Friday, January 31, 2014

sticky situations

*I feel like in most aspects, I'm a decent mom...except when it comes to costumes. I don't have the knack nor the enthusiasm when it comes to school spirit days. When I get a note home that next week is "dress like a scarecrow", I groan inside. I don't want to spend any money on something he'll most likely shed 10 minutes after being at school, however I also want him to be proud of what he wears and not embarrassed. :)

Today was the 100th day of school and the kids had to dress like they were 100 years old. Really?? Ugh. :) For 99 cents (spent on his glass/nose thingy), I think he came out pretty well. And HE was happy and excited. That's all that mattered. :)

*So I've had an umbilical hernia ever since Kendall was born (thanks pregnancy!). It's gradually gotten worse and I've finally come to realize I need to get it checked out. What I'd like the doc to say is that it's fine and will just be an annoying thing I have to live with. I DON'T want him to say I need surgery. Because surgery with a high deductible health plan = money. :(

*My parents are coming over for the Superbowl and to celebrate my dad's birthday. I'm trying to find a new and yummy dessert to make. This one looked amazing but seeing as my dad will make us keep it here afterward (he'll not want the temptation at their house), I decided a dessert with 3 cups of heavy cream (yikes!) is also not something we should be keeping around our house either. :) Hopefully I can find something a tiny bit less "add a pound for every slice". :)

*A friend of mine recommended a book that her and her daughter go through. I decided to buy it because it sounded so cool. It came in the mail a few days ago and it is SUPER cool. :) It's called Sticky Situations. Each day has a story about a situation to read. At the end there are three options given that your kids choose from on how they should respond. The idea is for your kids to pick which decision is the one Jesus would want you to make. 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

cake balls and cheap burgers

*Yesterday I took the kids to get flu shots. They did great. Cam asked to leave the room when it was Kendall's turn, but I had him stay and Kendall barely teared up. :)

*I find myself getting REALLY sad about losing my Kendall next year to kindergarten. Man I adore this little girl.

*We have been on a hummus kick lately. I mix it into my veggie lunch concoctions, put it on crackers for the kids, and make little snack wraps for Chris (1/2 a tortilla spread with hummus, wrapped around string cheese). This one is our favorite from Costco.

*I had a red velvet cake mix so I decided to make cake balls this past weekend. While I'm not a huge fan (too mushy of a texture maybe?), they sure are cute little things. 

(no, mine didn't look this pretty)

*This morning's question jar question was, "What do you think God looks like and if you could ask Him one question, what would it be?" Cam's response to how He would look was, "Long white robe, white skin, and a smile on his face." Love the, "smile on his face" part. So sweet.

*Woohoo for Red Robin gift cards. Double-woohoo for "1/2 price burgers" today (if you are a Royal Red Robin member)! Dinner taken care of!

Saturday, January 25, 2014

more hiking

We very rarely do two hikes in one week, but we had such a great time last Monday I decided to find a new one for today. Chris went golfing with some friends from college so the kids and I headed out to the desert. We hiked The Randall Henderson Loop and had a great time. It was two miles with 1/2 being uphill so I was super impressed that the kids did so well (with minimal "When will it be done?" from Cam). :)

Here we are by the visitor center. They had a little station with all the different paw prints one might see on the trail. We didn't see anything but foot prints but it was still a fun way to start out the hike. :)

We were pooped when done and an iced coffee from McDonald's sounded soooo good. Usually when I get a giftcard to somewhere I try to space it out and not use it too quickly. I've been terrible at this with my McDonald's card. I'm addicted to these things and this was the third one this week. :( I need to tone it down.

Speaking of giftcards, Kendall has discovered a new game. We usually get to Cam's school a little early at pick up. To pass the time we play "the giftcard game". Basically I show each one to her (flashcard style) and she has to guess where it is from. She LOVES this. Sidenote: The huge stack she is holding is not all giftcards. Some are rewards cards, store credit, etc. :)

Tuesday, January 21, 2014


Yesterday we found a great new hiking spot. It's called Whitewater Conservancy and it's about 30 minutes from our house. The cool part is that it's more than just a trail. There are tons of boulders/rocks that the kids LOVED climbing all over. The river that goes through was quite low, although I'm pretty sure certain times of the year it's much more aggressive and not good for splashing around. Anyway I'm glad to have another place up our sleeve and Cameron asked several times throughout the hike if we could come back, so I know it's a winner. :)

This was a little man-made pond at the beginning of the trail. When we were done with the hike we let the kids take their shoes off and wade around.

Monday, January 20, 2014

layered mexican cornbread salad

*This morning I took both kids with me to take the elderly man I help to the doctor.

Cam: Why can't he drive?
Kendall:  I know about older people, Cameron. Sometimes when old people get older and older, they are too old to drive...because they are older.

