Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Kid Cuisine

The kidlets all love to help out when there is any cooking to be done and they especially love anything that involves layering. These are grilled scalloped potatoes - recipe from Stacey P (the other Stacey with an "-ey" in our ward).

First lay out foil in a cross shape and throw on some blobs of butter (REAL butter). Next slice up a big pile of potatoes and onions - you must use a mandolin for this because makes perfect, thin slices. If you do not own one, contact my friend Gail and she'll hook you up. I found my Pampered Chef version brand new at a yard sale this past summer. For some reason the lady had about 6 of them still in their boxes and she was not a distributor - odd.

Have the kids alternate layers of potatoes and onions. Sprinkle each layer with salt, pepper and garlic powder.

Watch out for those onions!

Mr. Calvin was in charge of the pepper grinder.

He was very enthusiastic.

Add a couple more blobs of butter to the top, wrap it up and toss on a med. grill for 30 minutes while you grill the rest of the meal. If you like, open the packet and sprinkle the top with cheddar cheese and let cook for another 5 minutes for melty cheesy goodness. Enjoy!

Random Tag

Tiffany wrote: I was tagged by my friend Cathy, and these were the instructions: "Go to your pictures file and pull the fourth picture from your fourth folder. Post it."

Here is my random photo taken at our home in MN a couple of years ago when my sister Heather and her husband Ross came to visit. Calvin looks like such a baby! Max has not changed a bit.

I tag: Heather (the sister above), Kelly, Mercedes and Leanne (If they actually read this blog!)

Monday, September 29, 2008

Full moon on the landing

I found this shocking site as I went upstairs to bed the other night. So, I did what any good mommy would do. I found the camera, took some photos and left him there for his daddy to find when he got home from work.

Things I confess: The boys room is never clean. Calvin moves his bed every night. His favorite spots are a corner in my room, the landing and my bed. He does not normally sleep naked. Max always sleeps on TOP of his covers so it is easier to make his bed in the morning. Max likes to use several pillows so he is practically sitting up while he sleeps.

Lost in Austen

What is THIS and why did I not know about it?! Has anyone seen it? Thoughts?

Mrs. Bennett - ooooh, I love this actress!

Mr Darcy - he's no Colin Firth, but I'd like to see how he plays the role.

Elizabeth - I think she's the new bond girl.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Thoughts on Motherhood

I have been spending much of my time this week thinking of the Nielson's (I still cry over every new story) - not only about the tragedy they are struggling through right now, but of the example they are to the thousands who are following their story each day. Their extended families continue to amaze me with their strength, love and faith during trials. What an immense blessing for Stephanie and Christian to have grown up in these huge families with so many sisters and brothers who have now stepped in to care for their children, lift their spirits, help raise funds for their recovery and to share their story with the world.

I have spent a great deal of time pondering how I can be a better, mother, wife and church member these past few weeks and I appreciate this family for reminding me that I can do better - be better. I wonder if it will someday comfort Stephanie to know that because of this horrible accident, thousands of people have found her blog, read her story and been touched by her joy and enthusiasm for motherhood, marriage and living life to the fullest.

I don't know why it sometimes takes a terrible event or heartbreak to remind me of what is truly important in life. I want my marriage to be strong, loving and honest, I want my children to feel safe, adored, capable and grateful and to have a close relationship with their Savior.

I want to do better, be better.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Our very own V.I.P.

Calvin was the VIP at preschool on Thursday. After telling me all about his friend Luke's poster from the week before (Luke does NOT like flowers), our boy was pretty excited to make a poster of his own. Having put it off for several days, Calvin ended up making his poster with his Dad and a stack of Ranger Ricks while I was teaching card class.

This is what Calvin does NOT like: monsters and big blue hairy spiders.

These are his favorite things: chocolate, his family, penguins and a bat hanging upside down with a frog in his mouth (Calvin said "he's a funny guy").

This is where you are supposed to stick a picture of you or draw a picture. Calvin chose the weird yellow thing instead. I added the circle shots so the other preschoolers were not confused.

He was ridiculously proud to show it to his class.

Thursday, September 25, 2008


Here is the outfit Sophie wore to school on Tuesday. CLEARLY, we can see that her outfit consists of a t-shirt, leggings (tights with the feet cut off), and a zip up dress on top. I did not see Sophie come in the door after school, but later as we were getting ready to leave for scouts, I looked over at her and said,
"Sophie, put your dress back on and get in the car." Then, it dawned on me that she was not wearing her dress.
"Sophie, when did you take off your dress?"
"Oh, after gym today, I was just soooo hot . . . . "

This led to a long discussion on modest dress - tights and a t-shirt not being modest enough for school!

In other fashion news, Calvin has become quite adamant about dressing himself. This is the charming outfit he wore to pack meeting. This morning, he had on this same out fit with a pair of overalls on top.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Sunday Lovin'

As we were tearing out the door Sunday morning - on time for church, but very, very late for choir, I made the kids stop for a quick photo because they all looked so cute. Seconds after these shots, Max knocked Calvin to the ground and he ended up with grass stains all over himself. We also all ate spice sugar cookies in the car on the way to church for breakfast, so none of us looked clean by the time we arrived.

