Monday, December 31, 2007
That's how I feel after a week and a half of nonstop eating. I've been traveling for the holidays and it seems whenever I'm away from home I can't control myself.
I am responsible for the consumption of two entire loaves of Swedish coffe bread as well as a whole bag of Lindt chocolate truffles and three maybe four pints of Brigham's vanilla ice cream. The sad thing about this is that I was not even remotely hungry when I ate any of this...none of it!
Lucikly I will be home tommorrow. and luckily it's the new year so I can get my eating back on track. I guess this little piggy will be starting 2008 with the resolution to loose weight...or at least to only eat when I'm hungry! Oink! Oink!
Happy New Year everyone!
Friday, December 28, 2007
I just hate it when that happens.
Thursday, December 27, 2007
Gasp! The horrors!
I really consider myself lucky that they even have an Internet connection since they are in their late 80's. So I guess I shouldn't be complaining at all but, well, it's me, so I'm gonna complain...just a little.
I have forgotten how really, really, really s. l. o. w. a dial-up connection can be. There's no hopping around from blog to blog, site to site. And I definitely dare not open more than one Internet session at a time. Normally when I am blogging I can have as many as three or four open...but not with dial-up.
So, I am asking for a little patience over the next couple of days. I am still going to post but it's just going to take me
to get the posts up so please bear with me. And while you are waiting, please say a tiny little prayer for me....patience is not my strong suit.
And I guess you can go ahead and pray for peace while you are at it.
Monday, December 24, 2007
Just wanted to take a minute away from all of the holiday "fun" to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and to ask that you please remember why we go through all of this craziness every year. Because ultimately His arrival is all that should matter to us.
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. -Luke 2:11
Friday, December 21, 2007
Miss Virginia wanted to thank me in person for sending her a Christmas card. The Christmas card we sent had our family photo on it and she wanted to let me know that she thought the card was lovely and that she truly appreciated the card. She even came bearing gifts! She brought four of the cutest cupcakes I've ever seen and a box of delicious oatmeal cookies.
Thursday, December 20, 2007
As I've mentioned before I have been trying to institute some new family traditions this year now that the kids are a little older and might actually enjoy them. So we decided we were going to take them. But my husband has been really busy at work lately and we kept having to put it off and put it off. (We didn't want to go on the weekend because we heard the lines get really long.) Last night was our last chance to go before our Christmas travels and we finally made it!
The kids were in awe looking at all the beautiful light displays. Peter would say, "Cool! That's awesome!" and then Sarah would pipe in with "Yeah! That's the most awesomest!" We like to call them "Pete and Repeat" because she loves to imitate her older brother!
Since we got a late start we weren't able to stop at the hot chocolate stand or roast marshmallows but next year we are going to leave early enough to do that. Peter declared this is the best place ever! He even said he wanted to come back next year. And so a tradition is born...
I tried to take pictures of some of the light displays but my camera just doesn't have what it takes...
So, here is a picture I took of me and the kids as we were driving through the park. (We let them sit on my lap so they could have a better view of the lights. They may have enjoyed that just as much as the lights.)
If you would like to see some good pictures of the light display go here and click on the link at the bottom of the page. Most of the lights were animated (guess that's the right word to use...anyway...they moved) so it's hard to get a good idea even from these pictures of how cool the displays really were.)
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
Jennifer has tagged me to play . . .The Random Christmas Hoopla!Here goes:
1. List 12 random things about yourself that have to do with Christmas
2. Please refer to it as a 'hoopla' and not the dreaded 'm'-word (which, for you bloggy newbies, is meme)
3. You have to specifically tag people when you're done. None of this "if you're reading this, consider yourself tagged" stuff is allowed...then nobody ends up actually doing it. The number of people who you tag is really up to you -- but the more, the merrier to get this 'hoopla' circulating through the blogosphere.
4. Please try and do it as quickly as possible. The Christmas season will be over before we know it and I'd like to get as many people involved as possible.
12 Random Christmas Things About Me...
1. I love Christmas and it really annoys me that everywhere I look I see Happy Holidays. I am a Christian and I will always proudly say Merry Christmas. According to a 2001 American Religious Identification Survey, 80% of Americans are Christians. If there are so many Christians in America then why are we all saying Seasons Greetings?
I know. I am a hypocrite. I caved and went with Season's Greetings because the background went really well with our picture. My husband was so distraught over this that we printed out stickers that said Merry Christmas and put those on the envelopes. Next year, I think we are just going to wear lime green so that our outfits will match the Merry Christmas background.
3. I was raised as a Moravian and one of my favorite memories as a little girl is the Christmas Eve Lovefeast and Candle Light service. It is a beautiful service and I highly recommend anyone living near a Moravian church to attend this year. I am a Catholic now and a little part of me will always miss the Moravian service.
4. When I was a preteen our church had a live outdoor Nativity pageant for maybe 4 years. It lasted for 5 nights each Christmas and we performed it 6 times each night. I loved participating in that. I was always an angel. I guess some things never change!
