Friday, October 31, 2008

Cute and Easy Storage Container

I found this site that has tons of great ideas for crafts and things.

My most recent favorite is this, which I will be making tomorrow.
Total cost? Less then $2, plus ribbon, which if purchased at Wal-Mart is VERY cheap. I'm using ribbon I already have, so in a way, the ribbon is free.
I got my container at Dollar General for $1.25. I am going to use it for the same thing as in the picture, but read the comments on this post for many, many more ideas.

I've created a MONSTER!

It's Halloween, sure. And Jackson IS dressing up like a clown-alien-banana-cat-monster, but I don't believe that allows him to ACT like a monster until tonight, and then a nice "scary" monster.

He was a perfect angel at my OB appt. Quiet, listening to heartbeat and saying, "thump, thump" while patting his chest, reading a book while OB checked me (he was by my head locked in his stroller, so he saw nothing...he had a slight fever yesterday so I didn't want him to go to babysitter today, even though his fever is gone) Jack took over. He threw a fit in Target, kicking Fat Baby (AKA my stomach!) while in the cart, so he did not get the trick or treat bag he wanted. He threw a fit in K-Mart, so he got an early nap time when we got home, with much fussing before he fell asleep. Thank goodness K-Mart had blue hair spray for less then $7 (is Wal-Green's for reals?) for Brennan's NEW costume...a blue LEGO. (The vampire cape was lame, yep, and it apparently strangled the poor boy. So, he came up with the idea of being a, economic kid!)

I am wondering what got into him and I really hope it hopped out by the end of nap time or else somebody just might not be trick or treating tonight...though that means less candy for ME, so we will see how punishment is issued if the monster remains. (However, less candy for ME means less weight gained for me, so maybe that is a good thing...)

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Halloween Craft

This is my version of Kathy's craft from a while back. A few friends gathered at my house the other morning (can I be more vague?) and we created some cute decorations.
We had LOVE, THANKFUL, HOHOHO, and GOMEZ. All were very cute.
Thanks for coming over to play ladies! I had fun and can't wait until the next craft day!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Can't Stop Thinking...

I can't stop thinking about Christmas. If I had a really nice artificial tree (we have no tree), I think I'd put it up Nov. 1. Seriously.
I am envious of my mother and father who have TWO trees! Maybe this year I will break down and buy one...nah. I don't see that in my budget right now.

Trick or Treating...Round Two (AKA Trunk or Treat)

Preparing for trick or treating...

What I Learned From Hosting Trunk or Treat (for the second year in a row)

1. Never say "No" to the offer of help, in any form.
2. Always say "Thank you" to all who helped.
3. Expect the unexpected, like no lights in the parking lot!
4. Turn up the crockpots a little bit...the ton of nacho cheese probably won't burn and you would have had hot nacho cheese.
5. Microphones are way better then yelling, even if some people thing it's funny to see/hear you yell.
6. Plan for one hundred, but only about 50 when it comes to nacho sauce.
7. My children's costumes will never be as cool as some of these creative mama's.
8. Kids are crazy!
9.'ll all come together and really, how hard is it to screw up hotdogs, nachos, Little Debbies, and candy???

My Halloween Costume Idea

So, I feel like poor old Chris Farley lately...Fat Guy In A Little Coat.
I think this is what I am going to be for Halloween. If it had been cold for trunk or treat last night everyone would have basted in my Fat Girl in a Little Coat glory.

Oh, and this is not the clearest version of the clip from Tommy Boy, but it is slightly edited, so we'll take what we can get.

Monday, October 27, 2008


Right now my life is in preparation mode.

