Saturday, October 2, 2010

.............. An update (in case anyone still reads this blog)

Well, I found myself with some time tonight & thought, hey! Why don't I blog a bit?! Since it's only been, what...? Like a year or something!!!! :-) I really should be doing my Beth Moore study that I'm waaaaaaay behind on, but oh well. I'll get to that next.

So!! A whole lot of "much" has happened since I last blogged. Jeff graduated college! (yay) We went to Aruba to celebrate our 5 year wedding anniversary & his graduation. He got a job at CH2M Hill. I got a new job at Saatchi & SaatchiX. We bought a house. Can we say BIG STUFF going on in Hickleland. No babies on the way yet though (whew). Gotta get thru some of these other life changing events before we cross that path. We are just SOOOOOOO amazingly blessed! God is good.

Jeff really likes his job. He stays super busy. He is a special projects coordinator for CH2M Hill - a huge engineering firm. It's only a year contract, but we are PRAYING they hire him on full time after a year. Or if not them, then some other engineering company here in NWA. We really hope to stay in this area! (obviously, since we just bought a house).

Yesterday marked the last day of my first week on MY new job!! I'm the HR Coordinator for Saatchi & SaatchiX (pronounced sot-chi)- a global advertising company headquartered here in NWA. I think I'm going to like it once I learn the ropes, but man what an overwhelming week! I am responsible for 200+ employees (insurance, benefits, etc). The job comes with a LOT of responsibility but also a lot of perks, so I'm really excited!! For example, we get 3 days off at Thanksgiving (paid) and we close Christmas eve & remain closed thru New Years (paid). Wahoo!!! LOTS OF PAID HOLIDAY TIME! And I think I'm gonna need

Ok, moving on to the house!!!!!!! Wow, I'm so excited about it! We have it inspected Wednesday, so pray everything goes well for us!! It's an all brick home, 4 bedroom, 2 bath, wood burning fireplace, jacuzzi tub in the master bath, large open kitchen & living room, hardwood floors, great deck out back. I'M SOOOOOO EXCITED!!!!!!!! This is definitely the nicest house I've ever lived in!!! If all goes well, we should close on Nov. 5th. And we're taking volunteers to help us move!!! ;-) hee hee

So that's our life a nutshell...........and now I leave you w/ a pic of the new house! :)

Monday, April 26, 2010

..........................Ali's first camping trip!

Jeff and I have been dying to get out and go camping! This weekend was going to be one of our only chances to go this spring, so we jumped on it. Our goal, was to camp Friday night, hike to Tea Kettle Falls Saturday, camp Saturday night and then hang around the creek for a while on Sunday before heading home. Well, the rain kind of messed up those plans, but we still managed to have a good time. Friday night was pretty terrible, I will say. We got there late so we were late in setting up camp and late in getting dinner started. Since we were racing to beat the rain, Jeff put the finishing details on the camper set up while I started dinner. I got all the potatoes peeled & went to light my dad's little camp stove (we borrowed), but it wouldn't come on. We finally figured out it was broken! And this was our only means of food for the weekend, let me add. So we made a trip 30 miles into the closest town hoping we could buy a replacement for the part that was broken. NOPE!! Well, we asked them if they could call Springdale to see if they had the part. They made the call and told us that they DID have it there. YAY! So we drove another 30 miles back to Springdale, grabbed dinner (since it's 9:00 by this time), only we find out that they did NOT have the part we needed either! So it was literally like midnight before we got back to camp and in bed for the night. BOO! Then, of course it stormed on us most of the night, so we did not get much sleep. Saturday it rained almost all day, so we just kind of drove around and did a little exploring. Saturday evening we cooked dinner on our replacement stove that we stopped by our house & grabbed. I was so glad I brought a game with us b/c this was our entertainment Sat. evening while the flood gates were opened and the rain came pouring down! We did manage a small hike on Saturday during a tiny break in the rain - just trail blazing thru the woods around camp, but nothing like what we thought we'd do. I will say it was a beautiful area tho!

