Thursday, February 14, 2013

valentines fun and recipes

Valentines was low key, but sugar filled around here.  Thanks to Pintrest and All Recipes for these amazing recipes.

Valentine tradition for us is heart shaped pancakes for breakfast.  This obviously is more for me than the kiddos.  When I gave Ian his (all decorated cutely), he quickly said, "No.  I want peanut butter & crackers."  Hmph.  I ignored him and he loved the pancakes.  I found the greatest (IMO) pancake recipe here.  I make up a batch of mix, and when it's pancake day, I just add the wet stuff.  It's like having my own homemade Bisquick, only better.
Shape compliments of hubby and a pizza cutter.  Maybe it's time to get a heart shaped cookie cutter?
They almost look too adorable to eat.  Almost!

Anyway....I also made up a batch of this strawberry Valentine Chex mix for a few special people.  Avery helped me with this one.

This was so yummy!

Looks even prettier in cute bags

For Avery's class I made a Valentine treat for their non-party.  I've always wanted to make these.  So easy!
Best if you can make them to eat the same day.  I was short on time
and had to make the cake part and put in fridge til next day to frost.
Cone isn't crunchy.  But no one in her class complained!
And finally (yes, I was a baking fool!) I made this Rich Chocolate Truffle Pie for my chocolate loving husband.  He doesn't know it yet.  And there's no pick because it's not set yet.  So, the website will have to do.  Hopefully it tastes good.  The batter sure did!

Jim and Avery went to her school's Daddy/Daughter Dinner/Dance this week.  They had a great time.  Wish I had more pics, but apparently the camera lost juice.  So the only picture he got was a self done one.  Better than nothing.  That's one handsome man and one adorable princess!

Hmmmmm, a little off.

Monday, February 11, 2013

So Long Norovirus

Yes, this is what our house looked like during our 2 week diarrhea and puke fest, thanks to the norovirus.  This was one mean virus for us.  I'll spare you the details.  Poor Benjamin got hit first.  He was out of school for a week.  Then came Ian and Avery.  They didn't miss as much school, but mainly because theirs hit on a Friday.  Here was the scene in our house the first night they were all affected at the same time:
Ian:  gets up out of chair and vomits on floor
Avery:  climbs over the back of the couch, screams all the way to her room, and stays in there the entire night
Benjamin:  stands and looks at vomit, vomits, and goes on his merry way
As a parent, I've decided I never really know what kind of pain my child is in until I have to go through it myself!   And I did.  Gives me a whole new level of compassion.
We have our furniture and floors back now.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Small, Fuzzy, DEAD

If you're a huge lover of nasty, disease-infested critters....Do Not Read Ahead....

You ever have those things that you just can't get rid of?  You know, like a stain in clothing.  You work and work, and spray and spray, but the darn thing just won't come out.  Then, one give it one more shot.  Lo and behold the stain is gone.  Remember that feeling of pride because you beat the stain?!  Well, I had my moment today.

We've had these annoying (and quite loud) mice.  I've set 2 different traps, 3 different times.  All 3 times on both traps the mouse has gotten the bait and eluded the trap.  And those things are NOT fun to set.  Luckily, I haven't had any squashed fingers.  Just bait thrown across the kitchen and a bad attitude.

Finally, I decided to use peanut butter.  The little sucker can't just pull peanut butter off like a piece of cheese, right?  Each morning I look under the sink and on the floor in the pantry to see if there's a body.  This morning there was....under the sink.  And thank heaven he was dead, not alive and kicking.  I honestly thought I would gross out, wig out, or just feel sorry for the little thing when this day came.  But you know what?  I felt none of those.  I felt like Rocky Balboa....a hero, a fighter, and utterly succesful!  Only I didn't have to suffer any of the punches.  DA NA NA, DA NA NA!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Asics - Try These Running Shoes on For Size


Okay, is it weird to adore shoes?  Cuz I adore these Asics running shoes.  They are by far, so far, my favorite.  They weigh nearly nothing and I almost feel like I'm running on air.  I don't want to stop running when I'm in them.  Extreme, I know.  We usually buy new running shoes every 5 months or so, depending on budget and how worn our current shoes are.  I've flipped between Asics and Saucony.  I'm back to Asics after this pair.  I want to go ahead and get my next pair because it seems we hardly see the same shoe twice at Academy when we go.  If I get them now, I don't have to worry about the tears and heartache that would come if I weren't to find them again.  Okay, really extreme now!  Seriously, great shoes.

