1.31.2011

waffles and peanut butter.

Don't you all put peanut butter on your waffles? In my family we grew up putting peanut butter and syrup all over our waffles and pancakes. I remember going on sleepovers and having pancakes or waffles and asking if they had some peanut butter. I have received some very strange looks when I ask for the peanut butter, but a pancake or waffle just isn't the same without it for me now. My family also has always made homemade syrup, so it was always hard for me to have "cold" syrup straight from the bottle when I would eat breakfast at other people's houses. I mean after I asked for the accommodation of the peanut butter I always felt awkward asking if I could heat up the syrup first too haha. Since I had a hard week I decided Saturday morning to treat myself to some waffles :) My parents gave us a really cool waffle maker for Christmas, like the kind you would use at a hotel, and it made the best waffles! So I thought I would share the family recipe here for you all. Enjoy :)

Leavitt's Waffles
3 cups flour
5 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 TBSP sugar
4 large eggs
2 1/4 cups milk
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
2/3 cup oil

Don't beat the mixture too much. It will be thick. Pour 1 cup batter per batch. This recipe is easily doubled, tripled etc. My family usually makes tons of this and we have ourselves a waffle feast!

1.26.2011

smoke alarm.

 Top: BP Blazer: JCrew Jeans: Silver Boots: Steve Madden

So we live in an incredibly small apartment. It also happens to be in the basement of a house, so we don't have a lot of windows. Our oven also sucks.... but what doesn't suck is our smoke detectors. They are very very sensitive to say the least. Whenever we decide to broil something, the oven creates an abnormal amount of smoke. The thing is, nothing seems to really even be burning! Yet there is enough smoke that could make people think our place is being engulfed in flames. Well the other day Trevor was making steaks, and he broiled them. Lo and behold our apart was full of smoke with in minutes of him opening the oven. Not just one but all three of our smoke alarms went off. These suckers are LOUD, and they do not turn off easily. You have to fan like a crazy person! Because we don't have a lot of windows opening them didn't help much. We had the door open but it was freezing cold outside. So the image here is... me and Trevor frantically destroying magazines as we ferociously wave them back and forth in front of the smoke alarm. By now we are cold, our arms are tired,  our ears hurt, and it seems like there is more and more smoke because I can't breath. This lasted for about 10 minutes and I am pretty sure we freaked the neighbors out...haha. So lesson is? Why do we ever need to go to the gym? We can just get a great work out right before we eat our streak :)

P.S. So I am wishing I lived Malibu. My brother lives there and runs into celebrities all the time. It isn't that I love celebrities or anything, but it would be cool to run into someone I truly am a fan of their work. For example today my brother ran into Katy Perry at the bank! Just a typical day for him... haha.

1.25.2011

2011 & a great salad.

Just like my Christmas update my New Years update is behind as well. Jamie my bestie from back home happened to be in St. George as well this Christmas break. Her parents decided to move to St. George, and their timing couldn't be any more perfect. My first Christmas away from home and I got to have a piece of it with me still. We spent an afternoon on her boyfriend's motor bikes, and soaking up the hot tub. Since we were both there, we decided the 5-6 hour drive to San Diego to see a friend from church get married was well worth the trip! It would also mean we could see other family and friends in San Diego :) So we went, and it was a blast. We danced the night away at the wedding, Courtnie (our friend that got married looked beautiful). Since we left our boys in Utah we went to a small dinner with friends for New Years. I have never felt more like an adult then I did that night, haha. I mean I have never had a quite New Years Eve before.... ever! It was also my first New Years Eve where I didn't have a New Years kiss since I was 15 years old... haha. Oh how I missed my Trevor. But it was still a great low key night, with yummy food and friends.
My mom shared this wonderful salad with me to bring to the New Years Eve dinner. Now let me tell you, I am normally not a fan of salads that have a bunch of different things in them, but this salad really blew me away! It is a must try.
Pasadena Salad (serves 4-6)
What you need:
1 head romaine
3 chicken breasts shredded
1 cup chopped celery
4 stems of green onion, slice
1 avocado, cut up
1 granny smith apple, cut up (cubed) skin on
1 10 oz. can of mandarin oranges, drained
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup blue cheese

Add all into large bowl.

