Friday, November 30, 2007

Why the title "You're Pretty Too."

My sister-in-law suggested I write about why I have named my blog "You're Pretty Too." Several, if not most of you reading this know the story already, but since I am enjoying blogging much more than I intended to- I decided to write the story down- you know for posterity! About this time of year nine years ago my in-laws were having a family portrait taken. It was the children's gift to the parents- in fact I organized it- because that is the type of person I am :). (I'm not really conceited- just very sarcastic!) We were in the studio and the photographer was placing everybody. He started with my soon too be sister-in-law who has won beauty pageants- seriously- I'm not just being sarcastic here. He went on and on about how gorgeous she was. Then he placed my two other sisters-in-law and again pour it on thick about how beautiful they were. Then he got to me. Now I was 5 months pregnant at the time with my first child and in that "Is she getting fat or is she pregnant?" stage. So not feeling incredibly confident about myself anyway, he looks at me and says, "Well, you're pretty too." Thanks for the courtesy comment. Later that night I said to Eric, "I didn't realize I was the ugly duckling of the family." He of course had no idea what I was talking about. It did hurt my feelings that night, but now I think it is the greatest story and comment because it really does encompass my personality. I have joked about it with my family and friends so much, I can't imagine not being "Pretty too." Surprisingly my in-laws do not know this story. They were there, but I'm sure have no recollection of it at all. I'm afraid if I told them the story they would just try to comfort me and say, "Oh, he didn't mean it like that." But I know he did and I don't want it meaning anything else. I am pretty too and I like it that way! Here is the picture of my in-laws that was taken that infamous day! My beauty pageant sister-in-law is on the back right and Eric's two sisters are in front. I'm the average pretty one on the back left. I was telling this story to another friend who knows my older sister also. Her comment was, "Not only do you have good-looking sisters-in-law, but your older sister is a real beauty too. She has that gorgeous blonde hair and she always looks so nice and..." She stopped short because she realized she was going on about my sister like the photographer had and seriously said, "You're pretty too." I know- I get it!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

"Turkey for me and turkey for you. Let's eat turkey in my big brown shoe."

I think I will try to title all my blogs with a little ditty. So thank you to Adam Sandler for today's title. So we had Thanksgiving at our house and despite all my complaining and worrying it turned out just fine. My in-laws brought a 23 lb turkey, but they didn't think it would be enough so they asked us to make one too. Guess what we had in our fridge Thanksgiving night- that's right a completely untouched, cooked 15 lb turkey! So we have been enjoying turkey leftovers every night since. Finn asked if we were going to have turkey until January and I said, "Yes and you better be grateful because there are some people who don't have any..." (You know the rest- Parent Lecture #14). Anyway here are some of the turkey dishes we have been consuming or will be trying this week:

Turkey sandwiches- with stuffing, cranberry sauce and a touch of mayo-mmm- so perky!

Turkey Shepherd's Pie with sweet potatoes on top-very tasty

Turkey Enchiladas

Creamy Turkey and Rice soup

and the piece de resistance- Baked turkey and broccoli pasta.

Now I think this one is the highlight because Eric and I made this recipe up ourselves. Here it is:
1 lb penne or ziti pasta- cooked
4 cups shredded turkey
2 cups steamed broccoli
1 1/2 cups Parmesan cheese
1 cup shredded Swiss cheese
1/2 medium onion chopped
small can of mushrooms or you could use fresh - but we didn't have any.
2 Tbs olive oil
2 Tbs butter
4 Tbs flour
2 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup cream
1 Tbs White wine vinegar
1 crushed clove of garlic
1/4 tsp nutmeg
Salt & pepper
Preheat oven to 400. Heat oil and butter together over medium high heat. Add onions, mushrooms and garlic. Saute until onions are soft- about 4-5 minutes. Add flour to make a roux- cook for a minute or two. (If you use fresh mushrooms you may have to add more oil to make the roux, because those babies just soak up the oil!) Add chicken broth and cream. Let thicken, then add vinegar, parmesan cheese, nutmeg and S& P to taste. Let cook for a few minutes. Combine pasta, turkey, broccoli, and roux. Pour into a 9 x 13 sprayed with cooking spray. Then top with Swiss cheese. Cook for about 15-20 minutes until the cheese is browned on top.
Sooo, sooo good- if we do say so ourselves. If you do try this recipe- let me know what you think. Also do you have any good turkey leftover dishes? I'm pretty sure I will need some more. We are only about 2/3 the way through our turkey. "Turkey for the girls and turkey for the boys. My favorite kind of pants are corduroys..."

