Monday, October 19, 2009
Friday, October 16, 2009
Thursday, October 15, 2009
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Thursday, October 8, 2009
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
The 17 pc. set included a stainless steel stand and pot, fork guard, 6 forks, 6 ceramic plates, and a ceramic insert functional to use with cheese or chocolate, and a fuel container (the fuel is sold separately). It all nests together in a neat little box for safe and easy storage.
I'll let you know who the winner is on Thursday!
Saturday, October 3, 2009
I have a phobia of using public restrooms. With all the statistics out there about fecal matter latching on to purses and the thought of who-knows-what diseases lurking in the corners--I just don't like it.
Thursday night we met my Dad and his wife in Columbus for dinner. "Golden Corral", they suggested and even though the very thought made me a little sour, we weren't paying, so we agreed. Looking around the restaurant, I was put at ease. It was exceptionally clean and the food looked clean, too, which is always a plus.
This is actually pretty good," I said finishing off the last bite of a pre-mixed Caesar Salad. And really, it was. We finish eating and visiting and it's time to go. As soon as we hit the parking lot, I felt a rumble in my stomach, but we still had to make it to Kohl's and Wal-Mart, so I quickly squashed any thought of sickness.
Travis suggests we skip Kohl's since we had all the boys with us. "Nonsense," I say. "You go in and take your time. I just have to take these blinds back to Wal-Mart and get the right size. The boys can go with me." Looking back--this was my death sentence right here.
So me and the boys go into Wal-Mart and because I have to go to Customer Service and I only need one thing, I make all the boys sit in the shopping cart. We go to the CS line and it hits me. Whatever-I-just-ate-body-don't-like-e diarrhea hits me, just like that. I'm in the customer service line and I start sweating. My stomach (or intestines, rather) is cramping so bad all I can do is grit my teeth and try to act like a normal person. It's my turn with the Customer Service Manager and I don't even know if I can make it to the counter. I found all the inner-strength I could muster and move forward. Jackson starts standing in the shopping cart and all I can do is glare at him and hope he sees the fury in my eyes that is screaming for him to sit down because all the energy I have is focused on two things: 1) NOT pooping my pants right there in the Customer Service line, and 2) just getting through this conversation with the CS manager.
I got the kids in the car and mentally checked off 'Worst Experience of My Life".
As for Travis? He strolled out of Kohl's happy as a lark. No kids to struggle with in the store and no life-threatening diarrhea. He was just fine. (No, seriously, he tried to take the older boys with him but I insisted they go with me and then he felt really bad.)
This little boy must have a naughty gene. As soon as he wakes up he starts trying to lick me or one of his brothers, he will knock over chairs, jump off the furniture, steal pickles and chocolate syrup out of the refrigerator, ect. ect. ect. I taught him how to say, "I'm naughty" and it is the cutest thing in the world. He walks around saying,
I'd like to know what kind of deal I made with God to get children this interesting. You know?
Friday, October 2, 2009
My potty-training tips:
Throw out the pull-ups--In my opinion, Pull-ups only prolong potty training. Of course, there are times when they come in handy, like, when you have to go somewhere and when your child refuses to put on a diaper, but still pees while they are sleeping. During potty-training, I always have my kids in underwear when we are home. Get a good carpet cleaner--they will have accidents, but it's important for them to learn that wet underwear feels gross against their body. It only takes a few times to realize that they'd rather just stay dry. Or, sometimes I'll put a diaper on over the underwear. They will still feel the wetness, but it won't get on your carpet.
Start a routine--I start training as soon as they wake up. The first (or second or third!) thing we do is go to the potty. If they don't go right then, come back in 10 minutes and try again. You can usually tell if they've already gone in their diaper after they have woke up--it will be warm. If that's the case, give them 20 minutes before you take them. If you've given them something to drink, take them 20-25 minutes after. If they don't go, take them every 10 minutes until they do go.
Stay consistent-- This is the most important thing. I always say that potty training starts when the parent is ready, not the child. It's difficult to interrupt what you are doing every 10 minutes to take your toddler to the bathroom, but, potty-training will not be a long drawn out process if you do it this way. I will say right now that I am not very consistent with Bryce. (Right now he is wearing a diaper and watching a cartoon.) But, if you can commit to a couple of days to focus on just potty-training, they will have it down. But, it's up to you to take your kid potty--at least for the first couple of months.
