Monday, December 26, 2011

Merry Christmas to All

We had a great Christmas and I hope all of you did too. Our Christmas started a week before. All of our family got together early because it was our off year. Everyone went to their in-laws on Christmas day except for Kris, Tiersa, & the girls. We had our traditional grilled cheese made with Boudin's sourdough bread (yum) and tomato soup. I also made the 13 bean soup. Then we opened presents. The grand kids had so much fun and so did we just watching them.

Christmas morning Warren and I watched the Christmas devotional, which was a beautiful way to start the day with inspiring music and guidance from a prophet of God. It helped us to focus on the true meaning of Christmas which is the greatest gift that has ever been given to man,  our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  We went to church with Kris, Tiersa, the girls and Maxcine.  Tiersa was one of the singers along with a few other people in the program. She sang beautifully. Then we went to their house to see the girls presents.

We spent the entire evening Christmas night talking to Elder JT in Thailand on skype. Skype is the best thing ever. We were able to have Steven and Marianne in Utah on at the same time. It makes having him gone just a little easier. Everyone else in the family came over to talk to him too. He is doing so great. He is so happy and loves his mission. We are so proud of his willingness to serve the Lord and teach the people in Thailand His gospel. He will be home in less than 4 months.  It was so good to see him and it made Christmas perfect.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

13 Bean Soup

I love to make soup when the weather cools off. This is one of my favorites. It makes a big pot full and is great to have on hand when family stops by hungry. I am sure it would freeze great as well. It is 100% vegan, gluten free, protein rich and chocked full of all kinds of other nutrients. The recipe comes from Shar's kitchen center. I changed the chicken stock to vegetable broth to make it vegetarian and I use 1 can of diced green chiles instead of the Desert Garden Green Chile Sauce which she uses. I cook mine in a pressure cooker. If you don't have one, soak the beans for at least 8 hours, drain and then add to the other ingredients. Use at least an 8 liter pot and cook for around 3 hours until the beans and rice are tender. 
 I love to fix the vegan cornbread found on to go with it. 

  13 Bean Soup                                        

In an 8 liter pressure cooker saute:
1 large onion, chopped
1 large green bell pepper, chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
4 T. garlic oil

2 C. Bob's 13 Bean Soup Mix, sorted & washed
1-28oz. can Muir Glen Crushed Tomatoes
1-15oz. can Muir Glen or Trader Joe's fire roasted diced tomatoes w/chiles
1-4oz. can diced green chiles
1 C. frozen corn
2 T. Bob's Bean Soup Seasoning
8 C. vegetable broth
2 C. water
2 T. mexican seasoning
1 tsp each of roasted garlic, garlic pepper, & salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 C. brown basmati rice

Stir ingredients. Bring to a boil. Secure pressure lid. Bring to second ring of pressure. Maintain pressure for 40 minutes. Drop pressure by letting it drop on it's own. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. 
If not using a pressure cooker it will probably take 1 - 2 hours because you soaked the beans first. Pressure cooker's don't require the soaking process. 

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

My Favorite City

My mode of transportation. Good old BART.

Market and Embarcadero.

The Golden Gate Bridge wrapped in fog.

Under the Golden Gate bridge.
I loved the newlyweds t-shirts. So cute.

I had a great time 2 weeks ago in San Francisco. I spent two days walking all over the city, taking pictures. One of my favorite things to do. If you click on the pictures they will enlarge on your computer.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Number 3

This last weekend my daughter and I ran in the St George Utah Marathon. We had a lot of fun driving there. We always stop in Jacob's Lake and get cookies. It is a highlight of the drive. The peanut butter chocolate chip  is now my favorite instead of the chocolate parfait. I love driving by Lee's Ferry and Vermillion Cliffs, it is one of the Lord's finest creations. It is considered a very sacred and spiritual place by the Navajos and I agree.

It was the 3rd time I have ran in the St George marathon. The race started out really good. I was making good time and felt strong. But about 10 miles in, it started getting a little warmer and the up hills were wearing me down. They said it was the warmest it has ever been at the starting line. I was walking at every water station which was every two miles except for the last 6 miles I started taking one minute walk breaks every 4 minutes just so I could finish. I must have started out too fast and probably only 2 hours sleep the night before didn't help.  I have trained in the heat all summer which was much hotter where I live than it was there. Over all I did really well. I had no cramping which I had last time. I attribute that to taking Endurolytes every hour, gu's every 45 minutes, drinking a cup of water at every station and sipping on water with Nuun in it that I carried in my Nathan water pack. I didn't have any stomach issues after the race which I always have had in the past. The down hills always take more of a toll on your body than you would think. I finished with a 4:45 which is my second best time. If I had just done a couple things differently I know I could have pr'd. My best time is a 4:40 which wouldn't have been hard to beat. Oh well no biggy! I am very excited to have finished number 3. It is such an amazingly beautiful race.

