Slow Cooker Rice Pudding

1. In a slow cooker whisk together the sweetened condensed milk and whole milk. Stir in the rice.
2. Cook, covered, until the rice is tender and the mixture has slightly thickened, 2 to 3 hours on high.
3. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and raisins.

Optional: add peaches, strawberries, or chocolate syrup. Enjoy!



This movie is filmed so well and has such a great message. It makes you realize that it can be the littlest things in life that mean so much.

I will soon be back posting more frequently. Have a happy Thursday!


Katrina B Photography

Happy Tuesday... I hope everyone had a great Labor day weekend. Wasn't it nice to have any extra day off? Bear and I spent it up in the Mountains, away from our busy life, enjoying the beauty and the quietness.

Recently, I have been busy trying to get caught up on photography. I have so many fun sessions to share with you, but for now, here's a sneak peak of my best friend and her adorable family. See more of my photography here.


our weekend

as you probably guessed, our weekend was spent up in Park City hanging out with my parents and their new puppy. the cool fresh air was so wonderful, waking up in the morning and having to wear a sweater or cuddle up with a blanket was a nice break. the 100'+  temps we have been having in Provo are getting a little old.  

on saturday we took the dogs to the lake. shento enjoyed swimming after sticks and a toy duck.  the puppy (Sadie) enjoyed chasing after shento once he got far enough away from the water. sadie was very hesitant of the lake and wouldn't go near it by herself.  but she sure loved chasing shento all around, and she quickly learned that biting his legs would get his attention.

it was such a nice weekend.
i hope this week goes by quick so we can have another great weekend.


it's a family affair

when i was growing up my family always had a dog. a sweet, lovable, black energetic dog, named coal. he was more like a sibling to me than a family pet.  that poor dog was patient while i dressed him in baby bonnets, pushed him around in a stroller, or tried to make him wear shoes.

after he passed away the thought of a new dog was despicable. my parents didn't want to have to go through that again, nor did they think any dog would be as well behaved, lovable, and special like coal.

fast forward a couple years to when bear and i got shento.  after getting over some pillow tearing up and carpet chewing mayhem, they feel in love with our puppy. and the thought of getting a dog of their own became a little more real. 

When bear and i went to colorado a couple weekends ago, we decided to leave shento at my parents house. now that he doesn't chew up pillows and dig their carpet up, he made them realize that owning a dog brings so much peace, joy, and love into a home. the next week i got a call from my mom saying she was going to look at a puppy. but she repeatedly told me she was 'just looking'. i found that funny because on her way to see the puppy she stopped to buy a blanket. i received a phone call from her asking me what type of blanket would make this new puppy that she is 'just looking at' most comfortable?  i went with her to see pick up the puppy. this little black pup with long curly ears comes running up. she was calm. we picked her up and rocked her like a baby. her puppy eyes watched every move we made. and at that moment, my mom fell in love with a new puppy... with her new puppy.

this weekend bear and i went to my parents house to hang out with this bundle of curly hair. she is more spastic than calm now that she has gotten comfortable in her new home.  but when she falls asleep in your arms she is the sweetest little thing around. this little puppy named Sadie has already brought so much love into my parents home. 


Colorado Part 2

thanks for all the fun Colorado. we will be back soon.


Eden, Utah {around your town}

hello there. i am Talia, Derek is my husband, who happens to be my best friend, who happens to be the best part of my life. my blog is about us two hooligans and our life since we tied the knot, but today i am talking about my hometown Eden, Utah!

How long have you lived in Eden, Utah?
I lived in Eden for 3 years but recently moved around the mountain to Ogden with my husband. My parents still live in Eden so we visit all the time!

What was your favorite thing about living there?
Being surrounded by beautiful mountains and a lake. It provides for endless adventures.

Can you give us a little bit of history or background information about Eden?
I don't know much other than it was originally called North Fork Town and after some families moving up there and had the town established they thought Eden was more suiting, which i agree with completely.

If I was coming for a day trip, what should I do or see?
For summer then going on a Safari at Powder Mountain! They have these huge rock-crawlers-'Powzilla' or 'Ski-Rex', that drive all around the resort to the most beautiful lookouts. I love to ride to Hidden Lake and play on the rope swing :)

If it were in the winter then i would definitely recommend snowboarding at Powder Mountain! It lives up to its name and has 100% mother nature made snow. (no artificially made icy 'snow'!) not to mention i love there advertising (herehere and here are just a few of my favs) to keep it a 'secret' spot.

Favorite Restaurant? What is the best thing on the menu?
Carlos and Harley's- street tacos or nachos!

