Wednesday, October 31, 2007
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
* Saturday morning I had choir practice at church. That meant that Matt & Zachariah had to get along together for a few hours. When I came home there was a tent set up in the living room in the form of a card table with many blankets on top. Zachariah was happy and Matt was painting in the kitchen nearby. Wow, I was proud of my husband for being able to entertain Zac like that. And he kept playing in it all day. We took it down after he went to bed that night. The next morning Zachariah wanted to make another one. He even showed me where everything was. Too cute. We'll save tent making for special days, though.
* Sunday we went to another small group get-together. So far we're enjoying the group. I talked about it a little in this post. I was nervous about it at first. Even after the first meeting I wasn't sure if we were going to fit in. Last week I felt a lot better about it. And this week was even better. I think it was just taking a little time for us to fit in. Honestly I felt like I'd have more problems fitting in with the two younger couples. I didn't know how they would accept us. But this Sunday it was us and the two younger couples. No one else was there. We had a great time. And Zachariah has warmed up to all of them. And they are all warming up to him. I think this is going to work. They have also decided that the group would like to put together a garage sale in the spring to raise money for Matt's Mali trip. We are so excited about that and feel really blessed.
* I started my period yesterday. Yuck. (Good thing I have peanut butter fudge around.) It's especially bad since this is the first I've had it in 2 1/2 months. Matt was concerned that I was pregnant, but honestly I knew I wasn't. I mean, I did think about it and would have been very happy. But Matt was worried, and I know it's not what he really wanted. Then when I told him that I definitely was not pregnant now, he seemed disappointed. Hmm, I find that odd. Maybe it's time to start trying for another baby. Maybe he's ready now. We definitely need to talk about it.
* To make it even more fun, I think I'm getting a cold. It's not bad, but my throat hurts. And my nose has been runny/stuffy off and on since last night. I know I got it from Zachariah. He woke up Saturday with a stuffy nose. Since I share food and drinks with him, I knew I was probably going to get it. Silly me.
* Thanks for the feedback about my eyebrows. Since no one told me that they were horrible and I must hasten to a salon to get them fixed, I think I will just leave them be. You wouldn't lie to me now, would you? I hope not.
Monday, October 29, 2007
Fanny Farmer Fudge
4 1/2 cups sugar
1 large can evaporated milk
Bring to full boil for 10 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and add 1/2 lb (2 sticks) margarine, 18 oz. white bark & 1 Tbs vanilla.
Beat until smooth. Add 1 cup walnuts or pecans. Makes 9x13 pan (or for thinner pieces, pour into 10x15" jelly roll pan).
Easy Fantasy Fudge
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) margarine
6 cups sugar
1 1/3 cups evaporated milk
2 pkg (12 oz each) semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 jar (13 oz) (or 2 small jars) Marshmallow Creme
2 cups chopped nuts (optional)
2 tsp. vanilla
Lightly grease 2 13x9 pans or jelly roll pan. Mix margarine, sugar & milk in heavy 4-5 quart pan; bring to full rolling boil on medium heat stirring constantly. Continue to boil for 5 minutes on medium heat or until candy thermometer reaches 234 F. (It actually takes 6-7 minutes to reach 234, so I always use thermometer.) Remove from heat; gradually stir in chocolate chips until melted, add remaining ingredients; mix well & pour into prepared pans. Cool at room temperature; cut into squares - makes about 6 lbs. fudge.
For easier cutting & cleaning, line pans with lightly greased foil, flip out & remove foil before cutting.
Peanut Butter Fudge
2 1/2 cups sugar
1/3 cup corn syrup
3/4 cup milk
Mix these ingredients and cook over medium heat - stir occasionally until mixture forms soft ball (234 F).
Add: 1 Tbs butter, 1 cup peanut butter & 1 tsp vanilla
Beat to hasten thickening (ready to pour when edges of fudge start to harden on the pan). Pour into buttered 9x9 pan (or line pan w/foil & butter foil).
Here is the fudge all cut up and ready to be frozen for the holidays. This does freeze very well.
And the rest that got a little more crumbly will have to be eaten now. Darn! (I did take some to share with the other adults where I tutor.)
Try some. Enjoy!
It's funny really that I am from a family of girls, but none of us were ever too overly concerned about our appearance (except our mother). Our mother did not pass this on to us, and it didn't matter too much to her that we weren't into all the make-up and stuff she is. I think out of all 3 of the girls, I probably wear the most make-up and am most concerned about my appearance. And it was the same way with most of my friend in high school and college.
