Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Comfort Food

I've been a little obsessed with soups this year and this one will go down as one of my favorites. It's hearty, healthy, and very easy. The best part can finish off this meal with the best brownies you will EVER taste. I've eaten a lot of brownies in my day and few have compared to these.


3 Bean Soup
1 yellow onion
olive oil
1 carton vegetable broth
1 can pinto beans
1 can black beans
1 can navy beans
1 can diced tomatoes
sea salt
freshly ground pepper
Saute' chopped onions in 2 T. oil in pot. Add vegetable broth. Simmer. In food processor, blend 1/2 of each can of beans and 1/2 the can of tomatoes. Pour remainder of beans and tomatoes into pot. Then, add the blended beans and tomatoes to pot. Season with salt and pepper. Simmer in pot for 30 minutes.

8- 1 ounce squares of unsweetened chocolate
1 cup butter
5 eggs
3 cups sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla
1-1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
2-1/2 cups chopped pecans or walnuts, toasted

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grease a 9 x 13 pan.
Melt chocolate and butter in a saucepan over low heat; set aside. In a mixer, beat eggs, sugar and vanilla at high speed for 10 minutes. Blend in chocolate mixture, flour and salt until just mixed. Stir in the nuts. Pour into prepared pan.
Bake for 35-40 minutes. (Don't overbake.)

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Crash !@*?#%!@

Whenever I complain about my aches and pains, my bicycle man encourages me to stop pounding the pavement and get myself on the bike.

Apparently, it's more gentle on the body.


one blown tire = one serious case of road rash

Needless to say, I'm not convinced to make the switch quite yet.

Monday, March 29, 2010

It's that time of year again.

Baseball = Four games a week, dinner on the run, late nights, and one bored little sister.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Date Night

This weekend I was able to enjoy a special "date night" with my boy.

For 2 hours I was tutored in the sport of basketball.

Max was my own personal stat man.

This kid knows everything about every player in the NBA, from height and age to college and NBA experience. It's amazing!

He couldn't take his eyes of the game, while I couldn't take my eyes off of his enormous chocolate chip cookie.

A night with the boy I love at the sport he loves was a good way to spend a Friday night in the desert!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Let's Reform Our Health

After months and months of a political storm of debate, name-calling, tea-partying, and town halls, the silver lining in all of this partisan !@?.*!#?, may be some much needed peace and quiet.

OK, it's not likely.

We've had fierce partisanship in this country from the moment our federal government was established and if we've learned anything from history, it is that Americans love a good fight.

So, the fight will go on

and, while we may not agree on what to do about the issue of health care in this country,

we can certainly agree that, as Americans, we are not a healthy group.

Our medical system has just become really good at saving unhealthy people.

What's wrong?

  • Two-thirds of American adults are either overweight or obese.
  • Approximately 20% of adults in this country smoke, despite the fact that it is the most preventable cause of illness and death.
  • Fast food drive-thrus are lined up with cars.
  • We eat out of boxes labeled with ingredients we can't pronounce, much less define.

We love our freedom to make our own choices...
But, please, save us from ourselves.

These self-destructive habits our killing us!

Can you just imagine the decline in diseases like type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer if this country made some simple changes.

So, whether you agree or disagree with the new reform, one thing is for sure: We are far too intelligent of a people to sit back and continue living unhealthy lifestyles. We are in charge of our own health.

It's time to make some new habits.

Here's one way to act.


Mr. President, please put the cigarette out! I voted for you, but watching you sign Health care Reform and knowing you light up was a bit too ironic for me. *The US spends billions each year on health care related to tobacco use.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Lindor White Chocolate Truffles

I have spent most of my life despising white chocolate,
that is, until about a month ago.

While checking out at Borders Books, I grabbed one of these babies, thinking it was my beloved dark.

Ever since, I have been hooked! I can't stop indulging on these creamy little pieces of perfection.

And... I'm getting my fill now because, come Monday morning, I am cutting out sugar and white flour.

Please, pray for my now.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Here We Go Again

I registered today.

I wasn't planning on doing another so soon and I am a bit behind in training, but here goes...

On June 12, at 5:30am, I'll be at the starting line and crossing my fingers for a Boston Qualifying time.

Thanks, Maury!

Friday, March 12, 2010


One day just wasn't enough!

Max spent a good couple of weeks celebrating his ninth birthday this year.
It began with some bowling and birthday cake.

Then, there was the evening out with the boys at the drive-in to see The Lightening Thief.

And... today his dad surprised him with a trip to SkyVentureArizona for a little indoor skydiving.
I think his 10th birthday will be a little more low-key.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

McDowell Mt. Race

I've been itchin' to find another race to enter and I stumbled across this the other day.

I've never done a trail run race, so I'm excited to give it a try.

Hopefully, I won't be eating any dirt!

Come join me. I'd love to see some friends out there!!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Team Four Unity

Today, I watched my favorite bicycle man doing what he loves.

Warm weather and a bike race...I can't think of a better way to spend a lovely spring day.

Friday, March 5, 2010

PMS & Facebook Don't Mix

I am in the thralls of a ruthless bout with PMS


today, some neanderthal called me a Nazi




because I consider myself

a feminist.
Instead of giving into my PMS urges and unleashing written wrath on him,

I ran 6 miles

and now I'm too tired to explain.

My dear friend Heather, said it best...

"It all started with reading A Room of One's Own when I was in high school. That was followed by a lot more feminist readings and a new vision of the world was born. I felt very comfortable in my new feminist skin despite the teasing of some. I remember at my sister's wedding my new brother-in-law introduced me to his friend as his"feminist" sister-in-law. Was that supposed to be an insult? As I traipsed off to BYU I started to understand the hint. Now as I was firmly implanted in Mormondom I started to feel like there was something wrong with identifying myself as a feminist. Slowly I abandoned the label, at least outwardly.

