Thursday, June 25, 2009

Summer fun.

Summer has been slow coming to our part of the world, and that's been fine with me. I love the spring and fall weather the best. Yesterday, though, brought the first real hot stuff. In the 90's. After a lazy Taco Bell dinner, I cleaned out the Suburban and got the baby seat in and situated. I was really hot by the time I finished (and this was at 6:00!) and sat down to read for awhile. Kannon walked across the street to the store, with the kids, and they bought some squirt guns and a fun sprinkler. After they got it all set up, I went out to watch them and enjoy their fun. I did get wet, too. I let them spray me a bit and even ran through the sprinkler with Sarah. She has such a hard time with it, though. She wants to be a part of the fun, but isn't too excited about getting wet. Right now, as a matter of fact, the 2 kids are outside with the water and she just keeps screaming. I warned her when she put on her suit that she would get wet. So, it's almost laughable.





This was the end of the water fight as we did not refill the bucket.
Just a brief update.


Nothing happening. No, really. Absolutely nothing. This baby has not dropped, and the doctor says that nothing can or will happen until it does. So, now I will be doing more talking to this one, inviting him/her to move along!



The other day I was cooking dinner. Benjamin smelled the spices and said, "yuck, that stinks, I must be allergic." After I named the ingredients -garlic powder, onion powder and pepper - he went on. "I think when you mix the garlic, onion and pepper it becomes something I'm allergic to." I think he was just teasing me, but I thought how fun his mind is sometimes.



Sarah walked in on me blinking, squinting and rubbing my eye. She furrowed her brow and asked what was wrong. I told her I had something in my eye. "Is it a tic-tac?"

Friday, June 19, 2009

Another recipe, 38-weeks, anniversary and a video to make you smile!

Because Kannon gave this recipe a 12 out of 10 and my Mom loved it, too, I thought I'd post it for anyone. It's a quick crockpot recipe. Serves about 4. We had 6 of us eating and only got firsts. =(
Chicken Stew
2 envelopes chicken gravy mix
2 cups water
3/4 cup chicken broth
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 Tbsp. minced fresh parsley
1-2 tsp. chicken bouillon granules
1/2 tsp. pepper
5 medium carrots, cut into 1-in. chunks
1 large onion, cut into 8 wedges
1 broiler/fryer chicken (3-4 lbs) cut up
3 Tbsp. flour
1/3 cup cold water
In a slow cooker, combine gravy mix, water, broth, garlic, parsley, bouillon and pepper until blended. Add the carrots, onion and chicken. Cover and cook on low for 7-8 hours. Increase heat to high. In a small bowl, combine the flour and cold water until smooth; gradually stir into slow cooker. Cover and cook for 1 hour. Serve with biscuits.
I used about 1 1/2 lbs. of boneless skinless chicken breast, cut up in chunks, instead of the fryer.
So, here is the newest pregnancy picture. Me at 38 1/2 weeks. Nothing is going on to convince me (or the doctor) that this baby is on its way. I have a feeling we'll be overdue again.
Monday was our 8th anniversary! We're going to try and get out on our own tomorrow to celebrate a bit. But, on Monday I was pleasantly surprised with a delivery of flowers. I haven't gotten flowers like that since our 1st anniversary. He's brought them home a few times from the grocery store. But, a delivery is so extra-special. Anyway, I'm surprised and pleased to have made it 8-years. Even when things have been rough I've always felt like eternity is still within our reach.



