...and they all lived happily ever after...

...and they all lived happily ever after...

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter

Happy Easter everyone.

My we all remember our Savior, Jesus Christ, our big brother and true friend.  He came to Earth to live for us and to die for us so that we can return to our Father in Heaven one day.  Hopefully we can all try to be like Him in the life we choose to live.  

Thursday, March 28, 2013

We don't have to agree on everything in order to be kind

I strongly believe in this...

But I also believe in this...

Having strong beliefs does not mean hating everyone who does not agree with me.  It does not mean attacking them personally even if I'm willing to stand up for a principle that is important to me.  We can see the world in vastly different ways and still lovingly care for each other.  I have been on the receiving end of nasty, hurtful comments about the way I've chosen to raise my family and I don't want that for anyone -- even if their choices are not in line with what I believe.  We are ALL God's children and He loves us no matter what.  As brothers and sisters it would be nice if we offered each other a little piece of that same loving kindness.  That's what I think.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Making clothes seem awesome

Recently we started pulling out our stores of spring clothing for the children (then it started snowing again....sigh).  

In the mix of Ellie sized outfits were a couple of wrap around, sarong type skirt.  I think they are really cute, but Ellie threw a fit when she saw them and wanted nothing to do with them.

So, we decided to try to make them seem cool.

Yeah, it didn't really work.  Ellie still refused to acknowledge these cute items.  She won't be wearing them anytime soon, but we had a good time trying to talk her into it so it wasn't a total loss.  I love goofing off with these people, it may be my favorite thing to do.  

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Jewels of the sea for me

Josh is on the verge of finishing his masters degree in education administration.

He is almost halfway through his final class.  His last day will be April 22.  I can hardly wait to celebrate this major accomplishment as a family.  I am just so proud of this man that I married.  Not only is he an amazing husband and father (not perfect, mind you, he does leave shoes and empty socks lying around the house and that does make me crazy sometimes) but he is also a dedicated teacher and one of the hardest workers I have ever met in my life.  He is constantly concerned with taking care of our family and helping us be the best we can possibly be.  

Well, while I was working on plans for a little family shindig for when April 22 finally rolls around (if I want to take us out for dinner that means cashing in credit card points for a gift card since money is scarce and gift cards can take weeks to actually get here) Josh was working on plans of his own.

Tuesday afternoon he came home with a bundle hidden under his coat and a sneaky smile on his face.  I didn't pursue it because I was in the middle of giving a piano lesson to an adorable young lady.  But Josh was giddy.  It was pretty cute/hilarious to watch.

Once I was done with my two little Tuesday students Josh greedily dragged me into the bedroom, made me close my eyes and handed me a box.  It was obviously a jewelry box so I was leery (I am not usually a fan of jewelry).  But once I got the ribbon off and set the lid off to the side I was surprised to see a beautiful strand of pearls.  Nothing fancy (which makes them so so perfect to me...and feasible for a teacher's salary), just a very simple (and lovely) necklace...with a matching pair of earrings.  

Like I told you, I don't normally care much for jewelry.  That said, I have always quietly wanted a set of pearls.  They are simple and clean and very versatile so for me they are the ideal accessory.  

But even better than the necklace was the smile on my husband's face.  He was high on my thrill and it was wonderful to watch.  He gave me a hug and told me that as we come to the end of round two of his schooling adventures he wanted to say thank you for all of the support and proof reading and taking the kids on outings so the house can be quiet for homework etc etc.  He said he felt this newest degree was just as much my accomplishment as it was his and he wanted to thank me for the sacrifices we've made together to get him through this.

I cried.  

Of course I did.  That's what I do.

He really is one superb specimen of a man and I feel awfully lucky he is MY superb specimen of a man.  Also, I'm proud of him.  I can't imagine anyone better to be married to...but I still wish he'd put away his own socks.

(Love you JKD.)

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Lucky for us they're around!

Happy St. Patrick's Day to a collage of my favorite little treasures.  

We delivered a gold treat to every one of the sprites that live in our house while they were sleeping.  Waking up to chocolate just may be their favorite way to celebrate a holiday. 

We'll see what other creative schemes these little people can cook up in our house today.  I feel very lucky to have each of them around.  

Have a wonderful St. Patrick's Day everyone!

A bit-o-gold for every little treasure in our home.
(I know, our offering is rather small.
Can't give them too much chocolate or bad things
will happen the rest of the day!)
 They may be strange sometimes (well, seriously, who isn't) but we're still really lucky to have them around.  We love you, kidlets!

