Thursday, July 30, 2009

New Stuff at Summer CHA - Part 3

This is the last thing I saw that I thought was neat. I'm sure there are other things out there but I am relying on the videos of others.

When I first saw this product I was kinda thinking…nah…but then I got to thinking, it would make it easier to coordinate your brads with the paper you are working with…so maybe. It is the I-Top Brad Maker by Imaginisce it will retail for $29.99 and if Michaels carries it, I could use a 40% coupon making it oh so much cheaper. There are 3 different punch sizes for $11, $14 & $17.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

New Stuff at Summer CHA - Part 2

New cutting product that looks like a good one…no more mats to replace, reasonably priced, etc…

Here is the new product that Provo Craft has released for all us Cricuteers. Looks like one I would love to have for traveling purposes and being able to design without being connected to the computer but it will be a long time before I get one since they are going to retail them for around $400. Seems a bit much I think.

I did see several pictures of Cuttlebug embossing folders and Spellbinders Shapeablilites and Impressabilities that I definitely would like to get. I guess we'll see if there are any other good things that come of Summer CHA.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

New Stuff at Summer CHA - Part 1

Summer CHA is going on now and I would never be able to attend but I always like to see the new stuff before it hits the stores. On occasion I have ordered from Two Peas In A Bucket and they are a wonderful online store that carries a lot of variety so you can shop from the comfort of your own home. I also follow them on twitter. This week, they are doing videos of several companies and their releases for CHA. I wanted to share some of my favorites. They state that they are going to do this for 3 days so that is why this is Part 1, if I like anything on the next two days, I'll share those as well.

Basic Grey is one of my favorite paper lines and I was SO EXCITED to see the Eskimo Kisses line. I really loved the paper with the little deer on it. There are actually 2 videos to showcase the Basic Grey lines.

Little Yellow Bicycle is fairly new company, they haven’t been out very long and I was REALLY surprised at all of the embellishments they do for their lines. My favorite is the Autumn Bliss so I will have to be watching for that paper.

Pink Paislee is another fairly new company and I really liked their Amber Road line. I don’t do Halloween so having the leaves and anything for autumn along that line is great.

Bella Blvd has a really cute camped out collection that I liked.

There are several other videos that they shared today and if you want to see them on the YouTube site after watching one of these videos, along the right hand side there is a section “More From TwoPeasInABucket” and there are videos for Prima, American Crafts, Maya Road, Anna Griffin, Jillibean Soup, Hero Arts, and Fiskars.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Saturday's Song - Worshipping You

I love this song and I don't even remember how I came across it. I think I may have heard it on YouTube and went in search of it on iTunes. A wonderful worship song...they are my fav's.

Worshipping You

Take this offering that I bring
Humbly I fall on my knees
To proclaim You're everything
My life's nothing without You
Take my hand and lead me through
You are my sustaining love

(pre chorus)
I live to worship You
I live to worship You

Here I am worshiping You
With all I am worshiping You
Bowing down in spirit and truth
With lifted hands worshiping You

(bridge 1)
I'm not ashamed of you
I'm not ashamed of you
I'm not ashamed of you

(bridge 2)
I'm gonna worship You forever
I'm gonna worship You
I'm gonna worship You forever
I'm gonna worship You

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Saturday's Song - Roses Will Bloom Again

Today's song is kind of a tribute to an old friend, my former pastor, Glenn Button, who passed away Thursday night. In speaking to his wife, Diane, also a friend, she asked if she could play this at his funeral. I've sang this song in church many times and I did a recording of it to be played at my great uncle's (maternal) funeral and it was played at my grandfather's (paternal) funeral as well. I get too emotional at funerals (especially of someone I knew really well) to actually sing it so the recording was a necessity. This time the recording artist will be singing it.

While growing up, Glenn was like another dad to me and my siblings and we were raised with his kids so we were all like family, but then again sometimes that is the way it is when you are raised in church and you have a church family in addition to your blood family.

