Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

We had a fun day and hope you all did, too!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Holiday Traditions

I love, love, LOVE Christmas. I probably get as excited as just about any kid out there. I don't think that early October is too early to listen to Christmas music or watch my favorite holiday movies. In fact, my kids have been watching Mickey's Once Upon A Christmas for the last two weeks. Drives Keith nuts! He is perfectly happy to wait until Thanksgiving is over to start celebrating. Not me! One of my favorite things about this time of year is the special family traditions. And I am always looking for new, fun things to do with my family. So, I want to hear about YOUR favorite holiday tradition. The one that inspires me the most might just win a little something. Please share and later I will post about our family traditions and some new ones we are starting this year.

Fun Give-A-Way

Check out Gina's give a way on her blog!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

10 Weeks to a Merry Christmas

I finally got Week 3 posted on my other blog. Sorry it was so late! Also, don't forget that this is the last week to sign up for the My Favorite Holiday/Winter Things Swap for Charity.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Wooden Spool Dolls

I saw these cute little dolls made out of wooden spools on this blog. I made a couple and then I wanted to make some for Jaxson. I made the Incredible's, but the masks make them look angry. I do plan on making some more and I found a super-cute pattern for a soft, carry-along doll house to go with them!


Snickerdoodles are my favorite cookies. Last week I had to make some for Activity Days so I made a double batch so I could put some in the freezer. This is a very yummy recipe from the Lion House Pantry Cookbook.


1/2 cup sugar
1-1/4 t. cinnamon
1 cup butter, softened
2-1/2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 t. vanilla
2-1/2 T. water
6 cups flour
2 t. cream of tartar
1 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt

In medium bowl, mix 1/2 cup sugar and cinnamon and set aside. In large mixing bowl, combine butter and 2-1/2 cups sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, vanilla, and water; beat until fluffy. Add flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt until well blended. Shape dough by rounded tablespoonfuls; roll in cinnamon-sugar mixture. Place on greased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 9 to 10 minutes or until golden brown. Makes 5 dozen 3-inch cookies.

To freeze the dough I just shape and roll in cinnamon-sugar mixture, put them in a cake pan, put waxed paper on top and add more rows, flash freeze, and place in labeled freezer bags. That way you can enjoy a pan of fresh baked cookies anytime!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

And the Winner is.......

Sarahanne! You win the pocket Christmas planner. E-mail me with your contact info and I will get it in the mail.

Fall Pictures

We took the kids out to my parents' house and then down by the river in Firth today to take some fall photos. Here are a few of my favorites.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Scentsy Raffle for Charity

My sister-in-law, Crystal, has donated a holiday Scentsy warmer and three yummy smelling bars to raffle off with all proceeds going to the Children's Cardiomyopathy Foundation. The warmer features a very festive Santa and would make a great addition to any holiday home decor! The bars include: Cranberry Spice, Sticky Cinnamon Bun, and Enchanted Mist. So very good! The raffle tickets are $1 each or 6 for $5. Just click the donate button, enter in the amount, leave a comment on this post, and then send me an e-mail with your name, e-mail, and the number of raffle tickets you want. The drawing will be on November 20 so the lucky winner can enjoy their new warmer and scents through the holidays! For more information on pediatric cardiomyopathy or on this wonderful not-for-profit foundation visit

Don't forget the other raffle and swap with ALL proceeds going to the Children's Cardiomyopathy Foundation. Scroll down to view and join the fun!

We Miss You Already!

We were lucky to be able to spend some time with Keith's family this week. We even enjoyed lunch at the Snake Bite. Robert and Haley are headed over seas for a new job opportunity. We will all miss them, but we wish them the very best of luck with their new adventure! We love you Robert and Haley!

Eastview Ward FHE packets

Here are the packets that we will be putting together for November. The themes are: Gratitude, Family Traditions, Thanksgiving, and Slow to Anger. Each packet includes a file folder, song, scripture, lesson, activity, and treat idea. We always have lots of fun putting them together. Hope you will join us! Tuesday, October 28 at 6:30. Call or e-mail me to sign up if you aren't already on the monthly list.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Just Kidding

Jen tagged me, too. This one is 6 random things about me.

