Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Public Service Announcement

Most people who know me know that one of my most favorite things to do is EAT in BED. Since Brian has meetings on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and some Thursdays, I try to hightail it to bed as early as possible with a good book and a tray of snacks. I'm pretty much a self-sacrificing person; so I thought I would help you all case you want to try out my hobby.

Here are some recommendations of what to eat and what NOT to eat in bed.

First - don't try to eat a meal in bed. This is just mindless snacking after 9 pm. The kind all the diet books tell you not to do. It shouldn't really register that you are actually eating........just that you are happy.

Don't take any food that requires silverware. It's too hard to hold a book and a fork. And you are taking chances getting the food from the plate to your mouth and reading at the same time.
Finger foods are best!

Veggies and Dip rock - don't drip dip on your bed linens though. When we redid our bed linens there was a moratorium on food in/on the bed. That lasted 24 hours or maybe from midnight to 7 am the first day. But seriously - no dripping on the bed!

Crackers and Cheese are almost perfect - I love salt at night. Most my snacks are salty. There is a problem with the crackers though. Most crackers are crumbly. Triscuits are the worst. Still love em though. You can always brush the crumbs to the othe side of the bed.

Pretzels are perfect - Whether you bite them or pop a whole one in your mouth, they are great. No crumbs. A little boring though.

Popcorn is good depending on how you eat it - If you are like me and eat one piece at a time, it's a neat snack that leaves no tell tale signs. You do have to have a napkin for the greasy fingers though. Do NOT wipe your hands on the bed linens. If you are the kind of person who grabs big honkin' handfulls of popcorn and shoves them in your mouth, this is not for you. You'll drop popcorn in the bed and it will be a popcorn cake when you wake up.

Nuts are good - They are salty and they have lots of protein (in case you forgot to eat dinner or forgot that you ate dinner). Mixed nuts in a little bowl are nice and tidy. Once again, eat one at a time. Sunflower seeds - not so good. Shells get everywhere and it looks like your bed was under a bird feeder or something. Peanuts in the shell are a disaster! You can NOT not drop the stinking shells on yourself. Then you brush them off you and then they are in the bed. Then you brush them out of the bed and they are on the floor. Next thing you know, it's 11 pm and you are changing the sheets and vacuuming the room.

Any small salty item on a napkin or in a bowl - cheezits, goldfish, chips, doritos, love em all!
Cookies, brownies, and small desserts stolen from receptions or New Beginnings are great - if they aren't crumbly or greasy. Nothing is better than a bite size cream puff wrapped in a napkin taken from a stake meeting. It combines two illicit activities.......well maybe three.......if you count self gratification.

Do NOT eat individually wrapped food or candies in bed! You don't want to roll over on crackling papers in the middle of the night and really, you don't want any evidence (other than an empty bowl or plate) lying around in the morning.
Do NOT eat Junior Mints in bed. They are so yummy and just the right amount of bitter and sweet. But no matter how careful you are...........well do you know what they look when you sleep on one? It's just not good! It's not good for you. It's not good for your husband and it's not good for the linen! Trust me! Don't do it.

I highly recommend combinations of foods. Go in the kitchen and consider carefully what to put on the tray. You don't want to get in and out of bed over and over. I just hate getting all comfy and then having to jump back out of bed because I forgot something important like a slice of turkey or a dab of grainy mustard. Don't forget the napkin and don't forget the drink.

When you finish snacking but before your husband gets home, move the tray across the room - like you don't know when or how the tray got in the bedroom. It could be from yesterday.

When he gets in bed and jumps out quickly because he has just been stabbed by a thousand cracker crumbs or peanut shells, do NOT look up from your book. Do NOT answer questions like, "What is in this bed?" or "Where did this come from?"

I hope this helps! I've been perfecting bedtime snacking for years......well not just bedtime snacking....snacking in general.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Empty Nesters

The boys are at a leadership conference for three days. They leave at 7:30 and get home at midnight. So it's kind of like we are empty nesters.........except that when they get home, they bring these other boys who are staying with us. And they watch movies all night. And I have to get up and make everyone breakfast at 6:30. And I go to the school from 10 - 2 to serve lunch to 800. But other than that, it's like we are empty nesters.

So tonight, Brian and I practiced. We wanted to see what it would be like to be 65ish. We went to Red Lobster. We didn't get there until 5:15. Most of the AARP set was wrapping up. They get there around 4, so we were late.

We decided that for Family Home Evening, we would go through the Blue Book and fill out our mail in ballots. Doing this in a public place is probably wise. If your spouse doesn't agree with you on an Ammendment or Refrendum, you can't argue really loud or throw things in a public place. My job was to read the Ammendment and the Pro and Con arguments out of the Blue Book. Then we discuss and mark our ballots. It wasn't really fair, because I was doing the reading and Brian was doing the eating.

We finished our dinner and voting and came home for the dessert/activity part of Family Home Evening. We don't always have dessert or activities at FHE but since the kids are gone..........what the heck.

