Tuesday, October 19, 2010

I'm hopping to some blogs...

One thing about this little ol' internet:  There are tons of blogs to read!  It's like reality TV, but without having to eat bugs or vote people off.  Not that I'm opposed to either of those, just in the proper context.

In looking for some quality blogs, I've decided to join in on a blog hop hosted by Nicole at One Little Mister.  Her blog is family friendly and lots of fun.  It's easy to tell that she takes pride and spends some time on it!

So I'll be off doing some visiting.  You can tag along if you want!

Avocados...A contest entry

The Aztecs believed that avocados were a strong aphrodisiac.  I'm not so sure about that, but the avocado is one of nature's most nutrient dense foods.  I've been known to justify my over-consumption of guacamole by mumbling, "It's the good fat!" around a chip smothered in a glob of green goodness.

We love to eat avocados in any form.  I'd probably even try avocado ice cream.  We slice them onto sandwiches, dice them into salads and  mash them into dips.  They're delicious as a topping on ceviche or tossed into Cowboy Caviar (that's another recipe I'll have to post here!). 

All over bloggy-world I have notice the avocado contestMichelle at Scribbit has jumped in and is hosting a contest on her blog. 

Here is my recipe entry, a salad  made with avocado, shrimp, and citrus.  So refreshing!

Avocado in the Sea Salad

2 avocados, peeled and diced
2 tomatoes, diced
1 bunch green onions, sliced, including the tops
1 lb. fresh or frozen already cooked shrimp (If it's frozen, let it thaw in refrigerator first. If they are a larger size, rough chop the shrimp before adding them.)
1 lemon, juiced
1 small bunch of cilantro, chopped (about 1/4 cup)
salt and pepper to taste

Mix together the avocados, tomatoes, green onions and shrimp.  Add lemon juice, cilantro, salt and pepper. 

That's it!  This tastes best if you make it several hours ahead of time.  Can be eaten as a salad, as a salsa, or to top a tostada.  You can even use the recipe as a base and add your favorite ingredients.  Sometimes I'll use red onion, or add diced cucumber, or diced red pepper or fire roasted chilies, or some jalapeno to spice it up.  Yum!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Sunday Soliloquy (when I'm really just rambling on to myself and trying to make sense of it all)...

Last night was Stake Conference, just for the adults, and of course babes in arms are welcome, too.

Love being a part of a group of people who are trying their best to be their best.

Our Area Authority, Elder Scott D. Whiting was here from Hawaii.  He said "Aloha!" when he got up to speak.  Love that!

He spoke about keeping the family strong, and doing that by having a) family scripture study  b)family prayer  c)family home evening.  Radical ideas!

He also said that our main objective, what this all boils down to, is to have the Spirit in our home.

Now, I've been thinking.  How can I do this?  I suffer from a debilitating need to set the bar too high.  I have great expectations, and when those aren't met, I crash miserably.  I expect my children to participate in the above three activities, and when they cause problems, I get really irritated and, quite possibly, I will sometimes even overreact!  (I know, it's hard to believe.  I also know that my mom is laughing when she reads this.)

But then, do I just aim low and be grateful for whatever amount of participation I get out of them?

Is there a happy median?

It is also hard to feel the Spirit when I feel stressed so much of the time.  And again, I admit that some of that stress is self-induced -- if I were more organized, some of it would disappear -- but some of the stress comes from the day-to-day worries about money and kids.  Those are really the two biggest anxiety-producers that I have.  So, if anyone has some advice, I'm open to it.  And I'll just keep praying, and trying to knock some sense into my kids.  Because the older they get, the less they have.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Madsen bike contest...

Madsen Cycles Cargo Bikes

Isn't this the coolest bike EVER!

Of course, she should be wearing a helmet.

I wonder if they make bike helmets for dogs?

I'll be right back, I'm going to google that and I'll let you know what I find out.

And holy helmet, here it is.

I can't stop grinning!

OK, back to what I was REALLY posting about...

Madsen is having a contest, and they're giving away one of these bikes.  LOVE it!

I'll be wishing I had one of these bikes today while we're at the Salmon Festival.  That way I can eat all I want at the salmon bake, and let one of my kids tote me around.

Friday, October 15, 2010


Need I say more?  Not only is it a delicious, almost everybody loves them cookie, but it's also a great nickname for someone you love. 

Come on over here, you little snickerdoodle.  Let me take a little nibble.

As you can see by the spills and splashes, this is well-loved and oft-used recipe.  Don't let that yield: about 5 dozen fool you though, I usually only get 3 dozen out of this.  And I also add a little vanilla, even though it doesn't call for it. 

Because vanilla makes everything better.

Kind of like sour cream.

Hmm. Maybe some vanilla flavored sour cream.

Now that would gross my kids out!

We made these yesterday, and I'll be on a third grade field trip today with a bunch of snickerdoodles. 

I might bring some cookies along, too.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Personalized Holiday Cards

I have to admit that in the past few years I've been TERRIBLE with sending Christmas cards, birthday cards, any holiday cards.  You name it and I haven't sent it.

When I think about personalized cards, it's really easy for me to get way complicated with a design:  handmade, with lots of froo froo and sparkles. Then I get overwhelmed and decide to not even bother with it.

