Thursday, December 15, 2011


When an out of control one of these...

is careening down a hill toward one of these...

you get one of these...

This happened a few weeks ago and he's all healed up now.  Fortunately, he was wearing a helmet or else it could've been much worse.  I'm thinking that I need to look into purchasing full body armor fitted for a 7 year old.

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Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Oh, Wait...

...I mustache you a question!

Cracks me up, everytime.

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Monday, November 7, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Okay, I'm a week late, I know.  I've been a bit busy since my last post back in August (wow, has it really been that long?!) but I had to show off my two spooky boys. 

As Phillip and I took them around trick or treating we reminisced about how when they were toddlers they were too shy to knock on doors.  Last Monday I had to tell them to slow down as they ran from house to house.  Fortunately, we made it through the night with nary a zombie nor haunted skeleton getting hurt.

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Monday, August 22, 2011

A Look Around

I'm embarrassed to show off my garden this year. The heatwave really did a number on my tomato plants. Hard to believe, but I didn't get a single tomato this year. I've had plenty of blooms but they never developed.
Here's another sorry bell pepper plants. I've only gotten a couple of peppers this year but they were inedible. I can always count on basil, though. Next year, I'm skipping the peppers and planting nothing but basil in this bed.
Look at this poor hydrangea! I have 3 of them and they all look like this! It's starting to put on some new growth since the heatwave and drought broke but most of their existing leaves died.
The muscadines continued to grow, though, and are starting to ripen.
And here's another plant that has continued to grow...vincas (periwinkles). I love this plant because it's almost impossible for me to destroy. It's almost impossible for a border collie mix to destroy, too. She dug out the flowers a few weeks ago and I had to replant them and they're as good as new.

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Friday, August 19, 2011

Love For Junie B

Does that classroom look familiar?
It's Room One from the Junie B. Jones books! The boys have been fans of Junie B. since Kindergarten. Sure, she overuses the words smelly, stupid and dumb but she's really a funny character. Especially when she's brought to life in theater. We loved watching Jingle Bells, Batman Smells back in December.
In the first Junie B. book she gets locked in the kindergarten building after school. I can remember reading this book one night to Thomas when he was in kindergarten and as I was turning off the light he said, "Mommy, I wish I could be locked in the kindergarten building with Mrs. D." (Mrs. D was one of the very young and pretty kindergarten teachers at his school.) Cute! Of course, nowadays Thomas doesn't think it's cute at all--especially writing about it my blog--more like stupid and dumb but in the words of Junie B: a journal is where you write your life.

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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Wordless (Sort Of) Wednesday: Roasted Tomato Soup

(Inspired by's Doodle Your Favorite Meal contest)

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Monday, August 15, 2011

Princess Gravedigger?

(Monster Jam, January 2011)

Nathan and I were playing Know It or Blow It one day and I was doing pretty good, moving along through trivia questions like, name the 7 continents, what are the 4 types of taste buds, and who are the 5 family members in The Simpsons?

But then I hit a snag when it came to naming the 8 original Disney princesses. I know I should have my girl card taken away for this but I could only come up with 2...well, technically just one because I said, "Ariel and the one in the yellow dress." I'm so ashamed. I couldn't even come up with Cinderella?! Sheesh.

On the other hand, I CAN name 8 Monster Jam trucks:)

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Friday, August 5, 2011

A Dinosaur Poem...I Think


This is Screature. Santa brought him for Nathan back in 2009. It freaked him out so much that it has been sitting on a bookshelf in my bedroom ever since along with a fake tarantula and a poisonous Shrek glass that we were supposed to return to McDonald's but never did. It's the scary shelf.

And now for a scary poem by Thomas that no doubt disturbed his 3rd grade teacher.


giant reptile, instinct

moving, roaring, drooling

hunt, kill, kick, jolt

killing, shooting, blasting

dangerous, hurtful

machine gun.

