Sunday, May 31, 2009

Identify a Space and Beautify It



Inspired by a talk given by Elder Uchtdorf I decided to identify a space and beautify it.  Now, I have no experience with flowers or gardens to speak of, but I did enjoy this simple project.   

Below, I've posted part of this inspiring talk, but if you would like it in full, here is the link:,4945,285-1-54-31,00.html

The Work of Creation

The desire to create is one of the deepest yearnings of the human soul. No matter our talents, education, backgrounds, or abilities, we each have an inherent wish to create something that did not exist before.

Everyone can create. You don’t need money, position, or influence in order to create something of substance or beauty.

Creation brings deep satisfaction and fulfillment. We develop ourselves and others when we take unorganized matter into our hands and mold it into something of beauty—and I am not talking about the process of cleaning the rooms of your teenage children.

You might say, “I’m not the creative type. When I sing, I’m always half a tone above or below the note. I cannot draw a line without a ruler. And the only practical use for my homemade bread is as a paperweight or as a doorstop.”

If that is how you feel, think again, and remember that you are spirit daughters of the most creative Being in the universe. Isn’t it remarkable to think that your very spirits are fashioned by an endlessly creative and eternally compassionate God? Think about it—your spirit body is a masterpiece, created with a beauty, function, and capacity beyond imagination.

But to what end were we created? We were created with the express purpose and potential of experiencing a fulness of joy.4 Our birthright—and the purpose of our great voyage on this earth—is to seek and experience eternal happiness. One of the ways we find this is by creating things.

If you are a mother, you participate with God in His work of creation—not only by providing physical bodies for your children but also by teaching and nurturing them. If you are not a mother now, the creative talents you develop will prepare you for that day, in this life or the next.

You may think you don’t have talents, but that is a false assumption, for we all have talents and gifts, every one of us.5 The bounds of creativity extend far beyond the limits of a canvas or a sheet of paper and do not require a brush, a pen, or the keys of a piano. Creation means bringing into existence something that did not exist before—colorful gardens, harmonious homes, family memories, flowing laughter.

What you create doesn’t have to be perfect. So what if the eggs are greasy or the toast is burned? Don’t let fear of failure discourage you. Don’t let the voice of critics paralyze you—whether that voice comes from the outside or the inside.

If you still feel incapable of creating, start small. Try to see how many smiles you can create, write a letter of appreciation, learn a new skill, identify a space and beautify it.

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Thursday, May 28, 2009

Marshmallow Sandwiches!

Smores are a summer must and Orlando has decided that Marshmallow Sandwiches is a better name!  Too cute.  So, I have been having some fun with the whole sandwich idea.   Here is the newest yummiest bestest ever:

Nuke the mallow for 10 seconds on a saucer.  Place it on a graham cracker, but first smooth some peanut butter on the cracker and set some chocolate chips down in it.  (B/C who really has chocolate bars--chocolate chips very easy to find-and they don't roll off when in the PB!)  Then add the top cracker and enjoy!  
Let me repeat, layers include
graham cracker
peanut butter
graham cracker.
How can that not be good?

What is your latest summer treat?

Thursday, May 14, 2009

and then you know...

So Ivan (4) and Ammon(2) had the following conversation:

Ammon:  I'm not a baby.  I'm a big boy.

Ivan: No you're not.

Ammon:  Yes I am.

Ivan: No you're not, you are still a baby.

Ammon: No, I'm a big boy!

Ivan: No you aren't you are a baby.

Ammon: (Very upset now)  NO!!  I AM A BIG BOY!!

Ivan: Ammon, Look at your butt!  If it has a diaper, you are a baby.  

Ammon: (Looks, gets quiet....ponders.....)

Ivan:  See, you are a baby.  You just look at the butt and then you know. 

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Goodbye Purple, Hello Silver!!

Goodbye Purple Van.  We will miss you.  The dent where Josh backed into a pole, the scrape where I did the same.  The way you held each of our three boys safely in their infant seats and later boosties.  You are the only van they've ever known.

Until now!!  Hello Silver!  You are going to fit in just right.  Another Silver Mazda makes a great match for our first car (96 protege) don't ya think?

Thanks for being a decent price(which according to Dave Ramsey is what you can pay off in two years), not too old (04) great miles (38K)  and oh so cute! Thank you for having a CD player, windows that go up and down, a functioning air conditioner, vents in the back, and yes, even a DVD player.  May you bless us with many trips of safety and security! Arkansas, Oklahoma and Texas-we'll be there before years end!

Touch a Truck!

The boys loved this free community event.  Just think lots of trucks and cars for boys to climb and play on!  Truly a boys paradise!  Enjoy the photos!

