Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Pepperoni Pizza Pasta

Tonight for Bible Study/Family night I tried this new recipe. It was a HUGE hit! I cannot believe how much Little Brian ate! I made a double recipe and the 6 of us ate almost all of it! 

Pepperoni Pizza Pasta 

6 ServingsPrep: 20 min. Bake: 20 min. + standing


  • 1-1/2 cups uncooked elbow macaroni
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1-1/2 cups pizza sauce
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • 30 slices pepperoni
  • 1 can (2-1/4 ounces) sliced ripe olives, drained


  • Cook macaroni according to package directions; drain. Stir in the
  • eggs, Parmesan cheese, sour cream and Italian seasoning. Transfer to
  • a greased 11-in. x 7-in. baking dish. Bake at 375° for 10
  • minutes.
  • Spread with pizza sauce. Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese; top with
  • pepperoni and olives. Bake 10-15 minutes longer or until cheese is
  • melted. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving. Yield: 6 servings.
Nutrition Facts: 1 piece equals 316 calories, 18 g fat (8 g saturated fat), 111 mg cholesterol, 808 mg sodium, 20 g carbohydrate, 2 g fiber, 19 g protein.

I also made a Butterscotch Torte for dessert which got rave reviews as well. I just love when everything turns out tasty!

After dinner we played with my new cotton candy machine my mom got me for my birthday! It is SO much fun!! Jacob doesn't have a lot of interest in anything besides video games right now, but the rest of played and ate and ate and ate ourselves sick... it is going to take some getting used to in order to get the big fluffy sticks of cotton candy, but it will be lots of fun practicing

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Glass Blowing class

Of course we purchased the deal for Glass Blowing on Amazon when it came across! This is something that I had an interest in and added to my bucket list a while back.
Kenny and I met Jereme and Melodi at the Circle 6 Glass blowing studio to learn about glass blowing.
 The instructors were great and had fun, entertaining personalities. They worked with us hands on to make clear glass flowers. 
The instructor showing Me and Kenny the 2000 degree furnace. 

Shaping my piece 

pulling the petals out 

Kenny dipping to get his lump of glass 

Kenny shaping his flower 

Melodi's turn 

Jereme giving it a try 

Me and Kenny 
My Flower 

Kenny's Flowe

Friday, February 24, 2012


I seriously never even heard of Wicked before my friend Beverly told me about it. She really wanted to see it  and I am pretty much game for anything. I didn't realize what a HUGE production and pretty much what a big deal it is! 

Here we all are: Lloyd, Beverly, Me and Kenny:

The evening was so nice! We went to the Chuck Box for dinner and then headed over to ASU Gammage Theater for the show. Our seats weren't bad, but I would have like to have been closer because it was hard to see the detail in the costumes. The story was great!!

Very fun night! 

Sunday, February 19, 2012


Ring, Ring, Ring 
Me: Hello? 
Little Brian: Aunt Amanda you gotta get over here and see! 
Me: See what buddy? 
Little Brian: MY TOOTH! Its out! I did it all by myself! 
Me: Ah Congrats! We will be right over! 

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Horseback riding

I don’t think we could have picked a more perfect day for a nice horseback ride out in the desert! The weather was amazing today! Poor Kenny was still fighting a pretty bad cold (even took Friday off), but was feeling good today.

After a nice big breakfast at IHOP, Kenny drove Becky, Donna and I out to MacDonald Ranch in Scottsdale so we could all cash in our Groupons. This was Donna’s first time on a horse which was pretty exciting. She ended up with a pretty naughty horse (just like herself!) who wanted to wander off the trail often. It made for a lot of laughs for the rest of us. Becky’s horse knew a special trick where he could sneeze out of both ends at the same time… poor Kenny was behind them. I am not the biggest fan of trail rides, since you kind of just trout along and don’t really get to do much on the horse, but as far as trail riding goes this was a really good one. 
Kenny on his horse 
Donn on her naughty hourse, Becky and Kenny
We saw an owl living in a Hawk nest, heard stories from our trail guide and pretty much just laughed a lot. 

Me, Donna, Becky and Kenny

I couldn't resist taking a picture of Donna's horse peeing... She was laughing so hard it was contagious!

