Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Happy Happy Birthday Rachel dear!

Happy Birthday to this gorgeous girl! Glad it was such a great day! Love you! (Emily)

Monday, February 2, 2009


Remember to bring:

    because we will box up one of everything and send it to Tracy. 

* SWIMMING SUIT for sauna and hot tub.

   just SLEEP IN THE BEDS there and wash and dry the sheets before you go. Also bring a PILLOW, and a TOWEL.


   LIKE for late-ish Friday night. (if no consensus, we'll vote.)

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Dynamic d'Evegnees

Getting home from Church at noon increases not only the time we have for family play, but apparently it sends our kids' imaginations into a new dimension where costumes roam free and super-hero-powers come alive.

A few Sundays ago the kids were playing downstairs while I was causing a wave of domestic destruction in the kitchen and preparing Sunday dinner. When I went downstairs I found them in a huddle of heroic proportions, collectively fighting off galactic bad guys en masse. They had already created the cast of characters, complete with the description of their super-powers and a plot for their upcoming movie (which is still in negotiations with the producers--aka the parents who own the expensive equipment).

The names, the powers, and the costumes were all their own--I'm just the lady that brought it to the big screen!

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Happy, Happy Birthday, Emily Dear!

Our Happy Birthday sentiments are as bold and as bright as this blog!!!  We love you so much!  Keep checking throughout the day for birthday wishes!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Holiday Season to Birthday Season

With the close of the holidays we get a short break and go right into birthdays. With 2 in January, one in February and March, and two in May, the party planning gets into full swing. Last Friday I took Emma and 4 friends to St. George to celebrate her birthday. She chose this as her party and her present. We had a great time doing all the things young girls love--including going to the mall! Emma is gentle and kind and a calming influence in our family.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

White Chicken Chilli

Since we are in the recipe sharing mood....here's another one!

White Chicken Chili
Layer frozen chicken tenders on bottom of crock pot
Add: 1 can rinsed black beans
1 can rinsed northern beans
1 can corn
1 can petite diced tomatoes
Mix 3 cups water, 2t chicken bouillon, white chicken chili seasoning mix, cumin (I use ½ t), cilantro (fresh or dry).
Poor in crock pot. Cook on high several hours (4 or 5).
Dish in bowls and top with sour cream (I use fat free), avocado, fresh cilantro
The kids like to dip tortilla chips in the soup (Emily)

Snow Ice Cream for a Snow Day!

The kids just finished licking their bowls to get every last creamy drop of this wonderful snow-confection, and we had to share the recipe and the demo-video! (I just had a spoonful, and it was pret-ty tasty!)

The kids foraged for the snow outside (you can guess the kind of severe warning I gave about avoiding the yellow kind!), and then helped measure and mix the other ingredients (since there are only a total of four, it was very easy to manage, even with the bonus of holding Marie the entire time). We had a ball. . . a SNOW-ball, that is! (Dork alert! Dork alert!)

Let me get some of their ratings and reviews, since they're surrounding me as I type this.
Ethan says, "It's snow-tastic!"
Holden says, "It's really goooood! So try it!"
Eve says, "Put some chocolate on it and then mix it!"
Caleb says, "Two thumbs up!"
Peter says, "I-Keem. . . chomp!"
Marie says, "Heyaaa!"

Monday, January 26, 2009

For dinner tonight we re-lived some of our Provo days of yore and re-created one of our favorite salads that was a get-rid-of-that-baby-weight go-to recipe because it was so healthy and flavorful. Unfortunately, we can't get it through the drive-through anymore (although we rush to El Azteca whenever we're in Happy Valley), so we did our best to imitate it.

Someone forgot to move the grill before the big snow-storm hit (that would be moi), so I had to pull on my boots and climb up and around the grill to do the chicken from above like some sort of Eskimo-she-woman, but it was worth it!

Eve went wild for the jicama, but kept referring to it as "hippopoto-ma," so I think that will be its new name in our house .

