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Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A Change in Our Lives

Eighteen years ago I met the most amazing man in the world. We went on our first date and ended up talking all night.  During that long talk he ask me to marry him.  I was floored when without thinking I said "Yes."  Really and truly I did not believe him until we went 4 days later to pick out the engagement ring.  Two months two days later we were married. 

During that time in my life I had fallen away from the beliefs I was raised with.  I made choices that did not fit with my Divine Nature.  Rather than admit that I knew my choices were wrong I turned my back on my beliefs.  When I met The Man of the House I began to understand that I did still have a Divine Nature, and Individual Worth. 
I ask The Man of the House to take the Missionary Lessons to understand the beliefs that I was raised with and how my family believed and worshiped.  He gladly took the Missionary Lessons.  After taking the lessons he told me that he had great respect for my family and the LDS Church but that they were not his beliefs.  He was the head of my household and as such I knew I needed to follow his lead. 

Thus, we began to attend the Baptist church.  Through the years I have learned so much and met people that have grown to love and admire in the churches we attended.  We became active in the churches and I took on many responsibilities.  I have been a Mothers Day Out teacher, Vacation Bible School Director, Women's Ministry leader.  I have learned more about my own beliefs through growing and learning.

However I still felt I had gone from depending my parents testimony to that of my husband, not really having my own.  When Pooh Bear was about three years old I realized that I could not teach my own children to have faith in anything if I did not have my own solid testimony.   

The Man of the House and I discussed this and he whole heartedly supported me in my search and where it led me.  My heart was lead back to my beliefs, The Church of Jesus Christ of Later Day Saints, that I was brought up with.  I attended Sacrement meeting again on a semi regular basis again.  It was somewhat like coming home, being the prodical son. 

After awhile I began to notice that if we did not attend church as a family were not attending regularly.  So with that I decided that we needed to stay with the denomination my husband led us to.  We did this for several more years.  I kept up with General Conference and Church news but did not attend Sacrement meeting or Releif Society.  I enjoyed my visits from my Visiting and Home Teachers.  My parents kept me abreast of things as well. 

I taught my children about the Bible and where I could put in the Gospel Principles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Later Day Saints.  But as far as discussing the specifics of my beliefs I respected my husbands choices for our family.

The Man of the House has been adiment that when the children were old enough to question they were old enough to find their own beleifs.  He firmly believes that each child must find their way to Heavenly Father. 

Over the last few months as I have dealt with health issues, I have ask for several blessings.  From a Father's Blessing to a Priesthood Blessing.  All of the children were able to witness these blessings and are old enough to begin to understand that this is different from what they have grown up with. Pooh Bear began to really question and wanting to understand why Mom's beliefs are different from Dad's. 

We discussed the simple differences of the Trinity versus the separateness of each Being.  The restoration of the Fullness of the Gospel by Joseph Smith, and the retrieval of the Golden Plates from Laban by Nephi.  As we talked she kept asking questions and wanted more and more in depth information.  I suggested she take the Missionary Lessons. 

We called the Missionaries, and she started the lessons.  Took it all in and ask questions upon questions. 
She followed through on their challenges, she began to read the Book of Mormon, and began to pray for guidance.  Pooh Bear took the whole process very seriously and began to question her beliefs.

 As happy as The Man of the House and I were to see this process there were those in the extended family that have been less than thrilled.  Pooh Bear took their concerns and prayerfully considered. 

Her decsion has been made.  After I came from the hospital this weekend, Pooh went to church with my Visititing Teacher.  She went to talk with the Bishop all by herself, she asked to be baptised!!!!!!!! She is ready to change her life.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

RainDrop Reflections

Well this past week went pretty smoothly..... YEAH for us.  We restarted our school year, and got a lot accomplished. We have been doing just 3 workboxes this week.  We will add another 3 this week and then 3 the next week and after that, more as we need them to get through all our assignments. We have done school mainly in the living room this week with the RainDrops going to get their items and bring them down to me.  We will head back upstairs to the school room this week.   

What we are learning: 
Snoopy has been working on telling time to the minute.
Boo is working on writing expanded forms up to hundred thousands.
Pooh Bear is doing word problems with time elements in them.

What chore we accomplished:
I was able to get the dining room pretty well organized so I can have a scrapbook/sewing room.  Which means I got to work on some sewing and scrapbook pages! 

Megan's Week:
"Megan" finally had her appointment with her counselor to get her schedule for school on Friday.  She started school after her appointment.  Then stayed after school with the band and saw her first American Football game!  She had a good day and enjoyed the game, but was so very tired at the end of the day.

Megan has homecoming in just 2 weeks so we will be heading out to find a dress for the dance next weekend and all the makings for her mum.