video

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Ben - I can fly for real. But, just for a little while, then I just fall.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

recipe

So, I spent a whole morning choosing recipes, creating a menu and shopping lists for the next 5 weeks. I figured that would be one thing that would make having a new baby easier. I bought all the long-term stuff and have grocery lists for each week with the perishables. That way if someone else needs to shop for me it's all ready to go.
One of my friends asked if I share. Well, unless you had the same cookbooks it would be kind of difficult to do. I'm not going to type every recipe. But, one of the first ones I tried turned out so well, I thought I'd share it. The recipe made plenty for our family of 4 and half of that recipe has already been stored in the freezer for a second meal later.
Wild Rice Mushroom Chicken
2 pkgs. (6 oz. each) long grain and wild rice mix
8 boneless skinless chicken breast halves
5 Tbsp. butter or margarine, divided
1 large sweet red pepper, chopped
2 jars (4 1/2 oz. each) sliced mushrooms, drained
Prepare rice according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, cook chicken in 3 Tbsp. butter for 10 minutes on each side or until browned and juices run clear. Remove chicken and keep warm.
Add remaining butter to pan drippings; saute red pepper until tender. Stir in mushrooms; heat through. Add to rice. Serve 4 chicken breasts with half of the rice mixture. Place remaining chicken in a greased 11x7x2-in. baking dish; top with remaining rice mixture. Cool. Cover and freeze for up to 3 months.
To use frozen dish: Thaw in the refrigerator. Cover and bake at 350* for 35-40 minutes or until heated through.
Yield: 2 casseroles (4 servings each).
This recipe came from my "Taste of Home's Quick Cooking Annual Recipes - 2002" cookbook. A few years ago my sister-in-law was showing me some recipes from one of these cookbooks and I got excited. I went to ebay and bought 5 of them, 2002-2005. The sad thing was that the first 3 ended up having recipes ripped out of them. Still, I was able to come up with 5 weeks worth of recipes from this one cookbook. We've found a lot of new favorites and also some we don't like. This recipe was definitely a 9-10 on our scale!
Just wanted to post the pictures I promised. This is our garden. We have green beans (need to put up poles), carrots, spinach (the lettuce didn't grow at all), beets, peppers, herbs, watermelon, and tomatoes. We also planted the little pear tree. I hope we've moved before it produces, though! We've had incredible rain for the past month and really appreciate that way of watering.
This is the before of our bathroom. With the cool shower rod deal we had to have 2 shower curtains. That wall had a door that went into the kids room. We covered it up when we remodeled their room - 3 YEARS AGO! And the blue tub just didn't leave room for different colors in the bathroom. The trim around the window, etc. used to be a bright blue - I painted it "hitching post."

So, this is the bathtub now. I really like the tile and don't think we did a bad job. We had a problem when we put up the shower rod, broke 2 tiles. So, he's replaced those, we just need to re-grout. Plus, the grout in that corner cracked all the way up. So, we need to redo that. I've painted the new wall, we just need to get some trim so it will match the rest of the room. But, we all enjoy it. I especially love having a shower in our house again! It took at least 3 weeks!


Next are some old/new pictures of my bedroom. Our original plan had been to remodel the whole thing- tearing out the walls and ceiling. But, we both felt it would be better to use that money to pay on the baby bills soon to come. Instead, I insisted we paint (I've hated the turquoise walls since we moved in!), rip out the carpet and sand the wood floor underneath, and replace the window.

The kids helping me prime the wall.

This was underneath the carpet! We were surprised to find it there. It's a kind of linoleum with this feather design. SO OLD. And totally glued on to the wood. Kannon ended up taking half a day off work to do it. We had planned on him doing it on a Saturday, but he needed to work. He picked up the sanders at 1pm and didn't get finished until 10:30 that night. He took one break to eat dinner! He was my hero.


One finished view.
One old view. I didn't take any of the carpet, but it was gray and gross. The previous owners had dogs and we found dog hair in the carpet for a long time. Plus, it was just stained and ugh.


I took a picture of this because I wanted to have a record of what used to be in our bedroom - a room that should bring peace and comfort. I decided to remove this bookshelf, it is now on the back porch and our room feels so much better.

