Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Bread, anniversaries, bread and insanity...

This isn't the post I was going to do today. But you don't know that because you don't know what I was going to post about! I'll let you in on that later. So I bake bread. Not astounding, I know. But I have always used the same recipe, Aunt Peggy's wheat bread. It has stood up to the test of time. Although, I always put the second of 2 loaves in the freezer so it doesn't go wierd while we eat the first loaf. Here's the problem...That second loaf always separates from the top when I cut it! (after being thawed) So I tried a new Whole Wheat Bread recipe today. Always good to try new things, right?! I fear change! I thought I was losing my mind because I thought the oven kept turning itself off! Now I am the first to admit that I am a bit insane! Insanity is just part of the fun at our house. But I really thought I was going batty! Here is the lovely bread I baked today.

The Butter and Honey are an intregal part of the whole homemade bread eating experience.
Mmmmm...melting butter on hot bread!
Oops, couldn't help myself. And, a girl has to wash down the big bite of whole wheat bread with butter and honey with something!
The next generation learns to butter and honey her own slice of heaven...
I've eaten a couple of big hearty slices of bread by now.
I feel good.
By the way, the other topic for today was a couple of anniversaries.
Monday was the sixth anniversary of my brother Aaron's death. I miss him! I cried a little. I will now eat a big slice of bread with butter and honey for him!! Aaron, we love you! We miss you! Come back soon!
Today is my wedding anniversary. I guess I should say OUR wedding anniversary. 9 years of wedded bliss and all the other stuff that comes with the bliss. I love my honey more than the honey and butter and bread! I have a big bouquet of roses sitting on my counter making me feel really good. I also have 3 great kids who have made our union even more fun! I had hoped to post pics of the day in question. But, alas, I forgot to have Daniel find them and put them on my computer! Think of me and him together and thinner, more hair on him and the bountiful temple behind us... (memories...)
Does anyone have any bread freezing words of wisdom? I suppose I will freeze this bread and see what happens.
And about the insanity with the oven thing....I had Ruthie watch me while I stood in the kitchen to make sure I didn't hit the off button on said oven. It didn't turn intself off...I must need a nap or something.
Wait! No! I need another slice of bread!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

A little History Lesson

My Grandma...We celebrated 95 years of life this weekend!

Here we are, back from a whirlwind adventure/vacation/birthday party/where-the-heck-did-the-weekend-go?/wow, that was fast/are the kids asleep yet?/trip to Lee's Ferry. Lee's Ferry? you ask. That is where Brigham Young had my great, great grandfather, Warren Marshall Johnson, and his son and my great grandfather, Jeremiah (Jerry) Johnson, run the ferry that got Mormon Pioneers traveling west across the water. My grandma, Annie, was born in Wyoming and then came down when just a wee babe in arms. She lived there, went to school there, played there, etc, etc.

Do you ever feel like when people share their personal family history in church that you want to just yawn really big and shake your head in a way that says, "Why do we care about your family, when mine is so much better and more exciting! I really don't care, actually, so I'm just gonna sit here and pretend I do."? Well, I am sharing my family history. It's a 15 minutes of fame thing, I guess. But I will move on now that I've said my peace. Did I mention that a few years ago President James E. Faust talked about these men in general Conference? Yep, I thought that might get your attention.

But I digress from the rest of the experience. We all went down to Lee's Ferry to celebrate my grandma's 95th birthday. We had fun along the way, so I'll share that fun with you!

We stopped on our drive there, in Cove Fort. It is a fort. We got the tour from a missionary lady who really didn't get children. She was a trooper, though, and my kids actually listened for a part or 2.

2 kiddos on the inside of the fort, but outside the housing. Aren't they cute?!

Where'd you get such big eyes, Sam?
They weren't allowed into the display area. Dang! So they hung on the barrier, which really made the lady a little annoyed. She hid it well, I thought.
Can you imagine hanging your wet undies out to dry in the kitchen??
That's soap in the thing there, made out of animal fat. Thank goodness for Bath & Body!
Dad and the kiddos on top of the fort. They weren't allowed up there unless we went with them...such strict rules!

