Thursday, October 28, 2010

Just Wondering......

1.  Does every high school celebrate homecoming as "big" as ours and is any other high school celebrating homecoming week in conjunction with Halloween????  Don't you think that is just a bit too much!  Sorry, but homecoming is trumping the "great college road trip, but that post will come.....eventually!)

Tuesday was "character day" and Sara went (of course) as a Harry Potter character ~ Elizabeth did dress up but she had to pick her costume up from a friend on the way to school so it is one of the few undocumented events in our lives.

Wednesday brought "cartoon day" and Elizabeth and Sara teamed up for this one....We visited the local Goodwill and found a blue shirt that Sara converted into the "Ash"costume.

Elizabeth used her Pikachu costume from third grade (what used to be pants are now shorts!) and Sara created the Ash costume to go with it. They both were (and secretly still are) HUGE Pokemon fans....when they were younger, they traded Pokemon cards, watched the cartoon, and lived, ate and breathed it....needless to say ~ this was right up their alley!

Pokemon balls ~ made out of Styrofoam balls from Hobby Lobby.

Ready for battle!

2.  Does anyone have a better reminder system for their household then "notes" stuck around the house with duct tape?

Note to UPS man:  please do not leave if we do not answer ~  go to the back door and knock very loudly! I would have been crushed had I missed the delivery of my D-90!!!!

Ellen is making a play toy for Felix (cockatiel) and needs lots of "pop tops" ~ and just in case you didn't understand the directions ~ it is well illustrated!

In addition to many notes all over the house, 
we keep a pretty good calendar of events!

I have taken to writing notes when I am upset with 
one of my children ~ I find it communicates my point and there is no misunderstanding of what I am trying to say. Emotions do not get in the way when you communicate through writing.  This was a note that I left Ellen yesterday to "gently" remind her of some things she needs to refocus on.

Note taped to TV ~ yes that is duct tape......note to self ~ go and buy some Scotch tape! We are tape-less in this house!

Really ~ there is that duct tape again ~ Ellen wrote this 
last night so she wouldn't forget her poster!

The reason she is wearing blue socks is because yesterday was crazy socks day ~ a part of Red Ribbon Week ~ a week long celebration to help with drug awareness.  Just wait till "crazy hair" day....I think it is tomorrow!

OK, I admit it, I "reused" Ellen's note for me...she forgot her lunch in all of the crazy "find
blue socks, get the poster, take pictures of Elizabeth and Sara in their Pokemon costumes, make three school lunches,  feed and water 13 bunnies and babes, and make a good breakfast for Elizabeth since she had major testing going on today" so I wanted to make sure I didn't forget to bring Ellen's lunch to school!

There was the note from Elizabeth taped on my kitchen cabinets to remind me to order
the flowers for homecoming...with specific instructions on what type of ribbon should
be on bootneer (how do you spell that!) ~ indigo ~ to match her dress of course!

And finally, after all those other notes around the house, I still make my own! This is my "to do list".  I am guessing that I need to get with the program and into the year 2010 to use some fantabulous (my invented word) technological invention that would keep me straight; but, I really like that pen and paper!
(and duct tape)  It works for me.

3.   Shouldn't the 11th commandment have been - Thou shall not have to endure 90 degree temperatures in October (after a brutally, hot summer of 100 plus degrees continuous heat)?

4.  Does the ice-cream/custard/snowball shop in your town have a bottle of syrup mixed especially for your children and their friends called "little cup of love"?  Our girls like the syrups of nectar and ice cream mixed ~ and when we went today, they told Ellen that her sisters and her friends asked for it so often that they made a "special" bottle of it. Now, when our girls order the "little cup of love", the custard store is ready with a special bottle of syrup mixed only for them!

5.    Does any one have "camera love and idolization" like I do....prepare to be wowed with my new photos from my new D-90! I am bursting with excitement for my new camera and am completely obnoxious about taking pictures on an hourly basis.

6.   Does anyone refuse to go to Hobby Lobby unless they have printed a 40 % coupon, found either on the Internet or newspaper,  before they go.  And, does anyone always print several extra copies so they can turn to the person behind them in line and give them a  40% coupon to "make their day"!  (It is so fun to see the expression on their face!)

We won't "darken the door" without our coupon!  Today, we were getting supplies for Ellen's costume.

7.  Does anyone have two expectant mama rabbits that they are checking on every other hour (while having three dogs in heat)?  This is Pebbles ~ there is no rhyme or reason to the name.....she is a good Mama and has had several litters.  I wonder if the marketing wizard at J.C. Penny (red torn up newspaper) envisioned  their ad as lining for bunny litters?

