Tuesday, December 30, 2008


Oh my god, does anyone else have a child that wants to eat butter??? Every meal he tries to find something to put butter on. I guess it is kind of my fault, when he has toast in the morning I want him to spread his own butter. For Christmas, he got a child's butter knife. I've been really into letting him do things himself, I went to IKEA and bought all sorts of fun gadgets. Here he is spreading butter on individual pieces of green beans. Chris thinks this acceptable because he IS eating the green bean too.
Last thought when I'me looking at this picture is when is this kid gonna get out of his high chair??? He LOVES his high chair and has no desire to sit at the table with us. Oh well, if he's 13 and still wants to sit in his high chair than we've got a problem! (;

Getting it together

Alright, I've been wanting a craft area for Cameron's art supplies so for Christmas I asked for a bookshelf for them. Welllllll, instead of just craft supplies it's become an area of Cam's craft/montessori items (at least some of them are). I put out stencils, sorting, color matching, jingle bell pouring, crayons, paper, colored pencils, knobbed cylinders, transferring poms, snips. It was hard to controll myself; I wanted to put so much more out there. I think that I will switch items out every month so he has new things on the shelf. This wasn't exactly what I wanted to do with the shelf but I think he'll use it more this way. HMMM, maybe I'll have to get another one just for craft items. (Chris will love that; I already put this one in the dining room :))

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

It's almost Christmas??!!??

What! I just can't believe it! It's almost Christmas! I still feel like I have so much to do but I really don't need to get it done by Christmas. We've been busy makin' crafts and doing projects. And basketball games, school, volleyball games and just fun Christmas stuff. I haven't had to time to post much so hopefully soon I can get caught up!

We went to the Milwaukee Zoo Lunch with Santa on Sunday. It was soooo cold but we made it to the Peck Center and had a blast! (Even the big kids did but Anthony won't admit it(:) The kids got to go up and sing and Cam loved it!!

Cam even took a run to Santa. This was a surprise because at the mall Cameron wanted NOTHING to do with Santa but he liked him here.
I love this picture of the kids! Well I gotta get back to more sewing (I'm trying to make Bella, my niece and Mallory, my cousin a tutu for Christmas). I don't think we'll ever get the kids all looking at the same time.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Christmas ornaments

For preschool we give the kids a present each year. It isn't anything fancy or expensive but its just a little something to tell them that we are thinking about them. This year we made them ornaments with their picture in them. Here's my sample of Cameron in Disney World (of course). We took pictures of the kids during work time. They turned out adorable.

We are also giving the kids "Magic Reindeer Food". I can't wait to do this with Cameron on Christmas Eve. I think he'll get a kick out of it. I'm hoping we will be able to put up our tree tonight. I just want to get the lights on and then over the next couple of days be able to put up the ornaments. It's so hard to get everyone in one place EVER so hopefully at some point everyone will be able to put some ornaments up together.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Grandma Irene's birthday

We had Grandma Irene over for her birthday on Friday! Cameron and I made her a birthday cake (it's suppose to be a lion even though the kids thought it was Sponge Bob! }: Grandma and Cameron had a great time together! They played while I made dinner and who knows what Chris was doing!

We sang happy birthday to her and Cameron helped her blow out her candles.

Cameron really liked the cake! Can you tell??

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Happy Holidays

We've been working on putting up our Christmas decorations! I think we are almost all done except for the tree. I HATE putting up the lights on our tree. Every year, I end up cursing Chris out and it's not very Christmasy at all!!! Once they are put up, it's great putting the ornaments on but before then is not pretty. Here's what we've done with the fireplace area.