Beautiful Sunrise

Veyo Hill 

Snow Canyon


No one saw me come through the finish line. My daughter was feeling very sick and my husband and son had to tend to her so they missed me. She finished with a 3:49 which was great. It was still the greatest feeling ever to cross the finish line and know you can finally stop running. I compare it to childbirth. You push yourself to the limits and go through so much pain and then all of a sudden the baby is born and the pain is over and you get the beautiful reward of all the hard work. There is no greater feeling than that.
My hubby and I drove back home together. We had a great drive home. The highlight was listening to General Conference on the radio in the car. We hit a huge down pour of rain in Flagstaff and we had fun listening to Netflicks for the last 2 hours of the drive. The 7 hour drive flew by.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Hungry Runner Breakfast

After running 8 miles this morning I was starving. I found a great banana pancake recipe on a website called I have tweeked it a little so I thought I would share with all. They are so yummy and are great cold as a snack. I love adding blueberries, peaches, nuts, and drizzling on warmed pure maple syrup.
Banana Pancakes
2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
2 tsps baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup coconut sugar (sprouts)
1 tsp sweet spice blend (Schar's) or 1 tsp cinnamon & 1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 cup vanilla almond milk
1 Tbl vanilla extract
3 large bananas, mashed
2 Tbls coconut oil

Mix together flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, sweet spice blend in large bowl.  Mix almond milk and vanilla together then add to flour mixture and whisk together. It will still be dry. Add banana, mix in then add coconut oil and stir until almost smooth.

Cook on hot griddle for 2 - 3 minutes then flip and cook 1 - 2 minutes more.

I hope you enjoy them. Let me know what you think.

Monday, September 19, 2011

A Food Revolution

I have been reading the book the China Study and it is making me take a good look at what I eat. I have always tried to eat healthy but this book is making me realize I have room for much improvement. I have been experimenting with alternatives to eating animal protein. There are so many great blogs and web sites that have wonderful recipes. I think it is so great that most of them are done by younger women who believe in good nutrition for themselves and for their families. I think it is a food revolution that will help people improve their way of eating and their over all health.  I have posted them in my blog list. I have found two really great oatmeal recipes that might seem a little weird at first but they are so delicious that they are like eating a dessert. I love making extra and keeping them in individual bowls in the refrigerator and then I just eat them cold, especially the Green Coconut Oats. So far I have only had the Carrot Cake Oatmeal warm, but I bet it is good cold as well. Don't let the color scare you, they really are so good. Make sure you only add the amount of kale called for in the recipe for the Green Coconut Oats or it will taste too too green. The coconut cream in the Carrot Cake Oatmeal is heavenly. You can find the recipe for the Green Oats on under oats and granola and the Carrot Cake Oatmeal on, click on recipes and then type in oatmeal. Have fun and let me know how you like them.

I Love the End of Summer

I love it when summer is coming to a close. Not only is it starting to cool down a little but every September Utah peaches, pears and tomatoes arrive. They are always so delicious. I canned 2 quarts of tomatoes the other night as an experiment. They turned out pretty good. I know it was silly to only do 2 quarts but I had already used up most of the tomatoes and the last few were getting really ripe so I gave it a whirl. I think I am going to invest in a water bath canner. I want to try doing peaches and pears next.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Last Long Run

Yesterday morning I  did my last long run before the marathon which is October 1st. I ran with Shelly and Lindsey. We started at 3:45 in the morning and we mapped our course on the web site called I ran 23 miles and they ran 21 because they are two weeks behind me in their training. Shelly is doing the Nike Women's Marathon in San Francisco and Lindsey is doing the Layton, UT Marathon. Our course was fun, we covered a lot of territory. We ran through Gilbert, Higley, & Chandler. The highlight of the run was just before dawn when we ran by the Gilbert Temple that is under construction. The weather was great for the first 19 miles but the last 4 miles were really hard for me. It was starting to warm up and I was feeling totally drained of energy. It is always a great feeling to finish a long run. The rest of the day I was pretty much a zombie. A 2 hour nap was a must.

