Thursday, October 14, 2010

My Favorite Breakfast

A few months ago Nathan and I flew out to beautiful British Columbia for a wedding reception. We weren't sure where to stay since the bride and grooms place was full of siblings and pretty much ground zero for planning and decorations. This was when I had my first exposure to a real Bed & Breakfast.

Now I'm not talking like Motel 6 or La Quinta Inn with it's little breakfast of cereal and doughnuts. This place was literally a place to sleep and relax with the most amazing breakfasts each morning. We found the place on the Internet and we weren't really sure what we were going to find. It didn't look super glamorous but the reviews were great and the price didn't hurt either!

Well we soon found out that this B&B was run by a nice older couple. The husband was from Scotland and the wife from BC and the reason they had the B&B was because she loved to cook. They had renovated the basement and that's where the guests stayed. The rest of the house upstairs was full on antiques from when the area was settled with plaques describing each item and the time period it came from. The breakfast table overlooked their backyard which was full of trees and plants and flowers. My favorite part was all the fresh herb she grew right there from different kinds of parsley to mint to chives and asparagus. so cool!!! Did you know that asparagus grown right out of the ground in a single stalk??? I loved walking past her asparagus garden everyday! The only way I could describe this place was wonderfully quaint.

Each morning the hostess would prepare the most delicious breakfasts! Two of the days we came upstairs to find fresh scones baked that morning with homemade jam and butter, and that was just the precursor. My favorite breakfast she made was probably her glazed pear crapes with homemade whipped cream and powdered sugar. My mouth waters just thinking of it! Along with my first experience at a B&B it was my first real experience eating yogurt parfaits. Along with those fresh scones we always were served a fresh fruit cup or parfait. I'm pretty sure she made her own granola but it was so yummy! Ever since then, I've made my own fruit parfaits in the morning for breakfast. I buy strawberries, cantaloupe, honey dew, kiwi's and berries. Then I cut them up bite sized and grab some low-fat strawberry yogurt and granola and mix it all together. It really is one of the best parts of my day and it's pretty healthy as well!

Sadly I can't remember the name of the B&B. If I think of it I'll have to post it but I absolutely love my yogurt parfaits each morning!! And I'm determined to start growing all my own herbs! If I thought I could get asparagus to grow here I totally would do that too!!

For the recipe to my parfait, click the link to "Kina's Recipes"

Monday, October 4, 2010

Chix Books

I haven't had a lot of time to update my blog but I absolutely had to tell everyone about a really cool little group that I'm in. It's called "Chix Books" and it's a bookclub. A few ladies in Airdrie or Calgary (mostly Airdrie) read a different book every month and then get together a discuss it. We've only had two meetings so far but they have be AMAZING! The first book we read was "Uglies" by Scott Westerfeld and wow, what great conversation this book inspired. so many different ideas about how we think about ourselves and how we treat others. It was my second time reading it and I was ready to go read the rest of the series after that!

The second book we read was "The Thirteenth Tale" by Diane Setterfield. This book was so intense. The writing was amazing and the story, although somewhat disturbing at points, was so engaging. I HAD to know what was going to happen next for this family. The book had kind of a "Jane Eyre" feel to it, definitely a gothic novel and although it was a sad story the author told it in such a way that it was light and had almost a happy overtone. The end was so surprising and the story so involved that our Chix Books discussion was all about the plot and subplots. The funniest thing was seeing how others imagined how the different characters looked in their minds. One lady totally pictured one character to be black when he most obviously wasn't and I pictured the same character to be in his 30's kind of rugged looking with dark hair, which he wasn't! I would definitely recommend it to anyone who likes to read!

For this last dicussion we had a themed threat. Since the book took place in England our theme was "Tea & Crumpets" or English treats since who really knows what a crumpet is! We had a table full of things like scones (to take place of crumpets), turkish delight, tea, yorkshire pudding, york mints and little cookies and chocolates. I wish I would have taken a picture and am now resolved to always bring my camera. We discussed dressing up...we'll see how far that goes! haha

To the left I'm hoping to post whichever book we read for the last month and what I thought of it just incase you're looking for something new to read!
Also, we have an amazing group that's called "Flix Chix" and we get together once a month to watch a flick chick sometimes at the movie theater and sometimes at someone's home. We have so much fun with this and hit up Boston Pizza or Applebee's for dessert afterwards and that's when we usually have the most fun!! If you aren't in a group of some kind you should find one to join or start your own! I schedule it out through facebook and email, pick a date, time and place so everyone can mark their calendars. We usually get around 10-15 people showing up each time. So much fun!! Great friends and a great time!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

New Beginnings

I've been so excited about this post since it happened and now I finally can spend the time on it. I was kind of terrified of this part of Young Women's when I got called into it, the big activities and programs like New Beginnings. I am so grateful for the Internet because I was able to find an awesome idea for our New Beginnings when the time came to plan. NB is like a kick-off for the Young Women's program to get the girls excited for the new year and Personal Progress so there was a lot of pressure for it to be fantabulous! I jumped onto and found the best idea, an Olympic new beginnings, which worked out amazingly because the 2010 Winter Olympics were being hosted in Vancouver, Canada this year.

