Friday, February 26, 2010


I've been horrible at taking pictures lately so am posting an oldie, but a goodie. 
It makes me sad though to see that sometime between this shot and now
Henry lost his baby face.
And Harper lost her chubbiness.

I tell ya, we are sick of being sick! I've had a cold since last week, but seemed to be getting better every day...until Wednesday afternoon when my sinuses went into pain overload. I thought for sure it was a sinus infection but the doctor said it's probably not. In the meantime I'm taking some medicine and finally feeling a little better today. What a yucky last couple of weeks! I'm such a baby when I'm sick. The kids have acted so much better with their colds than I did yesterday. Sad, huh?

Hope you all have a great weekend. I'll try and post some more interesting stuff next week. Promise!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010


 I missed the first week of this study, but got to finally go today and I am pumped.

Any of you been through it before?
Isn't that Beth Moore the best? 

I'm so excited to see what God has in store for us to learn...and looking forward to sharing it with you!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Cream of Chicken Soup

I was majorly craving some home cookin' after our week of having colds.
There's not much else that quite hits the spot like a big ol' bowl of soup, so that was my mission. I searched some different websites and decided on this baby:

Cream of Chicken Soup

1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 medium Spanish onion, chopped
2 stalks celery (with leaves), chopped
3 medium carrots, chopped
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon flour
7 cups chicken broth, homemade or low-sodium canned
3 sprigs parsley
3 sprigs fresh thyme (did not have) 
1 bay leaf (forgot to add!)
2 3/4 cups cooked, diced chicken
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 1/2 teaspoons dry sherry (did not have) 
1 tablespoon kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley


Melt the butter in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add the onion, celery, and carrots and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 12 minutes. Add the flour and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, for 2 minutes more.
Pour in the broth and bring to a boil while whisking constantly. Tie the parsley sprigs, thyme, and bay leaf together with a piece of kitchen twine and add to the soup. Lower the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
Stir in the chicken and *noodles* and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat.
Whisk the heavy cream, sherry, and salt into the soup and season with pepper to taste. Remove and discard the herb bundle. Divide among soup bowls, sprinkle the top of each soup with the chopped parsley and serve immediately.

*I also made a batch of homemade noodles, which was my first try. We really liked the soup with, but it'd be just as great without.

Homemade Noodles:
courtesy RJ's Grandma

5 eggs beaten
Dash of Salt
1 to 2 tbl of heavy cream (if you happen to have some on hand)
About 2 cups of flour, or more if needed as batter has to be stiff.

Roll out very thin on floured table and let dry. After it's dry, cut to whatever size you would like. I added to the soup and let boil for about 3 minutes.

Seriously, this was the yummiest (and richest) chicken soup I've ever eaten. And it's easy! Not necessarily low fat, but it's made with lots of yummy love. Aka: butter.
Speaking of butter, I watched Julie and Julia for the 2nd time this weekend. Pretty sure I need to buy that movie. I just love it!
Anyways, it'd be a great soup to make for company served up with some warm bread and a salad.

Bon Appetit!

Thursday, February 18, 2010


I'm a horrible-house-keeper.
Which should be no surprise.
But I'm trying to be a recovering, horrible-house-keeper.

If staying at home just meant playing with the kids, putting them in cute clothes, baking cookies, and putting a yummy meal on the table, I'd be a star!
I know all those things are good and a part of it, but we can't only have fun, right?

RJ loves a clean house. He's never been nagging about it and he helps out all the time, but I know he loves it when he comes home to cleanliness.
Knowing this and not doing it?
Well, that just makes me feel plain awful and lazy.

So I've been slowly, but surely, keeping things tidy-er.
Doing the dishes before I go to bed.
Getting our living room in order after the kids go to bed.
Etc, etc, etc.
But one area that I'm the worst at is our bedroom, which is part of the reason I am redoing I will want to keep it nicer.
After all, he deserves it.
And of course I enjoy a cleaner house too.

Not going for perfection here and hope that's never a goal of mine.
After all, the kids are only young once!
It will be so much easier to keep things tidy after the kids are gone...and I don't want to think back to days where I spent more time on the house than on them.
But, I'm trying to get to a really good balance of it all. It's about time I figured this out!

The kids have really yucky colds this week.
Yes, I realize things could be much, much worse.
So we're just taking 'er easy and staying away from other cute little kids so we don't pass it along.
Their moods are actually really good though...thankfully!

So Happy Thursday!
Hope you are all enjoying this beautiful sunshine.
Aren't you enjoying how it's staying light so much later....makes me so excited for Spring!
I'm off to eat a felt sandwich with strawberries, tomatoes, and carrots, and play with some pasta.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Why do I even start projects like this??
It may be the end of me...