5. Opening the gifts in our stockings was always something that we did last in our house as a child. It was almost like an afterthought. My husband's family always opens them first and the presents in the stockings are almost as good as the "real" presents. His sister, especially, puts a lot of time and thought into picking out special little gifts for each stocking.
6. When I was little Santa always left our presents wrapped. I was horrified when I grew up and learned that in many households he leaves the unwrapped. My husband's gifts were always unwrapped and he is very annoyed when I insist on wrapping the kid's presents.
7. I love Christmas decorations. I love to look at them in the store and in magazines but I don't have a lot of them at home. We have a tree and the outside of our house is decorated but that's about it. It seems like sooooo much work and expense for just a few weeks out of the year to do much more than that. It 's because I'm so practical...or lazy....
8. I like to see snow on the ground on Christmas day but growing up in the south it never happened. But now that we visit my husband's family in Massachusetts there is always a good chance! Last year it actually snowed on Christmas day and right now they have at least a foot or more on the ground! I bought mittens and hats for the kids today because I know we will be playing in it!
9. I prefer gift wrapped presents to gift bags but sometimes you've got to do what you've got to do. And I would never turn a down a Christmas gift because it was in a gift bag. I just think it is more fun to unwrap something than to pull it out of a bag.
10. I always put money in the Salvation Army bucket every time I see one at Christmas.
11. My husband and I both love the smell and look of a real tree but for practical purposes have had a fake one for the last 7 years. My husband has said, at least 100 times this year, Geez, I sure wish we had a live tree. I've got a feeling we may be getting a live tree next year.
12. My favorite Christmas song is The Little Drummer Boy. It gives me chills whenever I hear it.
I'm glad I'm at 12 because I can't think of another thing to say!
All right Honey , and Page you guys are next!
These words stopped me in my tracks and tears begin to form in my eyes. I was reading yet another poem I had received through email. I get them all the time. Usually I read them and delete them from my inbox as well as my mind. Their messages are always sweet but for me fleeting. Until this one.
This line comes right at a time when my daughter always seems to be under my feet. She always wants to help me and she always wants to be right by my side doing whatever I'm doing. Several times a day, it seems, I am turning around to get the laundry, prepare dinner, make a bed and she is underneath my feet causing me to stumble. And every time I curse silently and tell her to get out of the way. And every time I immediately feel sorry that I have just told her this and every time I silently pray to God to forgive me for being a bad mother and to please, please give me extra patience.
Since the day this line stopped me in my tracks, I have been trying to be more mindful of how lucky I am to have this little one underfoot. And every time I want to say get out of the way, instead I find myself reaching down to give her a hug and saying a prayer of thanks to God for her and asking him to please, please give me extra patience.
In case you are interested, here is the complete text of the poem. Maybe a line in it will touch you.
1 CORINTHIANS 13 - THE CHRISTMAS VERSION Author unknown
If I decorate my house perfectly with plaid bows, strands of twinkling lights and shiny balls,
but do not show love to my family, I'm just another decorator.
If I slave away in the kitchen, baking dozens of Christmas cookies,preparing gourmet meals and arranging a beautifully adorned table at mealtime,
but do not show love to my family, I'm just another cook.
If I work at the soup kitchen, carol in the nursing home, and give all that I have to charity,
but do not show love to my family, it profits me nothing.
If I trim the spruce with shimmering angels and crocheted snowflakes,
attend a myriad of holiday parties and sing in the choir's cantata,
but do not focus on Christ, I have missed the point.
Love stops the cooking to hug the child.
Love sets aside decorating to kiss the husband.
Love is kind, though harried and tired.
Love doesn't envy another ones home that has coordinated Christmas china and table linens.
Love doesn't yell at the kids to get out of the way, but is thankful they are there to be in the way.
Love doesn't give only to those who are able to give in return, but rejoices in giving to those who can't.
Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Love never fails.
Video games will break, pearl necklaces will be lost, golf clubs will rust.
But giving the gift of love will endure.
Sunday, December 16, 2007
Me: Go pee, Peter.
Peter: I don't have to go.
Me: Oh, ok.
30 seconds elapse and he begins to hold himself again.
Me: Go pee, Peter.
Peter: I don't have to go.
Me: You are holding yourself so it looks like you have to go pee.
Peter(in an exasperated tone): I don't have to pee Mom. I'm just holding myself because it's fun.
Me: Oh. Well, o.k. then.
I didn't really know what else to say.
Friday, December 14, 2007
I dislike packing lunch for my husband. I haven't figured out why I dislike it so much but it probably has something to do with the fact that I'm lazy. But even though I don't like to do it, I love him so I do it anyway.
My poor husband gets the same thing for lunch every day...a ham and Swiss cheese sandwich with mayonnaise and a can of Diet Mountain Dew. He eats this every day. Bleh. And as much as I hate packing this for him, I feel sorry that he has to eat it. But that's what he says he wants and I'm too lazy to figure out something else for him to eat so that's what he gets. Every. Day.
