Thursday, December 30, 2010

Merry Christmas 2010

I am very happy to write this letter and get 2010 out of here! This last year was a bit of a challenge and wasn't really all to exciting. I guess I am just happy to get a fresh start in 2011 and make it the best year yet! So sit back and enjoy the ride as you read about the challenging year that we have had, I promise I will try to remain positive in light of all of the negative. I was able to get a way for a girls weekend in Galena Illinois in January. I had a wonderful time with my girlfriends shopping, getting pedis and having late night talks. The end of my trip however led to 5 months of pneumonia that 5 different meds couldn't seem to kick. I felt like I was sick for an eternity!

In April, I was informed that my position as Intervention Specialist was to be eliminated due to extreme budget cuts in our district. I had the opportunity to have various interviews but the Lord had better plans and brought me back to a thought I had had in the back of my mind for almost a year. The job market for teachers didn't look very promising so I decided to start my own business and open Little Orckids Preschool. Within a few weeks of this decision, I had a number of families signed up to start in the fall and I knew this was the path I was to take. I was excited to work from home and I must say I am still happy with this decision. In May, Dennis and I had the chance to go to our first ever Cubs game. Sad I know, we have lived in Chicago all our lives and we just now got around to seeing the Cubs play.

June brought much excitement and hopes that 2010 was going to become a better year. We started fertility treatments after 5 years of trying to start our family, Dennis was offered a job doing commercial pest control with Orkin and I started a summer job as a nanny. One of my all time favorite jobs for summertime. I had fun going to Chicago, getting into an accident in a cab, hanging out at the water park with friends, visiting Legoland, bowling, playing mini golf and relaxing. In July, I attended Girls Camp in Indiana for my third year. Our Stake picked a new camp site this year and it was great. I volunteered to take our Pathfinder and haul the trailer, a first experience of trailer driving for was a little scary at first but we made it there and home safely. My sister, her fiancée & my nephew moved in with us during this time. They relocated to Northern Illinois in hopes of finding a better life up here. It has been nice watching my nephew grow and sharing his firsts, like walking this past week!

August was a busy blur. The day after I returned from camp, Dennis & I went to a Bon Jovi concert at Solider Field This was the first time in our married life we have gone to a concert together and it was our first & only date night since June as Dennis has been extremely busy with work. Our seats were so high up, we had a great few of Navy Pier. Fast forward 2 days later to Sunday.....we attended the wedding of my cousin Anthony and his gorgeous bride, Elise. The ceremony was very nice and the reception was alot of fun.
The next morning I left to go spend a week with my cousins at my grandparents house. It was nice to just lay around and visit but I was happy to come home and sleep in my own bed, plus two weeks away from the hubby was starting to make me miss him. That next week, Little Orkids Preschool opened its doors to 7 anxious children. In barbeque business news, That's Barbeque was introduced to a slew of restaurants this summer and picked up by a few stores. Dennis has taken a lot of time to get the business to a great point this year an we look forward to its growth in 2011.

We celebrated 5 years together in September with sushi and a stroll around downtown Wheaton, started our first round on IVF in November that led to a miscarriage. We have plans in January to jump back on the IVF bandwagon and try again. We stayed local and spent Thanksgiving & Christmas with family. Although this year has brought many challenges to our family we have keep our faith in the Lord that he has a plan for us. It has been hard to come to the realization that its all in the His time. He has done a wonderful job in tuning my patience this year and I know even Miracles take a little time.

We look forward to a better & brighter 2011 and hope that is the year that our dreams come true.
Wishing you & yours a Merry Christmas & a Happy healthy New Year!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Happy Birthday Dennis

Last Tuesday we celebrated Dens birthday. We went to Maggianos for dinner with the family for dinner that night. Dennis wanted to make sure this years birthday wasn't forgotten as I had to call 911 the day before his birthday to have him rushed to the ER. He was woken up early in the morning to a noise. I went out to check on him because I heard a groan. I found him hunched over the kitchen sink. He was breathing but not responding to me. I laid him on the floor and tried to get his attention. His eyes were bulging and he was staring off into space. I kept saying Dennis are you ok? Finally I got a "I can't hear you" from him. I ran to grab my sister to help me. This was the scariest point in my life thus far and I don't want another I called 911 I was holding back to tears but my adrenaline was going so fast I found it hard to dial the numbers and even find the words to answer the dispatchers questions. The paramedics arrived within seconds of the call and we rode off to the hospital in the ambulance. Before I had gotten in the ambulance I called Dennis' mom to meet me at the hospital because I didn't want to face this alone.

