where sisters, sibling rivalry, and creativity collide.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Journaling by Suzanne

Yes, it's been a year since this trip and I have yet to finish the book.  It was fun reading what I had already written, but I lost steam and never finished.  Thanks to the challenge, I made a small goal and completed two pages.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Uh, what happened?

I know we are all busy and distracted but really?  Let's try this again. 

Two pages of journaling this week.  I am going to finish mine so they are really complete.  I expect SOMETHING from each of you. 

Now, get busy!!

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Journaling Page 2

I decided to do something about me instead of the kids.  My first page is posted on my blog.  A little boring but I needed to start slow.  I am going to actually draw it out on paper and try to do a little more with it this week. I will try to post my amendment(s).

My second page is a Journal of My Typical Driving Week.  I am going to take pictures this week and add them to the actual page I did.  I am not very good at doing things about myself but if I don't my kids will never know, right?  I will take pics of the finished project but here is the driving outline now.

A Typical Week of Driving


8:40 – From Home to Church on Cherry (1.25 miles)

12:15 – From Church to Home

2:45 – From Home to NCL Meeting for Lauren (1 per month)

3:00 – From meeting place to Home

3:45 – From Home to Rachel Hill’s house on Koch to YL meeting at White building (1 per m)

4:45 – From Home back to NCL meeting place

5:00 – From NCL meeting place to Home


(Before this  year I was driving to Almaden Valley (7 miles) 1 or 2 times a day for school.)

8:15 – From Home to Willow Glen HS 2001 Cottle (1 mile each way)

8:55 – From Home to Grace Dibble’s (10 houses) to Willow Glen MS (1 mile each way)

2:00 – From Home to WGHS pick up Tylor

2:45 – From Home to WGHS pick up Connor

Every third Monday I pick up the WGMS so I get Connor at the same time.

4:10 – From Home to Graham Davies then to Billy Markham then to SJ City College (3 miles)

4:40 – From Home WGMS to get Lauren from CC to Music Village for guitar  (7.5 miles)

5:00 – From MV to errands – Nob Hill (.125 mile), gas, Target (2 miles), etc.

6:05 – From MV to Home


7:15 – From Home to WGHS drop Connor and Tylor

9-ish – From Home to Safeway (2 miles)

1:45 – From Home WGHS pick up Tylor

2:30 – From Home to WGHS pick up Connor

2:45 – Drive Lauren and team mates to Cross Country meet – where ever. (2-10 miles avg)

6:15 – Drive back to WGMS to drop off Cross Country team

6:45 – From WGMS to Home


7:15 – From Home to WGHS drop Connor and Tylor

12:00 – From Home to WGHS pick up Tylor

2:17 – From Home to WGHS pick up Connor

4:10 – From Home to Graham’s to Billy’s to SJ City College Soccer stadium

5:00 – From Home to WGMS pick up Lauren from Cross Country

6:55 – From Home to Church for YM/YW

8:30 – From Home to Church pick up from YM/YW


7:15 – From Home to WGHS drop Connor and Tylor

1:45 – From Home to WGHS pick up Tylor

2:30 – From Home to WGHS pick up Connor

2:45 – From Home to WGMS to drive Cross Country to meet

3:50 – From Home to Strength Training Gym for Tylor (only if CC meet is close)

6:15 – From Cross Country meet to WGMS

6:30 – From WGMS to Home


7:15 – From Home to WGHS drop Connor and Tylor

7:40 – From Home to Grace’s to WGMS

12:00 – From Home to WGHS pick up Tylor – we typically go to lunch and drive somewhere

2:15 – From Home to WGHS pick up Connor

3:00 – From Home to WGMS pick up Sydney and Grace

5:00 – From Home to WGMS pick up Lauren from Cross Country


From Home to Target and Home Depot (2.25 miles)

From Home to Oakridge Mall (3.5 miles)

Various Trips thrown in:

From Home to Steve’s house (11 miles)

From Home to Dr Wolkstein, dentist (3.75 miles)

From Home to Vet (2.25 miles)

From Home to Trader Joe’s (5 miles)

From Home to Costco (3.25 miles)

From Home to NCL meetings (5 miles)

From Home to Drycleaner (1 mile)