**I can't get this any bigger, but if you click on the image it will enlarge.

Views from my window - Sunday Edition

We have been enjoying a lot of rain this week and the leaves are rapidly changing colors. I am feeling a bit pressured to get to an apple orchard stat! Even the blossoms outside the window are changing color.

For some reason there seem to be a ton of bugs and bees in the plants outside the window. I guess they are preparing for the winter as well. Just don't bite my son - okay? Speaking of bugs, I picked up two fly swatters at a garage sale last week for about ten cents each. BEST TOY EVER. The kids fight over them whenever a pesky fly makes it way into the house - which is often because my kids have serious issues with closing doors.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Some things you should know about Max

Max loves soccer. He is on the same team this year as his buddy Greg. Greg is Natalie and Johnny's older brother. The team is playing on the full field this year with an actual referee. Max is still very much a defensive player, but he is trying to get the whole dribbling/passing concept down.

Max's Mom ordered his shirt about twelve sizes too big this year. Max's Mom gives away all of the soccer shirts after the season ends.

Fact: Max has too many shirts.

Max cannot tie his shoes because him Mom only buys Velcro close shoes. Velcro makes her life 1000 times easier.

Max needs to learn to tie his shoes.

Or, the coach could do it for him.

Max has really looooong hair. He likes it long and throws a fit whenever I take him to get it trimmed. If his hair is not trimmed, he looks like he is sporting a mullet. I assume this is just a phase and really short hair will be in again soon.

Fact: Calvin is really sweet - or maybe he is just perpetually sticky. This is evidenced by the fact that the poor kid gets stung by more bees than anyone I know.

Fact: This is not the bee that stung Calvin, but he did wail that the bee was "black stripe and yellow stripe and it put it's bum on me and stung me!"

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Friday, September 19, 2008

Blogging Community

This is an ongoing story I have been following for the past month about a beautiful family in Arizona. Stephanie and her husband Christian were involved in a plane crash on August 16th and sustained very serious injuries, leaving four young children who are being cared for by her sisters. Reading Stephanie's blog (she is called Nie Nie) is truly uplifting and so inspiring. I admire how easily she writes about her love of being a mother - even with all of its challenges. I love how tenderly she writes of her love for her husband. I admire how prepared their family was for the challenges that are ahead of them now. I love being inspired to do better, to love more and to pray for others. I don't know this family personally, but I think about them a lot.

Stephanie's sister has been updating her blog with news on Stephanie and Christian's slow recovery. I cannot tell you how many times I have cried while reading her blog - for instance today when she wrote about Christin seeing his wife for the first time since the accident. There are so many good people in the world and I am grateful to this family for sharing their story.

10 Favorite Things

I saw this challenge on a blog I like to read called Tip Junkie. It asked bloggers to show 10 of their favorite things in their homes. I spent this morning putting up fall decorations with the kids until we ran out of steam. The rest of the decorations are all over the kitchen table and I have high hopes of being motivated enough to put them up this weekend.

This is my messy scrap space. I love that I have a scrap space even if I share the room with the office, laundry room and doors to the basement, guest bath and garage. It is very much a multi-purpose space. I found the old frame in the trash when we lived in NH and added the cork. The two magnet boards were $1.00 yard sale find and here and I painted the frames.

This bookshelf was a NH garage sale find along with the platter on the wall. I love that it is made of old boxes and that the top box sags a bit in the center. The kids love to play with the pewter tea pot.

This set is one of my all-time favorite garage sale finds from New Hampshire. I still remember the gorgeous home way out in the country where my girlfriend Leta and I found these. I paid $15.00 for the set.

My pewter candlesticks. I love pewter. It has such a great glow to it and yet it never needs to be polished!

My ornament tree. My sister Koo gave this to me for my birthday several years ago and I love to find little seasonal ornaments for it. The kids managed to break a couple of ornaments today in their enthusiasm to put them up. Such is life.

My mantel. I love having a mantel and having cozy fires in the winter.

I love old boxes and found these at a garage sale in NH. I love that the bottom box has a Concord, NH label and will always remind me of the years we spent in NH in law school.

I love my cook books and I love the bookshelf they are stored in which I pulled out of the trash in New Hampshire. Free stuff is the best.

Sophie's pink room. I love this room because it makes Sophie so happy. The beaded chandelier is a recent yard sale find as is the $8.00 bookshelf.

Books. Our whole family loves books and they are all over the house. Here are some of the neatly shelved books. The other night I had just fallen asleep when the three stacks of books (stacked about 5 feet tall) on the floor against the wall in my bedroom fell over, knocking my bedside lamp onto the floor and scaring the crap out of me. It is time to find a better place for those books. We need a library.

Crafty Girl - September Card Class

Here are the card samples for September's card class. Classes are here next Wednesday and Thursday night at 7pm. All of the supplies can be purchased at Archivers. I will send out the supply lists today.

This is another version of the same card using different stamps and papers.