Expect accidents--Remember, they are not even two, or are just two. They will have accidents. They've been going in their pants since they were born. Even after they are potty-trained, an accident may happen.
Have an arsenal of tricks--Have books, DVDs or whatever that will help your child connect what you are saying. Also, I always use M & Ms--it's classical conditioning and I don't care what experts say about rewarding with food. If they go potty, they get an M & M. It works. Also, I don't know how well this would work for girls, but it's always worked well for my boys. Sometimes, especially at first when they don't want to use the potty, I will pour a cup of warm water over their pee-pee. They always pee. I will do that then say, "okay, your turn" and then they will do it. Maybe it helps by association with the water going into the toilet? I don't know, but it helps. I always talk about how big they are when they use the potty. Praise works great. too.
My boys have always peed in the potty before they pooped in it. To get them to poop in it, I really play up changing their diapers. "I will say how yucky it feels", "how stinky it is","how big boys poop in the potty", ect. Eventually they will want to poop in the potty.
Finally, every child is different. Maybe these tips don't work in your house with your child. I hate changing poopy diapers after they start pooping like an adult. I don't like buying diapers and I don't like having dirty ones around. So, for me, I want to get it over with as soon as possible--but if you don't mind all that stuff, your kid will be just fine if you wait awhile.
Thursday, October 1, 2009
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Super easy and soooooo good.
You should try one.
1 envelope of active dry yeast
1/4 hot-warm water
1 t. plus 2 T. sugar
1/2 stick unsalted butter, melted
1 15 oz. can of pure pumpkin
5 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
3/4 t. salt
1 stick butter, softened
1/4 c. sugar
1 c. packed brown sugar
1 T. cinnamon
3 T. milk (plus a little extra)
Friday, September 25, 2009
I adapted this recipe from The Chicken Soup Book by Janet Hazen. I thought it was okay, but Travis and the boys LOVED it! The book is great--something I might order to just have on hand.
1 pound of bacon, cut up
1 lg. onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 t. celery seed (the recipe also called for paprika and mustard seed, but I didn't have any)
3 rounded T. all-purpose flour
10 c. chicken stock
4 med. potatoes, cut into cubes
1 c. heavy cream
2 c. sharp cheddar
2 c. chicken breast, cooked and cut up
salt and pepper, to taste
parsley, to garnish
In stockpot, cook bacon over medium heat until crispy. Drain on paper towels and set aside. Remove all bacon grease from the pot except for 1/4 cup--leave that. Cook the onion
and garlic in the bacon grease until onion is tender, about 8 minutes--and stir frequently. You don't want it to burn on the bottom. It will start to come off the bottom in your soup once you add the broth and little black flecks will be floating around--this happened to me. Add the spices and flour and cook for about 3 minutes--stirring constantly. Add chicken stock a little at a time and whisk to form a smooth mixture. When all the stock has been added, bring to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly once again--for about 10 minutes. Add the potatoes, cream, and reserved bacon. Reduce heat and cook for 15 minutes, or until potatoes are tender. Add the cheese and chicken and stir until cheese is melted. Season with salt and pepper and add parsley on top for looks (and to hide the black bits in case you burn it, like me.)
This soup has a lot of rules to follow...I didn't do it perfectly, but it was still good!
Place 4 baking potatoes in a microwavable dish and turn on high about 15 minutes. (I use 2 glass pie dishes; one on top of another--you know, plastic is bad! So are microwaves for that matter.... but I at least feel a little better about using glass.) Once softened all the way through, slice down the middle; long ways.
Scrape out the potato leaving about a half inch from the sides and empty into a bowl. Once all the potato is scraped out, mix about 1 c. sour cream, a couple T. butter, and fresh cut chives (I also added real bacon pieces). Mash together in bowl and then fill your empty potato skins with the mixture. Top with more chives and bake in oven about 15 minutes.
I just don't know. But I do know that this morning when I was helping Jackson get dressed, because he is almost 4 and says, "he can't do it by himself", I wanted to run away. His jeans are "too hard" he says, which really means "too tight", but it took me awhile to figure it out--I thought he didn't like the feel of the fabric, but nope--we just had to adjust them. Thank Heavens for adjustable waist! Meanwhile Bryce is standing next to me with that ball popper thing that rolls and is hitting me in the head with it, all the while I am trying to button the now adjusted jeans. Jackson's shirt, which I am trying to put over his head, is not the right one so he just falls down and lies on the floor lifeless. I tossed the shirt on him and surrendered.