The lady on sugardoodle had templates and everything for invitations and scripts. I just cut and pasted and used and discarded what I wanted! It was awesome. The logo that was given was this amazing young women's torch symbol over 8 Olympic rings the colors of the values. I absolutely had to used it. I ended up color printed the logo on this shiny silver paper and then printed the invitation part on translucent vellum paper. They looked amazing especially because he Olympic ring logo was on a tan back ground to see the white (faith) ring. On the silvery paper it came out gold!! Here's a pic of it below. They were so cool I couldn't throw out the extra one so it's still in my scripture case!! haha

I wanted the whole thing to be kind of like an Olympic medals ceremony so we set up a back drop kind of similar to the real thing. I used the same logo to create a giant YW's Olympic symbol out of cardboard and form paper. I printed the flame head on the same silvery paper and attached a black handle. It turned out sweet.

Here's the whole back drop. I had to have twinkle lights cause they basically rock. I wanted to have them every where but that was soooo too much work. We had medals put together for all the girls with this years theme on them. The jar next to the podium was for the torch when it came in (not a real one but a seriously cool one).

Since flags are a huge part of the Olympics I thought it would be fun to have a flag ceremony with each of the the value colors as a flag. I found all this really neat fabric at Walmart already cut into the perfect size with all different kinds of patterns on it. I got two of each color and sewed them into flags. We had the girls come in after all the parents were seated carrying the flags around the tables to the old Calgary Olympic theme. The lights were off and the torch was lit. It looked so real! I wish I got pics of it but I was slacking at that moment. The girls eventually ended up at the front where there was a jar on the table for each flag. Below are the girls with their flags. We had them wear a shirt that corresponded with their flag color.

A huge part of our branches Personal Progress program is focused on getting to the temple so we have certain things that the girls earn once they complete a goal that gives them something special related to the temple. Some of the things are a temple recommend holder, temple clothing bag, special temple book and decorative tiles. Things that will remind them what their goal ultimately is. Below is the display table of all the things.

Sadly I neglected to get a picture of the torch lit up at the actual event so one of the missionaries gladly offered to hold it since he missed when the actual Olympic torch went through Airdrie. I looks real when the lights are off. SO COOL!!! I got the design from the lady's blog. It worked superbly!
The rest of the photos are just fun ones of the girls holding their medals or their flags. Overall it was an amazing night! We had each girl go up and pass the torch to each other and give an example of a women in the gospel that exhibited their value. A member of the branch presidency talked, as well as the stake YW's president. We also listened to the song called "Believe" which was the the theme song of the Vancouver Olympics. Such an amazing inspired song! Download if you don't have it!!! I get chills every time I hear it. For dessert we had each girl bring their favorite dessert, so easy and we have a few girls that have special diets for nut allergies, etc. and they were able to bring something they could eat. What started out as a scary event turned into a super spiritual fun night for the leaders, parents and the girls!!

Our YW's president, Michelle with one of the Laurals.

One of our Laurals and Beehives showing off their sweet medals. Made out of wood, gold spray paint and vinyl lettering. They say, "Be strong and of good courage."

One of my most favorite pics of that night! All the girls raising their value color flags to the sky. woot woot! I love the one girl that has hers straight up!! haha Way to go for the Young Women's program the church has put together! I have such a great love for it and the things it teaches our girls and for the things I learn from it myself.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Banana Cake Loaf

This is a Martin Family favorite! I have no idea where my mother-in-law got the recipe but the best part is the topping. The girls in the family always end up fighting with the boys because they pick the topping off and the girls like the cake with topping on! You'll have to decide which is your favorite. This is a super easy recipe to make and pretty fast to whip together. Hope you all enjoy it!

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Couscous Salad with Sauteed Shrimp Scampi

One of mine and Nate's favorite recipes that's light and fresh. It's perfect for when your feeling a little bogged in from the snow and cold weather. It's also one I make and take to potluck activities or parties because it's different and has great flavor and most people love shrimp. Get the recipe and pictures on my recipe blog which I hope to update with my favorite recipe I make for the week. We'll see. :)

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Welcome back to blog land...

