Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Old barns

For any of you that like the country, check out this blog! Wendy and her photos are amazing. Makes me miss home a little.

Friday, November 26, 2010

USA swimming, what to bring to a swim meet.

We gave Nicholas 3-16oz bottles of Nitrilite sport drink replacement. I did not know the dose for him is one bottle the entire meet. Please read below if you are not informed about sport nutrition.

Nutrition Center from usa swimming

Nutritional Cheat Sheet PART ii
BY MIKE MEJIA, M.S., C.S.C.S//Special Correspondent

Provided that you've adhered to the guidelines we published in last week's article, there are a couple of steps you can take the day of the meet to help make sure that you perform at your best.

Eat Breakfast

Start out with a proper breakfast. This does not entail grabbing a bagel with cream cheese and eating it in the car with a large orange juice on the way there. The bagel, especially if it's made with white flour can really jack up your blood sugar levels. Granted, the fat in the cream cheese will blunt this affect somewhat, but add in the OJ and you'll be all fired up for warm-ups and likely crash shortly thereafter.

The best-case scenario is to sit down and eat some slow cooked oatmeal (prepared the night before) with fruit, or some eggs and whole grain toast, or whole grain cereal with skim, or low fat milk. If it's an early meet and you must eat on the run, at least make it a whole grain bagel with peanut butter, as the these two foods together make up what is known as a complete protein by providing your body with all the essential amino acids it needs. Trade in the OJ for a lower sugar sports drink and you're good to go. Some more foods to stay away from include bacon, sausage, croissants, doughnuts and sugary breakfast cereals.

As far as what you should have in your bag for snacking, I think the best way to address this is with a list of what you should bring, vs. what you should not bring.

What to Bring:

1. At least 32 oz. of water to drink during and after the meet.

2. No more than 16-20 oz. of sports drinks that meet the above criteria.

3. Energy bars: Try to stick with bars that have less than 10 grams of fat, and less than 35% of their calories from sugar (the lower the better). To calculate this: multiply the number of grams of sugar by 4 and then divide that number into the total calories.  Some recommended brands include: Kashi TLC Bars, and Odwalla Bars.

4. Whole grain pretzels, crackers and cereals.

5. Nuts, seeds and dried fruit (in limited quantity due to the relatively high sugar content).

6. Lower Sugar Fruits: Strawberries, Apples, Cantaloupe, Blueberries, Raspberries and peaches.

What not to bring, or bring less of: 

1. Chips of any type. Most are loaded with fat and calories.

2. Goldfish, Cheese Nips, or any other types of crackers made with white, enriched flour.

3. White Bagels and Breads.

4. High Sugar Fruits: Banans, Raisins, Pineapple and Grapes.

5. High Sugar Energy Bars: Many types of Power Bars fall into this category.

6. Fruit Juices of any type: Too high in sugar and don't clear the gut as rapidly as sports drinks, possibly leading to stomach cramping.

7. Soda. This one's an absolute no-no!

8. Cookies, candy, gummy bears, or anything else along those lines.

Why can they not make a sport drink with real sugar?

Nicholas was poisioned at a swim meet with a sport drink containing sucralose. I did not know sucralose is splenda! Do you? Please read on if you are not informed on artificial sweetners.
He was so miserable, he was begging we take him to 911 and this lasted with a fever for  4 days!! He had a headache, no appetite, anger, pain, he was oveheated, felt like he was going to blow up, hyperventilating, sour  stomach, he was in a ball, feeling like he was hit by 1000 footballs are his words!
This was very scary. He is sensitive and I am very sorry I did not do my research. He swam 6 events and 2 relays and I thought he needed the replacement. I do not use Gatorade because it is made with high fructose corn syrup.  We see a huge difference when he does not have corn syrup or high fructose corn syrup. The drink I gave him was nutrilite. This is the difference between it and several other competitors.
Compare NUTRILITE® Sports Drinks to Gatorade and Powerade.

