Friday, October 29, 2010

What Matters Most

I was talking with a friend this morning about life and all the goings on these days. As I hemmed and hawed about decisions and my lack of patience and what I want but can't find, she brought me back to reality.

I was reminded by our conversation that so much of what I am currently worried about ultimately has so little to do with lasting happiness. And so, though a day late, today I am thankful for the things that matter most. I'm thankful for the Mr. and the Bug, and for the knowledge that we can be together forever. I'm thankful that I have the ability to make any house a home. I'm grateful for a loving Heavenly Father who is keenly aware of me personally.
I have been selfish and short-sighted. I have so many blessings that it feels wrong when I know so many who are going through difficult times and intense hardships. I live a wonderful life.

My little kitchen helper


Monday, October 25, 2010

Letter to The Mr.

Dear The Mr:

I miss you. The Bug does too. Remember how you left (well) before the sun came up yesterday and came home after it had gone down? The Bug wouldn't have seen you at all if we hadn't been naughty about his bedtime. I have not been a very patient mommy. I'm a little stressed out about all the decisions we have to make right now, and even more worried about the things we can't control. My head is missing a few extra hairs to be sure.

Thanks for working so hard for our family. I know this is stressful for you, too. We'll just have to pray harder. Some day soon a nice young family is going to come along and realize that this is the home of their dreams. Then we can find the home of our dreams, conveniently located at least an hour closer to your work. In the meantime we will make the best of things. We look forward to being able to see you again--the Bug is in need of a good wrestle.


The Wifey

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Thursday Thursday

I totally forgot Thankful Thursday last week! What a bum I am. I better make today's list twice as long.

Today I am grateful:

That we have had two families come and look at our house this week (I'm told that's unheard of in this market).

That we have a great Realtor (and friend) that was willing to spend
7 HOURS looking at houses yesterday. And he bought us lunch. Way awesome.

For taco soup.

For an awesome sister-in-law who made the Bug feel at home with her family while we house

For these pictures:

was 1/2 second too late. The look on his face was priceless.

For exercise

That this Autumn has been incredibly mild so far. I can't believe how warm it's been. Good weather to train for a Triathlon...sigh...

For a master bath. Apparently a lot of homes in Utah don't have them.

For life. I get frustrated some times, but it is such a gift just to be here.

Count your Blessings!


Monday, October 18, 2010


Meh. I'm not doing as well as I should be. All this preparing to sell the house and move and whatnot has thrown off my groove. Or so I shall blame. More hats!


Sunday, October 17, 2010

Cinnamon Rolls!!

I make THE best cinnamon rolls. I'm not kidding. I figure I can say that because it's not my recipe, so I really don't get any credit. I took a cooking class in college that required a research project. One team set out to find the perfect cinnamon roll recipe. Well, they did. I was lucky enough to snatch myself a copy.


2 Tbsp active dry yeast
1 tsp granulated sugar
1 cup 110 degree water
1 C. warm milk
2/3 C. melted butter or margarine
2 eggs-slightly beaten
2/3 C. granulated sugar
2 tsp. salt
up to 8 C. bread flour

In a small bowl dissolve yeast and 1 tsp sugar in warm water; set aside.

In a large bowl mix together milk, 2/3 C sugar, melted butter, salt, and eggs; add yeast mixture and 4 cups of bread flour to mixture; beat until smooth; stir in enough flour to form a slightly stiff dough.

Turn dough out onto a well-floured surface and knead for 8 min.

Place dough in a large greased bowl, cover, and allow to rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 1/2 hours.

Roll dough out onto a floured surface into a 15x20" rectangle.

Brush 1/2 cup melted butter over dough

Sprinkle cinnamon sugar mixture over dough:
3/4 C. brown sugar
1/4 C. white sugar
2 Tbsp. cinnamon

Tightly roll up dough and pinch edges together to seal.

Cut into 1 inch slices

Coat the bottom of a 13x9x2 baking pan with cooking spray.

