Thursday, October 21, 2010

And we're off... Oklahoma that is. Oklahoma City, specifically. And no, not to be a part of "Ghouls on Parade." Gross. (Although that activity did manage to alter my cousin's wedding reception plans for Saturday night...can you even imagine?!!!)

We have been so very busy around our house and I have so many fun things to post about, but just can't seem to slow down long enough to find the time. Hoping next week proves to be slower paced!

And maybe I'll be able to do a blog or two from OKC!

Wishing everyone a great weekend,

P.S. My first-born had her first Parent/Teacher Conference yesterday. Actually, I should say, I had my first PARENT/Teacher conference yesterday. It was a weird feeling being on the opposite side of the table, that's for sure! She is doing all teacher-kiddos do! :)

Pumpkin Patch 2010.  I just love the giant silos in the background!

Monday, October 18, 2010

I'm Leaving On a Jet Plane...

Hello everyone.  Happy Monday!  I hope you had a fabulous weekend; we sure did. Lots of cooking, baking, and activities this past weekend which I look forward to sharing with you this week.

The daddy arrived home from Washington, D.C. on Friday afternoon. The little ones were so very excited to pick him up from the airport. Unlike departure, we didn't park and enter the airport, rather we just pulled into the parking garage and Daddy met us with his luggage. (Departure was a bit hectic managing the run-away preschooler and my husband thought it might be easiest for us to not exit the minivan!)

Just a couple of cute shots at departure and arrival.

P.S. My husband took the "good" camera with him to Washington, D.C. and left me with our very first "point and shoot". As you can see from the departure images, it was on its last leg. It didn't last the first week my husband was gone and I ended up purchasing a new "point and shoot", thus the arrival/restaurant photos.

Benjamin insisted on taking his Fisher Price airplane with us to the airport.

At security before Daddy had to board.

Goodbyes are always the hardest.

Last minute hugs.

So excited to pick up Daddy from the airport.
Captivated by Daddy!

All smiles from the backseat.
Luke gets some Daddy love at the restaurant.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Taco Soup & Apple Nachos (Recipes)

Yesterday was such a beautiful day with temperatures finally agreeing with the calender.  After a half-day of kindergarten and preschool for the little ones, we loaded up the van and headed to the park in town.  Unfortunately, I forgot the camera. The irony here is that I never seem to forget the big DSLR, but since my husband took it to Washington, D.C. with him I have the little, convenient, point and shoot and keep forgetting it!  So, no park pictures.

Instead, I'll grace you with the photos I took of our "Mexican" Fall meal.  I apologize in advance for the crummy food photos...I even read a blog post on how to shoot food shots...and still found it a challenge! 

Our dinner last night was Taco Soup.  I found the recipe at Mennonite Girls Can Cook.  I thought it turned out delicious, but I think my husband might find it too bland.  He is a spicy eater!  The jury is still out on the little ones...Mary liked the taco meat and corn, but not the beans.  Ben liked the taco meat and beans, but not the corn.  And since I'm not a mama that cooks to "special order", I found myself straining bowls of soup to get my somewhat picky eaters to eat.  They both agreed that putting their own cheese and sour cream on the top was fun.

After dinner, I had a special treat nachos.  If you haven't seen these floating around in blog-land yet you are missing out!  This treat is especially fun for the little ones.  I discovered the recipe from Monica over at The Homespun Heart during her "Make Your Home a Haven Day 2.

"The 'goodies' for making Apple Nachos!"

"Thinly slice those apples!"

"The final product."  Yum!
Recipe for Apple Nachos (adapted from Taste of Home recipe)

2 Apples thinly sliced
Drizzle of Caramel ice cream topping
3 Tbsp. of mini chocolate chips
3 Tbsp. of chopped dry roasted peanuts
1 Tbsp. of sprinkles

I realized that we forgot the chopped dry roasted peanuts that we had gotten into just a few hours before.  Oh well...that's what "next times" are for!

Today we pick up Daddy from the airport. The little ones are so very excited. And even though we Skyped nearly everyday, there's just no substitution for the real thing...hugging and tickling and laughing with Daddy in person.  I have a special dinner planned for Daddy who has had to endure two weeks of government dorm food.  bleh!  Homemade S'mores for dessert.  Another recipe to follow!

Wishing everyone a great weekend,

Our Little Daisy...Scout!

I'm so excited to announce that Mary Catherine has officially become a Daisy Scout! (I loved being a Brownie/Girl Scout.) Our troop is a combined kindergarten/1st grade troop as there are not enough girls at either grade level to warrant separate troops. Oh, and did I mention that I am co-leader of her troop?

Yesterday the little ones and I trucked up to the elementary school at afternoon dismissal. Ben managed to find some other siblings to play with and Luke slept like an angel during the entire meeting.

Our troop of seven girls (4 kindergartners and 3 first graders) started the meeting with the Girl Scout Promise. We worked on a craft activity that involved basic supplies of paper and markers/crayons/colored pencils, and did a couple of ice breaker/name game activities. We also played a cute cooperation game with a hoola hoop. All things horsey seems to be the rage in K/1 so we are going to definitely plan some type of outing to a horse farm/barn/stable, etc.

