Welcome and Enjoy the ride!

Life is about the “Adventure”…that envelopes the simplicity of line, color, perspective and balance…all wrapped up in the emotions of life, that motivate us to change, be more than we are and inspire us and others to make the journey worthwhile, no matter where we end up.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Getting out of my comfort Zone!

I give advice to people that in order to grow you sometimes have to get out of your comfort zone and do new things. Yesterday I did that in a round about way... I went Dip Net fishing on the Kenai River with Rob, Fred & Carol Kaatz. I haven't been on a boat in a very VERY long time for a good reason,...I get sick easily! The whole idea of being in an environment that mimics the way I felt while being pregnant is the LAST thing I would go do for fun. But Rob was going fishing with Fred, and Fred suggested that the 'wivess come along' to spend time with them, and according to Fred...Carol wanted to go . So I didnt' want to seem like a wimp, & I'm not one to back down from a challenge. Fred just talked the idea into a invitation before I could explain my self out of it.
SO I DID IT! Got up early (grumpy since I didn't have my morning quiet time to wake up, or workout and shower)...was a bit snippy when I couldn't find my hat that I knew I'd need to cover my head/ears with. Rob said I kind of through a tantrum & wasn't very sociable. OH WELL~! (I appolagized to Fred later for being grumpy but said he had come 30 minutes too early and hence saw/heard the real unprepared for company CJ!)
We drove to Kenai..(1 & 1/2 hours away)to the river.Stopping by a store briefly prior to pick up a new net.At the dock, I took possition in the middle of the boat and concentrated on NOT feeling queasy with the movement of the boat on the water. Then after we got out a ways I was moved to the front where I took charge of one of the dip nets. With a 6 foot handle and a 5 foot circular net it was fairy heavy and difficult to manuver with the river drag. Rob was driving the boat and Fred was handling the other dip net, while Carol was in the back. I struggled with the net and didn't catch anything..and Fred managed to get 4! He was really excited untill ...by complete accident the "D" ring detatched and he lost the new net down the river.
We'd been out for 4 hours and decided we needed to eat. So we pulled the boat out, took it to Rob's Dad's place not too far from the river and parked it there. We droce into town and found alittle Chinese restaurant and ate,...but after discussing our plite,..we decided we spent enough effort to drive all the way to Kenai and rearange schedules that we shouldn't waste the opportunity & decided to go buy another two new nets and TRY our luck at more fish.
The weather had been cloudy but not rainy, so the afternoon seemed to spread the clouds out so that the sun shown and warmed things up a bit...but the WIND was still out and I was NOT warm at all. With the new nets ..we began to catch more fish quickly and by the end of the day we had 36 salmon totall between the two couples to share. When the water was calm I had no problem but every time a boat wold zipped by us.. the WAKE would create huge waves that surged my queasiness back to the surface... I felt sick more often than not,but struggled to just look up at the horizon and breathe the crisp air and focus on stuff that WASN'T moving! With the two nets on each side we balanced out the drag, but as soon as one net caught a fish and was brought up the other would drag the boat into a circle..so the other net would need to be brought up as well. Fred did most of the catching, switching off with Rob. I did however catch about 8 and once had two in the net at the same time. But standing there manuvering the heavy net & pole was exhuasting to say the least and at the last pass through the channel to catch ONE more fish..we found our selves acccidently caught up on a sand bar. Rob & Fred jumped out into the shallow water, pushing us back into the main part of the river again. But in the process Rob accidently tripped over the net handles and fell, getting wet up to his hips in the muddy silt. We were all tired and glad to call it a night as we headed to the dock/ramp by 9pm. Then of course we drove the 1 & 1/2 hours home. My headach from day 4 of my monthly cycle and sleep deprivation after taking care of Wendy from being sick with the flu for a week had taken its tole on me,..so I simply crawl into the shower to clean up and then into bed..with the floor seeming to still sway to & fro! Oddly I woke up with the same sensation..but not as strong. I hope it doesn't last long! Rob, Fred & Carol fillet the fish and put them on ice in coolers to tend to by this evening, after Rob, Fred & Jessica took another trip up to catch more fish. (they returned home with 8 more..not alot, but every FISH COUNTS when your hungry in the winter time!)

