Sunday, November 6, 2011

Books, books, and more books!

I've been reading some great books and I keep adding to my list of "to-read" (thanks to goodreads and all my friends that keep posting books they like or want to read! If you're on goodreads, add me as your friend, I'm always looking for new ideas!)

I'll start with a few books on my "to-read" list...the list is much longer than this, but these are at the top of the list

now, what I'm currently reading...(yes, I am currently reading all 3 of them. which one I read on a given day depends on what kind of mood I'm in)
this one makes me laugh, it makes me feel better about not being "perfect" when it comes to all the things you're supposed to do...

I really just started this one, maybe the first page. but I've heard that it is amazing!

I really never liked Oprah, the only reason I'm reading this is because I know how it ends! I'm interested to see how it all comes about. The author decided to see if doing all the things that Oprah says we should do will really make life better...she did everything Oprah said to do for a
full year...

Now for what I've read recently...
We read this for a book club I'm in. I didn't like it, it's an easy read, but not worth the time (in my opinion)

I read this awhile ago, but I really enjoyed it, especially with the whole Eat, Pray, Love hype. I liked this one so much better than Eat, Pray, Love. If you want to read something like that, read this one!

Becoming Isaac inspired me...I've blogged about this series before, but as a follow up...I am taking a pottery class because of this book and LOVING it!! Pottery is a great way for me to bring out my inner artist!! I'll blog about my pottery adventures another day!

This is my latest read. I found it very interesting! If you've read it, I'd love to hear what you think...

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Rhythmic Gymnastics

I started rhythmic gymnastics a long time ago. I loved it! I have always wanted to coach, and now I have the opportunity...I am joining up with the Taber Gymnastics Fitness Club (click for a link to their blog). I am so excited to coach! I thought I'd post a few great videos for those of you that don't know what Rhythmic Gymnastics is all about...

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

I LOVE my jobs!

I consider myself lucky. I know there are a LOT of people out there that HATE their jobs, so much so that it causes physical pain. I am lucky because I have 3, soon to be 4, jobs that I LOVE! My number 1 job is being a mother. I know that there are many days that I don't really love it, but in the long run, it is the best job EVER. My kids amaze me, and I love when they give me a hug or say "I love you" just because. What more can I say? I love my job as MOM.

Job number 2 is the job that pays the bills, and most often, that is the job that is hated the most. So many people work only to pay the bills and look forward to the day when they don't have to do that job any more! But, I LOVE my "work" job. I love the work I do in the operating room (and it's not just because most of my patients are "asleep"). I love the challenge of learning something new every time I go to work. I love the people that I work with! That's what makes the most difference. we have a great team in the Taber operating room. Thanks to all that make my job great!

I'm going to skip to my upcoming job number 4...starting this september I get to start coaching Rhythmic Gymnastics. For those that don't know what that's gymnastics with ribbon, ball, hoop, rope, clubs. instead of bars, beam, vault. I miss it so much since I was young and I've always wanted to coach, now I can! I'm looking forward to teaching and growing!

Now for job number 3. I must say that this is the best job EVER! (If you HATE your "work" job, just ask how I can help you make the move to something you LOVE). SCENTSY. I don't just love it because I'm addicted and it feeds my addiction (oh boy does it ever!). I don't just love it because it gives me a little extra each month to spend on what I WANT (with minimal work to get that money). I don't just love it because of the great incentives offered to consultants (check out the great warmer I earned this summer!).
I love it because Scentsy is an amazing company, run by some AMAZING people. Heidi and Orville Thompson are so...I can't think of a word amazing enough...they give and give and give some more! At the recent Scentsy convention in Texas, Heidi spoke on the power of one. Part of her keynote speech was a challenge to post sticky notes with encouraging thoughts for others to come after you. I was so touched by her words! maybe I'm the ONE, or maybe it's YOU! don't let the moment pass you by, no matter what it is...a kind word, a hug, or even a smile can make the difference in the life of others. So, watch out for my sticky notes (beware, they could be anywhere, even facebook)! This is a clip from Heidi...

this video is an example of how amazing Heidi and Orville are...

