Wednesday, February 23, 2011

TAKS Snacks for Dover

Sisters- as many of you know, it is TAKS season. Our children are beginning to focus on the year end exams. We are currently collecting snacks for the students at Dover Elementary.

We are working to collect 650 individually wrapped snacks. ( The "Austin" type sandwich crackers are ideal. The snacks should not be greasy or leaking salt, colors or flavoring. Chips are out.)

You may bring the snacks to church and I will deliver them to the school.

The testing process makes for a long day and the snacks help to re-energize our students. Thank you in advance for your generous donations.

Jennifer Gaines


Dear Sisters,

On the 27th of Feb we have the opportunity to review President Monson's General Conference address titled "The Divine Gift of Gratitude" (click on the title to read the talk). What he is teaching us is a blessing we can experience every time we are willing to feel gratitude. I believe that the blessing will also grow as we express the gratitude. Some of you may have read When Bad Things Happen to Good People (excellent book). Of course, the title of the book is true. I am able to bear personal witness that if we will interject gratitude in our life (in any way we are able) that the "bad things" that may happen to us will be easier to bear and we receive more benefit from these trials.

Please prepare to share your thoughts and feelings about gratitude on February 27th.

Shirlee Chaillet

6 more days!!!!

There are only 6 more days till our FIESTA of FRIENDSHIP! Find a friend to bring Tuesday, March 1 at 7pm in the cultural hall at our building. Dinner, music, fun surprises and not to mention - each one of you!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


I hope you are all planning to attend our Stake Emergency Preparedness Fair.

Saturday, February 26th
9 a.m. to Noon
Stake Center (on Bowser Rd.)

The stake is putting forth a great effort in order to empower it's members to improve their self-sufficiency. This will be an inspiring event! Make an effort to come and get ideas and information. If you have not done so, I suggest getting a BINDER to orgainize all of your Food Storage/Preparedness information. Then, when you get information on a certain topic, you simply stick it right in your binder. Purchase some binder tabs and also pockets/sheet protectors to put items in in your binder that can't be hole punched. (Like the CD they will give to each family who comes to the fair!!!)

Just a word to those who may be feeling a bit overwhelmed: COME!--and after you have seen all the possibilities, pick ONE thing to start working on. No one can do it all at once, so keep it simple and start small. (...you know you should!)

See you there!

Speaking of Bread...Let's talk SERVICE

Last night we had an interest group at Julia Smith's home (actually it is the permanent home for the Dallas Texas Mission President and she and Pres Smith are currently serving as such)to learn about baking/making "artisan" bread. (I want to thank all the women who attend these and make them so successful!)
When I think of all the responsibilities of the Smiths, I am most impressed that she agreed to do this for us. But it was the quality of the event. President Smith stayed briefly to show us how to make a pizza crust and then a pizza. Then Julia showed us how to make bread and bagels and then it morphed into her granola and yogurt. And we had so many samples to "graze" on during the demonstrations. (I can only think of the word "graze" as I was so full when I got home.)
I know they had just had Elder Ringwood and wife in their home for a week and yet she made so much available to all of us who attended.
Then, she made copies of other recipes the sisters wanted.
David serves with President Smith so I am aware of their schedule. This event has reinforced the truth for me THAT - the more you do - the more you CAN do. The more you serve, the more you can and DO serve.
I have just come to treasure and love all the women who are so busy and have such full schedules yet CAN and DO serve. It enriches my life and encourages me to do more from their examples of service!

Monday, February 14, 2011


My first real memory of this day was seeing a HUGE red lace and fabric covered box of candy waiting for my mother (from my father) on our dining room table. She kept the box for years and used it to store letters etc.
Of course as I attended elementary school and made my Valentine's Mailbox or some other corny container to get valentines from my classmates, I started getting a glimpse of what this day could mean. I could remember someone without looking like a "needy" person and I could feel remembered. I kept many of the valentine's day cards for years.
I love this day. It gives me a "focused" way to tell people I love and care about them. So I will. I love and care about all of you in this Dallas 4th Relief Society. It is so true that you learn to LOVE the people you serve. Love is not a passive emotion. It is not something one can "wait" to feel from others. That is freeing to me. I do not have to know how anyone feels - I can LOVE each of you - my very own decision.
AND I have made that decision!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Lesson This Sunday

for Sunday's lesson I ask that everyone ponder the following 3 questions after reading Lesson #27;
1. How is Work an Eternal Principle?
2. How does Idleness affect us as individuals, families and communtities?
3. What suggestions do you have for teaching our children to work and to value work?
I appreciate everyone's participation in the lesson and hopefully together we can inspire one another to try a little harder and do a little better.
Fronda Wiseman