Porcupine Balls

Isn't that the greatest name for a dinner? We made these tonight out of the Paula Deen's my first cookbook. Chris and the kids got a kick out of the name of course and so the kids started asking him what we were having for dinner the other nights of this week and he thought it was funny to start naming every other animal he could think of and add balls after it (Rhino balls). The kids found this to be hilarous! Here's the recipe:

1 lb. lean ground beef
1 1/4 c. uncooked rice
1 tsp. dried onion
1 tsp. seasoned salt
1 tsp. italian seasoning
1-14 oz. can of diced tomatores with juice
1-10 1/2 oz. can of beef broth
Turn oven to 350 degrees. Put the ground beef in a mixing bowl. Measure 1/2 c. of the rice and put it in with the meat. Add the dried onion, seasoned salt, and italian seasoning. Mix it all together. Roll it into 8-9 golfball size balls of meat. Put the rest of the rice in the bottom of the baking dish. Pouor in the tomatoes and the beef broth and stir with the spoon. Put the meat balls on top. Cover the dish tightly with foil. Bake for about 1 hour. The rice in the meatballs will have puffed up all around the meat, and your meatballs will look like little porcupines!
It was really good! We (okay I) am trying to make more homemade meals at home but it sure takes a lot of time. Oh well it's worth it.

Today we made salt dough ornaments! I love making things with Cameron. Here's the recipe for these:
1/2 c. salt
1 c. flour
1/2 c. water

Mix together and when it becomes dough knead until smooth. Use cookie cutters to make fun ornaments or gift tags. I think this year we are going to make gift tags out of them. Last year we made ornaments for everyone.

Bake at 250 degrees for 2 hours.

It was fun making these and in the next couple of days we will paint them!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Our camera

THANK GOD for warranties! We were setting up our Christmas decorations and Cameron & I were wearing our Santa hats.

The camera just froze! I don't know what happened but now we have to take it into Best Buy to get it fixed! I've never used a warranty before so I hope it's worth it.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Button Turkey

My button turkey turned out awesome!! I brought it to school today and my mom asked if I could keep it there. I have to sub tomorrow afternoon so I will bring it home tomorrow and show what it looks like. Thanks for the great idea! I think I'm going to make a christmas tree next and use buttons to put ornaments on of different shapes.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Epcot's Food and Wine Festival

Some of you know how much I HATE cooking! It's not that I wouldn't like to but I just a) never feel like it turns out right or b)have the time. I'm starting to realize that we really need more balanced and healthy meals here! I've known all along but just need to get busy with it. Well,

I went to the greatest workshop while I was in Disney. Okay, they really weren't workshops; one was called, "Authors without borders" and it had the authors of the book, "Real food for healthy kids" and they talked about their book and I realized that I needed to really do something about this. Of course, I bought the book and had them sign it and talked to them for a while. The same day, they had a cooking demonstration and I went to that and realized that I could really do this for my family!! Thank you to the authors for showing this to me!!

Well, so far we are doing great. One of the things they said to do is have fresh veggies out before dinner and offer those if anyone is hungry. This seems to work good so far! Okay, I am SOOOOO excited! We are on our 3rd homemade meal in a row (to some of you this doesn't seem like much but for us it's a HUGE deal) and everyone is really enjoying it! Cameron ate everything I put out for- him tonight and Chris, Kait, Anthony and I had a BLAST just chit-chatting away! This is great! I made two different kinds of pasta dishes tonight (I couldn't make up my mind on which one I liked better) and everyone was so excited about them. It's amazing and I'm really excited for this winter because I think it'll be easier to get homemade meals on the table with Chris around more. Hopefully, he can keep Cam entertained while I cook. I think tonight we'll do some sort of fish dish with rice and I think corn.

I'm a big Sam's Club shopper and have many meals in the freezer still and need to get rid of them before I truly get to make everything from scratch. I will just have to have fun with side dishes while I get rid of the rest of the Sam's Club stuff.

Also, I bought some Pampered Chef items and have been using those the last 3 days too! The lady from Pampered Chef just send me an email where I can get the cranberry deep covered baker at 60 percent off (I can just see Chris shaking his head when I say that because he doesn't think I can pass up a deal and I really can't ha-ha) and send a bunch of recipes for it too so I can't wait for that to come it. Hopefully, I'll have the Sam's Club items gone by then. LOL

Wish me luck!!