Another after picture. I still need to finish painting the trim around all 3 doors and the window. I only painted half up the edges, enough to get us moved back in. This is a project I really don't want to leave for very long. I've ordered the window - it should come in a few weeks. That'll be nice. We don't have a screen right now on our old window, so we get some bugs in that way at night. In this one you can see the floor! Such a difference. The whole room is so much brighter and even more inviting.


These are the yellow roses in the front yard. It's time for me to cut the old buds off so we can have them some more this summer.

And these are the wild ones that grow on the other side of the door in the front. They are mostly dead now. Bummer, my front will be colorless for awhile, I guess.

I guess that's that.


Thursday, June 4, 2009

some kid funnies

This is a game Sarah likes to play:
Sarah - Where's your smile, Mama? (so I smile and she smiles back)
Ben, where's your smile? (he smiles)
Dada's smile is at work.
Ben - No he doesn't! (he heard Dad smiles at work)
She also often comes to me with "a surpresent for you". I figure it's a surprise present. She might have anything from sticks, to clean hands, to the diaper I asked her to go get - hidden behind her back. It always makes me smile.
Ben's just too smart sometimes. He was talking to Sarah in the car about stop and go.
Ben: g-o-e, that spells go
Me: Actually it's just g-o
Ben: Well, what does j-o-e spell?
Me: That spells Joe.
Ben: They rhyme, so it should be g-o-e.
Me: I don't know, Ben.
I have a hard time explaining a lot of stuff about spelling to him - some of it just doesn't make sense!
This afternoon, as I was on the computer, my kids were quiet in the other room. I knew Sarah had been asleep, but then I heard kids out front. My kids get in trouble often for being in the front yard - I just don't feel safe when they're out there. So I went to check on them and ask why they were out there. This is what I found. Sarah had fallen asleep on the couch with a pillow as a blanket. I guess Ben liked the idea and so he joined her - he has just his feet sticking out. This is how they sleep at night, too. She covers up pretty normal - but Ben sleeps with his head covered and his feet out. He heard me taking this picture and got up, so it was a short nap. Oh, well. I think Sarah is going to be weaning away from her naps as well. Some days it's such a fight.

we had a food fiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiihgt
(from Ben - he said "I've been planning that forever - well, not forever, just like a day. But, I had to wait until you were doing a blog.")


Baby update


So, my sister said she hasn't heard much from me about this pregnancy. I guess I just felt like as long as everything was okay, there wasn't much to say! Plus, I've been more nervous this time around. I'm just now starting to feel okay about having another baby and going through the whole birth thing. I really did need the whole 9+ months. Let's see - I'm big and uncomfortable. I've been going to the chiropractor regularly, to keep my back from hurting too much. But, a few weeks ago he told me not to come back until after the birth. Ugh - I hurt pretty good every night now. I think some of that may be the sciatic nerve. I've never had a problem with that before, but I think that's what I'm feeling. I get tired in the afternoons. Sometimes I take a nap with Sarah - but I often get interrupted or feel like I have more important things to do. I also just don't have the energy to do much. The kids want to go to the park, EVERY DAY! I managed it last week for an hour and came home exhausted. I didn't do anything but push the swings! Since we don't know what we're having, I can't use that as a help on when this baby might be born (ie. Ben was 2 weeks early, Sarah induced 6 days late). So, I've given myself a 2-5 week window. Today, I found out that my doctor will be in Bangladesh during that time! So, unless the baby is born next week, or I go over my due date, we will have a different doctor for delivery. That's got me a little upset. I mean he's delivered both of my other kids and I've been working with him this whole time. What's a girl to do? I think he should have been required to file his vacation a year in advance, that way when someone wants him to be their doctor he can let them know he won't be around for the delivery and they can choose to find someone else. Aargh. Today was also my first vaginal exam of these last weeks. The baby is no longer breech - Yay! But, no news as to being closer to a delivery. So, pretty sure next week will not produce the baby! I made a list - finally - of all the things I needed to do before the baby is born. Then, I quit worrying and wouldn't you know it, I lost said list! I don't remember what was on it - don't even get the satisfaction of checking off what I might have already accomplished. My right foot swells every day. It's getting a little worse every day. At least it doesn't hurt, just looks gross. The baby moves a lot. Hiccups, too. Some times the pushes hurt and I spontaneously jump. I've also had Braxton Hicks contractions. I don't remember them with Sarah, but for sure with Ben. I still feel like it's a girl, but some things make me wonder if it's a boy. I'm really excited for this surprise! I also don't really have much to wear - scary, huh? I have one pair of capris and one pair of jeans and my mom made a skirt and a dress, plus the skirt from last pregnancy and a dress I bought. So, I do wear dresses and skirts quite often. They are pretty comfortable, too. That's mostly what I can think to say about everything right now. Leave a comment if you have any questions! Or if you want to come and clean my floors! =)