We feel really blessed that we didn't have to travel by covered wagon!
Aaah, Lee's Ferry...My dad has the white hair (snicker, snicker) and is holding cute baby Jeremiah (hey that name sounds familiar) and my grandma is oohing and aahing at the baby.
Ok, let's take a 95 year old woman who can't see and hike that mountain back there...Ok, not really the "mountain", but it was a rough climb, not that I'm out of shape or anything, mind you. I was just thinking of grandma! That ranger is Deanne. She did a personalized tour of the Ferry!
Oh Cute! That's me with grandma and 2 kiddos saying hi! That's also her chair so she could sit and have breaks while we hiked over rocks and ravines and...oh, yeah, it was special!
This is the fort. I don't think she actually lived in it, but we have it on the tape (obviously I wasn't listening -too many endangered lizards because of too many kids) but I'm sure we have something about that. The kids did love going in it.
Lizard...endangered only because about a bazillion kiddos were constantly chasing,, well, there could have actually been thousands of these things milling about.
Inside the fort...thick walls so it's cool. It gets to 120 degrees in the summer. Yep, I've been there in the summer. Not fun. It was a pleasant something under 90 degrees today.
Rocks+kids=great fun!
Wait, they aren't supposed to climb on the buildings! Where are their mothers?
Desert Rose.
Part of the hike. Part of our group. The water the Ferry would cross.
Hi Isaac!
I don't recall what this was. I might add here that Daniel took the pictures!
Sam with cousins Ben and Nick inside a wall.
What's with the Popeye look?? She sure is cute, though. cute! Their mother must be awesome and so cute herself!
This is what used to be an oven.
After the hike, we went to have a picnic lunch in some shade.
Like I said, Daniel took the pictures, and at this point my body refused to get out of the nice chair I sat it in. So I think this is where Jeremiah and my grandma lived after the fire mentioned below.
This is where the house was that they lived in. It burned and my grandma was in the house caring for a baby sister when she felt sure not to put the baby back in the bedroom. Soon after that, someone yelled, "Fire" and they ran in and the room that the baby would have been in was engulfed in flames. Her mom would have run in after the baby and they both would have died. My grandma cried when she told this story on Saturday.
Notice the hole in Isaac's sandwhich, perfect for the fruit snacks to go in.
Silly Sam!
Isaac. And that's my cousin Jaren.
Mother and Daughter.
On the road again.
We are glad to be home. No one is glad to go back to school and work tomorrow, though. It was a great trip. We are grateful grandma is still here so this could actually happen.
Have a great week!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Wanna Salsa?

Not too long ago a friend of mine, April, posted on her blog that it would be fun to do a recipe every once in a while. Well, what a fabulous idea....I Love To Eat! So I thought I would share a yummy salsa recipe that I made today for dinner.
X-tra Super Salsa

2 medium tomatoes

1/2 small sweet or mild onion (I use 1/4 white onion)
3 Tbls diced green chilies
1 Tbls white vinegar
fresh cilantro
1 garlic clove
black pepper
Put all the ingredients in a blender and plow through it. Look out, it's yummy!
Now on the food note, Isaac and I made sugar cookies from one of those Betty Crocker bags (not everything can be fresh made all of the time) after dinner. When they came out of the oven, Isaac said, "They look just like the cookies they make for school lunch. Now if we just had some cookie salt to go on them, they would be just right." So I got the "cookie salt" (sugar sprinkles) and the kids had a blast sprinkling their little hearts out. The following picture is my version of "sprinkled cookies", my kids' version was on the verge of "Holy Cookie Salt, Batman!"

Because my version is pretty (and not eaten), it gets published.
So every once in a while I think I will stick with this tradition...I'll post a yummy recipe I think you might enjoy. Anyone else wanna join in?

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Botox anyone?

So here's the thing...A couple of weeks ago I was doing my usual makeup routine and noticed a new dent in my face. Not one of those dents from the pillow! No, this is one of those permanent dents between my eyes that marks my age and possibly just how much I furrow my brow. Does anyone actually say that anymore?? Furrow one's brow?? Now, I know I'm getting older and I know that I should look my age. But this is ridiculous!
So I have been using needles since I was 12. No, not like that! I have Diabetes and have to inject insulin. Those needles don't scare me. I have stuck myself in the upper arm, thigh, stomach and hiney bumper for many (many, many) years. So I think a shot of Botox should do the trick and fix this dent. Now have you seen my face?

It's the dent over and beside my right eye, on your left. You see?!?!?!
Not to mention the dark circles!
So my problem is this. I couldn't inject my face. OUCH! Can you say painful?! So I think maybe the answer is a facial "wash" with the stuff. You know, dip my face in and pray for the best. And if that's possible, why not just jump in and tighten the whole body! Know what I mean?? Really, I do have "dents" and stuff in certain places. So why not a swimming pool of the stuff. Maybe I would share it with those I love, we would all look tight! Oh wait, I just saw Priscilla Presley. Not good. But not being able to move my mouth might be a blessing, right? All right! The point of it is to paralyze the muscle...hmm..does that sound like a good idea to ANYONE?? And it's a Botulinum Toxin. Say what?! Yep, Botulism! Maybe I will hold on to my new dent as a way to say to the world..."YES! I am 37! I am getting old! I am even kinda cute! I have a dent on my face, not to be confused with the dents in other places on my body! I will survive this and the other dents that will be part of my face soon! I love my dents, one and all!! I don't need Botox because I am Woman, hear me roar! ", etc, etc...
Alright, enough of that...on to cuter things in my life....Yep, you got it, my kids, and most likely the causes of my new dent!

