Thursday, October 18, 2012

Time Out For Women weekend

This post is a little late, but I am so excited to share with you some of the fun pictures from Time Out for Women Denver- which was in September! Time out for Women is put on by Deseret Book Company, and is a weekend full of laughing, crying, fun, and inspiration for women. I look forward to this event EVERY year, and never regret going. This year in particular I was SO SO SO excited about because, as is fully known here on this blog, my favorite music group Mercy River was going to be singing at it! To say I was excited was an understatement. This group seriously does not have a single song that I do not love, and that does not inspire me. They produce the most amazing albums, and they are amazing women too! I really enjoyed listening to them talk about the inspiration behind different songs they've written, or sung, and then to hear them perform in person was amazing. I just sat there in awe the entire time. I will even admit I went a little "groupie" on them and got teary eyed when they came out to do their first number, I just love them that much!
What was truly fun for me was to chat with them for a little bit!
I was so excited that my sister was able to come in town to attend TOFW with me, and that my amazing husband was willing to watch her 3 kids along with our 3 kids for the weekend too!

No, I won't end without sharing a few things I learned from the weekend....and I even have a fun video to share too! The theme for this year was "Seek the Good". How often do we go through life looking at the faults in people? I'll give a few thoughts on some of the speakers for us all to think about!

Virginia Pierce- spoke about forgiveness, it was an amazing message that she shared and gave me a lot of things to think about. Some of the notes I wrote down were "REFUSE to be offended, look deeper for the intent of their actions.- usually people aren't trying to offend!" and "Holding on to expectations is often the source of unforgiving feelings".

Sheri Dew- such amazing, strong women! She talked about the strength of women, and that we as women have specific roles to play. Something she said I really liked  was "Men and women are EQUAL in the sight of the Lord, not IDENTICAL." and  "There are some things the Lord will only show to those who seek and believe"

Chris Williams- author of "Let It Go", if you'd like a great inspiration video for the day go HERE and watch this mans amazing story of forgiveness, enduring, and moving forward through trials.

Anthony Sweat- spoke about the true meaning of Charity - "Charity is a relationship with God", "We all have hungers, needs, wants, and Charity is the food that feeds you- "if ye drink, ye shall never thirst again"

Julie De Azevedo-Hanks- spoke about being "Your most authentic self" - "Instead of trying of feel better, maybe we should get better at feeling!", Celebrate the good that is already in you. Acknowledging and owning my God-given strengths is humility." and my favorite "Instead of making a to-do list make a ta-da list!"

And lastly, here is a hilarious parody that Mercy River did....that is OH SO TRUE.

Thursday, October 11, 2012


As I mentioned at the end of my last post, I spent last weekend listening to our modern day Prophet and Apostles at the 182nd Semi-Annual General Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Whew, that's a lot in one sentence....we just call in General Conference. I learned so much listening to the leaders of the church teach, guide, and inspire all to be better, and do better. Thanks to the inspiration from a wonderful friend I even created some activities that kept my kids present for ALL 4 sessions (that is 8 hrs!) of conference for the first time EVER.  My favorite talk this time was Elder Henry B. Eyering, his talk is titled "Where is the Pavilion", click that title and it will take you to a summary and link to the video so you can watch it too! Some of the other talks I really enjoyed were President Dieter F. Uchdorf on Saturday morning(2nd counselor in the first presidency of the church, and Sister Ann Dibb on Saturday morning as well. You can click HERE to listen or watch any of the speakers from all sessions of conference.

Prior to conference on Sunday I decided it was time to bake a yummy fall treat breakfast. I searched around on pinterest and googled some ideas and boy did I find a hidden gem of a recipe! So delicious that I decided I just had to share it! I made Pumpkin Cinnamon Streusel Muffins. Seriously, they were so melt-in-your-mouth good. So, here they are!

Pumpkin Cinnamon Streusel Muffins
found at: Two Peas and their Pod blog

1 3/4 cups all purpose flour  (in an attempt to add a little health into this I substituted 1/2 C. whole wheat flour, and will probably increase it to 3/4 C. or more next time)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 tablespoon cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoons nutmeg
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup canola oil
1/3 cup water
1 cup canned pumpkin (I added a little more than this)
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Brown Sugar Cinnamon Filling:
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Streusel Topping:
1 1/4 cup oats
1 tablespoon flour
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Dash of nutmeg
6 tablespoons cold butter, cut into chunks


1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line two muffin tins with paper liners or spray with cooking spray. Set aside.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Set aside.
3. In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, oil, water, pumpkin, eggs, and vanilla extract. Whisk until smooth and combined.
4. Slowly stir in the flour mixture. Mix until ingredients are combined.
5. For the brown sugar cinnamon filling: in a small bowl, mix the brown sugar and cinnamon together. Set aside.
6. For the streusel topping: in a small bowl mix together the oats, flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Mix in the butter with your hands until the mixture is crumbly.
7. Fill muffin cups half way full with the pumpkin batter. Sprinkle the brown sugar cinnamon filling over each half filled muffin cup. Fill the muffins cups with the remaining batter. Top each muffin with streusel topping.
8. Bake for 17-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Remove pans from oven and cool on a wire rack. Remove muffins from tins and enjoy!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Just Relax

Sorry I've been MIA for a couple weeks now, I've had a bit of a "bloggers block" and have been busy trying to accomplish some goals of spending more time with my family and dreaded chores. On to the post though.....

Sunset in Santa Fe, NM......amazing huh?!
  As a mom of 3 young kids my life can get...well, crazy. I spend every day trying to get a hold on things and figure out how to keep my life together.
 Here's my current life equation:
homework+spelling tests+reading lists+fundraisers+volunteering+preschool snack days+field trips+speech therapy homework+a two year old+soccer( or baseball depending on the season)+grocery shopping+meal making+working out+church responsibilities= one stressed out pair of parents.

So what do we do to relax a bit and just let life come one day at a time? One thing I like to do is get out and enjoy nature! Autumn time is my absolute FAVORITE time of the year. I feel like it screams "Slow down! relax a little!" The hustle and bustle of the holidays hasn't come around the corner yet, and everyone is tired out from summer vacations, and the confusion of school starting. My favorite smells are the smells of autumn: pumpkin, cinnamon, and apple....they cause me to pause, take a deep breath, slow down and relax. Spring and Fall cause me to actually take note of the colors changing all around me. I love the vivid fall colors of yellow, red, and orange. The sound of a leaf crunching under my shoes. The warmth of the jacket I haven't warn for a year and the excitement I get to put on my tall boots! I've said it before, but can you tell how much I love nature?  

Bridal Veil Falls Park, Provo Canyon, UT- this is the park where my husband proposed to me:)

 Of course I can't go without saying that music and reading a good book can help you relax too! What do YOU like to do to relax and de-stress?

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