Monday, May 30, 2011

The Foremost Good Fortune

I haven't blogged for awhile, not sure why. But, I'm determined to do better. This last month has been a rollercoaster for me. Mostly I'm tired of cleaning my walls. It seems like every night there's something new to clean off Kayla's wall. She is a budding artist that loves to try new mediums...paint, crayons, permanent markers, makeup, poop, pudding, we've seen it all. The rule is that if you make the mess, you clean it up. That means that if she's made the mess after she was sent to bed, then fallen asleep, she gets woken up to clean up the mess. (maybe that's mean, but it's all I can do to keep sane). Any help in this area would be welcome!! Several months ago Kayla got into my makeup (the good stuff from MAC) and ruined it all. I lived without. A few weeks ago I got my hair cut really short and had a desire to wear some makeup, so I went to walmart and bought some new makeup. Last night, after listening to Kayla and Blake giggle and chitchat they were finally quiet. I went to check on them and found Kayla sleeping, covered in makeup and the wall covered as well...come to find out she wasn't alone (her lying brother had his own punishment). I love my children, but some days I really would rather work full-time and let Chris stay home!

On that note, I'm reading a great book that reminds me to take time for my kids...The Fortunate Good Fortune. a memoir by Susan Conley. It is a story of a family that goes to China on a great adventure. Susan writes the story of their adventure, then the story of how she finds out that she has breast cancer. There is one part in the book, after she has gone through surgery and treatment, when she just wants to spend time with her boys rather than being annoyed with them. I hear people tell me all the time that as bad as these days may seem, there will come a time when I miss them! What I'm trying to do is make the most of these days while I have them!!

ps. if you click on the link above or here it will take you to Susan Conley's website, watch the trailer for the's excellent. Read the book too!

Sunday, April 17, 2011


this has been a busy month so far...and all about Kayla!

We started on the first with Kayla's birthday. I decided that I would do some April Fool cupcakes. Peas and Carrots, mashed potatoes, and corn. They were delicious. Kayla got Tangled, and loves it. So much so, that she used some of the money she got to buy a new princess dress like Rapunzel's and some long golden hair to go with it!

It's been such a busy time that Kayla has taken to falling asleep under the kitchen table...

this is Kayla before her surgery. I brought some stuff home to prepare her so the masked faces wouldn't scare her.

We had a crazy play day with some friends. 2 new babies plus the crazy kids running around having a great time. We'll miss the Robison's when they move.

It was my Grossmutti's birthday this month (my grandma). and all that were close enough came for lunch and visiting in Cardston. This is only part of the family (more will be around for the reunion in July) and the picture was grandkids and great grandkids.

this is the cake that Cassidy made.

Our latest adventure happened this past friday. Kayla cries everytime I comb her hair, and NEVER lets me put pigtails in. This day she actually let me put in pigtails without a single tear. I was out late for bookclub the night before and so I decided to have a nap on friday afternoon. I woke to Ryker telling me that Kayla had cut her hair. I came out to see only one pigtail...I called my friend and hairdresser, Chandra, who told us to come right over! Chandra did a great job at fixing it! good thing Kayla is so cute, and that she's keeping her earrings in!

This picture is Kayla after I told her that Chandra was going to fix her hair. She picked some up off the floor and said "Chandra fix my hair", like she would be able to put it back on!

It was a bit more dramatic when the other pigtail was out.

She sat still through the entire fix! something else that she's never done before!

The finished cut looks really good and I think the short hair suits her (it's also way easier to comb her hair everyday!)