Caramelized Almonds:
1/2 cup sliced almonds
3 TBSP sugar
Melt over medium heat (preferably non-stick skillet) and stir until
sugar melts and caramelizes almonds.  Cool and add to above.

Dressing:
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 TBSP fresh chopped parsley
2 TBSP sugar
2 TBSP white wine vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste

1.24.2011

beauty.

I was hesitant about posting this, but after reading an article that was published on the same topic last week, I decided to share it. For my Senior Seminar we were allowed to pick any topic we wanted to to for our research paper. For awhile I was stumped, but my professor told me to find something that I was really interested in so I wouldn't get bored of looking up more information and writing over 15 pages. At first I was not sure why I was drawn to this topic. I reflected on why this topic fascinates me so much and think I have come up with some form of an answer.
Because it also affects me.
I am by no stretch of the imagination considered over weight. Yet I still focus on how much "better" my body could be. Does this make me vain? Or am I simply just a product of my environment?
If this does mean I am vain...I think most women out there are in the same boat as me. I do not obsess over my body, but it is something that is constantly in the back of my mind. I will find myself critiquing my body, and then seconds later tell myself how ridiculous I sound. Why do I play this battle in my mind where I have to convince myself I look fine, and that I know am pretty dang healthy? And what does this battle mean for other women? Some result in eating disorders, BDD, obesity, and others simply fix the "problem" by going under the knife. Since we had to narrow our topic down to be very specific, I decided to focus on plastic surgery, more specifically cosmetic surgery.
Why do so many women have body image issues?
I would just like to preface this paper by saying that I am not necessarily against cosmetic surgery. I do however think that women have taken it to a new level, and our society is starting to accept it. 
The feelings women have about their bodies is what most concerns me.
I would really love to hear some women's perspective on this.

Now please don't mind any spelling errors etc. that you might find in this paper, my parents already pointed out several to me! I turned it in a couple days after Christmas so I wasn't reading with the best of academic eyes at that point, haha.
 
P.S. Just a couple days ago my mother emailed me this link. This article made me decide to post my research paper. I know not everyone reading this is LDS but for those that are I thought you might find it interesting, especially if you live in Utah. Just some surprising statistics and more thoughts about exactly what I discuss in my paper.

An old friend and her sister have made this topic their mission in life :) check our their blog!

1.20.2011

Vintage Brooch Headband.

 So I have another easy way to use two different items to create something new. 
The past couple years headbands have become so much fun!

What you need:
Brooch/Pin (I am sad because I use this brooch all the time &just noticed it had a missing stone. bummer!)
Soft headband (so that it can pin through.)

What to do:
Secure the brooch or pin onto a headband to create a fun new piece for your hair :)

If you want to make it more permanent you can always glue the brooch or pin onto the headband. You could even use multiple smaller pins etc. to cover the whole headband and really glitz it up! ENJOY.

1.19.2011

butt kiss.


 Dress: Down East Jacket: F21 Belt: Old? Shoes: Steve Madden
Remember when butt kiss was about the worst insult you could give someone on the playground during recess? I know if I had said anything like that at home I would have been in big trouble. While now I give butt kisses all the time... let me explain. When me and Trevor are getting into bed, I like to turn to the left, while he turns to the right. We lay down in that 180 degree fetal position that most people start off in and what results is our butts are touching. Trevor hates this. But one night I said, "Hey babe, our butts are kissing!" Trevor didn't think this was very funny, but from now on I always make sure to give him a quick butt kiss before we go to bed. Thank goodness Trevor puts up with my strange ways :)

1.18.2011

"It's In the Bag."




Over at A Hasty Life, Ashley has put together a blog crawl series called "It's in the Bag." I thought it would be fun to join along seeing there is nothing more interesting then the contents of a woman's purse. Today is my day to post about the wonderful things you can find in my purse. Well usually my purse is like a Mary Poppins bag! No joke. You can ask my friends and they will tell you the strangest things they have found in my purse. One time I even had a hammer in my purse. Long story short I am a pack rat, and tend to take everything I could possibly think of that I need with me somewhere. So despite being a receipt hoarder, medicine, non-travel deodorant size carrying purse goer... I have cleaned up the contents that I probably shouldn't be carrying around in my purse to the essentials for you all. Is that cheating? haha.