El Azteca Grilled Chicken Salad
(This much will make 6-8 salads)

Place 4-5 chicken breasts in a plastic freezer bag and add:
1/4 cup onion (I just used dried minced)
2 t fresh garlic or garlic salt
4 T cilantro (dried or use 1/4 cup fresh)
1/2 packet chili seasoning
2 T cumin
4 T lime juice
1 cup Zesty Italian dressing

Marinate for 6-8 hours (I was rushed this morning [who me? rushed? huh?] and only had them in the marinade for 3 hours and the meat was still full of flavor)
Grill the chicken 8-10 minutes on each side and then let rest for 5-10 minutes before you slice it into luscious chunks of tender-meat-fiesta.

Other ingredients:
1-2 heads of red-leaf lettuce, rinsed and chopped (you could use romaine too, or sometimes we use spinach)
1 can corn
1 jicama (pronounced "hiccama." Ask for it in the produce section if you aren't sure where to find it), diced into cubes
Grated cheese (low-fat mozarella)
Mexican rice (6 cups cooked brown or white rice with 1 cup salsa and 1 cup part-skim mozarella cheese mixed in when it's still hot)
Black beans (I just rinsed them and cooked them in a saute pan with garlic, minced onions, a little tomato juice, 2 t cumin, and 2 t cilantro for about 5 minutes)

To assemble the salad :
Layer lettuce, corn, jicama, cheese, rice, beans, and salsa. Top with chunks of chicken. You can serve it with light or fat free Ranch Dressing or just sprinkle fresh lime juice on the top.

The kids had some tortilla chips with theirs, but I was the epitome of self-control and resisted the crunch!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Happy Happy Birthday to Sarah!

I don't know how to be fancy on blogs yet, but pretend this entry is flooded with balloons and all the birthday trimmings. Sarah, you are my hero on so many levels. Every time I am with you, I feel uplifted to be a better person and mother. I admire everything about you and only wish we could be neighbors. I hope your day is wonderful!
Much love,

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Yummy recipe (Emily)

I got this recipe from Amy Openshaw. It is one of her all time favorites for guests. Sarah wanted a copy and since I'm turning into the blogging queen-here it is!

Mediterranean Salad, Grilled Chicken, and Coconut Rice

Mediterranean Salad (serves about 10)
7 large tomatoes (cut in bite size chunk)
2 cucumbers (peeled and chunked)
1/4 small diced red onion
3 oz cubed mozzarella cheese
3 oz crumbled feta cheese
3 T. Olive oil
2T. Red wine vinegar (can use pear, apple or other fruit vinegar)
1 T green olive tapenade (Trader Joe’s or other specialty store)
Fresh basil leaves to taste
baby spinach (add two or more handfuls for color)
Salt and Pepper to taste
Large bread croutons (optional–can go soggy)

Cut up and mix items together. May cut ingredients up ahead of time, but do not add oil and vinegar until right before serving.

Marinated Chicken
Marinate chicken breast (1 per person) in Wishbone Italian dressing overnight. Season with pepper and season all then grill and cut into thin slices. Chicken is served cold–may do ahead of time as well.

Coconut Rice
2-3 cups Uncle Ben’s converted rice. Cook rice as directed but add about ½ can coconut cream (NOT coconut milk) at the same time you add the water. The cream can be found in the grocery store by the pina colada mix for drinks. After the rice is finished cooking, stir in large toasted coconut flakes.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

For Tracy's birthday

Tracy, I don't feel truly qualified to post my comments in the hallowed sanctuary of "the Hafen girls," but Sarah has given me a special dispensation. FROEHLICHER GEBURTSTAG, meine liebe Tracy, die einzige deutschsprechende Frau under den "Hafen Girls!" I hope you've had a good day, with Tom and the kids bringing you breakfast in bed, followed by a leisurely day of reading novels, exercising, taking two naps, eating bon-bons, and watching Oprah. Tracy, I admire your endless capacity and willingnes to give and give for Chaya, Tom, and everyone else in your family. You bless their lives, and you bless ours by your strong and edifying influence in your home and ours. With love and gratitude, Bruce

Happy Birthday, Tracy!


This will be up the whole day if you want to leave a message for Tracy either in the post or in the comments box!!! (Just click right under here where it has the number of comments and you'll get instructions on how to comment.  Sorry this is so bright. . . . but it's Tracy's BIRTHDAY!)

We love you, Tracy!

