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Sunday, January 30, 2011

Post with pictures!

So they aren't the best quality pictures, from my cell phone, but they're pictures!

I painted my nails on January 1, all them pink except for my thumb. I made this little baby. I had it on my thumb during church and felt kind of embarrassed, so I removed it later. But for a minute,  I thought it was cook. Even though I do not heart cross bones and skulls.


I made this shirt for Nicole. Over the years I've tried this pattern 4 or 5 times and I was happy it finally turned out. She's pretty happy to be modeling it for you today.

 We had an awesome sunset the other night when I was on my way home from taking Gina to the airport. The sky was bright pink off in the horizon.


 Ken is the ward mission leader. Every Friday the Elders come over for about an hour and watch videos on http://mormon.org/. Matthew was sitting the midst of them this last Friday so I took some pictures. I like seeing him with the elders.


 I ate sushi the other day. I took a picture for my friend, Kate who hates sushi. Kharma hit me early. The next morning I was sick and felt crummy all that day. I don't think I'll be eating sushi for a long time, if ever.

 We had refreshments after the adult session of Stake Conference on Saturday. 4 seminary tables clear full of pie. It was a beautiful site.
 This is my kitchen. It has the best sewing/crafting counter ever. It's more than 3 feet wide and 8 feet ling. I LOVE IT!

Matthew doing a crossword puzzle with a big pencil.

Sunday Stake Conference

Today I almost skipped Stake Conference. Ken had to work at 10 and I didn't want to to take the kids and sit through a 2 hour meeting by myself. If I'm being honest, I didn't want to sit through a 2 hour meeting period. But, I am so glad I went!  The spirit was really strong there but the best part was after it was over. I was able to reunite with an old friend from our ward in Utah. We live in the same Stake and figured it out when they came to visit for niece's baby blessing.

We were in a ward in Utah highly populated with newlyweds-as unofficial student ward. There were 8 of us pregnant at the same time and Stephanie and I sat next to each other in RS and compared our pregnancies. All 8 of us sat in row against the wall-'pregnancy row'-8 babies born within 2 1/2 months of each other.  Carson was born 3 weeks before Robert. She and I used to scrapbook together once a week. I clipped her baby's fingernails when she was too scared. I watched him while she went running and she watched Nicole and Matthew after I had to get a job,

I'm so excited that we were able to reconnect and I look forward to getting together with their family. Yay for friends and for it being such a small world, especially in the church.

Saturday Evening Stake Conference

Tonight we had our adult session of Stake Conference. It was a great meeting. I loved every speaker.  Here are some things I've noticed about the Saturday session of conference over the years that differ from the Sunday sessions and a regular Sunday block meeting.

I mean to offense to anyone. I'm just pointing out what I've noticed about the Saturday Session.

  • Women bring their knitting/crocheting/needlepoint craft to work on.
  • Old people don't hide the snacks they've brought with them.
  • People have a hard time deciding where to sit. There are adults from seven wards in one chapel. I think someone took my spot!
  • There are more flip flops and jean skirts on a Saturday meeting. I must have missed the memo that said to dress casually.
  • There is no guilt for going to the store or out to eat after church.
  • It's my most favorite meeting of the weekend. Every six months.
Just thought I'd share. It's my blog. I can do what I want.

Did I miss anything?

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Regifting

Once upon a time my brother, Ryan gave me a really cheap gift for Christmas.

In 1997, the first Christmas Ken and I were married , all the married kids decided to draw names. At the time 4 of us were married. Ken and I got Heather and Farrell's name. Ryan and Rhonda got us. I don't remember the rest of the mix up.  Ryan and Rhonda lived in Georgia and while Ryan attended college he worked for Rent a Center. Ken worked for Rent a Center also-in Bremerton. (pre college and getting a life/real job)

Ryan and Rhonda gave us really neat things. A blanket from Mexico, a lot of scrapbooking paper, herbs and spices and ...Love Dust.  What?! You've never heard of Love Dust? That's because you could never buy it. I imagine you've never #1 worked for Rent a Center. #2 rented from Rent a Center. If you don't fit either of those descriptions, you would never have come into contact with it.

Ken knew what it was because he worked there. He also knew it was free. and gross. Imagine the flavored sugar, like in pixie sticks, packaged in fake pink plastic heart shaped 'perfume bottles' voila! Love Dust. bleh

Ryan gave us a whole case of that junk.