Fast forward a few years and I had an interesting experience in grad school where I was the only person in my Early Modern Europe reading class with Professor Craig Harline. One day we were talking about feminism and I expressed my hesitancy in referring to myself as a feminist. I don't remember his exact words but the gist of it was: Why? Why should you be ashamed of that? My conversation with him really gave me the confidence to reclaim the label for myself. Fast forward a few more years: Now I am a mom to two awesome girls. I am mostly home with them, so sometimes I don't really think of my feminism that much. But I recently I had a couple of experiences that have reawakened my feminist ideals. Several months back I read a book, The Widows War (I don't really recommend it. It was much racier than I would have thought from reading the synopsis.) Anyhow the story takes place in the 1600s in New England. The main character's husband dies and her house and possessions transfer to her nearest male relative, her son-in-law, since women couldn't own property. She no longer has a say in where she lives, how she lives, etc... I was getting so upset by the book and feeling very grateful for the time in which I live and the rights which I now enjoy.

Shortly after that my daughters were playing "princess" and I overheard this conversation: "The king wants to marry me because I am the prettiest" "No, he wants to marry me because I have the prettiest dress." This made me so sad. I felt like I had done my girls a disservice by allowing the "princess" hysteria to enter my home. I was listening to the song "Virginia Woolf" by the Indigo Girls and I just started hugging my oldest daughter and crying. (I'm kind of an emotional person). I just started thinking about Virginia Woolf and her life and how she impacted me. I started thinking about my girls and the life I want for them. I don't want their view of themselves to be shaped by sexist ideas and I don't ever ever want them to feel like they are of less value because they are female.

That day marked some changes in our lives. We have downplayed the "princess" stuff and sought for some different female role models. It awakened me to some of the attitudes that I and my girls face occasionally that I want to counteract. Last Sunday a man in our ward asked my girls to "give him five." My girls hit his hand as hard as they could and he said, "Wow, you're pretty strong for girls." I said, "They are pretty strong for anyone." I also wanted to add that I knew my girls could beat up his sons pretty easily but I stopped myself. My husband and I laughed about it later and I felt content to know my feminist self was intact and ready for the days to come.

I understand some people's problems with the term and the movement related to it. People associate the term feminism with what I term the "excesses" of the movement: men bashing, abortion, the belittling of motherhood, etc... Obviously the feminist movement has evolved over the years and within the movement you will find infinite opinions and viewpoints. But just because there are somethings about the feminist movement that we don't agree with I don't think we should do away with the term altogether or more importantly the fundamental understandings that it represents.For me the term feminism denotes this basic definition: "feminism advocates the equal treatment of women and men and states that discrimination in particular against women does exist and should be eliminated" ( B Kent Harrison and Mary Stovall Richards, Feminism in the Light of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, BYU Studies 36 n0 2 1996 -97, pg. 181-199) (This is an awesome article, by the way. )I mean who wouldn't agree with that? According to this definition shouldn't we all be feminists.

It drives me crazy when I hear women today say: "I don't like feminists" or "I'm against feminism." I want to say: "Do you like being able to vote, own property, get an education, testify in court, have the option to work and hopefully be paid according to your abilities (we're still working on that one.)? Do you like it that your husband changes diapers and helps with the housework? Because guess what ? You have feminism to thank for that."

Sure there are a lot of people who refer to themselves as feminists who I don't agree with but I am so grateful for the men and women who have fought for women's rights. We are all the beneficiaries. Despite it's failings the term feminist still best describes for me my view of women and their place in the world."
-Heather Arnitas

Monday, March 1, 2010

A Race to Remember

I really wasn't sure what I was getting into when my sister and I decided to pull a team together to run the Ragnar Relay.

For two days we endured illnesses, injuries, sleeplessness, news of a tragic accident, route changes, and runner substitutions.

Van 1 started out from Prescott on Friday morning. We met them at our first major exchange in Kirkland, AZ.

Then, it was our turn...
The weather was perfect and the scenery...gorgeous! We all loved our first legs of the race!

We marked our kills (each time we passed another runner) on our van. It's kind of silly. We celebrated our kills and sort of ignored getting passed by other runners. It's just part of the fun of Ragnar!
Night runs required a reflective vest, headlamp, and flashing light in back.

At this point, we met up with Van 1 and they took over for the next 6 legs of the race.

It was around 7:00pm. We ate and tried to get a couple of hours of sleep. No luck! At 12:00am we headed to our next big exchange to meet Van 1. This was where we took over. Sandi left on the Carefree Highway and I headed to the next exchange to meet her and take the next leg. While I was waiting, the officials announced we would have to stop here because a few miles up ahead a runner had been hit by a car. They re-routed us and eliminated several legs of the race.

Needless to say, it was mentally tough for about the next 6 hours. To get motivated to continue, especially in the dark, with the knowledge of what had just happened was almost impossible.

But, push forward we did and by dawn we were having fun again.

My last leg was along the Beeline...8 1/2 miles on Saturday morning with zero sleep since Thursday night. I decided right there...lack of sleep is the most challenging part of Ragnar!

We finished at Tempe Market Place around 2:00pm to be greeted by friends and family. The experience was amazing~ exciting, hilarious, exhausting, emotional, and gratifying. I would do it again in a heartbeat.

The camaraderie of all the runners out there is unlike any I've experienced in other races.

Ragnar is one big, two-day running party and if you ever get the chance, you have to experience it!

If you are interested in being on our 2011 team, let me know!