carbon copy weekend

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Our weekend was a carbon copy from the weekend before that.  A little bit of cooking here and there mixed in with great fall weather that allowed us to either stay outside and play for hours or cuddle inside when it started to rain.  As mundane as it seems, it was a great weekend that allowed me to finish my book, make a dent in my knitting, and of course clean and take care of little ones.
//1  My Mexican Rice.  Recipe will be posted later this week. 😉
//2  My peppers have been growing like wild flowers.  It feels so satisfying to cultivate and grow your own food.
//3  Mama’s tinted lip balm on baby girl’s lips.  She was excited; can you tell!?
//4  A reader of mine suggested buying a set of window markers for the kids on rainy days.   I so appreciate that whisper of advice because it was a sanity saver that day!  Plus, the kids go wild for it.  It seriously kept Scout entertained for almost two hours.  Go buy some!
//5  This is love letter to a stranger that I promised myself to leave behind somewhere in a public place but forgot to do it!!  Every time I left the house, I would leave the letter on the shelf.  Hopefully this week I can get the job done.  If you’re interested in why I’m doing this and what it is about, click here.
//6  Outside time was plentiful for the kids.
//7  My moist, buttery, roasted chicken.  It was so delicious!
//8  My PURPLE bell peppers.  I had no idea these existed until they started growing in my garden.  They are bright green on the inside and they have a mild sweet taste.  Cool, huh?!!  
Linking up with the lovely Mary Beth at Annapolis & Company.

Mail Delivery

It feels rare to receive something for free in the mail these days, but a couple of days ago, it happened.  Even so, I can’t keep the package for myself.  It will soon be on its way to Texas to a dear friend of mine who recently delivered her second child.

(And if you are the said friend, then please stop reading. It will spoil the surprise. lol.)

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What is in the package, you ponder?  It is a few Spark Cards that a New Jersey-ian named Hillary is sending out for FREE.  She hopes the cards will encourage conversations between other mothers, and then leave them behind for others to find and use.  Spreading the free gift, if you will.  Have you heard of Hillary from the, Longest Shortest Time?  Her podcasts range from humorous to heartfelt and will make the days that you feel totally insane—sane, after all.  Her primary message is that no matter what phase of motherhood you’re in, you’re not alone in the trials you may be going through. 

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If you’re interested in her podcast, you can easily find her on iTunes.  I use this app for my podcasts.

If you want your own spark cards delivered to your mailbox, then you can find the form here.

If you want to know more about why she does what she does, then go here.

Just for the record, I don’t know Hillary, and she has no idea that I’m writing this. I just think she is cool. 🙂

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I Hate When Things Bite Me In The Butt

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It’s not too surprising that I wrote a blog post adorned with cozy pictures of my homemade hot chocolate, followed by a trail of words that shunned summer, that in return, summer would show me what’s, what.
This very fateful day started off great; the middle was pretty good, too. But by 4:00pm the city’s electric company blew a breaker (or at least that’s what I picture in my mind). Half of the town was left without power; this included my house. We found this information out while trying to make a quick run to the store, which were all closed due to no power. And because summer wanted to show me who’s boss,  it was blazing hot outside, without any air!  I’m talking 90 degrees, peeps.  It made my distaste for summer that much greater, because if there is one thing to know about me, it’s that I hate the hot weather.  
(did I mention that our entire house runs off electricity?)
 
In true southern fashion, us, and every one of our neighbors, headed outside to sit on our porches.  Trust me, it sure as heck felt better than the stifling heat that was building inside the house. 
 
While mopping the pouring sweat off our foreheads, Bubba called the electric company, during which I said a silent prayer for a rainstorm.
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Then…there was a bit of hope. Bubba said the company claims to have the electric back on by 8:30pm.
 
Not more than ten minutes later, we heard thunder in the distance. I praised the Lord for the eventual downpour that cooled everything down into upper 70’s. It felt great…until after the rain stopped and the humidity stepped in its place.
 
By the time 8:30 rolled around, the electricity still wasn’t on, and we had had it with feeling sticky. So we called the company again. And by we, I mean, Bubba. Because of the storm that blew through, it delayed the repairing process and the new time was 1:30 am. ACK!
 
It was tough for me to sleep. No air, no fan, only a tiny window to open for relief was not cutting it. I can’t even sleep without a the hum of a fan.
 
I was miserable. I tossed and turned underneath a thin sheet, with one leg hanging out, desperate for cooler air.
 