Fact: I am not a pleasant pregnant person.
Fact: My mom thought it was a lame gift too. (the Love Dust part)

Combine these two facts and you get 2 annoyed women who decide the 'gift' should be saved and returned at a later unexpected date. ie: 2 Christmases later.

Fast forward to Christmas Eve, 2 years later. That morning we had learned that our Aunt Brenda has passed away. Although we didn't see her much, she was one of our aunts on my Dad's side that we did know. We were sad. We went to church that day and that evening we got together as a family for annual gift exchange/party. (Pre-Ensign Ranch) While we were having a good time, there was an underlying feeling of sadness. I remember everyone opening their presents and we were all grateful and appreciative. Then it was Ryan's turn to open his. A lot of the family knew what he was getting. He was completely unsuspecting. He opened it, turned it around to read what it was, looked a little confused and then laughed right out loud. (pre-LOL) A tradition was born that glorious evening.

We  no longer give it as a gift, it has to show up as a total surprise. The more embarrassing, somehow the better.

I've received it at lunch in the elementary school I've worked at, in a box while unpacking a move, he broke into my car once and in the mail instead of the thing I was expecting (my scriptures). It's showed up on his office desk, at a ward function, shoved in his luggage while unpacking his car, and the missionaries gave it to him once.

The love dust has resided in Washington, Oregon, Utah, Georgia, New Mexico and Kansas.

Ryan has it right now. It was presented to him at a ward party as gift from one of his Priests.  He's the Bishop of his ward and the youth took the opportunity to roast him a couple weeks ago. The evening ended with Ryan receiving a gift...of LOVE DUST. MUAHHAAHAH!! (This was my top secret project, mentioned here-bullet #5.)

When mom died, we gave her one of the little packages of love dust since she was partially responsible for the game.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Obligatory post.

Some days I don't really have anything to blog about but I kind of feel an obligation to post something, just so I don't fall out of the habit. Welcome to an obligatory post.

One year ago today I was on my lunch break, in the drive thru of Long John Silver's. I had already placed my order and was now in line to pay. My cell phone rang and it was my Dad. It's not uncommon for him to call me through out the day. I thought nothing of it. I answered my phone and this is how the conversation went.

Me: Hola!
Dad: Hi. What are you doing?
Me: Ordering a fish taco.
Dad: We're at the Dr. Mom's cancer is back. It's in her bones, her spine, on her chin and it stems from her breast.
Me: silent. tears coming at a rapid pace. What?!
Dad: We're at the doctor. Mom's cancer is back. It's in her bones, her spine, on her chin and it stems from her breast.
Me: What are they going to do about it? Is she going to be okay?
Dad: We're waiting to get our instructions. She'll probably start chemo in a week. She'll have surgery the beginning of next week to put a port in. If we don't do anything she has 6 months.
Me: more silence and tears. Ok.
Dad: are you okay?
Me: fine.

We hang up. I'm bawling as I get my stupid fish taco.

No treatment would have bought my mom 6 months to live.
Chemo killed her 28 days.

I hate cancer.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Happy Birthday Brandon!

Happy Birthday to my nephew Brandon! He is 13 years old today.

Two things I've heard Brandon say that are worth repeating...


  • If awesomeness were a sin, I'd go straight to hell.
  • I may not be popular but everyone knows who I am.
Happy Birthday Brandon! I love you You are awesome.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

You're invited!

Since I've already received my first RSVP I guess I should make it official. You're all invited to my sweet 34 slumber party.  October 21, 2011 from 8pm (Amy I made it an hour earlier) until breakfast the next morning. Bring your favorite treat, your wedding album/scrapbook/pictures and stuff to sleep on. We have blankets, no extra pillows or air mattresses. Invitations will go out in the mail the first of October. Bring a friend if you want. We have room.

Post about birthday celebrations or something

Last night we spent the evening in Poulsbo at my sister's house, celebrating my Dad's birthday. I got a call yesterday morning-an invitation to dinner. I said no. I got another call and was reminded it was my Dad's birthday. I actually knew it was Dad's birthday, I just didn't put 2 and 2 together. (4). Ken got off work an hour early so we actually got to Wendi and Larry's by 6. (1.5 hour drive each way-which is why I said no.) Here is how my side of the family celebrates birthdays.

