Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

The pumpkins are carved.

The costumes have been tried out at trunk-or-treat.

And the teeth are already rotting.

Oh yes, I'm having fun too!

And there's more fun to come tonight. Happy Halloween!!
(Everyone be safe and have fun tonight.)

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Fun With Carter and Kate

While the big girls are at school, I have fun with Carter and Kate. I thought it would be fun to get some pictures of me with Carter. I don't have many of those, so we sat down and took a few shots.
Let's just say, they didn't turn out exactly like I thought they would, but I still treasure them.

Why do the best ones always come out blurry?

Kate was mad because I wasn't taking any of her. And I wonder why I didn't, with the eyeliner drawn all over her face. But I clicked one anyway just to appease her and it caught her personality so well, I couldn't help but take another.

How can you say no to this perfect child?

And here is another from a few hours after the photo shoot when she abandoned the eyeliner and went straight for mascara.

Unexpected Surprises

Yesterday a very sad and tearful Becky showed up at my door. She's buying her first house and as houses usually go, unexpected things happen. She was supposed to close last week, but there was a glitch. So today was supposed to be the "new" closing date. But....there was another glitch. Thus, a tearful Becky. I think most of us who have been through the house buying process can all say we sympathize with the tears and frustrations of Becky.

While Becky told Jarom and me the story and fretted over canceling the carpet cleaners and the U-Haul truck for the second time, the doorbell rang. And who do you suppose was at the door? Why the UPS man delivering a package for me AND Becky. He couldn't have picked a better day to bring goodies in the mail.

And what was in the package you ask. (Should there be a question mark at the end of that sentence? Hmmm...) New Fall coats!!! A few weeks ago Becky saw a sale for buy one get one free in the Chadwicks magazine. Plus the offer was available on sale prices. So we each picked a $190 jacket that had been marked down to $89. And we each ended up paying only $45 total. We were pretty proud of ourselves.

But we were even more proud of ourselves when we saw how awesome we looked in our new Fall wear.

Monday, October 27, 2008


(Fun in a cup...)

To fulfill your Halloween munchies try:

Monster Mix

  • Witches Hats = chocolate chips
  • Candy Corn
  • Broomsticks = pretzel sticks
  • Goblin Brains = Crunch-n-Munch Popcorn
  • Worms = gummy worms

Let me tell you, a pretzel and a candy corn is a match made in heaven!

(I think eyeballs = raisins and halloween marshmellows would taste good in this too.)

(Or in a big bowl.)
****If you have a tried and true recipe you'd be willing to share, leave a comment with the recipe title and post the recipe on your blog so we can all come and check it out. Thanks for playing; the more the merrier! ****

My baby is TEN?! You've got to be joking!

Well, Alyssa did it. She went and grew up on me. How did that happen so quickly? I swear I was pregnant and COMPLETELY miserable with her just yesterday. Now she's entered the double digit era. What a great kid Alyssa is. I wouldn't trade her for the world. She's always such a help to me and has such a talent for caring for her siblings. She's such an example to us all. You will never hear a naughty word come out of Alyssa's mouth. She's the language Nazi around here. I love that she is so firm in her beliefs and has such great self esteem. Alyssa knows what she wants and where she's going. I knew she would be an amazing person from the minute I laid eyes on her. Happy Birthday baby, I don't care if you're 10, you'll always be my baby.

Alyssa gave me explicit orders that she was going to have a poppy seed cake with NO frosting. That kind of dashed my hopes of decorating a fun Halloween themed cake, but after I added the spider rings, I felt better about it. And besides, it wasn't my birthday.

Building haunted houses was a hit. Thanks Emily for the adorable idea. The kids all loved it.

If you thought that Kate was going to be left out of the fun, you were dead wrong! Thankfully she was satisfied with broken graham crackers and I didn't have to glue a whole house together for her.

How cute did these turn out? (It also looks better if you display them on the counter with a few chocolate sprinkles spilled about.)

I think my ears are still recovering from the din of the party. They played "monster tag" in the dark basement and my oh my can little girls scream. But what fun they had.

Alyssa has asked for an Easy Bake for every birthday and Christmas for the past 3 years. I finally caved and let her have one. Can you see the sheer bliss on her face. She's been a cooking fool ever since.

I'm always so grateful for my mom's help at the birthday parties. She's been to almost every single one I've thrown. Even some when we lived in Boise.

You'd think with a wind up like that, she'd have gotten all the candles in one blow, took two.

After the guests have gone home, I wonder to myself why I even cleaned the house before they came. :)

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Block Directions

Several of you have asked for directions on how to make the cute Autumn blocks my sisters-in-law and I did. I was planning to do my spring/summer set and give you step by step pictures and info, but who knows when that'll get done. So instead, I stole the few pictures that we took from Emily's blog and I'll tell you best I can with these.

6 inch wooden blocks
4 inch wooden letters
scrapbook paper
modge podge
sponge brushes
paper towels

Step One: Buy a 2X4 from Home Depot and cut into 6" lengths. Sand the rough edges.

