Friday, August 28, 2009

Fun Fact Friday

Yes...I just made that up. Here are some fun facts for you this morning. Or maybe not so fun facts. Fun facts are in the eye of the beholder. Haha. I just made that up too. That just made me think of Blaine. He makes up jokes all the time and they are usually soooo not funny but you gotta feel bad for the kid and at least fake laugh, ya know? Well, unfortunately he has picked up on that and realizes that we are fake laughing and says with a sad little face, "That wasn't funny was it?"

On to Fun Fact Friday! And these fun facts today are about me and my family. So, like I said, these may not be fun for you, but they will be for me!

1. We rearranged our living room furniture a little over a week ago and we have been too busy to rehang pictures so they are in weird places now. That weren't weird places before. Isn't that fun? Normally I would take them down and prop them against a wall but that wouldn't be fun with a two year old now would it? And we all know with a two year old everything is safer hanging on the wall!

2. Yesterday was my sister's birthday. We are two years, one week and fifteen minutes apart. When we were little we always had to share a birthday cake. Well, her being the older sister, she hated my name on her cake and me being, well me, I hated it that we didn't get to eat two cakes within two weeks. So every year our cake would say, "Happy Birthday Rachael and Sara!" So the beginning of my junior year we carted off Rachael to David Lipscomb University in Nashville, TN and dumped her off. A week or so later was our birthdays. She didn't have a car so she didn't get to come home. Mom was a really cool mom and had a bakery deliver her a cake that said, "Happy Birthday Rachael!" And I got my own cake the very next week that said, "Happy Birthday Sara!" Rachael called home crying because hers didn't have my name on it and I cried because mine didn't have her name on it. Mom just rolled her eyes and reminded us that every year we complained about that and now we were crying about it. We were pretty upset that birthday but we can laugh about it now.

3. A lady at our church got a Wii fitness and has lost over 40 pounds. Well, Stephen went to the Dr. for his check up this week and his blood pressure is high. And the Dr. is always telling us we both need to get some weight off (duh) so we went and bought us one last night. We are just saying it is for both of our birthdays. His was in June and I had two things picked out for him for his birthday. The first one we passed in the store and I kind of pointed it out and he said it was stupid. The other was a t-shirt with one of his favorite groups that I have to order on line and they were out of his size and HIS SIZE ONLY!!! So we are gonna be Wii fittin' it up now! We will see how long that fun lasts won't we?

4. And last but not least. My laundry room is not really a laundry room. It is a washer and dryer behind folding doors in my kitchen. So during ball season we eat dinner with jock straps hanging up to dry. That's real fun seeing how I am the only female. Fun, fun!

I hope you all have a fun Friday!


Thursday, August 27, 2009

It's Just a Phase

It seems like we are going through those phases a lot lately with all three of the boys. Brayden has been doing a wonderful job at getting himself up and in the shower in the mornings on time! And he even has a pleasant attitude in the mornings! I know that is just a phase because before we know it he will be a teenager and I will have to tell him what my mom always told me. "You may be taller than me, but I can still stand on a chair and slap your face!" Wow....I can't tell you how many times I heard that as a teenager.

Blaine is definitely in a phase. And he needs to get himself out of it real quick! He stays in trouble at home, back talks, tells me what he is not going to do or is going to do and has spent several hours this week waiting on Stephen to get home to spank him. And that is after I have already spanked him. He is the type of child you can beat black and blue and it won't phase him. We tell him something he needs to do. Something as simple as "get out your homework and get started" or "please pick up your shoes out of the middle of the floor and put them away". It turns into a whine fest with all the crying and complaining. That's when he gets sent to the bathroom because I don't want to hear it. And let me explain the bathroom. I have always used the bathroom instead of sending my kids to their rooms (except for Bryson). How many times have you sent your kids to their room and then they forget they are in trouble and start playing, and you forget they are in trouble and you think to yourself, "Wow...he is really playing well by himself today." Okay, so maybe it's just me. But that is why I use the bathroom. There is nothing fun in there to do! Bryson gets to sit in his bed for a few minutes when he gets in trouble. Oh, does he hate that! I can hear him hollering from the kitchen, "I be nice now mommy!"

