Thursday, May 31, 2012

N is for NETFLIX

N is for Netflix
 My Netflix recommendations:
Jake made me watch this ... it was a little funny.

Jake never believed me that this was a funny show.  Then, he watched every episode.  Now I am married to a version of Michael.
This is the kind of show you wonder why you are watching or why you haven't turned it off yet.  But then, you've watched every season.

I love when the mean one calls the other one by a girls name.  That's my favorite kind of humor.
Thank you E. Noorda for this introduction.  Love it.

Cary Grant.  Need I say more?
Jake and I love this one.  I'm so glad Jennie F. Wilder took me to this movie.  That was one funny night.
I watched this during a long and lonely six weeks I had once.  Funny stuff.
  Honorable Mentions:

New in Town
Brian Regan
Lost - Still didn't watch the last episodes.  It got too confusing.
My Name is Earl - I like to hear Jake's laugh while he watches this show.
Prison Break - I liked the first few seasons, then it's no good.
Sesame Street

Monday, May 28, 2012

Last Day of School Celebration

Fish Farm!

 We went with Anne, Jimmy, and his family to the fish farm to celebrate the last day of school and Anne's birthday!  The kids loved, loved, loved the fish farm.  They even touched the fish :(  Not me .... I just fed the fish so they would bite the kids hooks.  We were there for less than an hour but it was a hit with all of the kids.  What a fun afternoon!

Summer Learning

On Friday, Abbi was so excited for her last day of school that it made her tummy a little nervous in the morning.  But she was even more excited after school that she is not a 1st Grader anymore!  She and I had milkshakes at Warren's to celebrate.  I quizzed her about the school year.  Abbi's favorite part of 1st Grade is reading, math, and recess.  Her least favorite part was "There were too many chapters."  While we were eating our shakes, Abbi was so cute.  She said, "What else do you want to talk about?"  While I sat there with her, my heart was so grateful for her and for the blessing Heavenly Father gave me.  My heart was full of love and pride in Abbi and her beautiful little self.  

After the kids have gone to bed, I've been working on a project for Abbi to be able to keep up on her reading and other school work over the summer.  I dug out books from downstairs and I admit, I also made a few to several Amazon purchases.  Then using the story as a theme, I planned out a week of educational plus fun activities.  It's consistent so Abbi will know what to expect each week, plus it's fun because the activities change with every story.  I'm excited to start this with her.  She's already hauled off with the Junie B. Jones books to read for fun (they don't have a folder to go with them).  I also put all of the summer reading program sheets in the folders so we don't forget to keep track!

Click here for a link to find a folder freebie - Olivia
Or buy a small load of them for a very small price here - Etsy Shop  
And don't forget to follow me here Follow Me on Pinterest

My Most Gourmet Cooking

Best Gotta Have It Brownie
(a lady in Kaysville won an award for this recipe and was featured in the Standard Examiner about five years ago)

Mix: 1 cup soft butter, 2 cups sugar, 1/3 cup cocoa

Stir in: 4 eggs

Add: 1 1/2 cups flour, 2 teaspoons Vanilla, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1 1/2 cups nuts if you swing that way.

Stir.  Pour into greased 1" deep baking sheet.  Bake @ 350 for 20 minutes.  Remove from oven and cover with 1 pound mini marshmallows.  Bake for 3 minutes.  Remove from oven and drizzle frosting.


1 2/3 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup butter
1/3 cup cocoa
1/3 cup Canned Evaporated Milk

Sometimes I put the frosting into a sandwich bag so I can drizzle it over the marshmallows.  Today, I just globbed it on with the spatula.

These are always very popular wherever I've taken them.  There's never been leftovers.  The good news is how easy they are to make, besides, they are so so delicious.

The brownie batter is yummy, although I don't condone eating raw eggs in any other form.  I don't usually eat the frosting pre-brownie because my conscience gets to me by that point of the baking process.

