Thursday, February 28, 2013

What a month...

 I am so glad for MARCH to come! I know that March isn't really the beginning of Spring around here...we should be in for more snow, but it means it is around the corner! Here is some of the good and bad from this past month...

On the 6th, James knocked out three of his front permanent teeth.  Our great dentist fixed him up like new...but it brought to our attention that James has been having Absent instead of just going to the dentist, we went to the doctor, the hospital for an EEG, and the neurologist.  Didn't expect this when the month began, but we are glad we now know what is going on. More on that later...

That same week I was driving the kids to school and THIS happened.  We purchased new tires a month or so ago and keep having trouble with them keeping air pressure. We have had to make SEVERAL trips to Big O this month and hopefully have it all worked out. The good news?  For once I wasn't in my bathrobe when I drove the kids to school, and I even had my hair combed.  Good thing. 

I taught my last trampoline class for a while and it is kind of a relief.  I love doing it, but it will be a good break until we do it again in the spring or summer.  In the meantime, I have been doing Insanity video's at home and walk/running with the dog.  I decided since Sophie is now two, it might be time to get back in shape. 

Daisy graduated from her class at Pet Smart.  She really was the star student.  She would do everything the instructor told her to do and learns really fast.  She still has a ways to go! 

On President's Day I took this crew to the Idaho Falls Museum.  The Museum was celebrating their 10th birthday and so admission was free.  Note to self-usually when things are free to the public it is not worth going.   It was PACKED.  This is us standing out in the COLD line. 

I still pinch myself everyday that I have these two...mostly I am so glad they have each other.  Sophie hates when Annie is not home and they love to play together.  Annie dressed them both up here.  They make me laugh and smile everyday. 

On Sunday it was so sunny and I was really feeling Spring Fever.  I wanted to go on a walk, but the boys said it was too cold.  I didn't believe them.  The girls were up for it.  

Annie was so excited to ride her bike.  

When we got to some hills, she wanted to me to push/pull her.  I didn't have gloves on and my hands were FREEZING from being on the metal of the bike with an icy cold wind.  I didn't realize that it was not even 20F and WAY colder than I had imagined.  Sometimes the sun can deceive you! We decided to stop at Grandma and Grandpa's and hitched a ride back home in Grandpa's truck.  Sometimes you just have to get outside, cold or not!

The Elementary School is having their annual Read-a-thon and these guys have been reading around the clock.  This is on the way home from the Library...thank goodness for books to keep them busy.

Good bye, February!  Can't wait to see what March brings...

Monday, February 25, 2013


I was waiting for my annual picture of Annie and Sophie together on Valentines before I did my recap of the big day, but I still don't have it.  I will have to get it in another post.  Here is a recap of the big day...

I had set the table all fancy and thought we might have a fancy dinner.  However, with swim practice that night and a bunch of other stuff going on we had pizza instead.  The kids were so happy too! 

And of course, they were heart shaped...yummy.

We had our Annual Adams Family dinner then next night.  Grandma had everything done up really fancy! 

Michael was seated and waiting for the steak....

With everyone local coming, it takes about three tables.  

Not Annie's best picture, but London looks so cute. 

Aunt Jennifer and Isabelle

"The Middles"

Grandpa's Annual Rose Ceremony...

"Annie, will you accept this Rose?"  "Absolutely."  (I can't help it, I have to make references from The Bachelor everytime because I think it is funny.)

Brett and Jennifer

"Yes, dear, of course I will accept this rose.  I will be yours forever."  

Grandpa always gets excited and does a cheer for Grandma. We have a shot just like this from last year.  I love it. 

Grandpa and the girls.  

We missed the rest of the family in Arizona and now Oklahoma.  It was a lovely Valentines Day. Annie said she thought they should have it during the summer, but I told her we had to have it in the winter time to break up the dreary months.  I know some people think Valentines is dumb, but I love having holidays and traditions to look forward to- especially during this time of year.  I am OVER winter.  Do you think if I put out my bunnies and Easter decor it will feel like Spring even if it is only 15F outside?  I am going to try it out.

One more thing....THANK YOU NANA for the awesome Valentine's Package.  The kids loved it.  They all made Valentines for you but I am the worst I still don't have them in the mail.  Maybe for Easter?  :)

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Lent and letting things go.

