Sunday, October 3, 2010

General Conference is on YouTube!


The final session was today and it's already up on YouTube, including the Priesthood session.

I love it!

Here's a link to the General conference playlist on the Mormon channel

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

baby Bauer

watching Taylor play soccer with grandpa

(wearing the quilt grandma made for him)

Monday, September 6, 2010

Soldier Hollow sheepdog trials

People and their dogs come from all over the world to compete in the Soldier Hollow sheepdog trials. It's just up the canyon from us so we decided to take Taylor and Cooper (grandchildren with a brand new baby brother) to see the dogs at work.

The main event was herding sheep. The dogs had to heard the sheep through a course, then separate out five and get them into a pen.

There was lots of other doggie fun:

High jumping dogs

Police dog demonstration

Taylor and Cooper loved it when the dogs took down bad guys (in dog proof suits)

There were even duck herding dogs!

Can you believe the dog got the ducks into a wagon??? He really did!

Of course we had to have a little break

I get to pick 3 flavors?!?


We finished the day watching "Splash Dogs" compete to see who could jump the furthest into a swimming pool.

Here's 2 nice looking jumps

This one looks just like our celestial dog, Jill.

It was a fun day

Friday, September 3, 2010

BYU TV for kids

I came upon these "Animated Heroes Classics" today while reading my email.

You can take a look here.

Some of the episodes can be streamed right from your computer  and others you will need to catch on BYU TV.

They might be good to keep on your DVR, if you have one. I like to keep a couple of good quality shows available for grandchildren visits - a last resort after playing in the yard and with Grandma's closet of toys and crafts.

There is lots of other family friendly content - you can see a list of shows here.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Cocoa for the heart

There's a nice little article in the August 30th Time magazine titled "Chocolate for the Heart."  It reports that a new study done in Sweden found that those who ate chocolate once or twice a week had a 32% lower risk of heart failure. However, those who ate chocolate every day lost the benefit, probably because of the fats.

I kind of like my chocolate daily, so what about cocoa powder? I buy Sharffen Berger brand which is about 20% cocoa butter - that's much less fat than regular chocolate.

Here's a report about an older study (2003) on the benefits of cocoa:

In their study, Lee and colleagues performed a complicated chemical analysis of cocoa, black tea, green tea, and red wine, finding that cocoa had the highest levels of antioxidants, twice as high as red wine, and nearly three times stronger than green tea:

  • Cocoa had 611 mg of phenols and 564 mg of flavonoids.

  • Red wine had 340 mg of phenols and 163 mg of flavonoids.

  • Green tea had 165 mg of phenols and 47 mg of flavonoids.

  • Black tea had 124 mg of phenols and 34 mg of flavonoids.

"These results suggest that cocoa is more beneficial to health than teas and red wine in terms of its higher antioxidant capacity" and ability to fight damage leading to heart disease and cancer, writes Lee.

One caveat: "Even though a bar of chocolate exhibits strong antioxidant activity, the health benefits are still controversial because relatively large amounts of saturated fats are present," Lee says. "However, a cup of hot cocoa has a much lower level of saturated fats (0.3 g per serving) than a bar of chocolate (8 g per 40 g bar)."

Heat may help trigger release of more antioxidants, Lee writes. The new finding makes hot cocoa a compelling addition to our kitchen arsenal of cancer and heart-disease fighting foods.

(Ki Won Lee, PhD, a food science researcher with Seoul National University in South Korea. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry)

Here's how I use (and love) cocoa powder:

Hot chocolate - see my recipe here

Chocolate Banana Smoothie - so much better tasting than a chocolate milk shake!

Recipe for one serving:

Add to blender:

  • Half of a frozen banana (or fresh - just add more ice)

  • 1 TBS or so of good quality cocoa powder, 1/2 cup of regular, soy or almond milk

  • A couple teaspoons sugar or sugar substitute if desired

Blend to liquify and add ice cubes until thick.
Sometimes I add a spoonful of peanut butter.

Chocolate banana ice cream

You need a high power blender for this like a vitamix.

Put 3 or 4 frozen bananas in blender. Add 3 TBS good quality cocoa powder, 2/3 cup of cream or regular, soy or almond milk. Add sugar if desired. Blend until smooth.

