Thursday, May 28, 2009

i heart ... kaitlyn

this is kaitlyn.

she is always happy and bubbly.

what makes her so happy?

10 things that make kaitlyn happy:

1. ice cream
2. amusement parks
3. interesting books
4. swimming
5. babies!
7. listening to music
8. playing the cello
9. going on exciting vacations
10. my new lip gloss from sephora

lip gloss! a girl after my own heart!

i heart ... sierra

sierra is a funny girl!
she always makes me happy!
let's find out what makes her happy.

10 things that make sierra happy:
1. family
2. new blue ipod nano chromatics
3. when people around me are happy
4. christmas
5. thomas jefferson
6. cassidy
7. a good night’s sleep
8. my birthday
9. paula’s blog!
10. hot guys j/k!!! #10 is going to utah!!!

i've seen sierra's new ipod and it would make me happy too!!!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

i heart ... stacy's memorial day bbq

every memorial day stacy has a bbq.
it's become a family tradition.
and here's what we do:
we eat, of course!

we play with thomas jefferson.

thomas jefferson terrorizes chimichanga, the chinchilla.

we have a program where we...

... sing patriotic songs...
("america the beautiful" and "the star-spangled banner")

...we read the gettysburg address all together...

...the children recite from memory
a portion of the declaration of independence...
(drafted by thomas jefferson!)

...and most importantly we remember
our uncle grant
who died in world war II.
(grant is in the cockpit and kitty is the name of his wife)

and then it's time for dessert!

p.s. - i want to share something very special with you.
it is an excerpt from a letter my uncle grant (my nana's brother)
wrote to his wife kitty while he was stationed in europe.

october 26, 1943 every desire is to be with you,
yet there is something within me
which urges me to defend and protect what i know is right.
...i can't be satisfied unless in my own eyes i am doing my utmost to
help preserve our way of life.
that is the reason i couldn't be contented
to stay in the states.
i feel that i am fighting so that we can have that future
of being free, independent, and know that
we will continue our lives uninterrupted.
i am defending everything you mean to me.
loving you always, your devoted husband,

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

i heart ... stephanie and eric

yes, i am related to cinderella and prince charming.
didn't you know?
and would you like to know more?
well, you lucked out because i'm going to tell you.

10 things that make stephanie happy:
1. paula's blog
(i completely agree with you, stephanie)
2. my children's laughter
3. friends on facebook
4. red vines
5. shelby playing the violin
6. ny times crossword puzzles
7. a good book
8. rachmaninoff 's "rhapsody on a theme of paganini"
9. bedtime
(ummm... stephanie, i think that's only 9... )

10 things that make eric happy:
1. off -roading with the boys
2. going out to eat with my wife
3. seeing summer blockbusters with shelby
4. guns
5. sushi
6. chickens
(paula says, "what??? chickens???")
7. reading the Bible
8. doin' family stuff
9. working on a challenging project
10. repenting
(like the time when you repented because you gave me a list of 15 when it was supposed to be a list of 10)
11. free enterprise
12. doin' whatever i feel like a wanna do, gosh!
13. cramming extra things into a list of ten things
14. bawdy humor
15. liberating people from tyranny
(that's always nice)

... bedtime and sushi... both make me very happy as well!

Monday, May 25, 2009

i heart ... rockett st. george

lounge under the eiffel tower, right in your very own living room!

rockett st. what?

i know, that's what i said too.

but one of my favorite bloggers,
jaimee rose,

introduced me to rockett st. george.

it's an online store from england that sells the coolest,

and i mean the coolest,

wall decals

(and lots of other cool stuff too).

posted here are my favorites.

(what the what?)

Saturday, May 23, 2009

i heart ... brennan

brennan with thomas - he makes her happy!

did you ever wonder what makes brennan happy?
well today's your lucky day!

10 things that make brennan happy:

1. babies

2. chocolate

3. friends

4. disney movies

5. girls' camp

6. ocean blue ice cream

7. no homework!!!!!!!

8. music, esp. piano, singing, and the music on my mp3 player

9. the camera i'm going to get in a few days!!

10. my mom

mmmmm... babies and ocean blue...
i'd like some of both right now!