I've learned my more naps and the scissors are all locked up. We're still not sure if she had help. Kayla says Ryker helped. Ryker denies it. I believe Kayla.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

tonsils (and adnoids)

There isn't a time that I don't remember Kayla snoring. It was about a year ago that we really started to be concerned about it. Chris was sleeping on the floor next to her bed one night and noticed that she stopped breathing several times during the night. I took her in to see our family doctor (who is the best family doctor I've ever had). He referred us to an ENT (ear, nose, throat specialist). It took several months to get in to see her. I thought I would have to put up a fight, but she pulled out the consent for surgery right away without even asking about it. After several more months of waiting we finally received the OR information and a date for surgery in mid-February. Surgery was this past wednesday. Kayla did really well and was up running around by that afternoon. Because she isn't quite 3, she got to stay overnight for monitoring before they sent her home. I was a rough night...I think she's like her dad, in that codiene does not make her tired, it makes her wired! she got very little sleep that night, none the next day when we came home. she got a little more the next night, but it wasn't until Friday morning when I gave her just tylenol that she slept for 4 hours (with her brother and sister running around her). She still has to stay home until next wednesday, and take it easy for another week after that, but she's on the mend and doing great. Here's a few pictures from her hospital stay...
this was her waiting for her turn to go into surgery. (loving her new scentsy buddy)

she gobbled up all the popsicles she could get her hands on.

the iPod saved me, she watched Bratz Babies about a million times while she was in the hospital.

even with her right hand bundled up with the IV, she figured out how to eat plenty of jello.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Keep Calm and Carry On

Keep Calm and Carry On was a poster produced by the British government in 1939 during the beginning of the Second World War, intended to raise the morale of the British public under the threat of impending invasion. It was little known and never used.

In the Spring of 1939, with war against Germany all but inevitable, the British Government’s Ministry of Information commissioned a series of propaganda posters to be distributed throughout the country at the onset of hostilities. … The posters were intended to offer the public reassurance in the dark days which lay ahead.

The intent of the poster was to convey a message from the King to his people, to assure them that ‘all necessary measures to defend the nation were being taken’, and to stress an ‘attitude of mind’ rather than a specific aim.

At the end of August 1939 three designs went into production… The first poster, of which over a million were printed, carried a slogan suggested by a civil servant named Waterfield. Using the crowns of George VI as the only graphic device, the stark red and white poster read ‘Your Courage, Your Cheerfulness, Your Resolution will Bring Us Victory’. … The third design, of which over 2.5 million posters were printed, simply read ‘Keep Calm and Carry On’.

… The ‘Keep Calm’ posters were held in reserve, intended for use only in times of crisis or invasion. Although some may have found there way onto Government office walls, the poster was never officially issued and so remained virtually unseen by the public – unseen, that is, until a copy turned up more than fifty years later (2001) in a box of dusty old books bought in auction. (Barter Books)

I recently found this poster on Simply Fresh Designs. At first, I just passed it by, not really liking the style. The quote never really meant anything to me until today...After cleaning up messes all day long, then fighting with my girls to go to bed and picking up the books in their room 3 times!!! I took a deep breath, called their Dad, and tried not to scream, cry, or throw things (not a good thing to let my kids see) and this quote came to mind. As hard as it is some days to carry on, we do. I'll admit that I'm not the best at keeping calm and it's something that I want to do better. So, I printed out a copy and hung it on my wall as my new motto.

Keep Calm and Carry On!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

waiting sucks!

This seems to be a week of waiting...
waiting for test results from Jeff's surgery,
waiting for my scentsy order to come,
waiting for the tax return to come,
I'm not a very patient person, so I had to distract myself by trying some new recipes...
both are for the slow cooker.
both are from fix-it and forget-it kids' cookbook.
both are deserts.
both turned out delish!

