Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Last night I went to my cooking skills class. We learned about making good soups and stews. Then we all brought halloween treats. It was pretty hilarious, the gross things people made. I made "spider eggs", pictured below. They are deviled eggs with cut up black olives to make the spiders. I think they were a hit. Don't they look so creepy? A few of the other things brought: eyeball ice cubes, edible eyeballs, a pudding dessert with cool whip ghosts on top, monster fingers with witch blood (green breadsticks with an almond for a fingernail & marinara sauce), an apple/fruit dip, and pink popcorn. We also tried a couple of soups/stews also. Of course, I thought everything tasted great!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Wah-num-brah! (Let's eat!)

Monday: Grilled hamburgers served with Five Cup Fruit Salad.
If you want to try a REALLY good seasoning for your burgers try McCormick Grill Mates Montreal Steak seasoning. My friend, Jeni, and her husband Jeff (hey guys!) introduced us to this seasoning and now we use it all the time. We usually always use it on our steak and a small amount on our hamburgers. It's really good!

Tuesday: Cheesy Broccoli Soup in Bread Bowls served with green salad.

I think my brother, Dave, got us hooked on these soups. (A TON of the things we eat or use for cooking are because our friends and family have told us about them!) He introduced us to the Creamy Potato Soup, which I love. Then we tried the Cheddar Broccoli and also the Chili. I loved the broccoli but wasn't too impressed with the chili. Haven't tried the others yet. Most of the time, you can find these soups at Walmart. I love them, because it's so easy and tastes homemade.

Wednesday: Creamy Herbed Pork served with Jasmine Rice and Green Beans. Yes, we love our Jasmine Rice!

Thursday: Fettuccine Alfredo, leftover meatballs I need to get rid of, & Asparagus Dijon.
Friday: Date Night to celebrate our anniversary. We were supposed to go out two week ago, but needed to postpone until this week.

Saturday: Herb Chicken served with Garlic Mashed Potatoes & Frozen Veggies

Sunday: Indian Tacos
Tom's mom was kind enough to give us some authentic fry bread mix that she loves. She is originally from New Mexico and has some great Navajo recipes that she makes. You can make quite a few things with the fry bread mix. This time we are making Indian Tacos (picture below). On the back of the package and on their website it has a recipe for Grape Dumplings. I think I want to try those with another one of our packages that we have left. This is also where I found the saying "Wah-num-brah", in case you might be wondering.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Happy 6th Anniversary!

Yesterday was our 6th Wedding Anniverary! Unfortunately, Tom was out of town! He had the pleasure of meeting his male cousins, on his mom's side of the family, at Lake Powell for a "boys weekend"! I was fine with him being gone on our anniversary. I figured that he needed a break after graduating and starting work in June. He didn't really have much down time between graduating and starting his new job! It sounds like him and the guys are having a lot of fun. Can't wait to see his photos and hear all of their stories. We will celebrate our anniversary this coming weekend by going on a date. He also surprised me by having flowers delivered yesterday! How sweet.

