|Make a Smilebox recipe|
Saturday, November 28, 2009
I feel this longing in my heart for something more, and I don't know quite how to achieve it. Is it just a funk that, after a few days, I'll get over or is it something deeper than that? If I look back over my life in 5, 10, or 50 years, will I regret staying here longer? Would I regret it more if I leave? Should I be looking to do something different than what I am doing now? Should I stay and ride it out? It seems like such a vicious cycle. I'm not looking for any specific answer, just putting it out there.
On a much lighter note, Christmas has come to our house. The tree is up and decorated, there are lights and extra candles; it now 'feels' like Christmas. When I was younger, Christmas seemed to be all about me and what I could get out of it. As I've gotten older, and this year in particular, I am seeing opportunities to share and give. I think it's important to keep Christ at the center of Christmas and I personally hope to maintain that attitude, not only through this season, but all year long.
Thursday, November 26, 2009
In no particular order, I am thankful for...
Family who loves me unconditionally
Friends who accept me and my quirks, and there are a few
Music that brings joy to my heart
Sunshine that helps keep me sane
Daylight Saving Time which helps me appreciate the sun
Snow that occasionally causes a day off and lots of adventure
A place to call home
A job that allows me to make money
Children who let me be a kid myself; I L-O-V-E being around them
Opportunities to serve
The one thing that I am most grateful for is the knowledge that my Father in Heaven loves me and has a plan for my life. I love knowing that I am not alone in this life and that He is aware of me at all times, regardless of how I feel. I am glad that he has sent me family, friends, and sometimes complete strangers, to help me figure out all life has to offer.
Have a happy day thinking about the things you are grateful for. Hopefully we don't just do it one day a year.
Monday, November 23, 2009
Saturday, November 21, 2009
Lots of naps...check
We have all been out for the count for over 10 days (except for the 2 when I foolishly pretended I wasn't sick and jumped back into work at full force...probably what brought on the sinus infection). We are so ready for this all to be over with. The silver lining here is that since we are all sick, we are spending almost all of our time together, whether we are in a state of consciousness or not. And for that, I am grateful.
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Bloody Eye-Ball Soup.
I've already made my 'what I'd do differently' list for next time because there will be a next time!
Sunday, October 25, 2009
Toasted Coconut Marshmallows - have you tried these. Please, go get some of these ASAP!
A few of these, and then if you are unsure if you have enough, add a few more.
You will obviously need Rice Krispies cereal, or other cereal of your choice. Melt the marshmallows, a small bit of butter and the Kisses together in a microwave-safe bowl. Do this in short intervals so as not to overcook the marshmallows. Once the mixture is smooth and melty, stir in the cereal; combine well. Place on a pan lined with aluminum foil (easy clean up).
It may not look like much in this picture, but it is definitely one of the best treats I have had in a while. I'm not a huge fan of Rice Krispies treats in the first place, but I think it is safe to say that these will not last long (luckily - I only made 1/6 of a batch).
I don't actually have recipes for the next few things, but I was having fun and was feeling a bit creative. This is what can happen when you're hungry and have some extra time on your hands.
Boiled peanuts - not my creation, or idea. When my parents came back from Georgia they brought back A LOT of peanuts. Boiled peanuts are one of those things - you either love 'em or hate 'em.
There is one more creation in the works, but I won't post about it until after Tuesday - the Trunk or Treat activity at church...
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
This past month I...(in no particular order):
-went to the fair for the first time (thanks Jenny). We went to see the Jeff Corwin show at the Topsfield fair which means we got to see some animals that were, um, not your typical farm-type animals. I enjoyed walking around, looking at the GINORMOUS pumpkin, watching silly goats try to attack each other from separate pens (thank goodness they were separated by a fence), and most of all - eating yummy fair food.
-ate clams for the first time; realized that I am not missing A-N-Y-T-H-I-N-G! I imagine if you went to the bottom of the ocean floor and licked it, they would taste something like that - YUCK!! It was also the first time ever in my memory that we ordered a fish platter at a restaurant to share - no chicken to be found. It wasn't half bad...except for the clams.
-have been doing homework - surprisingly I enjoy it. I haven't completely worked out organizing my time yet - but it's getting better every week.
-have been practicing the piano. I figured that I wasn't a very good piano teacher if I assigned homework to my students and didn't make myself really practice. I have been learning new songs outside of the necessary requirements of 'songs I have to know to play in church'.