While my poor husband is eating the same pathetic sandwich I begrudgingly pack for him day after day after day, there is one lucky family out there who gets to eat like this every day. This wife and mom strives to make her family tasty and visually appealing lunches every day using the Bento method. She wants to do this for her family and she's doing it quite well. What a good wife!
Look back through her archives at all the gorgeous lunches she has packed for her family. If I weren't so lazy, I'm sure I could get some great ideas for my husband's lunch here. But knowing him, he would come home asking where his ham and cheese sandwich was.
Like I said, my husband is a simple man. Lucky me!
Thursday, December 13, 2007
I cringe every time Peter or Sarah mention something that they are so sure they are getting from Santa Claus because of course, it's not something that I have bought for them.
Christmas morning could be grim around these parts. The kids better appreciate everything they get and they better not moan and groan about the things they didn't get or I may just take their toys and give them away. So there!
Next up? Christmas cards.
Will the fun ever end?
Beth: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner and Blitzen. And of course, Rudolph!
Dan: It's not Donner. It's Donder!
Beth: Donder?! That's ridiculous! It's Donner ! Everyone knows it Donner!
Dan: No! It's Donder!
This goes on for a while until I can take no more. My husband unfortunately is usually right when we have an
I definitately was not on my high school debating team.
So this year, after we had our little
Apparently in Twas the Night Before Christmas the reindeer was named Dunder (or Donder) but it was changed in the song Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer to Donner. Also, according to this article Blitzen was originally Blixem in the story. Donder and Blixem were Dutch for thunder and lightening and then changed to Donner and Blitzen which are German for thunder and lightening. The reason for the change is unclear but wow! Who knew? And I am sure you are saying at this point who cares? Well, I care!
I can hardly wait until next Christmas. When my husband and I have this same
It's the little things, people!
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
That being said, you would think I would be posting a delightful little holiday appetizer recipe. But no. I have decided to post a holiday cookie recipe. And before you start groaning and saying Oh no! Not another holiday cookie recipe! please take the time to check this one out.
I made these for the first time last week for a MOPS cookie exchange. I had to make three dozen cookies and the last thing I felt like doing was baking. I saw this recipe in the December issue of Family Fun Magazine and it sounded perfect for me. No baking, no kneading, no rolling out cookie dough. Just throwing some stuff in the food processor and then rolling it into balls. This was my kind of recipe. The cookies were quick to make and they looked very elegant in their little paper cups. These cookies would look very nice on the dessert table at your holiday party.
Please note... kids DO NOT like this cookie...must be all the fruit. It has a very grown up taste too it. I can't explain it. You will just have to make them for yourself.
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup dried apricots
1/2 cup chopped dates
3/4 cup dried cranberries
3/4 cup pecans
1 cup blanched almonds
1/4 cup orange juice (no pulp)
1/2 cup granulated or sifted confectioners sugar
Combine the dried fruit and nuts in a food processor and pulse until you get a coarse mixture, about 1 minute. Add the orange juice and pulse again until the mixture sticks together, about 15 seconds.
Shape the mixture into 1-inch balls, then roll them in sugar for a sweet coating. For a nice presentation, place each ball into a mini-cupcake paper/wrapper. Refrigerate. Makes about 2 1/12 dozen. (Please note - I made mine a little bigger than 1 inch....they looked better in the paper cups this way.)
Monday, December 10, 2007
I ate way too much this weekend, as usual. But the real reason my pants were so tight this morning is that I did laundry on Saturday. So my jeans got their weekly tightening and shrinking in the washer and dryer.
But never fear. They should be loose enough and baggy enough by this weekend (when they will get their weekly washing) that I will think to myself, Ooohhh! I must be loosing weight!
This weight loss technique will work great...until next Monday...
Sarah wanted to roll our her own little ball of dough so Dan gave her a little piece of it to work with. She rolled it with the little rolling pin her Aunt Cathy gave her last year at Christmas and when she got tired of using the rolling pin, she rolled it with her hands. Then Peter came in and gave it a few squeezes and then Sarah played with it some more. Dan wisely decided not to use the dough so it got discarded on the counter top. When I saw it laying around on the counter near one of the gingerbread men, I could not resist taking a picture of it.
Because I am a 13 year old boy.....
I am so immature like that.
Saturday, December 8, 2007
For instance, just yesterday, several people Googled "pirate treasure hunt" and were taken here...
Many people have Googled "Popsicle drip catcher" and have found themselves here...
Lots of people have Googled "chocolate covered pretzel" and have landed here...
Yesterday, however, I found myself with a new Google search that landed someone here, which was the post I wrote wondering if anyone else's pee smelled like asparagus if they ate too much of the lovely vegetable.
The search they used to find my post was "If you eat a lot of fried okra will your pee stink?"
Hmmm. Seeing as how I don't eat okra, fried or otherwise, I'm not sure. Megan. I am going to have to leave this one to you to answer.
The Internet is waiting....
Editor's note - My blog is the number one result when Googling "If you eat a lot of fried okra will your pee stink?" Should I be pleased or not?