My thoughts and prayers go out to the family through this time in their lives. Glenn, is in a better place now, a place we all long to call home one day.

This is a picture of me with Glenn & Diane back in 2003 when I was home for my grandpa's funeral, he officiated the service.
Roses Will Bloom Again
by Jeff & Sheri Easter on the Shining Through album

Verse 1
I planted a little rose bush
I tended it with care
It’s buds began to blossom
Their fragrance filled the air
But when winter came it withered,
The petals drooped and fell to the ground
My heart sank as it faded
But I’d forgotten who had made it

Roses will bloom again
Just wait and see
Don’t mourn what might have been
Only God knows how and when that
Roses will bloom again

Verse 2
Rose was his only sweetheart
A loving wife for forty years
Cherished every day they had
And held memories oh so dear
He never dreamed he’s bury love
And go to live alone
But he lay his Rose to rest
Looked up to heaven and tried his best
To believe that

Roses will bloom again
Just wait and see
Don’t mourn what might have been
Only God knows how and when that
Roses will bloom again

Verse 3
The precious Rose of Sharon
Broken and bruised in cruel shame
Stained on the cross of Calvary
So that men might be saved
Oh, satan cheered as He died
While Mary and the others cried
Then God raised Him up from that sleep
And kept a promise only He could keep

Roses will bloom again
Just wait and see
Don’t mourn what might have been

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Conversations with my granddaughter

This last weekend my stepdaughter and the grandkids came up for a visit. My granddaughter always has something funny, smart or amazing to say and I'm going to try to keep track of them and put them into posts.

Here are 3 different scenarios that happened this last weekend....she always has new material that we have no idea where she comes up with.

Scene: Sitting at Sonic getting drinks and fries at Happy Hour – we were staying in the car

Aydann: Mom, I need ketchup
Mandi: Sorry Aydann they don’t have ketchup here. (She didn't want it all over the car)
Aydann: Oh man…(in that bummer voice)

Uh she is 3 where did she come up with that

Scene: In the kitchen at our house talking before dinner (It has been 3 ½ months since she was up to our house and a couple of weeks ago we got a couple of new rugs in the kitchen.

This is the rug we used to have in front of the sink

This is the rug we replaced it with -->

Aydann: Meema, when did you change out the moose rug?
Meema: *Looking at her in AMAZEMENT and a shocking look to Mandi*….give me 5 peanut…..You are sooo good.

Once again she is 3 and KNOWS our d├ęcor or what it used to be.

Scene: After dinner, Aydann & I sitting out on the front porch steps watching the hummingbirds come in for dinner to my 3 feeders (Aydann was having fun watching them zoom in and out)

Meema: Are you ready to go in?
Aydann: No, I just want to sit out here some more
Meema: Ok, well I’m going to go in, I need to empty the dishwasher and re-load it
Aydann: Ok….can I help?

I let her help put the silverware away…what a sweetie.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Saturday's Song - East to West

Trying to figure out which (out of the many favorites that I have ideas for these posts) song to choose, I heard this song on my way home last night and was singing it to the tops of my lungs in the car (I love to do that...more so than the shower), so I thought hey, we'll do that one this week.

How far has our sin been cast? This song describes how far....from as far as the East is to the West, there is no end. We remember more frequently than He does. He forgets after we have asked for forgiveness and casts it away but we can't fathom that forgetfulness because we ourselves are bound by our thoughts and memories.

East to West
Casting Crowns on the album "The Altar and The Door"

Here I am, Lord, and I'm drowning in your sea of forgetfulness
The chains of yesterday surround me
I yearn for peace and rest
I don't want to end up where You found me
And it echoes in my mind, keeps me awake tonight
I know You've cast my sin as far as the east is from the west
And I stand before You now as though I've never sinned
But today I feel like I'm just one mistake away from You leaving me this way

Jesus, can You show me just how far the east is from the west
'cause I can't bear to see the man I've been come rising up in me again
In the arms of Your mercy I find rest
'cause You know just how far the east is from the west
From one scarred hand to the other