"There's hope," I think to myself. I can remember a time when Triston was just as feisty, if not more, than the other two. Now he is a typical five-year-old who loves his family and goes out of his way to make them happy--most of the time.
Thursday, September 24, 2009
I made this pudding recipe from the book Family Feasts for $75 dollars a week by Mary Ostyn. It's a great book and I really like some of the recipes, but for some reason I just can't figure out how she could only spend $75 on a family of four using some of the recipes she includes. Nearly all of them have meat, fish, or shrimp in them--a big part of the grocery bill. Anyway, her book also includes wonderful little homemade recipes like this one. This pudding is awesome--way better than the box kind.
1/4 c. cornstarch
2 c. milk
1/3 c. sugar
1/8 t. salt
1/4 c. coco powder
1 t. vanilla
1 T. butter
Combine sugar, cornstarch, salt, and coco powder in a medium size sauce pan. Whisk 1 c. milk, stirring until smooth. Whisk in remaining cup of milk until well combined. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly and gently, until mixture begins to thicken. Reduce heat to low and continue to cook 2 to 3 more minutes, stirring gently.
Remove from feat and add vanilla and butter, stirring until melted. Pour pudding into bowl or individual serving dishes. Cover with plastic wrap, laying the plastic on top of the pudding to keep a skin from developing. Chill until cool--about 1 hour.
A couple of weeks ago, the kids were playing on a tree that had fallen half-way into our yard from the woods above (I say above because of the massive hill that makes up the back half of our yard and was home to that particular tree). Anyway, it became an instant jungle gym. So the kids play on it and swing from some of the smaller flexible branches that jut out from what would have been the top of the tree. This day, the kids were playing on it and I heard Bryce start crying. I looked out the window and noticed this was a different kind of cry. Also, he was standing perfectly still and not coming to find me--which was odd, right? Travis was standing on the porch telling him to come down but still, he wouldn't budge.
Coming off a crazy story about a snake that just happened to have found it's way into the bedroom of some friends of ours around here--that was the first thing I thought of. Maybe he spied a snake and was scared....but then again, I'm sure he would have called out "Snake"--he knows what they are. And Jackson is just playing away right above him on the tree, surely if there was a snake he would have made it known--he freaks out over flies. But, where is Triston? He is not in the vicinity anymore, which tells me one thing: someone has done something that is going to warrant a whippin'.
Triston does that--runs and hides if someone, AKA Jackson, is going to get in trouble. I've asked him why he feels like he needs to hide if he hasn't done anything wrong, and he says so I don't think he did it too. He's learned the ramifications of 'guilty by association' at a young age, I guess.
As I get closer to Bryce, all I can see, at first, is his little sad face with big tears swelling. But then, I can see his hair and clothes are soaked. I look at Jackson, who if flipped upside down dangling from a branch by his legs, and ask where the water came from. Casually, he says, "I don't know".
I look to Bryce and say, "Why are you wet, Bryce"?
His response? He looks right at Jackson and says, "Pee".
I turned to Jackson, still dangling, and asked if he peed on Bryce.
He says, "Well, I had to go and he wouldn't move so I just peed on him."
I was dumbfounded and just stared back and forth between my soaked baby and the heathen that is still dangling from the branch.
Jackson senses that I'm not happy. "Mom," he adds while disengaging from the tree (I think he was positioning himself to run!). "It was his fault. I told him I was going to do it and he wouldn't move. Mom. Mom? Mom. Bryce did it. He could have moved, but he just stood there."
I left Jackson and grabbed a still-crying Bryce. After a bath for a grateful Brycer, Travis and I sat down and had a talk with Jackson. These kinds of situations leave me too exhausted to spank--I get overloaded with just the right punishments because, seriously? What do you do for that? Jackson apologized and Bryce, who never would have been mad at him anyway, accepted with a double-leg take down. The wrestling match had begun and all was forgiven. (I will never understand that, but Travis does, so we're good).
