Sunday, September 30, 2012

What Heaven Sees In You

This last month in Young Womens the lessons have been on Virtue, and the girls learning what their worth is. To end it all a lady in our ward with an amazing voice came in a preformed this song for us. It had touched all of the much that not one of them had a dry eye when it was over. So I thought I would share it today because I love it! I think it's beautiful!

What Heaven Sees in You

Sent to this Earth
You were saved through the ages for this day and time.
Child of great worth
Child of promise, daughter of the Divine
Pure and holy in a little white dress
You were held in a cicrle and you were blessed
And the Father looked down
And the angels surrounded that place
They knew the truth, all that you could do
And you will too
If you have eyes to see what Heaven sees in you.

Dressed in white once more
Making promises to follow in God's way
So much lies in store
For the little girl who enters at the gate
Pure and holy in a little white dress.
You were led into the water and you were blessed.
And the Father looked down
And the angels surrounded that place
They knew the truth, all that you could do
And you will too
If you have eyes to see what Heaven sees in you.

Do you understand who you are
Part of the Father lives in you
And if you continue on this path
Every promise God has given will come true

Heaven on Earth in the house of God
So much fills your heart and mind
Woman of great worth
Woman of promise daughter of the Divine
Pure and holy in a long white dress
You promise forever and you are blessed
And the Father looks down
And the angels surround this place
They know the truth all that you can do
And you do too
Cause you have eyes to see what Heaven sees in you

Will you have eyes to see
What Heaven sees in you.


Saturday, September 29, 2012

Ready for a great salad?

My husband's favorite place to eat is Winger's, and if you have ever tried their Sticky Fingers-you would know why.  They are amazing! Luckily pinterest has everything you could ever imagine, including this recipe and also a sticky finger salad.  Wow!! This is my favorite salad, and not to mention my husband's as well, and he is not much of a salad guy.  It is super easy too!

All it takes-
1/3 c Franks hot sauce (honestly it has to be Franks-it seals the deal.  I found mine at walmart)
1 1/2 c brown sugar
1 T water
1 package of frozen breaded chicken tenders
Black beans

1. Heat the hot sauce, brown sugar, and water in a saucepan until the sugar dissolves.  Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.
That's all for the sauce! Soooo easy!!
2. You can fry the chicken tenders in oil to make them crispier, but I like to just bake them like the instructions on the package.  After they are cooked, dip them in the sauce until they are completely covered.
If you want just sticky fingers-then you are done, but if you want the salad-keep reading!
3.  Shred your lettuce.  Drain a can of corn, or I like to use frozen corn from costco-it tastes like fresh corn! So yummy!! Also drain a can of black beans.  Mix those three together and top with sticky fingers and ranch.  That's all!! Seriously one of my favorite salads!!

The first time I made Sticky Fingers, I added ranch to the sauce, made up a batch of popcorn, and dipped it like they do at Winger's.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Easy and Delicious Chicken Salad

Have you guys ever tried the Apple Pecan Chicken Salad from Wendy's? Well, I did once and became HOOKED. I started craving it almost every day (I know you are wondering, and no, I am not pregnant.) So, after dragging the hubby and kids there multiple times to get one I decided to create my own version of the salad. This salad is now a favorite, even for the hubby who isn't a big salad lover. It's super easy and quick if you're looking for a no-fuss meal. 

Throw some chicken breasts on the grill. We are a family of four and we will eat almost two breasts in one meal (the children don't eat much, it's basically me and the hubby that eat it all.)  Then all you need is:

Buy a mix of lettuce, chop up some Granny Smith apples and top with Craisins and Raspberry Vinegarette. You could also add pecans, blue cheese (that is what Wendy's puts on theirs.) or anything else you might like. See? Easy and delicious.