  • I prepare for the craft date at my house tomorrow morning by cleaning. This cleaning is also helping me prepare for when my parents and the new baby come by getting a few things in order that have been sitting around, waiting for me to give them attention.
  • I prepare for the upcoming childbirth with braxton hicks contractions (though I have no control over that).
  • I prepare for a newborn by buying a little extra of this and that when grocery shopping and searching for the perfect pacis. (I love MAM, but Wal-Mart's aren't that cute, so I need to go to Target.)
  • I prepare for my craft date by cutting 2x4's into small squares.
  • I prepare for trunk or treat by going to Wal-Mart to get the last of the needed supplies (If I go to Wal-Mart one more time this week I will scream...oh, wait, I still haven't gotten groceries!)
  • I prepare my family for the celestial kingdom by (trying, very hard) to read the scriptures every night and teaching them to say "good" prayers (Brennan says "Thank you" for everything, even things he is asking for, such as "Thank you that I can be good and go to the green party", though now he throws in a "We are very pleased that..." I have no clue where that one came from).
  • I prepare Brennan for reading by helping him with his level one and two books.
  • I prepare myself for the upcoming cold weather by trying on my jackets and hoping they will fit over the fatter version of me.
  • I need to prepare my lawn for winter and trim down the dead flowers and have Bart cut the grass.
  • I prepare for Christmas by doing all the shopping for the boys on Thursday. (Thanks Kristen!)

There are so many things to prepare for...what are you preparing for?

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Rock Star Party

Brennan was invited to a friend's 6th birthday party. She is obsessed (I am hoping, b/c she got a ton of themed presents!) with Hannah Montana (who wouldn't be, esp. at the age of 6?) so she had a H.M./Rock Star party.

The mom gave rock star make-overs to the kids, girls getting funky hairdos and colored hair pieces and glitter, plus glitter eye makeup, boys getting colored spray and star sunglasses. Brennan picked blue, because he currently claims that is his favorite color. I tried to do a faux-hawk at home, but his hair looked bad so we just made it a bit spiky in front. (Jackson also got a faux-hawk, which looked awesome, but quickly fell b/c his hair is too long. It was a "big kid" party so Bren and I were able to ditch the toddler and enjoy ourselves)

There were the cutest blow up guitars the kids rocked out on as they played a game of statue (I guess you'd call it that...rockin' music played then when it was turned of you had to freeze!) and there were blowup microphones, too, used for a game of pass the (potato) microphone. Winners got Hannah Montana suckers shaped like guitars (who knew?!?!?!) and all the kids got a blow up guitar and microphone as goodies, along with candy from guessed it, Hannah Montana pinata. Oh, and let's not forget the incredible blow up stage...blown up by the birthday mama! It was the cutest thing, and made for a great backdrop/party spot.

I re-discovered that Brennan is a bit of a "chic magnet"...he reported getting 3 kisses and giving 1, too! Oh, my...we are going to have to watch our future heart throb and make sure he doesn't break too many of the girls hearts! (Of course, the kiss he gave was to the birthday girl as she thanked him for her gift...I think she gave everyone a kiss b/c she was so excited to get all the gifts...but then I think kissing got on his brain)

Friday, October 24, 2008

Trick or Treating...Round One

Tonight began the official season of trick or treating. It's funny how we allow strangers to give our children candy in the month of October, but if they were offered candy from strangers during any other month of the year, we'd be calling 9-1-1.
We went to Westroads Mall and participated in their "safe" trick or treating around the mall. It was fun, I guess, if you call 5000 kids all in costume fun. It was a good test drive of the costumes (kind of, Brennan just put on his cape, he wasn't worried about what went underneath.) As you can see, Jackson's "monster eyes" need some help staying upright and he really looks like a clown-alien-banana-cat-monster, but oh, well...he likes it and is happy, except when he accidentally eats a bite of the fur instead of his dinner. Brennan's vampire cape was itching his neck and he quickly got tired of the teeth. (Don't worry, he has glow in the dark teeth for the "important" night of free candy from strangers, the purple ones were from a party.)
I joked that we now did not need to buy candy for Trunk-or-Treat at church (Round Two of TorT), but Bart shot down my idea. We'll see...

My How Time Flies

How is it already time for Target to have Christmas merchandise right by the Halloween merchandise, ready to take over on midnight of Nov. 1?
How is it that Brennan is 1/4 of the way through with kindergarten? Didn't he just start preschool last month?
How is it that Fat Baby will be here in less then four weeks?'s went by so fast.
How is it that the warm days of summer and crisp days of fall have disappeared? Will you be coming back to join us for a few more days, or is this it?
How is it that a week has passed and I still haven't posted about our fun adventure to OCM and Aidan's birthday party yet?
How is it possible that it's payday yet again? Not that that means we'll have money, just have work to do to give our money to others.
And is it already 3 p.m.? I haven't taken a nap yet and Jackson will be up soon.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

I want that ______ (fill in the blank with the newest obnoxious toy/game/food here)

I hate cable.

