May 31, 2012

Pregnancy Cravings

Jordan was really hoping I would experience some bizarre pregnancy cravings. I think he looked forward to me eating Pickles and Ice Cream. To his disappointment, I have not craved anything abnormal.
Mostly, I crave fruit & cold beverages. {If those 2 things happen to be involved in the same edible form - GREAT! Jamba Juice & I have had somewhat of a love affair.}
Normally, I am a chocoholic and ice cream addict.
Those things have not been so appetizing to me.
Instead of Chocolate Chip Cookies, I have been making
Lemon Crinkle Cookies
I found this recipe on Pinterest & it sparked my {p}interest :) because this recipe won the LDS Cookie Bake-Off. I will warn you, if you make a single batch you will be sorely disappointed. Double it, trust me!

Lemon Crinkle Cookies:
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 egg
1 tsp. lemon zest
1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/8 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 cups flour
Powdered Sugar

Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg, lemon zest and juice. Scrape sides of bowl and mix again. In separate bowl combine dry ingredients (excluding powdered sugar). Combine with creamed mixture. Roll dough balls in powdered sugar and place on greased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 9 - 11 minutes or until just browned on the bottom and top looks matte (not shiny). Cool on hot cookie sheet for 3 minutes before cooling on wire racks.

I made this cake the other day and both, Jordan & I, have been counting down the minutes until we could eat another piece.
Mandarin Orange Pineapple Cake

{I have never liked mandarin oranges, but I may be converted.}
So do yourself a favor and make this easy-as-pie cake.

Mandarin Orange Pineapple Cake:
1 yellow or white cake mix
1 large can of mandarin oranges, separate oranges from juice BUT save juice

Follow directions on box for cake, BUT replace water for mandarin orange juice. Stir chopped up mandarin oranges into batter. Bake as directed on box.
Cool completely before frosting.

1 med. size Cool Whip (or 2, 8 oz. containers)
1, 4 oz. package vanilla pudding
1 can Del Monte crushed pineapple, drained of juice

Mix 3 ingredients together (discard pineapple juice) and frost cooled cake. Refrigerate cake, it gets better each day!

In somewhat unrelated news, I found this image on Pinterest  & sent it to Jordan. He got a kick out of it because it pretty much sums me up.

Happy Baking!

Oliver's Room

Our little Oliver

has quite the room awaiting him upon his arrival into this world. With lots of help/generosity from family, we are ready for him to come.  My sweet Mom got us the crib bedding & the 2 Nursery Rhyme pics above it. The crib is from Jordan's sister, Jenni, I just had to paint it. The rug is one of my Great-Grandma's rag rugs.
{The blanket hanging is the one I made for the little guy.}
My parents donated the white bookshelf & my Aunts who just trekked across the country for antique shopping brought it to me. The books were donated by Heather, Mom, and Bethany. The pictures and frames were gifts from Mom and Heather. The Winnie the Pooh beanie babies are treasures from my
 past. The red frame on top (still in its packaging) is for

Oliver’s baby picture once he makes his grand

appearance. My glider chair was a gift from Elyce & Anita. {I have ALWAYS wanted a glider chair to rock my babies to sleep.} My Mom made the cute snuggly blanket (along with dozens of others that are neatly folded in that there closet).
These pictures were all collections through the years {since I knew this would be the theme to my nursery a while ago}. Jordan found the lighthouse night light for me at an antique store {I love lighthouses & dream of owning a lighthouse house one day}. The knitted hat was an adorable find by Aunt Bethany. The fabulously soft elephant is from my sister-in-law Ginny and her mother {I him}. And finally, the dresser is from my parents, I just fixed it up with some paint and knobs.
I am still considering whether or not a changing table is needed.

Also searching for the perfect letter "O" {for Oliver }

to hang somewhere. So there are still a few finishing touches to be done, but pretty much...we are ready for this guy to come play with us.

May 30, 2012

Goodness In Arizona

During my last trip to Arizona as a carefree childless woman, I got to do some fun things with my fam.
Side Note: Waiting in the airport to fly to Arizona, I looked out the terminal window and saw a gentleman grilling up some grub...
It was 9 a.m., a little early for burgers, I would say.

Jordan and Elyce flew in on the same night. The next day Jordan went camping with his friends overnight while the rest of us got ready for my baby shower .
Once Jordan got home we all drove out to the new Rudy's in Chandler.
{Remember we fell in love with it here & oh, how we wish they had one in Tulsa.}
{Be sure to look allllll the way down the table...those are little Shillipeppers at the end.}
It was the perfect place to go and eat together with 8 kiddos under the age of 8, but not be too disruptive to others.

