Faith, Family, Friends, Fellowship, Food, and Fun

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Today is Aggie Day........WHOOP!!!!

It has been an exciting day around here. Stephen's parents came to meet Abby. We all wore our Aggie shirts in anticipation of the Alamo Bowl vs Penn State. As we are watching the game right now, Lauren is picking up on how football is played. She was sitting on the floor, cheering on our team, and when we didn't make the first down, she leaned over and put her face down on the floor and said, "We didn't do it." Every now and then she blurts out, "Gig 'em Aggies, Whoop!"
That's our little Aggie!
Gig 'em Aggies, BTHO Penn State!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

December 26- journal notes

Today we had to take Abby to the doctor so they could scan her head for a bilirubin check. The scanner indicated her level was 18 so they sent us over to the hospital (next door) for a blood test. That level came back 17.6 which was up from yesterday.

December 27-journal

Today we had to take Abby back to the hospital for another bilirubin check. We should be pros by now. The nurse sat us down in the chair and gave me the warming pouch for Abby's heel. She told me that Abby would scream. That was not a good sign. I suddenly became bold and I said, "Why will she scream, she didn't scream yesterday and our son never screamed when he came in 13 times last year?" She did not comment, she proceeded to stick Abby (no screaming) and then bend her tiny foot upward, towards her leg. THEN she screamed. I was so mad. I looked at Stephen and said, right in front of her, "What is she doing differently than the nurse yesterday?" Plus, this nurse smelled like she just finished smoking a pack. The smell of nicotine was in her skin, years and years of chain smoking. And she was touching my precious baby. She finished and told us to wait. We never had to wait before. We started talking to a college student who was also waiting. She said she was just accepted into nursing school and she was there for a drug test. She said the same nurse had taken her urine sample and flushed it down the toilet before she remembered to keep a sample for testing so she had to sit and drink water until she could produce another sample! As we left, I told Stephen that if she is there tomorrow, I will tell her she is not touching our baby again and I want another nurse.

The doctor's office called, Abby's bilirubin level is down to 16. We have to go back to the doctor tomorrow at 1:30 for a bilirubin scan (on her forehead). Please pray for an even lower bilirubin level!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Candy Cane Twists

#28 Candy Cane Twists by BHG Christmas Cookies '03 May freeze up to 1 month

This recipe has been moved to my cooking blog. Thanks for visiting.

25 Sweets Recipes in 25 days

#23 Sparkling Butter Toffee Cookies by Land O' Lakes
1 c sugar
3/4 c butter, softened
1 egg 1 t vanilla
2 c flour
1 1/2 t baking powder
1/4 t baking soda
1/2 c English or almond toffee bits
1. Heat oven to 350. Combine sugar through vanilla in large mixer bowl. Beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often, until creamy (1-2 min). Add flour, baking powder and baking soda; reduce speed to low. Beat until well mixed. Stir in toffee bits by hand.
2. Shape rounded tablespoons of dough into 1 1/4" balls. Roll in sugar. Place 2" apart onto ungreased cookie sheet. Flatten each with bottom of glass to 2 1/4" circles (dip in sugar to prevent sticking).
3. Bake 10-12 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Let cool 2 minutes; remove from cookie sheet. Sprinkle with sugar (colored) while warm.

25 Sweets recipes in 25 days

Saturday, December 22, 2007

25 Sweets recipes in 25 days

...will resume tomorrow. I'm on a blogging break since we just got home from the hospital this afternoon! I do have lots of hospital stories to share too!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

New Addition

The wait is finally over. Abigail Claire was born at 7:03 this morning (December 20th). She was 19 and a half inches and 5 lbs. 14 oz. Both Mommy and Abby are doing great.

Abby is such a bundle of joy and we could not ask for a better Christmas present. There will be more information coming soon.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Baby Abby is on her way

I just left the doctor's office. I am dilated to a 4 and 80% effaced. Now some of you may say that if could be a week but when I was 36 weeks pregnant with Caleb and went in to the doctor, I was dilated to a 3, 50% effaced and in the hospital that night!

So check back for updates and pictures and please keep us all in your prayers, especially as my mom travels here from Fort Worth.

What I did last night and Daddy's presents

I know I told myself that being 35 weeks pregnant I would not be able to do my usual baking and candy making this Christmas season. That really depressed me. If you're a new reader, welcome and let me fill you in, I am a working mom with a 3 year old and a 21 month old and my constant swelling keeps me off my feet. Yesterday I had to fill an order for a co-worker. She wanted Layered Mint Chocolate Fudge, Oreo bark, and some nice white chocolates melted in my candy molds. That was no problem but I just couldn't stop there. I figured I might as well make my Toasted Pecan Cranberry Bark and Peppermint Bark. On top of that, Stephen had another Christmas Program to video so I was flying solo. The kids did great, I listened to them in the monitor just screaming and giggling and I knew there would be quite an aftermath in their rooms but they were not bothering me so I just left them alone. I was up until 11:15 packaging all the candy but I packaged up the extra candy to sell in the lounge and now I have some goodies to give the doctor when I go this afternoon. Oh yes, did I even mention that I also managed to wrap presents too?

Toasted Pecan Cranberry Bark

Oreo Bark

White Chocolate melted in candy molds.

Green white chocolate melted in candy molds. I forgot to take pics of the red but you get the idea.

I posted in my Monday blog about how Lauren was telling her daddy about his presents so I came up with a plan. As I wrapped present #1, I told her that it was called a "spanking stick." That's right, Daddy is getting a spanking stick. Present #2 is a naughty paddle and #3.....are you ready? I told her to say we got him, "Granny Panties!" It worked too. When he got home from his show, I asked him to test her and sure enough, she did just as we rehearsed. How about you guys, any tricks to keep the gifts a secret?

25 Sweets recipes in 25 days!

This recipe was moved to Aggieland Mommy Cooks.

Monday, December 17, 2007

All Food blogs about my weekend!

Friday night we moved Caleb's toddler bed to Lauren's room so he could get used to sleeping in there when my mom comes for Abby's birth. It actually went well.

Saturday was a day to remember for sure. I started out with another one of my lists- this one was a long list of everything I wanted to get done ON SATURDAY. This list included: pick up all clothes that have made it to the floor, including my DH's, organize all the Little People toys AGAIN since all 1,000 pieces were on the living room floor, clean the kitchen-not just the dishes, the counters, the floor, Caleb's seat which is his hiding place for snacks later, change sheets, get all the toys out from under the couch, get the idea. A perfectly do-able plan, except Stephen had to leave by noon to go video a show an hour away and my big ol' belly isn't gonna allow me to do half that stuff. Plus, I started having Braxton-Hicks contractions, several an hour. As noon approached, Lauren called out that she had to go to the bathroom...and it wasn't tee-tee. Poor thing has her poopie problem again. We had her on Miralax for months but she has been cured for awhile. So she basically sat there for almost an hour crying, I mean CRYING big crocodile tears. We gave her more Miralax but how long would that take? Stephen left for I turned back to the bathroom, I had to laugh at Caleb's efficiency in getting all the toilet paper off the roll and onto the floor. Then he decided it would be fun to play in the potty while his big sister sat there in agony, slobber hanging from her lips. I convinced him that playing in the dry tub would be more fun, at least for me. Then I sat there feeling helpless as Lauren cried her little eyes out.