The hazards of running in the dark. She still had 20 more miles to go.

The best time of the day. 

After 23 miles.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

A Lesson in Humility Continued

If you want to read this in the right order read the next post first. I couldn't get the post to continue. If anyone knows how let me know.
This is it. The line on the center of the rock are the cables. It supposedly looks worse straight on than it really is. I think it looks crazy.

The next two pictures are of Kelsey and Shelly at the top.

Once they made it back down we were ready to start hiking back to camp. We had 8 more miles to go. It was around 12:30 when this next picture was taken. We made it back to camp at 5pm, 12 hours after we started.

When he saw the camera he sat up and posed. He was our welcoming committee.

Yosemite was amazing. I can't wait to return.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

A Lesson in Humility

Wednesday morning Shelly, Kelsey, and I flew to Fresno, CA and then drove to one of the most amazingly beautiful places I have ever seen, Yosemite National Park. As you drive there you wind your self and I do mean wind, through beautiful forested mountains. Along the way you drive through a long tunnel carved out of a granite mountain and as you are coming out of it you see this amazing view, WOW !
We then drove to Curry Camp and moved into our humble abode a little tent cabin with 4 beds in it. It was very clean and very comfortable and it had a little desk with a chair and a light.  There were hundreds of other tents just like this in the camp. We were only a couple tents away from the bathroom which made it nice especially in the middle of the night. Bears are a big problem there so they have you put all food, drink, cosmetics, and toiletries in the bear boxes outside of each tent. You can see it to the right with the water bottles sitting on it. If you take anything in your tent with a sent you may have an unwanted visitor in the night. I double checked my backpack every night to make sure I hadn't missed anything.  We never saw a bear, but Kelsey is sure she heard one on the hike, thumping, rustling, and breathing heavy in some brush near the trail we were on. Shelly started playing here harmonica and we all started yelling and singing to keep him away.

Wednesday night Shelly's friend Eda met up with us, she is second to the left.  We went to bed around 10 but none of us slept very well. There were too many noises and it got pretty cold. I think I got about one hour of good sleep. We got up at 4 am to get ready and left camp at 5 with our head lamps blazing. The dark made for an interesting first few miles which entailed some steep uphill trails and never ending stairs carved out of rock going up the side of a cliff with the rush of a waterfall in the blackness. We could feel the spray of the water from it, thus that part of the trail is called Mist Trail. It felt really good because we were working very hard and had worked up a sweat. The higher elevation made it more challenging as well.We made it to the top of Vernal Falls just as the sun was coming up, it was so beautiful.

It was very sad to realize that just last month 3 people were swept over the falls and died at this very spot. They went over the railing and with the slippery rocks and rushing water they lost there balance. Only one body has been found so far. They actually closed this area for a few hours shortly after we passed by so they could continue searching for the two missing people. There was a picture of them posted near this spot as missing persons, a pretty young woman and young man in their twenties.

We continued on the trail and passed by this beautiful crystal clear river. Our destination was  about 3 miles away. Around this point we crossed paths with a young man who was from Ohio. He was traveling across the country on his motorcycle and had hiked the Grand Canyon the week before. I asked him how he was handling this hike because I felt it was very hard and he said "it is a lesson in humility." I loved that statement because I could totally relate.  Nature is very humbling when you are faced with all of the challenges it places before you. When we reached the last climb before we got to the cables to go up Half Dome I had to talk myself into going on. It consisted of another set of granite stairs carved out of the side of a mountain with nothing to hold onto except for wide open space all around you. It was rightfully named Misery Hill by Shelly's father.  We were at about 7000 ft elevation at that point. I was doing OK until we hit the end of the stairs and we had to walk across smooth slanted granite with a steep incline. I couldn't handle it and started to feel very panicky so I told everyone I couldn't go any further. Talk about humbling. Everyone else was doing fine but the heighth was really getting to me. Shelly went most of the way down with me to make sure I would be OK. At certain spots where the steps were really steep I had to scoot down on my rear. I found a spot to wait with all the other unfortunate souls who couldn't make it up the mountain while Kelsey and Shelly scaled up the side of Half Dome. They had two cables to hold onto and they had caribeners and a harnuss to strap themselves onto the cables for safety. At one point they said they had to pull themselves with all their strength to get to the top because it is almost straight up.
The picture below is Half Dome. We had to hike to the far right side of it from this point.