As for Triston? He said he got outta there because he thought Jackson was going to get it--smart kid. As for me, I went back and forth about even writing this down--here or in my journal--some things are better left forgotten. But, one day, with everything that Bryce endures now, he is going to be able to whoop Jackson, and I'm going to need the proof that he probably deserved it.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
1/4 c. all-purpose flour
1 1/2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
1/4 t. salt
1 t. ground ginger
1 t. ground cinnamon
2 large eggs
3/4 c. buttermilk
1/2 c. 100% pumpkin
3/4 t. vanilla
3 T. melted butter
Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, ginger, and cinnamon together in a large bowl. Set aside. In another bowl, whisk eggs, buttermilk, pumpkin, sugar, and vanilla. Combine with flour mixture and mix until blended smooth. Stir in melted butter. About 1/2 c. per waffle in waffle iron. Enjoy!
Monday, September 21, 2009
Friday, September 18, 2009
Thursday, September 17, 2009
Sunday, September 13, 2009
Dillon getting ready to share his story.
Indulge me for a few minutes and read the story I've posted. I'm not just writing this post as a fundraiser, I am, but also to bless you, the reader, with an incredible story filled with faith, inspiration, and hope.
June 28th of last year is a day my husband's side of the family will never forget. Our teenage cousin, Dillon, was in a nearly fatal ATV accident near his home in Baker, FL. (Between Destin and Pensacola) Coincidentally, an off-duty paramedic was passing as the accident was taking place and help was called immediately. Dillon was flown by helicopter to Sacred Heart Hospital, an hour's drive from Baker. The 4-wheeler landed on top of Dillon's head, crushing his skull, and left him with a traumatic brain injury. During this time, doctors told his parents to expect the worse as Dillon's body fought fevers and swelling in his brain. Again, coincidentally, a renowned brain surgeon just happened to be doing work at that particular hospital when Dillon was admitted.
Many times during those first few days we received calls to start praying--they thought Dillon was slipping away, and countless doctors said they had never seen a patient with injuries such Dillon's make any kind of recovery. Dillon was hanging on to life.
He slipped into a coma. His body was healing slowly, but still doctors were skeptical if he would wake up, let alone have any type of brain function. As the weeks went by, his parents, family members, and friends talked with Dillon, held his hand, and prayed and fasted for him.
After 4 months, Dillon started to stir. He slipped in and out of consciousness and began to speak broken words and phrases. As more weeks progressed, Dillon started to regain consciousness and it was discovered that the accident left him completely blind due to damage on the optic nerve from the swelling in his brain. It became apparent that although Dillon's body was badly injured, his personality was still his own. One story that sticks out is when Aunt Carol (Dillon's mom, our aunt) and Cheryl (Travis' mom) were hooking Dillon up to his feeding tube, they would talk to him and tell him he was having great food like steak and potatoes. One day, Cheryl told Dillon he was having hot dogs and asked if he would like ketchup, mustard, and relish. To their surprise, Dillon responded, "Ketchup only, please". Not only was this the first phrase that he actually talked back with, it was something that was very familiar to Carol. Dillon had eaten hot dogs his own life with ketchup only. To me, as a mother, this stuck out--we all know our kid's little quirks.
After spending 6 weeks in the PICU and an additional 9-weeks in an in-hospital rehab clinic in Atlanta, Dillon was able to come home. Carol says, There were many challenges the biggest being that Dillon could no longer see the world with his natural eyesight". She adds, "He has had to learn to see the world with his heart and can truly find beauty in everyone".
Over the early part of this summer, Dillon has made great strides with his rehabilitation. He is able to walk without a cane for short distances and recently told Travis and I a story about walking 150 steps all by himself out to his dog's pen. You can imagine the excitement!
Dillon's story is one that those affected by tragic accidents may be familiar with. Although it was a new type of devastation for our family, many all over the world have experienced similar struggles as they find themselves, or their children, in these types of situations. However, while Dillon was in a coma, he found himself in the presence of the Savior. Dillon had a unique experience that started to emerge with the first few broken words and phrases that came out of his mouth as he was starting wake up.