Friday, May 22, 2009

i heart ... pizza and gelato

brook and joe invited me to join them for lunch.
we went to grimaldi's.
(as in the famous patsy grimaldi's!)
they went to pizzeria bianco last week
and they wanted to see how grimaldi's compared.
pizzeria bianco won.
but still, grimaldi's was very good
and since it's much easier to get into
we will definitely be back!

after pizza of course we needed gelato.

so brook and joe introduced me to gelato 64.
i got blood orange and key lime.
the blood orange was to die for!
(the key lime... not so much)

(oh, and next time i'm going to get the blood orange again,
but with coconut lime!
i can't wait!)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

i heart ... happiness!

(they make me happy!)

the happy list.
okay. yes. i freely admit that i have lifted this idea from another blog.
it made me wonder what makes my loved ones happy.
i've asked some special people to tell me.

but first,
did you ever wonder what makes me happy?
let's see...

1. my family

2. laughing until i feel faint

3. the temple

4. europe (especially london!)

5. christmastime

6. U2

7. dr. pepper

8. orange blossoms

9. scary movies

10. arizona winters
(in no particular order)

but i bet you already knew all this.

Monday, May 18, 2009

i heart ... how this boy loves this dog

thomas does not have a dog.

but he needs a dog.


this is dex, my uncle brian's dog.

thomas could not get enough of him!

oh, the joy!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

i heart ... mother's day brunch

mother's day was a week ago.
is it too late to blog about mother's day?
oh well. i'm doing it anyway.
and you'll be happy i did
because i'm going to share two scrumptious recipes with you.
(and they're easy too!)
the past couple of mother's day brunches, and for christmas brunch too,
i've made

crème brûlée french toast

i'm telling you... it is da bomb!!!

it's from "the essential mormon cookbook".
here's the recipe:

1/2 cup butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoon corn syrup
1 loaf texas toast
5 eggs
1 1/2 cups half-and-half
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
(i added chopped pecans)

syrup butter:
1 1/2 cups butter
3 cups maple syrup
melt together and serve over toast.

in a small saucepan melt butter, brown sugar and corn syrup (and chopped pecans, if you're adding that) over medium heat until smooth, stirring occasionally. pour mixture onto large greased cookie sheet (i cover the cookie sheet with tin foil). spread mixture to cover surface. place 12 slices of texas toast in a single layer to cover pan.

mix together eggs, cream, salt and vanilla. spoon mixture over each piece of bread. cover and refrigerate overnight. bake uncovered at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes. remove from pan and serve. if not serving immediately, turn each slice of bread over (this will prevent bread from sticking to the bottom of the pan).

makes 12 servings

i also tried a new dish this mother's day.
to be honest, the main reason i chose this recipe is because it was easy -
but it turned out super good!

it's from the "paula deen & friends" cookbook.

spinach and bacon quiche

6 eggs, beaten
1 1/2 cups milk
salt and pepper
2 cups chopped fresh baby spinach, packed
1 pound cooked bacon, crumbled
1 1/2 cups shredded swiss cheese
one 9-inch refrigerated pie crust, fitted into a 9-inch glass pie plate

1. preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

2. combine the eggs, milk, and salt and pepper to taste in a food processor or blender. layer the spinach, bacon and cheese in the bottom of the pie crust, then pour the egg mixture on top.

3. bake for 35 to 45 minutes, until the egg mixture is set. cut into 8 wedges.

serves 8

Saturday, May 16, 2009

i heart ... my desert

i live in the sonoran desert.

i think it's so beautiful.
(even though it can be very hot. boo!)

i took these pictures on a drive up to payson.

red mountain
my favorite mountain

the superstitions
and weaver's needle

Friday, May 15, 2009

i heart ... this pickle face

"hey kaitlyn, let me try some of that pickle."



"please, can i have some more?"

Thursday, May 14, 2009

i heart ... dr. rebeca

darren & rebeca before graduation.

last night i went to my sister-in-law rebeca's graduation.

look who else was there...

president obama

it was rather exciting!
(whether or not you like the guy)

rebeca is now a
doctor of philosophy
material science and engineering

president obama congratulating rebeca

congratulations rebeca!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

i heart ... a perfect day

today was a perfect day.

i had two simple tasks:

buy a pair of jeans


get some primer potion.

first stop: jeans.

guess what?

they were half off!

so i went ahead and also got black slacks and a shirt

and all together it cost me as much as i had planned on paying for the jeans.


next stop: sephora

well, that makes for a perfect day right there. going to sephora.

i tried on the new escada scent,

(lychee, plum, pear nectar accord, strawberry meringue accord, violet petal sorbet, mimosa blossom, jasmine, amber, sheer vanilla, teak wood)


then i went to the counter to purchase my primer potion

and that was when i learned that i would be receiving

3 free lip glosses

because i'm a "beauty insider".