Try these for your next BBQ or work potluck.  Easy + Yummy = It makes you look like a pro. 

Sunday, May 27, 2012

All About Me - #21


If you had more time alone, you would - write a story or clean
If you could change anything about the world - politics
If you had a plane ticket to anywhere in the world, you would visit - Ireland
If you could visit any time period, you would choose - the first few decades of 1900
If you could live in any time period, you would choose - this one
If you could, you would spend time with this famous person - W
If you could be famous, you would like to be famous for - writing or politics
If you could magically change one thing about your physical appearance, it would be - my weight
If you were stranded on a desert island, you would want these three people with you - Jake, Abbi, and Noah
The first thing you would do on the desert island - unpack the supplies, because obviously Jake wouldn't go anywhere unprepared
The first thing you would do upon your return from the desert island - shower
If you could change one law - I would change how politicians are compensated
If you were in prison, you would spend your time - I would hold very still so I could shower less
If you could erase one memory - I wouldn't have found out about Santa in the first grade
If you had extra money - I would be home with my children
If you had one million dollars - I would be home with my children but at a different house
If you could choose the age of your death - I wouldn't want to, just old
If you could bring back one person from the dead - I wouldn't
If you had wings, you would fly above - anything but water
If you could ask God one question, it would be - what should I do now?
If you were the queen of your country - that would be awesome
If you were a plant, you would be - a Bonsai tree
If you were a beverage, you would be - a Shirley Temple
If you could start all over - I would have let Jake sleep and take Abbi to school this morning

Friday, May 25, 2012

1st Grade - Done!

Our girl has finished the FIRST GRADE!  She did so well this year and ended strong!  Way to go, Abbi!  She made some new friends and loved the school work.  We know she played hard at recess because she would come home tired or a little messy.  Abbi made a lot of improvements where she could and she learned so many new things.  She especially loves learning about bugs!  We love her so much and we are very proud of our big girl!

Here she comes, second grade!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

M is for Mistakes

M is for Mistakes

Everyone makes them, right?  I've been told that no one is perfect.  It's hard to believe that when I compare myself to others, though.  There are some character traits and stuff that I really value, and when I meet someone who seems to have be strong in the traits that I value then maybe they seem perfect.  You know the batch of chocolate chip cookies that works out?  They all seem great until you find one that doesn't have as many chocolate chips per bite as what may seem ideal.  So what used to be good perfect, is just a regular cookie.  People are all regular cookies.  Sometimes our chocolate chips are evenly balanced and delicious, sometimes they're missing or spread too thin.  I think I may have plenty of good chips in me but once in a while, I spread them too thin and that makes them look like a less than perfect cookie.

When I make mistakes I'm not the best cookie:
Generally, my less than best self is caused by my brain.  It thinks, and thinks, and thinks and then I believe there are issues where there may not be an issue.  Or, I begin to have victim thoughts about how life could be different.  Turns out, patience is the answer to a lot of my self-made problems.  Other times, my mistakes are caused by procrastination.  "I'll do _______ right after _______."  "I'm going to start doing ________ tomorrow."  "I can just wait ________ out.  It'll take care of itself."

I avoid mistakes by:
If I think about what I just wrote, it sounds like my solution would be less thinking and more action.  That may really be true.  It makes me think of the nights I go to bed at a normal time, all tuckered out from moving all day.  I don't usually feel like a bad cookie on those nights.  But if I have wasted time, or had less than positive interactions, I feel like a cookie with no chocolate chips.

Dealing with cookies who make mistakes:
I get to interact with people whose chocolate chips might be a little out of balance.  They have them, the person just doesn't know it.  Every day seems like acquiring a new taste for cookies with less than the ideal amount of chips.  Now, I'm not saying this just about people at my place of employment.  And, I'm not saying it in a judgmental way.  My chips don't line up very often either and I may be an acquired taste, as well.  There are a lot of nicknames for me that remind me that my chips aren't balanced.  But, the important thing is to remember and find the chocolate chips in every cookie.  If you find the best bites, it makes the rest of the cookie good, too.

