Monday, November 29, 2010

Old School

....I'm taken it back to the old school
Cause I'm an old fool
Who's so cool....

Today is Monday which means we are back on the routine for the week. Monday's are marvelous. Braxton's little friend picks him up for preschool (we carpool). Adelle, Emmett, and I do laundry and hang out in our pj's for a while. Adelle gets to play big sister/baby sitter while I take a shower (she loves this responsibility). I get the kids ready and the old library books collected to take back and we go to library story time just down the street from our house. It's a special morning for the little ones and I. Lots of books, little friends, special time without big brother....
This morning, after I got dressed I put on my shoes and then I laughed out loud.
These shoes were given to me 10 years ago right after I graduated high school from my dear friend as a hand-me-down! Ok, so hear me out here; She wore them for who knows how many years, then gave them to me 10 years ago! These babies are old! They were free for me! And they are my all time favorite, most worn shoes, ever! Thanks friend!
After having this realization of the shoes I proceeded to evaluate the rest of the outfit. It was definitely blog worthy.
The brown cords were a Christmas present from my mother-in-law 7 years ago. It was my first Christmas as part of the fam. She has really good taste in clothes and the clothes she buys me are always the right size....not sure how she does that? The tank under the sweater was a hot buy I found online clearance browsing back when I was pregnant with Braxton. I've always loved it because it's so long and I can wear it even with a big belly. The cable sweater is one my mom found for me at a garage sale a couple summers ago. It was in perfect condition and totally mine for free. Score!
So there you have it a whole entire outfit from the old school.
The funny thing is that most of my clothes are this old, this worn and still....well, I still wear them.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Stellar Stockings

My mother-in-law is extremely talented!
That is an understatement.
Among other things (like the skirts my bridesmaids wore in my wedding), she creates these Stellar Stockings!
They are my favorite Christmas decorations because they have so much meaning to me.
I see Jeff's, which he's had since he was a little boy, and I think of him as a boy playing with a train and giving his sisters grief.
I see mine and I remember when it was just the two stockings hung close and filled full.
I see Braxton's and I remember getting to be the one to chose what was on his stocking and pondering and then choosing "The Little Drummer Boy." This was a perfect fit for him and when I hear that song I always think of my sweet boy.
I see Adelle's and I smile because she is such a little angel in my life and I can hear her sweet voice saying, "dis one is mine."

I just got word from a pretty valuable source that Emmett's stocking is done!! I can't wait for it to arrive in the mail from Arizona. Our mantle will be complete once again. Jeff's mom has been super busy making stockings this year. Not only did she have Emmett's stocking but she also gets to make stockings for Jeff's sister Erin's new husband and their 3 children! This is another reason why these stockings are so stellar. Everyone in the whole family has one and they are each unique and different.

Thanks mom (Gramma) we LOVE our stockings!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Turkey-Bowl

Braxton ready to play in his first ever Turkey-Bowl! He's been waiting for this for 5 years!
My blessings enjoying a warm yummy crepe breakfast

I love Thanksgiving. It's one of my favorite days of the year partially because there are so many traditions that I can count on. The turkey, the cranberries, the pumpkin pie, the family gatherings, the playing of games, the chance to show off my kids....
Another one of these traditions is the Turkey-Bowl. Jeff talks about the Turkey-Bowl for months before Thanksgiving and he and the guys exaggerate how awesome it's going to be. This year he invited Braxton to play! The real deal, which was huge for Brax as we usually go and watch and afterward Jeff and Braxton play their own little game.
So this morning the kids got up, early as ever, Jeff and I sent them out to put on a movie. When I came out I gave each of them a kiss and said, "I am very thankful for you, Happy Thanksgiving." Braxton repeated the gesture to everyone in the family but when he got to Jeff he goes, "I am thankful for you, Happy Turkey-Bowl!" I am thankful for this special tradition.
I have so many blessings. It seems like every year I recognize more and more of what I have to be thankful for. Maybe this is part of growing up? There are blessings I have now that had anyone told me a year ago, that these would be my blessings, I would have probably laughed hysterically or rolled my eyes in disbelief. Yet, they are my reality now and I am so truly thankful.
Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Baby, it's cold outside

It is so cold! 24*and my kids keep asking when it's going to be summer! I think the sun shining outside is a bit deceiving!

I've been singing this song for the last 4-5 days but unfortunately I know the tune, just not the correct words.
So basically I've been walking around singing

I really can't stay
Baby, it's cold outside
I must go away
Baby it's cold outside

over, and over, and over. I looked up the lyrics.
This song is hilarious!
Me the romanticist: This song has so much feeling. I love it!
Me the mom: Cold or not, get home....NOW!

