Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Guess What I've Been Up To???

Making sugar cookies!!! Tomorrow I'm throwing a baby shower for my cute friend at work and we are having a little lunch for everyone. Tasty french dip sandwiches, salads and desserts! Yum! I am so looking forward to it! I thought I better add some sweets to the party!
Here is the recipe:
Elise's Sugar Cookies
1 cup butter
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs
1/2 cup less 3 tbsp. milk
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
4 cups flour
Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes.

Cream Cheese Frosting

8 oz. cream cheese
1/4 cup butter
4 cups powdered sugar

My very, very, very talented mom made Stacie and her baby boy this wonderful hooded towel and two washclothes! It's my favorite baby gift to give because they are so useful and they last such a long time! I know you will love it Stacie!!!

So, speaking of my extremely talented mom... here is another one of her latest creations that she gave me for an early Valentines gift. I have numerous sets of these hanging towels that my mom makes for every season and holiday. Are they not the stinkin' cutest things ever?? I absolutely LOVE them! Thank you so much mom! I love you very much!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Cleaning Makes Me Happy!

Tonight my house is clean! I know that it may only last until morning but for now it's perfect! The vents have been vacuumed out and washed, rugs washed, bathrooms clean and sparkly, floors swept and mopped, and everything dusted and vacuumed!! It's the most rewarding feeling! Almost like good therapy! (I probably really need some of that!) Tomorrow I'm escaping with my friends for the day and so I make myself earn the right to get to play and have ME time!! I don't know why but I do that a lot. For example if I want to scrapbook, then I have a list of things I have to accomplish before I reward myself and scrapbook! Then I don't feel guilty that I should be doing something else. It probably seems really strange to all of you but it really works for me in keeping my sanity.

Speaking of cleaning, I LOVE THIS MOP!!! My mom gave it to me for Christmas this last year and used it for the first time tonight. I think she got it from QVC (we're all junkies) and it's from Don Aslet. It's a microfiber mop and you don't even have to use any cleaning product when you clean with it. Just water!!! I have to admit I still put a little bit of Lysol in the water more for the smell good factor. Then the house truly smells clean!! And you can take the mop head off and throw it in the washer!! This clean freak is addicted!

And I've just got to give a huge thanks to my sweet Conner tonight for all of his help with the cleaning chores. I usually do all of my cleaning when the kids are with their dad so I am spending all of my limited time with them and not worrying about getting the house clean. Conner was so anxious to help! He vacuumed the whole house and spend about an entire hour vacuuming out all of the vents! He was such a helper to me! Look at him jammin to his Ipod! Just like I was! Thanks bud, I love you and appreciated all of your help tonight! I couldn't have done it without you!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Look What Santa Brought!

My kids have been asking me when I'm going to blog about Christmas, so here you go little ones.
Wow! Santa found us again this year! Thankfully everyone was good and he didn't have to pass us by. We had a wonderful, fantastic Christmas and the day couldn't have been more perfect. I didn't have the kids until noon but the nice part of that was, it made the day last longer! Clay and I got up and went down to my mom and dads and had hot chocolate and apple cinnamon toast for breakfast and then just hung out until the kids got there. Then we opened gifts with everyone and eventually made our way back home. The kids didn't get to see what Santa had brought until about 4:00 in the afternoon. I LOVED IT! They were a little anxious but that's what makes Christmas fun!!
Conner's Santa Loot

Courtney's Santa Stash

The kiddos waiting in the laundry room to see what Santa brought...
Conner with his new camera...

And his Case International Combine! Santa really made this boy happy this year!

Can you tell she is a little bit excited??? She was so much fun!

Hanna Montana guitar game! "It's the best of both worlds"
Later in the day we made her name out of Bendaroos and...
traveled to space in "Moon Shoes"Clay got some Steeler spirit!!
And I got a sewing machine, NOT to be a seamstress or to mend our clothes, HELLO, to scrapbook! Well, I'm going to give it a try anyway.

This was the other project that I worked on before Christmas. My sisters and I had these school desks when we were kids and Keesha thought it would be fun to spray paint them from turquoise to black and then I put the girls names on them with vinyl. They turned out so cute! Great idea Keesh!!

Friday, January 9, 2009

The Handprints on My Heart

This is the calendar that I received from my sweet Courtney for Christmas that she made in Kindergarten. I had to post the artwork made from her handprints for each month of the year, plus I thought this was the cutest thing ever! She had to demonstrate how she had created each one of the pictures with her hands and how Mrs. Tyger had put paint all over her hands and even up her wrist!! It cracked me up!
My Handprints
I know you wipe some away
But these handprints were made to stay
So keep them forever a treasure they'll be
A special "I Love You" for you from me.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Mom's Delicious Roll Recipe

Since I posted a picture of my mom's chili and hot rolls on Christmas Eve I thought I would also post her recipe for the rolls. I had never attemped to make anything that involved yeast as an ingredient until a little over a year ago. And now I have mastered these rolls. In fact this picture is of the rolls I made for Thanksgiving dinner this year. And I make them for Sunday dinner all the time instead of buying rolls at the grocery store bakery or Rhodes frozen dough. Thanks Mom for teaching me how to be so domestic! I can't wait to try another batch wearing one of my new aprons that I got for Christmas!!