Wednesday, December 5, 2007
I know that Wednesday is almost over so I'm a little late to the party on this Works for Me Wednesday post, but when I saw that Shannon wanted quick and easy recipes AND that her recipe contained Rotel AND that there were people out there who had never heard of Rotel, I knew I had to post this recipe.
I originally got this recipe off of a can of Hunt's diced tomatoes but the second time I made it, I substituted Rotel for the Hunt's tomatoes and have been making it this way ever since. My husband loves this recipe because it's tasty. I love it because it's easy and quick and I normally have all the ingredients for it on hand at any given time. So without any further rambling, here's the recipe:
Tomato Bacon Quesadillas
8 flour tortillas
2 cups shredded Mexican blend cheese
1 can Rotel with lime (any flavor works but we prefer the kind with lime for this recipe)
10 pieces of cooked bacon (I always use the microwave bacon...so much easier than frying!)
2 T vegetable oil
Combine cheese, Rotel and bacon.
Spread 1/8 of the mixture on half of a tortilla and fold in half to make a circle.
Cook each quesadilla over medium low heat until cheese has melted and tortillas are starting to turn brown...a couple minutes on each side.
Serve with sour cream.
It is really easy to whip these up and they are super yummy! And if you have never used Rotel tomatoes before you don't know what you are missing.
My favorite Rotel recipe is this yummy dip:
Brown a pound of sausage and drain the grease off.
Put a block of cream cheese in a pot over low heat.
Stir in a can of Rotel (drain the liquid off first).
Stir in the sausage.
Cook until warm (continuing to stir) and serve with corn chips or tortilla chips.
If you have never had this before, you are probably turning up your nose but let me tell you...this is some good eating! Take this to a party and you will come home with an empty bowl...I promise!
And with that, I am off to bed to dream of fattening dip...but hey it's got tomatoes in it so it can't be all bad. Can it?
Tuesday, December 4, 2007
Sarah: Good night, Peter.
Peter: Good night, Sarah.
Sarah: I love you, Peter.
Peter: I love you too, Sarah.
Dan and I just looked at one another and smiled. My heart melted and I wondered to myself, Are these the same two kids that just argued over who was going to get into and out of the bathtub first? Are these the same two kids that fought over whether they were going to watch Little Bill or Little Bear? Are these the same two kids who are constantly yelling, fighting and screaming at one another over every little thing?
I guess they truly are brother and sister because after all the petty bickering is put aside, at the end of the day, they really do love one another.
Saturday, December 1, 2007
And then we got to choose 6 bags of candy from this table...
There were also pretzels in multiple shapes and sizes, shredded wheat cereal and Wheat Thins. I could go on and on. Clearly, the people running this workshop had built a gingerbread house or two.
We paid for our little house and got our big bag of Royal icing and we started working...
Until our little house looked like this...
The kids had fun and when we left they had a little sugar buzz from sampling the roof "shingles" and the "bushes". I had fun because I was able to relax and let them make a mess because I didn't have to clean it up! And I think Dan had fun because he got to "build" something. (I am using the term "build" loosely because he was really decorating the house instead of building it but shhhhhhhhhhh we aren't going to tell him that!)
Friday, November 30, 2007
I would like to tell you I took it down because it was too big and too in your face and just too busy at the top of the page. And that's part of the reason but that's not the real reason. The real reason I took it down is because it was a lie and I don't want to misrepresent myself to you.
Let's examine the picture in detail and you will soon see what I'm talking about. Let's begin with the phone.
I rarely ever talk on the phone with anyone other than my mom. Mom and I usually talk first thing in the morning for about 5 minutes and then that's it for me and the phone unless some unsuspecting someone might happen to call.
When my kids see the phone attached to my ear they start to emit a loud high pitched whine that doesn't stop until I remove the phone from my ear. Even if I am trying to hide in another room while I'm on the phone, they will start this whine. It's like they have a super power that makes their skin tingle as soon as I touch the receiver. So talking on the phone is out for me. And a red phone? Not even sure they make red phones.
The second thing about this picture that would make it unreasonable for me to use as a representation of myself is the fact that this mom has pets. And not one pet but TWO! We have no pets in our house and the main reason is because of me. I have zero desire to feed, bathe, clean up after, and provide general upkeep for two more creatures...especially creatures that require boarding when we go on vacation! My poor kids are begging me for a pet...begging me...but I am standing firm on this one! No pets in this house...yet, anyway...I may be talked into a goldfish...someday.
The next detail that doesn't go unnoticed in this picture is the fact that this woman is breastfeeding. That right there should be a big clue to anyone that knows me that this picture is not supposed to be me. I breastfed my kids for a total of two seconds. Well, o.k. It was longer than that.
I breastfeed Peter for two miserable months. I had a C-section and I had to pump to get my milk to come in and when it finally did, it was mostly fore milk according to the lactation consultant that we consulted TWICE. At a cost of ONE HUNDRED DOLLARS. Each time.
I finally gave up, gave my son a bottle, he finally seemed full and I finally stopped crying. Enough about my breastfeeding failures...that's another post for another day. Let's just move on...
