Wednesday, April 20, 2011

My Darlings

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Spring Spring Spring

I can't begin to tell you how BEAUTIFUL SPRING is here. There actually is spring here. Arizona skips right over this wonderful season. I can't believe all the daffodils growing along the freeways and just springing up out of now where. It's amazing! Enjoy the pictures below. This is all just in our neighborhood on a walk we took the other day.

Love this speckled flower.

Kathryn Loves to pick the flowers around for me and by now she's gotten used to me saying Oh thank you but lets leave it there for others to enjoy too. The other day at her friends house she picked a pretty flower from their yard and she brought it to her friends mom and said this is for my mommy but she's going to tell me I should have left it there for others. At least she's understanding what I tell her.

The drive into our neighbor hood was lined with these pretty things. with a smattering of pink here and there. It was glorious. It is now mostly green. My family in AZ is surely missing one of the BEST seasons of the year.

Charlotte is ONE

My baby is ONE! I can't believe it. She sure came to us with with a bang and wow it's already been a year.
One year ago today I was at University of California San Francisco waiting to be cleared to go see my baby after having a C Section and her off into the ICU. It was 5-6 hours before I got to see my little darling.
She sure has gotten big. We just got her the new forward facing car seat. She looks so grown up in it.
Stats first
Weight 21.3 lbs = 60%
Height 30 1/4 in = 90%
Head Circumference 18 1/2 = 95%

Here are a few pictures of my darling. Then more about her below.

Spina Bifida T-shirt

Look at her on her knee's! She's so awesome!

her Birthday outfit. Sorry it's blurry. I was trying a new setting and I couldn't get it right.

Cheesey Daddy with the Birthday girl.

Her Birthday toy that Kathryn picked out. I think she likes it.

Her teefers!

Our for a walk.

She's doing some amazing things if you ask me.
Army Crawling
Gets to Sitting from laying down
Plays with Kathryn
Puts Weight on her Feet
Uses her Pincer fingers to grab little things
Wakes up Happy!
Sleeps good
Two Teeth
Says Mamamama
Knows her Name
The Cutest chubby cheeks

Looking back and thinking about how I felt when I was told the news I would have a child with Spina Bifida, Man I wish I would have known what I do now. I wish I would have seen how wonderful everything is and how uncomplicated things are right now. My Pediatrician hear always says things like "wow, she's just all tucked away nicely, I don't even have to do anything" meaning with SB clinic and Early Intervention, and MOM's study things She is Well taken care of!

Oh and I'm so exited to be coming home this summer. We'll be there for her 15 month appt. and I get to go back and see Dr Ciminello! He is seriously the BEST doctor in all of Arizona.

Anyway Happy Birthday to my sweet, adorable baby girl. Whom we like to call Charlotte 'B' or Baby Q. Charlotte B came from me because my best friend growing up mom used to call me Heather 'B' and I think it sounds cute and Matthew calls her baby Q. You'll have to ask him why he calls her that. He says it's something about that he calls Kathryn, Baby O and we have enough Baby P so the next letter is Q...

You're growing up so fast, but you will always be my baby girl. I love you Charlotte 'B'

Monday, April 18, 2011

Loosing a Friend

I got an email from my mom last week about a good friend from long ago was killed in a Motorcycle accident. He was recently married and is expecting his first baby in just a month. His wife created a facebook page for friends and family to leave comments and words of love for Josh and his wife Jessica.

I went to elementary school through high school with Josh. We were in the same ward for church all growing up too. Times like this I wish I had a better memory. I wish I could remember the details, the fun group dates, the birthday parties anything that we would have done together. I know my dad was his bishop getting ready for a mission and he certainly had a special place in my dad's heart.

Reading the posts from people I knew and didn't know that knew Josh has made me think about my life and what I would leave behind. Josh will be remembered as a man of respect, love, genuine happiness. He had the biggest smile. He always would greet us girls in HS with Lovely Ladies or Some other term of beauty. He was a ladies man in the sense that he respected and showed sincere love and appreciation for all women.

I have two gifts from Josh that I have kept after a long time of getting rid of things a long the way. I used to collect Baseball hats and he got me a hat for one of my birthdays. I have kept two hats one was the one he gave me. I have also only kept two porcelain dolls one of which he gave to me just because.

I was always so strong, muscles everywhere. I don't think he was afraid of anything. I certainly was taken from this earth to soon. A good friend posted something very touching and wonderful to think about at a time when someone is taken early in life. Our Father in Heaven must have some big plans for him on the other side. He was to good a man not to be.

Tears are already flowing. I called my husband Matthew after I got the news and told him I loved him and that he needed to be careful. I don't want to loose him. Life is so short anyway. We need to tell those we love that we love them. What they mean to our lives! What they have changed in us.

Self reflection always come in these times. I hope that when it's my turn to leave this world that I will be worthy of the type of praise that Josh is getting now. Why do we wait so long to tell someone there worth to us. It might end up being to late.

