February 16, 2011


Okay, I constantly have people asking me what they can do to help. Here it is:

I need help cleaning & painting our winter guard floor tomorrow (Thursday the 17th). I would love any help- even 15 minutes at a time.

Help me stay sane!!

February 13, 2011

Woo-hoo Sushi!

I LOVE surprises. Getting them are fun, sure, but I much prefer being the mastermind behind them. With Valentines coming up, I'd spent a lot of time thinking about what I wanted to do for Craig. I haven't been a big fan of Valentines since we stopped decorating tissue boxes and having parties in Elementary school. Mom's birthday (14th) was always a more exciting to plan and make things for.

Anyway- I was so excited about what I got for Craig for Valentines day that I just couldn't wait any longer to give it to him.  That is usually Craig not being able to wait. (Example: he gave me my birthday present at about 6:30 am before I had even fully woken up on my birthday.) When I was in Connecticut, mom & I went to Borders to find a science/physics DVD for Andrew & I found a fabulous sushi set. Craig and I LOVE sushi. Sadly, even having sent Craig home with two 50 pound checked bags and a very full carry on, I still didn't have room to bring it back with me. But, this week I found an even better book with more pretty pictures for him. I was quite excited.

Since I gave it to him two days early, I hadn't gotten all of the supplies we were going to need but that made it even more fun since we were able to go together. After I gave him his sushi recipe book (outside Shoga- where we were going to lunch together) we decided we were going to make our own for dinner. 
After lunch, we decided that we wanted to make shrimp tempura, salmon (smoked), crab (krab) and California rolls. We headed over to Many Lands and got some short grain sticky rice, bamboo rolling mat and some rice vinegar. Add lots of fresh veggies such as cucumber, carrots, avocado & green peppers (for in the rolls) and a large bowl of tempura vegetables and you've got a yummy dinner.
Grandpa expressed interest in trying sushi a few weeks ago when Craig and I were talking about it. For a variety of reasons, we didn't want to have raw fish and I'm not really sure grandpa would have eaten it if it was raw anyway. Watching him take his first bite of a shrimp roll was mildly entertaining. We did have chop sticks and did try teaching him how to use them but that was a no-go. He picked the roll up with his fingers and then tried taking a bite out of it which didn't work (they fall apart.) Oh, and yes, you do eat the roasted seaweed wrapper. He tried one of the Krab rolls and then just stuck with the tempura veggies.

Because we were going to take pictures of a couple of my guard girls, we didn't make anymore rolls. Salmon rolls & stir fry for lunch today! :D

February 9, 2011

Feeling torn?

I am! Sophie is currently bundled up in her pack & play taking a "nap." Actually, today she is talking to her stuffed animals. It is most certainly nap time for her and after she didn't rest much yesterday, she needs all of her naps today. I really just want to pick her up and snuggle her to sleep but I'm afraid of a couple things: 1- we both fall asleep. This is a problem because I wouldn't get anything done while she's snoozing (like, taking a shower which just isn't fair to the people who have to be around me).    2- And much worse than the first, I might roll on her. 3- I encourage her to get in the habit of needing to be snuggled in order to go to sleep. Gah! It's so not fair. 

Instead of snuggling her to sleep, I think I will attempt to get the journaling part of her baby book done. I have something like 15 pages ready to be glued as soon as I get those notes done. They're not really anything exceptionally special, but maybe I'll post some pictures of those later.

February 8, 2011

Katharine's Wedding Reception...Part 2

And I'm back to finish chronicling the fabulous tale of Katharine's weddingness. There was just too much to put in one post so here is part 2.
Okay, so Saturday morning we woke up to find my puffs had collapsed, I was overly dramatic, Craig saved the day by going to Costco and getting me some frozen ones to work with. They were the only things not homemade... I think we all survived.  Katharine had requested some frosted sugar cookies for the reception. She doesn't like buttercrap frosting or regular glazes so I made a cream cheese glaze tinted pale pink like the roses on the puffs & pumpkin bars for the heart-shaped cookies.

Craig's aunt Liz and her girls were in town and staying with grandpa (so, in the room next to ours). Liz saw me running around like a nut and offered to help. She made an additional batch of chocolate chip cookies for back-up/fill in (and they ended up being used) while I was dipping the sugar cookies in the cream cheese glaze. Tawny- who I hadn't met before- also came over and helped. I don't think we would have gotten everything done without that extra boost during the final dash. On top of everything else they helped with, they tidied the kitchen for me after we left.