Tom left early Thursday morning and will get back late tonight. I wasn't quite sure what I was going to do while he was gone. But, I managed to stay somewhat busy.
Thursday: Jordyn was in school in the afternoon, so I took Evan with me to get my driver's license. It was a miracle.... the DMV was almost empty!!! The lady who helped me even said it was very unusual. By the time I left (about 30 min. later) it was packed! Talk about good luck! I passed my written test, but got 2 wrong. I can't believe I'm going to admit this, but I missed the question on what a yield sign was! It showed a red and white triangular sign.... I thought yield signs were yellow!? Anyways, who cares, I passed! My photo actually turned out decent too.
Friday: I took Jordyn and Evan with me to the "Lending Library". I mentioned it awhile ago on here. It's a libraray where you can check out toys and equipment for special needs kids. You pay $10 a year and get to check out 6 things per month. We got 3 toys that are hooked up to switches. Jordyn pushes the button and then the toy plays it's song or dances, or whatever it does. Then we got 2 toys that vibrate. I will take some photos/video of Jordyn playing with them and post them soon. And of course, Evan thinks these toys are the funnest toys he's ever played with! Friday night I made Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip cookies and watched the movie A Good Year. I knew Tom would never watch this movie in a million years, so I rented it while he was gone! The cookies were REALLY good and the movie was ok.
Saturday: I decided this was my day to do nothing. (Like I was so busy the other days!? haha) I should have cleaned the house or something, but I really didn't feel like it. I got to sleep in a little in the morning, which was nice. Then in the afternoon I watched Water World, which was on tv. For some reason, I remember this movie getting bad reviews, but this is probably the 2nd or 3rd time I've seen it and I like it! Saturday night I ventured out to the store with BOTH kids! The grocery store is one place I cannot take both kids by myself. I can't push Jordyn in her wheelchair, carry Evan or hold his hand, AND carry groceries. But, I made it work. I put Jordyn in the stroller (she is beginning to look ridiculous in the stroller... she is so big!) and Evan pushed Jordyn (or I held his hand). Then I put the milk in the small basket underneath the stroller. We made it in and out of the store with no problem! I spent the rest of the night getting the kids bathed, etc, and then read a book the rest of the night. I did get a rather large romance/mystery book at the library to read while Tom was gone. I am about 3/4 of the way done with it.
Sunday: Went to church. Came home, ate lunch, baked bread, and made Jello Jigglers. Now I am on here!
I can't wait for Tom to come home tonight! I've talked to him a couple of times while he's been gone. I always tell him,"It's so quiet and boring while you're gone!" I also HATE having to sleep alone... it's just creepy and I don't sleep well. Yesterday I pulled out our photo album of our wedding and honeymoon. I posted 3 of my fav. photos of our honeymoon. Tom and I still talk about our honeymoon quite frequently and how great it was. It was an farely inexpensive trip that we planned ourselves and we loved the area. We can't wait to go back some day! Happy Anniversary Tom!

Lake Louise, Alberta, Canada

Lake Moraine, Banff Nat. Park

Leaving Glacier Nat. Park and heading into Canada

Monday, September 17, 2007

Monday: Eating at a friend's house

Tuesday: Beef Enchilada Casserole, Spanish Rice (Kaw River Ward Cookbook p. 36)

Wednesday: Chicken Fried Rice & Egg Rolls

We are officially obsessed with these egg rolls! We buy them at Walmart and they are pretty inexpensive (We always buy the pork egg rolls). And so far, they are the best egg rolls we have found! We've tried lots of egg rolls from Chinese Restaurants and always think they are just ok. But, these are really good. I like to bake them a little longer than it says, to make them really crunchy on the outside. Try them & let us know if you like them!

Thursday: Leftovers

Friday: Mexican food from Taqueria Landa's
Tom discovered a great place that serves authentic Mexican food. They have a booth a few blocks from Tom's work where they serve lunch. So this weekend, we tracked down their restaurant so that I could try the food. We both had steak burritos. They are HUGE and cost $3.50. (I think they are the most expensive thing on the menu) I couldn't even finish mine it was so big. And it was really good. I think this will be our new place when we are craving mexican food. We are excited to try more items from their menu. I am so glad to find a cheap place to eat that tastes way better than fast food!

Saturday: Tuna Noodle Casserole

Sunday: Leftovers

Friday, September 14, 2007

Zoo Boise 2007

Last night we attended Tom's work BBQ at the Zoo. We have never been to the Zoo, here in Boise, so we were excited to go. They had some great food and then we were free to walk around the zoo for a few hours. I got to meet the Pres. and Vice Pres. of the company... very nice guys. I told Tom, as we drove home, that he seems to work with some really nice people. He agreed... he said everyone really gets a long and the "head honchos" in the company are nice guys. It was nice being there at night because it was cooler and Tom's work had the whole place rented out so we didn't have to deal with crowds of people.

When you go to the Zoo, does it seem like all of the animals are hiding, sleeping, or not even there? I heard several people saying,"I haven't seen many of the animals out." But, I also heard another person saying,"I've seen more animals out tonight than other times I've been here." So, who knows. They had some cool animals and the kids loved it.

Monday, September 10, 2007

This is going to be a pretty easy cooking week. We are trying to cut the grocery bill this week, so I planned meals that I didn't need to buy a lot of ingredients for. It also helps that we have a few events to go to, so I don't have to cook! We are going to try shopping this week at WinCo Foods. I went in their the other day for the first time (hadn't even heard of this place before we moved here) and it is supposed to have the cheapest prices around. I can't wait to see how cheap our grocery bill is for the week. It's almost like playing a game to see how little you can spend.

