Wednesday, November 30, 2011

So, when you live in San Luis Obispo these are the kinds of activities that  you do for your ward playgroup.  Pretty awesome right??
                                                   Gracey loved this little pony "Pixi"
Mindy Smith from Equine Freedom Farm was so generous to host riding lessons at her Ranch all day today.  Gracey and Beckham said it was the "best day ever"  They literally rode for hours and still didn't want to leave.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

I am in love with Gracey's Preschool picture. She is growing up WAY too fast!

Friday, November 25, 2011

 We have a "Thankful" Banner that has been hanging in our dining room this last month.  I have cherished the sweet conversations that have taken place between our family, as we have reflected on all the many things that we are thankful for.  We are feeling especially grateful for our good health, as we have watched our sweet Lexi battle Leukemia.
This Thanksgiving was spent with my family.  It felt extra special this year, since we no longer live close to them.  I am so grateful that all my siblings and their families were able to join us for our "Feast"

Grammy brought turkey treats for the kiddo's
The girls did a lot of dressing up
We had a very special guest join us. My grandma.  The kids call her GG for Great Grandma.  I promise you, she is just as sassy as that red hair!!  Loved having her in our home and watching her love on our babies.

        Listening to a story

 At the end of the story Gracey proceeds to ask GG.... "GG, why do you have one tooth going this way and another tooth going a different way?" I interrupted the conversation when she began asking if it was because she didn't brush her teeth enough...  oh goodness, she is a brutally honest daughter of a hygienist.

The table

  Post Feast lounging
My dad will be in Africa working during Christmas this year, so the kids got to do a little celebrating with their Papa. They lined up and anxiously awaited their "Papa gift".  The kids were so quiet, I think Beckham thought we were going to pray.  His little arms are all ready!!
   Papa handing out his gifts
Some really excited boys!

Their very own Sleeping Bags!
  The day after Thanksgiving was especially gorgeous and we spent the day at Avila Beach.  The kids played for hours, just happy to be together.

Beckham found one of my brothers old toy swords one day, while playing at my moms house.  Well, this sword goes where ever Beckham goes!!  He has even perfected doing everything one handed, as to insure no one takes his powerful sword.

Tiffany, Harmony and my baby brother Justin
Happy cousins
And of course we finished our outing with some locally made ice cream.

Grandkids!        [there are 2 more joining the family next year!]

Hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving!!

Monday, November 21, 2011

November 2011

                                                          Avila Beach Park Play date

                                                               Puss and Boots 3D

Apple Farm with Grammy and Papa

I love hosting Thanksgiving every year! I get really excited to spend time with my Family and I love every minute of planning the menu and cooking.  Growing up my mom was vegetarian.  So over the years, I try to have creative dishes for her to enjoy.  Our friend Chris made this dish last year during the holidays as his take on stuffing.  It was divine.  It reminds me of a souffle you would find in New Orleans. You  must try it!!!  Here is Chris' recipe:
Cornbread Pudding

4 eggs
1 cup course or medium grind corn meal
2 small cans green chili
2 cups cheddar cheese
2 cups heavy cream
4 cups 1 inch cubed bread
1 onion chopped fine
2 tablespoon butter
2 teaspoon baking powder
Salt/pepper to taste
Cook onions in butter until translucent. Beat eggs add all the ingredients together except the corn meal, baking powder, and bread. Mix the cornmeal and baking powder together add to mixture then add the bread and mix again. Let it sit for a few minutes so the bread gets soggy then put everything into a baking vessel of your choice make sure to grease it or spray it. The shallower dishes work best like a glass 9x13 as long as it is not to shallow . You can also use a cast iron frying pan if its big enough.
Takes about an hour to cook @ 350. You want the knife to come out mostly clean but totally dry is no good it should jiggle a bit but not be wavy. It should be nice and golden on top. Let it rest for 20 minutes. Eat it up.
I prefer croissants they taste the best and make the pudding more fluffy the original recipe calls for French bread. You can also add a diced jalapeƱo or two if you want it mores spicy. Also  this recipe is very adaptable to any taste, this recipe is my own take on Alton Browns recipe from good eats. 

 This is my favorite salad right now and it will definitely be included in my Thanksgiving spread.  

8 oz cleaned baby spinach
1 ripe, but firm, Fuyu persimmon
8 oz fresh whole beets, roasted
2 oz goat cheese, crumbled
Toasted Hazelnut Vinaigrette (recipe below)
Toasted Hazelnut Vinaigrette
1/4 cup hazelnuts (1 oz weight), toasted and chopped
1/2 shallot, sliced
3 oz extra virgin olive oil
1 oz champagne or white wine vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
If prepping in advance Steps 1 and 2 can be done the day before.
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Roast the beet/s until done. Let cool. For further instruction on how to roast beets go here.
2. After the beets are done, or at the same time if you have a big oven, toast the hazelnuts. If the nuts still have their dark skin on them this will need to be rubbed off and is easily done after toasting.
                                                            Happy Thanksgiving!!

Thursday, November 03, 2011


Rob has been out of town all week, so I took a break from the kitchen and had a dinner date with Gracey. I suggested Chipotle (quick and delicious) and her response was "mom, I'm thinking sushi sounds good." Sushi sounded awesome! 
Gracey made all her favorite requests: 
"I really love the eel, the tuna with those crunchy fish eggs on top and octopus salad"
This girl loves to dine and was so excited to have a date with me.  We topped off the night with frozen was perfect.  And I made my girl really happy!  We talked about how she played Rapunzel on the playground with her friends that day, why Jesus has to live in heaven and what outfit would be perfect for her school pictures.  Love her.

Wednesday, November 02, 2011


 If this isn't Heaven for a little boy,  I don't know what is!!!!!!  Trenches, lots of dirt and a tractor....I Can Not keep him away!  Today was the start of a big landscaping project.  Can't wait for the end result.  But in the mean time, this boy is Happy!


 We started Halloween off with a Bang!!....with Beckham chucking all my beautiful pumpkins and squashes off the dining room table in every direction.   I am pretty sure god gave Beckham those cute dimples for a reason!!
 We went trick-r-treating with the Harris' and the Salter's.  The kids had a blast.  This was the first year that Gracey wasn't terrified to knock on strangers doors and speak to them.  She followed the lead of Abby and Charlie and was pretty excited about all of her treats.
 Beckham decided that his dinosaur costume is really fun to wear at home but, did not want to leave the house in it.  So, he wore his super cool "B" cape.  Beckham managed to make friends with every homeowner he got candy from and weaseled his way into their homes to pet their dogs.