We don't.

Anna asked yesterday if Grandpa was going to get presents. I said no. She asked if we were going to sing Happy Birthday. I said if we remember. She asked if there was going to be cake. I said I don't know, but assured her of good food for dinner.  Last minute I loaded the cake I made on Sunday night that was waiting to be consumed after Family Home Evening-and a container of cool whip because I was out of frosting.

We ate a delicious dinner, visited for a while and then ate cake. We didn't sing Happy Birthday. We didn't call the cake and ice cream-birthday cake and ice cream. It never even crossed my mind.  When we were getting our coats on to leave, I felt something in my pocket and remember that I actually did have a gift for me Dad. (Best. Daughter. Ever.) I walked over to him, told him I had a gift for him. He was surprised. (Not the 'I'm so excited I can't believe it kind of surprised. More like, Really? Are you serious?) I handed him a ketchup packet I'd had in my pocket since the 15th.

Adam threw it at me in Safeway in Cle Elum when we were all there shopping for our Ensign Ranch groceries. I told him to get me some ketchup. First thing he did when I saw him was he started throwing ketchup packets at me. I saved one for a rainy day-or emergency birthday gift. Dad was at Cle Elum with us so he knew the story. He told me said ketchup packet could become the next Love Dust. What is Love Dust you ask? Stay tuned. I have a really good story for you.

Final Thought: Birthday to me are like Anniversaries. (Not just because they are celebrated 1 day a year-geniuses!) Ken and I don't celebrate our Anniversary. Most years we aren't even in the same state when it shows it face. And you know what? That's okay. We love each other everyday. We don't need one special day to remember that. Birthday's are the same. I love my Dad everyday. As well as each of my family members. Do we really need to set apart a special day each year to tell them? nah. But I sure love spending an evening with extended family! I really missed that when we lived far away. I've seen my brothers, sisters and Dad more in the last 9 months that I did in the last 5 years combined.

All that being said, I want you all to know we don't neglect our kids on their birthdays. They get gifts, a cake and their favorite meal. But, I am not consistent on the awesomeness. I just don't have the spirit of the birthday instilled in me. I think they are a little bit over rated. BUT, you should still feel obligated to give me gifts. All the time. 10-24-11 is right around the corner. My sweet 34. Shop now. Shop often. Come to my slumber party.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Happy Birthday Dad!

Happy Birthday to my Dad! He is 19 years old...again.  (History does repeat itself.)

In honor of his birthday, here are 2 fun facts.

  • He has a lot of knowledge in topics that may not seem important. My sister and her roommates call him Google. I call him when I want to know about anything that I'm too lazy to look up on Google.
  • He's a temple worker.
Happy Birthday Dad! I love you a lot. Thank you for always being there for me because you always have been.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Dear Lacey 2nd. I'm sorry.

Today I messed up royally on the closing hymn in sacrament meeting. hymn #77.

I botched the intro so badly the chorister looked at me and laughed before we started singing. (I couldn't find the last part of the bracketed intro, so I held one note too long, them messed up the timing.)

During the actual song, first verse, I had a hard time keeping time. I actually laughed right out loud it was so bad, and if it wasn't for an awesome soprano singing really loud I wouldn't have been able to keep it going at all. It was that bad.

When it was over the Bishop even told the chorister it wasn't that great. His exact words, 'We kind of messed that one up Frank, didn't we?' I was still laughing.

It was glorious. If glorious means 'worst organ playing ever.'

I'm still not fired.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

New Recipe # 5 - Best Homemade Brownies Ever!

3/4 C melted butter
1 1/2 C sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
3 eggs
3/4 C flour
1/2 C cocoa
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 C chocolate chips
1/2 C nuts (optional)

Mix all the dry stuff.
Add all the wet stuff.
(chocolate chips are dry stuff.)

DO NOT OVER MIX! It dries out the brownies.

Bake at 350 in an 8x8 pan for 40-45 minutes.

This recipe is easily doubled to bake in a 9x13 pan.

recipe from Wendy Narvasa.

New Recipe #4 - 5 Minute Dinner

1 box of cereal of choice
1 gallon milk
spoons and cereal as needed
napkins option

pour cereal into bowls
top with milk
eat with spoons

recipe from Heather James.

