Sunday, December 30, 2012


Are we instagram friends yet? Let's follow each other denisemadsen1

This is my life via instagram..

homemade pizza
all ready for Christmas
 Happy Thanksgiving

wishing I was back on vacation

mommy and son

Merry Christmas

30 in 30 starting January 1st!! Be excited :)

Look for me on instagram so I can follow you back :)

Thursday, December 27, 2012

christmas recap

Christmas Eve was spent eating all day, cleaning until my allergies took over and wrapping presents. My families tradition is to order pizza for Christmas Eve dinner and watch 'It's a Wonderful Life.' Dave loved that tradition so much that we do it every year in our home too. I think I was a little excited for Christmas because Christmas Eve went so SLOW! So to help pass the time we played games. And because I'm feeling too lazy to write a big fancy post, here are some pictures to do the talking. Enjoy!

 Settlers of Catan, fun game!
 Soo my allergies got the best of me after cleaning all day and frozen broccoli on my face was the only thing helping hahaha
Yum sparkling cyder
 cuddling with this guy :)
bedtime stories

Once Kyson scurried off to bed, Santa came! Santa was a little upset though, we forgot to put out cookies and milk for him. Oops!

Christmas morning started for us around 9:30. Kyson decided to sleep in and we were totally ok with it.

After opening all those presents we played! And then we ate and then we played some more. And then we napped. What's Christmas without a Christmas nap?
When I woke up, my sweet hubby surprised me with some diamonds!! Best wake-up call I've had in a while :)
Aren't they gorgeous?! I had been hinting to Dave for months that I really wanted a pretty diamond necklace to wear for more dressy occasions. He went above and beyond my expectations and got me two beautiful necklaces. Exactly the kind I was looking for. The man is good at this stuff!

It was an amazing Christmas spent with the two people I care about the most. We all got spoiled, made some great memories and everybody was happy, happy, happy! I hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

stocking swap 2012

 Along with my ornament swap, I also linked up with Kelly for a stocking swap. This was so fun! I got my gift just two days ago and I really hope my partner got her's. I guess that's what happens when your gift has to go thru customs. It takes forever!

I was partnered with Karen, check out her blog she's adorable! My favorite thing in my stocking was this little headband and the nail polish. Normally when I wear headbands they give me headaches or they just slip off but this one is simply perfect. No headache and it stayed in place perfectly! And the nail polish? It's Christmasy red and gold glitter. Need I say more? She got me so many other cute things and I'm so happy I have a new bloggy friend.

On a different note, yesterday my cute family loaded up in the car, cranked up the Christmas music and drove around looking at the Christmas lights. We stopped at Chick Fil A and got a Peppermint Chocolate Chip Shake. Oh. My. Lanta. best thing I've put in my mouth all year! It has little chunks of candy cane in it. Aww my mouth is watering now. Anyways as we drove around we realized just how much Christmas lights there were. Close to none. It really makes me so sad at how few people decorate these days. When I was a kid every house had lights up. Kyson may never know of the joy they bring at Christmas time. The Christmas magic is dying these days and it makes me die a little inside. :(

This shake is a MUST for everyone!

Merry Christmas!!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

ornament swap 2012

This year I joined in on an ornament swap and I was so excited about it!


I was partnered up with Jenn and right away began to look for the perfect ornament for her. It was a lot harder than I expected. I'm not to keen on the cheesy, plastic, cheap ornaments which seriously is all I could find. So I really had to search for the right one. I found it! And it had a great Christmas meaning behind it. But I'm not going to ruin the surprise so if you want to know what I got her, head on over to her blog. I told her that I was very girlie and she sent me the most adorable ornament.

I'll admit that it's the only pink ornament on my tree and it sticks out like a soar thumb, but I love that it does! It reminds me that I have a new blog friend in the neighboring state to mine.
Tell me this isn't perfect for me?! That's the shopaholic in me talking.