Somehow, by the grace of God, I passed out.  Around 3 in the morning, I was awakened by the TV and all the lights coming on.
I breathed a deep sigh of relief, marched downstairs, turned off all the lights, shut windows, turned my fan on, and finally caught a few zzz’s.
My lesson?  Never, ever, tempt summer.

Thoughts & A Recipe

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It’s blazing hot outside, but I can’t be bothered by details.  I had to make myself a cup of hot chocolate while I dream of cooler days.  I can’t help it.  Summer just isn’t my season.  To add more insult to summer, I also made a large pot full of hearty chicken soup.

 

Ahh…summer.  You can leave now; and take your humidity with you.

 

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On other topics, I actually have quite a bit that I want to say.  I just haven’t been spitting them out.  Does that happen to you?  I do plan on talking about my failing vegetable garden, and the homeschooling programs we are using, for those who are curious.  I also have a pretty touchy topic to discuss when it comes to our real life friends and family.  It really is an over due explanation that a particular few have patiently, and not so patiently, been waiting to read.  I feel like it will be the post that can answer all the questions and if they ever pop up with another question, then I can state, “Read the blog! It’s all there!”.   

 

Annnd, just as soon as I get a grip on my procrastination, I will sit down and type it all out.

 

But while I sit here, sipping on my leftover hot coco, I want to wrap up my post with this:  Today, I’ve felt very enlightened within my faith, and it feels great to have understanding and knowledge of Christ.  It brings me to a place of peace that I didn’t feel when I lived life without him.  I feel blessed that my son has the same realization at such a young age, whereas it took me until adulthood.

 

Now for the easy recipe that my title hints at: I hope you enjoy it.

 

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nostalgia & a broken heart

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My heart broke today. Not for a person; for nostalgia. It’s funny, I never imagined handwritten letters, such a common skill, could become close to ceasing its existence. Writing is my love language, but handwriting letters is an impalpable love of mine. There is something about scribbling words onto a crisp sheet of paper that someone could possibly hold onto forever.

 

In case you’re wondering what brought this on. It is simple, really. I was in need of new stationary. Good old fashioned set of plain quality paper with envelopes. I went to five different stores and couldn’t find anything except for notecards. Beautiful as they are, it is not letter paper that can hold a beaucoup of scrawled words.

 

While visiting the last store, I asked if they could order what I was looking for. He politely replied with, “…no one writes letters anymore.”

 

I was instantly bummed out. And no, he could not order it because they no longer sold stationary.

 

There are a few specialty stores, but their paper is extremely expensive, so I suppose it is back to college ruled notebooks for my recipients.

No Rhyme Or Reason

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Sometimes, the last thing I want to do is leave the house with my three kids in tow. But my errands were begging me to stop my charades and just go. So I put my big girl pants on and went on my way.  Luckily for me, God shed his grace on me. He knew I was trying my best to be patient during the half hour of traffic I painstakingly crept through. He knew I was trying to be patient with Rori as she screamed half of that time. He knows I don’t like driving in the rain, and I drove in the rain the entire way.

I assumed by the time I stepped my soggy foot into the packed store, my kids would begin their tantrums and their attempt to escape the cart.
But, guess what? They were angels. I couldn’t believe it. Then, at check out, they couldn’t find the price on the pants I wanted, and gave me a discount on them.
Then, on the way home, the traffic was lighter and Rori eventually fell asleep. The rain slowed to a drizzle and we all made it into the house before it began pouring again.

God is good.

The rest of the day was the usual grind, coupled with preparing my homeschooling lessons. Speaking of homeschool, I finally received the Teaching Textbooks for Nate’s Math this year and Bubba received his Calculus book.

Just for the record, I hate math. Better them than me. ha!

Sorry there was no rhyme or reason for this post.  It was completely random, and I sort of like it that way.  I’m tired of planning all my posts…this blog is supposed to be my journal so I may as well begin treating it like one. 

Until next time,
Elizabeth

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Evidence that…TKWH

TKWH (The Kids Were Here) are in the words of Brenna Peterson
I was looking forward to documenting a new aspect of our lives, which I gave little (or no) attention to with the camera. Yet it is such a significant part of our everyday. These left-behind toys, the messes, the food, the strewn about clothes; some days, I think they’re staring me in the face, laughing. You vacuumed? ha! You just emptied the sink? Too bad! The entry way has been cleared of shoe piles & coat mountains? Nope, not today!”
I first heard about this through the blogger of Mama Daze and really wanted to jump on the TKWH bandwagon.  So, periodically, I will be posting a group of random pics that is proof of the torture the kids put my house through.  Just kidding about that last part.  Sort of.  Hah!!
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Just a little thought about the grapes; I think my toddler is OCD.  He has been doing this since he was a baby!  He must get it from his father!

