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Monday, December 7, 2009

Too much H1N1!

John made us a lovely Sunday dinner last night. We had steak, rice, and a nice salad. Cara asked for seconds and helped herself! A few minutes later she proclaimed,

'Uh Oh! I have way too much H1N1 on my plate!'

We looked up and immediately cracked up! She was holding the bottle of A1 sauce in her hand! So much talk about the swine flu has really taken it's toll!
Much to Cara's annoyance, we laughed about this many more times before bedtime. She is such a cutie!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Christmas is coming! Only 24 more days!

I LOVE Christmas! It is my favorite time of year. I already have Christmas music on in my car and we will be decking our halls this weekend! I love the traditions that we have, the joy that it brings to our family and the true meaning of Christmas, the hope and love that Jesus Christ brought to the earth.
I read the December visiting teaching message today and was touched by the lovely words of our church leaders about being disciples of Christ. I really loved this quote by President Dieter F. Uchtdorf:

“Disciples of Christ throughout all ages of the world have been distinguished by their compassion. … In the end, the number of prayers we say may contribute to our happiness, but the number of prayers we answer may be of even greater importance. Let us open our eyes and see the heavy hearts, notice the loneliness and despair; let us feel the silent prayers of others around us, and let us be an instrument in the hands of the Lord to answer those prayers."

I look forward to the blessings of service this Christmas season and look forward to rediscovering the true purpose of the season!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Happy Birthday Mimi!! We Love you!

One of my favorite people in the entire world celebrated her birthday yesterday. Kendryn asked her how old she would turn. We all laughed. Truthfully, to me she is ageless. She encompasses the energy of a very young woman and approaches life with the excitement of a child. She brings that energy into every problem she faces and every life she touches. She also possesses a wisdom that is rare, even in the very aged. She is the person I seek out with every parenting question and every life question I have. When anyone I know comes to me with a problem, I think of her first for the answers. What amazes me so much is her ability to make everyone feel so loved and important. She listens with real intent and gives so much of herself to help everyone. I love her as much as my own mother and am so grateful and humbled that I get to have her as the grandmother of my 4 wonderful children! I love you! Thank you for all you do!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

So much to be Thankful for!

Had such a nice Thanksgiving. Thought I would list a few things I was Thankful for this past weekend::

A wonderful husband!
4 healthy. crazy, fabulous children
Delicious food with amazing family and friends
A short but fun visit with Gusti and Kali! (Thanks for coming!)
A crazy Black Friday shopping trip with Ally, the Toveys, and the Trappets..home at 3:30am!
Extra sleep!
Date with John
Talking to Cassie on Thanksgiving (get a blog!)
Did I mention extra sleep??

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

I Miss Christal!

I was thinking today how fortunate I am to have such amazing friends. John doesn't NEED friends, but I do. My friends are spread out from here to Utah to Arizona but I love them all and appreciate all the love and support they have given me over the years. You know who you are!
I am blessed to have 3 brothers, but no sisters. When I married John, I was blessed with 4 lovely and wonderul sisters that embraced me and included me in their family without missing a beat. They are so very dear to my heart and I love them so much. I am really missing Christal right now. Katy just got home from BYU, I see Michelle often (but not often enough), and Emily is living an exciting life in L.A./New York. It is Christal that calls me daily and makes me feel like part of her life even though she is so far away. She is one of the best friends I have ever had. She has always found a way to make it home for the holidays, but with 2 small kiddos and another angel on the way, she will not be able to make it home this time! I will miss you guys and be thinking about you!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Congratulations Ally! We Love You!

We had a great day last Thursday! Our wonderful Ally auditioned for the school play last week and made call backs. They are doing the musical, Beauty and the Beast. She was so excited because out of 20-some people at the call-back, only a handful of them were 7th graders. The next day I took her to school late and when we walked in the door a whole swarm of girls ran up to her screaming and told her she had been chosen to play the part of Belle. We are so excited for her and so pleased with her hard work and positive attitude. She is a joy to have around and we can hardly wait to see her and listen to beautiful voice when the play opens in February!

(This beautiful picture was taken by my very talented friend Gusti!)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

A Christmas Carol

John, Ally and I are representing our family in our Stake Play this year. Our Church has done a play every 2 years for the past 20 years and it is a major production! There are over 125 cast members and a 12 peice orchestra! We are doing the musical version of "A Christmas Carol". The directors are awesome and the people we have met are so wonderful! It has been a great experience!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

My Crazy Trolls!

I call my have lovingly called my 3 littlest kids "trolls" since they were old enough to stomp around and wreak havoc! I walked into Kendryn and Cara's bedroom to check on how far they had progressed in picking it up and this is what I found! Crazy girls! They told me they were stretching! I will post more about them later! So much more to say!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Thank You.

