Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Tuesday, November 6, 2012


Thank you skywriter for the entertainment Sunday.  I have never seen skywriting in action. Very cool! I stood in the parking lot of our church from start too finish while my kids begged to go home.  Look how even the letters are, that is talent!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Halloween Dinner

This year Heather went as a nerd. Ashley was a tourist. Aubrey and Michael went as cowhands. So I had very little sewing, only suspenders and some fringe on a cowboy shirt  We put our energy into dinner. Becky brought the chicken, beans and rice. That left the fun stuff for us.
 I carved the brain shape before cooking the cauliflower in water with some red food coloring. It glowed a creepy pink under the black light.
 Aubrey and Heather made the deviled eggs. Aubrey also made the string cheese fingers. They looked so creepy I couldn't even eat them. The jar is just sour cream with some green olives.
 I looked at Fry's for the stuff to make homemade root beer but no luck. So I just poured a couple bottles in and added dry ice. Everyone thought it was the most awesome homemade root beer ever until I had to refill and they saw what they were drinking. Next year I need to try Safeway.
I was so excited to finally find something that really glows under black light.  Tonic Water!!  We put it in the apple and grape juice.  Next year I think I will breakdown and buy cool aid or maybe sprite, something super sweet so I can add more tonic water without making the drinks too bitter.
Of the three different kind of black lights I had the energy efficient work the best. they really made the table glow!

Here are the kids. VERY toned down in the costume department. I guess that is just the case as the kids get older. It is all about the candy.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!

Sunday afternoon we got a silly idea to send some scariness to my son Tyler. He has always been afraid/creeped out by these dolls. One of the dolls is named Helen. I can't remember the others name.  Heather loves them and feels very offended when the boys have  userthem to scare each other by putting them under the covers to be found late at night when crawling into bed.

The other girls wanted in on the fun.  This blurry one was my favorite in print. 
The lack of focus makes it look so real

But Aubrey's face in this one is awesome!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Track Meets

Two track meets two days in a row. Both Ashley and Heather did a great job!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Oh the Places You Will Go

Today we dropped our boy off at college. It has been so busy getting him ready I haven't had too much time to worry or be sad.  We have had to simutaniously work on his mission papers and all of the appointments that involves. So very,very busy. It reminds me of Ambers wedding. I was just too busy to have any time to feel sorry for myself about loosing my baby.
I only got a little weepy during the  welcome. And that was mostly from feeling very the spirit and being very grateful that he was attending such a wonderful school. Where people care as much about his spiritual growth as well as his academic growth.
He didn't even make it a mile and a half  to the freeway before falling asleep. He had stayed up all night packing (but mostly hanging out with Kaj) the car full of stuff. The car was so full there was barley enoufh room for one in the back.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Goldwater Lake

We spent most of  Labor Day down at the lake. I always say I am going to leave after a couple hours and come and pick up the kids but I never do. They are so fun to watch I barely get in any reading.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Spruce Mountain Hike

This is my favorite hike that doesn't have a river waiting for me at the end.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Groom Creek Cabin

It is always such a blast when we get together with the family for the holiday weekends.  Th kids play and play.  We do a lot of lazing around.  The food is always awesome.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Happy birthday Dad

Today is Dad's birthday. I just love this poster Kaylynn made for him. He loves turtley. The balloons are so cute, green his favorite color.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Peach and Blackberry Cobbler

One of our family's all time favorite treats. It is super easy!

Fruit Mixture
2 pounds fresh peaches
1 pint fresh blackberries
3/4 c sugar
3 T cornstarch
3 T butter melted

3/4 c flour
1/4 c cornmeal
2 T sugar
1 stick butter
2 T cold water

Heat oven 350 degrees

Fruit Mixture
Combine peaches, berries, sugar and cornstarch.
 Place in 8x8 oven proof dish. (A cast iron skillet works great.) Drizzle melted butter over.

note: This recipe is very forgiving. I never weigh my fruit, I just fill the skillet. I am sure I put in way more than 2 pounds.  I also substitute different fruit depending on what I have handy. Blueberries, pears, etc. Just don't leave out the cornstarch or it will be runny.  Guess how I know?

Combine flour, cornmeal and sugar. Cut in butter
 (see my pie crust recipe for directions on cutting in butter) Add cold water.
                                                              Crumble over fruit.
Bake 45 minutes until top is golden

Serves eight maybe ten if your kids are not all hungry teenagers.

I am linked up at Somewhat Simple  and Delightful Order

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Long day

You know it is going to be a long day....when you get a call telling you there is an IRS agent waiting for you as you are driving to work.... and he needs some paperwork. Is there anything scarier?  Not the best way to start a morning. When I asked if it was for real. Ron said "he seems real, he has a badge."
 I spent the next ten minutes of my commute (it seemed a lot longer) wondering how my day would end. At least I might get out of making dinner, someone else would be making mine. And I was pretty sure if I got arrested that federal prison is much nicer than Sheriff Joe's tent. 
Lucky for me he was very nice and there had been a possible glitch in the system (what? our government?!) because a lot of reports from that quarter were missing, etc. Whew!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Bobbin Organization

Why didn't I think of this before! Really, Why?! I have spent some serious time and effort on organizing bobbins. I know crazy when so much of my world is neglected and in chaos. But bobbins and thread all messy makes me nuts. I also am a bit OCD about my thread and bobbin matching when I sew and can't stand to wind one color over another color on a bobbin.  I have tried that and eventually need the color under the one on top. Then I have the dilemma do I unwind the top color and waste all of that thread or just wind over the top color again and make a rainbow out of this thing.  I know if only I had used my obsession for curing cancer or world hunger. Sorry, all wasted on bobbins.

