Friday, April 25, 2008

New Kickers

Just had to share the SCORE we got at Ross the other day. We went looking for video game controllers for our Gamecube (which we found as well) but then we took a glance through the shoe area and Peter found some sweet track shoes for $6! Then he felt bad because he was getting some shoes so we went to look for some for me and had a struggle at first but then happened upon these beauties... $8! They are my new favorite shoes and the color scheme I am going to incorporate in my house! I am so excited, they were just the thing to get me motivated!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Busy Busy Bee

At least that is what I feel like. Do you ever have those times where you feel SO busy and yet can't seem to get anything done? That is kind of what this week has been like for me. Although I promised myself to blog about some of my "crafting" and so here is what I have created this week ~ One more picture to come (it was accidentally deleted last night - UGGH!)
Cute Onesie baby outfit for a baby whose parents don't know the gender yet!
*I will be taking this baby's mommy's maternity pictures TODAY!! I am so excited. The pictures will be posted on my Eyes of Mad Blog.

Here is a way cute apron that I made for Peter and my friend who is on a mission. This is for her birthday (which was some time in Feb... oops) But she LOVES aprons so I figured a little homemade lovin in the kitchen is always good!

~If you would like a custom made apron just post a comment and I will e-mail you back with how much it will be! ~

The Crusade of a Life Time

So Peter and I just got back from a Primerica meeting (a company we have been involved with for almost 5 months now) and a few parts of this article were shared there and I wanted to share it with you... Here is the link if you want to check out the entire article for yourself American Chronicle.

The Escalating Mortgage Crisis: Questions, Answers & A Company You Should Know About
George Boelcke FCI
February 17, 2008
"Why hasn´t there been legislation passed to mandate income verifications, simple plain-English disclosure and banning mortgages where the payments don´t even cover the interest, and the balance actually goes up? It would have prevented many kinky brokers getting millions of people confused between "you´re approved" and "you qualify for this loan and these payments."

There is a huge amount of blame to be shared in this fiasco. But I haven´t heard any company take any responsibility for anything. Nobody has stepped forward and acknowledged their role in millions of families now living a financial nightmare.
Isn´t it funny, in a sick way, that almost ever lender now advertising fixed rate loans? These are many of the same lenders who are waist-deep in the nightmare they were instrumental in creating. Now a bunch of them are the "good guys" that want to help you?

For most people, the most important criteria of who gets their business should be the credibility of a lender. Just because someone pays money to be on TV or the radio does NOT make them credible. It only makes them advertisers. Credibility is measured by what a company does – not what they say, and there is now ample evidence of what the cost has been to ignore that difference.

Yet there is a huge company, Primerica Financial Services, a division of Citigroup, that has made vast numbers of refinance mortgage loans through a product they call SMART. NONE of these are adjustable rate mortgages. Read that again: Primerica has never originated any ARMs with their refinance products (done through Citicorp Trust Bank). Their clients are watching the mortgage crisis from the sidelines and the safely of a fixed-rate term and consolidation, thinking: "that could have been me in a foreclosure…"

Because they refuse to do false, misleading, or gimmick advertising, they need to work harder to make themselves known, in spite of doing the right thing, in the right way, all the time? How sad that credibility can so often be bought by simple advertising. But if you´re looking for a second opinion, some options, or perhaps a way out, it might be worth your time to get in touch with them.

No, I don´t work for them, nor any of their associated companies, but there´s a good reason Primerica has its own chapter in the It´s Your Money book!"
*Here is Kody and Trish, they were the ones who first introduced us to Primerica and how greatful we are to them.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Published Author!!!

Yes, this would be included in a biography of my husband! Peter wrote a paper on Animal Abuse and Neglect and his teacher really liked it so they worked together and edited it a little bit and submitted it to the local news paper and they published it recently! Here is the article:

There's no excuse for animal cruelty
Animal cruelty essentially breaks down into two categories: abuse and neglect. Violent forms of entertainment like cockfighting and dog fighting frequently kill or maim animals. An animal injured beyond repair most of the time will be destroyed or tortured for more sick entertainment. People who participate in such deeds must have little or no feeling or love in their hearts.

But because most people are good, we can assume that only a small percentage actually physically abuse their pets in this manner. Neglect, on the other hand, occurs all too often. As the Australian newspaper, the Sunday Territorian has reported: "Neglect and failure to provide proper care is also cruelty." If you own a pet, please consider the Golden Rule: Treat others as you would like to be treated, and extend that to now include the beloved animals in your life. By preventing animal cruelty in our own circle of influence we can make a difference that will not only change the situation around us but will help change the world. Do just a small part and we can save animals and humans alike from lives of horrible suffering and fear.