Here's a few pictures of our trip. We finally made it to Tea Kettle Falls on Sunday. Such an amazing place!!

Ali is ready to go hiking w/ her adventure bandana on!

She was a wet little dog all weekend

A plant had grown thru this dead oak leaf.
Home sweet home (so glad we were not in a tent!)
Jeff's snake

Little family

Tea Kettle Falls from below. This area is just so beautiful! I love seeing God's majesty in places like this. The hike there was just gorgeous.
The look from on top
Ali was tuckered out after our hike. I think it was like 2 miles there & back and she treated the trail like an obstacle course just running all over the place like a mad woman. It's extremely entertaining to watch her on the trail...jumping over trees, and diving under branches, looping around anything & everything. Hysterical! She really wears herself out!

Sunday on our way home. She did not hardly move for the next 24 hours! LOL!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

.............Hiking trip

Jeff was 'studying' Saturday (he actually ended up passing out all afternoon), so Ali and I went to Spirit's creek with my dad. We had a great time...the dog absolutely loves being outside!! The forest was pretty charred from a controlled burn the previous week, so we were hiking through ash. Ali was a wet, black, muddy mess by the time we got done. She went straight into the tub as soon as we walked in the door at 10 pm! It was a long afternoon, but we had fun. Here are a few pictures:

Here you can see how black the woods were from being burnt

This was a really neat rock

She loves the water!

The more wet Ali got, the more the ash turned her black. So gross!

My dad the photographer

He took a shot of us

This is me hand feeding Ali her dinner. She gets so excited on the trail that it's the only way she will eat. Can you say spoiled???

Conked out! (before we even got there,!)

................U of A Banquet

Jeff and I went to the U of A banquet at the Clarion Inn on Friday. I still can't really tell you what it was for, exactly, but it was fun! We got dressed up and ate some GREAT food! The buffet was yummy and the dessert bar even better! I didn't get many pictures, but I'll post what I have.

Us at dinner

This is Jeff accepting his "hockey puck". All the graduating seniors get a plastic paper weight that has their name engraved on it along with the Engineering department hog.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

...........................Ali's first hike!

I'm way behind on this post, but we took Ali hiking several weeks ago. I truly believe that this dog was BORN to HIKE!! In fact, I would love to get her a doggie T-shirt that says it...LOL! She absolutely LOVED it. It was hilarious - she was so excited that she would run way ahead of us on the trial, then circle back & run back to us. Then she'd do it again and again...she was just having so much fun. Quite entertaining!

Starting on the trail

Pretty water!

Family pic :-)
Ali loves the water. Has no problem crossing creeks or getting her feet (and body) wet. Which is good because Jeff and I spend a LOT of time in the water during the summer!

We stopped at Shores lake on our way home. It was sooo pretty!!

Crossing the dam

Tuckered out after a long day

Sunday, February 21, 2010

........................New pics and The Doggie Palace

Here are some recent Ali pictures! She is really GROWING! She is getting taller, heavier, and stronger every day it seems. We really enjoy having her around. I especially enjoy it when Jeff is at school late & I'm home alone!

Firs pic - sleeping on Jeff. She is very much a lap baby! Always has to be near you or on you. She gets severe separation anxiety. It's a little ridiculous.

Loving her new blanket!

Ali & Jeff runnin in the backyard. We were all so excited to have a warm sunny day on Saturday!!

She'll be too big to hold before too long! (notice my hair cut? It's short!)

Jeff worked so hard on building Ali's dog house. It is most definitely the coolest dog house in NWA! It is insulated, weather proofed, and extra large to allow plenty of room for her to grow. Here are a few pics

Ali helped supervise...

Insulated walls
The finished product...

I chose the colors and painted her name and the dog house (well, most of it, but the trim). I went with chocolate brown & hot pink... it's a little silly, I know!! But I wanted it to be fun and girlie. I never splurged on cute, fun stuff with Nikita because I wasn't sure how long she would live (which is also silly). So I'm assuming Ali will be around many many years & we're going all out! LOL!

The door actually opens wider for the warm summer days when she needs a little more air circulation.