-went to Boston and, for a little while, new exactly where I was.
-went fishing in the dark (wow, that sounds like a song), didn't catch a thing
-experimented with several varieties of microwavable Chinese noodles. My suggestion - find a good take out place; they were disgusting!
-went to Smolak Farm on what may have been their busiest day ever. It was fun though and I got THE most awesome cookbook ever!
- watched it snow for the first time this season in our town on Sunday. It was the best kind of snow - no cleanup!
-had a conference call for work with our Corporate office in the middle of a power outage. Picture it - my boss and I in her office, door closed, in the dark on her cell phone. It was working great until the wind and rain really picked up and I totally freaked out. Worked out for the best though, I didn't really want to be on that call.
There have been other things going on, but I'll spare you the details...for now.
I'm totally getting excited about Halloween coming! I have a costume, a reason/place to wear it, and have recently discovered all sorts of Halloween/fall crafts, recipes and other randomness that will be invading our house in the coming week or so.
Friday, September 18, 2009
On Saturday I was going to clean the house and go for a bike ride. Well, I woke up and it was pouring rain (actually, it started Friday and just never stopped). That caused the whole 'go for a bike ride' idea to be washed away (clever, huh?). So, I decided that I would do some baking to fill in the gaps of time. I went to the grocery store to pick up a few things and came home. I started cooking/baking at 2:00 pm; I didn't finish until 9:something. I was completely exhausted when I finished and decided that the dishes could most definitely wait until morning; there goes the cleaning part of my day.
Sunday came, I went to church, was invited to dinner and agreed to attend a meeting. After church, I went home to do the dishes (okay, so I missed morning entirely on that one), made lunch, sat down to work on some ideas for primary, finished up my dessert and left. In the mix of everything and a great time, I lost all track of time and I missed the meeting I'd agreed to.
Monday morning I started a bit behind schedule because of the dog. At the end of the day I rushed home because it was the first day of school - I had to return a movie to the store, make dinner, feed the dog and take him for a walk and make it to school - all in an hour. My class started at 6:30 - I think I walked in at 6:30:30 (that's seconds, not a typo). I got out an hour early and was excited because I could get home and do my homework first thing. But when I got home the dog needed me. So, being the good human that I am (he trained me to be this way), I put my books away and played with him before retiring to bed.
Tuesday morning turned out to be the almost the exact same schedule, but instead of class at night I had another meeting (which I made it to, still not sure how; perhaps because it made it into my planner). I came home to an interesting situation (a post for another time) which caused me to not be able to 1 - do my homework, again; 2 - clean up the ongoing mess I'd made; 3 - work out (and I needed my workout for my sanity after the craziness of those few days).
Wednesday finally arrived - the homecoming day! I made it home at lunch to put dinner on in the crock pot (whoever invented the crock pot...genius!). It was a good thing I did too, because I had to go straight to the airport after work. We got everybody home and fed and started to reorganize our lives, slowly but surely. Mom and dad brought back two big bags of fresh peanuts which we boiled that night. I haven't had boiled peanuts in years and boy were they good! While we were waiting for the peanuts to finish I realized that I had some free time on my hands, so I sat down to do my homework. I should have known that it would never happen if I sat down in the living room, but I sat, and no homework was accomplished; and trust me, there is a great excuse for that, too.
Luckily, Thursday rolled around and, would you believe it? I got almost everything done that I planned. Homework - check. Clean up - check. Work out - check.
And my excuse?? R-O-U-T-I-N-E!!!
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
I also figured I had better recap the most amazing weekend of my life to this point. Last Tuesday I hatched the most brilliant of plans; I was going to go to Utah to surprise my sister for the long, Labor Day, weekend. I started looking at plane tickets, asking people to sub for me at church, and trying to organize everything to make this happen. Then reality sort of kicked in and the cost for the ticket, and the rental car and the fact that I would only be on the ground for 2 days kind of overwhelmed me. I decided that it would probably be better to not go and save the money for another trip where I could spend more time.
On Thursday we had our company outing (gorgeous day, by the way). My General Manager came over and he asked me about my plans for the weekend. I told him that I had been trying to take this trip but that I had backed out because the cost was ridiculous. He agreed that it would be a huge trip but great surprise and totally backed the idea, which kind of bummed me out because, with someone else support, I wanted to go even more.
