Saturday, December 20, 2008

Out Takes

Just a few fun shots of our family that didn't make it into the Christmas card.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Seminary Boys

Today was our last day of Seminary for the semester. As much as I HATE getting up early, going out in the cold and dark, and planning an hour long lesson every day, I truly love teaching these boys. They are always cheerful and alert and interested in the morning. I don't know how they do it. I am so VERY lucky to have them in my class each day. Here they are with the leather bracelets I got them that say "Steadfast and Immovable" to remind them to be as the apostles of New Testament: Steadfast and immovable in keeping the commandments of God and always abounding in good works.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Time To Make Granola..

Sophie just walked in while I was adding these photos to my blog. She looked at me and said, "You should call that 'Bored'." Then she said, "Just some friendly advice" and walked out. I've GOT to get a life. Okay. First, add 8 cups of rolled oats (not quick oats) to a big roasting pan like this one sprayed with Pam. Then add 2 Tablespoons cinnamon, 1/2 bag coconut, 1/2 bag sunflower seeds, 1/2 bag chopped pecans, small bag slivered almonds, 1/4 cup sesame seeds, 1/2 cup wheat germ, nutmeg (I like to shave the real thing in, but you can use ground) and 1/2 cup brown sugar.

Next mix it all up.

On the stove melt 2 sticks butter, 2 cups honey, and a glob of olive oil. Pour on top of dry ingredients and mix up really well so it is all coated. Put in oven on 300 degrees for one hour and STIR EVERY 15 MINUTES. Mix it up well each time. Sometimes I let it go an extra 15 minutes if it seems a little too wet still. When it cools add golden raisins and craisins if you have them. Yum. I think I'll go have some.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

How To Make Bread

My family loves this bread recipe that I got from my friend Sylwia Hardman. So I am going to show you exactly how I make it! First you make THE SPONGE. 4 1/2 teaspoons yeast and 3/4 cup warm water. Stir, then add 1 cup wheat flour. Let sit for 45 min.

Then you mix the dough. Add to the sponge: 2 1/2 cups warm water, 2 cups whole wheat flour. Mix. Add 1/2 cup wheat gluten, 2 1/2 tablespoons oil, 1/3 cup honey and 1 1/2 tablespoon salt. Mix and slowly add: 2 cups whole wheat flour and 1 1/2 cups white flour. I mix it in my Kitchenaid with the dough hook for not more than 5 minutes.

Put the ball of dough in a greased bowl, cover and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour. I put mine in a warm oven with a bowl of hot water. I heard that is good to do, but I don't know why. Then take it out, punch it down, divide into two balls. Roll out, roll up, put in loaf pan and bake 30 minutes at 325. Easy Peasy.

Stay tuned till next time when I teach you how to make my famous and delicious GRANOLA! Who says I have too much time on my hands?!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Christmas Cactus

Have you ever seen such an amazing Christmas cactus? Someone gave this to Joe a few years ago as a tiny, innocent plant and it did what all plants do under his green exploded and took over the world. You should have seen the vine that I saved us all from not too long ago. It was a close call. I conquered that but it continues to want to come back. I do what I can to keep us all safe.

Thanksgiving In Utah

We got to spend a really fun Thanksgiving in Utah with my sister's family. The kids always have fun together and it was wonderful to see her, her husband and my parents. We also got to go to Heber and visit old friends and also to Payson to visit Joe's aunt and uncle. It was a busy four days! We love going there and wish we could move back. Joe did some interviews while we were there, so you never know what could happen!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Landon's Hobby

Most teenagers have hobbies. I get that. Most parents have to drag their kids away from Xboxes, cell phones, facebook, and other sundry escapes that teenagers love and need (or so they think). Books are a big one for my kids. I have to drag them away to eat, sleep, do chores or study. They love their books. But here is one hobby that is tough to drag my son away from. This is Landon's latest copy of his Christmas arrangement. It is a work in progress-- and what a work it is. Every waking moment is spent slaving over these pages. Perfecting and playing. This is what this kid does for fun. He writes, erases, writes, erases until he has it just right. But then he adds more. It is quite something. If and when he ever finishes it I'll put it on youtube.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Cincinnati Halloween

This year we decided to do Halloween right. We went to Cincinnati for my best friend's production of Macbeth! This friend, Jennifer Eliason, is the most talented, amazing person I know. And I know a lot of talented, amazing people! She is the director/producer of the Lawrenceburg Shakespeare Company run completely by teenagers. The teens do the acting, lighting, sound, etc. all directed by Jennifer. It was a magnificent performance punctuated just enough by modern music and choreography to keep even children interested and entertained. I can't say enough about how impressive it was. On Halloween night the adults went out to dinner while the kids dressed up as...I'm not sure what. I know there were some ghosts involved, but I'm not sure what the others were. We had fun taking senior pictures of Landon's friend Cody (see last two pictures of this post) and running around the city seeing the sights. Thanks, Eliasons, for a wonderful weekend!