SO I went DIP NET FISHING on the Kenai River, didn't throw up and came home with another adventure under my belt. I'm sore, tired and exhausted even a day later. Who know FISHING could be such a workout!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Mother's Day card using Carolee Jones's graphics

Ok I know this is a bit self promoting but heck it's my blog right?
So I made a cute Mother's Day card using my new "Modern Mom" graphics from PcCrafter.com (plus one image from "Cluckin kitchen"). The basic victorian envelope is in the creatable set and I just added some of the images and typed in addresses to mail out using Wendy Medium font. The hard part was deciding which graphics to use since they were all so stinkin cute! Plus how do you use ONE image to show all the things a MOM does? My mom did it all and I am finding I am following in her footsteps to do the same,...us SUPER CHICS have to remind each other how much we apprecate the examples of those that have gone befor and made such big shoes to fill. I hope I'm measuring up to the potential of what my Mom was and is and what I can be.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Basic Bread Recipe by Carolee Jones

Preheat oven to 370 degrees
*Mix together and let rise 15 minutes or until yeast is fully bloomed
1 cup of warm water
1/2 cup of olive oil
1/2 cup of honey
2 Tablespoons of Yeast
*In a glass measuring container or bowl heat milk in microwave for 1 1/2 minutes
2 cups of milk (you can substitute water if desired)
*slowly add milk to yeast
*add one cup at a time
approximately 6-9 cups of flour
(* I grind 2-3 cups of wheat into flour then add remaining white flour)
1 1/2 teaspoons of salt (add this after the 6th cup of flour)
*Remove dough from mixing bowl - it should be still slightly sticky.
*Kneed just enough flour into the dough to make it elastic.
*Place dough into a large greased bowl & cover & let rise till doubled!
My house is hot so it doesn't take more than 30 minutes, but the more wheat you have in the recipe the longer it takes to rise.
*Punch dough down from sides into middle, dump dough onto counter and divide with knife into 4 equal parts, place in bread pans & cover to let sit and rise.
Bake @375 for about 20-25 minutes or until golden brown.
*if using a convection oven Bake for only 15 minutes.
***optional***I like to throw in 1 cup of wheat germ, 1/2 cup of ground flax seeds, & 1/2 cup of zoom hot cereal uncooked. This just gives it extra texture and crunch.
***for my crescent rolls*** follow recipe but use only white flour. After mixing dough divide into two equal parts and roll out into 18" circle. Brush olive oil over surface and using a pizza cutter cut from the outside in making long triangles. Then Roll each from the outside inward and place on a greased baking dish. *I've used a pizza circle pan, and placing rolls like a big floret design, or same placement in pie tins.Let rise till big and puffy & Bake @375 degrees for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Happy Oven card

I craft & make projects all the time, but always forget to take pictures to show so ..here's one you might like using a recent NEW design from ME (*Carolee Jones) with ART GONE WILD
and using Michelle Cutts new CLEVER CUTTS small inset box Template. The supplies used are:
  • AGW Happy Oven set
  • AGW What's Cookin' set
  • Acrylic block
  • The Clever Cutts Small Inset Box Template
  • Scoring tool, .5mm pencil and craft cutting knife (all available as part of the Clever Cutts Starter Kit)
  • Straight edge
  • 1/8" or 1/16" foam tape
  • Adhesive
  • Card stock: White to stamp images onto, Paperbag Tan Brown for card base & coverage of oven insert on the inside of the card, Baby blue for saying above stove and inside oven backing behind cookie sheets, Dark Brown to frame saying, Red Plaid pattern paper for front
  • 6" Red see through 1/4th" wide ribbon
  • Coloring pencils/ markers (* I used COPIC alcohol based markers cuz they leave no streaks when blending)
  • Inkssentials blending tool
  • Tim Holtz Distressed vintage photo ink from Ranger
  • Inkssentials non-stick craft sheet (*great to blend the ink and not waste or ruin counter work surface)
I've included some links conected to ART GONE WILD's website to where you can purchase the Happy Oven, What's Cookin' sets along with the Clever Cutts starter Kit that has the foam matt & cutting/scoring tools needed. The blending tool, craft sheet, & distressed ink I purchased at Stampers Anonymous:
I shared this card project with some of my family on a recent trip to Utah a few months back. It recieved great reviews and we all had fun making it! GOOD TOOLS make all the difference in a great project!

