Thursday, August 30, 2007


Yesterday we broke a record here in the Valley of the Sun. The record? The most days over 110 degrees! Isn't that something to be proud of? This is a copy of the graphic that appeared on the front page of yesterday's newspaper. The only positive thing I have to say is that during that whole week in July when it was unbearable (116 on the 4th!) - we were in shady, cool Duck Creek, Utah!
Here's hoping that yesterday was the last day (it is ONLY supposed to be 108 today) of the hellish temperatures. I'm telling you it is not right for it to be 103 at 9:00 in the morning OR 9:00 at night! And it has been at least that the last few days.
I'm wishing for some thunderstorms and cold breezes. I'm longing for a vacation and the ability to be outside for more than 5 minutes without my skin sizzling. As everyone else in the nation prepares for fall, we are still suffering from heat stroke. But, I do know, that come January - we won't be the ones complaining!!!

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

How do you let people know you blog?

I have had this blog for a couple of months now. However, very few people know about it. I have been loathe to tell people for some reason. I guess I don't want anyone to think that I think that what I have to say is so great that others really need to read it. Especially when I read some of the incredible blogs out there. There are people who have very important things to say out there. And here I am sharing recipes and family pictures. I told my close friends and that is it - until today. I told my mother-in-law about it today (Hi DeAnn!) but I felt kind of weird doing it. I told Alan about it but I am pretty sure that he has never visited. If anyone is reading this - how did you get the word out that you have a blog? Just wondering....

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Tasty Tuesday - Yogurt Chicken

I am putting this together for my food group this afternoon. We had it last night - it is a favorite at our house. I got this recipe from the cooks at Girl's camp.

Yogurt Chicken

4 chicken breasts (slice in large slices - 4 or 5 to a breast)
1 sleeve Ritz crackers crushed
8 oz plain yogurt
2 Tbls Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper
1 Tbls seasoning salt (or other seasoning you like)

Add cheese and seasoning to cracker crumbs. Dip the chicken in the yogurt to cover completely.
Then dip the chicken in the crumb mixture to coat well. (I use plates - one with the yogurt and one with the crumbs - then you can have one messy yogurt hand and the other relatively clean with the crumbs) Place on cookie sheet and drizzle with 1/4 c. melted butter. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

Last night I served it with cooked squash and fruit salad - I am taking a green salad to food group this afternoon. I will give them a mixture of greens, slivered almonds, cooked and crumbled bacon, sliced strawberries and croutons. I will also give them a small jar of this simple, yummy homemade dressing or they can use whatever dressing they love.

Simple Salad Dressing

3 Tbls lemon juice
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
3 cloves of crushed garlic
1/2 cup canola or olive oil

Blend lemon juice, salt, pepper and garlic together at high speed in a blender. Slowly add oil.

So yummy and fresh tasting. I am hungry!!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

WFMW - Food Group

I haven't posted anything in a little while. I was actually going to talk about my new food group last week for a Tasty Tuesday - and didn't. Then I was going to do it last Wednesday for WFMW - but didn't. I don't know what has happened in the last week - nothing cataclysmic - but I have been away from my computer a lot.

So, for Works for Me Wednesday I want to tell you about my new food group. So far it is AWESOME! There are four of us in the group - We meet each Tuesday and trade meals. I am loving it. We each make four of the same meal and meet together and trade. The meal I am going to make for everyone - I make for my family on Monday night - then I can work out the kinks, the baking times etc... I don't really follow recipes and make up a lot of things as I go so I need that day to really refine. Then I make it or put it together for three other families on Tuesday and we trade.

We have a couple of rules. The meals have to be able to feed families. We all have about the same size families. Two of us have 4 kids, the other two have 5. When you assemble a meal it has to take only 10 - 15 minutes of prep. All of the vegetables should be cut etc... We try and do as much ahead as you can so that we don't have to do much the other nights. One of the families doesn't really like onions so we just leave it out of their meals. But that is it - it is so simple and it is great to have dinner planned on Monday and then everything I need to put together dinner on Tues, Wed, and Thursday.