I start the day, the war begins, endless reminding of my sin
Time and time again Your truth is drowned out by the storm I'm in
Today I feel like I'm just one mistake away from You leaving me this way

I know You've washed me white, turned my darkness into light
I need Your peace to get me through, to get me through this night
I can't live by what I feel, but by the truth Your word reveals
I'm not holding on to You, but You're holding on to me
You're holding on to me

Jesus, You know just how far the east is from the west
I don't have to see the man I've been come rising up in me again
In the arms of Your mercy I find rest
'cause You know just how far the east is from the west
From one scarred hand to the other
One scarred hand to the other
From one scarred hand to the other

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Linking to some good stuff

I’ve been coming across some blog posts lately and making notes of them to “share” because I thought of it having a good message or being funny.

If I continue to find good ones, I will continue to do posts like this in the future…but keeping it to a couple at a time.

*This first one I thought was good especially when the writer makes the comment that “I didn’t get what I deserved” and he is right…none of us do.

*This one is good about marriages…I like the analogy that “difficulties [in marriage] come in waves. If you can make it through the wave you're on, you'll find that it will end.” I have experienced this many times and yes, it surely does come in waves.

*This one is comical especially after reading about what she did in a shoe store…

*This is another one that talks about riding the waves but in different circumstances.

*This one was linked by a blogger that I read all the time and it is funny…I think I would have to skip Thanksgiving dinner with the family this time around.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Fantabulous Cake Recipe - Mocha Sheet Cake

I came across this recipe in a magazine a couple of months back and I've been REALLY wanting to make it but knew if I did for just Scott and I....I would be the one to EAT THE WHOLE THING....soooo, when we were invited to a BBQ for the 4th of July it was a perfect oppotunity for me to try it out. It is so yummy and time I will do it with just the cake and after it is cooled just sprinkle powdered sugar over it instead of the frosting, mainly because the frosting just really makes it sweeter....and I really just like the CHOCOLATE!!!

Mocha Sheet Cake

1 cup butter
1 cup brewed coffee (decaf if desired)
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups all purpose flour
2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup dairy sour cream or plain yogurt
2 eggs
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 recipe mocha frosting (below)
1/2 cup miniature semi sweet chocolate chips

(Note: for this part, I used a smaller saucepan for boiling and put the flour, sugar & salt in my Kitchen Aid mixing bowl and added the boiled mixture to it, because I don't have any saucepans that I could use a mixer in)

In a large saucepan bring butter, coffee, and cocoa to boiling, stirring occasionally with a wire whisk. Remove from heat and stir in flour, sugar and salt. Beat on medium speed with an electric mixer for 1 minute. Add sour cream, eggs, baking soda and vanilla and beat on medium speed until well-blended, about 1 minute more. Pour batter into an ungreased 15 x 10 x 1 inch baking pan. Bake in a 375° oven for 23-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Let cool completely in pan on a wire rack. *
Spread Mocha Frosting atop cake; sprinkle with chocolate pieces.
(I used a 9 x 13 glass Pyrex dish and baked for 25 minutes)

*Make ahead: Freeze cooled, unfrosted sheet cake in the pan for up to 3 months. Thaw cake at room temperature before frosting.

Mocha Frosting

5 tablespoons butter, softened
1 lb package powdered sugar
3 tablespoons cold brewed coffee
1 tablespoon milk or cream
1 teaspoon vanilla

In a large bowl beat butter with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Beat in powdered sugar a little at a time on low speed until combined. Beat in coffee, milk or cream and vanilla until frosting is fluffy and spreadable. Add 1-2 additional teaspoons milk if needed to attain desired consistency (I didn’t need to do this last part).

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Saturday's Song - Independence Day Tribute

My post this week is going to be a little different and I thought I would pick a few songs that we all know that are patriotic, since today is Independence Day.

I know I am very thankful that I was born and raised in America. I can't even imagine what a lot of people go through in these countries where they aren't free like we are.