Oh and one more thing, She has never had a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.  She tried one for the first time this week.  LOVED IT!!!!!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Tasty Tuesday

Today is The Man of the House's Birthday.  I will be making one of his favorite dinners.  Meatloaf, buttered potatoes, corn, and green beans.  And I am going to try these dinner rolls from scratch.  I will let you know how they turn out!
Found at


  • 3 3/4 cups bread flour, divided
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup shortening
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 (.25 ounce) package rapid rise yeast
  • 1/2 cup warm water (120 to 130 degrees F/50 degrees C)
  • 1/2 cup warm milk
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted


  1. In a large bowl, stir together 2 cups flour, sugar, shortening, salt and yeast. Add water, milk and egg. Beat with electric mixer on low speed 1 minute, scraping bowl frequently. Add the remaining flour, 1/4 cup at a time, until the dough comes together.
  2. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes. Place in greased bowl and turn greased side up. Cover and let rise in warm place until doubled, about 1 hour. Dough is ready if indention remains when touched.
  3. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and divide in half; cut each half into 24 pieces. Form the pieces into rounds. Place the rolls close together in two lightly greased 9 inch round cake pans. Brush with melted butter. Cover and let rise in warm place about 30 minutes or until doubled. Cover the rolls with a damp cloth and let rise until doubled in volume, about 40 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
  4. Bake in preheated oven for 12 to 18 minutes, until golden brown.

Monday, August 22, 2011

1. Restart school
2. Finish planning Girl Scout year
3. Aaron finish one Cub Scout Belt loop

Sunday, August 21, 2011

RainDrop Reflections

The past week as seemed to fly by.  With all else that has gone on in the past month and a half my health is getting better, with only one rather small hick-up.  My lovely little RainDrops clean up a spill in the kitchen without being told... (YEAH RainDrops.)    The even mopped the floor all around the area and got all the sticky off the floor.....However no one told me.  In I walk and down on my BUTT I go!  I went to get an w-ray on my wrist we thought I had broken my wrist.  Tunred out it was a sever sprian and bone bruise.  I am still having issues with my pinky finger and will discuss that when I see my regular doctor tomorrow, about my blood pressure and heart.  But all in all I am felling pretty good and read to get back to the normal routine. 

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Thankful Thursday

This week I am thankful for my wonderful new daughter "Megan."  She is our new exchange student, she is from Thailand.

She arrived last Friday night.  She had a 26 hours travel to get here.  She was tired and very glad to have the travel part over with.

 Megan has started marching band where she is a member of the percussion pit!  She will start school a few days late as we are still getting her registered.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Thankful Thursday

This week I am thankful for our family's very own "Super Hero."  My nephew is in the military.  He has been deployed to Korea and Iraq.  He has once again been deployed.  I will not say with what branch or to where he has been sent for the safety of him and those with him.

From the time of his enlistment my children have called him a "Super Hero."  He is one of many and I pray for the safety of them all! 

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Tasty Tuesday

Today is my birthday this is what I am having for my special dinner!
Orange Chicken
Found at All Recipes



  • Sauce:
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup rice vinegar
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange zest
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced fresh ginger root
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons chopped green onion
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • Chicken:
  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil


  1. Pour 1 1/2 cups water, orange juice, lemon juice, rice vinegar, and soy sauce into a saucepan and set over medium-high heat. Stir in the orange zest, brown sugar, ginger, garlic, chopped onion, and red pepper flakes. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat, and cool 10 to 15 minutes.
  2. Place the chicken pieces into a resealable plastic bag. When contents of saucepan have cooled, pour 1 cup of sauce into bag. Reserve the remaining sauce. Seal the bag, and refrigerate at least 2 hours.
  3. In another resealable plastic bag, mix the flour, salt, and pepper. Add the marinated chicken pieces, seal the bag, and shake to coat.
  4. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Place chicken into the skillet, and brown on both sides. Drain on a plate lined with paper towels, and cover with aluminum foil.
  5. Wipe out the skillet, and add the sauce. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Mix together the cornstarch and 2 tablespoons water; stir into the sauce. Reduce heat to medium low, add the chicken pieces, and simmer, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Monday's Weekly Goals

1. I will start practicing yoga every morning before school starts.  This means I must be up by 6:30am every morning. 
2. School will start on time at 8:45am each morning. 
3. I will spend time each morning before school making sure my calendar is up to date and I know what I have scheduled that day.

Each Monday I will update the goals on from the last week and set new goals for that week!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

RainDrop Reflections

Well the past month has been a long one.  I have had several more ER visits trying to figure out what was going on with me.  It has taken a while but we think my health issues are finally under control.  There are still a few tests to run, but we are getting the house and life back to normal. 