Step Two: Cut cute, seasonal appropriate scrapbook paper into 8 cm x 13cm pieces. (We used a cm measuring/cutter thingy. I am sure I could convert it to inch measurements, but I would mess it up if I did. Basically the scrapbook paper should be just slightly smaller than the wooden block.)

Step Three: Glue the paper onto the block with modge podge. Just do the backside of the paper to stick it on for now. You'll do the front later. One side of the block will be for Autumn, the other side will be for Winter. (You can do a second set with Summer/Spring as well.)

Step Four: Stain the block and paper with stain. (We used a light tan color.)

Step Five: Paint your letters (we used 4 inch wooden letters), then let them dry.

Step Six: Smear 3 coats of modge podge on top of block and paper.

Extra Step:Enjoy a piece of cheesecake while everything is drying.

Step Seven: Rough up edges of letters with sandpaper and stain if desired to give an antiqued look.

Step Eight: Glue letters on to block with tacky glue and let dry.

Step Nine: Enjoy your masterpieces!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Bits About Me

Okay, it's time for me to fulfill all the tags I've gotten lately. I'm going to combine them all into one giant thing and give you all some more bits about me.

1. I love to talk on the phone. I have loved it since I was a little girl. It just makes the house work go by so much more quickly. (So, if you ever need a chat, give me a ring. I'm up for it...always.)

2. I think my most favorite thing to do, besides eat, is laugh. I really love to laugh. And sometimes at night when I'm almost asleep, my belly tightens up and I get that tickley feeling and I just have to absolutely nothing. It used to drive my poor roommate in college nuts. Sorry Jennie.

3. When I was a senior in highschool, I wore a retainer. I was eating a piece of chocolate and kind of sucked on the retainer to clean it off (sorry I know that's sort of gross). The retainer slipped to the back of my throat and speared me. The back wire somehow hooked itself through the flap of skin in front of my tonsil. I had to go to the emergency room to get it out. AND I had to have a tetanus shot. It was so embarrassing. Now I know what the poor fish feel like when they get hooked. (Yes, feel free to laugh at me.)

4. Oh good heavens...I think you all know just about everything there is to know about me. I honestly can't think of any more.

I know this really doesn't fulfill any of the tags you all gave me, but it's gonna have to work cause my brain has stopped working.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Who Lives Here?

It seems I have a little squirrel living in my house.

It's getting ready for winter by burying pumpkin cookies in my couch.

And storing chocolate chips in the windowsill.

Hmmm...Do squirrels drink the rest of the cider from the jug and use towels to clean up the spills?

Nope, it's only two busy children who empty all the Nesquik on the counter and then use the dirty dishes in the sink to soak their feet.

Happy Birthday Becky!

They say it's your birthday!!!! And a big one at that. Becky turns the big 3-0 today!! Welcome to womanhood Becky. :)

Monday, October 20, 2008

Pumpkin Farm

For family night this evening we went to the local pumpkin farm. It's always so fun to see hundreds of pumpkins growing in fields. I told Jarom that if I had a ton of land I'd plant myself an acre or two of pumpkins just so I could look at them in the fall.

I also told him that he needs to make his millions so I can build myself a big red barn just for the fun of it. He told me that if he built me a barn, I'd end up putting animals in it. To which I replied, "Just a goat....and maybe a miniature horse." How fun would that be? I've always wanted a goat. I got an eye roll for a response then. (See Miki, even the pumpkin patch got green pumpkins this year.)

Look at the fun display of watermelons.

The watermelons were cool, but my kids are cuter.

After checking out the big red barn and reading the price of $10 per large pumpkin, we decided to head on over to Wal-Mart and get big, orange pumpkins for $3 a piece instead.

It was all fun and games until the sisters started fighting. Gotta keep things real don't they? I was ready to bop them on the heads but Jarom punished them by making them hold hands for the rest of the night. LOL!! Oh were they mad. But it worked.

We ended the night with donuts and eggnog. I'd say it was a success, even with the fighting. These are the things that make a family.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Weekend Review

We took the kids to Pizza Hut Friday night for dinner. I think pizza tastes SO much better when you eat it at the restaurant. Probably something to do with smelling it while eating. Jarom used to work at Pizza Hut when we first started dating and Halle thought it was so funny to think of her Daddy cutting pizzas.

After dinner, I took off and went to my sister-in-law Emily's place to have a craft night. We didn't get started until 10 pm and you know me, everything is funny late at night. That and the fact that I think I was high off the smell of varnish and stain led to some serious laughing. Water even shot out my nose once. It's been a long time since that's happened to me.
Here's the semi-finished product. You can flip these blocks around and they will spell WINTER (as soon as the letters come in at the store). I think they turned out pretty cute. I didn't get home until 2:30 am. I think you all deserve a stay out all night, get high from fumes, crafty girl party.

