Monday, September 29, 2014

Book Review: What Alice Forgot

What Alice ForgotWhat Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

Ugh! I was quite surprised by how much I really disliked this book, based on the positive reviews of some of my most-trusted goodreads friends. I found the book (and most of the characters) irritating and sappy, the letters written by Elisabeth and Frannie annoying, the f-words (as always) unnecessary and the storyline too predictably wrapped up in a nice little bow at the end. Why didn't someone just tell poor Alice what was going on in her life and get the poor woman some help instead of trying to shelter her from her lost memories. Seriously? Hoping this book soon falls into the category of What Julie Forgot as I move onto something a little less reminiscent of Nicholas Sparks.

View all my reviews

Tuesday, April 15, 2014


I think that too often we undermine the daily, everyday, routine loads that we carry. It's important to remember that even the smallest load can feel heavy on a hard day. We don't have to be suffering a great loss, trial or heartache to feel sad, lonely and burdened. Parenthood can be hard. Childhood can be hard. Middle School can be hard. Life can be hard. Relying on the Savior is necessary and essential as we move through life, one load at a time.

David A. Bednar's April 2014 Conference talk is available HERE.

Feel free to Pin, share or print the image I created.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

The Phone Call That Changed My Life

Twenty years ago I went to the doctor because I was sick. Nothing terrible, just the typical sore throat-headache-stuffy nose-cough that wouldn't go away. It would have been a pretty forgettable appointment if it wasn't for a question the doctor asked and the follow-up phone call from a nurse later that day.

After a quick peek in the ears-nose-throat the doctor determined a prescription was in order and asked if there was any chance I was pregnant.  Erik and I had hoped for this news for a couple of months and I was in the "it's possible but too soon to know" stage. I mentioned this to the doctor and he said that a blood test could reveal the result much sooner than a urine test. Despite my fear of both needles and blood I agreed to be poked and headed home, prescription in hand. I'm not sure exactly how much time passed, but within a couple of hours a nurse called to let me know that the pregnancy test was positive. I was thrilled.

At that moment there was so much I didn't know. I didn't know that this pregnancy would cause insatiable cravings for BYU hot dogs and a strong aversion at times to lettuce. I didn't know that prenatal vitamins were huge and the last thing my body felt like digesting. I didn't know that the exhaustion from pregnancy was nothing compared to the exhaustion from motherhood. I didn't know that I was carrying an amazing baby girl inside me who has become an equally amazing woman today.

It's remarkable how much the news that day changed my life. Although it would still be 8 months before I'd hold my first baby in my arms, I knew at that moment that I was a mother, an instrument in God's hands to bring a life into this world. My mother heart was already born. It's who I am. It's who I was always meant to be.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Be Happy Now

This is from one of my all-time favorite talks. I love it. You can read it here.
Happy Monday!

Texas Caviar

I could live off of this yummy black bean and corn dip. I love it! I've also had it with black-eyed-peas, but really love the black beans. I'm not an avocado lover, so I leave those out. It's affectionately called "Bean and Corns" at our house. It's a great make-ahead recipe and is even better the next day.

1 can black beans, drained
1 can corn, drained
4-5 green onions sliced
3-4 small tomatoes, diced
1/2 bunch of cilantro
about 1/2 bottle of Italian dressing (low fat/fat free works great)
1 avocado, diced (optional)

Put beans, corn, tomatoes and onions in a large bowl. In a blender or food processor mix together the cilantro and Italian dressing. Pour dressing over the bean and corn mixture and stir. Add avocado. Serve with chips or on taco salad.

Friday, January 31, 2014


It's College and Career Week at our elementary school and the 2nd graders were asked to describe a good college student. Thankful that Mason has such a great example in his oldest sister who seems to have mastered all eight items on the list. I hate thinking of the day when these gems no longer come home in the backpack.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Chicken Florentine

This is one of my families favorite recipes.  I've made a few changes from the original I was given several years ago, using fresh spinach instead of frozen and cutting the chicken into smaller pieces. It's so easy to throw together on a busy weeknight but also has fantastic dinner-party appeal.

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
4 - 5 cups pasta sauce
2 cups cream or half & half
2 cups fresh spinach, julienned
freshly grated parmesan cheese
1 box of pasta, prepared

Cut chicken into chunks and place in a sprayed 9x13 pan. Sprinkle with garlic powder, salt and pepper.

In a separate dish, combine sauce, cream or half & half and spinach. I use a combination of 1/2 cup of cream and 1 1/2 cups of half & half. Using all cream is fantastic, but not quite as healthy. Pour the entire mixture over the chicken. Bake at 375*, uncovered for about 40 - 45 minutes, until sauce is bubbling and chicken is cooked completely. Top with parmesan cheese and return to the oven for 5 minutes. Serve hot over pasta.