Thursday, September 27, 2012

The Husband Whisperer

So, if I haven't already told you, I loved BYU-I education week.  I went to so many great classes that I really love and learned so much from.  One class that I was really looking forward to was "The Husband Whisperer."  I loved the name, and thought I can always use tips on how to get my husband to do what I want him to do. :)  Kevin Hinckley was the instructor, this is his website. 
To begin with he taught us, that we, as the Husband Whisperers, need to be gentler and softer, have more emphasis on the relationship, and have longer ropes (just imagine a horse with a metal bit in their mouth and a short rope compared to a long rope, which do they respond better too.)
He shared a scripture in 3 Nephi 11:3-6 in the Book Of Mormon, and I had to laugh!  It reads:

"And it came to pass that while they were conversing one with another, they heard a voice as if it came out of heaven, and they cast their eyes round about, for they understood not the voice which they heard; and it was not a harsh voice, neither was it a loud voice which they heard; ... And it came to pass that again they heard the voice, and they understood it not...And again the third time they did hear the voice, and did open their ears to hear it."
Ha!  That could either be your husband or your children. :)  Back to to class....
Kevin taught us that we need to talk to our husbands with gentle tenderness and strength. This means not being wimpy, weak, naggy, or whiny.  Tough, I know.
He had four steps to talking to our husbands so that they will hear us,

Step 1:
Own personal conduct.  
Where do I need to improve.  There are two of us in this relationship, and although sometimes we think it is all the other persons fault, we are both contributing and can both improve.
Step 2:
Spirit to Spirit
1. Use a still small voice.
2. Use physical contact.
3. Use eye contact.
At this point in time he went up to one of the class members, got down on his knee, took her hand and in looked into her eyes.  In a quite voice he said, "Honey, I am really worried about you.  I noticed... I am just wondering what I can do to help you."    He told us you don't have to get down on your knee or take their hand, but talking in a quite, non-nagging voice, touching them (on the shoulder or arm or holding hands, something like that) and looking in their eyes, that is what it takes to get their attention and let them know this is important and I really care.
Step 3:
How are you feeling?
How does this effect you?
What are your concerns?

Then really listen to them.  Don't just ask them and then start planning what you, as Super Woman, can do to fix it.  
Step 4:
What would you like to do?
What would you like me to do?

He said that we need to keep these kinds of conversations around 30 -60 seconds.  Our husbands will start out listening to us (especially if we use step 2) but after about 30 seconds they start to tune us out because they think that we are going to go on and on and start nagging.  But if we keep it short they will listen.

Now after this planning he said, what do you envision?  He instructed us to be careful when we are trying to assist our husbands to do things.  We cannot expect him to do it the same way you would expect from yourself.  

This was a great class.  I wish that it would have been an hour longer, I am sure that I would have learned so much more from him.  
FYI.. Kevin Hinckley is a a marriage counselor in Dallas, TX.  He has been doing this for many years, and I think he would be a great counselor.

I wish you luck as you "Whisper" to your husbands.


Wednesday, September 26, 2012

German Pancakes

Yum yum yum! I LOVE German pancakes!! We used to always eat them when I was growing up, so maybe I love them because they remind me of my childhood-or maybe it is just because they are AMAZING!!! Mmmm! I decided to make them for breakfast, and I decided to do mini style, in the muffin pans.  They turned out delish and I topped them with my mom's blackberry syrup.  Another double yum! Lucky for you, that recipe has already been posted, so try these German pancakes out and pour some hot blackberry syrup over the top, sprinkle with powdered sugar and enjoy!!

1 cup milk
6 eggs
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 cup butter, melted
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Blend first five ingredients in a blender.  Be careful to see that any flour clumps get well-blended.
  2. Blend in butter a little at a time in order to temper the eggs.
  3. Grease muffin tins well and distribute batter evenly between 24 tins (about 1/4 cup measuring cup and filled it almost full.) Bake for 15 minutes, or until puffy and golden on top.
  4. Served with your favorite toppings.  

