Friday, September 10, 2010

Me and diets

Okay I am putting it out there....
A week ago I started another diet... I know, I know, it's supposed to be a life change not a diet blah blah blah but I am going on my first cruise in less than 2 months (yeah me!!) and for some reason the cute board shorts I bought in Vegas in March... that still have their tags on... do not fit! Ok I totally know why they don't fit... I didn't excercise all summer and with so much family and friends around showing off their amazing baking/cooking skills (cough, cough Becky and Julie) what was I supposed to do? And let me tell you my french toast with homemade buttermilk syrup is to die for... just sayin'
So there... I said it... I have struggled to take off the 70 lbs I gained with Seth, I was fortunate (?) that he was 11lbs and I had an ovarian cyst the size of a grapefruit removed (too much information??) at the same time but I have sat at the same weight since about my 8 week checkup... until last November when I was finally able to take control of my life and went from a size 16 to a 9. Yeah me! But I am going slowly back up again... feeling sluggish and unhappy.
So with this cruise looming ahead of me I am taking the leap again... It's only been a week and I have been sick for 3 days now but I have gotten on the treadmill 2 out of those 3 days, and then promptly fell back into bed for the rest of the day and night and day again but I did it!!
I feel like 4 years of my life have gone missing... I felt so miserable about how I looked that I wouldn't let anybody get to know me, pictures were shunned and moments were not captured. I was surrounded by girls who were fit and happy and I was depressed and overweight.
Until Seth, weight really had never really been a problem for me... I gained 70 lbs with each of my five kids... and I would work it off, when I met Steve I looked and felt great! Thanks to a fabulous kickboxing class and a busy life style and I admit 2 months of Herbalife I was in the best shape I had been since my militia days. I had given up on myself and thought that I would never have my body or my life back! It's been a slow process... but my kids and my hubby have been my biggest supporters... reminding me that the cookies I made for them are not on my diet but they have always loved me for who I am, not what size I am. But they like it when I can hike and play and swim with them, mostly they like me healthy. So I am doing this for them as much as for myself. Wish me luck!!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010


Today was Seth's first day of Preschool and he was a champ! We've been talking about it all summer and he was ready to go! Buzz Lightyear backpack, hair spiked up and running shoes on! He looked so so cute! He has had a cold for almost 2 weeks now so I thought he might have to miss it but I looked up the rules and unless he has a cough, fever or thrown up in the last 24 hours he is allowed to come. But now I have his cold and I just want to crawl into bed for the rest of the day. I hate getting sick! Why is it that when the kids get sick they can function yet my nose starts running and my body feels like it's been hit by a truck! I've been taking my Essential Oil blends and getting enough rest and even exercising and I still catch what ever goes around... so annoying!
With going back to school comes the strict schedules of morning and afternoon... morning consists of getting everybody up, showered, (which is no small feet when you have 5 boys who wake up at the same time and only 2 showers!) fed, scriptures, prayer and out the door. Then when they all get home its all about how much food they can eat before they need to go to a practice or a game.
Just a glimpse of what my calender looks like for Saturday....
Seth-Soccer game @ 8am
Ben- Football Game @ 10:30am
Sam- Fencing Tournament@ 8am and 7pm
Zach- Lacrosse game x2 in South Jordan (ask me how I am going to get him there?)
Ave- Soccer game @ 12:30
Oh and Ave writes his ACT test in the morning and Zach has a 3 hour landscaping job to complete too!
Welcome Fall!!!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Zucchini Pineapple Loaf

Here's a yummy recipe for all of that zucchini you, or if you're like me, you're mother-in-law has grown!

2 Eggs

1/2 cup cooking oil

1 cup granulated sugar

1 cup grated zucchini, unpeeled

1/2 cup crushed pineapple, drained

1 tsp Vanilla

2 cups flour

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

3/4 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/2 cup chopped nuts, optional

Beat Eggs, cooking oil and sugar. Stir in zucchini, pineapple and vanilla.