I got an anonymous call last night with a directive to look on my porch. This is what I found when I did.
If you ever get the chance to read this, THANK YOU.
There are truly angels living among us.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Happy Birthday to my Hot Husband!

I love you, John Starke! I have loved you for what seems like forever and I will continue to love you with all of my heart for ever and ever and ever...........
We have been married almost 15 years there is still no one I would rather spend my time with than you! Thanks for being a wonderful dad and and my very best friend! Thanks for making me laugh every day and making our home a nice place to be!
Happy Birthday! Ha! Now you are the same age as me! OLD!

Sunday, November 15, 2009


So, I have made this commitment to regularly post on this blog to fulfill my journal obligation. I am sadly starting to run out of ideas after the first week! I know, pathetic. I know that not many people read this but I thought I would post my recipe for whole wheat bread. I make it twice a week and it only takes an hour from start to finish. I use whole white wheat and I grind it myself. It make 4 large loaves. My kids love it and I feel great feeding it to them. Here it is:

Whole Wheat Bread

6 cups warm water

12-15 cups wheat flour or more

2 TB salt (Real Salt)

¼ cup Lecithin

¼ cup vegetable oil or applesauce

2/3 cup honey or agava

2 ½ TB Dough Enhancer

2 ½ TB Saf Instant yeast

3/4 cup potato flakes (optional, but great!)


1. Combine 8 cups flour, 6 cups warm water with dough hook

2. Mix in yeast

3. Add salt, honey, oil, lecithin Turn mixer speed to 1, then two, three, four, adding flour as flour pulls away from the middle (up to 15 cups total) I usually use about 131/2

4. Knead in mixer 7-8 minutes

5. Add dough enhancer

6. knead two more minutes.

7. Cut (don’t pull) dough apart

8. 4 large or 6 small loaf pans

9. Cover with plastic wrap. Let rise to double—dough above pan about an inch and a half.

10. 350 degrees 28-38 minutes (180 degrees)

I usually add about 13.5 cups flour total. Depending on your water in your flour you may need more or less flour. I grind white wheat and it tastes great but red wheat or a combination of both works well too!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

In Loving Memory

This summer my Mom's side of the family gathered in Coos Bay for a memorial. It was a time to celebrate the lives of two fabulous people that we had lost. One, my Nana, had lived a full life and passed away at 95. The other, my Uncle Mike had lived a hard life and left this world too soon, leaving behind two beautiful children and a grandchild he never got the chance to meet. As we gathered at my Grandma's house and reflected on these lives that had touched ours, I was grateful for many things. Most of all I am so grateful that we have choices. No matter the mistakes our parents make, or that we make as we progress in this life, we always have a choice. It is never too late to change, never too late to make things right. As long as we are here on this earth we can make a choice to positively (or negatively..but I am focusing on the positive) affect the world and those around us. I am grateful for the opportunity to self-evaluate and make corrections in my life. I still have a long way to go, but that thought gives me hope!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Pallo Family

We had friends visit us last night. We stayed up until midnight chatting, they are so fun!
Nicole and Aaron have been some of my closest friends for many years! I was there when they met, watched them fall in love and get married in the temple. Nicole and Aaron have an 18 year old senior, Gage (MHS!!) and a 4 year old cutie pie, Alex. I am so glad they are so happy and have such a wonderful family! Please visit us any time!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Cam's 7th Birthday

My littlest Cameron,
I love you sooo much and I had so much fun celebrating your 7th birthday with you this week! I can't believe how big you are getting. Your hands, your feet, your mind and your little spirit. You are kind, funny and so good to your mom! Some things I love about you:

  • I love tickling you every morning when you crawl into bed with me before school. I especially love it when you put your arms up and tempt me to tickle you!
  • I love that you are a really great brother to Ally, Kendryn and Cara.
  • I l love that you always have a smile on your face.
  • I love that you are so willing to help mom around the house. You take out the garbage and recycling for me each day... you say it's your job because you are the "other" man of the house.
  • I love that you sing lots of songs all day while you do things, usually a primary song, My Hands are Bananas, Link by Link, or something from Joseph.

  • I love that you do push-ups when the microwave starts, just like your dad!
  • I love that you still want us to sing your special song each night before you go to bed.
  • I love listening to you are getting so good at it!
  • I love that you are such a math wiz!
  • I love that you tell me you love me and hug me ever time you walk by me!
  • I love that you still let me kiss you...and like it, because I know those days are numbered!

I hope you have a great year. I hope you know how much we love you and how special and important you are to our family!

Monday, November 9, 2009

A New Determination

Well, I am going to try this again! Actually, I'd probably better say I am going to DO this again! The word "try" leaves wiggle room and that can lead to failure!
I have joined a Women's Wellness Challenge and one of the requirements is to write in a journal each day. I have always been terrible at this, but I have cute kids, a wonderful husband and a lot to be grateful it I am pledging to write on this Blog each day durring the challenge!
Day one down!