Friday, May 31, 2013

Father's Quote

With Father's Day approaching I have been searching through General Conference talks about Fathers. I found a great one from April 1981 by President Ezra Taft Benson entitled "Great Things Required of Their Fathers."  It is a great talk that mentions the responsibilities of fathers and how being a father is something that one is never released from.  If you get a chance check out the link above and you can listen to the talk or read it.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Patiotic Wreath

I always see really cute wreaths around the web and especially on Pinterest.  I decided to try and make a foam wreath out of a dollar store pool noodle.  My Fourth of July decor is rather limited and I wanted to go for a Patriotic theme.

I wrapped the noodle with one spool of blue with white polka dots and two spools of red and white striped ribbon (I found both at Walmart).  It worked really great until my baby decided to lounge around on it like an inner tube at the pool, and well it became an odd shape so I decided to attach a chalkboard and some paper fireworks form Landee See, Landee Do.  To make the chalkboard I spray painted a plain wooden plaque with chalkboard spray paint.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Camping S'moregasbord

It is a family tradition that over Memorial Day we pack up and go camping in the snow for the weekend.  This past weekend we were blessed with absolutely beautiful weather and the stomach flu, (but that is another story).

Anyways one of my favorite memories and one that my kids really enjoy is the time we spend around the campfire.  Usually telling stories or jokes, but occasionally having great talks.

We also like to make S'mores.  This year we kicked up our campfire treats and had a S'moregasbord.

 We usually do regular S'mores with marshmallows and chocolate and graham crackers.  Then a few years ago my youngest brother and my dad invented "the Family Snacks" in which we take two chips ahoy chocolate chips and squish a perfectly roasted marshmallow in between.

This year we brought up Oreos and cookies n' cream chocolate and Reese's Peanut Butter Cups.  We all had fun mixing things up a bit and trying new things.

Before we left we also had to roast a few Starburst for my youngest brother who is serving an LDS mission in Armenia.  His favorite was to twist a few different colors together and then roast.

Maybe next year we will get crazy and throw some twix in the mix.  What are some of your favorite campfire desserts?

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Toffee Bite Cookies

At my house growing up we made a lot of chocolate chip cookies.  My favorite way to eat them was always when the came out of the oven and were warm and gooey.  I made some the other day for a craft day but I decided to throw in some chocolate covered toffee pieces and they were so good.
You start out with 3/4 cup of white sugar and 3/4 cup of brown sugar and 1 cup of shortening.  You cream this together

and add two eggs and a teaspoon of vanilla.

Then it is time for the dry ingredients. You take 1 tsp. of baking soda and 2 1/2 - 2 3/4 cups of flour and add that to the mixture.  The I put in a whole bag of Heath bites.

 I preheated the oven to 350 and baked each tray for 10 minutes.

Toffee Bite Cookies

3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar tightly packed
1 cup shortening
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. baking soda
2 1/2 - 2 3/4 cups flour
1 1/2 cups toffee bites

Cream together the sugars and the shortening.  Add the eggs and vanilla and mix.  Add the baking soda and flour mix until the dough is soft but not sticky.  Mix in the toffee bites.  Roll dough into about ping pong sized balls and bake at 350 degrees for 7-10 minutes.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Memorial Day

I belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and I found this sweet talk from Elder Shayne M. Bowen "Because I Live, Ye Shall Live Also."  It was given at the October 2012 General Conference.  In it he shares a story of how one of his children passed away tragically at a very young age.  He talks of the peace and comfort that he eventually found through the atonement of Jesus Christ and he bears testimony of the Resurrection and Eternal Families.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Out of Control Hair Day

My son's school has an alphabet countdown and each day has a new letter and a new activity to go with it.  Today was Out of Control hair day.  Well my dear son does not let anyone touch his hair or spike it.  We found these awesome ideas from Bee in our Bonnet.  My son immediately vetoed each and every idea.  Then he decided to design one himself.  He wanted his head to be the sky with the sun and clouds.  He sketched it out and made sure that I followed it exactly.

We used temporary hairspray from Sally's and it worked great and he had fun with his hair at school.  For the clouds he wanted some white material that would stick out but not any cotton balls or paper.  I took a sponge that I found at the Dollar Store and cut it into pieces and stuck them in with a bobby pin.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Soccer Treats

My  husband is the coach for our five year old's soccer team and the season has one more game.  He wanted to give them a little something for working so hard and I wanted to make them cute.  The little boys will just be thrilled to have the candy bars and gatorade but I made this little tag that says

"There's no 'Snickers' about it you guys are great.  Enjoy the time off and get ready to 'Perform' next season."

