Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Intertube fun

Kids always find an alternate use for items. Becca brought the intertubes in the house and the girls found them to be great "movie watching" chairs.
However, it wasn't long before Lydia was sound asleep on the floor and Becca opted for a more comfortable chair to watch "snow white". 
I am so in love with these pictures. I'm excited at how well they turned out. I read an article about light source for taking photos and it an A+ tip, look at the light in those photos - completely unedited. Here is a link to that article if anyone is interested.

Monday, February 22, 2010


Tom is a cute kid who doesn't want to hold still long for the camera. I want a nice photo of each of my kids to hang on the wall (I didn't buy school photos, I figured I could do my own, but here it is the end of February and I still haven't done it, until today). He asked if we could just take two pictures and then he could be done. I told him it would be a few more than two, but it wouldn't take too long. After I had taken 10 shots, he asked if we were done yet. I said, "not yet, I need to get a good photo" and cute little Tom said, "they are all good pictures". Right you are Tom, all of your pictures are great because you are such a cute boy and that came out in each of the photos.


 Becca is such a beautiful little girl. She is fun to photograph and it is so easy to get fabulous smiles out of her. Becca is three years old and full of life and fun. She laughs easily and loves to get others to laugh too. Becca is my story girl. She always is wanting stories read to her or told to her. At bedtime she likes me to make up stories and have everyone she loves be in the story. Becca also loves to dress up. This pink dress, in the photos, is in her dress up box and she has changed into it about three different times today, with other outfits in between each time.

Sunday, February 21, 2010


It's been a long time since I have done any digital scrapbooking. Ever since we moved (last August) my photoshop elements has not been working. Last week I took my computer to the Mac store and the wonderful people there got it working (for free) and now my kids and husband wonder if they will ever be able to separate me from my computer again. I just have so many months of catch up to do, and some relearning since I am rusty. I was brushing up my skills doing some tutorials on one of my favorite digiscrapbook sites (Jessica Sprague) and it inspired me to make this layout of my sweet Lydia.
Lydia is turning 18 months old this week, which means she goes into nursery at church next week. Jeremy will be glad for that, since he is the one that has her for the last two hours of church, while I am in Primary doing music time. I think she is excited. She has gone in there a few times when Jeremy or I have gone in to help and today when I told her about nursery she smiled and said "yea".  Lydia really is pure sweetness. Her sweet smile says it all - she really is as cute and sweet as she looks in those photos. I hope she always keeps her sweetness and her even temper, I need at least one child who is calm and sweet, I get too much drama from the others.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Florida Field Trip

I took the kids to an orange farm where we could pick our own oranges.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

whole wheat bread

I had a fun time today making bread with friends. Some of my friends have expressed interest in learning to make bread and this week I finally did something about it. We got together this morning at my house and we started with grinding the wheat and then experienced the process of making bread - which after it was over they realized it's really quite easy and not time consuming to make bread. I can go from start to finish (bread out of the oven) in 1 1/2 hours, with only about 15-20 minutes of my time involved, the rest is rising time and cooking time. Of course our favorite part was eating the bread when it came fresh out of the oven.
Sharing this experience with my friends reinforced how much I love homemade bread and how much I love making it. Later I went over to help Kandis make bread at her house and Kara came too, and despite having spent the morning making bread there wasn't anything I would rather be doing. It felt so great to have a skill that I can share with others. Bread is such a yummy skill to have. Here's my recipe.

Perfect 100% Whole Wheat Bread
4 Cups WW flour
1 Tbls dough enhancer
1 Tbls high gluten flour
2 Tbls instant yeast (SAF brand is best)

    Mix the dry ingredients well and then add:
4 Cups water - hot, but not too hot

   Mix all together well and then let "sponge" for 15- 20 minutes (sponge= let sit without disturbing)
   Add in
 1 Tbls salt
1/3 Cup honey ( or sugar)
1/3 Cup oil
6-8 Cups WW flour

Add the additional flour one cup at a time until the sides of the bowl are clean and no dough is sticking to the sides. Be careful not to add too much flour - you don't want tough dough.
Knead bread in mixer for 7 minutes.
Make into 4 bread loaves. Let raise for 30 minutes (or until double in size, don't let it rise higher than the sides of the pan, it will rise a bit more while cooking).
Cook at 350 F for 30 minutes.

If you don't want to cook all four loaves at the same time, freeze some of them. After shaping, put in loaf pans and put in the freezer. After they have frozen wrap in plastic wrap. To use, let them thaw and raise and then cook them. I prefer to cook all the bread and after it cools, wrap and freeze some of the loaves and then pull them out an hour or so before needed, or can quite defrost in the microwave.

This dough also makes excellent rolls. I shape the rolls at the same time that I shape the loaves, but I let them rise until the bread is done baking (1 hour total) and then I bake them 15-20 minutes - I put them in as soon as the bread comes out.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Take time to laugh

Have you ever watched Brian Regan - he is the funniest comedian- my sides hurt from laughing. The video labeled "walkie talkie" is short and sooo funny.

Monday, February 08, 2010

Cookies and mustaches

Charlie made mustaches for Tom and himself, I thought it was pretty clever. Tom wanted to make cookies, oatmeal chocolate chip is our favorite, and of course the dough is our favorite, the cooked ones are okay too, but really, it's all about the dough.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010


We did fingerpainting with Becca and Lydia today, we took off shirts so they didn't get dirty, but maybe I should make them some smocks to wear. The finger paint is homemade, I found an easy recipe. The girls enjoyed mixing the colors - Becca was all about making purple, and they loved how the  paint felt to smear around. I'm usually against messy projects, but I think I would do this one again with them.


How is it that the littlest, messiest, noisiest people are so precious? Lydia is such a stinker. For instance, right now while I am trying to type she is screaming, climbing all over me and trying to help me type, and mad that I won't let her.  But she is also so sweet. Just a moment before all the trauma she was giving me smiles and kisses. And now she is back to laughing and giggling and snuggling with me. 
I love her little feet - so little, so chubby, and the cute little toes.
I love to make her laugh - she has the cutest laugh.
She has crazy hair, not as crazy as Becca's, but still, it's crazy, although, it has a slight curliness  to it, I don't know where she gets that from. 
Lydia is my constant companion, she doesn't like to be out of my sight. Sometimes that is obnoxious, but I remind myself to enjoy it, although my little shadow is less than helpful sometimes (hands in everything while I'm trying to cook, pulling folded clothes on the floor, pulling things on the floor that I just put away) she won't stay little for much longer and soon I won't have a baby anymore

It's real

Yesterday was Jeremy's first day in his master's program. He went to orientation all day and then we went to an evening orientation for the students and their spouse. We met a few other students that are from Utah (I guess there are 8 students from Utah in Jeremy's class, this is becoming a popular school for Utah people, it's nice to have others from "home", it makes home feel a little less far away).
Today is Jeremy's first day of class. He has class all day Tuesday (three classes) and part day Thursday (one class). The rest of the time is study time.
Although we moved to Flordia 4 months ago, it finally feels like we are here for what we came for. It was nice to come early and get settled before school started, but it never felt real until now.


Last Monday Jeremy took Charlie and Tom camping. They went with some friends, Aaron and his boys Luke and Jordan, and Art and his son Nathan. They left Monday afternoon and returned Tuesday afternoon. They came home smelling like campfire, so I think they got the fire going okay, I think they even did smores. The dads all came home exhausted - sleeping on the ground is rough - Jeremy said he is going to get a cot before he goes camping again. The boys had a fabulous time and it is definitely one of the funnest things they have done recently.