If you have to plan a date night, what would you do?
I would rent a tandem bike from Diamond Peak, (its only $20 for the day) and pack a picnic lunch, or pick up some sandwiches next door from Mad Moose Cafe. You can ride straight from Diamond Peak store to the North Arm Trail that wraps around Pineview Lake. It is a one mile loop with wild flowers all around. We have seen some pretty cool birds and even a few Moose from the trail. (My husband and I did this when we made our Stop Motion movie for our wedding.) After the sun sets I love to walk along the Wolf Creek Golf Course. You can bring a blanket and look at the stars! On a clear night you can see dozens of shooting stars. 

Best place to grab lunch for under $7 a person?
Mad Moose Cafe. They have the best paninis and Ogden's Famous Farr's Ice Cream!

Favorite shopping spot?
Dottie Becks has some real treasures! It is right in the heart of old town Eden, by the original General Store. They sell handmade items as well as unique home decor, accessories, for adults and kids. I love that everytime i go in they have different gems.


Are there any festivals or annual activities that you would recommend?

My favorite is the Balloon Festival! They launch in this big open field , that also has the cutest teepee,  at sunrise. They are so colorful it just makes me happy to see all of those bright spots in the sky. Then after sunset they light them up again and hover as they glow in the night sky. It is one of the coolest things to witness! 

If you want to get more information or fun ideas of things to do in Edengo check out Talia's blog. If you look at her sidebar you will see a label 'eden' that links to any post that she has written about Eden. It's a great tool. Thank you Talia for posting all this great information. I look forward to taking a day trip to Eden.

If you are interested in writing about your town, please email me at katrinanbrooks@hotmail.com 


beautiful colorado

We spent a long weekend in Colorado. The weather was perfect, the surroundings were stunning (as always), the food was amazing, and the company was exactly what I needed.  i always forget how relaxing being in Colorado is. It’s so peaceful and picturesque. 

we packed the weekend full of fun activities, including, a craft show, bbq dinner and bluegrass show, hiking, bird watching, and lots of relaxing on the front porch. I’m already wishing to go back. 

P.S I have more pictures from our trip, unfortunately my hard drive is almost full, so until I figure that out enjoy.  


our drive to Colorado through the lens of my iPhone

last week we took a small road trip to the beautiful state of colorado. 
the 6 hour car ride was fun. i was lucky enough to get to listen to 
bear sing me his favorite tunes for most of the trip.
after every song he would ask, do you think i'm a good singer? 
and i would respond, of course i do!  
the weather was beautiful. we watched a storm roll in and the 
clouds it created were spectacular. 
after it rained, a beautiful rainbow appeared in the distance. 
on our home trip, we stopped at a rest stop. 
bear decided that we should climb to the top of the nearest mountain/outlook. 
once we made it to the top of the mountain, it started pouring...we got soaked!
our car trip was great but our vacation was even better. more on that later! 


Dalston, London {around your town}

Hi! My name is Liv. I am a make up artist and blogger currently living and loving with my Dave in London. Usually you can find our blog here: Liv+Dave
I am so excited to be a guest over here at Simply Us to share our favorite spots in this city with you guys.

Where do you live?
I am living in Dalston, East London a very vibrant and multi cultural neighborhood. One that Italian Vogue and The Guardian named the coolest place in Britain. ; We love it here.

How long have you lived in Dalston? 
I have lived in London for 3 years, after spending a year in NYC and 8 years in Berlin Germany, my home country. I constantly keep discovering this city myself.

Can you give us a little history behind London?
London is the capital of the United Kingdom and has been around for over 2000 years. It has experienced all kinds of drama including the plague, devastating fire, civil war, aerial bombardement, and terrorist attacks. It's a lovely place ; )

What is something you find unique to London?
The great bus network, the Queen and how London somehow manages the split between a very big cosmopolitan city and very charming traditional British place. The look of the cabs and phone booths. 

If you were planning a weekend around your town, what would the agenda look like? 
A weekend is way to short! Try and stay a little longer.  Maybe have a browse though our adventures on our blog and follow some of the recommendations that look exciting to you. 

London is a big city and there is so much to do and see. Here is a little pick of things that we love doing:
Start the Saturday with a good Breakfast at Caravan or Railroad Cafe taking a bus into central London and pick one of the many great Museums to visit. I love the Tate Modern, The British Mueseum, National History Museum. If you are into Fashion go to the V&A, it's amazing. You can take a walk along the river Thames, where you can see most of the famous sightseeing spots.
Borough Market is not far and a great food market to grab yourself some lunch.
On Saturday night try seeing a gig or even in the Roundhouse in Camden, its a great venue.