50 Cent Fun

Have I mentioned my weakness for garage sales?  If not, let me be clear.  Garage sales are amazing!  So, spring  aka garage sale season is one of my favorite times of year.  The kids get more toys now then all of their winter birthdays and Christmas combined.  I found about 12 ninja turtles-and got them FREE!  I've also found some amazing bowls with lids for a quarter!!  I've also found a few cute clothes (this is unusual).  But, of all the finds I think the 50 cent Pinata wins the prize.  I found it at a friends garage sale the Saturday before Cinco de naturally it was a must.  A must that must bust!  The boys decided we needed to have a pinata party, so an e-mail was sent, a time set and a park chosen.  I had 8 to 10 ladies come with kids, not too shabby to just play and swing at a turkey pinata!!  The morning of the 5th of May is one to remember.  Lando wakes up early, comes into our bedroom (you know it's early if Josh hasn't left yet) and says holding a turkey pinata above his head, "Today is the BIG day!"  Months of planning could not have made for a more excited group of boys.  I love my boys.  They get excited about simple things.  Maybe one day garage sales will be one of those....

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

E-Mealz Rocks!

I really am enjoying this service.  Hope you'll check it out!

I love this because it doesn't involve coupons, cutting, or keeping up with anything.  The grocery lists are completley organized.  I stay in food budget, and my family likes the food!!  

Monday, May 4, 2009


V.I.P. stands for Very Important Person.  As a stay at home mom I don't always feel very important.  Seem familiar?  Ya know when you try to keep a house in order and it is impossible to tell or when the kids fight despite all your efforts or when you give in to the all too easy TV or the cookies you are trying to resist.  Ya know.  It just isn't always very glam and often it seems life outside the home might be a better place.  Still, I am home because I can be.  This is truly a blessing not every woman enjoys.  My husband supports us both physically and more importantly emotionally in this difficult decision.  I still miss my teaching job and the kids I worked with.  Of course, I also miss my college days and free time and my mission, and many phases in my life.  I am sure they were not always easy yet now they seem but sweet memories.  I believe these young years of my children's lives will also be sweet memories.  Tonight one such memory was made.   During our family home evening lesson we talked about some V.I.P.'s including the pioneers, Joseph Smith, and especially Jesus Christ.  Why are these people so important?   Then I asked each person to look at one other person in the room.  Whoever they looked at they then needed to tell that person why they are important.  We took turns and sweet things were said (like we play together, have fun, etc), but then it was Ivan's turn.  Ivan looked at me.  Josh asked, "why is mommy important?"  Ivan said simply, "because she loves me."  It was clear and beautiful and I confess getting a bit choked up. But, my four year old just taught me that:  I AM important!  Even if I'm not as organized or as thin or as crafty or as healthy, or disiplined, or wonderful as so many fabulous women I know.  I AM important because I love my children!   What a lesson!  Thank you Ivan, I needed that.  

Golden Weekend

We were lucky enough to have a golden weekend.  Golden weekends for us are when daddy isn't working at all.  No call, no pager, nothing nada.  He is home and he is ours!  Because this doesn't happen too often, we have really come to appreciate this family time.  This weekend was no exception.  Friday night we went on a date, but deciding last minute we took the kids.  We explained that they were on a big people date and had to act accordingly.  We went to California Pizza kitchen.  They had pepperoni and Josh and I enjoyed Jamaican Jerk.  Mmmm.  Then ice-cream from Graters.  Finally, we went and saw Monsters vs. Aliens.  Can you believe it was my first ever 3D movie??  Crazy huh?  But let me tell you I SO enjoyed it, the first time something (it was a cookie in a preview) flew at me I was just super excited.  Orlando kept explaining, "if you have your glasses on the stuff jumps out of the tv, but if you take your glasses off it stays in."  The movie was a bit much for Ammon but luckily the theater was not crowded and he had plenty of room to walk and of course I had snacks.  Gee, it was fun.  

Saturday we planted a garden.  For us this year that means basil, sage, and rosemary.  Perhaps we will add on, and we are wondering about tomatoes.  We just need to keep things simple right now and the yard is not very conducive for a gardening spot.  The best part was just doing something-anything, with dad.  And for Lando, nothing could be better than the dirt.  

Saturday night we got a sitter and Josh and I went to Chipotle.  Gee, their food is the bomb!  I had the fajita salad with all the fixins.  Yummy!  Then we went to stake conference.  Imagine sitting in a meeting alone with Josh able to hear the speakers.  A-ma-zing!!
Sunday was also nice and slow.  
I am so thankful for the few but fabulous golden weekends, thank you Josh!