Thursday, March 27, 2008

The life cycle of paper

It all begins with trees. Trees growing happily in the sun. Weathering the elements, growing tall and strong.
Next, someone comes along and cuts down the tree. They take it to a big factory where the tree is somehow made into paper. All sorts of paper.

They make;

Paper used to print the news.

Paper made into all sorts of magazines.

Paper sent to publishing companies, used to make books.

Paper sent to phone companies, power companies and other public service companies.

Paper sent to schools for school assignments, art projects, report cards, and notes from teachers.

This paper is then transported in many different ways.

Some will magically appear on the front porch.

Some will be left in the mailbox by a trusty mail carrier.

Some will be stuffed into children's back packs.

It doesn't matter where it comes from.
It doesn't matter how it gets here.

Somehow, every piece of paper ever created ends up on my kitchen counter.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

A Sunday poem

Until I hear a "snap"

Working my way into this most awful, beastly trap.

As I'm working up a sweat.

Cause I'm not quite there just yet.

Now I'm hopping in one place.

Holding in my breath
while sweat is dripping down my face.

Here I stand


As I smile and take a pose.

You see, I've finally done it!

I've put on my pantihose!

By Jill

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Baskets full of............

The Bunny showed up at our house today.

He brought all sorts of delightful chocolate covered treats to
Brielle, Aaron and Max.

He filled CJ's basket with...................

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Food! Glorious food!

Alternate title for this post: "Yet another reason not to blog when it's really late and you're tired."

Today Brielle yelled at her brothers.
This in itself is not an unusual event, however, it's what she yelled that surprised me. She said;


Do any of you have any idea what she meant to say?
Hmmmmmm. I'm thinking contest.
Leave your guess in the comments. First one to guess correctly wins!

The prize? Pretty much just the respect and admiration of your peers.
(Sorry, I'm just boring that way)
I thought of going through Aaron's backpack and giving away all of his unfinished homework as a prize .................
(Seriously, it's not like he's ever going to use it)
Okay, the winner can choose between the following two pieces of artwork made by two of my darling children.
Mr. "Sock Man"
by Brielleor

"I heart Weirdo"
by Aaron(sorry I couldn't get the photo rotated)

Both are original works of art, worthy of hanging on any refrigerator.
(And worth much less than the cost of the postage)

The word again is "mivgipiemillo"

We thought that it sounded like some sort of dessert.
Trying to combat further boredom among my children (Less than one week and they are back in school!) We have decided to try and come up with a dessert that we can name.......

We are taking suggestions for that one too. Please, make it yummy!

Since this post is all about food, I need to mention the eating habits of my toddler. He is currently in a phase where he only eats food that is yellow, orange, white and brown.
No green.
No blue.
No red.
No purple.
The only foods he wants to eat are Eggo waffles, eggs, chicken nuggets, cheeseburgers, yellow corn tortilla chips, hard taco shells, cheetos, cornbread, meatballs, hot dogs, cheese, milk........
He is by far my pickiest eater.
Last week, we had a breakthrough. I spent many hours making lasagna (My kids refer to it as "the world's best lasagna":0)
We have been trying to get Max to eat this forever, and he won't touch it. Last week, he actually asked for it, and ate three helpings!
I was so excited, that this week I went to the work of making lasagna again. This time, Max wouldn't touch it.
Go figure.

CJ has a new food obsession.

"Corned Beef Hash"

CJ went ice fishing with his scout troop last weekend, and for breakfast, he was introduced to the corned beef hash. He can't stop talking about it.
"Mom, can you buy me some corned beef hash?"
"Hey, you know what would hit the spot right about now? A big old can of corned beef hash!"
"Hey Mom, did I tell you about how they fixed the corned beef hash?"
"Hey Mom, I thought of a new sandwich, you make it with two slices of french toast, and inside you fill it with bacon, syrup and CORNED BEEF HASH"
Apparently, at the camp, two cans of hash were brought, and CJ ate an entire can himself.

On the plus side, I now know what to get him for his birthday.
Does anyone have a recipe for a Corned Beef Hash birthday cake?
Do you think I could get a case of Corned Beef Hash at Costco. I'm sure it would cost a whole heck of a lot less than the iPod we got him last year.

Today I decided that I will be inventing a new alarm clock. It will smell like freshly baked cookies, and sound like the timer from our oven. This sound/smell combination will bring my children running from any corner of the house, garage, or back yard, however, when I go to wake them up in the morning, it's not unusual to have all three of them laying in bed with their alarms ringing loudly in their ears, and they are still sleeping soundly.

Following along with the food theme, here is another video by CJ. This is a movie trailer for a film he has in the works. The main thing holding him back is needing about 30 banana costumes. With his current film budget (nothing) it may take a while for him to finish the project.

