Thursday, February 24, 2011

Another Trip to Garden Valley :-)

Thursday, February 24, 2011
I was planning on going to Salt Lake City last weekend to visit Lisa and Val, and possibly my college roommate Heidi.  I was bummed to find out the afternoon before I was getting ready to head down there that Lisa had been really sick (sorry Lis - I hope you're feeling better!).  We decided maybe I should postpone my trip, which probably ended up for the better because Val ended up making a last minute trip to Boise and Heidi had been busy with work and school.

Anyway, I was no longer sure what I should do with my 4-day weekend (I had taken a vacation day Friday, and Monday was a holiday)... so I was excited when Mandy and Mike invited me to join them at a cabin they had rented in Garden Valley.  Yes, I had just been to GV a few weeks earlier, but I love the little escape.  Plus they had planned a trip to the tubing hill, which I hadn't been able to do last month with our snowmobiling adventures. 
I had a really nice time - the tubing hill was awesome, and we enjoyed the rest of the time at the cabin relaxing, eating, learning a new card game (31), etc.  The adults spent quite a bit of time playing the Kinect while the kids played outside the cabin sledding down the little hill - check out how goofy we look in this video... but we had a blast!  Thanks for the invite guys, and for making my weekend worthwhile :-)


Thai Raclette Dinner

I LOVE my raclette grill.  I discovered this type of grill when I turned 21 and my friend Nate took me to celebrate with a fondue dinner at the Mona Lisa.  It's a swiss tabletop grill where you can cook meat and vegetables on top, and there are little trays that you can put just under the grill to melt cheese, etc.  I don't really know how to explain it, but it is definitely a fun way to cook.

Anyway, Mike invited me to join him, Mandi, and TJ for a Thai raclette dinner last Friday evening... We cooked steak, pork, and chicken in various marinades and curries on the raclette.  The meat was accompanied by rice, peanut sauce, and a delicious Thai soup.  Seeing as cooking food on the raclette and Thai food are two of my favorite things, I would say the evening was a great success!  We ended the night with Italian sodas and a movie :-)


Friday, February 18, 2011

IBR Article

Friday, February 18, 2011
Robin asked me to post a copy of the Idaho Business Review article, so here it is!  I'm pretty sure I didn't say that I ride my Harley through the foothills (it's not a dirt bike!  think I said country instead but that's okay!)  Anyway, you'll probably have to click on the image to be able to read the text (I couldn't find a link to the article online - at least not yet).


Thursday, February 17, 2011

2011 Idaho Women of the Year

Thursday, February 17, 2011
Last month I posted about how honored I was to have been selected as one of the 2011 Idaho Women of the Year... Well, tonight was the actual recognition dinner!  It really was such a special evening, complete with great friends, good food, and even a red carpet!  All 50 honorees were recognized with a beautiful unique glass blown award - something that I will definitely always treasure.  We also received copies of the Idaho Women of the Year magazine (with pictures and articles about each of us) that will be inserted into tomorrow's edition of the Idaho Business Review.  Thanks to all who made it such a wonderful evening!
Me with my boss/friend/workout buddy Kris
Thanks for coming Lance!
The glass blue lotus petal award
Thanks Savanah for doing my hair and makeup!
And thanks mom and dad for the flowers - it was so fun to have them delivered to my office at work!


Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Learning to Crochet

Wednesday, February 16, 2011
Jen has been teaching me how to crochet so that I could make a scarf for the Special Olympics.  I remember trying to crochet back in 2003 when I was a Young Womens leader and I failed miserably.  I got so frustrated just trying to make a washcloth!  I gave up and haven't tried again until just a couple weeks ago.  Jen convinced me that it was easy... well at least she made it look easy!  I wasn't so sure if I was cut out for crocheting after spending hours on my first two rows... they were warbly and uneven, but eventually I started getting faster, more consistent, and just better.  I am happy to report that I finished my first ever crocheted scarf tonight!  Here's a picture to prove it - just don't look too closely at how crummy the first few rows look.  I hope whichever athlete gets my scarf will know how much love and work went into making it, even though it's far from perfect :-)


Ronald McDonald House

I don't know how I have gone 30 years without ever volunteering at the Ronald McDonald House (RMH for short in the rest of this post!)... I think I have always known that the RMH provided a place for families to stay who had kids receiving hospital care, and I have heard of different groups providing service at the RMH, but for some reason I've never been involved with part of an organized service effort there.  I am happy to say that now I have!  As a member of the Boise State Professional Staff Association Volunteer Committee, I had the chance yesterday to, along with some colleagues, make dinner for the families staying at the RMH.  We picked a menu of lasagna, garlic bread, caesar salad, and brownies, and had an enjoyable evening touring the RMH and cooking a delicious smelling dinner!  We were also able to deliver supplies from a supply drive we held at Boise State.  I'm looking forward to next time we can volunteer - we had a great time!  Thanks Rebecca for organizing everything!
Matt and Rebecca - prepping the meal
Barb - washing dishes!
Browning the hamburger!
The whole gang with Ronald McDonald