Nehemiah - "a mind to work"

In studying the lesson for this week, Gospel Principles #27 "Work and Personal Responsibility", I have enjoyed rereading the story of Nehemiah from the Old Testament.
Nehemiah was given permission by the King of Persia (the Israelites had been taken captive by Persia) to go back to Jerusalem to rebuild the city. He faced great opposition from the people who lived in the lands around but in the city "the people had a mind to work". (Nehemiah 4:6)
He faced persecution and threats from those around Jerusalem and they kept badgering him to come out of the city to speak with them - but - he knew they meant him harm.
He had this incredible focus and capacity to do hard work and follow through on what he knew the Lord wanted him to do. He states in Nehemiah 6:3 "I am doing a great work so that I cannot come down." He and the people of Jerusalem rebuilt the wall around the city in 52 days!
I want to be as invested in my work so that the "world" cannot distract me and that I can say - "I'm busy - I will not be distracted by you!"
One day, I am going to meet Nehemiah. I am going to let him know how impressed I was at his great example of leadership and work ethic.
He is another one of my NEW favorites from the scriptures.

Monday, February 7, 2011

TAKSing Service Project

It is that time of year again. Dover needs your help.
Dover is a Title 1 school and needs our help as they prepare to take the TAKS test. Over the next month we will be collecting snacks, and mints for the children of Dover. These items will actually be distributed on TAKS testing dates so there are some specific requests.

We need to collect the following:
650 individually wrapped snacks. (The "Austin" type sandwich crackers are ideal. The snacks shoud not be greasy or leaking salt, sugar, colors, or flavoring. Chips are out.)
1300 individually wrapped mints

Please keep these needs in mind when you do your shopping over the next few weeks.Bring your donations to the Releif Society Room on Sundays and I will take the snacks to school.

thank you in advance for your service. Our students appreciate the snacks. :)

T night

It's ward temple night tomorrow. Every time I'm planning on going to the temple, I put a "T" on my calendar. If I put "temple" it seems like something always comes up--like the adversary is trying to get me to stay away from the temple. So now my "T" is like a little trick so he won't be able to interfere. Anyone else have a Temple Day tradition?

Hope to see there tomorrow, 7pm session.

Job Hunting Tip

If you or someone you know is looking for a job I encourage you to check out ldsjobs.org. This website, operated by the church, gives the job seeker an opportunity to register and complete a profile that can be viewed by potential employers. Once the profile is ninety percent complete, a potential employer who is searching for job candidates can type in the position they wish to fill and a list of potential candidates looking for that type of position will appear on the screen. It is therefore important that candidates make sure their profile is complete, well written and accurately outlines the type of job they are looking for. If it doesn't their name might not appear on the list of candidates the employer sees.

Additionally, job seekers can look at the jobs posted under Stake Jobs. This is a list of jobs posted by staff at the LDS Employment Resource Center or by Employment Specialists in the area. Currently there is a job on this list for a Reservation and Customer Care Specialist with Hilton Hotels that allows you to work from home on a variety of schedules.

If you need help getting on ldsjobs.org or completing your profile, just contact me at s74brown@yahoo.com.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Book Club Update

The next Reading Interest Group meeting will be Tuesday, February 22, 7:30pm, at Barbara Doerk's house. We will be discussing The Wednesday Wars. Hope to see you there.

And remember, we have Stake Conference tomorrow!

Friday, February 4, 2011

My New Favorite Thing - Asphalt!

I have lived in Dallas for 35 years. I cannot remember a week of weather like this - where I was afraid to walk out and get my mail for fear of falling and not being found till Spring!
On Monday, I was riding my bike and thinking that the scenery looked grayish and dull. What a difference 4 days does for one's perspective. I would dearly love to ride my bike on the boring asphalt/cement trail and stare at the brown/gray/dull green landscape because that would mean I was out of my house exercising and looking at ANY scenery besides all the many tasks I could do in my own home "now that I have the time".
I love Dallas and Texas and the way my details (such as the weather) can change so quickly. I am grateful for the safety most of us have had from the harsh nature of this weather. I feel happy every time I hear my heater kick on and/or my water runs freely from "unfrozen" pipes.
But looking out my window this morning to a BLANKET of white makes me long for the day when I can see the asphalt!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Recipes from Eggs Cooking 101 Class

Boiling Eggs

Boiling eggs can make them tough and rubbery, and eggs that are cooked too long or at too high a temperature can get green rings around the yolk. While these eggs are still fine to eat, it's better to use a more gentle cooking method. Gentle cooking also helps prevent cracking.

To make hard-cook eggs, place clean, uncracked eggs in a single layer in a saucepan. Because fresher eggs are harder to peel, older eggs make better candidates for hard-cooking.