Passover is over

And it was awesome! Here are some of the pictures from the big feast:
Here is our Seder plate which was really interesting and helped us to understand a lot of the traditions behind Passover. Below is pictured the Potato Leek Fritters with Lemon-Cumin Yogurt they are SO delicious and pretty easy to make because you use the pre-made hash browns you buy at the grocery store. My Mother-in-Law made this awesome looking salad! It was good too!Here is our roasted lamb and left over chicken from the Matzo Ball Soup - this lamb wasn't my favorite but the grocery stores around here don't keep themselves too well stocked with different cuts of lamb. Next time I am for sure searching for a LEG of LAMB not settling for the lamb shank which was very tough and chewy.
Peter did a great job researching and explaining the Passover traditions and we all learned so much. I totally encourage everyone to try this out with holidays that are native to your ancestory or even if they are not it just helps you become more "well rounded".

Monday, April 14, 2008


Well we aren't Jewish but I love learning about different cultures and their holidays and traditions.

Peter and I will be having dinner over at his parents house and hopefully going all out for a Passover Feast.

I found my dinner recipes on My Recipes and a yummy dessert on The Food Network.

Here is my Menu:

For starters a soup - Matzo Ball Soup from Cooking Light, April 2004.

Our Main Course will consist of - Marinated Lamb with Orange Chimichurri from Cooking Light, April 2006.
Passover Chopped Layered Salad from Cooking Light, April 2004.and Potato Latkes (link will come later).
*Matzo Meal can be found here.

We will then round out our feast with a fabulous, FLOURLESS Chocolate Torte from

Keeping with tradition we will also have a Passover Seder Plate (pictured above) which has great symbolic reference to the story of The Children's plight from Egypt (which is traditionally read during dinner).

The things that are included on the Sedar plate are as follows:

Charoset - Represents the mortar the Jewish people made to construct the pyramids while they were slaves to the Egyptians. Charoset usually consists of chopped apples, walnuts and sweet wine. (We don't drink so I will be substituing the wine for grape juice.)
Karpas - This is usually represented by parsley or some other green vegetable which is a symbol of spring. The parsley is typically dipped in salt water, reminding us of the slaves' tears.
Beitzah - A rosted egg (or an egg that has been hard boiled and then placed under a broiler) indicates to us the temple sacrifice and how the cycle of life is ever continuous.
Zeroah - The Lamb's Shankbone which is a symbol of the ancient Passover sacrifice. This bone (doesn't necessarily have to be from a lamb) needs to be roasted until dark brown.
Mar'or - Means bitter herb to remind us of the bitterness of slavery. (Horseradish is most commenly used).
Chazeret - This is the last place and it can hold either the saltwater or more bitter herbs like lettuce.

The other thing that is included on the seder plate are three Matzo'swhich symbolizes how quickly the Jews fled from Egypt leaving no time to allow their bread to rise. The Matzos are either wrapped in cloth or covered and then borken and eaten at specific points during the meal. The first item mentioned above is placed in the spot nearest the person leading the Seder. As the leader reads each part of the story of the Jew's plight from Egypt the corresponding part of the seder plate is eaten on top of the first Matzo bread.
The second Matzo bread is used for the traditional blessing, Hamotzi, that is proununced over the bread during holidays.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Hider-odious Lamp PART 2

Remember this gross thing? Well the ugly duckling has finally become a SWAN! (Retro/modern style... )The whole thing cost: $5 for the lamp at the Trift Store, $3 for the spray paint and I have yet to cover the lamp shade, but I will let you know the cost of that too!

I also painted two other lamps while I was at it and I LOVE how they turned out too! This is probably my favorite part of the whole lamp!

Monday, April 7, 2008

Form before Function? I think not!

Looking for a cheap and quick kitchen update? Well here is my two cents on the project...

Measure the wall behind your stove, write down the measurement and bring it with you! (This is a very important step if you don't write it down and bring it you will probably end up getting the wrong size... trust me.) Buy a piece of sheet metal from the local hardware store (I think we went to Home Depot) that is approximately the same size as the area you measured (if it is a little bigger than that is ok (too small is probably not a good idea though).

Bring that home and screw it into the wall.

Get some Magnetic Storage Tins and fill with your favorite spices and herbs. This makes for a convenient spice wall right above where you use them most... your stove top! I did this right after we moved in and I have LOVED it! It also helps bounce light, the metal is pretty reflective and is a great illuminator for a small and generally dark space.
*There are different types of storage tins, some have holes in the side of them for sprinkling or pouring and the bigger ones I got at IKEA.

