Friday, December 28, 2012

Olive Bread, So Good

     Oh my heavens, have I got a recipe for you. This recipe comes from The Pioneer Woman's Blog, which I get every morning, and I am convinced that if we met in real life we would be instant best friends. I tried this last night with a few variations. I used pre-sliced french bread and I skipped the green onions. And because I used the pre-sliced french bread I only had to put it under the broiler for about five minutes. This was like a delicious pizza without the nasty sauce. 
     Seriously, I made this my dinner last night. And don't be afraid of the Mayo, because it just helps make it creamy, you can't taste it. I also had mozzarella on hand so that's what I used. One more quick tip make sure the butter is very soft. It helps it spread easier. It was so good. Give it a shot.


  • 1 loaf French Bread
  • 6 ounces, weight Pimiento-stuffed Green Olives
  • 6 ounces, weight Black Olives
  • 2 stalks Green Onions (scallions)
  • 1 stick Butter, Room Temperature
  • 1/2 cup Mayonnaise
  • 3/4 pounds Monterey Jack Cheese, Grated

Preparation Instructions

Roughly chop both black olives and pimiento-stuffed green olives. Slice green onions into thin pieces.
Combine butter, mayonnaise, cheese, olives and green onions in a mixing bowl. Stir together until thoroughly combined. Spread mixture onto French bread that has been sliced lengthwise. Bake at 325ºF for 25 to 30 minutes or until cheese is melted and browning.
Mixture can also be refrigerated (up to two days) and used as a dip. Great with crackers.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Time To Take Down The Tree

     Have you taken down your Christmas decorations yet? Has your tree found a new home on the curb? I am always a little unsure of when it should all be taken down and put away for next year. Some people are superstitious and believe that you have to take it down on New Years for good luck in the New Year.
     In the past we have taken our tree down as late as two weeks after Christmas because the kids couldn't bear to part with it. This year I think it may go sooner than that, providing I don't have a mutiny on my hands.
Some of our kids still don't think I should take the tree down sooner rather than later. Our tree is pretty dead and taking up valuable real estate in my kitchen. What? It was the only place we had to put it this year since we have filled every available space with people.
     We had a great Christmas with family, and presents, and lots of good food. I hope yours was just as good. Now off to strip the tree before it becomes even more of a fire hazard. Maybe I'll find a gift card I missed. :)

Monday, December 24, 2012

Ready Or Not Here It Comes

     Ready or not here it comes. Today is the big day, because tomorrow will be too late. I hope you are done wrapping, baking, shopping and sitting in front of a fire with eggnog, or your drink of preference in a mug, enjoying some Christmas music.
     I'm not there yet. Not even close. I hope to be there some time late tonight. I'm keeping my fingers crossed on this one.
     I am wishing all of you a very Merry Christmas. May your families gather in health and safety and share in the spirit of the season.

Friday, December 21, 2012

New Years Resolutions

     It's that time of year again. Time to start thinking of some New Year's resolutions. I would be willing to bet that over the last 32 years of marriage I have had the same resolutions 27 years in a row. I figure this means I am either an eternal optimist or an epic failure. I'll let you decide.     
     The important thing is, I am still going to make them this year too. I haven't narrowed down the details yet and to me the details are the important part. I like to make elaborate lists of goals, setting down rules as to how I'm going to accomplish said goals. (This is probably why I fail.)
      But I'm still going to make them. It's a tradition after all. Here's a few that I have been keeping on the list.
To eat healthier. (This will fall by the wayside on New Year's day.) To be a more patient and better mother. My kids conspire to make this one impossible by driving me crazy.)  To keep to a house cleaning schedule. (Don't tell me what to do.) To try and save more money. (Have I mentioned the fifteen people living in this house? They want to eat daily.) To read my scriptures more consistently. (I actually had some success with this one last year.)
     Those are just a few of the goals I have set for myself and I'm sure there will be about ten more that I can fail at before the snow stops flying.
     Do you make resolutions? More importantly, do you keep them. What had been your greatest success? What had been your worst failure.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

How Can This Be Happening Again?