Tapioca Treat

8 cups of milk
1 cup small pearl tapioca
1 cup sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup crushed pineapple, drained (I used a whole can)
1 cup grapes, cut in half (I added 1 can mandarin oranges, drained instead of grapes)
1 cup frozen whipped topping, thawed (I just realized that it's just 1 cup, I added the whole tub-it worked out great)

mix the milk, tapioca, and sugar in your slow cooker with a wisk.
cover your slow cooker. cook on high for 3 hours.
crack the eggs into a mixing bowl. beat them. add the vanilla to the eggs.
use a ladle to scoop out a little of the hot milk and carefully add to the egg mixture. stir the hot milk into the eggs well.
add the egg mixture to the slow cooker.
cover. cook on high for 20 min.
chill the tapioca completely. this may take 3 hours.
after tapioca has chilled completely, stir in fruit and whipped topping.
serve cold.

the whole family loved it!

Pumpkin Pie Pudding (I made modifications based on what I had)

2 eggs
1 can solid pack pumpkin
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup milk
2 Tbsp butter
1/4 cup vanilla sugar (I got this at costco, and it's the best ever)
1/2 cup Biscuick baking mix
1 Tbsp pumpkin pie spice

beat eggs, add pumpkin and milk (both) mix well.
melt butter, add to pumpkin mix.
add sugar, baking mix, and pumkin pie spice. mix well.
pour into slow cooker.
cover, cook on low for 6-7 hours, or until it sets (you will know it is set if you move the slow cooker gently and the food doesn't move.
let the pudding cool before serving. eat warm or at room temperature.

The rest of the family didn't try this one yet, but I'm loving it!

Let me know if you ever try any of my recipes, and how you like them...

coming soon, my scentsy order should be here soon, I'll let you know how wonderful it smells!! (if you want a sample, send me your address)

Thursday, March 3, 2011

life is hard

Some of you may know what's going on in our family right brother-in-law, Jeff B (my youngest sister's husband--both my sisters are married to Jeff's), had brain surgery almost a year ago. they found a tumor and took it out. There were some complications after and lots of time spent in the hospital. They thought they were in the clear until a month ago, a routine MRI showed lesions, they're unsure exactly where they are and what is growing. Tomorrow is the start of this new journey for them. He's going to have surgery, they'll biopsy the lesions and decide from there what needs to be done.
All of this makes me appreciate all that I, family, the gospel of Jesus Christ...So, we'll be saying lots of prayers in the next few days, please include Jeff, Cassidy and Archer in your prayers.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

feeding my addiction

I'm addicted to Scentsy. It took me a long time to get my first warmer, but after that I was a goner!
It started with an old high school friend hosting a fundraiser for a girl in our area with cancer. What better time to order something, I got some great smells, 2 beautiful warmers, and I helped out someone in need. Since then I love trying new scents. We got my son a buddy for Christmas and he loves it! Even my husband has started asking about something to put in his stinky work truck (he works in the sewer treatment plant)...I'm going to get him a travel tin to put under his seat. With all the money I keep spending, Meghann suggested I become a consultant and make some money off my addiction. Now I can introduce others and feed their new found addicitons...
Never heard of it? it is basically flameless candles. Warmers (using lightbulbs) melt scent filled wax. The smell fills the room. There are tons of different smells to choose from, so you're sure to find at least one that you like. I am often surprised to find that I like smells I never thought I would.
check out my new website. You can ever order directly from the website (if you're in the US and want to order, just send me a message and I'll tell you how to do it). If you want to smell the available scents, just let me know.
I'm excited for the new plug-ins available in Canada again and the March scent, Jumping Jelly Bean!

images from the Scentsy spring/summer 2011 catalog

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

the wrong book

I love books! I love to read! I've always had tons of book available to me (I love the library). When we started having kids I always made sure that we had lots of kids books and we read to them every day. I always wanted my kids to love reading as much as I do. Christmas and birthdays always bring new books. This year for Ryker's birthday he got a book called The Wrong Book by Nick Bland. It's a book about Nicholas Ickle, who is trying to tell his story but keeps getting interupted. Today Ryker was upset that Kayla was trying to take the book (insert screaming here), I let them work it out and the next thing I heard was Ryker "reading" the book to Kayla (he has the entire book memorized) and Kayla repeating the parts she knew (this is a big step in her speech, she's doing awesome with her speech) and Blake listening intently. These are the moments I love the most about being a mom!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Texas Sheet Cake is the Devil!