That brings me right to the number one reason the poor lady in this picture will never accurately represent me...She is...IRONING!
I will do a lot of things for my family but I ain't ironing! That's why we have a clothes dryer. It's not just for drying but also for wrinkle removing. Most clothes can be hung up right out of the dryer and look practically wrinkle free! I mean you are going to be hanging them up anyway so you might as well hang them while they are warm and avoid the dreaded iron. And if you happen to own a pesky item that's 100% cotton that really requires some wrinkle removing assistance, then do what I do and take it to the dry cleaners.
When my husband saw this picture on my header he started to give me a hard time. She's IRONING. You never IRON. Look! She's IRONING while BREASTFEEDING. You didn't really breastfeed and you certainly don't IRON.
O.k., o.k. I get it. So my husband was giving me a hard time and I was starting to feel guilty anyway. I mean, I don't want you guys to think I'm breastfeeding while ironing and talking on the phone all day long so I took it down.
I guess I was looking for a blog header that summed up in one picture the busyness and craziness of "A Mom's Life". I couldn't find a picture that accurately portrayed this mom's life so I guess I'm going to have to leave that to my writing.
Thursday, November 29, 2007
Is it even possible for a 3 year old to blush?
After the boys left the next day, Sarah said several times very emphatically I miss Thomas. She even said Thomas is nice and batted her eyelashes a few more times.
I've got to explain to her that compliments are nice...but she should at least hold out for chocolate!
Monday, November 26, 2007
Saturday, November 24, 2007
I asked them to tell me things they were thankful for and I wrote them down. I copied the things they were thankful for on to leaves and then we, er, I mean I, glued them on to the tree. I thought they would want to glue them on but they were not interested. Not sure what the problem was because I can always get Sarah to go wild with glue but not this time.
This was the result:
Bananas, butterflies, Legos and pretty flowers are just as important as family and friends. Oh, yeah...and cookies. Don't forget the cookies!
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
Sarah and I had fun making these turkeys while my husband and my son were building something with Legos. After we finished them and were proudly showing them off, Dan said something along the lines of, "Ohh! I can't wait to see Friends and Seinfeld tonight!"
Ahhhh, the good ole days of Must See TV on NBC and the subtle humor of my dear sweet husband. Although I really must agree with him...they do resemble peacocks!
Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
Monday, November 19, 2007
They were all found under my oven when my husband was trying to retrieve my watch which has a loose clasp. Apparently I was making some wild motions while trying to make a sandwich for his lunch this morning and my watch flew underneath the oven. (I really need to get that clasp fixed!)
What's under your oven?
Jennifer, over at Ramblings of a Crazy Woman has bestowed the "You Rock the Crib" award on me. How cool is that? And if you ask my kids, I am sure they would toooootaly agree that I rock the crib. Hump....well, maybe they wouldn't agree, but Jennifer agrees and that's what's important...especially since she is the one handing out the award...
And as with all blog awards, it is my right and my duty to pass it on to some other deserving candidates...
And now, without further ado, the "You Rock the Crib" award goes to...
Megan from Fried Okra - I love reading Megan's blog every day. She is a southern girl currently living in the Midwest and she is trying to get everyone west of the Mason Dixon to speak Southern, ya'll. I hear she's even trying to get them to eat...grits!....gasp!
Katie from Rosies are Red, Violets are Violet - I just recently started reading Katie's blog. She has an adopted son who is 5 years old and she is in the process of adopting another baby. You go Katie! I can't wait to read all about it!
Thanks again to Jennwa for the award. I love me some blog awards!
Sunday, November 18, 2007
My husband, who is a real traditionalist, felt very strongly that the clues should rhyme so he took it upon himself to write them. In less than 15 minutes, this is what he came up with...
To findin’ me hidden treasure at last
I hid it near here many long years ago
When without my booty I had to go
But the treasure I robbed they’ll never get back
It’s yours for the taking, no doubt about that
But to find it you’ll be needing my pirate treasure map
If you follow the clues it soon will appear
Here’s your 1st clue – look where you eat
Under a painting you’ll find there’s a seat
Under that seat, I’m happy to say,
You’ll find clue #2 to point out the way
Here’s clue number 2 – go climb a stair
Walk down a long hall, that is, if you dare,
You’ll find a blue chair that moves when you sit
You’ll find clue number three when you sit down in it
You’ve found clue number three, you’re proving quite clever
But you’ll need clue four if you’re looking for treasure
On a small porch there is a small table
You’ll find it there, if find it you're able
Now look for some gravel and a white basement door
Walk up to that door and give it a slap
By the time you have done so you will be holding the MAP!
Here are the kids gathered around listening to another clue.
candy that I got 75-80% off at after Halloween sales. It was a really cool treasure chest but the picture doesn't do it justice.
I think the kids had fun. I know my husband and I did! I would have never thought I would go to this much trouble for a kids birthday party but it was cool working on a theme and carrying it out. We have always just had family birthday parties for the kids and I have always said that I wasn't going to have a friend birthday party until my kids asked for one. Well, Peter asked for one this year and I guess now, there's now turning back!
