Friday, May 30, 2014

Saturday Dishes - Grad Party

Welcome to Saturday Dishes
Where every week is a new theme...
Your job is to post your recipes that coincide with that theme!
Easy peasy, right?

Don't have a recipe that goes with the theme?
No worries!
Just sit back, relax, enjoy the other posts,
& be sure to check out the index & upcoming themes
to see what you can post in future weeks!

This week's theme is:
Grad Party

My sister is throwing a Grad party this weekend
so I figured we would too!!!
I am still in disbelief that she is old enough to graduate!

Saturday Dishes is hosted by:
- Marissa @ Life is Fantasmic -

- Lisa @ Pebbles and Piggytails -
Facebook ♥ Twitter ♥ Google+ ♥ Pinterest

Check out our blogs & show us some love!
We love seeing new faces & new followers on our social media,
& comments make us smile (:

Last week's theme was Memorial Day & Grilling
& I was very impressed with the participation for our first week!!!
These were some of my faves...

Barbecue Bacon Burgers w/ Grilled Pineapple Salsa from Happy Food Happy Home
That grilled pineapple salsa sounds uh-maze-ing!!!

Bacon Ranch Potato Salad from Celebrating Sweets
Anything bacon + ranch = love

Fresh Strawberry Cake from Sondra Lyn at Home
I love that the recipe calls for lots of fresh strawberries making it moist & it's gluten-free!

Blackberry Cobbler from Five Heart Home
This tickles my taste-buds & I would love some right now...

Lisa's faves might be different than mine,
so don't forget to swing by her blog too! (;
Oh yeah...
& if you were featured
feel free to grab a button!

Life Is Fantasmic

Next week's theme is:
Mocktails & Kid-Friendly Drinks
Swing by to link up your tasty non-alcoholic drinks
& remember that you can link up more than one post if you have them!

Now on to the linky...
Link up your Grad Party recipes,
visit other posts,
& make new friends!
Since this theme is more of a party theme,
you aren't limited to just food ideas...
Feel free to post ANY Graduation Party ideas that you have!
Anything that would make a glad grad!

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Friday, May 23, 2014

Saturday Dishes - Memorial Day & Grilling

Welcome to Saturday Dishes
Where every week is a new theme...
Your job is to post your recipes that coincide with that theme!
Easy peasy, right?

Don't have a recipe that goes with the theme?
No worries!
Just sit back, relax, enjoy the other posts,
& be sure to check out the index & upcoming themes
to see what you can post in future weeks!

This week's theme is:
Memorial Day & Grilling

Memorial Day always reminds me of grilling out or having a picnic,
but I'm sure you have plenty of other recipes or traditions we'd love to see!

Saturday Dishes is hosted by:
- Marissa @ Life is Fantasmic -

- Lisa @ Pebbles and Piggytails -
Facebook ♥ Twitter ♥ Google+ ♥ Pinterest

Check out our blogs & show us some love!
We love seeing new faces & new followers on our social media,
& comments make us smile (:

There are no actual features this week since it's our very first Saturday Dishes,
but come back next week to see if your post was featured!
Lisa's faves might be different than mine,
so don't forget to swing by her blog too!

As I was revisiting my boards on Pinterest
I was reminded of this picnic quilt from Cutesy Crafts that I am dying to make
(& by make I mean have someone make for me because it would take me well over a year)
& thought I would at least share that with you since picnics & Memorial Day go hand-in-hand...

It's super cute, right?
I already have a pile of jeans & fabric scraps that I've been saving up,
but I have no idea which box they're in,
so you should save me the trouble & just make me one (;

Next week's theme is:
Grad Party
& I hope you'll join us in sharing any Graduation party ideas you may have!

On to the linky...
Link up your Memorial Day & Grilling recipes,
(old & new)
visit other posts,
& make new friends!

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Thursday, May 22, 2014

Saturday Dishes Index & Upcoming Themes

Upcoming Themes

October 25th - Halloween
November 8th - Family Recipes
November 15th - Side Dishes
November 22nd - Turkey & Thanksgiving
November 28th - Leftovers
December 6th - Holiday Desserts
December 13th - Appetizers
December 20th - Christmas
December 27th - NO SATURDAY DISHES (Enjoy the holidays with your families)
January 10 - Healthy / Get Fit Recipes
January 17 - Comfort Foods
January 24 - Warm Drinks or Snacks
January 31 - Casseroles
February 7 - Anything Goes
February 14 - Valentine's Day
February 21 - Mardi Gras
February 28 - Chinese New Year
March 7 - Chocolate
March 14 - St. Patrick's Day
March 21 - Potatoes
March 28 - Citrus
April 4 - NO SATURDAY DISHES (Enjoy the holidays with your families)
April 11 - Easter
April 18 - Seafood
April 25 - Anything Goes

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Tuesday, May 20, 2014

LDS General Conference - Sunday Words of Wisdom (April 2014)

I finally found the time to finish typing up my Sunday highlights
from the April 2014 General Conference
of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints!
If you missed my Saturday highlights,
be sure to check out that post
to be motivated, inspired, & spiritually uplifted (:

Here are my highlights from the Sunday morning & afternoon sessions.
Keep in mind these are my hurried notes & they are not all word for word.