My son choose the clear Gatorade and I grabbed a six pack of snickers and tied everything together with bakers twine.

Now they have a fun treat from the coach as a thank you for all their hard work this season.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Painting Countertops

With our new cabinet color, I wanted to change our countertops as well.  Someday we hope to have granite or quartz but right now that is not an option.  I painted the cabinets and I saw a few examples of painting countertops floating around on the Internet so we decided to jump in and try it.
The countertop color before.
We used Zinnser primer to cover the existing color and I lightly sanded the surface before I applied it.  Three coats later the countertop  was covered and then my husband and I used acrylic paint with a sea sponge to add the design.  It took about two hours to get the look we wanted buy we were pleased with the results.  The colors we used were: Antique Parchment, Vanilla Ice Cream, Melted Chocolate, Lite Mocha, and Licorice.  Then we put polycrylic on the top because polycrylic will not yellow but polyurethane will.  I did five coats and so far they are holding up great.

The countertops without the polycrylic on.

The finished product.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Peanut Butter Pie

I really like to find new desserts and and make them for other people.  With my four kids, finding time to actually bake is a challenge and is always messy.  I found this No Bake Pie from Annie's Home.  It was really easy to make and it tasted amazing.

I made the crust by taking two sleeves of graham crackers and smashing and rolling them with a rolling pin to get the crumbs.  I wanted a chocolate crust so I added 2 Tablespoons of cocoa powder to 1 1/2 cups of the graham cracker crumbs I just made, along with 1/4 sugar.  Then I melted 1/3 cup of butter and mixed it all together.   

Then I pressed the crust into a 9" pie plate, and I baked mine at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 10 minutes.

 I mixed the peanut butter, cream cheese and whipped topping together with sugar and vanilla and then spread it around.

Then I decided to decorate with Reese's Peanut Butter Cups and Whipped topping.

Sunday, May 19, 2013


My family loves it when I make rolls for dinner.  Their favorite is Crescent Rolls.  I usually have to double the recipe when we get my siblings together.

You start by taking 1 Tablespoon of yeast and sticking it in 1/2 cup of warm water and set it aside. (Pictured below is the recipe doubled, as with all the pictures)
 Then in a mixing bowl you put in 1/2 cup of butter (softened) and 3/4 cups of milk (scalded)  with a teaspoon of salt.  You combine those ingredients then add 3 beaten eggs.  Then you take 1/2 cup of sugar and 2 cups of flour and stir those in.
 Then you add the yeast and water that you set aside and two more cups of flour.  Then you let the dough sit for about an hour.
 Divide the dough into thirds and roll each section into a flat circle about 1/4 inch thick.  Cut each circle into 8ths with a pizza cutter and roll from the wide end of the triangle to the point. This makes 24 rolls.
 Place on a greased cookie sheet and let double in size.  Then bake at 350 Fahrenheit for 12-15 minutes.  Then rub butter on the top and enjoy.

Dinner Crescents
1 TBSP Yeast
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup milk, scalded
1 tsp salt
3 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup sugar
4 cups flour

Sprinkle yeast in the water and  set aside.  Combine butter, milk and salt in a mixing bowl.  Beat eggs and add to milk mixture.  Add sugar and 2 cups flour to the milk mixture.  Stir in the yeast and remaining 2 cups of flour.  Let dough rest for an hour.  Separate the dough into thirds and roll each piece into a circle.  Cut the circles with a pizza cutter forming 8 triangles.   Roll each triangle from the wide end to the point.  Let sit until double in size and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 12-15 or golden brown.  Makes 24 rolls.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Pantry Makeover

We have a great sized pantry and I have always felt that the space has been wasted.  We have those delightful wire shelving units and we can't even get to the back of our pantry without closing the door and doing an awkward dance.  There are so many amazing pantry's on Pinterest and I decided that we needed to do something.
We pulled out everything and used the prefabricated shelves and attached them onto 1" x 2" boards and used a few L-braces to support the shelves in the middle.  The kids tested out the shelves and they are nice and sturdy.  The process was easier than I thought and we now have room to store everything and actually use the items in the pantry.  We even made a spot for our garbage can to keep it out of sight.

My son with Uncle Jake testing the shelves.
Uncle Jake helping test out the shelves again.

We decided to overlap the smaller shelves onto the larger ones to give them support and hopefully us more room.  I love that the garbage can is tucked away and that we can open the door.  We even have a spot to hang up our broom and dustpan and room to stick in our mail.
Over at House of Hepworths there is a great tutorial on how to install shelving in a closet.