Monday, January 31, 2011


It is COLD outside! This morning on the way to the store, my car told me that the temperature outside was nine degrees - and that isn't taking into account the wind chill.

The sun came out over the weekend and started to melt our sun catchers a little bit. It didn't take long for them to freeze back up though. Now they look a little sinister I think.

We have so many icicles this year. Much more than I remember in the past few years. Maybe a strange melt and freeze pattern this year or our house is getting older and losing a lot more heat. I hope the latter is not true.

They are predicting a blizzard for us on Wednesday, so we will see what happens with that. Sometimes it seems they predict these doomsday scenarios and then we get barely an inch or two. I know that this storm is packing a punch in the south though so...maybe? Honestly I am a little excited to see a big snowfall. I don't think my kids have ever seen one in the magnitude they are predicting. We have tons of food - as long as our heater keeps on running, we will be fine.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Silly girl and total randomness-es-es

After my last post, the sickness decided to put my stomach through another round. Just so I won't jinx myself, I am not going to say that it is gone, but I am going to really, really hope that it is.

I have so many things on the to do list in my head, that I don't even know where to begin. Maybe if I wrote them on paper it would be easier. Besides, you can't beat that feeling of accomplishment when you get to actually cross something off when you have completed it.

I know the first place I have to start is Evan's closet. The other day I pulled a shirt out for him to wear that I hadn't seen him wear in a long time. It looked small to me so I looked at the tag. Size 4. Maybe if I didn't have clothes in his closet that would fit his sister, he would be able to find clothes that did fit him.

I have a free book on account at Shutterfly that is going to expire in four days. I really need to work on it because "Hey - free book", but I just have no desire right now. Plus if I sit for a long time, my stomach starts to hurt a little so I much prefer laying on the couch under a blanket and catching up on all things iCarly with the kids.

I was rather proud of myself this morning for getting all the bills paid, the dishwasher unloaded and reloaded and for getting the trash gathered and to the curb by nine.

I think I will actually be able to make dinner for my kids tonight. On Sunday when I was feeling good, I let the kids pick the dinners we would have this week. Spencer chose pesto tortellini for Monday - which he had to make since I was writhing on the couch in pain. Yesterday was supposed to be meatloaf, but even though I felt a little better I couldn't stomach the mixing of the meats (I use ground beef and ground turkey in our meatloaf), so we decided on grilled cheese and tomato soup. Tonight we are having Evan's choice of Pierogis - or "Goodness" - as I told him they were called and that is how he asked for them.

I finally finished making thank you notes to send out for Hailey's birthday gifts. I have to write them still, which I hope to do later. Sadly, I still have not managed to send out thank yous for the gifts we received at our Christmas party (which was over a month ago!). I really need to dig deep and find some motivation. I know I will feel so much better and lighter once I get this stuff out of my head.

Speaking of cute is my little shower capped princess? She wanted to take a shower with me the other morning and I just had no patience to fight the hair fight again. Not the washing of the hair, but the combing of the hair afterwards. So we capped her up. She was so funny. Her hair is getting longer and I think that it is starting to look kind of cute like that. I am also thinking of letting her bangs grow out for a change. Her bangs never lay right because of her natural curl. Longer hair means more surface to have to brush though, so I am not sure how it will go over or how long it will last. Keep us both in your prayers.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Embracing winter

My body finally gave in yesterday to whatever nastiness has been infecting our family since JANUARY 1st! Can I tell you how ready I am to be done with this? SO READY! I am taking it as a good sign that Spencer hasn't vomited in three days now - the longest he has gone since two Tuesdays ago. Did that make ANY sense? From now on, all is going to be well! I am knocking on wood just to be safe.

It is cold out. The kind of cold where you don't even want to be near the outside. Last week the kids and I started a sun catcher ice project. Since the sun decided to shine today for the first time in I have no idea how long, we decided to finish our project.

We started with some ice cubes tinted with food coloring.

Then we placed them into various receptacles filled with cold water and put a piece of yarn inside to work as our hanger. It was so cold out the day we did this, the ice cubes and cold water started to slush up almost immediately. It was a matter of hours before these were covered with snow, but I didn't have room in my freezer and the front porch was way colder than the freezer anyway.

Today we brushed the snow off of them, popped them out of the molds and voila!

