Going Private

Team Edward-Bella-Jacob

 

Ha ha not my blog just yet, just the NEW MOON premiere last night!  I’m talking 81 people in a private theatre all to ourselves with our potluck, soda and drinks and NO screaming little teenagers to ruin our fun.  

The process started months ago to get a large enough crowd to rent out a theatre at the Rave at Town Square, but since it’s New Moon we’re talking about, the group was actually split between 2 theatres since we were so big. 

The movie- loved it!  The company was fabulous and we weren’t even sardines in the theatre like I thought we would be.  I am slowly becoming more of a Team Jacob fan than Edward, wow! 

We had so much fun kicking out the non private party goers and just being in such great company.  We had soccer moms and UMC nurses with a mix of Mike’s hs friends and all my church gals there to celebrate and party with at 11pm and then the movie started right on time at midnight. 

Just a note that #3 is coming out next July so start planning now to get your group of gals together and come join our private party next year.  I think we’ll top 100 people next time which is very exciting to me.  Food storage and event planning- all part of my resume of fun times!

April in Review

I kind of think I should just unload my camera’s pics at the end of the month and then blog a recap of important events to go along with the select few pictures.  Sounds easy and organized in my mind at least!

Well, let’s start where we still remember what was happening:

Anniversary- Mike and I have been married for a mere 5 years.  All is well in the Cox House of Fun.  We spend more time apart than together, but nightschool ends soon and I definitely have more time with my new calling.  Do we argue and disagree?  Of course, but when it comes down to it, we love eachother and have only knocked out 5 years of an eternity.  We are so in this for the long run.  Love you babe!  And since the “traditional” gift for a 5 year anniversary is wood, Mike was creative and got me a gift card to Home Depot knowing I would buy my materials to make my square foot garden boxes.  He also got me a gift card to Michael’s craft store to maybe buy some wood craft project and a gift card to Old Navy to buy something to wear that’s not wood!?!  Combine that with my $45 dollar off coupon and you’ve got a great deal to go shopping!  I love creative thinking for presents outside of the box- ha ha, no pun intended

Daddy's Little Helper
Daddy’s Little Helper

 

Boys Hard at Work
Boys Hard at Work

 

Square Foot Garden Box #1
Square Foot Garden Box #1

Easter: We have a tradition to invite Mike’s ATech HS friends and their kids over for an potluck picnic and Easter egg hunt at the park behind our house.  This was our 3rd annual Easter Eggstravaganza and we opened it up to our neighborhood group and church friends and had a record 45 people!  I didn’t even say hi to everyone, because I was making sure the food table was well stocked, but everyone ate, kids got to hunt for eggs, and then they all left!  Worked out great in my opinion =o)

Lightning McQueen Easter Basket
Lightning McQueen Easter Basket Josh and the Fox Family
Walking on the Wall

Walking on the Wall

The next day (real Easter Sunday) we went to the Lee’s who are in our ward and our kids and us adults have become really great friends.  We made homemade pizza and had a great Easter egg hunt.  Nice laid back time for all to enjoy.
My 3 Boys

My 3 Boys

 

Sharing the Loot

Sharing the Loot

Maddy, Joshy, Mikey, Rachel

Maddy, Joshy, Mikey, Rachel

 

My 1st Homemade Pizza

My 1st Homemade Pizza

Ta Da

Ta Da

 

Hidden Eggs in the Playhouse

Hidden Eggs in the Playhouse

New Calling: On Easter Eve I had a thought pop in my mind before I went to bed that the new RS presidency would be called the next day.  I bawled like a baby.  I have never had such an intense calling that pushed me to my limits, out of my comfort zone, and really made me question my beliefs and testimony.  Nothing can prepare you for a calling like that (in the RS presidency) more than going to the temple and being assured that you are doing this all for Heavenly Father and that He will provide a way and means for you to handle your calling, family, and other obligations.  I have never experienced such excruciating headaches than those on a Sunday afternoon, but I have never been able to say that I know a name and face of more than 75% of the sisters in my ward personally either.  I loved my calling, especially getting out and really getting to know the sisters.  There were struggles- food orders, a never ending revolving door of move ins and move outs like no other, and the occassional overscheduling of meetings on a school night, but I loved it.  I made up the rest of the diaper cakes (Mikey attempted to help) and was so excited to clear out my binders, manuals, and other RS things getting passed on to the new couselor which made some space in my house for food storage- yay!

