Saturday, March 29, 2008

Andrew's 16th Birthday Party!

We had to have a bunny cake, as a joke, because Andrew's birthday was always close to Easter and sometimes on Easter and when he was little we always made him a bunny cake.
Nothing says birthday party like cupcakes, right?

A warm welcome from the sidewalk

Opening presents

This looks worse than it is. Millie just wanted to be in the picture too!

Playing a get to know you game-

I can't believe that Andrew is turning 16 years old! I remember the day I found out that my mom was pregnant with him and it doesn't seem like it was that long ago.

I thought it would be fun to have a CAKE Taste Test and a Dance Dance Revolution tournament. We had the party at my house and all of Andrew's friends came and had a great time. At first I thought that we would have 16 cakes to test, but everyone thought that was too many, so we had 8. It was fun for me, because I like making cake and also fun to see what was the most popular. Everyone voted for their top 2 picks, and the contestants were...

Caramel Frosted Hummingbird Cake

Zucchini Pistachio Cupcakes

Praline Mini Bundt Cakes

Chocolate Cupcakes (pictured above) and Bunny Cake (also pictured above)

Tied for Second- French Banana Cake

Tied for Second- Poppyseed with Lemon Glaze

And the winner- Strawberry-Lime Layer Cake

We had a ton of fun and Laura Dawn won the DDR tournament, playing against Matt in the Final. Go, Lar! (For any of the cake recipes go to My Food Blog)- I really recommend trying the Strawberry Cake, it was delicious!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Finally...... My Makeover

Right before
After... in the car- self portrait
I love the haircut, A-line, really short in the back, got rid of my
horrible blonde edges
The makeup was a little dramatic, but fun and FREE! and she gave me some great makeup tips. For the first time in my life I have real eyebrows!
I am happy with the overall results of my makeover. Yippee!

What do you think?

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Tuesdays with Dorie

Caramel-Topped Coconut Flan

I joined a really fun group of bloggers called Tuesdays with Dorie. We are baking our way through a cookbook, 1 recipe, 1 week at a time. I posted it on my food blog, which I have also updated a little bit- check it out here!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Uncle Jacob

First I want to say thank you to Jacob. He had spring break this past week and really helped me out by giving me a couple of extra hands. The egg dyeing would not have been possible without him. Our next door neighbor came over right when I was about to start dyeing our eggs and asked to borrow a cup of vinegar. That was all the vinegar I had! Luckily, Jacob got on his bike and sped over to grandma's house and retrieved a bottle full of vinegar. And I have to apologize for posting the picture above, but it really shows the true feelings about what was going on at that moment.

Jacob also got my kids out of trouble. Later that night when I was getting the kids ready for bed, I saw a Wendy's frosty cup and spoon in Jonah's room. Also two containers that he had flipped over and turned into a makeshift table. My first thought was that Jonah went and got the frosty out of the freezer and snuck into his room downstairs and shared it with Ryanne. I figured they got into the freezer when I was gone running or something. Good job on the sharing, but since when is it okay to eat something as messy as a frosty in your downstairs bedroom without anyone knowing about it? I was a little upset, but mostly amused. I went to go tell Laura Dawn and Jacob about the funny story. That is when Jacob confessed that he is the one who got the frosty out of the freezer and gave it to the kids. I guess it wasn' that big of a deal to him that they disappeared from his sight as soon as he handed it over? Anyway, at least I found out an adult was kind of in charge of the whole situation.
It was nice to be able to hang out with Jacob a little bit. The kids love him and he is so good about playing with them nonstop and letting them climb all over him. Thanks Jake!

Jonah's Latest Self-Portraits

Looks like Jonah got a hold of my camera phone again... and again!

Friday, March 21, 2008

3 Ways to Decorate Cookies- Can You Guess Who Did What?

This is the very popular dump and pour method- 1st, you dump a ton of icing on your cookie and kinda spread it around a little and then you pour as many sprinkles as you can on top. This is the quickest method, so if you are in a rush, try it out.
This is the less known method- dot and place- 1st, you dot a tiny bit of icing on your cookie, you don't want to use too much, and then you carefully place the appropriate sprinkles in their designated places. This method requires a little bit more time and experience.
Last, but not least, is the road most traveled. The same, old boring- ice and decorate method. You spread your icing carefully and them decide what would be the best way to decorate, and go with whatever comes to mind. This can also be time consuming, but fun none the less.

