Showing posts from November, 2009

How I like to start my day:

I love to wake up before everyone else in my house. In those quiet minutes (sometimes an hour!) I like to make a cup of hot chocolate -- doesn't matter the season! -- and catch up on Facebook, blogs, e-mail, or news on the computer. I am a hot chocolate snob. . .I don't like mixes AT ALL. I have this down to a science and the calories are minimal. The first couple times you do it it may take you 3-4 minutes -- I have it down to less then 2, easy. Here goes:
Warm up a cup of milk (I use skim or 1%) and I have found I need to do it EXACTLY 1 minute, 26 seconds.
While that is warming assemble the rest of your ingredients in the bottom of your favorite coffee mug:
1 heaping tsp unsweetened cocoa (I use Hershey's but am sure there are lots of better varieties out there) to 2 tsp sweetener.Today I did one packet of "fake" sugar (Kroger brand is the only brand I like)
and a little less then 1 tsp of hot fudge sauce. Sometimes I use 2 packets of "fake" sugar …

Christmas shopping!

It's that time of the year!!! I have decided instead of doing individual gifts for family members(our three sets of parents and three siblings) this year, I am going to put together baskets for each of them with items that I love and/or find meaning in. I have a MILLION ideas, so we'll see how many actually make it into the baskets! My goal is $75/basket, including basket, wrapping materials, etc. I know it seems expensive but really, individual gifts generally run anywhere from $40-$60/each so this is probably about the same. My nieces still have their own gifts (they are 9 & 5) and I love to give gifts to the adults so this is my solution.

My first order is for Ethiopian coffee! I have a good friend, Aime (check out her adoption journey at who is raising money for their Ethiopian adoption by selling various items, one of which is this Ethiopian coffee. I myself am not a coffee drinker but think this might be interesting for the 3 …
I am a teacher. I was a teacher. I am also a student. My life is busy these days with SCHOOL. I love school, always have. I knew when I was in second grade (or maybe first) that I wanted to be a teacher. I'm fortunate that I have always known what "I wanted to be" and had that goal to work toward. I can not imagine NOT knowing and going aimlessly through my childhood, teens, and early adulthood NOT knowing that I wanted to get married, be a mom, and be a teacher. Although, ultimately, all of these are up to God, I felt I had the most control over my profession. I remember my student teacher in 5th grade, Miss Frisbee, and admiring her, wanting to BE her. I watched and learned from all my teachers -- what they did that made them good teachers, what made them "bad" teachers. I know, I know, I was born "old". I was. Anyhow, I lead a blessedly "typical" life and went from high school to college and into a teaching job. I taught 6th grade math fo…

Happy Birthday Thomas!!

Thomas is 11 years old today.

How is that possible?
Just LAST YEAR I was pregnant with him. . .waiting. . .and waiting. . .and waiting. He was overdue.
Then he started pre-school. He went two days a week the first year, then three days a week the second year.
His brother was born on his first day of school the second year.
He was 4 years old and the oldest of 4!

He is an incredible big brother.
I love his white hair and ice-blue eyes.
I love his energy and sensitivity.
I love that he tries so hard to do the right thing (and yet is so impulsive he often acts without thinking. . .)He's good in school -- he loves to play school with his siblings and he's ALWAYS the teacher.
When I asked him what he wanted for his birthday he said "Under Armour". Easy to please (although his taste is a bit expensive!)
He's a great athlete. He can run a mile in less than 8 minutes. He is strong. He is an excellent swimmer. He loves soccer. He wants to do gymnastics -- and will probably b…

Soccer Saturday

Well, Saturday was officially the last day of our Fall YMCA soccer season. It's been a season fraught with lots of rain, make-ups, and not much practice. But the kids had a great time and grew as players.
Our family loves this sport. Neither Tom nor I played growing up but it's such good exercise and all but Margaret have taken to it. Margaret has tried two different seasons but she loses interest quickly. We really enjoy watching them all play, and they all show talent too.
Thomas started when he was three and it just wasn't for him at the time so we didn't try again until we moved down here 3 1/2 years ago. We were looking to "jump right in" to some activities in the community and soccer registration was under way. We signed the older three up, Tom was called to coach and we haven't missed a season since! We also tried coach-pitch baseball that year and it was a disaster. Soccer has been "the" sport that has worked for the whole family.

I won!

Yea! I'm so excited that I won a blog giveaway!!! Vicki Courtney (check my sidebar, I need to learn how to directly link still) had the following giveaway last week:
Jackie Kendall and her sister-in-law, DeDe Kendall, have written a fabulous book for mothers to use in guiding their little princesses (ages 4-9) closer to the heart of the King, Lady in Waiting for Little Girls (wish I knew how to give you a direct link to this book -- if you can help me please comment!)
My girls are at the older end of the age spectrum for this book I know we'll still cherish it. Any time I have a resource to use to guide my children's hearts closer to Our King I'm stoked!
Happy Friday!

Cheeseburger Soup

Yum, yum!!! My oldest has been requesting this soup since our first cold snap a couple of weeks ago (we're back in to the 60's now but 40's is cold around here!) and I finally got around to making it for him. It's an awesome, hearty soup. Lots of ingredients, but if you get them all out and prepared before you start it is a very easy soup to make. Enjoy :)

You will need:1/2 lb ground beef (most people like more, including us)
3/4 cup chopped onion
3/4 cup shredded carrots (I couldn't find them in my store so I chopped mine up)
3/4 cup diced celery
1 t. dried basil
1 t. dried parsley flakes
4 T. butter (divided)
3 c. chicken broth
4 c. diced peeled potatoes (1.75 lbs)
1/4 c. all-purpose flour
8 oz. process American cheese, cubed (2 cups)
1 1/2 c. milk
3/4 t. salt
1/4-1/2 t. pepper

I start by browning my ground beef. This time I didn't because I already had some cooked in the freezer. This is just to thaw it out and break it up.
Peel and cut up potatoes (I think I used 7 I…

Season of Motherhood IV

Yes, there are four. You could say I "won" (and got the four children I dreamed of instead of the two I had agreed to) but that's not what it's about. By the time we found out about Frederick my husband and I had submitted our lives to God and although Frederick was not in OUR plan (remember, at this point I was done, done, done too) he was always in God's plan and being children of God we gave praise for another human that He was going to entrust us with.
My husband told me I was pregnant December 31, 2002 (my youngest was born May 28th of that year). I didn't believe him. Our good friends had canceled our New Year's Eve plans so we stayed home. We had lived in our home for a year and a half and had never hung up any pictures so that evening we got them all out and spent our time doing that. Well, Tom spent the evening doing that -- I laid on the sofa too tired to help. I couldn't be pregnant! 1) I had a 7 mo. old and was nursing; 2) I was tak…