Monday: Chicken Tenders in Honey Mustard Garlic Wet Rub, Jello Fruit Salad, and Jasmine Rice

Tuesday: Grilled Pork Chops & Baked Potatoes

Wednesday: Scrambled Eggs w/Ham & Cheese, Jam Filled Muffins

Thursday: Going to Zoo Boise for Tom's work BBQ.

Friday: "Fixed Up" Frozen Pizza for me, salad (Tom gone for dinner!)

Saturday: Going out for our anniversary.

Sunday: Angel Chicken (slow cooker), w/ buttermilk biscuits.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Perfect day to go outside!

It was finally cool enough to go spend some time outside. (without sweating or passing out from heat stroke!) The high today is supposed to be 79, I think. I have been telling Tom for the past few weeks that we should go on a picnic! Of course, he was never too excited about that idea. But, he finally agreed to go because I said we could go downtown to Ann Morrison Park (where we saw the fireworks on July 4), which we've been wanting to go check out during the day. And I also said we could do a little geocaching too. Usually if I include geocaching into our days activity... he doesn't mind going!
A few days ago, I was watching Dr. Phil and he was asking his wife, who is always in the audience, about romance and dating in their marriage... or something like that. She was saying that he does pretty good being romantic etc, but "He could go on more picnics." Then Dr. Phil started explaining why he doesn't like picnics."I just don't understand picnics. Why would I want to eat my food on the ground? Why do I want to eat my food outside and on the ground when I have a great table, and plates, and air conditioning at home?" I thought it was pretty funny and I think that is probably exactly what Tom was thinking!
Anyways, our picnic was going great until we started getting bugged by hungry bees! Oh yeah, I forgot about BEES bugging you at picnics! So, I was pretty much running around the table the whole time, trying to get the bees away from me and Jordyn. (sigh) Oh well... It was still a good picnic. We walked around the park, checked out the cool fountain, and fed the ducks and geese.

Photo Below: Evan eating the bread istead

of throwing it to the ducks.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Tom is watching the first game of the NFL season... so I'm bored.

  • Last night I went out to dinner with a group of friends. It's funny because at one time or another, we have all been in the same ward.... in Spokane! Now, all of us (5 including me) live in the Boise area. Two of the girls have lived in Boise for the past year or two. The rest of us have all moved down here in the past six months. We've met at the park a few times already,with our kids, and decided to have a "Girls Night". We went to the Cheesecake Factory and it was REALLY good. It was hilarious because we had a long conversation, during dinner, about having babies. There were two men eating right next to us (and I'm sure they could hear every word we were saying)... I would have loved to hear their thoughts on our conversation! So, it was a lot of fun and I think we might make it a regular thing now. It's been great having these girls around so that we feel like we at least know a few people!

  • I think I may have my own personal secretary now. I mentioned earlier that I got hooked up with a company that provides us with a "service coordinator" for Jordyn. It has been so great! Today I got a lengthy e-mail telling me all the people she has called for us and all the appts. she has set up. I hardly have to call anyone anymore! One of the most frustrating things to deal with, when it comes to Jordyn, is having to call so many doctors, customer service workers, secretaries, and a million other people. You ask people to send faxes; they mysteriously disappear. One person tells you one thing; another person tells you something else. You send something in the mail; they never get it. You leave a message for someone; they never call you back. Our service coordinator eliminates most of this frustration because she gets to deal with it, not me!

  • I finally did it. I had someone watch Evan today while I took Jordyn to an appointment! I was so proud of myself! Jordyn had an appointment at the dentist and they were going to attempt a cleaning and x-rays. I knew Jordyn would get mad and then I would need to calm her down. So, taking Evan could have been a disaster. There is a girl in the ward with a little girl the same age as Evan and I asked her to watch Evan. I could tell she obviously didn't mind at all and she kept telling me over and over, "If Jordyn has doctors appts., bring Evan over... we don't mind at all!" So, she may be my "go to" person for a babysitter. In six months, Jordyn has her next dentist appointment and I scheduled Evan for the same time. By then, the baby will have been born also. I've been thinking all day.... How am I going to take Jordyn, Evan, and the new baby to the dentist!? I guess we will figure it out when the time comes!

