31 March 2011

just gotta have some faith

some days i just can't figure out how everything is going to work out, or how we'll get everything done.

but it's worked out so far, so i just have to remember that if we live right and try our best, it will probably work out in the future too.

even if nothing adds up while we try to figure it out.

29 March 2011

10 things that are great about right now

1- i am almost done with my statistics class! last class ever! yes yes, i know most of you thought i was already done.and i was supposed to be, but i was short a few credits. so now i'm almost done for real and i will hopefully pull an a in the class and then i will have my bachelor's degree!

2- it took a year, but i am finally done paying off medical bills! it's amazing what being pregnant and having twins will do to your medical expenses. luckily the girls were perfectly healthy, so it was a lot less painful (for my wallet, at least) than it could have been.

3- the girls are starting to sit up all by themselves. (i'm on dallin's laptopper, so i don't have access to pictures, but i'll post some of those later)

4- we received our 2nd blog book (for the year 2010) in the mail last week. i love how much fun it is to go back and re-read our entries. now, i just need to get my blog printed from before d and i got married, and i'll be all caught up

5- d has less than a month left in the semester. this one has been a hard one for him full of lots of classes that he doesn't really like, but he's been stellar (like usual) and will finish up well. but the best part is that he will be done! for a few months at least.

6- d is also looking for a part-time job for the summer. he found a position at camp tracy (a boy scout camp) as a climbing instructor and has an interview this week. how perfect would he be at that?!

7- my cousin and his wife are being sealed to their daughter elizabeth this coming friday. she is such a sweet girl and i am so happy for them!

8- general conference is this weekend! i probably won't get to watch it on saturday because of work, but i'm really excited for sunday at least! it always makes me want to be a better person.

9- we've been doing a half-hearted "cry it out" this past week with the girls so that they can learn to sleep unswaddled and even with our lame efforts (me sneaking in to peak at them), the girls learned pretty quick to fall asleep in just a few minutes (as long as their tummies are full of course).

10- we've been having problems with our car starting lately. i took it into big o today to get it fixed, afraid it would be something like the started. luckily, all it needed was the battery terminals replaced and $26 later, we're good as new! how great is that?

11- i love how much sabrina & fiona are in awe of their surroundings. while d was working on homework this evening, i took the kiddos out for a walk in their stroller. we went carseat free this time, so they were just sitting up in the stroller on their own. we walked a few blocks and they didn't make a peep the entire time. i kept checking on them to see if they'd fallen asleep, but they were wide awake, turning their heads from side to side to just soak everything in, mouths in little "o's" just lapping it all up. i just love how aware they are becoming!

12- i'm sitting on the couch, while d is at the desktop working on a paper. it's quiet now cuz the girls are asleep. he's working so hard. i just feel super grateful and so blessed to have him for a husband. i love him so much and i love him more every day (sorry, i got the sappies there for a sec)

i could go on, but i better stop now, since i'm at #12 instead of just ten like i said. our life is busy! and crazy! and overwhelming a lot of the time, but when i sit down and think about it, i have no reason to complain! sure, it seems like there are days where i don't get anything done, or the girls cry all day, or i'm just so tired. it's hard sometimes because d would rather be working, and i'd rather be at home, but... i have a good job that pays the bills so that d can focus on school and get done quicker. f & s are awesome little sweeties who just bring so much love and laughter to our little tiny apartment. we are just so blessed! all we have to do is remember that.

what is something you are grateful for?

mealtime monday

wow, what a tremendous response from last week! (haha, just kidding peeps. this is obviously more for my benefit than anyone else's, because it forces me to plan our menu!)

our menu this week includes:
monday- leftovers
tuesday- homemade tomato basil pizza
wednesday- slow cooked pork carnitas
thursday- chicken & rice
friday- out with family
saturday- to Barker's
sunday- to Robison's

kind of a lazy week cooking wise, but it's just one of those weeks. we have a lot of family things this weekend including conference and my cousins being sealed to their wonderful daughter elizabeth! i don't mind though because it means lots of family time and less cooking for me!

here is a new easy recipe we love

thai chicken
2 large chicken breasts
3/4 cup salsa
1/4 cup peanut butter
1 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp lime juice

put chicken in crock pot. mix together salsa, peanut butter, soy sauce, and lime juice. pour over chicken. cover and cook on low for 8 hours, or high for 4. serve shredded or whole over rice. i like it over basmati rice best, but brown rice is a healthier alternative and it's still tasty.

i'll admit, i was a bit skeptical of the salsa/peanut butter mix, but it is SO tasty!
we love trying new things! what is your favorite easy dinner?

22 March 2011

Mealtime Monday

here's a confession: i'm not a big budgeter. i don't really have time to write everything down or put it into an excel sheet. so my budget is this: "don't spend money." since we're a one-income household for the time being, i've started to work on a weekly menu to save $$$. my sister-in-law posts her weekly menus on her blog, so i decided to start doing this as well.
from now on, i'll be sharing my weekly menu and a favorite recipe on mondays. we'll be doing a lot of slow-cooker recipes because i work until 7 most days. in the few weeks that we've been doing this, we have already seen huge benefits!

menu plan

frozen pizza & salad
eating out/date night
eating at grandma robison's

and now for a favorite recipe!

