30 August 2010

fun with grandma & grandpa

This past weekend my parents journeyed out from Iowa to smooch on Haven and to see her new tricks...it's always fun when family haven't seen our little toodlebugs in a while and then see how she's grown!

I love this picture above-it's as if Haven is asking, "Grandma, you ready for church?"

Haven is showing Grandpa how "big she is"!

We also headed to Alan & Theresa's for little Will's 1st birthday party on Saturday and a great photo opportunity with all the cousins!

cousins: Charlee Jones (9.5 months), Will Miller (1) & Haven (9.5 months)

27 August 2010

Friday's Funny

What one will do in order to get a Christmas card picture? Well...this was taken at the Smokies in 2007.

26 August 2010

fondue fun

Last night we had the pleasure of hosting some friends over for catching up & fondue.
My husband had never done fondue before, and although a skeptic, I think by the end of the night, we had won him over. We did beef, chicken & pizza rolls in an oil fondue with a few kinds of dipping sauces and also a chocolate/peanut butter fondue with marshmallows, graham crackers, angel food cake, and strawberries.
Tami-thanks for bringing your fondue pot over so we could have two kinds!

Holly's Mom was in town for a little wedding dress shopping-it was great having you Kristen!

Haven thought the fondue/porch dinner was pretty fun!

20 August 2010

Friday's Funny

Everybody seems to have some sort of weekly post: accountability to their beloved blog so here is mine...introducing Friday's Funny. Friday's Funny will be a hodge podge of pictures (if I'm short on time), snip-it's of daily life, or stories (if I have a bit more time than expected).

I hope you enjoy!

Today's Friday Funny: Good Friday 2010
(Just a warning: it is a bit long!)

Arlan, Haven & I traveled to Phoenix, AZ, this past Spring to spend some time with my mom's side of the family. I have two aunts, usually dubbed "The Aunts" in Phoenix, who if you ever meet them, you won't forget them! Full of life, gadgets, stories, cooking, energy, refrigerators...the list goes on-these two are a gem. We usually alternate staying at places & since we had Haven along this trip, and Aunt Lois has a crib & MULTIPLE baby toys, we stayed with her & Uncle Ells. Now mind you, Aunt Lavonne only leaves a mere 2 blocks away & my cousin Kolette & her husband & boys a mere 4 blocks away-all in the big sprawling metropolis of Phoenix.

Okay, on to my story...

We had spent the majority of our time buzzing around Phoenix-shopping, the zoo, spending time with family, etc. The last day we were there happened to be Good Friday and after hiking a bit, dropping off supplies at my Aunt Lo's workplace, we decided we best get in one more shopping trip to Paradise Valley Mall. (We were actually returning something we had bought there earlier in the week-some would think "pathetic"...we think efficient)!

Uncle Ells & Aunt Lois had graciously lent us their nice car for the week beings their other "car" wasn't considered safe to be hauling Haven around in. This unsafe car, however, happens to be my Uncle Ellsworth's pride & joy. lovingly named "the Buick".

The Buick has well over 200,000 miles on it, the front passenger's door doesn't open, & a few windows don't work. It hasn't had new freon for years (my Uncle is a die-hard in the heat of PHX), and the struts and breaks...well, one would have to push quite hard for the said effect to kick in. All this said, the Buick is a gem as my Dutch Uncle Ellsworth repeats, because "ya know Kate, cars depreciate."

Okay, we are getting to the story-the introduction, however, is key to the story.

Off Arlan, Haven, and I go to PV Mall one last time. We are at a stoplight waiting for cars to begin accelerating and crunch-someone rear-ends us in the nice Chrysler car. No one was hurt, in fact, Haven slept through the whole thing, & there was minimal damage but beings I was from out of state & it was my Aunt & Uncle's car, I wanted to make sure I filed the report right. I called 911 and as we were waiting for the police to come, I also called Uncle Ells & Aunt Lois. Uncle Ells happened to be on the other side of the Valley & Aunt Lois was at work-both of them assured me that calling the police & filing a report was the right thing.

The first officer arrived, instructed us to pull into a nearby daycare off of Cactus & he'd follow. While filling out the information, a white SUV pulls up & out jumps my cousin Kolette with her son Kole and says, "Katie Louie-what happened?!" I explain to the officer that this is my cousin whose parents own the car I was driving. Kolette happened to be coming back from PV Mall & saw me in this parking lot (sidenote-the daycare was actually owned by a minister from the PHX church :)

Kolette then ensures I'm filliing out the form correctly and by this time, a second police officer has pulled up. Whispering to me, Kolette says, "uh this is just a minor accident. Why are two officers here when people around the city are probably getting robbed right now?"

