Tuesday, April 30, 2013

birthday weekend up north

This past weekend we went up north for a visit and to celebrate Kendall's birthday with Chris' parents.  We had a great, great time...

Our friends, Matt and Jana, came out with their kids to help us celebrate.  It was warm enough for swim suits and water out in the backyard.

However prior to water play we tried to water-proof Kendall's bandage. :)

Here is my castle cake.  It was simple but she liked it. :)

Jana and I trying to figure out Kendall's Barbie closet. :)

The kids road their bikes A LOT.

While I didn't take any pictures, a big highlight for me was a clothing swap Jana had invited me to.  Basically several girls gathered together clothes that were still in good condition, but for one reason or another never got worn (I think we all have those).  The host sets up all the clothes at her house ahead of time.  Then we all gather together, draw numbers, and take turns "shopping" for free, cute clothes!!  It was such a fun afternoon and I came home with a large pile of "new" items for myself! :)

Wednesday, April 24, 2013


Whenever we go to Disneyland my mom always packs dinner for the adults.  The past couple of times she has included sweet pickles on my deli sandwich and I'm officially a huge fan.  I used to think I hated them, but I now don't want a sandwich without them. :)  This got me thinking about the foods I hated as a kid but now enjoy...

Used to hate:

*Sour Cream
*Tomatoes (okay I don't LOVE these, but I at least tolerate them now)
*Bell Peppers

Still hate:

*Most seafood
*Anything remotely spicy
*Fruit in dessert--hehe... I don't "hate" this, but think it's against nature :)

Sidenote:  I googled pictures of sandwiches with pickles to include on this post and I found quite a few of peanut butter with pickle sandwiches.  I think I should start a, "never will try in a million years" list! Yuck!

p.s. Our little patient has been doing amazingly well.  You would never know she burned her arm except for her bandage and that she literally holds it up all the time like it actually is in a stiff cast (quite funny).  :)  Even changing/cleaning her bandage goes well (though Chris and I get a tad squeamish looking at it!).

I've really been liberal in allowing her pie (pacifier) during this "special time of having a boo-boo".  Tomorrow I'll crack back down. :)

Tuesday, April 23, 2013


Yesterday morning I decided to drink my hot chocolate by the fire and the kids decided to sit on the other side of me.  I've now had four people ask my why on earth I had the fire going in weather like this.  :) For some reason I was just cold and since our fireplace is just a "flip the switch" with glass (kind of like a window), it's easy to turn it on for a few minutes when I need it.

Anyway, I won't explain how it happened because it would be hard to describe, but I had gotten up and Kendall tried to crawl on Cam's lap. Kendall then fell off the chair and braced herself against the very hot glass pane.

She burned the underpart of her forearm pretty badly and within just a few minutes we both were crying...she from the pain and I from seeing her in pain.  After a trip to Urgent Care, some heavy duty cream and Motrin, she was great and remained that way the rest of the day.  We are so thankful it wasn't worse (it ended up being a 2nd degree burn, which a bad sunburn can also be diagnosed as).

During all that, poor Cam stayed locked in his room with the noise machine on until school time since she was screaming pretty badly (as soon as it happend he ran up stairs lickity split!).  This morning Chris and I have already planned to put him in the car for school a few minutes early so Chris can help me change her bandage as we know that will most  likely involve some crying. :)

Here is my little brave girl with her "pretend cast". :)

Saturday, April 20, 2013

some randoms

*Like my new blog?  Thanks Chris! :)

*Two years ago we went to IKEA and Cam has mentioned it several times since.  He even remembered it was Exit 37 off the 10 freeway :)  So since he didn't have school yesterday we took a trip and it didn't disappoint.  Both kids LOVED the play area and wanted to stay longer.

Kendall enjoyed pretending the rooms were her own. :)

I couldn't go there and NOT get the kids their $1 humongous cinnamon rolls!  This healthy lunch was accompanied by cornbread (in my opinion it was more like yellow cake with a dash of cornmeal!) :)

*On the way home we stopped by Costco for:
-Frozen veggies
-Feta Cheese

*Cameron recently learned how to ride a bike without training wheels.  He now loves to ride his bike whereas before he never wanted to (I realized it was because his training wheels were always tilted, making it unstable feeling).