Tuesday, September 25, 2012


My very best friend in the whole world in honestly one of the greatest people I know! She is so funny, beautiful, has the biggest heart, would do ANYTHING for anybody at the drop of the hat, she is so caring, loving...and really truly one amazing person! Her husband is equally amazing! They have been married for 4 years and haven't been able to have a baby of their own. It absolutely breaks my heart. We have known each other our whole lives, I remember many...many conversations that we would have when we were younger dreaming about our future families, what they would look like, the type of moms we would be...and what we would name our kids. I want more than anything for her dreams to come true! They would be the greatest parents and they so badly want a little bundle of joy to add to their family. So I am writing this in hopes today that if someone is out there, trying to make the hardest decision of their life, they will be able to find Emily and Brad. Here is a link to their website that you can find out more about them, and here too if you can't get enough :). If you know of anyone, or in the future hear of someone please refer them here, it'll be the greatest decision they could make.


Monday, September 24, 2012

Free Books

I've been reading a blog for a while 71 Toes, it is such an inspiring blog for me. Shawni is such a good writer, mom and wife! It's one of those that she seems to have everything together but instead of thinking "life seems perfect for them...she is perfect" it's just inspiring and makes me want to be better. She is ALL about family and has so many great ideas. must run in the family because her sister is the writer at, which is also a very inspiring blog for mothers. Their parents have written a few different books and they are giving two of them away for free right now at the Powerofmoms blog, you can just download them to your computer. They seem amazing and have great reviews on them. You can get them here. They are called "A Joyful Mother of Children" and "I Didn't Plan to be a Witch." I have started reading the second one and the first page had me, let me give you a little preview....

"You planned to be the perfect
mother, right? You planned to have a
spotless house and dress your little girls
in pinafores and have hot cookies ready
for your little darlings every day as they
came through the picket fence and up
the flower-lined walk after school.
" Roses bloom beneath our feet, all the
earth's a garden sweet!"
You certainly didn't plan to be a
witch! Not to lose your patience with
these little darlings! Not to feel frustration-
or anger-or guilt ! Oh, no! Not
those things! Not you!
And surely no one else feels these,
do they? I mean .. . look how perfect
other families look. Most mothers must
have it together! And some surely must
be supermoms-being all things to all
people-wife, mother, lover, counselor,
spiritual leader. "Making life a bliss complete!'
No, you certainly didn't plan to
be a witch!"

I'm excited to read these! I remember when I first help Brynlee in my arms and the first few months...and more of her life I just always thought, how could I ever get angry or frustrated with you?! And now when she's screaming, throwing tantrums...and into everything! I feel like I am a witch some days...and I thought I never would be! :) So go on over and get these books while they are available! 


Sunday, September 23, 2012

Cheap House Updates Part 2

So for the second edition, I have been working outside and more of the painting inside the house. For the outside, the cheap update I'll show you is how to spruce up your flower beds and bring life to your front (and/or back) yard.
 I know my yard looks terrible right now.  I have not weeded in a while, but you get to see the good, the bad, and THE UGLY!!
 These are just close ups of each of the flowerbeds. 

 These flowers were beautiful this summer, but their time has come to be pulled!  I spent about 3 hours weeding, and then planting pansies, and pink mums one day. . .
 Today,  my son and I spent another 2 hours spreading mulch on all of the beds.

                Before                                                                After
                 Before                                                              After

                     Before                                                                After

               Before                                                            After

 This one looks so much better huh!  For this project, I spent about $50.00 on the mulch ($2.56/ bag at Walmart) and $20.00 on flowers.  I love the way it looks with fresh mulch!  I just pops the colors of the flowers and green bushes out.