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

5 people for Thanksgiving dinner

I'm having Thanksgiving at my house for my in-laws. To reward myself for doing such a nice thing I bought myself a little Thanksgiving present- this cornucopia of flowers. I found it at Costco and love it. Anyway having Thanksgiving at my house reminds me of my Grandma Sara. She has ruined Thanksgiving for me because no one else can do it like her- although my mom comes pretty close. She would have the table set for days before so we could anticipate all the yummy things we would eat. That got me thinking of a question someone asked me once- "If you could have dinner with any 5 people, dead or alive, who would it be and why?" When I was asked this question it took me a long to answer it. There really isn't any celebrity or famous person I would like to really meet. I think I would be disappointed, honestly. But I finally came up with an answer. Here it is:

1)- My Grandma Sara- She died right after Katie was born and I miss her more than I thought I would. She is the kind of person who made every grandchild feel like they were the favorite or everyone was her best friend. She is one of my favorite people.

2)- My Grandma Carol- I was named after her, but when she was an adult she changed her name to Caroline. (Apparently she thought "Carrie" was just an average pretty name!) She was a spunky lady. We called her the "Queen Bee." No one else could tell my dad what to do except her. I think if we were the same age we would have been great friends.

3)- My Grandpa Finn- He died when I was just 4 and I all remember about him is his funeral- sad, huh! But I have heard he was an incredible man who loved his family and wife more than anything. He had a great sense of humor and was a hard worker. Even though I don't remember him, I know I have felt his presence with me during difficult times in my life.

4)- My Grandpa "Pink"- He got the name "Pink" because he had red hair. If you have ever wondered where my girls get their red hair- it is from him. He died when I was 2, so I don't remember anything about him. I would want to have him for dinner just to get to know him. I don't know a lot about him. I do know he was laid-back- probably to off-set my Grandma Carol and that he was a spender. I think he and Eric would have gotten along beautifully!

5)- Mor-my great grandma. She died when I was 14, but I remember her very well. She called me "Car-e" instead of Kari because that was the Norwegian was to pronounce Kari. My favorite story about her is one time my father was visiting her during the winter. She was a very active, healthy woman and my father asked her what she did during the winter to stay active. Now she was in her 80's at the time and this was her response, "I shovel the walks of the little old ladies on the street."

So there it is: the list of who I would have for Thanksgiving dinner- (besides my living relatives- of course!) I have chosen these people because I think it would teach me more about myself than anything else. I believe we are the product of our ancestors more than we realize. I am so thankful for my heritage. It has made me who I am. So if you are reading this- tag- who would you have for Thanksgiving dinner- dead or alive?

Friday, November 16, 2007

Love is a many splendored thing.

I'm sure I will write many posts about my Annie. She is quite a character, in fact I think she would make a good character in a book. And if I ever get brave enough I will write that book. Anyway after that previous post I thought I would include a picture of her and another cute conversation we had last night.

This picture is from Halloween when Annie was "Little Orphan Annie." Here is the conversation:

Annie: Mom, I can be in love when I am an adult.

Mom: Okay.

Annie: Mom. I can be in love when I am a teenager too.

Mom: Sure.

Annie: But my teacher says I can't be in love in first grade, but it's just so hard not to!

I may be in a tiny bit of trouble with this one!

Oreo moon cycle

This is a project Finn brought home from school this week. It is the phases of the moon made out of oreo halves. A very clever way to teach this concept, I thought especially because I use to teach this when I taught school. But if you look closely at the first quarter on the right side you will see that the first quarter moon has been licked off. And that is where my story lies....

Finn proudly walked in the door waving his phases of the moon with Annie behind him pleadly for an oreo cookie. He kept telling her no because he had worked hard on it and didn't want it ruined. I agreed with him and told Annie to leave him alone. Annie is not easily distracted from an object of her pursuit. (I'm trying to see this as a positive attribute and call it perserverance instead of stubbornness!) Anyway after a few minutes of being told to give it a rest, she let it drop. She and Finn went into the family room to watch their daily dose of "Arthur"and I went about to one of the hundreds of things I could be doing at any given moment. After a little while I went into the kitchen and passed by them watching TV. At that moment Annie looked up at me with her "deer in the headlights" look. If you are a parent you know this look. If you are under the age of 12 you have a hard time not letting your face give you away when you have done something wrong. Two thoughts went through my mind then- 1) "Annie , you are going to have to come up with a better poker face than that ." and 2)- "What could she be doing wrong- she's just watching TV." Apparently my desire to get the laundry changed was greater than my desire to find out what she was getting into because I just kept on to the laundry room. While changing the laundry I heard a high-pitched, drawn out "ANNNIE!" coming from the family room and thought, "Yep, there it is!" I came back to the family room to find Finn again waving his oreo moon phases poster at me but not so much proudly, rather -angrily. I saw the missing "First quarter" and knew who the culprit was immediately. I asked Annie why she would eat the icing when she had been told not to. She said she "accidentally" did it. Yeah sure- and I just "accidentally" finished off the last of the pumpkin cheesecake!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

I don't like that spooky!