Bryson's phase now is stuttering. I noticed it starting last Friday. It steadily got worse over the week. Tuesday my mom had eye surgery so me and Stephen took turns going to work that day so neither one of us had to miss. Stephen said he kept asking, "Wh wh wh where's my mommy?" He gets stuck on "I" too. "I I I I I wanna go outside." One day this week I was laying out his clothes to get him dressed and he said, "Wh wh wh where we...wh wh wh where we....wh wh wh were we.....golly man! (interject huff and eye rolling here.) Where we goin'!" I asked him if he was getting frustrated and he told me he was. I reminded him to slow down and then reminded him not to say "golly". My mom told me yesterday that he asked her, "Mawmaw? Why do I say wh wh wh wh?" Mawmaw told him Brayden and Blaine did that too, and he just needed to take a breathe and slow down. He seemed to do better last night.

So are any of your kids in a phase? Are they good phases or are you hoping that they get out of it quickly?


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Getting To Know You

Blaine brought home his graded papers yesterday and in that stack of papers was a "getting to know you" type of letter that each child wrote to their teacher. I thought I would share it with you here so you can see how sweet he really is. He does have his moments, but he is a sweet boy! It was addressed to his teacher, but I will be leaving out her name, for safety's sake, I guess. I will try to write it here as he did on his paper. I will translate if the need be. Here it goes:

first I want to tell you my favorite sport. I I know a lot of kids will say o i'm so good at evrey thing i'm not one of those kids. I don't brag. ok back to what we were talking about. It's swiming it is super fun. right now Im working on my font flip. my favrite food is chineese food My favrite color is well red, Black and silver not like seprate like ya now like on a football hellmat. My best friend's are Jillian, Morgan, tate, wily, cranm. (That is Graham.) My fimily is silly my mom funny, nice and every other thing good you could ever think of.

your best friend, Blaine

She must have told them to write a page because when he got to the last line, he was finished and signed his name. His teacher has her work cut out for her with the spelling and punctuation, doesn't she?


Thursday, August 20, 2009

Thankful Thursday

This week I am thankful for the way Bryson talks! I love it! It is so fun to watch his expressions as he is trying to explain something to us. He is starting to talk in great detail now but sometimes he can't figure out a word to describe something so he acts it out.

The boys have been asking him to repeat a word that he says and I couldn't figure out why. I wasn't sure if it was his facial expression or just the way he said it.

"Bryson...say broken!"

He would say it and they would laugh. They were getting so tickled their eyes were tearing up. I hid and watched to see what was going on. Then I heard one tell the other what it sounded like. I would have never figured it out if I had not heard them say it, but it sounds like he is saying a bad word. And to a 3rd and 6th grader, that is the funniest thing in the world. Boy humor. So I put a stop to that real quick.

My favorite thing he does now is when he wants the boys to play with them and they are watching T.V. and ignoring him. "Bane! Baynen! Pay wiff me!" He walks up, turns off the T.V., and then stands and watches them. They start hollering for him to turn it back on, and of course, he stands there, throws his head back and laughs at them. It can be very entertaining.

Some other things he says now are:

Weed-eed-eater......that' when daddy uses the weed eater. It's like he is a scratched record and gets stuck when he says it.

Weedo.......weirdo (gotta love the influence of older brothers.)

"I like Ci'mon lattes too mommy!".....that is what he tells me when we go by Starbucks, as he bobs his head up and down trying to convince me to stop because he likes Cinnamon Dolce Lattes.

"Dats Hanna Tanna mommy! I lytch Hanna Tannah!" .....that's I like Hannah Montana.

Why is it when you try to remember stuff they say so you can write it down you draw a blank? I need to start carrying a note pad in the car with me because that is usually when he is talking and cracking me up!


Tuesday, August 18, 2009

It Ain't Food Network, But They Eat It....Tuesday!

This past week I tried a new breakfast recipe. It was really good. I made it the night before because of the cooling time. 2 hours. I didn't feel like baking it at 3am, so I thought this would be the next best thing. It says it is good on the go, but let me just add that it was very crumbly and Blaine gets my van dirty enough without adding breakfast bars to the mix! We ended up eating it with forks. Every single person loved it and I even took the leftovers to work to snack on and shared some with my boss. She liked it too! I told the boys that I would make it again soon and Brayden requested peaches in it. I thought that sounded good too and since they are in season I think I may try to go to the farmers' market this weekend and get some. I like to freeze them and use them for the next few months so I think I will add that to my to do list. The recipe said that you can use nectarines or plums too!