The new color was just so pretty next to the old color that I had to work with it somehow. And I'll probably end up doing an off-white outline around the design.
I know, I know. It's dark! But everything else in the room is going to be off white-ish. 
Trust me!

Big Time

This is a big time post, with some big time information. Not really, but I haven't taken the time to blog for a while so there's lots to get out there.

Buckle Up.

My big 3-0 was on Thursday and it was great. RJ got off at 3:30 and took me out to dinner at Cafe Su and then to a coffee shop. 
Delicious. Perfect. Great. 
I loved turning 30.
He also had Friday off and took me to the fancy mall and MADE me spend $30 while he played with the kids. Naturally, I bought a bunch of small things because I have a nasty habit of trying to see how much I can get for my money. It was great, great fun.
I also went to the Habitat Restore. If you live in this town and have not been there yet...what in the world are you waiting for?  Well, I suppose if you don't like getting a gallon of paint for $5, then it's probably not the place for you.
Saturday morning I dropped the kids off at a friends and went downtown to see my man run a
5 mile race. 
In Red Flannel.
And it was great!
Naturally, we all went to Jethro's afterwards because it's just amazing. 
Sunday Harper woke up with a little fever and sounding horrible...a trip to the clinic and she had croup. She's been a trooper though.
That night we rearranged our living room. I love doing that. Makes my house seem all fresh and new...if that's possible for a 99 year old house. 
Thanks to President's Day, RJ also had Monday off.
More hanging around. More noticing both kids have pretty nasty colds. More impressed with their good attitudes despite the yuckiness. 
Today brought us back to the doctor for Henry this time...he's got a case of the strep Bummer, but he's actually being incredibly sweet through it all.
Phew, there's my weekend re-cap. And let me say, it was the longest weekend ever. 
(In a really good way)
It felt like it was never going to end.

Now for the picture recap.

RJ just about to finish the run:


 The Willow Creek running crew:

RJ makes the best pancakes and treated us to some almost every day that he had off. Sweet! 
And check out the new griddle attachment. After some *ahem* issues with Sears, we got the $114 part for free. Again, sweet!

Opening a Valentine's package from Grandma.


When I was at Target the other day, I walked past the rug aisle and saw the rug of my dreams:
I went to look a little closer and saw that it had an orange sticker. You know what that means! I looked even closer and saw that it was $149 on clearance for $35....and I had birthday money right in my Happy Birthday to Me~! After unrolling it at home though, I realized I had to rearrange the whole room to make it look just right. RJ willingly helped...aka:moved everything to where I told him...and ta-da! A whole new room:




At the Restore, I got a $5 gallon of beautiful paint for our bedroom and this light fixture:

 One of those pieces that has potential to be really tacky, but I think it's going to end up pretty cool? It was only $5 too. You wouldn't think I'd spend more than that do you? So this week while the kids are sick, I'm working on our room during nap times, hoping to have it all done in a week or two.

Have a great Fat Tuesday!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Bottoms Up


Does it get any cuter?


Good night, my 20's.
30's...I'll be you in the mornin'.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

DIY Necklaces and Like Father, Like Daughter

Want to beat those tired of this winter blues?
How bout making yourself some necklaces to spruce up your wardrobe?
We did both of these at our last MOPS and it was a lot of fun. I'm sure you have all the supplies to at least make the t-shirt necklace and maybe some of you are lucky enough to have the supplies on hand for the washer necklace. These things are all over the worldwide web. I can be creative, but not this creative.
They're cute, and best of all cheap, cheap, cheap.

#1 Washer Necklace
tutorial here
So here is mine. Pretty, huh? I like, because it's pretty but also a little edgy.

It's a little tricky to get it started, but once you do it only takes about 15 minutes. I was on a budget so just use some ribbon I found of clearance, but once this weather cooperates I'm going to go get me some pretty satin ribbon and try it again. *Plus* washers are about 2 or 3 cents a piece. CHEAP!

#2 T-Shirt Necklace.
I first learned about this when I received one as a gift from my amazingly crafty sister-in-law. I love it. Then when I googled it and saw how easy they were I couldn't believe it. Plus, I have all the supplies on hand. Are you ready for this? It's amazing!

Take some old t-shirts of the nice, sturdy cotton variety. Either adult or large children size. Plain or patterend.

