Friday, March 26, 2010

'Looks like it's been a while...

It seems like it's been weeks and weeks since I posted anything, but it's really only been ten days or so. I guess when life gets lost in high gear, time just seems to blur.

Springtime has exploded here, in all its glory - complete with lazy snowflakes, rainy downpours, misty grey days and fabulously sunny ones. We have flowers everywhere, the temperatures have bounced back and forth between balmy almost summer-like to shivering lows that make you wonder how long spring can hold out before deciding to stay a while, there's even been a few days where I thought the porch roof was likely to blow away. That doesn't say too much though, because our porch roof has been less than firmly attached for months now, but recently there have been a few days that have been more windy than is usual.

Anyway, here's a quick walk through my camera pictures of late with a little commentary sprinkled throughout.

The makings of a Map
On the 8th, Sir and I were the third couple to agree to join Chasm and HisLady for a few days at a beach house on the Oregon Coast. The trip isn't scheduled until June, but we told our kids about it that night, and they were thrilled. Since I didn't have enough buttons in the jar to do a countdown the way we normally do, the kids and I spent the next day making a map to the beach house with a section to color in for each day that's passed until the vacation takes place.

The finished product

Then there was a 'Ladies Tea' on the 13th that the Butler and I got got attend. It was very relaxing and I really had an enjoyable time. (Thank you Lily and Heather!)

Emma and Kay
Grandma C. made these little dresses for Dolly and her friends and now they've been passed down to the little girls. This particular morning (the 14th), Emma woke up wanting to 'match' someone. So, I called Chasm'sLady and found out the same dress had already been laid out for Kay the night before!

And we got to meeting to discover that Chiquita and Dolly were also matching! A few months ago, Lily had found two matching blue dresses that were the same size. She kept one for Chiquita and gave the other to Dolly. It's almost funny how many times Dolly and Chiquita end up wearing the same thing, but the girls love it.

Sisters and Cousins
And Friends

"We MATCH!!!! Can you believe it?!?!!"

Last Friday, the kids and I finally went to visit Sir at work. We missed our January visit for various reasons, and we couldn't go in February because of the Winter Olympics, so the kids were ecstatic to finally get to 'go visit Daddy at work' again. Of course, my camera batteries were dead and ALL eight of my replacement batteries were dead too, so we came home with less than a handful of pictures and only a couple that were really any good at all. It was such a gorgeous day too! I so wanted to take pictures of the helicopter on its river pad, Dolly's first trip with her own ticket (she's not free anymore {sniff}), our very full stroller of picnic supplies and a video of the kids dancing for the Saxophone player at the seabus terminal on the way home, but it was not to be.

On our way back to the seabus, Dolly found a few blossoms on the ground. She started collecting as many as she could and I stopped to see if I could take a picture of them on the tree since they were so beautiful. A passing man saw her collecting the little wilted flowers, leaped up and broke off a branch of blossoms which he gave to Dolly before continuing on his way.

Look how BLUE that sky is!

A regal 'queen'. Dolly was so proud of herself.
She had borrowed Emma's bedsheet and created her own 'gown' all by herself.

And lastly, a fallen horseman - playing dead.

The End

Monday, March 15, 2010

2010 - Family Picture

"And the LORD, He it is that doth go before thee, He will be with thee,
He will not fail thee, neither forsake thee."

Deuteronomy 31:8

And one where the guys are a little more photogenic.

My kids are all (ALL!!) right now, sleeping at the same time... so I think I'm going to see how long I can lie down before somebody wakes up. I might even fall asleep!

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Now I need to go shopping...

I've made this winner twice so far, and had to look up the recipe four times in the process. And there are a number of look-alike recipes out there too, so finding it each time has been quite the adventure - especially when I'm rushing. Hopefully now I'll be able to find it without having to read a dozen recipes until I find the 'right' one.

Black Bean & Couscous Salad
Serves 8
  • 1 cup uncooked couscous
  • 1¼ cups chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime/lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 8 green onions, chopped (approximately 1 bunch)
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro (use the whole bunch)
  • 1 cup frozen corn kernels, thawed
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, drained
  • 1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon pepper (or to taste)
1. Bring chicken broth to a boil in a 2 quart or larger sauce pan and stir in the couscous. Cover the pot and remove from heat. Let stand for 5 minutes.
2. In a large bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lime juice, vinegar and cumin. Add green onions, red pepper, cilantro, corn and beans and toss to coat.
3. Fluff the couscous well, breaking up any chunks. Add to the bowl with the vegetables and mix well. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve at once or refrigerate until ready to serve.

Serve with pretty much anything Mexican!

I love that it's so easy to put together. The most time consuming part is chopping the vegetables so even if you start from scratch you can pull this one off in less than 20 minutes.

Friday, March 05, 2010

The 28 Days of Joy

He never missed a single day - in spite of our busy schedule!

Monday, March 01, 2010

My Budding Author/Illustrator

The other day I fell down the outside stairs. Dolly had been inside drawing away in a notepad that Aunt Knittery had given her and when she saw me gimping about after Sir had helped me back inside the house, she brought me her masterpiece. "Mommy," she said, "I decided to give this picture to you because you got hurt on the stairs. It's a princess, and I made her hair like yours so it might help you feel better."

A few hours later when I was feeling a bit better, I called Dolly and asked her to tell me the story about her picture. "I don't know." she said "I just made a princess." "You did," I told her, "but every princess has a story.... 'let's write this princess' story together. Go get your notepad and I'll help you." My intention was to help her get some printing practice in as well as encouraging her creativity. In the end, I did most of the printing except for a word or two on each page and I discovered quite a bit about my little girl.

(Dolly's part of the story is what's written in blue
and she did all the illustrations unassisted)

by Dolly and Mommy


(the princess)

Once upon a time there was a beautiful princess who lived in a castle. She never was allowed outside because the beast who lived in the swamp, wanted to eat her. But there was a kind and wise fairy who had a magic wand and she was going to rescue the princess by using her magic wand.


(the fairy)

But the wand was missing! Without her magic wand, the fairy could not help the beautiful princess. So, the fairy travelled for many days until she met a king. He was sitting on a rock under a big tree. "Hello," said the fairy. "Can you help me fix my magic wand?" "Yes, of course!" replied the king, "Where is it?" "I think it is on top of the mountain." said the fairy. "Last week a giant bird swooped down and took my wand and flew away. I need you to climb the mountain and get my magic wand. So the king did.


(the king)

After the king gave the fairy her wand, he decided to go with her and help her rescue the princess. Only when they got to the castle, the princess was gone! She had gone looking for the fairy in the woods. But she had left a note on the castle door when she left. "Dear Fairy," the note read "I am in the woods. Love, Beaute." So the fairy and the king dashed into the woods. When they got there, they heard a terrible roar! The beast was about to gobble up the princess!


(the beast)

"Stop Beast!" shouted the king. The shout startled the ugly monster so that he dropped the princess and tried to grab the king instead. But he couldn't because the fairy used her magic wand and turned him into a duck. And with a quack, he waddled away. The king rushed to the princess and carried her to the castle where she got better and they fell in love. So they got married, and lived happily ever after.

(and the magic wand)