We had this tonight along with strawberry ice cream and no dairy no sugar cherry ice cream - using my Five Minute Ice Cream recipe.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Two pictures you have to see

A friend shared this experience with me yesterday.

She said that a woman she knows was riding in the car with two grandchildren. In an effort to keep them entertained she handed them two magazines and told them to look through them and then trade. After a few minutes her little grandson started laughing and said, "look Grandma, this kitty really really has to go to the bathroom!"

She had the children exchange magazines and immediately her grandson started laughing again. He said, "Look grandma, this lady has to go to the bathroom too!"

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Bauer the Beautiful

Our 16th grandchild was born today! He makes our group perfectly even - 8 boys and 8 girls, although we've been heavily weighted on the boys the past few years (6 born in 2008-2010).

Here's why I call him Bauer the Beautiful
(click to view video)

Saturday, August 21, 2010

YouTube lift

Here's a few inspirational and fun videos on YouTube

The fun theory:

I also like Pass it On TV Spots

These are great - and you can download them ("Download Now" in the left column)!

My favorite one is "Concert"

Monday, August 9, 2010

I even like canning

We have an off and on apricot tree.

This year it was on, big time.

The fruit was so beautiful and organic and colorful that I just had to keep it.

So Reid and I bottled apricots, apricot jam, apricot butter, and apricot nectar. The jam is the best I've ever tasted. I made it the old fashioned way with no pectin and low sugar.

Here's the recipe from the new Williams Sonoma book, The Art of Preserving (bought at Costco for 17.99):

3 lb apricots
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice

Halve and pit apricots. In a large nonreactive bowl combine apricots and sugar. Let stand at room temperature for at least 4 hours or overnight in refrigerator.

Prepare hot sterilized jars and lids.

Transfer apricot mixture to a large nonreactive saucepan and add lemon juice. Bring to simmer and cook uncovered, stirring frequently until most of the liquid has evaporated and the jam is thick (15-20 minutes).

Ladle hot jam into prepared jars, leaving 1/4 inch headspace/ wipe rims and seal tightly with lids. Process in boiling water bath 15 minutes for pints (10 for half pints).

To know if the jam is ready, I put a little on a plate that's been cooled in the freezer. If it kind of wrinkles rather than runs when I drag a finger through it, it's ready

I’m enjoying sewing lately

I'm not sure why

My projects this summer (so far):

  • king sized bed skirt

  • throw pillows

  • completely recovered my outdoor sectional

  • two pillow case dresses for 5 year old Taylor (and one for Tessa and one for Emily waiting to be sewn)

  • two sets of window toppers plus throw pillows for Jenny

  • sort of sewed, sort of wrapped window seat pillows for Julia's new more grown up room (age 13)

I used to sew quite a bit when the family was young.

And up until my mission (or maybe my dissertation) I made special quilts for each new baby.

I always enjoyed sewing and I've kind of missed it.

There seems to be a return to crafting lately among young mothers and I love it. Why? maybe the economy?

I think it's a good thing. We all need creative outlets.

Here's a fabulous video on the need for creating.

One reason for my return to sewing are the great new fabrics that are available and the ease of finding them by shopping online. I love! It's the easiest and cheapest way to find fun fabrics.

Here's what I just ordered - maybe to sew a tablecloth for outside and some tiered ruffle skirts for the little girls.

And the price???

Only $3.95 per yard with a 20% off coupon on top of that plus free shipping!

I just found a few pictures of my sewing projects.

Jenny's living room decor

Taylor's pillowcase dress - oh and that's my recovered outdoor sectional in the background

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

5 minute ice cream

Yes really!

And it is the best ice cream ever!

You can get the recipe and see a video here.

You need a good strong blender like a vitamix. Just add a package of frozen fruit (12-14 oz), 1/2 cup or less of sugar, and 2/3 cup cream, yogurt, coconut milk or soy milk (I'm going to try out skim milk soon). Then just blend until relatively smooth. It will be soft serve but you can freeze it for a few hours if you like firmer ice cream.

Here's the flavors we've tried:

Mango - fabulous (reminds me of the 4 mango trees we had in our yard during our mission)

Cherry with a drop of almond extract - my husbands absolute favorite. It's unbelievable with hot fudge sauce - tastes like a chocolate covered cherry.