Sunday, February 13, 2011

Chinese New Year

Sunday, February 13, 2011
February 3rd was the official start of the Chinese New Year.  My mom was excited to host a Chinese New Years dinner, but wanted to have it last Sunday... um, hello, Superbowl???  I convinced her to postpone the dinner to this week, and my parents definitely went all out!  Dinner included pork & seeds, chicken lettuce wraps, cha gio, mongolian beef and pea pods, fried rice, and more.  Dinner was delicious :-)


BYP Lounging Series with Brad Little

Tuesday evening I attended my first BYP Lounging Series event.  It was held at the Arid Club, a private club in Boise - it was fun to check out the exclusive venue.  The guest of the evening was Lieutenant Governor Brad Little, and he took about 35 minutes talking to us about his views on current state issues as well as where he sees our state heading in the future.  He then took the next 25 minutes or so answering questions from the audience.  I appreciate his honest answers - and some of them weren't easy questions!  I am looking forward to future Lounging Series events where we as young professionals have a chance to dialog with local leaders on important issues.

On a side note, I found out this week in our BYP Leadership Team meeting that BYP's website is the second most visited "young professionals" website in the nation, just behind Chicago... pretty cool, right?  BYP is such a fantastic organization that has really opened some exciting doors for me.


Saturday, February 12, 2011

Time for New Family Pictures???

Saturday, February 12, 2011
Here is the family picture that hung on the wall at my house growing up:

In case you can't tell, the little girl is me (I'm now 30) and the baby is my sister Mandi (now 28).  This is our one and only family picture ever (unless you count the one time that we set the camera up in the front yard on a tripod and all stood in a line and set the camera on timer so Mandi could have a family picture to take with her when she taught English in Russia)!  I decided it was definitely time for an updated picture, especially since that picture included only one of my three siblings :-)

This last fall I coordinated to have my friend Jen take our pictures on a Sunday afternoon after church.  It was the only time we could work out because Beki was home from school for Thanksgiving and the rest of us had really busy schedules... and it decided to snow!  We didn't let the snow stop us, and we now have a new family picture to hang on the wall!


Sunday, February 06, 2011

Blog Books

Sunday, February 06, 2011
About three months ago I was excited to see that Blurb (the company I use to print my blog books) was the Groupon for the day.  I immediately purchased a couple coupons, since I knew I would need to order both my 2009 and 2010 books once I had put them together (yes, I was WAY behind and had hardly started my 2009 book).  Anyway, I realized the coupons expired next week, so I spent a good chunk of my weekend working on the books.  I finished them both tonight and submitted my order - hooray!  They should be here next week!  I am so glad I have been able to keep a log of my life on this blog... I enjoy having the books and looking back through them.


Superbowl Sunday

Tonight was the one and only NFL game I watched all year.  I was excited to root for the Packers (and was happy they won!) because two former BSU players now play for the Packers - Daryn Colledge and Korey Hall.  I even wore a green sweater in support of the Packers :-)
For the game, we all got together at Jared's house and had a feast of chile verde, pork nachos, chips and dip (including my homemade refried beans - see the recipe below!), sushi, meatballs, little smokies, etc.  After all, isn't the Superbowl partly about the game, partly about the commercials, and partly about the food?!

We also played some mean games of air hockey during halftime - I was the reigning champion!  Okay, I only played two rounds, but I won them both!

As I mentioned above, I made homemade refried beans to bring to the party.  It's not my recipe, it's actually my friend Jessica's.  She served a mission in NYC and met a lot of Dominicans, and she learned this recipe from them.  I think it is delicious - way better than any canned refried beans.  I think the secret is the bacon - everything tastes better with bacon, right?  It actually makes a LOT more than I thought.  Jessica says that it freezes nicely, so that is what I'll be doing with my leftovers.  Thanks for sharing Jessica!

1 lb bag pinto beans, rinsed and soaked overnight (if possible)
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and smashed
4 strips bacon, chopped
1 onion, roughly chopped
1 1/2 t salt

After soaking the beans, place in pot with garlic, bacon, onion, salt, and enough water to cover the beans by an inch or two.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer beans for 3-4 hours, adding water as necessary to make sure the beans stay covered.  Once the beans are soft enough to easily smash with a fork, remove from heat and drain, reserving the juice for later.

Puree beans (with bacon, onion, etc) in a food processor, with about 1 lb grated cheese (I used 1/2 cheddar, 1/2 pepperjack).  Add reserved juice and additional water if necessary to get to the right consistency.  You might need to do this in batches.  Add salt and cumin to taste.


