Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Yummy Pumpkin Cupcakes

I have had several requests for this recipe. ENJOY!!!


1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature

1 c. firmly packed dark-brown sugar

⅓ c. granulated sugar

2 c. cake flour

1 (3.4 ounce) package instant butterscotch pudding

2 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

1 tsp. ground ginger

½ tsp. freshly-ground nutmeg

⅛ tsp. ground cloves

½ tsp. salt

¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

2 large eggs

¼ c. milk

¼ c. sour cream

1 tsp. vanilla

1¼ c. canned solid-pack pumpkin


1. Preheat the oven to 350° (175°C). Prepare a cupcake tin with 18 liners.

2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugars on medium speed until fluffy, about 5 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, sift the flour, butterscotch pudding, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, salt, and pepper into a medium bowl.

4. Add the eggs 1 at a time to the mixer, scraping down the sides after each addition.

5. Alternate adding the flour and milk, sour cream, vanilla mixtures, beginning and ending with the flour. Beat in the pumpkin until smooth.

6. Using a standard-sized scoop, divide the batter equally between the cups. (They’ll be about ¾ full.) Rap the filled pans once on the counter to release any air bubbles. Bake the cakes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 20- 25 minutes.

7. Cool the cupcakes on racks completely. Make frosting during cooling time.

Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting:

1 (8 oz) package cream cheese, softened

¼ cup butter, softened

5 cups powdered sugar

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

Mix the cream cheese and butter until well blended. Add the cinnamon and vanilla- beat well. Slowly add the powdered sugar.

Monday, October 18, 2010


I like traditions! Sometimes its hard, sometimes I think "oh yeah, this is what we do, blah blah" but when I do put forth the effort and not only try and create new traditions, but actually stick to them, I'm so happy in the end. I'm not sure if I have ever posted about our Ice Cream dinners that we have, but oh well if I have. Twice a year when I go to parent teacher conferences if all the kids get a good report (which they do) then we have ice cream for dinner.YUP! JUST ice cream for dinner! (come on, two nights a year of just ice cream for their nightly nutrition isn't gonna kill them....wink, wink) The kids LOVE it and its so fun to see their smiley faces! I actually look forward to PTC because I'm reminded that even if my kids seem to fight with their siblings 24/7, and even if I feel like sometimes they do things just to torture me, that I must be doing something right, because they REALLY are good kids! I just wanted to journal afew things that each teacher had to say:
Austin: Very kind to all the other kids, very sweet, GREAT writer with an amazing ability to tell stories through his writing, very funny! (pretty great since he has 4 teachers and the ALL had the same things to say!)

Hunter: Very bright, kind and sweet to the other kids, willing to put in the effort to work hard. (it was super cool; his teacher had him actually conduct the conference and talk about his grades and if he thinks he deserves those grades and had a question and answer paper he read to me that was really cool)

Mason: Sweetest kid, (every teacher tells me how much they love this guy....which is the truth, he is super great!) very kind and a huge heart. Never gives up even if he doesn't know the right answer he still puts forth his best effort. "One of my all time favorite kids I have EVER had in all my years of teaching" (talk about the biggest smile from mom....really I can't take the credit bc he just came this way!) likes to talk, not just to the kids but to the teacher too, and talk and talk and talk (really he does talk SO much....sometimes Devin will turn to me and say "did you even realize he is still talking to us?" It's really not mean, he will TALK your EAR off and its SO funny!

Emberlyn: "I'm not even sure what to talk to you about except how great she is" Very smart, very willing to offer to help someone else with their work, or help the teacher. Excels at everything she does and is so sweet and kind. (I'm just SO glad that at least if she is going to take after her mom....not to brag, but she does hahahahaha! but really, at least she doesn't get busted for talking in class all the time! The story goes that when I was in Kindergarten I would never shut up and would try to "teach" the kids next to me while the teacher was teaching, so one day poor Mrs. Withey thought she would get me to stop and said "Kristina, would you like to come up here and teach the class?" my response? "SURE!" and I marched right up, picked up where she left off and kept going........dumb I know! LOL)

