Thursday, May 28, 2009

Cool Mom

Want to be the coolest mom on the block?

Just serve OJ pops for breakfast.

I got compliments such as, "You're a really good chef Mom!"

And, "Maybe we can have this for breakfast everyday."

And, "Thanks Mom!"

And, "I told all my friends at school about it."

That's right folks, I rock as a mom. :) Thank you OJ pops, thank you!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Yellowstone 2009

It's that time of year again....our annual Yellowstone trip. We missed Kade's and Quin's families this time around, but still managed to have some fun. Prepare yourselves for a whole slew of pictures.

The kids loved Grampy's idea of Jiffy Pop over the fire. Can you believe this is the first time I've ever had this kind of popcorn. Very fun to see it puff up!

It tasted good too.

A stinkin' raven got into my bread while I was loading my cooler for lunch. I had my back turned for one minute and the bird knew right when to strike. He also made off with a HUGE muffin, and our neighbor's entire bag of 16 buns. Oh, he was pesky.

Up we go, first hike of the season. Trout Lake here we come. This is one of my most favorite hikes in Yellowstone. (Why I didn't get a picture of the actual lake, is beyond me.)

Crossing the creek at Trout Lake.

Crossing the creek is the easy part. It's getting up the bank that's tough. LOL! My poor mom.

We hiked to "Suspension Bridge"; getting there was exciting, but getting back to the car was a miracle (well for some of us). This is a 2 mile round trip hike, but the bridge is at the bottom of a ravine. The hike is straight down, and straight back up.

The kids hanging out at Suspension Bridge. As a side note, my dad nicknamed Kate "Sack-of-Weeds" (you know, like Sacajawea) this weekend. She was not fond of it at all, but oh it was so funny and fit her perfectly.

Nothing like quality sister time in the camper.

Carter enjoying the view. Carter was Bryon's shadow this weekend. It was so cute, he wanted to do EVERYTHING Bryon did.

There was a motorcycle accident that happened very close to our campsite. Life Flight backed up traffic for miles. We were waiting in the car when Dad decided he'd take the kids and start walking. It was only after they had been gone for a while that I realized they just might see someone hurt or worse. Thank goodness there wasn't much to see except the helicopter landing and taking off.

Everyone hiked the 5 miles to Fairy Falls.

Well everyone...

except Kate and me.

We were too busy looking for "babies" aka chipmunks and ground squirrels. And emptying rocks out of our shoes.

And playing with sticks and rocks. We had a good time despite not seeing the waterfall.

Mimi and Kate, enjoying their strawberry lemonades.

Taking in the view of the Tetons during a lunch break.

On the way home we enjoyed views like this! The Tetons are absolutely gorgeous. A great sight to end the trip with.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

American Idol Finale


I must admit, I thought Adam had it in the bag. I mean Kris is good and all, and I will probably buy an album from him (love the guitar), but seriously, Adam is a super star.

Jarom called the outcome weeks ago. (Not necessarily Kris, but he said it wouldn't be Adam.) He had a point. All of the Gokey voters were certainly going to put their votes with Kris for the night, thus Adam coming in second.

But really...did you hear the screaming in the crowd for Adam? Double what Kris got. I really thought good ol' Seacrest would say Adam.

But no...he said Kris. And I shot up off my bed and exclaimed, "Shut.Up!" Like a 13 year old girl.

Farewell for now American Idol. I'll miss you! And Adam, I'll be seeing you someday.

Oh, and I must say that this was the best finale AI has ever had. Great entertainment, good use of the top 13, and seeing Kara flash the world was priceless.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009


Maple is a GIANT Great Dane "puppy" that lives next door to me. She LOVES to know what's going on in my backyard. All she has to do is hop to see. It everytime I see her head pop over my fence! This is a 6 foot fence and she is jumping straight up from the ground.

Is that hilarious or what?! How can you not laugh when you look out the window and see a giant dog's head popping up and down?

Every time I see Maple's head, my day gets a little bit better.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Roomies Reunite 2009

This past weekend it was time for the college roomies to get together and just have some fun. So Jennie and I loaded up in Adam's (her husband) BMW and took off for a road trip. Hilarious to see Jennie drive that RESPONSIVE car. LOL! I all but choked on my M&M one time when she tapped the brakes. So funny! (Really she drives great, the car just moved with the slightest touch.)