Place cinnamon roll slices close together in the pan; cover and let rise in a warm place for 45 min.

Bake rolls at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes, or until golden brown.

Let cinnamon rolls cool slightly and coat with desired frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting:

1/3 C. softened butter
4 oz. cream cheese
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 drops almond extract
1/2 tsp corn syrup 1 Tbsp milk
2-4 C. powdered sugar

Powdered Sugar Frosting:

1/3 C. softened butter
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
3 Tbsp milk
3 drops almond extract
2-4 C powdered sugar

*Hints: When letting the dough rise, I turn my oven on to warm. I cover the bowl with a warm, slightly wet towel, stick it in the oven and then turn the oven off. It rises twice as fast.
I cut the roll with dental floss--it works great without smashing the dough.
I cook my rolls a little under the suggested time.
I never have almond extract on hand, so I've never used in in the frosting. I usually make the powdered sugar frosting and then add 1-2 Tbsp cream cheese.



Thursday, October 14, 2010

True Courage

I don't like controversy. I hate confrontation or dispute of any kind. And yet, they are a part of life. So when these battles rear their ugly heads, we are presented with a choice. We can sit back quietly and let others proverbially 'duke it out' or we can speak up and risk being torn to pieces. Which is better? I haven't decided yet. I think it comes down to whether or not you can stand it in the ring. I'm not sure that I can. This post will undoubtedly produce some anxiety as I intent to talk about something incredibly controversial. All I ask is that any comments are respectful and uplifting.

For those who are not members of my faith, twice a year we hold a General Conference in which the leaders of our church host a world-wide meeting that is broadcast from Salt Lake via television, internet, and satellite. This past conference, a few weeks ago, one of the church leaders President Boyd K. Packer gave an address that spoke about the temptations of the world and the power to overcome them. Many were offended by his words, assuming that he was condemning individuals who experience same-sex attraction. Since this talk was given, there has been a huge amount of controversy.

Our church believes that acting in a homosexual manner is wrong. It is categorized as sexual sin, in that it is outside the bonds of marriage and that God forbids it. We do not, however, support condemnation, judgement, or ridicule of our fellow men. We do not believe that individuals who are attracted to members of the same sex are bad people. We simply believe that it is inappropriate to act on that attraction. I have shied away from this topic so many times, because it makes me really uncomfortable. I know several people who are Gay or Lesbian and I love them very much. I have not known how to balance my love for them with my feeling that their actions are inappropriate. I have not felt secure enough in my understanding of the issues, and in my understanding of God's perspective on the matter. But of the little I know, I do know that God loves His children. I also know that He will not be silent simply to avoid controversy. All throughout the Bible we see the rejection and persecution His prophets received as they proclaimed His word. They were not, to be sure, very popular.

So, as I said, I chose to remain silent about this issue until I could better understand. There are still many, many parts to this puzzle I am figuring out. This morning I saw a link to a Blog that blew me away. It is written by a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (aka a mormon); a man who is attracted to other men. What courage it must take for him to do so! The world needs to hear what he has to say. I have never heard the perspective of a man (or woman) struggling with these issues and living the life of the Gospel. It gives such a message of hope and faith. I feel that he reflects beautifully our Church's standing on the subject. He is not rejected, but embraced. His life is hard, and he is living in a manner that is pleasing to God. I hope to find more clarity as I read about life through his eyes.

Here are his thoughts on the talk given by President Packer. All of his posts are similarly uplifting.

I know that many of my friends have very different views than my own, and I respect that. I know that morality is not very popular these days. I am certainly not here to tell anyone how to live their life. I am here to talk about how I choose to live my life. And I believe the words that President Packer spoke. I believe that true peace and happiness come from living a clean life. I believe that it is our highest responsibility to love our fellow men. I believe that weakness of the flesh can be overcome through our Savior Jesus Christ.


Saturday, October 9, 2010

Here we Go!