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

First Day of School

Jordyn had her first day of preschool today! (Not the greatest photo, but it was the best I could do.) She is in an afternoon class with about 4 other boys. In Spokane, she was also in a class full of boys! Her teacher seems really great and so do the assistants. Last week we went to an open house to meet the teachers and other kids. We found out there are two other kids from our ward, in Jordyn's class. I can tell they already like her. One of the little boys from our ward ran up to her today and was saying,"Jordyn's here! Hi Jordyn, Hi Jordyn!" It was cute. The other kids started last week, but Jordyn had to wait while the school finished her paperwork and got the teacher's trained on how to handle seizures. We also went to a second meeting, last week, to meet with all of the therapists who will work with Jordyn. They asked me LOTS of questions and we set up goals for Jordyn. At the meeting, her teacher said,"Today, one of the boys in Jordyn's class said,"Where is the girl with the big wheels?"... I had to laugh at that!
It's good to have Jordyn in school. I feel like her days will be a lot more fun now... instead of just being at home with me! I also took Evan to the library today for a "toddler reading time", while Jordyn was at school. I think we will go to that once a week, so he will have something fun to do also. I guess this means our summer is officially over! But, it really is kind of nice to have a change of pace. Now the kids are both sound asleep and I can get a few things done!

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Menu Plan Monday

This is another one of my attempts to try something new. It seems like every once in awhile you get an itch to organize your life or change something. I went to a "Cooking Skills" group at church the other night. It's once a month and someone teaches us a new skill every month. This was my first time going and they were teaching how to plan your dinners meals from a menu. And then they asked you to bring a sample of food for everyone to try that has to include food from a garden. I took Carrot Coconut Muffins that turned out really good. I actually already plan our meals every week, but I definately got some new ideas from the class. I still need to organize better... plan the meals the same day every week, go to the store the same day (only once a week), and save the menus I make, in a binder, to refer back to. I also found a blog online, Organizing Junkie, where a whole bunch of bloggers post their "Monday Menu" for everyone to look at. So, that is what I am going to do! Now you can see what we are eating for the week and use the recipe if you want.(Even if there isn't a link, I usually have a recipe for most meals. Let me know and I can e-mail you the recipe.) I would love to hear what things my family and friends are making too... we will try almost anything. So if you have a good recipe or something for us to try... send it my way. Hopefully the men reading this post aren't rolling their eyes at the fact that once a week they have to see our menu... oh well, I know the women out there might find it somewhat interesting!

Monday: Corn on the Cob, Steak, and Jasmine Rice

Tuesday: "Breakfast Dinner" - French Toast Casserole with Pecan Topping (recipe from America's Test Kitchen), Sausage Patties

Wednesday: "Fixed Up" frozen pizza, green salad

Thursday: Glazed Pork Chops, Egg Rolls, Rice

Friday: Sloppy Joes (America's Test Kitchen), Tater Tots

Saturday: Curried Chicken & Potato Packets

Sunday: Baked Manicotti (America's Test Kitchen), Frozen Veggies, French Bread
Extra/Baking: Buttermilk Onion Bread & Apple Oatmeak Bites

Yes, I love America's Test Kitchen, if you didn't know already. The Sloppy Joe recipe is the BEST recipe for sloppy joes we've ever made. I think I will be using that recipe for the rest of my life!

Saturday, September 01, 2007

We NEVER learn.

It happened again. We locked ourselves out of our vehicle. Well, I should say Tom locked himself out of the van! Tom had run an errand with Evan and was coming inside to pick me and Jordyn up, to go get something to eat. He said his arm bumped the lock, just for his door, and he assumed all of the other doors were already unlocked. So, we soon realized all the doors were locked, with the keys and Evan in the van. Luckily, the van was running and had the air conditioning on. Not wanting to spend money on a locksmith, Tom went and got a hanger and started sticking it in the crack of the door. As he is doing this, I was inside looking up the phone number for a locksmith. I went out to the garage and told Tom that I found a place called "Affordable Lock Out"... just in case we needed it. After about 5-10 min. Tom was able to hit the unlock button with the hanger! He said,"Now that was quick and affordable!"
When we bought the van, we were bummed that they only gave us one key. We both agreed we would need to make a copy... sometime soon. But did we do it soon? I think we all know the answer... no! We never learn. I don't know how many times we've locked ourselves out of our apartments or vehicles because we don't have an extra key. Then we say, we will def. go get a copy made! And it takes us forever to do it. I wonder how many lockouts we will have to endure to finally teach ourselves a lesson!

Evan thought it was quite hilarious to be locked in the van.

Tom breaking in. In the photo below you can see the hanger almost reaching the button.