Saturday, December 24, 2011

Modern acorn wreath

It's Christmas Eve and I never blogged about the cool wreath we made over a month ago.  I found the idea here

Parent teacher conferences in November gave us quite a few half days and one of those afternoons the kids and I gathered acorns.  They had a great time scouring the ground for them.

I glued them on and it took a lot of glue and a bit more time that I thought it would.  But I am pretty happy with the results--a wreath I can have on my door all year--no straw (visible), flowery flowers, fake birds, plastic grapes--just a clean, simple, modern wreath, my kind of wreath.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Oh, please!

Many of you know I can easily get on a soapbox and start voicing my opinions: this is one of those times. 

A brochure came in the mail this week.  This is the cover.

Dialogues, like the following, flood my head...

Mom: Oh, Betty, this computer game is much more important than for me to make dinner.  Well, maybe I will, but I definitely don't have time to do dishes!  We are bonding too much in front of my laptop.  Hey--maybe Dad will let us order take-out again, or better yet--McDonald's!

Dad (reading to little Sue): "And Kimmy said to Kelly, 'Mother says I can come over after I clean my room...'"

Little Sue: What's, "clean my room?"

If people are taking the attitude, "Life's too short to clean our own homes" than we are really missing the opportunity to teach our kids an important lesson.  Children feel more valued in a home where they are counted on to do their part.  Why is teen suicide higher now than decades before?  Oh, I could go on and on about the value of work!

"Thou shalt not be aidle; for he that is idle shall not eat the bbread nor wear the garments of the claborer."  (D&C 42:42)

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Before winter hits....

(to the tune of "Popcorn Popping on the Apricot Tree")

I looked out the window and what did I see?
Fall colors glowing on many a tree.
Autumn had brought me such a nice surprise--
Two beautiful daughters growing up before my eyes.
One turned 10 and is such a treat.
The other turned 12 and is just as sweet.
It was really so
and it seems to me--
Time is flying by
much, too much, quickly!

Busy day--eating funnel cake in our jammies.

Welcome Dragon, now the world's most loved
birthday beta fish ever!

Birthday party with friends--playing country fair-inspired games.

Horse racing!

Finals in the ping-pong blow (they LOVED this one)!

Party time!

Corn dogs and watermelon and lemonade.

Blue ribbon pies for a blue ribbon girl! (Excuse the dirty kitchen).

Yeah, that's a lot more than 10 candles.

Balloon animals!

I love her expressions when opening gifts!!

Older girls now...making glass tile
necklaces, snacking, and hanging out.

Opening presents with two curious little brothers hovering...

Birthday field trip to the Museum of Glass!

Watching a live glass-blowing session...

Cool middle schoolers (and mom and 10-year-old)

HOT glass!

Hot girls!

Never tired of posing!

Chulily glass bridge--looking up
(couldn't get the camera settings right to see their faces).

I could look up for hours!!

12 years old!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Who you gonna call?

$10 on random vacuum cleaner parts at the thrift store?  Give me some duct tape and stand back!

shoe boxes painted black, 3 rolls of electrician's tape, and 2 rolls of duct tape later = proton packs!

Looks like they work!

A little too well!


Thursday, October 27, 2011


Just curious, now....

Who reads my blog?  I assume it's only about 10 people, at most, because I don't see very many comments. 

So, if you are reading this--could you leave me a comment?  Or maybe email me?  Just curious...

(Maybe I don't want to find out--maybe there's only 2 people or something....)

Friday, October 21, 2011


I was out of town on Sept. 24, when my church has a worldwide broadcast for the women of the church to watch.  I missed this talk
President Uchtdorf gave lots of wonderful counsel, one thing being not fretting over things that really aren't that important. 

I listened to his talk this past Sunday.  I should have listened to it sooner :).

Don't ask me for help; I'll rarely say "no."  Well, I should have said "no" a few weeks ago.  Our R.S. Super Saturday (a day where we get together and do a bunch of crafts) was this past Saturday.  One of the ladies in charge asked me to head up a cute little set of nativity puppets.  I checked out the template online and knew I could do it.