At naptime, Caleb had half-way fallen asleep in my arms, something that he hasn't done in a long time. So I put Caleb to bed and then Lauren. She sleeps in a loft bed so we have to block the ladder to prevent Caleb from climbing up and doing daredevil stunts like taking leaps to the floor. Finally, naptime for Mommy too, right? After Lauren yelled from her bed once and then somehow climbed down the ladder and OVER the 4 foot tall kitchen that blocks her ladder, and only after threatening to call Santa to tell him that Lauren was not taking a nap, only then did she stay in bed and I managed a little nap- until Stephen called.

Not exciting? No, here is the good stuff...after dinner, DH took the kids for a bath. Caleb won't stay in long so Stephen was dressing him and he had put up a baby gate because ya know, if you don't, Caleb will make his way back into the tub-clothes and all. Lauren likes to stay and play until the water is so cold her lips turn blue. So there I was in the recliner with my feet up, still having contractions, Lauren in the tub, and she called, "Poopy Potty!" Stephen headed in to get her out of the tub and she yelled it again. Then she cried. Remember that Miralax? It kicked in. In the tub! Picture this, I jumped out of the recliner only the leg of my jammie pants got caught on the foot rest and after jamming my toe, I went right to the ground. I could not break loose from the chair. I had to ask myself if I really wanted to, I mean I knew what was waiting for me in the tub. So on top of my list for the day, I got to clean poopie out of a tub, scrub the tub with Comet and bleach, and bleach the toys. But I have to brag on my DH. I told him that I too needed a bath since a shower would require being on my feet. I already had candles lit in there and he rolled up a towel for my head and turned out the lights and I got to have a short Mommy moment. How nice!

And bedtime? The kids stayed up and played and giggled and we just let them. Lauren now tells Caleb that he is her friend, it's so sweet.

Yesterday was not so eventful, I don't think I could handle another day of so much fun. Stephen was hired to do a demo video for the Aggie Elite Wranglers to send to America's Got Talent. The kids and I went to finish up our Christmas shopping for Stephen. Lauren has done such a good job keeping his gifts a secret.

Naptime was a little challenging since both kids were awake when we put them down. They played and laughed and again Lauren got out of bed, her door flew open, and both kids came running down the hall laughing and screaming. We broke Lauren's heart when we put Caleb in his room for a nap. She cried for an hour for her little brother....their relationship is precious. I hope it lasts forever.

After her nap she wanted to change clothes. She loves changing clothes, that's why there are always clothes on the floor. She came into our room with this white halter-top/shorts outfit that is definitely for 75 degrees or above. I told her she could not wear it because it is too cold outside. So she says, "Are we going outside?" Okay, is she 3? Then a proud moment, she must have noticed the Cowboys were on TV because she said she was going to get her Cowboys' outfit. And that's what she did.

At bedtime Stephen took Lauren to potty and she told him, "We bought your presents. They are a secret. It's a secret that we got you socks. It's going to be a surprise" Then as he put her in bed, she told him, "You're getting pants too." That stinker!!!

Menu Plan Monday

Laura is hosting Menu Plan Monday. Here's what I think we're having this week- we have all the ingredients, let's see if we have the time....
Monday- leftovers that are filling up the fridge
Wednesday- Homemade Pizza
Thursday-Mexican Cornbread
Friday- Taco Soup

Friday, December 14, 2007

25 Sweets recipes in 25 days!

#28 Candy Cane Twists by BHG Christmas Cookies '03 May freeze up to 1 month

1 c butter, softened

1 c sifted powdered sugar

1 egg

1/2 t vanilla

2 1/2 c flour

1/4 c finely chopped peppermints

red food coloring

gran or colored sugar

1. In large mixing bowl beat butter with an electric mixer on med-high speed for 30 seconds. Add powdered sugar; beat until combined.

2. Beat in eggg, vanilla, and dash of salt. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Stir in any remaining flour. Divide dough in half.

3. Knead crushed peppermint candies into one half of the dough. If desired, stir red food coloring into peppermint dough to tint slightly. Leave remaining dough plain, cover, and chill doughs about 30 minutes until easy to handle.

4. Preheat oven to 375. Work with half of each dough at a time, keeping remaining dough chilled. For each cookie, on a lightly floured surface shape a 1" ball of plain dough into a 4-5" rope. Repeat with 1" ball of peppermint dough. Place ropes side by side & twist together. Pinch ends to seal. Form into a candy cane.

5. Place canes 2" apart on ungreased cookie sheet. Sprinkle with sugar.

6. Bake in preheated oven 8-10 minutes or until edges are set. Immediately transfer to wire rack to cool. Store in layers, separated by wax paper, in airtight container at room temp or freeze up to 1 month.

6 Dozen Cookies- FINISHED!

I did not advertise my goodies this year because I knew I'd be too tired to fill all the orders and I feared that Abby might come before I could finish, but word of mouth is amazing and I got an order for 4 dozen decorated cut-out cookies. So I told myself I could do it in baby steps. Monday I made the dough. Tuesday I made the frosting, Wednesday I cut out as much as the dough would let me (Lauren got her own dough too) and I baked and baked. Last night, while Stephen was at a show, I decorated until 9:30, taking a short break to feed the kids. They're done and I'm pleased.

Great recipe!

A friend (who I think wants to remain anonymous) passed this along to me.

If you are looking for that special cookie recipe to share during the holidays, this is the one I make on Christmas Eve so I can deal with the "family" on this joyous occasion.

1 cup of dark brown sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
1 cup of granulated sugar
4 large eggs
2 cups of dried fruit, such as dried cranberries or raisins
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts or pecans
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 bottle Jose Cuervo Tequila (silver or gold, as desired)

1. Sample the Cuervo to check quality.Take a large bowl, check the Cuervo again, to be sure it is of the highest quality, pour one level cup and drink.
2. Turn on the electric mixer. Beat one cup of butter in a large fluffy bowl. Add one teaspoon of sugar. Beat again.
3. At this point it's best to make sure the Cuervo is still OK, try another cup just in case.Turn off the mixerer thingy.
4. Break 2 leggs and add to the bowl and chuck in the cup of dried fruit. Pick the frigging fruit up off floor.Giggle.
5. Mix on the turner. If the fried druit gets stuck in the beaterers just pry it loose with a drewscriver. Giggle again.
6. Sample the Cuervo to check for tonsisticity. Giggle some more.
7. Next, sift two cups of salt, or something, whatever. Check the Jose Cuervo.Now shift the lemon juice and strain your nuts.
8. Add one table full of that one stuff. Add a spoon of shuga, or somefink. Whatever you can find. It all looks the same.Grease the oven. Turn the cake tin 360 degrees and try not to fall over.Pick yourself up off the floor. Try not to giggle, it makes the floor fall out from underneath you.
9. Don't forget to beat off the turner.Finally, throw the bowl through the window, finish the Cose Juervo and make sure to put the stove in the dishwasher.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Doctor's do kids know these things? Grandmother

First, my appointement yesterday went well. Abby is in position and there is no concern that I'll have her in the next week. I showed my doctor my elephant ankles and she didn't seem concerned and I suddenly found that I was happy my mom left her 80s style boat/deck shoes at my house because I just slipped them on this morning.