I will be very glad when football season is over and we cancel it.

Why, you might ask yourself.

Because every time my children see a commercial for ANY toy (even girl toys with Jack), game (video or board game), or food (yogurt, fast food, bananas, they aren't picky) all I hear is "I NEED that" or "I need that toy for Christmas Mama."

No, you don't. What in the world would you do with that electronic dog that you play with and it grows into a pet? Why would you want to try all natural peanut butter? You hated it when I got it for you at Panera that day (let me tell you, I tried it to see why they were being so really is gross). Who would play that new board game with you? Me? Nope, you get too frustrated when you don't win and pieces wind up all over the house.

So, I wait.

For the end of a great thing (football season and crystal clear reception) and the beginning of a better one...PBS Kids during the week, and obnoxious commercials only on the weekend mornings. I can handle one day of the offense, just not all day, every day.

(Yes, I hear you saying turn off the t.v. It is off, A LOT, but for the small times it is on, ARGH!)

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

New York! New York!

Today, while I battle with two extremely tired and cranky children, Bart gets to play around New York City. I get to cook dinner for the three of us, he gets to dine with clients and put it all on a corporate card. I get to watch t.v. alone, Bart gets to sleep at a 5 star hotel.

Oh, how unfair life is sometimes.

But then again, I don't have to make a huge presentation in front of a room of strangers tomorrow (though I do have jury duty), I didn't have to work a ton of UNPAID (gotta hate salary sometimes) overtime to complete "the deck" last week, and I didn't have to fly out of Omaha at 5:45 a.m. (though the boys and I did have to get up then and drive him to the airport and I got to listen to Jack cry and cry as we left...he wanted to go fly, too!)

I guess it all equals out in the end.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Dental Nightmare

Today I took Brennan to Alpha Dental.
Now, I know a red flag should have went up in my mind when the receptionist told me it was in a shopping center along with Bag-N-Save and Dollar General, but I thought, "hey, don't judge too soon."
Yeah, I wish I had just canceled.
Brennan freaks out at dentists...every time.
We went to a great dentist WAY out in the Millard area, but it really is a LONG trip and I wanted to find someone close to home. I wish I had just went back to Dr. Hohnstien or whoever Brennan went to the first time we went to a dentist here.
The receptionist was nice enough as was the dental hygienist, Julie. However, they kept telling freaked out Brennan to be quiet for the other patients (oh, it wasn't even pediatric why was it listed as so on my cigna online stuff?). Yeah. Not happening.
Then, they said the dentist said he did not have to get x-rays...HELLO...he had FIVE cavities last time he went to the dentist and had to be put to sleep to have them filled. I tried asking for them but was told it wasn't needed every time. Evil or Very Mad
So, no x-rays to see if there were more cavities.
Oh, we got there 20 minutes early and got right in...then, at 5 minutes past our scheduled appt. starting time, as Julie is trying to get Brennan to open his mouth for the cleaning, she says, "We really need to get this done Brennan. We have other patients waiting to get their teeth cleaned, too." was only FIVE minutes after we should have even gotten there. one was in the waiting room
#3...I don't give a crap what your schedule is like, right now you are dealing with MY CHILD and should not be worried about someone else...maybe don't schedule so many people at once???
So, as soon as Brennan was done (all they did was count teeth, shine a light at the cavities, and clean them/floride rinse, didn't even floss them) I was out of there. They gave me a return appt. card with the six month can bet your sweet tooth we will NOT be returning.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

No Secrets Here

Today during church, I was talking with the bishop and another man about the upcoming Christmas dinner. I mentioned that I was planning on bringing a LOT of dishes, because I thought it would be awful if we ran out of food again. I was also trying to "con" the bishop into providing more then just meats (there was plenty of meat at the last Christmas dinner, just not so many sides...probably due to visitors per family who brought something ratios being out of whack)

So, I said something about our last church potluck and was surprised when the bishop made a comment about it being on my blog or something.