Note: I won't spell out the lyrics to all of these this week either. All of the videos are short and you can watch them all or pick your favorites.

The first song is our National Anthem and I searched for it by this group specifically because I love their acapella rendition of it. The video quality isn't the best but the song is still amazing in their format.

The Star Spangled Banner
The Isaacs

The next song is done by another favorite vocal group and the video has some really good footage of our country.
This song is one of the most popular of the many American patriotic songs and it has been proposed as a replacement for The Star-Spangled Banner as the National Anthem. The poem part of it was published to commemorate the 4th of July. (I learned this all from here)

America The Beautiful
The Gaither Vocal Band

This last one is by one of my favorite artists. Martina has a wonderful voice. If you want to know any trivial information about this song you can go here.

God Bless America
Martina McBride

May you all have an enjoyable 4th of July and remember to say a prayer of thanks for our freedoms we still have and those who fight for us to have those freedoms.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

An enlightening experience with the catering biz and some rich folks

I have a friend, Kathleen, who, on the side, does catering with her sister, Margo, (they are partners but Kathleen also works full-time). They have done several different events and have done it for years but last weekend they had a wedding for 350 people (the largest event they've done) and it was a buffet dinner with appetizers, so she asked if I could help. I was glad to, thinking it would be fun (and it was) and to have a new experience in doing something I hadn't done.

The wedding was to be at 4:oopm at a church in town and the reception would be at the parents of the Bride's home in their backyard...hmm...backyard is an understatement...but I'll go into that later. We were to have everything set up and ready expecting the first of the guests to arrive around 4:45pm. Kathleen asked me to come around 12 to help out and to be dressed in black slacks with a white shirt. I had both so I didn't have to buy anything special to wear. I also have several pairs of black shoes...I have always worked in an office setting and have black dress shoes, however, working in an office setting...I'm usually sitting most of the day.

She gave me the address of where their home the top of a hill that sits above Hayden Lake. So I get there and there were several cars parked along the street and in the driveway (family and the bridal party were getting ready) so I parked a couple of houses up the street so I wouldn't block anyone in. I had also wondered how in the world they were going to have so many people here, in a residential area...where was everyone to park....I figured out how later.

I rang the doorbell twice and no one answered but I could see on the side of the house a gate was opened to the back and I could also make out kind of a tent back there and figured that would be where I would find Kathleen, Margo and anyone else who was helping them out. So I walked around...several landscaped stairs down to a landing in their backyard to a pool...and further out I could still see that tent (what it actually was...they had their tennis court tented off with all the tables for everyone to sit, the band to set up and the dance floor).

I was quite relieved that someone came out the back door just then so I could inquire as to where the catering people all were and he said, oh this way...they are down in the garage (not the garage to the house because I was just there at the front of the house and it was opened but no one there) and I'm so glad he showed me because we went around the pool, down several more stairs to another landscaped terrace that has a huge outdoor kitchen set-up, down another larger set of landscaped stairs to a huge house....they call it their "funhouse" and in that garage all the catering people were setting up. Margo, and her daughter, Jennifer, were there and they had been working at getting things set up for awhile, I could tell, she told me to go on in and Kathleen would show me around and get me started.

So I go in the door to an area that has a 2 lane bowling alley and a putting green and around the corner they have a pool table, big screen tv & a full I know why they call it their "funhouse". Wow, they don't lack for any kind of entertainment. Kathleen was there helping a couple of other gals that were there to help out as well. She showed me around where everything was going to be set up and I discovered that they had parked their cars on another street (with the address of the "funhouse"). They have patio furniture everywhere, a huge fire pit and Kathleen said they even have an outdoor screen to watch movies on. I could tell that they entertain a lot because in this garage they have a bunch of cupboards that had all kinds of plates, serving pieces, anything we could think of to put food out on.

These people have 3 lots in a subdivision, 2 that have houses on them that are back to back (kinda - more kitty corner) and the other lot has the tennis court on it, so it is more of a triangular area that they own). I also spotted 3 golf be used in transporting the guests to the reception from some area, I didn't know where, they would all be able to park.