After a 5+ month hiatus I had a thought that I felt like sharing. So here it is. I was reading my friend Rachel's status today and it said something about posting your fav line from a movie or maybe it was a line from your fav movie in your status, whichever it was I honestly couldn't think of a single line from a movie. That always happens to me!! I'm put on the spot and my mind goes blank!! Or maybe it's that I've watched too many movies and I can't zero in on a fav one...or not. Nate, my hubby, can seriously remember any line from any movie and then quote it perfectly! it's a great party trick because everyone thinks your so cool cause you can quote some random movie and make everyone laugh. not me, I'm left struggling to remember what movie that even came from. At least since we're married I get to ride on the coattails of his coolness.

I did however remember a few lines from my favorite TV series!! I've seen this series like 6 or 7 times since Nate gave it to me for my birthday 3 years ago. I know that's craziness because it's 3 seasons long, but it's oh so good!!!! I've lent it out to many friends who have joined me on what I now call the "V-Mars train." That's right, “V-Mars" stands for Veronica Mars. This show has it all! Super cute, gets-ya-right-in-the-heart main character (Kristen Bell), espionage, witty humor, cute boys, star-crossed lovers and lines I can actually remember and want to remember!! Oh, and it's one my hubby actually watch completely with me. If a boy likes it, it's gotta be worth it!

So here are two scenes that are some of my most favorite from this show....

Logan: I thought our story was epic you know, you and me.
Veronica: Epic, how?
Logan: Spanning years, continents, lives ruined, bloodshed, epic.
Veronica: Come on! Ruined lives, bloodshed? Do you really think a relationship should be that hard?
Logan: No one writes songs about the ones that come easy.

Not sure if this will actually post a video or just the link but check it out! I mean if you want...or not.

This next clip is way to long to write out but there are some priceless gems in this one that Nate and I still quote to each other on a regular basis. Here's a little preview.....

Veronica: Hey, how's it going?
Logan: oh, this is gonna be good.
Veronica: What?
Logan: You have that "I would rather be making out with a broken bottle" look which if history serves, you're about to say something awkward.
Veronica: This? (points to her face) This is my "I'd rather be spelunking face." It's like you don't know me at all.
Tehehe marshmellows and promises.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Just A Little Randomness

big surprise, I haven't posted in a while, but I have a friend who has declared every thursday "random thought thursday" so I said to myself, what the hey! Warning: these are probs more then thoughts cause I am a women of a lot of words.

Since purple is my fav color, random thought uno, I love YW's! I was driving around at the activity tuesday night on a photo scavenger hunt with a car full of 12 yr old girls, a good song came on the radio, we pumped it and sang at the top of our lungs! It's sweet to feel young again and that totally makes one of my top 5 moments in YW's so far!

I've started this digestive cleanser called Dr-Ho's Ab-Trimmer. you have to take these weird pills in the morning that taste like garlic and then this powder you can mix with water or juice. the first day I decided to try it with water, got all of it down but one last swig. took a deep breath, tipped the glass back, felt the mixture hit my hangy thing in the back on my mouth, gagged and spit it all out of the floor. immediately busted up laughing, oh this was at work too. no one was around but it was still a priceless moment, one moment gross mixture going down my throat, now gross mixture on the floor for me to clean up.

I'm so busy I don't have time to clean my house. It's almost to the point of ridiculous. Not only my house but my life. part of me loves it cause I feel like I'm always getting somethang done but somewhere in my subconscious I know it's only a matter of time before I crack. oh, and nate just got called into the elders quorum pres.

do you remember how old you were when you started noticing boys? I guess it was sometime in elementry school when my best friend glenda told this boy clint that i liked him and I was too afraid to talk to him so i avoided the whole situation until he showed up at my house. it was a little "say anything" now that I think about it but sweet. so driving randomly with these yw girls, need to take a pic of someone doing a pop-a-wheely on a bike, see two teenage boys, stop and ask them to do it. one girls out takin the pic the other two are inside talking about the kids muscles and randomly say "I bet he has a six pack." i busted up laughing and asked them how they knew about six packs. One of the girls named Ryanne said, "um, we're getting to the age where we notice those kinds of things." yikes! okay then. but seriously, aren't they too young to be noticing those kinds of things??? I suddenly feel really old

New fav show, "How I Met your Mother." hi-larious!!!! plus there's a character in the show named Robin who's from Canada (bonus) and she does every stereotypical canadian thing imagined! I find it immensely entertaining.

the whole "Twilight" craze-fest that seems to have taken over everyone in world is driving me NUTSO!! today on the radio I heard that they're (I don't know who specifically)starting these interactive twilight parties where you can go and dress up and have some kind of "twilight experience." now I love books, ya'll out there know I LOVE books and fiction, but come on! what is the point? so you go this party and meet weird guys dressed as edward and vampires and bring to life this book then after partying it up, you have to return to real life, your own house, your own job. why try to bring something to life that is never gonna be?!?!?! just seems so unhealthy. man, what a downer am I...