  Sports Drinks
 G Original™
 Sports Drinks
Calories 60 50 57
Sodium 110 mg 110 mg 51 mg
Potassium 30 mg 30 mg 32 mg
Sugars 14 g 14 g 15 g
B-Vitamins Yes No Yes
Antioxidants Yes No No
Artificial Colors No Yes Yes
Artificial Flavors No No No
Preservatives No No No
Based on Internet and label claims, August 2010. Serving size = 8 oz.. Trademarks: Gatorade and G-Original (Stokely-Van Camp, Inc., Chicago, IL.); Powerade Sports Drinks (Coca Cola Company, Atlanta, Ga.).

Water, Sucrose, Natural Flavors, Malic Acid, Sodium Chloride, Potassium Citrate, Fumaric Acid, Nutrilite® B-Lenium Blend (Niacinamide, Acerola Concentrate, Maltodextrin, Pantothenic Acid, Pyridoxine, Hydrochloride, Sodium Selenite, Cyanocobalamin [B12]), Sucralose.
Dr. Hull's Book About The Potential Dangers Of Splenda®

Splenda®: Is It Safe Or Not?

In Splenda®: Is It Safe Or Not? Dr. Janet Hull reveals the scientific evidence strongly suggesting the chemical sweetener sucralose may harm your body. Perhaps there is no “free ticket” to eating all the sugar-free products you want without paying a high price physically – even weight gain.
Don’t despair – in Splenda®: Is It Safe Or Not? Dr. Hull gives you plenty of safe alternatives to keep life “sweet” visit Is Splenda
Before you tear open that little yellow packet of sweetener and stir it into your coffee, please read this.

Do you want to:

  • Avoid certain diseases and maintain health and vitality well into your later years?
  • Save your children from a slow poisoning from hidden toxins in their food?
  • Discover scientific data about overlooked poisons in your everyday life?
  • Avoid those vague health symptoms of illness that puzzle your doctor?
  • Be informed with inside information mainstream media won’t tell you?
  • Have control over your health through knowledge?
  • Desire to enjoy your grandchildren (and great-grandchildren)?
  • Not allow advertisers to “teach” you what’s good for you?
Interested?  Then we need to talk about a sweetener war sweeping across America.  Perhaps you can sip on that cup of coffee black until we straighten out the confusing selection of artificial sweeteners out there.  This information is a tool to protect your health – and your children’s health – from a hidden danger that marketing experts have packaged attractively and seductively.  You’ll be shocked at what the “quiet side” of scientific research reveals.
It’s time to admit that there is no free ticket to eating all the sugar-free products you desire without paying the high price of harming your body in the long run.  The “technology of foods” (artificial sweeteners and manmade foods) has gone too far, and will not secure eternal health, beauty, slimness, or youth.  Laboratory sugar-free chemicals are not your answer.
This information will “wake you up” more than that mug of java you’re holding.  But don’t despair – there are plenty of safe alternatives to keep life “sweet.”


The dangers of aspartame are now widely known, but the risks of using Splenda are not documented – until now. Splenda may not penetrate the blood brain barrier as aspartame does, hence entering the brain and creating neurotoxin havoc at the brain center, but Splenda CAN adversely affect the body in several ways because it IS a chemical substance and not natural sugar.
December newsletter Equal Sues Splenda
The same patterns with aspartame (NutraSweet/Equal) are repeating with sucralose (Splenda). Their claims of product safety and research results are identical to those used by The NutraSweet Company.  Note the comparisons and repetitions between the products, the corporations, and marketing.  Maybe now, consumers can prevent damage to human health sooner than with NutraSweet, which has damaged the health and lives of millions of innocent consumers since it was placed in the public food supply in 1982.
Has the FDA repeated the aspartame approval process for sucralose, allowing a product with proven carcinogens to flood our food supply?  Only time will tell, as it has with aspartame. Yet at the cost of human lives.
Knowledge is power.  As an educated consumer, you have the awareness to choose what you and your family will ingest.  Unnatural artificial sweeteners may affect your health.  Why take the chance?  With this book, you woke up and smelled the coffee just in time.  Now you can drink it safely.  