Alright, I'm back from Disney (I'll post about all the fun; hopefully soon!!) but I am working on a project that is so awesome I found it on The Crafty Crow. I love everyone's blog! Some are so inspiring; it makes me really excited to try new things and a lot of the instructions are so easy to follow so thank you, thank you, thank you!!! Here's what I am making right now: http://mymontessorijourney.typepad.com/my_montessori_journey/2008/11/a-little-someth.html
Wish me luck though!! I'm handstitching it with a blanket stitich. My mom taught me at church this morning how to do it on a napkin. What a lady! She can help me with everything I need. I really appreciate when she takes the time to help me with my crazy projects. She is always willing to help me in how to do it easier or even how to do it. THANKS MOM!! I hope my kids come to me the way I come to her for help. She's taught me so much (but I can ALWAYS learn more from her) and I want to be able to show my kids all the cool stuff that she knows. You might ask, why not use the sewing machine but here's the problem. I don't have any thread for the colors I need. I have little bobbins but no big ones. That's something I could use for christmas (hint-hint)!! I really only have white, teal, light yellow and tan. I guess that's the only colors I've needed so far. I'd really like to build on my sewing skills too! Right now, it's easier to handstitch because I can be by Cameron and still play with him while I do it. I'll show you the finished project when I'm done! I want it done by Tuesday so I can bring it to school; I don't know how much Cameron will play with it but I'm hoping the kids at school will like it!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

What are we going to make today?!? Take 2

Alright, here we go again! Cameron and I came downstairs this morning and the first thing he said, "What are we going to make today?" I had to think quickly because I hadn't planned on making anything today so we decided to make pancakes for breakfast.

Here's the recipe:
1 1/2 c. Buckwheat pancake mix
1/3 c. milk
1 c. applesauce
1 egg
1 TBSP. applesauce
1/2 c. chocolate chips, opt. (Cameron wanted these added)

Mix everything together until just blended. Let stand for 5 minutes. Cook on one side until bubbles form on the edges, then flip and cook on other side until golden brown. Serve with your favorite toppings! For thinner pancakes, add more milk. For thicker, use less milk.

For blueberry pancakes, add 1/2 c. blueberries.
For cheese, add 1 c. shredded cheddar cheese.
Thanks to my cousin Amy for introducing us to buckwheat pancake mix.

Cameron got to "taste" some of the mini chocolate chips.
We had to make some that looked like Mickey Mouse!

Yesterday, we made yummy, yummy oyster crackers!!
Here's the recipe:

1 pkg. oyster crackers
1 c. oil
1 tsp. garlic salt
1 tsp. dill weed
1 pkg. original ranch-style salad dressing

Mix all ingredients together. Bake 250 degrees for 10 minutes. Watch carefully to avoid burning.
This recipe came from the Holy Communion cookbook. The kids love these and so do we!!!

Friday, October 3, 2008

What are we going to make today?!?

Alright, my little helper has just become my always wanting to help BIG helper! Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining but sometimes a mom needs a rest. Okay, maybe I'll get my rest when I'm old and in a nursing home (maybe).

Cameron did a great job dumping the ingredients in the bowl and using the mixer (with my help, of course). Here we are making cookies (C cookies for school):
1 c. butter
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. soda
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla
2 c. flour
1 or 2 c. chocolate chips
Nuts (opt.)
Cream together first 7 ingredients. Add remaining ingredients. Drop by spoonfuls on greased cookie sheet or spread in cake pan for bars. Bake at 350 to 375 degrees for 12 to 15 minutes.

*We used mini chocolate chips and only had unsalted butter and they turned out great!!


Cameron wants to make sometimes everyday, sometimes more than once a day. This has worked out okay the last couple of days because we've had to make cupcakes for Open House, C cookies for preschool, oyster crackers for Kaitlyn (Cameron said she would like them so we had to make them for her). In addition to baking, we've made craft projects for preschool. We are talking about insects and found a lot of cool things for school.
We made a Hungry Caterpillar also but I'll post that next time. I'm also going to post our oyster crackers that we make. The kids love them!!

Puzzles, Puzzles and more puzzles

I really want to keep up on posting but don't have much time right now so this will be short on writing but I want to get these pictures up!

We do puzzles all the time!!! We have puzzles all over the family room. Cameron doesn't like it if we put them away until we do all of them. He likes the large floor puzzles and does a really nice job on them. You can tell he is like an only child because the kids are so much older than he is. He wants to play with someone ALL the time. I need to start trying to get him to play by himself little by little. He's not satified with me being in the same room either, he wants me to PLAY with him.