8:15pm

I am angry.
I am done being a mom for the night.
I started a fast, forgot I started it and broke it like 10 minutes later.
Now I am going to make brownies.
I am not going to share.
Then I will restart my fast.

The End

ps, I lost a follower. I was probably going to fire them anyway.

How was your day?

Friday, January 21, 2011

today. January 20, 2011 edition

Today I have

  • worked on my bedroom. (It's the worst room in the whole house.)
  • done 2 loads of laundry so far.
  • Applied for 2 jobs and read descriptions for many more.
  • checked my email.
  • read every blog I could find
  • been on facebook
  • rewrote my sister's time sheet I fill out for her every pay period. (The person who wrote it doesn't know excel very well.)
  • ate soup for breakfast.
  • brushed my teeth
  • talked on the phone for over an hour--collectively
  • sent and received 17 text messages
  • PROCRASTINATED A LOT!
Today I have not:
  • vacuumed
  • unloaded the dishwasher
  • folded my mountain of clean laundry
  • read my scriptures, except for one verse written on my friend's blog.  All of you should read Lacy's blog. I love it. You will too. You'll love it A LOT if you like cats.  Kate likes cats. Read her blog too.
  • played tetris on my phone
  • gotten out of my pajamas
  • DONE MUCH WORK

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Tribute Video

While we were at Ensign Ranch last weekend, my little brother showed us this video he put together as a tribute to my mom. I've cut off the last song, which is more personal to our family, but I'm sharing the first 3 with you as a request from a couple of my friends.  Well done Kyle. You did a nice job.

video


Wednesday, January 19, 2011

free give away, duct tape, a pencil ninja and a YouTube video

My friend, Amy is having a free contest on her blog. http://amyrnelson.blogspot.com/2011/01/csn-stores-giveaway.html I am posting this so you'll read her blog and with me well in winning the contest.  Don't try to enter.  Or do. She'll be reading this and probably disqualify me but oh well. (Amy, don't disqualify me.)

Here are some scriptures cases that were made at our family reunion.  All our of duct tape. That's right. We're that awesome.


Here is a photo of me showing off some more of my amazing skills.  It's was 1 in the morning. Don't judge
.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Happy Birthday Sarah!

Today Sarah is 1 year old. My sister and her husband have been raising her since the day she was born and they are going to adopt her. Although it's not final yet, she still deserves a shout out.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

T-45 minutes

...until we leave for the 3 day weekend!!  It's our annual snow trip to Ensign Ranch with my side of the family.  I'll be back on Tuesday! Have a good one. I know I will.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Wanted...

Click on the photo to enlarge...



Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Memory Monday...er Wednesday

2nd grade. The year of

  • skipping school - Ryan decided to skip school on day but came home before I left. Enter nosy little sister. I told him I wanted to stay home too. He said I couldn't because I wasn't sick. But I was in fact uncomfortable. I had felt like I needed to sneeze. All morning.  He finally gave in and let me stay home with him. We had a really fun time except that he makes a crummy lunch and we had to hide in the coat closet for an hour in case mom and dad came home for lunch.
  • wearing make up - I was home alone for 20 minutes each morning after everyone left for the day and before I left.  One day I decided to try out my mom's makeup. I did so by applying blush to my whole face. I was pretty.  My teacher called me out to the hallway to ask why I was wearing makeup and I told her I wasn't. She went and got a tissue and wiped it across my face and showed me the makeup. I still denied it. While I was waiting for her to go get the kleenex I wanted to run out of the room and straight home but I knew I'd get in bigger trouble for doing that.  I can't believe she never called my parents.
  • moving for the first time 
  • moving for the second time
  • getting baptized
  • picking all my own clothes (after mom went to work) - I had twenty minutes after everyone left to ditch the clothes my mom picked for me and put on something cool.  I looked terrible everyday, I'm sure of it now. That's probably why my teacher never called home. They probably thought mom and dad were drunks or something. (sorry mom and dad)
  • 'Strip' throat
  • jumping on the bed
  • Sunshine Lollipops and Rainbows - Heather and I listened to this song on a record all. day. long. We loved it. A lot. I still do.
  • Gina was born
  • G.I. Joe in the morning, She-ra in the afternoon
  • Garen burned his bum on the wooden stove (big blisters and lots of aloe vera leaves)
  • Mrs. Bobo was my teacher after we moved. Worst. Teacher. Ever. Even in 2nd grade I knew she was a witch. Don't let the freaky clown name fool you. I remember her telling our class that she and her husband had made the conscious decision not to have children because they didn't want them. Even in 2nd grade, at 8 years old I knew there was something wrong with that. Because I lost my filter early in life, I raised my hand and asked her, and I quote, 'Why the heck are you teaching school if you don't want kids?' My name was written on the board and I  missed recess. boo.
Good times.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

I promise...

