Thursday, January 29, 2009

Happy Birthday To You!

Well, our little girl turned 18 today. Where did all the time go? It's funny, when they're small you joke about the day they will be 18, and an "adult." You think you will have so much time with them. You watch them grow, watch them blossom and know that they will grow up, but when the time comes that they are grown up, it just doesn't seem like there was enough time. Am I ready for her to grow up? Am I ready for her to move out on her own when she goes off to college? Am I ready to not see her every day, and know where she is every (well, almost) hour of the day? Ok, I can tell by the way my tears are falling that right now I am a selfish mother, I do not want her to grow up. I want her to stay and be my little girl forever. I know very soon I will need to let her go, and although it will break my heart, I know that I will.

She found these on her car early this morning before school

Dinner and Dessert at Olive Garden
More cake (which we saved to eat) and presents
See the resemblance?

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Dinner - Rachael Ray Style

I've always wanted to try a meal that Rachael Ray says is only 30 minutes. I got on the Food Network website, picked an episode out (the Simple Three Course Italian Episode), went grocery shopping Friday morning and Friday evening at exactly 5:00 pm Erin and I got to work. I laid everything I needed for the recipes out on the kitchen table before I started timing myself.
Before I show the pictures and link to the recipes, here's a little "insider" scoop. First, Rachael Ray's menus may be quick and - she claims - only 30 minutes, but they are not easy on the pocketbook. For our family I budget around $400 per month on food, and this trip cost me almost $100.00. Granted, I did buy other things, but that $100 usually gives me enough food for about a week.
Here's something else. Surprise, Surprise, it did NOT take only 30 minutes to cook this meal. It took me 50 minutes, and that was with help. 50 minutes of rushing around trying to get the meal done in 30, and I was left with a HUGE mess in the kitchen, probably another 50 minutes of cleanup time. Ugh.
The final kicker - the recipes weren't even all that great! Adam and Clay didn't even eat them. But at least I got to play the part of Rachael Ray, even if it was only 50 minutes!
Click on the name of the recipe to get the link:
Orecchiette with Crab - Couldn't find orecchiette pasta, so I used mini bow ties

Monday, January 12, 2009

Today is Monday. Monday is the one day of the week I work until 5:00. When I come home in the evening I can look forward to never a dull moment. Today, I got to see:
You need to do your homework. Really, you need to do your homework. You need to do your homework and I mean it. DO YOUR HOMEWORK NOW!
How's the studying for finals going, Erin? Helloooo? Erin???

Look, Syd's cleaning her room! I warned her I would post this picture.
As of 9:30 tonight, Adam did finish his homework, Erin seems to be ok with her studying (finals in two days), and Syd's room is...well, Syd's room.

Monday, January 5, 2009

FHE - Carter Style

I'll start the new year off right, I thought. Tonight we will have Family Home Evening. I will make it special, and light the candles for dinner. I will make learning the scriptures fun for the whole family. Bring on the Legos! Your challenge, should you choose to accept, is to build something with Legos that relates to the scriptures. You will have three minutes in which to complete this challenge, and then you will show them off to all. Ready, Set, Go!
Syd works hard to find just the right pieces to make her masterpiece - all two of them. What thought, what finesse! However, a cross is something scripture-related.

Erin made Moses on the mountain. Very creative, and great use of those Legos. Great job, Erin!

We look over at Adam, and with a face like this, we know he's up to something. This kid can play with Legos for hours; he can put pieces together to create things we never knew existed. This is what he chose to make tonight:

A guy reading scriptures in a "gun thing." "But Mom, you said to make something about the scriptures, and that's what I did." Hmmmm, he's right, you know.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year 2009!

Hard to believe that it is 2009 already. A new year - time for resolutions, if you make them. This year, in addition to the resolutions almost every one of us puts on our list - I admit, every year I vow to eat healthier and exercise more - I will add a few more to my list. Here are just a couple:

1. I will spend more time with my family, and time spent cleaning the house won't count. Time goes by so fast and before you know it, your oldest daughter is graduating. Just ask me. I know.

2. I will make a special point of getting together with friends. Too often I say, "let's get together," and it never happens. I realized there are some friends I haven't seen all year.

We spent New Year's Eve with some wonderful friends of ours. We ate dinner, then played games (WII, pool, and MadGab) and visited until midnight. We stayed up until around 1:00 am (even us "old" parents). Bill and Melanie live near Virginia City, so we decided to stay the night rather than face the windy road down and the roads with lots of people, many of whom had been drinking. Bill and Melanie were great at letting all five of us stay with them. Thank you so much for such a fun time! We plan to spend a relaxing day at home to welcome in 2009.
Adam learned to play pool, and found that he really enjoyed it
Rack 'em up, Dad
It's just as fun to watch the people play as it is to play the WII Fit
Dinner time! Spaghetti and roast chicken
Happy New Year!
C'mere and gimme a smooch!
Reminder NOT to buy the hats/crowns with elastic string at Walmart. They were too small.
The kids blew their horns and got the dog singing/howling

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