Monday, February 28, 2011

My executive decision on school yearbooks...

The other day both of the kids brought home order forms for the school yearbook.

$26

TWENTY SIX BUCKS times TWO kids.

Flash forward 4 more years and that will be twenty six bucks times FOUR kids.

For a hardback yearbook of grades pre-k thru 6th.

When I was in this same school, the yearbook was $6 and paperback.  So my parents always bought my sister and I both one.

I thought I would do the same for my kids and then I thought about it long and hard.

  • Our school is really too big to have just one yearbook for grades pre-k thru 6th.  I think it would be a safe guess to say that our school's population has doubled since I was JP's age.  If each little school had it's own year book that would also allow for more candid shots, which are the best part of the book anyhow.

  • Speaking of candids, last year's book had the fewest candid shots I have ever seen in a year book.  One page with 6-9 photos per grade.  That is highly difficult to try and show the happenings of  200+ kids during a nine month period.   

  • The yearbooks are put together by parent volunteers using photos from teachers, and or that parent volunteer.  I can think of one particular year where the same photo was used multiple times in the book.  Silly. 

Then in occurred to me that this year I have had the opportunity to help A LOT in AJ's class.  I have lots of photos from field trips, class parties, the playground, cooking, and centers. 

LIGHTBULB!

Order one yearbook for the kids to SHARE!

Then I will make a photobook for AJ, probably for free, using one of the digital photo sites.  It will be far more special than a traditional yearbook because WE get to cutomize it.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

My Son The Free Throw Shooter...

There is one thing I taught JP early.

Free Throws Win Games.

You never come in the house from shooting hoops, if you didn't end on a perfect free throw.

So imagine my surprise when last Saturday, the child steps up to the free throw line and shoots off some wacky fancy shot.  He made it.

Of course I was only taking still shots and had no video of it.



Clearly the child has been watching waaay too much Sportscenter.

Check out the smirk on the referee, who by the way is very good at his job.  I enjoyed having the two Refs we did during that game.  They always do a great job.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Things people should never comment on...

Today I dragged myself with my 3 littlest ones to the doctor.

I have been battling a sinus infection for a couple weeks and decided to admit defeat and head in for some antibiotics.

Of course when you go to the doctor you have to be weighed. 

You know what my nurse said to me after being weighed?

"I would have never guessed you weighed THAT much!"

Ok perhaps she didn't quite enunciate THAT BIG, but how is a person supposed to react to that statement?

Should I be offended or happy?

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Look who has a sweet tooth...


 perhaps this is why my dishwasher is no longer working?
and why I now have gates at BOTH ends of the kitchen, forcing me to do the 15meter High Hurdles over and over throughout the day.


Big Guy

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Daredevil in the making...

Little Guy is an Independent Thinker.

He is a Freestyle Man.

An intelligent Daredevil.

He is also persistent and a little stubborn.

He comes up with some crazy feats that when he does them he shouts, "mommeee luuuk" with a grin that you just can't help but smile at.


And then Big Guy usually says, "No Row Row, Boo Boo"


Little Guy sitting the way HE wants too.

Monday, February 21, 2011

How much food does it take to feed a family of six for a week...


about this much.


That is 13 feet of food, plus the 6 feet on the other side of kitchen.

And these boys aren't even teenagers yet.  Oy.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Hair Raising Fun...

With 4 kids even the most uneventful days are filled


with

hair raising fun.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

No time for mischief...

Today Big Guy is so sick, he has had no time to be naughty. 

Unless you  call getting sick all over mommy's bed mischief.

Sweet boy has caught a tummy bug and has literally just laid in my bed the entire day.

All day long.

He has watched Yo Gabba Gabba 187 times.

He is confined from the rest of the kids, so he is really missing his twin brother.

Little Guy, on the other hand, really enjoyed the one on one time with mommy today.

I hate seeing my babies sick.  I pray Big Guy recovers quickly and that no one else comes down with this nasty foul tummy bug.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Fun Food Friday

My kids ALL TIME FAVORITE Friday night food has got to be HOMEMADE PIZZAS.

It is amazing what giving a kid a little dough can inspire.

When we have sleepovers it is always the first thing the kids ask, "Can we make homemade pizzas???  PLEASE!"

As if they have to add the 'please' to the question!