We hooked up with Fur (aka Jennifer) for dinner and then a movie. We really wanted to take our pictures sitting on the bullet bikes parked out front the theater, but decided we were too chicken. Had we been 19 again, it would have been a no-brainer. (Back then we might have even scored a ride on one too.)

We laughed and ate, and ate some more. We stayed up really late talking away. It was just like the gold ol' days! (Except we're old and late nights don't agree with us as well as they used too.) We missed Michelle who couldn't make it, and sometime need to schedule this party with Lee Ann. (We're thinking about breaking in your new tub. LOL!)

We came home with a few bags of goodies too. But most importantly, we came home with cheesecake! Yes folks, we went to the Cheesecake Factory THREE times in under 24 hours. That's got to be some kind of record.

I love this little tradition we've got! Thanks for the fun ladies!

Friday, May 15, 2009

Have a Nice Weekend!

Frozen burritos, lasagna, hot dogs, mac-n-cheese, and McD's......check, check, check.

Mom's going away for the weekend. (To Boise with the roomies.) Have a fun weekend with Dad, kids. Love you all!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Running Like the Wind...or maybe a turtle.

I have always had a secret desire to run a marathon. Every time I see someone out running I think, "Man, that looks like it feels SO good." Then I try it and hate every minute of it. I can not run to save my life.

When I was a senior in high school, I took correspondence classes to be able to graduate early. One of them was for a P.E. credit and I had to run a mile. Good ol' Jarom would show up at my house every morning and force me to run (walk briskly) my mile. Honestly I think I lied to complete the course and wrote that I could run an 8 minute mile. I've NEVER been able to run a mile in under 13 minutes. And now, I bet I couldn't get it in 20 minutes.

Today, I decided I would try again. I googled "how to train for a 5K" (decided I better start small, marathon is WAY out of my league), donned my sports bra and running shoes, and took off. The guide said if you are a non-runner ( to walk 6 minutes, run 1 and repeat that pattern 3 times, 3 days for week one. (Got it?) I thought that sounded a little pathetic and decided to skip to week 2; walk 5 minutes, run 2. Easy peasey right?

WRONG! I am pathetic I tell ya! I did my first 2 minute run and could hardly talk to tell Carter and Kate which direction to turn on their bikes. Then it was suddenly time for run #2 and after 1 minute flat I thought I was going to puke. I decided I'd better get back to training week 1's advice and gave myself the full 6 minute walk before run #3. I was able to run for 1 more minute, but my heart and lungs felt like they were going to explode.

HOW IN THE WORLD do people run marathons??? I mean seriously, they have got to be made of different material than me or something. Why does it look like it feels so good? And will I EVER be able to run a mile straight?

Monday, May 11, 2009

Locks of Love

Alyssa has been toying with the idea of donating her hair to Locks of Love for a little while. The teacher she had for 1st and 2nd grade has breast cancer and is currently undergoing chemo, so this is a big topic at her school. This was a BIG deal for her, she doesn't take easily to her hair getting cut, as you may remember. She and a friend both decided they were going to go through with it, so today was Alyssa's big day.

Before the cut Alyssa's hair was to her waist! (In this picture her hair could almost rival Cousin It's.)

No turning back now! She cut off 10 inches.

My sister (the stylist) with her purple extensions, and Alyssa's new do.

So cute from behind! I love it! Can you believe that even with 10 inches off, her hair still isn't even that short? This kid has a head full of hair!!!

Look at all that beautiful hair that I just know someone will love.

Alyssa, I am SO proud of you. Cutting your hair and donating it was just such a cool thing today. And something you will always remember. What a great example you are. And you look beautiful!

*As for an update on Kate, she went back to the doctor and he gave her another breathing treatment b/c her lungs still don't sound right and she still labors a little with her breathing. (Nothing like Sunday though.) He sent us home with our own nebulizer, prescribed steroids, and allergy meds. He does think it is an asthma thing going on, but he's not sure if it is allergy related or a reaction to a viral thing she's got going on. (I'm HOPING for the latter.) But I think with having the nebulizer at home, she's on her way to recovery.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Good Grief...what a day!