So here are some questions for you, my dear readers. What can I do to these brows? I have never plucked, tweezed, or waxed them. Nothing, ever! I think it might be time. Here's the problem, I have no idea what I'm doing. Plus I don't really have the money to pay someone to do it for me. Any suggestions? I don't want to mess up and look horrible.
Also, I never wear much make-up. In the picture I have on eyeshadow (3 shades) and mascara. That's usually all I wear. Sometimes I'll throw on a little pressed powder or lipstick. I own a liquid foundation, eyeliner, and blush but I rarely use them. I always feel like I need a better foundation, but it seems to heavy when I do where it. And I worry that it looks horrible. Eyeliner, I am never happy with the way it looks when I do it. I don't know how to properly apply it. And I tend to have a shaky hand at putting it on. So, any suggestions about foundation (how to wear, whether or not I should wear, what kind do you like)? Any helpful hints about eyeliner? And any other make-up advice for me?
Thanks in advance. And also, I'll be posting some fudge recipes later. Keep an eye out! Complete with photographic evidence too.
Friday, October 26, 2007
I went Trick-or-treating for the first time last night. At first I didn't know what all these people were putting in my orange pumpkin bucket. Then I saw that it was yummy candy, and I tried to figure out how to get it out to eat. Mommy & Daddy let me walk around for a while, and I learned that if I went up to the people and held up my bucket they would put candy in it. Wow! That made me smile. We walked around the whole mall (I sat in my stroller when I slowed down). There were lots of other kids in neat costumes. And my bucket got more and more candy. Then we went out and got back in the car. Mommy took my bucket away. :( But she did let me munch on a little candy on the way back home, so I wouldn't be too mad. When we got home Mommy let me look through my pumpkin. I got to eat some cheese puffs "chee puhh". Then when Mommy turned around, I just dumped the whole bucket. Wow, I got some neat things. Mommy let me eat a few little things, then we picked up and put the rest away. It was a fun night. Mommy said she'll show you some of my pictures. I would come trick-or-treat at your houses, but it's probably a bit far to drive just for that. So, we hope that you enjoy the pictures. I love you all. Hugs & kisses.
Thursday, October 25, 2007
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
1. My least favorite housecleaning chore is dusting. I try to do it at least once a week, but sometimes it ends up being 2 weeks before I get to it again. Last week after I dusted Matt asked if I'd gotten the one end table. I told him of course, when I dust I dust everything. He doesn't usually care if things are dusty, but it was starting to bug him on that one table. (The light is shining right on top, so it's really obvious. We don't use that table much either.)
2. I have 4 houseplants. They're lucky to get watered twice a month. 3 of them are from funerals, the other from when Zachariah was born. I remember to water them when my peace lily droops. It perks right back up within an hour of watering it.
3. I love watching old family sitcoms like "Full House", "Family Matters", "Step By Step", "Fresh Prince", "Home Improvement", etc. We loved these shows as kids and I wish there were still awesome shows like that on now. Gotta love reruns.
4. I always need to run errands when it's raining. I don't know if I get tired of being cooped up in the house, or if I just put it off long enough that I have no choice but to go out when it's raining. Either way it's no fun getting a kid in and out of the car repeatedly and dragging groceries in the house while it's raining. (I did that today.)
5. We don't watch many movies. My dad buys lots of them, so we just borrow from him once in a while. I always end up having them forever and not returning them, because I forget to watch them. I have 6 I just got from him recently, so hopefully we'll get them watched and returned soon.
6. I do at least one load of laundry a day. It helps me stay on top of things. Laundry is one house chore that I really don't mind at all.
OK, I'll tag Jana, Andria, Sara, Emily, Kellie, and Shelly.
Monday, October 22, 2007
1 cup sugar
1 cup pumpkin
½ cup shortening
1 Tbs. grated orange peel (optional)
2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. cinnamon
¼ tsp. salt
½ cup nuts (opt) &/or ½ cup milk chocolate chips or ½ cup raisins (I always use Milk Chocolate chips & sometimes nuts)
Mix in order & bake at 375 8-10 minutes. Glaze.
¼ cup butter
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1-2 Tbs. milk
Melt butter till brown. Add other ingredients. Makes about 4 dozen cookies.
