Thursday, February 26, 2009

Book Club has been reading Persuasion by Jane Austen for the last few weeks. I have wanted to read Jane Austen for a very long time. I even checked out Emma once and gave it my best effort. But, I am going to admit, it was just too hard for me. The language was so difficult to follow. So I gave up. I suggested it for book club and everyone liked the idea. Rita suggested that we get started with it by checking out the book on tape to get into it and then pick up the book to finish. Well I got the tapes and loved it. I never moved to the book.
So, today I had to tutor but started listening again on the way home between classes. Well, I don't have a tape player in my house and I was getting to the end of the book.....the good part. So, I sat in my car for 1 1/2 hours this morning with the windows down while I listened. Thoroughly enjoyed myself....although I must admit I fell asleep briefly a couple of times. I hope I didn't miss anything too important. Then after my 2nd class I pulled up in the driveway and again listened for another hour. I felt like I did as a kid when I would sit in the car waiting for mama outside church. The wind was blowing and it was a little warm. Perfect for listening to a great book. How grateful I am that I can take the time to sit and listen to a great book. I know I am very lucky.
So, I love the book. I especially, I think, like the reader. She had such a wonderful English accent. I have been catching myself thinking in that accent and using those words. I love the characters and how silly they seemed to be so concerned with social positions. I wonder if I am like that and don't recognize my own silliness. I am so happy to have read --or listened to-- my first Jane Austen. I checked out the movie, Sense and Sensibilities, and am excited to watch it.
OK, side note. I hate to admit this, but I can't remember how to punctuate books and movies. Isn't that terrible. It hasn't really been THAT long. But, if anyone would like to educate me, I would be appreciative.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

I wanted to do a 44 things I love about Zack in honor of his birthday, but I am so bad at those things. I have tried and tried, but just can't finish them. Oh, what the heck....I will try

1. He loves Drew Barrymore. Ok, I don't know why I put that, esp. first, but she is on Jay Leno and I think she is really funny, too. Interesting, but funny.
2. I love his smile. It is so cute.
3. He has gray hair when it is dry, but looks coal black when he has his gel in it.
4. He is just as Republican and Conservative as me.
5. He noticed Nancy Pelosi being obnoxious at the State of the Union address tonight all by himself. I had too. YUCK!
6. He loves sushi like I do.
7. He has aged wonderfully. I think he gets better looking every year.
8. I love that he reads my blog.
9. I love it when he makes his smoothies and makes me one.
10. I love that he bears his testimony to our family often.
11. I love his sweet way with the s.
12. His favorite scripture is Ether 12:27. I love that.
13. I love his ocean sounds music he listens to to go to sleep at night.
14. I love to put my feet on him at night.
15. I love when he puts his hand on my arm during the night.
16. I love that he calls random people when he travels. People from our past, usually older ladies.
17. I love that he takes good care of his mom and mamaw.
18. He is funny....
19. He loves his Blackberry and his computer.
20. He encourages our family to be our best.
21. I am grateful that he works so hard for our family.
22. He wants to get out of debt.
23. He sends Alex random notes and emails just to let him know he loves him.
24. He does lots of random acts of kindness, often without telling even me.
25. He is good to find others needs and help out.
26. In the hotel he lays his toiletries out on a wash clothe very neatly and organized.
27. He cries at movies.
28. He is tells his sons he loves them, very often.
29. He appreciates me and what I do for our family.
30. He tells our family that (#29) all the time.
31. It freaks him out that our s are growing up and all that includes.
32. He is 6 years older than me!
33. He quit drinking coke. Seems like a hard thing to do.
34. He has overcome some really tough things.
35. I love when we work together on a project and really connect over it.
36. He loves to work in the yard...and even though it doesn't look like it now, he finds great pleasure in it.
37. He loves his truck that is my age.
38. He was 38 when Lily was born and that is how old I am now......glad we don't have a baby when I am 38.
39. I love when he comes home for the day.
40. I love when he works from home and we are together all day long with no kids around.
41. I love when he does thoughtful things for me.
42. He likes to dress neatly.
43. He brings his own clothes to the cleaners, now. Little thing, I know, but.......
44. He likes to hold my hand. Last time we were in church in Winnfield with my mom we held hands during sacrament meeting and the s were sitting with my mom on the stand so we talked and laughed a little during the meeting. Vicki, a lady I have know there my whole life, came over after the meeting and asked how long we had been married and said we were "gagging" her with our sweetness. Last Sunday when I was there she asked me where he was and said she missed us being "all over each other". We weren't all over each other, but.....he does like to hold my hand, and I like him to hold it.

