Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Merry Christmas!

My sister-in-law Susan posted this on her blog and asked people to answer it too. This is for you Susan! I like doing these too, and seeing what other people say.

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? wrapping paper with beautiful bows

2. Real tree or Artificial? Real, Real, Real.

3. When do you put up the tree? The day after Thanksgiving... sometimes Saturday

4. When do you take the tree down? The day after Christmas... its sooo dry by then

5. Do you like eggnog? Yes, and it likes my hips... I try to stay clear of it

6. Favorite gift received as a child? Jem doll... any one remember her? I was sooo excited!

7. Hardest person to buy for? I love to buy presents, it's coming up with the money that's the hard part! ha!

8. Easiest person to buy for? Ellie

9. Do you have a nativity scene? Yes

10. Mail or email Christmas cards? Mail. I have done typed letters, but it's not me. I am back to hand written, more personal and a nice touch I think

11.Worst Christmas gift you ever received? We used to complain about oranges and peanuts in our stockings, but I like it now:)

12. Favorite Christmas Movie? White Christmas

13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? Usually November

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Probably, I am a re- gifter

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Too many choices! I love pickled herring, cream cheese with shrimp sauce and shrimp, artichoke dip from Carolyn (it's amazing!), leftsa and anything my mom makes!

16. Lights on the tree? White lights

17. Favorite Christmas song? O Holy Night

18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? Depends on the year. I like to visit and be visited... they both have their perks

19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer's? I don't think so... I feel a little silly trying to see if I can sitting here at the computer by myself

20. Angel on the tree top or a star? Bow

21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? I love to start opening presents as soon as they show up at my door. Doug hates that, so usually almost all on Christmas morning... about 5-6am!

22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? Too many people shopping. I don't like crowds

23. Favorite ornament theme or color? I got a little angel when I was about 7 -- she is sitting on the moon holding a lantern. I love her for some reason. The only ornament I took from my mom's house.

24. Favorite for Christmas dinner? My grandma Petie's traditional dinner. Ham, sliced oranges, deviled eggs, twice baked potatoes, pickles

25. What do you want for Christmas this year? A new nice blow dryer, but Doug will think that's too boring, I am pretty easy to shop for I think though. New scented lotions from bath and body works would be nice too. Someone tell Doug to read this! ha!
We had snow in October! The first and only so far this year and we got 4 inches! It has been sunny many days since. Ellie loved the snow!

Ellie poured the milk all by herself! You can see she did get a cup full along with creating a nice little mess.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Adoption Paper Work Complete!

This Friday we have our final interview with our case worker and turn in the rest of our required papers... birth certificates, photos, letter, etc. The interview is 3 hours! One for me, one for DOug and one together... I still need a babysitter for Ellie, I won't make her endure the hours:) We are really excited! Although it may still be a long wait after we are done with the papers at least we have done our part. Pray for us, that we will receive the little baby (or babies) that God has prepared for us. I think we are going to have twins sometime. Doug thinks I'm crazy. We'll see who's right!

Friday, September 26, 2008


I was reading an article this morning about motherhood. As I read, "Parents can offer a unique and wonderful kind of prayer because they are praying to the Eternal Parent of us all. There is great power in a prayer that essentially says, 'We are steward-parents over Thy children, Father; please help us to raise them as Thou wouldst want them raised'."

Although Doug and I have not been given the opportunity to have children on our own I have always kind of felt that no matter if you create, carry and bring a child into the world, or have them placed into your arms from another, they always came from some where else, some one else anyway... we all kind of "adopt" children as our own from God. They are never really ours, but God's. This understanding has greatly helped me over the years to know that our situation in adopting is not that different from bearing children, ultimately. I feel a lot of peace in that knowledge.

I think God gives us perspective and understanding like this at times to help us see the big picture. It is easy, no matter your situation, to start to look around at others and not up God to for answers. There are many circumstances people face that they can say 'why do I have to do this?' or 'why can't I do this?' I have learned and probably keep learing, that God's plan for us is perfect and it is individual, but not often fair, if we compare. I try to remember that and it makes me happy to know that God loves me and is aware of me and even takes time to teach me and help me understand.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Canning Continued...