All the way home I was trying to figure out how I could possibly make it work, but to no avail. I tried my best to put it out of my mind because I was making myself really depressed and saying things like, "I wish I had never had this idea". While I was sitting at home on the couch, trying to keep 'the trip' off of my mind my cell phone buzzed; I had a text message. I thought it may have been Lori because I tried calling her and I expected her to be telling me she was in class, or to call at another time. I opened the phone and it was a message from my GM asking if I had purchased my tickets yet. I told him I hadn't and then, the most incredible thing of all time, he texted back and said that he wanted to use his frequent flyer miles to purchase my ticket!! I couldn't believe it. I reacted like they do on TV when they show commercials for the Publisher's Clearing House winners - there was laughing, crying, jumping, screaming, more crying, lots of smiling. Within 24 hours, all plans were made and I was on a plane and heading to Utah.
Lori had no idea I was coming and, thanks to her roommates and friends, was still awake when I got there. I had been planning the whole time how I wanted to surprise her but when it came right down to it, I just went and stood in front of her window(I didn't want her running down the stairs and falling, or something like that). It was probably kind of weird, but it worked. She then had the same type of reaction I had; tears, laughing, crying. It was the most awesome feeling ever! We had an amazing weekend together; it was laid back and fun.
The trip went very fast but I am SO glad that I was able to go! I firmly believe that the most important relationships you have in life should be with your family. This weekend we...reconnected, for lack of a better term. This trip was unbelievably good; it couldn't have been any better! Truly a miracle!
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
I went home and told my mom about 'the other' perfume and I think she may have laughed at me for walking out of the store without getting the one I wanted. In my defense though, I could hardly see straight after testing so many others - I wasn't even entirely sure which one it was that I could still smell. Well, last Thursday I came home after being in the woods all day (ah, the good ol' days). I sat down to dinner and my mom asked if I was ready for a surprise. She handed me a bag, a Sephora bag. Inside was a new body wash; Chocolate Fudge Cake - I crave chocolate every morning now, and a perfume. Not just any perfume...
Monday, August 31, 2009
5 minutes later - good feeling gone. NEWSFLASH! The company outing has been moved to Thursday - only 2 1/2 days away now. The desk and messages will have to wait.
Okay, so it's not that bad. Out of all of the things I do, this is one of the easiest. The timing is just a bit off, but I guess it's a good adjustment to being back in the office after last week.
My resolve - I will not panic or stress. I will remain calm and organized (whatever that is) and, my famous last words, everything will be fine.
Sunday, August 30, 2009
Go indulge and ask yourself this - is it breakfast for dessert or dessert for breakfast?
Thursday, August 27, 2009
Saturday, August 22, 2009
Now, I'm off for the crafting part of my evening...
I went to the craft store yesterday and found this really great pattern for a new bag - I can't wait to find some fabric to try it.
As for cleaning - well, after I do everything else, it just may not happen. That's what Monday's are for, right?
Thursday, August 20, 2009
1) I used all of my vacation time to go and see Lori
2) I wasn't actually planning on still being in this state
3) I have a H-U-G-E work meeting next week that I am organizing
(There is sort of a 4th and that is, I wasn't sure I could tempt fate enough to get cool weather - it's been a hot week; we had gorgeous cool weather last year)
So, even though I had 3 fairly valid reasons (and 1 not entirely valid but totally truthful reason) I still felt like I was missing out. I never, ever, ever liked going to girl's camp when I was 'supposed' to go, so to be missing it is a pretty big deal. I did, however, take some time yesterday (and a half day off work, hehe) and go up for the afternoon. I couldn't believe how much I missed it; I didn't want to leave. These young women and their leaders are AWESOME! So, needless to say, I am already making plans now to somehow be involved again next year - I refuse to miss it!
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
In other news, today is my birthday and I gave myself a birthday present! I am officially a college student again and I couldn't be happier! Granted, writing out that check was not as memorable, but ultimately worth it. The other perfect gift is that 15 of my credits from BYU-Idaho transferred - so I am down a full semester of work. Yippee!
Sunday, August 9, 2009
My absolute favorite part was being on the front of the boat and trying to lay in the sun. I say trying because every time I thought I would have a great stretch of light and warmth, we would turn and the sail would be on the wrong side - but it was completely relaxing anyway. One of Lori's friends came down for the day and we had a blast hanging out and giggling like a bunch of little girls. It was truly perfect! I wouldn't have traded it for anything! Pictures will follow one day...maybe!
