Saturday, January 31, 2009

February Meals

One of my goals for 2008 was to plan our meals in advance. I tried the weekly menu plan - it seemed like I was always planning; the bi-weekly menu plan - still took too much time; and finally the monthly menu plan - this is the one that worked for me. I try to sit down at the end of the month and plan out meals for the following month. I make a list of the meals I plan to make that month - and then at the beginning of each week, I take out that list and transfer in which meals we'll have. Following are the meals I plan to make for the month of February:

Homemade Pizza x2
Three Cheese Pasta
Spaghetti Pie
Spaghetti noodles with cheese
Homemade Macaroni & Cheese from Tammy's Recipes
Cheesy Chicken Vermicelli from Tammy's Recipes
Broccoli Cheddar Soup
Baked Potato Soup
Creamy Corn Chowder from Tammy's Recipes
White Chicken Chili
Crockpot Italian Chicken
Crockpot Beef Stew
Chicken Potpie
Cheesy Beef and Rice from Heavenly Homemakers
Cracker Casserole
Pepperoni Pizza Rolls
Beefy Enchilada Bake from Heavenly Homemakers

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Our Baking Nights

On Wednesday nights, Scott & Ryan head to AWANA and Abby, Caleb and I have fun baking up some yummy goodies. First, I clean up our dinner dishes and make room for our baking supplies. Then, we all wash our hands and put on our aprons.

Then we work together to mix up a batch of something yummy. Of course, my little helpers love to take turns adding ingredients and mixing it up with the big wooden spoon.

One of our favorite recipes is Breakfast Cookies from the Heavenly Homemakers blog. These cookies are delicious, and good for you too - well, maybe not so healthy when we add in chocolate chips ;)

And, of course, the kids always get to taste-test a cookie from the first batch out of the oven.

Oh, and when Scott and Ryan return home, some of our homemade goodies are always cooling on the cooling rack - so they do get to share in some of this yummy goodness too!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

He's 7!

It's hard to believe that this little guy...

just celebrated his 7th birthday!

Monday, January 12, 2009

10 Years

We just celebrated 10 years of marriage.

Scott planned a get-away trip for us - a cabin in the mountains. We were forewarned that the cabin was a bit hard to get to...the first time we headed up the mountain we missed this sign (where we were supposed to turn), we kept heading up and up and up until finally I told him we could not go any farther - I admit, I was a bit frantic at this point - I could just picture us falling off the side of the bumpy, rocky, curvy, remote, mountain road!

Scott got the car turned around and we headed back down, and we found the downed sign - and thankfully we soon found our cabin. And I have to admit, it was well-worth the work it took to get there.

Previous vacationers to this cabin mentioned black bear sightings - but no bears for us except this one :).

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

No words necessary

Nature in Winter

We woke up to a world of ice this morning. Thankfully, the ice did not accumulate on the roads...however, it did make for some beautiful landscape...

Here's a close-up of our holly berry bush.

Oh, and this one is for my six-year old son, a basketball net covered with icicles...

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Remembering 2008

We began the year by celebrating Ryan's sixth birthday, Superhero style - Batman, Superman and Spiderman were all present!
And of course, cake was enjoyed by all...Here's Caleb modeling one of Ryan's gifts - a Superman costume

In March we celebrated Abby's fourth birthday with a ladies tea -

On Easter weekend, Scott's cousin and family visited from NC, and we enjoyed some time playing at a nearby tire park.Here's Caleb all dressed up in his Easter finest, complete with Daddy's slippers. In May we celebrated the completion of AWANA, Ryan completed his first year of Sparks and Abby completed her first year of Cubbies.

In May, my sister got married - Abby was a beautiful little flower girl and Ryan was a very distinguished ring bearer.

Springtime brought lots of playtime in our backyard -Caleb's favorite spot was most definitely the swing.

In June we indulged in a week at the beach with Scott's family.

In July we visited one of the local carnivals - Scott's parents purchased all-you-can-ride wristbands for each of the grandkids and the kids had a blast on all the rides.

The kids planted their own wildflower garden and we enjoyed lots of blooming flowers all summer.

We also got to take a much requested puddle-jumping walk after a summer rainstorm.

In August, Grandma and Papa treated the kids and I to a morning at a nearby zoo.
And of course, no summer is complete without ice cream!

In late August we returned to one of our favorite amusement parks, Idlewild. This time Caleb was old enough to join in the fun.

On Labor Day weekend we joined Scott on a work trip to NC - we were able to visit with his cousin and his family - and we also tried out a really cool kids' museum.

In the fall we spent lots of time at the soccer fields - watching Ryan's practices and soccer games.
One of our favorite family trips is the visit to the pumpkin patch every fall. This year we did our annual excursion to the patch on Caleb's birthday weekend.
Later that weekend we celebrated Caleb's second birthday.

At the end of October we attended our church's Fall Festival instead of trick-or-treating.

In November we enjoyed some mild fall weather...

And we also got a taste of some snowy fall weather.

After Thanksgiving we once again had our annual cookie baking day.

In December, we celebrated Christmas with our family.

We also made a trip to Boyd's Bear to check out the Christmas decorations - the kids always enjoy seeing the three story Christmas tree with all of the trimmings.

And finally, we welcomed 2009 with a "make-your-own-pizza" and game night at home.

Boyds Bear at Christmastime

We are blessed to have a Boyds Bear Museum about 20 minutes from here. For the past few years we have especially enjoyed visiting during Christmastime - they do a phenomenal job decorating and it's a perfect place to get pictures of the kids - that is if you can get the kids to pose :)

The most popular section of the store this year was the candle section. The kids spent a lot of time sniffing each candle and exclaiming "this is the best-smelling candle ever!"

And we finally got a good Christmas picture of our family.