Monday, February 28, 2011

A Few Random Pictures from Today

We were able to spend about an hour outside this morning before it started to rain.

This hill is such fun for running and riding down. Sometimes the kids even lie on the ground and roll down just for the fun of it.

Austin and I worked on adding more rocks from here and there on our acre to the fire pit.

Coloring rocks with sidewalk chalk

I hope you enjoyed these little glimpses into our day.

Kids in the Kitchen - Amanda's Triple Cheese Bacon Macaroni (With a Side of Chocolate Chip Cookies)

The kids went all out planning their menus this week and today was Amanda's day to cook. As she's becoming more comfortable in the kitchen she's gotten reached the point where she's ready to experiment and trying new things.

One of her favorite food is macaroni and cheese and she has made it many times from the box. This time she wanted to make homemade mac and cheese and she didn't want to follow a recipe but to make it her own way.

So, with no recipe and no exact measurements here is what she did.

Boiled about 24 ounces of macaroni until it was somewhat tender but not soft. To the drained macaroni she added a lot of grated cheddar cheese, nearly a whole 16 ounce package of american cheese, a 16 ounce container of cottage cheese, several large spoonfuls of sour cream, and a pound of bacon, baked and diced.

 Over this she poured enough milk to keep it moist as it baked and added salt and pepper to taste. 

All this makes a very large batch of macaroni and cheese but we feed a lot of people around here. It turned out wonderful and we ate nearly all of the large pan of it. The smaller pan we will eat either tomorrow or Wednesday. It's always nice to have a quick meal ready on days when we're extra busy or just want to be able to spend most of our time outside.

She also made a delicious batch of jumbo chocolate chip cookies.

  Add some peas and applesauce and we had a wonderful dinner this evening.

Thank you, Amanda.

For more fun and delicious recipes check out Tuesdays at the Table at All the Small Stuff.

Lovely Yellow Ribbons

Also check out Tasty Tuesday over at Balancing Beauty and Bedlam.

TastyTuesday200pix The Dirty Dozen vs. The Clean Fifteen

For a wide variety of articles on homemaking visit Raising Homemakers.

A Birthday Party for Dr. Seuss

A daycare parent sent me text Sunday reminding me that tomorrow is Dr. Seuss' birthday. She suggested that it would be fun to have a party for the kids and offered to supply cake and balloons. I happily accepted her offer and told her I would check out some resources online for some fun activities for the kids. She suggested a site called Seusville.

Suessville is a fun place full of activities based on Dr. Suess' books. There are printables, online games, ideas for group activities, and arts and crafts. There are also special sections for parents and educators.

I printed some pictures to color and a craft for the kids to do.

When Sarah (the parent who got the party ball rolling with her suggestion) came this evening to pick up her child, she brought the balloons and cake along with a lot of party favors and other fun things.

I'm looking forward to some fun tomorrow and will post pictures. Is anyone else celebrating Dr. Seuss' birthday with kids? I'd love to hear about it if you are. 

Beginnning a Journey of Blessing

Ann Voskamp, who writes beautiful posts on her blog A Holy Experience hosts a beautiful community of bloggers each Monday who are counting their way to a thousand blessings.

It seems like a lot, and one blogger wrote that after the first, obvious blessings, there is sometimes a bit of a struggle to find the blessings each week. But they are there. We do not serve a miserly God who doles out blessings in limited quantity. There is simply the need to regard life with eyes wide open to see, heart waiting and ready to receive the blessings He so lovingly gifts us each day.

So today I am joining the group, counting along with them and learning from them. I am new to this journey, my number this week starts at one, but I know it will be a journey filled with blessings from surprising corners.

Blessings #1 - 10

1. Unlimited, unending love from my Heavenly Father, resulting in the gift of salvation through His Son.

2. Teaching and learning with my daughter as she tackles new challenges in the kitchen. Her chosen adventures today - chocolate chip cookies and homemade macaroni and cheese. I can hardly wait for dinner.