Jamie, my co-leader and I divided up responsibilities. I think that I am taking on crafts and service projects; Jamie is managing registration forms, money, uniforms, etc; and fortunately another mom volunteered to do Girl Scout Cookie sales...bless her because those cookie sales are a lot of work. I am also planning on being the troop photographer...even if it isn't an "official" position. You might have noticed that I only included two pictures of Mary. I didn't feel comfortable posting my other pictures on the internet since they included so many faces of the other girls and this is my personal family blog.

Looking forward to sharing with you all of the fun things our little Daisy experiences over the course of this school year.

And, after a long week of ballet and soccer lessons, Daisy scouts and religious education, we are ready to start the weekend! We are fortunate to begin our celebratory weekend tonight as Mary Catherine and Benjamin do not have school tomorrow (Friday is report card prep). We are also excited that the Daddy returns home tomorrow after being gone for TWO FULL WEEKS at the National Fire Academy. Boy have we missed Daddy!

For dinner tonight...Taco Soup and Apple Nachos for dessert. Recipes posted tomorrow!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Picture Day!

It's picture day at our house. Mary Catherine looked adorable in her new back-to-school outfit that Mimi got her. We saved it for picture day.

And just in case you were needing a ballet lesson...

Wishing you a wonderful Wednesday!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Making Your Home a Haven

Hello Sweet Readers!

I did not abandon my promise of posting at least three times this week. Instead, I've been busy blogging over at her Little Ways my WordPress blog.

This week,I've linked up with Monica over at The Homespun Heart
for her "Making Your Home a Haven" week blog party.

I hope that you'll hop over there to see the different ways that I have been working this spring and fall to create a cozy nest for my little birdies, including our newest addition!

I have to admit...I'm feeling a bit schizophrenic right now trying to manage to different blogs. I really enjoy the WordPress platform, but I also love all the connections that I've made with my followers here at Blogger. Plus, now that Blogger has changed the template designer, I've made an absolute mess of my blog! LOL I have a few ideas for some my 2-year blogging anniversary is TOMORROW!

Blessings to all of you,

Saturday, October 2, 2010

On This Day, I Thee Wed…17 Years Ago

Seventeen years ago, I walked down the aisle to marry the love of my life!  And since we married in the days before digital cameras, and I have yet to scan in our wedding pictures, I have no wedding pictures to share with you.  :(

So, you’ll just have to believe me when I say that October 2, 1993, was a beautiful crisp, Fall day!  In fact, it rained the morning of our wedding day and I remember being panicked that our outdoor pictures would be ruined.  But, God, as always came through!  By late afternoon, after our 2:00 PM wedding Mass, the sun was shining brightly.

For nearly 11 years, we celebrated our wedding anniversary as a couple…a childless couple.  But in the past six years, God has blessed us with three beautiful children and our family is now complete.  And while I miss our anniversary dinners as  a “couple” at fancy restaurants or expensive resorts, I know that the day will come again when we are in fact childless as empty-nesters.

For now, I’m completely content with dinners out at Applebees or Red Lobster with children in tow!

Thank you, Chris, for being such a wonderful husband and father to me and the children.  You work so very hard…two, sometimes three jobs, so that I might stay at home with our little ones.  Your dedication to the Fire Service for a life-time career is noble and highly respected.  Your children are proud to call you Daddy and your friends and extended family are often amazed at your commitment to both work and personal relationships.  I am proud to be your wife.  Thank you for standing by my side through the many difficult and challenging losses we faced.  You are my rock.  My love. 

Happy Anniversary! 


Our first wedding dance as a married couple…Harry Connick, Jr.’s It Had to be You.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Goodbye Summer…You Were So Good To Us!

Due to my lack of blogging this summer, I really didn’t post too many of our vacation pictures to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.  Ironically, I won a give-away in late July that also had a “beach” theme.  So, in order to express my heart-felt appreciation to Melinda, who I got together with last weekend, I thought I would share some of my most-favorite beach pictures from this summer and a couple of shots from the items inside my “goodie” bag!



As you can see, Melinda gifted me with quite the assortment of summertime goodies.  Included in her anniversary give-away were:

  • scrapbooking papers
  • mini note cards (flip flops and sand pail)
  • an actual beach ball!
  • beautiful pencils and fun-loving ribbons
  • a gorgeous butterfly magnet
  • adorable products from Mary Englebreit including emery boards and stickers
  • ….and for the car trip to the Gulf Coast next year…a Word Seek!  FUN!




Happy Blogging Anniversary, Melinda…even if I am a bit belated!  And if you haven’t had the opportunity to visit Melinda, please drop by Country Dreaming.  Melinda always has the best trivia about holidays, seasons, special occasion days, etc.  I always learn something new after visiting her blog.

And now for some cute kiddos!  First, my favorite close-ups…






Next, our day trip to Wilmington, North Carolina.  BEAUTIFUL!  I love these next pictures, especially this first one.  It reminds of those old Coppertone for Kids advertisements!




This last set of pictures shows how much fun Mary and Ben had with the little surf board.  Ben also loved the sand itself and spent hours digging, filling up sand pails, and collecting sea shells.




Summer, I miss you already, but I’m also excited about the months ahead and sharing the Fall and Winter holidays with our newest little member.


Looking forward to cool, crisp days and nights snuggling in front of the fireplace!  I’m off to create some type of “crazy Dr. Seuss-like” costume for Mary’s ballet performance tomorrow.  Wishing you all a wonderful weekend!