The other day at work we got talking about cookies and brownies. One of my coworkers said that her husband loves frozen cookies and brownies....brownies....Texas Sheet Cake is really good frozen (it doesn't quite freeze through, just really cold)...I haven't made Texas Sheet Cake in a long yesterday, I make Texas Sheet Cake....bad idea! It's soooo yummy...I don't know how it ever made it to the freezer before...this one won' should try it some time....

I use my stone bar pan (you need a large pan with edges ie. jelly roll pan)

mix together:
2 cups flour
2 cups sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt.
set aside.
in a sauce pan melt:
1 cup butter
4 Tablespoons cocoa powder and mix well, add:
1 cup boiling water.
stir and let boil for 30 seconds.
add chocolate mixture to flour, stir together.
in measuring cup mix together:
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking soda
add this to main batter and stir until smooth.
pour in pan

bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.
while the cake is baking...
in the same sauce pan, melt:
1 cup butter
when melted add:
4 Tablespoons cocoa powder
mix well, boil for 30 sec, remove from heat. add:
6 Tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
stir, add:
1 lb powdered sugar
stir until smooth.
pour over still warm cake.

you might want to wait until it's cooled off, or not (but take caution if you don't)
ENJOY!! like I mentioned before these are equally delicious directly out of the freezer (if they make it that long)

so delish!!

Kayla loves them...

24 hours later...(don't ask who ate most of it)

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

My wonderful hubby...

...surprise. without even reading my valentine's post, Chris bought me flowers for valentine's day! It was a pleasant surprise, he even had Ryker pick them out for me.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!!

I've never really been big on celebrating Valentine's Day, just the usual valentine's cards in elementary school (when did valentine's become more than just a card with names??). I don't expect Chris to get me flowers or chocolates. The kids did get toast with a heart this morning (cinnamon toast to boot), and they'll get a treat after dinner tonight. I did want to blog about love or hearts or something...

It seems appropriate that I am currently reading Before my Heart Stops by Paul Cardall. It is a book of his life with "half a heart". I'm really enjoying this book, not sure if it's because I worked in PICU where we treated "heart kids"

This is the remarkable true story of one man's struggle to survive long enough to get a second chance at life.

Award-winning musician and popular speaker Paul Cardall was born, essentially, with half a heart. After living more than three decades with a congenital heart defect and undergoing six major heart surgeries and numberless procedures, Paul was informed that his heart would not beat much longer.

"Paul was a poor candidate for a heart transplant," says Angela T. Yetman, MD. "It would be technically difficult and possibly fatal ... but Paul was determined to beat the odds." And beat them he did.

Along the way, Paul wrote down his thoughts, feelings, and observations in an online blog called "Living for Eden," named for his three-year-old daughter. This book reflects those blog entries and additional intimate insight into a miraculous journey that convincingly shows that God knows us personally and that we are put here on earth for a reason.

Paul says, "I'm a witness that these soul-stretching experiences can offer us, if we let them, joy, wisdom, happiness, and a personal relationship with God."

After reading his story, you might also ponder the question, What do I need to do with my life ... before my heart stops?

Thursday, February 10, 2011

the potter

I just finished book 3 of a great series about the Potter of Neiderbipp. This is a great series by Ben Behunin about discovering and becoming the best that we can be. Being better than we are, casting out fear and accepting God's will for us. These books have made me want to try pottery. I've wanted to try it before, but these have really sparked a desire. Taber has an arts and craft society, and according to their blog, are going to offer potter classes soon. I'll be the first one signed up when they do! So, if you're looking for a good book, or something new to try, these are great inspiration!

post 100

I was just going to do a quick blog about the Valentine's we made for Ryker's class, but I realized that this will be my 100th post. How can I not make it special! Problem, I have no idea how to make it special! So, I guess you just get a boring post about valentine's and maybe some new recipes...

