Thursday, March 31, 2011

swimming


I'm loving this weather. I had such a fun morning with my kids...one of those mornings that you just think, "THIS is why I'm a mom." You know what I'm talking about? We walked up to a sports park and played for a while, then walked home. Nothing big. But both kids were great, happy, and the weather just added to our good moods. :)

Anyway, I know I'm late to the game on this, but Cam does not know how to swim and I need to do something about it this summer. Any advice? I have horrible memories of my swim lessons (my poor mom probably does too), consisting of me repeatedly getting out of the pool and running while crying to my mom. I'm 50/50 on how Cam will do. But I would love some advice from anyone in my area who has successfully tackled this with their kids. :)

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

recently

*Last Thursday my parents watched all five kids while Chris and I went to Big Bear with my sister and her husband. It was a quick trip, but very fun and relaxing. It was nice to talk so much without getting interrupted by kids.

Dinner at a cute pizza parlor.




Afterward, we went back to the cabin to watch Inception. I thought it was an AMAZING movie, but will admit that I needed the husbands to pause it and explain a lot along the way. :)

*This week is Cam's Spring Break. I wanted to do something fun, so we headed up north to my in laws for a few days. We had a wonderful time, got quite a bit of relaxing in, ate scrumptious food, and watched the kids have a blast

Wig fun with grandma


We spent the majority of the time outside on their property. They have so much space to run and play.


Last night we left the kids back and went to have dinner with some friends, Matt and Jana. They made the most amazing dinner. Each person had their own, personal grill for different meats and veggies. I knew Jana wouldn't disappoint with dessert seeing as she loves chocolate as much as I do. She surely didn't with her chocolate lava cake. :) It's alway nice to see them and we felt so spoiled by all the work they went to.

The ride home today went OK, however the further we got, the more we realized Cam had come down with a pretty painful ear infection. Chris ended up taking him to Urgent Care this evening. I'm just glad he was able to enjoy the trip and it waited until we got home.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

two more recipes...

I have two more recipes to share, and then Chris and I are off for a kid-free night with my sister and her husband! We are heading up to Big Bear to a cabin owned by a friend of my sister's. I've already started dreaming about the moment I wake up tomorrow...and DON'T have to get out of bed right away. :)

This first recipe I had last night. My sister made it and it was soooo wonderful. The flavor is so unique and yummy. I would highly recommend trying it. :)



The next one is for homemade maple syrup. I make my veggie waffles about once a week and freeze them. I can go heavier on the veggie flavor because I know they have syrup with them. Despite not having much syrup, it still probably adds up since they have them EVERY day. Although homemade has just as much sugar, at least it doesn't have all the other things you can't pronounce on the label. :) It's super easy and much cheaper.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

fancy nuts



Tonight we went over to my sister's for dinner. I was in charge of the salad and decided to try something new. Both my sister and mom had told me about some candied almonds they had tried in a salad. I had no measurements/recipe to go by, so I just dumped some sugar and almonds into a pan and turned on the heat! I had to stir them every minute or so, but after about 10 minutes, I had the tastiest little nuts that added so much flavor/crunch to our salad. I felt quite gourmet and will definitely do this again, especially because buying candied nuts can be so expensive!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

weigh in and trains

Sunday was Chris and his friend's weigh in. I've mentioned before that they have bet with one another to help stay motivated for weight loss. We plan dates for them to golf, but they must meet their weight in order for it to happen. Both met their goal and had a great day of golf. Ana and I stayed back with the kids and got quite a bit of good conversation despite having four kids amongst us. :) When the guys got back, Ana and I snuck off for a relaxing pedicure. Such a fun day!



Yesterday we took Cam to Toys R Us. He has been having so much fun with his trains lately, we wanted to get some expansion sets to make a "super duper humongous train" for him. We also got him a couple more trains and he has been in heaven. We don't typically buy either kid toys just because. However to be honest, it is neat for me to see Cam so involved in something so "typical". It made us both a little more lax on spending some extra money. I think we had just as much fun setting them up, simply anticipating how much he would enjoy them.


Saturday, March 19, 2011

liege waffles



This morning I was waiting for Kendall to wake up (Chris and Cam had gone to breakfast) and flipped on a cooking show highlighting Liege Waffles. It brought back memories of a trip I took to Europe right after I graduated from college. A friend, Cheryl, and I spent about 2.5 weeks traveling around. I distinctly remember these waffles in London, which were sold on the street. I cannot begin to describe how absolutely amazing, wonderful, and stupendous they were.