Happy 44th Zack--------I love you!!!

Birthday Events

Well, Zack's birthday was yesterday. Yep, he is 44 years old. Wow, I just can't imaging where the years have gone. We have been married almost 20 years, now. Unbelievable. To celebrate...and hide the fact that I didn't get him anything....I tagged along with him to Houston on a business trip he already had planned. We got a late start and stopped in Beaumont at Tokyo of Japan for sushi. Yummy! Then on into Houston. This morning Zack drove me to the temple to do a session and then meet the kids who were there on our annual Mardi Gras temple trip. It was wonderful. I have never done a session strictly by myself, but I really enjoyed it. I thought about how nice it would be to be able to go once a week. Maybe one day in another season of my life. I am excited to go to the temple soon with Alex and texted him that earlier today, to which he responded, "I'm pumped". It was very satisfying to be there in the temple with Taylor, Mary Catherine, and Sarah Beth. They have wonderful spirits and strong testimonies. I am so grateful for that. Not to mention how very cute they are!!!
Funny story....Taylor spent the night here at the house with Bryce Anderson. MC and SB stayed at the Newton's. So, last night President Newton was asking me if I thought that Taylor could wake up in time to meet at Kroger this morning. I was so sure that he could and would be fine. Oh, YES, I told him. No worries. So, last night I lectured Taylor on all the things he needed to be sure and take care of that night. Lock the door, set your phone on loud, keep it near you.....etc. Usual things when mom is not home. So, Taylor didn't really want to take time to listen to me. He could handle prob, right? Well, this morning Sarah Beth calls me at 5:45 saying that they couldn't get Taylor to answer the phone. Ok, ok, go ahead and get ready and Daddy and I will keep calling. So, we call and call and call. No answer. Then suddenly Taylor answers the house phone and says that President Newton had to come over and wake them up. According to President Newton, he let himself into the house (no locked door!!!--I know Lisa, scary, right!) to find 6'2" Taylor asleep on the 4' ottoman in front of the TV with ESPN blaring! Lights on everywhere. So Taylor jumps up to go wake up Bryce. This all occurred at 6:15 and Taylor and Bryce arrived at the Kroger at 6:35. Taylor was right to say, "Good thing I took a shower last night"--and that Daddy brought your shirts to the cleaners and they were ready for you!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

"I'm getting really excited about going on my mission"

How can those nine words make my heart sing? I called Alex last night to check up. He was so happy and excited. He was waiting for his dorm room to be inspected and was just as upbeat as he could be. So I asked him what was going on. He told me that that day he went to the MTC with a friend from here, Deneka Mahana, to see another friend, Lake Alvis, into the MTC. He said it was so cool. He was the last one to hug Lake before he went into the MTC. I called Sheila last night to tell her the much as I had been given:) Anyway, Alex went on to tell me how he had some really great experiences lately that made him so excited to go. The MTC was one. Another was in his religion class the professor bore his testimony about prophets for the entire class period. Alex said it was awesome. And then in his Mission Prep class they practiced teaching a discussion. He liked that, too. I guess all these experiences have really helped to light his fire. He seems to be growing. Wow........sure does make it all worth it. And while I know that there is an awful lot this

AND this

going on out there at BYU, I think things are moving along really well. Please pray that we can get these papers filled out and get this boy on a mission in the next couple of months!!!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Breakfast Pockets

I have been reading many blogs about having a "cooking day" set aside to put many meals or at least parts of meals up in the freezer. I am very interested in trying this. I think I will start this week on Thursday. This is the first thing I will try. I looks awesome and I know my kids would LOVE it. I think I could do it with pepperoni for hot pockets, too. Let me know if you have any more ideas for freezer meals. Anything you have tried that I should try, too. I have been thinking of muffins, but we eat them so quickly when they are fresh from the oven!

These Homemade Breakfast Hot Pockets are a great "Baking Day" project. Take the time to make these on an afternoon or morning while you will be home. These take a couple of hours from start to finish to make, but they can be frozen and will provide a hearty breakfast for your family for a while.