Oatmeal Berry Breakfast Bars

Crust and Topping:
1 cup flour
3/4 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold and cut into small cubes
2 1/2 cups quick cook oats
2 Tbsp. apple or orange juice

1/4 cup dark brown sugar, firmly packed
2 Tbsp. flour
Pinch of salt
3 1/2 cups fresh blueberries, raspberries, or blackberries
1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice

Step 1
Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 9x13 inch pan.
Step 2
Add the flour, light brown sugar, and salt to the bowl of a food processor. Pulse once or twice the combine, then add the butter and pulse five or six more times until coarse crumbs form. Add the oats and pulse two or three more times.
Remove 1 1/2 cups of the mixture and set aside. Add the juice to the remaining mixture and pulse three or four more times until it's just moistened. Press this mixture firmly and evenly into the bottom of the pan using your fingers or the bottom of a measuring cup.
Step 4
for the filling, whisk together the sugar, flour, and salt in a medium size bowl. Add the fruit and lemon juice and gently toss the mixture using a rubber spatula until the fruit is coated. Distribute the filling over the crust.
Step 5
Sprinkle the reserved crumb mixture over the filling. Bake the dish until the top is golden, about 35 to 40 minutes. Let the pan cool on a wire rack for about 2 hours, then cut the sheet into bars. Store them in the refrigerator in an airtight container.


Friday, August 14, 2009


Remember last week when I mentioned finding Sneaky Chef here? Well, well, well. I spent a couple of hours this past Sunday afternoon pureeing yucky veggies to sneak in my family's food. I made three different batches: green puree, purple puree, and the white puree. Then I froze them in ice cube trays and after they were frozen I popped them out into gallon freezer bags to store.

So...Tuesday night I decided I would be sneaky. I told the kids I had found a new lasagna recipe that you cook on the top of the stove so we could eat quickly to get to soccer practice. Don't worry...that was all true. Just not the whole truth. What they didn't know was it had 3/4 cup of pureed broccoli, spinach and green peas and 1/4 of oat bran. We couldn't taste it. Isn't that crazy? Brayden ate two plate fulls, Blaine ate his normal bird size feeding, and Bryson doesn't eat pasta very well so he ended up eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich later. Stephen wasn't home for dinner but he ate it at lunch the next day. I ate about half of what I normally would because it was so filling!

After I told them all what was in it, then they told me it wasn't as good as my regular lasagna. So next time I think I will make my regular lasagna but add the sneaky stuff. My family likes cottage cheese in lasagna and it wouldn't have worked in the stove top recipe. I made it exactly like the recipe said. It needed salt and next time I may add more spices. But all in all, I was pretty impressed. Now I will just have to catch them off guard to sneak in some more in another recipe! Try it with your family and let me know what you all think!


Thursday, August 13, 2009

Thankful Thursday

I know that this is something everyone says they are thankful for, but I am soooo thankful for my wonderful husband. He is always really good at reminding me that sometimes it is better to keep my mouth shut than to make myself feel better and say something that will probably make matters worse. And I know it's hard to believe, but sometimes that is hard for me. (That was slightly sarcastic, in case you didn't pick up on that.) But he is always there to encourage me and keep me grounded.

Sometimes there are people that we can't do anything with and situations we can't do anything about.

And just like Stephen says, some people are like an ugly wart you can't get rid of.

That is especially true in our case. But Stephen is always there to remind me that the boys will never have to do without things that they need, no matter how much others try to ruin things for them. Or us. Or whoever it is they try to ruin things for.

And I guess I am like any other mother, it hurts me to see my children get hurt. But unlike my children, my hurt will go away and theirs will be bottled up inside. And then one day, those that put my kids in these situations will wonder why my kids have bad feelings towards them as adults. But I guess the saying is true...what comes around, goes around.

Trying to be the bigger person and not stoop to that level has always been hard for me. Stephen is always there to encourage me to be patient. But I'm not very patient either. He has his work cut out for him doesn't he?

Thank you, Stephen, for reminding me of this daily. And for being there for all the boys and seeing them as your own.

Sniff, sniff.

I am finished now.


Wednesday, August 12, 2009

First Day of School

The first day went without a hitch! Everyone got up on time with smiles on their faces! Well, Bryson wasn't smiling too big when I drug him out of his bed, but he didn't fight me. Which he does sometimes and I am surprised I haven't had a black eye yet. I walked the boys in so he had to be dressed. Yes, I am one of those mothers. And I told Stephen if someone stopped me at the door I was gonna tell them I would stop walking my kids in the first day when we start having orientation before school starts. Mothers get first day of school anxiety, too, ya know! And don't worry, I didn't actually walk Brayden in, I walked him by, on the way to Blaine's.