I found this cute idea at sisters stuff blog and had to try it out. I love valentine's day, but hate that kids valentine's are all about the candy. I wanted to do something different, but more than just a silly card. Here's what we got.

I did freezer meals with a friend this week and wanted to come up with some new ideas. Here are two that I came up with. The first I've had before. The second, I hope it tastes as good as I think it will. Note: I make big batches of both, so I'm going to put down the amounts I used, if you want I can break it down to one meal.

Ham and Potatoe Casserole (A twist on funeral potatoes)

3 bricks of cream cheese
2 cans cream of chicken soup
2 cans cream cheddar soup
1000 mL sour cream
4 cups shredded cheddar cheese
4 bags cubed, frozen hashbrowns
8 cups cubed, cooked ham

mix cream cheese, soups and sour cream in large bowl. add hashbrowns, mix to cover potatoes. add cheese and ham. mix well. divide into 8x8 pans (this gave me enough for 6 pans). cover with tinfoil. freeze. To serve, thaw, cook at 350 degrees for 1 hour (or until bubbly and hot in center).

Southwest Chicken

8 cups cooked, shredded chicken
1 jar of kraft sizzling salads spicy fajita cooking sauce
1 jar of kraft sizzling salads barbeque ranch dressing
2 cups ranch dressing
4 cans black beans (rinsed)
3 cans kernal corn

mix dressings/sauce, add chicken. stir until chicken coated. add beans and corn. mix well. divide into large freezer, ziploc bags. (I got 6 from this recipe). To serve, thaw, warm over stove. serve over rice, in tortillas, or over salad. Enjoy.

Scent of the day: Sandalwood and cranberries! YUM. in the bedroom: My Wish! What are you smelling today?

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Hawaiian Haystacks

I've been craving Hawaiian Haystacks for the past few days, but it just doesn't seem to be working out...first we were in Calgary when I first wanted them. Hard to make them in a hotel room! then, on the way home from Calgary I wasn't feeling good, at all! Strep throat is back! yuck. I haven't been able to eat since we've been home, therefore, no hawaiian haystacks. I guess I could make them for just my family, but then I'd still have to make them later for me too (seeing just doesn't fill the craving). Until I'm feeling better I'll keeping thinking of them. until then, what are your favorite toppings for hawaiian haystacks?? I love pineapple, coconut, crunchy noodles, and cheese!

Monday, January 31, 2011

All is well! All is well!

Life isnt always easy. At some point in our journey we may feel much as the pioneers did as they crossed Iowa. Up to our knees in mud, forced to bury some of our dreams along the way. We all face rocky ridges, with the wind in our face and winter coming on too soon. Sometimes it seems as though there is no end to the dust that stings our eyes and clouds our vision. Sharp edges of despair and discouragement jut out of the terrain to slow our passage. Occasionally we reach the top of one summit in life, as the pioneers did, only to see more mountain peaks ahead, higher and more challenging than the one we hae just traversed. Tapping unseen reservoirs of faith and enduranace, we, as did our forebears, inch ever forward toward that day when our voices can join with those of all the pioneers who have endured in faith, singing, 'All is well! All is well!
Ensign, May 1997, 61

This was a quote my sister found recently and posted. For those of you that know Cassidy, you know what's going on...or you can read about it on her blog. I love my sister and my heart breaks for what they are having to go through right now.
This past weekend my mother-in-law was taken to Calgary for major surgery. She is currently in the ICU in Calgary and stable. She will have to go back into surgery every day until they have removed all the dead tissue. There's always a risk that things could go bad at any time. Thus, we are going up to Calgary today to visit and spend some time with family.
All of this makes me think about how to explain death to my children. I am grateful for the knowledge I have of our Heavenly Father's plan and that I can be with my family forever, That no matter what happens, Heavenly Father gives us trials to make us stronger and will never give us trials that we can't handle. Ask me if you want to know more about what I believe!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Freezer meals