So Kate decided to add to my Mother's Day by giving me the gift of her spending 4 hours in the E.R. So not cool! The little toot gave us a bit of a scare.

Saturday night she started coughing, so I hooked up the humidifier and put her to bed. She had a very rough night and by Sunday morning her breathing was labored and shallow. We knew we needed to take her in and it is ALWAYS my job in our family to do the doctor bits. However...I HAD to be to church today. Our little primary was singing in sacrament meeting for Mother's Day and I needed to lead them. So Jarom decided he'd take Kate.

After letting our bishop (who happens to also be our pediatrician) know that Jarom wasn't going to be making it to church, he and Kate headed over to the E.R. He texted me all through church (I know, for shame for shame), updating me, and my bishop kept tabs on things for me too.

It was difficult for me to not be with her. Very strange and emotional and probably a good experience for both Jarom and I to be on opposite sides of our normal parenting duties.

They tested for RSV, took chest x-rays, gave her two breathing treatments, and some oral steroids. Her oxygen levels improved fairly quickly but her heart rate was really high so they wouldn't let her leave until it came down. RSV came out negative, nothing wrong in the x-rays, so they are thinking it might possibly have been an asthma attack. We go back in tomorrow for a follow up and hopefully we'll figure out more then. She's still coughing and very raspy, but at least she isn't gasping for breath.

I'll tell you what, even though this was a very scary thing for me, I know that it was pretty minor. I can't even imagine those parents who have REALLY sick kids. My heart hurts for them and I give thanks for the health of my own children.

Sure made for an interesting and memorable Mother's Day, that's for sure.

And a HUGE thank you to Deanna who stepped right in and helped me SO much with primary. I really, really appreciate it!!!

Happy Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day everyone! My cute kids hid out all night in the office creating something glorious to give me for Mother's Day. This is the result.
Is that not the cutest little cardboard purse you've ever seen ? And it was full of some very fun things. Everything from homemade cards, homemade jewelry, and a gift card or two. Very thoughtful and I loved it! Thank you my little family, I have the very best one on the whole earth! I love you!

We also wanted to let the other mom's in our lives know how much we love and appreciate them!
My Mom.

My Mother-In-Law.

Happy Mothers Day!!!

Friday, May 08, 2009

Is It Friday Already?

Wow, is it really Friday? This week FLEW by for me. (Or maybe it BLEW by with the incredible winds we've been having. Ha, ha, I'm so clever.) I don't even really know why; doesn't seem like I did anything major or accomplished much. Kind of like my bank account...suddenly the money is gone and I've got nothing to show for it. Or like a trip to the grocery hour of my time, 100 or so of my dollars, and nothing to make for dinner. And quite honestly, I don't have anything to blog about.

I'm sitting here trying to think of something witty to say, or of some funny story to tell you, but all I can come up with is the fact that I just discovered two holes on the inside thighs of my favorite pants. Boo-hoo...I hate buying pants. I hate buying clothes for that matter. Nothing EVER fits me or looks good on me. Uggghhhh... Why can't they figure out some cute clothing designs for those apple shaped people like myself? I know I'm not alone in this body shape. Okay, enough whining, just had to throw a small pity party for myself there.

Oh...and do you want to hear the big pity party I threw earlier this week? My kids wanted a treat, so we decided to make muddy buddies, but the bowl was in the dishwasher. So I set all the ingredients out on the counter to wait for my big bowl to get done. My mouth was salivating thinking about those chocolaty bits of goodness I was soon to consume. (You should know that I was slightly hormonal and chocolate was more than just a want, it was a NEED.) When I came back downstairs to make the treats, my kids had EATEN all the chocolate chips. Oh my word, I don't think I have ever been so livid about a stupid thing in my life! Warning to all children: DO NOT eat your mother's chocolate when she has PMS!! wasn't pretty.

Things are much better now, and I've forgiven my kids and they me. I decided to get a picture of just me with my kids for my header in honor of Mother's Day, Jarom says I look divorced. No one worry, next month for Father's Day Jarom will get his own dedicated father header.