For Lent my Mom and I are "letting sweets go".  No, we are not Catholic...but I think it is a great concept and so we both decided to go for it.  She brought me this yummy Giant Rice Krispee Treat on Fat Tuesday to kick things off.  So far, I HATE not having that piece of chocolate after dinner, or a cookies here and a bite of candy there.   I guess that means I am pretty dependent on treats so this will be good for me.  I have already been trying to be better since January....but this is serious business!  No sweets until Easter.  Yikes. 

Another thing I am letting go of is as much clutter that I can part with. For a few years I have done mini-versions of 40 bags in 40 days but this year I am going to step it up a notch. I sent three giant boxes to the DI (our donation location) with Ryan this week.  I know we have lots more to go.  This is also a cure when you want to move out of your house and can't.  Clean and de-clutter....instant cure.

These days we are letting go of some family rules.  Things like, "Stay out of the Living Room" and "Don't Jump of the Balcony".

Keep in mind that Ryan is over 6 feet you can just see how high this girl is flying. 

It may not look like it but this balcony is VERY high and so are these ceilings.  I mean, just look at the door under the balcony- it is a regular height, and then that balcony comes off the second story.  These guys are crazy. 

That pile on the floor in the middle of the room has been there all week....letting things go. 

Even the pets are going stir crazy.  Here is Gary the Bearded Dragon taking a ride on Michael's beloved Wolf.  I think he is enjoying the ride. 

This is a bad picture, but see the three dogs out there.  They have taken over the hillside.  They run up and down the hills and wear each other out.  

 These two are the main culprits.  Daisy (our Golden) runs over and gets Misty (The Lassie Dog) that belongs to Joshua's good friend AJ.  They are so funny and get into all kinds of trouble.  In January we decided to take Daisy to Pet Smart for a Dog Training class.  We walked in the class and started laughing.  Guess who else was in the class?  That is right, Daisy's best friend Misty.  I shouldn't let her go and roam the neighborhood...but she sure loves it. 

Today is the first Saturday in what seems like centuries that we have been able to sleep in.  We didn't go skiing, and there were no swim meets.  So far we have done a big old NOTHING and it is really nice.  I should start cleaning my house. I have just been on the run all week and it really needs it, but I am not going to do it. I am going to let the kids continue to veg out and watch cartoons and I am going to take the dog for a run.  Cleaning will have to wait...I am really letting it go today.  I will let you know how letting the treats go is going next week.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

The BEST Sugar Cookies Ever

Okay, I know that everyone thinks their Sugar Cookie Recipe is the best. I guess it is really what you grow up with is what you like. But, really, this is a good one.  And I get requests for it all the time.

-You don't have to refrigerate it for a certain amount of time, so if you are in a hurry, no worries.
-It uses simple ingredients that you always have on hand.
-I like it because it is not too sweet.  I think I sugar cookie should not be really sweet, since you are gonna load it up with all that sweet frosting.  So just a warning, you might think they taste a bit plain.  Trust me, it will balance out the frosting.
-Also, a sugar cookie should be "tender and sweet with crisp edges"according to my Professional Baking Sources.  Those huge fluffy cookies that you get at the store (my kids love them) are not true Sugar Cookies in my book.  They need to have a touch of crisp and not be too thick.

Anyway, this is what my Mom wrote about this recipe in our Family Cookbook:

Mama's Sugar Cookies

When I was a little girl our next door neighbor, Mrs. Britzell would bring us sugar cookies for different holidays.  They were always special.  Grandma Milligan got the recipe from her and it became the one that she would make.  She didn't make cookies very often, however, she just wasn't a cookie maker.  When I asked her for the recipe she called it Mama's Sugar Cookies.  When I'm making it I almost always double it.  This is what I make on Halloween, and Thanksgiving Turkeys, Christmas Bells, Stars, etc.  and for Valentine's Hearts. 

Cream:  1/2 c butter
             1/2 c sugar

Add: 2 T milk

Add:  1/2 tsp baking soda
         1 pinch salt
         1 tsp vanilla
         1 beaten egg

Use approximately 2 cups flour-use some in rolling out but be careful not to add too much.  

Bake 350F for 8-10 minutes.  

When I was little I didn't like frosting on them, I just liked them plain.  Also, I almost always quadruple the recipe.  Seriously. I figure if I am going to the effort I should make a lot and this is one cookie that Ryan loves.  They also freeze great and I actually love them that way, straight out of the freezer.  

Another thing, I always made these with butter and then one day my Mom revealed to me that she uses Margarine in all her baking recipes.....WHAT?!  Mom, you need to tell us these details or we wonder what we have been doing wrong all these years.  The thing is, I like the way that butter makes them taste, but they WILL be more crisp.  I like the way the Margarine makes them soft.  (My kids are babies about this, they HAVE to be softish).  So, I compromise and I usually do half and half.  2 sticks of butter, 2 sticks of Margarine.  