It is about 4:45 am and we are getting settled in the room and in walks Dens entire family all worried about him. Needless to say the Dr said he just had a fainting spell also know as Syncope. They did an EKG & ran some blood work just to make sure all was well.
We walked out to the hospital at 6:15 with that diagnosis not a clue to why he passed out in the first place. Of course this left me freaking out for the next couple of days following this incident that something was wrong with him and this was going to happen again.
So for his birthday, I was just thankful that he is here with us still and it was nothing major.

Gingerbread Houses

Tonight we built gingerbread houses with Tonya & Gary. This was a first ever for me, I have never made a gingerbread house before and now I know why......the icing is horrible to maneuver. The nice little white blob in the front on the house would be from my bag of icing exploding so I decided to add candy and call it a patio.....over all it was a fun activity.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Super Couponer Strikes Again!

It has been a while since I have done a super coupon deal but I couldn't resist this one....I got 14 boxes of cereal for $1.64! No that is not a typo....$1.64. I love getting deals like these.

Friday, September 17, 2010

5 Years Together....

And still in love!
We celebrated our 5th anniversary by going to Sushi Mono in Wheaton (which was amazing!), took a stroll through Adams Park and did some goal setting next to a dimly lit fountain, and finished the night at the movies seeing Salt (which was very good). It was nice to have some time together to talk and catch up on things.
Here's to an eternity more!

We got the Spicy Salmon, Ecstacy & Crunchy Melt rolls, all were very yummy! Our appetizer was asparagus beef rolls (AMAZING) and Edamame. We will be going back!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

It only took 5 years but........

I have finally gotten my KitchenAid that I have been asking Dennis for, for the last 5 years! My grandparents sold us their barely used one for a great price. Dennis asked me to make him some homemade bread, receipe compliments of my friend Jen. I decided to make my homemade mac n cheese to go with that yummy french bread. I can't wait to make cookies, cupcakes and of course more bread!!!!!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

I am having a very difficult what does one do when they are having a difficult week? Well, go to the temple of course. I have never had such a burning desire to go to the temple before until this week. It was our ward temple night on Friday night and it has been on my calendar and has been on my mind all week. Whenever I found myself down this week I said to myself, I need to go to the temple, I need to go to the temple. So lastnight I went to the temple with a full heart and I poured it all out to my Father In Heaven and I asked him to make my burden light.

The coolest thing happened last night and it was a very awesome spiritual experience. I have not been feeling very close to the Lord lately and I haven't been feeling the spirit very much. This has been very hard on me because I have felt alone and unguided at a time where I need our Heavenly Father more than ever. Before I got to the temple I said a prayer that I would be able to feel the spirit and know that I am not alone. For the purpose of keeping things sacred I am not going to go into detail but there was a point that I was reminded of my great grandmother, tears came to my eyes as I felt the spirit overwhelm me and then I was we were walking to one of the rooms, I saw an elderly woman come out of a room that looked exactly like my great grandmother, I had to do a double take, then again I felt the spirit again.

I left the temple feeling at peace. My Heavenly Father is aware of me and he is right there going through this with me. There must be some big lesson I am supposed to learn from all of this and slowly I am learning but I can't wait for my miracle to be in my arms. For now I will think about my baby being up there with our Father in Heaven waiting to come meet his parents.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

I Just Want to be a Mommy!

Infertility SUCKS! It is even more difficult when friend after friend has baby after baby and you are left with empty arms. Next month marks our 4 year mark of trying to become parents....I really didn't think it would take this long. We have been working with our fertility specialist Dr. Binor out of Copley for almost a year and I absolutely adore the man! We started doing treatments in June of this year after years of just trying and waiting and talking about adoption. I just had an appointment with him a few weeks ago and he would like to move on to IVF. It scares me just because of all the meds you have to be on and having to go under to remove my eggs. I used to be afraid of doctors, needles and the thought of going under. When we first started this "infertility journey" I told myself I would not undergo IVF. Now 4 years later I am ready to go but a little nervous. It is funny how wanting something so bad makes you change the way you feel about it! The crappy thing about this whole situation is that I lost my job back in June, the job with killer almost to good to be true insurance that covered everything. Well Dennis new job offers insurance. However, said job's insurance does not cover infertility treatments, meaning I have to take Cobra from my previous employer totalling a whopping $500 a month just for me! Really! Why is this fair? Did we ask to not be able to have children the conventional way? Why do we have to pay oddles and oddles of money just to have a child of our own? There should be some relief given here, its not our fault.
So for the past 4 years, I have been a big emotional grump who is jealous of any pregnant woman that comes into my radius. I am hit with struggle after struggle to become a parent and sometimes I ask myself if I am ever going to get that chance? I just want to be a mommy!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Bon Jovi, My Cousins wedding & A Week with Cousins

Bride & Groom

My Aunts & I


Grandma & I

Me, Grandma & Aunt Trish

Bon Jovi

Representing the Hawks!