Friday, February 17, 2012

Bunko night

While we were at the twins b-day party last week Nanette offered me her spot at her church bunko night since she wouldn't be able to make it. Although, I am a big fat chicken about meeting new people I agreed and Michelle and I made a night of it.

We met at Smashburger - have you eaten there!?? Holy cow its delicious and I can't wait to take Kenny to try it. Michelle bought my dinner... even though I refused she insisted and said it was her random act of kindness for the week. She explained that her mom and her have been doing this for a while... searching for someone to do something random and kind for... She told me it always comes back 10 fold... I totally believe in this too and try to do the same, although I don't do it as actively as I should. She told me a story about a woman who picked up her tab at Wal-mart when she was she was low on money and waiting for payday. Its awesome when people do things like that... I need to open my eyes to more opportunities to help or just make someone's day better.

After chatting for well over an hour (and I am sure we could have gone longer!) we headed over to the church. They have a pretty good size group so it made it pretty fun. They are serious about staying on task and getting through the 3 games which doesn't leave much time for chit chat (which I am terrible at anyway). The games went quickly and I met a few new people. I even ended up winning a door prize which always make the night a little more fun!

It was a fun night and would have been even more fun if Michelle and I weren't both worried about our sick households. Emma has a 'surgery' earlier in the week for a MRSA outbreak. Poor little thing had to have a boil type infection removed from her little bottom... Michelle said they gave her some medication, but because of her size they couldn't put her to sleep for it.... I can't image having to hold your little baby while they go through that : ( Also, Kenny was off work today fighting some sort of cold/flu virus and Trevor might be getting it as well...

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Valentine Flowers

Look what my Valentine sent me! 

I was out of the office on Valentine's Day, but these were waiting for me when I arrived the next day: 

I enjoyed watching them bloom throughout the rest of the week:

I didn't used to be a fan of flowers because they just die... I have changed my perspective... I think it is okay to just enjoy something beautiful while it lasts even if it is short lived. 

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Cupid Tradition

You have heard about it before and before that and even before that, but the 'Cupid' AKA Bird AKA Sugar Fairy tradition continues... but with a NEW expanded version.

This year I am took on 4 recipients (Kenny, Brian Jr, Jacob and Brian) ! It was actually easier and cheaper to shop for larger bags that I could split up and repackage, rather than individually packaged goodies.

Each night Kenny and I would ride our bikes (or on busy nights just drive) over to my parents house and drop off the goodies in my brother's car (I am special enough to have my own key!) so the boys would see it in the morning... The boys brought it up almost daily and asked why we were giving them treats... I kept telling them it wasn't me, it was cupid... by day 10 maybe they started to believed me...naw they knew it was us all along. It was fun though. 

Monday, February 13, 2012

Candy Bar CRAZE

When I first signed my brother, Kenny and I up for Tour de Cure I was extremely overwhelmed with the task of raising $450 for the 3 of us in an 8 week time frame... So I do, what I do and brainstormed ideas. Among my ideas was making cute little candy bars to sell some dressed up candy bars... I had NO IDEA they would take off they way they did! We started with a case (36) and I was nervous we would get stuck with a lot of leftovers... it sold out in 15 mins! 

I took orders and ended up making a second batch of 44 with my brother (Kenny was out of town) that night. Brian was hilarious and we had a lot of fun making the candy bars... he could understand why the strips had to go a certain way on the hearts and why we needed 4 hearts for each candy bar etc... I guess you had to be there, but it was funny.
I ended up getting EVEN MORE orders to finish over the weekend. Kenny helped me with the last order of 22. Kenny and I kicked ours out in an hour and half! We raised a total of over $200 and I spent over 12 hours making them! Craziness!! I am glad we raised so much, but I am SO done making them! 

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Just life

Little Brian and Jacob
This week I crammed everything we could into the other 6 days so that we could have a day to RELAX! Unfortunately, it just wasn't in the cards for us... but it was a great day! We slept in and then Kenny spent most of the day running around looking for a bike. He came back a little defeated and decided to just put the $60 into the bike he has rather than spending hundreds to get a better quality bike.

