Sunday, December 30, 2007

"It's Just What I Wanted"

One of the best things about being a parent, in my opinion, is watching the excitment and delight of Christmas morning. Ryanne had the best reactions and expressions. Everything that she saw was "just what I wanted". Even Jonah was pretty impressed with Santa's ability to deliver.
"How did he know exactly what I wanted?" I wanted to remind him that he wrote a letter, but I let it go. The stocking stuffers were delicious and I have to say that the day was very enjoyable!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Holiday Happenings

Matt is 32! He had a great birthday and I was brave enough to try and make a truly Southern dinner. I made chicken and dumplings, collard greens, fried okra and a peppermint- red velvet cake. It was a success! Thanks to a great recipe from Betsy Jennings and help from my younger brother Jacob, the dinner was great and it even passed the test of two southern boys who grew up on this food. We also decorated Gingerbread houses, that were homemade, and the kids had a great time with their cousins eating candy while they were decorating. We have had so much fun with our cousins and family this week!

Triple Layer Peppermint Red Velvet Cake (Southern Living)

Pretty, isn't it?

Owen's house

Savannah helped mom decorate

Ryanne's house

Jonah's house

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Packing Peanuts and the last cookies

We received a bunch of boxes in the mail containing Christmas presents and the best part for Savannah was the packing peanuts. She stayed in the box for quite awhile. Jonah and Ryanne wanted a turn too, so they all took turns playing and splashing. When Savannah was done she tried to run away and eat some. If only Santa knew that something so simple and inexpensive would keep their attention for so long! Thanks Papa Frank and Grandma Becky!

Macadamia Lime Cookies and Chocolate Chip
The macadamia cookies were the best tasting of the cookies we have made. I made another batch this morning to take to a family Christmas party. Yeah- we are done with the cookie making!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Cookies, our Snow Pile and Aud's Orange Cake

Gingerbread people and trees, chocolate cranberry oat bars and double chocolate bites

Matt thought it would be a great idea to put all the snow that he was shoveling off the driveway into a big pile. His reasoning was that when everyone else's snow melted, we would still have some snow left, if our pile was the biggest. Good idea, except for the fact that it is covering the sidewalk to our front door and almost burying the tiny tree in our yard. It is fun to sit on, though!

Audrey's Orange Cake from Portugal
My dad bought a case of oranges and I was getting sick of eating so many every day. I remembered this cake that my sister made right after she got home from her mission. It is so good and so easy! You just have to juice a couple of oranges and add flour, sugar, eggs, and baking powder. It is so good. I made one to take to my neighbor but we couldn't resist digging in so the next day I made another one. I am telling you this is the easiest thing to bake and it makes your house smell so good. Thanks Aud!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Jonah's pictures

Jonah loves taking pictures with my phone's camera. I was so surprised when I looked this last time at all the photos he took because there were a bunch that were actually really cute and not fuzzy. Amazing- the talent of a 5 year old, don't you think?

Cookies and a Craft

Strawberry Cheesecake Cookie Bars and Chocolate Pistachio Pinwheels

Chewy Ginger Cookies and Candy Dipped Pretzel Sticks

We made the easiest craft ever. It was these adorable rudolph ornaments. You know it had to be easy if I was going to attempt it. They turned out pretty cute too! If anyone is interested it was featured in Parents magazine.
Jonah made his first doorbell drop by himself. Matt and Ryanne were hiding behind our car and Jonah ran next door, rang the doorbell and made a safe getaway. He was so excited and Matt was actually surprised that he pulled it off all alone, especially because he had to run through snow in the dark. Go Jonah!

Sunday, December 9, 2007

More snow and more cookies

Mint Polka dot Trees and PB&J Linzer Stars

Matt building a snowman at midnight

stained glass sugar cookies

Friday, December 7, 2007

Rewind to Ryanne's b-day!

We got our camera a few days after Ryannes birthday. Luckily Lar took some pics, so even though it was over a month ago, I thought I would put up the highlights of her birthday.

Jonah with the legs of the unicorn pinata

Ry hugging her new pet puppy (stuffed of course)

Ry going for the gold in pinata hitting

starting to eat the cake

Ry's pink pony cake and her new my little ponies

jacob really enjoying his food

Pretty party girl

jonah smiling for the camera

waiting for the festivities to begin

savannah with her good friend Andrew

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Cookie 2 & 3 and the Olive Oil Accident

I was trying to be a good daughter. I was making dinner and cookies at my moms while my mom, dad, and Andrew were shopping in Salt Lake. I was doubling the vegetarian lasagna so we could freeze one for the holidays. Savannah was happy as a clam in the pantry with the door closed. I decided to check on her. She had dumped a 2 liter bottle of olive oil all over the floor and was playing in it with kitchen utensils. She was also sitting in it and spreading it around with towels. Fun cleanup for me! Ironically, yesterday Matt asked Savannah if she was going to get into everything like Ryanne, or not so much, like Jonah. This might have been our answer.

My dad was in the cookie spirit too. He made a double batch of his mothers Oatmeal Chocolate Chip recipe and we used some of the cookies on our plates to give away too. cookie #3 was a stained glass sugar cookie. Make your fave sugar cookie and cut a shape in the middle. We made Christmas tree shapes. Bake for half the time and then add crushed up jolly ranchers to the shape in the middle. Bake for the remaining time and you have a pretty cookie to share!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Christmas Cookie Fairy= Day 1

Instead of trying to make 15 different cookies on one day and taking beautiful plates of assorted goodies to everyone we know, I decided that we would make 1 different cookie for 15 days and take a couple plates around the neighborhood each night. Here is today's product Chocolate-Candy Cane Cookies Jonah loves taking things to people's doorsteps and then ringing the doorbell and running away. So we are off to make a getaway in the snow!

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Tis' the Season

Snowman tree

Superman theme decorated Christmas tree

It is officially Christmas time! Santa came to Tooele today and we welcomed about 8 inches of snow. It snowed all day and while it is pretty to look at, we realized that we have no snow gear (snowpants, boots, gloves, etc.) and so the kids really can't go and play outside yet! BRRRR!

On Thursday we went to Salt Lake and attended the Festival of Trees. It is a fundraiser for Primary Childrens Hospital that happens every year. People decorate and donate Christmas trees, wreaths, gingerbread houses, and all sorts of crafts that are auctioned off. Before the buyers take them home, it is open to the public for all to see. They have 2 stages at either end of the huge conference center and choirs sing, children dance, and of course there are sweet treats. There are probably at least 700 decorated trees and I told the kids to pick their faves and we would take a picture. It was difficult to pick just one, so here are some of our favorites!

Noahs ark- made of gingerbread

at the far left is the most intricate gingerbread creation I have ever seen. you can't really tell from the picture but it is a dragon, complete with lights.

a mini dinosaur tree

huge playhouse, that had an upstairs!

My dad borrowed a wheelchair for the kids after awhile, I forgot the stroller.

Darth Vader tree. Jonah's expression fits the tree! Scary!


My little pony



Hello kitty

My favorite, an upside down fairy theme!