Over Labor Day weekend, I got the privilege to hear Dillon share his story in a room of 50 or more people--some he barely knew. Sitting in the middle of the room in a chair, unable to see the ones around him, he shared what he experienced. This is his story:
"I awoke in a place much to beautiful to be Earth. As I looked around, I was greeted by my Grandaddy Morgan. (also Travis' grandad who died in 1999) He was so very excited to see me and picked me up and gave me a bear hug. He introduced me to his dad, my Great Granddaddy Morgan, who I had never met. They were both so happy. There was a third person with us, our Savior Jesus Christ.He held my hand and gently eased me away from my grandfathers. We walked beside a big beautiful river and Jesus told me that if I would come back to Earth and tell everyone I knew and met that He is real and that He loved them--every single one--my eyes would be healed. I didn't know anything was wrong with my eyes, though, because I could see Him standing before me. I told him I would do as He asked and I woke up in a hospital".
I had heard the story before, as Dillon has kept his promise and has shared with our family many times. (His mom says everyone else he meets, too!) But hearing this story from Dillon's mouth, in his own words, was truly soul-touching. Dillon speaks with the Spirit and it is hard to question if what he is saying is true--you just know it is, you can feel it.Recently, Dillon traveled back to the PICU for another surgery. One of the doctors that had administered to Dillon told his parents that Dillon had raised the bar for how badly you can be injured and still survive. Other doctors and nurses mentioned that because he just kept hanging on, so did they--even thought they were certain, at that time, Dillon wouldn't survive.
Here is the fundraiser part--Dillon is getting the opportunity to travel to Peru, where a team of doctors are going to preform a surgery on his eyes. It involves using stem cells from healthy babies' cord blood, not embryonic cells, but is unavailable in the U.S. The surgery alone costs around $30,000 plus travel expenses for him and his parents. They are shooting for an October date for the surgery. This is where you can help. Any contribution would be so greatly appreciated--even prayers. Especially prayers. As Aunt Carol says, "Prayers are the best. We have witnessed first hand the power of praying".But if you would like to donate money, here is the information:
Dillon Crawford Fund
728 N. Ferdon Blvd.
We're working on a Paypal account as well. I'm a little disappointed with Paypal as I learned that before they'll issue donations, they take some off the top for themselves. Not cool, Paypal, not cool. But if you'd rather not send a check or money order to the address listed above, I will have a Paypal button featured as soon as they e-mail me back on the difficulties of not being able to embed the HTML code. (also not cool.) You'll be able to put debit and credit card information directly into Paypal and select a donation amount. It's a secure website used by millions of people worldwide and is largely associated with Ebay.Do you believe in coincidences? I don't. I don't believe it was coincidence that Dillon was able to get help so quickly because of the paramedic that just happened to be passing as the accident was taking place and I definitely don't think it was a coincidence that a renowned brain surgeon just happened to be present when Dillon was admitted into the Emergency Room. The Lord always has a plan. For Dillon, it involves great faith. But he, and the rest of our family, believe in what the Lord Jesus Christ told him: that if he keeps his promise his eyes, and ultimately his body, will be healed.
Thank you, from everyone in our family--especially from Dillon and his parents for taking the time to read this story and contributing by prayers or monetary donations. I will keep an update of Dillon's upcoming surgery on my blog.
Friday, September 11, 2009
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
8 oz. cream cheese,softened
1/2 c. butter, softened
1 c. powdered sugar
3 T. brown sugar
1/4 t. vanilla
1 c. mini-chocolate chips
1 1/2 T. coco powder
3/4 c. chopped pecans
Beat cream cheese and butter until smooth. I did this in my Kitchenaid and left it on for a few minutes. It was a whipped consistency, which I think helped in the texture of the finished cheese ball, just beat it really well if you don't have a high-powdered mixer. Mix in both sugars, coco, vanilla, and chocolate chips. Cover and chill for 2 hours in the fridge. After 2 hours, shape into ball and roll in pecans. Cover and chill for 1 hour more. Serve with graham crackers.
you. are. welcome!
We arrived in east Tennessee just 30 minutes late for the first family reunion, which was earlier than we expected, so score for us. The location of the church (that we have been to several times for this very reunion every year) was lit up by a little star on the GPS, so all is good. Except the little star turns out to be an ally behind what looks to be a condemned building on an unfamiliar street.
Travis drives by. Does a U-E, then drives by again.
"This is not the right place, you know," I suggest.
"But the GPS says it's right here," he replies as the stress starts to appear in his face--metaphorical beads of sweat, if you will.