Find a shallow container. This is one I found at a thrift store. Mark the width on a kitchen skewer.
Cut the scewer at the mark. Measuer up and repeat with the rest of the skewer. My box is 4 1/2 inches wide so I was able to make two out of one 12 inch skewer.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Cupcake Sailboats

I teach the 16-18 year old girls at church. As a girl I loved this poem that hung on my sister's bedroom wall and I wanted to share it with my girls.
I didn't think to take a picture  because I was ditching Sunday School to finish them until I was dashing out the door. Kind of lame that they are in the pan for transport but hey what do you expect from someone playing hooky. The boat is a Oreo Cakester cut in half and the little red flag is made from a bit of fruit roll up. Linking up at craft-o-maniac

Friday, August 17, 2012

Thrift store therapy

I have been having some thrift store fun. I am still on the hunt for a Haymore Milk bottle. I found this Prescott Dairy one at an antique store in Mesa, it will have to do for now. I always snap up these glass plates when I find them. My grandma had a set of these she used for her bridge parties. I love them.

I am making a valentine bunting so that was my justification for the fabric, $2 for 5 yards.  I still need one more crochet doilie.  I am going to make a bunting from them for my kitchen window.
The cake pan stand is first attempt at making my own cake stand. It is made from an old heavy cake pan and  a candle stick. It looked darling with cookies in it. But it is crooked!
The candlestick is heavy and seems so solid but it is sadly warped somehow. I am not sure if I am going to keep it or if I can fix it. Looking at it makes me a bit crazy.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Betsy Ross Flag

I found an old piece of scrap wood. I think it may have been a sign in a former life because the corners were already rounded.

I tried using spray paint but the wood was so old it just sucked it up and you could not tell I had painted at all. So I used a couple of layers of exterior paint as a primer then spray painted white. I would have liked to have left it distressed looking but the whole time I kept thinking how much paint I would need to use so my husband would realize it was suppose to look the way it does and not throw it out. He does not appreciate rust and chipped paint like I do.

Using a craft ruler apply tape to mark stripes. This was a tad tricky because the board was 21 1/2 inches tall. I needed 13 stripes and the taped was 1.41 inches wide. Way too much math! Reminds me of one of my dad's riddles.
 Mark off the field. I made mine too small. It is square and I thought that is what I was suppose to do. But it looked weird and I  had to fix it in the next step.

 Paint stripes red. I moved the right side of the field markings over a couple of inches making it more rectangular. Using a plate I laid out my stars. The stars on a Betsy Ross Flag are oriented out. Spray blue.
 All done. I think it needs to be toned down a bit. Sanded a little or something. Maybe once Ron gets use to it he won't notice if I shabby it up a little.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Great Grandma Ashcroft's flakey pie crust

I come from a long line of awesome pie bakers. I learned mostly from my mom and a little from my grandmother who measured everything by hand and had only a 1/2 c measuring cup in her house. I assume for us baking impaired girls because I never saw her use it.
After calling home twice while at the cabin to make sure I had the ingredients and baking time right I thought I would post the recipe for future reference. My great grandmother Arrilla Ashcroft was a young widow who  did things like take in borders and wash to support her children. She was well known for her delicious pies and sold them to local restaurants. This is her recipe.

21/4 c flour
3/4 t salt
2/3 c + 2 T shortening. I like butter flavor crisco
ice water
Combine all ingredients excluding the water in a large bowl. Cut in shortening until it resembles very small peas. You can use a pastry cutter or a food processor for this but I think two knives work best. 
Gradually add ice water. Fluff with fork. Repeat. Do Not Stir! 

When the dough sticks together, but before it gets too wet you are ready to roll. Place half of the dough between two pieces of plastic wrap. It's not pretty but it works.

Fold in half in order to move it into the pie tin. The less you handle the crust the flakier it will be. Poke holes in crust with a fork.
For apple pie, fill crust with apples, cinnamon, brown sugar, butter  and a touch of nutmeg if you like.
The family I grew up in liked a two crust pie. Ron's family likes this crumb top instead. I have been converted to thier crumbly ways. Plus now I can make two pies for the same amount of work.
Dutch apple crumb topping
1/4 c butter 
1/4 c sugar
1/4 c flour
Combine all ingredients in bowl. Cut in butter the same as you did for pie crust.

Sprinkle over top of pies.
Bake at 425 degrees for 45 minutes.

Here is Aubrey showing off her very first pie ever. It was amazing.
I am linking at Southern Lovely and Lil Luna

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Swirly twirly french braid

My girls love getting their hair braided. Sometimes it is for the braid itself (thank  you Katniss Everdeen) Most the time it is so they can have crazy awesome curls the next day. Like Heather's on the first day of school.
This is how we do the Swirly Twirly. Yeah, I know we are super creative when it comes to making up names for stuff. Probably why our dogs have lame names and I have never named a car. Although I think that it is so cool.

Section off hair. Think of putting a box at the crown of the head and leaving hair loose all around. Then divide the "box" crown section in half horizontally. 

Begin braiding the bangs on one side of the head. I like to use a reverse french braid 
so the braid stands out a little.
                         Keep braiding along the ear, back of  head and up the other side.
                     Take out the band from the top section of the crown.  Braid across.
Finish up by braiding down and across the bottom half of the crown.
Finished. Yeah Swirly Twirly hair!