I guess I can't keep telling all my secrets on my blog because those who read me, share me. I am honored you do this, bishop's wife...I just thought it was really funny as your husband starts to tell me he knows more about my family then he thought possible.

Come to think of it, Bart is the same way. I update him on the latest Sophie, Jack, Holly, Lexi, McKenna, Crovan, Max, etc, etc, etc. adventures all the time.

Good thing I never mentioned about that time I...

Or that time I said...

No Friends Here

Today during sacrament meeting at church, I was trying to keep Jackson quiet. Bart has had to work about fifty thousand hours this past week and actually got called in about 45 minutes before it was time to leave for church today.
So, Jackson and I are struggling and he tells me,


Ha, ha, ha.

My first spoken words of disdain from my children.

Can't wait for when he can actually make complete sentences on a more regular basis.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Hot Glue, A Girl's Best Friend

Today I decided it was time to get to work on Jack's Halloween costume. He wants to be a monster. I wanted to create the boys costumes this year (Bren wants to be a easy is that?), so I set out to find the perfect monster pattern...

The pattern catalogs don't have monster costumes. At least not a size 2/3.

Then, I found the great dragon costume at Old Navy that Jack was perfectly content to call a monster.

They were sold out.

What to do? What to do?

I searched the pattern catalogs at Hancock's with a fine tooth comb, trying to be as creative as possible.

The end result?

Get a Wizard of Oz pattern and turn the brown lion into a green and (I wanted blue but Jackson picked...) yellow monster.

I bought a fuzzy green fabric for the head. I didn't think about how it would shed as I cut it out and sewed it together. I needed to hem to the edges b/c they were ragged (it was really hard to cut!) There was no way I could hem this fabric. It was getting "monster guts" as Jack and I called it EVERYWHERE! I was afraid the guts would get into my machine and just ruin it.

So, I pulled out my handy glue gun and went to town. Nothing like hemming with glue, burning fingers every few seconds, and gluing monster guts all over yourself.

But, in the end, it worked out great and I can't wait for the "big reveal" coming soon. I am even considering not sewing the rest of the costume, just a dap of hot glue here and there to hold it all together. I might even hem the pair of pants Bart has that are two inches too long with hot glue.
I am getting addicted to it's ease, pain, and quickness.

So, no pictures of the monster head Jackson won't take off and will probably wear to school to pick up Bren. Nope. Not until it's all done, though don't hold your breath for a masterpiece, because it is a piece, just not anything noteworthy.

By the way, do you think it would be tacky to have Jack wear a sign that says "Scary Monster" around his neck so people will know he's a monster, not a green dog or lion or alien?

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Fat Baby's Nursery

Go here to see what Karen created today!

It's just about the cutest thing ever painted in a baby's room...well, in my opinion anyways.

And Jackson agrees (he even helped!)

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Flu Shots, Round Three...The Final Round

Bart got his flu shot yesterday.
He goes to the same clinic as the boys.
I was there for a little under one hour with the boys.
He left our house, got his flu shot, and was home in less then 1/2 an hour total.
Shocking, I know. (FYI, we do live less then 1 mile from the dr. office, so it is a short drive)
Oh, and he says it didn't even hurt a little bit.

Sunday, October 12, 2008


I am Benson Ward's primary president. For those of you non-Mormons, that means that I am in charge of "children's church" or "jr. Sunday School".
Each year we have a program that involves the children and the principles and songs learned from that year.

This year the theme was "I Am A Child Of God". A very basic concept, but one with a lot of power to it. Instead of me just writing the children's parts and giving them out, I had the children and their parents answer a question pertaining to the theme, so that the children wrote the program.
It was great. I love that the words were truly the children's (or cut and paste off the internet in a few places, like my own child's) and that they were able to show what they had learned this year, not just what was told to them.
I think if I still have this calling (chances are...) next year that I will do things the same way. Unless Diana wants to do it next year...

With all the niceness and sweets out of the way...THANK GOODNESS IT IS OVER! It always stresses me out (I've been involved with the program for almost 5 years now, even in Baton Rouge)...this year I actually lost sleep over it, waking at 2 a.m. one night having things I needed to do run through my mind until I just got up and did them around 3 a.m. (Was that pregnancy related or primary related? I don't know, but I sure was tired the next day) Even though I know it will all come together in the end, it is very nerve racking to get to "the end".