And this folks, is why I should NEVER blog without a story to tell or a picture to post. Have a great weekend and a Happy Mother's Day!!!

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Singing in the Rain

For the last couple of days we've been having some really great thunder and rain storms. I love a good thunder storm. As long as there aren't cyclone clouds or freakish bolts of lightening involved, it's all good. My kids were out enjoying the rain, having such a good time. Until...

a big clap of thunder ended their party. You should have seen how fast they ran. SO funny!

Tuesday, May 05, 2009


I realize it's Cinco De Mayo and I should probably be doing a delicious Mexican recipe, but...

Ever since I read the words, "candy bar filling" on Wish Trish's blog I have been dying to try this cake. Last night was the night! A very tasty treat indeed! Bear with me, I will give 3 separate recipes, but oh so worth all three! (And Trish makes wedding cakes and such, so these recipes are large. I halved everything and they were perfect for a two layered 9 inch round cake. If you want to see pictures of her beautiful cakes, just search "candy bar cake" on her blog.)

First up, Trish's no-fail cake recipe:
2 (18 ounce) boxes white cake mix (I like Betty Crocker)
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 2/3 cups water
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons real vanilla
2 teaspoons almond extract
2 cups sour cream
8 large egg whites

1. Place all dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl and stir together with a wire whisk.
2. Add the remaining ingredients and beat for 2 minutes.
3. Pour into greased and floured cake pans, filling each pan a little over half full....
4. Lightly tap cake pans on counter to bring air bubbles to top....
5. Bake in preheated 325° F oven until cake tests done. I don't put a baking time here because it depends on the size of the pan. (For my two 9 inch rounds it took about 30 minutes.)

*This is an easy cake to change the flavor of. You can make it with lemon for lemon cake, use a different flavor cake mix (whole eggs instead of whites), etc.

While your cakes are baking away, get started on the filling and frosting.
Candy Bar Cake Filling (Tastes a whole lot homemade chocolate pudding to me!)
1/2 cup sugar
5 tablespoons cornstarch
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 cups whole milk or half-and-half
3 egg whites (beat with a fork until frothy)
1 tsp. vanilla
8 ounces chocolate bars, any flavor (I used Dove Promises)

1. Combine all ingredients except vanilla and chocolate bars in a heavy saucepan.
2. Stir constantly until mixture boils. Boil and stir one additional minute. Do not leave unattended.
3. Remove from heat.
4. Add the vanilla and chocolate bar pieces.
5. Stir until chocolate is completely melted.
6. Pour into a bowl. Press plastic wrap directly onto surface (to prevent pudding-skin). Chill. Don't fill your cakes until this mixture is completely cool throughout.
Trish's Tip:
Filling a cake is simple if done over time. Filling a cake the day you are going to eat it is a race against the clock. My suggestion is to cut your cakes how you want them, pipe icing about the circumference of your finger around the outer edge to be filled, and freeze it for several hours before filling. This allows your filling to stay contained, and also provides support so that the outside of your cake doesn't "burp" as it warms up. After filling re-freeze before stacking and icing.

Trish's Stiff Whipped Cream (Oh my word, just give me a spoon, SO yummy!)
1 bottle (4 cups) heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tablespoon vanilla
and your choice of instant pudding mix (I like to use white chocolate flavor because the whipped cream remains white.)

1. Freeze metal mixing bowl and whisk (or Kitchenaid whip) for at least 1/2 hour.
2. Remove utensils from freezer and immediately pour in whipping cream, sugar, and vanilla and begin whipping hard.
3. When whipped high into whipped cream, add enough pudding mix to stiffen. If I am piping I will add an entire (small size) box of instant pudding mix.
4. Let whip several minutes on high until stiff peaks form (I would estimate 5 minutes or so).That's it! It will stay good in the fridge in an air-tight container until the expiration of the heavy whipping cream. It freezes really beautifully, too.

I realize this is a bad picture, but I wanted you to be able to see the yummy chocolate pudding filling on the inside.

Thanks for the cake tips and recipe Trish!!

Friday, May 01, 2009

Deep Thoughts

Carter's question of the day...."Mom, what would happen if a ghost tickled you?"

There's a thought to ponder.