Ricki ~ a Flop eared bunny ~ see how the long ears hang down?  Flop eared bunnies along with  the Rex breed are my favorite....Ellen has had her for at least two years. 

8.  Does anyone have a husband as cute as I do ~ maybe he will be OK with me posting him on the blog with this question!

9.  Are there any other children that insist on "homemade" costumes (not that I am complaining but isn't it usually the Mama that wants that?) and come up with something creative ~ every year?  (and make them with a bird on their shoulder?) I have photos from this year and last year...but hopefully I
will have time to post previous years as every year is amazing.  

If you have followed my blog for a while, then you know that Sara is our "master seamstress"....she not only whipped up her outfit today, but also helped Ellen finish hers.  Ellen is a bag of autumn leaves and Sara is a character from Avatar ~ Navi.....I think!!!!!! Her costume is not complete but wait for upcoming pictures.

Almost done!

God knew what he was doing 
~ when he gave me three girls ~
and a Nikon D-90!!!!!

Last year's creation from the "from the mind of Sara "!  It began as a simple roll of green felt....and after they finished with it.........a Halloween masterpiece.  The only problem ~ bathroom breaks!

Ellen's "home made" costume from 2009 ~ an Octopus.....made from a blue hooded sweatshirt and the "suckers" are the paper circle stickers from Office Depot.  She diligently colored black dots on every circle and hot glued the circle on to the fabric.  The eyes are a Styrofoam circle cut in half and colored in with a black marker.  

10.   Did anyone try my easy home made yogurt (recipe on sidebar) really is a no brainer.....except when you turn oven on for a few minutes to "warm" it up, and forget to turn it off in your rush to get to Hobby Lobby.  When you come back, it will look like this! Don't let me scare you from making really is so easy ~ just make sure you turn the oven on for only five minutes, not two hours!

And, if you did....did you sprinkle some cinnamon sugar on it, bake it in a pretty dish and try to pull it off as dessert?

Just Wondering??????

Monday, October 25, 2010

What a week ~ and it is only Monday!

It is only Monday morning and I am already tired!  There is soooo much going on ~   not only the our household, but also the other members of the family!  First let me share what is going on in "Wild Kingdom".

I once read the book "The Red Tent" for a book club that I belonged is about ~  how can I delicately put this ~ how the women of biblical times were banned to a special area of the compound when it was "their time of the month".  In this particular book, it was an elaborately decorated tent and it relates the special times these women had during their week's visit to  "Red Tent".   Well, do they make "Red Dog Houses"?  It is that "time of the year" for all three dogs and it happened at the same time.  If they think women who live together sync their cycles.....someone needs to do a study on my dogs.    Dogs are lucky as they only go through this nonsense two times a year and I guess I am thankful that it happened at the same time so they can all be on "lock down" together.  The reason that it is such a pain and EVERYONE I know get their dogs spayed is that: 1. It is messy ( not going to describe this one, use your imagination - lets just say they don't make feminine products for dogs); 2.  It lasts every bit of two weeks and sometimes three;  3.  Like women, they aren't themselves and don't behave as you have trained them...multiply this times three and it equals problems; 4. Their instinct is to "look for a man" so you have to be ultra careful to only let them out of the house when every gate is on maximum security lock down and they are on leashes; 4. Every dog for miles "comes a courtin" and my dogs would love to go on a date with them.  We will hardly ever see another dog roaming around and when my dogs are in their womanly way, they come out of the woodwork. Apparently the "scent" carries for miles and can you imagine when it is three times as strong.  One time, way back when,  I took a lab that we owned named Killington (who was in heat)  jogging.  By the time I returned, nine...nine male dogs were nipping at our heals! I ran like the wind that day!  Fortunately, we have a fence that in fairly good at keeping intruders out and crazy, love struck dogs in, so if we all are ultra careful NEVER to leave a gate open, the prospective doggy fathers have a pretty big challenge in front of them.  However, there are always those male dogs that missed their opportunity to enroll in the "agility dog classes" and are able to make it over the fence.  Hence, the rule that each dog needs to be on a leash when we take them out of the house into the yard!
And in the words of Forest Gump....."that's all I have to say bout that"!

Oh, some of you may be wondering why we put ourselves through this torture on a routine basis....we have beautiful registered golden retrievers as well as a registered lab and we want to breed them with "beautiful registered males" one day ~ (not the poodle down the street).  One of them is old enough to breed but the other two are two teenagers that are not to be trusted for these two weeks! 