Hider-odious Lamp

Ok so my friend Alli and I had a bit of a girl's night out on Saturday during the Priesthood session of conference and we went to Tai Pan as well as the DI. Well at the DI we found some priceless pieces of decor that were absolute MUST HAVES! She found this way awesome end table that was made of really sturdy wood and had some pretty cool geometric shapes on it. She is going to paint it black. I am so excited to see that.

I found what is going to be the next craze for sure... my 1970's lamp complete with 50 ft shade! HA HA... Well this will suffice as the "before" picture. Once I give it a little makeover I will post more so you can see the beauty that lies within!
These were some quick pictures so they are a bit fuzzy but I am sure you get the idea!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Live, Learn and then get Luvs...

So being a newly married couple and having never really had to do a ton on your lonesome before you tend to learn a lot! Here are some things we have learned recently...

Never buy the knock off brand of Match light Charcoal. We tried grilling last night and the charcoal would not stay lit! We continued to douse it in the charcoal lighter fluid but to no avail! KINGSFORD

is the way to go!

*If you want a sweet grilling recipe see the Grilled Asparagus and Polynesian Marinated chicken post below... MMMMM! Also another good one is from Tyler Florence in his show on the Food Network, Tyler's Ultimate - Grilled Chicken with Garlic Herb Dressing and Grilled Lemons.

Keeping your house clean is an EVERYDAY ordeal! But if you do a little everyday then it won't become a disaster area and you feel better about yourself. (Ok this may not be true for Peter... the feeling better about yourself but I sure do when I have a clean house!)

Warning: Keeping your house clean everyday may turn you into a NEAT FREAK

And last but not least, never walk outside with bare feet when it is dark and the weather is warm... can you say ARACHNOPHOBIA!!!
*I doubt that this is the exact type of spider that I found in our stair well last night when I almost went out to get the mail but it was HUGE and brown... uggh!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Grillin' Time

Here is some of the yummiest grill recipes you will find! Plan on two chicken thighs or one chicken breast per person and 5-6 asparagus stems per person.
This is Grilled Asparagus -

Drizzle with Olive Oil (enough to coat)
Drizzle with Balsamic Vinager. Rub the oil and vinager so to evenly coat the asparagus.
Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Put the asparagus in tin foil
Slice a lemon in quarters and place on top of the asparagus.
Grill in the tin foil for 10 minutes or until almost tender then slide off of the tin foil directly onto the grill and cook until black grill marks show.

Polynesian Marinated Chicken

1-2 cans of sliced or chunck Pineapple (divide the juice from the slices)
1/4 cup Soy Sauce
1 Tablespoon Sugar
1/8 teaspoon Pepper
1 Tablespoon Garlic (crushed or minced)
1 Tablespoon Honey
1/2 teaspoon Ginger Root (Fresh or powdered, which ever you have on hand)
1/4 cup Green Onions (I have made it without this before and it still tasted wonderful)
1 teaspoon Sesame Oil
1/2 cup Brown Sugar (more if you prefer but I thought this tasted just fine)
Squirt of lemon juice
Grated orange peel of one orange

Arrange chicken in a shallow dish. Combine pineapple juice (save pineapple for skewers or just grilling) and the rest of the ingredients. Marinate 30 minutes or overnight, covered in refrigerator.

Grill on medium for 10-20 minutes (keep an eye on them for doneness). Grill pineapple at the same time (if you used pineapple rings just set them directly on the grill, if you used chunks place them in tin foil). Use remaining marinade as a basting sauce for the chicken while grilling.


Will You Wear Blue?

I am not sure if you have gotten this in an e-mail so if not I would like to share it with you. I usually just delete those silly forwards because to me they are a waste of my time but a lady at work sent this to me today and I feel like I want to share it with everyone.

First Place
Todd Heisler The Rocky Mountain News
When 2nd Lt. James Cathey's body arrived at the Reno Airport, Marines climbed into the cargo hold of the plane and draped the flag over his casket as passengers watched the family gather on the tarmac. During the arrival of another Marine's casket last year at Denver International Airport, Major Steve Beck described the scene as one of the most powerful in the process: "See the people in the windows? They'll sit right there in the plane, watching those Marines. You gotta wonder what's going through their minds, knowing that they're on the plane that brought him home," he said. "They're going to remember being on that plane for the rest of their lives. They're going to remember bringing that Marine home. And they should."

Second Place
Todd Heisler The Rocky Mountain News
The night before the burial of her husband's body, Katherine Cathey refused to leave the casket, asking to sleep next to his body for the last time. The Marines made a bed for her, tucking in the sheets below the flag. Before she fell asleep, she opened her laptop computer and played songs that reminded her of 'Cat,' and one of the Marines asked if she wanted them to continue standing watch as she slept. "I think it would be kind of nice if you kept doing it," she said. "I think that's what he would have wanted."