What a fun little blog swap this was and I'm definitely going to do it every year! Thanks Megan for a fabulous swap :)

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Christmas Festivities

We've done a few fun Christmasy things the last few weeks that I never got around to blogging about. So here they are, all in one super post!

We took Kyson to a Christmas Parade the city puts on. I had NO IDEA the parade was as big as it was. The entire city showed up and it seemed like half of the local companies were involved with their own floats! It was nuts! This was our first year going but everyone kept saying this was the shortest parade they've had. And yet it was still so long. Too long if you ask me!

 Kyson waving to Santa Claus
A concert we went to after the parade for the cities official tree lighting.

Over the weekend we ditched the Squadron Christmas Party and went to Lubbock to finish up our shopping. We chose Lubbock because we didn't want to deal with the business of Dallas and thought Lubbock wouldn't be so bad. Boy were we wrong! It was crazy!! We finished our shopping, went to dinner at Joe's Crab Shack (we go there a lot) then went to the Lubbock Temple.

I was so bummed that this temple didn't have any Christmas lights up! My Grandpa was in charge of putting up the lights at the St George Temple for almost 10 years. I used to help him as a kid for days and it was such great bonding time! So Christmas lights at Temples are always so special to me. Oh well, they did have a small Nativity though.
I'm so excited for Christmas this year! NO TRAVELING!! We're pretty excited about that since we'll be traveling a lot next year!
Merry Christmas!!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

a comforting poem

 I'm sure most of you have seen things floating around facebook about the Connecticut shooting. I've seen so many things that touched my heart in remembrance of those lives lost but this poem really stuck out to me and I thought I'd share. It was written by someone I don't know so I don't really know who to give the credit to other then the name of the person. A woman named Cameo Smith.

twas' 11 days before Christmas, around 9:38
when 20 beautiful children stormed through heaven's gate.
their smiles were contagious, their laughter filled the air.
they could hardly believe all the beauty they saw there.
they were filled with such joy, they didn't know what to say.
they remembered nothing of what had happened earlier that day.
"where are we?" asked a little girl, as quiet as a mouse.
"this is heaven." declared a small boy. "we're spending Christmas at God's house."
when what to their wondering eyes did appear,
but Jesus, their savior, the children gathered near.
He looked at them and smiled, and they smiled just the same.
then He opened His arms and He called them by name.
and in that moment was joy, that only heaven can bring
those children all flew into the arms of their King
and as they lingered in the warmth of His embrace,
one small girl turned and looked at Jesus' face.
and as if He could read all the questions she had
He gently whispered to her, "I'll take care of mom and dad."
then He looked down on earth, the world far below
He saw all of the hurt, the sorrow, and woe
then He closed His eyes and He outstretched His hand,
"Let My power and presence re-enter this land!"
"may this country be delivered from the hands of fools"
"I'm taking back my nation. I'm taking back my schools!"
then He and the children stood up without a sound.
"come now my children, let me show you around."
excitement filled the space, some skipped and some ran.
all displaying enthusiasm that only a small child can.
and i heard Him proclaim as He walked out of sight,
"in the midst of this darkness, I AM STILL THE LIGHT."

Since becoming a mother I've become 100 times more emotional than I was before motherhood. I find myself crying during movies, stories and even my own experiences more often than I used to. I found out about this tragic school shooting while I was working. My husband called me 3 times trying to get a hold of me and when I finally answered he explained what had happened. I couldn't even wrap my head around it. He didn't want me to be alone thru all the sudden waves of emotion coming over me so we met up for lunch and I balled. Just picturing how scarred those little babies must have been. Thinking about those parents receiving that horrific phone call. I can't even put into words how I feel towards those families involved. But then I start thinking about where those little babies are right now and it brings a feeling of peace to me. To know that they are with our Savior in Heaven being well taken care of. Being happy. It's going to be a challenge when it comes time for me to teach my son about death. But the most important thing I can teach him at that moment is about Heaven and how glorious it'll be to be back there. I keep trying to think of ways I can help all those families involved and I realized the only thing I can do is pray. Pray for peace and comfort. Pray for forgiveness and love. And to do my absolute best at keeping God at the center of my home and mine and my families lives.