Daniel gets home tonight. Hip, Hip, Hooray! We are very happy people!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

My Weakness

I am addicted to The Office. I think the show is hilarious and have been borrowing my sister's DVD collection to just get a fix. I about went crazy when the writer's strike took the show off the air. So I just borrowed seasons 1 and 2 from Katie and then my friend started watching them, too. (She's a new junky!) I realized that every time Daniel walked into the room while I was watching, he would say, "I guess if you had The Office DVDs you really would watch them." I made him get the first season of 24 on DVD and watched it once and never again...I can only watch each episode once. But The Office, on the other hand, I can watch over and over. So I did the inevitable...I bought season 3. I needed to see Pam and Jim (again) after The Kiss!! Could anyone really deny me that?? So I just finished watching season 4 through Dinner Party (hee hee) so I am caught up (again) for this Thursday, babe! And, I bought season 2 today. Daniel is out of town and I need something to fill my night with! If I can't have Daniel, I will have Jim....and Pam and Michael and Dwight and Angela and Creed and Stanley and Jan and Kelly and...well, you get the picture.
My current collection! (and addiction)
While I am super single mom'n it, I don't cook dinner...I do play "Short Order Nan" and "Drive Thru Sally", but tonight we will invite the "Pizza Guy" to linger on our front porch just long enough to drop off a wonderful, cheesy pizza! My kiddos are stoked!

Have a wonderful Tuesday night!
(By the way, I realize I am missing Season 1. I guess I am working backwards in my personal pursuit of The Office. My next shopping trip has Season 1 in bold letters to be purchased and then duly watched! Thank you very much!)

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Who Could Resist??

The Most Important People In The World!

The Love Of My Life!
My Sweet Hearted Isaac!
My Brown Eyed Sam!
My Ruthie-Girl!
I Love Being a Wife and Mom!

Saturday, April 5, 2008

The construction of a cake.

A King Kong Cake, that is...
It is a well known fact, if you well know me, that I love to make cake! Not just any cake mind you, major cake! I get a cake idea from my kiddo, look it up on the internet and copy it to the best of my amatuer ability. Next Saturday is Sam's 6th birthday. Tomorrow we go to my mom's for the April birthday extravaganza. I ask Sam, "What kind of cake do you want for your birthday at Abbie's?" He says, "King Kong!" Ok. So here is the construction of the King Kong cake.....

First you need a large cake pan...this cake has some serious layers. This is my "big" cake pan.
This is a "small" cake pan. Pour 3 cake mixes worth of batter into the 1 "big", 2 "small"s and 1 Barbie cake bowl (previously used to make a Barbie cake, which was ok but not a great cake moment!).
Put a couple in the oven at a time. Can't forget that some pans, because of their size and shape, cook at a different time than others. I am happy to say that I didn't forget that!
Meanwhile, only because it's so boring waiting for cakes to bake, and because my house is immaculate, the laundry is done, my kids are prefectly playing together and tonight's dinner is simmering as we speak, I make the icing. (Just kidding! My house is a mess, 1 kid is in her room until it's clean, don't know where the others are, and can you say Burger King for dinner!)Those are actually 3 different tints of gray. Not really, but that sounds like I know what I'm doing!
When the cakes are baked and cooled, I have to cut the 8 inch cake squares down to 6 inch squares to make this thing. I don't have 6 inch pans because you have to special order them! A serrated knife and tape measure can work miracles!
Then cut the monstrous cake into 1 9 inch square and 2 6 inch squares. Oh yes, there is a reason for all those squares.
Make sure you have all the necessary pieces cut and ready to assemble.
Before assembly, though, take a taste test of your handiwork, um, handibake, um, bakework, OK, just take a taste of the cake you cut off of the piece you need!
Taste test on a couple of other unsuspecting characters. The one not pictured still hasn't cleaned her room!! Whatcha gonna do Sam? Slay it??
Oops, almost forgot to get something to put the cake on! A jelly roll pan upside down covered with foil...
Put the base piece down and frost. I love to put waxed paper around the bottom of the cake so I don't frost the pan, too.
Stack the next layers, 1, 2, 3, and frost. Notice that I had 4 6 inch layers made above. Don't notice that I have only put 3 on! Please! It would have been just way too tall, and guess who has to carry it on her lap on the hour long drive down to Sandy tomorrow!?!?! Aah, so 3 layers are placed on the base and frosted.
Then the dome. Now if you were to go on the internet to where I got this cake idea from, you would see that, not only did I not put a 6 inch layer on, I also "left out" (didn't realize I needed)the smaller round layer that goes on top of the 6 inch layers and under the dome. So I won't bother to tell you where to find this lovely on the net. Do you see the top of a building taking shape? Looks a little like a beehive actually.
Aahh, the little details mean so much. Did the little girl there actually finish cleaning her room?? Nope, just a water break.
And the finished product........
All I need is Fay Ray to complete the adventure. It does look a little squished, like the building is cracking under Kong's weight. But, like I said, I'm an amatuer! I love making cakes for my kids, and other unsuspecting little ones. It's fun and even a bit of therapy.

Have a fun and enjoyable Conference weekend everyone!