Showing posts with label Traditions. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Traditions. Show all posts

Sunday, December 7, 2014

DIY Christmas Picture Ornaments

Every year we give our kids a new ornament to represent a memory form the year. Sometimes its from a place we visited or can be from a fad they are into. For example this year my girls love Frozen. The problem is the demand and cost of frozen ornaments is ridiculous. I decided to make my own.
I started with buying this little wood rectangles from my local hobby store. They came with 4 to a pack. You can paint this if you want just make sure they dry all the way before moving on to the modge podge part of it.

Then I printed out the pictures  I waned on picture paper from my printer. Then I modge podged them on.


The wood  was so soft I just used a screw driver to punch a whole in them and string them. My girls loved them! They were so excited to hand them on the tree. The other nice thing is that there was plenty of room to put their names, the date and a little story on the back.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Valentine's Traditions

Last year we had a packed day on Valentines Day. Looking back to plan for this years I am trying to decide what we should do. Should we get a sitter and have a date night? Should we go do something fun as a family? Maybe stay in for some fun?
 
 
 
Last year I made yummy Red Velvet Crepes. My husband and I really enjoyed them, my girls liked them, my son openly announced he preferred the regular kind of crepes. We could do that again for breakfast.
 
We also went to Dinner at Buffalo Wild Wings. We could go out to eat, or order some to go at home. I even heard you can buy just their sauce, and we could make our own at home. Hmmm that sounds good.  Then I could watch one of the movies from my top 5 Valentines movies lists.
 
My kids love crafts and my son has gotten into origami lately. Maybe I could teach them to make something origami, play some games and decorate sugar cookies.
 
I'll have to keep thinking about this one. So many choices what do I do? It's not every year that Valentines falls on a Friday night.
 
Comment, Tweet or Facebook me what you are doing this year for Valentines Day, I would love to know! I feel like my creativity pool is running a little shallow.
 
 

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

A Pokemon Valentines

My son loves Pokemon. Unfortunately it's not exactly the most accessible thing on the market. Last year he wanted Pokémon Valentines to hand out at his schools Valentines party. He didn't believe me that they don't sell them at the store. So we had to result in making some. So I searched the ever so handy Pinterest for idea's. This is what my son decided to make.
 

I know they aren't the cutest most Pinterest worthy Valentines in the world, but my son loved them. I could have made them all my self and made them cuter, even and so on, however,  I believe in the importance of involving my son on his own Valentines. They were his to hand out, why should I do all the work? Besides it was a fun to have some bonding time just him and me, cutting, writing and taping them together.

We started out by both tracing some of my drinking glasses on white and red construction paper. My son cut them all out, Then I would cut the red ones in half. While he glued the red paper on the white, I wrote the "I 'Chews' you Valentine" on them. When we he went to bed I drew the black line and circle across the middle. When he woke up the next morning he was so surprised and kept telling me how much he loved them and kept hugging me. Then he taped the bubble gum to them. He was so happy and excited to hand them out. That's all that really matters right? That he was happy. The fun time together was a bonus too.

On top of that every year his school on most holidays do some kind of a PTA fundraiser where you can purchase a candy, flower or something and have it delivered to his class with a little note. Every year I send him a note with a Pokémon joke on it. Yup, I'm that cool of a mom!

Here was the past 2 years with a few I have saved up for the future. If you don't get it, than you may just not be a huge Pokémon fan like we are ;)
  
          -Charmander is red, Squirtle is blue, if you were a Pokémon, I would choose you.
          -Just like Bulbasaur, you will always be my number 1!
          -What does one Geodude say to the other Geodude? "You Rock Dude!"
          -What's Pikachu's favorite Valentines treat? Shocktarts
          -Like Jesse and James, we make the perfect team.
          -You're more legendary than a Zapados!
           


Now on to this year, know what he wants? More Pokemon valentines! Here are a few I have come across I think we could do, many aren't that different from last year. Which one do you like best?

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Christmas Day

We had a wonderful Christmas and I wanted to share a few of the highlights.
 
 
 The best part of the whole day was seeing my brothers face on Skype. My brother is serving a mission for the LDS church in El Salvador. He is my partner in crime, and I miss him. I am counting down till he comes home. I got to see his handsome face and have a few laughs with him. We got to talk to him for a little over 2 hours. Every time we talk to him (which is Mother's Day and Christmas) I bring a pineapple and we put it in the back round or hold it. Sometimes we stick it behind people heads like bunny ears, and all sorts of goofiness.
 
