Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Ella lost another tooth!

Her 4th tooth has been hanging by a thread. So much so that I wrote in her baby book yesterday morning that she lost it that day. I was so sure she'd lose it yesterday! Now I'll have to change it to today! By the way, she lost the bottom one today. That top one was two months ago. She's going out of order! She still hasn't lost her top front middle right one!

While we're on the subject of Ella, I wanted to share this cute pic I got yesterday. She doesn't look five, does she?!?!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

And the WINNER is:

Congrats!! I'll get you the book soon!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Hoilday Happenings!

Enjoy the slide show!!

Winner of the contest to be announced soon!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Another yummy recipe!

I get requests for this all the time. Here is my recipe for Oooey Gooey Butter Cake!

Oooey Gooey Butter Cake

1 Box Yellow Cake Mix
1 Egg
1 Stick Butter, softened

Directions for bottom:
Mix until blended and crumbly. Press into greased 9X13.

1 8oz Stick Cream Cheese, softened
1 lb 10X (Powdered) Sugar (1¾ C)
2 Eggs
1 tsp Vanilla

Directions for topping:
Beat all together until blended. Pour onto bottom and spread to the edges. Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes or until lightly golden brown. Cool and cut into squares.

(Click on "contest" above for details!)

Monday, December 22, 2008


Come and join my challenge! You could win a FREE BOOK!!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Friday, December 19, 2008

Uh oh...I think I'm in trouble...

Coby has been given a project assignment to design his own island using the geographic stuff (I'm so technical, aren't I?) they are learning in school. He has three options for his island. He can make a 3D one, make one on poster board, or make one using Word or PowerPoint. He decided he wanted to do it on the computer. He was asking about PP, and I was trying to explain to him what it can do. He wasn't grasping it so I wanted to show him an example. A real good one is the slide show I made for him for his first birthday. It chronicles all of his milestones each month as well as including pictures and video. Took me weeks to do. I found where it was on the computer and Coby, Ella, and I settled in to watch it. Coby loved how the slides moved on their own and you could add different transitions and all that. Totally accomplished what I set out to do - make him understand PP. When it was over Ella turned to me and said, "Did you make one for me too, Mommy?"


Guess what I'm working on this afternoon?

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Get Yer Snowman Poop Here!!

So, the funniest thing I've seen for the holidays is "Snowman Poop." I was given this little bag of goodness years ago and have made some almost every year. This year I thought the kids would get a kick out of giving some to their friends and, yes, their teachers. Here is a pic of the finished product and a copy of the words in case you would like to make it too. The "poop" consists of mini-marshmallows! Enjoy!

Santa looked at his list
Even checked it twice
And he found out that you
Haven’t been very nice
Since coal is so expensive,
Here is the scoop:
Santa’s filling you stocking
Snowman Poop!

Don't forget about the blog challenge!

Monday, December 15, 2008

The Most Adorable Baby EVER!

We were given these cool coasters as wedding shower gifts a few years ago at two different weddings. They have a spot in the middle for a picture that, of course, were of the bride and groom. We managed to end up with four of these and I promptly changed the picture to some cute one's of the kids. From lots of use the pictures have started to get water marks on them. As I'm looking at this adorable one of Ella it dawns on me that I do not have another! It was taken before I had a digital camera! So, I quickly scanned it in and tried to fix it up so the mark isn't so noticeable. I had to share the pic with you because it makes me smile every time I see it! She is six months old here. Enjoy!

Don't forget about the GIVEAWAY!!! We have some good submissions so far! Keep them coming!!

I thought blog giveaways were supposed to be popular???

So, I'm offering a FREE book and NO ONE is taking me up on it? Is asking you to do one nice thing for someone too much? Or do I really not have any readers?!?

Come on everyone! This is free! I'm not asking you to buy anyone anything! Let someone merge into your lane! Give up your spot in line! Let that tired mom have the last Wii...I don't know! Get out there, do something, and tell me about it here!!

Apparently people need to read this book more than I thought....

Saturday, December 13, 2008



Impressive.....have no idea what it means...

Friday, December 12, 2008

Dinner by Coby

Our Martins Grocery Store has a cool little kitchen in it where there is a chef preparing food that the customers can sample. Many a dinner has come from these recipes because the kids try them and like them! The latest one that Coby was dying to make was: Sauteed Shrimp and Creamy Tomato Pasta. YUM! Here is the recipe:

Sautéed Shrimp and Creamy Tomato Pasta

3 TBSP Olive Oil
1 pd. Medium Shrimp – peeled and deveined
2 TBSP garlic – minced
¼ tsp Dried Oregano
½ C Tomato Sauce
1 Can Diced Tomatoes, drained
¾ C Heavy Cream
½ pd. Angel Hair Pasta
S & P
Heat Oil in a skillet over med-high heat. Cook shrimp with garlic and oregano for 2-3 minutes and season with S&P. Stir in tomato sauce and tomatoes and bring to soft simmer. Add cream and briskly simmer until sauce has thickened slightly, about one minute.