There's one thing we can do to make life sweeter...
We can be grateful!
- President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Commandments are opportunities to exercise our agency & receive blessings.
- President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

I don't believe the Lord expects us to be less thankful in times of trial
than in times of abundance & ease.
- President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

It's difficult to develop a spirit of gratitude
if our thankfulness is only proportional to the number of blessings we can count.
- President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

See gratitude as a way of life.
- President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Instead of being grateful for things,
be grateful in our circumstances.
- President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

We can choose to be grateful no matter what.
- President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

When we're grateful to God in our circumstances
we can experience gentle peace in the midst of our afflictions.
- President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

How much of our lives are wasted waiting to see the rainbow
without thanking God for the rain?
- President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Endings are not our destiny.
There are no true endings, only everlasting beginnings.
- President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

A thankful heart is the parent of all virtues.
- President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

If members learn to use the correct name of the church
(The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints),
it will underscore that we are Christians,
members of the Savior's church.
- Elder M. Russell Ballard

Extending an invitation without following up
is like beginning a journey without finishing it
or buying a ticket to a concert without going into the theater.
- Elder M. Russell Ballard

We can all be more consistently involved with missionary work
by simply replacing our fear with faith.
- Elder M. Russell Ballard

Our Heavenly Father is always near & wants to help us.
God is watching over us.
We are not alone.
- Sister Jean A. Stevens

He accomplishes His miracles one prayer at a time,
one person at a time.
- Sister Jean A. Stevens

The gospel is not weight.
It is wings.
It carries us.
- Sister Jean A. Stevens

We can trust that God will not always help us the way we want Him to,
but the way that will best help us on our path back to Him.
- Sister Jean A. Stevens

This life is your "4 minutes".
While you are here,
your actions will determine whether you win the prize of eternal life.
- Bishop Gary E. Stevenson

If you're thinking you already blew your 4 minute race,
stop thinking that & never think it again.
It is never too late to get back into shape with the Atonement.
- Bishop Gary E. Stevenson

"I am a competitor.
I want to do my best,
but I want my fellow competitors to do their best too."
- Torah Bright, Australian athlete -
- Bishop Gary E. Stevenson

Is there someone who needs your encouragement?
- Bishop Gary E. Stevenson

We each carry a load.
Is our load creating enough spiritual traction that we won't get stuck?
- Elder David A. Bednar

Don't be loaded up with too many temporal things.
- Elder David A. Bednar

Sometimes we mistakenly believe that happiness is the absence of a load.
- Elder David A. Bednar

Christ has perfect empathy & will help us carry our loads.
- Elder David A. Bednar

We cannot fully love God if we don't love our neighbors,
& we cannot fully love our neighbors if we don't love God.
- President Thomas S. Monson

Love is the very essence of the gospel & Christ is our exemplar.
- President Thomas S. Monson

"I have wept in the night for the shortness of sight
that to somebody's need made me blind;
but I never have yet felt a tinge of regret
for being a little too kind."
- President Thomas S. Monson

Every day of our lives we are given opportunities to show love & kindness to those around us.
These opportunities often come unexpectedly.
- President Thomas S. Monson

Charity is the pure love of Christ.
Moroni 7:47
- President Thomas S. Monson

Some of our greatest opportunities to demonstrate our love will be within the walls of our own homes.
Love should be the very heart of family life.
- President Thomas S. Monson

"Why is it that the ones we love most
become so frequently the targets of our harsh words?"
- President Gordon B. Hinckley, May 1989 Ensign -
- President Thomas S. Monson

Always be considerate.
Be sensitive to the thoughts, feelings, & circumstances of others.
Be careful not to destroy another person's confidence through careless words or actions.
- President Thomas S. Monson

Forgiveness should go hand-in-hand with love.
- President Thomas S. Monson

"Of all sad words of tongue or pen,
the saddest are these: 'It might have been.'"
- John Greenleaf Whittier -
- President Thomas S. Monson

We have the power to increase the world's happiness
by giving a few words of appreciation to those we encounter each day.
- President Thomas S. Monson

Decide to respond with love & kindness to whatever comes our way.
- President Thomas S. Monson

Eternal knowledge comes only through personal prayer & pondering.
- President Boyd K. Packer