Then we got our jammies on and watched the World Series, Monday Night Football, played Sudoku, read books and played this stupid word game on Brian's phone all at the same time.

Before you knew it, it was 9 pm. I fell asleep. I like this life!

But then real life interrupted my empty nesterness at 10:30, when Garrett came home for a bigger car to take kids to a party and then bring them back here to watch movies.

It was fun while it lasted.

PS: It's not a very good idea to eat Junior Mints in bed.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Out of Control!

So after my 20 seconds of perfection on Monday, my life skittered out of control. No, I don't have pictures to prove it and it was like a tornado that has left me trashed in the wake of destruction.

Please remember that my husband is the bishop of a singles ward. So all that is listed below did not happen directly to MY family but we were involved in some way. Do not panic. No one died from any of the listed incidents or by my own hands! We are all alive! ;)

1) A totalled Porsche
2) A bad break up
3) Dinner served to 300 teachers and staff TWO nights in a row
4) 14 Parent/Teacher conferences - I even conferenced with the cheerleading coach about the flag boys! That's how good a mom I am!
5) A fight including a police report, trip to the ER, stitches.
6) Football game - we won and we're still #1 in state
7) A really hard ACT test
8) Two lacrosse games with me as coach. (I even got yelled at for taking a time out 8 seconds before the game ended. Hey! I had two time ous left! I can take them whenever I want!)
9) One lacerated nose and a broken nose but since I had already been to the ER with someone's elses kid this week - I sent someone else.
10) A birthday party for PK
11) A temple wedding
12) A ring ceremony and reception
13) A baptism
14) Preparing for two high school strangers to come stay with us.

Thank heavens it's FALL BREAK this next week!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Somestic Perfection and a Shout Out to My MIL

The stars were aligned just right today or something. As I type, dinner is cooking, the family home lesson is prepared and blonde brownies are cooling on the counter.
Can you believe it?????

At my house, if I haven't figured out what we are having for dinner by noon, it ain't happenin!

We're having Chicken Malove, Rice, Green Salad and Steamed Broccoli and Cauliflower. And of course.........the blondies.
So the shout out to my mother-in-law is for the recipe that is a family favorite. When Brian and I married, she presented me with a small notebook with 20 or so "family recipes." This notebook has grown to three volumes!
But here is the really easy recipe for
Chicken Malove -

Breasts of Chicken
2-3 T Oil
1 Chopped Onion
1 Can Cream of Chicken Soup
1/2 C Milk

Coat the chicken breasts with flour and seasoning and brown both sides in oil. Put browned chicken in a 9X13 pan or the crockpot. Saute the onions. Pour those over the chicken. Mix the cream of chicken soup and milk and pour over the chicken and onions. Bake at 350 for 1 hour or cook on low for several hours.
For the seasonings, I uses, Lawrey's Season Salt, garlic salt and pepper. I like to saute cut up celery and sliced mushrooms and add these with the onion as well. I also thin the soup out with more milk - almost a whole cup more.

We like to serve this over rice. Yum!!!!!

This is a great dinner to put in the crockpot before church or on a busy day. It's a great meal to serve the missionaries or guests. You can actually use chicken tenders or thighs too. Whatever makes you happy!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Tiny Baby Turns 14!

Parker AKA
The Baby,
Tiny Baby,
The Midge (cuz he's too short to even be called a midget)
The Rat
Sir Bubs,
Sir Bubs-a-lot,
Poopy Parker, (sung to the tune of the SpongeBob Squarepants chorus)
Stinky Pete,
The Groundhog, (also sung and has a dance to it too!)

He's our man! He's such a good sport and he takes all our teasing. For years we have tickled and poked him. We sing songs about him. And we've even threatened to cook him in the oven. I think he still believes it's a real possibility.
Parker turned 14 yesterday. He asked for a fryer. You did not misread that. He asked for a fryer. When I pointed him in the direction of the old Fry Daddy that has been under the stove and unused for 10 years, he became indignant. He wanted a "professional" fryer with temerature controls and a basket. ???? This is like the time he was turning 8 and asked for an KitchenAid mixer. When I told him he could use mine anytime he wanted, he explained he wanted his own because he wanted to put it in his room...............with granite countertops. He said he wanted to convert his room into his own kitchen.

He celebrated by scoring a goal in his lacrosse game, frying up french fries in the new fryer and going to his first Stake Dance.

He said he met lots of cute girls and had a great time. He is busy texting said girls right now. The best part of the night was when a girl who looked quite a bit older asked him to dance. They talked and she asked how old he was. He admitted it was his first dance and asked her how old she was. She said that she was 19 and really wasn't supposed to be there because she was in the singles ward. Parker said, "Really! My dad is the bishop of the singles ward."

Monday, October 13, 2008

Is It Bad if Your Dryer Smells Like Chocolate?