1. Coach Purse, the "Carly Handbag."
2. Coach Glasses, funny story behind these. I picked them out at the doctors office way before I ever got this purse. Lo and behold they both come from the same "Carly" line.
I guess I know what I like!
3. Fossil Wallet. Love the colors and design of this wallet, I have had it forever.
4. Canon Camera Power Shot, got to have a point and shoot ready at all times!
5. Secret tampon mini purse, haha. Isn't that great?!
6. My phone of course :)
7. Bath and Body Works Sweet Pea Anti-Bacterial Hand Lotion.
8. Neutrogena Moisture Shine Lip Soother (SPF 20)
9. Rimmel Inc. Lipstick in Red Alert.
10. I just realized I forgot my keys in this picture. My keys have a red leather heart key chain I got in Florence on them, and a very beat up pink piggy (I love pigs and I collect them in all forms haha).

So there you go! A look into my purse. Which is normally stuffed with even more odds and ends. I don't know how guys get away without having a purse.... I mean I guess they do get to have massive pockets which we don't get... but I think more guys should have murses :)

1.17.2011

Peanut Butter Ice Cream Sandwhiches.

 The other night me and Trevor went over to his cousin's house along with his sister and we all had dinner. It was fun to meet his cousin and her husband again since the first time I met them was on my wedding day, and that wasn't the best day to really get to know them, haha. But it was such a fun night, and we of course played... Mexican Train :) &Scum. Since she was making dinner, I brought over a dessert. I was feeling creative so I decided to make some homemade Ice Cream Sandwiches. As you learned in my oreo post, I am not a huge fan of chocolate. So I decided to make them out of Peanut Butter cookies :) So here we go...

What you will need:
Peanut Butter Cookie Dough
(If you want to use another type of cookie, you could try something like a sugar cookie so you could use a cookie cutter and create fun shaped ice cream sandwiches!)
Ice Cream
Plastic Wrap, or Aluminum Foil

What to Do:
Bake cookies.
Take out Ice Cream and soften to a point where it is spreadable (work quickly, will melt fast!)
Take a cookie and spread desired amount of Ice Cream on it. Sandwich it between another cookie.
Take Plastic Wrap or Aluminum Foil and wrap tightly around cookie and place in freezer.
Place in freezer for 4 hours or until hard.

ENJOY :)

1.14.2011

new beginnings.

 Top: Lulus Blazer: Thrifted Pants: F21 Belt: F21 Boots: Steve Madden
Well the first week of school has come and gone! This was the first week, of my last semester for my undergraduate degree... was that confusing haha? This May I will be graduating and I couldn't be more thrilled. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel :) I can't stop thinking about this summer because Trevor and I will have the summer completely to ourselves before Law School starts up for him, and before I start even more school. So we plan on having a fun packed couple of months!
It is amazing how time flies right on by! I can't believe I will be graduating because that means my little sister will be graduating from high school! There is just no way my little baby sister is that old... because last time I checked she was about 10... yup 10. I have 2 sisters and 3 brothers, and when we were younger and all  living under the same roof, we use to talk about how things would be when we were older, what we wanted to be doing, where we think we would be. It is just crazy to see all those conversations becoming reality. Four of us now married, two with kids, one a mission, and the last one ready to leave the nest. I am loving watching my family grow up into the people they have always wanted to be. Watching them achieve their goals, and going for the things they want. A big family means a lot of amazing examples.

1.13.2011

what's old is new.


I love the direction jewelry has taken the last several years. Instead of just the cookie cutter pieces you could pick up at different department stores, jewelry has evolved into something so much more creative! I am constantly seeing new innovative ways to wear things. While I was home at New Years I was rummaging through the drawers in my old bedroom. I still have odds and ends left in that room, and stumbled across some old jewelry I had from the pre-teen years. I found this fun bracelet made of different colored bobble balls. Then I thought about how I could possibly turn it into a necklace.

So here you all go, an easy peasy way to turn an old bracelet into a necklace...

Bracelet Necklace

What you need:
 1. Bracelet that has two open hooks/holes on the end of it.
 2. Ribbon (whatever size you prefer, mine was a thicker ribbon.) 
 3. Scissors.

What to do:
Do I even really need to explain this? Well here you go...
 1. Make sure bracelet is unlocked from hook.
 2. Take ribbon and weave through one loop (my ribbon was thicker so I folded it in half)
 3. Make it as long as short as you like, and then cut. Take this piece and create another strand  of   ribbon to equal length.
 4. Loop each strand of ribbon through a loop at the end of each bracelet.
 5. Put the now necklace around your neck and tie a bow with the ribbon to secure the necklace

 VOILA!

