Friday, January 29, 2010

Little Monsters...

So I borrowed this book, Baked, from the library this week. It has some unbelievable looking and sounding recipes in it. Mark isn't a big sweets eater, so I always have to make sure someone is either coming over or we are going somewhere when I get the urge to bake, or I will eat the goodies all by myself.... and trust me it has happened...once... maybe twice.
One way of getting around this is making cookies, and freezing dough to make at a later time. Which is also a trick to making you look like a domestic goddess... always having fresh baked cookies when people unexpectedly drop by.
Anyway... back to the cookies.
I made the Monster Cookies from the book... they are good.... the dough is almost sinful.

These babies have it all. A combo of oatmeal, peanut butter and chocolate chips then to top it off you add in M&Ms.
The recipes says it makes 3 dozen... I got about 5. Apparently my dough scooper is smaller than theirs... here's how I look at it. Since I got almost twice as many cookies as they did, when I walk by the cookie jar and grab one cookie, I'm really only eating half of one, since it's half the size. Isn't that nice? So instead of thinking I ate 5 - cough - cookies yesterday, I really only ate 2 1/2. Cookie Math!

In unrelated news, when I picked Isaac up from school today, I was telling Kaityln's mom about his professing his admiration for her daughter the other day... and the teacher came up and said that during class today, Isaac looked at Kaitlyn and said, "I think I love you" to which her response was a small smile and a shrug...

In even more unrelated news, I was tired of not being able to breathe through my nose last night and went to take some Robitussin and discovered there was none to be found! We did however have some left over prescription cough syrup that our pediatrician gave Isaac last fall. I took a quick swig and was asleep/passed out in as soon as my head hit the pillow... for an hour and a half. I was up the rest of the night, itching and my mind racing... apparently there is something in the cough syrup that didn't agree with me. So I apologize if you find this post is random and long, but I am still feeling a little medicine foggy!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Put a little love in your heart...

So, we started decorating a little for Valentine's Day. I got some cute wooden hearts and scrapbook paper and of course glitter from Hobby Lobby.
We broke out the paint, and sequins, glitter and glue and made an afternoon of making valentiney things.

Apparently, this opened up the flood gates of Isaac's heart.

Sitting at the dinner table, Isaac said dreamily, "I hope Kaitlyn is at school tomorrow."

We nod.

"She is the greatest. girl. ever."

We look at each other and smile.

"I really like when she wears a bow in her hair."

"She's pretty pretty."

"Mom? Can I make her a necklace?"

"Sure," I barely whisper... I bite my lip like Pa Ingalls' half laugh/half cry.

Then he bolts out of his chair and is on to something else...
Ah... young love.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

My favorite winter dinners...

These meals have been making frequent appearances in our home since it is so cold.

They are really easy and kid friendly.

And just for Julie... the "recipes!"

Two of them are crock pot recipes so that makes it even better! I love putting the ingredients in the crock pot in the morning and when Mark gets home from work, there is no mad rush to finish up dinner and get it on the table. Just plate and serve!

the classic spaghetti and meatballs.
I didn't really use a recipe for the meatballs.... I used beef and Italian sausage and then anything I had that I thought would taste good, you know, extra garlic, an egg bread crumbs, stuff like that.
Then I fried them until I thought they were brown through, then simmered them in sauce for about an hour just to make sure.

Mmmmm roast
I brown the roast in olive oil on all sides, then throw it in the crock pot on low with a packet of dry onion soup mix and carrots and a little bit of water, sometimes potatoes too but the rest of the clan prefer mashed potatoes. Cook all day. I usually make Jiffy corn bread too... I know some don't consider this real cornbread but man I love me some Jiffy!

Chicken Stroganoff.
This one doesn't look very appetizing, but it is so good and only uses 5 ingredients!
In a crock pot combine chicken breasts - I usually make 1 pound - with 2 TBS of butter a packet of Italian dressing. Cook on low 6-8 hours. 30 minutes before serving, take a block of cream cheese, cut it up and a can of cream of chicken soup and throw it in with the chicken. I usually shred the chicken now, but it is not necessary.
Serve over egg noodles.
I've only made these once... last night... but feel pretty confident in saying that they will make many reappearances in the future! They were scrum-dilly-umptious!!

Monday, January 25, 2010

See this little girl?

I love her more than words.

She has a smile that lights up her entire face... even though her face is perpetually dirty.

She can melt your heart with a hug and a kiss.

She is very caring and compassionate.

She is a creature of habit and is not afraid to let you know when things are not going according to her liking.

She's driving me a little nuts.

She's sassy. She's smart. She's very strong willed.
Qualities which are all fine and good.. except when she is throwing a fit... which has been an almost daily occurrence around here.

Terrible twos?
Is it just a girl thing? Who knows.
I am just looking forward to this particular part of toddlerhood to be over.

"You know you really wear me out, but I love you anyway."
Amen Olivia's mom. Amen.

On a completely unrelated note, I read this post last night and cannot stop thinking about these pancakes so guess what we are having for dinner?

Thursday, January 21, 2010


to bring color inside,
even though it is grey and dreary outside.