SPLENDA® Is It Safe or Not?

After twenty years of NutraSweet® (aspartame) dominating the sweetener market, people are realizing for themselves that aspartame really is a foul food chemical tragically harmful to their health. Now, people think Johnson & Johnson’s Splenda, made from sucralose, has come to the rescue as the newest chemical sugar replacement “made from real sugar.” People don’t want to hear that it may be just as dangerous as aspartame, and this white knight of sweeteners is no better improvement. 
New chemical sweeteners (like Splenda) and the sweetener blends (aspartame, sucralose and acesulfame K blended together in one product) may be causing users to show signs of weight gain, disruption of sleep patterns, sexual dysfunction, increases in cancer, MS, Lupus, diabetes, and a list of epidemic degenerative diseases. The corporations continue to stand tough in their denial of any connection to chemical sweetener additives.
This website takes you into the world of Splenda; ready or not, here we go again.

The Chlorine In Splenda

Chlorine is commonly found in nature, but almost always in combination with other building block elements. Chlorine's structure makes it very reactive and because it is so reactive, it is very useful to chemists, engineers and others involved in making things humans use every day.
The inventors of Splenda admit around fifteen percent (15%) of sucralose is absorbed by the body, but they cannot guarantee us (out of this fifteen percent) what amount of chlorine stays in the body and what percent flushes out.
So, do you feel lucky today as you sprinkle that yellow packet of powder in your tea?  You will be alarmed once you realize how chlorine, this common chemical we’ve trusted as a “purifier”, is actually affecting our health in more ways than you know.  Hopefully, this chapter will make you hesitate before you let your toddler take another sip of your diet cola.
What Are Sweetener Blends?
I’ve written about how artificial sweeteners like sucralose (found in Splenda) and aspartame (found in NutraSweet) can have a negative impact on your health.  Now the sweetener industry has gone a step further in their quest to copy real sugar’s sweet flavor. They are mixing Splenda and NutraSweet and other artificial sweeteners together! Mixtures of any artificial sweeteners are called “sweetener blends.”
Instead of one harmful chemical coursing through your body, you now have two or three (or more) interacting with each other, and in ways we may not know yet.  If one substance is hazardous, do you think adding toxins to it will make it better?  It is just one more potent “alien” mixture with unknown interactions that your poor body will try to use, excrete, or store. Its mix n’ match chemistry at the expense of your health.
The Unsafe Sweeteners Out There
Artificial sweeteners: This category of non-nutritive, high-intensity sugar substitutes includes ASPARTAME, ACESULFAME-K, NEOTAME, SUCRALOSE, and ALITAME. The two sweeteners that have recently undergone current and pending FDA approval are SUCRALOSE and ALITAME, respectively. Cyclamate lost its FDA approval in 1970, but is currently up for re-approval. Numerous new sweeteners are currently in various stages of development and approval.
Saccharin, Stevia and Other Safe Alternative Sweeteners
Sugar and the quest for weight loss represent an enormous growth opportunity for the food and beverage manufacturers worldwide. And as everyone in the industry knows, the average human prefers taste to nutrition.  Let’s see how we can reverse this trend.
The two safest choices of sweeteners to date are saccharin and stevia. Yes, saccharin! Saccharin is actually similar to stevia in its origin.  It originally came from a plant imported from China, and in its original form, is a complex sugar extract from the plant itself.  Stevia is extracted from a plant grown in South America, and is also a complex sugar extract.
According to FDA documents, saccharin has never caused cancer. Years ago, saccharin was sold in tiny pin-sized pellets, and merely two or three were enough to add sweetness to coffee or iced tea.  This is what I consider a natural sucrose (sugar) substitute!
The Real Scoop On Sugar
Everyone needs to know that there is a difference between sugars - natural sugar, refined sugar, and corn syrup.  Sugar is like a two-sided coin: heads – if natural, it can be useful to the body, and tails – if altered by man, it can be harmful to the body.  How do you know the difference, and where can you buy the right kind of sugar products?  Here’s the scoop...artificial sweeteners are not the solution.
Dying To Be Thin: Weight Loss and Weight Gain
Do diet sweeteners really help you lose weight, or do you eat more and gain weight in the long run?  Do diet sweeteners make you fat? Yes, because they trick your body and don’t feed it what it needs
According to researchers, there is no clear-cut evidence that sugar substitutes help people lose weight. These days, more and more data suggests that these chemical sweeteners may actually stimulate appetite.  Aspartame has been on the market for over twenty years, so most of the information in this chapter refers to weight gain in relation to products made with aspartame.  It is too early to know how these patterns will repeat with sucralose (Splenda).
Are Your Kids Depressed and Aggressive?
If you have kids, you’ll be the first one to notice health and behavioral changes in your children. Children are reacting to artificial sweeteners in harmful ways, but this aspect of the sweetener wars has gone unnoticed in the mainstream health community.  The sweetener corporations market to children by placing soft drink machines in public elementary schools, and by influencing doctors that diet sweeteners don’t cause abnormal behavior and emotional stress in children. When you have exhausted all the other reasons for your child’s poor health or mental/emotional problems, then diet chemicals could be the culprit.
The rising numbers of mental disorders have gone unexplained until now. A diet of chemical foods means a diet of malnutrition, and when the body is starved of nutrients, it becomes mentally and physically stressed. Don’t raise your children on diet chemicals – search for healthy alternatives.
Sugar-Free With Diabetes
Diabetes may be a common disease these days, but it is still misunderstood.  Most people think diabetes is simply a disease that means you just can’t eat sugar. The artificial sugar industry markets fake sugars as totally harmless to the diabetic, and tempts them into believing they can eat and drink all they want by “tricking” their bodies. But what works for one person may not work for another. What makes this matter even more difficult to understand: diabetes is just a little bit different for every diabetic.  This is why no one artificial sweetener company can truly make a blanket statement that their product is “safe for diabetics.” 
As delicate as diabetes is, how then, can diet chemical sweeteners be safe when a person with diabetes requires such precise chemical management? 