Rather than being light and fluffy, they are dense, almost like a donut. They are good simply by themselves because the dough is very sweet (and they have this crystallized sugar outside). However you can get them with many different toppings, chocolate being our favorite, if I remember correctly. Oh, if I could find these waffles even 50 miles from here...I would drive.

p.s. Don't my men look cute out on the field? Had another great game today. :)

Friday, March 18, 2011

*Yesterday I visited the SDC kinder class. It made me a little less squeamish about the whole idea of the kinder + Cam combo. :) The teacher has a variety of disabilities in her class, yet her specialty is Autism. The principal spoke very highly of the teacher's love/commitment to each child. I could tell it wasn't just the principal trying to sell me...she was sincere in her regard for this teacher. We have his IEP in about a month, but it helps me to have a visual of where exactly Cam would be as we discuss the options.

*Went to a playdate today hosted by a friend from church. I decided to pull Cam out of school early to go with us. He did wonderful and I'm glad I gave him the opportunity to be around new kids. :)

*Tomorrow I'm getting my hair cut/highlighted. I'm SOOO looking forward to it. Not so much the end result, but the process. I think I might get a Starbucks on my way and just savor every relaxing moment in that salon chair. Ahhh...

*We got the settlement check from the lawsuit against our builder (we didn't start it, but joined). No new toys for us...but honestly, adding that nice padding to our savings is present enough!

*I love cold, cooked carrots. Raw...no thanks.

*I bought ingredients to make this tomorrow. I made it several years ago and had written some high ratings to the side of the recipe. I'm going to try and make it a little lighter by changing a few things. Hopefully it will be almost as good. :)

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

*Chris tends to think I can be a pessimist at times. I always correct him and say that I'm a realist. So, as a realist, I give Emily and Brad 4 months. I can see why she has a hard time with it all, but I do feel sad for Brad because I think he wants it to work far more than she does. Quite the shocker at the, "After the Rose...". :(

*Chris and I discovered our new favorite at Gourmet Pizza. It's called, It's a Gouda and it includes: BBQ sauce, chicken, cashews, cilantro, mozzarella, and Gouda. Amazing!!

*This past weekend we went to Old Navy to get Cam some new shorts. There were some puppies being sold in the parking lot. Both kids were quite excited. We've thought about getting a dog before, however money for shots, food, potential vet bills, etc. have kept us away for now. Maybe someday.



*Agenda this afternoon: Library, McDonald's and Cam's "speech activity" (which is what we call his time with the grad students and another little boy each week).

*Agenda after kids go down: It's A Gouda leftovers and finish our movie we rented, Morning Glory.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

get me to the morning


I made some goodies today for tomorrow night. I'm having a few friends over to watch The Bachelor finale. As I type, I have the biggest tummy ache I've had in a while. Why do we insist on continuing to eat cookies after we've already made ourselves sick on the dough? Wouldn't the discomfort of a full tummy stop us from continuing to make it worse? Ugh!!! I just want to fall asleep so it will be gone in the morning (except I will have trouble going to sleep since I can't turn over on my stomach due to my full tummy).

Saturday, March 12, 2011

today

This morning was Cam's first T-ball game. He did great and has improved so much since last year. As he got to 1st base, he looked over at my parents and I as we where cheering for him and said, "Mom! This makes me SO happy!" He was beaming like I've never seen and it was so wonderful to see.

After lunch we headed up to Oak Glen for a hike. I literally think Cam has as much fun on our hikes as he does at Disneyland. For some reason he loves the concept of a trail winding around and was constantly telling us to keep moving and, "...let's keep going on the trail guys!"

Tonight we went out to dinner for our anniversary. We had one of the grad students who works with Cameron at his speech clinic come over. He was super excited for this and they had a great time. Initially we had planned to drive out to Palm Springs for dinner. However after the long day, we ended up wanting to stay more local...like we always do. Both Chris and I are very much homebodies in the evenings. During the day, I'm constantly going different places with the kids, obviously because the outings are for their enjoyment more than mine. But when it comes to our downtime at night, we both love to just relax at home. More often than not, we like to get back early from a night out so we can have some relaxing time before heading to bed. For some reason, I hate getting home from something and heading straight to bed. Anyway, it was a nice night and we are just about to watch Southland with a bowl of ice cream as our relaxing ending. :)

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

9 years


Back when Chris and I were dating, I knew I loved him and that he was a Godly, amazing person. However I didn't really think about looking for specific qualities that would make for an easy marriage. I never knew it would be important to marry someone who...

*was wise with money
*would take initiative in doing chores around the house he saw needed to be done
*loved spending time with the kids and would take them away from mom when he knew she needed a break
*would continue to make me laugh
*supported our family so I could stay home

...and the list goes on. I'm so thankful that he HAS these qualities that I never knew would be so vital to marriage. Happy 9th Anniversary Chris!!! I love you more and more every day. :)

Monday, March 7, 2011

pitas, soy milk, sleep and McDonald's

*Seeing as I love to look through cookbooks, I'm surprised it took me this long to come up with the idea of checking some out from the library. I checked out Bake It Up! and found a great recipe for pita pockets. I hate buying hamburger buns from the store because we never end up using them all. I made these pita pockets today and they were really easy and very moist. You had to cut them open a little more than store bought ones, but Chris gave them a solid 9!