It took a lot longer than it looked.  Mainly because there was no template for little detailed items, like hair, beards,  headpieces, and such.  I spent Friday night creating templates for everything and then getting all the supplies in order for each person who paid for a set of puppets. 

I also spent a few hours pressing, hemming, and cuffing a pair of dress pants for a friend.  My hubby was gone that weekend and all the kids were in bed by 9pm. 

I couldn't believe it took me SO long to finish up these two projects.  It was 6:15am when I finished and began cleaning up.  I wondered if I should even go to sleep since Super Saturday was starting at 8am (and I still hadn't popped up the popcorn I was asked to bring).

I felt that I needed to go to bed.  That one hour of sleep I got was enough to recharge me for Saturday's duties: making popcorn, Super Saturday crafting, soccer games, caring for infant, etc...

Saturday night, after the kids were down, I found myself in the kitchen making some treats for Sunday dinner, finishing a Super Saturday craft, and cleaning the kitchen.  I'd felt dizzy of and on during the day.  Out of the corner of my eye I could see darkness--I knew the fatigue was catching up to me. 

I felt very impressed that I needed to get to bed--immediately!  My kids didn't need to wake up in the morning and find their mother passed out on the kitchen floor.

Being sleep-deprived is just as bad as being intoxicated.  1 hour of sleep in a 40 hour time period--I was stupidly drunk!  I will never do that again!  (No puppet is worth that).

Thursday, October 13, 2011

This job doesn't pay enough!

Click on this link to pay me for my blogging and/or homemaking skills:

Made you click!

Seriously, though...I'm not quitting my day job--I'm kind of in it for, well, a while!

September and October have been a rollercoaster.  We took the kids on a suprise trip to Disneyland and SoCal, visiting old friends and places (pictures below).  It was a great time to go--3rd week of September when the whole nation is back in school.  The longest line ever was 20 minutes--and that was maybe once encountered!  We had a fun time.

Disneyland for 8 people (we invited my awesome mother-in-law) + airfare + car rental + food + a few souvenirs = a pretty large sum :)

Lodging was free, sort of.  We put that timeshare to good use this year...

Who would have thought, that while we were all blissfully enjoying ourselves away from home, so many objects IN the home would misbehave while we were away, and decide to cease operating only mere weeks after our return?!

Some of you married men who are good at sports.  Some of you married men who are good at speaking.  Some of you married men who are just good to look at.  Well, I married all that AND a man who is good at fixing stuff :).

It's not like he has all the time in the world, but he set to work feverishly during any free time he had.  But, alas, some times all the effort in the world is wasted on things that cannot be brought back.

Rest in peace:
  ~ 4th-computer-we've-owned-but-it-still-feels-like-we-just-bought-you ~
~ stove/range-that's-as-old-as-the-house-but-still-seemed-too-young-to-die ~
~ waffle-iron-that-never-made-the-best-waffles-but-we-still-loved-having you ~
~ clothes-dryer-drum-that-made-such-intersting-sounds-before-you-gave-in ~

Thanks, dear items.  I's not like we just coughed up enough money to go enjoy a trip together.  If you were going to miss us that much you could have just told us--not just quit on us!

I can't post pictures of the fun my hubby had in trying to revive everybody because the new computer requires a new cord, that I didn't have to have with our old computer, to accept my camera.  See!?!  Give them an inch--and they walk all over you!

(The following pictures were miraculously uploaded before the big crash).

So, in just a short 6 weeks--I got a trip, a new dryer drum, computer, and range/oven!  Have to save up a bit before I can afford the waffle maker.  Having a family isn't expensive...having stuff for them is!  Sheesh!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Week 5 and 6!

Behind on the blogging!!!

