the Rose Bowl!!! *does a happy dance*

An amazing game, but the managed the victory.  Oh man, I soooo wish I could go to that game in Pasadena, California.  Can anyone say road trip?? That would make an amazing Christmas present.  *calls mom* Lol!

January 1st, 2010.... Ohio you better watch yourselves, the Ducks are flyin' in!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Go Ducks!!

In about 2 1/2 hours, the University of Oregon Ducks will battle against the Oregon State Beavers for a spot in the 2010 Rose Bowl.  In the 113 years of this Civil War, there has never been more at stake!  Both teams are competing to face the Ohio State Buckeyes.  For any Oregon fan, Ducks or Beavs, this is the game of the year.

Here in Portland, you can tell the fanbase is split almost down the middle.  Always has seemed that way in the 10+ years that I have proudly supported my Oregon Ducks.  No matter where I have worked, the week of the Civil War has been a huge week!  This year, at PGE, we are having a competition on our call stats.  Giving us the option to dress up in our favorite team's attire, it's been fun!

Now that we are nearing game time, my nerves are all jumbled.  I want to see my team go to the Rose Bowl, for sure!  Regardless of the outcome, one Oregon team will be on their way to sunny California in an attempt to fight off the Buckeyes and claim the national title.  While I couldn't be happier about that, I am all for the Ducks whoopin on some Beaver booty and then whoopin on some Buckeye booty.  It all seems to fit just fine!

My Ducks obsession (yes, that is the correct term) started, for me, in 6th grade.  My science teacher at the time was a huge Beaver fan, and me and a couple friends (Kristen!!) decided it would be fun to rally against him.  Which we did.  It was then and in that season that I became a hardcore Ducks fan.  We would make Ducks signs to put up over his Beaver signs and constantly talk about the Ducks.  Even in highschool, when I would go back to my old elementary school for my brother or sister, I would make signs to cover up his.  Lol.

I <3 the Ducks.  Plain and simple. 

Happy Belated Monday Mingle!!!

Late, per usual.  Lol!  However, I did make it this week.  That accounts for something, right??  Lol, head on over to 80 MPH Mom for other fabulous minglers!  She is the queen of MM and hosts it every week for us!

Without further ado, here we goooo!! (And my editing sucks, sorry, Konnor was being a turd and Movie Maker didn't like my file format.  Le Sigh)

And it was Neve Campbell!! People used to say I looked like her..

And here is the horrendous pic of my face.. See that cheek?  Yeah... I had a fat bruise for a few days too. I'll post that pic some other time.  This is enough humiliation for one day :)

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Wordless Wednesday.. Selfish Edition...


Dead ends gone!  Just got some layers.  Nothing exciting. :)

Visit Extraordinary Mothers for a list of more bloggers who participate in Wordless Wednesday!!

Sibling Love... How Powerful!!

This morning, I witnessed something absolutely spectacular. There is no other way to put it.

Normally, when Ariana cries, Konnor attempts to calm her down by talking to her or playing with her. His love for his baby sister is out of this world, and tends to bring a tear to my eye. They will be great friends, I can see this.

However, the tables changed this morning. It was no longer Konnor that was concerned about Ariana, but Ariana who was concerned about her big brother. He wasn't listening and was sent to time out, which sent him into a fit of crocodile tears. Ariana, who was playing with a toy, dropped it at the first sound of her brother crying, and turned her head in his direction.

Watching this interaction pulled at my heartstrings. She was trying to find him, and nothing else could grab her attention. I tried to give her toy back, but she would pay no attention to me. She kept staring down that hallway, looking for her crying brother, who she couldn't see.

After Konnor's timeout, he came in to his concerned sister, and gave her a hug and kiss. Dismissing the thought that something was wrong, Ariana went back to her toy and continued playing.

How amazing is it to watch siblings interact? My 3 1/2 year old trying to comfort and be concerned with his baby sister is one thing, but for my 6 month old being deeply concerned about her big brother is something amazing.

Giggly Baby and Singing Toddler....

Just a couple videos from the last week or so....

Black Friday Events....

Since I have a dysfunctional family, I often find myself dreading the upcoming holidays, rather than enjoying them. Sad as this may seem, I am never disappointed when someone flies off the handle (generally my grandma) and the mood for the holidays are sour. Despite all of that, I honestly try and find the joy in the holidays.