Christ is the anchor that holds us & protects us
& our families through the storms of life.
- President Boyd K. Packer

We should each commit to live 'true to the faith'.
- Elder William R. Walker

Get to know your ancestors.
The more connected we are to the stories of our forefathers,
the more likely we will be to make wise choices.
- Elder William R. Walker

We must not forget the experiences & blessings that come from going to the temple.
- Elder William R. Walker

We must not forget that we have a living prophet.
- Elder William R. Walker

We must be willing to completely alter our course when necessary.
- Elder L. Tom Perry

Out of respect for our agency,
the still, small voice
is never a strong, forceful tug.
- Elder L. Tom Perry

We must always be ready to receive the gentle tug of the Spirit.
- Elder L. Tom Perry

Today's complexity demands greater simplicity.
- Elder L. Tom Perry

Obedience is a choice.
It is a choice between our limited knowledge & power
& God's unlimited wisdom & omnipotence.
- Elder L. Tom Perry

There will always be a force to oppose the truth.
- Elder Lawrence E. Corbridge

You are more than human.
You are a child of God, our Heavenly Father.
- Elder Lawrence E. Corbridge

Do as young Joseph [Smith] & ask God to know the truth.
James 1:5
- Elder Lawrence E. Corbridge

In times of calamity or tragedy,
the Lord has a way of refocusing us & our priorities.
- Elder Michael John U. Teh

There is no end to what the world has to offer,
so it is critical to recognize when we have enough.
- Elder Michael John U. Teh

Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
Matthew 6: 19-21
- Elder Michael John U. Teh

What are some treasures in heaven that we can lay up for ourselves?
1. Acquire Christlike attributes
2. Put more quality time & effort into strengthening family relationships
3. Serve others
4. Understand the words of Christ
- Elder Michael John U. Teh

Satan distorts the real purpose of things.
- Elder Marcos A. Aidukaitis

One should not roam through garbage.
- Elder Marcos A. Aidukaitis

How can we recognize truth in a world that is increasingly blunt in its attacks on things pertaining to God?
1. We can know the truth by observing its fruits.
2. We can find truth by experimenting on the word ourselves.
3. We can know the truth by personal revelation.
- Elder Marcos A. Aidukaitis

Faith without works is dead.
- Elder Marcos A. Aidukaitis

No injustice is this mortal life is permanent, even death.
- Elder D. Todd Christofferson

Our lives are in reality, His.
- Elder D. Todd Christofferson

The Savior makes all things right.
- Elder D. Todd Christofferson

May we resolve to do a little better than we have in the past.
- President Thomas S. Monson

May we ever follow His example.
- President Thomas S. Monson

Our Heavenly Father is mindful of us & will guide & bless us.
- President Thomas S. Monson

May our homes be filled with love, courtesy, & the Spirit of the Lord.
- President Thomas S. Monson

Since these were just my highlights,
I encourage you to listen to or read the other wonderful words spoken at Conference...

Sunday morning:
Grateful in Any Circumstances by President Dieter F. Uchtdorf
Following Up by Elder M. Russell Ballard
"Fear Not; I Am with Thee" by Jean A. Stevens
Your Four Minutes by Bishop Gary E. Stevenson
Bear Up Their Burdens with Ease by Elder David A. Bednar
Love--the Essence of the Gospel by President Thomas S. Monson

Sunday afternoon:
The Witness by President Boyd K. Packer
Live True to the Faith by Elder William R. Walker
Obedience through Our Faithfulness by Elder L. Tom Perry
The Prophet Joseph Smith by Elder Lawrence E. Corbridge
Where Your Treasure Is by Elder Michael John U. Teh
If Ye Lack Wisdom by Elder Marcos A. Aidukaitis
The Resurrection of Jesus Christ by Elder D. Todd Christofferson
Until We Meet Again by President Thomas S. Monson

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Friday, May 16, 2014

Saturday Dishes - Coming Soon...

Remember the time when I guest-hosted a fun link party called Saturday Dishes?
That link party has taken on a few new owners since then,
& I'm excited to say that I will be teaming up
with my friend Lisa at Pebbles and Piggytails
to be the new hosts for Saturday Dishes every weekend!!!

I've been debating about adding a link party to my blog for quite some time
& I knew that if I did, it wouldn't be an anything goes party.
If you hadn't noticed, I love themes.
themed whatever...
I think themes are fun.
Each week there will be a new theme
& the recipes you post should fit that category!
I will be making a Saturday Dishes index as we go
so each of the themes will be in one easy to find location (:
I will also post what the upcoming themes will be
so that you can plan ahead!
You'll be able to find a link to the index under both my food & party tabs...