Who Will Win The Sweetener Wars?

The immediate dramatic success of Splenda has shaken things up in the artificial-sweetener business, dominated for decades by the rivalry between the blue and pink - Equal and Sweet'N Low®.  Each of these brands has come up with a new marketing approach to deal with the ravenous dynamics of the ‘diet’ marketplace.  Are they playing fair or playing on consumer trust?
In the midst of the continued controversy over aspartame, many pharmaceutical and health food manufacturers - Pro Lab, Twin Lab
and Ross Products, makers of Pedialyte®, for example - have switched to using sucralose in their manufactured products.  But who are these major big corporations ‘fighting’ in the artificial sweetener wars, and what do these mega corporations really stand for?  This is an important question to answer before buying their products.

Rising From The Grave’s Disease

Justin Dumais is a 2004 Athens' Olympic Silver Medalist, a Grave’s Disease survivor, and aspartame victim. Merely months before the Olympic trials, Justin contacted me for nutritional help in recovering from a diagnosis of Grave’s Disease caused by diet colas with aspartame. He read my first book Sweet Poison, followed my recovery experience from my own case of Grave’s caused by aspartame, and cured his disease in six weeks (just like I did) by simply removing aspartame from his diet, cleansing, and restoring his depleted nutrients. His recovery from a “false” diagnosis of Grave’s Disease came merely months before the 2004 Athen’s Olympic Trials. But, like me, did Justin really have Grave’s or merely aspartame disease?
Nutritional Alternatives To Stay Healthy
Nutritional diets are critical to long-term health, but when you are polluted with chemical toxins from your foods, such as chlorine in sucralose and methanol in aspartame, it is important to remove these toxins as quickly and as safely as possible. Removing chemicals from the human body is a two part process – eating right and cleansing from the chemicals permeating your tissues. 
Go here for the nutritional protocol for restoring good health I used to recovery from my own near-fatal disease. I pass on to you the best of my nutritional programs and recommendations for removing harmful food chemicals from your body in the 10 Steps to Detoxification and The Richardson Cancer Diet, most importantly – how to cleanse from artificial sweetener chemicals.