I love having 2 freezers. It leaves lots of room for me to make meals for the month as well as having bread, chicken, meat and veggies (and those cookies from my last post)! I'm always looking for new recipe ideas (so if you have any, please send them to me).
I often find some great ones on they post a monthly menu of breakfasts, lunches and dinners. the recipes are for 2 or 4 times the regular recipe, and they have a schedule for the cooking day. The menu is for 2 families, cook one day, split the meals and feed your family for the month. I have been doing it on my own for awhile now. I don't do all the recipes, but I choose some I think my family would like and make those. I don't always do it all on one day, sometimes I just make extra of what I'm making for dinner and freeze the leftovers. Then on days I work, or am out all day I will pull something out the night before or morning of, throw it in the crock pot or set the timer on the oven. Next month I'm getting together with a friend and we're going to pick 2 meals each, make enough for 4 meals of each recipe, and switch so we've got 4 different meals times 2. (do you understand what I'm trying to say?).

Here's a recipe I tried this month, I wasn't sure we'd like it, but it was good.

Cranberry Chicken and Rice (this makes 2 meals)
6 cups rice, cooked
1 cup apple juice
3 pounds chicken breast
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp garlic powder
2 pounds fresh cranberries
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger

place rice in 8x8 pan, pour juice over rice. nestle chicken in the rice (I used cooked, chopped chicken) sprinkle with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. (adjustment) chop cranberries, mix the sugar, cinnamon, and ginger sprinkle over cranberries. put cranberries over chicken and rice (next time I think I'll use dried cranberries and reduce the amount of sugar). Freeze. To serve: thaw. uncover and bake at 350F for 50-60 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through. (because I used cooked, cubed chicken I cooked for 20-30 minutes). Enjoy!

best cookies in the world

I hate hard, crunchy cookies! cookies should be soft and chewy. There's nothing better than warm, soft cookie. I'm always looking for a great recipe. For chocolate chip I always go back to one tried and true recipe that makes a soft chewy cookie...
Chipits Chewy Milk Chocolate Cookies
(you know that recipe on the bag of Hershey's Chipits milk chocolate chips)
Beat 2/3 cup melted butter (I use soft margarine)
2 cups lightly packed brown sugar
2 eggs
2 tbsp hot water
mix well.
Stir in 2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
Stir in 1 package Hershey's chipits milk chocolate chips
Drop from small spoon onto ungreased cookie sheet.
Bake at 375 degrees for 8-10 minutes.
Makes about 5 dozen cookies.

I use my pampered chef small scoop to get uniform sized cookies and cook them on my pampered chef stone. I never use regular cookie sheets anymore, there's no other way to bake cookies.

I always make a double batch of cookie dough. then, rather than baking all the cookies, I use the small scoop to make dough balls. I fit as many as I can on a cookie sheet (this is where I use my regular cookie sheets) don't leave any space and then flash freeze the balls (put them in the freezer until frozen, about an hour). Then, put them into a freezer bag and back in the freezer. That way, I can just pull out however many I want and bake them. Fresh, warm, soft, chewy cookies without the mess of making them! It's awesome.

I also tried some oatmeal raisin cookies (except I turned them into oatmeal blueberry cookies, no nuts)
Chewy Oatmeal Raisin cookies
1/2 cup (1 stick or 4 ounces) butter, softened
2/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt (I often use a half teaspoon, but I like more salt in my baked goods)
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
3/4 cup raisins
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C).
In a large bowl, cream together the butter, brown sugar, egg and vanilla until smooth. In a separate bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt together. Stir this into the butter/sugar mixture. Stir in the oats, raisins and walnuts, if using them.
Bake them for 10 to 12 minutes (your baking time will vary, depending on your oven and how cold the cookies were going in), taking them out when golden at the edges but still a little undercooked-looking on top. Let them sit on the hot baking sheet for five minutes before transferring them to a rack to cool.

I still haven't make up my mind about the cinnamon, but they are nice and chewy!