Monday, January 12, 2009

For Sarah (Emily)

I learned from Sarah's comment to my previous entry that a person can click and drag pictures from the blog to their personal computer. So Sarah--here are a few more! These kids are quite the hikers!
How sweet!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Memory Lane (Emily)

These pictures are backwards, but since I am new at this--oh well! Here we are at the top of the "saddle." We were crazy hikers with kids ages 4-11. We hiked up cliffs and rocks and were grateful no one fell off! Thanks to Joy we were rescued in the end when we got lost. Thanks to Joy and the ranger!
Standing on the remnants of (Great) Grandpa Hafen's cabin. Spencer wants to create a plaque and post it at this site so everyone knows what all these boards are doing here. We understand this could be quite a good Eagle Project?

Grandpa Hafen sharing stories from his childhood at the 'ole homestead. Grandma actually knocked on the door of the current owner to see if a "few" grandkids could take a look at the yard! I have some good memories of this place!

The front of (Great) Grandma and Grandpa's house. Ellie had just fallen on the steep road in front and gashed up her knee. She isn't screaming because of Joy's first aid kit (okay because of the sucker Joy had in her first aid kit). Aunt Joy saves the day again! (Do you see a theme here)?

Look at all these cute teenagers (or almost teenagers)! Can you believe they belong to us? Sure had a great time with all of you in St. George. You make us want to be better!

Me blogging? (Emily)

I have been resisting blogging for quite some time now. I guess I'll give it a try since Sarah has made it so easy! Here's to bonding! PS Does this have spell check?


Does anyone else want to post or even comment?  (Pretty please with splenda on top?)

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Whole Wheat Banana Nut OR Blueberry Pancake Recipe and Liahona Rice Crispy Balls Recipe! (Sarah)

The kids asked me what was for dinner tonight and when I caught a gander of the over-ripe bananas decorating our counter, I said "Banana Nut Pancakes, Blueberry Pancakes, Scrambled Eggs, and Smoothies!"  They jumped up and down and asked if they could help.  So much better than a squinchy, grouchy, yucky face and leaving me all alone to fend for myself in the kitchen!

I found a recipe online and then tweaked it and here's what we came up with:

Whole Wheat Banana Nut OR Blueberry Pancakes

1 and 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
2 t baking powder
1 egg
1 cup soy milk (or regular milk if you're not a granola chick like me. . . heh)
1 t salt
1 t cinnamon
1 t vanilla
1/4 c apple sauce
2 T olive oil
1/2 cup frozen blueberries for blueberry pancakes
OR 2 mushed up bananas and 1/4 cup slivered almonds for banana nut pancakes

Stir together dry ingredients and make a well in the middle.  Add wet ingredients until incorporated.  Then cook 'em like you'd cook any other pancake.  (I figured you probably don't need any more instructions. . . If you do --call me!  We need to talk!) (OH!  Did you seriously notice how healthy these are?)  I didn't even use any syrup!  (Of course my sweet-teeth-kiddies did. . . what can I do?)

I have to chuckle a bit at the pictures because only the advent of the blog could induce mothers to take pictures of absolutely everything.  I never would have staged a photo-shoot in my kitchen without the tantilization of a silly blog post!  Really, who takes pictures of their kids eating a lazy-night breakfast-dinner?

 Rice Crispy Liahona Balls

For FHE on Monday, Holden gave us our lesson about the Liahona.  I was charge of the treat and decided to make Rice Crispy Liahona Balls.  We mixed up the rice crispy recipe and added yellow food coloring to make them golden.  Then I sprayed Pam on the kids' hands so they could make their own balls.  (Stoopid Mom, I know, but we got a good laugh out of it.  Of course I had to help them get their fingers un-gooed.)  Then we let the balls cool and dipped them in melted chocolate chips (because obviously they weren't sweet enough already) with skewers.  We put them in the freezer to harden the chocolate because they were already foaming at the mouth wanting to dive in.  (Peter chose to eat his on the skewer because the chocolate was melting in his chubby fingers)

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Calling All Hafen Girls!

If you're reading this, you're a HAFEN GIRL either by marriage or birth, so congratulations!  Please share what's in your head or in your camera and then comment on other Hafen Girls' posts!