Splenda Product List

As of May 2004, the list of over 3,000 products containing Splenda was thirty-four pages in length.  Note: some of the products are not labeled sugar-free, and some products also contain aspartame.  The best advise is to read ALL the labels on anything you buy for you or for your children’s safety.
The list includes a variety of foods and food products, pharmaceuticals and children’s medications, vitamin supplements, protein powders, protein bars and weight loss products, liquid and powdered drinks, popcorn, gums and mints, toothpaste, and water.

Aspartame Case Histories

Case histories are an excellent way to share the experiences of those who have faced one of life’s hardest challenges – nutritionally turning disease into health.  Most of these case histories have happy endings, and after considering the evidence, especially after their long and arduous struggles for health, what these people have learned serves as a beacon of hope for others. 
Aspartame has been on the market since 1981, so over twenty years of aspartame use has passed.  Let’s hope our new awareness of the influences of sucralose and the other chemical sweeteners comes much sooner to prevent any more human suffering.

NutraSweet Product List

The original product list containing NutraSweet’s twenty-year product monopoly is impossible to find these days.  Taken from my book on aspartame, Sweet Poison, the original list of NutraSweet’s novel 5,000 products from the 1980s was sent to me directly from the NutraSweet Company.

Splenda Research Studies

Bottom line – what’s the research say about sucralose?  Well, the studies proving the safety concerns are out there, but they are hard to find and technical.  Nonetheless, they prove the claims of concern are valid and I have spent the past 10 months uncovering the research thanks to my contacts around the world.
With this website, you woke up and smelled the coffee just in time.  Now you can drink it safely.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Closing Yellowstone Nov 4 2010

 The new overlook at Gibbon falls. They did a great job with the new bypass and parking. I thought it looked great. Nicholas was thinking he was not feeling well after looking over the edge. The wind was cold and and day was overcast. The drive into the park we saw Bison, Elk and squirrels. The kids used the animal park list and found almost all of them by the time the park closed.
 Jeff Surprised me and took me to the time share in West Yellowstone for the night. He told the kids it was a surprise. He packed the bags, food, everything! He even brought swimsuits for the boiling river!
Nicholas has a art for finding hearts! He found this heart on the chair in the time share, after dropping a lego and bending down to get it, he yells "MOM THERE IS A HEART FOR YOU!" I am amazed by his will to find hearts for his mama!
 We had never stopped at the Sheepeater Cliffs. They were really cool and Jeff loves columnar basalt. The kids learned something new!
 This is the first and original entrance to Yellowstone National Park. It is grand and beautiful. I am so glad to have gotten to see it for the first time in our 15 years spent in and out of the park by way of the west entrance. This is at the north end of the park and was so cool!
 Mountain sheep were hanging on the hill outside Mammoth. There were about 7 sheep and they did not care we were there.
 This is the parking area to the only hot springs you can soak in Yellowstone. The Gardner river flows through and allows for cooler water to make it a great soak! It was extra hot this time and really enjoyed by all of us. It is one of our favorite spots. We still need to get Grandma Kristi there. Maybe next year!
Dad, this is going to be so fun, don't you think?

Paisley is excited to be taking her baby to the hot springs for the first time, she even brought a bathing suit for her!

Nicholas along the trail to the hot springs. He loves to float the river along the hot springs!