Last Day

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I would love to be typing you a verbose foreplay of words today, but I just don’t have it in me to produce mind blowing material.  So I guess I will keep this post short, sweet, and simple for you.
During the last day of my niece and nephew stay with us, I had them do a craft project that I had promised them they could do earlier in the month.  Better late than never, right?  The project went along with the bible lessons we were doing, which was about living and knowing the word of Jesus. 
They had way more fun with it than I anticipated, and it kept them busy for a few hours!  I don’t have a picture of their “final product”, but I can tell you what they did. 
–They each painted the wood blocks and then Bubba put a loop of string on the back of each one, so it could be hanged onto the wall.– 
If you’re interested in doing it with your kids, this is what you’ll need:
scrap wood/blocks of wood
1” small nails
hammer
twine
paint w/paintbrushes
All I did was draw the outline of a cross onto their blocks of wood for them as a guide.  I let them hammer in the nails and wrap the twine in whatever direction they chose. 
Once they finished, Bubba burned the frayed twine to keep it from unraveling over time. 
Annnnnnd…that’s pretty much it. 
We Miss You Already Kaily and Kayden!

The Weekend

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1// At top, is easiest dish you will ever make, and yet it is so delicious that your family will devour it in one sitting.  I made it for breakfast on Saturday morning for the kids.  It is your classic Monkey Bread recipe.  I have a story behind that Bundt pan, but I’ll save it for another time.  (I used Pioneer Woman’s recipe)
2// Next up is my niece, Kaylie, who is staying with us this month.  She said this would end up being a bookmark.  I’m curious to see the end result. 
3// My baby girl.  She is beautiful, even with crumbs on her face.
4// This was a science experiment that I let the older kids conduct.  It shows what happens as a cloud becomes heavy with water.  It was a simple experiment that required items that I already had around the house.  If you want to let your kids do this as well, here is what you need: clear glass, shaving cream, food coloring, and water.  Just fill the glass 3/4 full of water, put a thin layer of shaving cream (not gel) on top of the water.  Then add a few drops of food coloring on top of the shaving cream.  It should begin to “rain”.
5// Speaking of rain, the weather here has done nothing but rain for the last month.  As in, record breaking rain.  Our yard is turning into a swamp, and my plants are dying.  I try to let the kids play outside in between the rain, but it usually doesn’t last for long.  This picture is of Rori after she threw a colossal fit because her older brother went outside into the rain without her. 
I wonder if Seattle lawns are always muddy or slushy?
Any way, our weekend was low key as usual.  How was the weekend in your neck of the woods?
Linking up with Mary Beth today!  Check her out for some amazing photos.

My Boys

My boys…

They celebrated another year of life last month.  This is a very cliché saying, but it is true,  they really are growing up fast.  Especially my twelve year old!  The mere thought that I have a twelve year old, stresses my brain out.

 

I don’t really have any profound words to say about their birthdays, but the simple fact that I made their special day “feel” special is enough for me.  Especially since we combined their birthdays on Nathan’s, which happened to be the day before we left for our vacation.  It was an extremely hectic day. 

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I also created the worlds best vanilla cake recipe ever… then I lost it.  Better yet, Scout lost it.   I call it, Scout’s black hole.   (we ate an entire sheet cake in one day b/c it was that good.  Over indulgent? Yes. But I assure you it was worth it. ) 

 

After I realized that the awesome recipe had been colored on, then disappeared, within 7 seconds, I had to break the news to my husband.  After the typical questions, like, why would you leave it laying out like that? were answered, I reassured him that it was all good!

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Imagine me tapping the side of my head with my pointing finger convincing my husband, not to worry,  because I have it safely stored up here.

 

Thing is…I did NOT have it safely stored in my mind because the cake, while it looked edible, was the most disgusting thing I think I’ve ever made.  It all went into the trash.  Don’t ask where it went wrong, because I don’t know.  But what I do know, is that I need to retrieve my missing recipe from Scout’s black hole.  I MUST!

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Luckily they were champs about it and enjoyed a mountain of donuts instead. 

Happy Birthday to the special boys in my life.  I love you.

-Mom