For Thanksgiving, my happiness happens to be Black Friday. It never fails, there is always excitement going out at odd hours of the night to buy toys that I would never buy on any other day. This was to be my fifth year in a row going out on the day after Thanksgiving, and each year my planning gets more and more intricate.

It's amazing how a couple weeks before the big day, online websites will get a hold of Black Friday adds, and post them. This makes planning much easier for hardcore BF shoppers, such as myself. Comparing prices, I can make my battle plan earlier than Thanksgiving, when the adds are featured in the local newspaper.

This year, both Toys'R'us and and Wal-Mart through me through a loop. As Toys'R'us offered a midnight opening and great deals on some toys for Ariana, I figured we would be starting there. My sister and her friend went with me (thank goodness, too, they are a hyper couple), but they weren't happy to hear that we were going out to stand in line at 9pm for Toys'R'us and that we would not be sleeping.

Convincing me to buy them energy drinks on the way, we were in a line with approximately 20 people in front of us. The rain came and went, but compared to previous years, it wasn't cold at all (which was probably because we were in line at 9pm, not 2am). We sat, stood, and they giggled about absolutely nothing at all. Oh, how I remember being a teenager. Haha!

Come 10 minutes before opening, the usual "line jumpers" started to crowd around the curb directly across the front doors. Recognizing such a crowd from years passed, I informed the girls what was about to happen. That being, doors open, people rush across the street, and cut in line. It was a classic (but not classy) act, which involved those of us who had been standing in line for hours to become quite upset, and punches would most likely be thrown.

Now Toys'R'us had made a barricade with carts to protect such an act from happening. However, they did not tie said carts together, so people were grabbing them and taking them to their places in line. I was nervous... no I was pissed that these people, showing up 10-20 minutes before the store opened, were going to be getting in before the mile-long (no joke) line that had been waiting for hours.

Buuuut, Toys'R'us threw us another curve ball when about 10 employees came out, and formed a human barricade to keep the line jumpers out. No kidding. Believe it or not, that barricade worked, too! At least no one jumped us or the 20 people in front of us, which was all I cared about, really. We were in and out of that store in 1/2 and hour, which was great, and off to Wal-Mart we went.

I am pretty sure I almost died of shock when we arrived at Wal-Mart, too. My sister said "there's no line" yet the parking lot was full. I laughed at her, thinking that wasn't possible. Ohhh, but it was. We cautiously walked up to the door, to find them open, and into the store, which had few people in it.

Panic set it, and I was positive that they must have started sales early, and all the good stuff had to be gone. Most importantly, the Ipod Touch my mom was making me get my brother for Christmas. I sent the girls off with my list as I headed to the electronics. Peeking into their MP3 player case, I saw plenty of the Ipod Touch, and felt I bit of relief.

Keep in mind, it is 1245am, and Wal-Mart wasn't scheduled to open until 5am. We were all very confused. Reaching the counter, the lady was kind enough to sell me the Ipod at the BF price, before the 5am time. Score! I put that hot item into my jacket, which was then covered with the things the girls brought me.

After we had everything (and more) in our carts, we stood there, staring at each other, and wondered what in the world we were going to do until 5am. We weren't allowed to buy anything at BF price until then, so we had to wait. And wait, and then wait in the checkout line, and wait some more.

In the time between finding the items we were buying, and actually getting to the register, many things took place. Two different people on two different occasions thought it would be a good idea to take their shopping carts, full of goods, and run through the doors and out of the store. Not smart. Both were caught. All we heard from where we stood were different store alarms going off.  We were also subject to people trying to make their own line, which was not so promptly shut down by some of the store employees.  Nice try, cheaters!!

Here are some pics of the girls sleeping and hanging around (yes, in toddler chairs).  My sisters friend, Kayla, even sang "I'm A Barbie Girl."At least they were good entertainment for me. :)

Oh yes, and how could I forget their infamous sword fight?  It would have been hysterical if I would have caught the part where they almost knocked down half the isle in the midst of said fight, but my timing was off.

After six hours at Wal-Mart, I was done with shopping. Tired and feet hurting like one can't explain, we went home and crashed!! No Target for me, though I wanted to. And, I missed the sock sale at Fred Meyer! Still a bit irked about that.