Anyway- reception. We got to the building in Logan at about 3:00. The wedding wasn't set to start until 4:30 so we unloaded everything we brought with us and got things going in the kitchen. I'm not sure how this happened but it was assumed that I was in charge of the food and the reception. I understand that weddings are stressful times and they don't always bring out the best in people... including me at times. I had to step out to feed Sophie for a few minutes and came back to find people had been going through my tupperwear eating everything I brought, an aunt of some kind messing with my fruit platter arrangement and children with fingers in my decorator frosting. I was ready to throw a kitten at someone. Luckily, my very good friend, Emily, was there and came to my rescue.

Emily says and does what needs to be said and done. She became my sanity and right hand (yes, I am right-handed so this analogy works) for the rest of the night. Between the two of us we were able to keep the food table properly filled, attractive and clean the entire night. Even when some items would run out entirely, we were able to keep everything looking full and welcoming. MASSIVE thank you to Emily!

Just a couple final thoughts/favorite moments of the evening:

  • Pretty much anytime Tyler's brothers came into the kitchen. They remind me a lot of Bryan with their bone-dry sense of humor and wit.
  • Katharine finally telling her MiL it was her reception and she would do what she wanted (at the time, getting a bite to each and some water to drink instead of standing in a stupid wedding line)
  • Borrowing Sarah V's lacy black slip since my black eyelet dress doesn't fit my... shoulders... the way it did when mom made it before I was pregnant. (Which I didn't know until I tried putting it on 10 minutes before the wedding ceremony.) 
  • All the time I spent with Emily 
  • The end. It was quite satisfying seeing that we pulled off a pretty, calm evening (food-wise) and that we were done. 

Katharine's Wedding Reception...Part 1

Sophie just put herself down for a nap which means I should really get going on some of my other "to-do's" today. I have quite the lengthy list, actually. Instead, I'm sitting on the sheets that need to go in the wash (someday I won't change diapers on the bed) writing on my blog. I'm going to try to be quick this morning since I do want to get some more done before heading to another guard performance tonight.

So, Katharine got married! (And she was an absolutely stunning bride.) It's still a little odd for me to see notifications about "Katharine Christensen" on facebook. She and Tyler, like many college-age couples, were working on a modest budget. Wanting to help Katharine have the nicest reception she could, I offered to help with her reception food. After much discussion and deliberation, she decided on delicious hot chocolate and various finger desserts and treats.

Not too long ago, Katharine moved into her new apartment in Ogden. Happy for her and Tyler, boo for me- it's just too far away. Since she lives so far away, we finalized the menu, I adjusted the recipes to get the amounts we wanted, got the exact amounts we were going to need of each item (to make sure I wouldn't under or over shop) and then went shopping. Katharine came to Provo after she got off work and we began mixing, shaping and baking. I really wish I had gotten a picture of the kitchen during the process. The prep area was immaculate but the funny part was seeing cooling racks, cookie sheets, plastic containers and serving items covering every flat surface in the kitchen... including chairs and bar stools. When all was said and done, we had something like 45 dozen cookies, 250 decorated creme puffs and a couple pans (30 cut each) of pumpkin bars.

I spent all day Thursday prepping and doing some baking. I woke up Friday morning and baked constantly, made frostings & glazes, packed cookies for transporting and decorating. Again- THANK YOU, MOM, for the decorating classes! Friday night, the night before the reception, I made the mixture for the creme puffs and piped them on the trays. I was planning on filling them Saturday morning before leaving and then decorating them in Ogden. I woke up Saturday morning to find that all of my shells had collapsed. If you're reading this you likely know me and how dramatic I can get over important things going wrong so I won't go into anymore detail here. Craig solved the problem by going to Costco and getting me some frozen puffs to work with. Grandpa had been asking why we weren't just buying everything from the beginning and told us that getting those puffs was the smartest thing we'd done all weekend.

In my next post, I'll tell you all about the reception. Get excited for too many cooks in the kitchen, children that needed to be kicked and overly "helpful" family.

By the way here is what we had for the final menu:

  • Fruit platters
  • Pumpkin chocolate chip bars with homemade cream cheese frosting (The BYU bakery recipe)
  • Chocolate chip cookies (for Tyler) 
  • Sugar cookies both glazed & plain (grandma Kyne's recipe- they were a hit) 
  • Coconut macaroons (yum!) 
  • Creme puffs (with cream cheese roses)