I moved a couple weeks ago & Lisa is moving this week,
so please be patient with us as we decide which week we will start.
I promise we'll keep you updated though!
To make this party a success
we'll definitely need your participation
so spread the word
& keep checking back!

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Monday, May 12, 2014

Happy Mother's Day

I had a rough day on Saturday.
REALLY rough.
A day that brought me to tears multiple times
due to mere frustration with the kids.
I'm sure my pregnancy hormones had something to do with it as well,
but still...
I felt like I was talking to a wall.
I became a broken record.
I couldn't go to the bathroom without something spilling or breaking.
The kids were screaming at each other.
Their toys weren't being shared.
There were diaper blowouts,
runny noses,
tired & crabby kids.
I'm used to these things happening each day.
It's part of being a parent.
It's not unusual.
But when it became a constant all day battle with all of the above
mixed with stress & my pregnancy hormones
I was ready to throw the towel in.
I tried turning on movies.
The kids wouldn't stay in the room.
I tried playing with them.
They continued fighting with each other.
I tried to get them to take a nap.
They both wanted to cuddle on the same side of me
& ended up arguing over who got to cuddle with my left side.

My patience would fluctuate.
It started out fairly high,
but it diminished little-by-little as the day went on.
When the kids would do something adorable
it would jump up a bit,
but soon drop back down to a discouraging low.

Hubby was two hours away
at our old house trying to touch up paint
& do other odd jobs that needed to be done there,
then he came home to take care of the yard at our new house.
I felt like he had done so much more with his Saturday than I had done with mine.
I had only been able to unpack one box all day
& our house looked like a tornado had passed through it.
This whole "nesting" phase just isn't working out for me.
I wanted the house to be unpacked & in order,
but being the mom of two young children I should have known better.
I can try my hardest to have a routine,
but I have to expect the unexpected to happen each day.
Routines just don't work for us.
At least not right now.

We got the kids ready for bed right after our late dinner.
(Daylight savings time really throws my cooking schedule off
as well as my internal 'get the kids ready for bed' clock.)
Little Dudeman went to bed & fell asleep easily,
but Little Princess wanted cuddles.
Hubby & I started to doze off in the process,
but my bladder woke me up shortly after she fell asleep.
I was still pretty grumpy
& was hoping that there would be enough time for us to cuddle on the couch & watch a movie,
but I also reeeally needed a shower.
I knew I couldn't stay up to watch an entire movie thanks to that little cat nap
so I complained & cried to Hubby about my day while eating ice cream,
then opted towards the shower.

I was still crying when I hopped in the shower.
I thought about Mother's Day
& how we didn't get gifts, flowers,
or even cards mailed out to our wonderful moms.
I thought about how undeserving I was to be wished a Happy Mother's Day,
especially after a day like that
when I had no patience for the very children who made me a mother.
I thought about a lot of things...
I noticed I kept putting more & more negative thoughts into my head.
So I quickly said a prayer that I would be able to be comforted,
& that I would have the strength to keep Satan & those negative thoughts away.
It worked.
Almost instantly.
The rest of my shower was relaxing
& I started thinking positive thoughts...

I realized that I'm not a bad mom.
Rough days happen.
That doesn't mean that I love my children any less though.
I'm extremely grateful for the opportunity I have to be a mother...
I'm grateful for the two wonderful children that put up with me all day every day.
I'm grateful that they ask what's wrong & remind me that it's more fun to be happy than it is to be sad.
I'm grateful for our unborn daughter that wakes me up in the middle of the night just because.
I'm grateful for Hubby & that he understands being a stay at home mom isn't always easy.
I'm grateful for the joy that motherhood brings.

I realized that between Hubby & I
we are blessed to have 5 amazing moms (:
This is what our kidlets call them:

I could spend plenty of time explaining the wonderful qualities each of these women have,
but I'll save that for another post since this one is already a bit lengthy...
We love each of them the same amount,
but for many different reasons!

Nana & Nani are half of the reason that Hubby & I were born.
Gram & Gramma took care of & raised us the most.
CiCi, Nana, & Nani weren't able to spend as much time with us,
but the time we were able to spend with them was time well spent
& we still learned a lot from each of them.
CiCi & Gramma helped us realize that not all step-mothers are evil.
Nani & Gramma are the ones I call the most when I need to vent
because they are my actual moms,
but I know Hubby's moms are great listening ears as well... (:
Gram is no longer with us,
but I know that she is still watching over us each day.
Each of these women have an immense love for us
& we have an immense love for each of them.
They are absolutely wonderful
& I'm sure that they love us even when we are so scatterbrained that we forget cards!

At church today we had a great lesson about choosing to be happy (:
It was just what I needed this crazy Mother's Day weekend!
I can't wait to tell you all about it!

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