We Seek After
These Things
Recently returned from serving the people of Honduras for 3 years

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Spreading a little Christmas Cheer

Hello everyone!

Happy Holidays!!

I can't believe Christmas is just around the corner now.  I hope you are enjoying some treasured times, holiday get togethers with friends and families to celebrate the birth of the Savior and celebrate the spirit of Christmas at this fun time of the year!  

This year has been a very interesting year for me.  It was two years ago during the week between Christmas and New Years that I was called to serve as the Relief Society President.
(for my non- LDS friends . . . it's a leadership position over the women in our neighborhood to spiritually strengthen families, individuals and provide service, also looking after the temporal welfare of the families in the area).   I can look back and see the hand of the Lord each day in my life.  Somedays, I have been more receptive to the promptings and whisperings of the Spirit than others, but I truly can testify that I have felt Heavenly Father's influence each day in my life.  I'm so grateful!  I'm so grateful for YOUR influence and example in my life.  

 I do so love the Christmas season with all the goings on, it's such a feast for the senses!  We loved our evening with the Tabernacle Choir in the Conference center downtown this week!   Truly, as I listened to the songs of the season I'm certain we were all participants on the glorious evening so long ago as the Savior came into the world.  What a celebration it must have been and I'm so grateful we are able to relive the celebration of our Savior's birth each year!

I wish these last several months I would have had the opportunity to follow along with you all more closely and leave thoughtful, pensive comments on your amazing blog posts.  I wish I would have had the time to create some amazing blog posts myself!  But there is a time and season for everything . . . I'm anxiously awaiting those days . . .

But meanwhile . . .

just spreading a little Christmas cheer here


Hope your Christmas is the Merriest!!
enjoy one of my most favorite Utah musicians ever!

(Steven Sharp Nelson - thepianoguys.com)

Sunday, December 4, 2011

A Christmas Gift

to the world . . .

So precious!

Amazingly filmed at Utah's New Jerusalem in Goshen.

One would never guess it wasn't filmed in the Holy Lands.  I was so impressed with how beautiful this film is, it just reached out and captivated the entire audience in the 21,000 seat Conference Center in Salt Lake City, as we were all held spell bound through it's entirety.

okay . . . watching it again . . .

Saturday, December 3, 2011

If you Give a Blogger a Minute . . .

(that's just about how much time I've had for blogging recently!)

This is the kind of blog update you get :)

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It's what's on my fridge today -

and it makes me so very happy . . .

Other news of the day -

Kelsie is going to Ohio for Christmas!  She is excited to see her family members there.  Lucky girl! We bought the ticket in a miracle moment of finding a reasonable fare amongst the Christmas madness of the airlines.  Then it was gone . . . never to be seen again.  I LOVE small miracles . . .

Cleo, our yellow lab, age 11 years old - continues to decline . . . it makes me sad . . .   :(

Cory & Sara! 
(you can see them in the photo blog header sippin' cider through a straw . . .)
are expecting . . .

(drumroll please . . . . ta da ad da DA!)

a baby BOY!   HURRAY!  Expected to be coming this way in mid-April 2012.  You know what we'll be all in a dither about next year :)

And tonight -

It's off to the Madrigal Feast - truly the holidays are upon us.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

A Christmas Pledge - from a friend . . .

Just as the hustle and bustle of the holiday season is beginning to come upon us full force . . .

I came upon this Christmas pledge, received from a friend during a Christmas past and another holiday season.  I hope as the season unfolds I can remember it each day and focus my thoughts and actions, and participate in those events that inspire us at this time upon the true meaning of the Christmas season.

A Christmas Pledge

Believing in the true spirit of Christmas, I commit to:

  • Remember Christ and rededicate
    myself to spiritual growth,

  • Examine my holiday activities
    in light of my deepest values,

  • Remember those who truly
    need my gifts,

  • Express my love in more
    direct ways than gifts,

  • Slow down and be a bearer of peace
    and serenity with my family and friends.

  • It is a challenge to create a simple, soul-satisfying, value-centered Christmas in the midst of all the commercial pressure.  How can our families enjoy the true spirit of a Christ centered Christmas if we don't lead the way?   Something to think about . . .