1. I have a crazy hair phobia. Mostly cuz every other time I eat out there is a hair in my food. Nothing is more disgusting than that.

2. I am not a early riser. Hate getting up before 8:00 in the morning. Makes me grumpy.

3. I can pick things up with my toes.

4. My favorite flavor of ice cream is bubble gum.

5. When I eat a slice of bread I wad it up first. Jaxson also does that only he calls it "making dough."

6. I love Froot Loops.

I have been "tagged" a few times, so here goes.

First, from Gina, I was supposed to go to my pictures and find the fourth picture in the fourth folder. It is from 2005. Wouldn't you know we would be boating.

The next tag, from Nicole, is this:

4 things I love about my husband: he is a GREAT father, he is gentle, he is a hard worker, and he always loves me, even when I am a jerk.

4 movies I could watch over and over: Grease, White Christmas, Nacho Libre, and Chicago. What can I say. I love musicals.

4 TV shows I watch: We actually don't have TV, but I heard Dancing with the Stars is good!

4 places I've been: Cancun, Las Vegas, California, and Canada.

4 places I'd like to go: Hawaii, Puerto Vallarta, Japan, and New York.

4 things I look forward to in the next year: another baby (wishful thinking), a vacation just for me and Keith (again with the wishful thinking), warmer weather, and winning the lottery.

And last, but not least, this one from Janeal.

8 things I am passionate about: my family, the gospel, raising awareness for pediatric cardiomyopathy, being a mom, organizing, spending time with friends, Keith, and Shutterfly scrapbooking.

8 words or phrases I say way too often: good crap, No!, whatever, Go sit in time out, maybe later, hell's bells ( pretty sure I got that one from my grandma. made me giggle every time.) 7 and 8 might be cuss words, and for the sake of keeping my blog family-friendly, I will just leave it at that!

8 things I want to do before I die: have another kid or two, go to New York, write a book, learn to surf, learn to ballroom dance, go to Hawaii, see my children grow to be happy and healthy adults, and grow to enjoy cooking.

There. I think that covers them all!

My New Blog

I decided that it was time I had a blog for my personal stuff, and a blog for my creative stuff. From now on, the 10 Weeks to a Merry Christmas will be posted here. I will leave this week's drawing on this blog to keep confusion to a minimum! Don't forget to check out my charity swap and raffle. Just scroll down to join the fun!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Win a Pocket Christmas Planner

Leave me a comment by Saturday about what you did this week to get ready for the upcoming holiday season, and you will be entered into a drawing to win this Christmas Planner! Anyone can play!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Charity Raffle and Swap

Please scroll down to view and join the Charity Raffle and Swap with all proceeds benefiting the Children's Cardiomyopathy Foundation!!

10 Weeks to a Merry Christmas: Week 1

Before you make any plans for the upcoming holidays, create a budget. Here are some tips to get you started.

Decide on an amount you are able to spend. It should be an amount you have available in a savings account, or an amount you can easily save between now and December.
Write a list of all the people you usually buy a gift for. Be thorough. Don't forget the paperboy, trashmen, hairstylist, boss, secretary, mailman, your kid's teachers or any of the other people you may buy a small gift.
Put the list in order of importance, or in order of amount spent - with the highest at top. Usually your children, spouse and parents will be on the top of the list.
Now begin to divvy up the amount of your total budget. Write down an amount you would like to spend for each person. Total it up. Does it exceed your total? Begin deducting from each person till you reach your total. In some cases, it may be necessary to eliminate a person entirely.
Keep the budget with you in your handbag or wallet. Look at it as you shop, and make sure you do not go over the amount per person.
Peruse the Sunday advertisements for the best deals or use shop comparison sites such as to find the most reasonable prices on hot items. Take advantage of free shipping offers that are usually frequent during this time period.

Make a Holiday Planner. This could be as simple as purchasing a small notebook that you use just for your holiday planning. Or you could make it fun and create your own. This website has a lot of cute ideas. Make sure your planner has a place for your shopping and card lists, receipts, a copy of your budget, and lots of blank pages for recipes or decorating ideas you want to try this year.