So, my life is pretty much the same everyday. I don't send out family newsletters or anything because honestly, there's nothing to report. Even over the course of a year we do pretty much the same thing. I only have one child, so I don't have all the craziness of a houseful of kids to talk about! But, I do have canning, which is crazy (at least for me!). This week I was able to put up, or help put up 6 batches of salsa (that's 90 QUARTS of salsa)!!! That didn't include my apple sauce, peaches, jam and peppers. One of the longest weeks of my life! Ha! I was up until 1 am one night finishing a batch. Now, we have tons of salsa though and we are very happy-- almost 50 quarts. The mess is a little under control but my supplies are all over the house, though they are cleaned up and more contained than eariler! I still have lots to do, but I have a break for a few days and I need it!
Coming up.. more peaches, apple pie filling, pears, peach salsa

Saturday, September 13, 2008


I love fall for many reasons, but one of the best is that it is time to can. I am so excited for all the food we are putting up. I started salsa today, yum! The whole house smells good. Doug gave me a food processor for Christmas and I have put it to good use. Wow, it makes it so easy to make salsa! I am posting the recipe for anyone who wants to try it! I also love the colors and the cool weather. I have had all our windows open and it is so nice! I love fall! I am canning more salsa, peaches, peach salsa, green chilies and applesauce next week, along with crushed tomatoes I am sure. We have a great local farm that is pick your own for really reasonable prices. I will be super busy, but it is great!!!

My beautiful garden... I am still waiting for the tomatoes to turn.

I made this wreath and am quite pleased with the result. Doug thinks it is ugly, but I didn't ask hime anyway! Ha!

Homemade Canned Salsa

5 gallon bucket full of ripe tomatoes
Anaheim peppers
18 jalapeno peppers (wear gloves, the seeds can burn your hands)
**if you leave seeds, it will be hot…the more the seeds, the hotter the salsa
8 cups chopped celery (I just use 1 large bundle)
12 bell peppers
8 cups chopped onions
4 cups vinegar
2 cups sugar
1 cup salt (yes, one cup- it's not a typo)
4 T cumin
2 T black pepper
1 bulb garlic

Wash, core and chop tomatoes. I like Roma the best, they have less juice and more meat. Hand chopping at least half of the tomatoes will make your salsa chunkier, the other half you can puree in a food processor. Wash, seed and chop all other vegetables. You can do it all by hand, but a food processor is recommended because of the quantity for this recipe. Combine all ingredients in LARGE pot (I use my pressure canner) and bring to a boil. Boil for 1-2 hours (stirring occasionally) or until salsa is cooked down to the consistency you like. The longer it boils, the thicker the salsa. Fill prepared jars ¼ inch from the top and process in a hot water bath for 35 minutes. Yield about 32 pints.

Catch Up

Well, my sister told me to update my blog, so I am listening! It has been way too long, so I will give a review of what's been going on.

We went to the zoo in Salt Lake City and we had fun! I am not a big zoo person (I don't like parades either, very un-american), but I am glad we went!

A girl from Doug's work, Stephanie stayed with us a little while this summer and she and Ellie were good friends. Ellie loved to play in her room and put on her jewlery!

We live in a great neighborhood and Ellie has great friends! This is Ellie and Daphne playing out in the pool! We hang out with the kids and our friends a lot in the summer evenings.

We are a 5 Buck pizza family. We like to visit Doug at work on Friday nights and have pizza... Saydee Lou came with us this night:)

Ellie likes to eat pizza backward... everything she does is so cute!