 Now those are some serious cockle burs!!
Upper terrace at Mammoth, so dry!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Halloween 2010

We took the kids to Calvary Harvest party and then to a few houses in the neighborhood. They enjoyed it and were ready for bed after a few treats. Nicholas was a storm trooper and Paisley was a kitty. She did not wear the entire costume, maybe next year. I baked a GF cake and made soup. Jeff traveled home from Spokane with grape juice for some yummy wine to be made soon.  He is great at making wine and loves it. He is very excited to be playing in some since it has been almost 5 years.

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Saturday, October 30, 2010

Happy Birthday Aunt Ann

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Tuesday, August 31, 2010

2010 First day of 2nd grade and preschool

It was a rainy morning. Nicholas got up at 3:45 am and said it is time!  We tried to get him to go back to luck. He wore a new pair of jeans from grandma Kristi and his favorite Toni Hawk green shirt from Grandma Alcie.  He was styling and even wore his new hiking boots. He ate a great breakfast and Paisley woke up at 6:30 am.  She walked Nicholas out to his bus in her jammies, barefoot in the pouring rain, hugged him and said have a good day brother.  I cried....he has the best bus driver and aide. Marge is a godsend and really loves him.  He is liking the special needs bus much better than his old bus.  It was too loud and way too crazy per Nicholas.  He had a good day per his teacher. He did not have much to say, just wanted to line up his Lego's when he came in off the bus. His teacher Mrs Huntsman is great and she said" Hello, for the most part I feel that Nick had a good day.  As the day wore on and he began to tire he was resistant to working.  However, when I sat with him he started to work.  He did not cause any problems in class, he was well behaved and seemed to make a friend.  He did very well in the assembly even with all the noise."  He ate a snack and it was time to go play for 45 minutes with is dear friend Hallie. She asked if he could play and he was out the door like a rocket!  His special ed teacher even called to see how his day was. She made sure he got off his bus and to his class. She put him back on the bus to come home and said he did really well.  What a hard day for a boy who is so sensitive to change, noise, routine, sleep, meals etc.  He forgot his lunch bag and said I did not know where to put it mom.  It is the same school but everything is different, different time, lunch table, room, etc.  Just think how you would feel if that were all different and it all bothered you.  I am so proud of you Nicholas for holding it all together. You are amazing and I learn from you each day! 

Paisley went back to BEIC and has Ms Cindy and Mrs Loa Jenkins. They are amazing and I cant believe Pais will be in kindergarten next fall. She is so mature, shy and intuitive. She loved getting ready. She wanted her hair in two piggies and wore the outfit her Grandma Kristi made for her.  The rain had stopped so she wanted a few pictures outside.  She was so excited to see her friends. I helped on the first day and was glad, she was timid. I was glad I was there for her.  Today is her second day and gave me a high five when I left.  

My babies are growing up quickly. I cherish each moment and try to always be attentive to their every need.  Each day brings something new, it is fun to see how I choose to handle it. I want to be the best mom ever. My mom always did an amazing job making us feel #1. I can't remember a day I did not feel her love. I want it to be that way for my kids. 

Tuesday, August 3, 2010


Fudge by Grandma Alcie

5 cups sugar
1 cup butter or margarine
1 can 12 oz evaporated milk
Bring to rolling boil and mark the timer for 5 minutes exactly.  Stirring constantly for the five minutes, then take off heat. Stir in 12 oz any chocolate chip, and 1, 7 oz marshmallow cream .
Mix well with large strong spoon and pour into large pan 9x13 or larger. Cool and cut, will freeze nicely too. I like to make it night before and refrigerate. You can add nuts if like. I have used mint chips, butterscotch, dark choc, peanut butter, white chips etc. Have fun and enjoy!

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Gluten Free

Gluten Free

This is a great link to a great blog. The recipes, ideas, and inspiration is wonderful. Have fun searching, my friend Julie told me about it and I have loved looking!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Blue Angels 2010 Idaho Falls Idaho

The day is beautiful, sunny warm and not too windy. At 200pm we went as a family to the Blue Angel's practice open to Make a wish children. Nicholas was invited and we thoroughly enjoyed the show. Nicholas took a jet his Aunt and Uncle had given him and the night before he painted it to look like a blue angel. He had it signed by the F/A 18 Pilot 4 Maj USMC Chris Collins and pilot 5 LCDR Frank Wisser. The C130 Fat Albert was there to show off along with the 6 jets.
There first formation of four...wait till the other two show up!