We allow each child to mix their own bowl of dough.  Then they get to roll it out and flatten, or toss it.  They add sauce, cheese, and toppings all by themselves.

This past week for Valentines day we made heart shapes. We have also done pizza 'logs', squares, snowmen, etc.

It is a fun, inexpensive meal with a lot of wonderful memories.  In fact this activity is straight from my own childhood, with my awesome mom and dad.

HOMEMADE PIZZAS

1 package MarthaWhite or Great Value pizza crust mix
tomato sauce or pizza sauce
cheese
pepperoni, olives, hamburger, bacon, etc

Prepare dough according to package.  My secret is that we always make sure to let the dough rise in a towel covered bowl on top of the middle of the stove while the oven preheats.  After the dough has risen let kids creatively shape it.  Then you add the sauce.  Tomato sauce is cheaper, but  I would suggest adding a little oregano or Italian seasonings to zip it up.  Add your cheese and other toppings and bake for about 6-8 minutes depending on thickness at 350.

Kids love to eat what they create!  Enjoy!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Class Valentines...

This year I found awesome free printables here

So after I tortured myself through figuring out layers in photoshop I printed these adorable valentines out in wallet size for all the classmates.



Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The Bond of Brothers...

I am truly Blessed.

Beyond measure.

I get to be a part of something so uniquely special.

God chose me to enjoy this.

Something only a few of a special club get to witness.

As a witness I will still never fully understand it. It is something only a they know.

It is the twin bond, or in my boys case the Bond of Brothers.





It is a bond that cannot even compare to a normal brother-brother, or brother-sister bond.
It is indescribably amazing.
They can fight one minute and love the next.
They have concern for each other when the other is out of sight.
They call each other the same name.
They are the best of friends.
They need each other.
They are TWINS.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Valentines Day...

Valentines Day has always cracked me up a bit.

It is the commercialism of it that I laugh at.

Last night I was in the local big box store watching people fill their carts with heart shaped boxes of chocolate, red and pink stuffed animals of all sizes, and balloons.

I laugh because in a week those heart shaped boxes of chocolate will be in the trash, half eaten. The balloons will be popped or deflated. By May every garage sale will have hideous valentine themed stuffed animals for a quarter.

I mean if you are gonna give a valentines day gift, give something the person is actually gonna use.

I for one would like one of these, or these, or these.
Those are practical gifts that would remind me I am loved.

I am also a fan of the homemade valentine.

The fun little things you do for the holiday that don't really cost a lot, but the kids are sure to remember.

Cute love banner in the window.

Valentine subway art framed around.

Homemade photo valentines.

Candle lit dinner.

Heart shaped pizza.

Heart shaped pepperonis.

Heart shaped cookie cake.

Of course a special little toy for each child. JP got toy story lego set. AJ got a little tinkerbell playset. Little Guy got a Handy Manny character set. Big Guy got Sheriff from the movie Cars. Best of all...all that was FREE! I love coupons!


Candle lit dinner

Heart Shaped Pizza with heart pepperonis

Cookie Cake



Monday, February 14, 2011

My Valentine...

I received one very special valentine this year.

It was from AJ.

She worked hard creating valentines for each member of the family. I am sad to say she was the only one to do this.

Not only did she do great artwork of hearts and peace symbols, but she added creative poems.

I promise you I do not use tobacco...


I Love you.
Valintins ore pink yellow and bleu
to Mom who likes to chew

We just died laughing at her sweet card. Love that girl.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Sunday Afternoon...

AJ spent the afternoon building a highly detailed block city over at her Nana's house.

Each and every block had a very special purpose.

She is all about details.



Saturday, February 12, 2011

Bye Bye Snow...

I am probably one of the only moms in town sad to see the snow melt.

Of the last 10 school days, we have had 7 snow days!

I really love snow days.

I love making my kids a hot breakfast and staying in jammies past 10am.

I love the ins and outs and wet clothes all over the floor.

I love the constant hum of the dryer and the smells of baked goodies.

I love that all four of my kiddos are home.

I love the excitement in the twins eyes when they come out of their bedroom in the morning and see that JP and AJ are still home.

I love the cleared schedule.

I think snow here in our neck of the woods is God's way of saying, "slow down, stay home, and just be."

So these past two weeks while many were complaining I was shoveling my driveway with a smile, baking yummy snacks with my children, throwing snowballs at a 9 year old, building a snowman with a 6 year old, trying to share my love of snow with two 2 year olds, sledding like a 8 year old, and hiking through God's country admiring His creations.

