Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Little Braids!

I must admit, though I was never the real "girly" type girl, I have always loved to play with hair. Curling, braiding, french braiding, straightening, twisting, pony tails, barrettes, bows and bobby pins...I love them all! So on the rare day when Lizzy will sit still for long enough, I start to play! Aren't these just the sweetest little braids?!

Lime Meringue Cupcakes

This is a recipe that I tried today. They turned out pretty good. I loved the lime curd and the meringue, but the actual cake wasn't my wasn't bad, just not my favorite. The recipe came from the cookbook Cupcakes from Williams Sonoma. I had a great time trying out my cooking torch to toast the meringue! My sweet husband gave me the torch as a gift a number of years ago, but I had never actually taken out of the box. (I was pleasantly surprised to find it in a cupboard in my kitchen, rather than stored away in a box in the garage.) I love trying new recipes and having family to share the recipe with! Timothy said he didn't like it, then proceeded to eat the whole cupcake.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

It's official...

I am a witch. Or at least, I will be playing one in the upcoming SVCT production of Into the Woods. I am very excited for this part! I can be mean and nasty and sarcastic without any of the guilt. After playing the nice girl for so many years this part will be a refreshing change. I get to sing, "I'm not good, I'm not nice, I'm just right!" That just about sums it up for how I feel as a mother most days. ;o)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Dining Room Measuring Spoons -

Dining Room Measuring Spoons -

I love these measuring spoons! I used them today to make some yummy oatmeal cookies, and everytime I bring them out of the drawer, they make me smile!

Sunday, January 17, 2010


I love the theatre...but as the demands of motherhood are, well, demanding, I don't often have time to put in an appearance on stage. Every so often though, a show comes along that I am just dying to be a part of. That happens to be the case in SVCT's newest production "Into the Woods".

This is a fabulous show, full of fairy tale stories, witty lines, and tongue twisting songs. And I love it!

So, I picked a song, packed my dancing shoes, and headed to the SVCT warehouse on Friday to audition. It was so nice to see some familiar faces, but I have rarely been so nervous! I'm still waiting to hear the results...keep your fingers crossed!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

To laugh or to gag?

Timothy came out of the bathroom the other day and went straight to the fridge. I asked, "Did you wash your hands?" He said dejectedly, "I never get away with it!" So I tried to explain that if he didn't wash his hands he would be eating the bathroom germs along with his food. On the way back to the bathroom he muttered, "I've eated my boogers before, and those are germs..."

Spring Cleaning...Day 4

Day 4's assignment was to start cleaning and organizing the kitchen. The article suggested starting in the pantry, emptying everything, and then putting it back. So that is what I did. I didn't realize how much my pantry could hold until this little exercise! I didn't think the pantry was terribly unorganized, but this was a great opportunity to check expiration dates (I threw away three tall garbage bags full of expired food) and to sweep and mop the floor of the pantry.

The kitchen was overflowing with pantry items. This was difficult for me because I had worked so hard all week to keep my counters and tabletops clear all week long. But it was great motivation to get everything put away.


I don't want to post these things in an effort to toot my own horn. It is rather a way to measure the progress I am making in our home in a more tangible way. So much of my life as a mother is working on tasks that don't stay done. But here I can look at my photos and know that I completed a project. I find great satisfaction in that!

Our first trip to the ER...

