Thursday, April 28, 2011

A Sense of...Style?

Jacob came in to the house while I was cleaning the kitchen.  I noticed his shoes and asked if they were new.  

"No," he said, "I don't wear them often, I feel goofy in 'em!"  At that point I looked up and noticed his other clothes. I couldn't talk because I was laughing so hard.

 What do you think?  Is it the shoes or the cut-offs from 7th grade and the Saver's Christmas shirt?   BTW - he had been playing baseball with a group of friends.  He had actually worn this "outfit" in public!  He must feel comfortable enough to  sport his own style. (I know of a pair of cut-offs that are NOT going to make their way back to his room)

Monday, April 25, 2011

Jumping for Easter Joy and Eclairs

Now that Spring is here (if you believe that, I have a Sony Walkman to sell you), our favorite activity with the grandkids is jumping on the trampoline.  We had all the kiddos over on Saturday for a barbecue and a wet Easter egg hunt!

The beginning of the hunt.

It was a success.  I'm sure we'll be discovering un-found eggs for the next few weeks.

I went to the Taste of Home cooking school last week.  One of the recipes featured was this one for eclairs.  It's super simple and delicious!

1 cup water 
1/2 cup butter, cubed
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp. salt
4 eggs
2 1/2 cups cold milk
1 package (5.1 ounces) instant vanilla pudding mix
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 ounces semisweet chocolate or 1/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 Tablespoons butter
1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
2 to 3 Tablespoons hot water

♥In a large saucepan, bring water and butter to a boil.  

Add flour and salt all at once and stir until a smooth ball forms.  Remove from heat.  Let stand for 5 minutes.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Continue beating until mixture is smooth and shiny.

♥Using a tablespoon or a gallon size zip-lock bag with the corner cut...

...form dough into 4 inch x 1 1/2 inch strips on a greased baking sheet.  

Bake at 400 degrees for 35 minutes or until puffed and golden.  Remove to a wire rack.  Split eclairs open.  Cool
♥In a large bowl, beat milk and pudding mix according to package directions.  In another bowl, whip cream until soft peaks form.  Beat in sugar and vanilla, fold into pudding. Fill eclairs.
♥For frosting, in a microwave, melt chocolate and butter; stir until smooth.  Stir in sugar and enough hot water to achieve a smooth consistency.  Cool slightly.  Frost eclairs.  Store in refrigerator.

Enjoy!  Have a napkin handy.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Easter Message

I removed the video because it came on as soon as the blog was opened and I wasn't sure how to fix it.  

 Oh sweet, the joy this sentence gives. I  know that my Redeemer lives!
Happy Easter!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Road Trip Revisited

We're back from our road trip to Nauvoo and surrounding areas.  Actually we've been back for a while but it has taken me this long to post pictures.  Even though I have some clever  and funny things to say, I'll just get on with the slide show.   It won't take long, I'll choose just a few of the hundreds taken:

Nebraska landscape.  Notice how I inserted myself in to the picture? Hitchcock would be proud!

Winter Quarters Temple in Iowa.

Got to Nauvoo late Sunday night and checked in to our old and cozy hotel.  This isn't our hotel, it's just an old cabin but I thought I'd try to trick you.

This is our hotel room.  How quaint is this? The hotel was built in 1840 as a residence. It seemed like not much had changed since it was first built!  Luckily indoor plumbing was added to the building.

I thought the ice dispenser was fun.  

The Magnolia trees were beautiful!

This is a sampling of the beautiful bronze statues in the Monument to Women Memorial Garden that's just outside the Visitor's Center.

In the Family Living Center, we were taught how to make candles, ash bread, pottery, barrels, and rope.  Andy's helping to make the rope here. 
Notice that no one else is in the building?  We timed our trip perfectly.  Not too many people were there and we had many of the sites to ourselves!

Here's a typical bed that uses rope to support the straw tick.  The rope would loosen after several nights, so it needed to be tightened. This is where the term "sleep tight" comes from. 

This Bee Box is in Wilford Woodruff's home. This is a device to help lead you to find a beehive. Children would take half of this box, go out and catch a bee, return home and attach the rest of the box filled with flour, coat the bee in flour, and release the bee. The flour slowed down the bee and it was easy to follow it to its hive.