We used our string to tie them to the tree in our front yard and we had some festive sun catchers made of ice.

Since our front porch slants down a bit, the ice tended to migrate a little toward the slant. Oops.

I will be curious to see how long they last. I am regretting that I didn't use a white string as a hanger. I think the dark blue may conduct more heat and cause them to melt out where the string is before the discs melt. We will have to wait and see. Still, a super easy and fun little project.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Deals of the day

After a long weekend and then a snow day with everyone around all the time, I was really feeling the need to get out of the house today. I had a remote control spider that I had to return to Toys R Us, so I packed up Hailey and we headed out to the sprawl.

We arrived at TRU at nine fifty and a glance at the sign on the door told us that they didn't open until ten. Never fear, there is a Goodwill a block down the road - let's go see if we can find any bargains.

Two pairs of pants for Spencer, one from GAP and one from Old Navy. They cost me 1.99 each. I can't stress enough how much I love buying pants on the cheap. My boys go through pants like they are made of tissue paper.

We changed around the furniture in the boys' rooms and Evan's desk is now in a corner with no light whatsoever. I told him we would look for a cute desk lamp for him.

Wish granted. One cute desk lamp. It even has the bendy neck so he can position it any way he desires. It looks brand new. Four dollars.

I spotted this light up globe on the top shelf. I am always drawn to globes - I think it has to do with my mom's collection of them. Either one of my boys would live for this. Since I had a lamp for Evan I decided that for now it will go in Spencer's room. Maybe eventually the office. I was a little bummed when I got home and noticed a crack in it off the coast of Argentina. It is slight - I didn't notice it at the store or I maybe would have thought twice. Or at least asked for half price. I paid four dollars for it, not too bad for something that will probably be cracked worse after spending a few months in a little boys room.

My best bargain was this PlayDoh set. Brand new in the box with a price tag of ten dollars right on it. I got it for four bucks. Evan and Hailey will LOVE this. They spend hours playing with Hailey's cake making station and the other PlayDoh stuff. I put it away to give to them as a Valentines Day gift.

A pretty good waste of ten minutes huh?

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Snow Day

I guess when Evan put ice cubes in the toilet he knew what he was doing, because today was a snow day!

Snow days are the best. A little vacation day that comes as a welcome surprise. The best part about today is that it wasn't very cold, so we all got to spend some time outside enjoying the snow.

Climbing on the piles of snow left by the snowplow.

Sledding down the hill in the yard.

Playing in the snow with your brothers and sister.

Running through the snow blower "wake".

Licking snow off of your mitten. Ew. Note that I stopped her from doing this and she was only faking for the photo.

Riding around with the neighbors on a four wheeler.
Hailey wanted to ride on a sled so badly. She is just too little yet so she settled for helping drive.

Building a snow fort with the world's most awesome Dad.

Trent keeps telling me he is going to sleep in this fort. I think he is crazy.
A pretty great day was had by all!

Sunday, January 16, 2011


We were getting our coats on to leave for church this morning and I asked Hailey if she was going to go to "kid church" or sit with me in "grown up church".

Hailey - I think I will go to kid church, but I am a little nervous. Maybe I will miss you.

Mommy - You won't be there long enough to miss me. Besides I won't be far away - I will be in the next room.

Hailey - You mean the room where God is?

Mommy - God is in all the rooms. He is everywhere.

Hailey - I mean not the REAL God. The pretend God.

Mommy - You mean the pastor?

Hailey - Yeah, the pastor.

Mommy - Yes, I will be in the room with the pastor.

Hailey - I think I will go to kid church with my brothers then.

Saturday, January 15, 2011


I could go on and on about how I can't believe that my little girl - my BABY - is four years old already. But I fear that to those of you who regularly read what I write, I will just come off sounding like a broken record.

I don't usually post much about the kids' birthday parties, but this year for Hailey's there were a few things that I really want to remember. So she is going to get a birthday post. Maybe it will make up for the lack of scrapbooks and videos of her as a baby that we don't have. The second child gets rooked - the third child get squat.

Due to her love of all things sweet. We decided to go with a candy theme for her party this year. I tried to wrap the invitations up in cello wrap to make them look candy-ish. They turned out all right, but looked a little weird to me.