Saturday, March 27, 2010


YUM! I love the smell of home made freshly baked bread! Brings back fond memories of when I was about 3 years old. Living in the quads at BYU with my folks. I would be down in the courtyard playing on the playground and I would hear my mom call me home, and the closer I got to the apartment & the higher I climbed the stairs the stronger the scent of the freshly baked bread would be, to the point I was trying to run up the stairs to get to it. Then my mom would bring to me a THICK slice of her bread still warm, with melting honey & butter spread over it. I'd sit on cool cement landing outside the apartment door and take a DEEP breath IN... almost becoming dizzy with the overwhelming YUMMINESS that steamed into my nose as the heat licked my cheeks. Then the taste...as I took that first bit,... soft and warm, while the honey & butter dripped down my fingers and tiny hands. AHhhhhh such a GREAT childhood memory!
And today, I STILL LOVE,love, love that first slice and to ooh and ahh over the smell, the texture and the taste of HOME MADE BREAD!
The recipe comes from my mother in law, Vivian Jones and even though I make bread all the time, I've never ventured to make WHEAT BREAD, as it was always too tough and dense. I got another recipe from my girl friend Alicia and the two recipes were very similar. So with the added element of using a convection oven and freshly grinding my own wheat into flour I attempted to try and risk my mother in laws infamous reputation for the best bread maker in the world ( that came from ROB...who I've heard that from for years!!!) No disrespect Mom..but I think with the right tools and the freshest ingredients with YOUR recipe ANYONE can make AWESOME BREAD, and yes compete..just a little bit with your reputation for being the ONE & ONLY to make the worlds BEST BREAD!
(*this rates right up there with my love for creme' brulee' YUUMMMYYY!!!!)

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

SNOW snow & more SNOW!

SNOW, SNOW go away, come again some other day...
preferable NEXT YEAR!

yes yes yes I know I live in ALASKA, and we should expect snow.
But we've had a snow/wind storm blow through the Kenai Peninsula & especially here in Homer for the past week or so that has dumped so much snow, it seems way out of the ordinary. Here are some pictures around our house and across the street. It's only March 10th & from the weather forecasts we should bunker down and ride it out, it isn't stopping any time soon.
On a good note, my Son Bobby & his new wife Kylie are flying up from Logan, Utah this weekend to Anchorage where we'll drive up from Homer (only a 5 hour drive) to pick them up and drive them back down here for a OPEN HOUSE (next Friday evening @ 7pm) to celebrate their wedding back in January. Bobby is really excited to show off his stomping grounds to Kylie and when I told him of all the new snow he was tickled WHITE! Yesterday there were a few avalanches on the main road near the pass to Anchorage that blocked all vehicles, but have since been cleared. The marina/boat dock was even closed due to the bad snow burns and accidents blocking the passage way to get out to the spit, so Rob got to stay home and be on stand by. Seminary has been canceled for 2 days, School was canceled yesterday and Church was canceled Sunday.Everyone is trying to dig them selves out of the contant dumping of new snow and the wind that keeps moving it and piling it up in places that make it hard to go and do much at all.
However..as i sit here listening to the hum of the big snow plows down the street it is a comfort to know the city is trying to clear the roads at least in town. I sent Rob & Krystal out to the grocery store yesterday for a few essentials since I was baking bread and needed a few things. When they returned they both vowed unless we were dying they were NOT going out in that stuff again! Apparently the roads were a mess and tons of people out in it who didn't know what they were doing.
SO ENJOY the snow pictures. I'm headed back to the kitchen to make myself a hot cup of herbal tea to go with a slice of pumpkin bread(with cream cheese frosting) one of Krystal's friends, Jed, who helped bake with us yesterday, shared a favorite family recipe with us and WOW,..it has officially been added to ours as well, YUM~!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010