Now that is my mom's recipe. Here's what I do differently. #1 I always double the recipe. Then it uses the whole can of pumpkin instead of half (a small can). #2 And I like it better with 1/2 cup of extra flour. My mom's tend to stay rounder, but mine flatten out a bit so they're more like cookies. #3 Forget the nuts and raisins, go with my mom's suggestion and always use milk chocolate chips. Yum! #4 Also don't bother with the orange zest, unless you already have some on hand. #5 These are still good without the glaze, but the glaze makes them lots better. #6 Also my mom always puts the sprinkles on top, and they are lots better with those too.
So run right out to the store. Go now, why are you waiting? Get the ingredients and make them. RIGHT. NOW! GO!
For your enjoyment, a few more pictures of these yummy delights.
Stay tuned for my mom's amazing caramel apple dip.
Sunday, October 21, 2007
Saturday, October 20, 2007
Anyway, you've been patiently waiting to hear about all the fun we had last weekend/this week. So, I will deliver. And I will include photos.
Saturday we went to Yellow Springs, OH to hike. First we stopped for dinner outside of Dayton. As we were finishing up our meal this man walked up to us. I'd noticed that he'd been smiling at Zachariah since he sat down. He seemed really nice. We soon found out that he is very friendly and lonely. His wife passed away almost 6 years ago. And he had stories to tell. Matt and I, being so polite, were concerned that we may never get out of the restaurant. The man told us of his trips to Europe. He saw the Sistine Chapel in Rome. He told about the guard in there being able to speak at least 4 different languages. Then he told us about how his son shared a door room with Matthew Fox while in college at Columbia. And how he slept in Matthew's room once and met his lovely fiance (the wikipedia link tells about her). He went on and on about how well off his children are as doctors and lawyers. And how important he thought it was that his wife taught them several languages by the time they were my son's age. He was a really sweet man.
Then we went hiking. We went about 2 miles on this beautiful trail. Matt went the whole way with Zachariah on his back.
I loved this bridge and took our family portrait looking into the water. Maybe for our Christmas cards...or not.
And a kind fellow hiker offered to take a picture of all of us. I can't even believe I'm posting this here, but oh well.
We also visited a dairy farm. They were all ready for fall. Zachariah loved it. He wanted to wander on his own. And since it was mostly geared towards children, we let him. We just followed where he wanted to go. He loved the pumpkins, tractors, goats, and cows...not necessarily in that order. Here is the pumpkin he picked.
Matt took Zachariah on a little ride they had for the kiddos.
He loved that the goats didn't mind hugs. :)
We spent the rest of Saturday at an outlet mall. Matt got a great deal on some dress pants that he really needed. And I found a fall jacket that I love. Unfortunately Matt ended the day with a killer headache, but he was able to relax and sleep in the car a little while I drove home.
Sunday morning we slept in a bit and enjoyed some time at home. Then we packed up some things and headed to my parents' house. We spent the rest of the day there. Zachariah was content playing with all of the fun toys Grandma has. And Matt and my dad played video games all day. My dad's XBox stopped working, so they went to the store and bought a new PS2. And he still would like to get a Wii when he can get his hands on one. In the evening my sister came over with pizza and subs. Yum.
Monday we went to the Toledo Zoo again. We had lunch at Red Robin first. Matt loves this place, and he had a free meal coupon for his birthday. Zachariah liked the restaurant too.
the zoo was fun. It was a lot less busy this time, so we just spent time at the things we really wanted to see. Zachariah rode the carousel once (he wanted to go again but I was feeling queasy about halfway through the first ride). Then we went on the train. Here is Matt and Zachariah waiting to see the train.
One of the funnest things for my boy was climbing on all the statues. He really enjoyed the one of the tiger and two tiger cubs. He kept wedging himself between the cub and momma. He thought it was great.
Monday after we finished at the zoo we went back to my parents house to change clothes and relax a while. Then we met Matt's mom and dad for an anniversary dinner. They were celebrating their 30th wedding anniversary. Matt's dad invited us without his mom knowing. She was so thrilled to have us and Matt's sister, Carol there to share dinner with them. And Zachariah loved the calamari they ordered. (Personally I won't touch the stuff. Yuck.)
Then we went back to my parents' house and stayed the night.
Tuesday was a sad day. It rained. And that seemed appropriate.
