Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Christmas Gingerbread Houses

So, to start a holiday tradition at the Shipp household, Trevor and I made holiday gingerbread houses this year out of graham crackers, cream cheese icing (only the best!) and assorted candies we picked out. We made them about a week before Christmas and it was actually really fun to tap into my kid/creative side for a while!

I also loved the fact that our kitchen table got seriously messy--kind of like it used to when my brother and I would play with Play-Doh as kids :)Here's Trevor hard at work (and also in desperate need of a haircut!):
I worked hard on my house and used a plastic bag to help me squeeze out clean-looking icing lines. The next four pictures are the four sides of my home... Front (notice my green Santa gummy bear on top with his chocolate chip hat):
Right side:
Back (watch out for the giant worm!):
Left side:
I was pretty happy that it stayed in tact and that it turned out really pretty! Of course I had to take a picture with it:
Here's the front view of Trevor's creation, which kept wanting to cave in toward the end. We caught this picture really quickly before it completely collapsed (he has a Santa bear too!):
And this picture just makes me laugh! It's just so appropriate! :) Trevor's collapsed little gingerbread house on the left and my sturdy, "perfect" one on the right. Now, I don't want to say that this picture serves to represent our personalities because that wouldn't be fair to Trevor... but... in reality the picture really is quite fitting... :)
It was a fun little tradition that we started that hopefully we'll continue throughout the years! I'm sure it will get more fun when we have kids who are excited about it! More Christmas pictures to come!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

BYU Basketball

The first weekend in December, Trevor and I joined Randy and Jenny Buck up in Salt Lake at the Energy Solutions Arena to attend a BYU Basketball game! I'm still not sure why it was in Salt Lake, but it was a good excuse to go up there! During the drive up, the first big snowstorm of the season blew through Salt Lake! It was so exciting to finally see some snow, even if it was REALLY cold outside!

The Cougars played the University of San Francisco and we killed them! Always fun to do things with friends :)It was fun because I've never been that close to the floor in the Energy Solutions Arena before! :) Maybe one day we can get this close watching the Jazz! This was the view from our seats (after we moved here from our less-desirable designated seats). And I had to take this picture of the little guys playing a scrimmage game during half time. They really were awesome! Look at this shot... can you spot the ball?:
Afterward, Trevor and I got a little more Christmas shopping done at the Gateway mall. But it was hard to stay patient because it's an outdoor mall... and it had just snowed! Overall, it was a fun date and a great trip to Salt Lake!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

My Very First Thanksgiving Dinner!

After we had Thanksgiving day at the church in Heber, we decided to try and make a Thanksgiving dinner on our own. I was mainly inspired by the cooking class we went to where a friend in our ward showed us how simple it could be to make a delicious turkey! So, I wanted to give it a try, despite my tiny stove, oven, and kitchen in general. So we invited Dave and Heidi over for Sunday dinner at our house. Thanks for being our guinea pigs! :)

We pulled our little kitchen table over into the living room to give us a bit more room to eat and so all four of us could squeeze around the table. Here's the table all set and waiting for food:And due to my lack of oven space, I had to ask our neighbors for the use of their oven to bake a couple things. Seen here are the delicious yams, green bean casserole, and the cranberry cake I attempted to make. I think I baked it a few minutes too long even though it was still 10 minutes less than was called for (thank you, high altitude, for making baking SO simple... blah). But yes, I had to use my end table as a serving table because I honestly had no room anywhere else! Haha
The stove was also full all night. At one point we had the potatoes boiling, gravy cooking, stuffing being mixed, and cranberry sauce simmering all at once. Here's the DELICIOUS cranberry sauce that Trev's sister Meghan gave us the recipe for. It did make quite a bit of sauce, however, and I should have halved it but didn't really have time to think about it! But... considering I've never really been a fan of cranberry sauce, this was AMAZING. I actually couldn't get enough. You could definitely taste and smell the cinnamon and orange in it:
Here's our table trying to fit all our food and drink and condiments and everything on the table. It was so small. I look forward to having a nice, big, STURDY kitchen table one day, where the whole thing won't shake when someone's cutting their turkey! Haha. But the food still looks delicious as I look at it now! :)
I'm taking the picture, hence not being in it, but here are Trevor with the Kimball's. Trev's tie looks weird because he had to loosen it and put it behind him when dressing the turkey. After it almost dipped in the turkey juices once, he learned his lesson. We also didn't want it to catch on fire from the oven either. Haha. Oh dear.
So... the results? Well... it ACTUALLY wasn't as hard as I thought it would be! Making the food itself is quite simple. What makes it all tricky is the timing of the dishes so they all are ready when the turkey's ready and not before other things or they get cold!

