Sunday, January 11, 2015

Lazing On A Sunday Afternoon

Two Things I am Grateful For:

1)  My oldest daughter who helps me in so many ways, but who also does nice things for her little sister.  Yesterday Danielle came over with a new dress for Lexi.  Then when we went out shopping she bought Lexi another cute skirt and blouse.  Lexi was so excited, she was the first to get out of bed to start getting ready for church this morning.  (she looked very cute in her skirt and blouse today.  If that outfit would have come in my size, I might have tried to get it for myself.  It's so cute!)  That alone is a very good thing!  I love that my kids are close, but I especially love that my oldest child and my youngest child are sisters and their age difference doesn't really matter in the grand scheme of things.

2)  I really enjoyed the talks in Sacrament today!  We heard from the full-time missionaries serving our ward area.  They were awesome talks.  Especially the second missionary that spoke.  His talk was just what we needed to hear.  Sure, the topic of their talks were about missionary work, but the stories and examples they shared were things we needed to hear.  I love how that happens just about every single Sunday.  It is always amazing to me how whoever is speaking in Sacrament Meeting is lead by the Holy Ghost to present those things their Heavenly Father wants presented in HIS Sacrament Meetings.  It is wonderful!

From the Camera:

These are my parents!  I know I have shared photos before of them, but as I was scrolling through photos today this one stood out for me.  Love their wedding photos and just thought I would share one.  
From the Heart:

In keeping with out theme, acts of kindness, here is another idea....

Education is a great privilege that many people across the world don't have access to. But those who do have means to go to school often find it to be very stressful.
Finding the motivation to study or trying to score high grades can be a challenge for many students. Some students have a hard time learning, others just need some encouragement. So for some students, studying with a friend can be a great solution to the struggles they have in school.

Step It Up

Have you noticed a classmate who struggles in school? Arrange to study together after class. If you're not already friends, this could be a step towards a new friendship.

Keep It Simple

Offer to help a friend review for a test. Just taking the time to quiz someone might help them succeed in school.
From the Kitchen:

Spicy Sweet n' Sour Meatballs

 We love meatballs in this house, in fact, we never met a meatball that we didn't like. With that being said I went on a hunt for a good sweet n sour meatball recipe.  We love spicy things a little bit more than overly sweet and so I decided to combine the recipe a spicy sticky sauce we love to put over chicken. The combination was so great!! Seriously yummy and easy to make!!! 

Spicy Sweet n' Sour Meatballs
3 lbs ground beef
1 1/2 cups bread crumbs
3 eggs
1 cup finely chopped onion
2 T. minced garlic
1 cup milk
3 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp pepper
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce

 Sweet Sauce:
2 1/2 cups brown sugar
1 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
5 tsp mustard
1 1/4 cup BBQ sauce
5 tsp Worcestershire sauce

Spicy Sauce:
1 1/8 cup Franks hot Sauce(do not use and other kind)
2/3 cup water
4 cups brown sugar

For the Meatballs: Combine all of the ingredients and mix well. Form into balls and place on a large cookie sheet. Bake at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes, or until cooked through and well browned all around. If you don't like them as brown cook them less.
For the sauces: In two saucepans, bring the ingredients for each one to a boil and simmer for about 5 minutes. Place the cooked meatballs in a large skillet, pour both sauces over the meatballs and bring the mixture to a simmer. Let simmer for 20 -30 minutes. If the sauce is to thin thicken it with a little cornstarch and water. Serve over your choice of Rice.

Note: I know this is a lot of sugar. If you want to cut the sugar down go ahead and try it. I have never done so, so I can't vouch for it success but let me know if you do and if it works. We always have a little bit of meatballs/sauce over a large portion of rice so we don't feel guilty about the sugar content. This really makes a large pan full and could feed 10 -12 people easily. If you don't want as much cut all the ingredients in half and make a half batch.

From the Spirit:

The Parable of the Divers   By: Stephen E. Robinson 
In his book, "Following Christ"
"Many years ago, when I was somewhere between nine and eleven, I participated in a community summer recreation program in the town where I grew up. I remember in particular a diving competition for the different age groups held at the community swimming pool. Some of the wealthier kids in our area had their own pools with diving boards, and they were pretty good amateur divers. But there was one kid my age from the less affluent part of town who didn’t have his own pool. What he had was raw courage. While the rest of us did our crisp little swan dives, back dives, and jackknives, being ever so careful to arch our backs and point our toes, this young man attempted back flips, one-and-a-halfs, doubles, and so on. But, oh, he was sloppy. He seldom kept his feet together, he never pointed his toes, and he usually missed his vertical entry. The rest of us observed with smug satisfaction as the judges held up their scorecards that he consistently got lower marks than we did with our safe and simple dives, and we congratulated ourselves that we were actually the better divers. “He is all heart and no finesse,” we told ourselves. “After all, we keep our feet together and point our toes.”

The announcement of the winners was a great shock to us, for the brave young lad with the flips had apparently beaten us all.  However, I had kept rough track of the scores in my head, and I knew with the arrogance of limited information that the math didn’t add up. I had consistently outscored the boy with the flips. And so, certain that an injustice was being perpetrated, I stormed the scorer’s table and demanded and explanation. “Degree of difficulty,” the scorer replied matter-of-factly as he looked me in the eye. “Sure, you had better form, but he did harder dives. When you factor in the degree of difficulty, he beat you hands down, kid.”  Until that moment I hadn’t known that some dives were awarded “extra credit” because of their greater difficulty.

I have a friend to whom life has been unkind. Though she married in the temple, her husband proved unfaithful and eventually abandoned her and their small children.  Since he has never paid a penny in child support, my friend works full time to support herself and her kids.  For several years she also went to school at night to improve her financial situation. Therefore, out of necessity, she could not be with her children as much as she would have liked and could not always give them the guidance and discipline they needed.  It just wasn't possible in her difficult circumstances. One result of her less-than-perfect family situation was troubled teenagers. Now in middle age she is faced with raising some of her grandchildren--again, alone.  Without a faithful companion, without the priesthood in her home, without the blessings that are realized where the ideal family setting is possible, it is almost inevitable that my friend should feel that her "scores" as a wife and mother, and perhaps even as a person, aren't very high. When she goes to church and sees other "ideal" LDS families, when she hears them bear their testimonies and give thanks for all their spiritual and temporal blessings, she sees in her mind the judges holding up scorecards that say 9.9 or 10.0. When she looks at her own life, her own failed marriage, her own troubled children, she knows that the scores are much lower, and she worries about her place in the kingdom.

Whenever I am tempted to feel superior to other Saints, the parable of the divers comes to my mind, and I repent. At least at a swim meet, we can usually tell which dives are the most difficult. But here in mortality, we cannot always tell who is carrying what burdens: limited intelligence, chemical depression, compulsive behaviors, learning disabilities, dysfunctional or abusive family background, poor health, physical or psychological handicaps—no one chooses these things. So I must not judge my brothers and sisters. I am thankful for my blessings but not smug about them, for I never want to hear the Scorer say to me, “Sure, you had better form, but she had a harder life. When you factor in degree of difficulty, she beat you hands down.”
From the Schmidt's:
This has been a good day so far!  Everyone made it to church which always makes me happy.  Kyle decided to check out his older sister's ward to day and just left to make it to their meeting on time.
Danielle gets to meet her boyfriends mother today.  I guess his mom is down from Montana to see a sister who is very sick.  So, Chance's Mom will be in town for a little while.  I'm excited for her to meet Chance's Mom.  She seems like a really great lady...and a lot of fun too.  This is a good thing!

We are all anxiously awaiting for word that Curtis' mission paperwork has been forwarded to Salt Lake.  We hope that news will come any day now.  Exciting times!  With technology today, our Bishop was telling us that he can track the mission call on his phone.  He will have daily updates on the paperwork and where it's at through the process.  I wanted to ask him if I could have that app for my phone, but I exercised some restraint and did not ask.  LOL!  It probably wasn't a good idea for the Bishop to share that information with us.  We might have to call him daily for updates.  Ha Ha!  
We wouldn't do that!  We know he is a busy man and will let us know if anything goes haywire.  We trust him.  ~smile~smile~smile~

Danielle's friend, Brittney continues to get better.  Her mouth still hurts, but she is doing much better.  She has a really bad infection.  In fact, the dentist gave her an antibiotic to take for 30 days.  He said if the pain and swelling in her neck and ear come around to the front of her neck she must go to the Emergency Room right away.  That means her airway is closing up on her and she may need more care.  Scary right!!??!!!  Poor Brittney.  I worry about her like she is my own daughter.  I know her family struggles as much or more than our family does.  I also know how her poor mother must feel with not being able to be there for Brittney.  It's hard.  My heart goes out to Brittney and her mother and brother.

Well, that is our day pretty much.  Kevin is flat in bed taking it easy.  I am here typing and getting ready to get things ready for dinner and for work for me and school for the kids tomorrow.  We have a busy week ahead of us.  Kevin has to be in Phoenix this week so that means Curtis will have to take him since I cannot.  Then Curtis has a job he is trying to get to start saving more for his mission.  We are crossing our fingers he gets it.  He would be working with Kyle.  4 ten hour days.  That way Curtis will have at least one week day to work on anything like eye appointment, doctor's appointments for shots or whatever comes up as he tried to prepare for his upcoming mission.  Exciting times!  

Well, you all take care and we will talk again soon.   Thanks for stopping by.  I hope as you visit the pages of this blog that you enjoy what you see or read and are inspired somehow too.

Quote of the Day:
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