Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Stadium of Fire

Thanks Tuli!

Our neighbor, Tuli, gave us tickets to the Stadium of Fire. My sister in law Juleena and her daughter Emma made the trek out from Vernal to go with us. We had an absolutely great time. The weather was tame, and all the entertainment was really good. My favorite part? The fireworks at the end were to die for! I also really liked the big flag covering the field. That's just one beautiful sight. Kira's favorite part? Miley Cyrus of course! She loved dancing along just like her big cousin Emma because anything Emma did was soooo coool!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Kanab Family Reunion

My family got together for our reunion. It's just my immediate family of brothers and sisters and their kids. There are seven of us siblings and 23 or so grand kids. My youngest sibling, Michelle, lives in Kanab, so we decided to get together there. She arranged rooms for us at Parry's Lodge. This is a kitchy little place where the stars of 1940's hollywood used to stay when shooting westerns in Utah's "Little Hollywood". It was a cool place.

We boated at Lake Powell on Saturday. It turned out to be a perfect day because it was mostly overcast, which made the heat more bearable. The lake is absolutely beautiful. There's just nothing like it. The water was even warmer than at Utah Lake, and it's much clearer. My cute neices and nephews were learning to wakeboard. A lot of them already know how to ski. One of my nephews, Salem, was skiing and completely fell over backwards. Unbelievably, he popped back up again; however, having already counted it as a fall, he had let go of the rope. He's a little athlete and just sank back into the water having completely regained his balance. Too funny.

We also had our traditional softball game Saturday afternoon. It ended in a tie, how nice! All the little kids get a chance to play, and it's a great tradition. Another tradition we seem to follow is a breakfast of Crepes. We include sweet crepes with fruit and creme sauce and ones with eggs, salsa, cheese sauce, and sausage. YUM!

Unfortunately, my mom and dad couldn't attend this year. They are serving their mission in Indiana and are doing well. Except for some homesickness brought on by the awareness that we were all together without them. It's a sacrifice, and we'll all be blessed for their service.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Oh what a book

I just finished the book, Ender's Shadow by Orson Scott Card. It was just completely fantastic. You must read its companion novel, Ender's Game, before reading this one. Some of the themes that were resonant for me were learning the meaning of love, finding family and where you come from, forming friendships and circles of friends, being resourceful, and becoming a leader. I finished the book while on our trip to Kanab for my family reunion. I'll write about our trip later.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Fantastic night at the lake

Disclaimer: This blog entry is not for the faint at heart die-hard waterskiier. We had such a beautiful time at Utah Lake Thursday night that you might not want to read about it due to skiing envy. Usually, the water at Utah Lake has more rollers in it than all the bakeries in the world, but last night, ah last night! It was fantastic! Jeff's cousin's family was in town from Canada, and we decided to introduce them to some warm water. Utah Lake, being shallow, is one of the warmest places around, but I'm not gonna lie, it's usually not too skier friendly.

We all got to ski/wakeboard/tube all we could handle. I've got the sore muscles today to prove it. Okay, we didn't make Jacey do any of that. She really enjoyed just being in the boat and toddling around back and forth between the open bow and the drivers' seat.

We even had enough good water for me to take Kira for a ski. Then, Jeff talked Quinton into skiing with him. Both Q and Kira did just fine. While picking up Jeff and Quinton, I asked Jeff if I had been going too slow. He said, "No, we were just tired." Then Quinton said, "I wasn't tired at all!!" I wonder why???? Could it be Jeff was doing all the work?

Yep, as the sun set, and we were out on the lake, I had that blissful feeling that, ahhhh I am out on the lake, and the sun is setting. It's a lovely place to be.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Off the hook

I guess the neighbors are off the hook. It seems while I was putting together that little story, I let that bread get a little burnt! It's all the fault of that mommy-induced alzheimer's because I figured I had to write the details of the story before some little person needed me to feed or change them so I wouldn't forget what I wanted to write about. Uh hum...I'll be back.

Funny Story

I'm just enjoying my first week of being home after a week-long journey with the family to Las Vegas. My husband had a business trip there, so the kids and I crashed the party since he was staying at the fabulous Mandalay Bay. We had a wonderful trip.

When we arrived home, we realized our garden had continued to grow without us. (Thank you automatic sprinkling system.) It was good to see our plants had shot up about a foot with all the warm weather. On the other hand, we were completely ambushed by zucchini. To those of you unfamiliar with LDS culture, zucchini is a long-standing joke among us since so many of us plant gardens. Zucchini, being so easy to grow, often grows much faster and larger than many of us can keep up with. Sometimes, during prime zucchini season, people just drop it off on your porch and run away, as fast as they can.

I guess being among so many non mormons during my week in Las Vegas, I decided to be very domestic and do something with some of our zucchini. I started searching our recipe books for a nice zucchini bread or cake or something. After finding a recipe that did not call for lard, shortening, or cardamon, because I didn't have any, nor ever will I, I settled down to make some zucchini bread.

This is how it went: I first grated some of my zucchini. I cut a few strips and ran them through my food processor. I was having so much fun that before I knew it, I had four cups' worth. The recipe only called for two. The zucchini I had cut in to was only half gone! So now I had to decide whether I was going to make a cake and some bread or just double the bread recipe. Since it is the middle of summer and to keep my kitchen cooler, I decided to just double the bread -- I could bake it at the same time. Looking back on that decision now, it may not have been completely smart. Most LDS recipes already make a pretty big batch for our larger than average families.

Before I knew it I was trying to fit six cups of flour, six eggs, four cups of zucchini into my Kitchen Aid. In the meanwhile, my 18 month old daughter came up and tapped on my legs. I picked her up, so she could see what I was doing. I went to the refrigerator for some brown sugar. Jacey started having a tantrum over the pickles, so I got out the pickle jar and gave her a pickle. She toddled off to squish the pickle into the living room carpet. Meanwhile, I looked back in the fridge and really could not remember what I was looking for. I had to walk back over to the mixer and re-read the recipe to find the ingredient I was searching the fridge for. I call that mommy-induced alzheimer's. I figure it will go away shortly before the real kind kicks in. After holding my breath and squishing that brown sugar in there, I got it all mixed. Then I remembered that a lot of good zucchini bread has chocolate chips in it. I'm all for that, so I headed to the pantry for some chocolate chips. Thinking that one unhealthy turn deserves another, I snagged several Cheetos puffs before heading back to the mixer to add the chocolate. That wasn't Body For Life approved. Oh well. The recipe didn't call for the chocolate -- it's just something to help wash down the zucchini taste. I wasn't sure how much to add, so I just poured. After a few shakes, the batter looked more like chocolate chip cookies than bread, so I added a few more shakes.

Finally, I was ready to pour the batter into bread pans. After pushing aside muffin pans, mini muffin pans, some kind of bear molds?, and several cake pans, I found the bread pans. I only have three, but I figure I was pretty good at squishing the batter in the mixing bowl... Nope, I'm going to have to figure something else out. Pushing those muffin pans to the side actually had a good side effect. Now I can have zucchini bread and muffins -- more neighbors to torment! Won't that be great? Now when I'm dropping all this off at unsuspecting neighbors's houses, I can leave some single portion little loaves! Perfect! It all came out of the oven perfectly -- well it looked a little squished. Total zucchini down -- 1/2 of one!!! Zucchini to go -- about two dozenand a half or so. Oh well, I guess I'll get out my chocolate chips!