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Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Roasted Pepper Pasta

I was hanging up some laundry in my closet the other day and noticed my Food Network magazines stacked up against the wall. Staring up at me was a picture of this pasta dish. It was the cover recipe from an old issue--July/August of last year. It looked so good, I couldn't believe I hadn't tried it yet. I finished up the laundry, headed into town for the ingredients, made it for dinner that night and...


I could've been eating this since last year?! Not fair! It was great but I did make a major change to the original recipe--I served it hot instead of cold. Delicious.

Roasted Pepper Pasta (original recipe here )

16 oz box rigatoni
3 bell peppers, halved, stemmed and seeded
6 cloves garlic, unpeeled
1/2 cup almonds
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 lemon
8 oz bocconcini (small mozzarella balls)
1 bunch fresh basil, leaves torn
salt and pepper

Preheat broiler.
Cook rigatoni as directed.
Place garlic and peppers (cut side down) on a foil lined broiler pan or cookie sheet. Broil for 8 minutes or until peppers are charred. Put garlic and charred peppers into a container and cover for about 5 minutes.
Toast the almonds in a a dry skillet over medium high heat. When browned and fragrant remove from skillet, let cool then chop.
Peel roasted peppers and cut into strips. Squeeze garlic onto a cutting board and mash with 1/2 tsp salt.
Add peppers and garlic paste into a bowl with olive oil and lemon juice. Add bocconcini, almonds, basil, pasta and toss. Add salt and pepper to taste.

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Monday, August 1, 2011

Little Pink Donut

Look who got a new toy!

For the past 2 years that Indie has been with us she has never had a toy of her own. I did get her a Nylabone once to dissuade her from chewing on our rocking chairs and she does have a purple squeaky ball that was a hand me down from the huskies but I've never bought her a toy specifically for her to play with and enjoy.

I was feeling a little guilty about that, after all, the huskies had a ton of squeaky toys, balls, stuffed hedgehogs and kongs. So we headed to PetSmart recently and Nathan picked out a brand new toy just for Indie. It turns out, like everyone else in this household, she loves donuts.

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Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Apple Walnut Sticky Buns

It's been awhile since I posted a recipe--in March I posted my mom's recipe for oatmeal cookies. Today I have another sweet treat, this time from Sandra Lee. I know a lot of foodies give her a hard time by saying that opening a can of cinnamon rolls is NOT cooking but I'm happy to take help wherever I can get it. My only complaint is that she e-nun-ci-ates ev-uh-ry word. But even then I'll sit through her show just to get a great recipe like this...delicious apple walnut sticky buns.

Apple Walnut Sticky Buns (original recipe at )

butter, softened (for greasing muffin tin)
1 Granny Smith apple (peeled, cored, diced into bite size pieces)
3/4 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 (8 count) tube refrigerated cinnamon rolls
1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Generously butter an 8 count muffin tin.
In a bowl, combine apples, walnuts and brown sugar. Spoon mixture evenly into the tin. Place cinnamon rolls on top of apple mixture.
Bake 12-14 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes then invert rolls onto a plate.
Mix icing with pumpkin pie spice and drizzle over sticky buns.

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Monday, July 18, 2011

The Day I Became Mom

I remember it clearly. It was a late Thursday afternoon in April--April 14, 2011 to be exact. We were driving to baseball practice and Thomas pipes up from the back of the car, "I think I'm gonna start calling you Mom instead of Mommy."

I guess I knew this day was coming, he is approaching the double-digits, after all. I was a little bummed out but I told him that would be fine with me, especially since I'm still 'Mommy' to Nathan.

But then Nathan decides to join in on the conversation with "I'm gonna start calling you Mom, too!" Great.

So later that night when my husband came home from work I broke the news to him that he's now married to a MOM. He took it well...even when I broke the news to him that the name-change extended to him as well and he's now DAD instead of Daddy:)

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Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Our Fourth

I think I post the same pictures each year--Nathan holding his ears, Thomas jumping over the colorful smoke balls, and both of them stomping on whipper snappers and chasing parachutes. And, of course, a big exploding firework. Still fun and entertaining after all these years.