Sunday, September 15, 2013

This week we are doing two challenges.  One long term, one for the week.
30 day challenge september
The first is a 30 day Work Out Challenge.  Choose one of the challenges below, or pick your own, and start on 20th.  Post which one you are going to do.
Here are the rules:  Measure yourself before you start.  We don't need to know the numbers but we do want to hear the results.  Questions to answer at the end: 
1.  Did you like it?
2.  Did you keep at it all month?
3.  Did it work?
SECOND CHALLENGE - This week only.
Journaling.  Yes, we need to do it.  But how to do it?  If you do it what works for you?  Do you have some creative way to keep interested in doing it long term?  Let's see you stretch yourself and do at least two pages of some sort of journaling.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Fix It - Suzanne

I know everyone has seen this photo, but it bears repeating;

When in the middle of a tropical storm;
1) Answer all phone calls, especially ones from home and visiting teachers. (yes, it was my home teacher that reminded me to look in my basement)

2) Check drains and window wells.  It was a drain pipe that failed and was running into a window well.  Once we figured that out it was an "easy" fix.

3) Put a status on Facebook book.  This will garner the most help from friends, neighbors, and provide moral support.

In the grand scheme of things, this was not a big deal.  We managed to dry out quickly. There wasn't much to cleanup other than the water and the carpet.  Thankfully we had one box on the floor which was half full of junk. (Another reason to keep cleaning out the clutter)

This "fix it" was an unintended project this week.  Funny how these challenges have a way of presenting themselves to us.


Friday, September 13, 2013

And Cabinets

My kitchen cabinets have needed a REALLY good cleaning.
(Why again do I clean anything when I have children?)
I also needed to touch up the polyurethane.  I used
Denatured Alcohol as directed and got all the greasy finger prints
and general drips and stuff off.
One thin and quick coat of polyurethane and I was done.

Here they are drying.  Aren't that pretty?!
One more fix-it done!!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

The Endless Sewing Project. End. Less.

I've made 22 composition notebook covers this month.  TWENTY-TWO!

They aren't particularly hard or challenging, but they do take a little time...which when multiplied by TWENTY-TWO equals a LOT of time.  I forgot to take pictures of the dozen that I gave to Deann yesterday, but here is a look at the nine that I whipped up today.

I hope you notice that each one is different.  So are the other thirteen I've made.  Did I mention that I'm not done yet?  I will probably make a few more, just to be on the safe side.

I think next week's project should be cleaning up sewing messes.

Lily's Dress

 This is Lily's baptism dress.  It has been living at our house for two months.  Two.  You heard me right.  Lauren went shopping with Suzanne and Lily and picked a cute pattern and some very cute fabric.  They even cut it out at Suzanne's house.  Then it came to live at our house.

Today Lily's dress is on it's way back home to it's birth place, Colorado.  Yup.  It is making the long journey back to where it was born/hatched/conceived.

The reason it is going on at part of the 'FIX or MEND IT' post is because of all of the fixing and mending I had to add to this project.  I did at least three hours of hand sewing.  No kidding.  I think it was worth it. 

Note to Suzanne:  You may want to hand wash this and hang it dry.  A light ironing will do the rest.  This will not be that durable dress she can wear for years and it will hold up through anything.  Repeat after me, del - I - cate.  :-)

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Tediousness x Infinity OR Why I like Small Houses

I don't mind painting.  Really, I don't.  I like that I can get in a groove and just get the job done.  Most of the time I do a pretty darn good job too.  Then there are baseboards.  Ugh.  Here's my issue with doing baseboards:

Damage like this knick were all over the house.
Scuff marks from soccer balls don't come off ... ever.

1.  They are next to the floor.
2.  Because they are next to the floor you can't paint them correctly without laying on said floor.
3.  Where I need to paint my floor needed cleaning. 
4.  Baseboards need to be white so when you paint them they look EXACTLY the same.  Exactly.
5.  They are freaking all over the house.  Every room.  Why?  I may have to rethink that in my dream home.
6.  Kids mess them up but say they don't - you know who you are - and it makes me annoyed.
7.  You have to wash them before you paint them or you get dust and lint in your paint and then it is all gloopy.
8.  My back and neck and shoulder, and now come to think of it my wrist, are all sore and I'm tired and cranky.

Here are the results.....

Sand, fill, sand, prime, paint, repeat

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Post for the week

Let's see we did an organizing post and a Pinterest post, what next?  Suggests being taken through tomorrow afternoon.....

Next week we are going to do a workout post... Uh, yes, we are.  That means you too (or two!).