 
 I also made my niece and nephews presents this year. I made shirts for them. My nephew is always quoting movies so I made him this one.
 
 
 
First I went to Dafont.com and downloaded the Movie Film strip font. Search for film and it should come up. Then I printed it on iron paper that I purchased at Hobby Lobby with my 40% off coupon.
 
My niece is a big Harry Potter fan so I made her these 2 things. The shirt I just googled the image I wanted and printed it on the same iron on paper.
 
 
 
Then over the year I tried to collect as many skeleton keys as I could when I cam across them. Then I bought some cheap butterfly ornaments and tore them apart and glued the wings to the keys. I think they came out super cute. I like the sparkly silver one in the bottom right corner the best.
 
 

 
They look cute in her room, we just need to make a few more.
 
For me the best part of Christmas is spending time with our loved ones. We are always so busy with others we don't actually sit around and enjoy Christmas Day gifts till the next day. We usually have scones or aebelskivers for breakfast on Christmas morning. We always watch one of the movies we get, this year it was Phineas and Ferb meets Marvel. Then we head over to grandma's. We play games, chat, enjoy company and then eat our tamale dinner.

 We even watched Despicable Me 2 while waiting for everyone to arrive at Grandma's. It was a fun relaxing day with lots of loved one's.  Although my kids got more goodies then they need and I just had to highlight one. My girls got the 2 princess's from Frozen. It was perfect cause not only had we watched it Christmas Eve, but my girls are starting to play together. They love to play the sisters and I love to sit and watch them play together. It was a wonderful Christmas, and I look forward to next year, where we are planning to change things up a bit. Which will be fun to blog about.
 

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Our Chatoic Christmas Eve

I love the holidays, spending time with family and traditions. I love to do old Traditions and start new ones.

My family for as long as I can remember always makes tamales on Christmas Eve and eats them on Christmas Day. The first year I had Christmas with my husbands family was my first traditional Christmas dinner. I remember calling home and telling my mom, "Guess what, I got to have Thanksgiving twice this year." I knew that a tamale dinner wasn't people's normal Christmas dinner, but I had never thought about what was considered an average dinner. So when we had turkey, cranberry, mashed potatoes, rolls, and pie I thought I was the luckiest person ever to have 2 Thanksgivings that year.
 

Last year we went and saw Monsters inc. with our kids on Christmas Eve. So this year the kids asked if we could start a new tradition and go see a movie on Christmas Eve again. Why not? So we ended up seeing Frozen in 3D with my sister and her kids. It was way fun, and good. I love musicals, which I didn't realize this had so much singing in it, I was in heaven. Not to mention the voice talents of Kirstin Bell and Idina Menzel, it was amazing!
 
 
 

Then we drove through the lights and Thanksgiving Point in Lehi. Then went home and had a yummy rib dinner and finished the night with the Christmas story from the Bible. Growing up I always wanted to open 1 present on Christmas Eve like all my friends talked about doing, but never was able to convince my parents. So when my husband told me that was his tradition growing up, I was thrilled to carry it on. So yes we are like the many millions who open pajamas on Christmas Eve, to make up for the years I wish we did as a family.

 
So yes it was a very full and fun day. I did it on purpose. That night all my kids were asleep within 5 minutes of tuck in, that has got to be some kind of Christmas Eve record! I purposely wore them plump out!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Larry H. Miller Sing Along -Free Family Event

In 2011 in addition to seeing the lights in Salt Lake we decided to attend the Larry H. Miller sing a long. We weren't quite sure what to expect and it exceeded our expectations.
Everyone got a yummy treat and a little envelope. In the envelope we ended up with free movie tickets, free popcorn vouchers, raceway tickets and other cool things. On top of the fun free things we got to sing along to beloved Christmas songs as a family. Even cooler was we got to sing along with Alex Boye. How awesome is that? If you are not familiar with him here is what you are missing out on:

Incredible! This year Emmy award winning and Grammy nominated Kurt Bestor will be there. I suggest bundle up the kids, enjoy the Christmas lights, get some hot chocolate and go to the free Larry H. Miller sing a long. It starts at 6:00 PM at the Energy Solutions Arena.
For more info check out http://www.kurtbestor.com/index.php?page=calendar&display=2505
or http://www.lhm.com/giving-back/christmas-sing-along

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Cinco De Mayo Fun

My husband and I kept going back and forth on how big or small we wanted to celebrate Cinco De Mayo this year. In the end we decided to relax at home with just our family. I'm glad we didn't invite lots of people over because Steven's sister came to visit from Idaho. We had quite the fiesta. We celebrated with their family on Saturday night before they had to leave back home.
First I decided to cook some yummy authentic Mexican food. My husband and I laugh often about how well I cooked our first year of marriage. As a Mexican it was and is my comfort food. It was the main thing I cooked. Then when we went out to eat I often also chose Mexican food. For dinner I made yummy Mexican rice, which has to be eaten with corn.  As well a buffet of typical Mexican food leaving a plethora of choices. We had all the fixing to make either quesidilla's, burritos, taco's, taco salad, nachos or any other concoction in between you could think of. Not to mention enough homemade guacamole and salsa to last us all weekend long.