    Tuesday, November 22, 2011

    Good Gravy . . .

    With Thanksgiving now right around the corner . . .

    I've discovered that not everyone had a dad who taught them to make excellent gravy!  I LOVE gravy at Thanksgiving, Sunday dinners and just about any old time.

    Did you know it is SO EASY to make??!!

    Here's the way I do it -

    How to make gravy


    Meat juice drippings (beef, chicken, turkey, pork)
    (optional - for best results drippings should include browned bits 
    from the stock as well as turkey pieces)
    Water - add water to drippings to equal 4 cups
    Salt and pepper
    3 heaping T of cornstarch
    1/2 C. COLD water
    (optional)  1T. chicken or beef bullion

    In a large pan, pour measured drippings and water to equal 4 cups.  Heat to low simmer or low boil over medium heat.  Dissolve the cornstarch in the COLD water.  Slowly whisk the cornstarch mixture into the simmering drippings.

    Turn heat down to medium low - continue to whisk for 10-15 minutes until gravy thickens.  Add salt and pepper to taste (1t salt, 1/2 t pepper approximately)

    If gravy gets too thick, slowly whisk water back into the gravy mix.

    Serve immediately

    And . . . there you go!


    Sunday, November 20, 2011

    It's that Holiday Season . . .

    It's the most wonderful time of the year . . .

    With the holiday season beginning this week - there definitely is a festive
    spirit beginning to spread an abundance of holiday cheer.

    It's the hap-happiest season of all

    with those holiday greetings and gay happy meetings
    when friends come to call

    They'll be much mistletoeing
    and hearts will be glowing
    when loved ones are near
    it's the most wonderful time of the year!

    Just thought I'd spread a little holiday cheer . . .

    Here's the recipe for my favorite seasonal dessert for a crowd!

    Pumpkin Cobbler

    1 yellow cake mix
    1 egg beaten
    1/2 c. butter

    Press firmly into 9x13 pan

    3 c. pumpkin
    3 eggs beaten
    2 1/2 t pumpkin spice
    2/3 c milk
    1/2 c brown sugar packed

    Mix and pour over crust

    1 yellow cake mix
    1/2 c white sugar
    3/4 c butter
    1 c to 1 1/2 c chopped nuts

    Crumble over the top

    Bake 350 for 45-50 min
    Top with whip cream or cool whip

    For our complete Thanksgiving day menu
    and many more LOVELY recipes
    you'll find them here!

    If that's not enough to being a little holiday smile to your face . . .

    Give this a try - it's so adorable!

    And finally . . .

     if you're ready to start on Christmas gifts and shopping and you're
    looking for some easy holiday gifts to make . . .

    check out all the Pinterest pins on my
    Easy DIY Gifts for Giving
    Super Easy Stuff
    Lots of Festive DIY Projects


    Sunday, November 13, 2011

    #10 - 12

    #10 the Blessings of extended family -

    Both Norm and I are so fortunate to have amazing family members . . . we love our family adventures of all kinds . . .

    from Roller skating parties with the Driggs family and Klein family
    to family vacations in the Morawetz family condos and cabin
    family reunions and the the bringing together of cousins from far and near.

    Here's just a sample of our family -

    DSC09179 kk rd sh
    (Morawetz family in Oceanside California - 
    just missing Dustin and Cami and Matt and of sadly . . .  Cole)

    #11  The economy has been unusual to say the least for the last several years.  It's effected us in many ways that we struggle with on a daily basis as I'm sure it's had an influence in your life as well.

    for one aspect I am grateful . . . . it's allowed all three of my married children to purchase homes this past year.  All three purchases have been exciting events that we have celebrated along with them.  It's been fun to see their choices as each has entered into their own unique home that is just right for them.

    Cory & Sara - nearby in Salt Lake City Utah
    Karianne & Greg - in Hilliard Ohio
    Dustin & Cami - in Raleigh North Carolina

    #12 - On a more worldly note . . .

    I have to admit . . .

    I am thankful everyday for my Macbook  - we have a very special relationship!
    ღ˛° 。* °♥ ˚ • ★ *˚ .ღ 。

    Little Catching up to do . . .