Pinterest Recipe from Sherri

Peppermint Pattie Brownies

I saw these and thought of the three things I had to bake for on Saturday - thus, why this is very nearly late.  I had volunteered to bake for a Poker Tournament that we weren't going to - we even bought in (purchased a place at a poker table) just so we would seem to be supportive AND the cross country team was working out AND I had promised my Gospel Doctrine class I would bring treats today.  So, baking away I went on Saturday.

This is where I found the recipe:  http://www.howsweeteats.com/2012/11/peppermint-pattie-brownies/

I follow this blog because she is creative without being weird. And she can be very funny.

Here are my hints:

1.  Make a box brownie mix if you are in a hurry.  Cool it in the fridge and make them medium thin.

2.  Really fluff up the peppermint layer.  I didn't go quite far enough - it was still good - and when I put on the ganache it was flat.  I almost wish I had done 1 1/2 batch of the peppermint, maybe next time.

3.  I added twice as much heavy cream to the ganache as it called for so I could pour it over the individual brownies.

4.  Thinner brownies are better.  Since you have to refrigerate after you spread on the peppermint thick brownies get VERY fudgy.  This isn't a bad thing but my GD class wanted milk.

Overall a very good recipe that was a nice change from frosted brownies.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Pinterest Recipe By Suzanne

This is a ridiculously easy recipe, but it sounded good. The link to the original Tomato Bruschetta.
The added bonus to this recipe is that I have an amazing neighbor that supplied the delicious tomatoes and the basil.  Thank you Emily!

Tomato Bruschetta
 (serves 2-4)
Several large organic tomato, cut into fourths horizontally
2 cloves of garlic, minced
small handful of fresh basil, chopped
pinch of coarse salt
pinch of freshly ground pepper
1-2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1.Turn on Broiler
2. Place the tomatoes on a baking sheet (I lined mine with foil). Top with garlic followed by cheese. Drizzle with oil and broil until cheese is melted. Sprinkle basil over tomatoes once it's out of the oven.
I loved them!  They can definitely be adjusted to taste.  I didn't use bread crumbs like the original recipe, maybe next time.  I'd also use other cheeses to see how that goes.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Egg Paint for Sugar Cookies

It was finally M.'s turn for making family night treat. She turned page after page of children's cookbooks, looking for just the right treat. I finally got down our oldest book, titled Betty Crocker's NEW Boys and Girls Cook Book. Note to publishers: if you expect your book to stand up to the test of time, never put the word "new" in the title. It dates it instantly.
Then we found "Paintbrush Cookies." The thought of combining sugar and art must have delighted her.

How to:
First, make and cut out your favorite sugar cookie dough.
Before baking, "paint" the cookies, using the following recipe.
When baking, remove cookies just before they begin browning (otherwise your colors are affected).

Egg Paint for Sugar Cookies
Whisk together 1 egg yolk and 1/4 teaspoon water.
Divide the mixture among several bathroom cups (or measuring cups, if you're out). Add and mix food coloring to each cup.

What we thought: the painting process was delightful, and the "paint" didn't seem to change the cookies' flavor too noticeably. However, the brothers thought it was gross that paintbrushes had touched their food. They ate them anyway.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Kansas City Rib Rub - Pinterest Challenge

First you need to make the rub. It's easy.  If you have the ingredients.  I was out of paprika AND onion powder, so a trip to the store was needed.  I bought lots of paprika.  Enough to make this recipe 3-5 more times! (the original recipe can be found here)

Kansas City Rib Rub
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup paprika
  • 1 Tablespoon black pepper
  • 1/2 tablespoon salt (original recipe called for 1 tablespoon, next time I'll try it with just 1 teaspoon)
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne

Mix all ingredients together in a small bowl.  Makes about a cup. Store leftovers in an airtight container.  We used about 1/2 a batch for three racks of pork ribs.

Step 1. Make rub.
Step 2. Apply rub to ribs (this was done by my oh-so-able assistant, Rebekah).  Let them sit and marinate a bit.  We left ours out on the counter for about 30 minutes.
Step 3. Sear on the grill.  About 5 minutes (or less) per side)
Step 4. Cook in oven (covered well with foil) at '325 for about 1 1/2 hours...or until meat is tender.
Step 5. Serve 'em up!
Step 6. (This is the best part!) EAT!!!
We paired ours with grilled corn on the cob and watermelon.
Finger licken' good.