I got some fun free printouts from The 36th Avenue.  They added a nice extra element to the fiesta. The kids enjoyed the straws and they helped differentiate who's cup was who's. I purchased some of our favorite drinks for their family to try as well. My favorite being Sangria's, Steven's Tamarindo, and the my kids favorite is the Sidral Mundet.  Creating a mariachi station on Pandora made the environment perfect.
What's a Cindo de Mayo Fiesta with out a pinata? We got a huge angry birds pinata filled with some cheap goodies. This was the kids favorite part. We went to the local park and use our Louisville Slugger mini bat for some fun swinging. My 10 year old niece loved busting the thing open, and the kids scattering to get as many goods as they could.

Then we did our own family photo shoot. The kids loved dressing up and and having their own spotlight for a little bit.
 
 


After all the set up, fun, junk food, and clean up we were all ready for a little siesta. Happy Cinco De Mayo!
 

Monday, April 1, 2013

Weekend Wrap Up

What a busy and fun weekend we had! Friday was a tight squeeze do to a last minute doctor appointment, so we had a quick frozen pizza for dinner. Then we met Grandpa, Grandma and Uncle Jacob at Kadan's Art show. He is very talented and we are fortunate enough to have someone local who teaches art from her home. He loves it!
 
Then we all gathered at our house for some coloring and dyeing eggs.
 
 
One of my favorite thing to do is wrap rubber bands around the egg before soaking them in a dye. Then after it tries you can take them off and you get this fun looking egg.
 
 
 
We also do things a little backwards in our house. We have made a special request for the Easter bunny to come on that Saturday instead of Sunday. That way we can focus on the real meaning of Easter on Sunday and the fun things the day before. Plus this year the bunny was super mischievous. He tied a different color yarn to each kids basket to help them find it. Getting water in the middle of the night was quite the work out, I assure you.
 

Saturday morning was spent searching for eggs, eating too much chocolate and following the crazy mess to their baskets. The kids were surely spoiled this year.

 
I know I keep saying how wonderful my neighborhood is, here is just one more example. Instead of the madness at other local egg hunts we did one in our own neighborhood. We donated 10 eggs for each kid who wanted to participate, then went looking down one of our streets for 10 eggs.  The kids loved it and ended up with some goodies, money being their favorite.
 
Then off to Grandma's house. We were celebrating both Easter and 2 of my kids birthdays. We had taco salad, cake, lots of deviled eggs and good company.
 
We did end up doing an Easter pinata, even though it wasn't in the plans. Usually my mom has such a large yard we do an egg hunt in her back yard. We thought it would be fun to get a puzzle and put the pieces in each egg instead of candy. Although the puzzle pieces we bought were slightly too big for our eggs. Oops. Our solution was a pinata filled with candy instead. What's a little family fun with out a pinata?  My family loves pinatas, maybe because were Mexican?!
 
 
 
 
Then Sunday morning was low key as we got ready, besides me being extremely nervous because I was asked to sing in a trio in church. The kids Easter outfits for church I bought at the end of last summer when I was still pregnant. I have wanted to go to Hawaii for a long time so they have fun luau and pineapple outfits from Gymboree. The pineapple ones are fun because those that know my Dad knows how much he loves a good pineapple.
 


 
 


Then for Easter dinner I invited my parents over to join us. My kids love when we break out the china and have a "fancy" dinner. We had a yummy roast with lots of vegetables. Everyone in my family, kids included, loved fruits and vegetables. As you can tell that was mostly all our side dishes. A nice laid back dinner, with good conversations and company was the perfect end to a long week.
 
Let me know what you did this Easter weekend. I love hearing about other people's traditions, old or new. Either leave me a comment or tweet me.

