Thursday, February 24, 2011

Februaury Vacation

Am I one of the only mom's who LOVES school vacation? I LOVE having the girls home with me, spending time with them, being lazy, watching them play together, hanging out with friends, catching up with friends I hadn't realized how much I missed...

We've been so lucky this winter too because my husband has a lot of vacation time and has been able to take off both Christmas and February breaks off so we have all been home! I hope it works out with April vacation too!

We haven't done a whole lot this vacation...A LOT of sleeping in! (Monday morning is going to be ROUGH!) We kicked off the week with an awesome luau with our friends over at PrepAhead&DineIn! Such a fun party for the kids and adults! MAKE the pulled pork! It was to die for! All of the food was so good and I can't wait to make it at home! And I can't wait to go to Scrumptions to buy some of those coconut macaroons...I ate WAY TOO MANY!

We started working on tearing down some wall paper in our hallway...UGH! And that's all I'm going to say about that! HA!

We ventured to the roller rink yesterday and it was a successful trip for all! I love that my big girl has embraced something new and is loving it. She is definitely my timid girl and is usually nervous to try new things. I'm not sure why, if she is just growing out of her timidness, or what, but she was very enthusiastic about rollerblading, so we are running with it!

We had a wonderful playdate this morning with mom's and kids from our first year of preschool. Our oldest kiddos started together and know two of our youngest are in school together. Seven kids for almost 3 hours and they all got along! IT WAS FANTASTIC! So great to sit and catch up over coffee. It took awhile I feel, but I have surrounded myself with some fantastic moms and kids and I feel so truly blessed! We may certainly not be able to sit and chat like that as much as we'd like to but...

Tomorrow we are headed out for a little lunch and a trip to our local natural history museum and planetarium which I have never been to but am looking forward to checking out with the fam tomorrow!

I think a relaxing weekend is on our horizon...I hope anyway! More wallpaper removal but other then that...Happy Thursday! I hope I'm not the only crazy mom out there who loves having her kids at home! (It sure does help that my girls have been getting along really well all winter!) 

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Calling All 80's Movie Fans!

How fun is this video from the new movie Take Me Home Tonight?! Find some of your favorite characters!

Early Morning Ramblings

Good morning! I was up a little early this morning, sending my husband off to work with a gain bag of Girl Scout cookies for the guys he works with. I had plans to go back to sleep after he left, but that didn't really pan out, so here I am. Enjoying the silence while the littles still sleep!

It's February vacation around here so the kiddos are home for the week. I went into the week with only one playdate planned but we now seem to have something going on everyday. How does that happen? I go between wanting to have lots of fun with our friends to wanting to stay curled up at home, just the four of us.

Where did the winter go? I have to go back to work soon. My job shuts down in the winter so I get a nice, seasonal break but my time is almost up. UGH! I love being home and I love the routine we have settled into. It's going to be hard to give it up. Why am I not independently wealthy?! HA!

So my break is almost up and I don't think I accomplished one darn thing on my winter To Do List...We started working on taking down the wallpaper in the hallway after living with the lovely pink flowers for a year now. Oh my! I forgot my loathing of wallpaper removal. My grandma was very heavy into the wallpaper and we took down wallpaper or a boarder in EVERY...SINGLE...ROOM! The last on the house list is the hallway and the bathroom. The bathroom needs a lot of work so it just keeps getting pushed back until we have a big chunk of money for it. The hallway just needs the wallpaper taken down and a skim coat and paint job. The wallpaper is proving to be a larger foe then anticipated! That damn stuff just doesn't want to come down!

I bought myself and elliptical machine yesterday! Very excited and can't wait to start using it. Sadly it won't be here until Monday. I was very bummed when it wasn't in stock. Don't they know I am all about instant gratification?! HA! I'll let you know how I like it!

I've neglected my camera this winter too. It was not my intention. I really wanted to take the time and play around with it but...I didn't. Part of my problem is I only have the zoom lens for it so that does not always bode well for taking pictures indoors of my kiddos. I have been using my phone a lot lately to take pics and while they do come out okay, they don't compare to what I could be taking with my camera. I think I'll go lens shopping today!