This is one of the missionaries making a miniature horseshoe in the blacksmith shop.

 The Nauvoo Temple is a beacon on the hill.  It's beautiful inside and out.

On the temple grounds is this statue of Joseph and Hyrum Smith on their way to Carthage.

This is the room in the Carthage Jail where Joseph and Hyrum were martyred by the mob.

This is the upstairs dungeon where Willard Richard placed John Taylor, who had been shot, to protect him from the mob. 

The Carthage Jail was a very spiritual place.   

We left Nauvoo and traveled through Missouri to see Liberty Jail and the Visitors Center in Independence.  Our final place to visit was Adam-Ondi-Ahman.  What a beautiful place. I was told that there's nothing here but a plaque...but there's more.

And it's not just Andy.

Taking this trip has helped me appreciate the spirit of the early Saints.  Their faith, dedication, obedience, commitment and strength is truly inspirational.

Are you still here?  You can wake up now.  Thanks for visiting.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Technical Difficulties!!

I'm here in beautiful Nauvoo basking in the spirit and events of the city. I was hoping to bore you with the hundreds of pictures I've taken along the way but, this blog has been a frustration. If you have checked my blog during the past 4 days, you may have noticed that photo bucket was having a Hay Day - or is it Hey Day - with my blog! It's all strange and this is the first time I've been able to sign on. However, I can't even insert can thank me later.

I hope to get this up and running soon AND coming to visit all of you! In the meantime, Andy and I are enjoying our road trip!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Good Luck!

You've heard it said many times and have probably said it yourself - I know I have.  If someone is having an interview for a job, getting married, picking out new carpet, taking a final, going skiing for the first time, or a myriad of other events; we may say, "Good Luck!"
Some people really believe in tokens of good luck such as: a four leaf clover, a rabbit's foot (not lucky for the rabbit), a horse shoe, rubbing the head of a red-headed boy or having a cricket chirping on your hearth.

I don't consider myself a superstitious person but there are a few things that I consider lucky.
When I go to the mall, the grocery store, the gym or anywhere there's a large parking lot; if I find a parking place where I can pull straight through two parking places and be in the same aisle as the front door and then to be able to pull straight out of the parking place when I leave, I know it will be a lucky day!  

Google Image - You can tell by the way the cars are parked that there will be many people who will have a lucky day!

You might remember from a previous post that I LOVE  glitter.  Just to be able to make something using glitter makes for a lucky day.  However, you may not be aware of this little known fact:  after working with glitter, if you find one or two sparkles any where on your body, especially on the face, that is good luck!  

Last week I worked with students as they decorated paper Easter eggs with glue and glitter.  At the end of the project, many students were OCD in getting each tiny square of glitter off their hands and clothes.  I let them  know how lucky they'd be if they miss a few glitter spots.  Today I was doing therapy with a 5-year-old.  There were a few morsels of glitter on the table and one eventually found its way to her hand. She held up her hand and said, "Look! I'm lucky!"  I felt proud. 

Last, but not least, if you find an old fanny pack that had been hiding for years, just before you leave on vacation, you will really have a lucky day!

And if you take a picture of it on your ironing board you'll bring double the luck!
(I'll be so stunning in Old Nauvoo next week!)

What do you consider to be your good luck charm? 

Sidenote: We're driving to Nauvoo.  I looked on the weather map only to see warnings of severe weather with possible tornadoes during our drive time.  Wish us luck!!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Spoke Too Soon?

After my last post about flowers, sun and Spring, we woke up to THIS on Sunday morning! Six inches of heavy, wet snow.  See the tree on the right?  That's our apricot tree that was filled with blossoms.  I don't think we'll be having apricots this year.  Mixed emotions... 

Here are my poor, beaten daffodils.   

Conference weekend is always a fun weekend filled with family, food, fun and, oh yeah, conference!   I always make cinnamon rolls during this weekend. 
I used the Lion House Pantry roll recipe to make these delicious rolls...  

...and frosted them with cream cheese frosting. Yum!

Here's a snippet of what happens when the guys go to Priesthood Meeting on Saturday night. This activity was after homemade pizzas and a healthy dose of sugar!

Hawaiian Haystacks for dinner on Sunday.   Is this a wish for a warmer place on a snowy day?

Conference weekend fills me physically and spiritually.