Second, if you are squeamish, skip this paragraph. Monday night Lauren was concentrating on putting window clings in the window when the baby gate fell over on her foot and she screamed out in pain. Really, I've never heard her cry like this before and I wondered how bad could it possibly be? Well, her big toenail was purple. She cried and she cried. Last night she was proudly carrying around a rolling pin, waiting for us to make cookies. She followed me in to get Caleb from his nap and all of a sudden she cried out in pain again. I looked at the floor and there was blood splatter everywhere: on the rolling pin, on Caleb's mattress, on the carpet. Her poor little toe was bleeding and again, it took forever to get her mind off of her poor toe.

So I kept thinking what could I put on her toe to protect it from falling objects, little brothers, bumps, etc.... I thought and I thought and then I knew. Grandma had bought her some "Tink" slippers and they were wrapped and under the tree. Stephen agreed that this was our best solution. You should have seen her little face as she opened the present. She was so excited and it definitely took her mind off the pain. A little while later she said, "But at Wal-Mart you said Santa would get it."
"Get what Lauren?"
"Mommy, you said Santa would bring me the Tink slippers, not Grandma!"
Good grief, not only does she have a memory, but she also processes what you tell her and she holds you to it!
God love 'em!

Finally, there seems to be some good news about my grandmother, please read the update in the prayer requests section on the right and please continue to pray!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Update on my pregnancy

Well, I have an appointment at 1:30 today and I hope it's good news.
When I was pregnant with Lauren, I had major swelling the last few months. I had to buy a size 11 shoe, I usually wear 6 1/2. My hands swelled so bad that it hurt to close them. I was told that it was normal to swell in the summer plus I found out all the water I had been drinking was loaded with sodium. I didn't pay attention to the warning signs, either did my doctor, I gave birth to Lauren at 34 1/2 weeks. I had no contractions until hours after my water broke.

When I was pregnant with Caleb, I did not have swelling, at all! I carried him to 36 1/2 weeks. I was at the doctor that morning and she told me I was dilated to a 3. She said it could be later that day or even a few weeks but I told her I'd see her later that day. It was a VERY busy day, I did not rest at all. Stephen went to video a show and my mom (whom I called that morning and told her to head on down from Cowtown) and I ran errands. My contractions started at about 9:30 that night.

Here I am at 34 weeks and 6 days and the swelling is no longer controllable. Each day I've gone home and put my feet up. I've stayed off of them as much as possible with 2 toddlers. Each morning my swelling had gone down, but not this morning. My size 11 slip-on sandals are tight. I've had them off for an hour now and there are still impressions in my feet. I've been having mild Braxton-Hicks contractions for the passed week, and there have been some other sharp, shooting pains....well....down there.

So please pray that I can get the swelling under control and continue to work until the 21st, that's our last day.

Thanks and I'll keep ya posted!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

12 Days of Christmas

So when really are the 12 Days of Christmas? And where did that crazy song come from? As Kathleen explains it: The Twelve days of Christmas are between Christmas and Epiphany or “We Three Kings (The Magi or Three Wiseman) Day”, January 6th. It is thought by some that it took the Three Wise Men twelve days to travel to Bethlehem. In the Catholic Church Christmas season doesn’t officially begin until Christmas Day and ends when the Wise Men bring gifts to their Savior in Bethlehem. Few practice this tradition of giving in the United States but some still do.

The Christmas carol is thought to be written by a Catholic and an Englishman, as the song originates from Great Britain, sometime before or during the 16th century. It was popular in Great Britain and Scandinavia during this time, which is why many believe that the song had a powerful sub message due to persecution. We may never know for sure but the attributed meanings are still very relevant and for those who want to teach their children a few Bible lessons, this song is a wonderful tool.

My True Love — God (The Trinity – three in one) Matthew 28:19, John 10:30, John 14:6, John 17:11, 20-22, 1 John 5:7Me — The Baptized Christian
Partridge in a Pear Tree — Jesus Christ our Savior
Two Turtle Doves — The Old and New Testaments
Three French Hens — Faith, Hope and Love (1 Corinthians 13)
Four Calling Birds — The Four Gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John
Five Gold Rings — The First Five Books of the Bible (Pentateuch)
Six Geese A-Laying — The Six Days of Creation (Genesis 1)
Seven Swans A-Swimming — The Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 12-14, Isaiah 11: 2-3)
Eight Maids A-Milking — The Eight Beatitudes (Matthew 5: 3-12)
Nine Ladies Dancing — The Nine Fruits of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22)
Ten Lords A-Leaping — The Ten Commandments (Exodus 20: 2-17, Deuteronomy 5:6-21, Matthew 22: 36-40)
Eleven Pipers Piping — The Eleven Faithful Disciples
Twelve Drummers Drumming — The Twelve Points of the Apostle’s Creed, The Twelve Tribes of Israel, The Twelve Days of Christmas

Isn't that neat? Now you know!

Christmas version of getting to know you...

I keep getting these from different friends. Some of the questions are the same, some are different so I have combined them and my OCD personality made me organize them so the tree questions are together and the gift questions are together...somebody stop me! it is:

1. When do you put your decorations up? The day after Thanksgiving while watching the Aggies beat t.u. WHOOP!
2. Real tree or artificial? Artificial for now
3. How do you decorate your Christmas tree? It's mostly maroon and gold with Aggie ornaments of course but each year brings more Hallmark ornaments-we need another tree- or at least space for another tree
4. What is on top of your tree? An angel in a maroon dress
5. Colored or white lights? White but I do miss the blinking colored lights from my childhood
6. Do you hang mistletoe? always forget
7. When do you take your tree down? after January 6 (Epiphany)
8. Do you have a nativity scene? Yes
9. When do you start shopping for Christmas? whenever I see that perfect gift.
10. Hardest person to buy for? my parents and his parents
11. Easiest person to buy for? kids
12. Worst gift you ever received? I don't remember
13. Wrapping paper or gift bag? Wrapping paper
14. Does Santa wrap the presents or just set them under the tree? Wraps them all in Santa paper
15. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Only at Chinese Gift Exchange
16. Open Christmas presents Christmas eve or Morning? Morning
17. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve? No, we did as kids, after midnight mass
18. Do you remember your favorite gift? I'd have to think for awhile
19. Which do you like best giving or receiving? Giving
20. Mail or e-mail Christmas cards? mail!
21. Travel for Christmas or stay home? Usually travel but can’t this year- too close to due date
22. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer? ABSOLUTELY!
23. Most annoying thing about this time of year? School doesn’t get out until Dec. 21
24. What you love most about Christmas? Faith, Family, Friends, decorations, music
25. Favorite Christmas tradition? Going to my mom's family's get together
26. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate? EGG NOG!! have some in my fridge and Stephen doesn't like it so it's mine all mine!
27. What is your favorite holiday dish? I think I like it all the same...
28. What is your favorite holiday dessert?
Pecan Pie and all the candy (fudge, truffles, etc..) that my Aunt Joanie makes (I make a lot now too)
29. Do you like candy canes? yes
30. Favorite Holiday memory as a child? Going to Mommiegrans on Christmas Eve every year...going to midnight mass with all the aunts, uncles, cousins, and extended family. Hearing Santa's sleigh bells as we left mass, and all the fun with the cousins the next day! One year Uncle Chris put all the kids to bed and showed us Rudloph's nose (water tower light)
31. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa? Huh? What do you mean?
32. Snow: Love it or hate it? Love it – never get it
33. Can you ice skate? Yes but it's been years!
34. What's the most important thing about the Holidays for you? Being with family and creating new memories with my children which includes teaching them about The True Gift God gave to us
35. What is your favorite Christmas Song? Oh my gosh, I like them all. I'm making a list this year of all my favorite artists for each song in case I get an iPOD. I do get choked up when I hear, "Let There Be Peace On Earth" and "Angels We Have Heard On High"
36. What is your favorite holiday movie? The original Miracle on 34th Street

So there you have it. That's what I love about Christmas!

