Jul 30, 2008

My cute nieces

I love these pics of some of my cute nieces. I just wanted to take one cute picture, but of course they were kind of silly, so I said, "Come on, just one cute picture, please!"
And so the photo shoot began....
Kinda silly
Here's the cute one
"Ok, now take a sad one of us..."
"...and now take a silly one..."
Love these girls! They are so much fun!

Pretty funny

I saw this in the $1 section at Target and had to buy it. So classic!!

Jul 29, 2008

Baby nursery...

So, I got some really cute pink and brown baby bedding while I was still living in California, so pink and brown was the plan for the colors for the nursery. I was given a changing table, a crib and a glider that I thought would be so cute stained a dark chocolate brown. Well, I'm kind of clueless in the world of home projects, so I really had no idea the work that was involved in stripping and staining furniture. My mom and I took part of the crib to this store called Four Chairs in Orem who are suppose to be the "staining experts". They were so helpful and strongly suggested painting verses staining due to the intense work that would be involved. While we were there, we saw this adorable bedroom set. How cute would this be for a nursery that could be for either a boy or a girl?! Love it! The pink and blue are actually really light baby pink/blue, but then you put a dark brown stain over it as a glaze, which gives it this look. I LOVE the crib! (It's one of those that turns into a toddler bed, then a full-size bed).

So, inspired by these cute pieces, my mom and I thought it would be cute to paint a dresser that same chocolate brown and then do pink drawers with the stain over it for the nursery. It's kind of hard to see the color in the photo, but I did a close-up of the drawers, so you can see it better. If anyone remembers, this is the lime green dresser that I had in Huntington Beach for the last 6 years! I still have to put the poly coates on it, which will make it look more finished, but I think it turned out really cute! We also painted a cute frame to match. I'll post pictures of the nursery when we're all finished, but for now I included a couple of pictures of the changing table and the crib, which are now finished. They both were a light, natural wood color before. I wish I had before/after pictures. I will admit that these kinds of projects usually end up being far more expensive and time-consuming that you ever expect them to be. That was definitely the case with these projects. (And being 9 months prego didn't help!) I am so grateful for my mom who spent many days shopping and driving up to Highland to help me get everything done. She is amazing!! Dan's family was also really helpful in sanding/painting the nursery and the furniture. It's a work in progress, so I'll post more pictures when we get it all done. It feels so good to have things coming together and to start to get settled.

Jul 27, 2008

American Fork Canyon FHE

Dan's sister Jen and her family have been in town for the past couple of weeks, so we've been able to spend alot of time with Dan's family, which has been alot of fun. For the past couple of weeks, we've gone up to American Fork canyon to have dinner and family home evening. I just love American Fork canyon. Last week our friends Cory & Chelsea Bagozzi and their cute kids Stella & Weston came with us. It's always fun to hang with the Bagozzi fam! Family, friends, a bonfire, s'mores, dutch-oven cobbler, a starry sky...who could ask for a better night?

Here's a few pics of the Bagozzi family

Ella's baby blessing

Dan's brother Jeff and his wife Kate recently had a baby girl, Ella Jean Dixon. Last Sunday was her blessing. Unfortunately we didn't get any pics of her in her beautiful blessing dress, but here are a couple of shots of the sleeping beauty. She is just adorable--such a tiny little thing. We are so excited that our little one will have a cousin so close to her age. After the blessing, we had a family luncheon at their home. It was fun just to hang out with fam, spending time together, playing games, eating way too much food,etc... I also had to include a picture of Dan getting worked by all his nieces and nephews. He is always so great with kids. His nieces and nephews just love rough-housing with their uncle Dan.

Ella Jean Dixon

Liz & Taylor Dixon
Claire, Eric & Grant Dixon
My adorable nieces Claire, Sierra & Cassidy

Dan getting worked

Steel Days Parade

A couple of weeks ago, we went down with some of the Dixon clan to the Steel Days parade to watch my nieces Claire and Taylor who were dancing in the parade. I haven't been to the parade in years, so it was fun to be in town for the celebration and to relive some memories of the good, ole days when I used to dance in the parade as a kid. When we were kids, the Steel Days carnival was the coolest thing all summer and you just couldn't wait to go to it. It was such a trip to be downtown and see the carnival all set up. All sorts of carnie's were out in full force. Let's just say that it wasn't nearly as classy as I remembered it.
My father-in-law Roger Dixon, Dan's sister Jennifer Schafer, Dan and our nephew Milo (who have been in town from Oregon) Me & my cute niece Sierra

Dan and his little buddy Milo. Milo takes a little while to warm up to people, but he just
loves Dan. What's not to love?