While Christmas shopping at Target, I came across these candy ornaments. I bought a couple thinking they might look cool as cake decorations or something. Then the day after Christmas, I went back and bought a ton more when they were fifty percent off.

The morning of Hailey's birthday party started off looking like this outside.

I told Hailey to come to the window and look because the sky was "Pinkalicious" land. She ran over and said, "It IS Pinkalicious land, maybe God painted it that way just for my birthday!" Seriously, how cute is she?

We found an idea for a cake online, and we tweaked it to work with the candy that we had. We filled glass jars with candy so the little girls could fill up goody bags and that could be their party favor.

The girls covered pretzels in candy coating then decorated them with sprinkles.

Hailey and the party girls. Three of her cousins and two friends from her class came over.

Trent and the boys were around at the beginning of the party and then got a phone call inviting them to go sledding. Spencer was thrilled with the idea. Evan decided he wanted to stay for his sister's party. I couldn't believe what a character he was. At one point the girls were in Hailey's room putting on crowns and jewels and some of her dress up dresses. Evan came out of his room all decked out in his fire fighter costume - complete with some Harley Davidson fringy gloves.
A bit later, he changed into his mummy costume and joined in with the filling of bags at the "candy bar".

I will never forget how cute he was with those little girls trying to explain to them how to play Candyland on the DVD. "Just stand on a mat. Any mat. It doesn't matter if it has a picture on it or not." He would call them by name and tell them where to go or help them find the next color. Seriously, he was the cutest.

I am so grateful that my mom came over to help with the party. Our plan was that when the girls first arrived they would play the Candyland DVD game. The only problem was that as the girls walked in, they were all too timid to start playing. The only ones playing the game were Evan, Spencer and Grama -who Evan dubbed "Grama Nutt" after one of the characters in the game. I started to panic a little and began to melt the candy for the next activity. Grama knew just what to do. She channeled her inner former school teacher and got all the kids acquainted with a rousing game of Duck Duck Goose. They LOVED it! Thank you Grama Nutt!

One of the other things I always want to remember was courtesy of her oldest brother. The morning after her party - her real birthday. She was laying in bed with me in the morning. Spencer came in and without being prompted said to her, "Is there a birthday girl in here? Happy Birthday Hailey!" She glanced at him with a look that was a cross between elation that her big brother remembered her day and embarrassment to be the center of his attention. He walked over and gave her a big hug (also unprompted) and she said "I love you Scence!" To which he replied "I love you too Hailey!". It was one of those moments where my mama heart just melts.

Happy Birthday Hailey Marie! We love you so much!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Eat your vegetables

One of the gifts I received this Christmas was the cookbook Double Delicious! by Jessica Seinfeld. I love to look at recipes and cookbooks. I love to cook if I have all the ingredients. That is where my weekly meal plan is essential.

What I was most excited about in this new cookbook was the fact that the recipes are not very complicated and she tries to incorporate better ingredients. For example, whole grain pasta instead of plain old regular pasta. Another thing that I love is that every recipe includes a vegetable puree for a little extra boost of nutrition. There are pureed vegetables in them and you don't even taste them!

So before you start to cook up any of her yummy recipes - first you have to whip up your purees. I was a bit nervous, but it was so easy! And if I can do it, anyone can do it. All I have is a cheap, little, in pot steamer basket and a sketchy food processor at best.

Trent was my kitchen assistant (he was just as excited as I was about this) and we tackled three purees on our first try. It took about an hour from start to finish for all three.

Broccoli - which we have already tried in a chicken balsamic sandwich that was out of this world!

Cauliflower - We had this in a baked ziti and bacon and egg cups that Trent and Spencer made.

Carrots - We had these in the ziti, chocolate chip waffles, tuna casserole and in homemade granola. Can you believe granola? You can't even taste it. I swear I could have eaten the carrot puree with a spoon. It was so sweet and yum.

You portion them into half cup servings which is what most of the recipes call for and when you need them, just thaw and add them in.

Tonight I am going to make a batch of sweet potato puree. I am making honey mustard chicken fingers tomorrow and that is the secret ingredient.

Can you tell I am excited about this? So fun, easy and healthy. If I had known how easy it was to make these veggie purees I would have saved myself a fortune in baby food costs!