Start shopping now. After you create your gift list it's easy! Just keep your list in your purse and keep an eye out for the items whenever you are out and about. This is a good way to get some of your items on sale, too.

Put a meal or two in your freezer every week. That way when the busy holiday season rolls around you can focus on having fun instead of making dinner. Here are some recipes to get you started.

Easy Cheesy Chicken
6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
2 cups sour cream
2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
dash of paprika

Place chicken breasts in a disposable aluminum 9x13. Mix all other ingredients and pour over chicken. Label and freeze.
To Serve: Thaw overnight in the fridge. Bake at 350 degrees for 1-1/2 to 2 hours or until chicken is tender. Serve over rice or egg noodles.

Easy Swedish Meatballs
30 pre-cooked frozen meatballs
1 pkg. country gravy mix
1 cup sour cream
12 oz. pkg. egg noodles

Prepare gravy according to package directions. In a large saucepan, mix prepared gravy with 1 cup sour cream. Cool to room temperature. Place meatballs in a large freezer bag and pour sauce over meatballs. Label and freeze.
To Serve: Thaw overnight. Heat in large saucepan until meatballs are heated through and the mixture is bubbly. Serve over prepared noodles.

When you have accomplished these goals (before week 2) leave me a comment. One lucky person will win a homemade Christmas planner! I will try to get a picture of that posted later in the week.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

10 Weeks to a Merry Christmas

I love Christmas and I love to organize. And so I have come up with a fun weekly plan to help us all get our holiday preparations done early so we can focus on the true meaning of Christmas and enjoy the holidays a little bit more. 10 Weeks to a Merry Christmas will begin the week of October 12th and run through the week of December 14th. I will feature tips on everything from creating a holiday budget to preparing for house guests. I have also received several requests for more freezer meal tips and recipes, so I will include those in each weekly plan as well. Be sure to check back Sunday to get started on the right track to having a Merry Christmas!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Nativity Set Raffle for Charity

My mom makes these AMAZING Nativity Sets out of river rocks. Each set is unique and takes her about 40 hours to make. She sells them for $150, but she has donated a set to be raffled off with all of the proceeds going to the Children's Cardiomyopathy Foundation. The set includes: Baby Jesus, manger, Joseph, Mary, donkey, cow, two shepherds, three sheep, angel, three wise men, and a camel.
You can purchase a ticket for $5 or 5 for $20. Just click the donate button at the top of my blog, enter in the dollar amount for the number of tickets you wish to purchase, leave a comment on this post, and send an e-mail to me at with your name and the number of tickets you are purchasing. THEN, on November 20, one lucky person's name will be drawn! And that person will be the winner! I will notify the winner via e-mail as well as announcing it on my blog. I will get it shipped right off so it can be enjoyed for the holidays.
Keep on reading for a fun swap with all proceeds benefiting the same foundation!

My Favorite Holiday Things Swap for Charity

My daughter, Emersyn, was diagnosed with Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy when she was 6 months old. Pediatric Cardiomyopathy is a life-threatening disease that affects about 300,000 children in the United States. Research on pediatric cardiomyopathy is extremely under-funded. For that reason, and to help raise awareness, I am hosting this FUNdraiser!! All proceeds will benefit the Children's Cardiomyopathy Foundation. For more information on the foundation or on pediatric cardiomyopathy visit:
Now for the fun part. This is a My Favorite Things Swap with a Holiday/Winter theme. You will be assigned a partner whom you will send your three favorite Holiday/Winter items, one handmade item, and a hand-written card. You will receive a fun package from someone else in return. In order to participate there is a $15 charge. All of that will be donated to the foundation.
All you need to do is join before October 31 by clicking on the donate button at the top of my blog, donate the $15, and send an e-mail to with your name,e-mail, and address. Partners will be assigned by November 10. That will give you lots of time to shop for your partner before the package needs to be sent out by December 1.
You can still donate even if you prefer not to participate in the swap. ( But that's the fun part!!) Just click on the donate button and enter in your donation amount.
The more people that know about this the merrier, so PLEASE, mention it on your blog, send an e-mail to friends and family. Let's have some fun!!