Saturday, January 31, 2009

Sisterly Joke

I have a running joke with my sister about how I can't take a decent snapshot. It's true. Professional photos - pretty decent but, boy do I have some doosies from the old Motorola. I just get caught in the most unflattering moments. Some of the photos are painfully funny to snicker over and other you just feel sorry for me. Last weekend didn't disappoint...another photo to toss in my horrendously large stack. This one is for you Tina!

Friday, January 30, 2009

Easy and Delicious Onion Soup

Every Day Italian Onion Soup
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 large Vidalia onions, sliced
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
4 cups beef broth
4 slices ciabatta bread, cubed***
4 ounces sliced fontina cheese
Special equipment: 4 (1 1/2-cup) ovenproof ramekins

In a medium, heavy saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions, salt, and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are tender, about 10 minutes. Add the thyme and broth. Simmer, uncovered, until the onions are soft, about 15 minutes.
Divide the soup between the 4 ovenproof ramekins. Divide the cubed bread among the ramekins. Top each with slices of fontina cheese. Place under the broiler, until the cheese is golden and bubbly, about 4 minutes. Serve immediately.

***Instead of using ciabatta bread, I make rosemary peasant bread from Make and Takes. I think it makes it even better.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

1st grade writing assignment

Translation: Pencil Sharpener

The pencil sharpener is like a crocodile. Eating little fishes in the jungle. Watching up close good bye little crocodile and have fun in your pool don't get a stomache.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

I Love February!

I am really excited to announce (wait for it) da da ta daaaaa.....starting February 1st thru Valentine's Day I am posting all things VALENTINES! I can't wait, who better than me to completely devote myself to Valentine's Day. Oh, how I love it. Remember to stop by often, if not everyday for fun, creative, inspiring, festive and lovely things all about Saint Valentine. (I am an authority, my husband served his mission in the citta Valentine's Day originated.)

Monday, January 26, 2009


I have started a small collection of knit and/or crochet blankets. The two burnt orange blankets I found at second hand retail stores. I love their different stitches and scalloped edges. The multi-colored blanket I found in Ventura, CA. with my sister, Tina at a thrift store. I think is going to be fun and challenging...trying to find unique and funky blankets to add to my collection.

Friday, January 23, 2009

You Deserve It!

This week has been quite the week, between dealing with the claim adjuster, the total Trooper, buying a new car, and the loan....I thought we deserved a little treat.

Banbury Cross is my favorite doughnut shop in Salt Lake City. Everything there is delicious from the maples bars to the apple fritters to just plain old glazed. Before I was married I lived down the street and drove to work everyday smelling doughnuts. For me, that was heaven.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

The Purse

I think that there are three types of Purse People.

1) The first type of purse person is: Functional Purse: Someone who considers a purse totally functional. It serves a purpose, it holds money, stamps, keys, sunglasses etc. When they have kids they may even use a diaper bag instead - total functionality.
2) The second type of purse person is: Anti Purse: Someone who hates purses, maybe they prefer a wallet attached to a chain that fits in their back pocket or they just use their back pocket to hold necessary items. This person thinks purses are not for them.
3) The third type of purse person is: Purse Lover: Someone who LOVES purses and they have many. A different purse for different needs, or outfits, or social engagements. They may even considered a purse an mandatory accessory.

What is funny about my purse theory is I have run the gamut of all three purse people. I started out as the Anti Purse - I dare say I hated purses....what was the point? I bought a old post office letter pouch that was 6 inch by 4 inches that I kept things in. My mom finally took it from me saying I was going to ruin the pouch and I needed to buy a purse.From there I stumbled through a few wallets here and there. Holding up lines everywhere I went trying to find necessary items. About ten years later I actually bought a purse. For $2.00 at Down East Home with my niece who subtle urged my that I probably needed it. See Below:

But.... Last week I went

to Anthropologie (my favorite store) and Adam saunters over twirling a purse on his own wrist trying to entice me. Now, I have to admit I am just starting the Purse Lover stage, but I am enraptured with this one. It is big and bulky and holds all my fun stuff - camera, gum, sunglasses and wallet. I love the colors and embroidery and the leather handle is soft and smooth. When Adam hands me the purse he says: "Please buy this! Look it is on sale" (which he knows is a dead ringer) I thought to myself....I have been eyeing alot of purses lately that I would just love to have, it is from my favorite store and on sale. Maybe I need to embrace my new love of purses and grow-up and be a Mom with a purse that can hold everything she needs. We'll needless to say.... that purse has a happy home.

Saying Goodbye

For those who are not aware on December 23rd our beloved Trooper was totaled in the parking lot of Del Taco in SLC. Luckily no one was hurt, because no one was actually in the car. The driver ran straight through a major intersection flying over the 4 foot snow embankment and smashing the front of the Trooper. Adam saw most of what happen from the inside of the Del Taco while eating dinner.