Apricot - cream is great and I tried using plain yogurt and less sugar to make it tart. Loved it!

Chocolate banana - delicious. I just added 3 TBS of good quality cocoa powder.

That's all for now but I have fresh pineapple chunks in the freezer to try that flavor next.

Beezus and Ramona

Reid and I just saw the movie Beezus and Ramona with our cute little granddaughter Sylie (and Karenin, her Mom). I used to read Ramona stories to the 5 Js when they were little. Such fun!

The movie was darling. I loved every minute of it - mostly because Ramona's features and mannerisms reminded me so much of  our little Emily - another granddaughter. I don't know if these pictures show the resemblance. But they are very very alike.

Actress Joey King


Sunday, March 28, 2010

General Young Women Meeting

The General Young Women Meeting was held last night and it was amazing! Each member of the young women general presidency spoke along with President Uchtdorf. They all gave fabulous talks. President Uchtdorf spoke about "Once upon a time" and "Happily ever after" with a reminder that there is always adversity in between.

You can listen to all the talks and the Lehi young women choir numbers here.

We all got to see a new video - "Be strong, I know who I am."  It's available on the youth website here. I love the music!

You even listen to video excerpts of the talks  here.

It was an absolutely wonderful evening.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Footprints in the snow

We have dear in our yard most days - but I didn't think they'd come right up to the front door!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Catching up

I haven't blogged in a long time :(

So this is a 'catch up' post.


Scary headless kitty decides to move in

My husband hates cats, I kind of like them - so I sneak this neighborhood kitty in occasionally. It showed up yesterday morning after a big snowfall crying at my door. I let it in. It looked around, zeroed in on the softest spot in the house and fell asleep for eight hours!

It has a head - somewhere

I cooked!

Life is so busy lately that this is a rare occurrence.

I made my Dad's dill pickles

I used to can them in the summers - but that was ages ago. Recently I discovered the Costco bag of a dozen or so small tender cucumbers. I brine them and put what's left after sampling in the refrigerator. Here's the recipe:

Put the following into a large glass jar or bowl:
Sliced cucumbers (I cut them lengthwise)
3-4 cloves garlic (sliced)
piece of hot pepper or pinch of pepper flakes

Bring the following to a boil:
1 1/3 cups vinegar
1 quart water
1/3 cup salt

Pour over cucumbers. Cool and store in refrigerator.

We are into Quinoa lately. It's supposed to be a wonder grain - great source of protein and all kinds of good things. We bought a big bag of it at Costco so I went hunting for a good recipe. I came across this Citrus Quinoa salad that was fabulous

Citrus Quinoa Salad

1 cup quinoa
1 cup diced cucumber
1/2 cup diced figs or dried apricots or raisins
1/2 cup drained canned mandarin orange sections, halved (I used the whole little can)
1/4 cup sunflower seeds or toasted almonds
2 green onions, diced
2 Tbs chopped coriander or parsley

1 tsp grated lemon or lime rind
3 Tbs lemon or lime juice
1 Tbs sesame oil (I used olive oil)
1 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp each ground cumin and coriandor
salt and pepper

Rinse quinoa and drain. In saucepan bring 2 cups water to a boil; stir in quinoa. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until water is absorbed and quinoa is transparent; drain and let cool.

In salad bowl combine quinoa, cucumber, figs, orange sections, sunflower seeds, onions and coriander.

Dressing: In small bowl mix lemon rind and juice, sesame oil, sugar, cumin and coriander; pour over salad and toss to mix. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days.

Makes 8 servings of about 1/2 cup each (it was so good I ate 2 cups)

More catch up news tomorrow - I ran out of time as usual

Friday, January 8, 2010

Fun cooking blog

Fab Frugal Food is a cooking blog created by one of my friends. Take a look. It's fun (and fab)!

And they have a KitchenAid mixer giveaway going on right now!

Friday, January 1, 2010

New youth website

An LDS  website for youth went live yesterday. My hope is that it will bless the lives of young people all over the world by inviting them to keep the commandments and  live the standards the Lord has set to bless them.

It is in Beta version - that means we need feedback on what you like, what you would change, what you would add, and what doesn't work well.

Take a look and tell me what you think via a comment or email -

It would really help if you could have young people take a look too since it is all for them.

This is exciting!