Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Just Like My Momma Make It

My mom and I decided that we wanted to learn how to make our own bread, from scratch, without a bread maker. Mom found an easy recipe and even ground the wheat... just like the old days.


It was a very long process, kneading the dough and waiting for it to raise. I cannot imagine how the pioneers did it every single day...







It took us a couple of tries, and some trial and error... but we finally perfected the process! So delish and even better with homemade jam. We decided to have a baking day once a month so we can keep homemade bread in the freezer all month! 



Let me know if you want the recipe!

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Boston Bound!

Being in a long distance relationship is not fun. The only upside is that I had an excuse to take a trip to Boston! I had never been before, and was not looking forward to the snow... but it was an adventure all the same.



After picking me up at the airport, Paulo drove me around downtown and around Harvard. I cannot get over how small the road are and how crowded the city is. Not to mention the drivers are horrible!

Our first stop was at Chili's! Paulo had never tried the chips and queso, which happens to be my favorite of all time... It was a tense moment... and he didn't really like it. More for me I guess!


I told Paulo that I needed to go to the beach. I knew it would be freezing, but I wanted to be able to say that I had been there before. Just as I expected, it was 5 degrees at the coast and we couldn't stay out of the car for more than a couple of minutes... but it was totally worth it. Hey guys, I've been to the beach in Massachusetts!

I told Lucy that I was going to a place with snow and she asked me to build her a snowman. This was our attempt at building Olaf.


Compared to the locals, I was completely over dressed with my boots and hats and gloves. Some people were only wearing hoodies. I hadn't been in snow since I lived in Rexburg and I remembered real fast how much I hate being cold!



Melissa told me that going to the east coast I HAD to try SHAKE SHACK. We tracked one down in the outskirts of Boston. It was completely packed, but totally worth it. Their fries are amazing!

 

I also really wanted to go to the Boston temple. We weren't able to make it on Saturday due to weather, but we did get to walk around the grounds on Sunday. It was too cold to stay long, but really beautiful.



It was a quick trip, but so fun. We got to spend a lot of quality time together. I met some of his friends and got to see where he lives. Counting down the days until Paulo gets to come to Arizona!

Friday, January 24, 2014

Arizona YSA Conference

The single adult organization in my area threw a huge conference this year. I am not one to go anywhere near a singles activity or event, but after seeing who would be there speaking, I had to sign up. 


Elder Holland was supposed to be the keynote speaker on Friday night, but cancelled at the last minute. Instead we heard Sherry Dew and the new temple president Elder LeSueur and his wife. 
Sherry Dew was my favorite. She spoke about making plans and fulfilling goals.

Saturday morning we heard from Thurl Bailey who played in the NBA. He told his conversion story and spoke about finding your mission in life. I then got to go to a session with Christian and Stephanie Nielsen. I was most excited to hear from them. I had read Stephanie's blog for several years and loved her book. They were in a plane crash 5 years ago and spoke about healing our hearts and finding joy in your journey. I was able to meet and visit with them after their talks. Such inspirational people.


After several other speakers and a service project, I was able to hear from Mitt Romney and his wife Ann. Mitt Romney was a presidential candidate and told stories about the people he met on his campaign trail. So fun to see these people in person and hear them bear their testimonies.


There were over 8,000 single adults at the conference, it was a little crazy but really fun. Every single speaker gave a little lecture about getting married and dating, as was expected, but also the reason I hate going to those things... Such a great experience though, one I will always remember.

Monday, January 6, 2014

WELCOME 2014!

True to our tradition, New Year's eve is spent staying in our jammies, watching a movie marathon while eating take out and chocolate.
Best night ever spent with Kailey (and her baby bump),Melissa, and Chris!



My New Year's kiss... maybe next year it will be a human



CHEERS to 2014! A lot of big things are brewing this year!


                                           


Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013 Challenge

For Christmas last year, my mom gave us each a Book of Mormon with her testimony inside, and a journal. She challenged us to read each day of the year and write what we learned in our journals. 
Well, as far a goals go, I did finish the entire Book of Mormon. I was not as successful in writing in my journal. I am hoping that writing my experience in my blog can count for that part of it.