 

 

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Desert Star Playhouse Giveaway


Several years ago my husband and I were introduced to a fabulous place called the Desert Star Playhouse. The Desert Star Playhouse produces family friendly comedic musicals. It is very family friendly (for children over 8ish) and has yummy food too. It is one of Steven and my favorite date nights because we get food and a show. We have purchased season passes several times and it really is the best bang for your buck. With the way our schedules are we usually get to see a show around Valentines day, in the spring, my birthday (June), our anniversary (August), Steven's birthday (October) and a Christmas date. Since our season pass is payed for in advance all we have to pay for is the sitter and how much we want to spend on food. Sometimes it's just ice cream, other times it's pizza and smoothies.
We did so much moving around the past few years that it had been a little while since our last show there. Recently we went and saw Kicking the Hobbit, Bored of the Rings. We LOVED it, it even made it to my favorite top 5 shows I have seen there. Here is a brief synopsis from their website on the show...
    Science Fiction geek Walter gets a “Dear John” from his fiance because he spends too much time fantasizing about "Star Wars" and "Lord of the Rings." Now Walter must journey to Middle-Earth with a zany band of misfits to return balance to the the world...and his girlfriend. Come along on this hilarious adventure to find out if Walter can defeat the Dark Lord Sharon and become a hero to couch potatoes everywhere.

Walter was played by Corey Brandenburger who is a regular there and is very funny. He did an awesome job. As someone who loves all types of theater one of the things I look for, especially here, is when the actors push the others. Sometimes they try to break the others out of character, as the audience sits back and watches them go on tangents or the other cast members try to hold straight faces. Corey is good at filling in those moments and has perfect comedic timing. Another cast member  was thrilled to see was Kerstin Davis. She was in several of the first shows we saw and I just loved her and the characters she portrayed. Then with all the moving around we did the few shows we saw she wasn't in. When I saw it was her I turned to my husband to remind him she was one of my favorites. She is fun and comfortable going off script, plus I love some of the voices she does thru the show. She choreographeed the show as well, adding to her talent pool.

 

Gollum was played by Mary Parker Williams who not only is the veteran at the Desert Star but the assistant director. She makes some of the best faces and nails her double personality character. Dog the Bounty Hunter was played by Bryan Dayley. My husband and I agree it was so fun to see him in this role (he also nailed his accent) since we remember his very first performance at the Desert Star. He has come a long way and has made it onto our list of favorites.  The ensemble as a whole did an excellent job together. There were a few new faces like Jeff Jensen who impressed us with his singing in the Olio, and George Anderson who was equally as funny to watch. Carli Christoffersen played Bilbo and is very talented. We have seen her a few times before and I always look forward to when she sings a solo in the Olio at the end of the show.

The best part is you don't have to be familiar with whatever movies they are doing a parody of in order to enjoy yourself. You get a good laugh every time. The Hobbit plays at the Desert Star till March 23rd. With only a month left don't be afraid to get you tickets a head of time, they tend to sell out. I have always had a pleasant and helpful experince with the box office, even when having to move dates around. If you have to make changes to your ticket dates, Desert Star is very accommodating in helping you find another night to attend or giving you a credit until you can figure it out. The sooner you book the better seats you get too. Call their box office at 801-266-2600, and get ready to pee your pants from laughing so hard!
The Desert Star has also donated two tickets to their show Kicking the Hobbit. Please leave a comment below to be entered in the drawing. For more entries share this post on Facebook, Twitter, or on your own blog. Leave additional comments for each share. Giveaway closes on Monday, February 25th at 11:59 MST. Winner will be picked at random thru random.org. Winner will be announced the following day.  Good Luck!

 

Sunday, February 17, 2013

The Flour Game

Once a week my family enjoys doing something called Family Home Evening. That is where as a family we sing songs, have a spiritual thought, play a game and eat yummy snacks together. It's a great time for my husband and I to teach a concept we need to work on as a family or we sit back and watch the kids imaginations fly. For example Kadan was "lesson" this week. So he used his pokemon to show us that when we say hurtful things it hurts like these pokey pokemon, and when we say nice things it feels good like these soft ones.  Every week re rotate who is in charge of what part of Family Home Evening. Here is a picture of our FHE chart.

This week's game got a little messy. We decided to play the flour game. I saw this on Pinterest and my memories playing it growing up came flooding in. You start out by packing a mug or teacup with flour, and turning it upside down on a plate.
 
Then with a coin on top everyone takes turns cutting it, trying hard not to let the coin fall. If you are the one that causes the coin to fall you get to fish it out with no hands. The laughs and fun come naturally in this. 