Clear things up? :)

*Last night we went to some friends' house for dinner. I brought this salad which was WONDERFUL!! I think the part that made it so yummy were the corn bread chunks. I actually used bottled ranch because I was too lazy to make her dressing (I think it might be even better with her's).

*Saturday night we were able to go out to dinner with our friends, Jeremy and Ana. We had a such a great time. We always have plenty to talk about, but I brought a long a baggie o' questions for fun too. :) Among the questions:

-What is one thing you love about your spouse?
-Would you be willing to drive a UPS truck everywhere (and couldn't tell people the real reason as to why) if it meant you could eat whatever you want and still be healthy and not gain weight?

*I'm still debating on the hair cut I posted a pic of last week. A friend of mine made a good point when she said, "Knowing you, you would find a way to pin it back, put it in a ponytail, etc..." Too true. I'm just not good at cute styles where my hair is in my face. I want it back and off my neck. Hmmm...

Saturday, January 18, 2014

light brown M&M's

*One of the blogs I follow posted a link to a list of foods which never lasted. Here are a few that I had not thought about in years!

Remember light brown M&M's??


Clear Pepsi. I think I was in Jr. High???

*Yesterday Kendall and I went on an outing with my moms' group to the cutest You've Got Mail type bookstore. They read stories to the kids and provided a craft and cookie.

*This past Christmas, the craft that Cam's classmates made for their parents was a jar filled with conversation questions. LOVED it! We've already plowed through the questions and I made a fresh batch the other day. Each dinner the kids look forward to pulling 1-2 out. A couple examples are, "What is one thing you like about yourself?" or "If you owned an airplane, where would you want to fly and why?"

*Next big family gathering WILL include this cake. It will :)

*When I'm at Jazzercise and the instructor says something like, "How ya'll doing?????" or "Can anybody feel this????", I feel like a stick in the mud. That is NOT me to yell, "Woohoo! I'm workin' it!" I just want to exercise. :) But I don't want to be a snob so I at least smile in response. I wonder if I'm the only one who feels like that...???

Wednesday, January 15, 2014


Nothing too exciting going on around here...

*Today I met with the school psych at Cam's school. I wanted to pick her brain about ways in which we can help him in a certain area. It was a good meeting. :)

*Last night while Chris was at softball, I started Food Inc. Wow. Umm...I think Chris would have probably chosen to stay home from softball if it would have meant I didn't watch this. :) I'm only 1/2 way through but so far meat = bad (obviously in addition to processed crap and sugar). I'm still unclear if the production of meat is bad or if it's meat in and of itself. I'll keep you posted as I know you are dying to know. :)

*The kids have been on a board game kick lately. The game of choice is Candyland, made even more fun by substituting Lego men for the game pieces.  Also, I'm not one of those parents who ever cheats to end a game early if it has gone on a really, really, really long time. Never. ;)

*I love this warm weather we've been having. I hate the wind we have here in our little town. Ugh.

*Kendall is excited to go with me to Jazzercise tonight. The friend I attend with is bringing her four year old for a little Jazzercise playdate in the childcare.

*Not watching the Bachelor this season. We got rid of cable and while I technically could watch it (I would just have to always watch it live), I just was never into Juan Pablo. Accents do not make me swoon like they apparently make most of the gals who are watching. :)

*Okay, so I get that boys burp and it's a phase they go through, blah, blah, blah. But I can't understand how Cam could possibly have as much gas as he does. I'll be honest. It's REALLY annoying and I hope this phase ends soon!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

castle and haircut

For Christmas my in-laws gave us some money for fun outings as a family. We decided to use some of it on Friday to take the kids to SkyTown in Redlands. They had a BLAST. We met my parents for dinner afterwards making it a really fun day (Cam had the day off school)

Yesterday morning Chris took the kids to my parents' so they could play while he worked on my mom's computer for her. While they were gone, I took out my new Mandoline (Christmas present) to attempt my sweet potato chips. I think they are great. The kids? Um...Kendall asked if she could spit it out. I'm not giving up, though. I WILL find some sort of veggie chip they like. :)

Cameron got a really cool castle building set (using plaster bricks and cement) for Christmas. It was a great activity for the two of us to do as opposed to his Lego sets which are more of a solo activity. :)

Watching football with daddy yesterday afternoon:

Debating getting this done to my hair? Yes? No?

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

food stuff

Yesterday morning I was so excited at the deals I got at our fruit stand. For $8.50 I got ALL THIS!!!

The peaches were on their way out so I cut up most of them to dry in my food dehydrator. Part of the sweet potato was cooked and the other part is awaiting my sweet potato chip experiment (I found on this blog). :) The cauliflower was riced and cooked.

The ricing was for this pizza crust I blogged about a while ago (the post also tells you how to rice). I swear it is the tastiest thing. Chris likes it and the kids and I LOVE it. :) You really must give it a try.