We went to the funeral for Cheryl's baby boy, Ethan. I've never seen a casket so small, and I hope I never will again. Brett and Cheryl are doing GREAT though. What strong people. Brett even spoke during the service. Basically what he wanted people to know is that they know God had a plan in this baby's short life. He brought him here for a purpose and took him back to heaven too. Cheryl hardly even cried. I talked with her briefly, and she's doing well. She says she has her moments, but mostly she's OK. What a lovely little service though. We all had lunch afterwards at their church. It was nice to see the family and talk to them about the terrible loss.
We spent the rest of Tuesday at my parents' house. Then we came home in the evening. Since then I've been playing catch up, it seems. That's what I did. Nice, huh?
Thursday, October 18, 2007
Friday, October 12, 2007
Thursday, October 11, 2007
"Our son Ethan David went home to be with Jesus tonight. Mommy and Daddy were with him. He was a fighter who gave 110%. His spirit never gave up, although his body could not sustain his life here on earth. I will post details as we have them. Thank you for all of your prayers and love. Cheryl and Brett"
I had a feeling it was going to go from summer straight to winter this year. That's what it feels like right now. It's supposed to be 60ish this weekend. Which will be great hiking weather. Plus it's supposed to be sunny! We almost always go hiking this weekend in October.
Here is the weather in Ohio in what Zachariah has been wearing. (But yeah for finally being able to get him into his new fall clothes.)
Sunday- short-sleeved shirts and shorts. (Notice how the dog is best friends with the kid- only when he has food in his hand.)
Wednesday (a lot cooler)- long-sleeved shirt, pants, and a jacket to go outside (He almost needs his winter jacket on.)
Zachariah was being quite the model yesterday afternoon as seen in the photo above. I put his denim jacket on to leave, and he wanted to pose. I have several cute shots of him. It was his idea to pick up the pumpkin and feature it in his picture. What a sweet, funny boy.
Tuesday, October 9, 2007
- I need a place to be me without fear of judgement.
- I want to connect to other moms.
- I sometimes want to share my private feelings with people who don't know me.
- I want to talk about my son.
My blog is not known to my husband, family, or close friends. There are, however, a few real life friends who do read my blog. I know of a few, and there may be more. I trust that what they learn here will be kept private. It's like carrying on a private conversation with someone, you respect their privacy. Anyway, I'm not concerned about that. (But I'm not confident enough to tell my family and close friends about it.)
Sometimes I'm here to be funny. Sometimes I have to be serious. Other times I just feel like writing. And most often I just want to get my feelings out. Do I hold back? Of course I do. I'm not sure I'll ever be a good enough writer to put it all out there. Or maybe it's that I'm not that kind of writer.
Some days it's as much fun for me to read other people's blogs as it is to write my own. But here is where I feel comfortable. I feel like I belong.
That's why I blog. How about you? Leave a comment or make it a post yourself. What is your blog to you?
Monday, October 8, 2007
The good: Matt makes supper probably 40% of the time. I love this. He's a great cook. The times he doesn't cook, I usually get things ready before hand. Crock pot recipes are great. Or one dish things that Matt can throw in the oven when he gets home are good too. But if I don't prepare something, he'll take over. He's great at improvising and making something out of odds and ends we have around.
Zachariah ate brussel sprouts tonight. He loved them. I had to go back and get him more...twice! I told Matt we'll have to remind him in 10 years, that, yes, he used to eat brussel sprouts.
The bad: Although Matt makes a really good supper, he never cleans it up. He leaves out the pans and cooking utensils. He lets dishes pile up and throws them precariously in the sink...if they even make it that far. The kitchen is always a terrible mess after he cooks dinner. And I don't even mind cleaning up if he cooked it, but he never helps clean up when I cook. I don't get it.
Also, he leaves the table when he's done eating. I usually fix Zachariah's plate, then get him started. Then Matt and I will fix our plates and go sit down with him. Matt usually gets to sit down before me, because I have to fuss and make sure everyone has everything they need. So, we sit and eat as a family...until Matt is done eating. He'll usually sit there for a little longer, but then he takes off. He sometimes gets all his dishes into the sink before doing something else. I'm left to finish eating, take care of Zachariah, and then clean my dishes as well as the kids. Then I go clean the kitchen up, and right after that (if not before) I'm getting Zachariah ready for bed.
After all that, I clean up all Zachariah's toys. Matt almost never puts them away. I'll admit there have been a few times when it's not a huge mess, so I just make sure it's pushed to the side. But most of the time, I put everything away. Matt gets to sit and relax while I do this. He will ready Zachariah a story, and then I put him to bed.
At that point I'm exhausted. And Matt wonders why. Ha!