What can I say, the kid is destined for greatness!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Sister White and the Seven Sunbeams

Once upon a time, in a ward far far away, lived a Primary teacher, Sister White.
Each Sunday, Sister White, along with Sister Snow would teach a darling little group of three year old Sunbeams.
These were the cutest, most darling little children that anyone could ever imagine! Their names were..............
and Giggly.

These sweet little children were brought to Primary each week by their loving parents, eager for them to receive lessons in all that is good and pure.
Each of the parents brought their little Sunbeams to Primary, leaving them in the loving care of their teachers, Sister Snow and Sister White. As their parents left, the children each became rather distressed and they all began singing their favorite song in unison. It is called "I WANT MY MOMMY!!!"
These sweet little children made a transformation, changing their names to..........
and The Imitator
(Happy kept his name, as he was still quite happy to be there, causing great delight among the teachers.)

As Primary began, the cries of the little Sunbeams could be heard throughout the church.
Anxious parents waited outside the Primary room, ready to come in at any given time, and rescue the teachers from their children.
As the singing time began, The children calmed down (a bit.) Wiggly then took off his shoes.
Then the imitator took of his shoes. Next, Fearful removed her shoes. Soon, all of the Sunbeams were barefoot, and they began to smell each others feet.
Apparently, the smells were not pleasant, because Fearful yelled PU, and then put her shoes back on and began running from her seat to the piano to her seat, to the piano, to her seat.............

Well, you get the picture.

The Imitator immediately began following Fearful, so now there were two running back and forth. Sister Snow and Sister White were beside themselves. They each grabbed one of the "runners" and sat them on their laps.
Suddenly, Anxiety burst into tears again, saying that she really needed her Mommy. Sister White tried to reassure her, however, her sorrow was so great that her tears and her nose began to run and drip down her face in such a way, that Sister White took her to her mother.
When Whiny saw that Anxiety went to her mother by sobbing, she began to sob, and no amount of comfort given by any of the teachers would mend her broken heart, so she was taken to her mother also.
(Okay, we're now down to 5 Sunbeams)
At that very moment, Wiggly and Fearful began to sing a new song called..... "!...BA!..."
The imitator, of course, joined in, and the others, and they sang
and Louder
Sister Snow and Sister White were overwhelmed. Several of the other teachers in the Primary left their classes, to come and help with crowd control of the Sunbeams.
The Primary chorister then brought out her magic bag to reveal chocolate eggs, to be given to those children who sat in their chairs and sang (the songs that they were supposed to sing.)

The Chorister was greatly respected for her quick thinking, and Sister White made a mental note to bring her a batch of homemade fudge later on in the week.

The children sang with all their might. They sang about popcorn popping, and of Snowmen. Then they sang of being children of God, then Wiggly removed his socks and waved his feet around to show everyone his brightly painted pink toenails.
Then Fearful went up to the Chorister to see if she could score an extra chocolate egg, and of course, The Imitator followed, and since two of the Sunbeams were up by the chorister, then two more felt the need to join them, and they danced around the Chorister, then over to the piano, back to the Chorister............ect.
Then they began the "BA....BA.... BA.... " song again.

Happy was.....well, just happy to be there, occasionally looking at the other Sunbeams as if they were nuts.
Happy gave hope to the hearts of Sister Snow, and Sister White.
Perhaps, someday, the others might follow his example and be happy too.

When it came time to go to class, Sister Snow and Sister White led 5 temporarily happy little children to their classroom. When they got to the classroom, they counted only 4 Sunbeams.

One of them, apparently, had escaped.

Sister White went back into the hallway to search for the missing child. She found Screamy playing in the drinking fountain, completely soaking the entire front of his shirt. She led him to the classroom.

Sister Snow taught the children a wonderful lesson, all about how grateful we are for God's creations such as trees and flowers.
She gave them pictures of flowers to color, but some of them did not like to color, and preferred to jump off of their chairs.
The Imitator soon followed.
Sister Snow and Sister White stacked the chairs in the corner, leaving the Sunbeams nothing to jump off of, so they removed their shoes and began smelling each others feet again.
Then someone dumped the crayons all over the floor, and they began walking on them in their bare feet.
Then they began peeling the wrappers off of the crayons, and throwing the tiny bits of paper at each other.

Sister White was sure she could feel a migraine starting.

A shriek was heard as Screamy discovered that someone else had scribbled on his paper, then he tore it up only to discover that it wasn't really his paper, he had torn the paper of Fearful, who was now crying loudly because Screamy had torn her paper.
Oh my!
Someone then broke out the "BA... BA... BA...."song again.
The Imitator joined in. (you didn't see that one coming did you?)
The Sunbeams then discovered that they could pound on the wall along with the "BA.. BA...BA" song, and apparently, it was great fun.