Here is a VERY cheap thing for your front door!  This flower pot was only $16.00!
Same $16.00 flower pot, just at the side of the garage to add a little visual interest there too!
My kitchen will be the next big painting project.  Here is the before picture:
You can definitely see the plaster touch-ups I have made already, but no worries, I will be painting over them soon!  Just in case you are wondering, I will be painting my kitchen Glidden's- Gentle Fawn.  Here is a link to look at it at Home Depot:  It is a warm brown with an orange undertone.  You can get samples at Home Depot and Walmart for $2.94 of it premixed to test it on your walls.
 I think it is beautiful and goes well with the counter tops, cupboards and even brings out colors in the floor!  I will wait for opinions once it is done.  It is a little bit of a slow process because there is so much to go around!
Yay!  My kitchen is finally done!  Here is the final color. . . any thoughts?

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Jalapeno Jelly

A couple of years ago Stacy wanted me to try some Jalapeno Jelly.  She told me over and over again how great it was.  Well, me, being the one who DOES NOT like spicy food, at all, kept telling her no.  She told me over and over again that it is not spicy, it is sweet.  Yeah right, it has the Jalapeno in the name! It has to be hot, are you kidding me!  Well, I have a husband who loves spicy food, and loves jalapenos, so he told her yes.  She shipped us a jar she wanted us to have it that bad!  :)  Austin tried it and LOVED it!  And told me to just try one little bit on a cracker with cream cheese.  He promised it was not hot.  So I tried the tiniest little dab I could get... it was DELICIOUS!!!  We ate about half the jar right then and there.  Seriously, so good.  Last year I wanted to make some, but my jalapeno plant only grew one pepper.  This year I had enough to add one to each of my 3 batches of salsa and to make a batch of jelly.
This is so good.  I hope you are not as stubborn as I was and try this really soon.    

Jalapeno Jelly
makes 6 half pint jars

3/4 lbs Jalapenos, seeded
2 C. cider vinegar, divided
6 C. sugar   (see why it is sweet?)
2 pouches of liquid pectin
green food coloring, optional

Wash, drain, and remove stems and seeds from peppers.  Puree peppers and 1 C. vinegar.  In a pot combine puree, remaining vinegar and sugar.  Bring to a boil.  Boil for 10 minutes stirring constantly. **
Stir in pectin and return to a rolling boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly.  Remove from heat and skim foam.  Add a few drops of food coloring if desired.  Laddle into hot jars leaving 1/4" headspace.  Process 10 minutes in a hot water bath.

**When this says stir constantly, I would do that!  I didn't, and within 30 seconds of me not stirring my jelly was boiling over.  What a mess it was to clean up!!  Especially because most of it burned to the stove.  So please, save yourself some trouble and stir constantly.  


Friday, September 21, 2012

20 Favorite Halloween/Fall Decorations

With Halloween coming up we thought we would do a post of our favorite Halloween Decorations, so we can have them all in one place.
Decorating for Halloween can be so much fun!  With pumpkins popping up in stores everywhere you can feel festive without having the scariness of ghouls and monsters if you prefer not to.

Ribbon Pumpkins...darling!

Pumpkins wrapped in tulle and finished off with ribbons. I love this!

DIY Fall Shabby Pumpkin - made using twine, one roll of toilet paper, hot glue and a stick.

Giant spider made with pumpkins! How scary (and cute)!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Rotating Clutter