On Sunday explore East London with a Breakfast at the Happy Kitchen . After that you can walk around Broadway Market, people watching and exploring little shops, get a few snacks from the food stands and sit down in London Fields park. Take a walk down the canal towards Shoreditch and visit another great market and vintage shopping Mecca : Brick Lane. Now you are very close to Columbia Road flower market which is open every Sunday, grab yourself a bunch of beautiful flowers. After you prob spent a great deal on shopping , coffees and cakes you can visit the very budget friendly delicious Stingray Globe Cafe and order a one of their great pizzas.
If you are up for more, or you visit in the cold season, spend the Sunday afternoon in a pub that offers traditional (or vegetarian!) Sunday roast like the Talbot
If you are up for a very unique dining experience and money is no issue try the raw food restaurant Saf and you will eat what you have never tried before.

Best place to go shopping? 
For vintage explore the area around Brick Lane, a visit in the Topshop flagship store on Oxford street is a must, if trendy boutiques are your thing try Shoreditch and Stoke Newington if you have more time is worth checking out as well.

What is the best coffee or tea house? 
Despite a million coffee shops and cafes in London, it isn't easy to find one that makes real good coffee. The British love their tea, but I have always been a coffee girl.
The best ones you get at Allpress and Caravan. The coziest at The Railroad cafe and the friendliest at The Happy Kitchen.

When is the best month or season to visit? 
London has a mild climate so it's worth visiting anytime of the year. I prefer spring time. 

Being from out of town or from another country, what are some essential things I should pack? 
We have a different voltage to the USA so you will need a travel  transformer to convert the voltage. An American friend of mine blew the fuse of a whole hotel floor, with her hair dryer, so be aware!

As most people are aware, London just held the Olympics.  
Did you to any events? 
We weren't organized enough to apply for ticket a year in advance but we have watched the opening ceremony and a few events on a big screen in a park. I have also seen the Olympic torch live.  
And every lunch break I try watching a few events on a big screen next to my work. 

Have the Olympics effected your everyday life? 
I did the make up for an Olympics inspired beauty photo shoot for a fashion magazine the other week. It seems like the theme is just everywhere. You can't miss it. 

Do you have a favorite event? 
I love to see gymnastics. 

Are you cheering for anyone in particular?
 Banksy! The graffiti artist. He has recently done some amazing Olympic related works across the city. It always worth watching out if you could spot a real Banksy when you get here. (See picture below) 

Liv, thank you for being our London tour guide. You have really made me want to plan a trip to London in the very near future. 

If you are interested in being a tour guide for your town, please email me at katrinanbrooks@hotmail dot com


we're leaving town

boy, I can't tell you how excited i am to pack up the car and head out of town with the one i love.
we are traveling to beautiful colorado to spend time with family, enjoy the outdoors, and 
see you next week! 


shento made a friend

A couple weeks ago we got new neighbors. those new neighbors 
have the cutest puppy, june. shento and june have become inseparable, 
and it makes me so happy that shento has a best friend. 
the moment shento wakes up he goes strait to the front door in hopes we will let him outside
so that he can romp around the yard with his new best friend. 
and if june isn't outside, he will go sit on their porch until either 
we call him home or better yet, june comes out to play.  and when our front door is open just a crack, 
june will come running in looking for shento. 
the two of them go bounding through the house until they eventually head outside. 
 they truly are inseparable, and if we would let them decide 
they would be hang out each other everyday... 
all day long.



1. Gabby Douglas  2. 3 Picture Unknown  4.  5.   6. 7.


our weekend...

was relaxing.
we watched a lot olympics
had dinner with some amazing friends
spent time with family
(who came to help us fix some things around our house)
i painted a new picture
we ate lots of fresh fruit 
and we planted a few new house plants. 
the weekend was perfect!


Sydney, Australia {around your town}

Hi Simply Us readers! My name is Gaby and I blog over at This Little Port. Today I'm excited to share a bit about my adopted town, Sydney.
Where do you live?
I live in inner Sydney, and have done for the past 4 years. I came for a holiday and never left!

How long have you lived in your area?
Not long actually, I've been in my current home for about 4 months. But I've always lived within the same area of Sydney.

Tell me a little bit about your town?
Sydney is big! When I first moved here I thought it would be all laid back and beachy; in reality, it's a large, thriving city. That said, it is spectacularly beautiful and has heaps of beaches. The Opera House and the Harbour Bridge are more amazing in person than you might expect.
What is one thing that you don't think anyone knows about your area?
The area where I live is very gentrified, but until about 50 years ago there was a coal mine not too far away.

What is your favourite thing about where you live?
The ocean. The ocean. The ocean. Amen.

Where do you go for a cheap date?
Um, did I mention the beach? Seriously though, I'd either go to the beach for a sunset swim or pack a picnic and have it in the Royal Botanic Gardens.

Favorite ice cream parlour?
Aussies don't say parlour :) But I'd go to Bar Italia in Leichhardt, where you can also immerse yourself in little Italy.