  • to post better recipes for the rest of the year.
  • not to post pictures of snakes on my blog.
  • to get a camera soon so I can take awesome pictures of my fantastic children.
  • to blog stalk you for the rest of my live long days...if you have a blog and I have the URL.
  • never to make my children eat canned peas or liver with onions.
  • nothing else.


Monday, January 10, 2011

New Recipe #3 - Impossibly Easy Cheeseburger Pie

1 lb ground beef
1 large onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
1/2 tsp salt
1 C shredded cheese
1/2 C Bisquick
1 C milk
2 eggs

1. Heat oven to 400. Spray 9 inch pie plate with cooking spray. In 10 inch skillet, cook beef and onion over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until beef is thoroughly cooked; drain.  Spread in pie plate, sprinkle with cheese.

2. In medium bowl, stir remaining ingredients with wire whisk or fork until blended. Pour into pie plate.

3. Bake about 25 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean.

***
I store cooked ground meat in the freezer because I hate having to defrost and cook it while I'm making dinner. I just defrosted the browned meat, added some dehydrated onion to it and salt then spread that in the plate, then poured the saucy stuff on top. Prep time was 5 minutes and cook time 25.

My opinion - My kids like it and Anna wanted seconds. It's a winner. (She doesn't want seconds of anything and typically doesn't love what she's being served because it's not processed.)

In Loving Memory

Robert Kenneth Cheney passed away 9 years ago today.

If you haven't read about Robert, you can go here.

I know there is a post like this every year and I just want to let you know, as long as I am blogger there will continue to be a post like this every year in the future too.  Here's what I know 9 years later...
  • My arms ache for a baby that I don't have and who wouldn't even be a baby anymore. His chair at the dinner table is vacant.
  • As blessed as I am for the special experience surrounding his birth, I am not grateful that he is in a better place and not in pain. Our home is full of love and he would have felt that love had he ever been able to come home.
  • The pain does not go away. We don't have a shrine of him in our home and we don't talk about him everyday, but even as I type this there is a lump in my throat and I want to cry.
  • I don't judge how many children people have or how far apart they are in age. 
  • Families are indeed forever.
Here is a little 'Infant Death 101' for you.
  • Don't ever tell a person they should be thankful their child that has passed away is in a better place.  I can think of no better place than my home.
  • Don't ever tell a person they should just be thankful for the children they have at home. If you lost 2 of your fingers would be thankful for the 8 remaining or would you often wish you still had 10?
  • You don't have to say the perfect words to a person who is suffering. Let them know you love them. Loving someone is greater than being sorry for them.
  • Allow them to talk about their loved one. Take deep breathes if it creeps into their conversation often. Their mind is consumed with their loss. It's impossible to just 'get over it.'
  • A child that dies at birth, even if they never left the hospital is still a child, a person, a member of a family and one to mourned after and one who will never forgotten. Don't judge a person for missing a child they didn't even know. Or for counting that child in the 'number of children they have.'
  • Lastly don't judge people for only having 1 or 2 or 3 children...or for however many they have. It's NONE of your business. You have no idea why they have the number of children they have and or why they planned to space them, not space them, or delay getting pregnant in the first place. and I repeat with greater emphasis IT IS NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS. Do you have any idea how many times people, even at church, have looked down on me for having 2 children? Do you know how many times people have SAID something to me about it? I have 2 answers to the questions, depending on who they are and how rude/nosy they are.  #1 (pc answer) Heavenly Father knows what we can handle and so far our number is 2. (3 now suckers!) #2 (You've ticked me off answer) We actually have 3 children but one died. (DEAD SILENCE...no pun intended. My answer made them feel bad and I AM GLAD!)  Three times a charm...IT IS NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS.
Matthew 7:1-2
Judge not, that you be not judged. For with what judgement ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.

If I've offended you it is because you have chosen to take offense to the words you have just read. Take a break and come back when you're ready. I'll take back nothing I've shared today.