    When it comes to my reflections on Gratitude . . . I have a little catching up to do . . .

    #9 Gratitude for Goodly Parents

    I, Kristin, having been  born of goodly parents . . . therefore I was taught somewhat in all the learning of my father (and mother); and having seen many afflictions (not all that many) in the course of my days, nevertheless, having been highly favored of the Lord in all my days (much more than I deserve); yea, having had a great knowledge of the goodness and the mysteries of God, therefore I make a record of my proceedings in my days. (and you can read about it on this here blog site . . .)

    I have so many specific traits, characteristics and attributes that I can credit directly to my parents - for which I am endlessly grateful . . .

    • a love of reading
    • love for gardening
    • appreciation for poetry, music and theatre
    • planner of family parties and celebrator of endless occasions
    • a testimony of the gospel
    • a desire to enjoy the great outdoors and all it's beauty
    • traveling . . . traveling . . . traveling and flying on airplanes
    • and best of all . . . ability to pronounce all the words from the Jabberocky

    Thank you mom and dad . . .

    Saturday, November 12, 2011

    It Made me Chuckle . . . it did . . .

    Do you follow country music?

    I just had to share this because it made me chuckle . . .
    From this weeks (2011) Country Music Awards -

    "The CMA gives out separate awards for song of the year and single of the year. What’s the difference between these two genres? Simple: the nominees for song of the year were about dying, mean people, dirt roads, a break-up and tequila. The singles of the years are almost all about breaking up. Still unsure of the difference? Don’t worry because the Band Perry won both awards for its song “If I Die Young.”  The Perry siblings were also named best new artist of the year."

    Read more: http://entertainment.time.com/2011/11/10/barbie-dolls-and-taylor-swift-highlights-from-the-country-music-awards/#ixzz1dUssRKGm

    Ahhh . . . pretty people . . . pretty song . . .

    (oh! and I'm not done with the gratitude just yet . . . it's still coming after this short interlude of country music song of the year  :)

    Monday, November 7, 2011

    Reflections on Gratitude

    It's my own fault . . .

    I love my life and hesitate to miss out on any opportunities . . .

    Thus leading to me to experience ofttimes a very trying day, certainly not an uncommon situation as every day -

    • I don't get nearly enough sleep
    • I have too much on my plate
    • the Dr. called and wanted to start my daughter on heart medication
    • and I'm taking care of a dog who is slowly dying of cancer

    And as I frequently do when feeling totally overwhelmed and ready to crash . . .

    I've found that hymns have a way of uplifting me, helping me put things in perspective and inspiring me to have a better attitude.

    Serendipitously the hymn that came to mind this day was
    "Count your Many Blessings"

    How is that!??  It just popped into my mind . . . just exactly what I needed to hear.  And as I reflected on the words . . .

    It leads me to #'s 5,6.7  of my month of
    Attitude of Gratitude

    #5  I'm really grateful for 11  years with my beautiful yellow lab Cleo.  
    She is lovely and never is far from my feet.  She has the most adoring personality and is always (almost) obedient.  (unlike her black counterpart . . .)

    So I am grateful for 11 wonderful years with our sweet Cleo girl.

    I Heart Faces-3

    #6  Sometimes jobs can be SOOOOO frustrating!! (exclamation point!)
    But in reality I am very grateful for my job . . . it's NOT my life . . . but it does make my life possible.  I'm grateful for the new addition of a Diet Coke soda fountain at work . . . sometimes it saves my life :D

    I'm grateful for my schedule that allows me to spend two full weeks with my family of uninterrupted time every month.  Time I can now travel to see my kiddies (and grand baby cakes) since they are living clear across the country now.  I'm grateful for covered parking, especially since it looks like SNOW outside today!  And most of all . . . I'm grateful for the many good people I work with that make it all worthwhile.

    spring 2011-7 kk fus
    (too many hats . . . frequently we just wear too many :)

    #7  I would be so lost without my wonderful neighbors and friends who serve with me in my church calling.  I am the most unorganized person - can you say "governance by sticky note"  . . .