*A friend of mine gave me a copy of Jesus Calling for kids.  While it's a great book, I think my kids aren't quite old enough for it.  So we are just going back through The Jesus Storybook Bible.  I read it each morning while they are eating breakfast.  I feel like they are less distracted since they are eating. :)

*A blog I follow posted this and I thought it was soooo true.  While I'm not a huge Pinterest user, I AM big on browsing cooking blogs, cooking magazines, and cookbooks.  Yet I have to admit that I rarely try most of the things I see.  I need to work on that. :)

Friday, April 19, 2013


I've had some fun birthdays in my 34 years on this earth.  But I must say that this year's was one of the most fun, special, and sweet ones I've had.  I think the main reason was that the kids had been SOO excited leading up to it.  It was simply a meal made by them, with a few little extras.  But there excitement and desire for MY excitement was too sweet for words.

I stepped out for an hour to read at Starbucks while they got things ready.  When I came home they were "hiding", then jumped out to show me what they had done, which included lots of pictures hung up, table place cards, and a super sweet card.

One of my favorite parts was how they decided they wanted the room to smell good.  And what better way to make that happen then to bring down their shampoo?? I love how they actually opened the cap to let the scent out! :)

Spaghetti and garlic bread was on the menu, accompanied by Cameron reading me some "birthday questions" that Chris had typed up.

Cameron must have asked me a hundred times what my "favorite part of the party" was. :)  I honestly said it was the whole thing because it really was. :)

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

*Today the kids and I went to the mall.  Afterward we headed to the 99 cent store so they could spend some of their $5 they each received from their great grandma this past weekend.  This was quite the incentive to behave, especially when I made them sit against the wall right beside the check out at Children's Place, rather than race around the store (which is what they did last time). :)

*This past Christmas Chris' mom gave me a few of the tiniest little glass bowls.  I LOVE them because they are perfect for the kids' waffle syrup.  They each hold about a tablespoon, yet it looks to the kids like they have a full bowl of syrup! :)

*About a month ago I went through a couple weeks of having a metallic taste in my mouth 24/7.  It finally went away but has now come back.  It is very annoying and baffling.

*Last night I made meatballs and mixed them with the sauce that goes with this recipe.  I swear I could drink this stuff.  It has soooo much flavor!!

*We are heading up to Chris' parents in a few weeks and we'll have an early birthday for Kendall along with our friends Matt and Jana (and their kids).  I'm going to try and tackle this cake.  I'm not good at fondant, but I've found that simply microwaving tub frosting makes it so you can pour it over the cake and it dries glossy.

Sunday, April 14, 2013


Chris' family visited this weekend and I decided to try two new recipes.  The first was a Chocolate Angel Cake that my sister had made a long time ago and loved.  I can see why!  I served it Friday night and we all really liked it.  It is rich, yet at the same time not heavy.  It has such unique flavor for a chocolate cake. :)

The second recipe was one I saw on a FoodNetwork show.  These Sassy Tailgate Sandwiches are very easy, can be made the night before, and are VERY yummy.  You can mix and match cheeses and meats and they are just all around a great company dish. :)

Yesterday while half of the family went golfing the other half stayed back and had fun with things like making a couple batches of homemade playdough. :)

Our time culminated with a fun birthday pizza dinner for me. :)

Right now Chris and Noonie (who will be with us until tomorrow) gave me an afternoon off and took the kids out to the desert.  I'm loving my place on the couch that I have not moved from and have no plans to until they get home. :)

p.s. Thanks for asking about Cameron on my last post.  His teacher has a great way of helping him when he is having a hard time, so after drop off, she had him write a letter to me (usually it consists of "Dear mom, I really miss you...") and he was totally fine and happy at pick up. :)

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

thoughts on my morning...

First off, Kendall is terribly funny because she'll often wake up and immediately launch into asking me if I remember something that happened.  It becomes quickly apparent that she is referring to a dream but does not realize it.  However she gets VERY upset if I don't tell her that I remember the same incident.  So I'll admit I usually say I do remember just to avoid that. :)

This morning the second I walked into get her: "Mom, do you remember when we found a dinosaur bone in the bushes and we left it there?  Then it went up in the air and came down and broke?  Do you remember that???? We should have brought it inside!  Why didn't we bring it inside???"  Ummm....