Mere seconds after her comment, we hear a loud crunch at the same intersection where I was just rear-ended. Kolette pops up & says, "Hey, someone else just got rear-ended!"..."Oh NO! It's my Mom!" She goes over to the road & much to her horror, sees her Mom (Aunt Lois) has just rear-ended someone.

Aunt Lois & this other car come into the same parking lot & officer #2 now helps them start filling out an accident report. The 2 gentlemen in the car Aunt Lois hit were quite distraught with this whole situation as they were on their way to the next-door vet clinic to put down their beloved cat. Aunt Lois felt terrible for hitting them but didn't quite receive the same patience in return.
(many more details are involved in those last few sentences but I'm choosing to leave them out)

Meanwhile my officer has finished my report and heads off. Officer #2 is then realizing my car I was driving and this crunched-up Buick are both owned by Aunt Lois who has her daughter, Kolette, standing next to us.

Officer #2 - "Wow, in 17 years on the force, I'm not sure we've ever had a situation like this."
Kolette - "Yeah, well we live real close to each other-even in a big city. This is my cousin visiting from Illinois."
Officer #2 - "Well, if you have any other family around, please tell them, for their safety, to stay off the road!"

At that moment, Aunt Lavonne pulls up, jumps out, and yells, "What's going on?!"

Kolette - "That's my Aunt Lavonne!"

The police officer's mouth just drops & is in disbelief that yet another family member has not only shown up at this mayhem but also only lives a few blocks away from all in Phoenix. Aunt Lavonne had called Arlan a few minutes before, happened to be in the area at a lunch date, and thought she better check things out. However, she did NOT know there had by this time been 2 accidents.

All this chaos only took approx. 45-60 minutes from start to finish. Aunt Lois had called my Aunt Lavonne to tell her I had been rear-ended and Aunt Lavonne had counseled that perhaps to support Katie and make sure everyone had insurance, Aunt Lois should buzz over to the accident site. To my Aunt Lois' credit: I was driving the car she usually drives, and with so many idiosyncrasies in the Buick, including breaking, she wasn't accustomed to the car she was driving.

Added to the madness was the fact that Officer #2 went to high school with my other cousin, Kari, who recognized her last name as he was filing the accident report.

What was my calm, logically Uncle Ells' comment about all of this?...

"Maybe there's an accident discount with our insurance for volume of accidents."

17 August 2010

9 months

Haven received a very fun map for one of her baby showers last Fall & her and Daddy had a super fun time putting her stickers on the states she has traveled to-a little young for maps, you say?
"Never too young," replies her Daddy! :)

One of her favorite pastimes-books!

Another favorite pastime-crawling! She's at that stage where I never know exactly where I"ll find her!

While in Holland, MI, a few weeks ago, Haven toured her first windmill.

hmm...perhaps not as interested in touring of the windmill as her parents :)
Doesn't she have this pained look like "I don't care if you both love history, but this isn't my idea of fun!"

16 August 2010


We had the pleasure of hosting the past several weeks some really special people at our home. Two former students made it over for dinner/evening to catch up before their school year began again. Thanks Amy & Trevor...it was great catching up!

This is a former student of Miller's & StuCo Exec. Board member, Amy, who is studying economics at SIUE.

And this crazy-haired guy is Trevor: a former student of mine, StuCo Exec. Board member, and also traveled to D.C. 2 years ago with us on Close-Up. Trev is studying at ICC right now planning on transferring to a 4 year college (yet to be determined) to study mass communications.

12 August 2010

another first...

...much to her father's chagrin, Haven experienced her first nail painting party. We were over at our friends, the Endress', who also had other friends & neighbors over, and with that many girls, a mother cannot say no! She loved all the attention & making new friends as they lovingly painted [just] her toenails pink-thanks girls!

09 August 2010

perhaps in the future?

Haven was at Marsha's (one of our great babysitters from Spring) when she snapped this picture...too fun!

04 August 2010

garden party 2010

Last week we were fortunate to host friends for our 3rd annual garden party...it was a delightful time! The weather was picture perfect with a nice breeze in our backyard & the guests were lovely. Thanks friends for making our garden party a success!

The croquet match with several ladies got quite intense!