This experience was incredible for us and Nicholas. The time he had with the pilots and the special attention to be up close...front row seats for two and a half hours!  The music was very loud, but he managed pretty well. He was definitley ready to go home, but will never forget the experience, nor will we!  He felt very special and had no idea how cool it was to be there. We could have never made it through the day, the event was perfect!
This is way fun, thanks Daddy for bringing us!

We got to see Greg Poe and his stunt plane, he started the show. Very great acrobats!  We also got to see 3 MIGs in formation. Absolutely the most cool sound to hear them hum over you. We also saw a F16 falcon and a F15.
This was on takeoff and the deck crew is in the background.

After the show Jeff was able to go to the tarmac with Nicholas to get his signatures and pictures taken with the pilots.  This was a wonderful and very special experience and we are very grateful! 
Nicholas happy and glad he stuck it out for those signatures on his plane!

Paisley enjoyed the planes and she thought the noise was amazing!  It was AWESOME and The PLANES ARE COOL and That IS ALL!

 The make a wish kids with some of the pilots at the end of the show. Lots of mommy's were crying by this point.  Things like this where these pilots take time to show these kids how special they are is truly incredible! Thank you BLUE ANGELS!

Monday, June 7, 2010

I Heart Faces • Play

I love this photo of Paisley playing tea party! She has the glasses and heals and is ready to be a mama! She loves to get out her tea set from Mema and play.  We do this almost daily and the stuff she will say is so cute.  She loves to act real grown up and loves to dream  I love this about her and we have some good tea visits.  Balto is even invited every once in a while. Be sure to check out the other photos at

Have a wonderful day and may God bless you abundantly!  Love Paisley and April

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Birch Creek and our Maiden voyage in our new tent trailer!

This is our new used pop up trailer. A Coleman toas. We told a friend we were interested in getting one and a few months later she phoned and said she found one.  It is perfect, 8 feet long to tow and really spacious. We set up the shower and changing room outside and the table can be in or out.  It was super fast to set up. We went Birch creek, about 1 hour and 15 minutes from our house.  The kids loved the short trip and we loved trying out the trailer. Jeff bought a generator so when we are at a site where there are no hookups, we still have power.  It was so great to have heat and lights.  We had a family movie each night and kept warm as the temps dropped in the evenings.  This is a picture of our first supper. We had watermelon, cauliflower and broccoli, penne noodles with wine marinara sauce and dinner sausage.  The stove can be used in our out, so we cooked outside and sat under the awning.  It is a moment I will always remember.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Boy with autism races in swim competition | KIDK CBS 3 - News, Weather and Sports - Idaho Falls - Pocatello - Blackfoot, ID - Idaho Falls, Pocatello, Blackfoot - Idaho | Local & Regional

Boy with autism races in swim competition | KIDK CBS 3 - News, Weather and Sports - Idaho Falls - Pocatello - Blackfoot, ID - Idaho Falls, Pocatello, Blackfoot - Idaho | Local & Regional

Homemade Yogurt

I love this recipe. I have had a lot of requests for it.  If you are a yoplait fan you can save $600.00 a year making your own and adding your own sweetener. The kids love honey and fruit on it.  It is not tart but has a distinct flavor. The texture is smooth and very creamy.  I love the idea there is no added sugar.  I like to use Reed's whole milk. Their cows are hormone free.

So here is the recipe, enjoy!

1 gallon of milk. I use Reed's whole.
1 cup yogurt starter(you can use a small cup of plain mountain high or nancy's yogurt, or you can use a cup from your previous batch.)