We also need to start working on cleaning up! I've realized that I just automatically start cleaning up without having him help me. We're now trying to train him to help and hopefully eventually we will start getting him to pick up on his own. Hmmm, we'll see how that works out for us.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Kaitlyn and Homecoming

I have to get these pictures up of Kaitlyn!! She had homecoming at Lutheran on Saturday, September 20th. She looked so grown up!! I love this girl!!!!

Buzz Lightyear makes homemade playdough

Cam and I made playdough this morning! Yes, he's wearing a Buzz Lightyear costume. We spent about an hour this morning talking about what costume he wants for halloween and we still have picked one. This is one of his dress-up costumes and loves to wear it everywhere. Chris even let him wear it to the zoo.

I love making things with him now. I love babies the best but it's so fun when they can start helping. I know that I could have made it much faster and cleaner but it's nice when we can slow down and do things like this!

Play Dough Recipe
4 cups flour
1 cup salt
4 cups water
4 tablespoons oil
1/2 cup cream of tartar
Mix all ingredients in a sauce pan. Cook and stir over low/medium heat until play dough is completely formed and no longer sticky. Allow to cool slightly before storing in an air tight container or zip lock bag.

*You can use 1/2 and 1/2 of baking soda and baking powder if you want. It turns out the same*
This was a new trick that I learned today and it's really nice. Cream of tartar can be expensive because you can only get it in tiny containers so its much cheaper to make it with the baking soda and powder.
Here we are playing with our new playdough!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Dinner at Shogun

We had a great time at Shogun tonight for dinner. This is a Hibachi restaurant in Racine and the kids love it there! Alright, Cameron doesn't like the fire part but tonight he didn't even mind it!! It is SO expensive but the kids really have fun and I know that when they get older this is one of the things that the kids will remember! We all have those memories of when we were children and we want our kids to have these memories too!

I remember all family vacation we would take with my nana and uncle. Every year the week after the 4th of July we would go on a week vacation with my nana and uncle! I loved staying in the same room as my nana and uncle! We've gone to LaCrosse, Mackinaw Island, Michigan, even to Pennsylvania! It's something I loved (even if there was always one MAJOR fight between somebody, that part I didn't enjoy) and want my kids to have those memories without the arguing (:

Anyways, back to my Shogun memory! The kids had a blast trying to catch the vegetables!! Here they are all trying to catch zucchini! Anthony was the fastest to get it but Kait caught it too (after a few tries) and even Cameron got a piece in his mouth (alright, they told him to close his eyes and open his mouth and Andy put it in his mouth and we all cheered and clapped!). Even Chris and I tried. Okay, Chris did it right away and I never did! I tried but it never happened.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Trip to St. Louis

I never shared about our wonderful trip to St. Louis! It was planned so that Chris and the boys could go to the Rams vs. Giants game but it turned into so much more than that!! It turned into one of my favorite and best trips we've had! It was relaxing (I guess for our family we'd call it relaxing) and just a pleasant time!! There was no yelling or arguing about ANYTHING! I'm reading the best books right now but that's a whole other post.

We took a trip to the St. Louis Zoo. What a beautiful zoo! We had a blast there and saw lots of cool animals! We even saw a dinosaur!!

The kids showed Cam how to act funny! He really didn't understand what and why they were doing what they were doing.

We went to a restaurant Saturday night that use to be owned by the Cardinals announcer but he died. Chris found out that the management of the Giants was going to be there later that night. Of course, Chris had to see who was going to be there so he took the other kids back for dessert so he could see who was there. Anthony got his cast signed by a Giants player that now is a coach. It was cool to see the kids and Chris get excited and enjoy the same thing. I love the kind of teenagers the kids are!!! They are so special and I feel so close to them. I hope we have the same kind of bond with Cam when he's a teen that we do with the other two.

I love this picture!!! It shows what a stinker this little brother is and how good the older kids are with him!!

We went to the St. Louis Children's Museum too! The kids had fun there too. It doesn't matter how old they are!!

We even saw Sacagawea!! What we make our kids do!!! His first girlfriend will love to see these pictures!!