Doug loves his picture taken. He looks happy, huh? Ha! I didn't post the one of him flipping off the camera.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Jam, Jam and more Jam

I have been canning jam like crazy! I don't know exactly how many I have, but at least 40 pints. Apricot and Raspberry are the ones I have done so far, and apricot syrup for pancakes and waffles. YuMMy! I am going to do peach jam too. I love jam! For the record, I give a lot away. My brother asked what in the heck I would do with that much jam! Hey, this girl just needs to make sure that if there is ever a shortage, she will be set in the jam department. My neighbor and friends aren't complaining that I do a lot, so I will just keep going!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Long Time No See

Doug took off early Monday morning for Boy Scout camp and is coming back tomorrow! We are both very excited to see dad! I am usually the one who leaves and that is way more fun than being left behind...
While he has been away we have kept busy... we went up to Logan for a couple of days and visited my dearest friend Annette and her family. We helped her get ready to move into her new house which they have 1 1/2 weeks to prepare for! Yikes! She is the mother of 5 - 6 years and under. Her new house is beautiful and has a great raspberry patch! I got to pick the berries because she didn't have time to do anything with them right now. Lucky me! I made great jam today and I am so excited! I love raspberry jam!

I went to my favorite DI while I was there. I got the cutest shirt, pants and black dress- totally good shape and a bargin! I love the Logan DI! I always find treasures.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

The Beautiful Logan Canyon

We went on our second camping trip this summer up Logan Canyon. It is so beautiful! We love it and are returning again in 2 weeks. Ellie loves camping, getting dirty, hikin' in the mountains and playing in the river. She was a really big helper this trip. We didn't ask her to bring us our bags when we were setting up camp or start hauling them back when we were done, but she has a good work ethic already and we are so proud:)
Here's a video of her helping and pictures from our camp out.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Busy Girl

Here are some pictures of our girl. She is growing so well and very happy! She loves her family and friends and always is having fun!!!

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Aunts and Uncles Know Best

Ellie woke up from her nap and picked out some toys to play with. Aunt Mimi gave her the soccer ball (encouraging sports right from the start:) and Uncle Marty gave her the kitty cat. She loves them both! Thank goodness for great aunties and uncles!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Bathing Beauty

Ellie loves to swim! She spends hours on the deck playing...alone or with friends. Today she was practicing her floating skills and teaching her baby, too.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Blessings always come...

I have been teaching couponing classes lately and it's been nice to get a little extra income. The classes are free to the people who take them and it really helps out their families and us! I just got an opportunity to go into a local grocery store and have a table to contact people for signing up classes. It has been working great for another teacher and I am looking forward to getting the classes. It only takes about an hour and a half at the most to teach a class and it can be really profitable for the time it takes. Another blessing in our lives and I am always grateful to the Lord for helping us with all our needs.

If you live in Utah and you want to find out how to save a TON of money, I can hook you up! It's amazing. You know it's good if I do it (I was couponing a year myself before I ever started teaching classes) because I am pretty frugal and always looking for a great deal!

Happy shopping:)

Thursday, May 29, 2008

who's the coolest?

Have you ever met someone and thought, "they are the coolest person!"? If I have the great opportunity to not only meet them, but actually be their friend, I always feel extra blessed to have them in my life. I have a lot of these people I have met through the years, some were short acquanties, others I have know forever. I always still say when I think of them, "they are so cool."

The definition of cool has changed for me over the years. In my youth (I am almost 30 already!) cool was more what you wore, how you looked, if you played sports (and were good:), if you had lots of friends and stuff to do on the weekends. If you have a teenager in your life this might sound familiar... now this is my definition of Cool: friendly, easy to talk to, easily engages people in coversation, confindent in self- comfortable to be themselves. They all have individual skills and a variety of interests, but the single trait that seems to stand out is how I feel in their presence. It is hard to use words to describe that, but to put it simply I feel good around them and sense their goodness. They seem to be at a higher level of self development and happiness in life. Very cool.

Now I will say, I still have a few superficial opinions of cool- for instants Matt Damon, coolest guy on earth. I mean, have you seen his skills in Borne Ultimatum. Big fan. But generally it's my neighbors and friends and family I think of. Here's just a few... (don't be offended if your not listed, I didn't want to take 100 hours to write this entry, you know I love you all!!!)