Mmmm...Good Eats!
Is this vintage-esque Charlie Brown shirt not the cutest thing?!?
The next day we went to the Phoenix Children's Museum.
Heather & I supervising the kids at the "car wash" - the kids ride trikes through the car wash.
(Earlier that day I went swimming with Elyce, Lucy, and Nora - - that is why I am sportin' a sunburn.)
There is always room for one more on an elevator. NOT, I will take the stairs, thank you!
Drool face...Drake, not my mom.
This room had felt words with Velcro on the backs and the walls were also lined with Velcro so you could create funny sentences. It was pretty clever.
Grandpa supervised / took a nap.
The Noodle Jungle...I want one in my house please!
Not sure what this was exactly, but it sure looks like it must be fun by the look on Mom's face. :)
Break time for the adults. Loading up on some caffeine, I believe.
These guys were shopping in the grocery store...they push their kid size grocery carts through the aisles of play food and then check out at the cash registers. It is one of the favorite areas.
The crown jewel of the museum was not pictured for whatever reason...there is a mega cool jungle gym. {Like McDonald's Play Place on crack.}
Norie liked sitting with her best bud {Grandpa} in the reading area while he read.
Thanks Betty for getting us all in for FREE! Fun was had by all!
Later that night we had a very nice dinner, game, and video presentation (pictures from the last decade) with the Rogers. It was very rare that we were all in town at the same time.
It was fabulous to be in Mesa for Mother's Day!
Jordan got me 'Pre-Mother's Day' Roses before I left for Arizona,
and I get this lovely necklace
once Baby Boy is born.{Since he is due at the end of July, we don't know if the birthstone will be a ruby or peridot for August.}
Anyway, everyone came to Mom & Dad's to celebrate.
Elyce and Oscar
Nora, Mom, Lucy
Joey (I call him Josephine), Heather, Chris
Blake and Elyce
Hallie, Mom, Oscar
Bennett, Adam, Jocelyn
Mom, Chris, Joey
Beth and Mom
Mom and Boyd
Joey and Elyce
And my personal favorite...
Mom and Ben
I stayed a few days extra after Elyce & Jordan flew back home to Colorado and Tulsa.
I was able to join my parents for a nice little afternoon in the sweltering heat to see the Angel Moroni be placed on top of the Gilbert temple.
On His way...
{Moroni is attached to the crane on the right.}
And His final destination.
As you can see from the second picture, it was the popular place to be at 2 in the afternoon in temperatures in the triple digits. Thankfully, Sam's Club was close by and provided a much needed cooling off space. It was really neat to see the 12+ foot, gold-leafed angel reach the top.
The day I flew home I finished up a quilt I made for our Baby Boy.
It was my first quilt I sewed together from start to finish. Thanks Mom for teaching me!
{There is a picture of it completed in the coming completed Nursery post.}
We also managed to make 4 batches of Apricot Jam. My parents Apricot tree only provided 1 apricot last year and this year it was loaded to the max. All the neighbors and family had picked it over and there were still apricots coming out of our ears so we made the jam. I brought home 1 tiny jar and am looking forward to my parents coming pre-birth and bringing me more. So delicious!
I got to stuff myself silly with lots of Mexican food (since Tulsa does not offer what I would consider mouth-watering Mexican cuisine - besides Chuy's). I also ate a lot of frozen yogurt and Nielsen's Chocolate Covered Cherry Custard - my favorite! It will be too long before I can return to Arizona. A lot has to happen between now and then, BUT, Bethany, I promise, it will be sooner than a year. {The crazy girl thinks she won't see me for the entire next year.}
 In the meantime, I have these memories to hold me over.
Thanks for the memories.
Oh, and Jordan, THANK YOU for my very fashionable compression socks & all the foot rubs...after weeks of not recognizing my own feet, it turns out they were under all that moosh after all.

May 29, 2012

Baby Shower

My generous and infinitely talented sisters and mom
threw me a baby shower in Arizona.
I was so excited to be able to make the trip home (Yes, I think Arizona is home).
It had been way too long since I had been there (Christmas).
The theme of the shower was Children's Books, since that is what I am decorating Baby Boy's nursery with.
The invitations, designed & put together by Bethany & Company...
Heather outdid herself with the decorations...
not only did she make me a diaper cake, but it is a Winnie the Pooh honey tree diaper cake.
She also spent endless hours in thrift stores on the hunt for children's books.
If you can't tell by the picture, in front of the salads are books called A is for Salad, Monsters Don't Eat Broccoli in front of the broccoli salad, & Oliver's Fruit Salad in front of the fruit salad. She made Green Eggs & Ham {Deviled Eggs, the yolks dyed green with pureed spinach and topped with bacon bits} with the book displayed next to it. Anyway, clever things like this that only she could come up with.
She made the following as well {you know, in her spare time}...

There were many hours spent in the kitchen by all of these special ladies {and more} making the 'Best of the Best' treats so all of my guests and I could over-load in deliciousness.
 It killed me that I was pretty much ZERO help in the kitchen. As soon as I stepped foot, or feet, in Arizona my feet swelled to ENORMOUS proportions...I am blaming it on the heat because they have since gone down. So I was of no help, but thankfully, Elyce let me boss her around and do the things I would have been doing if my feet didn't have to be propped up.
Holly made the party favors which were these cute bookmarks...thanks Holly!
We so very much missed your cute buns!
Also, in Holly's spare time {She & Heather spend their spare time eating Bon Bons & watching soap operas. NOT...they both have 5 kids to raise.}
she made me and baby this darling quilt!
Sharon gave me matching outfits for Cadbury and Baby...will definitely need some pictures of the two together.
Bethany captured this cute picture of some of my nieces & great-nieces who were there.
{Did you know that I am a Great-Aunt? Yep, multiplied by 8!}
It was fun to see everybody and I sure loved getting back to Tulsa and putting the nursery all together. Thanks to EVERYONE who helped spoil me and make me feel so very special. I have the best family!
(Coming Soon - post of nursery!)