So a while back I wrote a post about a class I took at BYU-I Education week on how unloading the dishwasher will make your life easier and kitchen cleaner. I thought I would share another tip from this great class and instructor. (Her name is Marie Rick, by the way, and this is her website. She is absolutely WONDERFUL!)
In this class she was teaching us about rotating clutter.  What is that you wonder.  Don't worry, so did I.  But don't worry, I am here to help.  Dishes are rotating clutter, but we addressed that last time.  Trash is rotating clutter.  A little tip she gave with the trash is ... have a smaller garbage can in the kitchen that gets taken out every single day, yep, that is right sister, EVERY SINGLE DAY!  That is a hard one for me, I have a small garbage can, but I want to pack it in there as tight I as can.  But I have to say, being 7 months pregnant, this does not smell pretty.  I need to work on this one a bit more.  
Holiday decorations are rotating clutter, and so is laundry.  Laundry?!? What?!?  When I heard her say that I thought, "laundry is not clutter, we have to have clothes."  Then I thought about my laundry room.  
Yep.  Clutter.  
Marie's challenge to us was this... When you do a load of laundry, take it out of the dryer when it is warm, then proceed to fold and put away while warm.  I know, I know, some of you are thinking the same thing as me, "Why would I ever give up that rush of trying to find a matching pair of socks in the basket of clean clothes that has been sitting on the laundry room for an entire week when the bus is almost here and your child will miss the bus if you don't hurry?"  I had the same thought!  :)
My laundry day is Wednesday, and so on Wednesday I wash load after load of laundry.  I try to fold some of it, but I never, never get it all done.  On Wednesday nights my hubby goes and plays basketball after the kids have gone to bed.  So for the last couple of years I haul all of my laundry baskets into the living room, plop down onto the couch and fold the laundry that didn't get done during the day, while watching TV.  I don't watch TV the rest of the week so this is fun entertainment for me. Then it usually takes me around 3-4 days to actually put the laundry away after that.  (Except for my older girls laundry, they do that themselves, on Wednesday or Thursday)  And what happens when he decides to not go play basketball that week, well, the laundry sits in the baskets for at least a week, while we all try to dig out socks and underwear we know have to be in there somewhere! 
It took me two weeks to finally decide that I wanted to try this tip.  And can I just tell you.... 
Marie had told us that it will be 4.5 minutes of torture when that dryer gets done, but I tell you, the torture is worth it!  I just stand next to the dryer and fold away for just a few short minutes, then load all the folded clothes up in a basket and go from room to room putting them away.  It takes me less then 10 minutes per load, and then it is done.  I have an entire counter of clean space in my laundry room now.  I do have to add, my girls still put away their own laundry, that is just one of their chores, and they do need some responsibility, so I kept that the same.  But I have my 4 yr old carry his laundry to his room and help me put it away while it is still warm.
This tip has worked wonderfully for me.  I love that by just doing these little things I feel happier and much more organized!
One more tip that goes with laundry.
Who enjoys folding sheets?  I know that I don't.  Her tip for sheets was this... When you take your sheets off your bed to wash them, don't put a different set on.  (in fact, she suggests you only have one set of sheets per bed, unless you have an infant or bed-wetter)  Wash and dry the sheet set, then immediately put them back on your bed.  I love this tip too.  So this is what I do... Monday's are my sheet day.  The whole family knows it and so on Monday mornings instead of making their beds they take off sheets and bring them to me.  I wash the sheets.  If the kids are home I have them take their sheets and make their beds when they are done, if not, I do it.  All the beds are made with clean sheets by noon.  I love it.  Seriously.  Me and folding sheets are not friends, and I used to just have a laundry basket sitting on my counter full, and I mean FULL of sheets, just waiting for the following Monday so I could put them on the beds.  Don't have that problem anymore!  

So, that is what I learned about taking care of rotating clutter!  I hope that this helps you as much as it has helped me.  Maybe one day I will feel that my life is organized.


Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Candybar Icecream Cake

A couple weeks ago, I was in charge of bringing dessert to my in-laws house.  After looking through all of the mouth watering pictures on pinterest, I found the lucky winner.  It was called Chocolate Malt Ice-Cream Cake, but you can substitute any candybar for the malt balls (whoppers).  My husband wanted me to try Twix bars, and it was delicious!!! Here is how it turned out-