We have said good bye to our Bo Ba Houng and Thaly.  The house has been so quiet even with our 3 RainDrops.  Our newest Kid From Around the World come in this Friday night!

As far as RainDrop Academy, things are going slow with the ER trips and such.  But we have gotten things started and are looking forward to getting ourselves back on a regular schedule. 

Monday, August 1, 2011

Friday Mommy Moments

Well this week's moment comes from no one other than myself. 

Tuesday I walked in the kitchen to make sure I had enough leftover pork roast to make BBQ with.  Well apparently there had been a spill on the floor and my wonderful children cleaned it up, not just wiping it up but got the mop out and all.  However they did not tell me (side note we have a tile floor in there, slippery when wet is an understatement.)  So I bet you can guess where this is leading.  YEPPERS!  I slid!  Now I have slid countless times on that floor.  Every time I have I have caught myself on the counter.  This time......... not so lucky....I hit the floor.

At first we thought I had broken my wrist, even the doctor said I had.  But after the radiologist read the x-ray they said it was a SEVER sprang and a NASTY bone bruise.  My shoulder and elbow are spranged as well.  All in all I will mend and life will go on. 

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

RaindDrop Reflections

You may have noticed that I have not posted this past week.  Well that is a LONG story.  

A week ago this past Saturday I had some stomach pain.  I thought I had an ovarian cyst and went to the ER.  Nope that was not it they thought it was on my colon.  Sent me home with some pain medicine and something stop stomach cramps.  I was sure to tell the whole hospital what medicines I was allergic to, we told the pharmacist (my pharmacy is not open at 3am when they let me out of the hospital, so we wen to a major pharmacy that was open all night.)   I was back home and on the medicine for just 36 hours.  Ms T was calling 911.  I was having a MAJOR allergic reaction to a sulpha drug.  I had no idea that it was a sulpha drug.  I am not that up on all the drugs that doctors can give and what they are made of, I am a homeschool mom.  But as I said I told them what I was allergic to, they should have known.  I was on my way back to the emergency room.  I really HATE riding backwards I always get car sick that way.  But oh well no other way to ride in an ambulance.  I need to get help I was in pretty bad shape.  They took me back to the same hospital!  They kept me overnight for observation, I left the next morning because they scared me to death.  Did not want to give them another chance, sorry but they could have killed me!

The stomach pain worked itself out and I was felling much better. Thursday the carpet got replaced in Boo's bedroom and we got furniture got moved around to set up for our new Kids From Around the World to arrive in August.  

Friday we started to make our plans for the 4th of July celebrations and went to buy a few fireworks to set off ourselves. The Man of the House and I watched a movie that evening after doing a few sparklers with the kids that were at home.

I was woken up with trouble breathing and chest pain about 30 minutes after going to bed.  But I tried to ignore and and it eventually went away.  I woke up Saturday morning and felt fine for about the first half hour I was up.  Then it started all over again.  This time I did tell The Man of the House.  He suggested instead of paying for an emergency room visit we try just the local urgent care place.  I grabbed Pooh Bear and headed out.  My chest was hurting a lot but I got there.  Pooh telling me on the way there "we need TWO plans mom," to which I responded "NO. We will be fine."

When we go there I was taken straight back.  They did an EKG and called 911.  I guess we needed 2 plans.  My Pooh Bear was so grown up about it.  She called her Daddy and the Grandparents and told them where we were going.  She of course could not stay behind so she got to ride in the ambulance up front.  When we got to the hospital she made sure they knew my name, birth date, and all my allergies.  All I had to do was lay there and be pitiful.  

They admitted me with a possible heart attack.  I was given several drugs in case it was a heart attack to protect the heart.   Of course it was the holiday weekend so the stress test lab was closed for the Fourth.  The doctor wanted a stress test and observation to make sure whether it was a heart attack or not.  If not what was causing it, so I had to wait for Tuesday.  So there I sat from Saturday to Monday.  

There I sat Saturday night all of a sudden I felt like crap.  The medicine that was supposed to protect my heart.... STOPPED it!  For 6 seconds I had no heart beat.  Then for about half an hour my heart struggled to get its rhythm.  Now they needed to see if it was the actual plumbing, or the electrical system.  

So this morning, Tuesday, I had the stress test to see if there was a piping issue and that was clear YEAH!!!!  Then I was transferred to a different hospital that would do to the testing on the electrical function heart.  If the test came back the the little STOPPING action could happen again, which would need a pacemaker.  Not a fun test but at least they knocked my out.  