All I wanted was to take a quick shower by myself...was that really too much to ask? I put one of Lizzy's shows on and ran upstairs to shower quickly. When I came back down, wrapped in a towel to check on her, she had moved a chair over to the cupboard where I keep the medicine in the kitchen and emptied an entire bottle of Claritin on the counter! She had also poured olive oil all over the top of the pills. And if that wasn't enough, she had the sunscreen out and was putting lotion on her legs. Did I mention that she wasn't wearing any pants? That was because she had peed all over the bathroom floor and left her pants and underpants there by the toilet. I asked her if she had eaten any of the pills, and she said she had, so while she sat in time out, I cleaned up the bathroom and kitchen while talking on the phone to the doctor and poison control. Poison control advised a trip to the emergency room, so that is where we went. I was torn between being angry (with Lizzy and with myself) and being worried. All went well
at the hospital (which Lizzy pronounced "hosmiddle"). Lizzy was given this lovely charcoal drink and then we waited to see if there would be any effect from the Claritin. Lucky for us, there were no side effects and the doctor remarked that she doubted Lizzy had swallowed even one pill. So four hours and one or two gray hairs later, Lizzy was released and I was able to take her home. And the most amazing part, after almost 12 years and three boys, it was my sweet little girl that was the first of my children that I had to take to the emergency room!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Spring Cleaning...Day 3

Today I was back in the living room. Everything was sparkling from the cleaning yesterday, except for one little corner. The corner I never showed in the photos. The corner that still housed the boxes of Christmas decorations and the bookcase that I have never been able to get looking quite right. So while Lizzy played at a friend's house, I carted the boxes out to the garage and got to work on the bookcase. After de-shelving the books, wiping down the shelves, and re-stocking the shelves, it was time to go get Lizzy, but it still didn't look right. So after another try, I was able to get the books arranged in a passable manner. I'm still not happy with it, but it will do for now.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Spring Cleaning...Day 2

Day 2: The Living Room
The job for today was to organize the living room. I get to spend two days in this area, and since my living room was pretty well organized, I got down to the business of cleaning. I moved the Christmas tree (cast iron stand and all, since I couldn't get the base unscrewed) to the backyard for Jeffrey to take care of at his convenience. I dusted, vacuumed (carpet, tile, and even the blinds!), washed outside windows, and mopped the floor. I let go of a family home evening chart, made of wood, that I had never really liked the look of, but it had been serving a purpose. I decided that it was more important to enjoy looking at my mantle than to hold onto something that I didn't like, even though it was useful.
In this process, I am learning things about myself and about my home. This house was not my first choice to live in, and I have used that so often as an excuse to stay away from it. I have learned that I like being home, even in a home I don't love, when it is clean and tidy. It was the mess and the clutter that I avoided.
The lesson that I still need to learn is that no matter what I do, my home (and life) will still get messy. The website I am using said this:

"Quite honestly, I don't have solutions for this problem, because the problem is, we live with imperfect people. Some personalities and temperaments endure disorganization more than others. And certain ages tolerate--even enjoy--messes more than others."
With everything nice and clean, I found myself following a two year old around picking up dropped popcorn crumbs. And I really, really tried not to yell at the eleven year old peeling a cutie over my clean floor. But I do have great satisfaction in knowing that the floor is clean, at least for today.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Spring Cleaning: Day 1

After two weeks with everyone home, decorations filling the house, and treats scattered over the counters. Two weeks in which presents were taken out of hiding, wrapped, then placed carefully under the tree until that fateful morning when the wrappings were torn, tossed and discarded, only to leave new toys, books, games, and clothing which would need a place to rest in our little abode. After all of this, I needed a rest. A rest from the clutter. A new year. A new beginning. In short, I had a dream...a dream in which there is a place for everything, and everything has it's place. A good friend shared a website with me which you will find here. I tried this once before, but didn't get past day 2 or 3. But, as I am always an optimist on January 4--or whichever day is the day where the kids go back to school after a looooonnngggg winter break--I thought I would give this Spring Cleaning thing another try. So this is what I have accomplished today. There are still a few things that I haven't tried to unclutter upstairs, but I am proud of what I have accomplished today!






Before (and this is my WORST spot in the house!)


Ahhhhh....much better.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Ornament Tradition

Jeff's great-grandmother made ornaments like this each Christmas, one for each grandchild and great-grandchild. After she passed away, Jeff's grandma carried on the tradition. This year she decided that she could no longer keep up with making the ornaments, so instead, she taught a couple of her daughters, granddaughters, and me how to make them for ourselves! This is my first attempt, but I look forward to making many more in the future.