My new calling is a Primary worker specifically in the nursery.  I’ll admit that I was a bit resentful at first since I would go from knowing everything about events and happenings in RS to knowing nothing since my 2 hours of the block would now be spent with 18-36month olds. But thanks to a wonderful Bishop who gave me a blessing, I can now rest assured that this is where I am supposed to be. All my worries and doubts have faded away and I honestly look forward to my huge classroom with 12 little kiddos ready and eager to learn of Jesus. The Lord needs me at this time to help foster the bity testimonies of His little ones.  I love a challenge and this is for sure a challenge!  So far I’ve relied on my college degree to help me in this area, but more importantly I’ve relied on the Lord.  That’s an important lesson right there!  I’m ready and anxious and seriously want to teach these kids to read!  I’ve got the 1st hour down as far as books and singing songs and now we just need some fine tuning to the second hour to make this little ship run smooth.  I am 1 of 3 teachers in this class actually so the extra help with crowd control really works wonders, thankgoodness for that!  This coming Sunday will be my 3rd time in there and it gets better (less behavior problems) each and every time!  Another important lesson is to take the initiative to still do the things you did before as far as reaching out to other sisters to make them feel welcomed to the ward.  And knowing about the RS activities might be a bit more difficult, but I still do what I can to find out and attend and do my part.  I am enjoying my Sunday calling and while I do miss my RS calling at times, I do know that it’s someone else’s turn to shine and serve the Lord to improve the education in RS at this time.  It’s someone else’s turn for serving and dealing with everyone else’s issues!

Mikey's Creative Touch
Mikey’s Creative Touch

 

Diaper Cakes Galore

Diaper Cakes GaloreYum Strawberry Group Order

 

Murder Mystery Dinner: Did you know that the Hotel at Mt. Charleston is super cheap and is starting to offer discounts and fun events to Las Vegas locals?  Well Mike is director of IT (fancy name for being their computer fix it guy) for the company who owns and runs the place and he came across their deal to attend a Murder Mystery Dinner up there.  Add on the employee discount, invite the Lee’s to come along for the fun, get a room for the Stevensons so they could babysit the kiddos for 2 hours, get all fancied up for a real date without kiddos in tow and you’ve got yourself a really nice grown up party! 

We were told shirt and tie, but apparently our idea of formal dress and the rest of the guests ideas were way off!  Oh well!  We were the best dressed couples that evening and had fun socializing with strangers and figuring out if Cougar the golf star, London the rich movie star, the cupcake baker, or the recently unemployeed lawyer did it in the ballroom with the snow globe!  None of us won, but we had fun trying!  Oh, and Mikey got sick on the way up and puked all over my car!   And then it happened in the middle of the night on the comforter, but at least he was in his own bed at the hotel and not sleeping between us.  I don’t handle vomit very well, but this poor sick kid I think has gotten me over being afraid of puke- I didn’t have a choice really!

The Sitters-Working for Food (and a Free Room)

The Sitters-Working for Food (and a Free Room)

My Hot Date!

My Hot Date!

 

The Bar- 21 and Older

The Bar- 21 and Older

The Morning After

The Morning After

Little Cheifs

Little Cheifs

Rum Tum Tum Banging on Our Drums

Rum Tum Tum Banging on Our Drums

 

Whew!  That’s a bunch in April, but I think I’m on to something doing this unload pics and blog all at once!  Stay tuned for more!

Cafe Rio Burritos

I’m not really a fan of the restaurant like the rest of the world, but this recipe is really good and feeds a crowd.  It seems a little weird to pour a green sauce on my burrito, but the sauce is what makes it oh so good!  Thanks for the recipe mom!  Thanks for the fun evening friends and family.  While I’m at it, thanks creator of the crockpot!

Cafe’ Rio Burritos

Ingredients:

2 dz. Unbaked tortillas – buy them at Smith’s

3 lbs. Pork Roast

Cook roast with 1 cup of water on low for 9 hrs. (overnight) in a crock pot (or on high while you’re at church b/c you didn’t read the recipe the night before!!) 

When done, drain the water if there is any left.  Shred roast with two forks

 

Add:

¼ Cup Honey Barbecue Sauce (add more sauce if you want it juicer)

¾ Cup Catsup

½ Cup sugar

½ tsp. Garlic Salt

 

GREEN SAUCE – make in blender 

2/3 Cup Salsa Verde – (green salsa)

1 ½ Tbs. sugar

1 tsp. Salt

2/3 Cup Mayo

2 Tbs. Lime Juice

¼ tsp. pepper

Slowly add 1 Cup oil

¼ Cup Cilantro – BLEND

 

Serve the meat from the crock.  Serve green sauce from pitcher.

Mix Romaine lettuce, cut up tomatoes and cilantro in one bowl.

Serve with bowls of shredded cheese, black beans, onions.

 

Cook unbaked tortillas on a pancake grill until bubbly and brown.

Make the burritos with hot tortillas, pork, green sauce and sides. 