I really can't stay - Baby it's cold outside
I've got to go away - Baby it's cold outside
This evening has been - Been hoping that you'd drop in
So very nice - I'll hold your hands, they're just like ice
My mother will start to worry - Beautiful, what's your hurry
My father will be pacing the floor - Listen to the fireplace roar
So really I'd better scurry - Beautiful, please don't hurry
Well maybe just a half a drink more - Put some music on while I pour

The neighbors might think - Baby, it's bad out there
Say, what's in this drink - No cabs to be had out there
I wish I knew how - Your eyes are like starlight
To break the spell - I'll take your hat, your hair looks swell
I ought to say no, no, no, sir - Mind if I move closer
At least I'm gonna say that I tried - What's the sense in hurting my pride?
I really can't stay - Baby don't hold out
Ahh, but it's cold outside

C'mon baby

I simply must go - Baby, it's cold outside
The answer is no - Ooh darling, it's cold outside
This welcome has been - I'm lucky that you dropped in
So nice and warm - Look out the window at that storm
My sister will be suspicious - Man, your lips look delicious
My brother will be there at the door - Waves upon a tropical shore
My maiden aunt's mind is vicious - Gosh your lips are delicious
Well maybe just a half a drink more - Never such a blizzard before

I've got to go home - Oh, baby, you'll freeze out there
Say, lend me your coat - It's up to your knees out there
You've really been grand - I thrill when you touch my hand
But don't you see - How can you do this thing to me?
There's bound to be talk tomorrow - Think of my life long sorrow
At least there will be plenty implied - If you caught pneumonia and died
I really can't stay - Get over that hold out
Ahh, but it's cold outside

Baby it's cold outside

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Our Favorites

I totally made this! Like today in about 15 minutes with 3 little ones "helping"!
Instead of saying, "I am not a sewer." I will now say, "I am learning to sew."
It was really fun.
No pattern, no measuring, not perfect...
I just found a piece of fabric that matched my kitchen and created something.
Right now it's my favorite part of my table!

This Red Balloon is Emmett's favorite thing as off this week.
He loves it and chases it all around the house.
It's very fun to watch him and his free toy!

Adelle's favorite thing is snacks!
Cheetos, raw almonds, animal cookies, pretzels, raisins....
Last week we ate 2 whole bags of satsuma oranges in 4 days!
They aren't bad snacks, but when it's all she wants I have to draw the line.
So yesterday we had a tea party and everyone was given a little plate with all of Adelle's favorite snacks and when they were gone, they were gone.
Everyone was happy!
Dress up is Braxton's current favorite thing. He has so many fun dress-ups and they all get their fair share of wear by this boy!
Here is Buzz eating scrambled eggs. I never know who is going to be joining us for breakfast!

Oh, and no picture but last night I made baked artichokes to go with dinner and they were yummy.
Take an artichoke
wash it
cut off the top inch and the poky parts
mix a minced glove of garlic, melted butter, some lemon juice,
pour onto artichoke (make sure it gets between all the little openings)
top with a pinch of salt
wrap in foil and bake at 425 for about 75 minutes.
I'm going to go with my first instinct here and post that Jeff's favorite thing was coming home to homemade meatloaf for dinner.
Or maybe it was beating me twice in a row at NERTZ last night!?

Friday, November 12, 2010

Thankful Friday

If your name is on the picture it means you rock and you were the pronounced name that my child shouted out when I asked, "What are you thankful for?"
If your name isn't on the still rock because, well as you can read for yourself, my name did not make either paper.
But, that's the great thing about these kids. They are thankful for so many things/people that the question can be asked a hundred times, each time the answer being different!

This top one belongs to Braxton. It is just about as accurate as it could be and he spent much time ensuring that.
The eggs and the nest were his idea and I followed his lead on that one.
This one is Adelle's. I was so impressed with hers as well. My favorite part is the eggs. She put them in the turkeys tummy. Too cute!

This was a fun project today that occupied some of our morning.
I love projects like these because the kids can really practice following directions and it's amazing what they are capable of doing on their own.
All I did was cut out a circle (for the head)
an oval (for the body)
some feathers and legs and beak.
Then they followed my instructions to glue it all together.
Gobble, Gobble!!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Thursday in November

It's 41 degrees and I just hung my flannel sheets out on the clothesline to dry.
There are certain things I like done certain ways.
This is one of them.
Nothing better than clean, fresh air smelling sheets!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


Yesterday while making dinner I was secretly watching/listening to these little friends.
Braxton, "You're cute, wanna get married?"
Adelle, "huh, get mair-wied???"
Followed by hysterical laughing by both

Monday, November 8, 2010

crepes anyone??

