Sunday, February 22, 2009

Super Sunday

Today was a big day for Scott and I in our new ward. This morning we both spoke in Sacrament Meeting, which was actually quite the feat. This week has been one of the craziest weeks for both of us, and we honestly didn't have time to write our talks until yesterday. Our topic came from an Ensign article by Bishop Keith B. McMullin entitled "God Loves and Helps All of His Children". It's a nice talk, and if you haven't read it or heard it before you should definitely read it.

Our talks both went well, and overall it was a great meeting. After the meeting we went to the primary room to find out what our actual callings would be (last week we were called to be primary workers). It turns out that I'm in the nursery and Scott is the primary pianist. Today the previous pianist was still there, so Scott played teacher for the nine-year old boys. It was fun for me to be back in nursery, but it's different being in a new ward. None of the children can really talk yet, so we finished our play time, lesson, music, coloring and snack all within the first hour. Ah! The second hour was all play time with bubbles at the end. You can never go wrong with two-year-olds and bubbles. :)

At the end of the meeting block we were both feeling pretty good, having given our talks and completed day one of our calling after such a heinous week. Phew!

Monday, February 9, 2009

The Crazy Life

Scott's schedule is absolutely hectic. On a regular week he leaves the house by 8 a.m. and doesn't get home until 9 or 10 p.m. Mon-Fri. With his full time schedules for school and work, completing his medical internship, and working on his lab research there isn't much time left in the day. The good news about this is that I am learning to be a perfect wife with dinner on the table when he comes home. Our body clocks are off a little, what with dinner at 10 and all, but life is good!

Scott is awesome for working so hard to secure a future for us - he is absolutely amazing! I love being home to get things done here and I'm glad he makes that possible for me to do. Speaking of how utterly amazing Scott is, tonight he received an e-mail informing him that he has received an ORCA Grant for his research! Can life get better? I submit that it cannot!

On another note, today I saw one of my good friends from high school. He told me about an institute lesson he had that was focused around optimism. He said that the lesson has changed his outlook and he is now looking for the good in things even when it's hard to find. He thanked me for being so optimistic and mentioned that my husband is a lucky man. Right he is! Scott sure is lucky to have me. :)

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Digital Scrapbooking

Are you interested in digital scrapbooking? I've never tried, but it's difficult for me to take so much time to organize the photos and the pages...I might try the online stuff soon.

My ballroom coach from high school just launched a great site for digital scrapbooking, so please check it out! It's called Tutor Me, Girl and it's amazing. If you want to try it before buying a starter kit or subscription, visit Two of a Kind, Working on a Full House to enter a drawing for a FREE starter kit for Tutor Me, Girl. This blog also has lots of awesome giveaways, so check it out! It's one of my new favorite sites.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Learning New Skills

Lately I have been very interested in learning all that I can about the following:
  1. Meal Planning - I define this as the art of planning meals for the week to come. It also may include the cooking and freezing of said meals for quick and easy dinners as well as shopping for ingredients.
  2. Coupon Clipping - My high school ballroom coach has mastered the art of coupon clipping, and I'm ready to start! I have learned that the main secret is to keep your coupons organized and accessible.
  3. Food Storage - I am trying to learn more about the usage of food storage, before I actually begin the accumulation part. If anyone has any recipes that could assist me in cooking with my food storage basics, please let me know!
  4. Cooking - I like to cook, especially from scratch, but it takes so much time that it's very difficult. My favorite website is You can find any recipe, any time, using any ingredients. You can also double, half, quarter (etc) any recipe, read user reviews, and save your favorites for later! The site also has easy printing options for each recipe and contains lots of great articles.
  5. Baking - I absolutely love to bake, mainly because I can be a little more creative. As with cooking I love to bake from scratch, and I enjoy finding recipes when I don't have much in my pantry to choose from.
All that said, here are some great articles I have found in the past few days, all found AllRecipes.
There are many more articles on the site, so feel free to browse!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Shout Out to Sean

On December 31, 2008 my little brother Sean turned 14. This means awesome things for him:
  1. Sean can now attend stake dances! You had better believe that he put this into practice asap. There was a stake New Year's Dance that he attended to bring in 2009. Technically, he had only been 14 for less than 24 hours, but that is still 14 so he got to dance!
  2. Sean can now attend Especially For Youth (EFY). I went to EFY four times while I was allowed, and I loved every minute of it. I've been talking it up ever since - especially in the last year or so. I gave Sean the web link so he can look over the session schedule, and I think he's pretty excited about it.
  3. Last but certainly not least, Sean can be (and was) ordained to the office of a Teacher. HOORAY! This afternoon we were able to attend Sean's ordination and it was great. Just before closing my eyes for the prayer I glanced at Sean, only to find a huge smile on his face. I am very proud of my little brother for making the right decisions in his life. He is well on his way to becoming a great missionary and a wonderful husband. I'm also grateful for our older brother Steven for setting such a good example for Sean to follow.
Thank you to my brothers!

Superbowl Sunday

Today was Superbowl Sunday, which would not have meant a thing to me before I married Scott. Surprisingly, I found myself somewhat interested in the game. Weird. We watched the game with a bunch of friends as is some sort of requirement for football, and we had tons of food which is also a requirement for the occasion. I volunteered to bring cookies and cupcakes as I knew I had the ingredients on hand to make these, saving myself a trip to the store. Click on the links below to see the recipes and enjoy the photos!

For cookies I made Chocolate Cutout Cookies and they were great! I used the appropriate shaped cookie cutters: a football, a helmet, and a trophy (once decorated the footballs were my favorite). Instead of completely frosting each cookie, I made a small amount of Powdered Sugar Frosting to outline the cookies with. I chose this recipe because it was very simple and I had all the ingredients on-hand. I read the reviews before trying the recipe, so I tweaked it just a bit. I only put in 1/8 teaspoon of salt, and I used milk instead of water. The recipe turned out perfectly.

For cupcakes I used a funfetti mix I had on the shelf. As the cupcakes were baking I realized I had no frosting, and no more powdered sugar. I looked through the things I had and saw some instant pudding mix. There had to be a way to make frosting with that, right? Right! The recipe I used was Mock Whipped Cream Frosting With Pudding Mix. The recipe is on the right-hand side - just scroll down. After figuring out the correct combo of food coloring to make brown frosting, I arranged and frosted the cupcakes to look like a football. I was very proud of myself.

All in all, the shindig went well. Everyone was rooting for the Cardinals, but I like the Steelers better. Don't ask me why because I have no reason. I was happy they won.