February 2nd, 2010:
My parents gave us a wheat grinder for Christmas, and we were so excited to start using it. I made several batches of bread successfully but only by babysitting our old oven to the temperature that kept fluctuating and made for a long sit to wait and watch and keep changing the controls to keep the temperature consistent enough to bake my goodies. Then one day just before I was ready to put the puffy raised bread in the oven, I opened the door to black smoke. I turned it off tried to scrap off whatever was causing the smoke on the bottom and then tried to turn it back on,..NOTHING, nauda,...just beeping sounds and no heat at all. My oven had officially DIED! I called a neighbor and borrowed her oven to bake that batch and then came home and frantically spent hours doing research to what was available and how much and what features. It was all very frusterating as we are so limited up here in Alaska for appliances and most things are ordered with a 6-8 week wait. THAT WAS NOT AN OPTION for me. I looked for a freestanding electric, glass top, white, convection oven of 30" width. However, our emergency fund was only $400, and an average oven with the features I wanted was at the bottom price level of $1000.00- up to $2500.00. Plus the liklihood of any store having what I needed IN STOCK and available with in a week or so was next to impossible.I did however email the store in Kenai where we had purchased the dead oven from and got a response of what they had and didnt have and how much. Guess what, they had something I could use and it was ON SALE! The reason was because it had been dropped and dented a bit, mostly cosmetic but considering what every one else had to offer it seemed the only deal. I still had no idea how we were going to come up with the money ($750 +240 *5 year warrenty=$990). THEN MY DAD called who had a strong feeling we were in need and he happened to have some funds available after the final signing and closing of their house selling in Washington. He called my mom, to talk with her first and she had been having the same strong feelings, so when he called he had NO IDEA ..he was a literal answer to a prayer, only moments before. I talked to Rob, told him of my parents offer, then had him double check what I had researched, get a hold of the store and asked permission if they'd stay open an hour past closing time, so he could drive up the 1 1/2 hours drive to Kenai and pick it up. This was on Saturday late afternoon, and if this wouldn't work out, we would have had to wait another whole week since Rob coudn't get the time off from his work in time to go get it durring thier store hours. So with in a few hours of my Dad's call and a few other calls to the store in Kenai, Rob drove up and picked up a new stove for us! He stopped in to see his Dad & Mina and didn't get home till almost 10pm. After church on Sunday two friends stopped by and helped move it into the kitchen, where Rob had to take off the power chord to the old one and attach it to the new one. (*did you know that you have to by the chords SEPERATLY??? thats so silly, glad there was nothing wrong with the old one). By that evening I had ground some fresh wheat into flour, with our new wheat grinder (ABSOLUTLY LOVE IT!) and made two batches of bread already. The only problem was..I had gotten use to the old oven NOT working that I almost burnt it.The new oven WORKS..it's HOT and stays at the same temp you set it at and the convection setting realy does cut the time in almost half!

I'm including some pictures of our NEW wheat grinder and of a GOOD batch of mini bread loafs, Lasagna (*we had for dinner tonight) and some Cinamon rolls I made that turned out great!

You are generous beyond words and always seem to be the ones to deliver answers to our families prayers. I feel indebted to you ....for so much!

Monday, January 18, 2010

The NEW YEAR ...& a trip to UTAH for Bobby's Wedding!

The first of this year has been no less that a whirlwind of events as per usual with the Jones household! We started off the year with a FAMILY trip to UTAH to attend Bobby & Kylie's wedding January 5th, 2010! We left Homer, Alaska & drove all the way up to Anchorage (5 hour trip) then flew to Salt Lake City, Utah (6 hour flight) . LONG trip!!! Bobby & Kylie met us at the airport and took us to the Binghams where we visited with Kylie's family. Jessica took the bus up to somewhere close and Kylie & Bobby picked her up and brought her to where we were and we had a mini reunion! First time all of us were together like that in a long time. WAS GOOD to see all my children together again.
We then went over to the Scherzinger's where we met up with Julie who graciously allowed us to stay with them for the week. Her house was like a catalog and I felt like we were staying at the ritz! The wedding was that evening at the Quirrh Mountain temple. We arrived in time to take some quick before pictures of the family in front of the temple and then proceded inside for the ceremony. The ceremony was beautiful and the only glitch was when it came time to exchange the rings.. Bobby couldn't find the wedding band, just the engagement ring. He had accidently dropped it out of his pocket in the other room. Kylie was so cute as he poked and poked both his pockets in a feeble attempt to find it and she just shook her head and sighed. He put on her finger what he had and after the guests were congratulating them..one of the patrons at the temple came hurridly into the room holding up the missing ring. It had fallen on the floor and due to it's newness was found easily as it sparkled on the floor. SO GLAD it was found, and what a cute story to add to their wedding day adventures to tell as they get older.Afterwards the Binghams ward provided a very simple and YUMMY breakfast dinner at their ward building for all the wedding guests. It was a perfect way to end a long, busy and beautiful day.
The rest of the week was spent traveling back n forth between Provo where Jessica was living and going to school. Then back n forth between the Scherzingers in Jordan where we were staying and the Binghams in Kearns (where Kylie's family lived, then on up to Kaysville where Rebecca lived(Rob's adopted sister)and Rob's mom Vivian & Ray & Sharla (Rob's brother & sister) were also staying...Rob made the equivilant of 4 round trip drives from Homer to Anchorage durring the one week we were in Utah in that blue rented Suburban driving back n forth to all the family and get togethers! The Scherzinger's family was delightful and gracious to allow us the whole bottom half of their home. They had food and games and made us feel so welcome. Bobby surely made lifelong friends with them on his mission while he served in this area and we will deffinatly stay in touch! We also took time to go shopping at the University Mall and let the girls see the book store on the BYU campus and all the handsome eye candy(boys) along the way. Wendy & Brittany got their ears pierced andRob's sister's son Christopher joined us and helped man the video cam to document the whole procedure! We drove up to Rebecca's place and played Wii , snacked and enjoyed being with Rob's side of the family in the Berrett's new house. Every night we were up late and up early each morning, trying to fit all the family and events we could into our ONE week in Utah.The reception was on Friday evening and the Binghams did a lovely job decorating the chapel. Stephen, Kylie's dad had his 4th round of Chemo treatment and arrived back in time to catch his breath and be there for the reception. He looked a bit under the weather but we are glad he was with us and doing as well as could be expected. He will have one more chemo treatment and then see how well the cancer is contained, if not then its onto bone marrow transplate surgery. We are praying its contained and he'll be well enough to join us up in Alaska for the Open house for Bobby & Kylie in May.
The morning after the recpetion we joined Bobby & Kylie at the Binghams where they opened their wedding gifts and we oooowwed and aaaahed! Then we drove up together to Kaysville where Rebecca had a BIRTHDAY party for Vivian and the family that was there. The kids played more Wii and the rest of us eat and visited. Then we headed up to Logan where the NEWLY WEDS appartment was and helped unload all the gifts to their cute little basement appartment under an old farm house up on a hill. It was dark when we passed through Logan but from what we could see it was very quaint! We then went to Chili's for dinner then back to the Scherzingers to sleep one last night. The last day we went Temple Square with Bobby & Kylie and viewed the Christous statue inside the visitor's center. It had been 23 years since I had been there and was neat to have all my 5 children & new daughter in law with me & Rob there together. We took TONS of pictures but here are a few to see our crazy-g0-nuts FAMILY trip to UTAH for Bobby & Kylie's wedding. WHAT A WEEK!