This is Katie when she went to the pumpkin patch with her preschool. Her teachers take a picture of each of the kids in front of the pumpkins. Usually each kid smiles and proudly shows the pumpkin they have chosen to purchase. But not my child. She was afraid of something in the distance-(She said there was a monster there and according to the words written on the board in the picture- she was right!) and they couldn't get her to smile. I think her teacher felt bad, but I think it is a great picture. We have plenty of pictures of her smiling, but this is our first one of her looking scared. What great mother I am that I delight in my kids fears!:) Often during the Hallowen season when she saw something that scared her she would say, "I don't like that spooky."

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Thank you to everyone who has commented on my blog. You have made me feel very popular! A quote from Lucy in Peanuts is very appropriate here: "I don't care if I have friends, as long as I'm popular." Really I do care about my friends. They mean a lot to me. I love you all. This post has to be short because I have spent so much time looking for a new outfit for my blog. But if my blog could talk it would say, "I feel pretty! Oh, so pretty. I feel pretty and witty and..." (I love musicals!)

Tuesday, November 6, 2007


Man- I'm having a good blog day- I was tagged and here are my answers:
5 things I was doing 10 years ago:
*Teaching 2nd grade *Still enjoying being a newlywed *Certainly not enjoying all my free time before children *Getting mad at Eric for buying snowmobiles- hey, we still have that argument! *Watching ER
5 things on my to-do list today:
*Call my pediatrician's billing office *Put up my Thanksgiving decorations *Continue to organize our storage room *Fold 3 loads of laundry *Vacuum upstairs
5 snacks I enjoy:
*Pumpkin pie *Swedish Fish *Caramel apples *Cottage cheese and pears *anything topped with fresh whipped cream not that cool whip crap
5 songs I know the lyrics to:
*Five, Fat Turkeys-(I'm playing the piano for the 1st grade and right now they are learning Thanksgiving songs), *Ice, Ice Baby by Vanilla Ice (LB and I learned this one in high school together.) *Baby Got Back (I grew up in the South and rap was very big.) *Elvira by the Oakridge boys- props to my dad for that one *For Good from Wicked
5 things I would do if I were a millionaire:
*go to Italy with my husband *Pay off my mortgage *Save more aggressively for college, missions, etc. *Be a philanthropist *make my husband a lifetime contributing member of the Cougar club
5 bad habits:
*Swearing *Talking myself out of going to the gym *not consistently reading the scriptures *leaving projects half finished *not making my bed first thing in the morning like me mother taught me
5 things I'd never wear again:
*Banana clips *pants with pleats- except for Halloween *a bikini- I never really have but certainly won't start now! *blue eyeliner * Big, round peach glasses-see previous post
5 favorite toys:
*Shutterfly *Wicked CD *my new sewing/craft room *my bike and bike trailer *Suzie Q
People tagged: my family

Stuck in 7th Grade

Alright, so I have been more than a little hesitant to start a blog, but my friend Julie convinced (aka- forced) me to start one. Apparently the best way to get me to do things is have Julie talk me into them -

Julie:"Hey, Kari- be in this cooking club, play soccer, read this book, do a blog!"

Kari: "Okay!"

Really, I do love Julie. She gets me to get out of my comfort zone. Now I have given a myriad of reasons as to why I haven't blogged- "I'm too busy, It's like a Christmas card letter everyday, I will get addicted to it." Anyone of those reasons is valid enough - but I think I have figured out one more nagging reason behind my hesitancy...It makes me feel like I am in 7th grade again. You know that feeling of "Where is my locker?", "Will anyone sit with me at lunch?", "I'm not as popular as Stephanie Streeter."(Doesn't that just sound like a popular girl's name? Stephanie Streeter is actually a very nice girl, but she was blonde, a cheerleader and a hottie- everything I wasn't in 7th grade.) But with my blog it is-"Will anyone read my blog?", "Will I have a long list of friends I like to blog with?", "People won't comment on my blog." I know this sounds very silly, but it is how I feel when I am doing something new that is uncomfortable. I consider myself a fairly confident person in most scenarios, but give me something new and I feel like I'm 13 again. 13 must have been a very transitional year for me- and I suppose for a lot of people- because I revert right back to those feelings even though I am a 30 something college graduate who is raising 4 children- pretty well in my opinion. Anyway I have decided to embrace my inner 13 year old and show her who is boss by just doing it whether anyone cares about my blog or not. So I haven't decided whether this blog will be a place to release my creative writer or brag about my children or vent or count my blessings- maybe a combination of them all. But in honor of my first official posting I am including a picture of myself in 7th grade.

Now you tell my -why would this girl feel insecure about anything?!? :) A few editorial comments about this picture- yes, those pants are hiked up to my bra-line- although I don't know if I had a bra on at the time, I wore that style of glasses for years- I just got rid of a pair just like them seriously about 2 years ago! And this picture was taken at a Girls' camp in the 80's when a rainbow didn't have the same significance it has today! My challenge to anyone who may read this is to put as goofy a picture as you can find of yourself at age 13 on your blogs. Release your inner 7th grader!