Friday, July 30, 2010

Corn Salad

I love yummy side salads in the summer, don't you?
At our 4th of July reunion, we had this yummy corn salad and I've been meaning to make it ever since.
I tried to buy the ingredients just using my memory, but failed so made some changes.
Still super yummy!

1T. lime juice (I forgot the lime and used a drizzle of honey instead)
1/4 t. salt
1/4 t. hot pepper sauce
5 t. olive oil, divided
1-1/2 c. fresh or frozen corn, thawed
1-1/2 c. cherry tomatoes, halved (used red pepper instead)
1/2 c. finely chopped cucumber
1/4 c. finely chopped red onion (did not add)
(I also added black olives)
2 T. minced fresh basil (used parsley)
1/4 c. feta cheese

In a small bowl, whisk the lime juice, salt, pepper sauce and 4 t. oil; set aside.
In a large skillet, saute corn in remaining oil until tender. Transfer to a salad bowl; add the tomatoes, cucumber, onion and basil. Drizzle with dressing and toss to coat.

Let stand for 10 minutes before serving or refrigerate until chilled. Sprinkle with cheese just before serving.


Hope you all have a lovely weekend!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Henry Dean

Henry's illness of choice is strep throat.
He's had it 4 times since this time last year.
Like, if you don't get strep throat, you're soooo not cool.

Thankfully he's acting pretty well, but I always hate to put him on that yucky medicine!
Strep throat is easy to handle though, and I'm thankful that's all it is. 
And hopefully we'll all catch up on some sleep we lost last night.....
Happy Thursday! 

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

While They Were Sleeping

While They Were Sleeping
Welcome to my first installment of WTWS!
I love (usually) when my children are awake. We play. We laugh. We yell. We fight. We play.
We love.
But I'll admit....nap/quiet time is a beautiful thing.
Today, while they were sleeping, I decided to work on a fun project.
.....because my house is already spotless. {triple wink}

We are experiencing some changes in our dining room that I'm pretty excited about, and maybe some day I'll show y'all the redo. A while ago we brought down Henry's little table to have in that room and it's where they play with play-doh or
color or play.
I thought I'd make it a little more fun and put them in the mood to be more creative.
I gathered lots of old supplies and sacrificed some new ones.
Turned on my absolute most #1 essential tool = a hot glue gun.
And got busy.

So, what did you do WTWS? (or resting or being quiet?)
And let's not start on what I should have been doing wtws....
like the dishes, laundry, reading, etc, etc, etc....:)

Monday, July 26, 2010


A Monday after a getaway. Always a little rough!
RJ and I left right away Friday morning after dropping the kids off at their aunt and uncle's house and 
 went to Minneapolis! We had actually thought about going somewhere different for once, but it's so nice to go somewhere and know your way around.
Uptown, lunch on a rooftop, Edina Theatre, Edina Creamery, shopping, Loring Park, dinner outside, coffee shop downtown, H&M, IKEA (a fun new purchase!), pizza in Ames, and back home by Saturday afternoon. It was quick, but OH, so good.
To much relief of RJ's, I did NOT bring my camera. It was nice not to worry about snapping pictures, but makes for a boring post....
When we got back home, R&J insisted they keep the children one more night, so we got to go on another date Saturday to The Fleur. 2 movies in 1 weekend. We're getting crazy in our old age!
The kids had a blast, we had a blast, it was all around good.

Here's to a good Monday.
More exciting posts to come!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

some random for your thursday

Random #1
I'm doing some fun projects for a baby shower this weekend. I'm going with a cartoon/superhero
theme since I already have a lot on hand that I can use and not spend much money.
That's my kind of baby shower-decorating!!

These will the centerpieces:

After I was completely done with them, I asked RJ his opinion.
 He looked at them and said, "his name is going to be Titus Wayne?"
Holy Canoli. Here I thought I was just doing something cute and turns out I was being clever too.
Seriously, how could I have missed this?

Random #2
After months and months of being very curious, I'm going to give this a try:

My friend is so full of healthy recipes and I can't wait to try it out.
What should I bake first??

Random #3
My hubby is taking me away for a day to one of my favorite places in the Midwest.
{opposite of down}-{starts with a T and rhymes with clown}
I can't wait! We haven't been on a date in loooong time. Seriously, way too long.
I can not wait!!

Well, I guess that wasn't very many randoms, but it's all I got.
I hope you all have a lovely Thursday!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Rainy Day Projects

I have to say that I enjoyed yesterday being a gloomy, rainy day...especially after all that heat!
And now that it looks like the rest of the week is going to be fairly rainy and gloomy, I've officially declared this week to be "Project Week"!
Day #1
The kids and I went to Hobby Lobby yesterday morning and picked out some fabric to recover my lamp shades. I had gotten a new lamp at a garage sale on Saturday (for $2), but the shade I had for it didn't match. Of course buying a new shade would be too easy, right? And this way I could make it much cuter.