Secondly I had a rough send of with Cam.  I put on some of his new shoes, only to realize I had bought the wrong size for the second time.  He started out slightly upset that he couldn't wear them, however then I escalated him by also becoming frustrated not only at myself for my bad purchase, but also at him for insisting he wear them.  THAT was my mistake.

As soon as he sensed I was frustrated it spiraled down ("Mom, why are you so frustrated?" "Mom, I just want to know why you are talking firmly?")  I quickly changed my whole demeanor and became super cheerful.  It was too late.  He needed longer than the 5 minutes we had until he and Chris had to leave for him to calm down.  Chris said he was still upset at school and I think we both are anxious to see how our little guy is when school is out.  I guess it's a good thing that right under my roof I have a constant reminder to keep my attitude in check.  The reminder just happens to be my son. :)

Monday, April 8, 2013

When I get a giftcard for a clothing store I usually use it right away.  However when we get gift cards to restaurants we try and stretch them out.  So last night my parents came over to watch the kids while we headed out to our all time favorite, The Cheesecake Factory.  

My food all around was a 10+++!!! I ordered the veggie burger and tried their sweet potato fries.  My food was piping hot (which is a must if they are gonna receive a 10 from me!) and it was delicious!!!

I wanted to capture the color of the patty, which was a bright pink (due to the beets). :)

Knowing that if he suggested we get a piece of cheesecake (because it's my birthday next week) I would refuse, since I can't stomach spending $8 on a slice (even with a giftcard!), Chris snuck away to the waiter and surprised me with a birthday piece.  I told him afterward that I actually did not regret the money because this  Oreo Dream Extreme was AMAZING!!!!!!  

p.s. Funny sidenote: So after I JUST posted the other day about being done with taking care of our fish... what did Cameron win at a birthday party over the weekend???  Another fish.  :)

Saturday, April 6, 2013

*Apparently on FB several people are doing the "burpee challenge", doing then adding a burpee a day for 50 days.  Chris and I decided to do it until Kendall's birthday (May 7).  The kids really get into joining us and last night's "family burpee challenge" turned into a Jock Jams dance party...take a look...

*I've given up on trying to make my homemade tortillas as floppy as store bought ones.  So while they work for the kids' sandwiches, they don't work as well to fold for burritos.  Chris' brother introduced him to some unbaked ones from Costco.  While I don't really like having to cook one each time I need one, I DO like that they only have 5 ingredients.  Chris adores the taste also. :)

*Had hamburgers this week and bulked up the ground beef with purreed black eyed peas and oats.  Kids never knew what hit em'.  Ha!  :)

*I let the kids try one of my Skinny Cow sandwiches for dessert.  I figured Cam wouldn't finish his since it was ice cream.  He isn't a huge fan because it is so cold.  Kendall, on the other hand, had no problems at all demolishing it. :)

*CONFESSION: The other day I was cleaning out our fishbowl and our fish accidentally fell in the sink as I was switching the water.  I'll be honest...I paused for a good 10 seconds debating just letting him glide down the drain.  I'm kind of done being a fish owner especially since the kids don't really care about him anymore.  But I felt too guilty and ended up scooping him back up. :)

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

three things that make me happy

*Today Kendall REALLY wanted me to make a house out of a box she found.  She is generally a very happy kid, but she was over the moon for this thing.  I could not stop smiling simply at how jumping up and down excited she was.  So sweet...

*Whenever we let the kids pick some candy out at Winco (in their bulk bin section), Kendall always picks dried apples.  Go figure. :)  I have been determined to make my own and I did today.  SOOOO yummy!!!!  I found a whole bag of apples at our local fruit stand for $1 (they didn't have much life left in them).  I sliced them as thin as I could and just sprinkled a little cinnamon on top.  I can't tell you how excited I am.  This whole tray you see in the picture cost about 40 cents!!!

The only thing I might do differently next time would be to peel them.  The skins can get a little tough.

*Chris has been SO disciplined with his bootcamp class/working out.  I am constantly amazed when I hear the car leave at 4:45am to get to his 5:00am class.  Wow.  He also has been so disciplined in his eating.  Tonight when we went to some friends' house for dinner, they had what I would call his downfall, creamy pasta and yummy bread.  He was so good and reminded me on the way home how he had wanted to quadruple the portion he served himself. :)