"I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me."
-Phillippians 4:13

Thursday, December 6, 2012

the true meaning of Christmas

The True Meaning of Christmas

Isaiah 7:14 (New International Version)
Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.

This is a wonderful story of a Christmas Eve dream of Santa as he is known today and Jesus who is the Reason for the Season we celebrate each year.
By the use of carefully chosen symbols in the dream a wonderful picture emerges which points us not to Santa who is himself a fantasy but to Jesus, the promised one, the savior of the world.
Late one Christmas Eve I sank back, tired but content, into my easy chair. The kids were in bed, the gifts were wrapped, the milk and cookies waited by the fireplace for Santa. As I sat back admiring the tree with its decorations, I couldn't help feeling that something was missing. It wasn't long before the tiny twinkling tree lights lulled me to sleep. I don't know how long I slept, but all of a sudden I knew that I wasn't alone.

I opened my eyes, and you can imagine my surprise when I saw Santa Claus himself, standing next to my Christmas tree. He was dressed all in fur from his head to his foot just as the poem described him. But he was not the "jolly old elf" of Christmas legend. The man who stood before me looked sad and
disappointed. And there were tears in his eyes. "Santa, what's wrong?" I asked. "Why are you crying?" "It's the children," Santa replied sadly. "But the children love you," I said. "Oh, I know they love me and the gifts I bring them," Santa said.
"But the children of today seem to have somehow missed out on the true spirit of Christmas...and it's not their fault! It's just that the adults, many of them not having been taught themselves, have forgotten to teach the children."
"Teach them what?" I asked.

Santa's kind old face became soft, more gentle. His eyes began to shine with something more than tears. He spoke softly.

"Teach the children the true meaning of Christmas.

Teach them that the part of Christmas we can see, hear, and touch is much more than meets the eye.

Teach them the symbolism behind the customs and traditions of Christmas we now observe. Teach them what it is they truly represent."

Santa reached into his bag and pulled out a tiny Christmas tree and set it on my mantle." Teach them about the Christmas tree. Green is the second color of Christmas. The stately evergreen with its unchanging color represents the hope of eternal life in Jesus. It's needles point heavenward as a reminder that man's thoughts should turn heavenward as well."

Santa reached into his bag again and pulled out a shiny star and placed it at the top of the small tree. "The star was the heavenly sign of promise. God promised a Savior for the world and the star was the sign of the fulfillment of that promise of the night that Jesus Christ was born. Teach the children that God always fulfills His promises and that wise men still seek Him."

"Red," said Santa, "is the first color of Christmas."

He pulled forth a red ornament for the tiny tree. "Red is deep, intense, vivid. It is the color of the life-giving blood that flows through our veins. It is the symbol of God's greatest gift. Teach the children that Christ gave His life and shed His blood for them that they might have eternal life. When they see the color red it should remind them of that most wonderful gift."

Santa found a bell in his pack and placed it on the tree. "Just as lost sheep are guided to safety by the sound of the bell; it continues to ring today for all to be guided to the fold. Teach the children to follow the true Shepherd who gave His life for the sheep."

 Santa placed a candle on the mantle and lit it. The soft glow from its one tiny flame brightened the room. "The glow of the candle represents how man can show his thanks for the gift of God's son who was born that Christmas Eve long ago. Teach the children to follow in Christ's footsteps, to go about doing good. Teach them to let their lights shine before men that all may see it and glorify God. This is what is symbolized when the twinkly lights shine on the tree like hundreds of bright, shining candles, each of them representing one of God's precious children, their light shining for all to see."

He then brought out a holly leaf. "Teach the children that the holly plant represents immortality. It represents the crown of thorns worn by our Savior. The red holly berries represent the blood shed by Him.