Jacob and Joni Borg
I met Joni my freshman year at Ricks. Joni is one of the coolest people I have ever met. If you knew her you'd think the same. Joni is totally herself and is great to be around. I miss hanging our with her. Her husband Jacob is equally as cool. One of the first times I ever talked to Jacob he was so nice to me. I think they were just dating at the time and we were sophmores at Ricks. I was pretty insecure in my early days and he made a long conversation with me and found things to talk about- he was so comfortable that it made me comfortable. I am sure her wouldn't remember the exchange, but I immediately liked him and still think back on how he made me feel. You guys are awesome!

Mike and Lisa Carver
Mike and Lisa are our neighbors. We think Mike looks like an FBI agent and is currently trying to be one. Doug says if he doesn't make it he should try show biz because he looks the part, I am sure Without a Trace would take him. Cool guy. Mike is so great with his kids and Ellie loves him! He is funny and works great with the youth in our ward (he serves with Doug in Young Mens). Mike is easy to talk to and would help anyone who needs it. Generally cool people marry cool people and that would be Lisa. I have never heard a negative thing come out of Lisa. One of her girls has health problems and has spent a lot of time in the hospital, had heart surgery before she was one and gets sick a lot. Lisa always has a big smile on her face and never says life is hard. Super cool people.

Mike and Jessica Forsgren
I met Mike and Jessica when I started dating Doug. They, like other listed made me feel comfortable and were really funny and fun to be around. They don't hide their opionions or thoughts, and share who they are. It's easy to get to know someone when they let you in like that. Jessica does tri-atholons and that's cool. Mike calls when a sibling needs to hear something and that's cool too. Glad to call you guys family.

Good people, doing good things and making life good for other people. Who's the coolest!?!

If you have a cool person in your life, let me know, I'd love to hear about them.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Mother's Day

Ellie on Mother's Day

Saturday, May 10, 2008

I've Been Tagged

A-attached or single: attached
B-best friends: Doug, Annette, Sunni, Becky
C-cake or pie: Cake with Ice Cream- Mashed together
E-essential item(s): lotion, everything in my kitchen
F-favorite color: yellow
G-gummy worms or bears: worms- they remind me of my childhood
H-hometown: Hines, MN/ Pine Island,MN
I-indulgence: Chocolate Haggendas
J-January or July: July
K-kids: Ellorie Ione
L-life is incomplete without: Kisses and Waterfalls, preferably together
M-marriage date: August 9, 2003
N-number of siblings: 2
O-oranges or apples: apples, from Dad's trees
P-phobias or fears: Doug dying, snakes
Q-quotes: My funniest quote this year is from Becky, well technically John Wayne "Life is tough, it's tougher if you're stupid."
R-reasons to smile: Ellie dancing, Doug taking a day off, visiting Minnesota, phone calls from friends
S-season: Hard to choose between Spring and Fall. I love the leaves in the fall, but I love the new life that comes out in Spring
T-tag friends: Joni, and who ever else wants to be... I don't really know how to do it though
U-unknown fact about me: I have a tattoo and I love skinny dipping. Just kidding. I have never done either. I am pretty much an open book... no surprises here
V-very favorite store: I love kitchen stores. If I was rich, I'd spend all my money there! I love quilt shops too, thanks to my mom! Otherwise any store with a clearance section and I love garage sales in Minnesota!
W-worst habit: Interrupting people when they are talking. I hate when I do that!
X-x-ray, ultrasound, or mammogram: Ultrasound
Y-your favorite food: what don't I like! Italian probably takes the cake though. Victoria's Italian Restaurant in Rochester, MN
Z- Zodiac: Leo

Tuesday, May 6, 2008


Aunt Mimi taught Ellie to trace her feet. She LOVES it! We are always coloring!!!

Ellie loves to play! She has lots of neighbor friends and is so happy! She really loves markers and if you noticed colored her belly button especially well- at least she didn't get the furniture.

Doug bought me lilies for Mother's day and we planted them Saturday! So beautiful