Monday, June 1, 2009

Life....as it's been.

I feel a little past due for updating. I keep putting it off, who knows why? Anyway, our last couple of weeks have been fairly full. We spent 2 weekends in Elko. Kannon had volunteered his labor to repair some damage done by a broken water heater at his mom's. We figured it would take more than one weekend. At the end of our 2 weekends it still wasn't finished. I'm sure he'll be up there again as soon as he can.
The 15th-17th was our first weekend. On Friday the cousins got to spend the day together. Stetson built a fire (without the flame) following the instructions he got on the grandma vacation. Then they decided they needed marshmallows. They each had a plastic fork, and Kate was in charge of doling out the mallows. I thought it looked like great fun!



Kate and Sarah playing with the dandelions. Kate tried to make a necklace.

That night Kannon and I went on a double date with his brother J.J. and his fiance, Misty. We went out for dinner and I enjoyed visiting and getting to know her better. This will be JJ's second marriage (Misty's too). And he will inherit 3 children! On Saturday morning I went to one of the Elko parks and met up with Misty and her kids. Sasha joined us shortly with her kids, too. We got to visit some more while the kids played. Misty's kids are the same age as mine (a boy Ben's age and a girl Sarah's age. Gabby kept saying Sarah was her best friend. They actually played together very well!) That evening was Misty's baptism. It was so neat. I love convert baptisms. I try to imagine that feeling of newness and peace in having chosen what the Lord wants.
Kreg (Kannon's brother), Misty and JJ.
That week we had our last day of school with the boys. We did the letter Z - made paper bag zebras and zebra cookies. I think they all just enjoyed playing together more than anything.
We went to Elko again on the 23-25th (Memorial Day weekend). We got there Friday night and I got up early Saturday (3:40 am!) to drive to SLC. I wanted to spend the day with my sisters, Janet and Susan (who was also visiting). I hadn't slept very well, so got up during one moment when I was pretty awake. Staying awake on the drive was tough. I stopped in Tooele for hashbrowns and a Dr. Pepper! Nice breakfast, eh? That would be called "the breakfast of people trying to stay awake"! I had had my fill of jellybeans and gobstoppers and my water was all gone (another reason I had to stop!) I got to Janet's in time to go with her to a Mary Kay "thing". We had a good time, got to visit and put on makeup. Then back to her house for yummy pizza and a nap for me. We went to the Distribution Center for new garments and met the boys (Levi and Stephen) at the Peace Gardens. It was an enjoyable walk - but I was having Braxton Hicks contractions the whole time! No pictures of my day there, I had to leave the camera for remodeling pictures at the in-laws. We had taco soup for dinner and then I had to leave. I listened to a book on cd the whole way there and back (and all the way home on Monday, too.) That helped me stay awake. Stayed up to watch "Taken" when I got to Elko. I didn't enjoy it very much. But, slept better that night. We had a relaxing Sunday - no remodeling, but the boys decided to play some basketball - some of it in the rain!
Kreg, the one with the broken hand, won! He got injured the weekend before in a motorcycle accident. We were all grateful it wasn't worse and hope he learned some lessons from the experience.