Friday, August 7, 2009
I will be starting classes on September 9 at .......North Shore Community College. I didn't think that I would even be able to get everything together in time, but I have spent this week doing paperwork and taking placement tests and I have orientation and registration next week, so it seems like it is really going to happen. I am going to be taking night classes to finish up my Associates Degree and then will work on transferring somewhere to finish my Bachelor's, but only one thing at a time.
So, I don't know if it's good news to anyone else, but I am officially staying here. I love my life and the positive things that I have going on right now. And even though I was so excited to leave to do something else - I am now excited and feel the need to stay here until further notice.
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
I usually feel bright and cheerful, like a bright pink, or orange, or bright blue. I like to think that I am optimistic by nature and, though I definitely have some down times, I can see things in a positive light. Today, though, I feel gray. I feel like the color of my world has been washed out. I feel lost inside this bubble that I live, and I don’t know exactly how to get out.
My boss is out of town this week which means I sit in a corner of the office by myself, with no one to talk to, with no break in the monotony. I work as hard as I can, for as long as I can, but then I hit a wall and have no one to bounce ideas off of, so I start to think and before long, I feel…blech.
I think that must have been exactly what happened. I had an awesome day yesterday and then, on my way home from work, I allowed myself to wander into the crevices of my mind where doubt, regret and mischief live. Because that’s where I allowed my mind to go, I have to bring it back out again and shut the door on this dark place.
As I’m writing this, the color feels like it is coming back, there is a smile creeping onto my face, and maybe, just maybe, I’ll survive (how about a little drama for the day?).
I spent my lunch break in an empty office that has a double window that overlooks the small airport behind our building. I brought a book to read today and, as I was reading, I could watch the planes take off and land as I glanced up. It felt good to sit and see outside without having to feel the heat of the day (my computer says 86 degrees right now and the humidity is killer today AND I wore black, so there was no way I was actually going to sit out in the sun, so this was the next best thing).
I frustrate myself with feelings like I had earlier, which I hesitated to actually post but that I did include, mostly for my own reference. Maybe I’ll give it to my boss and tell her it would be better for 1 – her not to go out of town, or 2 – give me a week off while she’s gone, or 3 - let me bring a friend to work for a week (anyone want to volunteer?) I guess in some weird, cyber way, blogging is my friend at work. I got to talk out my feelings, come to a realization of the problem(s), came up with a solution, and lived to tell the tale.
Now that I have gotten over the gloom and doom stuff, I finally remembered some of the really good things that have happened and I feel this obligation to compensate you in some way for actually having to read this post, so, this is for you- 10 good things
1-Lori and Tausha came to visit
2-Lori and Tausha and I roamed around Boston
3-I parallel parked in Boston
4-We all, parents included, went to the aquarium
5-I got sunburned which may not actually seem good, but I am no longer pasty white!
6-I judged a dessert competition
7-I ate ice cream the next day – don’t judge me J
8-I watched a movie with my parents that we all laughed out loud to!
9-I got one of those mood charts (you know, the ones that have a square over the face/emotion you’re feeling). I have ALWAYS wanted one, so it was pretty awesome!
10-I tried Strawberry Peanut Butter M&M’s. I may or may not have abandoned my search for a new outfit to get them. I may or may not have gone to two different stores on my lunch break to find them. I may or may not have eaten 1/3 of the bag on my way back to work.
I feel better now; I'm feeling pink again! What color are you?
Sunday, July 12, 2009
It reaffirmed to me that the decisions that I am making now are leading me 'home' in more ways than one.
Thursday, July 9, 2009
Tuesday, June 30, 2009
I put the cookies in the food processor until finely chopped. I then added some melted butter. Stir until it looks like all of the crumbs have had a butter bath (no, you do not want it soaking wet, but you want it to stick together once you get it in the pan)
Dump the crumb/butter mixture into a spring form pan (I line the bottom disc in foil so it is less messy and SOOOO much easier to clean) and press down. I have issues with getting things on my hands so I use a plastic bag. Beside, you leave more cookies in the pan and none on your hands.
Bake in the oven until the crust is set (about 10 minutes...I think).
While the crust was baking/cooling I made the cheesecake batter. I melted a white chocolate Lindt bar and added it to the batter.
While the cheesecake baked I made the chocolate mousse. It was turning into a very long night and the pictures started to become fewer and further between.
While everything was baking, cooling and setting, I also decided to melt some more white chocolate and added pink food coloring to make swirls to top the whole thing of with. At this point my wonderful mother came to my rescue at 10:30 pm and helped me with everything.