Friday, March 15, 2013

This week at our house

Life is always fun.  And sometimes it is also funny.

The other day, Ellie decided to paint her own fingernails (for the b-jillianth time).  Now, we have hidden the fingernail polish to prevent this type of action (and protect our bathroom rugs because she tends to spill), but Ellie is inventive and made her own ladder using a plastic shopping cart, couch cushions and several pairs of shoes.  It worked and the result was painted fingernails...uh...I mean fingers and also a toilet seat lid that is now glittery and pink (we can't get the polish all the way off the porous surface...nice).  

Ellie looks all wet in the pictures because she knew she would be in trouble so she tried to wash the polish off in the sink.  No dice, sweetheart.  The evidence is shining all over your fingertips and toetips (??) as well.  GUILTY!!!

Gavin is becoming quite the little pianist and he wanted to make a video of his latest piece...so we did. I love that he is enjoying the piano so much.  

And last, but not least, we made a new and delicious treat.  This is nigh unto a peanut buttery version of a rice crispy treat and since I LOVE all things peanut butter it was a wonderful treat for me.  Tasty!  You should try them out.  

6(ish) cups Peanut Butter Cheerios
1/4 cup butter
1 10 oz package marshmallows
1/3 cup peanut butter
1/2 package chocolate chips

Melt butter in large cooking pot on medium heat.  Add marshmallows and stir until melted (don't let your temp get too hot or you will scald the marshmallows and your treats will be really tough when they cool).  Mix in 1/3 cup peanut butter.  Remove the pan from heat.  Add Peanut Butter Cheerios to the pot and stir until they are all coated.  Transfer the mixture to a greased 9x13 inch pan.  Sprinkle the top with chocolate chips while the goop is still warm so they melt into the Cheerios a bit.

Let them cool then chop them up and eat them.  Ooooh, they are so so yummy.

(Although I altered things a bit to my tastes, here is where I found the original recipe if you are interested in that.)    

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Stupid. Dirty. Floor.

I am ready for spring, for lots of reasons.  

One of those reasons is this...

Ooooooh!  I get so tired of mopping the white tile in my kitchen every few minutes because my kidlets can't seem to wipe their feet or remove their shoes before tramping through the room.  Soggy winter ground and white tile do not mix.  Grrrrr.  

And yet, I can't be too upset, it means they are playing outside and not planted in front of a television (not that they wouldn't happily plant themselves there all day if I would let them -- just another reason why I am the meanest mom in the world).  Guess there really are two sides to every story.  

Still, I'm sooooo ready for spring.  

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Creative creatures

I love it when my kidlets get creative.  I am always thrilled when they come up with some new and inventive way to use something or some unique way to show off their talents and thoughts.  Whether it is creating a song for the piano, drawing something, designing with play dough or any other outlet I am a fan.

This week my two youngest found a box of magnets that have been stashed in a closet for a while.  Because the blocks are "new" to these two small ones they are ten times more excited to play with them than they will be in a week when the blocks are old news.  Here are a couple of their creations.

Logan made a lobster.  I think he did an amazing job on it, to me it looks just like a lobster.  I was pretty impressed.

Ellie, on the other hand, made a story with her magnets.  Still pretty fabulous if you ask me.  I love it when we get our creative juices flowing.  Lincoln logs, shape blocks, Legos, crafts, paints, moon sand...to me they are all mediums to encourage creative thinking and free thought and I am a pretty big fan of both.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

One Crushin' Birthday

My oldest daughter recently had a birthday.

It was a fun day and we tried to make it special for her.  But she has a sweet friend who made it an even sweeter birthday for her.

Our little girl happens to have a crush on a nice boy who lives in our neighborhood (and so it begins).  He seems to like her a bit too, and for her big day he made her a cake.  Knowing of her love affair with all things candy he decorated her cake with every sweet treat he could find.  She was ThRiLlEd!!  Not only did she get some attention from the boy she likes, she also had a tasty and sugary concoction to munch on for the next few days.  It was a win win for her.

This is the cake that Aubrey's young beau put together for her.

And the inside was nearly as exciting as the outside.  Impressive.

And one more after the kids took turns cutting slices to happily munch on.

Thanks for fabulous neighbors and cute little crushes (although we've squelched a fair amount of Aubrey's enthusiasm with lot of talk of boundaries and no dating until 16 and the like...her father, in particular, has VERY mixed feelings about the emotions of his pre-teen daughter).  Aubrey did have a wonderful birthday and we are grateful to everyone who helped that happen.  I do love that little girl (because to me, that's what she'll always be).
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