By the way, I never knew it, but my Mom told me THIS is the only acceptable kind of Margarine for your cooking.  Who knew?  I don't know why, I just do it.  She is a really good baker.  

Also, I usually only do them 8 minutes since my family likes them soft.  

Ok, those are my tips. And you can decorate them really fancy, like I plan to do this afternoon with the kids, or you can just slather them up with some good old buttercream frosting and eat them up.  ENJOY!  

PS That is a bad picture of a cookie, I just had it from last year and don't wanna take a good one from this year.  So, I guess it is a realistic picture of a cookie with a finger print and one your kid might have done.  ;)  Hey, this is not a cooking blog people. 

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Random Wrap Up

We have been trying to take advantage of our Season Ski passes and get up to the Mountain as much as possible this year.  I wish I had a picture of these guys trying to pose for this picture.  You kind of have to hike up to a spot and there is a grand and amazing view of the Tetons.  We didn't dare take this group any higher because there was a lot of slipping and sliding taking place and I didn't want to risk someone falling the wrong direction down the mountain.  So, we may have missed part of the Tetons, but you can see what a beautiful day this was!  (Cousins- Alexis and Emmaline, Grandpa, and the boys-Luke and Michael.)  

This one is a bit better with Luke, James, and Joshua.  I am so proud of them all! Luke and Michael have improved by leaps and bounds this Season and James and Joshua are amazing.  

This picture just makes me laugh. 

EVERY time I go skiing I just want to pack up and move up here.  I would love to be closer to the mountains and be able to come up here every day.  It would be a definite lifestyle change, but I think it would be exciting.  I could give up living by a Target if this was my back yard...

Alexis and Emmaline on the lift with me...

Josua and I
(I had my hair here...I have to admit.  Last night was the first night I felt a TINGE of regret cutting it all off. I was just missing it.)

James and I

Last Saturday it was just the boys and I.  (And Abigail too!)  I left Michael and Luke to fend for themselves for few runs so I could go once with the big kids.  I was impressed.  They fear nothing and every black diamond, drop off, and powdery mogul is calling their name.  My legs were burning and I realized that they can kick my butt on that stuff!  As for the groomed runs, I still hold that I beat them in form.

I just took this picture cause it was all four of the guys after Church and this is just so them.  When not skiing they love to veg on the couch.  Notice they are all sitting there and then look at James.  Sometimes I will find him upside down-always in motion. 

For the past couple weeks we have had sickness coming through our house AGAIN.  I am getting really tired of it and it seems we have been sick for an entire year, catching every single thing that goes around.  It started with Sophie this time, then went to Annie.  They didn't move for days. 

The little girls looked so pathetic when they had it.  So sad.  Joshua has it now.  He has been home from school all week.

This picture of Ryan above is being weird and won't let me adjust it.  Last week we went down to Salt Lake and splurged on some custom ski boots for Ryan and I.  Long story, but we have had trouble due to weird feet issues finding comfortable ski boots that fit right.  These puppies are a dream come true.  Expensive, but if you are going to be skiing a lot it is worth every penny in my book.  

Sunday morning...these girls getting their dolls ready for Church. 

I was really happy for the distraction because the morning had started out with a lot of tears.  

Annie really wanted to wear these new dresses I got them.  I told her only if she would let me put pink sponge rollers in her hair. Well, when I took them out that morning, she HATED her hair.  I thought it looked darling and sort of retro with the dress.  I tried to capture her crying to herself in the mirror, but she would barely allow it. 

I remember days like this in High School..."oh, no, my big poofy hair just won't go right..." 

She finally collected herself...

And by the time we headed out she was happy. 

This one was not, so no photo shoot together happened.  Hey, I captured them playing dolls and that is good enough! 

Later that night I was just so happy to be expecting again, I miss having a small baby around. 

Ryan just took this picture because at night this is what I look like-five months pregnant with a ball of bloatedness.  This is what led me to thinking I had Celiac Disease and going Gluten Free for three years.  Symptoms are officially coming back...I will just pretend I am pregnant instead. 

And finally....a picture of our front yard.  January was a good month for snow.  I have really enjoyed it, but I am a little over all the crappy road conditions.  It does make for a beautiful winter around here though! 

 Well, that is it for my random wrap up. Cheerio!