After 2 weeks of not feeling well.  Four days of which were consecutive with a HUGE heart scare.  LOTS of prayers by me, my husband, my children, my family, my friends, and friends of family and friends.  My heart is FINE!  There will be a need at some point down the road for a pacemaker.  I now know I have left bundle branch block.  We need to be very careful for new on but I will be fine.  We are praying that the pace maker will be at 79 and not 39.      

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Tasty Tuesday- Daddy's Favorite Meatloaf Stuff Bell Peppers

2 lbs ground beef
1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese
1cup ketchup
1/2 cup ketchup
3/4 tbsp tyme
3/4 tbsp basil
3/4 tbsp garlic
3/4 tbsp capers
half a medium yellow onion
1/4 cup bread crumbs
Bell peppers cored then sliced in rings

Preheat oven 400 degrees
Mince all spices in a large pile.  Rough chop the onion.  Blend spices, bread crumbs, capers, and 1 cup of ketchup, and cheese.  Be careful not to over work meat.  Form the meat in to balls and place in bell pepper rings.  Top with remaining ketchup.     
Place in oven for about 20 minutes or until cooked through.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

RainDrop Refelctions

What a week this has been.  We got home from our camping adventures and have not really slowed down.  Monday I tried several times to figure out what was wrong with my BRAND NEW washer.  Never could figure it out.  I had to give up and call Lowes services to get it looked at under the warranty.  When I called the next available time for service was FRIDAY!!!!!!!!!!  UUUUGGGGG camping stinky laundry, not to mention regular laundry, we will all be naked by Friday!  Thank God for Mrs R., Pooh Bear's helper, she took some towels and underwear to her house for us.

Tuesday, we worked on scrapbooks for the Kids from Around the World.  I am trying to get the albums finished of their time here in the USA.  I wanted to be able to at least have some done for their farewell party on Saturday.  The other RainDrop Family came to go swimming that morning and Aunt T took every one to the pool!  Then, that evening, I went to meet with my Girl Scout co-leader (both of the troops for the girls is the same wonderful friend) and another leader about the possibility of merging her troop with our older girls troop.  I did not get done until after 10pm.  That is WAY past my bedtime!  On top of that I really hate driving after dark.  I have not ever been diagnosed but I think I have some night blindness, so I try to not drive after dark.

Wednesday I went to help my dear co-leader clean out her daughter's room.  She was at camp and I told her I would help since she has been here more than once to help me organize the school room.  She was also sweet enough to let me take a load of underwear and The Man of the House's pants for work to wash in her washer.  THANK YOU Resource Queen!  We were also able to plan a good portion of the Little Sister Troop meetings while I was there.

Thursday was a cleaning day for the party.  We got most of the downstairs done and worked some more on the scrapbooks.

Fridays from Memorial Day to Labor day The Man of the House has what his company calls summer hours.  He goes in 30 minutes early every day and get off at 1 on Fridays.  That is an awesome perk!  On his way home he stopped and picked up Little T and brought him home with him.  Snoopy was getting his first ever official sleepover with one of this friends!  When he got home we ALL including Little T and Mrs T went to tackle the upstairs and the school room.  We knocked it out in about an hour and half and were done for the day.  Then Mrs. T took Boo to her house for a sleep over.  The man of the house and I went shopping for the party.  When we got home the girls and tried to get as much done on the books as we could.  Once again I was up past my bedtime.  Ba bo houng said she was up until 3am.  I only made it to midnight lol.  Oh by the way yes the washer got fixed!  We are doing LOADS and Loads of laundry!

Saturday was a wonderful and kind of a sad day.  The Man of the House took the little boys to the movie so we could get the scrapbook stuff put away and get ready to PARTY!  We had a house full of loved ones and friends, for the girls.  They were so excited to have some many loving them.  It was a special day for us all. 

Thaly with her Boyfriend

Bo ba houng and Mrs. T

Bo ba houng, Papa, Nana, Thaly

Bo ba houng and Cousin S

Bo ba houng and Cousin Mac


Grandma,Thaly,  Great Aunt B

The Albums

The cake!!  We have planned this for months!!!  The girls found it as funny as we hoped.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Tasty Tuesday

Orange Chicken

Found at


  • Sauce:
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup rice vinegar
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange zest
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced fresh ginger root
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons chopped green onion
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons water

  • Chicken:
  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil


  1. Pour 1 1/2 cups water, orange juice, lemon juice, rice vinegar, and soy sauce into a saucepan and set over medium-high heat. Stir in the orange zest, brown sugar, ginger, garlic, chopped onion, and red pepper flakes. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat, and cool 10 to 15 minutes.
  2. Place the chicken pieces into a resealable plastic bag. When contents of saucepan have cooled, pour 1 cup of sauce into bag. Reserve the remaining sauce. Seal the bag, and refrigerate at least 2 hours.
  3. In another resealable plastic bag, mix the flour, salt, and pepper. Add the marinated chicken pieces, seal the bag, and shake to coat.
  4. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Place chicken into the skillet, and brown on both sides. Drain on a plate lined with paper towels, and cover with aluminum foil.
  5. Wipe out the skillet, and add the sauce. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Mix together the cornstarch and 2 tablespoons water; stir into the sauce. Reduce heat to medium low, add the chicken pieces, and simmer, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Monday, June 13, 2011

RainDrop Reflections

This past week was a mix of slow and steady and lot of craziness.