Last week I made lasagnas for everyone. That was a lot of work - but it is a crowd pleaser. One of the girls made a chicken tortilla soup that my family loved. One made these incredible Salisbury Steaks with mashed potatoes and gravy. It was so tasty- we loved it and then yesterday when we were meeting I found out that it is a Weight Watchers recipe! Bonus! I have to admit that I "re-purposed" the other meal. I just used the ingredients for something I knew my family would like.

This week I put together everything for the families to make a chicken and stuffing crock-pot dinner. That was so easy to put together - it kind of feels like cheating. I picked up from the other girls a chicken and broccoli Alfredo (we ate it last night - it was great), stuff for French dip sandwiches (a crock-pot dinner), and chicken crescent things (we call them chicken pillows).

So that is something that is really working for me right now. Working for me and I don't have to do a lot of work. What could be better?

Monday, August 13, 2007


On Friday, all four of us girls got haircuts. Courtney wanted more layers but kept the length. Morgan got a "Nicole Richie" haircut - which is just really a shorter bob with some side-swiped bangs. I got my haircut quite a bit shorter - shorter than I have worn it in years. But the big news was that Nicole cut 14 inches of hair off to donate to Locks of Love. I almost freaked while it was being cut - but now I love it - it is adorable. She loves it too. Here are some pictures:

Friday, August 10, 2007

Movie Review - Bourne Ultimatum

Last night Alan and I went to see the Bourne Ultimatum. I really loved it. I loved the first two in the series and this was just as good. I think the first movie had the best ending (I'm a sucker for a happy ending) but this one ended still a little up in the air. I wonder if they are leaving it a little mysterious so that they can easily do a fourth movie.

Jason Bourne, as a character, is so easy to sympathize with. You really want him to find out what he needs to find out and then be done with all of this crazy running. He becomes the kind of character that you can feel his trepidation in killing unnecessarily and then his satisfaction when he has stopped a truly bad guy. I love this series of movies - I know there are a couple more "Bourne" books - I'm going to look for them next time I am at the library.

Speaking of books.... I finished Eclipse this morning. It has a very satisfying ending. Stephenie Meyer is a talented writer - I wish I had that gift. I can barely put sentences together in this blog. I am amazed at the world and the characters that she has created. It seems so real and it is so easy to get caught up in it. I highly recommend these books. My next book is Austenland by Shannon Hale.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Taking a Reading Day

I am having a hard time doing anything but reading Eclipse - If you love these books like I do - watch this.

Am I too involved?

Wednesday, August 8, 2007


They lived - they are fine. I cried off and on all day - but they liked it - they are going back tomorrow.

Weepy Wednesday

While parents throughout the Gilbert School System are jumping for joy - I am as weepy as can be. I just dropped off my two oldest for their first day of 7th grade at the Jr. High. I tried not to cry too much in front of them, but it all let loose as soon as I turned out of the Jr. High parking lot. It is a scary world out there and I have just dropped them off to face it alone. Good thing I have my book to keep my mind off of things. On Monday, when my other two start school, I will probably have to be tranquilized. Our youngest will be in 1st grade - she will be gone all day. I know I will come to love it - but right now - it makes me cry.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

So Funny

I would love to get the whole song, learn the lyrics and do it at my ward talent show - but we all know that even though it would be so fun and so funny - there is no way I could do it - I would be way too scared!


Tasty Tuesday - Buttermilk Syrup

I was recently reminded that I love Buttermilk Syrup!! I hate when you forget about something that is so good and so easy to make! This syrup is so delicious - it has a "caramely" taste but it is not too sweet. Obviously - with all of the butter - it is also NOT low-fat; BUT it is so worth it for a special weekend breakfast. It is especially delicious over oatmeal pancakes or apple pancakes - but my personal favorite is French toast or even better - French toast casserole!!

Buttermilk Syrup

1 stick of butter
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. baking soda

Cook butter, sugar and buttermilk over medium heat until it comes to a boil. Remove from heat and add vanilla and baking soda.

How easy is that??

Sunday, August 5, 2007

A New Favorite

I just bought these new toothbrushes recently. I love it!! I have used "power toothbrushes" before and I didn't like how violently they moved. You can turn this toothbrush on and the outer bristles kind of pulse but not too crazily. I swear it feels like getting my teeth cleaned at the dentist - every time I use it. It is called the Oral-B Pulsar and it was less than $5 at Target. I just thought I would share!