Monday, July 29, 2013

Cinnamon Rolls, Stainless Steel, and Sparklers...

So I am now two weeks post-surgery and I'm still doing well.  Unfortunately, I was a little too optimistic about the recovery in that first post most likely because I was living on Percocet (spelled correctly in this post as opposed to the last one).  Once I weaned myself off the heavy pain meds I had some more ups and downs.  It's hard to tell if the pain I sometimes feel now is just from the surgery recovery or if it's the same chronic pain as before.  It's definitely in the same place and feels similar, but they did a lot of lasering and cutting right there, so it could just be the healing that's hurting.  Only time will tell, I guess.  I've been up and moving around now for about a week, so that's been great, I just need to not overdo it because I still get tired so so so quickly.

Other than surgery, though, let me catch up on the happenings at the Rackham household lately.  That first Sunday I stayed home from church because I didn't feel up to it yet, but something crazy happened that night--Dave played a board game with me!  This is a testament to how not-well I was feeling because Dave hates playing pretty much all games except Settlers of Catan--the one game I don't like.  We played Monopoly and he actually enjoyed it, except that I won, which was unfortunate for him, but in general it was a positive experience I think, so maybe I'll get him to play with me again sometime.  (Unlikely, but there's always hope!)


Once Monday rolled around I couldn't procrastinate my research any further, so I buckled down and spent lots of hours researching all about attachment theory and where it came from and thinking about how I'm going to attack my thesis.

I really enjoy reading all these articles and studies.  I was talking to my older sister the other day and she was talking about how they're hard to comprehend and take forever to read because they're such a different writing style than we've ever read (as English and Humanities majors), but it really has started to come so easily to me.  I guess it's just that practice makes perfect.  I absolutely love being able to read the actual statistics from the study and draw my own conclusions about it rather than having to rely on third party summaries and often inaccurate predictions based on the research.  It makes me totally jazzed to start my program in the fall.  I can't wait!!


On Wednesday we had Pioneer Day here in Utah.  To be honest, I don't think we all really know what we're celebrating.  It's sort of turned into another 4th of July here.  There are American flags in everyone's yards, fireworks all night long, and everyone gets the day off work to go do the same things we do on the 4th.  It was fun, but I don't really get it--I thought we were celebrating our pioneer heritage and how a lot of our ancestors trekked across the country to the Salt Lake Valley.  How does the American flag fit into that?  (Maybe just because America was the one place we could practice our religion freely?)  Nevertheless, anytime fireworks are involved, I'm game.  We went over to Russ and Annie's apt. and ate the biggest snow cones of our lives, watched Top Gun (I'd never seen it!), and shot off some little fireworks.  It was a blast, and we actually had some pretty good little fireworks for barely spending any money on them :)  We loved the sparklers we got too--they weren't the kind that shoot out, they just kind of crackled and popped, so cute.  

Annie and Russ
Dave and Me

We were shouting spells at each other like the true
nerds we are, and I said "Expelliarmus!" and Dave kind of
let his arm fly backwards and no one understood what
had happened until he explained, "I was being disarmed!".
Here's me cracking up after he explained what
he'd been thinking.  

So all things said, we had a good Pioneer Day.  Dave got to go fishing all day long and caught a few on the Provo River.  Oh, and sorry about the poor photo quality^^.  It was the best our little iPhones could do.  


So here in our University Mall in Provo they put a new Cinnabon in and the aroma of freshly baked cinnamon rolls assaults you every time you open the door to the mall so it's nearly impossible to resist buying one.  Even though I frequent the mall as little as possible, it's still absolutely ridiculous to spend so much on just one little cinnamon roll. 

So I've been thinking about how I can fix this dilemma I'm in and I started looking all over the internet for a Cinnabon recipe.  My mom has one that always works perfectly for her, and they really taste just like Cinnabon, but I can't ever get them to tun out.  So I decided I'd branch out with a new recipe.  After a while of searching, I felt pretty confident that this one would be great so I set about making them.  