So, thanks to all of you who helped get to "the end" was a success and it couldn't have been done with all the parents and primary workers help.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Flu Shots, Round Two

Today, I got the dreaded flu shot. It was actually the first thing out of the nurse's mouth, "Are you interested in getting a flu shot today? We recommend it for pregnant women at all stages."
And I'd been hoping I'd forget to ask and then I'd postpone getting one.
Ouch is all I have to say.
The nurse asked which arm I preferred.
Really, I don't prefer either, but since they do NOT have the flu mist, then I guess pick a side, any side...
It burned.
A lot.
But now I am fine and hopefully my ten seconds of extreme pain and agony will benefit me in the long run.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Boo...I want that one!!!!!!

Today Jackson saw an adorable (?) dragon costume at Old Navy...on sale for $13! I have a ten dollar off card, so it would only be $ that's adorable.

Well, or course O.N. did not have it in his size, or any size near his. Bats, sure, ninjas and elephants, yep...but no dragons.

After checking online and calling all the stores in the area I discover NONE of them have the costume Jackson desires so much.


Now I am going to have to go back to my plans to sew him a monster costume.

I really wish he'd change "monster" to "werewolf"...because Brennan is going to be a vampire and how freakin' awesome would it be to have a vampire and a monster as my children? I can be pregnant Belle (b/c she wasn't beautiful yet) and we'll all be happy campers.

Halloween is still a few weeks away and I still have at least one week before I need to actually make the costume for Jackson...plenty of time for O.N. to restock or for Jack to decide werewolves are WAY better then monsters...

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Flu Shots, Round One

Jackson at CEC

Both boys got the flu shot, as I mentioned earlier.

Neither boy was brave. I think we were in a soundproof room when the two nurses administered the shots.

Jackson still got to go to Chuck E. Cheese.

We'll see if Brennan still gets his goldfish...

And the flu vac. may wear off before the end of the season, but I don't think I would have had the strength to pin the boys down in a few more weeks, not with Fat Baby growing and growing.

As it is, I their face as I pinned them to the exam table one by one...about their reactions(it was funny). And to think, I would do the same thing if I was in their shoes. (FYI, I am not exactly a compassionate girlie...ask me to tell you about when I saw Titanic in the theaters one day.)

Cooler Weather and Flu Shots (Part One of Three)

This morning it was a nippy 48 degrees outside, making the inside of our house about 65 degrees. I took my shower and ironed Bart's clothes for him for work (a very rare treat...I had to iron my own so I figured I'd do his as well) in the basement...with wet hair and little clothing...and I was not freezing...not even very cool. (well, that's my norm.)

Bart however, comes down to the basement wrapped up like an igloo burrito, complaining because I only turned the heater up to 67...he obviously forgot that $200 gas bill (plus an electric bill!) we had last winter. I informed him if the boys and I had to hang out at the house every day with it around 65, he better get used to it, too. (It's all about acclimating your body and "getting used to it")

He just frowned and muttered about freezing and balls and boys as he walked back upstairs.

In other is Part One of our three part series entitled: "The Flu Shot and Us". The boys are going in at 9:30 to get shots. Brennan has been promised his long anticipated goldfish (on Friday) if he is good and brave. Jackson will be carted off to Chuck E. Cheese for a play date afterwards (brave or not). Brennan already named his fish "Mr. Fishy Fish".

I'm just glad he doesn't know my track record with goldfish. Ask Crystal, my college dorm mate...I killed probably five or ten fish my freshman year. Maybe I'll get Bren a beta fish...those seem to last longer. Whatever he gets will be a fish that can hang out in a bowl that doesn't require a pump and all that jazz, though he has requested a castle.

Back to the shots...last winter the boys got shots, but not Bart or me. Well, both Bart and I got very very sick with the flu. I'd rather that didn't happen this year with a brand new baby around, one child in school, and a very active toddler at home as well. Friday I will be getting a flu shot at the OB...if I am brave enough to ask for it. (I will be brave, I will be brave...) What am I going to get as a bribe???

Who knows...maybe we'll all get to snort the stuff instead. You know, the nasal spray?

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


I complimented Brennan on how nice his LEGO Batman coloring was.