We had planned a camping trip for the weekend and started our week with the final plans and menu making. We found out that the other RainDrop Family (my brother and sister in law and their children) were not going to be able to join us, so we shifted plans to go with a friend. Thaly was making her plans to head to Florida with the church youth group.

Well guess what. Thaly and I both ended up wit a stomach bug on Wednesday night, and Thursday. Thaly wanted to go shopping for food for the camp out on Thursday, but did not make it past the first 2 stops before the grocery store, poor girl! If I could have gone home I would have too. That was a nasty bug. While was doing the shopping Thaly called and told me there was no way she could ride the bus from Texas to Florida feeling like that. I was not surprised at all.

I got things together Friday to head the camp ground. Lo and behold the washer was not working right (my brand new washer!!!!!!!!!!) I was still feeling crappy in the tummy and The Man of the House had the tummy bug too, along with Pooh Bear!

There I am packing for camp 2 hours later than I wanted to be and leaving 2 more home than was the plan. But we finally got there. Got camp set up and made a run to town to go to WalMart. While I was doing that the rest went to the lake to cool off, we then enjoyed our evening of Hobo dinners and s'mores.

By the way I put a hex on one of my kids for the first time ever. Ba bo houng made her dinner with lots of spices. Of course she is Asian! I got her Hobo dinner! OMG!!! I have never had my lips burn from my nose to my chin! I would never make it in Asia.

The next day we spent the afternoon at the beach area and had a blast. The water was cold but once you got it it was great! I took the float out and just let the water carry me where it wanted to. After playing for 3 hours on the lake we headed back into camp.

This is where our weekend started to take a turn for the worst. The 2 mommy's sent the kids to the shower. My friend and I waited for them to come back as we sat and drank some water and put of a box fan outside to help cool us off. When the kids got back from the shower we headed to shower ourselves. The water felt great just on cold. We cooled off and headed back to the campsite. The kids made us moms a sandwich and we set back to enjoy it.

My friend looked at me and said she did not feel good. She was pale and decided sitting in the car in the A/C would be best. Her daughter got her keys and they walked all of 6 feet to the car. Next thing I knew her daughter was YELLING my name. By the time I got over there she had passed out.

I started yelling for wet towels, to get the kids concentrating on something else, while I started checking her pulse and such. She was only out a few seconds when she started to come around then passed out again. Not only did she pass out she had a convulsion. At that point I called EMS. Turns out she was dehydrated, very dehydrated! She took a trip to the ER. I called The Man of the House but he was still sick. We decided to pack up and head home. I was blessed to have another WONDERFUL friend who could bring a truck up to the camp and help us get home.

My poor friend was kept for about 5 hours in the ER getting fluids. She was told that at our age ( we are not 16 any more) we should be drinking enough to have to go to the bathroom every 20 minutes, when it is this hot out! REALLY those stairs down to the swimming area were a killer (100 steps believe me I ask the Rangers). So not worth climbing and descending every 20 minutes. I think we will stay home for the summer and drink our water here!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Tasty Tuesday

This recipe came from Simply Recipes
  • 1/2 pound dry fettuccine pasta
  • 3-4 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2/3 cup finely grated parmesan cheese
  • Black pepper
Additional, for creamy version:
  • 1/2 cup cream
  • Nutmeg


1 Bring a large pot of salty water to a boil and drop in your fettuccine.
2a Plain version Melt the butter in a large sauté pan set over low heat. Once the butter has melted, turn the heat off.
2b Creamy version Melt the butter in a large sauté pan set over low heat. Add the cream to the butter as it melts. Stir often to combine the two, do not turn off the heat, but keep the heat at its lowest setting while the pasta cooks.
3 When the fettuccine is al dente (cooked, but still a little firm) lift it out of the pot with tongs and move the pasta to the sauté pan. Do not drain the pasta. You want it dripping wet with the cooking water. Turn on the heat under the sauté pan to medium and swirl the pasta and butter together to combine. Add half the cheese, then swirl and toss the pasta until it has incorporated into the sauce. If needed, add a few spoonfuls more of the pasta cooking water. Add the rest of the cheese and repeat.
4 Serve at once with either a little black pepper (for classic version) or nutmeg (for creamy version) ground over the pasta.
Yield: Serves 4.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Scripture Sunday

  • Psalms 118:4

    4 Let them now that fear the Lord say, that his mercy endureth for ever.

RainDrop Reflections

Wow can you believe the public school year is over?! Boy did it fly by.