I started helping out with prepping the food, slicing cucumbers (by the pounds), tomatoes and lemons. Then I got to enjoy their outdoor kitchen by grilling several pounds of sausages that were being sliced up for appetizers. We were really lucky in that the parents of the bride also got 10 high schoolers (all dressed in black slacks, white shirts & black ties) to help us out, which in essence was a life saver for us all because there was soooo much to do.

I ended up looking like the garbage disposal blew up all over my white shirt (I kinda figured I would end up that way cuz I am messy when I'm in the kitchen) so I didn't have to go out and mingle with any of the guests, we pretty much let the high schoolers do all the running (thank goodness because I was past the point of being able to walk much). My shoes had rubbed the skin off the backs of my ankles/heels and I was trying to carefully walk around to not touch the backs of my shoes to them.

I helped put together these HUGE salads (the bowls had to have been 2 1/2 ft diameter) and we did 2 - 3 of each kind of salad (4 different salads) in them. Then I helped with dishes for the rest of the night. For some of the appetizers they had overnighted fresh King Crab legs (already cracked...I was told it costs more to have them done this way to make it easier to eat), shrimp, salmon, another kind of fish, sausages, pork riblets, veggies, antipesto type trays, 3 huge fruit kabob displays (that a couple of the gals decorated), a white chocolate fountain, several different breads and lots of fancy cheeses. They had a sushi bar, a section where there was pork loin and prime rib (we weren't minding any of those) they did a cinnamon pork dish, chicken and rice dish & green beans. They ended up having so much leftover food.

In looking around a few of us were talking and we figured that the wedding had to have been over $50,000...just seeing the amounts of food that we were preparing, all the real flowers, all the dishes and chairs, tables, etc...for rental (there was no plastic ware everything was real silverware, real plates, real wine glasses, etc...) and this was just the reception.

Kathleen used to work for the father of the bride (he was a partner in a land development company she worked for and he is a Neuro-surgeon here in CDA) and so she knows the parents (that is how she got in on the catering part of the wedding). She said the mother-of-the-bride made her dress, the Bride's dress, the Bridesmaid's dresses and the flowergirl's dress. I didn't get to see the Bride unfortunately but I saw all the other dresses and she does WONDERFUL work. The Bridesmaids dresses were all Tiffany blue with a wide, white, satin sash that had a bow in the front and rhinestone straps...very fitting for the color, the mother-of-the bride dress was beautifully beaded, the flower girls dress had this tulle in the front that at the bottom (it was somehow folded to incorporate this) was silk rose petals in Tiffany blue.

Kathleen also told me that they had flown (in a privately rented plane) all the bridesmaids to Vegas for a bachelorette party....geez.

I did manage to snap off a few pictures with my cell phone so they aren't the best but you can get a little glimpse of what it looked like.
This is looking at the "funhouse" from the outdoor kitchen

This is the tennis courts with all the tables for seating (taken from the outdoor kitchen)

This was looking up towards their outdoor kitchen from the garage of the "funhouse"

This was looking up at the tented area from the garage of the "funhouse"...after the sun went down they had votive candles ALL OVER these rocks that were so pretty

Needless to say the next day, I seriously was having some major issues with walking. I hurt from my knees all the way down...must have been all that standing on a concrete floor, let alone up and down all those stairs in their backyard. I didn't leave until 11pm and I still had to walk all the way back up to the house and down the street to my car. Next time, I'm gonna get me some REAL "Crocs" (I hear nurses wear them on their shifts) in black and I should be good to go.

I was telling a couple of the gals that my step-daughter is getting married next summer and it won't even come minutely close to how HUGE this wedding is...but then husband isn't a brain surgeon either, so we couldn't afford even a minute fraction of the will be just as beautiful though. For my own wedding, I found you can do a lot of things, make them all nice and still be able to afford it.

*Note: Sorry I feel like this post is poorly written in that I am jumping all over but it is late and I was trying to remember so much and just get it all down.