Friday, November 16, 2007
Here is the cake right after I made it...
Those are candles coming out of the "cannons" and the cannon balls are Milk duds!
Here is the cake after I put some of Peter's pirate stuff around it. I wish I had thought to put the cake on blue paper so it would look like water.
Peter was pretty happy with it!
Not bad for a theme cake on my very first try!
The concept of this lighthouse was really cool but the execution was greatly lacking. The pieces Would. Not. Stay. Together. I spent many hours quietly cussing under my breath while trying to get them together. Even my brother and my husband who grew up on (and loved) Legos didn't have much success. And since they both had jobs and didn't have hours and hours to spend working on it, the onus of putting this $%^$% lighthouse together fell on to me.
Several times I got it together only to have the thing crumble in my hands at even the slightest amount of pressure. It was more than I or my son could take so eventually he and his friends began just trying to come up with other creations that, while still pirate oriented, had nothing to do with the &^*%$ lighthouse.
So, imagine the concern I felt when all my son wanted for his birthday were Legos Bionicles. Most of these Bionicles were for ages 7 or 8 and up. I told him that he would have to put these things together with the help of his older friend Cody or his Dad or even by himself because I did not want to have anything to do with them. The first morning after his birthday he started working on one himself and decided he better wait until Cody came over. Cody, who is 8, was able to put three of them together in one afternoon! Peter (and I) were beside ourselves!
This morning however, Peter decided that he wanted to put the Bionicle set his Aunt Cathy gave him together. I could not convince him to wait until we saw Cody later so I decided to try to put it together with him. We started right after he got up at 8:15. He didn't want to stop for breakfast so we kept going. We were making good progress until Sarah came down at 9:15. She was enjoying hiding the instructions and sitting on the parts. There was a lot of yelling but finally, FINALLY at 10:15 we were finished!
I am so proud of me! But I better be careful because you know what they say about pride. It goeth before a fall and I have a feeling I could be falling on this thing as we now have many different Bionicles in all stages of completeness all over the house. But Peter is happy and I must say I did feel a great sense of accomplishment this morning. Perhaps the package should read...Ages 38 and up!
Peter was quite pleased with the finished result!
It may not look like it but there were over 200 pieces in this set!
Sarah wanted her picture taken too!
Thursday, November 15, 2007
I was in charge of filming my son blowing out his candles on Tuesday night and my husband was in charge of taking the pictures. In all the excitement of the singing and the candles and the cake, I accidentally turned the camera to STANDBY right as we started singing "Happy Birthday".
Imagine my dismay when I realized that I didn't have this important life moment captured on film. But wait! You don't have to imagine my dismay and sadness because my husband took a picture of me sulking and feeling like a big ole retard. Here I am in all my glory. Note the Bedazzled shirt...
My mom, in her infinite Grandma wisdom suggested that we redo it and film the second time around. So, that's exactly what we did! Peter was very excited to get to blow out his candles again and I redeemed myself by hitting RECORD and keeping it turned on. It was a win-win for everyone involved!
Happy Birthday, Peter...again!
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
Since this isn't a chain they play whatever kind of music they want to play. Normally, they play high- energy songs like "Who Let the Dogs Out" and "YMCA". But on Monday, Miss Deborah decided to mellow it out a little with some kiddie tunes. Right as she switched CDs, Peter ran and jumped into my arms and then "Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes" came on. Instinctively I started swaying to the music and singing it aloud to him.
I am not a very nostalgic person. My husband likes to tell me that I have no soul. Usually he tells me this as I am throwing away
I've been humming "Head and Shoulders, Knees and Toes" all day and am always teary-eyed by the time I get to "eyes and ears, a mouth and a nose". Maybe it's PMS or maybe I'm turning into a softy in my old age. Or maybe, just maybe, I have a soul after all. (And Dan, no this does not mean we are keeping the holey socks in your dresser drawer. I've seen them and it's time they go!)
This is Peter holding a Bionicle he received for his birthday. He was a very happy boy!
Monday, November 12, 2007
This afternoon the kids were particularly whiny. Sarah decided not to bring a balloon home from the birthday party we attended and she was regretting the decision. And to make matters worse, Peter was taunting her with his. Then he decided he wanted to go play with some toys that my parents keep at their house. They aren't home so I told him no. So he began to whine and taunt her even more with the balloon which lead her to whine even more and, well, you get the picture.
I had to get them to stop whining before my ears started to bleed so I made them put their shoes on and out the door we went. I decided that we should collect some leaves and make a craft with them! I figured the fresh air would stop the whining and the craft would help me to overcome my feelings of inferiority to Jennwa. If you've never visited her blog, you really should. She has 2,147 Halloween crafts in the October folder and she has made at least that many turkeys this month. Can't wait to see all the Christmas crafts she puts together!
Anyway, we all got some leaves and the whining miraculously stopped...thank you God..and then we headed back inside to....