If you  like this and want to share it with someone you are more than welcome. Just let them know I wrote it.

Thanks for reading.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Facts That I Wish Weren't Facts


  1. We have 5 bottles of mayonnaise in our fridge right now. (2 are open)
  2. I have a cook in training who needed 2 T of butter...4 times. This means instead of being short 1 stick of butter I have a pound of butter on the counter, still in their wrappers, each cube missing 2 T.  :| 
  3. There was a slimy dish rag in my sink.  Same helpful cook/dishwasher from last night.
  4. We have teeth marks in our cheese.
  5. 'Someone' wrote their name in dust on the entertainment center. (They get sneaky in their old age.)
  6. I have to start my 5k training over. Apparently waiting 6 weeks between runs makes it impossible for me to run my 3 minutes without dying.  I'll get there again and this time we hopefully won't leave town for a week and then get the flu.
  7. My sewing mess may never be put away. (I'm actually okay with this one.)
I think that is all.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Fun things I may or may not have done today...and a complaint or two.

I don't like to use this blog as a place to gripe and whine. Everyone has things they can complain about but at the end of the day I want to remember the good things and that's why I don't publish them...anywhere. Even my hand written journal is about the good stuff.  Anyway, I've got a couple of complaints and you get to hear about them.
  1. Take your Christmas lights down people! We are almost a full week into the New Year. Christmas is OVER!  So you haven't been able to take them down yet. That's okay. TURN THEM OFF!
  2. I hate it when the kitchen sink isn't cleaned and rinsed out after the dishes are done.
Okay, I'm done and I feel a lot better for it.  Now for the fun stuff...

Things I may or may not have done today...
  1. 4 loads of laundry
  2. practiced the piano and organ
  3. went to a quilt shop and bought 2 moda charm packs  in the 'American Jane pindot' collection and a dessert roll in the 'American Jane happy campers' collection. (Charm packs are precut 5' squares of fabric - 42 count. Dessert Rolls are precut 5" x 45" strips of fabric.
  4. bought a Papa Murphy's DeLite pizza for dinner with spinach and artichokes on it. It was DELISH!
  5. didn't pull the car far enough into the garage and found out by having the garage door bump the bumper...twice.
  6. went to a RS planning meeting.
  7. talked to a few of my siblings and my dad
  8. sent out a few emails to my friend
  9. made fun of my kids
  10. While I was waiting in a long line of cars to turn left onto Pacific Avenue in Olympia today, 7 police cars raced passed me running code.  That was exciting.
Adoption Update:

Ken and I met with another attorney yesterday and have finally picked one. He's out of downtown Seattle and we are really excited about the decision. The adoption will take about 4 months to complete, once they get started and we are hoping to get started as soon as we get our taxes done. We are lacking the sweet moola and the want a retainer fee.  

Also, I am going to go to work part time to pay the legal costs - hopefully for only a few months.  I am nervous about going back to work part time in the evenings but it is so worth it, knowing Anna will be a true member of our family with no chance of losing her.

That's about it! Thanks for reading my blogdango!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

New Recipe #2 - French Fry Casserole

Okay, this is NOT a new recipe for me. This was a staple growing up at our house but each of my siblings that still make it, make it a little differently. Here's how I make it.

1 bag shoe string french fries 32 oz
2 small cans cream of mushroom soup
1 can evaporated milk.
a couple handfuls of shredded cheese - maybe 2 cups (I use colby or cojack but cheddar works well also.)

Empty bag of fries into a 9 x 13 casserole pan sprayed with cooking spray.
Mix soup, milk and cheese in a bowl, then pour over fries.
Stir the fries a little so they are all covered with soup mixture.

Bake at 350 for an hour. We love to serve this BBQ chicken and broccoli. We had it for dinner last night. My kids love it and it's a hit at every potluck I've ever taken it to.

Other variations - you can add:
onions
garlic
ground beef or maple sausage (we use maple sausage sometimes if we aren't have BBQ chicken)
I can't think of any others.

Hexagons are my new favorite!

I made this quilt top yesterday when I was supposed to be cleaning. I'm going to add more lines to it but isn't is cool?

Poor picture quality blamed on cellphone camera.

No Title Good Enough

My brother and sister in law lost a baby 5 years ago today. He was still born and his name was Jacob. Each year I try to remember the date but I end up having to call or text someone and ask.

