Thursday, July 5, 2012

New Adventures

A lot has happened since October of last year. School, Thanksgiving, Christmas,  the New Year, Jared's Birthday, Our 4th Anniversary (we went up to Flagstaff), the car crash, Christin's Birthday, Jared quitting his job, and lots of other things.
This month we started something new. Every week we are going on an Adventure! That's right every week (most likely on Christin's day off) we will be going somewhere and doing something new or something we haven't done together.

This week we decided to go to the Phoenix Zoo. On July 4th, we went to the Phoenix Zoo using the library culture pass. It was A LOT of fun! We were there for about 2 hours, and it rained at a steady drizzle during that time, so it was not hot at all. (Muggy, but not hot.) We enjoyed the time we were able to spend together and enjoyed the people watching as well. It was funny to see the crowds leaving as it started to get wet, then as we were leaving and the weather cleared a little bit, people started coming back.










Next week Christin is off on Saturday and we are thinking a hike. 
What is your favorite place to hike?

Thursday, October 27, 2011

October Update

Wow, we haven’t posted since January! I’ve been feeling really boring lately, like my life has gotten into a rut and we haven’t done anything exciting in a while. (Boohoo, throw yourself a pity party, right?) Looking back, I realize that LOTS of stuff has happened since January! I guess I’m not so boring after all...just belated!

In February, Jared was promoted to Security Supervisor and moved to the graveyard shift and now works from 10 pm to 6:30 am. I actually see him more NOW than when he was on the swing shift!

March was a busy month--we traded in the truck for a YELLOW car! It is much more reliable and gets better gas mileage. We both kind of miss having a truck to haul stuff around in, though.

March also means Jared’s birthday and our anniversary, so we spent the day at the Wild Wild Wild West Steampunk Convention. I think we will definitely have to return if they do it again next year! It was much smaller and more intimate than a Renaissance Festival, and the costumes were more impressive. Plus, we discovered a new favorite band: Steam Powered Giraffe.

Jared graduated in May, but decided to head back to school to pursue a Bachelor’s Degree in Recreational Management (at first it was Rec. Therapy, but we recently refined it!). I also passed the ABO certification test (American Board of Opticianry) in May, oh, and had a birthday!

In July we went up to Utah for a mini family reunion when Ammon came home from his mission. We brought Penguin with us which was...exciting. He actually did very well, though he did learn how to squeeze through the fence so he could be in the front/side yard and play with the kids. @_@ And of course, it was lovely to hang out with family!

Jared’s school/sleep schedule has really started to affect him, but he’s chugging along through school and work. I’m preparing for the NCLE exam (National Contact Lens Examiners) in November, and working hard as the Primary Secretary in our ward. We are super excited for Halloween...stay tuned for our (hopefully) awesome costumes!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Sir Knight and the New Year

The name of our truck is pronounced like in Monty Python, and maybe it’s British sense of humour is the reason why it has been breaking down on us lately. The problems seem to be stemming from the lack of a special battery harness which has been shorting out our starter. (It should be noted that I don’t know what any of this means; it sounds like a jock strap for the truck to me). That’s been taken care of--hopefully for the LAST time, but I’m not sure we can rest easy just yet. We’ve been very lucky to live bike-able distance from (my) work, and my parents have been wonderful about providing rides when we’ve needed it, especially when we broke down on the freeway last week! Hopefully in this next year we’ll work out our schedules/transportation situation a little better so we won’t have to depend so heavily on them.

In other news, we’ve both finished school!! I’ve graduated and I’m just waiting on the diploma in the mail--in fact, I’ve been making myself a nuisance for the last couple of weeks making sure I’m still on track (I am!)
Jared passed his last class but missed the deadline for graduation, so we’ll just have to keep checking in for the spring graduation. Right now we’re not sure if he’s going to go back, but that is one of the options we’re looking at.

Jared is training for the Ragnar in February and continues to bring home crazy stories from working Security at the mall. I love my job at Nationwide Vision, though I’m going to start doing more freelance writing on the side. I’m also I’m working on a play (it’s a musical!) in addition to my other writing projects. As long as the truck holds out, our 2011 looks like it’s going to be another great year!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Family Pictures 2010




So here they are. We finally went out and got some pictures taken of us after being married a for over 2 years. It was mostly my (Jared) fault. That's okay cause they came out great. Thanks to my wonderful sister Kati. Enjoy. These are our favorites.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Doors, windows... escape hatches?

In life, when one door closes...
...you stand around in the hallway, not sure what to do.
There’s gotta be an open door around here somewhere….

Jared applied for the U.S. Border Patrol a few weeks ago but didn’t pass the written exam. While this is certainly not the end of the world, it does throw a wrench or two in the gears. We’re back to the drawing board. *HEAVY SIGH*

In the beginning of October we’ll move into the Belara Apartments, which are actually in my parent’s ward (Pinnacle Vista). At the end of this semester, we’ll both have earned our degrees. After that, who knows where life will take us?

(Hopefully on vacation. That would be nice.)

Saturday, July 17, 2010

There and Back Again


We made it! It was exhausting, but the roads were surprisingly empty for a holiday weekend—we breezed straight through. Jared and I left at 11 pm July 3, drove through the night and made it to his parent’s house in Utah around noon (their time). Though needed, we didn’t get in a whole lot of napping because it was Dad Pike’s birthday and all the rowdy nieces and nephews came over to celebrate. Plus, there were fireworks.