The cousins

...This blog apparently needs and update on what I have been up to lately. I feel as if summer has just started but somehow it is coming to end. I seriously don't know where in the world the time has gone! So it may appear that I have done nothing eventful this summer but alas, I have done it in true Tara fashion, cramming it all in at once! On July 30th, just a day after returning from girls camp, Dennis and I went to the Bon Jovi concert @ Soldier Field. This was the first time in our married life we have gone to a concert together and it was our first & only date night in July as Dennis has been extremely busy with work. Matter of fact, I think it was the only time in July that we got to a have a conversation that didn't involve falling asleep mid sentence! Our seats were so high up, we had a great few of Navy Pier. I LOVE the city at night. Bon Jovi put on a great show and it was nice to spend time with my hubby for a change.

Fast forward 2 days later to Sunday.....we attended the wedding of my cousin Anthony and his gorgeous bride, Elise. The ceremony was very nice and the reception was alot of fun.

The next morning I left to go spend a week with my cousins at my grandparents house. It was nice to just lay around and visit but I was happy to come home and sleep in my own bed, plus two weeks away from the hubby was starting to make me miss him. So there you have it folks, proof that I have been up to something lately!

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Girls Camp 2010

This last week I completed my third year at Girls Camp. This year we went to Lafayette Indiana. The camp was very nice and we had a very busy three days! Lots of spiritual experiences and lots of fun was had by our ward. Of course, it rained the last night, as it always does when we go to camp. We actually had to take all of our stuff down the night before and sleep in the dining hall since we had to be up and gone from camp before 7:30 so the rain was no big deal, it just haulted our camp fire, yellow feather ceremony and smores but being in the dining hall together was cozy and fun. My highlight of camp was running from shower to shower (in swimsuit) with Morgan trying to get a hot water because we showered on night after everyone else did! We also met Sister Taylor from Joilet 1 ward sho is down right hilarious. She should be a comedian. During dinner she had me almost choke from how hard I was laughing as she was telling stories. It was a great time! Can't wait till next year.....rumor has it we are going to the same camp.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Preschool Table

I bought this adorable table today for my preschool. I am thinking about buying a second one. I scored this beauty for $50 on Amazon. They have an easel that matches for just $35 that will be my next purchase.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Time Hog

My time has been stolen and the culprit is this cutie.......
He takes up all of my time cuddling, laughing and playing with me!
My sister her fiance & my nephew Luca moved in with us about 3 weeks ago and I am more than thrilled to get to play with my nephew all the time!

Friday, June 18, 2010

A rumble in the night

Last night I was woken up and kept awake by pounding rain, loud obnoxious thunder and eye blinding lightning. I hate being woken up this way. Needless to say, I am really tired today now

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Opposites attract

St. Croix

Dominican Republic

Verona Italy

We have a dilema...I really really really want to take a vacation everytime I turn around but Dennis wants to save all of our money and do nothing with it, just let it sit and pile up and take vacations later in life. What if i die before I get to spend it? I on the other hand want to spend it and travel the world. Is there anything wrong with wanting to see the world before you die? At this rate, I will die a rich woman who never saw anything past Illinois!

P.S. I don't mind saving money, but really? To the point of never taking a vacation until I'm 40??

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

I'm a business owner and I like what the future holds!

Ladies & gents, Little Orckids Preschool is open for business! Website has been created @ Classes start in September. Now on to finishing the room (pictures to soon follow) and marketing.

Wish me luck...... :)

Friday, May 28, 2010

Cubs game

I am way late in posting this one but better late than never. Dennis and I attended our very first Cubs game (sad I know since we have lived here our whole lives). We were able to support our friend, Laura, who has battled and beat Breast Cancer. It was a fundraiser event for her walk for breast cancer. We went with the Giacominos & Sedlaceks. It was great to jump on the train that morning and spend the whole day in the city without a care in the world, or a check of the watch.