Let me point out that it might seem like Sister Snow and Sister White were just sitting by watching the festivities, however, they were, in fact, trying desperately to maintain some sort of order in the classroom.
It wasn't working.

After what seemed like hours, it was finally time for the parents to come and get their Sunbeams.
The crayons were cleaned up.
Papers were taped back together.
Shoes were put back on.
Except for a minor issue of Wiggly not being able to find one of his socks, clean up went fairly smoothly.
The parents came and took their children home. They were so excited to see the beautiful pictures colored by their children, and thanked Sister Snow and Sister White for teaching their children.
Sister Snow went home and took a Motrin.
Sister White went home and took a nap.
And they all lived happily ever after...........................

Let me also point out that Sister Snow and Sister White, dearly love the little children in their class. They are just tired.

The stories in this post may or may not be true.
Any characters similar to any people in real life are not intentional.
(That's my story and I'm sticking to it! If questioned, I will deny everything!)

For those of you totally lost,
Primary=Children's classes at church
Sunbeams=Three year old Primary kids.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Cures for the boredom

Yesterday we had a day packed full of fun activities!

Jo at tangled me is having a fix it Friday post today, so I thought I would show you what we did yesterday.

First of all, my TOTALLY COOL cousin invited us over to make Ukrainian Easter eggs.
I do have to say that she is the MASTER of all things artistic and beautiful!

Here are some finished ones that she had made earlier.

First, you start with a raw egg. You use a special tool which has a small funnel type thing on the end, where you melt wax over a candle.

When the wax is melted, you draw designs all over the egg with the wax.

Next, you dip the egg in dye.

You repeat the process, drawing more designs in wax, coloring the egg again, until you have several layers of wax and dye, then you put the egg in a warm oven to melt the wax.

After the wax comes off, it reveals the several layers of color on the egg.

SO cool.

We didn't want Max playing with the candle & hot wax, so we just gave him a paintbrush, and let him decorate his egg.

Next, you varnish the egg, then poke a small hole in the egg, and remove the insides. Apparently, you can just leave it raw, and in about 10 years, the yolk dries up, but I decided not to take that chance in our house. The insides are coming out.

When we got home, we made these yummy cupcakes.

I baked them in a mini muffin pan, frosted the sides and rolled them in sprinkles.
I have never worked with fondant, and I wanted to experiment, so we made the little flowers on top of the cupcakes, and then covered this small cake.
The fondant was easier that I thought it would be.

Last post, I included a video that CJ made when he was really bored. While it was somewhat amusing, it really isn't an example of his best work. He is actually quite good at video making and editing. Here is a better example of what he can do.

The iPod is actually his Halloween costume. If you didn't catch it at the end, it is a 160 terabyte iPod. (Hey, the thing is HUGE, CJ fits inside it, it should have a ton of memory)
If you really had an Pod with that much memory, it would hold;
40,000,000 songs
200,00 hours of video
50,000,000 photos


Wednesday, March 12, 2008

I'm Bored.........bored.........bored.......

I figured out a way to stop the fighting for a while on Monday.
I used the "divide and conquer" method. I took two of the kids shopping with me, and left the other two at home, splitting up the two who were screaming at each other the loudest.
While out, I managed to buy myself a new pair of shoes (on sale, YAY!) and a new outfit to wear to the concert we were attending that night.
Thanks to those of you who suggested that eating chocolate would help me endure the fight-a-thon. I bought myself a bunch of Cadbury creme eggs, which I now have hidden in the bottom drawer in my bathroom.

(The sound you are now hearing is that of my children stampeding into my bathroom to find the chocolate.)

Silly, silly children.

I would never really hide chocolate in there, because it is right above the heating vent, and the chocolate would melt.
I have found a much better stash for my chocolate.

I have hidden it in my tummy!

Maybe if they had spent less time fighting and more time...............oh, I don't know, possibly CLEANING UP THAT BIG MESS IN THE FAMILY ROOM, I might have felt like sharing the chocolate with them.

Too bad for them.

The kids have been out of school for just over a week now, and the newness of the situation has worn off. While I do enjoy the opportunity to sleep in each morning, certain signs of boredom amongst my children are beginning to emerge.

Top ten signs that my children are bored

#10. They actually helped me clean out the storage room.

#9. Two words "Spongebob Marath

#8. Brielle spent about 20 minutes covering her face with an entire roll of tape.

#7. Using blankets and chairs, they have built a tent city in the family room.

#6. They are coming up with new ways to insul
t each other.
"Mom, they told me my room smells like a dead pig!"