If you do not have time to make your own dough you can use refrigerated bread dough, but your hot pockets will not be quite as large. Or, you could also substitute crescent rolls and make them in to "breakfast in a blanket".

Dough Ingredients:
9 cups flour
4 eggs
1/2 cup sugar
4 1/2 tsp. yeast
1 1/2 cup milk
1 1/2 cup water
1 tsp. salt
2 sticks melted butter

Put 9 cups flour in a large bowl, make a well in the center.

In a separate bowl beat 4 eggs, than add 1/2 cup sugar and 4 1/2 tsp. yeast.

In another bowl, scald 1 1/2 cups milk in microwave for 3 minutes. Then add 1 1/2 cups water. Add this mixture to the egg mixture. Stir in 1 tsp. salt. Mix all ingredients well.

Pour this mixture into the well of flour in the large bowl. Do not stir. Put lid on and let sit for 45 minutes.

After 45 minutes, add 2 sticks of melted butter and mix well.

Cover and let sit for 1 hour. Now that your dough is made you are ready to make hot pockets.

Egg Mixture:
12 eggs
2 Tbs. butter
1 roll of breakfast sausage
2 cups cheddar cheese
1 half onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper chopped

While you are waiting on the dough you can be making the breakfast mixture. Using butter or margarine, scramble 12 eggs over a skillet. In another skillet, cook and crumble 1 roll of breakfast sausage.

In another bowl combine scrambled eggs, sausage, onion, bell pepper, and cheddar cheese.

To Make the Hot Pockets:

Pull off a round of dough about the size of a baseball and flatten on counter. Place about 1/2 cup of mixture in the middle of the hot pocket (or about 1/4 cup if you are using crescent rolls). Bring opposite sides together and pinch together. Then do the same with the other two sides.

Place onto a greased cookie sheet, or baking stone. Let rise for 30-40 minutes and then bake at 350 degrees for about 20-30 minutes.

Now, all your prep work and cooking are done! Once these are baked and cooled, you can freeze your hot pockets. When you are ready to eat them, just pop them in the microwave until warm.

This recipe yields 30-36 hot pockets, depending upon how large you make them.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

What day is it?

So, in preparation for some dental work I had done today, I took 3 benadryl! I know! One knocks me flat on my back, but I was really nervous. The doctor offered valium, but I thought that benadryl would be safer. So, needless to say I have been asleep ALL afternoon much to the frustration of my children. Apparently they tried several times to talk to me and I would shoo them away. One time I loudly said, "Powerade!!!". Yeah, I'm not really sure, but I kind of vaguely remember dreaming something and it was fairly appropriate. On the upside, though, it worked. I was fairly relaxed during the procedure and only a little more to go till my mouth is as good as new!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

A few weeks ago on Martin Luther King Day I invited myself with my s and Paige to go to Andrea's house at Swamp Surburbia to horseback ride. Lily has had a long time love of horses and was so excited to see some up close. Andrea let each of the s take a turn riding and even let them run.......a little! The wind was really blowing that day. It was really nice out. Of course, my s were a little afraid of the DOGS out there, but weren't afraid of the big horses at all.

Emma and Paige had fun climbing on the fences and riding. They played with Andrea's baby and watched the goat playing around.

But, Lily was all about the horses. She fed them carrots, helped give them their feed, and patted them over and over. I don't know what it is about horses. She just loves them. She remembers all of their names and tells me what each of them like and don't like.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Daddy, the tooth puller.....Mommy, the tooth fairy

Emma's mouth at 9 years and 2 months. Do you think she will need braces? Yeah, me too. Daddy the tooth puller did his magic again tonight. All the teeth in our family have either been pulled by the tooth loser or by Daddy. He is our official puller. The only one I ever pulled was Alex's first or second tooth. I tried and tried to pull it, but couldn't so I finally convinced him to let me tie a string to it and the other end to the door knob on the front door. It is a heavy door and then we slammed it and the tooth just popped out. I guess it was a little tramatic, though, because no one else has let me near their mouth since then. I thought it was really smart and fast. Oh, well, Daddy does do a MUCH less stressful method. He just gets them relaxed as he plays with the tooth and then.......CRUNCH.........he pulls it forward hard and fast and out it comes. They never even feel a thing. Now if that is not the cutest mouth, I don't know what is. She worked on it all day and pulled it right before she went to sleep. Tooth fairy should get up right now and track down some money before she gets too sleepy and forgets!