25 Sweets recipes in 25 days!

#13 Chocolate Toffee Bars by Baker's
1 c butter, softened
1 c firmly packed brown sugar
1 egg yolk
1 1/2 c flour
1/4 t salt
1/2 c light corn syrup
1/4 c heavy cream
1 t vanilla
1 pkg 8 squares semi-sweet chocolate, ch
1 c chopped pecans, toasted

1. Heat oven to 350. Line 13x9" baking pan with foil; lightly grease foil.
2. Beat 3/4 c of brown sugar and 3/4 c butter in large bowl with electric mixer on medium until light and fluffy.
3. Add egg yolk; beat well. Beat in flour and salt until well mixed.
4. Press mixture into bottom of prepared pan- spray back of plastic spoon to spread without sticking.
5. Bake 16-18 minutes or until golden brown. Cool slightly on wire rack.
6. Meanwhile: mix remaining butter, brown sugar, corn syrup, cream, and vanilla in large microwavable bowl until well blended. Microwave on high 4 minutes, stirring halfway through heating time. Spread evenly over crust in pan.
7. Bake 18-20 minutes or until set. Sprinkle top with chopped chocolate. Bake 1-2 minutes longer or until melted. Smooth surface evenly with spatula. Sprinkle with pecans. Cool completely on wire rack.
8. Refrigerate 30 minutes or until chocolate is firm. Cut into bars or diamond shapes to serve. Store tightly in covered container. Makes 3 dz bars.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Festive look

I got a bloggity make-over and didn't even ask. My DH just called and told me to check out our blog. I call it that cuz it is our family blog but I'm the only one bloggin', ladies you know how it is. Anyway, he created a header for me and I changed the colors to be all festivy. I think he's working on a good ol' Texas Christmas song. Okay, we're having trouble with the Texas song and since there hasn't been an Aggie Christmas song released, you'll have to listen to Nat.

Menu Monday

I don't usually have a specific day picked out for my meals but I know this is what we're having this week. When I plan ahead, it never fails that the meat I need doesn't get taken out of the freezer in time.

Monday: Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Sandwiches
Tuesday: Butternut Squash Soup
Wednesday: Monte Cristo Sandwiches
Thursday: Scalloped Potatoes & Ham
Friday: Crock Pot Chicken Tetrazzini

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Holiday Crafts site

All Things Christmas
Thanks Aunt Carolyn

25 Sweets Recipes in 25 Days

#10 Orange Delight Balls (very quick & easy)
1 box Vanilla wafers, finely crushed
1 c pecans, finely chopped
6 oz can concentrated orange juice, thawed
1 stick butter, melted
16 oz powdered sugar

Mix all ingredients except coconut. Chill. Roll into balls. Roll in coconut (optional).

Friday, December 7, 2007

What's your Grinch Name?

Mine is Testytroll Fussybottom
Seriously, who comes up with these things?


Lauren was singing a Christmas tune the other day, have you ever heard of "Walkin' in a window of Aladdin?"

Last night I was flipping stations and stopped when I heard Journey, ya know, "Don't Stop Believin'", "Open Arms", "Faithfully" ? From the 80s? So I finished singing the song and so proudly told Lauren, "That's Journey, can you say Journey?" She replied, "Why do they have 'germs'? " Stephen and I couldn't help but laugh out loud. Children are so precious! We'll have a Journey 101 lesson after Christmas. I might even have to buy a CD or two since cassettes are so stone-age.

Another Special Day

Happy Birthday to my cousin Nick!

He is the one on the far right. Nick is currently serving his 3rd deployment somewhere in the middle east! Please pray for his safety along with his fiancee who also serves proudly in the military!

Thursday, December 6, 2007

It's a Special Day

4 years ago today Stephen and I got married. I don't have any pics from our wedding on my work computer -Stephen, could you send me a few please? This pic is from our date night a few weeks ago.
For those of you who don't know, I met Stephen in a car accident. I was driving on the highway in Arlington, almost at my exit when all of a sudden everyone hit their brakes. It was not rush hour and very unusual to have traffic at this spot. The lady in front of me accelerated and then hit her brakes again. When I hit my brakes, Stephen hit me. My first thought was to call the police but his first thought was to jump out and run up to see if I was okay. I was a little frustrated because Heather just had Lexi and I was going to go see them at the hospital. Stephen and I waited almost 2 hours for the police to arrive and since it was a March evening, it got pretty chilly. I told him he could sit in my back seat and we talked. When the policeman did arrive, I was shivering and sweet Stephen offered me his coat. Then the officer wanted to call a tow truck for my SUV but Stephen helped pull out some of the damaged fender so I could at least drive home. He sort of hinted at going to get a drink but I had already asked my parents to meet me at my house so I had to decline (didn't want to look desperate and cancel with my parents). I really didn't want it all to end so I just asked him if he had a copy of all my information in case he needed to contact me....hey, it was the best I could do, okay? And we both drove away.
The next night he called to, "see if I was okay." I was in a very noisy Wal-Mart and the conversation seemed to go nowhere (I didn't know he was really shy) so I had to let him go after awhile. That next night I sat through 2 freezing softball games, watching Hyla's daughter play. I started sneezing and sniffling and coughing, I was a mess by the time I got home. While at the game, Hyla convinced me to call Stephen. That's what I did. He was working, I was at home all comfy in my jammies, feeling a cold coming on and we talked for hours. Then when his shift was over, he asked about that drink. It was so impulsive but after pointing out my constant sneezing and coughing, I agreed, got dressed again, and that was our first date. He proposed on June 1 and 6 months later got married.

Happy Anniversary honey, I love you. Thanks for the best 4 years of my life.
Hyla, thanks for convincing me to call him- that's what best friends are for!

Also The feast of St. Nicholas is on Dec. 6th. It is a highlight of the Advent season. Each child puts out a shoe the night before St. Nicholas Day in the hope that the kind bishop — with his miter, staff, and bag of gifts — will pay a visit. The current “Santa Claus” is modeled after St. Nicholas, but commercialism has tarnished the true story. Many families give gifts on both Dec. 6 and Christmas.
Here's a great link I bloglifted from Julia

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Cookies and Cream Fudge

Cookies and Cream Fudge has been moved to Aggieland Mommy Cooks

Thursday's recipe

Help! What gets ink out of fabric?