I didn't take a before pictures, but here's the after:
(light on)
(light off)

It was a pretty big pain to do, but I'm lovin' the results. The second the kids went down for their naps I worked like a mad woman to get it done. It's such a cheap way to change things up in a room! Fabric was 30% off and so was the trim. Throw in a hot glue gun and you've got everything you need. Also throw in that funky bird for $1.80 at HobLob and you're really set!

Lamp #2:

I really loved this fabric too, but thought I should keep that kind of pattern to a smaller shade. I'm lovin' it too! Now I have one more little shade I need to change in the room but not sure which one I should do or if I should get a plain fabric so things don't get too crazy.

Next Project:
Changing my picture wall!
This one will probably take the rest of the month, but it's a good week to get it started!

And since the kids took super good naps, I was able to make some yummy oven baked falafels.
Not really looking forward the day when my kids don't nap....

Hope you all have a lovely Tuesday!

Monday, July 19, 2010


I can't believe I'm writing this....
We got a Wii!
We've kind of wanted one for about a year now.
(we really like that Wii Fit business)
Just couldn't justify buying one though, so we were going to maybe wait til the holidays and see if there were any good sales.
BUT, we found one (used "once") on Craigslist with WiiFit (never used) for a really good price!
Like, we almost felt bad buying it, it was such a good price.
It was just some kid who got it and never used it.
You know, probably because he has 5 other gaming systems to choose from.
Sad how kids are spoiled these days, eh?
So we did it. We got a Wii!
At this rate, I'm thinking we'll own one of them there flat screen televisions by 2015.
Can't wait!

And since posts without photos are boring, here's another nugget of goodness from our photo shoot.

Happy Monday!

Saturday, July 17, 2010


What a fun couple of days we had!
The kids and I went up to the charming little town of GC to visit my bestie, Alisa, so she could take some amazing photos before her quickly approaching retirement from doing professional photo sessions. I also went so I could paint some murals for her sister, Marissa, who are both my husband's cousins but feel more like extra sisters. I've got some awesome family on all sides!

Anyways, Alisa captured some beautiful, hilarious, and perfect moments.

Some of my favorites, but there are so many that I just love! This is just a small handful of them...she took a ton of pictures and I love every single one of them!

This one will be so perfect in her room, don't ya think?

This boy did really well considering he's a 3 year old and having him sit still for a photo and smile is pretty painful.

The next 2 just make me laugh. RJ and I nearly busted a gut.
Seriously, her face?
Please (fingers crossed) let this be "just a phase"!

Oh, Henry. You crack me up.

Probably my all time favorite of me and my babies:

And how about this wall? It's a really old building in GC and I'm completely in love with it.

We also had a lot of fun playing all the little cousins. On the farm we had the excitement of seeing a crazy, low flying, crop duster. The kids loved it! Alisa went outside and caught the kids looking from the window. Too cute!

Ok. Back to that wall.
I just can't get enough.
I just can't get enough!

I did 4 little murals in Marissa's house and here's the one in the nursery for little Charlton, who will be arriving in September. They're going to call him Charlie.

And that's all!
Thank you so much for capturing all those moments so beautifully, Alisa. We love ALL of them and will treasure them for a very long time.
In fact, I think I'll look through them again!

Hope your'e all having a marvelous weekend!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


My little baby girl is still sweet, but oh my, does she have a sudden attitude.
We can not believe the looks she can give us!
Or the way she yells and screams at us??
I'm having LOST-style flash forwards of her teenage years and it scares me.
She's totally going to be the one looking for and getting into trouble and Henry will be running behind her keeping score.

Exhibit A
Task: Simply eating a banana this morning for breakfast.
Did I mention she didn't even weigh 20 lbs at her 15 months appt??
So we've been trying a lot harder at "encouraging" her to eat her food.
Simple, right?

This look on her face is about to become permanent.
And this was about 5 minutes after the struggle started.
She looks at us this way. Closes her eyes and then looks away in disgust.
Rough life, I tell ya.

Finally, she gave in!
I actually think we're making some progress because she will eventually take that bite without us having to put it in her mouth for her.

The reward: her milk!

And that right there is a moment in the life of a suddenly-dramatic-16 month little girl.
But thankful it's our only issue right now.