#5. They are commenting on my bl

#4. CJ (my computer genius) created a new program for the computer.
It's called "Noise maker"
It makes noise.
Because apparently we don't have enough noise in our house.


#2. I have heard the phrase "Mom, please make him stop coughing on my feet!"

And the #1 sign that my kids are bored............

(drumroll please)

They made this!

Friday, March 7, 2008

Favorite places :0)

I have several favorite places.



And here.

Now, as of today, I have a new favorite place :0)

and it is..............



And why, do you ask, would this be a favorite place of mine?

I think it might have something to do with

Oh, yes, I also have a new friend!
It's name is;

White Chocolate Carmel Macadamia Nut CHEESECAKE!

I've been thinking all day for the appropriate word to use to describe this fine treasure of a dessert.
The word I came up with is;


nuff said.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Three weeks out of school-Week #1-part 1

Alternate title to this post
"I like pears!"

My kids are on year round school, so every 8 or 9 weeks, they have 3 weeks off.
Monday began week #1.

First of all, I would like to tell about this sweet little fantasy that I have every time the kids go off track from school.
I see our family all working together towards a common goal.

Getting the house clean.

I see my sweet children being ever so willing to help in any way I ask, because, of (in my fantasy) they share the same dream that I do. Everything in the house would be put in it's place, closets organized, toys put away, laundry clean, folded and put away, dishes sparkling clean.
We are all happily working together, singing as we go. The sun shines brightly while birds, butterflies and other cute little forest animals come in through the windows, helping with the work in any way possible, all the time singing, and helping and....................

We interrupt this fantasy to slap you upside the head with a great big painful dose of reality!


I'm sorry, where was I?
Oh yeah, cleaning.

I made a list of things that would be accomplished while the children were out of school for three weeks.
Did I mention that yet?
They are out of school for three weeks!


#1 Everyone's rooms get cleaned.
#2 Storage room cleaned out and organized.
#3 Paint the living room.

I thought the list looked reasonable. #1 seemed somewhat do-able.
About two years ago, we told the kids that if they got their rooms clean, for every day they stayed clean we would give them a dollar.
Long story short, in two years, between three kids, we payed out exactly $17.00
Now the kids have goals. Brielle wants a new desk for her room, and Aaron wants an iPod.
They are doing a pretty good job cleaning their rooms so far.
CJ's room got clean a few weeks ago when DH put the Playstation II away until his room was clean enough to see the floor.
It's amazing how well the children work when properly motivated.

I only wish that "A clean house makes a happy mommy" would be motivation enough for them.

#2 is something I've been wanting to do since we moved in.
#3 probably won't happen, but I can dream can't I? (at least until reality hits me......again)

We (mostly ME) managed to get all of the kids old clothes out of the storage room, sort them and donate boxes of clothes to DI. We also got 4 boxes of hand me downs for nieces, cousins and friends.

Wednesday morning, I decided to reward the children for their help, and I made them French Toast for breakfast.
Later that afternoon, my cousin called to see if Aaron could come over and play with her son.

YES! YES! A thousand times YES!

I ask Aaron to finish loading the dishwasher while I got my shoes on.

Sidenote: One thing I need to explain is that every time Aaron goes over to my cousin's house, he asks for canned pears, and my sweet cousin will feed them to him. He won't eat the same exact pears at our house, only at hers.

As I drive Aaron over to play with his cousin, I tell him,
"Do not ask for pears!"
Aaron:" What if they offer them to me?"
ME: "If they offer them to you, that's fine, but while you are in their house, you are not allowed to say the word pears. You are not allowed to open the pantry door and stare at the pears. You are not allowed to say "Can I eat something that rhymes with stairs!" Don't think about them, don't draw pictures of them, don't even think about drawing pictures of yourself thinking about them!"
(I don't have anything against him eating pears, I just don't want him going over there and begging for food)
As I dropped him off, I old my cousin about the pear conversation we had in the car. She looked at her watch and said "OK it's 2:20, let's see how long he lasts."
Later, when I picked him up, she told me he had lasted exactly 40 minutes before he asked for the pears. She said he ate two big bowls of pears, and a bowl of cereal. He also told her that he was starving, because I hadn't fed him anything that day, he had just spent the entire day doing dishes.

Poor poor little Cinderaaron.

Seriously, I only make French toast about twice a year, you would think that might stand out in his mind.
We now have 2 weeks and 3 days until the kids go back to school.
Wish me luck.

PS: CJ just fell on the floor begging me to make sure that I referred to our Playstation as a Playstation II lest anyone dare think that we have one of those "crappy" Playstation I consoles.
Not that I even really care. (Please don't be offended if you only have a Playstation I)

Dear Children,

Dear Children,


Seriously, is that too much to ask?