Uh. Did I tell the kids we were going to make a craft with these leaves? Crap! I guess I didn't think this all the way through.
On the fly, I decided not to get too crafty and just go with some basic leaf crafts. I told them that we could glue the leaves to paper and make a collage or we could do leaf rubbings. Sarah is all about glue so she decided to make a collage. Peter wanted to just trace the leaves so I decided to try my hand at leaf rubbings.
3 minutes later this is what we had...
Peter decided tracing leaves was "stupid" so he split...
Sarah decided to dump a bottle of Elmer's glue onto her "collage". See her proud smile? See the ENTIRE bottle of glue on the paper?
And just so you know that I'm not entirely uncrafty and incapable of completing a craft, here's a picture of my beautiful rubbing.
I think I'll leave the crafting to Jennwa. Or send my kids to her house. They can craft with her while I'm eating bonbons!
Sunday, November 11, 2007
Did he just say ear? I got weak in the knees and I started to tremble. Here we go. Sarah suffered an ear infection two weeks earlier. We didn't get much sleep the night it presented itself and I knew we were in for it again. (Why do these things only happen at night?)
"Is the pain in your ear or in is it in your head?" I wasn't trying to be funny. I was hoping that maybe, just maybe, all he had was a headache. Silly me.
"It's in my head at my ear," he cried. Hmmm. That didn't really narrow it down for me so I ran to get get him some cough medicine. He's had a bad cough for a couple of weeks and I was hoping that maybe that would calm him down so he could sleep.
I gave him the cough medicine and crawled back in my bed and about 2 minutes later the crying started up again. We discussed the pain again and I decided that it was indeed the dreaded ear infection. I trudged to the medicine box and got out the Ibuprofen. He was crying the whole time and complaining about the ear pain. After I gave him the medicine he said, "Mommy? Can you pray to God for me?"
"Of course I can pray to God for you sweetheart. Actually, I already have been," I said.
I smiled as I thought to myself, we must be doing something right after all.
Hmmm...could it be excessive consumption of ranch dip, meatballs and spinach and artichoke dip? Or perhaps my need to eat all of the Halloween candy before the kids do, my love of TV and my DVR or perhaps my disdain for exercise? There are just too many reasons to pinpoint the exact cause.....
Friday, November 9, 2007
The first time we went, we placed our order for the smoke sirloin and the waitress said, "What side saddle would you like with that?" Dan and I looked at one another and snickered.
Dan said, "Side saddle? Um what's um a ....side saddle?" He had a hard time getting it out. Of course a side saddle would be a side item like baked potato, mashed potato, french fries, etc. We hate it when restaurants try to get cutesy with their menus. It's so unnecessary.
We made sure to give our waitress a little extra in the tip for having to say such a silly thing.
Anyway, we continue to snicker and joke about the side saddles and even several months later are still laughing about it. Dan looked at me last weekend and said, "Your side saddles are getting pretty big."
We won't be talking about side saddles any more.
Note - If you ever go to Texas Land and Cattle, don't get the fried pickles. I love me some fried pickles but theirs were no good. They used spears and I prefer chips when frying pickles. Why do you think I purchased a Fry Daddy in the first place?
Thursday, November 8, 2007
Many of you are probably already aware of Confessions of a Pioneer Woman. If you have never been there, you should visit. It is a wonderful blog and I highly recommend it. She has hundreds of commenters a day from which I can only conclude that she has thousands of readers.
She also has another blog, The Pioneer Woman Cooks. This blog too, is wonderful. She posts pictures of each step of each recipe. And her pictures of the food are gorgeous. At times, I find myself wanting to lick my computer screen. I said I had a problem but believe it or not, that isn't it.
The Pioneer Woman has a recipe for Buffalo Wings which I have never actually made but I will. Some day. I can actually taste these wings when I look at the pictures. But alas, I am very lazy and the thought of getting out the frying pan, and heating up a bunch of oil just seems like soooooo much work to me. (I am now kicking myself for selling my Fry Daddy at a yard sale. And I'm sure if my husband is reading this he is thinking I told you so, I told you so, nah, nah, nah, boo, boo! )
While I was salivating over her wings, I saw her recipe for ranch wing dip. Ahhh, now this is a recipe for me...no frying involved....just a little bit of mixing. That's something I can handle. And handle I did! Let's just say that after a mere two weeks, I am now on my fourth batch of this ranch dip.
I love ranch dressing. I'm not exactly sure when I first had it. The dressings I remember from my childhood are Thousand Island, Green Goddess, Roquefort and Miracle Whip...yes, we actually used Miracle Whip as a salad dressing...I shudder at the mere thought of that now. Once I had ranch dressing I never looked back. Every now and then I will try some newfangled fancy dressing but I always go back to ranch. Always. So I decided that if I was too lazy to make the Pioneer Woman's Buffalo Wings I could at least make her ranch dip.
And make it I did! I started out dipping broccoli. Delicious. And then carrot sticks. Delicious, too. This dip made raw vegetables taste delectable. And I even felt good about myself, because after all, I was dipping vegetables.