While he was gone I went over to visit the boys and do a little Valentine craft. It was just a little prepackaged kit from Joann's, but the boys had a lot of fun with it. They decided their monsters should have 3 eyes ! Very cute. (Zoey thought so too, when she chewed one of them up!)

After we did our craft, I took the boys to McDonalds for happy meals, just for fun. They had a blast as usual. Little Brian is SUCH a good eater and ate ever stitch of food, while Jacob ate about 3 bites... Don't know how the kid stays alive...

I spent the rest of the afternoon doing chores around the house that I had procrastinated for some time... It felt good to get them DONE! When Kenny got home he detailed my truck and had it washed (I am so spoiled I know) and then he helped me with the LAST batch of candy bar wrappers for the Tour de Cure --- soooo glad to be finished with them!

Brian invited us over for dinner so we headed over there. It is just adorable how the boys are learning to 'help' out around the house. Jacob sets the table (wrapping his hands all over the silverware) and Little Brian clears them all and puts them in the sink. Also, Little Brian is pretty much responsible for cleaning up after the dogs now and does so without complaining.

We had a nice dinner and the men had fun playing darts (their newest passion) afterwards. We had a little bubble gum blowing contest too... I believe I won, but since we were all playing we didn't really have a judge.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Overdue 2

Somehow we let an entire month pass before we could get together for the twins b-day party. The original party was cancelled due to Trevor being in the hospital (poor guy), but I didn't want their 2nd birthday to go celebrated (with us at least). So Kenny and I joined the Ross family and for their Saturday night church service and made the evening into a celebration.

The fun REALLY got started when Nanette (AKA their grandma got there). All three kids got SO excited and squeal, while dancing toward the door to greet her. I do have to say Zack gets pretty excited when he sees me too... I am not sure why he likes me so much, but I like it : ) 

We had pizza, bread sticks and salad and then headed off to their church Pure Heart.  

Pure Heart is a lot like our church Radiant and I really loved it. This week's sermon was the first in a three part series called Money Tree... this first one was called "Enough" and was about contentment. Did you know there over 2300 verses in the Bible that have to do with money? Crazy right? This sermon was centered on 1 Timothy 6:6-9. It was really good and I liked the phrase he kept repeating," There's nothing wrong with having stuff, its when stuff has us." So true.

Anyway, Zack and Nanette road with us to and from the church and it was fun to listen to Zack's million mile a minute gibberish. Its not that you can't understand him, because he actually talks very clearly for his age, but what he says doesn't always make sense :) He did remember that we needed to go home and eat the cake we  had left on the counter... seriously he remembered the cake and that it was on the counter. Smarty pants.

Emma is excited for Cake 

As we sang Happy Birthday to the twins, Emma was very anxious to try out the cake and stuck her hand in the frosting. Just to even things out, Michelle encouraged Matt to try a little and he said, "No, hot." Pretty smart if you ask me, he knew that flame on the candle meant hot.



So this is a picture of the cake BEFORE it left our house... I only had about 45 minutes to decorate this cake and NO COACH (Kenny the ex-bakery manager) so it was the first cake I completely decorated on my own. It didn't come out the way I pictured in my head, but I was still pretty proud of it.

UNFORTUNATELY, I used whipped cream frosting... and well... it doesn't travel well. As one point on the car ride over Kenny noticed the top layer was a good inch off the bottom layer... 

Oh yeah and I died the cake blue and pink to represent Emma and Matt. 

I was really excited about this gift too... I think the kids will be once their parents put it together for them! Lol Sarah went in with Kenny and I on this gift too.

The cake (from box mixes) was pretty tasty. I think Emma was the biggest fan... the devoured a pretty large piece of cake... and then proceeded to lick her fingers and even the table. It was pretty adorable. Matt ate a little, but Michelle pointed out he is the meat eater. I thought that was pretty interesting, because my brother's boys are like that too- one likes sweets (Jacob) and the other favors meat (Little Brian).

Kenny and I really enjoyed the evening. Kenny said it was probably one of his favorite times with them. The kids were just so happy it was hard not to catch the happiness bug around them tonight.... now I have to figure out to make this happen more often...