The boys and I wanted to pay are last respects and say goodbye. So we drove up to Co-Parts in N. SL where the Trooper was being stored and what I thought was going to be a major bawl fest actually turned into a lot of fun. The boys pretending to smash and create all the dents with their own fists into the trooper and we laughed instead of cried about not having the trooper around anymore.

We had a pretty major attachment to the trooper -- we had owned it for almost 7 years and bought it when Jack was a baby. Until the boys saw the Trooper they just didn't understand why the Trooper couldn't be fixed.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Toffe Bar Squares

For those of you who love my Toffee, try it as a cookie!

  • 1 cup of Butter - softened

  • 1 cup of brown sugar

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

  • 1 egg yolk

  • 2 cups of flour

  • 3/4 cup of chocolate chips - melted

  • 1/2 cup of crushed walnuts

  • Bake in a shallow 9x13 pan @ 400 for 8-10 minutes

In your Mixer, combine softened butter, brown sugar, egg yolk and vanilla - mix thoroughly add flour.

Cook at 400 degrees for 8-10 minutes just until the dough is a little brown in top. It goes by fast.

While the cookies are still warm, drizzle and spread melted chocolate all over surface of cookie. After the chocolate is spread, sprinkle crushed walnuts over chocolate. Cut into 2 inch by 2 inch squares. I like to Eat the cookies immediately, but they are also delicious after the cookies have cooled.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Christmas Clearance Blowout

I love sales, like every red-blooded American women, and when great fabric is on a great sale I feel like the luckiest girl in the world. I know Christmas is long gone but I happened upon some Christmas clearance fabric at one of my favorite quilt stores: Mormon Handicraft. The fabric is from one of my favorite designers Anna Griffin her Mackenzie Christmas line. The fabric was 75% off and at Mormon Handicraft I had $1.88 in "points" to put toward my purchase so I got 3 1/4 yards for $5.91! Shut-Up! To quote by husband and brother-in-law Rob: "that just happened".

I plan to make a "anthropologie-esque" table cloth for my kitchen table next Christmas. I am now on the look out for not-so-matchie coordinating fabric. What fun!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Deep Thoughts

I have only been blogging a few months, and have been trying to analyze why I like it so much. I find my mind works in very different ways when it comes to blogging. I think to myself quite frequently: Wouldn't that be fun to put on my blog, great idea for my blog, how would I say/translate that on my blog OR they are so creative on such and such's blog, hilarious post on such and such's blog, I wonder what such and such is up to on her blog.

So, as I have been trying to analyze and dissect why I love it so much I have found two thoughts to be true:

#1 - The blogs that I like and want my blog to be like... in some form or another remind me of a magazine. As a teenage, I was enamored with the magazines that arrived every month for my Mom. Country Living, Martha Stewart's Living, Victoria, Better Homes and Gardens...i loved them all. I would spend lazy afternoons reading articles, letters to the editors, features and recipes. As an Adult I am no different, I love my magazines and all the fun tidbits, ideas, inspirations and recipes they offer. A dream of mine has always been to work for a magazine or start my own.

That is why I love blogs, it is like a little snippets from a magazine everyday. Reading each new blog it it like turning a page in a magazine...with great ideas, insightful thoughts, crafts, new and vintage items and collections. I basically can't get enough...everyday is like getting a magazine in the mail.

#2 - I like to blog because I am not a show off, I don't like to toot my own horn, my life is not about me letting everyone know how "great" I am or what "great thing" I have just accomplished. But, I do find that blogging is a great outlet to "show off" my ideas, recipes, collections, crafts and other fabulous happenings without being intrusive about it.

I like that fact that anyone can choose to visit or not choose to visit someone's blog - it's their prerogative. And I can rattle on and on, and do post after post and put picture after picture on my blog without feeling like I am stuffing it down everyone's throat. It is a very hands off approach to letting people know what "great things" you find enjoyment in doing.

For these 2 reasons I really enjoy and get much enjoyment out of blogging. Why do you love to blog?

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Banana Blueberry Muffins

Last Friday I was at Walmart and I spied some big plump juicy blueberries, which is strange for January, but they were calling my name. Whenever I see blueberries my mouth begins to water and I think of a big dollop of butter and my recipe for banana blueberry muffins. After this recipe I can't really go back to ordinary blueberry muffins - the banana just seems to really bring out the best in the blueberries.

Banana Blueberry Muffins:
2 ripe bananas
2 eggs
1 cup brown sugar - packed
1/2 cup of butter or margarine - melted
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/4 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt

I forgot to include the brown sugar in this picture

Melt butter or marjarine in microwave, add brown sugar, add eggs and vanilla, mash banana and add to batter. Add dry ingedients: flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, stir til ingredients are completely blended. Fold in blueberries gently thru batter. Cook for 25 minutes at 350 degrees

A little trick: After all the cups are filled with batter, I always have a little (batter) left over and I cover the tops of the cups with just batter (no blueberries) that way, when the muffins cook no blueberries are exploding and being wasted.
We had these blueberries Sunday Morning and my family loved them.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Family Tree Quilt - Finished!!!

