Friday, December 16, 2011


Tonight was our annual gingerbread house decorating party.  MK invited her seminary class.  There are tons of conflicts in December so we usually only get a few kids and this year was no exception.  But it was still a lot of fun. 

Saturday, December 10, 2011

T'is the Season

Last night was our awesome ward Christmas party. There was caroling, Santa, treats and stories. But the best part was visiting with good friends:) I took Sharma Sleight's amazing Cranberry Salsa.

It's too good not to include the recipe:
1 12 oz. bag of fresh cranberries
3/4 cup sugar
1 jalapeno pepper, seeds removed
2 green onions
2 T fresh cilantro, chopped
1/4 tsp. cumin
Blend all ingredients in a food processor or a blender. Let it sit overnight. Pour over cream cheese. Serve with wheat thins. Addictive.

I also made this fudge (sans the nuts):

Fantasy Fudge recipe

MK with her good friend Janessa:

Joined by Katie and Jesse. Only two of them got the tacky sweater memo.

Mikey and MK before tonight's stake dance:

I've decided to embrace the "simplify and reduce" motto of provident living by cutting way back on my Christmas decorations this year. In other words, I was too freakin' lazy to go all out and decorate downstairs too. I'm perfectly content with my main level:)

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Calories Don't Count the Last Thursday of November

How can it be that we are dragging out the Christmas stuff already? It has been so incredibly nice this weekend that we figured we ought to put the lights up outside today instead of when it's freezing later. We had such a fun Thanksgiving. The first thing I do every year to kick off the holidays is to make cranberry orange nut bread. It is some seriously good stuff. It was just going to be the immediate family for dinner but everything changed when we were in AZ and the James family signed up for the missionaries. They didn't know that we had already asked them to come a month earlier so we thought, what the heck, let's invite them too. Then we invited the Moffitts. So at this point, counting the two sets of missionaries, we thought: cool. We have 20 people now. But... then we wanted to invite Leti and her kids since they are awesome and her husband is in Afghanistan. And when we found out the Bournes weren't going to Atlanta after all, we had to have them too. So in a matter of 4 days we went from having 10 to 32. It was so much fun!
Teen Table
Cute Janessa, Mary Kate and Ashley
The missionaries at the kiddie table:)
Thanksgiving wouldn't be Thanksgiving without football! And Dallas won their 4th game in a row. Dad is one happy camper.
The grown up table;)
Pies, pies and more pies.
Some of the young men playing Risk.
My favorite Thanksgiving food is green bean supreme. Thanks for making it, Grandma!

Monday, November 21, 2011


It's that time of year when we count our blessings so here goes...
I'm thankful for:
Laura & Jordan
Jeff & Krista & Baby Boy to Be Nielson
Nathan & Stephanie

Good Friends
Health and strength
What more could I possibly ask for?

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

My Birthday Boy

24 years ago my biggest baby was born weighing in at 9 lbs. 11 oz.
23 years ago:
20 years ago:
16 years ago:
11 years ago:
3 years ago:
Happy Birthday Tom Tom! Why did you have to grow up so fast???

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Our Shiny New Toy

That's right!  It's a new kitchen faucet.  Who thinks I should get a new kitchen to go with it?  Our practice Thanksgiving was a big hit.  The brined turkey turned out pretty good, but the deep fried one was even better!  Two sets of elders joined us to taste our new recipes.  Like a carrot souffle and a chocolate pecan chess pie.  They were my two favorite dishes of the night!  Thanks Nancy and Marilyn!  Can't wait til next year;)

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Crazy Week!

This past week was basketball tryouts.  MK went in feeling so so about it.  She has been struggling with Algebra II which has been overwhelming to say the least.  She also had a killer headache on day two which I'm sure affected her play, but after trying out, she still felt pretty good about her chances of making the team.  I was pretty shocked when she got in the car and told me that she got cut. How could they not want her?  MK is awesome. She is also super positive which is probably why she is taking it way better than I am. Ever since Wednesday night, I have been boiling over with righteous indignation, but I realize that I need to get over it.  It's just a silly JV team that in the long run, nobody really cares about.  A small bump in the road of life that she's already driven over.

And I mean that literally-- she got her learner's permit on Tuesday and has taken to driving like a duck to water.  She's a natural behind the wheel and on her second lesson she was driving through what I like the to call, the bowels of Oakton.  (Vale, Fox Mill, Lawyers etc...).  MK Rocks!  And so what if she has to sit on a cushion to see over the dashboard, she still rocks.

Tomorrow we are having our annual practice Thanksgiving at the Copans.  Every year we get together and force ourselves to try out new recipes.  Today MK helped me make the brine (from the Pioneer Woman's website) that I'm going to soak the turkey in overnight.

In other news, I just finished this very cute quilt (with minkie on the back) for my first grandchild who will be born in Feb in Texas and will be spoiled beyond belief:

I couldn't help myself and had to go with the little cowboy theme.  Now onto the next project....

Monday, November 7, 2011

Guess who's 22 today?
Happy Birthday, Laura!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Our Trip West

10 reasons why our trip to Utah and AZ was awesome:
1. Hanging out with cool peeps like Laura and Jordan.  And Tom. And his friend, Leslie.
2. Eating at J-Dawgs 
3. Doing jig saw puzzles at Grandma's
4. Taking walks in Lynndyl
5. Bombay House
6. BYU bookstore fudge
8. Caves
9. Planes
10. My first double double from In and Out.  Insanely fattening, but kicked the trash out of Five Guys.  Sorry, it was just that good.
Oh, and one more for good measure:  
11.We missed the crappy weather:)

 Dad's chili!

Lynndyl's number?


 Jill & Walker joined us:)

Bombay House.  Get the Lamb.

 The hostess with the mostest.

 Lynndyl Cemetery with GRASS!

 Doing what the G-Parents do.
Lest we forget.