Thursday, December 19, 2013

That Man of Mine

The picture is little dark, but that is Nathan, unloading groceries from the cart and putting them into the truck. What you can't see in the picture:
  1. That it is seriously 1 degree outside.
  2. Me - sitting inside a warm truck,
  3. Holding a hot chocolate that Nathan had purchased for me minutes before - I LOVE Hot Chocolate!
  4. Nathan does not like to go grocery shopping.
How did I get so lucky?

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Mormon Tabernacle Christmas Concert

This past Saturday evening, my mom and I drove to Salt Lake to attend the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Christmas Concert.

It was super cold that night, so I didn't take a lot of pictures outside.  Mom and I had a great time.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

AFS Christmas Party 2013

This past Saturday we went to Hollywood Connection for Grandma's annual work Christmas party.  I took the kids by myself because Nathan needed to get some things done.

We met up with Grandma and a bunch of the cousins and rode rides.  Clara spent some time hanging out with Uncle Eric.

The kids also got to sit on Santa's lap and tell him what they wanted for Christmas.  Clara flatly refused to sit on his lap but did yell at him what she wanted for Christmas.  I couldn't even get her to stand by him so I could take a picture.

After riding rides and watching a magic show, we watched Disney's Frozen.  It was a really cute movie with a great message and the kids really seemed to enjoy it.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Amelia Sings at the Festival of Trees

While Nathan and I were in Las Vegas, our little Amelia was singing her guts out at the Festival of Trees with her class.  My mom filled in for me and went to watch her.

Amelia is on the middle row in the red shirt with the big grin on her face.

I take after my mother - we like to get lots of pictures for events.

 My mom and Amelia

Barbara, my mom's good friend also went.

Amelia standing next to the tree that her school class helped to decorate.

They sang a variety of Christmas songs and Amelia said she had a great time.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

A Weekend in Las Vegas for the NFR

This past weekend, Nathan and I went to St George with 2 other couples to see the National Finals Rodeo.

Upon arriving at our hotel in Vegas, I made Sha and Debbie pose for a picture with me in the lobby while the guys checked-in. 

That night, the other 2 couples went to the rodeo while Nathan and I hung out.  We found a Krispy Kreme and ate donuts and drank hot chocolate.

Hot man + hot chocolate = Wendy is happy!

The next morning, I convinced Nathan to take a selfie with me in our hotel room mirror.

My handsome cowboy!

We went over to Cowboy Christmas to look around and shop.  Here we are waiting for.....

 Rob to get his shoes shined.  He looks mad at the shoe shiner man, but he wasn't.

Then we went to get some lunch.  I don't know why I thought it would be the perfect opportunity for a picture, but apparently it was.  A shot of Nathan and I inside Dairy Queen.

Later, Nathan and I got ready to head to the rodeo with Kent and Debbie.  Outside was this big truck so we got our picture taken by it, naturally.

Then Nathan got his picture taken next to the truck with the Dodge Queen.  :)

I only managed to take pictures of us while at the rodeo and nothing having to do with the actual rodeo.....  So here is a picture of Debbie and Kent at the rodeo.  Kent was trying to hide his face and was mid-sentence when I snapped this one....  LOL!

Nathan and I at the rodeo.

Bright and early the next morning, we went to the Las Vegas Temple.

After the session, we took some pictures outside.  Funny, the night before Kent didn't want to be in any pictures....

Nathan and I

 Our temple group: (left to right) Stacy & Greg Herbert, Rob & Sha Lund, Debbie & Kent Harris, Nathan and I

After our temple trip and a quick change of clothes, we headed to Country Christmas at the Sands, where I was able to snap these gems:

LOL too funny.

What was not funny.... the drive home.  We got stuck in the Virgin River Gorge on 1-15 all night long (that's 10 hours people) because of bad weather.  

Even though we spent a cold night in the car stuck on the freeway, the trip was tons of fun!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Book of Mormon Scripture Reading with a Study Guide

I found a great resource online a couple of months ago.  A woman named Heather Martinson put together a Book of Mormon Study Guide for her 11 year-old son.  Then, she made it available online for others to download.

Her copy was an awesome idea and a great start, but I decided to go through and edit the format a little and add pictures from the church's website.