For example, I get a phone call every couple of weeks where I get reamed out for a variety of reasons.  It's difficult to not retaliate or repay them in kind.  Instead, I just think about this person's chocolate chips, why this cookie is frustrated enough to be speaking this way, and then remind them that their chocolate chips will pay off.  But other times, you just have to think about the chocolate chips to yourself while cookies mistreat you.  That's when perspective, endurance, and patience really pays off.

Moving past mistakes:
Getting chocolate chips in balance takes action and patience.  They can't move themselves and no one can rearrange my chocolate chips for me.  Just today, I tried to talk to someone about being responsible for their own path and choices.  With everything I said, I heard blaming as a response.  Well, I'm responsible for me and my own cookies (children), and together we're gonna learn how to balance out our chocolate chips and to find the chocolate chips in others.  I'm under the impression that I've gotta incorporate more patience and a lot more action.

This may be the weirdest post I've ever written, but I just needed to think some things out.  I relate to cookies pretty well.  I'm still imagining a plate of cookies with varying amounts of chocolate in each bite, but I still know how to appreciate each cookie.  And, I know a lot of people with varying amounts of traits and qualities I value and I know how to appreciate them, too.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

All About Me - #20

Cat and Mouse
You are most comfortable - spending time with close family and friends
When you really want to get to know someone, you say or ask - I dunno, questions?
In social situations, you tend to - introduce yourself first
When you were attracted to someone - you act like the mouse
The largest age difference you have had in a relationship - 6 years
Who was younger? - Me
A person you successfully pursued in a short amount of time - Jake
A person you pursued over a long period of time - no one who was worth it
Something someone said or did that you found extremely attractive - "I love you"
Something someone said or did that you found frighteningly unattractive - made me read a poem he had written about me, at the end of our first (read: only) date
A saying you have heard about men or women that you believe is true - Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus; I don't know what that really means but I know we're different
Two things that are appealing about women - loving and smart
Two things that are not appealing about women - read into nothing and worry too much
Two things that are appealing about men - manliness and the way they show love
Two things that are not appealing about men - don't always use their words and.... that's it

Your friends tend to be - male or female; older or younger than you

A physical trait you find attractive - smiling ("I just like smiling.  Smiling's my favorite.")
An intellectual ability that you find attractive - common sense
A personality trait that you find attractive - humor

You love it when people ask you - I don't know....

Your secret passion - crafting

Your longest grudge - "Holding a grudge is like drinking poison and hoping the other person dies."

You truly believe it is possible to be with one person for the rest of your life - yes or no
You like surprises - yes or no
Someone has thrown a surprise party for you - yes or no
You have thrown a surprise party for someone - yes or no
You regret that you never had a relationship with this person - I would have liked a professional relationship with W
A type of person you don't seem to get a long with - no it alls

You and your spouse argue about this issue often - my choices for food

What you enjoy most about having a committed relationship - having Jake forever

What you dislike most about having a committed relationship - I might make bad meals or not ever clean the house

Thursday, May 17, 2012


L is for Laughing ... and Lisa

My most memorable laughs:

When I almost died laughing in the park in Layton ... Lisa whispered something naughty and I had a horrible asthma attack.

When Lisa and I stayed up until six in the morning when I had to give a talk in sacrament meeting the next morning.  ("I always wanted another sister." & "I'll put my face in your armpit!")

I'm afraid this is more like L is for LISA because so far I'm thinking up Lisa stuff.