My SAH husband just called to ask if the ink from the ink pad I gave Lauren will come out. I asked why and he said our DARLING Caleb got ahold of it and it's not only all over his face but the carpet and the couch too! I probably shouldn't have done this but I said, "Take pictures honey, this is great blog material." Then I said to try baby wipes because I've heard they take anything out of anything.
Future Blue Man Group Member- or Smurf? You decide!

That's sign language for "MORE"

Any other suggestions?
Sandra, thanks for your idea, his nails still look like the picture, it was great fun to go shopping with him last night!
I have to add that this happened while Stephen was preparing a Crock Pot meal for dinner. When he started the ink pad was safe on the table with Lauren.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

The Postal Grinch strikes again

aka: An update to the story about the post office "losing" our mail.

Back in the middle of October I wrote about how we aren't receiving all our mail. I did a little checking around and found out that several of the ladies in our Mom's group at church have also not received mail a time or two. We all live in different neighborhoods so chances are that it is not our actual mail carrier but someone at the post office. It always seems to be cards that are tempting to the postal eye. At Halloween it happened to us again. My mom sent the kids each a card. We never got them. On Oct. 17 I called my post office and I took careful notes of what the lady told me. She said she'd personally write her initials on each piece of our mail and if we received anything without her initials, to let her know immediately. Okay, let's think about this...if I didn't receive a card, it wouldn't really matter if it had her initials or not, would it? Guess what, after several days her initials were still not on any of our letters. I called her back on the 23rd. She said she'd make sure it got done. It didn't so my husband went in to the post office and asked for her. A supervisor from Houston came out and said she was helping out. She said all our mail would be bundled and counted and we too should keep count. If anything turned up missing, we'd go compare numbers. Meanwhile, my mom bought 2 more cards and sent them registered, which means she had to pay lots more to have them delivered. And so the latest incident? My mom mailed Stephen a card for his birthday. It had a check in it...which would be okay anywhere else in the world...but not here. We never got it! She also mailed a little 'thank you' card with it. We got the little card and Mom canceled the check. Stephen went to the post office where a different supervisor from Houston took his complaint. The man asked, "Do you suspect mail fraud?" Uhhhhh, yeah! The man said not to tell him anything else and he gave Stephen a phone number to call and report it. The man said there is a team from Houston that is working here so they can try to correct the problems. So.....Aggieland beware...there's a mail grinch looming out there.

Another debt paid off- POOF!

Those of you that have known me for years already know this part of the story, you may want to scroll down to the last paragraph.

When Stephen and I got married 4 years ago (this Thursday), we never imagined we'd face so many financial events all at once. For example, we met by having a car accident. We each had to pay deductibles. We moved before my house sold so we had 2 mortgages for 3 months. On the way to our honeymoon cruise ship, one of my SUV's tires shredded and we almost flipped. There was significant damage to the SVU, it wasn't drivable and we were in the middle of nowhere waiting for a tow truck. We actually had the ship waiting for us before leaving port. So we bought 4 new tires as soon as we made it home from our honeymoon. 8 1/2 months later our daughter was born 5 1/2 weeks pre-mature and was rushed to the children's hospital in Houston, about 2 hours away. Isn't insurance supposed to cover everything? We were in Houston for 3 weeks, eating every meal out and sleeping at the Ronald McDonald House. Since Blue Cross Blue Shield starts their fiscal year Sept. 1, guess what? We were billed thousands for me, the maximum out of pocket $2500 for Lauren before Aug. 31 and then another $2500 maximum out of pocket for Lauren for Sept. 1 etc... PLUS, BCBS said the ambulance ride to Houston was out of network (since they had a different tax ID number than the hospital) so we were billed thousands for that. Then she had to get special shots every month so she wouldn't get RSV. Those shots cost a couple thousand. And the list goes on... More medical bills came when I surprisingly got pregnant with Caleb the next year. Then Lauren had an ER visit.....

We were getting phone calls almost daily from medical bill collectors all while we were barely keeping our head above water with the other bills. I have to say we were NEVER late with other payments but we were very worried about the mounting medical bills....until a few friends in the mortgage business reassured us that while medical goes on your credit report, it is not held against you when you want to buy a house or car. SERIOUSLY? As long as you pay something, it will not reflect poorly on your report! So we have been paying about $10/month per bill since then. Wish we would have known that sooner. And by paying $10 per month, we have really gotten some surprising deals. Which leads me to the point of this rambling:

Stephen got a call the other day about an outstanding bill at the hospital. It was combined for Caleb's jaundice bloodwork, Lauren's visit to the ER, and one other thing. The remaining total was $684 but she said if we would pay $384, she would forgive the other $300. She said she would take two payments of $192. I told Stephen to ask her what about if we payed $350, could she forgive the rest? AND SHE DID! Then you think what if I offered $325? Or $300? Now if we had the money to pay off our medical debts, believe me, we would, but since we don't (remember I am a teacher and Stephen is a SAHD), we will take whatever deals come our way!

Monday, December 3, 2007

25 (or more) Family Activities

In addition to the 25 sweets recipes in 25 days, I would like to post some ideas for Advent/Christmas family activities. I did start an Advent section.
Thanks Aunt Carolyn!

A co-worker and also friend from church shared a family tradition with me that I want to start this year. She said that each Thanksgiving weekend she would lock herself in her room with a calendar and fill in each day in December with something fun their family would do together. Then, she would cover each day with a tear-away flap and each day a different child got to reveal the exciting event. Her 4 children are now college-aged and she said the youngest was upset last year when she did not make the calendar.

Here are some ideas but I would really love to hear your ideas as well:
1. Help your children make an Advent wreath-
a) get a mini wreath and mini candles at the craft store
b) string green tri-beads on a pipe cleaner...6 green, one pink (for the pink candle), 6 green.....
c) make a countdown chain either red & green for Christmas or 6 green, one pink, 6 green...

2. Have family games night.
3. Find out when your city is having their Christmas parade and go (unless it's at naptime like ours was)!
4. Make a clay dough ornament .
5. Family movie night.
6. Dec. 6 is St. Nicholas day. Read a story about St. Nick and research world traditions about him.
7. Bake treats to give away to neighbors, doctors, clergy and church staff, etc...
8. Go deliver the treats.
9. Family puzzle night.
10. Read, 'Legend of the Candy Cane' and make candy cane cookies.
11. Make a gingerbread house and read the 'Gingerbread Man'.
12. Go to a movie.
13. Make magic reindeer food.
14. Make Jesus' birthday cake.
15. Visit a nursing home.
16. Get a name from your church's angel tree, shop for the gift, and deliver it togther.
17. Bake cookies
18. Go to Santa's Wonderland
19. Read one of Tomie de Paola's many Christian books like 'Legend of the Poinsettia'
20. Go to a local church's Living Nativity
21. Make mixes in a jar for friends and neighbors.
22. Attend a local Christmas concert. Support the local high school, their performances are free.
23. Go ice-skating.
24. Read age-appropriate story about the birth of Christ.
25. Unwrap the first gift (baby Jesus) because this was God's first gift to us.