We made lots and lots of swirls....
Here is the before and after shot of the cheesecakes.
I was a little concerned how the mixture of textures would work out, but personally, I loved it (and that, in my mind, is all that matters).
I think I dream in chocolate...
Thursday, June 11, 2009
I have a whiteboard behind my door in my bedroom that I put quotes and reminders on, things that make me smile, and some that just remind me to do something. I recently updated it with some new statements and now, every time I shut my door, I see these new phrases that give my life purpose and meaning. So, I guess that at this very moment, despite the turmoil of the workplace and the weird world in which we live, I personally have peace and for that, I am GRATEFUL.
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
Sunday, June 7, 2009
Lori didn't come home this summer so she could stay and work as a cake decorator. This is what she gets to do everyday. This cake, however, was not for work. She made this cake FOR FUN after she got home from work. What can I say? She is A-W-E-S-O-M-E!
So here we are again, on the edge of another fun and exciting week. I hope yours is great, too.
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
This is the new color!!!
Of course we had to try the quilt on. It looks so great with the new color scheme.
In other news, the quilt is completely complete and I will be posting pictures soon.
Have you ever read the book "If you give a mouse a cookie"? Basically, if you give a mouse a cookie, he's going to need a glass of milk, and it continues a chain reaction of needs based on what you gave him. Well, if you give me (or let me help you make) a new quilt, I'm going to need a new color on the walls, and once that is done, I will have to rearrange the furniture. So, we spent yesterday, Memorial Day, painting my bedroom (I will also be posting before/after pics...one day). It went from a beautiful sky blue color with clouds on the ceiling to a bright, summery yellow. The furniture has also been moved - I'm still not sure if I like it or not, but luckily, that is a lot easier to change than say, repainting because I didn't like the color, right?
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Her birthday was yesterday and I am still bummed that I didn't get to celebrate with her. Oh well, I guess that's the way life is.
I have a spreadsheet at work that I put together about a year and a half ago. I update it every once in a while. One page has events that I am looking forward to and the other is full of quotes (confession: I am a quote freak!). I haven't opened it in a while, I seriously mean months. I came across a quote that, in the past day and a half, has brought me a lot of peace, confidence and encouragement. One day I hope to know who said it.
"It's not who you think you are that holds you back; it's who you think you're not"
And with that, I'm ready to conquer my future...
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
I may not like the heat, but it is absolutely creating a beautiful day. Oh, and I get to leave work in 2 1/2 hours, so I get to go and enjoy it. Thank goodness for the orthodontist (I never thought I'd think that)
Friday, April 24, 2009
During General Conference I really began thinking about life and the decisions that I was/am facing. It was Elder Steven E. Snow's talk that really got me going and got me incredibly excited, even confident in my decision that indeed, it is time for me to get on with my life. I haven't remained at home out of pure convenience, although it has helped enormously (thanks mom and dad!), or out of fear of doing something else (well, maybe a little), the timing has just been right. I needed to be at home to figure some things out, to figure out who I am and what I want out of my life. I have had some incredible experiences here, I love my job and have received a great education in the work force. The time has come though, to get on with my life, to do something. I still don't know what the right decision for me is. I have applications in and I'm making plans as if I were doing both and I hope that whatever is holding me back from making the decision that I want/need will either disappear, or I'll know how to conquer it. This may be one of those times that I take a step in the dark, that leap of faith, and proceed with my life.
Until I get my thoughts sorted, I feel I must escape from my thoughts, at least for a bit, and resume the current life and responsibilities that I have. Besides, I have a conference call in an hour, lunch to eat, and work to do. Duty calls - thank goodness!
Happy Friday! I hope you have some great weekend plans.
Thursday, April 23, 2009
After I finished my apron we pulled out the quilt we started a couple of months ago and finished sewing the top layer together. At this moment there is a quilting frame in our living room just waiting to be sewn up - our lives for the next few days, uh - weeks?, I mean months?? Sure hope not! Pictures of both projects coming soon.
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Check this out - inspiring!
Anyway, the world is once again good and I am looking forward to everything that is coming my way.
Sunday, April 12, 2009
Saturday, April 11, 2009
I made a batch of cherry chip and a batch of yellow cakes. Then I decided to top them with flowers that I piped out of colored white chocolate. I had a blast baking and piping and piping and baking. They turned out to be the perfect springtime cupcakes, Easter cakes, and April 11th cakes!!
Enjoy the day!