I'm going to blog about each of my family members on their birthdays this year and Jacob deserves a mention to.  I'm sorry I never got to know him. I'm also sorry that his Mom and Dad never got to know him either.

I love you Garen and Andrea. You're in my prayers today.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Quotes from my home to yours...

  • My body is skin
  • I  never put my toenails in my mouth.
  • I'm going to say Merry Christmas or Trick or Treat.
  • Howdy Fartner,
  • Mom, you drive me crazy when you boss me!

  • Never lick tables at a restaurant.
  • No toys in the bathroom. 

This picture makes me laugh right out loud. I may hate cats but I LOVE pictures of wet cats. hahahah!!


Sunday, January 2, 2011

New Recipe #1 - Mexican Pork

Once upon a time, in 2007, I dubbed that year 'a year of experimental cooking.' I created many recipes that year. Some were good, some were not so good and twice we threw it away and went out for hamburgers.

This year I am going to try a new recipe each week.  Maybe not each week but 52 times this year. I'll try to create a tab at the top...If I'm that smart.

Today was the first one, which I actually did make up on my own.

1 pork roast
1 can rotel
1 can black beans

Throw it all in the crock pot and cook for 8 hours or so.

Make up some Spanish rice to serve with the beans as a side dish. Serve the meat separately.

It was pretty good. Next time I'm going to pull the pork and serve it all together in corn tortillas with sour cream, salsa and guacamole.

It you try it, let me know what you think...

POST PUBLISH UPDATE:
I have added a link to rotel so if you don't know what it is, you can read about it. (I've heard from 2 people asking me what it is...It's in the canned tomato section at your local supermarket, I'm sure.  ps, I didn't know what it was until after I was married and ate it in a casserole at our neighbor's house.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Resolutions Schmesolutions!

I don't typically make New Years Resolutions. Last year I set a few goals and didn't get one of them accomplished.  I didn't even copy the one I stole correctly. I'm that lame.

I am going to try one more time because I really do want to make a goal and succeed at it.  Here are my goals for 2011.

  • Finish Personal Progress
  • Run a 5k (at Whaling Days in Silverdale - the last weekend of July.)
  • Drink enough water everyday
  • Read the Book of Mormon twice. (1 chapter a day and 2 on Sundays is all it takes to read the B.O.M in 6 months. Give it a try! I know you'll like it. )
That's all I've got in that area.

Each year I try to do something new that I've never done before. To me those milestones are equally as important as resolutions.  Here are my accomplishments for 2010.
  • I spent 2 full months without my husband while working full time, taking care of my kids and getting my house packed up to move to Washington.
  • I swam in Long Lake fully clothed. (Swimming fully clothed is not a first, the Long Lake part is.)
  • I ate eel. It was delish.
  • We welcomed Anna into our home.
  • Played 'music' on the violin and the viola
  • I ate corned beef and cabbage. It's now one of my favorite foods and we have eaten it 5 or 6 times this year. (thanks Liz and Ben!)
  • I am homeschooling.
  • I made a rag doll...5 of them.
  • I played a song on the organ using the pedals. (In the privacy of my own home.)
I think that is all.

One last note.  My little brother came to stay the night at our house on Tuesday. When they were packing up on Wednesday he wanted to vacuum my front room. I told him he'd have to do it using the hose because the belt was broken. I had plans to go to the store and buy a new belt on Friday and told him not to worry about it. He called me yesterday and told me not to buy one, he picked one up for me. I thought that was very nice of him. Last night when we got to a different brother's house he had me open a gift. He wrapped the belt. I like opening presents so this was all fine and good with me. The gift had an old USB thumb drive package in it and a note that said 'Have your kids open the big present.' This actually bothered me a little because he had a huge box that he wanted my kids to open and I knew they were going to be disappointed to find a small vacuum belt in it. But I played along. The kids opened the present to find not only a vacuum belt but a new vacuum to use that belt! Adam bought me a new vacuum.  What a huge blessing that is! Ours has been dying for almost a year but I keep 'fixing' it to make it last longer. Now that we have a new vacuum I'm going to let Matthew take the old one apart and we're going to try to build something new with it.  I think that is a great idea.  THANKS ADAM FOR THE VACUUM! We LOVE LOVE LOVE it!