With the leftover "rice", I had the yummiest lunch: rice, sauteed peppers, onions, cabbage, sweet potato chunks, and feta.

I also used it to bulk up Chris' chicken and rice (real rice) bowl. I would say he tolerated the addition of the cauliflower. :)

Later in the afternoon the three of us took our first longer bike ride to a local park. I wanted a fun snack for when we got there and decided to make my own kettle corn. I thought it was really tasty. If you are expecting it to taste like the real thing, you might be disappointed (it's not THAT sweet), but the kids liked it so that was all that mattered. I just put a little oil and cinnamon sugar mixture in a bag with the kernels and meshed them around before adding them to a skillet for popping.

Along the lines of healthy eating, Chris recently joined a 6 week program with his bootcamp class in which all the participants keep track of their progress, post their progress, etc. Here is a pic of him during his initial fitness assessment. I think I could maybe lift one of these for 5 seconds before dropping it. :)

And lastly on a not so healthy note, I came across these little gems and think they would be AMAZING.

Monday, January 6, 2014

coffee creamer

*I use coffee creamer a couple times a day in my hot chocolate. While it's just a teaspoon or two at a time, I decided to at least go "natural" in the sense of no chemicals. Granted, I still drink diet soda but every little bit helps, right?

*So I've realized that taking 3+ weeks off from working out basically puts me back to ground zero. Yesterday was my first workout and I was sore by evening and this morning's workout was brutal. Lesson learned :)

*It was annoyingly windy yesterday so we ventured a couple towns away to a park. What was my favorite part? The fact that it got so warm I had to take off my jacket!

*One of my favorite Christmas presents from my in-laws was a new Kindle. I've already finished my first book. It's also nice because if I ever go somewhere like Starbucks with free Wi-Fi, I can check my email with it (since I don't have a Smartphone). I'm still working on joining more library districts so I have access to free books.

*Chris and the kids watched Despicable Me II yesterday (while I read). They laughed so much and it was the cutest thing.

*School starts back today and I think the thing I'm looking forward to the least is advanced meal prepping. Over the break we had no time schedule so I didn't need to prep snacks, lunches, etc. way beforehand.

Friday, January 3, 2014


It's been over a year since we last went to IKEA and Cam has mentioned it several times since. So we loaded up yesterday and made the trek to Covina. We had a great time. Unfortunately the big draw for the kids, the play area, was a disappointment as the ball pit (what they had been really looking forward to) was closed. But it was still fun :)

I used some of my Christmas money to get a new bike. We had never been able to go far on the rides because I was stuck running alongside them. I'm so happy to now be able to join them.

This morning we took our first ride up to the donut shop. I've been much more lax on the healthy eating for the kids over this Christmas break...hence this donut the size of her face. :) 

I cannot begin to tell you how frustrated I am at this library book I cannot find. They are wanting to charge me $25 (a new one on Amazon is $6.50. Go figure). I've turned this house upside down and I'm beginning to wonder if the mistake is on their end. So today we are headed to the library so I can comb their shelves. Grrrr.....

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

holidays are over...

We have had two wonderful Christmas celebrations with both sides of the family. Here are some snapshots:

*Christmas Eve day was pretty low key, including a viewing of Elf. 

*Later we attended the Christmas Eve service at church. I love this shot of Kendall. Both kids did awesome sitting quietly during the whole service, but you can tell she had reached her limit and was ready to go. :)

*After church we headed to my parents for dinner (and some reading time ;)

*Christmas morning included what we've now deemed Christmas Bread (I've now made this the past few Christmas mornings). After the kids opened their stockings, we hung out and waited for my parents to arrive. Presents and a yummy lunch followed.

*The day after Christmas we headed up north for several days with Chris' parents and his brother's family. Here is our trip to their family favorite restaurant, Espe's.

Making Jello salad.

 Opening presents.

*Here are the cousins in their new Christmas outfits. Believe it or not this pic only took about 30 seconds to get. My SIL had the brilliant idea (after several "How many pictures are we going to take???") of telling them that we'll take as many pictures as it takes to get good smiles. They grasped the concept and ran with it!

*Last night my parents came to watch the kids while Chris and I saw a movie and went to dinner. I don't remember the last time we went to the theater! :)

*This morning I woke up early to start my workouts again. like woke up and decided to start back Monday. For sure. Monday. For real.  :) Instead, I went and cleaned bootcamp and then picked up a couple of these as a treat for the kids' breakfast before heading home.

Later while Chris washed the car, I took the kids to Loma Linda Medical clinic here in town. No, no one was sick. We went to play. :) I often take the elderly man/client there and Kendall has grown to love the outdoors area with the stream and fountain. Cam has always been curious when we talk about it. Since it was New Years and most of the office building was closed, I took them to run around and ride their scooters in the parking lot. Thanks, Loma Linda :)