Click on "comments" to add your ideas.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Saturday's -25 Sweets recipes in 25 days!

tomorrow #4 Raspberry Laced Vanilla Cake

#3 White Chocolate Chunk Macadamia Cookies by Spirit of Christmas (book)

1 c butter, softened
1 c firmly packed light brown sugar
1/2 c granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 t vanilla extract
2 1/2 c flour
1 t baking soda
1 t salt
1 c macadamia nuts, chopped
2 c white chocolate or almond bark (chopped) I used Wilton's candy melts
1. Cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs and vanilla.
2. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt; gradually add to creamed mixture.
3. Stir in macadamia nuts and chocolate. Drop by heaping teaspoonfuls onto greased baking sheets.
4. Bake in a preheated 350 oven 10-12 minutes. Cool slightly before removing from baking sheets. 6 dozen

Thursday, November 29, 2007

25 Sweets recipes in 25 days!

This fabulous recipe has been moved to Aggieland Mommy Cooks.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Corn and Green Chile Rice

This recipe has been moved to Aggieland Mommy Cooks.

Lots and lots to say today!

1. Happy Birthday to Stephen's Dad! We hope you have a super day. We love you.

2. My grandmother's biopsy results show that she has a malignant tumor behind her lung. More info to come but please keep her in your prayers.

3.What a moron! I mean FREE DINNER!
We went out to eat for Stephen's birthday last night and it turned out to be quite eventful. He picked a place that we go to more than any other place in town. We have always had good service and the kids get free ice cream at the end of the meal. But last night was different.........
Our waiter arrived at our table wearing a "Certified Trainer" shirt which told me we had one of the best. He took our drink order...a coke for me, a Dr. Pepper for Stephen and one kid's lemonade. Easy, right? He brought chips, green sauce, and salsa to the table and asked if we would need another serving of sauces. No thank you. A few minutes later he came back and asked what we would like to drink. Ummm....Coke, Dr. Pepper, and lemonade, remember? He said he lost the ticket. As he left the table, he bumped into a chair at the next table. I thought it was out of embarrassment. was just turning 6:00 and we were his only table. He brought the drinks and took our order. The special for Stephen, a Grilled Fajita burrito for me with the tortilla soup, and the kid's quesadillas for L & C. We waited and watched the newer tables get their food. He didn't even pass by our table for quite awhile, Stephen's cup was empty. By this time Caleb was getting fussy, he wanted food! The waiter came by and said, "Okay, what can I get for you?"

No y'all, I am not kidding. Stephen and I looked at each other in disbelief. It was like on the show 'Mad About You' when Jamie and Paul would go to that restaurant and Ursula (Lisa Kudrow) would walk up to the table for the first time and say something like, "Are you ready for your ticket?"

I told the guy we had already ordered. First he looked puzzled. Then he said he lost the ticket. "AGAIN?" I asked. He said yes. He didn't apologize or anything. We ordered again, adding an order of tortillas because, "our little boy can't wait that long" and I went to talk to the manager. When I got back to the table, my cold soup was waiting. Before I could eat half of it, our food arrived, with the tortillas, and the manager stopped by to see that our order was correct. Whew! So then Stephen's drink sat empty. When the waiter came by to see if everything was okay, my mouth was full and so I pointed to Stephen's cup. Stephen said, "Dr. Pepper" and the guy repeated, "Coke?" No, Dr. Pepper. He brought out a tray full of drinks, dropped them off at neighboring tables, left, came back with the tea pitcher and proceeded to fill Stephen's cup with tea. Stephen asked him what was in the pitcher. He told the waiter he had Dr. Pepper. So the waiter set the cup down...with tea in it....for Stephen to drink??? I gave him the cup and said he could take it. Then he came out with a new cup of Dr. Pepper for Stephen. We watched him bump into at least one other table. I really felt bad for the guy but how could he make so many mistakes? When Stephen went up to pay, he updated the manager on the events and she put her face in her hands. She told us he is one of the assistant managers! And Stephen told her that to top it off, that was where he wanted to celebrate his birthday. dinner!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Advent Traditions

Advent, which comes from the Latin word for "arrival" or "coming," is a period of preparation for the birth of our Lord. Advent begins four Sundays before Christmas and is the start of the Christmas season, which lasts through the Baptism of Our Lord. The first Sunday of Advent also marks the beginning of the liturgical year, the Church's "New Year's Day," at which time we change the cycle of readings we are using at Mass.

Read more at:

As we are preparing our homes and hearts for the beginning of Advent, I was wondering what your family does to celebrate Advent...what arts and crafts ideas you have...what stories you tell...what songs you teach your kids....what websites you love...anything Advent related really.

Please share your family traditions here! Just click on "comments". I look forward to your inspiration.

Check out
Look for the picture of the advent wreath.

The Memory of a 3 Year Old & Happy Birthday Stephen

Last night when I was putting Lauren to bed, I reminded her that when she woke up it would be her daddy's birthday. She replied, "We have to sing the birthday song." I told her that when the sun came up she could sing to her daddy.

Well, I wasn't home when she woke up but Stephen called me to tell me that when Lauren woke up she was screaming from her bed. Now, we try really hard to teach her not to scream from her bed and somehow she always forgets that simple request but she didn't forget what we talked about at bedtime. Stephen had raced to her room thinking something was wrong because most mornings Lauren gets herself out of bed. When he got to her room, she said, "It's your birthday!" I wish I could have seen his face because I'm sure it lit up like....a Christmas tree.

Happy Birthday Honey! I love you!

Taco Fiesta Chicken Lasagna

Moved to Aggieland Mommy Cooks

Monday, November 26, 2007

Our family Christmas Pictures

I know you can't tell in the pictures but Stephen is wearing a green shirt. The lighting in the studio made it look black.

Quick & Easy Egg Casserole Brunch

This yummy recipe has been moved to Aggieland Mommy Cooks

Thanksgiving, my Aggies, church adventures, and shopping

I don't think I've ever been away from blogging for 6 days before. Now I have so much catching up to do. I hope you all had a wonderful and relaxing Thanksgiving. We certainly enjoyed ours. My mom came down Wednesday afternoon. She had to leave my dad behind because he developed the worst stomach virus in their 37 years of marriage. Yes, 37 years! Wednesday night Stephen and I had a much needed date-night to the best place to eat in the state of Texas. We went to Christopher's World Grille where an order of raspberry tea is $4.50 and they don't make an entree for under $20. I think I mentioned in an earlier post that he won a gift certificate, we could never afford a place like that! Good eats y'all. We seemed to be at a loss for words since the kids were home with Grandma. We got to hold hands and just enjoy the moment. After the wonderful Greek Lamb Chops and Zihuatanejo Snapper we enjoyed some dessert and took our time leaving. When we got in the car we were surprised to see that we had only been gone an hour and a half.

Thursday Mom and I prepared the turkey dinner while Stephen tended to a nice fire and kept the kids out of the way. After stuffing ourselves like turkeys, everyone went down for a nap except Stephen and me. We watched the Cowboys. Well, I dozed off a little and woke up to Stephen standing over me, telling me it was snowing in Dallas (which is really Irving). For dinner that night we had our dessert, we were too stuffed to have any after the meal.