"Call my mom," he commands.
I'm thinking to myself, The freaking church is just down the road a little further, but I'm debating with myself whether or not I should say that because he is already getting anxious.
He picks up on it and says, "Just do it."
So I do do it because I'm a good little wife like that, but I get no answer. He starts sighing and breathing heavy and looking this way and that. And I just can't handle it anymore, so I blurt out "My goodness, Travis, just drive down a little further. It's going to be here somewhere--we're on Church Street for goodness sakes."
And he says, "If you would have put in the correct address this wouldn't have happened."
Our dilemma: We made it personal. And we're both hot heads, so we were like two little school girls staring out the window with our arms crossed--not speaking.
But then, as Travis drives down a little further, that church appears right in front of us. We pull up and are greeted by family members we haven't seen in months. Once inside, Travis and I made eye contact in the sea of people that were visiting with one another and I knew all was forgiven--just like that. Southern food and friends will do that to ya.
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
But these days, I am getting worried. Pandemic, they say, is coming--or has already started (and of course I've seen the what-if shows on pandemics, too). I know people who have it. I know someone who knows someone who has died because of it--a healthy someone who died. And my kid is in the public school system-- A.K.A. a cess pool of germs.
It's hard to let the fear of something like this rule your life, though. It's a maybe-maybe not type situation. So we're just trying to be prepared--just in case.
We are focusing on hand-washing all. the. time. Lots of hand sanitizer-- and always in my purse so that when we do go somewhere, it's always with us. Being stocked-up on staples. And I think I'll be going to the store by myself from now on. You are always going to be in the negative, as far as germs go, when kids are around. Especially when they do stuff like lick the freezer door in the frozen food isles and can't resist the urge to touch everything in sight. Because that definitely does happen. Oh, and the water fountain. What kind of magnetic pull does it have for my kids? They can not resist it. And I just can not let them use it. It's just gross.
Sunday, August 30, 2009
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Monday, August 17, 2009
So and so just got a brand new car. So and so just went on an awesome vacation. So and so can make and do anything and everything. So and so is building/bought/or remodeling a house. So and so has the best husband and cutest kids who do the cutest things and NEVER get in trouble for anything. Ever. So and so is pregnant with a girl right now.
Friday, August 14, 2009
Thursday, August 13, 2009
1 down, 179 to go.
He did great!
Except....he climbed a tree at recess and supposedly told another teacher NO when he was told to get down. He says he didn't hear her....and I believe him. Nevertheless, he promised to apologize today.
He got off the bus with red impressions on his face--he fell asleep!
He made some new friends and came home with a birthday party invitation.
He wasn't as excited to go this morning, but when he got on the bus I heard him say, "Good Morning Ms. Morgan" to his bus driver and sat right down.
I think his first day went pretty well....but, you know, I wasn't there so I don't really know...which drives me nuts!
I'd say parents need more adjusting than the kiddos do.
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
A quarter of my heart walked right out the front door this morning and hopped on a school bus. A gament of emotions was felt this morning as Triston got ready for his first day of school. I was nervous, wondering if I had given him too much information about what to expect. Travis--sad, not quite ready for Triston to go to school. Jackson--anger, thinking it wasn't quite fair that he didn't get to go. And Triston, well, I think he was excited and worried that bullies would be lurking in the corners and in the back of the bus. He pushed his nervousness aside, though, and hopped right on that bus without hesitation. The tears, from both Travis and I, were unexpected as the bus drove away with our little buddy inside.It's a weird feeling--my son is embarking on the beginning of his life without us, so to speak. Today is the first day that I or Travis won't be there to correct mistakes, double check that he looked both ways, weigh cons and pros with him, and to shelter him from all bad stuff out there.
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Saturday, August 8, 2009
J: (With a shoulder shrug) It's wreally big.
Friday, August 7, 2009
Locker organizers, or maybe just locker organization, was big for me back in high school. Me and a gaggle of my girlfriends would go into the school a few days early and prep our lockers for the year. Mine would always include a mirror, lip gloss, and pictures of my celebrity crushes.
I'm embarrassed to post the Calvin Klein ad of Mark Wahlberg that I lovingly looked at every day. It was a little, ahem, risque for high school....and even now I'm a little flustered just thinking about it. Here's a cleaner version. And then there were pictures of Brad Pitt A.K.A. Tyler Durden from Fight Club. Oh, and Lenny Kravitz when he was still cool. I still love that picture.