     I happens every year. I start to get ready for Christmas and I have all these great intentions and then somehow, someway time slips through my fingers and it's here and I'm not ready. I haven't done the baking I wanted to do, I'm not done with my shopping and don't have the food bought. How does this happen?!
     There's still Christmas music I haven't listened to. I need one more week. Can anyone help me with this? If you have the gift of going back in time or slowing down time, now is the time to let me know. I can keep a secret, really.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

My Daughter and Her Bionic Hearing

     How is it that my teenage daughter can hear me tell her sister she's being flaky from two rooms away? I think she has bionic hearing. It makes it really hard to talk about her behind her back. What's up with that?
     I thought teenagers were supposed to be partially deaf. My others always were. They were lost in a teenage world of their own. To be honest I think I prefer it that way. How can you find that release of stress you need while raising teens if they hear every whisper?
     I think it's some kind of conspiracy on her part to drive me crazy. It's working.

Monday, December 17, 2012

20 Random Acts of Kindness

     Is there anyone who hasn't shed a tear at the senseless violence that has happen in our country over the last few weeks? I doubt it.
     At this time of year it seems we should all be rejoicing in the season rather than mourning lost lives. I propose a little something to help mend our hearts and return the focus to happiness. In honor of the children, I am going to try to do 20 random acts of kindness before the end of the month and I invite you to join me. If all of us try to counter evil with good there is no telling what kind of difference we can make, though I suspect the biggest difference will be within our own souls.
     I still believe there is more good in this world than bad. Let's prove it. 

Friday, December 14, 2012

Our Christmas Season So Far

     We have had an eventful week and it's not over yet. This morning we are getting new carpet in our family room because our dog Koda has ruined it. We have to move the entertainment center, which has enough cords and wires to rewire the space shuttle. It may never work again. We also have to move the couch, which is heavy and bulky, but we won't have to rewire that.
     The flu has reared its ugly head at our house, be forewarned if you come over. My daughter passed out tonight in the bathtub as she was vomiting. She landed face first and split her lip open, got a bloody nose and we'll see tomorrow about the black eye.
     We're also trying to get my mother in law ready for her trip to California. Talk about stress, it's never ending around here.
     I can only hope we all get and stay healthy before Christmas comes and that Grandma doesn't get it at all.
     How's your holiday season going? Better than this I hope. :)

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Thank Heaven for Little Boys

     When I was growing up I had two sisters, younger sisters. I also had a younger brother, but he passed away at two years of age. Because of this boys were always a mystery to me. I didn't really understand the way they think and why they act the way they do.
     Now that I am married to one, and have given birth to five of them, they are less of a mystery.
     Boys are much more of a what you see is what you get kind of creature. They usually know what they want and go for it. If they get angry and fight with each other they explode and then it's over. 
     Where as the girls, they fight and two hours later you hear them saying,"And one more thing, remember when you..."  They are kind of like little wives that way. They may forgive, but they never forget.
     My boys have had so many girls around them that they knew just when to stick up for themselves and when to head for the hills. It has made them better husbands and better boyfriends. 
     I enjoy watching my two little boys and trying to see the world through their eyes. They are so curious about things and they enjoy testing their limits. I can't wait to see what kind of men they turn into.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Life is Good When

     What is it about a newborn baby's cry that  makes you want to pick them up and love them and poke your own ear drums out at the same time. I know, you're thinking, "You should be used to that with all your kids," but you never get used to that.
     The best part now is that I don't have to get up and take care of that screaming baby. hahaha. I can roll over and go back to sleep. Although I do have to confess a little bit of anxiety about whether she's being taken care of the way I would do it, but that's the price you pay for being able to go back to sleep. You have to trust that you've raised your kids in such a way that they are ready to take care of the next generation.
     This week alone I have heard all three of my grandkids wake up in the middle of the night. Sofia was throwing up the other night and I heard bath water running at about 2am. That brought a big smile to my face. I not only got to go back to sleep but I didn't have to clean up the barf. lololol Then Liam woke up a couple of times and I just snuggled down into my blankets and drifted away. Then there's little Livia, so tiny, so cute and so hungry. I don't have to change her, nurse her, or try to figure out why she is crying.
      I get to see them every day. I get to hold them when I want to and snuggle with them and kiss their little faces but I don't have to do any of the work. 
    Yes, being the Monna is the reward for having done it all before and now you get to not do it. Life is good.

Monday, December 10, 2012

If Money Were No Object

     Here we are with Christmas knocking at the door and it got me to thinking about presents. If money was no object, like it was you who just collected the Powerball payout of 192 million in cash, what would you want for Christmas?
     Would it be something small and sparkly that would make Elizabeth Taylor swoon, or something you could drive really fast? Use your imaginations and go for the brass ring here. What would it be?

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Let the Season Begin

     We just bought our Christmas tree, let the season begin!
     Of course, as I started stringing the lights I remembered that most of ours burned out last year and now I have to go buy more lights before we can progress. Why does this always happen? You get started on a project and you are stopped in the first three steps. I hope this isn't a sign of things to come.
     I probably have half my shopping done which it more than I had done at this time last year. I also have made a couple of batches of Christmas goodies. I'm feeling really good about that. I have a long way to go though. We have been making cashew brittle the last few years and it is one of our favs. I also make Russian tea cakes, which a few of us love, but the others can take them or leave them. Which is fine with me, more for the rest of us. I also make these little chocolate peanut butter squares that taste just like Reese's peanut butter cups.
     I have attempted to make sugar cookies with icing several times, but they never turn out quite right. I blame the recipe and the altitude, because it couldn't be me.
     I'm looking forward to Christmas a little more this year. I don't know why, it's not like we have more money to spend. It's the same as any other year. I think I have just decided to try and enjoy the season and not stress about it. I'm going to make a special point to enjoy the music, the lights, the food and concentrate on the blessings we already have, instead of what is under the tree.
    And here's to wishing the same for you my friends.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

The Birth Of Baby Livia

     We definitely experienced the highs and lows of the child birth roller coaster yesterday. And I have to say there is nothing worse than seeing your child in pain and not being able to do anything. Then there was the stress of a possible c-section after hours and hours of labor. Thankfully, we were able to avoid that, but after 27 hours of labor poor Karrah was exhausted. Pushing that baby out was a real test of her endurance.
    Luckily she had her mom and two of her sisters there for support and encouragement. I got a chance to see how special our family is. We're not perfect, but we try really hard not to hurt each others feeling and we are always there for each other when someone needs us. Watching Livia's birth brought us closer. And I can tell you that little girl is loved by each of us. She will never lack for family or aunts willing to help her and telling what she's doing wrong and right. If it takes a village to raise a child she has one in her own family. She probably won't be able to truly appreciate that until she holds her own little baby in her arms and is surrounded by family.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

I Love Autumn

     I love autumn. I love cold weather. I love the hazy, gold glow when it is late afternoon and the sun is beginning to set. It is the only time of year that has this feeling.
     Now the trees have been stripped of their leaves in anticipation of winter and the grass is turning a yellow gold.
     Christmas lights are taking the place of pumpkins and scarecrows. Before we know it Christmas will be here.
     I only wish this time of year would last longer and it wasn't quite so stressful.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Just One More

     We all stayed home from church yesterday with sore throats and runny noses. You're welcome.
      It's not the best situation to be bringing home a new baby, but hopefully sometime tomorrow my daughter will have her baby girl and in a few days we will bring her home.
     That will make a grand total of fifteen people living here. I have to say that there are times when it seems hectic, but all in all it hasn't been that bad. Maybe, we're just used to lots of chaos and noise, or maybe our house is big enough not to feel too overcrowded. We do have seven bathrooms, yes seven, with seven bedrooms, eight if you count the living room that we are using as a bedroom. We purposely did that just in case the day came when one of our married kids needed to stay with us for a while with their family. We could see the writing on the wall regarding the economy when we were planning our house.
     We look at this time in our lives as a blessing because we have been able to spend time with our kids as adults and with our grandbabies as infants. Most people don't get to do that. It seems just when your kids are becoming livable and pleasant to be around after the teen years they up and leave. You don't get to enjoy who they have become.
    We are lucky to have this opportunity. When they finish their educations and move I know we won't be able to see them as much and it already makes me sad. Sooner or later they will move away to follow a job or something like that and our time together will be over.
     For hundreds of years people raised their children and then those children grew up married and raised their families right on the same land, or at least in the same town. Those were the good old days. Family is what it's all about. There is always room for one more.