Favorite hidden restaurant gem?
It's not really hidden, but I love Yulli's in Surry Hills. Stop at Shady Pines for a drink beforehand, and enjoy throwing peanut shells on the floor with abandon.

If you had the entire day to do whatever you wanted, what would you do?
I would take a yoga class at Jivamukti Yoga Sydney and then wander over to Black Star Pastry for a treat. For another kind of treat, I would pop into the Gorman that's just opened in Newtown and peruse their beautiful, Australian clothing. Next I would ride my bicycle over to the Addison Road Markets to stock up on fresh produce, and maybe grab a vegan sausage roll from The Vegetarian Butcher. A Sydney day wouldn't be complete without a trip to the beach, so after dropping off my market goodies I would drive over to Camp Cove for a late afternoon swim followed by a beer at the Watson's Bay Hotel. Writing this makes me itch for summer!

Favorite outdoor activity?
Rock climbing in the Blue Mountains and bush walking (everywhere!).

Are there any festivals or annual activities that you would recommend?
The Sydney Festival is amazing each and every year. Other highlights are: the Newtown Festival, the Night Noodle Market, Vivid Sydney, Laneway and I'm sure I'm forgetting many more!

Thanks so much for having me Katrina! It's been fun to think about my city from an outsider's perspective, even though I am, technically, an outsider myself :)



I’m back form my un-planned blogging break.  I was feeling a bit over-whelmed and needed to escape. Escape from technology, glaring computer screens, and the creative process.

It feels like our life has been hectic. Our schedule’s are all over the place and we’re never together in the same place very long.  You see, since Bear started research about a year ago, his nights have been filled with gatherings, interviews, and activities. This leaves my nighttime’s peaceful and quite.

I mostly entertain myself with my photography and this blog. I’ve gotten really use to the quietness that surrounds our house in the evenings, but it has never felt completely content. 

Being along was wearing on me.  I was consuming more TV than I ever have, I had stopped making dinner, and forget about picking up and organizing the house.  I was getting to a point where I needed a break. And lucky for me, Bear felt the same way.  So together we put our life on hold. Bear cancelled all of his ‘research’ meetings and I got to have him all to myself.  We took a break from life, our everyday routine was put on hold so that we could re-connect and re-evaluate our life.

It was a well-needed life interruption, and we made the most of it. We took long walks by the river, enjoyed the evening sky cuddled up in the hammock, caught up on our favorite TV shows, and lounged around with each other. It was perfect being able to spend that much time with my Bear. 

And now, I am happy to say that I am feeling recharged and ready to get back into the swing of everyday life.  Bear has started to slow down on research and I have gathered my yummy recipes and went grocery shopping today (I have even started organizing the house). I am looking forward to enjoying nights with Bear, sitting at our dinner table, together, talking about our day.  


shento and fireworks

july is shento's least favorite month.
any loud un-familiar sound make him go into a frenzy. 
so you can only imagine what fireworks do to him. 
the poor pup shakes and frantically tries to find a hiding spot. 
one that is away from windows, and preferably the outside world. 
currently, he has taken up residency in the bathtub.
he jumps in, curls up into a little ball and hangs out until the noises stop. 
its become so frequently that I put a pillow in tub in the evenings. 
he at least needs to be comfortable. 
anyways, last week (who am i kidding, every single night since july 1st) 
people do fireworks in our neighborhood. 
this particular night, bear and i really wanted to comfort shento. 
so we started singing the star spangle banner...  loudly. 
as you can see, it did not help.
he ran directly to the bathtub to spend his evening. 
bear and i however, really enjoyed dancing around our house 
singing the lyrics to any patriotic song we could think of. 



on Friday evening, bear and i went out on a date. an actual hand holding, he pays for my dinner, fireworks at the end of the night (literally) kind of a date.... and it was terrific. 
i had been hearing so many good things about this new restaurant, cubbys. So for our dinner date we tried it, and it was amazingly delicious. i had a chicken sandwich and bear had the famous tri-trip. a highly recommended place if you are ever in the provo area. 

after dinner, we headed to the rooftop concert. it was perfect weather, we got a semi good seat, and the line up of singers for the tom petty tribute concert looked great. we (bear) are huge fans of tom petty so we were pretty excited about the concert. we rocked out under the stars, sang our heart out, and enjoyed the evening. 
plus, the night ended with a firework show and a kiss from the one i love. oh, and a refreshing ice cream shake.
how much more romantic can you get? 


July 4th

We celebrated the 4th of July in Provo, Utah. 
We enjoyed the famous parade with some of our wonderful neighbors. 
Bear made a delicious red, white and blue breakfast.
We went to the river to let Shento chase sticks in the water.
We walked to freedom days and listened to music and got a snowy. 
And lastly, we packed a picnic dinner and headed to the park to watch the fireworks.