    And they put up with me and help with every single thing that needs to be done, frequently on the spur of the moment.   They provide such uplifting council, encourage me always, and fulfill their own responsibilities with great inspiration.   I am indeed grateful for them and they make my life so much less complicated because of their service.

    And while I'm on a roll (and have a minute to my name . . .)  let's do tomorrow also . . .

    #8  I'm grateful for a miracle in my life on a regular basis.  The miracle is that somehow my Heavenly Father manages to stretch my time each day, he augments and magnifies the hours that I might accomplish the work he desires me to do. 
    He does . . . I don't know how . . . but I'm grateful . . .

    I ♥ღ this baby


    I ♥ღ this baby

    and yep . . .

    We are so grateful for her!

    (will be catching up tomorrow on 5, 6 and 7)

    DSC01432-2 kk rd

    Thursday, November 3, 2011

    A Month of Thanksgiving . . .

    A Month of Thanksgiving

    In an effort to Smile . . . Breathe . . . and go Slowly . . .  I find myself reflecting much about our month of Thanksgiving.  So why not celebrate each day of this month of Thanksgiving?  I know that I truly am Thankful everyday. 

    So in an an overly ambitious thought . . .

    I'm going to attempt a brief post a day and create a Thanksgiving journal of sorts throughout the month.  

    I've noticed that once I get on a gratitude thought . . . one almost always certainly leads to another and many more . . .

      I feel that being aware of the blessings and good things in our daily lives can sometimes be the catalyst or beginning of being more mindful in general.
    While, I'm starting a little behind for the overly ambious thought, I have a little catching up to do . . . and I may forget … life happens, you know … so we’ll just see how it goes.  LOL!  No pressure.  No legalism.  No “oughts” or “shoulds” or “musts.”  Wanna join me? 

    Just catching up here
    1 - Family . . . first  So grateful for it, for the opportunity to be together forever, grateful to have another new grandbaby on the way (ooops!  Have I actually made that annoucement yet?)

    klein family 2011 hearts

    2 - Blessings of the gospel - couldn't be a forever family without it, grateful for it's guidance and direction and DAILY influence in my life.

    3 - Must say BEAUTY of the world all around, seems I can't walk outside these days without marveling at the colors that surround me on the hills, on the leaves, on the trees, on the ground.

    Sunday, October 30, 2011

    "Smile, Breathe and go Slowly"

    Smile . . . Breathe . . . and go Slowly . . .

    Just taking a deep breath and hope that things slow down just a bit . . .

    Life is so full

    I want to

    savor every moment . . .

    I'm going to jump ahead from all the summer activities that haven't been blogged, recorded or knocked out of the endless photo stream on my hard drive - to something I just returned from recently.

    I was so fortunate to enjoy 10 days in the Northeastern United States with Norm and parents.  We had some amazing experiences, and I'm not necessarily blogging about the most incredible experiences right now . . . I'm still savoring those for another time and frame of mind

    But . . . I just have to mention how awesome Niagara falls is!

    I've never been to Niagara falls . . . never thought I would go there . . .

    It was an incredible experience, I've never experienced something quite as majestic and overwhelming to the senses as the amount of water that flows over the falls each day.   These photos will never do it justice.

    I highly recommend it if anyone is making family vacation plans!

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    "Maid of the Mist"
    boat tour
    A pretty spectacular of the American and Canadian Falls (Horseshoe Falls)
    This was so much fun and pretty amazing!

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    The challenge was trying to take photos without ruining my camera!

    I should have thought to bring a zipper baggie or something to shoot through,
    but I think it's still working . . .

    Niagara Falls Favorites 20

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    So hilarious . . .
    We kind of found the Canadian side to be a cross
    between Las Vegas and Disneyland . . .

    We much preferred the parklike atmosphere of the American Side
    although the better views are on the Canadian side.

    Be sure to bring your passport!!

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    There are some pretty fascinating stories about 
    survivors going over the falls . . .

    The most fantastic were of an 11 year old boy in a life jacket
    and a 60 year old school teacher in a barrel
    (oh! and her cat! poor thing!)

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    Looking at the Canadian Skyline

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    I think we picked the best time of year to visit, no crowds and the leaves were amazing.  Oh and of course the falls were incredible!

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