It was a beautiful day on Saturday. The kids and I cleaned out the garden and decorated the front porch. I even washed the spider webs away from the door. Ughhh... I don't know how well the corn stalks are going to hold up. The wind does a number on them. But they are fun and festive for now.
Too bad we didn't have a long enough growing season this year for our pumpkins to turn orange. But I kind of like the green ones in my pots.

Saturday night we built one last bon-fire at my folk's house and roasted hot dogs and marshmallows. I think it was a great way to end the season of nice weather. I'm sure the cold will come and stay next time around.

Sunday was spent at church and Jarom's folks'. I had to use his mom's big washing machine for my bedspread that got peed on by a kid. I know Sunday should be a day of rest, but is it ever really for the mom? It's nice and clean now, with clean sheets to boot. There's almost nothing better than clean sheets!

So that's the weekend in review. I feel like it was fairly productive. Did you do anything productive?

Saturday, October 18, 2008


Several weeks ago I participated in Kat's Favorite Things Swap. Kat went to hours of work and gave everyone partners. The idea was that we were each supposed to send a few of our personal favorite things to our partner. That way we could maybe be intoduced to a few new things that could become our own favorites. And also make new friends in the bloggy world.

I sent my package here to Brandy. And yesterday a package arrived for me from Casey. I've been waiting and waiting and worrying that my package was lost in the mail. It took 12 whole days to get from Tennessee to Idaho. (If you need to mail anything for Christmas, you might want to send it now, the mail seems to be a bit slow these days.)
It's here! It's here!

Oooohhh...What's inside?! She packed it so well, she didn't even need packaging material!

It was full of great things!

  • Delicious fruit leather 100% natural (I've already had a piece and love it.)
  • Adorable thank you cards and a March of Dimes sticky note pad (Casey had twin girl preemies born at only 23 weeks gestation. Her family participates with the March for Babies Charity.)
  • A Norman Rockwell puzzle (Casey decorates her play room with this series of puzzles. What a cute idea. Alyssa loves puzzles and will be in heaven.),
  • And the books Dare to Discipline (which I have heard really good things about) and Randy Pausch's Last Lecture (I've been wanting to read that for quite some time now.)

THANK YOU Casey for all the great stuff. And THANK YOU Kat for the fun swap idea. I have loved doing it and can't wait to do it again!

Friday, October 17, 2008

No Longer Naked

I've been needing something on my poor naked dining room wall and I just didn't know what to do. But ever since I saw a dish collage over at Nester's place (And yes, I ONLY lurk there. :) ) I've been wanting one.

So I went to the store and bought the first plates that grabbed my eye and that were in my color pallet for my living/dining room. That was a huge step for me. I never end up buying anything because I want it to be completely perfect and what if I find something different at the next store. But I didn't allow myself to think those thoughts, I just impulse bought. Then I came home and laid them on my floor, for a few days.

Mixing and matching, moving and switching, picture taking and more picture taking, even a plea for Miss Jennifer P. to help me out. I was too scared to do anything, so on the floor they sat...for 3 weeks.

Until today, when my trusty sisters-in-law came over and helped me get it just right. I don't know how I ever thought I'd be able to hang these by myself. Look at all the hands we needed. THANK YOU girls for your encouragement to pound that first hole! And also for all of your help.

It turned out great and we didn't even need a level to get it all straight.

I LOVE IT!!! It's so much fun to have something hanging on my wall. Now I need something on the opposite wall (I'm thinking big giant mirror?). This decorating stuff could get addictive.

I should add that I got these plates at TJ Max and the D.I. And the big center piece one is plastic. I decorated "thriftily". I'm so proud of me!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Best laugh ever!!!

You MUST go read this post featured today on SITS. I have NEVER laughed so hard at a blog post as I did at this one. Seriously, I just can't stop laughing. Thank you Karen for an ab work out today.

Wild Thing

Kate is a good sleeper. I don't take that for granted. We've suffered with our other children and the sleeping issue. None of my babies slept through the night until they were 2. That's 2 years, NOT 2 months. And not only did they not sleep through the night, they woke upwards of 8 times a night. I was pretty much a walking zombie for the first years of motherhood. The only way we could get them to sleep was by letting them sleep with us. We quickly became strong believers in the family bed. (We still have a little 4 year old who shall remain nameless that sleeps with us.) I know many people are against the family bed, and that's fine. I'm not asking for your opinion, just telling you mine. (Ooo, that came off a little harsh. Didn't mean it that way.)

Anyway the Lord knew I needed a good sleeper when he gave me Kate. (And frankly, I kind of think I deserved one.) She's a little wild animal during the day. But come night time, she goes in her room, looks at books until she's tired, turns off her own light, and goes to sleep. All night! The only things I have to do are leave a cup of water on her headboard and say, "Night-night princess, I love you." Then I shut the door and leave her be.

So the other night after I finished blogging, I walked past her room and noticed her light was still on. I opened the door to see what was going on because a) I couldn't believe she would still be awake and b) she always turns off her light. This is the scene that greeted me.

I don't think she could have picked a better book to fall asleep like this with.