Friday, March 19, 2010


So I left Reece in his high chair while I went to get my shoes on. I came back and found him so proud to be ON TOP OF THE TABLE!
Of course I wanted to see how he did it. So I put him back in his seat. He was only interested in the rest of his cheerios.
So I enticed him with my phone, which he ignored. But, then I added blueberries.
Oh yeah!
So excited...
to get...
"Can I Mommy? Really!"
in a ball.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

New lighting

I got a new lighting set up and backdrop kit for some photography I have been doing. The kids posed as little models for me. Cuties.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Sweet Potatoes Revisited

I really like sweet potatoes. They are good for you and taste great. Of course they are inexpensive and great tummy fillers....I use them a lot. Here is a little meal Shane, Reece and I eat. The girls won't eat it yet, but soon, they will love it, too.
1.Prick a sweet potato with a fork several times all over. Wrap in a damp towel and microwave for 5 minutes.
2.Saute diced mango, red pepper
3.Warm pre-made black beans, or you can use a can. I cook mine in he crock pot the day before.
4. Cut open cooked sweet potato, top with beans and saute mix, eat up!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Monday, March 08, 2010

First Trip to Carl's

We made our first trip to Carl's this year. The temps hit 60 today and after a powerful day at church, a picnic lunch of leftover pizza, a family hike in the woods and a 3 hour nap, we heard Carl's yelling our name. So we texted a few friends to see if anyone want to join us. We met up with the Martin's and indulged in a pre-dinner treat. The kids played hide and seek and we watched, and ate, and watched, and ate. It was fun to see Annalee have a little running competition. Noah, who is a year younger than her is not only quick, but agile. He gave the girls a run for their money. I am not sure what Annalee thought of this. She usually always wins. She tells me this often:) We ended up back at the Martin's house for pizza and a little more play time. The girls were in love with their all boy basement, trains and cars galore. Not to mention lots of fun on the bounce house! It was a great night and an end to a great weekend.

Project Simplify

I have been simplifying my whole life. I love to purge, clean, and organize. I have so many color coded excel spreadsheets on my computer it is embarrassing. I rarely print them out, but it makes me feel good to know they are there and I do use them in my head if that makes sense. It makes me feel in control, in a good way. I hate clutter and excess. My parents recount a story of me when I was four. They went to a furniture store and set me in the little playroom the store had provided. When they were done shopping they came back to find that I had cleaned up the whole playroom. I also remember going to friends' houses and spending my entire allotted "three hours" cleaning their room so that I could play. Just when I was done cleaning and organizing, I would get the call saying it was time to go home. It happened often enough for me to remember:) My wonderful husband knows I can't relax until all is in order and he is so helpful in making that happen. That said, I am on a simplifying rampage this month. I mentioned some ideas in the last post. I will be posting in detail about each project. Here is my Spring meal plan. We will use this for 12 weeks and then switch in June to a summer meal plan. This will help me know what to buy at the store and help not to buy extras. Not in the plan, ya know. I am excited to see it work.


B- Steel cut oatmeal

L- Chicken curry w/ veggies and rice

D- Pb&j


B- Muffins/fruit

L- Black bean, red pepper & mango sweet potatoes

D- Quesadillas & salsa


B- Cereal

L- Baked chicken sticks and baked fries

D- Nachos


B- Eggs/toast

L- Summer veggie soup/ cheddar biscuits

D- Southwestern omelets/chips


B- Smoothies/toast

L- Shredded chicken flautas

D- Mac & cheese



L- Salmon/ sweet potatoes / asparagus

D- Whole wheat pizza


B- Fresh baked cinnamon raisin bread

L- Egg Sandwiches / chips & salsa

D- Leftovers

From The Sneaky Chef


Saturday, March 06, 2010

Slowing Down...