This is another Nevada sunset. I just love what the rain does for the sky and the smells of Nevada! It was beautiful, but also cold. I was shivering when I went back in after taking their pictures!
We left Monday after a quick lunch. I drove the whole way (without stopping). Kannon and Sarah slept the whole way, Ben about 1/2 and then he watched a movie. We had met in Fernley and left his car there, on Friday. So, that's where we drove to. Sarah and I went home; Kannon and Ben took his car to Reno. A few weeks before, Kannon had won tickets in a raffle at the Union to go to a Reno Aces game. Box seats. They had a good time, although by the 5th inning Benjamin said he was done. He did enjoy the fireworks at the end, though. And the Aces won - so that was a plus.
Sarah and I had pizza and ice cream for our dinner and I enjoyed the quiet evening alone (after she was in bed).
We've got our garden planted. I'll have to do pictures of that later. We planted the seeds one night and then this last Saturday I bought the plants we wanted and we put those in that evening. We've enjoyed rain the last 3 nights and hope that it will be beneficial to our garden and the crops in our valley. I've loved the rain. Loved that I can turn off the cooler and just open the front door to keep the house cool. Love the smells and the overcast skies.
Last week, Kannon was asked to work some overtime. He had some late nights and even worked on Saturday. Because he just finished teaching a class at the Union and is going to be teaching another one starting next week, I felt like we needed to PLAN some family time. So that the kids would have things to look forward to and Kannon's time at home wouldn't all be taken up in projects. So, the first thing on our list was a food fight! A couple of times, at dinner, Kannon has tossed a piece of food at me to see if he can "make a basket." Ben always wants to follow suit and throw food, too. So, a long time ago we promised we would have a food fight - outside and planned so that Mom could deal with it.
This was actually before the food fight. I made mashed potatoes, ramen noodles, peas, corn, and applesauce. I forgot the jello in the fridge. Anyway, Sarah and Ben were pretty messy eaters!
All of a sudden I threw a spoonful of corn at Kannon and the fight was on. We all loved throwing the food, no one really enjoyed getting the food on them.
This was Ben's first bit of mess. He wasn't too pleased. Sarah fussed the whole time!
We did laugh a lot though and it was pretty easy clean-up. I ended up getting a spoonful of peas right down my front! (courtesy of Kannon, of course.) So, I spent the rest of the time holding my shirt like this.
We've also got a swim day planned and as soon as there is a movie we all want to see, we'll do that, too. I think we'll have to do a few more plans like this throughout the summer to make sure we are spending good time together.
Benjamin also finished his kindergarten work for the year and I say he's officially a 1st grader now. He'll tell you that he already did first grade - because he's been doing 1st grade work. We've got things in the works for him to go to school this next year. Homeschooling has been hard on me. He doesn't want to listen to me, wants to do it all his own way. I just don't feel like it's as disciplined as it needs to be. Plus, he definitely needs the social part that public school can give him. We start shots next week.=(
We also had a photo shoot for the kids this week. I've been putting it off for months! Maybe even almost a year. I knew that Sarah would be tough. She just doesn't always agree to pose. And they both do goofy faces when you tell them to smile. Well, we finally did it - and I don't think it went too badly. She didn't hold still often, but I think there will be some good ones to pick from. And Ben had the same posed smile over and over again! We borrowed my neighbors beautiful backyard and I'm excited to get them done! The roses were (are) in bloom and made a nice backdrop for some. Yesterday, when I opened my front door I could actually smell the roses. I didn't even have to go out and sniff each individual one! We have red and yellow ones blooming out front. I'll have to do some pictures of those later, too.
And so, we are pretty much updated. I have a doctor's appt. in a few days and I will update then on how the pregnancy is going. It's hard for me to believe that in 2-5 weeks I will have a new baby! I'm still pretty nervous about the whole labor part! It's hard not knowing how it will go.