His reply: "I colored a lot of masterpieces. I'm just, like, an artist."

Monday, October 6, 2008

Apple Pickin'

Our Family...see Fat Baby grow

Bart...thinking we needed more and more apples (we left with 53!)

Relaxing after a hard day's work

At the pumpkin patch

My buddy Jack

This weekend our family joined up with a few friends and went to Ditmar's Orchard to pick apples straight from the trees. The boys were both very excited about this idea, esp. Jackson who had just heard all about apple picking at the library's story time (talk about a timely topic!).

The day was a bit overcast, with a slight breeze...lovely for hiking around and finding the perfect apples. Luckily, we didn't have to hike up the monster hill to get to the apples though...we went on a tractor ride. I honestly don't think I could have walked up (and then back down!) that hill!

Ditmar's Orchard had a lot to offer, a play place, a store where they sell apples and other produce, along with different sauces and jams, apple cider slushies (YUM-O), fresh pies and homemade cider, etc. They also have a horse shoe pit and a corn maze, but since Jackson and Mom were beat, we skipped out.

So, what are our plans for all those apples, you might ask?
  • Well, I stored some to eat throughout the next few weeks, using the plastic bag in the crisper drawer method (there are lots of ways out there, I just chose this one b/c it was easiest).
  • I baked an apple pie last night (sadly NOT using Maren's delicious recipe...Bart is not a fan of crumb toppings.) Though it was good, I think the recipe called for too much brown sugar and made it too sweet, if there is such a thing.
  • I also made apple breakfast risotto in the crockpot last night, and Bart ate probably two huge bowls full last night and then took even more to work for today! I was going to be a wonderwoman wife and wake up at midnight to turn on the crockpot, then vetoed that idea and cooked it before bed instead.
  • Today I am making applesauce in the crockpot...we will see how that goes.
  • I plan on baking a bread pudding with shredded apples...I will post that recipe later because it is GOOD and easy!
  • Bart better be planning on eating at least one apple a day, since he is the one who kept going back for more and more :-)
  • Brennan took some to school this morning for his teacher and her assistant...suck up kid!
After all this creating with apples, I think I will take a break for a few days. Then it will be back to creating deliciousness with them.

Got any good apple recipes? Share them here or post a link so I can check them out. I have a few more I've found online, but I'd love to hear about your tried and tested recipes, too.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Ah, the smell of burn in the morning

This morning, I awoke to the aroma of freshly fried Beignets and the harmonious beeping of the smoke detector and Bart's frustration.

Ah, good morning world.
Time to stretch and have a great day.

Oh, that the SMOKE DETECTOR???

And why am I NOT smelling freshly fried Beignets, but burned oil and flour instead?

Bart woke up very early (6:30 a.m.) to make fresh Beignets from the mix we bought at World Market. Yep, World Market sells ZAPP's potato chips and Cafe Du Monde Beignet mix. Something went wrong, very wrong, in this process, and this is what I found in my kitchen:

Click here for instructions on how to properly cook Beignets

I am not sure the kitchen will ever be the same again. I have had the doors and windows open all day, and still the house smells of burn. (Did I mention it was in the upper 40's this morning and still I kept them open?)

Ah, nothing like the smell of burn first thing in the morning. Good thing the boys slept through it...THE BOYS!

I quickly get to their room (remember, Brennan is TERRIFIED of smoke detectors/fire drills, etc?) to find them huddled together on Brennan's bed...hiding under the covers. Brennan, though not crying, looks terrified and took a lot of coaxing to get out of bed.

Before school today, he got his tiny notebook he loves, and illustrated for us what happened when Daddy cooked breakfast today.
The X on the left side is showing us there was no fire. On the right is our house, with the teal being the stove (bottom square) and smoke. This kid is SO going to need counseling!

Well, there were some salvageable Beignets to come out of this mess...I will find out what others thought when Bart gets home from for the mess, I cleared most of the flour off the cabinet, had Bart put the stinky pan outside (didn't help with the smell, though), and I am ignoring it all until Bart gets home from work. After all, in the words of Brennan "I didn't make this mess." but God bless Bart for trying. I think we will read through these tips before we try again (together, and not at 6:30 a.m.)