3. Watching my son, Austin,  care tenderly for a wee baby, Kaleb,  and delighting in watching him grow and learn each day. Kaleb is now nearly a year old and both boys have grown a lot this past year.

4. Bluebirds in the meadow behind my house.

Eastern Bluebird by
click on photo for credit

5. A Robin hopping around in my back yard.

American Robin by
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6. My four year olds spontaneous "I love you, Mommy."

7. The quiet in the afternoon when all the little ones are resting.

8. The sound of rain on the roof as I sit in the kitchen typing this post and serving as the chief question answerer (is that a word?) for my daughter as she cooks.

9. Knowing that in a few minutes I will put on a pot of coffee to brew and fill the house with it's wonderful aroma to welcome my husband home from a long day of work.

10. The steady tick tock tick tock of the clock on the wall bringing back memories of being a little girl in grandmother's kitchen listening to the ticking of a clock much like this one.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Meet Me On Monday - 2.27.11

Meet me on Monday is a blogging meme hosted at Never Grow Old. It's a fun way for bloggers and their readers to get to know a little about each other by answering five questions each Monday. Here are this weeks questions.

What are you wearing right now?

Comfortable pajamas. I am typing this at 11:05PM.

Do you have any freckles?

I have a few, scattered here and there.

What is your favorite Lifesaver flavor?


What is the last movie you saw in the theater?

Polar Express. That seems like so long ago. I really need to get out more!

Would you rather live without tv or without music?

I could not do without music so I guess the the tv would have to go. That wouldn't be a problem for me but the rest of my family wouldn't be very happy.

More Fun Pictures From Today

As if this wasn't enough fun for one day here are some more fun pictures from today. If you click on the pictures you can see a larger version.

Somehow the trailor held a lot of fascination for all the kids today. Maybe because it was in a different place then it usually is. I guess sitting in the very back of the yard is more exciting than sitting in the driveway. Anyway, they enjoyed it.

Amanda brought Little Red, the guinea pig outside for some fresh air. She seemed to really enjoy it and was busy munching on weeds and chewing on small twigs. The kids loved watching her as well.

And of couse, Aaron had to climb a tree. This kid is the closest to having the skills of a monkey as any I've ever seen.

I couldn't resist this smile.

Michael pushing Mykalin on the tricycle. Michael just loves Mykalin and calls her sister. Every day he asks me if Mykalin's mommy has to work today and is Mykalin coming.

It's interesting to watch the attachments and friendships that form among the kids here. Kaleb is happiest when he is hanging out with Austin. And Austin just adores Kaleb so it's a win-win.

This shed has proven irresistible to boys (and girls) who want to show off how well they can kick or throw a ball. The challenge is to get the ball over the roof of the shed.

And while Cayson may not be able to kick the ball over the shed roof, he certainly can kick it all over the yard.

He can also use a stick for a weedeater. Anything is possible with a little imagination.

And now busy little people have turned into tired little people and are all (well, most of them) tucked into their beds and sound asleep.

This post was so full of busy little (and big) boys in motion that I decided to link it up at Home With the Boys as a Boys in Motion entry.

When You Give a Man (and a Boy) a Water Filter. . .

. . . and they try to take it out of the garage basement . . . here's what happens.

After trying to put it on the appliance cart and pull (and push) it up the steps, resulting in  . . . nothing, they decide to attach a chain to it and pull it out of the basement with the truck.

And the fun begins.

Austin attaches the chain to the truck.

Doug attaches it to the water filter.

And pull!

And the chain pops off.
So they try again.

And again.

And again!

Each time they pull it comes part way up the steps, the chain pops off, it rolls down the steps and more water spills out of a small opening in the top.

Finally, after many tries and spills, enough water has spilled out to lighten it somewhat.

Time to try a new approach.

Build a ramp

And pull . . .

. . . and pull . . .

. . . and push . . .

. . .  and it finally comes out.

I won!