I'll give honorable mentions to the restaurant in the Paris Hotel in Las Vegas, one to the time I was helping my friend from her wheelchair in the bathroom, and one to every year of girls camp.  I'd also like to mention the night Tammy and I spent in the back of my RAV during a rainstorm on a singles' ward camp out.  Oh, the things you see when no thinks you are watching.  A bridge in San Antonio was hilarious, once.  Lunch is never funny.  When my dad slaps his head while he laughs makes anything comical.  Those are pretty awesome, but Lisa almost kills me when we start laughing.

I'd say more about these but either I wouldn't remember them correctly or no one but Lisa and I would understand the conversations we have in the middle of the night.  And most importantly, some of these scenarios should not be recapped because of the content.

Good work, Lisa.  Way to steal the post.

hilarious: very funny
Synonyms: amusing, comical, convivial, entertaining, exhilarated, frolicsome, gay, gleeful, gut-busting, happy, humorous, jocular, jolly, jovial, joyful, joyous, laughable, lively, merry, mirthful, noisy, priceless, riot, rollicking, scream, side-splitting, uproarious, witty

Monday, May 14, 2012

Moab, Utah 2012

I split all of the treats into portions and put them in a bag with a map of the drive.  Abbi liked to track where we were.  This was a great thing for portion control and when the treats were gone, they were gone.
Delicate Arch - 3 mile hike in and out.  Beautiful.
This was the beginning of Delicate Arch.  The kids all did great!
Our little family at Delicate Arch.  Abbi probably walked it 1.25 times because she looped around from the front to the back of the group so many times.  She loved it!
My beauties at the Arch.
Miss Abbi posing inside Delicate Arch.

My lovies inside the arch together.  Too dangerous for Little Noah and me.

This is what happens after a 3 mile hike in the sun.
This guy has a good philosophy for taking the children into the wilderness and showing them what God made rather than always taking them where we tour around and love everything that is man made.
Our three small girl travelers at Dead Horse Point.  Marlie thought it was just a model, all pretend.  It is quite amazing.

Amy and I at Dead Horse Point.  I'm so happy she came!

Thank you to my Jakey for taking me to the wilderness.  It was a perfect trip, other than the facilities for relief.
My beautiful family on top of the petrified sand dunes surrounding our camp.  I literally left my mark there.  And my mark I mean the fibers of my denim shorts.

My big boy on the sand dunes.

My very handsome S.O. (significant other).

A tired boy and mom napping in the shade.
The junior camp rangers - Marlie, Abbi, James, Mylie, Jack, and Noah.

Noah, Mylie, and Jack eating their hobo dinners.  Mylie and Jack were partners in a lot of crime.

Happy hobo dinner!
Amy, Marlie, and Abbi eating their yummy hobo dinners that Jimmy made us.
James, Noah, Mylie, and Jack - so cute!
I don't actually have the written permission Jimmy requires to put his name, photo, or likeness on the interweb.  I may end up in the poor house or even jail if he finds this and presses charges.  Amber and Jimmy make camping a super good time.

Abbi and James working on their moon dough perhaps.
Noah and Jack eating a balanced breakfast before we headed home.
The weekend caught up with our young boy.  He slept for 13 hours, beginning at 5 p.m.

A cute pair of girls - Amy and her mini-me, Mylie.
Tank: A very naughty kitty who tried to ruin my vacation by running away the night before.  Luckily, the neighbor found Tank on Friday and deposited him back to our sofa.
We had such a good time soaking up the sun in southern Utah.  We haven't had a weekend together like that since last July.  Abbi and Noah were so excited for the trip and I think it's a part of Jake's blood to need to spend time in the wilderness a few times a year.  He made it such a comfortable trip for me, even in the rocks, sand, and sun.  I'm the Utahn who has never seen Delicate Arch or skied.  But now I'm 50% done being a Utah Native.  We hiked Delicate Arch, we drove out to Dead Horse Point, then hiked again to a small waterfall/pond to play in, and then hiked again around the petrified sand dunes we stayed on.  The kids dug and dug in the sand, chased lizards, and told stories around the fire.  This was a perfect kick-off to summer!