Monday, May 17, 2010

It's baaaacccckkkk

The coughing and weezing and oh I feel like crap and all I want to do is back again. I mean its not like I really enjoyed having it for 4 months and missed it so much I wanted it to come back! Why did it have to come back so soon? Really? I think this weather has something to do with it. I really don't want pneumonia again, it was not fun!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Found on a friends blog and I really liked, so I borrowed...thanks Kiera

"I don't want to drive up to the pearly gates in a shiny sports car, wearing beautifully, tailored clothes, my hair expertly coiffed, and with perfectly manicured fingernails.

I want to drive up in a station wagon that has mud on the wheels from taking kids to scout camp.

I want to be there with grass stains on my shoes from mowing my neighbor's lawn.

I want to be there with a smudge of peanut butter on my shirt from making sandwiches for a sick neighbor's children.

I want to be there with a little dirt under my fingernails from helping to weed someone's garden.

I want to be there with the children's sticky kisses on my cheeks and the tears of a friend on my shoulder.

I want the Lord to know I was really here and that I really lived."

Marjorie Pay Hinckley

Monday, May 10, 2010

Well this has never happened before.....

I have never gotten the opportunity to have more than one interview in a hiring season before, I am actually lucky if I even get one. Well today I recieved a call from Amy Drayper at Echlerberger Elementary in Plainfield. She was calling to schedule me for an interview for the kindergarten position that I applied for. My jaw dropped when I heard her message and said shut the front door! So I called her back and I have an interview on Thursday afternoon. How crazy is it that I have 2 interviews within a week of each other, both for kindergarten! I still haven't heard back from my prinicpal yet to see if I made it to round 2 of interview at LC where I am now....the interview went exceptionally well and I should be hearing from him in a day or so.

Sunday, May 2, 2010


Fingers and toes crossed, I have an interview Thursday for a kindergarten job at my current school! I am sooooooooo excited!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Something is missing

Does anyone else ever get tired of feeling like something is missing?

3 weeks ago Monster got neutered and this picture reminded me of it. Although Monster isn't a cat, its still funny!
And from the whole experience I will NEVER make an animal go through that again!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Just when you feel like giving up.....

My favorite talk from conference this year was by James B. Martino. His talk was about Trials. There could not have been a better time for me to hear this talk. Here are the highlights.

* How we react to difficulties determines our success.
* Not when we face them BUT how we face them
* Trials help us develop traits & attributes like out Father
* We grow from experiences but challenge is seeing the eternal perspective as we go through them.
* 5 things can be learned from the Savior
1. Will of Father- he was commited even through his trials
2. Don't complain or murmur- Ask What am I to do? Change? Learn? not ask Why Me?
3. Seek help from God- this helps strengthen us and ease the burden
Don't become bitter, become faithful
4. Serve others- it helps us forget out problems and helps strengthen ourselves
5. Forgive others/Don't pass the blame onto them.

We also got to sing I Know My Reedemer Lives during Sundays afternoon session. I was very thankful that Conference fell on Easter this year, it made it all the more special. I was thankful that I got to hear such wonderful messages from a prophet of God and the General Authority of the church. My faith has been strengthen because I listened.
Everywhere in nature we learn the lesson of patience and waiting.
We want things a long time before we get them and the fact that we
wanted them a long time makes them all the more precious when they come.
-Joseph F. Smith

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Meet the newest member of the Larson family

After much contemplation and a year of looking, we have decided to add another car to our family, a 2005 Nissan Pathfinder and we are in love with it!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Ok, so pie day was a little late

I made my first blueberry pie Monday Tuesday night it was all gone!

Happy April

...Oh believe it!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Happily Ever After

I attended the YW dinner and broadcast lastnight at our stake center. Can I just say that the Lord knows when we need to hear something. I have experienced this the last few weeks as I have not wanted to go to church just because I didn't feel like going BUT I went anyway because I knew I had to do. I get such spiritual fufillment from going to church. So far, every week I have felt like not going, I have heard a lesson or a talk that the Lord meant for my ears to hear. So back to the broadcast, President Dieter F. Uchtdorf was the closing speaker and I say they saved the best for last. His talk compared our lives to a fairytale, we have to go through some trial to get to our happily ever after. This is so true, we have to go through the trials in our life and learn and grow before we can have eternal life. We may not like our trials, who really does, but its how we deal with them and what we learn that helps us grow and move forward with our lives. I can say I have not enjoyed my trials at all, I dispise them but I am greatful to have gone through them because they have helped me grow and learn and I have drawn closer to our Heavenly Father. would be nice to have a break for a bit!