Chicken Pot Pie...I did it! And Chocolate Pumpkin Muffins Too!

Two proud baking moments so far this year.  The first, homemade chicken pot pie:

I've never made a really good chicken pot pie before.  Now I have!  And it's all homemade (well, except the crust).  No cream of anything, no cans.  Even the broth was homemade.  Yes, this was a proud moment for me.  The unfortunate thing is that none of my kids like chicken pot pie!  That's just left more for Daddy and me!   The recipe is here.
The second, chocolate chip muffins:

I love it when I'm right.  To clear the air, it doesn't happen often (especially in cooking), but the few times it does, I like to soak in the moment.  I had told Avery we could make pumpkin muffins (Weight Watchers recipe...just white cake mix and pumpkin puree), but when I went to get the cake mix I found we only had chocolate.  After suggesting we try making them with the chocolate mix, I got horrified and grossed-out looks from Avery and my hubby.  So, I got on-line and googled "what muffins I can make with chocolate cake mix".  The second item that came up was called something like 3 Ingredient Chocolate Chip Muffins.  I definitely liked the sound of that.  When I clicked on it, take a huge guess what ingredient #2 was.........YEP, PUMPKIN PUREE!    Yea for me.   We made them, and they turned out so yummy and so moist.  Here's the credit where credit is due:  3 Ingredient Chocolate Chip Muffins. I found out this recipe is simply a tweak on the Weight Watchers recipe we make....all the better!  If you're thinking it sounds gross to mix the chocolate mix with pumpkin, you're not alone.  However, you really can't even taste the pumpkin after all is said and baked.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

A Little Chili?

I love it when my kids decide to try something new.  I love it even more when they don't really know they're doing it.  I made chili the other night....for the nice cool rainy evening.  Benjamin immediately reverted to his ole stand-by (and quite frankly, life support) - peanut butter and jelly.  So, as usual, he sucks down his peanut butter and jelly while the rest of us enjoy the chili.  I decided to try the old, "Benjamin, wanna try some of Mommy's?"  Usually I get a turn of the head with a very quick, "No, yuck!"  This time he decided to go for it.  I started small and hopeful, with just a bean.  To my utter amazement I heard, "Ooo, yum!"  I'm not about to stop now.  I raise the bar with a bean and some beef.  Same reaction.  Then I just go for the whole spoonful.  Who cares that he ended up eating all of MY meal (in addition to his).....the boy ate chili for the first time....and he liked it!

Any bets on whether or not he eats it next time?


Monday, October 15, 2012

God is Great at Finding!

Whenever I've searched and searched for something and can't find it, and I find myself getting really frustrated, I pray and ask God to help me find it.  I have to say, it has worked every time!  I may not find it right away, but it eventually shows up, usually within a day or so.  And no, I don't think it's coincidence.  I believe it's God, caring about even the small things in my life.

So, the other morning I'm trying to get all the kids ready for school.  Ian wants his microphone and he can't find it.  I try to tell him he'll have to wait until after school because I don't have time to look for it.  He's gotten way better at actually looking for things himself now, but after a while of not being able to find something, he starts the whining.  ARGH!  (However, not much different than myself!)  This particular morning I decided that we would ask God to find it.  Never waste a good teaching moment, I say.  So, I told Ian we were going to pray and ask God to find his microphone.  We did just that.  I asked Him to help Ian find it before school, but if He didn't, then that I would stumble upon it during the day (because I definitely would not remember to purposefully look for it).  I continued on getting the kids ready for school and Ian seemed satisfied.

About 5 or 10 minutes later here's the conversation:

Ian:  "I found it!"
Mom: "Yea!  Who did we ask to help you find your microphone?"
Ian:  "God"
Mom: "So who should you thank?"
Ian: "God"

What a fantabulous teaching moment!  What a fantabulous boy!  What a fantabulous God!