This is our next door neighbor's house after a house fire early yesterday morning.
We were in bed and started hearing lots of sirens (not too uncommon in our hood) and what we thought was "construction" on the road they've been working on close by.
Then we looked at the time and thought 5:50 AM was a little early for for construction workers. I was already rehearsing the call I was going to make to complain.
Then we heard glass shattering, but still not alarmed enough to get our rears out of bed.
Then we heard Henry talking about some workers outside and we finally looked and the street was lined with fire trucks and our neighbor's house was a mess.
Thankfully he wasn't home, but looks like the inside is a total loss.
Please pray for him when you have a chance!
We maybe see him once a month because he's gone trucking a lot, but he's a nice guy.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010


I don't know...
Am I even technically a blogger anymore?
I just don't have any blogging umph.
Could be because we are wasting all of our evenings getting through the first 3 seasons of Friday Night Lights. We should be done with it tonight and then we can finally resume our normal lives.
I am loving this summer though! We've been playing outside and frequenting our nearby wading pool that I somehow didn't even know existed until this summer. Henry loves it and Harper just likes it, but it is so fun!

We're having dinner guests over this weekend and on the menu is falafels and roasted-pepper pasta salad. I've been dying to make it ever since it appeared on the cover of the most recent FoodNetwork magazine.
I think I'll give it a test run tonight.
Yummy...I can not wait to get it in my tummy!
Kosher salt

12 ounces mezzi rigatoni or other short tube-shaped pasta
2 bell peppers (red and/or yellow), halved, stemmed and seeded
6 cloves garlic, unpeeled
1/4 cup almonds
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 lemon
8 ounces bocconcini (small mozzarella balls) (I'm going to use feta cheese instead)
1 bunch fresh basil, leaves torn
Freshly ground pepper


Preheat the broiler. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook as the label directs. Drain and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking. Shake off the excess water.
Meanwhile, place the bell peppers cut-side down on a foil-lined broiler pan, add the garlic and broil until charred, 7 to 8 minutes. Transfer the peppers to a bowl, cover and set aside about 5 minutes.
Heat a dry skillet over medium-high heat. Add the almonds and toast, shaking the pan, 4 to 5 minutes. Let cool, then coarsely chop.

Squeeze the garlic from its skin onto a cutting board. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt; mince and mash the garlic into a paste with a large knife. Peel the roasted peppers and slice into strips; transfer to a large bowl. Add the garlic paste and drizzle with the olive oil. Finely grate about 1 teaspoon lemon zest into the bowl and squeeze in all of the lemon juice. Add the bocconcini, basil, almonds, pasta, 1 teaspoon salt, and pepper to taste; toss.

Doesn't it sound so yummy??!

Maybe I'll actually get around to posting some pictures of the outcome.
And of my kiddos.
And maybe of some other fun stuff.
Happy Tuesday everyone!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Good stuff

We've had a great time lately. The kids and I went up to my parent's house last Thursday and had some good time hanging out with my mom. RJ joined the party on Saturday when I met him up in the charming little town of Emmetsburg for a big family reunion. It was a blast!
I must share Harper's sweet lil' vintage outfit I found for $.25 at a garage sale, though I didn't a good shot of it.
Here's the front view: 

And here's the back view:

Pure sweetness, huh!?
So, back to the party. All the cousins hit at a pinata.

And gathered up all the candy.

After the first day we drove back to my hometown (holla, Albert City!) to spend the night and headed back up to the reunion first thing on Sunday. Harper had another sweet vintage outfit to wear:


(Katie, do you recognize this? My mom just changed the buttons to red ones and sewed on the little bow. Thanks so much for letting my have it!!)

My favorite patriotic duo:

On the 4th we hung out at the town square and some of the adults participated in a volleyball tourney as the rest of us cheered them on and watched the kids play.


The team! They were awesome (in our books) but didn't make it too far (in the bracket books).

We ate lots of yummy food all weekend and I made a 4th of July cake.
Idea from this sweet gal.
It was super yummy and I can't wait to try it again next year.
(it's a super great blog...Amanda's butter cream frosting is the best. The touch of almond extract is *perfect*)



Now that Harper is almost 16 months old, it's about time to re-paint her room, right?
I know. Kind of silly.
But I have this irresistible urge to paint her room a soft pink...and will hopefully do it sometime in the next few months.
While away, I visited a little consignment store and found a pair of the sweetest vintage curtains for $2.50. Score! My mom cut them in half and hemmed them for me and I'm in love.

They go perfectly with the lamp I got at a garage sale a couple of months ago, don't they?

I love the curtains so much, I've almost lost my urge to paint the room pink.

I hope you are all having a lovely week!
It's not hard when (hopefully) a lot of you or your husband's had yesterday off from work, right?
And lucky me gets a husband who has Friday off too because of a building move. Sweet!
Happy Tuesday!


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