Friday morning I awoke with tons of energy, more than a 35 year old, 32 week pregnant woman with a 3 year old and a 21 month old should...I made my favorite breakfast casserole and had it in the oven before anyone else woke up. Stephen started bringing all the Christmas decorations down from the attic. We all started a little shopping after the big sale rush was over. Stephen's birthday is tomorrow so I usually buy for both occassions but he was with us so it made it hard. We made it home and put the kids down for a nap in time to watch my Aggies beat the hell outta t.u. WHOOP! What an exciting game it was, the Aggies played like they should have played all year. I asked Stephen what would happen if we played t.u. at the beginning of each season instead of at the end, I mean really, we beat them last year and they were National Champs! I was a little saddened by Coach Fran's answers to the questions he was asked as he was walking off the field. He was asked about his relationship with his players and he basically said, "No comment." 5 years at the best university in America....with the best student body in America...and he couldn't comment? I looked over at Stephen and said he is going to resign. Maybe this wasn't a big secret....I guess I figured he'd be fired like Slocum was in 2002. Sure enough, within the hour, he resigned as coach of the Aggies and said he wouldn't be available to coach at a bowl game. Ya's what A&M football needs but I have to give the man credit, he has been involved in several wonderful charities in our community and I only hope our next coach will do the same. Friday night Stephen and I took advantage of the kids' playmate (my mom) and we went to do a little shopping for the kids.

Saturday the 3 girls went shopping for Daddy's birthday. What fun to drive through nasty cold rain and go in and out of shops. When we got home, we were surprised to see that Stephen had decorated most of the house. It looked so beautiful! Saturday after we all woke up from our naps, mom treated us to Red Lobster, yummy!

Yesterday we made it to church...forgetting that the nursery isn't open most holidays...and took the kids into the sanctuary with us. Thank goodness I packed a bag of tricks but that didn't work for long. Lauren did a wonderful job, probably because Grandma was there to help, but it was only a matter of time before Caleb couldn't sit and snack any longer. Since my belly is so big, I can't do much to help Stephen so he took Caleb out. About 10 minutes later he came in to show me that Caleb's sleeves were soaked...I think he was going for a 2nd baptism because Stephen said he dipped both arms in the fountain outside the church. Stephen was taking him to the warm van and said he'd be back. It is so hard to take the kids to church right now, sometimes Caleb doesn't want to stay in the nursery, I know it will be even harder when we have a newborn. I want to make it all the way through advent without missing mass but I don't know if that's realistic. Oh the guilt!

We had a nice lunch at On the Border....walked through the Aggie tent sale...and then it was home to see Mom off. It was such a nice, relaxing holiday. I don't want a big rush to Christmas, I want to enjoy each and every day. I am very excited about listening to Christmas music...I have found a great station online that plays Christmas music and my classroom is decorated as well.

Which brings me to today. As I was coming to work I heard talk about our new coach coming from Houston. I emailed Heather in Florida...why does she always hear Aggie news before me? I live here for goodness sake! She said there's a news conference scheduled for 11:00 today (now) and she thinks it is to name our new head coach as Mike Sherman, the offensive co-ordinator from the Houston Texans. He already has Aggie ties and he led the Green Bay Packers to 3 NFC North titles so this may be just what the Aggies needed.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Please take a moment to pray for

One of my best friends' family.

Lisa's father-in-law: his colon has ruptured where it had been reattached after the surgery last week. The surgeon went back in to repair it and clean out all the infection that he had. He actually developed 3 different infections last week. All of them very serious. Then they Care flighted him to Harris downtown (he was at Harris Southwest). Now he is in the Trauma ICU and his kidneys have shut down and they can't keep his blood pressure up. They want to do a 3rd surgery today because they left the wound open on Sat.
Today's update: Johnny had surgery at 5:00 yesterday evening. The doctor removed his gallbladder, put in a port for dialysis and cleaned out his system again & inserted a colostomy. So now he is still in recovery mode and unaware. He is on a 24 hour mild dialysis and still the same.

Her mother-in-law: has Pulmonary Fibrosis, which means the air holes in her lungs are gradually degenerating and closing up, so it's harder and harder for her to breathe. She's been dependent on oxygen 24/7 since she was diagnosed in 2005 and she's been confined to her scooter since last year. Johnny was her primary caregiver until last month.\

Don't forget about all the doctors and other healthcare providers! Keep the family safe as they travel to and from the hospital and please lift them up as holidays are always the hardest times to endure health crisis.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Caleb keeps us very busy!

Look at our little stinker. Saturday we took him for his first haircut so we could have our Christmas pictures done minus the 'Shaggy' look. See that picture? That's about as long as he would sit in that chair. Well... he sat a little longer as long as I made a fool out of myself and did Aggie yells. He likes that. When we got home, I trimmed and I trimmed until I was satisfied with his hair. In my next life I am going to open a kids' haircut salon where each station has a children's theme and is playing a movie that will capture the kid's attention! Anyone out there on board?

The other pictures were taken a few minutes ago, Stephen sent them to me. Caleb was waiting for his breakfast and decided to go exploring. He hasn't done this before because it is rare that the table is cleared off. Again, he is a stinker but at the beginning and end of the day, he is the most loving, snuggly boy around.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Great news and I love my doctor!

I had my doctor's appointment today. I told Dr. Blasingame about the bad sonogram experience at the hospital and how I didn't even get any pictures and she asked if I could stay so one of her girls could do a sonogram and print some pictures. So I stayed for another hour and we saw the most amazing things not only in 2-D but also in 3-D. Abby was asleep most of the time and the 3-D couldn't pick up an image of her face through the placenta but I rolled over on my side and we saw her hands...and ear...and then her eyes and nose and she even stuck her tongue out a few times. For awhile it seemed as if she was playing peek-a-boo because she kept covering her face with her hands.

The great news is that there is no spot (Choroid Plexus) on the brain....the placenta is not low anymore...and Abby was not breech today. Prayers answered, God is Great!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Big Announcement

The sonogram tech told me what I'm having even though I told him we didn't want to know.
Double click on the video to find out the gender of the baby.
Please feel free to leave a comment by clicking below on "comments".

Little Pig, Little Pig, Let me come in!

A friend of ours bought this cute house for her little boy and we thought it would keep Lauren busy for hours. She loves to color and she is very good at staying in the lines. So we printed our 40% off coupon and headed to Hobby Lobby to buy the house. We told Lauren we'd put it together right after dinner. Poor Stephen wasn't allowed to finish eating because she begged him to put it together. Caleb-who is ALL BOY, let me tell ya- started knocking it down before it was even put up. He was like the Big Bad Wolf except he decided he wanted to go through the windows- and he's never even seen the Dukes of Hazzard. After Caleb had had enough of Mommy and Daddy telling him no, he started knocking the house down! We could not believe this sweet, precious little boy. He even picked it up by the roof and just plopped it over on it's side. As you can see in the pictures, he finally gave in and went through the door. What a stinker he is!

My new house!!

Crock Pot Enchiladas

This fantastic recipe has been moved to Aggieland Mommy Cooks

Friday, November 9, 2007

My Aunt Ellen's Eggnog

This amazing recipe has been moved to Aggieland Mommy Cooks

Prayer request

I just found out that they have found a tumor behind my grandmother's lung. They will do a biopsy on November 23. Please pray that the tumor will be benign. My grandmother is 80 and her health has been deteriorating over the last few years.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Layered Mint Chocolate Fudge

This has been moved to my recipe blog Aggieland Mommy Cooks.