We took this week off from school ourselves and just played a bit. Next week is back the routine. However we did enjoy just a laid back, whatever happens, go with the flow kind of week.

We had a wonderful time on Monday with family celebrating and remembering those who have given the highest price for our freedom. I was given the opportunity to explain the holiday to our kids from around the world. Which in turn made me really think about what these brave men and women died for us. To stop and think that for us to have the opportunity to homeschool our kids, raise them up in the knowledge and understanding of the Lord, to vote for our leaders, to even have the opportunity to have a family the size and how we feel we are being led, all of this comes from those who fought and even died during so many conflicts and wars. It humbles me to know that others laid down their lives for us. Thank you to those who fought and died for me and my family to our so many freedoms.

Tuesday was spent getting things picked up and cleaned up from the weekend and getting ready for the new mattress The Man of the House bought us. Our delivery time was not until 6-9pm. Good grief I had no idea they did that kind of stuff that late! Ba bo houng did not have school that day as she did not have to take her English final. It was fun to have her hang around for a while. The Man of the House enjoyed the Mavs game at least until they lost!

Wednesday Thaly was finished with school for the year, but Ba bo houng had to go. But other than that it was a pretty quite day!

Thursday we had a real treat. Grandma came to see us. We have not seen her since Easter. I know that is really not that long but we all really enjoy when she comes or we get to go see her and Papa. We spent the morning at home then went to Hobby Lobby when the kids from around the world got home. I am helping the girls make a scrapbook about their time in the USA. So we went shopping for the book and a few special items to go with it.

Friday was a rather busy day. Mrs.T, who is Snoopy's helper, brought her grandsons Little T, baby T, her daughter the Divine Miss J, and two of her nieces. WOW what a full house and so much fun! The Divine Miss J took all the kids to the pool at about 1:30. They were there the rest of the day! They only came home long enough to get some snacks and drinks when they ran out of what they took! The finally got home to stay about 5:30. They had so much fun but they were so tired and water logged!

I took the kids from around the world to a scrapbook store Friday night. We got there about 4:30 and were there until MIDNIGHT! That is so past my bedtime, but we really enjoyed our time together! However Thaly and I both have seemed to get a sore throat. We both have felt puny since Friday boo hoo.

Saturday was quiet again. Thaly and I have just been taking meds and resting trying not to give the sore throat to anyone else. But Snoopy had a blast that afternoon with Mrs R, Ashlyn's helper. She took Snoopy and Little T to her house to play with her son in thier new TREE HOUSE!!!

We were supposed to get family pictures done today, but I am not sure Thaly and I are up to it. We will most likely stay home and maybe work on the scrapbooks some more. Have a relaxing day with the family.

Oh I forgot to tell you about our new bed. The Temperpedic is AWSOME! I am loving it and so is the Man of the House. He says his back is not bothering him quite as much in the mornings. That is seems to be improveing some every day!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Silly Saturday

Boo's favorite word makes me laugh!


Friday, June 3, 2011

Friday Mommy Moments

This week's Mommy Moments come thanks to Snoopy.

Discussing the new room arrangements for the fall, with the new kids coming in, Snoopy piped in "I DON"T want to share a room with Pooh Bear!"

We then ask him "Why not Buddy?"

His answer "She stinks and eats too much KETCHUP!"

Talk about thinking I was going to wet my pants laughing! The whole house was shaking with all of us laughing. All I could say was "well she may not want to share with you cause you eat too much PEANUT BUTTER!"

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Thankful Thursday

This week I am eternally grateful for my parents this week.
1 Nephi 1:1
  • 1" I, Nephi, having been born of goodly parents, therefore I was taught somewhat in all the learning of my father; and having seen many afflictions in the course of my days, nevertheless, having been highly favored of the Lord in all my days; yea, having had a great knowledge of the goodness and the mysteries of God..."

My parents have taught my so much in my life. They have loved my when I am was my most unlovable and celebrated with me when all was right with my world.

Knowledge, and by that I mean book learning, was only a small part of they have taught me. They have taught me about love, understanding, mercy, caring, compassion, courage, strength and so much more.