Tougher choices? What to do with my lemons....


or this

~all dessert pictures are from Martha Stewart!

JoAnn's is having an additional 50% off of their read tag clearance fabric!!!
And Kroger has their Beef Roast Buy one get one free!! Guess what we're having for dinner tonight!?

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

When the going gets tough...

the tough call Mom!

Last week, the kids got sick, then better, then I got sick. So sick that I needed my mom!
Luckily, I am blessed to have a wonderful mother who is willing and able to come help take care of her grandbabies when her baby was sick.
The kids were thrilled beyond belief... we see my parents every week, but you'd have thought it had been months since they had seen her!
She came, and immediately started cleaning... which wasn't what I had planned for her, but she insisted... and did loads of laundry and played with the munchkins and then to top it off treated them to Wendy's!
(a picture from the archives with a teeny Meg!)
I couldn't ask for a better mother. We have always been close, even those darn teenager years weren't too terrible for us... she may not necessarily agree. I am so blessed. I love you mom!

Monday, January 18, 2010

And so it begins

Isaac had his first soccer practice on Saturday. This is the first time he has been on a team that didn't consist of Mark, Meg or me and a few imaginary players!
To say the very least he was thrilled.

He was bouncing around, spinning, in other words, he was that kid during practice.

Megan was excited at first,
about 30 minutes in, I look over and see this.

On the way to the Y, Mark looked at me and said, "well, weekends won't be the same for a loooonnnngggg time." I am afraid he is probably right.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

A post in numbers

2 the number of sick kiddos

2 the number of concerned and exhausted parents

24 the number of hours virus lasted

20 the speculated number of ounces of laundry detergent used in previous 24 hours

5 the number of videos watched – in full disclosure, we have watched Robin Hood 3 times. Oo-de-lally!

204 the number of cuddles given

15 the number of rules that were broken

To be determined the number of days that it will take to “unbreak” said rules.

Unquantifiable how thankful I am that my husband would rather clean up all the pukey messes and keep the laundry going than sit with the stinky, pukey babes and watch Robin Hood, Diego and PBS kids. Thanks Hon, I couldn’t have made it without you!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Day 2

We pulled out the Play Dough, and I didn't micromanage the mess.

Remember the snowball cookies from yesterday?

Comfort food that will warm me to my toes.

Thursday, January 7, 2010


Since our last snow, Meg has been asking when we can build another snow man, and talking about "squishy snow".

We knew a big snow was coming.

We prepared with a trip to the library to get new books and a couple of movies too.

We waited...

We watched...

After a nice, stick to your ribs breakfast; sausage, biscuit, eggs and of course butter and preserves - we headed out to assess the situation.

Our synopsis:
Not good for snowman making.

Good for eating, shoveling and bulldozing.

We made a different kind of snowball instead!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Happy Birthday!

It would be rude to disclose his age, now that we are in our thirties...
Happy Birthday, Mark!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Saturday, January 2, 2010

In one word...

Just like dieting, I have never been a resolutions type of person.

I find that kind of funny because I love lists, so you'd think I would love to add another list to my repertoire, but alas, I do not make a New Year's resolution list.

I have noticed a few other bloggers choosing one word resolutions, you know, something like, simplicity or patience, discipline or intentional.

I thought it was a fun idea, but the more I thought about it, the more difficult it seemed to narrow an entire years worth of goals into one word.

No big deal really, since I'm not a resolution type girl.

Throughout the day of New Years Eve, I couldn't stop thinking of words that would tie together what I hope to achieve this upcoming year.
Some words seemed to cliche or predictable and some just too... something.

Finally, I thought of a word.

I would be lying if I said that losing a couple of pounds isn't where the word originated, but the more I thought about it, there were more and more ways that this word seemed to fit.

Yes, I would like to be more fit but not just to fit into a certain size, but to be healthy... to feel healthy... to set a healthy example for my kids.

I want to start adding more homemade foods to our dinners again.

I want to keep the relationships in my life healthy, by being a better wife and mother, friend and sister. I have been blessed with wonderful people in my life and I want them to know how much I love and appreciate them.

I want a healthier home. I can't promise that Pine-Sol will not be my bathroom cleaner of choice, but I know there are more kid/environmentally cleaners out there that I am going to check into.

I think there is always room for self improvement. I would like to focus on my emotional and spiritual health as well.

Please understand. This is not about becoming someone I am not or making drastic changes in my or my families life for a few weeks making everyone is miserable in the process.

This is about me asking myself;
is this good for me?
is this good for the kids and Mark?
how will we benefit from this?
is there a better alternative?
is this necessary?

So many questions...
Luckily, I'm not a resolution type of girl.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year!

We held our second annual "Neighborhood New Year's Bash!"

We had homemade pizza and ice cream sundaes with even more good snacks. As usual, too much yummy food, but that's what parties are about right?

The kids had a great time. They played and watched movies in their jammies... with the two youngest in their birthday suits for a few minutes... and they all stayed up to welcome 2010!

We grown ups had a great time playing games and for the record, the girls won... every game... every time!
Just sayin'.