Crepes are yummy
in your tummy
I can make them
I'm no dummy

Hubby's favorite
Sisters dream
Brother likes them with whip cream

Here's my famous recipe
It's no secret,
just ask me
If your feeling healthy use 1/2 whole wheat
(thanks Rachel I actually had never done that before but I did this morning and they were still amazing).

Here ya go:

2 eggs (whip them up good)
add 1 1/2 cups milk
add 1 cup flour
1 Tbs. oil
dash of salt.
Whip together or blend in a blender

Pour a tad bit into a well sprayed skillet and coat the pan.
Cook over med-high for a few seconds.
There you have it.

These are so easy and a huge hit in my house, and in the house that I came from. I actually make these and give them to my brothers and sister for their birthdays sometimes if they're lucky.
We eat them with butter and syrup but lemon curd is the best and my kids like blueberries rolled in them.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

My Dear Girls

I have some really special people in my life whom I am blessed to call my girls. They hold a special place in my heart and they also consume a bit of my schedule. That's how it is when you love people, you work for them, and then your love grows for them. And grows, and grows, and grows.

When Braxton was about a year old Jeff and I decided we were ready for baby #2. However, Baby #2 was not ready for us, and for reasons unknown to me at the time we were not able to conceive when we planned.
At that same time I was called, (in our church we are extended "callings" which are areas where we are asked to serve to help the church run properly) as a counselor to work with the Young Women. This meant that I would work with the girls ages 12-18 on Wednesday night doing some sort of activity to help them come unto Christ, and then I would also teach/lead them on Sunday. I was so ecstatic about this opportunity.
And so I did. I devoted every single Wednesday night to being with them and every Sunday for part of church. It was wonderful and I grew to love all the girls with whom I worked. We were able to learn together and they were able to really help me as I focused on them and the purpose for me working with them. I got to know them on such a personal level and felt their love reciprocate back to me as well.

In the meantime I had two more children. My schedule got a little more hectic but I continued to serve the Young Women. They were a great support to me and on more than one occasion I longed for Wednesday night to get out of the house and be with my dear girls. They are young and fun and so full of life and they are wise. They are living in hard times and I drew on their strength and courage.

Shortly after I had Emmett the Bishop in our church released me (which means they tell you thank you for your service and allow someone else the opportunity) from counselor and called me to be President of the same girls. I accepted with something to the extent of, "of course I will, those are my girls."
Since that time my life has gotten a little more chaotic. There are meetings on Sunday mornings before church, and sometimes after. There are meetings during the week and phone calls, calendaring, planning, emailing...

My family has sacrificed. My kids know Wednesday nights mom is gone and they know Sunday mornings dad will get them ready for church. My husband knows that I have lots of thoughts/feelings/promptings going through my head and is so supportive and loyal to me and my need to sometimes just "sit in silence."

Some might think this is a lot. I'm not going to argue that. But...the blessings that I have received from working with my dear girls is ten fold to the sacrifices I have made.

A couple weeks back we did an activity on Wednesday night that left us all in tears. We sat in a circle and everyone took a turn complementing everyone else. We told each other what we loved and admired about each other. We told each other of the strengths we recognized in them and the influence they had had on our lives. We looked each other in the eye and said, "thank you," and "I love you," and "that one time when you....." It was an amazing experience and I felt so connected to each of them in such a real way.

It's easy to get overwhelmed or sometimes to think, "will this even help them," "do they even care," "Am I doing the right thing?"


And so to my dear girls. You were mine before I was blessed with my own daughter(s?). I have loved you, prayed for you, labored for you and you are all wonderful and I would have each of you as my own. We get each other for this season and I am so grateful. You will always hold a very special place in my heart.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

a little secret

I have a little secret.
My kids, they are not deprived, only get one piece of Halloween candy a day.
Yep, ONE!
Why? Because sugar dramatically lowers the immune systems ability to function properly and since my kids are not able to make that conscious decision yet, I am making it for them.
They do not mourn. They are absolutely thrilled when they get their one piece.
And they are really healthy kids which makes them really happy kids.
It's all about perspective people!
Here they are only one day after Halloween with their cousins.
On my kitchen floor sharing and devouring pomegranate seeds.
They had completely forgotten about their candy and were arguing over who got the last little antioxidant filled deliciousness!
This makes me feel so accomplished in my efforts.
They love these seeds and they are so good for their little growing bodies.
and a side note, I used to be really scared of pomegranates because I didn't know how to really eat them but all you do is wash the skin then cut it in half down the middle and soak each half in warm water. Then the seeds pick out really easy!
Give it a try, I bet your kids will love them!