Meanwhile, cook pasta until al dente and drain.
Toss pasta with shrimp and tomato sauce. Serve immediately.
Don't forget about the CHALLENGE!! I can't wait to read what you all have done! Have a great day!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

A Challenge

I'm in the process of reading an incredible (well, I'm only on page 18 but so far it's incredible!) book called "Love As A Way Of Life" by Gary Chapman - he's the guy that wrote on the Five Love Languages. I came across a paragraph that I want to share with all of you. Take it to heart and see what "small things" you could do to brighten some one's day. From now until Christmas Day I will take comments under this post telling about something you have done for someone else after reading this (of course things you did yesterday and last week count, but not for this challenge - you'll just have to do something else!). I will then put every one's name in a stocking and pick one. The lucky winner will win a copy of this very book! I hope all will be blessed by what they do as well as what they read from others. Here is the excerpt:

"Is buying a homeless person a bowl of soup or taking your daughter to the park or driving a coworker to the mechanic when his car breaks down really going to make a difference in the world? The answer is an overwhelming yes. We might have loftier ideas of what it means to love, such as making a grand sacrifice of time or money or even giving up our lives, but why should we be willing to die for someone when we won't even fill up the gas tank for her? Every trait of authentic love begins with small things."

Good luck and have fun!

Feel free to pass this link to your friends. I'd love to see lots of people loving others in small ways!

Monday, December 8, 2008

NYC Pics!

Here are some pics from my day trip to NYC yesterday. I'm so tired today, but we had so much fun! Enjoy!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Friday, December 5, 2008

More bizarre happenings from our house...

Do bizarre things happen in three's like the saying "bad thing's" do? If so I'm curious to see what that third thing is. To the left is a picture of a lava lamp (you probably already knew that!). This is very similar to the one Coby has, as it's an orange wax with clear liquid. I was in his room the other day and I was curious to see that the lamp was not doing anything. The orange wax seemed to be just sitting there in a mound. It didn't look like a hard mound, like when the lamp is cool, but something wasn't working right. It just wasn't moving. The closer I got I realized it smelled foul. When I touched it I recoiled, it was extremely hot! I unplugged it and let it cool for a few minutes before I took it apart. When I lifted the glass from the base I was almost knocked over by a burning smell. How weird! As it cooled of I noticed the wax had a different color to it. The wax had burned!! I didn't even know this was possible! Check out this picture and see what color his wax turned:

SO Weird!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Finally some relief for Jon!

So my husband prefers not to be mentioned too much here but I had to share this bizarre story with you. As you all know we went to Great Wolf Lodge two weekends ago. While he was doing that cool wave thing, Jon had one of his contact lenses rip. He went to the bathroom to pull it out and only got half. He assumed the other half had been knocked out by the water and didn't see it in his eye, so he gave up for the time being. The only problem was his eye was still bothering him. He kept looking in it and had me look around as well to see if it might be the other piece still in there. We didn't see anything and it never showed up in the corner of his eye. So he thought that he had scratched his eye and made an appointment to see the eye doc on Tuesday. He may be a male (and ignore consistent pain in his ankle that has been bothering him for years - but I digress), but you don't fool around when it comes to your eyes. The doctor checked him out and found no scratches. He stopped talking about it and we went on with our week.

So imagine my surprise when he comes out of the bathroom this morning (for those who are counting it's been ELEVEN days since the incident) after getting ready for work with his finger out. He proceeds to show me the other half of his contact lens that he had just gotten out of his eye. Can you believe the eye doctor missed that? Jon admitted that his eye had still been bothering him but wasn't sure why. He had, after all, gone to the doctor for it!

Isn't that weird?

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Christmas-time is here!

I LOVE listening to the Charlie Brown Christmas album, don't you?? Between that and the Muppet's I'm not sure which is my favorite. I think CB wins out by a mere note or two! The kids love David Foster's version of "Carol of the Bells." Can't tell you how many times I've had to listen to that already this season!

Well, we went on our annual tree hunt yesterday. We needed to do it early this year because there isn't mush time between Thanksgiving and Christmas. This coming weekend Jon is on Worship Team which cuts into our Saturday and I'll be in NYC on Sunday. Then, we're just getting later and later. I'm glad it's done and as long as we I remember to water it everyday we'll be good to go! Here are some pictures from our trek:

Coby looks like he may be having fun in this picture but it's very deceiving.....

You see, this was his attitude about finding a tree. The teenage years should be fun....

And so the perfect tree was found rather quickly and taken back to the truck:

As Jon was preparing the tree for the base, the kids were having fun with our stockings:

After mom's job of putting the lights on "just right, " Coby had the honors of placing the hideous beautiful angel on top of the tree (Ella did it last year):

Editor's Note: The horrendous green-striped wallpaper (and lace curtains!) is soon to be a thing of the past. Needless to say I am literally counting the days until I am rid of the last speck of 90's "in" colors in my house! And yes that is a mistake you see in the strips. That was hanger-error. Identity to be kept secret....