  • 1 1/2 c flour
  • 1 c sugar
  • 1/4 c unsweetened baking cocoa
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 c water
  • 1/3 c vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp white vinegar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 c chocolate fudge topping
  • 1 1/2 quarts (6 cups) vanilla ice cream, slightly softened
  • 2 c candy of choice, coarsely chopped
  • 1 c whipping (heavy) cream
  • 1/4 c chocolate fudge topping
  • Additional candies, if desired
    • 1 Heat oven to 350ºF. Grease bottom and side of springform pan, 9x3 or 10x2 3/4 inches, with shortening; lightly flour. In large bowl, mix flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda and salt. Add water, oil, vinegar and vanilla. Stir vigorously about 1 minute or until well blended. Immediately pour into pan.
    • 2 Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean. Cool completely, about 1 hour.
    • 3 Spread 1 cup fudge topping over cake; freeze about 1 hour or until topping is firm. In large bowl, mix ice cream and coarsely chopped candies; spread over cake. Freeze about 4 hours or until ice cream is firm.
    • 4 In chilled medium bowl, beat whipping cream with electric mixer on high speed until stiff peaks form.
    • 5 Remove side of pan; place cake on serving plate. Top with whipped cream. Melt 1/4 cup fudge topping; drizzle over whipped cream. Garnish with additional candies.

      • Melanie 

    Tuesday, September 18, 2012

    Peach Smoothie

    If you enjoyed Michelle's Peaches and Cream, you will love this smoothie!  They are very similar, in that they are almost the same... both absolutely delicious!  I have been making this smoothie for the past few years when I get all my peaches to can.  Sometimes I make it for breakfast and sometimes it is a late night treat with my hubby, after all the kiddos are in bed.  

    Peach Smoothie

    2 frozen peaches
    1 fresh peach (not frozen)
    1/2 -3/4 C. cream, 1/2 & 1/2, or milk
    1 tsp. sugar

    To freeze the peaches blanch them in boiling water for 1 minute then remove the skin and pit.  Place them on a cookie sheet and place them in freezer for a few hours or overnight.

    In a blender add the milk and fresh peach, blend until smooth.  Add one frozen peach half at a time until smooth. You may need to add more cream/milk to get a nice smooth consistency.  Add sugar if desired.  

    I like to use cream, it gives it a richer flavor, but I don't always have cream on hand so I have tried different variations, and they all work and taste great.


    Monday, September 17, 2012

    Baby Journal

    I'm pretty sure as long as I can remember I have had a life goal to be better at writing in my journal. From the time I was about 10 to when I got married at 21...I barley filled one book. My best friend growing up has always been SO good at writing in her journal. We went to college together and were roommates and she would write in it all of the time, about a lot of her dates and the good and bad times. So over and over again I would set a goal...once a week I will write in my journal...and then it would never happen.  Then I heard of which is an online journal. So I thought that would be perfect for me! Because I can type pretty fast and it would be a lot easier for me. Well within a 3 year span...I think I wrote in that journal less than 10 times. It's horrible!

    Once again, when I was pregnant and when I first had Brynlee I made a goal to document all of the new things she was doing for future reference, and of course I was just SO overcome with SO much love for her and she has brought SOO much happiness to me...that I was determined to do it this time! For my baby shower Heather made this super cute book for me and had everyone that came to the shower write mothering advice for me. When Brynlee was a couple months old I pulled it out to read it. When I was looking through this cute little book I thought it was the perfect one to start I did!!! I've been doing really good at keeping up with it too! It is really fun to go back and read some of the things I've written and it just brings back all of those happy little moments. 

    I was writing in it about a month ago and had another idea come to me. This is actually something I've been doing good keeping up with because it's just little moments I write about and it doesn't take that long. So I decided to start one for Adam too. I think he's hilarious, he makes me laugh every day. I wish I would have thought about it a long time ago because there was a lot I wish I could remember. So I do the same thing... write down a few of the things we do, the funny or cute things he says and why he is making me happy. I've decided I'm going to do this for a year and then give it to him for our anniversary next year.  And I found the perfect little book for his too. I found our random little notebook that our wedding presents list. So that might be something fun to hold onto also. So...for me this works perfect because I am getting my journal writing in. I am writing about the most important things in my husband and daughter.  I'm just hoping I just stick with it! :)

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