I took these pictures the night before of the boys getting ready for the next day. They read in bed for about 30 minutes. I think that was a record for Blaine. He read his all time favorite book to Bryson, "Go Do Go!". I think that is the only book he has ever read all the way through! Just kidding....I hope there has been more at school! My battery said it needed to be replaced so I did that so it would be ready for pictures the first day.We went outside the next morning to take pictures of the first day of school and it wouldn't work at all. So I had to go back in and dig out my old camera. Then I realized later that one of them had on a school shirt and I am not comfortable posting it here. So maybe I can take a picture today and post that so I can see how much they change from year to year.
They both came home smiling and excited to talk about their first day. Brayden was excited because he is changing classes this year and will have a locker. Blaine is excited because his teacher is really cool and has a class blog so he got to get on the computer. He was even more excited because he got to leave the first comment!

I hope everyone else enjoyed their first day of school as well and I hope we all have a successful year of learning and making new friends!


Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

It Ain't Food Network, But They Eat It....Tuesday!

This recipe was emailed to me this summer by two family members. Kim (cousin-in-law) and my Aunt Vicki. Another family member, Aunt Sue, made it for a 4th of July get together and they all liked it so much they passed it on. And I am so glad they did! Everyone really liked it. Brayden said it was really good, but the more he ate it the more he said it wasn't as good as he thought. But we did have to leave the topping off of his because of the pecans. So I sprinkled plain brown sugar on his and I think it was just too sweet for him. I don't understand why processing plants can't have a designated area just for peanuts where they aren't around other nuts. Peanuts is what he is allergic to, not all the others. But since they are processed on the same equipment and could have "trace peanuts", Brayden can't have any nuts. That is annoying for me.

Grape Salad

1 lb. red seedless grapes
1 lb. white seedless grapes (we call these green)
8 oz. cream cheese
8 oz. sour cream
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla

1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped pecans

Combine cream cheese, sour cream, sugar and vanilla. Use a little milk to thin the mixture. Toss in washed and patted dry grapes. Place in an 8x8 pan and refrigerate. Mix together brown sugar and pecans. Just before serving, crumble mixture over grape salad.

I used fat free sour cream and regular cream cheese. I think next time I will try it with 1/3 fat cream cheese. I have never been happy with the fat free cream cheese since the texture is different, but maybe with mixing it with the sour cream it would be okay too.

I cut the grapes in half because of Bryson. I thought it would be easier to do it before I added the mixture. I wasn't looking forward to chasing slimy grapes around and it worked fine. He wasn't too fond of the topping. He kept spitting out the pecans. And I chopped them really small cause I'm not too fond of nuts but I try to incorporate them in some since they are good for you. So next time I may half the topping since almost half won't eat it. But Blaine, Stephen, and I really liked it. Blaine says I need to make it everyday!


Saturday, August 8, 2009

Blaine the Masseuse

Tuesday night I had a really bad headache. It could possibly have something to do with the couple of hours we had just spent at Chuck E. Cheese, but I'm not sure. I sat down after we had left and rubbed my temples. Blaine asked me if I had a headache and I told him I did. He told me he gave really good back rubs and that it might help. I told him to go for it.

Blaine: "Does this feel good?"

Me: "Yes. That is helping a lot."

Blaine: "Do you think I could give massages when I grow up and get paid for it?"

Me: "You mean be a masseuse? I guess you could."

Blaine: "Do you think I could set up a stand out in front of the house and give massages? Kind like a lemonade stand?"

Me: "Ummmm......probably not."

(Here enters all thoughts that go through parents heads of registered sex offenders and those that aren't registered.)

Blaine: "Why not?"

Me: "Well....there are just some gross people in this world and I don't think it would be a good idea."

Blaine: "Yeah. Your right. They may have head lice."

Me: "Yeah. Head lice."

Don't you wish children could stay innocent forever?

Have a great weekend!


Thursday, August 6, 2009

Thankful Thursday

So this is my first ever Thankful Thursday post and some of you are going to think I am awful when you read what I am thankful for this week!

I am SOOOOO thankful that school starts back on Monday! I am ready to go back to a regular schedule, regular meals and regular bed times. I am sick and tired of my kids fighting because they are bored to death. I am tired of the blood. Seriously. Blaine has picked so many fights with Brayden in the past few weeks and it seems like most of them have ended up with HIM bleeding when Brayden retaliates. Will he ever learn to pick on someone his own size instead of someone who is more than double his weight? I guess you say that he is a slow learner.