1. Place four quart glass canning jars, four lids, and four screw-tops in a large pot. Fill with an inch of water; cover with lid and heat to boiling. Boil for ten minutes. Leave the lid on the pot and move it off the heat until you are ready to use the jars.
2. Pour one gallon of milk into a large, heavy bottomed stockpot or Dutch oven. Heat the milk to 185-195 degrees Farenheit(90-90 Celcius). I like to add two vanilla beans at this point.
3. Place the pot in a sink filled with cold water and let the milk cool to 120-130 degrees farenheit(50-55 degrees celcius)
4. Stir one cup of yogurt starter into the cooled milk, using a whisk. Stir well to ensure that the starter is thoroughly incorporated into the milk. Take out the vanilla beans.
5. Pour the milk into jars, and put the lids and bands on. Place them into a cooler.
6. Heat one gallon of water to 120-130 degrees F(50-55 degrees C) and pour into cooler.
7. Shut cooler lid and leave in a warm place for three hours. When the three hours are up, place the yogurt in the refrigerator.
To make a delicious vanilla version of this yogurt, add 1/2 to 1 cup of sugar to the four quarts of milk when it’s cooling in the sink. Then stir in 1-2 tablespoons of vanilla, depending on your preference, and proceed as usual with the recipe.  I have also used stevia, vanilla cream is my favorite. 15-20 drops is good for us for 4 quarts.

Have a great day!
Love April

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Sand, Sun and FUN

Sunday is beautiful, the day was perfect! Nicholas loves the sand and the neighbors enjoyed playing with both kids.  They buried them and loved it. I took some pictures to capture the day and he will remember the fun for days.  Paisley even wanted to try out being buried. Nicholas loved playing with all the kids and sand is such a sensory calming thing. I am so thankful to have a sand box right out the kitchen window! 

Angie loves to play in the sand with Nicholas and  they had a blast today.  They had a tang break over in her yard and decided to get out the sand toys. Jeff worked in the garage and yard with his dad all day.  Spring is here and the first few batches of daffodils are opening,

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

White Chicken Chili

This recipe is great, it is a must make and keep! Enjoy, I was given the recipe by a dear neighbor friend and we serve it alot to company and guests.

Monday, April 12, 2010

I Heart Faces Photo contest

I Heart Desserts!

This week's challenge at I Heart Faces is "Desserts"! And I absolutely LOVE desserts!  This cake was made by my mom for my daughters 4th birthday. She loves pirates and we tried to make it as girly as possible.  I have another post of her party if you want to check out the ship my son and husband made for her! The cake was wonderful and everyone loved it!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Palm Springs Day 2

Swimming, Food, Airplanes, Grapefruits, and Cheesecake = a really fun day and tired kids.

  We loved the pool and tried a Gluten Free popcorn microwave that we all loved.  We will be going back to get more to bring home.  After lunch and a shower we all headed to the Palm Springs Airport to view the museum and honor the anniversary of flight. 

Planes always make me think of Grandpa Wayne.  Nicholas loves flight and the planes.  The noise of some of the ones taking off today got to him, he just covered his ears.  He sat in several and Paisley liked them too.  There were numerous planes and very interesting retired military men to visit with.  Nicholas was able to paint on a plane and he thought that was really cool.

On the way home we stopped to get dessert at the Cheescake Factory.  Oh boy, Nicholas got to try the new gluten free key lime and Jeff got the gluten free Godiva Chocolate.  Paisley picked the brownie cheesecake and it had 1258 calories, she took two bites and it is in the fridge.  I picked a vanilla bean, looks wonderful, I will try it after I am done blogging. 


While I was cooking shrimp stir fry for dinner, Jeff took the kids on a walk and they came home with a bag of grapefruits and a lime.  They are beautiful and a very sweet.  They are white grapefruit and Nicholas loved juicing a few.  We watched Life on tv as a family and Paisley fell asleep, real asleep.  We are  off the Sea World tomorrow and I am so excited and blessed to be able to go as a family on such a special trip!