I opened the dryer door and the heavenly smell of chocolate filled the laundry room. Hmmm........
Washing a chocolate bar isn't so bad. But drying it probably isn't the best idea.
I was sound asleep! The phone rings at 10 pm and it's the bishop telling me that school is cancelled because someone just drove through the front doors of the school.
A little disoriented, I didn't really know the questions to ask, but I called all 30 students as I threw on my clothes and searched for shoes.

My girlfriend came and picked me up. I wouldn't want to miss the excitement! We were greeted by the Superintendent of Schools, the Assistant Superintendent and the Head of all High School, who promptly demanded to know why it took us so long to get there. After hugs and catching up on what happened, we arranged for a dinner out sometime soon.
Then the media and a couple hundred students showed up.
My husband has a theory that people who participate in "man on the street" interviews always look like idiots on camera. Well, here is living proof that he is right!

MyFox Colorado SUV Crashes into High School, Classes Canceled

Watch the video clip for some extremely intelligent remarks from some flag boys we all know.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Breaking With Tradition

Today was the fist Sunday in our new building. Well, it's not OUR new building, since it's in the neighboring stake. And it's not NEW since it's been completed since June. But all the defects were fixed and the two wards using the building were finally allowed to move in.

The above picture is not our new chapel - just an illustration. Our chapel is bigger and prettier ;) to our break with tradition. Since moving to Denver 12 years ago, we ALWAYS sit in the 4th row. We have been in three buidling in this time and the meeting times have changed countless times. But one thing remains constant: WE SIT IN THE 4TH PEW.

Two weeks ago, I decided we would break out. We'd do something crazy. We would sit somewhere different. I don't think you realize how huge this is! I offered to buy the 4th pew several years ago. No one would take me up on my offer. I have actually thrown people out of the 4th pew. Luckily they knew me. Still, they were a little offended. My husband's response: "Gina, you can't just make people move." My humble response, "Yes I can."

I announced my plans to the children last week. Plus I added another crazy twist: Not only would we sit in a DIFFERENT pew, but we would sit in a DIFFERENT pew every week. The response was an overwhelming NO!

Today, we were a little late for leaving early. That's the subject of a whole different post. But in our obsessiveness, we leave for church 45 minutes early. The building is 9 minutes away!

Anyway, when we were driving to church, I reminded the children that we would be sitting somewhere different. They were so busy laughing at me for leaving at 11:47 instead of 11:45, that I don't think they heard.

So we did it! WE SAT IN THE SIXTH ROW or maybe it was the 7th. And we sat in the center of the center row. Instead of the right side of the center row. Yeah - really going out on a limb! It was really hard to hear though. The kids reminded me that we are NOT moving pews every week. But I've already scoped out where I want to sit next week. I hope someone like me hasnt already imagined that it is THEIR row or they will be sorely disappointed!

Monday, October 6, 2008

General Conference and Modern Revelation

I love General Conference! This weekend was the BEST! We were able to spend two days as a family at home together listening to the Lord's Prophet and his apostles.

Every talk was inspiring. Each speaker had a message that was applicable today. I came away with some new goals and ideas of things I can work on to be a better mother, wife, friend, teacher, and daughter of God.

More than anything though, General Conference builds my testimony that we have a living prophet on the earth today. The Lord had had prophets since he created the earth. Adam being the first prophet lead his dispensation. As we studied the Old Testament in seminary last year, I gained a greater appreciation for the prophets of that day - Abraham, Noah, Moses, Isaiah. I know the Lord provided prophets for his people in the Americas during the time of Book of Mormon history: Lehi, Nephi, Mosiah, Alma, etc. Surely the Lord would give his people a prophet today. Surely he would not want us to flounder and fail. he loves us just as much as he loved the people in ancient times.

The Lord has provided us with a prophet! I love listening to him speak. I love the prophets of old and I believe their words and live by their precepts, but a modern day prophet can address issues that are specific to our society: pornography, the economy, wars, etc.

I took a lot of notes and I have already reviewed them. But I really look forward to the printed talks in the November Ensign.

Friday, October 3, 2008


I haven't updated the blog and added the final Homecoming pics because.......well, I'm over it! I lived it. I loved it. And now I'm moving on. This is why I don't take pictures or scrapbook in general. Life is really fun while you are doing it, but afterward...........not so much. We're 29 activities down the road. But are some game highlights (without the game) and some dance highlights (without the dance).

Since the flag boys don't look ridiculous enough on an ordinary night, they added face paint for an extra special effect!
The flag boys roll the barrel boy down the track after every touchdown. The flag boys love it. The barrel boy....not so much.
The pre-dinner pre-dance pictures:
A few boys and a a lot of girls. Garrett used the following criteria to decide which group he wanted to go to Homecoming with: dinner. This group was going to P.F. Changs.

Garrett and Tyler entertain themselves.

What is with girls and this stupid pose?

Garrett and Tyler are wondering "Why?"
One of the dads said he talked to his girls about how they dress and act. He said, "They just have no idea what they are doing when they dress like that!" Garrett turned around and answered, "Oh yes they do. They know exactly what they are doing." LOL

Parker was invited with the group of all freshmen.....girls.