But personalized can actually mean something as easy as:
1. Adding a photo of the kids, cats, dogs, yourself, whatever.
2. A hand-written note to the recipient, even just a few words jotted down in your own actual chicken scratch handwriting.  Shows you care!
3. Have the kids draw a picture or illustration and turn that into a card. You can either use it as it is, or copy and size it onto cardstock  and fold to make a card.  This would work great for ANY holiday.  I've also used my kids own drawings for thank-you notes.  Grandparents especially love these, of course.
4. Instead of a regular folded and sealed in an envelope, send a postcard!  Design it on the computer and print onto sturdy cardstock and trim to a standard postcard size to use the postcard postage.
5. Get the whole family involved!  Have each family member contribute SOMETHING to the card; maybe design an element, create a poem for the inside, choose the font, pick out the perfect photo, and whatever it is that they've contributed, they'll get the satisfaction of knowing that a friend or family member will receive and enjoy that card.

I headed on over to Purple Trail to see what it was all about.  On the top of the website there are three steps to making your own personalized card: 
1. Pick a design   2. Customize your design   3. Order, Print, or E-mail.  It's as easy as 1-2-3. 

Plus, they are offering, For a limited time,

FREE shipping on all Holiday Cards prints! 

Holy cow, I might have to send some cards this year.  I know I've put it in writing here, so I guess I've got to give it the ol' college try.

Visit Purple Trail's website and design your own card.  Give it a whirl.  They make it a cinch!

The Mom Bloggers Club is giving away $100 gift code to Purple Trail for Personalized Holiday Cards.  How cool would that be to win?

Find the contest information right here!


It's no secret that I love chocolate in any form.  I especially adore dark chocolate, and it seems like the more bitter the more I adore it.  When Andy wants to surprise me with a little something, it usually includes a Hershey's Special Dark bar.  Yum.  I have to ration it, and freeze it, so I can break a chunk off and let it melt slowly in my mouth.  Holy cow, my mouth is watering right now!

I know it may come as a shock to some of you, as it has to me, (actually, when I dwell on it my heart beats just a little faster because I am so not ready for it) but Halloween is just around the corner.

That's right, it is 2 weeks and 3 days away.  If you're counting.  Or want to be reminded.

Since we are in a new town, I'm not sure about how much candy we'll be giving out, but I heard rumor that most of the population congregates in one particular neighborhood, which isn't ours, to do their trick-or-treating.

That said, I really should have some candy on hand, just in case.

The Mom Bloggers Club is sponsoring a contest for it's members that includes a Hershey's Halloween Prize Pack, of which I am hoping to win one.  Because I love chocolate.  And nothing says chocolate like Hershey's.

“We've had bad luck with children; they've all grown up” Christopher Morley

My children and nieces and nephews are growing up. They do amazing and wonderful things every day.  They are working at jobs, learning and growing by leaps and bounds, hitting the curve balls that life is constantly throwing them.

Our nephew just headed off to bootcamp in the Army, while his wife and daughter wait it out at home.

My cutie of a niece posted some videos of her singing on youtube.  

And Brian jumped right into football this year. He has never played before, and ended up starting late, but has worked hard and even gotten some playing time.

I can't believe my child is playing football. Seems like he was just in diapers, waking me up at 6:00 in the morning to go out to the backyard to play baseball. Good times. Now I wish he would get up on his own at 6:00 for seminary. Not so good times.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Bird shower...

These little birdies skipped the birdbath and took a shower in the sprinklers.
For more wordless wednesday, visit 5 minutes for mom.

What had me cracking up this morning...

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Keep your eye on the prize!

The other night Joseph picked out a book to read before bed. He wanted to hear about Jesus walking on the water, so we looked it up in the Bible Treasury for LDS Children and read it. We talked about Faith, and not beings scared if we have faith in Jesus Christ.

While I was listening to LDS Radio, I heard the same scriptures read from Matthew chapter 14: 22

¶ And straightway Jesus constrained his disciples to get into a ship, and to go before him unto the other side, while he sent the multitudes away. 23 And when he had sent the multitudes away, he went up into a mountain apart to pray: and when the evening was come, he was there alone.
24 But the ship was now in the midst of the sea, tossed with waves: for the wind was contrary.
25 And in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went unto them, walking on the sea.
26 And when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, It is a spirit; and they cried out for fear.
27 But straightway Jesus spake unto them, saying, Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid.
28 And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water.
29 And he said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus.
30 But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me.
31 And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?
32 And when they were come into the ship, the wind ceased.
33 Then they that were in the ship came and worshiped him, saying, Of a truth thou art the Son of God.

How many times have I thought that I have the faith and the confidence to do something, then falter, and have to rely on the hand of the Lord to pull me up and save me from drowning?

Thanks, Joe, for choosing the story that I needed to hear.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Sounds like a horror film...

So, I'm filling out Nutella's basketball form, since she wants to try out for the 7th grade team, along with 95% of the 7th grade girls, and here's what it says:

(Sport or Activity) Basketball, by its very nature, poses some inherent risk of a participant being seriously injured.  These injuries could include, but are not limited to, the following:

1. Sprains/strains
2. Fractured bones
3. Cuts/abrasions
4. Unconsciousness
5. Paralysis
6. Disfigurement
7. Head injuries
8. Loss of eyesight
9. Death

Maybe I'll just say no.
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