The dough turned out perfectly and they rose exactly like they were supposed to (up, not out), which is rare for me, and I was so excited to start baking them and put them in the oven.  But after about 30 minutes of no cinnamon roll aroma filling our house (which is half the point of making them at home, right?), I felt the oven and I could rest my hand on the was supposed to be at 400 degrees!  I turned it up even higher to see if that would help and let them go for about 15 more minutes.  When I realized our oven was broken I was distraught.  My perfect cinnamon rolls had been sitting in a lukewarm oven for 45 minutes just drying out and falling.

I called one of our friends from the ward and asked if I could use her oven.  She was very kind and let me bake them at her house, which gave her house the delicious aroma, haha.  So they cooked perfectly in her oven, but like I said, they had sort of shrunk in size because of sitting so long in the warm oven that dried them out.  They were still salvageable, though, so I just smothered them in cream-cheese frosting and they turned out alright.  I just wish our oven had broken on anything other than cinnamon rolls.  They take literally all day to make with all the rising and sitting and rising again and sitting again.  So to be ruined right at the end was just tragic.  


Come Saturday, my mom's sister Kendra and her 4 boys were here in Utah and the oldest (16 I think) wanted to go climbing with Dave so they climbed in the morning, and then we went looking for ovens when they got back.  We took a break in the middle of shopping around for dinner with Kendra and the kids at Texas Roadhouse.  It was delicious and Kendra was treating as a thank you for taking Tanner climbing.  As we left Dave told me, "I've been taking the wrong people climbing!   I need to take people who are going to take us out to dinner afterwards!"  Haha, he was joking, of course, but it was really nice of Kendra to do that for us and it was fun to catch up with them.  

Anyway, back to the ovens, we figured out the problem with our oven--the element had burnt out--so we thought, great, just a $40 fix!  But after googling it for a while, we learned that with our specific oven once it burns out, it burns out basically every year after that.  We need a new oven anyway since this one is impossible (undercooks and overcooks almost everything) and we hate the coil stovetop.  So we looked around yesterday and found a great deal on one that's stainless, has a glass stovetop instead of coils, and is actually a true convection as well!  Needless to say, I am one excited girl right now.  It's supposed to come later today, so I really hope it looks good in our kitchen. 

It looks huge in this picture for some reason, but in real life it doesn't--
and our new oven matches it,
so it'll be better once that's under it instead of this old one.  
While we were out looking, we also found an over-the-range microwave on an amazing sale.  We'd seen it at other stores and online already for about $150 more than we found it for at the Sears Outlet, and then when we went to buy it, they gave us another 20% off!  So it was really an amazing find, and it's a good quality one so it shouldn't break on us!  We installed that late Saturday night and just about killed ourselves.  But it was so worth it.  We have counter space!!  (Something we seriously lacked before with our counter-top microwave)

While buying a new oven and microwave is a pretty steep unexpected expense, Dave's work made a mistake in his paycheck for the last couple of months so we had an extra $500 on this paycheck that we were able to put towards it.  We were very grateful and humbled once again to realize that the Lord is constantly watching over and providing for us.  


Please excuse the horrible picture.  No make-up
and running back and forth between houses
for the cinnamon rolls will do this to you. 
I forgot to mention the paint!  So we went over to our friends Jordan and Maddy's house (same girl who let me use her oven for cinnamon rolls) and she had painted her living room a beautiful green-blue-teal-ish color and we loved it.  Since paint colors are impossible to pick I decided I was going to just steal her color for my study.  I've been wanting to paint it differently than the rest of the house but haven't had the gumption to start trying new colors.  It's called tranquility and it looks lighter in real life than in this picture, but after the cinnamon roll fiasco, we painted the room really quickly before heading out to Olive Garden for dinner with Dave's grandparents who were in town.  

We didn't paint where the ceiling meets the wall because eventually we'll be putting crown up there so it doesn't matter if it's painted or not yet.  When my mom saw the color she was like, "That's Tiffany Blue!  Just like your, you really like that color, huh?".  And she's right!  I love it :)  And eventually that room will be a nursery, so I figure it's fitting for a baby, too, right?


Now that I'm writing all this down, no wonder I'm still in a little bit of pain.  I've hardly given my body any time to relax and heal itself!  Hopefully this week will be a little less crazy...

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