Alright. I the littles are up and asking for breakfast. Happy Tuesday! Enjoy your week!

Friday, February 18, 2011

My Friday Favorites!

Here I am, back after another week of neglectful blogging! Who missed me?! How do I not seem to find time to blog and feel like I am way too busy but also feel like I have nothing going on, sll at the same time?! Oh well! I'm here now!

My grandparents anniversary party was pretty great! My mom surprised them with a vow renewal ceremony that was amazing to see. Another reminder of how much I love them and how blessed I am to still have them both alive and such a big part of my life and more importantly the lives of my children. They both ADORE each other and I adore watching their interactions.

Let's see...What else has gone on this week?! We are on our second day of 50+ degree weather and we are reveling in it! I took my youngest on a little zoo date yesterday! It was wonderful to be outside for a few hours and to see some animals out and about in the snow that we may not normally see in the warmer months.

We have February vacation coming up with lots of fun and lots of relaxing planned! Our friends are having a luau tomorrow night so that should be a fun kick off to vacation! We also have a couple of playdates planned and a trip to our local natural history museum. I also have high hopes to strip the pink flowery wall paper in our hallway and get that painted, FINALLY, after being in the house for over a year now...The hallway and bathroom are the last couple of things we need to do. The playroom could use an overhaul, but is totally fine for the purpose it serves. Maybe one day when the girls are older...

Did you guys watch the Grammy's?! I feel like I haven't watched it in a few years but tuned in this year and was pleasantly surprised that it was heavy on the performances and lighter on the awards and speeches. HA! Here is my most favorite performance of the night. My current favorite band Mumford & Sons and the wonderful Avett Brothers! If you haven't checked out these bands yet, YOU MUST!

Alrighty friends! Here's to a fabulous, healthy school vacation! I will do my best to update more this week! Have a good one! Make it count!

Friday, February 11, 2011

My Friday Favorites!

Oh poor, neglected blog! I don't know where the week went! I guess we've been fairly busy, enjoying life! Big plans for the weekend! First, let me start by wishing my grandparents a very happy 50th anniversary! I adore my grandparents. The homestead wouldn't have been the homestead without them! I will do a whole post about it someday, but we live in the house my great-grandparents built, the house my grandparents raised their family in... I LOVE it! is their 50th wedding anniversary!
We have family in from out of town so last night we had a wonderful turkey dinner! Tonight we have a roller skating event for the big girl's school! Again, for another post, but I can't say enough about her school! Tomorrow we have our nephew's 7th birthday (HOW THE HE!! are these kids turning 7?!?!?) at Monster Golf and Sunday is the big anniversary party! For the better part of the week I have been working on a dvd slide show to show and the party! It's been so fun to see all these old pictures, find ones I have never seen, and to hear the stories behind them! They've lived quite the life!

Okay, so on to some of this weeks favorites!

The Pioneer Woman's Book! Are you guys fan's of PW?! If you're not, you should be! Go right now and check her out at The Pioneer Woman! Anyway, in a fit of writer's block, she took to her blog and started writing the story of her 'courtship' with Marlboro Man! The story was a huge hit on the blog and she has now released the book, which includes stories from their first year of marriage. I can't put the darn thing down! I want to curl up on the couch for the rest of the day and finish it! It's great, she's just so darn sweet and funny, and she better make it over this way for a book signing! Her cookbook is also fantastic if you don't already own it!

Roller skating in the basement! My little ladies had never roller skated/bladed before but the big girl really wanted to go to the school's roller skating event. My girl is a little nervous nelly and not always so enthusiastic about trying new things so...I was a little nervous she was going to get to the event and not want to do it or hate it and I would have spent this money for our family to go...So...I bought my girls some roller blades and we headed down to the basement to practice! Luckily/thankfully my big girl took right to it. I'm sure we don't have perfect form...Okay, I know we don't have perfect form, but my girl is up in those skates and loving every minute! Hopefully tonight will be a ton of fun! They also do a basket raffle and the baskets are AMAZING! I hope we win one!!!

Old School Sesame Street Videos! My little picked out a Sesame Street video at the library the other day and it had so many great old songs that I watched when I was little! LOVE IT! I love the kids enthusiasm in this one, and who doesn't love James Taylor!