&the beauty of it is, you can still take it apart and use your bracelet if you want to. This could be a good thing to try with multiple pearl necklaces for example!

1.12.2011

hair icicles.

Coat: Logan Solid Peacoat Skirt: Down East Top: Macy's (actually a dress) Tights: F21 Hat: F21 Boots: Steve Madden

The other day I was running a little late for work. I really needed a shower so even though I knew I would be cutting it close, I took one anyway. Since it has been snowing the past several days and I don't have covered parking for my car (bummer) my car was covered in ice from the past two weeks that we have been out of town. I didn't grow up in the snow so using the ice pick thing to clean my car 1. takes me forever. 2. makes me really cold. 3. I simply just hate hate hate doing it... so since we only live a couple blocks from campus I decided to walk (I usually do walk since it is so close, it is only when I am running late that I want to drive.) After living in Utah the past several years one would think I would have this winter thing down. But as I am hustling to get to work, I noticed something funny when I went to move some hair out of my face... um my hair felt hard? That is strange. After examining it a little longer, I realized that my hair had divided themselves into little strands, very much like icicles might I add, and had frozen. frozen. I should have known better... but I have come to the conclusion that if I haven't learned anything the past almost four years of living in this state, I never will.

I guess I am just a true San Diego girl through and through!

P.S. You guys are hilarious. I loved all the comments about Mexican Train. I had to add that we all get pretty into it as well! There have been some pretty heated games of Mexican Train haha :)



1.11.2011

Christmas Recap.

I know I am super late on this post, but this Christmas break came and went so fast, and I haven't had any time to blog about it! So here we go... this was my first Christmas not at home in San Diego, but it was fun to spend the holidays with Trevor's family. Both of our brothers are actually serving missions in Chile, and the highlight of Christmas was being able to talk to them! My brother was even able to skype with us which made my day! Just to be able to actually see his face was amazing :) We spent time with family, saw movies, ate lots of food (too much) saw the lights at the St. George Temple, played with all of our presents, board games, and relaxed. I even learned how to play Chess! My dad and brother tried teaching me when I was about ten, but I didn't really get it... or more likely I didn't really care for it. But I was a lot more excited about  it this time around...haha even though Trevor crushes me every time... but someday I might win, right? 
All in all a great Christmas vacation :)
 

1.10.2011

How do you eat your Oreos?

I have never been a huge fan of chocolate... I know call me crazy. I blame it on originally being from Canada and having relatives send me the most amazing candy. Almost all the candy bars are made with Cadbury chocolate. So when I eat something here in the States and it is all Hershey chocolate, it just doesn't measure up. I also hate hate hate chocolate chips... chocolate cake is okay, I don't mind brownies... but at the end of the day I guess you could say I am a vanilla girl all the way.
Because of this, growing up I would split my Oreos in half and lick the frosting off (well lick isn't the right word... it was more like using my two front teeth and scraping it into my mouth, haha) Then I would discard the Oreo cookie part. But every once in awhile my mother would make homemade Oreo cookies. Now these were Oreos that didn't require me to take the cookie part off... because they were simply amazing. So here you go... my mama's quick and simple recipe for homemade Oreo Cookies! I made a big batch of them for the young primary class that me and Trevor teach at church... they loved them :)
 
OREO COOKIES
3 pkgs Duncan Hines Devil’s Food Cake mix
6 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
Work together with your hands because it’s too heavy for a blender (but you could with a Bosch or Kitchenaid).  Roll into walnut size balls.  Do not press.  Bake at 375 for 10 – 12 mins.
When you take them out of the oven tap pan on the counter, this will flatten the cookies.  Put two cookies together with the following:

ICING
¼ cup margarine or butter                        
1 – 8 oz. pkg. cream cheese
4 cups icing sugar                                     
tsp vanilla
Mix together.  Spread generously.

You can also double the icing recipe if you want more filling in your cookies! --I double mine :)
 Do you think I used enough Pam? HA.
  These are some double stuffed ones :)

1.01.2011

Best part of Christmas...

Skyping with my brother Alex on his Mission in Chile!