Stay tuned for the best cinnamon roll recipe of all time

There has been a major upset in the P. household. The Mr. was offered a new job too good to refuse. It is a huge blessing in our lives, and we know that it has come from the Lord. Because this new job will require 3 hours of commute time and an average of 10 more hours of work each week, we decided it is time to move.

Life has been quite busy as we prepare the house to go on the market.
We hope and pray that the house will sell quickly and for a good price. This is not the market to be selling. It is, however, a good market for buying, so we will just choose to see the glass half full, right? As tedious as the whole process is, it is kind of fun--for now, anyway. I enjoy watching the house transform as we prep each room and stuff most of it's contents under the house so that it looks less cluttered.

We are sad to leave our home, our friends, our ward, and yes, even Payson. We have grown to love it here. The cities up North seem so busy and overwhelming to me now. I really am a small town girl at heart. I am confident, though, that we will find what we need. What an adventure we are going to have!

Yay for a clean kitchen! And now to keep it that way...


Rise and Shout

So we scored some tickets to a football game at our alma mater last weekend. It was fun to go back and sit in that stadium again. We took the Bug. I know, risky. We were worried about him bugging everyone around us. He did surprisingly well. I'm not saying he kept to himself. He begged for candy from strangers. He gave "stones" to a kid sitting next to me. He drove his car on the knee of the guy behind me. He wiped Sugar Daddy drool on the girl in front of me. Everyone loved him. That kid probably had more sugar than he's ever had because people just kept feeding him.

I turned to the Mr. and said "He's like a magic key. You could open any door with this kid." And it's true. The little punk has no inhibitions. He has no concept of social boundaries. No one told him that age, race, dress, hairstyle or gender makes a difference; that some people might be too
cool to smile at him. So what does he do? He doesn't quit until he gets a smile. There were times I almost stopped him because I thought someone would be put off by him. And then they were playing games together. If you don't look at him he will put his face right up in yours until you do.

Why aren't we more like that? He's so real! He doesn't try to hide what he's thinking or feeling. He doesn't judge. He just enjoys everybody. Maybe that's why Christ tells us to be like a little child.

I would, however, not recommend wiping your drool on a stranger.


Thursday, October 7, 2010

Thankful Thankful

This week I am thankful for:

New Opportunities

Evenings with nothing to do (can't remember when I had one, hence the appreciation)

Canning buddies

The Gift of the Holy Ghost, and the ability to receive Personal Revelation

A clean house (once again my gratitude comes from a current lacking)

Short Hair

The Temple


The Mr.

And my little Astronaut Man


Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Another Day Another...


I know, I know, I just barely got it cut. And it wasn't the right cut for what I needed. As it so happens, this cut is what I need. It looks a little boy-ish under a hat, so I've had to make some of them a little more feminine. The good news is that I touch my hair WAY less with it this short, so I've been getting by with some nifty headbands I've whipped up which is a refreshing break from the daily hat.

I'm pretty serious about this getting-rid-of-Trich thing. I've decided I've got too many other things I need to work on to keep dealing with this problem. Usually I try to fix everything at once, and I end up in a frustrated heap having accomplished nothing. I am going to beat this. And, when I have, I will lick the next thing on my list. Until then I've got to be patient and just deal with my other shortcomings.

But, I have to say, I'm kind of having fun.


Monday, October 4, 2010

Canning Fool

Am I allowed to say that I like canning?

Cause I do.

Call me crazy.

There's just something about planting a seed

Watching it grow

Reaping the fruit

Peeling and boiling and processing

And finally storing it away for winter like a silly little chipmunk

This year:

Tomatoes---11 Quarts, 14 Pints
Salsa---21 Pints
Peaches--16 Quarts
Pears---9 Quarts
Apricots---6 Quarts

Still Left to do:
More Pears
Grandma's Chili Sauce

Something tells me it will be a little less enjoyable when I am trying to sustain a family of seven. But hopefully by then many hands will make light work :)