I started giggling to myself, because high school demeanor is funny. It just is and I think I'm going to laugh a lot when I start teaching. I digress. Anyway, it's been awhile since I've actually even thought of celebrities as a crush. (Because you know Edward is a character. I'm not really in to Robert Pattinson, even though I have been known to google him once or twice.) My husband just does it for me all the way around.
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
So yesterday, when I posted about loving thunderstorms and yada yada, I had no idea what was coming. I thought it would be hazy for a few more hours and then pass like usual. We went to the pool as promised to three special little boys, stopped for ice cream because Triston finally conquered his fear of deep water and started putting his shallow-water moves to good use, and made it home just in time.
Just in time to barely make it in the house before being blown away and pummeled with fierce hail. I'm no weatherman, but I'm pretty sure that when hail is coming down, in August, you'd better take cover. And I recently learned that when it's raining and windy, out here, to be aware because one or more of the trees that makes up the forest in the backyard could come crashing down at anytime, so I WAS SCARED. Which naturally scared the kids, which was just sad. Especially the baby. He covered his eyes with his blanket and kept saying, "scared". Broke my heart....
Tuesday, August 4, 2009
The morning is gray and wet. The canopy of leaves that shade our house makes it look like twilight instead of morning, especially today, and the security light is still on. I want to stay in bed and read books all day--my contribution to the depressed state of the sky, but the kiddos want to swim. Since it's an indoor pool, they win.
Saturday, August 1, 2009
Friday, July 31, 2009
Thursday, July 30, 2009
The hugely embarrassing ending: I threw up after riding the Star Trooper.
I reluctantly say, "Ooookaay" and hop on a basket that swings from a strip of metal. It wasn't that bad the first time around. When Triston and I were done, Jackson is on the sidelines crying because he wanted to go too and he looks at me with pleading eyes. Travis is crowned King of ALL WUSSES, and I hop in the basket again.
The rest is history. I held it until we got home and then I upchucked my dinner. I blame Travis for not manning up and riding the freaking ride AND taking the curves on our CURVY too quick. Plus, he laughed at me and I heard him tell his brother on the phone, "That is awesome." So not cool, Travis. So not cool.
I surpassed the calls of motherhood that night. I hope they remember this. But, if they don't I will be sure to remind them. (and Travis, too. This surely earns a freebie of my choice, right?)
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
I had visions of a purple ribbon. "Grand Champion" cookies, I would boast, but it did not happen for me this year. I entered these babies in the country fair and got a blue ribbon for them. A blue ribbon does not do these cooks justice--they truly are the Best Chocolate Chip Cookies Ever, which I properly labeled on the entry form. Whoever judged apparently did not get the memo--I lost to Pumpkin Bread. (and we all know it was probably quick bread from a box OR the judge's relative, but whatever.)
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
Last night, we went to the Brown County State Fair/4-H Fair. I was getting the feeling that Fair Week is kind of a big deal around here---I was right, and I love it. I guess I could say that I am a fair person--solely for the food. Nothing makes me happier than the whiff of good Kielbasa Sausage and fried Elephant Ears. Oh, and a Big Red. You've got to have a Big Red at the fair, right? And a Lemonade Shake-up. And Cotton Candy. And Fried Tenderloins.....
The fair was bombarded by teenagers, which of course I expected. But, I have never seen so many teenagers that look like this:
And I was totally disturbed. Skinny jeans do not look good on boys. On any boys. Ever. But especially on people who are not rock stars, or in the case of the band Metro Station, pop stars or electronic music stars? I just don't know.
I totally get it, now. I totally get why parents cringe and worry and fuss over their teens. I totally get why parents fear the coming-of-age adolescent and that kid's need to be an individual AND DRESS LIKE THAT. I totally get how things could always be worse than how your kid dresses, but ohmygosh, I would die if my boys were rocking that gear. And I totally felt like I was 52 instead of 26. Especially when one of the aforementioned "dressers" whispered something to his friend and they looked at either me or Travis and laughed.
And to my Mom and Dad: I am totally sorry I put you through the teen years. Forgive me quick before Triston, Jackson, and Bryce hit puberty (cringe) and I have to go through that. Okay? Good.