Add enough water to come at least 1 inch above eggs. Bring to a boil, turn heat to low and let simmer 1 minute. Turn off heat, letting eggs stand and cook for 15 minutes. Run cold water over the eggs. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Deviled Eggs

* 7 large eggs, hard boiled and peeled * 1/4 cup mayonnaise * 1 1/2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish

* 1 teaspoon prepared mustard

* Salt and pepper, for taste * Paprika, for garnishing


Halve 7 eggs lengthwise. Remove yolks and place in a small bowl. Mash yolks with a fork and stir in mayonnaise, pickle relish, and mustard. Add salt and pepper, to taste. Fill egg whites evenly with yolk mixture. Garnish with paprika. Store covered in refrigerator.

Egg Salad

4 Hard-boiled Eggs, peeled and chopped ¼ cup Light Mayonnaise 1 Celery Stalk, finely chopped 2 teaspoons Red or Sweet White Onion, finely chopped 1 ½ teaspoons Lemon Juice (freshly squeezed if possible) To taste: Salt & Freshly Ground Black Pepper (about 1/8 to 1/4 tsp of each)

Instructions: Gently toss the eggs and celery together in a medium-size bowl.

In a smaller bowl, combine mayonnaise, lemon juice, onion, salt and pepper. Fold into the eggs and celery. Season to taste with salt & the ground black pepper.

Chill for an hour or so before eating.

Ham and Spinach Quiche

16 oz. Frozen spinach (thaw under cold water, then squeeze out all water)

8 oz. Ham (sliced sandwich meat, chopped into small pieces)

½ cup chopped green onion

10 eggs mixed well

2 regular frozen pie crusts (thaw 20 minutes and prick bottom with fork)

1 cup cheese

Layer ½ spinach, ham and onions in each pie crust. Pour ½ eggs over ham mixture in each pie crust. Sprinkle cheese over top

(Place pie tins on baking sheet in case it spills over during baking)

Bake 350* for 45 minutes to I hour until center is cooked.

Schaum Torte (Dessert)

* 6 large egg whites

* 2 teaspoons vinegar

* 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

* 2 cups white sugar

* vanilla ice cream or whipped cream

* 1 (10 ounce) package frozen raspberries, thawed


1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C). Butter a large baking sheet.

2. In a large glass or metal mixing bowl, beat egg whites until foamy. Blend in vinegar and vanilla. Gradually add sugar, continuing to beat until stiff peaks form. With a large spoon, drop meringue in 8 clumps (about 4 inches diameter), close together on baking sheet. Indent the center of each clump with the back of a spoon.

3. Bake in preheated oven for 1 1/2 hours. Turn off oven, and let shells cool in the oven, about 1 hour.

4. To serve: Fill each shell with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or whipped cream , and smother with thawed raspberries.


With MORE freezing weather, here are MORE ways to be prepared:

1. Don't forget your food/water/fuel supply! (That was just a reminder!)

From the City of Dallas (Utilities and Water) we have the following important information:

Before a Freeze:

1. Wrap all exposed pipes located outside or in unheated areas of your home, including the attic.
2. Remove garden hoses from outside faucets. Insulate those faucets with hard foam covers or wrap with cloth or paper.
3. Cover vents around the foundation of your home.
4. Learn where your private water cut-off valves are and how to operate them.

In Sub-Freezing Weather:

1. Let hot and cold water drip slowly from inside faucets during a freeze.
2. Open cabinet doors under sinks on outside walls.

If you need help or emergency assistance in turning your vater off or on, you can reach the City of Dallas 24 hours a day by calling 311.


If you find yourself stuck at home on a freezy day, pull out your powdered chocolate milk that you have stored up and make a cup of "hot chocolate".

Here's an easy recipe from cooks.com (with a few modifications of my own) for those cold days when you're stuck inside with your canned vegetables...

Easy Homemade Vegetable Beef Soup

1 lb. stew meat (or ground beef)
2 (14-16 oz) cans vegetables of your choice (green beans, corn, etc.)
2 (8 oz.) cans tomato sauce
2 sm. potatoes (cook fresh ones or rehydrate potato dices)
spaghetti noodles

Season/cook meat as desired. Add tomato sauce, juice from vegetables, and water to desired consistency. Cut up potatoes or dehydrated dices to mixture with 1/8 to 1/4 cup raw rice. Break up a small amount of raw spaghetti noodles and put in soup. After rice and spaghetti are cooked, add mixed vegetables and continue cooking until thoroughly heated. Add water if necessary during cooking. Season as desired to taste. (Salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, beef boulion...whatever you have on hand that you enjoy.) You can easily double for large families.