Our nephew Brennon, who was working hard to get as much candy as possible. As you can see, there was lots of bubble gum up for grabs!

Me & Dan

Claire dancing in the parade
Brennon and Sierra doing their tough-guy karate chops

Dear, old A.F. High...

Here's a few pics from a get-together with some friends from high school. It was so much fun to catch up with everyone and see what everyone is up to. I am so blessed to have such amazing friends.

Here are a couple of yummy recipes from dinner that I had to pass along.
Sunshine Cake
Prep time: 15 mins.
Microwave time: 11-14 mins
Stand time: 10 mins.
1 lemon
1 orange
1 small carrot, grated (1/2 cup)
3 eggs
1 16 oz container sour cream
1 pkg yellow cake mix
¼ cup powdered sugar
Thawed, frozen whipped topping
Lemon and orange wedges (optional)
Directions: Grease fluted pan. Using lemon zester, zest lemon and orange using short strokes. Juice lemon and orange to measure ¼ cup total juice, set aside. Grate carrot. In bowl combine eggs, sour cream, carrot, lemon zest and orange zest. Wisk until well blended, add cake mix. Mix until well blended. Pour into pan. Bake in oven at 325 for 55-60 minutes or until knife comes out clean. Cool ten minutes. Invert onto serving plate. Brush reserved citrus juices over top and sides of warm cake. Sprinkle powdered sugar over cake. Garnish with whipped topping and lemon and orange wedges if desired.

Spinach Pasta Salad
tri-colored pasta
artichoke hearts (chopped)
grape tomatoes
feta cheese
fresh baby spinach
italian dressing mixed with honey to taste
***All ingredients are to taste. Just mix and enjoy!

Jul 23, 2008

Stuffed Butternut Squash

I got this great recipe from my friend Jen months ago and have been meaning to post it. I finally got it typed up, so I thought I'd share. It's a healthy, filling, delicious meal. Enjoy!

Stuffed Butternut Squash Recipe
2 small butternut squash (cut in half length-wise and seeded)
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
1/2 tsp olive oil
1/2 small onion, chopped
1/2 pound ground lean beef (or ground skinless turkey)
1/2 cup drained canned diced tomatoes with basil and oregano
1 dried mission fig, stem removed, finely chopped
1/4 cup frozen peas
Optional: I also add mushrooms and shredded zucchini for extra veggies

Preheat oven to 450. Spray pan with non-stick cooking spray. Sprinkle the cut sides of squash with 1/8 teaspoon each of salt and pepper (or more, if desired). Place the squash, cut side down, in the pan and roast until tender, about 40-45 minutes. While squash is cooking, heat the oil in a nonstick skillet. Add the onion and cook until tender. Add the beef and cook until browned. Add tomatoes and fig (and any other veggies), and remaining salt and pepper and cook until liquid evaporates. Add the peas and cook until hot. Turn the squash cut side up and spoon the filling into each cavity. Top with a little mozzarella and/or parmesan cheese and place back in oven for 3-5 minutes or until melted. Enjoy!

Jul 22, 2008

18 days to go....

but who's counting!? Man, it's amazing to think that in just a few weeks I'll have a little rugrat whose life I'm responsible for. What a crazy thought! This whole process is really incredible. I'll have to admit I have not loved being pregnant. It's been tough, pretty miserable from early on, and yet it's incredible. It's amazing to feel the changes that take place inside of you. It's pretty cool when you realize that you no longer have a little guppie swimming around inside of you, but that you have a person inside of you. You see the foot or the bum, or the baby responds to voices or sounds. It's amazing. And then after 10 months of it (not 9!) the time comes that you're just so uncomfortable that you're willing to do whatever it takes to get this baby out of you, even if that means bringing on all the terrifying events that come with childbirth and parenthood. I'm pretty sure Heavenly Father knows what He's doing!

Jul 21, 2008

Hanson Family Lake Powell Trip July 2008

Just after we moved to Utah, we went with my family to Lake Powell. My aunts & uncles and their families were also there, so we had a big group on the houseboat. It was fun to be there over the fourth of July. Here's a picture of Dan being patriotic! Unfortunately I didn't get too many pictures of people, but I took a few pictures of the sunsets, which were beautiful! We didn't have the best weather for skiing or wakeboarding (which I didn't mind, since I can't do any of that anyway!), but it was pretty nice for being pregnant, since it was quite a bit cooler. We enjoyed playing in the water, boating, playing games and eating way too much! We learned how to play speed scrabble, which we all got hooked on. I'm excited that we are so much closer to Lake Powell now. I definitely prefer the 4 1/2 hour drive over the 12 1/2 hour drive we've done the last few years! I need to download a few more pictures when Dan comes home with the laptop, then I'll add the text!