Liberty: SO sweet, so nice to the other kids, always does what is asked of her. "Sometimes I forget she is even here because she just sits back and does what she supposed to and I don't hear anything from her" (HUH??? For those of you who know my beautiful Liberty KNOW that you always know where she is....maybe this teacher has another Liberty in her class?? HAHAHAHA!! totally kidding)

I LOVE my kids, and I have always told them that it is WAY more important to me that they are good people, responsible and kind than ANY grade they get in their classes. They get good grades, but for ME, hearing every one of my kids teachers tell me how kind they are to the other kids and what a joy they are to have in class in worth more than all the A's in the whole world!!!


 So we had the BEST time last night with the BEST friends!!! My super new super FAB friend Lindsay and I took our 5 girls to a movie and the mall for a girls date night. We saw Nanny McPhee (which was really wonderful!!) took the girls to Tinkerbell in the S.S. mall which was so fun for all of us! We all found something fun and the girls were in heaven looking at all the jewlery. Funny story; all the girls got to pick one thing they wanted to buy and Emberlyn brings me this tile bracelet and says, Mom look I found the best bracelet for church.....she shows me this horrible bracelet where each tile has a picture of Christ on it. It took all of my effort to keep from cracking up in front of her; so I waited till she walked away LOL!! I told Lindsay I really should have got it and let her wear it to church just to see the look on Devins face.....Lindsay then suggested the Virgin Mary one would be better HAHAHAHA!!! 

 The funnest was when we drug them with us to Charolette Russe to look at shoes and while we were checking things out we look over and the girls are tromping through the store in these GIANT shoes and were cracking up! It was such a fun girls night! They are never too young to teach them how fun it is to be a girl!! Thanks FAB McRae babes for such a fun night!!

Liberty, Emmy, Whitney, Laine, and Brinley. What adorable girls!!!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Every Mothers Nightmare!

Fair warning! These pictures are pretty gross, look away if you need to. I think every Mothers nightmare is having to see their child in pain; physical pain, emotional pain, spiritual pain, it all hurts. Last night was physical pain for my sweet little Brinley. The kids LOVE to ride on Devins bike with him and last night was no different, until Brinleys foot slipped and got caught in the spokes of the tire and sliced her wide open in two places. I was shuffling daycare kids out the door (blessing #1...ALL 3 of my moms showed up early to pick up their kids, which never happens) when Devin came rushing in strongly letting me know "I need you, I need you right now" By the time I got upstairs he was just standing in tears holding Brinleys foot while she cried. THAT seriously broke my heart!! Devin is the brave one, the "keep your head" when scary situations arise and to see him standing there in tears shook me to the core. He just said, "shes hurt bad, we gotta go" I called my mom who happened to be about 10 min away from passing my house on her way home from work (blessing mom was early getting off work) and asked her to come get my kids as I had TWO guys downstairs finishing painting and the entire kitchen and family room was covered in drop cloths and plastic. I couldn't leave all my kids (two of which who were in tears) with my house is complete disarray! We loaded Brinley into the car and headed to the hospital across the street (blessing #3....we live SO close to a hospital; what an amazing blessing for our family time and time again) They immediately put us in a room (blessing #4....we happened to have some left over Tylenol with codeine from Emmy and were able to get Brinley comfortable before they even looked at her foot) We waited for awhile before they came in and the Dr looked and said that her tendon was still intact (blessing #5....upon further inspection, the spoke just skimmed over the membrane on top of the tendon, missing it entirely) and she was going to require some pretty intense stitches. For the next two hours while we waited, Devin loaded her up with juice, M&M's and cookies and we watched TV. They washed it (which was torture), put topical lidacane on it and we waited another hour. I insisted they give her Morphine before they started the numbing because just the washing was awful (which by the way....I HATE it HATE it when someone is in incredible pain and a nurse sits there the whole time saying "honey, this doesn't hurt, its just water, your not in pain" REALLY!?!?!?! When is the last time you were sliced open 2 inches deep and had someone shoot water inside of it!?!?!?! I was NOT a happy mom!!) So they waited for that to take effect, and then came the horrible part. I knew it was coming, and kept telling myself I would be brave, but after 5 min of screaming, "I want to go home, Tell her to stop, Just put a band aid on it so we can go home!! I broke down into tears and just cried with her. It took about 20 sticks and almost 10 min just to get it all numb. After that was over she laid on her belly while the Dr put two layers of stitches with a grand total of 30!! (Which out numbers ALL the stitches ALL of my kids combined have ever had) I sang songs with her and a couple times we had to tell her she couldn't sing with me bc she was moving too much :) and since the morphine was in full effect she was actually being quite funny. We would be in the middle of "lead me, guide me, walk beside me" and she would blurt out "what is that on my knee, something is touching me knee. Is the Dr closing my owie?" I LOVE LOVE LOVE this little girl!!! They decided to also put a splint on it and don't want her walking on it at all for at least 5 days so it can stay sealed up good before she starts bending her ankle. It was a LONG night, and absolutely heartbreaking, but she was such a good girl and so brave. I wish as moms we never had to see our children in pain, but in a weird way I think it reminds us of just how much we love them and even with all the craziness that they really do fill our lives with joy!