Saturday, February 05, 2011

Pottery Update

Saturday, February 05, 2011
Well, pottery class is over.  I'm kind of sad about that - I've really enjoyed going the last few weeks.  I definitely want to take another class, but my calendar is full the next few Thursdays, so I'll have to wait until I don't have as much going on.  Anyway, I went back today to finish up the last pieces I had made - I had already thrown the clay into the shapes I wanted, but needed to trim them (basically cut the extra clay off the bottom and make "feet" on them so they aren't completely flat on the bottom).  I ended up with three bowls and two plates.  I'm keeping my fingers crossed that all goes well with the firing and glazing process.  Stay tuned for one final pottery post once they are totally done!



Have you ever heard of a trekking class?  Well, a couple weeks ago my trainer Brandee introduced our bootcamp class to trekking... what a workout!  I found a definition on one site that said trekking is to treadmills what spinning is to stationary bikes.  I think that's a perfect description!  It's a combination of jogs, walks, runs, sprints, and climbs, all on the treadmill.

Brandee was out of town this weekend, so our little class of 4 decided to meet this morning and do our own trekking class.  I tried to find a good trekking workout on line because I couldn't remember exactly what Brandee had us do, but I couldn't really find one.  Anyway, I just made something up and called the workout for us and it turned out okay.  We wanted to remember what we did so we could do it again someday.  I thought I'd post it here for safe keeping, and also in case anyone else was looking for a trekking workout:

Warm up
Walk at a 3.0-3.5 (5 min)

Cycle 1 - Jog Uphill
4.0 speed at 2 incline (45 sec)
4.5 speed at 4 incline (45 sec)
5.0 speed at 6 incline (1 min)
5.0 speed at 8 incline (1 min)
5.0 speed at 10 incline (30 sec)
5.0 speed at 12 incline (30 sec)
5.0 speed at 15 incline (30 sec)
5.0 speed at 8 incline (30 sec)
3.5 speed at 0 incline (30 sec)
2.5-3.0 speed at 0 incline (1.5 min)

Cycle 2 - Run
5.0 speed at 1 incline (1 min)
6.0 speed at 1 incline (1 min)
7.0 speed at 1 incline (1 min)
8.0 speed at 1 incline (1 min)
9.0 speed at 1 incline (30 sec)
10.0 speed at 1 incline (30 sec)
2.5-3.0 speed at 0 incline (2.5 min)

Cycle 3 - Uphill Walk with Running Finish
4.0 speed at 0 incline (30 sec)
4.0 speed at 3 incline (45 sec)
4.0 speed at 6 incline (45 sec)
4.0 speed at 8 incline (45 sec)
4.0 speed at 10 incline (45 sec)
4.0 speed at 12 incline (30 sec)
4.0 speed at 15 incline (30 sec)
4.0 speed at 13 incline (30 sec)
4.0 speed at 11 incline (30 sec)
4.0 speed at 9 incline (45 sec)
5.0 speed at 7 incline (45 sec)
6.0 speed at 6 incline (45 sec)
7.0 speed at 5 incline (45 sec)
2.5-3.0 speed at 0 incline (2 min)

Cycle 4 - Sprints
Alternating 30 second sprints, 30 seconds straddling the treadmill
7.0 speed at 0 incline
7.0 speed at 0 incline
7.5 speed at 0 incline
7.5 speed at 0 incline
8.0 speed at 0 incline
8.0 speed at 1 incline
8.5 speed at 1 incline
8.5 speed at 1.5 incline
9.0 speed at 1.5 incline
9.0 speed at 2.0 incline
9.5 speed at 2.0 incline
9.5 speed at 2.5 incline
10.0 speed at 2.5 incline
10.0 speed at 5 incline

Cool Down
3.0 speed at 0 incline (5 min)


Beauty and the Beast

Every year Boise State hosts a joint wrestling match & gymnastics meet.  Both the wrestling and gymnastics are held at the same time and at the same venue.  I've been a couple times in past years and always have a great time - it is so much fun because there is always something to watch!

Last night was the annual Beauty and the Beast event and the Broncos did great!  The #9 ranked wrestling team beat Utah Valley (32-6) and the #15 ranked gymnastics team beat Cal State Fullerton 196.175-189.175.


Thursday, February 03, 2011

"You know you're reading a good book when_________"

Thursday, February 03, 2011
Borders Books posted this line on their facebook page and asked us to finish the sentence.  I could think of several endings!  Here are a few that came right to my mind.  Any others you would add?
  • You hope for red lights so you can read the book during the stoplight.
  • You read the book in line at the grocery store.
  • All of a sudden it's 3 in the morning.
  • You want to call in sick from work just so you can keep reading (not that I would do this because I'm an honest person, but the thought has crossed my mind!)
  • You cry (or sob) or laugh out loud when you are reading.
  • It's 6pm on a Saturday and you're still in your pajamas reading.