Alright kids, go forth and celebrate your butts off this weekend! I know we will! Life is good!

Friday, February 4, 2011

My Friday Favorites!

It's Friday again?! Where did the week go?! I hear a rumor there is snow on the way tomorrow but it also may be rain...I may or may not be avoiding watching the weather these days! We got an email from the superintendent of our town schools about a few things that have happened around here over the past week, and he mentioned a storm coming in for Thursday that they are watching...AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! I can't take it anymore!

We got another cord of wood delivered today so we will be out there tomorrow stacking it. (And when I say me, I really mean my husband! HA! I would just be in his way!) My oldest has also requested we go out to breakfast tomorrow to a local diner. Who can say no when she came home with such a wonderful report card today! She did great across the board and is reading above grade level and preforming well in math! I couldn't be prouder so we will be celebrating with giant chocolate chip pancakes in the morning!

And of course Super Bowl Sunday! Our beloved Pats are sadly not in the game. (don't get me started on their game against the Jets...Grrrrr...) But I have big plans to eat my way through the day anyway! Isn't that what the super bowl is all about? Food and commercials! I'll post the recipes on what we are planning on eating this weekend!

Now for a few things I loved this week...

You've seen this right?! 

Nutella Crescent Rolls! HEAVENLY as my big girl described her first bite! 1 pkg. crescent rolls, unrolled and separated, spoonful of nutella, roll up and bake as directed, sprinkle with powdered sugar and ENJOY! I have a friend who also made them this week and she spread the nutella on the crescent and then rolled it. I am going to try that this week and see which way we like better. They were definitely a perfect snow day treat!

American Idol! Are you watching this season? I was a little skeptical about J-Lo and Steven Tyler, but...I LOVE THEM! Okay, maybe not love, but I like them a lot. They have brought a much needed new energy to the show and as creepy as Steven Tyler can sometimes get with his comments and looks at the girls, he's pretty hilarious. I love when he randomly belts into song! I am looking forward to seeing the other changes they have in store for the season.

OH! And our little Valentine project dried better then I was expecting it to so I definitely recommend you try it our with your kiddos if the urge to stick your fingers in glue strikes you! The are very cute hanging up in our picture window!

And finally, a Friday favorite shout out to my friend Jake! He was my hero today showing up to salt and sand our ridiculously treacherous driveway! When I finally was able to free my car the other day I went to 4 local stores and they were all sold out of ice melt and sand and Jake was nice enough to come by and help us out! YOU ROCK JAKE!

Happy Friday everyone! Hope you have a fabulous weekend! Enjoy the things that make you happy!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

My SAD is kicking in...

How much do I love Liz's post over on Mom-101 today?! Haven't we all felt that way one time or another...or everyday! HA! Winter is getting to me...I need some sun, a tan, drinks down by the water...I sure do hope that groundhog is right this year!

Crappy Day = Crafty Day

Well, early dismissal yesterday and ANOTHER 'snow' day today...Oh how I wish it was snow! We have a nasty, slushy, icy, wet MESS out there today! I went out while the girls were having their lunch to shovel our walkways. I guess I should have gone out earlier because I now have about an inch of ice I can't get up. Our driveway is going to be SCARY when it freezes. It's an unpaved driveway so despite the snow plow, there is usually a little snow left on it. Well that snow is now covered in ice, slush, and water, and the ends of the driveway are full of all the plowed crap from the road...I may never make it out of here in my mini van! Hoping the plow guy makes an appearance!

So, we finally took advantage of our day at home to work on that Valentine craft I had mentioned earlier. I had high hopes for all of these cute yarn hearts hanging all over our house and the girls giving them away to grandparents and teachers...HA! We each made one and that was the end of it!

                                 I did a demo for the girls and then they got to work...

The girls hard at work dipping the yarn in the 'glue'

 The little has no issues with diving right in and getting the 'glue' all over her hands! My big girl, not so much!

Note the excess 'glue' all over the little's hand!

Their finished products! They are drying now, we'll see how they turn out?!?!
Here are the instructions if you are feeling daring and crafty!
Corn Starch Glue - Mix 1/4c. corn starch with 1/2c. water. Stir until smooth. Heat over medium heat until it is thick and translucent. Allow to cool to the touch.