As I look back on my childhood I know we did not have much as far a monetary possessions, but truly that is not what I remember. I am sure I complained that I wanted more "stuff," but not having stuff is not the memories I was left with. The things I remember and cherish are the tender moments and the fun times we had. Later as I got older I remember the scarifies they made so that we could have things and go places to have experiences and learn.

I remember on Relief Society evenings when mom was gone, sitting on Daddy's lap eating frozen peaches. We would sit all evening with Daddy, enjoying time with him. Mom was always at every school party, activity, or meeting. They had the upholstery shop yes, and she did work there. But she would take the time off to be there for us, then spend late into the evenings working in the shop to make up for the time she missed.

We did not not have much money for vacations and trips, yet they made sure we did enjoy time away from home. We camped, made over night trips, spent time with grandparents, and friends.

As I grew up and became a teenager my life, by my own doing, became fraught with turmoil. And of course that meant theirs was too. Mom has told me many times since then she would not wish a teenager like me on her worst enemy. Thank you mom for not visiting the mother's curse on me. Yet they never gave up. They never stopped loving me.

During that time mom would spend time on her knees almost constantly in prayer for me. That I am sure is how I survived those years. Daddy and I would hardly speak to each other at that time. Yet I knew he loved me. It was my choice to have the silence. There were times when we had not said a word for a week yet on Saturday evening we would both end up in front of the TV to watch Doctor Who on PBS. No words were exchanged, but were in the same room!

My time of trails ended, and I was able to look back on my life during that time and realize it was all my own fault. I was able to see the pain I caused myself and my parents. When I went to them to ask forgiveness it had already been given. They were there as they had always been to love me and accept me for all my strengths and weaknesses.

As I have had my own family I understand the reason there were there no matter what. The love they taught me I now give to my own children. Because of the love they showed me I am able to give love to my children and my husband, my foster babies, and now my children from around the world.

I was truly "born of goodly parents" they taught me the fullness of the gospel and the love of my Elder Brother and Savior. With the love of Jesus I am able to go to my Heavenly Father and ask for forgiveness and receive it! I have the knowledge that I am a daughter of Heavenly Father and truly have a divine nature! I can teach my own children that they too have that divine nature and are heirs to the Kingdom their Heavenly Father has prepared for them.

I know that my Heavenly Father is here for me when the challenges of being a parent are before me. When life becomes uncertain, I can go to Him and ask for his blessings and know that the answer might not be what I expected, but the answer is right for me and that time. Heavenly Father knows and is in control of all.

This I know because of the example my parents gave me. They have lived their lives with that knowledge in the forefront. Thank you Daddy and Mom for that blessing you have bestowed on me and my siblings. That I may have that to pass on to my own children, and give them that precious gift to them.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Tasty Tuesday

Another Racheal Ray Dinner

Big Meatballs with Pasta

1 1/2 pounds ground sirloin
2 small to medium yellow onion, 1 grated and 1 finely chopped
6 cloves garlic, chopped, divided
1 egg
1/2 to 2/3 cup Italian bread crumbs, a couple of overflowing handfuls
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, plus some to pass at table
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice or nutmeg
3 tablespoons capers, drained and chopped
2 tablespoons chopped sage leaves, 4 to 6 sprigs
A couple generous handfuls flat-leaf parsley, chopped, divided
Salt and pepper
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus some for drizzling
1 pound bucatini (thick, hollow spaghetti)
1/4 pound pancetta, chopped( I used bacon)
12 baby portobello caps, (crimini mushrooms), chopped
1/2 cup dry red wine, eyeball it
1 cup, (8 ounces), beef stock
1 (28-ounce), can crushed tomatoes, San Marzano if available
Preheat 400 degrees F. Place a large pot of water over high heat and bring to a boil.

Mix meat with the grated onion, 3 cloves chopped garlic, egg, bread crumbs, cheese, allspice, capers, sage, a handful of the chopped parsley, salt and pepper and a healthy drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil. Mix meat, score the meat into 4 sections and make 3 very large balls from each section. Arrange the 12 balls on a nonstick cookie sheet and roast 15 minutes until firm but not hard.

Drop bucatini (I used reagular Speggettie pasta) in salted boiling water to cook off. Drain.

Add another tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil to the skillet and the pancetta. Cook 3 to 4 minutes then add the remaining garlic and mushrooms to the pan and cook 5 minutes. Season the mushrooms with salt and pepper. Add remaining chopped onion and deglaze the pan with wine, cook off 1 minute, add in stock and whisk up remaining drippings. Stir in the tomatoes and season sauce with salt and pepper, if necessary. Stir in parsley. Simmer 5 minutes.

Toss pasta with half the sauce. Remove balls from oven and add to remaining sauce and turn to coat. Serve large balls, 3 per person, along side pasta. Spoon any remaining sauce over the pasta. Pass extra cheese at the tables.

