Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Thanksgiving: Part 2

Our second day was filled with fun fun fun!
The boys got up early so they could get plenty of razor hours in. While they were hurrying to get out the door my favorite Alta-ism was said.

Before I start this story I have to let it be known that Kevin teases Alta incessantly. And she knows this. Her dad was teasing her one day and she told him "Stop! Only Kevin teases me!"

So my little niece is three years old. Her size might fit her age, but her personality, the way she thinks, and the way she talks would make you think otherwise. Well this morning Kevin could not find his shoes. And he was getting frustrated. He had asked everyone. After about 8 minutes of searching Kevin decides to ask Alta:

"Alta, have you seen my shoes?"

"I hid them."

Kevin lets out a "Whaaaat..." And Alta jumps off her chair and retrieves his shoes behind a big plant pot.
She had hid them the night before.
And then she goes:

"I teased YOU!" as she hands him the shoes with a huge grin on her face.

We were all amazed with her trickery. How does a 3 year old know how to tease? How did she not give it away and laugh or giggle when Kevin was searching for his shoes? I mean I'm 23 years old and I would have started laughing at minute 2 of searching for the shoes if I had hid them. I applaud her.
After he left she kept saying "I teased him!" I guess she was sick of all his teasing and wanted to give him a dose of his own medicine. Well done my girl!

Now onto the playground. They have awesome playgrounds in St. George. This one was a spinners paradise. Or a worst nightmare for those who get motion sickness easily. We first let Alta play on the playground, but it wasn't long until we all started pushing kids out of are way for our turn.
Me and Alta both did way too much spinning and moving on all the toys. I started feeling nauseous on the swings and ended it right there. Alta kept going. She started looking a little nauseous and sick so we all decided to go home. It wasn't until we got home that she said "I probably shouldn't go there anymore."

Ha I love this picture. I am trying not to get sick. Alta is just loungin' in hers.

These were fun seeing how dizzy we could get ourselves after a long spin. Jumping out of one of these and trying to walk was a feat. We did it to Alta quite a bit, and then started to feel bad. But then we realized all the parents were doing it to their kids. Child abuse? Possibly. But it was so funny!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Thanksgivin' Stuffin'


1 lb seasoned bread cubes
4 TB butter
2 onions
2 celery stalks
1 green apple
3 links sausage, casings removed
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley (I halved this and used dried parsley)
1 TB fresh sage (or more)
1 TB fresh thyme (or more)
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
2- 2 1/4 cups chicken broth
2 eggs

Preheat oven to 350 F.
Chop onions, celery, and apple into little pieces and sauté in butter for 10 minutes. Halfway through add parsley if dried (You want to add dried herbs at the beginning of cooking, fresh herbs at the end). After 10 minutes add sage, thyme salt and pepper and remove from heat. In another pan, cook sausage until cooked through and crumbly.
In a large bowl combine bread cubes, with the onions, celery, apples, and sausage. Add chicken broth. Beat eggs in separate bowl and add at end. Toss and combine.
Add to a large baking dish, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and cover with foil in oven for 30 min. Remove foil and cook for 10 min longer.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Thanksgiving: Part 1

For Thanksgiving this year we went down to St. George for the weekend. It was quite grand to have everyone together. It's even grander that we all get along.

On Thanksgiving day the girls went on a road bike ride and while we were preparing the food, the boys went mountain biking and golfing. The girls all picked dishes to make for the big meal. I chose stuffing, since that is my favorite thanksgiving dish, and creamed corn. I was really scared making stuffing for the first time for the entire family but it actually turned out good. The creamed corn didn't turn out how I wanted it to, since my moms recipe calls for dehydrated corn and I used frozen corn. Next time I won't be so lazy and will dehydrate the corn. But everything else turned out wonderful!

Me and Kevin had to sit at the kids corner because we aren't "producers" or "producing".

While all the boys napped, Jeremy decided to tie up Alta.