Oh, and the food. The FOOD! Grilled chicken and ribs, baked beans, potato salad, french bread, deviled eggs and key lime pie. Still delicious after all these years.

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Monday, July 11, 2011

A 10 Month Difference

When school ended in June I was doing the 30 Day Photo Challenge busily posting pictures of myself (yikes), flowers and my old toys that are hidden away in a closet at my parent's house. So that's why I'm just now getting around to posting these pics of my boys on their first day of school and their last. I'd say they are growing into a couple of fine young men.

On a related but more somber note, stores are beginning to set up aisles for back to school supplies. Glue sticks, dry erase markers, hand sanitizers, boxes of tissue...and none of them are the size, color and quantity that is on your list. It's enough to give a mom nightmares.

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Thursday, June 30, 2011

Day 30: Self-portrait

It's the final day of the June Photo Challenge! And what a challenge it has been. I've gone from posting only once in April and once in May to posting everyday this month! We'll see what happens in July...

For day 30 it was another dreaded self-portrait. I had Nathan snap this picture of me this morning out by the muscadines. It's become my morning ritual--coffee, reading on the iPad, watching the birds, spending time with the dogs--I love these lazy days of summer.

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Day 29: Black And White

It's only fitting that I post a picture of my sister's dog, Maggie, for day 29. She had kidney failure and was euthanized Wednesday morning. She was a good dog and lived a long, happy life--14 years. We'll miss you, Maggie.

You were never masters, but friends. I was your friend.
I loved you well, and was loved. Deep love endures
To the end and far past the end. If this is my end,
I am not lonely, I am not afraid. I am still yours.
--Robinson Jeffers

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Day 28: Flowers

I have 2 crepe myrtles, one on each side of my front porch. I actually need more of them in my life because they're so colorful and easy to take care of. I especially love the red ones--I think that particular color is called dynamite. Surely Indie wouldn't dig up something called 'dynamite' if I planted one in the backyard, would she?

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Day 27: From A Distance

When we were in Florida for Spring Break one of the must see things on our to-do list was a spring training game. Luckily, the Cards were playing the Nationals nearby and we got a chance to see Albert Pujols at bat. Unluckily, we didn't get to see him hit any home runs. The ballpark hot dogs more than made up for it, though.

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Day 26: Close-Up

My internet was down for a few days so I got a little backed up on June's photo challenge. So I'm about to bombard your reader with 5 days worth of posts. Sorry 'bout that.

Thomas was a little upset that I didn't use his hands gripping the baseball bat photo for the 'hands' challenge. I had gone with the pic of Nathan's hands instead. To keep everything fair and balanced I'm using it for day 26, the 'close-up' challenge. Crisis averted. A happy 9 year old makes for a happy 38 year old.

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Saturday, June 25, 2011

Day 25: Something Pink

I had to search my archives for something pink and here it is...a pink rose.

At my sister's first wedding back in '99 she had one request... a bridal bouquet of pink roses. However, the bouquet that the wedding coordinator put together was far from pink. The coordinator didn't want the extra flowers from the rest of the floral decorations to go to waste so she put together a bouquet from those leftovers. And those leftovers were NOT pink.

So when my sister remarried last year she vowed to have pink roses. She did and this is a picture of one of them.

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Friday, June 24, 2011

Day 24: Animal

I'm gonna make this quick because I'm in the middle of Hot Tub Time Machine and it's pretty awesome so here's day 24 of the photo challenge...Indie.

According to Thomas she's the best dog ever. I don't know if I would go that far, I mean, if I wake up in the morning and find that someone has dug up all my newly planted flowers, I know exactly who to blame.