 I have always admired my mom's testimony of the Book of Mormon. I have read it completely several times and I know that it is a true book. I understand why it is a blessing to us, and I am grateful for the guidance we receive from it, but I still want to just fall in love with it, like my mom has.

As a read through the Book of Mormon, I tried to see a deeper meaning, or read something that I never noticed before. I wrote in my journal about God's love for His children. I wrote about the selfishness and evil of the world. I feel like our world relates to those days of old in a very real way. Those people forget so easily the blessings they receive and the counsel of the Lord. We are exactly like them, and I love to think that there is something for us to learn from their example, the righteous and the unrighteous.

While I am still on my quest to fall in love with the Book of Mormon, the real message a received this year was of HOPE. Every story and experience shared in the Book of Mormon is one of HOPE, and that is the same as it is for us in our day.The world is very wicked, and evil and scary. Bad things are happening and will still continue to happen. We are constantly having to choose the right way, we are constantly having our testimonies tried and tested. But, God is ALWAYS there. He is constant and never changes. At the end of the day, when we have nothing left, the only thing that shines bright is that of HOPE. Hope that we will get to live another day to try again, Hope that our trials bring forth something great, Hope that what we are doing is enough. 

As you read the stories in the Book of Mormon, you can see God's hand in these people's lives in a very real way. Help, Peace, and Hope are always provided as a way to help them pick up and start again. What other option is there for us other than HOPE and FAITH?

It's a lesson that I needed to learn to get through the year. It is a blessing for me to have the ability to see God's plan working in my life. What I am doing (or not doing) is for a reason and all the pieces will fit together in God's plan of happiness for me. I am learning to rely on HOPE and FAITH.

What did you learn about yourself in 2013?

Monday, December 30, 2013

Christmas Time

I spent Christmas this year at home in Gilbert. Mom always makes the whole month fun with different crafts and activities. This year she had everyone over for a game night and hot cocoa bar (Melissa and I did the bar, complete with falling snow)



Even though it was 60 degrees in Arizona in December, it just doesn't feel like Christmas without a cup of cocoa.

We went to the temple light concert to hear mom and Scott sing in the choir...


My loft's Christmas decorations

Chris and Melissa went to California for Christmas Eve and Day, so I was able to spend time at mom's house with the grandkids. We got to watch Scrooge and The Grinch.

Gettin' in the spirit.

For Christmas Eve, mom made a wonderful dinner and the kids did the nativity... complete with a real baby Jesus...


These boys got new ties from Melissa in their stockings.

Christmas day was opening presents and taking naps. Scottee drove down with Dad and Lisa in the evening and was able to meet his nephew for the first time.

Mom always comes up with fun games and competitions. One of the traditions is Oreo stacking...

Over the next couple of days we got to spend time with Scottee and the whole family.




I feel so blessed to be able to live close to family and spend quality time with each of them, especially around the holiday's.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Dreams Come True!

 I had never been to Disney World, so I was THRILLED to get the chance to go visit Kailey in Orlando.
My mom, Chris, Melissa, and I took off for a weekend of adventure, just a group of adults going to visit the Happiest Place in the World. And let me tell you, we were NOT disappointed!


We first went to the Magic Kingdom to visit PRINCESS ARIEL... just tears of joy and wonder pursued...


Over our 4 day trip we went to Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studio, Animal Kingdom, Epcot, and Downtown Disney.


My favorite atmosphere was Hollywood Studios. It wasn't so hectic and crowded. They also had the most insane lights display for Christmas, complete with Santa Goofy and snow falling from the sky!



Kailey and her friend James were our tour guides, making sure we saw all the best things. We got to see Fantasmic, which was an amazing show in Hollywood Studio. I highly recommend it. Also for Christmas they do a show called Wishes at the castle in Magic Kingdom along with fireworks... goosebumps for days!
We didn't do many rides, but were sure to hit up the roller coasters. Space Mountain, Rock'n Rollercoaster, Tower of Terror, and Everest (which was the best!)


We saw most of the Princesses and Characters in the parades and shows. We got to meet a couple...


Gaston was my favorite (besides Ariel of course!). He was just hilarious! He said things like, "How does it feel to meet your hero?" and "Nice to meet me." He challenged Chris to a push up contest. 

After 4 days we were exhausted! It was such a fun trip! One thing checked off my bucket list!