Thanks guys for commenting on my last post! I know there's more of you out there, but I'll let you remain anonymous for now. Thanks for reading my blog and making me feel loved.

I gave pampered chef a plug (I really do love all the pampered chef stuff I have and use it all the time).
Now for Scensty...I have been wanting to try mixing scents for awhile, but all the "recipes" I have found are for scents that I don't have. So, today I tried one on my own...Perfectly Pomegranate and Sunkissed Citrus (one to one). YUMMY!! It smells delicious! I can't wait for March 1st, plug-ins are back in Canada!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

are you there?

I have this nifty little thing on my blog that tells me when people visit my blog and where they're from. It makes me feel good that people are visiting my blog. The only problem is it only tells me where you're from, not who you are. If you're reading this, leave a comment and tell me who you are! (please, just to satisfy my curiosity) Thanks in advance! (you could leave your blog address, then I can read what you have to say!)

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Happy Birthday Ryker

5 years ago we were at home watching the World Junior's final game (Canada vs. ???). My water broke, it's wasn't a big gush, just like I had peed my pants. I wasn't feeling any contractions, so we decided to wait until the end of the hockey game (besides, the doctor wouldn't be there either, he'd be watching the game too!). Things didn't progress as expected, but by 330 Sat morning we had a beautiful baby boy! It's hard to believe that it's been 5 years already. Ryker is an amazing addition to our family.
This year the kids had to go to the sitter on his actual birthday. Ryker decided that he didn't want it to be his birthday when he had to go to the sitter's house. even when Chris dropped him off and said happy birthday, he said "we're not having my birthday today"! such a funny kid. Friday was bowling with Mom, Dad, and Ryker. then mcdonald's for dinner. tonight was dinner with family. Lots of presents, lots of fun! and now I have a 5 year old.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011


Just wanted to update you all on my progress. I've been working very hard on one of my goals, not so hard on the others. I have lost 5 lbs to date this year! yeah me! want to know how I did it? I got a nice little infection from Ryker, strep throat. it has taken up residence in my tonsils and refuses to leave. I am understanding why Kayla has had some trouble talking (my mother in law thought she had called the wrong number when she called yesterday). My tonsils are like smalls rocks in the back of my throat and it hurts like crazy. (Sorry Ryker for giving you such a hard time about not swallowing your spit, as gross as that is, it hurts to swallow). I have spent the past 3 days on the couch doing nothing but watch old episodes of NCIS and eating nothing but chicken noodle soup and drinking gingerale (and trying to swallow tylenol/advil/antibiotic pills). I am slowly starting to get better, but not as fast as I would like. Chris has been awesome in helping with feeding the kids and taking them to the sitter (I was supposed to work 4 days this week, that didn't happen, but they still went to the sitter otherwise the house would be in worse shape than it is). What a way to start the new year!

I did have a great idea to try project 365 (take a picture a day for a year) but that went out the window. So now I'm going to try for project 52 (a picture a week for a year) I'm sure as soon as I get going on it, it'll be a picture a day, I hope. I'll try to post them for you all here when I'm feeling better!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

new year, new me...i hope

It's the new year and I don't usually make new year's resolutions (probably because I don't tend to keep them and end up feeling worse). This year I really need to make some changes and I am hoping that by putting them out into blogger world anyone reading this will help me on my journey...
Since having 2 babies so close together I've had trouble losing that extra "baby weight". Now that my baby will be 2 in May, I need to stop blaming them and do something about it. Starting with getting a treadmill from my in-laws, I plan to use it whenever I watch TV, or when the kids watch a movie. I've been signed up for Weight Watchers Online, but not really doing anything about it...they've made some changes and I'm going to do the same.
Today I went to tell Ryker he spends too much time playing DS or iPod, then I realized that I need to be a better example...thus, I quit facebook. cold turkey, no going back, no matter what Chris says about me being back on tomorrow afternoon, if not tonight.
I've got more, but these are going to be the biggest ones. wish me luck!