(are you?)

(did you remember that lip gloss is my favorite thing in the world?)


next stop: jimmy choo

it may seem that this stop would not turn out so perfect

because the sandals i wanted were $875,


when the sales lady saw me walk in with my sephora bag

she said, "that reminds me, i need to head over to sephora

to buy my favorite cream that i'm nearly out of!"

"what cream is that?" i asked.

she rummaged through her purse and pulled out

now, i'm not gonna lie,

this woman had some serious wrinkles,

but she put on some of the "wrinkle injection"

right on the spot

and it was like magic!


she said it has worked better for her than botox

and i believe her.

so, i may not have been able to purchase the $875 sandals that i desired,

but i left with something else that is priceless,

a wrinkle cure!!!


next stop: anthropologie

my only plan was to walk through the store

and out to my car.
i found this amazing book called novel destinations.
(it's a travel book and literature book in one!! novel destinations invites readers to follow in the footsteps of much-loved authors, discover the scenes that sparked their imaginations, glimpse the lives they led, and share a bit of the experiences they transformed so eloquently into print. if you’re looking to indulge in literary adventure, you’ll find all the inspiration and information you need here.)

i love finding exciting new books!


next stop: sprinkles

let's get one thing straight - this is the original cupcake shop.

just ask oprah!

i thought a red velvet cupcake

would be the icing on the cake

(or cupcake)
of a perfect day.
ooh la la!

perfectly perfect!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

i heart ... jennie and her family

i spent the last week in pima, az.

never heard of it?

me neither

(until jennie and wendi moved there, that is).

jennie and her husband joe went to

the outer banks in north carolina for a week

and i got to stay with their children -

the cutest, funniest children ever

(except for my own nieces and nephews of course!!!).

jacey, jaron, jayton and jackson

pima is about 2 1/2 hours east of mesa

so i had a nice little road trip.

i love road trips!

i get that from my dad.

good music.

that's what you need for a good road trip.

(no line on the horizon-the album, music for the masses-the album, ex-girlfriend-no doubt, song 2-blur, be there-unkle, this mess we're in-pj harvey, indefinitely-travis, simple kind of life-no doubt, glory box-portishead, road to mandalay-robbie williams, hella good-no doubt, numb-portishead, 5 years-bjork, joga-bjork, bedtime story-madonna [but written by bjork, and oh-so bjork!], blue orchid-the white stripes, we're going to be friends-the white stripes, millenium-robbie williams, a love supreme-robbie williams, trouble-coldplay, bleed american-jimmy eat world, a praise chorus-jimmy eat world, warning sign-coldplay, a rush of blood to the head-coldplay, the wanderer-U2 w/ johnny cash, some days are better than others-U2, die all right-the hives, someday-the strokes, mamma mia-abba, waterloo-abba)

you also need beautiful scenery:

during my week in pima:

we went for a nice sunday drive and stopped for this beautiful picture

(this must have been when the bee got into the car

because shortly after this

the bee flew down my shirt

and stung me 8 times!

didn't know they could do that.)

we went for walks.

on this particular walk jayton kept climbing all over

every electric box we passed along the way.

every time, i would tell him it was not wise to play on electric boxes

(what are they really called anyway?)

because they might be dangerous.

i think i was bugging him with all my warnings

because he finally said back to me,

"this is not electric!"

oh, really???

true story!

they buried each other in the backyard.

i had to put a stop to this

because i got tired of giving them baths

every night!

bryson (wendi's), jackson, jaron (in the ground), kayson (wendi's) and jayton.

we celebrated jackson's 8th birthday

with waffles and ice cream for breakfast!

and then we went to mcdonald's for dinner.

(jackson is in the back sitting on the ground.

that's where he wanted to sit,

not sure why.)

after 6 short days jennie and joe returned,

but the fun didn't stop

because joe turned right around

and took his boys on the fathers-and-sons outing.

(waiting to leave)

and jennie (very pregnant) and jacey

ran in the 5k "cotton pickin' race".

it was a great week thanks to jennie's great kids!

she has them very well trained!

i would do it again in a heartbeat,

and that's saying a lot!