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Thursday, June 23, 2011

Day 23: Sunflare

This isn't the best capture of a sunflare in the world but it will do. Especially when I'm really wanting to showcase this tree. I love this tree. It was just a little wisp of a thing back in 2006 when the land was cleared for the building of our house. I'm so glad it didn't get caught up in the brush hog. It sits right in front of our house and every year it grows bigger and bigger...just like the boys.

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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Day 22: Hands's Nathan and his dad holding hands. Thomas wanted to get in on today's photo challenge and made me take a picture of him gripping his baseball bat. It was cute but I liked this one better.

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Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Day 21: Faceless Self-Portrait

So with maybe half and hour left of daylight I threw my camera at my 7 year old (not literally) and grabbed my 9 year old (literally) and flung him around the yard (about 50% literally) and BOOM! Day 21's photo challenge is complete.

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Monday, June 20, 2011

Day 20: Bokeh

Bokeh. Now that's a photography term I can wrap my head around. It means blur and I like it. Fortunately, when it comes to bokeh, my little ol' point and shoot can hang with the dSLR's. So take that, fancy schmancy cameras!

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Sunday, June 19, 2011

Day 19: Something Orange

Thomas' last baseball game was this past Friday. I was kind of sad to see the season end because this was his best year yet. Okay, so he never got a hit but he scored a lot of runs off of walks, caught a couple of pop flies AND look how cute he looks in his uniform! Nevermind that I went through a whole bottle of bleach trying to keep those pants clean.

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Saturday, June 18, 2011

Day 18: Your Shoes

Day 18's photo challenge is to take a picture of your shoes. Or rather, my shoes. Even more specific, my favorite shoes to wear this summer. They are so comfy, like puffy air pillows. Everytime I see a mom wearing them at the ballfield I'm tempted to ask her if she loves them as much as I do. Really, I wear them all the time and I have the flip-flop tan lines to prove it.

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Day 17: Technology

We are saying goodbye to this piece of technology. We cancelled our satellite service last week and so far, so good. With the internet and Netflix we're not missing much. The boys are handling it really well. They've even started playing with toys they haven't played with in years. Oh, and another good thing about getting rid of Directv...


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Thursday, June 16, 2011

Day 16: Long Exposure

Gah. I'm not liking today's photo challenge. So far it's been Take a Picture of Something Green...Now Blue...Ooooh, Pretty Clouds! And now the challenge is Long Exposure. That takes skills and I have none. Google says a long exposure makes water look all foggy like and this is as close as I can get to that effect.

So there.

Up next: Technology!

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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Day 15: Silhouette

Taking time out for a little vrksasana at Fort Walton Beach, FL. Good times.

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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Day 14: Eyes

I was settling the boys into bed tonight, ready to read a few more chapters in our current bedtime book--There's a Boy in the Girl's Bathroom by Louis Sachar--and I remembered...EYES! I had almost forgotten about today's photo challenge. I grabbed my camera and chose Thomas as my model. I love his freckles and long lashes. I even kinda, sorta love that he would only let me take his picture if he was cross-eyed.


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Monday, June 13, 2011

Day 13: Yourself With 13 Things

Today's photo challenge had me surrounded with 13 of my favorite books. Some are educational, some are thought provoking, some are funny and lighthearted but they are all my favorites in one way or another. And I'm just realizing that the majority of them have really strong settings that are as important as the characters. I'm also realizing that the majority of them are by female authors. Huh. How 'bout that.

Anywho, here's a rundown...
1. A Thousand Splendid Suns--Khaled Hosseini
2. The Kite Runner--Khaled Hosseini
3. The Bonesetter's Daughter--Amy Tan
4. Wild Swans--Jung Chang
5. Beloved--Toni Morrison
6. Animal, Vegetable, Miracle--Barbara Kingsolver
7. Gap Creek--Robert Morgan
8. The Outsiders--S.E. Hinton
9. Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood--Rebecca Wells
10. Cold Sassy Tree--Olive Ann Burns
11. Standing in the Rainbow--Fannie Flagg
12. A Girl Named Zippy--Haven Kimmel
...and book number 13...the good ol' Riverside Shakespeare. (I'm sittin' on it.)