We are not really big fans of mushrooms, but I tried it anyway. We loved them. Ashlyn made Prego Sauce with her meatballs but hey she loved the meatballs. Jessie at 2 helpings of pasta and about three meatballs.

I am really loving trying all this new dishes and finding out that I really can make more than frozen lasgana.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

RainDrop Reflections

Well this week was uneventful. So writing this may really be pointless, but here we go anyway.
Monday was a quite school day. We started our summer schedule. We will be doing our bible time everyday. We are using Training Hearts and Teaching Minds, by Starr Meade.

Each day we will also be doing Math and Spelling as well as 20 minutes of silent reading. Then we will be working on current events, no more than about 10 minuets. Then each day we will do one lesson in History, Science, English, Reading, and Art/Music appreciation.

We are hoping that this can all be done with in 2 hours. Then the rest of the day is ours to have fun.

Our helper Mrs. T, twisted her ankle over the weekend so she needed a few days to rest it. Mrs. R was here to help with school and our chores.

I figured out on Friday that I was a whole week off in my head. I was thinking this was the first week of June. Thinking we would be camping again next weekend. Went all week thinking that. Finally on Friday all of a sudden I had this HUGE revelation. YOU ARE WRONG!!!! Wow imagine my surprise.

The RainDrops are finally getting old enough that they can stay home for a short while with Pooh Bear "in charge." So Friday Pooh and Snoopy stayed home for about an hour until Bo Ba Houng got home. Boo went to see her BFF and The Man of the House and I went to do some shopping. It ended up being a impromptu date night!

During the huge storms back in April, our grill was tossed around the back yard. The insurance payed for a new one as well as new bedding and mattress in Boo's bedroom. We went comparison shopping for grills. Then stopped to look at mattresses.

The Man of the House blew me away! Not only did we replace the mattress for Boo, he bought a new mattress set for us! A Temperpedic!!!!!!!!!!!! OMG I thought I was going to have to have oxygen or something. I will be sure to let you all know next week what I think of it. It will be delivered Tuesday night!

Scripture Sunday

  • Psalms 132:12

    12 If thy children will keep my covenant and my testimony that I shall teach them, their children shall also sit upon thy throne for evermore.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Mommy Moment

This weeks Mommy Moment is one of more frustrating moments. While working with Boo this week on Math, she decided 7-5 was 1. No matter what I told her how I explained she was convinced it was 1. Thing was after about the second time I explained I could see it in her eyes she knew I was right! Yet she just had to be right.

Boo can be so stubborn. We are trying to learn to channel that energy in to the right things to be stubborn about. Additionally that when Mom and Dad tell you something like 7-5=2 they might be right!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Thankful Thursday- Best Friends

This week I am thankful for my 2 best friends. CM and I have been friends since the birth of our daughters over 13 years ago. For several years Pooh Bear that of CM, children as your siblings. She started to refer to CM as her "Fairy Godmother" and the name has stuck.
Seven years ago the family moved to Kansas City. Yes I still talk to CM at least 2-4 times a week. I know she will be there for me, not necessarily in person but always in prayer.

M&M and I met when we adopted Boo. Their family adopted Boo's biological brother. M&M and her husband became the "fairy godparents" (see it really did stick) to Boo. We now live just 25 minutes from each other. With 2 families of 5 kids, a working mom , and homeschooling mom, we do not see each other like we wish we could. But each year on our birthdays we go out, not anything fancy or a big party girl night just 2 friends going to the movie, or getting our nails done then a quite dinner.

Both of these ladies are like my sisters. We may disagree from time to time, but we are always there for each other. They are my sounding board when The Man of the House is not here. They support me, give advice, understand, cry with me, laugh with and at me. I love you both dearly!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Tasty Tuesday

I found this recipe on and added the breading sicnce my family eats it better breaded. We loved it.

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 pound boneless pork chops
2/3 cup orange juice
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 1/2 tablespoons white sugar
2 teaspoons water
1 teaspoon cornstarch
orange zest
Bread crumbs

Heat oil in a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Scramble the egg and pour in milk. Zest the orange in to the bread crumbs and season with your favorite spices. Dredge the chops in the egg and milk, then cover with crumbs. Repeat if desired. Cook pork chops until evenly brown on both sides; remove from skillet place in oven on cooling rack over a cookie sheet, on 275 to keep warm and crisp. Pour in orange juice, soy sauce and sugar. Boil for 2 minutes, scraping the bottom of pan. In a small bowl, mix together water and cornstarch, and stir into sauce. Poor over the chops and serve.

Wordless Wednesday