I really like that Sister Martinson (I am acting like I know her, but I have never met her) broke out the reading into do-able sections.  None of them are lengthy and we are usually able to get through each section, with discussion time, in about 15-25 minutes depending on how long-winded Nathan and I get.

After I had finished formatting, I printed copies for each person in my family (minus Clara) and put them in 3-ring binders.  This is what we now use to study scriptures each morning.  Since Sister Martinson is planning to publish this one day and has copyrighted it, I don't think it would be appropriate for me to post my version of her study guide here for you to download.  If you want it, you can comment with your email address or email me and I will send you what I have.  Or you can just jump over to her site and download her version (It is a word document).

We gather around the kitchen table each morning with our scriptures, study guide binders, and colored pencils and read and discuss a section.  Each section has questions to answer and ideas to think about.  We answer the questions and talk about what we are reading. When we read Lehi's dream, the kids drew what they were hearing in their binders.  There is also a map, a timeline, a heros/anti-heros, and a progression chart that comes along with the study guide.

The kids seem to be enjoying it and I hope that they are learning more than if we just read a chapter each morning.

If you do decide to start studying the Book of Mormon with her study guide, she would really appreciate feedback:
I realize there are many misspellings and common typing mistakes in this version of the study guide. I am working on those. The input that is most valuable to me right now is the content. My son once told me that it's a little frustrating sometimes when the study guide only echos what the Book of Mormon teaches without giving any new information. He also mentioned that there are some passages that aren't discussed in the study guide and wishes there was something there. This is the kind of input that is most valuable to me.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

No Need to Call a Plumber

After peeling about 15 lbs of potatoes for Thanksgiving dinner last week, I accidentally clogged our kitchen sink with the peels.  After trying myself to get the sink unclogged, I took a picture to send to my husband with a text that said, "HELP"! Ground up potato peels make for some very brown water!

I knew he would have to take apart the pipes under the sink, so I started clearing out my newly organized under-sink area and got my cleaning bucket set up underneath the "u" shaped pipe that comes out of the garbage disposal.  After a few minutes though, I got to thinking...  How hard can it really be to remove a pipe and put it back?

Turns out it is not hard at all.  Before Nathan could even come to my rescue, I had the pipe removed, cleared out, put back on and everything put back under the sink.  I am woman, hear me roar.  Super proud of myself!

I did't take an after picture.  Just imagine a clean, dirty-water-free sink!

Monday, December 2, 2013

My Favorite Mashed Potatoes

For Thanksgiving this past week, we celebrated at Mom and Dad's house with all of the Carter Kin.

For dinner, I made my favorite mashed potatoes.  You can find the recipe here.

I also made Cranberry Relish, which I neglected to take a picture of, but they are seriously delish!  People always turn their nose up at cranberries until they try this wonderful concoction of cranberries, apples and cherry jello.  It tastes great on turkey and rolls.  One day I'll post the recipe.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

There was Crying Over the Spilled Milk

See that white stuff?  That is a whole gallon of milk spilled on my newly purchased groceries and and freshly mopped kitchen floor.

Clara was trying to help me put away the groceries.  She picked up a gallon milk and was trying to bring it over to the fridge when she dropped it, blowing out the side of the carton.  I quickly ran over and grabbed the still gushing gallon, but it was too late.

When it first happened, I felt myself boiling, I could feel myself about to explode.  I looked at Clara who had retreated to bury her head in the couch.  I took a deep breath and grabbed my camera and snapped the above picture.  

Even though I lovingly reassured my baby that I knew it was an accident and that I wasn't mad at her, she cried.

I asked Amelia to run and get our stack of beach towels.  Isaac and Amelia helped me to pick up the wet groceries and sacks and set them on the towels.  Normally I keep the sacks to recycle for our garbages, but not this day!

I wish that I could say that I remained calm during the whole clean-up process, but unfortunately I didn't. There was a little bit of yelling when Isaac picked up one particularly soggy sack and walked across the kitchen floor - milk dripping the entire way.  There were also some exasperated and cross words when Amelia only brought 1 towel to clean up the mess.

I am not hoping for more spilled milk (there is still a foggy residue left on my kitchen floor even after mopping 3 times), but I am hoping that if there is a next time, I will handle my emotions better for the clean up.  I am hoping that I can speak more clearly about what I need so that my other kids, (the ones who had nothing to do with the mess, but are willingly trying to help clean it up) aren't getting chewed out for not following directions precisely.  