Friday, March 12, 2010

8 weeks.......and counting

Wow have I neglected this blog or what? Nothing new really to report in the last month. I am STILL sick! We are going on 8 weeks now! The doc put me on my third antibiotic, Prednisone and gave me an inhaler. The list of side affect are super long, I was kind of scared to take it! Today I experienced hyperness, jitteriness, crabby-ness and then after lunch I crashed!!! I am so exhausted and I have a killer headache.
On a lighter side, the weather and perked up and it was a gorgeous 65 yesturday. I even went a purchased a new spring coat. I am hoping that his nice weather will help me feel better and finally kick the walking pneumonia to the curb.

Friday, February 12, 2010

My first experience with an earthquake

Wednesday morning we were awoken at 4am by a loud noise, barking dog and a shaking bed. I knew right away that it was an earthquake, Dennis on the other hand tried tp pass it off as Monster shaking. You see when he gets woken up in the middle of the night, he will bark really loud and start to shake because his adrenaline is going. This I am very greatful for because I know that no one stands a chance at getting into my house at with my guard dog. While the boys were up checking out what was going on, I could still feel the bed shaking, no way it was Monster, he wasn't even in the bed. So we brushed it off not really knowing what it was and fell back asleep. 6am my alarm goes off and they are talking about a 4.3 earthquake just 2 towns over from ours. Dennis starts hitting my arm, babe we have an earthquake last night he says to where I respond, see I told you, hit snooze, and roll back over. Ours was small, I can't even image what the people in Haiti went through.

Oh Joy!!

This picture pretty much sums up what I have been doing for three straight weeks, NON STOP!
So I have been sick for 3 weeks now. It started with a cough that just got worse and worse and worse. After anihilating an entire bottle of Robitussin DM, Niquil & Dayquil and having zero change in symptoms I decided to go to urgent care last week to see what was going on. I was told that I have an upper resp. infection. I always get them this time of year and they most likely turn into bronchitis or step. I was given cough meds adn sent home. A week after taking the meds, nothing changed again, still have my annoying cough and I even managed to hurt my rib in the process. Yesturday I decided to go see my PCP in Geneva because I just didn't feel right. I really haven't had much energy these last three weeks and haven't wanted to do anything. I have completely abanded my training schedule for my 1/2 marathon. I attempted hitting the treadmill earlier this week with no luck. I started coughing and just not feeling right. So the doc tells me that I have had walking pneumonia and sends me home with an antibiotic and nasty tasting cough meds with codene and instructions to stay home and rest. Mind you I took the nasty disguting made me wanna gag cough meds before bed lastnight. Well they wore off around 3:30 lastnight when I started coughing in my sleep so bad that it woke me up! I get up this morning to take the dog out, go to cough and hear a pop, fall to the ground because I can't breathe and start to cry. Now this really can't be good. I decided to go visit the chiropractor asap to get some treatments done and see if he can figure out whats up with my rib. Sure enough I had popped one out of place and I may have possibly cracked one. So now, it hurts to cough, laugh, breathe deep or pretty much move. There is nothing I can do except give it time to heal itself. So now when I cough I clench my fists hard and try to get through the pain. I am just glad I went to my PCP and found out what was really going on and finally got some goods meds that should knock this right out. I just hate this time of year because I always come down with something and it's never any fun!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Galena Girls Getaway 2010

Alyse & I LOVE Santa/ Our Mexican Pyramid/Amanda & her beef

Hola/Bonnie, Lisa & I/ The moment Lisa tossed Alyse

hanging by the monk/Bonnie ate stale popcorn on display/chick flick

This year, a bunch of us got together and headed 3 hours northwest to Galena for a girls weekend. We had a pj party, gift exchange, chick-flick night and a day on the town. It was a great getaway. Can't wait till the next girls trip.....!!! (Hopefully Bonnie won't eat stale display popcorn again!)

Saturday, January 9, 2010


I have been keeping up with my running, as much as I can, since returning to work this week. I hit a milestone this week. I ran a mile in 9 minutes! Now, while this is great, I want to work more on endurance right now than speed. I went to the massage therapist on Thursday because my left shin was killing me. Found out I tore my muscle on my shin. Nothing that couldn't be fixed I was told. So I stretched and didn't run for 2 days until the pain went away. I went to Lifetime Fitness with a friend today and I ran almost 2 and 1/2 miles before I could feel the pain come back. After we completed our run, we sat in the hot tub for a bit and I can tell you it really helped! I wish I could sit in the hot tub after every run. I am working through this minor injury, I am not going to give up on my running goal. It's just a bump in the road.