(more pictures coming after I get them off Devins phone)

Brynn this morning. Kids are incredible!!! As an adult we would be laid up all day after a night like that, but she is all over the place like NO big deal! What a doll!!!!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Friends that Inspire

I have realized a lot lately how desperate I am to be better. I better mom, a better wife, a better friend; along with that I have realized that I have a handful; well maybe two handfuls, of amazing women in my life that inspire me. They bless me with their example and being around them, or talking with them, makes me want to be a better person. Really can you ask for anything better in a friend? Someone who is such a good example that you think about picking up your scriptures more, or loving on your kids more just because of them?? Someone who one minute you are laughing together about a movie, and the next minute having a conversation about being a better wife. I want to be that kind of friend.....not so other people can look and think how great I am, but for ME! I want to be able to lay my head down every night and think, "I was a little bit better today than I was yesterday" I'm incredibly grateful for amazing friends, old AND new, who inspire me and set a good example for me. Thank you for being strong, kind, wonderful women and for helping me to be a better person!

I couldn't possibly list all my "friends who inspire" OR have a picture of each of them; and I would never want to offend anyone, BUT this is just ONE of my amazing friends that makes me want to be a better person; I miss her and wish she didnt live so far away because I want to be like her when I grow up!

Love this little man!

 Really how cute is this kid? He is growing up WAY too fast, but we have SO much fun with him! We grabbed these jammies for him the other night and told him they were his monster jammies. He thought they were even cooler when we showed him that they glow in the dark. Except when Devin turned off all the lights in our room and showed him in the full length mirror, then he freaked out.

After Devin got him all dressed he was pretending to be grumpy about wearing them. I even said "say cheese" and without lifting his head he said cheese. I really love my little man and wish I could just keep him this way forever.

Thursday, October 7, 2010 - Ensign Article - Contention—and How to Eliminate It - Ensign Article - Contention—and How to Eliminate It

I used part of his article a couple of weeks ago when I spoke in church and haven't been able to get it out of my mind. My favorite excerpt was "if we will observe the great virtues in our companion the Lord will magnify them for us. Looking at virtues will many times eliminate contention before it has a chance to grow and a marriage will not grow in love, harmony and happiness when the couple neglect caring for and nurturing their love. With such nurturing there is no ground for contention to grow in."
In a story he tells about a couple he is counseling he asks them to write a list of 25 things that each spouse loves about their companion. I want to encourage every one to do this. Heaven knows that we wives especially can get irritated with the shoes left on the floor, or the garage not getting clean when WE want it done, but I feel really strongly that if we will take time to write our list of 25 things and refer to it often that we will quickly look past those annoying things (which by the way, speaking only for myself, I KNOW I have plenty of annoying things!) and "the Lord will magnify" those virtues for us.
Just my thoughts for today :)