Cut yarn into foot long pieces. We used red, pink, and white. Place heart shaped cookie cutter on a piece or wax or parchment paper. Push a piece of yarn into the glue. Pull out and run it between your thumb and pointer finger to wipe off excess glue. Lay the yarn inside the cookie cutter. Repeat with other pieces until the cookie cutter is filled with a thin layer. With a clean hand, press the yarn flat. Gently lift off the cookie cutter.
Allow to air dry for at least a day. You can speed up the drying by placing the hearts and parchment paper in the oven set to warm for an hour or two. (We are letting it air dry...)

Like I said, we had gotten the idea form the February issue of Family Fun, but I couldn't find it anywhere on the site. If you guys attempt it, be sure to let me know how you make out!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

It's all about aromatics...and laundry!

And cozy pants...and Peapod deliveries...and more snow...and healthy kids...and eggs...

Oh! Sorry...I got carried away!

Well, much like the rest of the mid-west and north's snowing again. And today, I like the snow, and would prefer twenty more inches to the icy mess we have headed our way. My little is finally back to 100% and I couldn't be happier! Being stuck in the house for 6 days with a feverish kiddo was getting to me. So she is better and we are headed out shortly to pick up my big girl at school. Due to the snow...EARLY DISMISSAL! Which means no make up day! I have big plans for crafts and wii this afternoon!

So, back to today's title...It's all about aromatics at our house today! I have a nice big pot of italian wedding soup simmering on the stove and bread going in the bread machine shortly! There are not many better smells in this world then onions, garlic, carrots, and celery sauteing!  I got the recipe from my friend over at  She is the mom of three awesome little girls and gives great tips of how to get a good meal on the table when you have kiddos who may not want to cooperate the 'witching hour' as I call it! I am also making her Cream of Tomato soup this week!

And...laundry...Good lord! It's never ending! I don't mind washing and's the folding and putting away that gets to me! HA! You can usually find 3 laundry baskets of clean clothes sitting around my house, wishing and hoping I would fold them! (Not to mention the laundry baskets of dirty clothes in each of the bedrooms and one communal one that usually sits at the entrance to our kitchen) NEVER ENDING VICIOUS CYCLE!

And cozy pants...Since I haven't left my house in 6 days, my yoga pants and fleece pants and warm up pants have seen a lot of wear!It's one of the perks of winter weather! Hey - always look on the bright side of life!
I'm sure my husband is loving my wardrobe choices these days! HA! But hey, you spend 6 days with a feverish kid wanting nothing more then to lay on top of you...jeans or khakis just aren't gonna cut it!

Do you have PeaPod or another grocery service where you live? Do you use it? If not, WHY NOT?!?!? I really have only used it a couple of times, mostly when my little was a baby, but I set up my delivery for today because we needed food and I just wasn't sure how the babe was going to be feeling so...I chose the 7:30-11am delivert time cause we were going to be home and it saved me a buck! WAHOOOOO! So, promptly at 7:30 my cutie pie delivery boy brought mt groceries right in! I felt so darn accomplished when my groceries were put away by 8am! (That means I don't have to do anything for the rest of the day right?!) I think I will def. be ordering my groceries more often!

And finally...eggs! We have chickens! Twelve lovely little ladies who we all adore! I am sure one day I will do a whole big post with pictures all about them! They are awesome, sweet, little egg making machines! HA! We are getting 11 eggs a day these days so 1 lady is holding out on us! People have said they slow down production in the winter but our chicks just started laying when the weather was getting colder so I am not sure if that has something to do with it or what. We have a couple of regular egg customers now (my mom and a friend) and then I give some to friends or family. In the spring we'll build a little egg and veggie stand to have out front!  Lord knows we can't eat that many eggs! You'll be happy to know I have perfected the art of scrambled eggs(I like mine with parm. or a really good sharp cheddar) and the egg sandwich!Needless to say, our ladies are not loving this snow...Half of their run is covered in snow.

Alright, time to bundle up to go get the girlie!I hope you are warm, cozy, and safe wherever you are on this first day of February!