But we got great reviews on the food! Dave and Heidi said the turkey was actually quite juicy and tender--so much so that they actually enjoyed the turkey this time, whereas they usually aren't too huge on it! I felt the same way. I was quite proud of my first turkey, despite the fact it was still a little bit pink on the very inside and we had to make sure to cut around it! Everything else was great, as well, my personal favorite being my Nana's yam recipe and that cranberry sauce! :) So good!

I am glad to say that I overcame the fear of making a turkey and that it wasn't as bad as I thought it'd be. We'll see if we make a tradition of doing this yearly... maybe, maybe not. I'm still young enough that I should be enjoying someone ELSE's cooking on Thanksgiving. I feel it's a rite you have to earn--being able to be the "Thanksgiving chef". But hey - now I know I CAN do it and it's actually pretty fun! :)

Happy Late Turkey Day!

Friday, December 4, 2009

A Much-Needed Trip to the Salon

The Saturday after Thanksgiving I went to see Hailey (I'm not sure if that's spelled right) at Serendipity Salon in Payson. She's been doing my sister-in-law Meghan's hair for years so I thought I'd try her out since I always love Meghan's hair! :)

She was really fun and I was more than glad to have my hair re-vamped for winter. I got a little brave and had her give me side-swept bangs too! Here are two pictures. I can't tell if the one with or without the flash is better so here's both:
Unfortunately, she was much better at blow-drying my hair straight than I am and it's been a struggle to make it all look this cute (especially the bangs) since I got it cut. I may call her and have her remind me what products she used because my hair felt SO good and now it just feels dry again. And I've asked Trevor for a Chi straightener for Christmas so hopefully I can have a much better straightener than the one I have now.

Anyway, I'm just glad that I have a little bit more color back on the top of my head where my natural color had grown in a lot. It makes cold weather a bit more enjoyable when you have warm-colored hair! :)

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Happy 25th Birthday Trevor!

My sweet husband turned a whole quarter century old on Thursday, November 26th (a.k.a. Thanksgiving this year). I don't think he minds too much when his birthday is lumped together with a holiday full of food and family! We had thanksgiving with Trevor's family up in Heber City at the church near his Grandma's house.

After eating lots of good food, we sat and talked for a while and then we stuck candles in Trevor's pie and sang to him! Then he was given a few gifts from some family members. This first picture is the cute card his mom gave him. She didn't make it (she often makes really cute cards) but said it just reminded her of him when she saw it. I think it's fantastic and it TOTALLY reminds me of Trevor too! :)Here he is fake-smiling for the camera because I told him to. Well!? I needed to document the moment for posterity! Please note the cute sweater/undershirt duo - birthday present courtesy of ME! :) He can change up his teal undershirt with a wine colored one!
One of his favorite gifts, of course: Golf Balls! :)
And these cupcakes weren't actually made for Trevor's birthday. In fact I made them a couple weeks before (funfetti cake mix with chocolate icing and pretty sprinkles), but it just seems appropriate to include it in this post. Don't they look delicious!? :)
Trevor's birthday was pretty fun! Other than the shirts, he got a few more birthday gifts including Peanut M&Ms and Sarah Palin's new book!

Happy Birthday Trevor! I love you!