Here was Chris's lunch today, stuffed with turkey burgers we love to buy from Costco.


*Last week we bought soy milk because Costco didn't have rice milk (for Kendall and her constipation). Today I tried the soy milk with my International House coffee. So much better than using regular milk!

*Kendall has been going to bed earlier, sleeping in later, and taking 2.5-3 hour naps. Who is this girl (not that I'm complaining)??

*Susan and I had a nice debate this past weekend. She says that it isn't right that I take the kids to McDonald's to play without making a food purchase. My argument? There is NO sign anywhere that says the play area is "for customers only". She says that it's implied. What do you think? I'd love to hear other opinions, but I will say that it won't change my mind about doing it. :)

Sunday, March 6, 2011

busy weekend

*Saturday morning we headed to the baseball fields for Cam's team pictures with his T-ball team. Season starts next week!



*After lunch, I left the kids with Chris and picked up Susan to do some shopping. Chris took the kids to the race car tracks down the road and they LOVED it. It's so nice to have that close by as a fun activity for them.

*We all met back at our house and Chris and Chris went to hit some golf balls while we stayed at the house with the kids. They had such a fun time together and I just can't tell you how wonderful it is to have my sister's girls so close. We had spaghetti for dinner and then they headed home.

*This morning we went to church. The four girl cousins all wore their matching skirts my mom had made and looked too cute.



*After Kendall's nap, we headed out to Palm Springs for the afternoon.

*During Cam's special room time this afternoon, he opened his door and yelled out, "Can I have my Bible?" When Chris brought it up Cam said, "Do you know why I want the Bible? So I can learn about Jesus." Wow. So sweet.

Friday, March 4, 2011

"that mom..."

*Costco list today:
Mixed frozen veggies
Feta
Wheat Thins
Bananas
Bread (two loaves, freeze one)
Milk
Soy Milk
Cheerios

*After Costco I took the kids to the mall. I've always been very irritated when moms disregard the "no strollers in play area" (it's a small space as it is) and "no food or drink" (their kids will trail Cheetos everywhere). However today I admitted that I became "that mom" a while ago. Cam has been too tall for the play area for months. Yet, we go...usually once a week. And we'll probably continue to go...I guess I'm ok with being a mall play area hypocrite.

Kendall was quite taken with the bear and loved to give it hugs.


*Chris's mom gave me some of her Valentine candy (she received from her students). I keep one of the small Sees boxes in my car. Every few days, on the rare occasion that I'm not reaching back trying to find Kendall's baby that has dropped or telling Cam what freeways we are taking to our destination (he's very into that right now), I pick out a candy and savor every last bite. It's kind of a treat for those quiet moments that come far too infrequently. :)

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Yummy


I mentioned last week that we had lettuce wraps at a friend's house for dinner. I decided to try my hand at them and they were SOO good and SOO easy!! I will definitely make these again. I think next time I'll add rice to bulk up the filling. Chris was a tad hungry after dinner and I realized rice would have made them more filling, but been less calories than more meat.

Lettuce Wraps

1 lb. ground beef
1 tbs. soy sauce
1 tbls. apple cider vinegar
2 cloves minced garlic
1/2 tsp. ginger
1/4 cup Hoisin sauce (found this easily in the international aisle of the store)
2/3 cup chopped green onions

Brown the beef. Add remainder of ingredients and heat through. Serve inside Romain lettuce.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

i did it!!!

Due to Chris's flexible schedule, he has always been able to go to Disneyland with us. I've never even attempted it by myself with both kids because 1. The long car ride could get sticky with both and 2. I wondered how it would work with 3 people on 2 person rides.

I really wanted to go this week, but Chris wasn't able to due to his workload. So I decided to tackle it myself, and boy was I glad I did. We had an awesome time. The car rides went relatively well. The parks were dead making it so we could go on almost everything we wanted. There really weren't any we couldn't all do together. Both kids had a blast and I had such a wonderful time with them. It really couldn't have gone better, giving me confidence to do it more often now. :)

I took this with my phone mid-ride because I wanted to capture this face. He was literally this excited the ENTIRE day. :)



Chris and I always cross our fingers that the tortilla factory will be giving away flour, rather than corn tortillas. Score. :)


Cam LOVED looking at the map of Disneyland and telling me where to go. He wouldn't take his eyes off of it even for the picture. :)