Here is Ella painstakingly adding an ornament to the tree (we only had one fatality this year):

Do you like my Pampered Chef stonewear loaf pan sitting on the top of my wood stove? They really should add that use to the catalog. I think they would sell millions if buyers knew how well it worked with water in it to help keep dry-air at bay. I've been doing it for years with ne'er a crack!

Here is the finished product. Lovely, yes?

And if you promise to ignore my son's messy excuse for a room I'll show you his masterpiece.


Okay...here it is:


Now are you ready for the best part of the season? I splurged this year and decided to get my van (aptly named by the kids "Sie-oya") in on the holiday action:

Yup. I am driving around Rudolph this year. If you pass me on the roads, be sure to honk!!

Friday, November 28, 2008

What's left of the best dessert I've ever had!

Pumpkin bread pudding from the Fishermans Inn in Easton, MD.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

Martha Stewart will not be dining with us this Thanksgiving. I'm telling you in advance, so don't act surprised. Since Ms. Stewart won't be coming, I've made a few small changes:

1. Our sidewalk will not be lined with homemade, paper bag luminaries. After a trial run, it was decided that no matter how cleverly done, rows of flaming lunch sacks do not have the desired welcoming effect.

2. Once inside, our guests will note that the entry hall is not decorated with the swags of Indian corn and fall foliage I had planned to make. Instead, I've gotten the kids involved in the decorating by having them track in colorful autumn leaves from the front yard. The mud was their idea.

3. The dining table will not be covered with expensive linens, fancy china, or crystal goblets. If possible, we will use dishes that match and everyone will get a fork. Since this IS Thanksgiving, we will refrain from using the plastic Peter Rabbit plate and the Santa napkins from last Christmas.

4. Our centerpiece will not be the tower of fresh fruit and flowers that I promised. Instead we will be displaying a hedgehog-like decoration hand-crafted from the finest construction paper. The artist assures me it is a turkey.

5. We will be dining fashionably late. The children will entertain you while you wait. I'm sure they will be happy to share every choice comment I have made regarding Thanksgiving, pilgrims and the turkey hotline. Please remember that most of these comments were made at 5:00 a.m. upon discovering that the turkey was still hard enough to cut diamonds. As accompaniment to the children's recital, I will play a recording of tribal drumming. If the children should mention that I don't own a recording of tribal drumming, or that tribal drumming sounds suspiciously like a frozen turkey in a clothes dryer, ignore them. They are lying.

6. We toyed with the idea of ringing a dainty silver bell to announce the start of our feast. In the end, we chose to keep our traditional method. We've also decided against a formal seating arrangement. When the smoke alarm sounds, please gather around the table and sit where you like. In the spirit of harmony, we will ask the children to sit at a separate table ... in a separate room ... next door.

7. Now, I know you have all seen pictures of one person carving a turkey in front of a crowd of appreciative onlookers. This will not be happening at our dinner. For safety reasons, the turkey will be carved in a private ceremony. I stress "private" meaning: Do not, under any circumstances, enter the kitchen to laugh at me. Do not send small, unsuspecting children to check on my progress. I have an electric knife. The turkey is unarmed. It stands to reason that I will eventually win. When I do, we will eat.

8. I would like to take this opportunity to remind my young diners that "passing the rolls" is not a football play. Nor is it a request to bean your sister in the head with warm tasty bread.

9. Oh, and one reminder for the adults: For the duration of the meal, and especially while in the presence of young diners, we will refer to the giblet gravy by its lesser-known name: Cheese Sauce. If a young diner questions you regarding the origins or type of Cheese Sauce, plead ignorance. Cheese Sauce stains.

10. Before I forget, there is one last change. Instead of offering a choice among 12 different scrumptious desserts, we will be serving the traditional pumpkin pie, garnished with whipped cream and small fingerprints. You will still have a choice; take it or leave it.
***Edited to add: As much as I would love to take credit for this I did not write it! I found it online!! Enjoy!!***

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Coby may not live to see tomorrow

So I went to the pantry to get something out this morning and noticed bits of waffle on the floor. Even some on the door. It was strange, but Coby had had them for breakfast. What they were doing by the pantry was beyond me. So, I concluded that he was putting the syrup away (like he is supposed to!) but had his plate in his hand (to put in the sink, obviously!) and some crumbs fell on the floor. Didn't explain the door but it was logical enough for me. So, waffle crumbs. No big deal. I grab the broom to sweep them away (wouldn't want to attract more mice...)and they stick to the broom. Which can only mean one thing. They are wet. Wet waffle on the floor? So I do the next logical thing. I call Coby in and ask him what it is.

"Oh." He says. "I sneezed."

Monday, November 24, 2008

Our Weekend Away!

We went to Great Wolf Lodge in Williamsburg, VA this weekend. I had posted a pic from my cell on here, but wanted to give you more. We had a great time! Well, except for the 5AM evacuation! Anyway, here are some more pics:

Ready to go!

The big fireplace in the lobby!

The view of the park from the lobby-level:

The wave-machine. Coby and Jon loved this one!

Ella at the end of one of the slides:

Posing with the bear outside the ice-cream shop: