Wednesday, August 29, 2012

School Days

I have ALWAYS enjoyed being with my kids.  I love their company and have felt close to them during their growing up years.
When my oldest two children were little, the laws that are now in place for attendance were non existent, therefore, we would sluff frequently; at least during grade school when learning used to be slower and catching up was a piece of cake.
One of my boys would hide behind the large trunk of a tree when the bus came by and then come home claiming he had missed the bus.  I didn't have a vehicle and he knew I could not take him to school.  We enjoyed the days together.
I fortunately have never lived where year round school has been implemented.
I happen to LOVE the Summer when my children are out of school and we have always had a blast experiencing things together.
Summertime is so fleeting and the day school is back in session is dreaded.  My oldest boys are both out of high school.  My younger two started school yesterday.  Time is precious and I dislike the day school starts.  On a positive note, it requires us to be more grounded.  My grass will now get more water and the overgrown yard will get the attention it deserves.

This year was a bit different; I still felt the pulling of my heart strings as I sent my children off to new schools; with one attending sixth grade where she has a locker and class periods.  The other is in tenth grade and at the high school now.  They both seem so grown up and each year seems to be a little more tough for me.  This time, my semester at college began the same day as my kids first day.  It provided a nice distraction and made it fun when I asked my kids about how their first day was, they in turn, asked me how my first day was.  I have really great professors and am excited to learn and for all the experiences we will encounter this year.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Grandma's Peach Dessert

16 graham crackers crushed
1/4 C. sugar
1/2 C. chopped nuts
1/2 C. butter, melted
Combine above ingredients and place half of the mixture into a 9X13 pan.

In a heavy saucepan, melt a 16 oz. bag of miniature marshmallows and 1C. of milk.  Let cool.  Whip one pint of cream till stiff peaks form and fold into cooled marshmallow mixture.
Pour half of the milk mixture onto crust.  Slice 8-10 peaches over the milk mixture.  Pour the remaining milk mixture over the peaches and sprinkle the remaining half of the graham cracker crust mixture over the top.  Refrigerate.  

This is my Grandma's Peach Dessert recipe.  It is yummy and even better the next day.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Hanna, Utah

Spent the weekend in a place called Hanna, Utah.  It was super fun and relaxing!  My friend had a birthday party at his family's estate.
He was a most gracious host keeping us very well fed and entertained!  We enjoyed awesome grilled salmon and a cozy campfire while being serenaded.  Comfortable sleeping quarters in his spacious house were provided (not that we got much sleep we were by the campfire until 3 a.m.).
Saturday morning, we rode horses and four wheelers, herded cows that had managed to escape, and floated the river.  We even encountered a water snake!
This colt was very friendly, walked right up to me.
Had a most enjoyable time and met some awesome new friends!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Peach Pie

This pie is delicious and very simple to make.
I just received a bushel basket of peaches and a large box of pears! I will be making and posting things to do with both.
Love this time of year!
Autumn is by far my favorite; I can hardly wait for cool nights, harvest moons, and brilliantly colored leaves!

Pie Crust
2 C. flour (remove 1/3 C. set aside)
1 tsp. salt
1/2 C. shortening
1/2 C. butter
1/3 C. ice water

Preheat oven to 400*.  Mix flour, salt, shortening, and butter with a pastry blender.  Mix the reserved flour with the ice water then stir into the flour/shortening mixture till just combined.
Roll out 2 crusts and line two pie tins.  Pierce crusts with fork. Place in freezer for 20 minutes.  Bake for 10-12 minutes. 

2 Tblsp. corn starch
6 Tblsp. Tang
1/2 C. sugar
1 & 1/3 C. water
2 tsp. lemon juice
Boil ingredients together stirring constantly for one minute.  Set aside to cool.

8 ounces softened cream cheese
1/2 C. powdered sugar
8 ounces thawed Cool Whip
Mix cream cheese and sugar till smooth.  Fold in Cool Whip.  Spread mixture into cooled crusts.

Slice 4 large peaches and arrange on top.  Place 3/4 C. blueberries on top as well.  Drizzle with glaze.


Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Zucchini Brownies

Another Zoo--Keee--Nee post!  I made some brownies with zucchini too!  My sister claims these should not be called brownies as they are more cake-like.  They are nonetheless delicious and your kids will not even know zucchini is in them!
My finicky daughter even eats these.
(loving my cell phone for a camera)

Mystery Brownies

2 C. sugar
1/2 C. baking cocoa 
1 C. oil
3 eggs
1 tsp. water
1/2 C. evaporated milk
1 Tblsp. vanilla
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. baking powder
2 C. grated zucchini
1 tsp. salt
2 & 1/2 C. flour
1 C. chopped nuts

Mix above ingredients together.  Smooth onto a greased jellyroll pan.  Bake 25 minutes at 350*.  Frost with your favorite chocolate frosting.

Zucchini Bread

I bought my home a little late to take advantage of this year's growing season.  My Dad let me plant a zucchini plant in his garden and it has been yielding tons!
I absolutely love eating zucchini; even raw!  My kids think I am crazy.
I love zucchini soup, zucchini chimichangas, zucchini muffins, zucchini pancakes, zucchini in my scrambled eggs; you get the idea.
This zucchini recipe is one I have adjusted through the years to make it so it gets done and remains moist throughout.

Zucchini Bread

Mix: 3 eggs, 1 C. oil, 2 tsp. vanilla
Add: 1 C. sugar, 1 C. brown sugar, 2 C. grated zucchini
Stir in 3 C. flour, 1 tsp. soda, 1/4 tsp. baking powder, 1 tsp. salt, 2 tsp. cinnamon 1/2 tsp. nutmeg, and 1/2 C. chopped nuts.
Pour into four small sized greased loaf pans.
Bake 325* for one hour or until done.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Pizza, Red Velvet Cake, and a Sunset

My kids have been asking me to make pizza for a few weeks now.  I finally got around to doing so today.  I love the crust recipe I have; it has garlic powder and oregano in the crust which adds tremendously to the flavor.  Yum.  I made one with pepperoni and olives, and one with ham and pineapple.  I wanted to make one with zucchini and tomatoes, but got ruled out.  They were both delicious!  

To top it off, my oldest boy came over and made red velvet cake.  

We ended the evening with a walk and enjoyed the view.  

Causey Reservoir

                                                                                   The reservoir 

 My kids in the canoe

I am somewhat of a dinosaur by nature and have thus excluded myself from the cell phone club until a few days ago.  I am a tad reclusive and enjoy hitting the hills and not being available at any given moment.  Not to mention the fact that I happen to think people can be most rude with their cell phones when they treat them as if they are the very reason of their existence.  However,  I finally jumped on the band wagon and am now the owner of a cell.  I am still uncertain as to whether texting should be the new form of communication; but am also realizing that it does have its perks.  I enjoy that when I am in the mountains, I cannot get reception and am still left to the sounds of the forest.
As many of you know, I am not a photographer and have been using my son's old camera that has been on its way out with a bad light sensor for quite some time.
Well, the largest cell phone perk is that they have awesome cameras in them!!  I took mine with me to try it out at the Causey Reservoir this weekend and loved how the pictures turned out.  It was a gorgeous day spent with a fun group of friends and two of my kids!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Moist Cornbread

Made some yummy cornbread last night.  It is a very easy recipe and makes the most moist cornbread ever!  Yum!

1 C. flour
1 C. cornmeal
1/4 C. sugar
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 egg
1/3 C. milk
1/4 C. melted butter
1 C. sour cream

Combine dry ingredients then stir in wet ingredients.  Spread into an 8X8 pan.  Bake at 350* 20 minutes.
Smother with honey butter and devour!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Raspberry Days

Bear Lake is one of my favorite places on earth.  Every August, there is a celebration held there called, "Raspberry Days".  It begins with a parade followed by, a craft fair, fireworks, and my personal favorite, a boat parade; people decorate their boats with lights, wait for dark, and parade them down a section of the lake.  The boats were all decked out and very festive this year; some sailboats even joined the procession.
We stayed at my Grandma's place on the lakefront.  It was fun to spend time with my family!  The weekend included a ride on the ranger up the canyon where we spotted moose, games of cards, rides on the jet skis, paddle board excursions, the traditional purchase of a raspberry shake, and a trip to Bloomington Lake.
The nights were crisp and cool, the days were filled with adventure and fun!  The moon was full and the reflection of the fireworks on the lake was breathtaking.

This one was taken at Bloomington Lake.