Very soon, you will see a great many people wearing
blue every Friday. The reason? Americans who support
our troops used to be called the 'silent majority' We
are no longer silent, and are voicing our love for
God, country and home in record breaking numbers.

We are not organized, boisterous or overbearing.
Many Americans, like you, me and all our friends,
simply want to recognize that the vast majority of
America supports our troops. Our idea of showing
solidarity and support for our troops with dignity and
respect starts this Friday -- and continues each and
every Friday until the troops all come home, sending a
deafening message that ... every red-blooded American
who supports our men and women afar, will wear
something blue.

Cranberry-Orange Muffins

Cranberry-Orange Muffins, originally uploaded by eyesofmad.

Cranberry-Orange Muffins
These are some of the best muffins EVER! I found the recipe on I have also exchanged the cranberries for raspberries... oh that was really good too!

Cranberry-Orange Muffins
Bake these a day ahead, and store cooled muffins in an airtight container. Freeze any leftovers in heavy-duty zip-top plastic bags.

2 cups all-purpose flour (about 9 ounces)
1 cup sugar, divided
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons grated orange rind
3/4 cup orange juice (about 1 large orange)
1/4 cup canola oil
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2 cups coarsely chopped fresh cranberries (about 8 ounces)
1/3 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
Cooking spray

Preheat oven to 400°.
Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Set aside 1 tablespoon sugar. Combine flour, remaining sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda in a large bowl; make a well in center of mixture.

Combine rind, juice, oil, and egg in a small bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Add to flour mixture, stirring just until moist. Fold in cranberries and walnuts. Spoon batter into 16 muffin cups coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle evenly with reserved sugar. Bake at 400° for 15 minutes or until the muffins spring back when touched lightly in center. Run a knife or spatula around outer edge of each muffin cup. Carefully remove each muffin; place on a wire rack.

16 servings (serving size: 1 muffin)

Nutritional Information
CALORIES 169(30% from fat); FAT 5.6g (sat 0.5g,mono 2.5g,poly 2.4g); PROTEIN 2.5g; CHOLESTEROL 2.4mg; CALCIUM 35mg; SODIUM 236mg; FIBER 1.3g; IRON 1mg; CARBOHYDRATE 27.9g

Rita LaReau , Cooking Light, NOVEMBER 2005

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Who are you?

Hello World!

We are the Andersons. Madly in love, living box underground (at least that is what it feels like), working, playing, and all of the things in between.

We love entertaining, traveling, and spending good ol' quality time together.

We also love our Savior Jesus Christ and Father in Heaven. We recognize their plan for us and feel their love every day.

Come get to know us as we trudge our way through newly married life and the joys that lie a wait within.

All the Best!


Valentines Day Dessert

Valentines Day Dessert, originally uploaded by eyesofmad.

Valentines Day Dessert
Here is my version of the "Ultimate Valentines Day Cake"

1 brownie box mix
vanilla ice cream
2 oz semi-sweet chocolate (I use Bakers)
2 oz unsweetened chocolate
4 oz white chocolate
Strawberries (for garnish)
Raspberries (for garnish)

Chocolate Lid:

Prepare the pan by placing a sheet of tin foil on a baking sheet and then placing the spring form heart shaped pan on top. Fold sides of tin foil around the pan. Spray with cooking spray.
Melt both the semi-sweet and unsweetened chocolate together in a bowl over a pan of simmering water. Do the same with the white chocolate.
Drop spoonfulls of chocolate one at a time into pan. Tilt pan until evenly covered in chocolate. Use a knife or toothpick to swirl giving it the marbled effect.
Place in the freezer 20 minutes or until set.

In the mean time, prepare brownie mix as suggested on the box.

Once the Chocolate Lid is set remove from pan and cover in the tin foil and place in the fridge.

Using the same heart shaped pan with the bottom of the spring form now attached, place a cup in the middle of the pan and then spray edges of cup and pan with cooking spray.
Pour brownie batter into heart shaped pan being careful to spread it evenly and not drip on the cup (if there are drippings on the cup they will burn so wipe them off with a paper towel). Bake as directed on the box.

Once brownie is cooled, remove the cup and fill the hole with Vanilla Ice Cream; place in the freezer.

When ready to serve, hull half of the strawberries and then cut the un-hulled strawberries in half. The rest of the strawberries slice. Arrange the berries so they are thicker on once side so as to make the lid tilt to one side. On the thicker side use the un-hulled strawberries pointing towards the outside. Place chocolate lid on top and then serve to your guests.

*If you don't leave the brownie in the freezer for too many days it will not get very hard and so cutting should not be a problem.
**Take the Chocolate Lid off to cut and just brake pieces off to serve.