It was an amazing break.

Bye bye snow, please come again soon.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Fun Food Friday...

One of my favorite things to do is to have breakfast for dinner.

The kids always think this is a fun crazy thing to do.

Pancakes are always a huge hit.

The trick for me is to not only prepare the pancakes for dinner, but to also freeze some for breakfast mornings.

What you say...you can freeze them?

Yup!

I make an ENTIRE box of pancakes, which takes right at 1 hour start to finish, with my large electric griddle.

Once everyone eats what they want for dinner and the extras have cooled, I put 3 pancakes per ziploc and freeze them.

When we are in a rush in the morning and Ms. AJ says, "I want pancakes."

I say, "No problem!" I grab a bag out and place it on a plate and cook a stack of 3 frozen pancakes for 1 minute.

They taste perfectly fresh and I save a ton of money.


photo from August 2009, AJ's pancakes and pj's party

Thursday, February 10, 2011

The real me...

Goofy
Fun
Silly
Energetic
Creative




Yep this is pretty much a true shot of the real me.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Natures Wonder...

While sledding in the side of the yard we affectionately refer to as "The Bone Yard" we came across the most amazing little creation.


The teeny tiniest bird nest I have ever seen.

It was only the size of a little clementine orange.
Just perfectly weaved with care.

Some would just pass by without noticing this bunch of sticks.

I was in awe at its perfection.

What a beautiful home.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

My Budding Artist...

The other day I decided to nap the boys separately.

So I put Big Guy down for a nap in my bedroom.

Before I left the room I did a quick scan for unsafe things. I grabbed my laptop and my camera and went to clean the kitchen.

A few minutes later I walked into the room to find Big Guy like this:





Does he look proud to you?

He appears to be beaming to me.

You see he had just completed he first masterpiece.

A one of a kind limited edition Big Guy Original.

It is priceless!



It is also permanent.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Meyssss...

I answered the phone and mayheim ensued...




Just a brief brief call.

How many of those adorable little butterscotch kisses do you suppose are in a bag?
I'll give you one guess...
A LOT!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Small but Speedy...

This year is her first time playing basketball and to keep her with the coaches and kids we love, we had to have her 'play up'.

So as a kindergartner she is playing against 1st and 2nd graders.

Did I mention she is a short kindergartner?

Don't let AJ's size fool you.

She is fast as lightning.



She is doing a great job learning the sport. Her dribbling is excellent. Now we just need to work on her shooting skills, so she can actually get the ball near the rim.



Saturday after two losses, her team the Kiwi Pirates won! They had an impressive game!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Fun Food Friday...

With a very active 9 year old boy, I need a quick snack/meal that is going to pack a punch and fuel him for hours of practice.

My solution to this is the Egg Sandwich.

I use a One Egg Wonder Pan to fry one egg up.

In the photo I used an English Muffin, but JP's preference is to have a whole wheat sandwich round. I toast the round in the toaster oven on 200 degrees while the egg is cooking and then set the cheese on it to partially melt.

We use a slice of american or cheddar cheese and two slices of bacon.

This sandwich literally takes less than 5 minutes to make and keeps my kids full!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Sweet Helpers...

I love to bake.

Love it.

Always have. I can remember as a child being excited when my parents would let me make a jiffy cake on my own.

The cake mix was less than 50 cents and the frosting mix was also the same.

I loved making the yellow cake with chocolate frosting, it is my dad's favorite.

So when we are snowed in, I can't help but bake up a storm.

Lucky for me I have 2 kiddos that also love baking.

Little Guy and AJ love to help in the kitchen. If they see me in there, I hear a dragging of a stool or chair immediately.

The perk of being my helper is licking the beaters.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Snowed In...

So we have lots of this going on.



Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Little Guy...

Little Guy I hope you keep your spunk as you grow up.

You have such a fun, loving, sweet, outgoing spirit.

You are brave, bold, and entertaining.


The other day you wanted a "ahat".

Then you wanted "shuzs" that were "no boots".

And of course shortly after this outfit you needed a "khot".

You continued on with your day wearing this new outfit. You didn't care that no one else looked the same as you. This is what you wanted.

You even slept in the whole ensemble.

I love you Little Guy!