 


Here is a video of the end of Kadan's Pokemon lesson and some of our flour game:

 

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentines Day

As many know and more are figuring out, I love holidays. I try to make them special for my kids. Starting last night we had an early pizza night and got heart shaped pizzas for dinner. Today the kids awoke to a valentine surprise waiting for them. Even my husband got a fun card and a movie.
The hardest part for me was waking up early to make my kids a special breakfast. I am not a morning person so mom being awake before them is just as surprising as not having cold cereal for breakfast.
I found a cute and yummy recipe on Pinterest for red velvet crepes.
The recipe is added at the end of the post. Kid tested and approved by all!




We got Krispie Kreme Dounuts and went out to dinner at Buffalo Wild Wings. Overall it was a good day. Now I am ready to go to bed and crash! A whole day with no nap is hard on a mommy with a three month old.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Here is the recipe for breakfast. I forgot marscapone cheese, so I used cool whip instead and it was just as yummy! If you have extra crepes like I did you can freeze them in between wax papers.
 

Red Velvet Crêpes (click here for direct link to original recipe)

by, duhlicious.com
 

Red Velvet Crepes
(Makes about 24, 8″ crepes)
Ingredients: – 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 2 cups butter milk
- 1 1/4 cup whole or lowfat milk
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 tablespoons cocoa powder, sifted
- 1 tablespoon red food color gel
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
+ 2 tablespoons cooking oil (for pan)
*Update: Because the buttermilk lends to the acidity of this batter, do not substitute the baking soda for extra baking powder. If you add more baking powder, and omit the baking soda, you’ll end up with a heavy and dense crepe. In order to activate the baking soda, it requires an acidic substance, which the buttermilk provides. Double-acting baking powder (likely, this is what you have in your kitchen) is activated by heat and an acidic element, and in this case, baking soda does the trick. Enough with the chemistry lesson– just don’t make substitutes if you want light and fluffy crepes; the recipe is balanced to account for ingredient properties.
Mascarpone Cream Filling- 500 mL heavy cream
- 300 gr mascarpone cheese
- 1/2 cup icing sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- zest of 1 orange (optional, but adds nice tang)
+ 1/2 cup raspberry jam (optional, for filling crepes)
Chocolate Ganache Topping- 75 gr bittersweet chocolate
- 75 mL heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon sugar

Directions:
For the Mascarpone Filling:
1. Using a mixer, mix mascarpone cheese, 1/4 cup sugar, and vanilla until soft and fluffy. Set aside.
2. Whip cream and remaining sugar to a stiff peak. Carefully fold into the mascarpone cheese until combined. Refrigerate until ready to use.

For Chocolate Ganche Sauce
1. Place chocolate in a heatproof bowl and set aside. In a small sauce pan, heat cream and sugar to a rolling boil. Remove from heat, and pour over chocolate. Carefully mix until homogenous, and set aside until ready to use. If the ganache sets, re-melt the chocolate over a double boiler.

Red Velvet Crepes1. In a large bowl stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cocoa powder. Set aside.
2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, milk, egg, sugar, melted butter, vanilla extract and food coloring. Whisk until combined.

3. Pour the liquid ingredients into the mixing bowl with the dry ingredients, and stir with a wooden spoon until the dry ingredients are combined. The batter will be a little runny (think soup). If you find that the batter is too thick and pancake like, add more milk (regular). Make sure the batter is clear of lumps.
4. With a pastry brush, brush the surface of large (non-stick) skillet with cooking oil. Heat it over medium heat. Test skillet after a couple of minutes by drizzling a few few drops of water onto the cooking surface. If the drops sizzle and evaporate, the surface is hot enough.
5. Turn the heat down to medium. For each crepe, spoon or ladle about 1/4 cup of the batter into the center of the skillet. Holding onto the handle of the pan, remove it from the heat and swirl the pan so the batter coats the bottom of the pan. You want to make the coating as thin as possible. If you have holes in the crepe, go ahead and add more batter to the pan to cover them. Return to heat.
6. As the batter cooks, it will dry and lose its shine (~ 2 minutes). Once this happens, use a non-metal spatula and carefully flip the crepe over. Finish cooking the crepe on the other side (~ 45 seconds).
7. Gently slide the cooked crepe onto an ovenproof plate, and keep the finished crepes warm in an oven set at 195 degrees.
Assembling the Crepes:
- If using raspberry jam, place a small amount the center of the crepe. Pipe mascarpone cream filling, and carefully roll.


- Drizzle with chocolate ganache sauce and dust with icing sugar.