Sorry the Family Tree Quilt has taken me so long to post, but here it is finished in all its glory. On Christmas Eve we gave my parents the quilt and they actually got quite emotional about it. I am not sure why I was surprised, because it is my family/parents history and being emotional would make logical sense. I knew they would love it and think it was special, but in terms of crying, I didn't know if that would be the end reaction. Although, my sister Jill and I kinda stole glances and gave each other air high fives we were happy and surprised when they shed a few tears. I think we secretly wanted them to cry!

As a quilter, I felt like making this quilt was a huge lifetime goal accomplished. Check one off in the "do before I die" column. I want to give a big fat thank you to Jeanette who helped me with all the applique work and Ella who machine quilted it for me. I couldn't have done it with out you guys!!! And a extra special thank you to my sisters who were big fans of the idea and helped me (everytime I asked) to quilt it into a reality. A goal like this one is never accomplished alone.

Don't forget you can click on the quilt to enlarge and its details. Thank you to Kimberly at tilt photography for taking the photo of this quilt.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Marshmallow Craft

My boys came up with this craft all on their own. It is simple and easy. Take skewers (or toothpicks) and attach the ends together using marshmallows to make fun and interesting designs. My boys love this craft for several reasons: 1) pointy sticks 2) marshmallows 3) building and creating

The shapes and designs don't last long, but they continue to build and attach the skewers in fun ways. As a bonus they get to eat all the marshmallows when they are done. My three year loves it because I will ask him to make shapes: triangle, square, rectangle, diamond and he can do it all on his own.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Only a Three Year Old

Just to clarify: my three year old jumped into the box while I was making dinner and asked me to place the lid on top. He was completely supervisied the entire time, later on, that box was filled with Christmas decorations. Yes, I am still putting away Christmas.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

French Toast

I love French toast. We'll I love all breakfast foods, but if I had my druthers it would be french toast. When I was visiting Tina over New Years I begged her to make me her Macadamia Coconut French Toast. Anyone out there who loves french toast this is a delicious recipe.

2 eggs
1/2 cup of milk
2 tablespoons crushed macadamia nuts
2 tablespoons coconut
dash of cinnamon
Grandma Sycamore white bread

In skillet, place a small amount of oil (2 tablespoons, more if desire) this will help cook the toast and make it a little crunchy on the edges. Once oil is hot (medium to high heat) dip bread in batter. Cook toast until both sides are golden brown and cooked. Sprinkle with powdered sugar (my favorite) and syrup. Enjoy.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009


mI decided to do My New Year's Resolutions a little different this year. I have 12 goals one for each month of the year. I hope that giving myself one month to accomplish each goal will keep me on track having fun and being artsy. Each goal is centered around something to do with Art and/or being Creative. This should prove to be both challenging and rewarding.

January - sew kitchen window curtains
February - create really great handmade valentine cards
for my lovely friends
March - make fabric strawberries
April - for the first time ever - dye Easter eggs with my kids
June - go on Wasatch Front: Quilt Shop Hop
July - Christmas in July!! make handmade ornaments
August - paint something to hang in my home
September - bind my adorable Halloween quilt
October - make simple and sweet
Christmas Quilts for my boys
November - find new and fabulous vendors for
Tom and Lucy's Art Shoppe
December - finish my Christmas stocking so it matches
the rest of the families

Monday, January 5, 2009

Happy New Year!

Yesterday was spent happily putting away Christmas decorations and ornaments. This was really a Great Christmas with lots of memories to cherish. With the added bonus of a totally fun New Year spent in California.

The last few days there I started making lists and dreaming up crafting/art projects in my mind! 2009 is going to be a "artsy" year to make lots of quilts, pillows, art, ornaments and of course, my long list of friends and family "special" projects. (I promise I will put up a picture of the FTQ)

California was strange in the way that it was warm! 65 degrees most days -- all you saw were Californians wearing warms sweaters and Uggs boots everywhere. You would have thought it was 25 degrees, my sister's family sat in front of the fire most nights, acting chilly! Here are just a few pictures of the fun things we were able to do because of the great weather.

Pasadena Rose Parade Float Viewing

Santa Monica Ferris Wheel

Leo Caralli Beach finding sand crabs

Friday, January 2, 2009

Sugar Bowl Win = Undefeated Season

To cap off a great vacation in California, we just watched Utah dominate in the Allstate Sugar Bowl win over 4th ranked Alabama. Final Score 31 Utah to 17 Bama! Utah's Undefeated Season was pure adrenaline to watch. Can't wait to drive home singing the Utah song the whole way and get back to Utah Country and celebrate. Sunday at church is going to be a lot of fun -- way to go Brian Johnson and company.

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