Week 5-- "Weather"

Nursery rhymes: "The Sky," "Twinkle, Twinkle," and "One Misty, Moisty Morning"
Recipe: Mudballs (chocolate cream cheese truffles)
Craft/activity: Seattle sunrise closet mural

Mud Balls (Chocolate cream cheeseTruffles)

2 Tbs. cocoa powder
1/4 c. powdered sugar
1/4 c. chopped nuts
1/4 c. cream cheese
chocolate sprinkles

1. Prepare paper cups (mini-muffin liners or candy ones)

2. Stir all ingredients together in a large bowl
(works best if cream cheese has softened
on the counter ahead of time).

3. Chill mixture a bit, for easier handling.
4. Lay out sprinkles on plate or shallow dish.
5. Gently roll cream cheese mixture into balls and
then roll in sprinkles. Place in prepared liners.

6. Stare at your yummy creations before chowing down.

Seattle sunrise closet mural

My oldest daughter and I are setting up shop--selling modest shirts that we find at discount prices (we love a good bargain). We wanted a back drop for our mannequin, Mandi (you'll see her later). Here it is:

There are actually quite an array of colors in the sunrise--but I couldn't back myself any further into the wall to photograph the whole spectrum. I painted the sunrise and outlined the buildings (and painted the space needle). The kids filled painted in the all the buildings--good job staying in the lines!! (Just to give you an idea on the size--it's 5.5 feet wide and 8 feet tall).

Week 6--"Dog Days of Summer"
Nursery rhymes: "Where, Oh Where [has my little dog gone]" and "Old Mother Hubbard"
Craft: Hot dog invites
Recipe: Grandma Gibson's West Virginia Hot Dog Chili

Hot dog invites for our annual street barbeque/pot luck!

I did the printing out on the computer and the kids helped
with the assembly. The googly eyes were their favorites--of course!

Grandma Gibson's West Virginia Hot Dog Chili
(got this recipe from a genuine West Virginia cookbook that was given to me as a wedding gift, a reflection of where I grew up, and I'm typing it up exactly as it reads!)

All ingredients amounts are approximate! Adjust to own taste!

1 lb. ground beef, browned
chopped or dried onion for flavoring sprinkle over top of meat (I used dried onion)
chili powder, just sprinkle enough to cover meat and onions
1 pint of tomato juice, mix with meat and onions
1/2 c. ketchup (just enought to cover meat and juice) for thickening
salt, just shake enough to cover pan of sauce


For authentic West Virginia Hot Dogs top wiener with homemade chili from above recipe and cole slaw.

Cole Slaw
Chopped cabbage mixed with Marzetti's Cole Slaw Dressing makes a good slaw for hot dogs.

I've made this chili sauce before, but never tried it with cole slaw before. It IS a delicious combination!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Week 4

Week 4--PIE-o-neer

* Nursery Rhymes: "The Queen of Hearts," "Sing a Song of Sixpence," "Jack Horner," and "Simple Simon"
* Recipe: Mini Tarts
* Craft: Tinkly Tambourines

Mini Tarts

1 stick butter
1/8 tsp. salt
1 c. all-purpose flour
2 Tbs. sugar
3 Tbs. water

assorted fruit, cut into small pieces

1/2 c. clear red jelly, apple jelly, or strained apricot jelly

1. Mix flour, salt, and sugar.  Cut in butter until mixtures resembles fine crumbs.  Add water, 1 Tbs. at a time until dough cleans the bowl.  Knead a few times.  Roll out thinly (I did all these steps myself for ease of clean up).
   Cut into circles larger than your pans.  (Can use tart pans or muffin pans).

   Press into pans.  Prick all over with fork.

   Bake in 400 degree F oven for 15 minutes, or until brown.  Let cool on wire rack.

  Place jam/jelly in saucepan and melt over low heat.  Brush into cooled pie shells.

   Decorate with fruit.  Brush more jelly glaze over top.  Let cool and ENJOY!!

~ TiNkLy TaMbOuRiNeS ~

These are popular with the younger kids and WARNING--these are loud!  We limit the time these can be used :).

What you need:

Aluminum pie pans
Bells, buttons, beads, shells, etc...

1. Punch 10-12 holes around each pie pan, using a hole punch.

2. Cut a piece of string at least twice as long as the pan's circumference.

3. Thread string in and out the holes, adding a bell, button, bead, or shell, in between each hole.

4. Tie string ends together (not too tightly--you want a little slack to make noise).

Time to make some noise!!