For the best sugar cookie recipe there is- go to Food and Fun!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Favorite Flowers

Is it a magnolia? No, but I do like these. White flowers seem so pure and clean.
or maybe gardenia? Close. Oh, and if you are wondering, these are the most expensive flower you can get as a corsage for your prom. Not that I know from experience or anything. If you are wondering what brought this all into my mind.... well,

with spring just around the corner, I started thinking about my favorite flowers. I am by no means a gardener, but I enjoy the smell, beauty, and happiness that flowers possess. Here are my favorites, (my favorite white ones, are above), in a particular order. The Stargazer lily- This one is just so vibrant and alive. I love the color, shape, and texture of this flower.
Hydrangea- I never really even knew about this one until I moved to Georgia. My mother- in law has a hydrangea bush in her front yard, right up next to her house, so she always has these (and other beautiful flowers) in her house and outside, of course. The color is really comforting and inviting.
My old favorite, that I still love- daffodil. It just says spring. It is bright yellow, like the sun and just adds that certain something when you see it against the green grass.

So, now you know my favorites. For something fun, post your favorites and I can learn something new about you!

We Love Heather!

Heather was able to come and visit us for a couple of days and we had fun! Savannah was so upset when we dropped her off at the airport and wouldn't stop crying. Last time we dropped Heather off for her airplane, she was the one crying because she had been holding 1-month old Savannah for a whole week. My how things have changed!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

A Storm, Girls Night Out, and St. Patrick's Day

What a St. Patrick's Day! We celebrated with an Irish Dinner, Irish Brown Bread....
Pistachio Pudding Mini-Pies
Green Sprinkle Pancakes and Green Eggs and Ham- made for an exciting day of eating!

On Saturday, I was headed up North to go to a Cake Decorating Class. It was a brisk, sunny morning and the weather was great. As soon as I got about 15 minutes from Brigham City, a unbelievably dense fog came out of no where and I couldn't see a thing. The sun was still shining so it was bright, foggy, and the roads were wet and slippery. I must have seen at least 50 cars that had gone off either side of I-15 and then, all of the sudden, it was stop and go. I looked in my rear view mirror and saw a pick-up truck flip and tumble off the road. Then I heard the sirens. A little ways ahead, there was a semi truck that had cross the median and gone head on into the traffic on the other side of the interstate. There were so many ambulances and I was really scared because I was all alone and I don't do well driving in bad weather.
I ended up having to drive really slow and then found out the class had been cancelled. All the excitement for nothing!

A few hours later, my mom and my sister and I met up and had our Girls Night Out. We went to the temple, ate at the Garden Restaurant at the top of the Joseph Smith Memorial Building, and then went shopping for a couple of things that we needed. As the evening progressed, the weather started getting worse. Rain turned to snow, and before we knew it, we were stuck in a blizzard. We saw more and more accidents, fire trucks, ambulances and my mom and I decided to head home. Luckily the closer we got to home, the calmer the weather became. We made it safely and I was relieved to be out of the car.
It was fun and I am glad we started this tradition. Thanks mom and Lar!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Focusing on Christ during Easter

This is something that I have been wanting to do for awhile now- put the focus during Easter on Jesus Christ. I was thinking about how to best achieve this goal and came across this book-

A Christ Centered Easter: Day-by-Day Activities to Celebrate Easter Week ( the link is to Deseret Book where you can buy the book). I bought it and I am planning on using it this Easter season to help our family focus on Christ instead of the Easter Bunny and colored eggs. Those things are still going to have a place in our celebration, but I am going to try and use some of these ideas to help us really think about why we have this holiday.

This book has a week of activities, scriptures, recipes, stories, plays to act out, crafts to make, lessons or devotionals to do and the best part about it is, that you can do how much or how little you want. It starts on Palm Sunday, a week before Easter, and has plenty of ideas that you can do for the entire week, even if it is just reading a scripture or talking about what Christ was going through on that actual day during that week of his life. It also has the activities labeled so that you will know what would be good for preschoolers, teens, adults or the entire family. I have picked out something for every day of the week preceding Easter and on Easter morning they suggest having a special breakfast and starting a family devotional.

I hope this will help my family really think about why we celebrate Easter and what a significant blessing it is in our lives to have our Savior and the gift of the Resurrection.