Category Archives: information

Summer bucket list

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Learn something new.

Read 50 books.

Swim in the ocean, eat Cuban food, run around the ropes course, play putt-putt on the Getaway.

One word – Festivals!

Swim at the reservoirs.

Hiking – find a new spot and go to a bunch of old ones.

Make a terrarium or two.

Paint rocks and hide them.

Play in a sprayground.

Discover some art.

Tubing/swimming – Clear creek, Bear creek, Platte river, Cache la Poudre, secret pond, super secret swimming spot.

Try every slush boba flavor at Lollicup.

Gondola ride/hike in Breck.

Camping – free camping, heck I might even pay for a spot…..

Library shows/arts/crafts – henna for sure.

$1 movies – hopefully they have some good ones running.

Rockhounding – looking for some cool rocks and gems.

Pet some dogs.

Have fun at park days.

Dance in line at Littleman’s.

Binge watch some TV shows.

Sing like no one is listening.

Co-ops!

Take lots of pictures.

Make s’mores.

Stargaze.

Dye hair with kool-aid.

Catch some snakes, tadpoles, frogs, and crawfish and let them go.

Pretend to be a tourist in my town.

One word – penny arcade, oops, guess that’s two words.

Go to Lakeside.

Go to Elitch.

Pick some berries and eat them.

Have a picnic or two.

Eat some good food.

Go to the cheese shop and the tea shop.

Teach Grace to drive.

Set up Bethany in her dorm at Mesa.

*Random stuff that I happen to add

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The week

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is slow. Grace has 2 finals today, I dropped James at the airport at 3am for his flight to an NREL conference in Nashville. I’m probably going to take a nap today, I need to run by the bank and the DMV today too.

Dinners this week – sandwiches, breakfast tacos, sweet potato and chorizo hash, find something in the pantry because we’re going on vacation and I’m not buying anymore food, see yesterday, plane food, Cuban food on the Getaway.

Our week- taking James to airport, co-op offerings, finals, DMV info, punny pots @ library, hike, water sampling, youth group, picking up James, packing, Miami, Norwegian Getaway to Western Caribbean.

Can you count on God? Is He dependable?

The things that we normally trust in are not unfailing – the government, money, spouses, emotions, children, love, relationships, people. When life is hard, when you are under attack, God is your shield – standing between you and the enemy. The more we depend on God the more He lifts us up and holds us close to Him.

T. F. Torrance, “As we draw nearer to God, the more integrated our spiritual and physical existence becomes, and the more integrated our spiritual and physical existence becomes, the more we are able to draw nearer to God.”

Psalm 33: 4 For the word of the Lord is right and true;
    he is faithful in all he does.

5 The Lord loves righteousness and justice;
    the earth is full of his unfailing love.

16 No king is saved by the size of his army;
    no warrior escapes by his great strength.

17 A horse is a vain hope for deliverance;
    despite all its great strength it cannot save.

18 But the eyes of the Lord are on those who fear him,
    on those whose hope is in his unfailing love,

20 We wait in hope for the Lord;
    he is our help and our shield.

The week

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To do this week – donate all the cat stuff and rest of dog stuff to the shelter, pick up Zoe’s paw print, school, worship dance, Walk2Connect library walk, Creativity club, jazz at EG, Fox theater Cinco show, youth groups, ballet work/self practice, Into the Woods school showing, Star testing, ACC jazz ensemble show, Ft. Lupton heritage fair, working at church.

Dinners this week – baked mac and cheese (shocker, this is Hannah’s dinner), pintos and sausage with cornbread, artichoke chicken casserole (Grace), breakfast for dinner (toast with dandelion jelly, fried eggs, grits, sausage), tamale pie, grilling stuff.

Artichoke Chicken Casserole

1 cup grated Parmesan cheese 
1 cup light mayonnaise
1 pinch garlic powder, or to taste
4 (4 ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 (14 ounce) can artichoke hearts, drained
1 (8 ounce) package crimini mushrooms, sliced

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Mix Parmesan cheese, mayonnaise, and garlic powder together in a bowl.
Arrange chicken breasts in a 9×13-inch baking dish; top with artichoke hearts and crimini mushrooms. Spread cheese mixture over the artichoke and mushroom layer.
Bake in the preheated oven until the chicken no longer pink in the center and the juices run clear, about 30 minutes. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the center should read at least 165 degrees F (74 degrees C).

Hot Tamale Pie

(I make my own cornbread instead of using the cornbread mix, but that’s up to you.)

2 cups diced poblano peppers
1 teaspoon salt
1 (16 ounce) jar salsa
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon ground dried chipotle pepper
2 (8.5 ounce) boxes dry corn muffin mix (such as Jiffy®)
2 eggs 2/3 cup milk, divided
4 ounces shredded Cheddar cheese, divided
4 ounces shredded Monterey Jack cheese, divided
8 ounces frozen corn, thawed

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Spray a 9×13-inch casserole dish with cooking spray.
Cook and stir ground beef in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat until meat starts to brown and release juices, about 5 minutes.
Reduce heat to medium and stir in poblano peppers, salt, salsa, oregano, and chipotle powder; cook and stir until seasoned beef is crumbly and no longer pink, about 10 minutes.
Mix one package of corn muffin mix in a large bowl with 1 egg and 1/3 cup of milk. Whisk to combine. In a separate large bowl, mix the second package of corn muffin mix with 1 egg, 1/3 cup of milk and half the Cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses.
Spread the prepared corn muffin mixture without cheese into the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle corn over the muffin mix, followed by remaining half of the cheeses, then the beef mixture.
Spoon the corn muffin mix with cheese on top of the beef and carefully spread over the top with a fork, leaving about half an inch from the edges of the pan.
Bake in the preheated oven for 50-60 minutes, until golden brown.

Weekend – that ended sadly

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Saturday – we took James to the Living history day in Westminster. We’ve been almost every year, but we always go on a Friday, so he’s never been. He had never toured the university building before, but first – war.

The Americans and British face off, we attack.

They attack.

Reinforcements arrive, we advance, sending them into retreat – we win!

James and I took a tour of the inside of the building.

Then followed the girls outside.

A stop on the way home.

We let Zoe have the run of the backyard – she sat and enjoyed the sun.

Sunday we skipped church and went to Dim Sum – we got there early and were in the first round of seating.

Totally full (we were going to do it Sat, but Bethany was at work, so we did it today, but that made us too full to enjoy the Art walk brunch – so we just walked and enjoyed the art.)

When we got home it was time. Time to say goodbye, get some last pictures and take Zoe to the vet to go to the big sleep. It was hard to be back in that room so soon after being there with Maisy.

Dance, art, jazz, math

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‘Sup this week – school, NIA, worship dance, watercolor and pen art @ library, jazz @ EG, on-line botanical illustration class starts, potluck @ church, youth groups, dropping shoe donations at Soles for Souls, Walk to Connect tour, Creativity club, First Friday art walk, hike, La Pompe @ Still museum.

Dinners this week – beef stroganoff (Hannah),
chicken, sausage and shrimp gumbo (Grace), taco soup, cranberry glazed pork loin with sweet potatoes, chili and cornbread, chicken quesadillas.

Slow Cooker chicken, sausage, and shrimp gumbo

2 (14.5 ounce) cans stewed tomatoes, undrained
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut up
1 (14.5 ounce) can reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 green sweet pepper, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
1 pound sausage cut into pieces
1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 package frozen okra
1 pound fresh or frozen medium shrimp (thawed if frozen), peeled and deveined
4 cups hot cooked white or brown rice

Add tomatoes, chicken, broth, green pepper, onion, celery, Cajun seasoning, garlic, black pepper, okra, sausage and cayenne pepper to slow cooker. Stir gently with wooden spoon or rubber scraper to combine.
Cover and cook on low for 6 hours.
Remove lid and stir in shrimp gently with a wooden spoon or rubber scraper. Cover and cook about 3 minutes more, or until shrimp is opaque. Serve over cooked rice.

Slow Cooker Taco Soup

1 pound ground beef
1 onion, chopped
1 (16 ounce) can black beans, with liquid
1 (15 ounce) can kidney beans with liquid
1 (15 ounce) can hominy, with liquid
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
2 cups water
2 (14.5 ounce) cans peeled and diced tomatoes
1 (4 ounce) can diced green chile peppers
1 (1.25 ounce) package taco seasoning mix

In a medium skillet, cook the ground beef until browned over medium heat. Drain, and set aside.
Place the ground beef, onion, black beans, kidney beans, hominy, tomato sauce, water, diced tomatoes, green chile peppers and taco seasoning mix in a slow cooker. Mix to blend, and cook on Low setting for 8 hours.
Top with sour cream, cheese, pico, corn chips, avocado slices.

Monday for dance we didn’t have devotionals, instead we used the time to pray with each other. We got Ann caught up on the dance and there is a few new moves that I’m going to have to practice because they are hard. Tuesday the girls had a watercolor/ink class at the library, then James and I went to jazz. Grace has been working though trig in geometry, unfair is what I call it.

Wednesday was the start of the botanical illustration class that Grace and I are taking, watching the videos I see that we have a long way to go.

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Here is my tonal sheet, just working with the new pencils.

Wednesday art and Thursday surprise

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Wednesday we did some school, Grace is finishing up MacBeth and working on sine and cosine in math. Hannah finished up a unit test in math and science. Bethany and the girls went to lunch, then she left for her friends house (birthday) and Grace, Hannah and I went to the library for Creativity club. I don’t tell kids what to bring or make so we had – painting LPS figures, coloring, digital drawing, construction paper art, drawing, clay making and I was folding my book. It’s coming along, I need to cut some pieces on the L and O to fold over, but I just wanted to see what it looked like first.

Grace made chorizo stuffed sweet potatoes (there is a potato under there) and then Hannah and I went to church.

Thursday morning I was feeding the fish when I noticed Frank the shrimp was doing something weird.

Then I saw tiny things in the water that looked like floating food, but when I looked closer I saw tiny feet moving around – Frank had babies!

Frank continued to pop out babies while we watched for about 30 min. When I left for NIA there were about 10 babies in the tank (we moved Aztec so he wouldn’t eat them.) I have no idea if the shrimplets will survive even for a day, but for today they are fun to watch.

It was also a nice day to go to the park, I made a park day at Redstone so we could get outside for a bit. The weather changed from sunny to cloudy, the wind picked up and it started to rain while we were there, but some of us sat under the shelter talking for awhile. TNO was at the Hampden Whole Foods, which I like because they have a full Indian food bar, yum. I’m making chicken tikka for the girls tonight, but I will have some at WF too.

Mesa, Chinese New Year, Sunday

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While James and Bethany were on a tour of Mesa, the girls and I headed over to the Far East center for the annual dragon dance. This being the year of the dog (which is sad, since we don’t have one anymore), they had dancing dogs. Enjoy!

We ended up at Pho because Star Kitchen was insane. We headed back home and watched TV/played until James and Bethany got home. He and I went to Indulge to have some together time, then back home for sleep!

Sunday we went to church and Phil gave the message on our series in Timothy. Bottom line – don’t do things that make God look bad to non-believers. Older men and women – earn respect, don’t slander, be pure, be someone who mentors younger people, someone they can look up to, life your life to the fullest and for God’s glory. Younger men and women – don’t slander, be self-controlled, submit to one another in love, love your spouse and children, be pure and do it all for God’s glory. Why? Because people are watching.

Titus 2: 6 We don’t want anyone looking down on God’s Message because of their behavior…..7-8 But mostly, show them all this by doing it yourself, incorruptible in your teaching, your words solid and sane. Then anyone who is dead set against us, when he finds nothing weird or misguided, might eventually come around. …11 God’s readiness to give and forgive is now public. Salvation’s available for everyone!

Hannah went to a friend’s house to play, we took Grace to lunch, I cleaned out Grace’s fish tank and killed all of her fish. I don’t know what I was thinking, the tank had a huge algae bloom and I just wasn’t thinking about how the fish would feel going from that dirty to sparkling clean. They didn’t like it, by the evening one was clearly on his way out and the other three (and a snail) ended up not making it either. Grace was devastated, I was so sad and guilty about cleaning the tank and causing her such sadness. We have to cycle the tank, so it will be a month before she gets new fish, and now we know – 1 gallon of change per week with a bloom, no overfeeding, leave the fish and plants in the tank during the cleaning, get a real plant to help with the water quality and don’t leave the light on for more than 8 hours a day. Still, it was very sad.

What we’re up to this week  – NIA, school, worship dance, Teacher’s day out (Cafe 180 and MOA), Girl scout cookies and drinks at EG, Creativity club, youth group, Teen science cafe (a Marine Biologist is talking about ‘sex in the sea’), leaving for Grand Junction a family visit to Colorado Mesa University, gondola ride in Breck, hiking, touring around town, working in the 3’s room at church, Gypsy jazz and swing dance at Mercury cafe.

Dinners this week – Moroccan salmon cakes with sweet potatoes, chicken soup with dumplings, TV dinner, Grand Junction (2 nights), lemon chicken with asparagus.

Moroccan Salmon Cakes with Garlic Mayonnaise

Garlic mayo: 1/2 cup mayonnaise 1 clove garlic, crushed 1/8 teaspoon paprika 
Salmon cakes: 1/2 cup couscous
2/3 cup orange juice
1 (14.75 ounce) can red salmon, drained (We are using 12 oz of salmon cooked)
1 (10 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach – thawed, drained and squeezed dry
2 egg yolks, beaten
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons olive oil

In a small stainless steel or glass bowl, stir together mayonnaise, garlic, and paprika. Set aside.

Prepare couscous according to package directions using the 2/3 cup of orange juice in place of water.
In a mixing bowl, combine the cooked couscous, red salmon, drained spinach, egg yolks, garlic, cumin, black pepper, and salt. Form into patties.

In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the olive oil and fry patties until golden brown turning once, about 8 to 10 minutes. Serve with garlic mayonnaise.