Measure remaining 7 ingredients into another bowl. Por all at once into batter. Stir just to moisten. Pour into greased 9x5x3 inch loaf pan. Bake in 350 F oven for 1 hour until it tests done. Cool for 10 minutes turn loaf out of pan to cool on rack. Wrap. Yield 1 loaf

I 4x the recipe and it made 5 nice size loaves. I also pureed the zucchini and added an extra cup and I used half white flour and half whole wheat. I cooked them all at the same time and they turned out great. I think they would freeze just fine too. Why make one when you can make 5!

Monday, August 16, 2010


We just had a big black cloud blow over us with rain and thunder... it's actually on the cooler side outside right now! Storms blow in and out so fast here!!
I have learned after almost 5 years of living in a desert to appreciate the rain... the first year I moved here... we were asked to pray for rain because it had been so dry and i have to admit I just couldn't do it... now it feels so good!
After living on Vancouver Island for so long the dreary rainy days made me long for 4 seasons, that is definitely one thing I love about Utah! We have beautiful springs and falls, winters are a little drawn out and summers go by too fast but we get a little bit of everything and the sun always seems to come out to brighten my mood :)
I've had a lot of storms in my life but having my boys is like having sun in my pocket... I just need to look at any one of them and they can make me smile :)
Storms can clear the air and leave everything smelling clean and fresh or they can leave a huge mess behind, just like changes in our life and I have had my fair share of changes to adjust to! The most recent being that I have been called as the Young Women President in my ward... yes you read that right... the president... Exactly what I thought too Lol I am under no illusion that the Bishop has any idea what he is doing, so I am just running with it... whether or not this will be a fresh start or a complete mess I am going to jump in with both feet and try and enjoy the ride. You all know how much I have wanted a girl... now I'll have almost 40! You never know how the Lord will answer your prayers :) I had my orientation from the former Pres and i am doing my best not to freak out but I can't seem to find enough chocolate to eat so I am thinking I might not be handling it as well as I would like too!!
So as my summer winds down a new adventure begins!!
Wish me luck :)

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Summer 2010

I can't believe summer is almost over. School starts on the 24th of this month and I am not ready to send my boys back!!
It has been quite the ride though, from the Smith Anniversary, to my moms visit, to camping at Palisades and everything in between it's been quite eventful.
I had the best visit with my mom, she really is a super lady, has had a lot of hard stuff thrown at her and she just keeps up her positive attitude and love for life. We had so much fun just laying in bed all morning talking and crying and laughing! Making meals, (loved the Hodge Podge!) remembering the past, excited about the future! More talking and laughing and crying! Even though we have lived thousand of miles apart for almost 20 years she has become one of my best friends. I can't wait until we can visit again :) I just hope I don't have to wait as long this time!
Our camping trip was alot of fun, mostly because we had John and the kids there and the location was just perfect, beautiful reservoir to swim in, with a dock to swim out to and be play some pretty crazy 'games' on! We rented a couple of peddle boats the last day and the kids spent the whole afternoon out on them, ... except for a couple of hours when a huge storm blew in with thunder and lightening so they hunkered down under the Quick Shade and waited it out while I had a really good nap!!
Smores every night and really yummy breakfasts and suppers. Some crazy storms that blew by but gave us spectacular sunsets! A few bugbites, a couple of sunburnt faces and one burnt finger so really a very successful camping trip for the Smith and Clarke families :)
The day we got back we unloaded the van, and went our seperate ways, Brenna and I went to Park City for Ave's soccer tournament, plans to hit the outlet stores between games and just chill with a good ebook got sidetracked as Ave twisted/sprained his ankle during the first half of the first game so we came home earlier than planned.
Now football is in full force for Ben, Steve got wrangled into helping coach and school is looming around the corner!
I am going to miss my summer!
Little nervous about the fall....

Monday, July 19, 2010

Almost here!!