And really, there isn't any use in crying over spilled milk.  There isn't any good done by yelling at the kids who are trying to help.  It just took a little time and effort to clean up the mess.  It was an accident and I have good kids who wanted to help make the situation better.  I need to remember that a little more next time.

Monday, November 25, 2013

A Quick Under-the-Sink Fix Up

Friday evening, I was looking under my kitchen sink for some cleaner and I got fed up with how it looked.

I pulled everything out from under there and wiped it down with a wet rag and some cleaner.

This is what it looked like:

In the back was the worst part.  Our sink had an undiscovered leak for a while and this is the damage it had done when we finally discovered and fixed the problem.

I knew Nathan had some sticky-tile in the garage from a project he did a couple of months ago.  (You can pick this stuff up at Lowes or Home Depot or get a box from here.)  While the cupboard dried, I went out to the garage and rounded up 6 of the sticky tiles.

Starting in the front, I laid one whole tile down and then worked my way across the front.  They I went to the back.  This required cutting the tile a little bit.  I actually started in the middle because one tile would fit between the two pipes that come up through my cupboard.

I didn't concern myself too much with lining the tile up on the back row like I had done with the front row. My thoughts were that it was in the back and no one would really see it back there but me.

This is the tile that covered most of the damage.  Even though there are some gaps in the tile, it will still look tons nicer and be easier to wipe out and clean.

I neglected to take a picture with everything organized and put back in there, but it seriously looks so much better.

If you don't have sticky tile laying around, you could use contact paper as well.  If you live relatively close to me, I still have a whole bunch of this sticky tile in my garage you are welcome to come and take a few pieces.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

A Wet Game & Sick Kids

Nathan, the kids and I went to a very wet, cold game on Saturday to cheer on our team.  We left at half-time since the Cougars were so far ahead and our little ones were getting chilled to the bone.

Mental note for me...  Remember that next time it is raining, put on the ponchos before getting out of the car and walking to the stadium.  Don't wait to get to the stadium to put them on or everyone will already be wet. Wet=Cold.  Duh!

Probably as a result of the cold from the game and a lingering congestion from the week before, Jared and Clara were pretty sick on Monday.  I told work that I would be working from home that day and I kept them both home with me.  They slept and cuddled under blankets on the couch while I worked and played nurse.

I also made these for dinner since I had a lot of time to make the dough.

I could do that everyday!

Later that evening Clara found a balloon and tried to figure out how to blow it up.  I wish I would have gotten video of her.  Her poor little cheeks looked like they were going to burst.

The next day we were back to work and school as usual.  Bring on the week!

Friday, November 15, 2013

Ham and Cheese Pinwheels

I came across a pin for these Ham and Cheese Pinwheels a while ago on pinterest.  The pin I pinned didn't link back to anything, so if you know where the original pictures came from, let me know.

Last night I decided to make them for dinner.

Here's how mine turned out before baking and after.

Making this was not rocket-science.  It was super simple.  You could use pre-made refrigerated dough, but I just whipped some bread dough up really quick.

Ham and Cheese Pinwheels

Bread Dough
Sliced Ham
Grated Monterrey Jack Cheese (you can use any cheese really, this is just what I had on hand)
Sliced Muenster Cheese

Roll dough out into a rectangle shape.  Top with sliced ham.  Then add a layer of muenster cheese down the middle.  Spread shredded cheese around the edges.  Then carefully roll up. (If you need a visual of this click here to view the original pin on Pinterest.)  Cut into 1-2 inch sections and place on baking sheet.  Bake in the oven at 425 for 20-25 minutes.


Super yummy,  They were a hit with the kids and the hubby.

I also whipped up a sauce to go with them, just some mayo and dijon mustard mixed together.  Delish!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Not So Cavity Free...

We made our semi-annual visit to the dentist yesterday and I almost forgot to take a picture!  Can you believe the horror!  It has sort of become a tradition for me to post a post-dental visit picture to the blog.

Unfortunately, Mr Isaac had a cavity, so he was ostracized from our "cavity-free" picture this time.  Better luck brushing next time bud!

Here is the cavity-free crew, a little blurry, showing off their teeth.

Super proud of Clara for actually letting the hygienist clean her teeth this time!


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