Thank you Honey!

Yesterday I read on a friend's blog how to make your own header. I went home and asked my husband if he could look into this since he is the computer genius in our family. Bless his heart...he got started and just wouldn't stop. I mean we stopped to run to Hobby Lobby but the minute we got back, he was at it again. That was really not easy since I didn't know EXACTLY what I wanted. So he whipped something up and he did a good job but it wasn't symmetrical y'all. I know, I know, who cares right? Well, ask him about the house I wouldn't buy because the front door was on the far left, not even close to the middle. Anyway, a woman has the right to change her mind and that's what I did. So back to work he went. I told him he could use 3 pics, 4 pics, 6, or 8, I didn't care but it had to be symmetrical. He came up with a good header but the darn thing wouldn't center. His bedtime, 9:00, came and went. "Honey, you can go to bed and we'll worry about it tomorrow." Nope, he wasn't going to go to bed without figuring this one out. At around 10:20, sleep deprivation set in and he thought he lost my entire template. He fixed it and finally realized he did need to get to sleep. Well, he must have gotten started on the centering issue as soon as I left for work because when I got my first chance to check email, he left a message that he got the header centered! Now we're just going to work on a little tune for your listening pleasure. So...thanks Stephen, I love you!

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Don't forget our soldiers...

When you are making your Christmas Card list, add just one more:
A Recovering American Soldier
c/o Walter Reed Army Medical Center
6900 Georgia Avenue, NW
Washington,D.C. 20307-5001

Holiday Cooking Blogger Style
I just found this wonderful site where you can post your favorite tried and true holiday recipes.

If you're new to my blog, welcome and while a few recipes are listed below, there are many more...check out the labels section on the right. I try to post new recipes every day so come on back y'all!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Baby It's Cold Outside

Well, not that cold yet, but it's coming. I love this weather as long as I can be inside, by a fire, sipping a hot drink, and snuggling up with my family. Today when I went home for lunch, my wonderful husband had Frito Pie waiting for me, how perfect. Caleb went down for his nap early and Lauren wanted to color in her room so it was just the two of us. That doesn't happen very often at all. During our nice quiet visit, Stephen dozed off a few times but who can blame him? He only gets about 5 hours of sleep each night, I couldn't do it.

Back to the cold weather...I found a gift card that I got for my birthday (Don't you just love it when you find "money"?) and I splurged on 2 Christmas CDs. Josh Grobin's Noel and Burl Ives' music from the Rudolph shows. Now I know what you're saying, yes I did rant and rave yesterday about Christmas coming too early but I promise I will not listen to the CDs until Thanksgiving. I'm just excited about having them.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Gobble, Gobble

Moved to Aggieland Mommy Cooks

Santa Claus is coming to town! Friday!

Yes, you heard me correctly. As I was driving to work this morning I heard a commercial on the radio that Santa is arriving at our mall this Friday night, November 9. Are you kidding me? Let's slow down people. Halloween came and went and is only a memory. I'm ready to dust off my Bing Crosby White Christmas CD but let's spend the next few weeks anticipating what we are truly thankful for and let's experience the chaos in planning our meal.

I would love to take the kids to all the fun and festivities they have planned for Santa's arrival but not before Thanksgiving. This is a ploy to get us to spend money now and to get our kids to start the begging now. I will not be a part of it. I won't take my kids to the section of the mall where they have Santa set up. Where are all the Advent and Nativity decorations?

Speaking of Thanksgiving, my parents will be coming here for Thanksgiving this year. Stephen and I decided a few years ago that we want to start our own traditions and while we knew some feelings would be hurt about us not going to Fort Worth, we realized with little ones that we can't stress ourselves out to make others happy. Are you with me on this one? How many of you have "been there, done that?" We want to have a nice TG meal which I will prepare (if Mom will let me) and then we'll watch the Cowboys. That's what we always did growing up and I can't wait to watch another game with my dad. Friday we'll anticipate the annual A&M vs t.u. game and we'll crank up the Christmas music while we decorate the house and bake the 100th batch of Chex mix. Then we'll spend the weekend resting and relaxing.

Lauren asks us every day if Grandma is coming. We show her on the calendar how long it will be before Grandma comes and she still wants Grandma to be here now. She talked to my mom Friday night and then asked to call her on Saturday. I always put the phone on speaker but this time Lauren took the phone and walked around the house talking to Grandma for almost an hour. When we hung up she cried and cried because she wanted Grandma to come right away. I called my mom back and let her listen to the saddest little 3 year old. When we hung up the phone we made a countdown chain and explained how we'll take one link off every day and when they're all gone, Grandma will be here. She caught on to that pretty quickly, yesterday she asked if she could tear them all so that Grandma could be here now. It's going to be a long 17 days.

Thursday, November 1, 2007


We sure have had fun this year. The kids and I watched The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown on Tuesday while Stephen filmed an Elementary show. Yesterday we carved the Jack-O-Lantern-which Lauren designed, put on costumes, went to the mall for Trick-or-Treating, went to a small festival for Trunk-or-Treat, and then went to some houses in our neighborhood. I'm not sure who was more worn out when we got home but I haven't slept that well in weeks!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Happy Birthday Aunt Patty

October is a very busy month in our family. When I was younger, we would have one big celebration for all the October and November birthdays. I think there were 8. Saturday was my Aunt Patty's birthday. Aunt Patty is the middle of 5 children and sometimes referred to as "Crazy Aunt Patty." While I didn't make that phone call I planned on making (the Aggies were on TV and I lost all touch with reality), I did send her a card (well, it is in the mail). I hope you had a great birthday, we love you!

Happy Belated Birthday to Uncle Chris- the baby. His birthday was October 2 and I totally missed it.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Not my "Itty Bitty Boy" anymore

We set up the toddler bed almost a month ago so that Caleb could get used to it. We had it set up with the headboard against the wall so he could get on and off by himself. So for weeks Lauren and Caleb have had fun playing on the bed. A few weeks ago we turned the bed around and tried letting him sleep in the bed. We left the crib in place as a precaution and we put pillows on the floor at the end of the bed just in case. As soon as we closed the door we heard a loud thump and sure enough, he had escaped, so back to the crib he went. But the next day, the bed once again became a cool place to play. As we were cleaning the house, Caleb climbed into the bed and amused himself. At about 11:45 I realized that even though his door was open, I didn't hear him anymore. Any good parent knows that silence is NOT golden when your kids are in a different room. When I walked across the hall, this precious moment is what I found.

And he has slept there ever since.


Lauren has decided that naptime doesn't mean she actually has to sleep anymore. Let me say that Lauren has always been a WONDERFUL napper. She usually goes down at 1:00 and sometimes we have to wake her up at 5:00. Lately she has been playing, which is fine as long as she stays in her room, but yesterday she must have had her own little fashion show because when she came out of her room to potty, she was wearing something completely different than what she went in with. And later when she came out because she heard me at home, she was wearing something different again.

So, how many different outfits do you think she tried on in a 3 hour period? We're going to have a quick lesson on hanging up clothes! Mommy's big ol' belly can't bend over anymore.