I find myself rushing through everything. I am a very strong Choleric and I strive for efficiency and practicality in everything I do. This makes me rush, rush , rush. I wonder why I feel the need to always tell the kids, "Eat, stop talking/playing, just eat." Why do I clean the kitchen like I am running out of time? Where am I trying to go? What is the point in all this hurriedness?
I love to hang my laundry because there is something so peaceful and slow about it. I leave the noise of the day for a few moments. If there are noises they are natural. No machines running, no movie sounds, no radio, no echos within the walls of our home... just wind, kids playing, chickens clucking, puppies running, sheets flapping. I am reminded to go slow when I am out there. The sun warms my hands and my back while the wind cools my face. So poetic, I know. But really, it is all very true. I have written about this before, but I am just so thankful for the chance to slow down.
I am working on slowing down our lives.
We have been home a lot more than usual.
I am reorganizing my workout routine so I only go 3 days a week for less time. I try to run errands only one day per week.
I recently put out 4 bins in the laundry room, one for each child. I swore off folding and instead I toss their clothes in, saving me bunches of time.
I also have been slowly weeding out all pants except jeans so I don't have to "match" their outfits together. In the summer they will wear only dresses so I don't have to keep track of tops and bottoms. They like dresses anyway.
Simple ways to cut down on the processes we go through everyday. That is the plan.
I went through my wardrobe and put together 5-7 outfits for each occasion: home wear, workout wear and going out wear. I wrote down what I had, what I needed and then got rid of everything else. It was liberating. Why do I need 9 tops that I only wear on dates, and we only go on dates maybe twice a month? I really like how it has translated to my shopping budget. I know that I am looking for one more skirt outfit and two tank tops. So those super on sale shorts just aren't part of the plan. I just pass them by.
I am also working on a simplified menu. I have tried this several times, but I really want to make it work this time around. I would like to have a 7 day meal plan for each season. You know, Wednesday is spaghetti night. That would make it very simple to shop for groceries and I wouldn't be tempted to buy extras. Even when I use a list, which I always do, I still get distracted by the goodies on sale.
This is another reason I want dreads in my hair. I would like to only have to buy shampoo and nothing else. I like the idea of not having to "do" my hair everyday.
So, this is where I start. I love it. I really do.

It is coming...

I can see it in the pictures of life. The ladybug invasion...
Avery bossing around the animals...
chickens free ranging...
the shedding of outerware...
puppies playing in the sun...
fruit salad calling my name...
outdoor play...
Spring, it is just around the corner!

Friday, March 05, 2010

Random Report

We having been having lots of fun around here. The sun has been shining, so lots of time outside makes for happy kids, happy mommy and happy puppies!
My dryer broke so I have been relishing the forced clothes line drying method, which I love anyway. It is just easier not to cheat this way.
The puppies have been lots of fun and I will continue to rave about my decision to get two. It is so much easier as they keep each other company and play a lot together, making them less of a stress on my furniture and household.
Avery is developing quiet the personality. She is silly and spunky with a strong will. Very expressive and smart, she has a quick wit and will have you both steaming from anger and laughing in an instant. I was trying to get her to take a pair of shoes up to her room. She replyed, "I can't." I asked, "Why?" She grabbed her lower lip with her fingers and said, " I'm hoeding my ips." I had to walk away.
We have been getting ready for the ball. That is so much fun! I will post pictures next week.
I found the best accessory shop in the world this week, Charming Charlies. I was in heaven. It is huge, organized by color, brilliant, and very reasonably priced. I was their twice in two days. Oh yeah!
Shane and I are in a fun time of marriage. You know how those times just get good all of a sudden. They weren't bad by any means, but they are just extra "good" right now.
I have been having a lot of fun with my little, "secret" which I will reveal soon, I promise. Let's see, what else...
Annalee is this close to reading and learning to love it. She carries her journal around everywhere writing down things she sees. She has also learned the art of tracing.
Shelby is becoming quieter and less crazy, I think Avery has taken over that department. Shelby adores her big sister and pretty much does everything with her. She upgraded to a booster seat which allows her to come along on "quick errand" trips. Those are ones where I don't have time to be putting kiddos in and out of car seats.
I went back to cloth diapers and I forgot how much fun that was, as far as diapering goes.
I am seriously thinking about getting dreads. I have been wanting them for a long time. I am normally pretty impulsive, so I am trying to be patient with my decision.
We are preparing for an Easter Egg hunt on the 3rd out at our place. If you didn't get the FB invite and would like to come, let me know.
Reece is thinking about mobility on his feet, although no steps have been taken. He does walk all around the living room while holding onto the furniture.
I have been in serious purge mode and got rid of my kitchen table, who needs two tables? I also purged my closet three times. I went through the kids clothes and have three big boxes to give away. If you want to look through them let me know! They are going to the Goodwill soon.
Avery cut her hair, lots of it. I tried to fix it, but there is really not much you can do in a situation like that.
Shane is having great success at the gym with his youth athletes. He is also the Biggest Loser trainer this year and really helping his team reach their goals. So proud of him!
I have been cleaning up lots of random messes. Like oatmeal and sugar, pee on the bathroom floor, puppy poop, crayons on the wall, you know, mommy messes. The ones reserved just for us.
I am getting giddy with thoughts of Spring. Gardens, flowers, hanging clothes, breakfast on the front porch, running outside, races, bike rides, parties and plans, lots of plans! I love the seasons:)
I think that is about it. Really random I know, but I had to get it all out there. Remember I am trying to lesson my word burden on Shane:) Have a great weekend.