Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Family Night: Japanese Cuisine

Last week our impromptu Family Home Evening Lesson turned out great! The kids loved it and we had some great discussion. It was simple: My hubby told our kids about his mission to Japan and his time at the MTC.

As a follow up, we decided it would be fun to take the kids to an authentic Japanese restaurant so they could also have a taste of what Dad experienced for two years. So last night we headed to Provo's De Mae. First he gave them a quick lesson on using chopsticks....harder than they look.

Some gave up and used their fork, but others were persistent.

Our youngest didn't really like anything (he hated it) except for an appetizer...I forget the name, but they are basically a potato cake that is deep fried (a hashbrown).

Let's just say that most of our kids would be pretty skinny if we lived there. They tried miso soup, salad, gyozas, yakisoba, katsudon, and ramen (the real kind which doesn't really taste like ours at all).

They did like the yakisoba and some liked the katsudon, but it was definitely an eye-opening experience for them. And I didn't have to cook dinner...Yay!!

Grilled Peaches

Fall is here! That means it is time for grilled peaches. Mmmm.

Wash and halve your peaches and then take out the pit. Clean your grill and heat to medium. First put your peach down flesh side first and cook for about 4 minutes. Then turn it over and stuff with filling. Filling consists of 2 cups oats, 1 cup flour, 1 cup brown sugar, and 2 cubes butter.

Cook for another 4-5 minutes until peach becomes soft and you can see the butter melting in the filling. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and a drizzle of caramel topping. Enjoy!

Conference Weekend

This last weekend we enjoyed a great feast!

It was general conference and we enjoyed each session as if it were a grand meal.

We listened to our prophet and the apostles speak great words of wisdom and council. Sometimes when I think about how scary our world is right now and what my children face as they grow up in it, I feel frightened. I am so grateful to have the guidance I need to prepare them and also to teach them the way of safety.

Our second oldest was excited to be able to attend the Priesthood session of conference for the first time.

He enjoyed the time with his Dad and his brother...and a tasty dinner afterwards.

Fun Run With My Fun Kids

I learned something new about my kids this last week: they are fast runners!

Their elementary school has been doing red and green ribbon week, emphasizing health and safety. One morning the whole school participated in a fun run.

The fourth-sixth graders ran the first race, two laps around the school and surrounding neighborhood, equaling one mile. Our fourth grade daughter came to me that morning with a race plan.

She was going to run the first lap easily, not going out with the front runners, but then on the second lap she was really going to push it. I was really surprised that she stuck to her plan, which worked very well. She finished very strong and by the finish had worked her way right up to the front runners.

Our second grader ran against 2nd and 3rd graders. He also ran very well, maintaining a quick even pace.

He is probably our most competitive and it showed. He finished 5th and ran a 7:18 mile. Way to go!

Our kindergartner wasn't planning on running. Honestly I didn't think he would enjoy it and that if he did run it, I was sure he would stop and walk. As he watched the other kids run, he begged and begged to run too.

We hurried into the office and signed the waiver and then he was able to run in the kindergartner and first grader race. I watched closely, expecting that he would quickly get tired and walk.

No way! Those little legs ran the whole half mile and he was also right there in the front of the pack. He crossed the finish line and headed straight for the cold water. It was a fun morning for me...maybe someday in the future, I'll have some running buddies.

I'm Old!

Mid-September we celebrated my birthday. It was a lovely Saturday. My husband asked me what I wanted several days prior. I knew right away! My life has been so busy lately and I really fell behind on our blog. For my birthday, I asked for one thing: time to blog without any interruptions.

So that is exactly what I got. It was wonderful. I spent the day documenting our busy August. After an early football game, my hubby took over my usual Saturday duties, transporting the boys in their lawn-mowing, cleaning the house, keeping the kids occupied and fed. It was great and felt so good to get caught up!

On a side note, just days after my birthday, I had to fill out a form that included a space with my age. I didn't realize until the next day that I put in the wrong age! And it wasn't what you would think...that I put in my age that I had just passed....no, I skipped a year, putting myself a year older than I really am. The fact that I can't even remember how old I am tells a sad tale: I'm old!

Our Football Player

Our second oldest has always wanted to play tackle football. This year his dream came true.

He has been playing the last month and a half on a city league team, the Dolphins.

Originally he wanted to play running back, because he is very quick and can pretty much get away from anyone. Soon, however, he found that he is a talented defensive end. His quickness is just as valuable on defense.

And stopping the offense is a lot of fun. He has played defensive end and safety and has been a real asset to his team.

He has gotten some good advice from his coaches and also his Dad as he learns how to respond to different offensive plays.

We have spent several evenings a week at the football field. It has been enjoyable for our whole family to come support him.

Our oldest often helps out with the chain gang.

Our football player has learned some valuable lessons from his time on the field.

Only two weeks left...


For me, September has been a month spent canning. This year I have enjoyed the work, but it has also been very tiring and I'm ready to be done.

Applesauce, pears, salsa, relish, strawberry and apricot jam have taken up many days... and late nights.

It is a good feeling to have a stocked pantry...overflowing into the kitchen. I would still like to do some corn and maybe some peaches, but for today...I'm done!

One More Summer Adventure

Yes, school has started, but that doesn't mean that we can't run up the canyon for a last-minute summer camp out!

That's exactly what we did the second weekend of September with our extended family.

With a little help we had the tents up ready for a restful (or not so restful) slumber in the woods.

Girl cousins like to stay up late chatting!

Grandma froze! Our second day of camping turned into a huge downpour...

which we tried to wait out, but finally decided to head back to Grandma's house and watch the BYU game....after the game we headed back up for another restful slumber.

Our youngest had the breakfast of champions: grapes and soda pop! Hey, when you're camping, anything goes.

The rest of us enjoyed sausage, french toast, fruit....the works!

When this guy arrived, the party really got started!

When camping, cute faces like these are proof that we are having fun.

And cups of giant slugs are proof the boys are also having fun.

Other fun activities include: science homework (insect catching),

begging for treats,

playing in the dirt,

chatting with Grandma,

and watching Grandpa cook in the dutch oven.

But that's not all, we also spend plenty of time in the creek

and many hours playing card games.

Yet, I think the most looked-forward to event is:

a tasty steak dinner with corn on the cob and dutch oven potatoes.

Food tastes best up the canyon with family!