Sunday- Wonderful. I'm getting giddy just thinking about the weekend ahead.
Saturday, October 6, 2007
Friday, October 5, 2007
Matt is enjoying having one evening a week with Zachariah to himself. They can go out for dinner, play together, and he gets to do bedtime. And it's so nice for me to get out alone for a while (for choir practice), and then come home to a peaceful house with a sleeping baby.
Yesterday my parents came over for a visit. They both took a week off work, but they haven't been doing too much. They went away one night and did some shopping. Other than that they've been staying home. I know my mother is worried about what's going on at work. She's also concerned about her friend, who has cancer, and is having complications right now. They won't tell her much of what's going on, because they want her to enjoy her vacation. My mom knows the friend is doing OK, but she thinks they learned more about her cancer spreading and it's probably not good. (It's been a long battle for this lady. She's been battling it for 7 years now.) Anyway, I think it was good for them to come here for a day and have fun. They seemed to really enjoy themselves, and I think they both needed the pick-me-up. Matt and my dad went golfing, which they both loved. Mom and I went shopping, which is always fun. Then my mom stayed here with Zachariah for a while, so I could go tutor. She thought it was funny the little things that Zachariah did that reminded her of me when I was little. I find it fascinating to hear about the similarities.
Wednesday, October 3, 2007
But why, oh why, am I thinking about this already. Maybe I'm growing as a mother and realizing that things don't always go as planned with a toddler around.
Last year I opted out of holiday baking. This is something I normally love to do. I believe I make a few small batches of cookies and some chocolate covered pretzels, but that was about it. Much less than I usually do. I knew that I would not have the time to commit to it with a baby around.
So what I'm thinking now is that I can start baking some of the cookies and have them out of the way for other things later. My little cousin always requests my gingerbread men cookies. And I have to make them for Thanksgiving and Christmas. I'm in big trouble if I forget (I've done that before). They freeze very well and so do my sugar cookies.
But am I nuts? I'm not the type to get into Christmas too early. I refuse to put my Christmas tree up until after Thanksgiving. And usually other than a few different kinds of cookies for Thanksgiving, all my other baking gets done the week before Christmas.
The more I think about it, the more I realize how easy it would be to just pull a tray off holiday cookies out of the freezer in time for an get together. And it sure would be a lot less stressful. I may start pulling my recipes out and deciding what to bake.
Tuesday, October 2, 2007
Yesterday while I was tutoring Zachariah came up to me with his empty snack container, held it up to me, and said "mooure". I told hold him OK, let's go get you something. Then I stopped dead in my tracks and realized my baby just talked. It's not that he doesn't ever talk, but he only says a few words and "more" has never been one of them. Usually he'll just sign it. It was so cute. When I ask him if he said "more", he said it again - "mooure". Aww, so cute.
This morning he woke up saying "Daddy? Daddy? Dad?" from his room. I laughed to myself, because he usually screams when he wants up then stops as soon as I walk in. So yesterday after nap time, I told him "If you just say 'mommy, mommy' I'll gladly come get you, and you won't have to scream." Ha, ha. So, that's what he did this morning. Except he was calling for daddy. But after saying that a few times, I heard "Momma...momma." Adorable.
Most days I'm amazed at the new things he's doing...as I'm sure every mother is at their child. While trying, this is a very fun age.
**In the picture at the top Zachariah stole my keys and was trying to "start" his tricycle with them.
Monday, October 1, 2007
We have a floor cleaner, but we haven't used it in a while. I've been noticing yucky stains on the carpet in the dining room lately. They directly correlate to where the high chair is positioned. I think they are various marks from assorted flying foods. I had mentioned to Matt earlier in the week that the floor was starting to disgust me. We talked about it briefly. Nothing else was said, and he decided on his own to clean the floor. What a sweet man.
The floor is cleaner and looks nicer, but it still has a few marks on it. I'm not too concerned. This is cheap, generic carpet that was put in the house before we moved in. Ideally we would just replace the carpet. I'm hoping that some day that's a possibility, but for now it's not. So I will live with it and know it won't always be like this.
In other news I've surpassed my 200th post. I was thinking of something fun to do in celebration of that. I did a list-like post about me for my 50th post, but I want something a little different. After doing that I had no motivation to write 100 more things even for my 100th post. Here's my idea. I need to know what you think. I'd like to try to write up 200 random memories from my whole life. It would be revealing about me, and I can think of some funny stories that might come out of it from my childhood and on.