Then one night, while watching TV, this dip called to me from the refrigerator. At the same time some tortilla chips called to me from the pantry.
Rescue us. We need to be together. Save us. You neeeeeeed us. Help........
I paused The Office, threw down the remote control, jumped off the couch and ran to them. I had to free them from their prisons. They deserved to be together. Why hadn't I thought of that before?
After I had rescued them, I situated myself back on the couch with the bag of chips in one hand and the bowl of dip in the other and began dipping and eating and dipping and eating and I have not stopped. Why had I been wasting this wonderful dip on vegetables? I wouldn't be making that mistake again.
Four batches of dip and many bags of tortilla chips later, I am wondering why my jeans are too tight and why my muffin top is even fluffier than normal. And is that back fat hanging over my bra? It must be all the dip and chips. Sigh.
They say the first step to beating an addiction is admitting you have a problem. So, I am here today, admitting to the world that I a problem.
Hello. My name is Beth. I am a ranchoholic.
Tuesday, November 6, 2007
I want to know the best way to clean tile floors.
We have beautiful tile floors in our kitchen and breakfast area. I decided to go with tile instead of hardwood in our new house because if dropping forks, plates, cups, and bowls were an Olympic sport my kids would have shelves full of gold! I have had hardwood in the kitchen in our old house and as beautiful as they were I could not keep them clean.
Overall,for everyday maintenance the tiles are very easy to clean. If one of the kids spills something...no problem. I can clean it up with a sponge and that's it. Problem solved. Then I can move on to something more exciting. Like the laundry. Or cooking dinner.
I need help with my major weekly cleaning. Currently, I vacuum the tile and then I use a Swiffer with one of those wet pads. Unfortunately, the Swiffer doesn't seem to get the stickier stains off the floor and I end up on my hands and knees with one of the Swiffer wet pads cleaning the floor. Had I known I would be doing this I probably would have just gone with the hardwood floor.
Help! If anyone has tiles in their kitchen and has an easier, more effective way of getting them squeaky clean, please let me know What Works for You. It is Wednesday after all!
Monday, November 5, 2007
As you can see, I have been messing around with the colors and went from white and purple to pale yellow and camouflage green. I don't think I will be able to look at these colors for long...not sure why but even though they are muted I find them annoying to look at and very bland, which sort of defeats the purpose of the change.
What do you guys think? And I would like everyone to comment on this. I know (I hope) I have more readers than just Jennifer, Pam and Megan so come on people...help a design-challenged, color-uncoordinated sister out!
My husband isn't big on celebrating birthdays...he thinks it's a waste of money and that it should be treated just like any other day. (That might be true for a 41 year old male who doesn't like to spend money but not so true for a 5 year old.) And I always felt like the kids should ask for a party with friends before we went to all that trouble. Well, several weeks ago Peter asked, "When do I get to have all of my friends over for a birthday party?" The mere question made my knees tremble and perspiration break out over my brow.
The thought of having a bunch of 4 and 5 year olds over for a party made me weak. And I'm not exactly sure, but I think this would also mean their parents would be coming as well since most people aren't comfortable dropping their four year old off somewhere with someone they didn't know really well. That's too many people for my house (and my wallet!) so I started thinking about other options. I went through them all in my head...
our house - too small for lots of kids and parents
the local inflatable place - too expensive
the skating rink - too expensive and Peter doesn't know how to skate
the park - November could potentially be too cold
After deciding against all of those options I went with a sleepover. I told Peter he could have his two best friends over to spend the night and he was thrilled! I did have to reiterate that this would be the actual party so that he wouldn't be expecting a big bash later with lots of kids and lots of presents. I think I got that through to him and he is still very excited! He just had his very first sleepover at his friend Colton's house. It was Colton's brother's birthday sleepover and my friend Jennifer, who is a crazy woman (she even named her blog that!) decided that all of her children should have kids sleeping over! Peter was so excited by that sleepover that I knew his own sleepover would be good enough.
So we are set for a sleepover and we are doing a pirate theme. Peter is fresh from Halloween as a pirate so he is excited about that. I am making a pirate ship cake (there may or may not be pictures of that later depending on how well it turns out!) and Dan and I will be doing a treasure hunt for the boys. I decided since I was only having two kids over I should at least try to get creative with the invitations. So, I made them look like old messages in bottles.
Here is the actual invitation....
I tried to age it by soaking it in tea and then burning the edges. I think it turned out pretty cool. Then we rolled it up and put it in a root beer bottle filled with sand to make it look like it has washed up on the shore. Here is my son pretending to be an evil pirate while holding the bottles. If only I had the invitations completed in time to take the pictures while he was wearing his Halloween costume he might actually look like a spooky pirate instead of a crazed four year old!
I think the invitations are cute and I hope the little boys that receive them will like them. Although, knowing kids they won't care and will just end up spilling the sand all over their bedrooms.
Sorry Page. Sorry Jennifer. I hope you will let your boys come to the party anyway!