I have been tidying, vacuuming, cleaning and doing wash all day so my house is almost ready for when my mom comes! Yeah so excited... so don't want to cry when I see her!
If I could get the boys to stop eating for a minute the kitchen would be done too but that will never happen. I would have been leaving for the airport right now but it looks like her plane is about 1 hour late and I am so done with housework... so I am just hanging out listening to my boys and some neighborhood friends jam out downstairs.
Who knew I would not mind at all the noise... I mean music... that comes from drums, electric bass and guitar all hooked up to amps and pedals. Not only don't I mind, I actually like it! It makes me happy to hear them work together and really they are pretty good :) I wish they would do it more!
I've been thinking alot about my family and how sad it is that I have three adorable nieces that I have never even met... I don't even remember the last time we were all together. Why does the world have to be so big?
It is always bittersweet when I have Steve's family visit for the summer... This time we got them all at once for Gramma and Grampa Smiths 50th wedding anniversary. We got a big group shot and individual family pics. Sherry Ward was our photographer check her out at She even came to our picnic and took a buttload of candids too. We all can't wait to see them... she's posted a couple of teasers on her blog and it's killing us!! We had a neat program in the evening and boy we got some talented kids! It was so fun to watch the cousins just love spending time together, every minute... whether it was just watching TV or playing cards or in a circle outside playing games. Every body got along so well. I just loved it. But it also makes me realize how much I miss my family. So I go from being in a fun mood to feeling sorry for myself! My poor sis-in-laws really don't know what to do with me! But fortunately they seem to put up with me and kept inviting me to go places with them :) and boy did we eat and eat and eat! They can shop me under the table though so I past going to Target and Costco like everyday! we are all in agreement that everybody should move closer!
Our house has a most beautiful office... High ceiling, built ins, granite counters, huge desk! So I decided when I had the girls come over to help sew some cute skirts... (still waiting for pics girls!) that I would move everything up from the laundry room to the office. Having the space work double duty is a little difficult but it is so nice to have my machines out and a huge cutting space. It's a work in progress! wish me luck!
Well I am off to pick up my mama from the airport :) Did I tell you that I am so excited!!!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Forever Young

An old friend of mine, (I say old because we were friends a long time ago... not because he's old!)... just posted that he is putting together an 80's heavy metal list on his Ipod for his 20 year reunion tonight... I'm sorry but when did that happen?? Although I didn't go to his school, we did graduate the same year... 1990! Gulp... and I was totally dating one of his good friends. So I did get to go to his prom... I remember what I wore, super cute, super short, white dress (I now... what was I thinking??)... and how long I had to lay out in the sun on a black shingled roof to get as tanned as my sad pale skin would let me... believe me I payed for that vanity in my 20's when I had to have my nose reconstructed because of skin cancer but that's a whole different post!
I remember getting ready at my dates house and his mom taking pictures and going to the prom in a limousine and being surrounded by tonnes of people I didn't know. That's about it! I don't even have any pictures! It was such a huge graduating class compared to my little catholic all girls school I went to, Holy Angels High, in Sydney, Cape Breton. It makes me sad that we couldn't pull a reunion of our own off this year... plans were being made for almost 2 years and it just seemed to fizzle out. I haven't been back to Cape Breton pretty much since I graduated... one trip up to see my family a year or so later and then they moved back to the valley and I never got back. It makes me sad that time takes memories and friendships away.
I am going to go back with my family one day and show them the beautiful place that I still call home and why I miss it every day... even though its been 20 years!
So I hope that my old friends have a fantastic time tonight and that maybe one day we will see each other again. If not, even though I might not have a great memory for details, I do remember the feelings... Excitement, anticipation, nervousness, and pure joy...
I was so lucky that I had really great friends and I loved every second I spent with them... every stake dance, youth conference, temple trip, and the many hours spent driving from Sydney to Cole Harbour, with and without my parents permission tee hee Living so far away and losing touch with so many good friends is just not right! But even though time may have been hard on some of us... (that would be me) we really will stay Forever Young!