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Sunday, June 12, 2011

Day 12: Sunset

Last summer we were looking for inexpensive daycations that would get us out of the house and into nature so we made a lot of trips to area state parks. The bad thing about hiking in the summer though is having to keep an eye out for snakes. And even though I know they had to be out there somewhere, I never actually saw one. If I could go the rest of my life never having to see a snake I would be a very happy girl. And I could have definitely done without having seen that one snake hanging out in our grill several weeks ago. Ewww.

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Saturday, June 11, 2011

Day 11: Something Blue

As a Cardinals fan, it pains me to post this but my husband and oldest son are die-hard Cubs fans.

Bless their hearts.

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Friday, June 10, 2011

Day 10: Childhood Memory

The other day Nathan asked me what I liked to do when I was little and I said I liked riding my bike and making mud pies. I also should have said, "Play with toys!" I loved reading, looking through my viewmaster and listening to records. And when I was Thomas' age, I was all about Strawberry Shortcake. But my all-time favorite toy? Barbie dolls!

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Thursday, June 9, 2011

Day 9: Someone You Love

Today's photo challenge is to take a picture of someone you love. I couldn't choose just one person so here's 2!

Now that school is out we get to take part in one of our favorite evening activities--sitting outside around the fire pit. Usually we make some smores or have ice cream and ride bikes or play frisbee while the sun goes down. Now that we have an iPad though it's less playing catch and more playing Angry Birds. Oh, well, at least they're getting some fresh air.

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Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Day 8: A Bad Habit

Don't ever ask your husband to name one of your bad habits. Especially when he starts by saying, "Well, you're a really good person but..." Hmph. He said that I never admit when I'm wrong. Seriously, though, how can I admit when I'm wrong when I'm always right?!

So here's what I think my bad habit is: I'm kinda messy.

I have a bad habit of throwing things on the dining table and letting them hang out there for awhile. Sigh. It's just so hard finding a home for all the papers in my life.

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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Day 7: Fruit

Day 7's photo challenge is fruit. Sadly, the only fruit I have in the house is some shriveled grapes in the fridge so I crossed the road in front of our house and took a shot of the blackberries that grow wild around here. They don't look much better than the grapes though. They're really small and unripe and if the heat doesn't get them then the birds and deer will. And I'm fine with that. At least until I start craving blackberry creme brulee.

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Monday, June 6, 2011

Day 6: From A Low Angle

It's Lekkers! More commonly known as Lexie. She's having a rough time of it lately and will be heading to the vet clinic this week. She's having a hard time keeping her balance plus she has a sore on her back that's not healing very well. What's that saying about dogs? They're not our whole lives but they make our lives whole? That's about right. Despite the stress, expense, work and heartache that comes with having dogs they're worth it.

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Sunday, June 5, 2011

Day 5: From A High Angle

How's this for a high angle?! My dad doesn't take his boat out too often anymore, I think that's why the most recent boating picture I have is this one from a couple of years ago. My mom and dad took the boys out for a boat ride on the creek behind our house and I sat out on the bluff waiting to take their picture. I'm sure they had an eventful time since it appears that a 7 year old is driving the boat!

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Saturday, June 4, 2011

Day 4: Something Green

I got a late start on my garden this year because of all the thunderstorms that popped up the first of spring. Now that we've dried out a bit I started one of our raised beds with a few of my favorites: bell peppers, cilantro and basil.

It's great having bell peppers on hand for fajitas and omelets. They also freeze really well.

I'm included in the percentage of people who love cilantro vs. the ones who think it tastes like soap. It's perfect for chicken tacos and guacamole.

What can I say about basil? I love it! I used up my last frozen pesto cube back in January and I can't wait for some more pesto!

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