More fair stories to come with a hugely embarrasing ending.
Saturday, July 25, 2009
Thursday, July 23, 2009
Getting ready for church on Sunday, Jackson walks in my bedroom and says, "Mom, you look pwretty. Are you going to be a pwrincess?" (I was wearing a gauzy ruffly skirt, which is my favorite, ever, that I got on sale at the Gap for $16.00 last year. It's the perfect shade of blue, and I just love it. That morning I matched it up with a black-fitted tee and leopard print ballet flats. Love it.)
At church, Jackson crawls up on my lap and whispers, "You have the pwrettiest eyes, Mom".
Yesterday at dinner, Triston asks if one day he will like girls. I told him, "Absolutely", but secretly I was cringing. He says, "But there is no other girl as pretty as you. Can't I just marry you?" Jackson chimes in, "yeah, I'm going to mare-wee you too and wive with you forever.
Add in Bryce and all the kisses he slobbers all over my face and the joy that lights up his eye when I walk into the room (unless he is doing something he is not supposed to like unwrapping ALL of the toilet paper from a double roll and stuffing it into the toilet. So not cool.).
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
My french experiment. It was quite simple--I got it out of a French cookbook for kids. But, it was delightful. A recipe I will add to the rotation.
any kind of chicken (I used chicken breast cut in half)
1/2 c. flour
1 t. salt
1/2 t. thyme + extra for sprinkling
1/4 t. pepper
bay leaf, finely crumbled
1 1/2 c. chicken broth
Combine flour, salt, thyme, and pepper, mix well. Meanwhile, heat butter and oil together until melted. Roll chicken pieces in flour mixture and place into pan. Brown chicken and cook, covered, for 20 minutes. Sprinkle chicken pieces with thyme, bay leaf and garlic. Add chicken broth, gradually, and mushrooms to pan.
Stir and cover (with a slight opening so steam can escape). Reduce heat and let simmer for about 30 minutes. You will have a yummy extra tender chicken dinner. Spoon mixture over chicken upon serving. Yum.
Canned tomatoes (I used canned garden tomatoes, about 28 oz.)
1 can of chicken broth (you could use vegetable broth also)
*I guess-timate a lot. Use your own discretion when measuring. Also, make sure you add enough sugar to counter-act the acidity of the tomatoes!
Saute a little garlic and onion in olive oil until tender. In a blender, combine tomatoes, broth, sauteed garlic and onion, and rest of ingredients. Puree until smooth and pour into pot. Bring to a rolling boil and serve with grilled cheese. I added a dollop of sour cream to top the soup.
My family goes crazy for this. It's a family recipe that we picked up in Tennessee. It started out as a Holiday breakfast, but has worked its way into dinner on a week night. I've also made it for several brunches, especially good for showers.
1 lb. breakfast sausage
2 cups shredded Colby-jack or cheddar
1 package crescent rolls
Preheat oven at 350. Open crescent rolls and layer the bottom of an 8 x 8 pan with 2 triangles. Try to stretch crescent rolls to cover bottom. Place in oven until rolls start to puff. Set aside. Meanwhile, cook sausage according to package, drain, set aside. Crack eggs in medium sized bowl and beat until you have a consistency like you were making scrambled eggs. Add cheese and mix well. Combine with sausage and mix well. Pour sausage mixture into pan on top of puffed crescent rolls. Place remaining crescent rolls on top and bake until top is golden brown, 20-25 minutes.
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
I was in awe. Awe because I really do live in the most beautiful part of the state. Awe because after so much negativity about this area, I was enlightened. Here I've been grumbling about feeling stuck where we are and wishing for our time here to expire so we can move on to bigger and better things. (i.e. a bigger city).
What a silly girl I am. There's quite a lot more than meets the eye around here.
The next day I go into town and run into another t-ball parent. Then the librarian asks me how we're doing and she means it. Then a lady I've come to know from work shows up at the same yard sale. Then some random man strikes up a conversation at CVS. Turns out his kids went to USI and now they are in law school--weird. It's kind of nice to run into people you know. Or, even if you don't you find out you really do--indirectly.
You don't find that in a bigger city. Or, at least not on the same scale.
Another road trip is planned. Too much too be covered in one day, but I'm packing my camera this time and I can't wait to document my finds.
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