Cut into 1" strips. *Doesn't have to be perfet. You can cut all your strips from the same shirt or use a few different ones. I used some XL boys shirts. If you use little kid shirts it'd probably be best for bracelets.
Take each strip and hold by the seams...and pull. The strips magically curl up.
 Then take each strip by the seam again and loop them around twice. Do this to each piece and gather the necklace by all the seams.
 Take some scrap and hand stich to cover up the seams.
 Ta-Da! A necklace. Wouldn't an all white one be pretty for summer?
I had a crafty friend also show how to make these pretty scarf/necklace things. She bought about 3 different types of yarn. Cut them into 6ft (or so?) strips. Gathered about 6 of them together, tied them in a knot in the middle (where it would be behind your neck), and then tied another knot towards the ends of both sides. Then just wrap around your neck. 
Talk about easy.
Aren't these head-less shots creepy?


On a completely different note...these pictures I found make me giddy.

 She could look completely different next month, but for now, I think she looks like her daddy.
And I love it.
And now I'm off. 
To play with the kiddos.
In our pajamas.
All day. 
And have some fun!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Monday, Monday...

Another snowy Monday. 
It seems silly to complain about it.
It is Iowa. 
No one is forcing us to live here.
But, seriously?

So to help this me from letting this weather completely bum me out, I decided to get out all of Harper's Spring and Summer clothes. 

Do I think she needs 15 dresses?
Did I over do it last summer with clearance sales and garage sales?
Did I learn a lesson?
I've already pledged to do less garage sale-ing this summer. (For real!!)

But am I excited for her to wear all those rompers and dresses.
You bet!

We had such a lovely weekend. I was sitting at the table basking in the beautiful-ness of my family and how Henry hadn't had a temper tantrum in a few days and thought all was right with the world. About 2 minutes later he threw a whopper of one, but you know? Just keeps me on my toes.We didn't have any real plans and were able to just hang out as a fam, get a few things done around the house, and have fun. I even got celebrate my birthday a little early and get my eyebrows threaded...pretty exciting stuff!

We just watched the SuperBowl as a little family and read the kids books during the commercials.

And today we're snowed in and looks like we will be tomorrow too, so I'm trying to motivate myself to get this house super duper 

Hope you all enjoy your day!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010


Alright, here's a shot of my bedding. It's a quilt and I paid $15 for it. Sweet! Actually, I paid $30 for it at half off and the next day we saw it at a different Target for $15 so I bought it and returned the other one. 
True story.
 Is that ridiculously cheap and a lot of work, or would you do it too?

The edging on the quilt is a darker gray/taupe kind of color and I think I'll do that on the walls. Not too dark, but darker than the gray on the quilt. Then accent with olive greens and distress my dressers and paint them cream. I'm sure it will take me a year before it's all done, though....
It totally matches my room right now with my light blue walls, but I really want a change, people!

After spending most of my free time last week painting the nursery, it's been fun doing different kinds of crafts this week. 
If you want to see how this:

Becomes this:


And this:

Then you should probably get your buns to our MOPS on Friday. 
And if you wonder what in the world a bunch of ladies are going to do with 500 washers, I again suggest coming to our MOPS.


My dad is staying at our house for a few days this week and Henry is loving it. I just spend an hour trying to get him to take a nap. He's just too excited to see his Pop-Pop! 

Anyways....Happy Groundhog Day!

Monday, February 1, 2010

I miss pop. Still. I realize no one but myself is not letting myself drink it, but my mom took the same New Year's oath and there is NO way I'm giving in before her. :)
1 month down. 11 to go.

I finished up painting a mural in our church's nursery.
Pictures to come....

I'm in charge of the MOPS craft this Friday.
And I have no idea what to do.
Possibly some jewelry and accessories. Or a fun Valentine's craft?

We're planning Harper's 1st birthday party and are going to have it here.
She won't care much about the awesome indoor water park, but her cousins will sure love it!

Naturally, since I bragged about Harper sleeping through the night a couple of weeks ago, she hasn't done it since. She did, however, sleep until 5:30 yesterday morning.
Man, give me 6 hours of straight sleep and I feel like I can rule the world.
Just 6 hours.

I'm enjoying the last 10 days of being in my 20's.

Actually, now that turning 30 is just around the corner it doesn't seem like a big deal.
 Plus, February is my favorite month of the year so I don't want to waste any time.

I got my bedding at Target last week.
For 75% off.
I got a quilt, 2 shams, 2 sets of sheets, and a bed skirt.
All for $50ish.
Happy Birthday to me!
And I didn't only get it becuase it was cheap...but mostly because I love it.
 Can't wait to get started on the room!!

I'm letting my pumpkin bars cool so I can frost them and bring them to our most awesome Acts group tonight.

And lastly, LOST fans?
Helloooooo Feb 2nd!


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