Someone posted this song for his Wife telling her he's sure this is what Josh is thinking right now. I think it's fitting for you all here too.

the picture at the beginning is not my friend...

That's two friends that I've lost .
My thoughts are with you Eric Russell and Joshua Flanders! Both taken from this life much to early.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Quibids Plugin Ready

I'm sure you're all aware of a few of the things we've won on Quibids lately. Last night we won Donkey Kong Country Returns + 25 bids.

$1.44 final price
+ $13.80 in bids (23 * $0.60/ea)
- $15.00 (25 free bids worth $0.60/ea)
+ $4.99 shipping
$5.23 total cost.

Now I'm sure there's several of you who are peaked in interest as to how much a Quibids auction would cost you to win. Well I spent all night finishing up my first browser plugin in order to satisfy your curiosity. It will allow you to use virtual bids on real live Quibids auctions so you can get the hang of it and find out if it's worth your time and money. Check it out. It's free. Details can be found at Please send me constructive suggestions if you have any.



Tuesday, April 5, 2011

My little Princesses

All ready for church. Mom are you done yet... Ok so I can get my girls ready but not myself. At least they look good!

Princess Kathryn

Princess Charlotte

Pressure Cooking at it's Finest

So I've been asked to do a cooking class for my Relief Society on Pressure cooking. I guess since I make a to die for Tortellini Soup and I've mentioned how awesome it is to everyone I know, just so I get a little praise on something I do well I get to now, do a class.

When they first asked I only really every made 3 things in my pressure cooker.
Chicken Bacon Tortellini, Hawaiian Delight, and Porcupine Meatballs. They are all SO good everyone wanted a class. I for sure can't do a 30 minute class on 3 things. So I've been trying out some things. I checked a couple books from the Library. One called Pressure Cookers for Dummies and Pressure Cooking for Everyone. Anyway I flipped through these and found the section on beans and decided I would try that out. Beans can be pre-soaked in a pressure cooker for only 2 minutes under pressure then rinsed and then cooked at pressure again. So I decided to try black beans.

Quick Soak
1 lb black beans then cover with water plus 2 inches above and then pressure for 2 minutes then rinse and you are ready to start the actual cooking.

I did a basic Bean recipe to cook them.
1 cup beans
3 cups water or chicken stock
1 tbsp olive oil
salt to taste

Since I did a whole pound I added 6 cups water for the 2 cups of beans.

Place all in 5-7 quart cooker then pressure for 7 minutes. Remove from the heat and quick release method meaning running cold water over it for a few seconds until pressure has been released. Then Open lid and check beans for doneness. In necessary return to pot to medium low year and bring to a simmer and cook as needed. If possible cool beans in cooking liquid. Drain beans saving the liquid to use in soups if desired.

Mine I pressured for 10 minutes and I think it could have cooked a little longer but with what I made with them it was fine. I then used them to make Churro beans a recipe I got from another RS meeting from Mary Anne Morriberon.

1 lb black beans cooked according to pkg. directions - do not drain
1 med onion diced
1 pkg bacon, cooked and crumbled
1 large tomato
1-2 jalapenos, minced
1 large Garlic clove minced
1 cube chicken bouillon
1/2 bunch cilantro finely chopped
1/4 tsp cumin
up to 1/2 tsp of salt to taste

Saute Onion, Garlic, and Jalapeno in a pan until soft. Add to beans. Add remaining ingredients to beans. Serve warm over rice. Grate Cheese over top.

Can also be served as a warm dip, with tortilla chips. Garnish with Sour Cream, Salsa and cheese.

This turned out way yummy and Kathryn LOVES it. it didn't turn out the same as Mary Anne's but it still worked out great.

Next I wanted to try some Quinoa. I friend on Facebook mentioned that she was excited to actually use her quinoa for dinner with a recipe she found on I thought I'd adapt that recipe to a pressure cooker recipe and it turned out great well in my taste anyway. The girls didn't think it was that great. Anyway here's what I did.

Just a basic quinoa recipe for Pressure cooker

1 1/2 cups quinoa rinsed and drained
3 cups water
1 tbsp of oil

Combine all in pressure cooker
Cover and bring to high pressure lower the heat to stabilize the pressure cooker. Cook for 7 minutes.
Remove and less pressure drop using the quick release method.
Unlock and remove cover quinoa should be slightly chewy. If hard return to cooker and pressure another 2-3 minutes
Drain any excess liquid

it was ready to use when I was done at 8 minutes. I then added a cup of the Churro beans to it and added a bit more seasonings. That below is what I got. Yummy healthy meal to add to my pressure cooker meals.

If anyone as their favorite pressure cooker meal or thing you make all the time let me know. I want to try some new things. My next thing will be sticky rice and chickpeas to make hummus. Then to big things like roast. Oh and hard boiled eggs. done in 3 minutes then let it release naturally. That will be way easier for Easter eggs then boiling for 10 minutes...

Oh and below is the pressure cooker I would recommend. It's $88 on amazon right now. This is definitely on my wish list. Anyways enjoy