But to end on a positive note, I am also thankful for the time we have gotten to spend together. Monday I took Blaine to do his school shopping and then he got to go to work with me. He grabbed my hand in the parking lot and told me we had been needing some special time with nobody else around and he was right! He got an icee and a pretzel from Target for being so good and cooperative while we shopped. Then he got to pick where we ate lunch and he picked Steak-Out.

Brayden got to go get school supplies on Tuesday and then on to work. He didn't want an icee. He wanted a cookies and cream milkshake from Chick-Fil-A so we grabbed lunch there and he got a milkshake for being so good. Then he helped me send out statements by licking envelopes. He didn't last long because he kept getting paper cuts on his tongue. In case you are wondering why I don't have one of those spongy things to wet the envelopes, Bryson broke it and we had to go to plan B. Brayden.

I hope you all are ready for school to start back, too, cause it's coming!


Tuesday, August 4, 2009

It Ain't Food Network, But They Eat It....Tuesday!

This is a recipe that came from my other Grandma. Mom's mom. Grandma Stroud. She passed away in 1994 and every time I make this I think of her. In fact, I can remember writing the recipe down on the recipe card that I still read to make this, as she was telling me how to make it. "Well, you mix a little of this and about a cup of that...." Long before I was ever married. It is written in cursive so I would have been old enough to do that. Yes...I have been cooking for a long time now. And this one is super easy!


about 1/2 stick of butter (don't mix this in anything)

1 cup flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
dash of salt
1 cup milk
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla flavoring

about 2 cups fruit

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Put butter in a square baking dish and put it in the oven as you mix your batter. Mix dry ingredients together. Add next three ingredients. Put the batter into your baking dish (batter is runny) and then spoon your fruit with the juices into the batter. You don't even stir. Just throw it in. How easy is that? Bake 45 minutes to an hour. And that really depends on how juicy your fruit is. It will look gooey in the middle but it will set as it cools a little. You don't have to let it cool all the way. I love it straight out of the oven!

Want to make a bigger one? Double everything and use a 9 x13 pan.

Options for fruit to use:

Fresh peaches. Peel and slice them. And the juice that comes off them when you slice them, throw that in to equal the 2 cups.

Fresh or frozen blueberries. If useing fresh, wash and remove stems from blueberries. Add to saucepan and a little water. Cup or so. Then add about 1/2 cup sugar. Bring to a boil then cook down for about 20 minutes.

Rhubarb. I think this is my families favorite. Extended family, that is. My kids have eaten it and liked it, but I don't think they remember. Wash and chop rhubarb. Add to saucepan and cover with water. Add a cup or so of sugar. Cook down. The amount of sugar really depends on how tart you want this one.

In the summer I buy peaches and what we can't eat I prepare them for this recipe and freeze it in 2 cup quantities so I can have some later.

And for those of you in the south, I refer to this as Yankee cobbler because I have never eaten it in the south! It is like a cake batter, unlike cobblers in the south that are more like a square pie. It is definitely easier than pie cobbler since you just throw it together.

What kind of fruits would you, or have you tried with cobbler?


Saturday, August 1, 2009

Do You Know a Picky Eater?

I remembered seeing a chef on the Today show awhile back. I think that is where I saw it, anyway. I couldn't remember the name of the book, so I decided I would google this morning and try to find it. The first thing that popped up was it! I am so excited! There are several free recipes on the website and she has three books. It has recipes for Mac-n-cheese, brownies, spaghetti sauce and more with foods that are good for you hidden inside. I am going to make out my list and the next time I go to the grocery store, get the items I need to try some of these. And since I just went to the store it will be a couple of weeks before I go. Hopefully. But I will get my list together in case I have to make a quick run so I can go ahead and pick up these items.

Have I mentioned how excited I am?

I don't really have picky eaters around here, they just don't all like the same veggies. Except for the asparagus that has been ran into the ground. Way into the ground. Blaine is the pickiest of all...if I had to pick one. He doesn't eat green veggies well. They all love salad. But salad here is lettuce covered with Ranch dressing so does that even count as eating veggies ? I'm thinking no. You guys need to go check out this website. And as soon as I can get my hands on one of her books you will be the first to know!

Do you have picky eaters at your house? How do you get them to eat their veggies?



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