Next he pulled from his bag a gift and said, "Teach the children that God so loved the world that he gave his begotten son." Thanks be to God for his unspeakable gift.

Again, Santa reached into his bag and this time he brought forth a shiny red and white striped candy cane. As he hung it on the tree, he spoke softly, "The candy cane is a stick of hard, white candy. White to symbolize the virgin birth and sinless nature of Jesus and the shape 'J' to represent the precious name of Jesus who came to earth as our Savior. It also represents the crook the Good Shepherd uses to reach down into the ditches of the world to lift out the fallen lambs who, like sheep, have gone astray. The original candy cane had three small red stripes which are the stripes of the scourging Jesus received by which we are healed, and a large red stripe that represents the shed blood of Jesus so that we can have eternal life.

He reached in again and pulled out an Angel. "Teach the children that it was the angels that heralded in the glorious news of the Savior's birth. The angels sang Glory to God in the highest, on earth peace and good will toward men."

Teach these things to the children."
Santa brought out a beautiful wreath made of fresh, fragrant greenery and tied with a bright red bow. "The bow reminds us of the bond of perfection which is love. The wreath embodies all the good things about Christmas for those with eyes to see and hearts to understand. It contains the colors of red and green and the heaven-turned needles of the evergreen. The bow tells the story of good will towards all; and its color again reminds us of Christ's sacrifice. Even its very shape is symbolic, representing eternity and the eternal nature of Christ's love. It is a circle without beginning and without end. These are the things you must teach the children."

"But where does that leave you Santa?" I asked.
The tears gone now from his eyes, a smile broke over Santa's face.
"Why, bless you my dear," he laughed. "I'm only a symbol myself. I represent the spirit of family fun and the joy of giving and receiving. If the children are taught these other things, there is no danger that I'll ever be forgotten." 

"If we don't teach the children these things......who will?"


Thursday, November 29, 2012

common hair care myths

So I totally stole this from but I seriously think people need to know this. It's completely true!

Myth: Frequent hair trims make hair grow faster.

Truth. "Hair grows a half inch per month, whether you cut it or not," says John Barrett, owner of the John Barrett Salon in New York City. Hair may grow slightly faster in the summer, but that has nothing to do with the stylist's scissors and everything to do with hormones, which do speed growth a little. One thing a trim will do: eliminate split ends, making hair look better.

Truth: "Hair grows a half-inch per month, whether you cut it or not," says John Barrett, owner of the John Barrett Salon in New York City. Hair may grow slightly faster in the summer, but that has nothing to do with the stylist's scissors and everything to do with hormones, which do speed growth a little. One thing a trim will do: Eliminate split ends, making hair look better.

Read more: Common Hair Care Myths - Hair Care Tips - Good Housekeeping
Myth: Stress can make your hair fall out.

Truth. Although your hair is falling out all the time, to the tune of 50 to 120 strands per day, it's possible that you may lose a few more strands when you're "catastrophically" stressed, meaning you have had a major life change such as divorce, lost job, or surgery says Gerome Litt, M.D., an assistant professor of dermatology at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in Cleveland. "Other culprits are pregnancy or antibiotics. After a few weeks, it will almost certainly grow back."

Myth: Switching shampoos can make hair look healthier.

Truth. "It may seem so, but experts scoff. "Hair can't tell the difference between brands or build up tolerance to any product," says London-based hair and scalp expert Philip Kingsley. "Your favorite shampoo will work the same every time you lather up, week after week, month after month." If you have very oily hair or favor a particularly sticky styling product that contains wax, it does pay to use a clarifying shampoo once every two weeks to wash away residue.

Myth: If you pluck out one gray hair, two or three will sprout in its place.

Truth. While it isn't true, plucking out those gray strands is a bad habit. You can damage the roots, causing infection or leaving a scar.

Myth: You can't make flat, fine hair look full of body.

Truth. Five minutes with a set of large hot rollers will add life to straight hair.

Myth: To get really clean hair, you must "lather, rinse, and repeat."