Monday was pretty mellow, but Tuesday, there was some excitement while we were jumping on the ground level trampoline in the backyard. Jared had just cleared the area so he could show the nephews the “Bunny” flip. They roared with laughter when he yelled out “Bum,” but somewhere between “Knee” and “Flip,” a spring shot out and suddenly Jared disappeared! One minute he was bouncing in the air, and the next he was on his back, staring up through a through a tear in the middle of the trampoline. It was pretty hilarious, to say the least. Unfortunately, Jared broke the nephews’ hearts as well as the trampoline, so there was some guilting from Wesley and Travis about that.

We left for the family reunion on Wednesday and stayed in a very nice K.O.A. next to Bear Lake. There we played games and more than one round of Spoons (which was in keeping with Pike tradition, competitive and near lethal). Bear Lake was gorgeous, clear, and COLD!!! There was skiing and tubing, but by far we had the best time on the jet skis. Aside from scaring Levi (we took a couple of wakes pretty hard) Jared and I had the best time on those things!

While packing away the tent on Saturday Jared and I unearthed an unwelcome visitor—a fat little mouse! Even though she had been burrowing under the tent and not in it, I was VERY glad we’d been sleeping on cots! (Thanks parents for letting us borrow the camping gear!) Of course, all the kids gathered around and wanted to take it home, but with Mom Pike’s help, a cup and paper plate, it was successfully released in to the wild.

After that, we took off for Idaho where we visited some families Jared had met on his mission. It was interesting from my perspective, never having most of these people, but they were all friendly and funny and nice. It was nice to meet the people that Jared had told me stories about—and fun to hear their stories about him! Everyone we visited also had GORGEOUS homes—even the house with twin toddlers was decorated beautifully. In Idaho we also saw Despicable Me (cute!) and randomly met up with one of the missionaries we had met in the Moon Mountain Ward, when Jared was mission leader.

On Wednesday we headed back to Highland to hang out some more with Jared’s parents, then drove back to Arizona on Thursday. Jared had to be to work again on Friday, and I go back on Monday. We had an awesome vacation but missed our puppy dog and our own bed. I guess it’s back to life as usual…but it’s good to be home.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Sufficiency

Sufficiency is a great thing. Especially when you are trying to make push yourself in a better direction. During the fall, winter and better part of the spring I like to ride my bike to work. This helps in saving gas and in scheduling. I don't like to ride during the summer do to the fact that my work does not have a shower for me. When we moved in with my older brother and his family we found that the were sufficient in many ways. We have definitely learned some of those. The one I found most interesting was making your own laundry soap. I was talking to my brother's wife while she was making the soap. She said if you think about the cost its about 50 to 75 cents a gallon. The great thing also is that it works on high efficiency machines and doesn't ruin them.


Laundry Soap
  • 1/2 bar Fels Naptha Bar
  • 1/2 cup Washing Soda
  • 1/2 cup Borax Soap

You will also need about a 2 gallon size pot.

Fill the pot with water, about half way. Grate the
Fels Naptha Bar and put it in the sauce pan. Heat it until the soap melts. Add the washing soda and the borax and stir until it is dissolved. Remove from heat. Pour approximately 4 cups water into the pot (almost till it overflows). Mix carefully. Let the soap sit for about 24 hours and it will gel.

Now then the directions are approximate. I watched her do it and recalled from recollection.

I am always hungry. I love to snack and am always eating candy or something sweet. I've been looking for something to help curb that appetite and recently found this recipe for granola bars. As a security officer a quick snack to hold you over when things are slow is important. So, here it is with no more ramblings.

Cranberry Coconut Granola Bars

(Adapted from Alton Brown)

  • 2 cups old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced almonds
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup light corn syrup (or just use 1/2 cup honey… I ran out of honey)
  • 1/4 cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract (1 teaspoon vanilla extract and 1 teaspoon orange extract would be tasty, too)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup dry roasted sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 cup toasted wheat germ
  • 1 – 6 ounce bag orange flavored dried cranberries (Craisins)
  • 1 cup sweetened coconut

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 9 inch by 13 inch glass baking dish and set aside.

Spread the oats and almonds out on a baking sheet (or in my case, your pizza pan because it’s close). Toast the oats and almonds in the oven for about 15 minutes, stirring once or twice. Remove from the oven and reduce the temperature to 300°F.

Meanwhile, combine the honey, corn syrup, brown sugar, butter, vanilla extract, and salt in a small sauce pan. Heat over medium-low heat until the butter and brown sugar are melted.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the sunflower seeds, wheat germ, cranberries, and coconut. Add the toasted oats and almonds. Pour the honey mixture into the bowl, and stir until all of the dry ingredients are coated in the honey mixture. Transfer to the prepared baking dish, spreading the mixture evenly and pressing down with your fingers.

Bake for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool completely (don’t say I didn’t warn you… If you only follow one part of the recipe, this should be it!).

Cut into squares or bars, and enjoy. Store in an airtight container for up to a week.

I can not take credit for the awesome pictures. The recipe and pictures are pulled straight from this site: www.mykitchenaddiction.com .

Personally I will modify the recipe as such:

Cranberry Coconut Granola Bars

(Adapted from Alton Brown)

  • 2 cups old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup honey (or agave syrup (healthier))
  • 1/4 cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract ( or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract and 1 teaspoon raspberry extract)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup toasted wheat germ
  • 12 ounces dried cranberries (Craisins)
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced macadamia nuts
  • 1 cup sweetened coconut
It is something that can be altered and played with till you find what you want. Enjoy!