Eggplant Lasagna
1 eggplant pared and sliced in 1/4 inch slices; flour each piece and fry in a little oil till brown on each side. Drain on paper towels, then layer in a casserole dish. Between each layer add a tsp of tomato sauce on each slice and add shredded mozzerella. 1 eggplant usually makes 3 layers in an 8x12 inch casserole dish. Top with Mozzerella as the final topping. Then bake at 350 for 20 minutes or until cheese starts bubbling.

Cooking Tip: To get out some of the water in the eggplant, and to have a less soggy cooked vegetable, You can slice Eggplant, salt the slices generously on each side, let sit on a grid or paper towels for about 1/2 hour, then wipe off any salt that's left. The salt helps get rid of the water, either by absorbing it or by causing the eggplant to sweat. Cooking Tip: To rid eggplant of bitterness, slices the pieces into saltwater as you peel it. Pat dry before cooking.

16 March 2011

tie your napkin 'round your neck, cherie

and we'll provide the rest! (name that song...)

so the girls have loved eating real food! we've only had them try a few things so far, but they always gobble it right up! so far we've had oatmeal, apple juice and apple sauce, sweet potatoes and carrots. i think we'll try pears and squash next.

they make such a mess when they eat, but i don't really have tons pictures of it (cuz it's hard to take pictures and feed two girls at once, one of which is usually on my lap). we've managed to snap a few though.



sabrina & fiona are also starting to love their stuffed animals, arnie (an elephant) and paulo (a giraffe)! sabrina loves to grab arnie's trunk and suck on his tusks, and fiona loves to grab paulo around the neck and squeeze him tight. and lick him of course!

one morning, as we were getting the girls out of their blankets, we found sabrina like this:

somehow her nightgown had slipped down to a scandalous level, and we of course, being good parents, took a picture of it!

on sunday, their 5 monthiversary, sabrina decided to roll over onto her tummy. not to be outdone, fiona followed her on monday (march 14). uh oh!

we've been having lots of fun in the barker home. hope you guys are doing well too!

09 March 2011

Dinner Menu and Sleep Deprivation

I know that I haven't written in a long time but, I have made a goal to write at least once a month. Now you and a billion of your friends will get a once a month minimum subscription to my blog voice or should I say "bloice". You might be asking, "Dallin, why haven't you written in your family blog?" Here are a choice few from my list of one million reasons why I have not written in this blog. For example, I have been a full time student, taking 16 credits of educational law, Spanish, math and multicultural education classes. Or how about this; I'm a full time father of twins. Does that satisfy as a good excuse? If it doesn't I can email you my list or you can visit my website at www.onemillionreasonsnottowriteintheblog.org/dallin'sreasons\\therereallyareamilliongoodreasons.
I digress.
Now back by popular demand for a once a month appearance:
Dallin's blog post #12011
So I have a few things to say. First, my wife is a genius! She came up with this brilliant idea of a dinner menu. It sounds simple yet, it has saved our bacon; so to speak. The reasons behind the dinner menu are that Becki works late and I'm taking care of the girls and usually food doesn't cook itself. Therefore the solution, crock-pot dinners. Take note that this isn't always the case but, we have become fairly creative with dinner as of late.
The secret behind the menu is the menu. I know that doesn't make sense but if you shop with a purpose then you only buy what you need to make dinner for that week and you save money in the process. Furthermore, since you already know what you are having for dinner there is no questions as to what you will make. You never have to ask if you have the ingredients you need because you would have already bought the ingredients earlier that week. Genius! I just wanted to let you know how awesome my wife is.

Oh! I almost forgot. We have had some luck with the girls sleeping through the night but no more. For some reason Fiona and Sabrina have been waking up a few times through the night and it is a cruel existence to be living.
One trick that I have learned is this: Don't let them hit each other in the face. Once again it sounds simple but it is more difficult than
you can imagine. At night the girls like to flail their arms about like whirling dervishes and unintentionally slap each other in the face. One solution is to sack the stuffed animals and create a iron curtain to protect from the onslaught of fists and poking fingers. However, the wall of animals is not yet impenetrable so another course of action needs to be found.

Well this is life and it is a good one! Peace and Love!

01 March 2011


it's funny how much things can change in just one year.

one year ago today, i went to the doctor for a pregnancy test and found out it was positive. then the tech asked me what my plans with the pregnancy were. she was asking me if i was planning on continuing the pregnancy. i said OF COURSE i'll be keeping the little rice dream (it's what we called the babe for the first few weeks)! the following months were hard of course, but totally worth it to hold those little tykes in my arms on october 13, 2010

i wonder what the next year holds for us...

(no, i'm not pregnant, just musing.)