Truth. One thorough washing will do the trick.

Myth: Rinsing with ice-cold water after a shampoo will give you shinier hair.

Truth. It might wake you up, but a dousing of cold water will have no effect on the shininess of your tresses.

Myth: Coloring your hair causes major damage.

Truth. Products today - both at home and in the salon - are gentle enough not to weaken hair. In fact, some contain extra conditioners that may leave hair more manageable than before. Although it's not necessary, "it can't hurt to consult a professional stylist the first time you do anything permanent to your hair or scalp," Kingsley counsels.

Myth: You can mend split ends with the right products.

Truth. Once they're split, that's it. The only thing you can do then is cut them off. Celebrity stylist Jimmy Paul suggests making split ends less noticeable by applying a product containing silicone or beeswax. It will temporarily seal ends together, making hair softer and more manageable. Try: John Paul Mitchell Gloss Drops and John Barrett Bee Hold.

Myth: You should brush your hair 100 strokes every day.
Truth. "Brush it only to style it, because brushing pulls hairs out of their follicles and possibly weakens individual strands," says Kingsley.

I agree with these things (for the most part) 100%. I came across this article and thought it deserved to be on my blog! I get so many people asking about a lot of these and in an attempt to educate the world I'm helping spreading the truth :)

Nick Arrojo (known from TV's What Not To Wear)
Truth: "Hair grows a half-inch per month, whether you cut it or not," says John Barrett, owner of the John Barrett Salon in New York City. Hair may grow slightly faster in the summer, but that has nothing to do with the stylist's scissors and everything to do with hormones, which do speed growth a little. One thing a trim will do: Eliminate split ends, making hair look better.

Read more: Common Hair Care Myths - Hair Care Tips - Good Housekeeping

Myth: Frequent trims make hair grow faster.

Truth: "Hair grows a half-inch per month, whether you cut it or not," says John Barrett, owner of the John Barrett Salon in New York City. Hair may grow slightly faster in the summer, but that has nothing to do with the stylist's scissors and everything to do with hormones, which do speed growth a little. One thing a trim will do: Eliminate split ends, making hair look better.

Read more: Common Hair Care Myths - Hair Care Tips - Good Housekeeping

Myth: Frequent trims make hair grow faster.

Truth: "Hair grows a half-inch per month, whether you cut it or not," says John Barrett, owner of the John Barrett Salon in New York City. Hair may grow slightly faster in the summer, but that has nothing to do with the stylist's scissors and everything to do with hormones, which do speed growth a little. One thing a trim will do: Eliminate split ends, making hair look better.

Read more: Common Hair Care Myths - Hair Care Tips - Good Housekeeping

Sunday, November 25, 2012


The last week and a half has been hectic, busy, and fun all at the same time! My sister and her family came to visit us from Louisiana and we had such a fun time. I miss living near my family but I really miss my sisters! I had a good time catching up and playing with my cute nieces. My 8 year old niece plays the violin at a college level!! Her violin teacher also taught the fiddler from Rascal Flatts (I don't know his name). I was in awe while she was playing for us! They brought their puppy with them and now Kyson is begging us to get him one. And well, I just can't say no to him haha

their cute family

For Thanksgiving I did ALL of the cooking! Turkey, breakfast, casseroles, side dishes, pies, snack foods and all, all by myself! It was a lot of work! This was our first Thanksgiving all by ourselves and we were really excited about it. It's fun being with family but we really wanted to do our own thing this year with our own traditions. I didn't realize how much planning Thanksgiving required! Knowing when to make something and in what order to have everything finished at the same time. It took a lot of work! Somehow I managed to work in THREE naps that day. I was exhausted! I've never cooked a turkey before but it turned out perfectly! I'm still very proud of myself :)

 Making my Grandma's famous homemade noodles. SO delicious, SO easy, and SO a secret :)

Just playing with a turkey 
 He's so handsome and I'm having a really hard time knowing he'll be 4 in less than two months!