SERVES APROX. 24 

Yum yum yum delicioso!

25 Random Things About Me!

1. I only have 1 pair of flip flops.  They’re black.  My first pair was given to me by a college roomie and they were red, white, and blue and lasted about 6 years before that toe divider thingy busted.  I miss them!

2. I have only had short hair for 1 year and it bugs me.  I don’t take the time to do anything with it.  Plus it’s so thick that it has to be layered which makes it hard to do anything with as well.  I’m growing it out and going back to my old ways of long and loving it!

3. I met my husband at church!  Ha, I can’t believe that’s our story.  We were on the Youth Conference Committee together for the Sandstone Stake, but we didn’t know eachother beforehand.

4. I really like to eat Twizzlers licorice.  Not RedVines or any other brand.

5. My hubby calls me Princess Cheese Puff because I really like to eat cheese.  I love chocolate too, but don’t have a nickname for that one.

6. When I was little I hated that big wrinkle that everyone has going across their big toe.  I never wore sandals that revealed my toes or walked around barefoot during the summer as a result.

7. I went to Western High School and my senior year I was drum major in the band, captain of the tennis team, captain of the Varsity Quiz team, President of National Honor Society, Academics editor of the year book, and on the seminary student council.  I had a school uniform every day I could wear!

8. I used to chase boys in 1st grade, pin them against the chain link fence and make them kiss me.  

9. My first job was a “courtesy clerk” at Smith’s grocery store.  I loved that job and occassionally I got to work nonfoods and also in the bakery.  Great experience.

10. I graduated from Southern Utah University with a degree in Elementary Education and came back to NV to teach.  My plan was to come back and teach the whole time.

11. I was never really good at math and sometimes I hated it.  My dad told me there’s no way to avoid math, so just get good at it.  I minored in math in college and know that a miracle got me through Calculus 1.  I even for a split sec thought I’d want to teach Jr. High pre algebra for the rest of my life. 

12. I count people’s toes to make sure they have 10 little piggies!  Everyone so far has had 10 piggies!

13. Our first house was a cute little orange 2 bed 2 bath house with a 2 car garage built in the 1970′s.  I’d move back in a heart beat! 

14. I really enjoy Memorial Day.  I think decorating graves is awesome.  Christmas is good too!

15- I love coupons!  My mom clipped coupons and taught me all about comparison shopping and finding the price per pound.  I clipped coupons in college and would share them with my roomies.  They just laughed.  When hubs and I become millionaires (at age 30 according to our friends) I will still clip coupons for sure!

16-  I’ve had 2 c-sections which guarantees the rest will come out the same way as well. 

17- I’m a graduate school drop out.  I’ve taken all the classes to earn my Masters Degree in Early Childhood- Special Edcuation from UNLV, but I waited too long to go back and register for the last two classes.  Some day I’ll finish.

18- My RS calling has forced me to get over being scared of strangers.  I just dive in and call/ stop by/ leave my contact info for strangers/ etc.  Meeting new people has become a personal goal for me I guess. It drives me nuts to not know a sister in my ward.  There are a few still though I have never met.

19- I’m a bit OCD.  Just ask my hubby.  My kiddo has picked up on it a bit so I’ve learned to loosen up… but just a little bit.

20- I’m half Hispanic.  Sure wish my mom would have taught me Spanish though!

21- I have a square freckle on my ear and so does my younger brother.

22- Lost my last tooth in high school.

23- The Cali mom with the 14 kiddos totally doesn’t bug me like it does the rest of the world.  Good luck to her!  Just glad it’s not me.

24- Some people like to buy clothes or shoes.  I like to buy groceries and food storage!  It’s a total high for me.

25- I could go on and on.  I enjoy talking about myself =o)

Hallelujah!

I am burning the very last CD right now!  Thank you to everyone who helped burn a set of 25 or so.  Sure helps to divide and conquer when it comes to big #s like 300!  And by the way, we only have 2 CD burners working at the moment.  1 is gone 15 hours a day with hubby, so little ole me was left with 1 burner, but I can now add CD burning to my list of accomplishments!  Hip hip hooray!  CD burning is done today!  Just got to pick up CDs from 3 people and we will be all set for the Emergency Preparedness Fair on Saturday!  Thanks once again everyone for your help!

Can You Burn CDs?

Um, huge favor to ask dear bloggers =o) So the preparedness fair is next week and we (hubby and I) have 300 CDs to burn for the event.  1 week, 300 CDs, only 1 CD burner…you get the idea!  Any one want to donate some time for a great cause and help in the effort?  I can personally deliver 25 CDs (unless you want more) and cases to you with the master CD if you will burn them at your house and get them done by Wed.  I will come back and get them too!  Leave a comment or shoot me an email if you’d be willing to help a sistah out.  I thank you in advance!