Place in large bowl:
1 cup butter flavor Crisco (use only Crisco)
3/4 cup sugar (1 cup sugar for sweet rolls)
2 tsp. salt

Dissolve 2 tbs. yeast in 1/2 cup luke-warm water, let bubble up. Boil 2 cups water and pour over shortening mixture. Let cool slightly. Add: 4 beaten eggs and 2 cups flour. Beat with wooden spoon. (I do all of this in my kitchen aid mixer and it works just fine) Add yeast mixture. Gradually stir in 5 1/2 cups more flour, no more. Stir hard with wooden spoon. Place in greased bowl and cover. Let rise until doubled. Divide into 5 parts and make rolls. Let rise until doubled. Bake at 375 10-15 minutes. (When I roll them out I cut them into circles and dip them into melted butter and then fold them in half and then put them on my cookie sheets) They are delicious! Enjoy!!!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

New Years Eve

We celebrated the New Year with one of my very bestest friends Joni and her husband Tom. We had dinner "redneck style" at LD's and then came back to our house and played some games and ate some yummy treats. We had soooo much fun, laughing, singing, humming and forming things out of a ball of play dough. It was a fantastic night! The kids even we able to stay awake past midnight. Even if we totally missed the clock turning to 12:00! We were having so much fun it was like 12:07 before we realized we had missed it! Opps!!!
We played "Partini" and some similar mini games from "Cranium".

I found a recipe for this fun cheese ball that I made into a snowman!
My little night owls!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

My Own Little Rudolph

Courtney came home from school the week before Christmas wearing this cute little reindeer hat that she had made in school. And her teacher had put a little red spot on her nose so she was Rudolph. I thought it was pretty cute and took a picture. (This way I don't have to save the hat. Shhhh...don't tell her)

Christmas Day

Santa made his appearance! And spoiled two deserving kids (well in my opinion). They each got an IPOD, a game and some clothes. Conner's main gift was an electric guitar which he was pretty excited about. Courtney was happy for her "pink IPOD" and "Ponyville". I was surprised that we had to go and wake the kids up this year around 6:30. I don't ever remember my parents waking my sisters and I up EVER!!!! We had no problem waking up long before mom and dad wanted us to! After we saw what Santa had brought we opened up a few presents and then had to be back down to my parents by 7:30. The kids making their way down the hall (half asleep) to see what Santa brought!

Grandma & Grandpa gave all the girls little Cabbage Patch dolls. Which they all loved!
After everyone opened presents we had breakfast, toasted apple cinnamon bread and hot chocolate! YUM! Then my kids went with thier dad for a few hours. We all returned to mom and dad's and played the new Wii. I should have taken some pictures... it was a blast!!!! I love how interactive it is. We were cheering each other on and had a great time! I love the bowling game!! I kicked Clay's bootie! We also had a major snow blizzard Christmas night that dumped over a foot of new snow! I loved it! Other than it made the power flicker several times it made Christmas nice and cozy! And kept me home from work on Friday, a much needed recovery day! I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas! Now on to a New Year!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Christmas Eve

I'm finally getting around to posting about our Christmas festivities for this year so here goes:
On Christmas Eve we always go down to my parents house (just 2 houses away) and eat dinner, sometimes play games open a couple of presents and watch "Christmas Vacation". Before we left I had to take a picture of our house all lit up in full "Clark Griswold Style".

My mom makes homemade chili and hot rolls for dinner. It was delicious!!!

Then my mom always gives us all new pj's to wear. It wouldn't be Christmas without this tradition! It's always nice to get a new, warm pair of pajamas.

Then a couple of years ago my sisters and I started a new tradition that we give our kids a new book on Christmas Eve. I have really enjoyed searching for the perfect book for each of my kids and hope that we continue this tradition like the one my mom started so many years ago.

Courtney had made Clay and I a gift in Kindergarten that she was soooo excited to give us. She couldn't wait until Christmas day for us to open it and she insisted that we open it early. (Which for anyone who knows me this totally breaks my very strict Christmas rules!!) The wrapping paper was made by her with Christmas stamps. It was adorable!

Inside her cute little present was the most priceless gift made my her precious hands... a 2009 calendar with little pictures made out of her handprints. I will have to post some more pictures of the artwork so you understand what I mean but for example November was her hand made into a turkey. It was the cutest thing ever! She was so proud of her little creation!! And I was a proud mommy to receive this wonderful reminder of her kindergarten year.

Hanging out with my sisters Breck & Keesha.

We had a wonderful Christmas Eve! I love the anticipation of the day ahead and mostly being able to spend this time with my family, husband and children. They are the most important thing! I'm so grateful for them and for this wonderful season, for the birth of the Savior Jesus Christ and for the sacrifices that he made for each one of us. Sometimes when I feel down and can't take anymore I think of all of the pain and suffering that He made for each one of us. I feel very blessed!