Gag! :)

Dave and I are all about traditions, whether we keep them going from our own families or make them up. We love them! When to put up our Christmas tree has been a challenge for us. Dave's family puts their tree up the day after Halloween!!!! And my family puts it up the day after Thanksgiving. I refuse to have mine up the day after Halloween because I don't want to be sick of it by the time Christmas rolls around. Dave doesn't want to wait until after Thanksgiving so this year we made a compromise. The day before Thanksgiving. Some compromise huh? I win! It was so fun putting it up with Kyson since he's just starting to figure out this whole Christmas thing. Holidays are 1,000,000 times better with kids! AND we started the Elf on the Shelf tradition this year.. OH. MY. GOSH. So fun! Kyson named our elf Ralphie. He's very mischievous ;)

It's been a great week and I can't wait for everything coming up these next few weeks :)

Thursday, November 8, 2012

this is love

4 years, 3 months, and 28 days ago I married the most perfect guy for me. 
I wasn't sure at the time but boy am I glad I did it! It's been an interesting marriage with low lows but really high highs! We truly fell in love, hard.
Dave and I are basically the same person, except I have boobs and he has something else. Our personalities are so much alike. We find the same messed up things hilarious when most people think they are horrible. We like the same foods. The same T.V shows. The same music, sports blah blah blah..

Basically I love the man I married more then words could ever express. He is so good to me. He treats me like a Queen from sun up to sun down even when I don't deserve it. He let's me warm up my cold feet on his bare stomach just to see me laugh from him having a small heart attack. He lets me pinch his perfect bum whenever I walk behind him. When we shower together (TMI?) he wraps a towel around me before he gets one himself. When I've had a long day at the salon he'll take my shoes off and rub my feet. He tickles my back every. single. night. He spoils the snot out of me! He's the most amazing father in every way and it makes my heart melt. And he let's me put face masks on him so I don't have to do it alone.

Sorry girl's, but the best one's taken!!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

two truths and a lie

 I'm linking up again with Asha for Two Truths and a Lie Tuesday. It's been hard trying to come up with things that you guys don't know about me. But here it is!

Asha's aspects

I went to the ER for having a chicken bone stuck in my throat.
I've found a dead mouse in my washing machine before.

I got a concussion from an ice cream maker.
 So which one do you think is a lie?
Does this look like a face that would get a chicken bone stuck in her throat? Negative! But it did happen to my brother haha
I did find a dead mouse in the washing machine before, when I was like 11ish. To this day I look in the washing machine before putting anything in it. Yuck!
My first job was at an ice cream shop when I was 16. I had just made ice cream and was cleaning out the machine. It was the big industrial size ice cream maker. I bent over to wipe out the inside and slammed my head into the metal door. I got a concussion and a nice goose egg to go with it. It was very painful! My Dad laughed at me.
And there you have it :) 

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Trick or Treat

I promise this is the last Halloween post you'll be seeing from me!

So Dave and I took Kyson up on base to go trick or treating this year. We met up with a few of our friends and took the kids up to where the Commander lives and all the Colonels live. Meaning the good stuff! Kyson got tons of candy and the adults? We got BBQ's left and right. Those Commanders really know how to do trick or treating! Kyson was so extremely shy that he refused to say trick or treat to anyone and every time they thought it was cute and gave him even more candy. Candy that Kyson wont eat. Kyson doesn't like candy, unless its M&M's.. My kid is from another planet..

 This is how we force Kyson to take a picture..
 The only picture with all the girls in it.. Haha me, Whitney(white shirt) and Alexis(black shirt). Dave was in charge of the camera..
See what I mean about him being shy? He made me do all the work! By the end of the night he was mumbling 'trick or treat' as quietly as he possibly could. The kid hates human interaction with anyone over the age of 5.

It was a fun night getting together with some of my best friends and their families. There was laughing, food, girl talk, guy talk and walking around getting exercise all in one night!