Store Closings!

All Lucky’s Stores and the Albertsons on Trop & Eastern and Lake Mead  & Jones are closing their doors on Feb 19th.  So, everything in the store is marked down 10-90%.  The non food items are better deals right now- diapers are 25% off, medicines and first aid stuff is 50% off, baking items are 25-50% off, spices are 50% off, household cleaners are 25-50% off.  We’ve been to an Alby’s and a Lucky’s and the prices are the same.  Alby’s did have a better diaper pack available though, so glad I got diapers (Huggies) there.  Oh yeah, and they are still taking Q’s so even more $$ off your purchase.  Have fun bargain shopping!  Everything is on sale, but not everything is a great sale!!  Be careful not to get crazy just because there’s a big store closing sign.  Don’t go in thinking everything must be a super fabulous low low price, because it’s not!

I Heart TVP

So I was making a chicken with veggie and stuffing covering the top casserole for dinner last night and the chicken was showing no signs of thawing out!  (Yeah, I pulled cooked frozen chicken out of the freezer 10 minutes before starting on dinner!) My solution= ditch the chicken and throw in some TVP sausage from a can that’s in my food storage!!

Results= totally delicious and flavorful!  I will be making this again. And the spices are such a nice treat since I only use salt and pepper pretty much.  So daring, I know!

So I’m totally thinking this would be a great casserole for that sister in the ward who just had a baby!!!  I loved this dish and I think the rest of my ward would too!  I just can’t figure out why I never get called to take in a meal!?!  And I think Dream Dinners should start using TVP meats in their casserole dishes too! A lot more of us would try this dinner service if the price was cheaper.  The more cheaper chicken is called TVP people.

Read more about TVP meat here.  It’s pretty easy reading and just may change your mind about it.  I am half tempted to ditch meat altogether and go TVP all the way baby.

I’ve TVPed the sisters at Enrichment and put the sausage bits in a nacho dip and they loved it.  I’ve TVPed the missionaries and some friends who came over for breakfast for dinner.  Those scrambled eggs had TVP sausage bits in them my friends =o)  And now I’ve TVPed my family members who had no complaints about my casserole.

Who’s next?  Oh, maybe 2 wards at our Emergency Preparedness Fair next month (mwah ha ha ha)!

New Year’s Eve

Is absolutely the best time to go to The Magical Forrest at Opportunity Village.  NO LINES= NO WAITING!  We got free tickets and even better, every adult was given a $5 gas card when we entered.  Mikey loves trains and so we had to do that first!  We also rode the carousel, the huge carnival slide, little snow bunny hill slide, and sipped hot cocoa while listening to the live band.  Wow, I just realized we didn’t even walk through the forrest of decorated trees!  We brought Uncle Brian along so he could take our pics =o)  It worked out well b/c we found another family we knew and we could take turns riding rides and being on stroller duty.  For sure we have a tradition started now!

Twas the Week After Christmas…

Our Cox Family Version of

Twas The Night Before Christmas 2008

 

Twas the week after Christmas and the timing is great

To start my Christmas cards for this year- yeah yeah, so they’re late!

December was crazy, the whole month we’ve been sick

Runny noses and chapped lips don’t make for a good family pic.

 

We shall update you on events, we’ve grown from only 1 kid to raising 2

Joshua was born in March and it’s fun watching what he can do.

He entertains Mikey by playing and drooling every day

At 9 months he’s not walking, or crawling, or sitting up – oh no way!

 

Mikey’s our almost 3 year old and boy is he real bright

He knows the ABCs, numbers to 15, and reads scriptures every night.

He recognizes words like “the” and “of” and “love” and “dad”

He knows his colors, shapes, and nursery rhymes, but potty training is going bad.

 

Mike has been really busy- church, school, work, and training for C.E.R.T.

He’s got a passion for emergency preparedness- here’s to hoping we never get hurt!

He only has 1 math class left; it’s taken 10 years for this 2-year degree

Be watching for a May graduation announcement when we will shout with glee!

 

I am enjoying life, staying at home and being the queen

Clipping coupons, blogging weekly, and trying new recipes are my thing.

I’m still up at night with the baby and then mix in my church calling

Serving in the Relief Society presidency, my lack of sleep should have me bawling!

 

We are truly blessed and know that everything comes from Him above.

We’re sending you New Year’s wishes of hope and peace and love.

And if you live in Vegas and think our kids sound great

Please come on over and babysit so we can go on a date!

 

 

Much love from our family to yours,

Mike, Amanda, Mikey, & Joshy Cox