Alta then told me to take pictures of her. This was what I had to work with:

Sunday, November 20, 2011

the chocolate factory

For a while now my mother, my sister and myself have been making and dipping chocolates for Christmas. It has become a tradition that I love. We, well really my mom, makes the cream centers (mint, lemon, lime, strawberry, raspberry, cherry, maple-pecan, coconut, peanut butter...the possibilities are endless here) and then we, me and my sister, dip them and make them look pretty. It usually takes a few days to do, especially now with two little nieces in the mix. We planned for last Friday as dipping day and set the whole day aside. Even with the whole day we barely finished them all. Since my mom is the Relief Society president we ended up having to take care of three additional kids due to the mom having to run to the hospital. A set of 5 month old twins and a 3 year old. Holy cow. We quickly put Hadley down for a nap, my dad watched Afton and my mom, myself and Chelsey looked after the candy-crazed three year old and the throwing up twins. I kid you not, just one twin threw up on me 4 times in a total of 20 minutes. Not cool. The twins also threw up on Chels. And the blankets. And the floor. I decided then I really do not want twins. Ever. Or a three year old who demands candy, juice and popcorn all at once. Kevin stopped by when all of this was happening and was glad he could only stay for a few minutes. He doesn't want twins either. Even though the twin girl could not take her eyes off or stop smiling at Kevin. That was the only cute part of this whole scenario.

We somehow managed to finish. And Chelsey loved her little Afton even more when all the kids left. She doesn't throw up. She's not a twin. She slept through the whole thing. Good girl.

After the chocolates were done, me and Chelsey went and saw Breaking Dawn with a bunch of her girlfriends. It was good. Everything I expected it to be; everything I expected it not to be. Kinda scary, lots of sexy, too much wolf talk. After all the sexy time, the girls next to me were like "Thats IT!!" Ha. Really? I thought. I barely made it through.

But I did love the preview for The Hunger Games. OH boy. It gives me chills every time I watch it. I have a thing for good previews you see. I love a good put-together preview. I love when the music matches the action and excitement; and I only have two previews that match this description:

1) Terminator Salvation

2) Hunger Games

Hunger Games rules. March 23rd can't come soon enough.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

how to: tofu

I love tofu. I am not sure where this love came from, but whenever tofu is an option on the menu, I get it. At restaurants I loved the texture, flavor and density of their tofu. But I never really knew how to make it at home. I knew that you had to press it, but never wanted to really invest in a tofu press. Sounded silly to me. So I made it without pressing it, but it never was how I wanted it to be.

But then I decided to make my own press. Maybe after 500 pressings, my husbands textbooks will have been worth the money.

On second thought, this is a pretty expensive tofu press.

Yummy Tofu:

Buy the firm or extra firm tofu.
Cut into long slabs.
Place a towel on a baking sheet.
Place cut tofu on towel.
Cover with another towel.
Place a cutting board/bread board on top.
Place books, dogs, children, or husbands on top for 20 min to 2 hours.

Then marinate the pressed tofu in whatever marinade you like. Tofu marinates and holds onto flavor great. I used this:

Let it marinate for a few hours.
Then broil marinated tofu for 6-7 minutes per side.

It is sooo good.
Even Kevin really liked it and he hates any type of "healthy" food I try to make him.

Now I just need Costco to get tofu. I bought two packages of tofu from Harmons and we easily ate it all. I need this in bulk people!

sundays with ellie

You first have to watch this little video of our day with baby:

Ellie in the snow from Mal Brower on Vimeo.

Jeggings for babies? Oh yes. This girl is stylin'. I tried to even put it up a notch with some Uggs, but she is one of them. One of them Ugg Haters. She'll learn.

This girl knows when she comes over to Uncle Kev's and Auntie Mal's that a party is in store. She gets right back into her carseat and demands that we buckle her in. And then she just sits. Sits and waits. Because she knows that eventually we will go somewhere fun. We. Are. So. Fun. She also knows we will give her watered down apple juice. Shhh. Don't tell her mom.

When we got back into the car after the first fun in the snow, this is what we had to deal with. She wanted more snow! So we went and found another spot.

Realizing this snow was edible was a big deal for this girl. We had to stop twice on the way down the canyon to get her snowballs so she could eat them on the way down. Kevin really does love this girl. I asked him if he would have stopped and got me a snowball on the way down. He just laughed. This little Ellie girl is trying to steal my man! I am on to you Ellie...