 We are caught a bit unprepared but if we can find a suitable husband, we would love to breed Maisy.  She is so gorgeous ~ This photo was taking of her just standing in the yard....if she were a person I am sure she would be Ms. America by now! She always looks and acts like a prima donna! In every photo she even looks like she is "smiling"!  Go back and look at the photos above ~ the other two are enduring the photo shot....Maisy has a perma-grin on her face.

Secondly on the menagerie front:

We have two new litters of baby rabbits!  Most of you know that Ellen has owned and operated "Hoppy Days" for two years and is one of the main wholesaler of rabbits to our two local "Feed and Seeds".  She is quite successful and makes a good bit of money for a sixth grader ~ actually, for anybody ~ all while having a lot of fun doing it!  I can't deny the fact that I love it too, and still get excited whenever a new litter of baby bunnies are born.

You have to admit....always having these little guys around (along with that cute little girl) to play with is so much fun! 

On a thankful note..........

Ringo ~ our rabbit that likes to live life wild and free (I am fairly sure he was a hippie in a former life) had another close call!  Ellen has had Ringo for several years and the reason she isn't $10.00 richer because of him is that he was featured with Ellen on the cover of the Baton Rouge Magazine when they named Ellen the "Young Entrepreneur of the Year"!  After that she couldn't bear to let him go and he became a permanent member of the bunny family.   She noticed that Ringo would always stand on his hind feet with his two front legs on the door looking like he was saying "PLEASE LET ME OUT".  None of the other thirteen rabbits did this and after a time, Ringo's silent pleading wore Ellen down.  She asked me if we could let Ringo run around the fenced in area that enclose her rabbit cages and I said yes; if you are prepared for the fact that he may leave and not come back.  She felt his desire for freedom was more important and even if he ran away "he would still be free, right?".  She took the chance a year ago, and he is still with us!   He stays in the fenced in area most of the time but occasionally hops over to a neighbor's yard to give them a bit of thrill.  We get lots of calls about "Ringo sightings"!  But he always comes home!  The only problem is when he happens to be in the yard at the same time as Libby ~ we try to check the yard before we let her out, but we have had two close calls ~ one of which was yesterday.  Ringo used the second of his nine lives.

We found Ringo literally in Libby's mouth as she was happily trotting around in they yard with her new playmate.  It was a hot day and after checking Ringo over, we realized, he was just overheated and scared.  So we soaked her in cool water in the bathtub and Ellen held him for hours....slowly, he came back from a limp rabbit in complete shock to the happy-go-lucky, free spirit that he is.  By the next day, he was back to roaming the neighborhood. So, we vow to really try and keep Libby and Ringo apart as I know now of two lives he has used up and who knows how many more close calls that we don't know about.  We just can't bear to put this free spirit back in a cage ~ he is named appropriately~ Ringo (after 
the Beatles's drummer!)


While searching for some cute pics, I saw this one, so I had to pop it up.  As I mentioned at the top of the blog, Gary really doesn't get enough face time or credit on this blog.  There are many reasons for this.....first of all, he works really, really hard and often is not around when I am snapping pics, secondly, because, unlike me.....he is a private kind of person.....being featured on my blog is probably his worst nightmare so I don't do it often.  However, he is a huge part of our lives and after twenty two years, I always look forward to him walking through our door and love the time we spend together!  Now, he probably won't be happy with me putting that "out there", but he is so darn cute that  I had to do it!  He is the greatest husband and father I know, so there it is....out there for the world to know!  Well, realistically, all seven followers that I have and I suspect two of them were created by my children as they felt sorry for me when they saw my "small" selection of followers!

Felix update ~  He has really become a tame cockatiel and now rides around  on Ellen's shoulder with ease.  You will catch her doing her homework, eating a snack or doing many other activities with her little friends!

Well, now I don't have time to finish all the happenings that are going on in the other two girls lives...but I will leave you with another teaser.  It is homecoming week, and I am going to try to document  all the crazy, fun and carefree things that happen this week ~ for many of us it, it will be a reminder of our crazy teenage fun as babies are to have in the house, the teenage stage is so full of life, energy and crazy fun!  On that note, I am off to straighten the house as some of the teenage folks are coming to practice "swing dancing" for the unofficial dance contest during the homecoming dance on Saturday!

It is "Decade Day" today for Homecoming week.  The seniors are dressing like the "80's" and Elizabeth has a real life warm up suit that she found at her Grandmother's house in TN last time we visited!  My mother had two of these beautiful work out suits, but quickly lost them to Elizabeth and Sara as they "love" the 80's fashions!  The are are vividly bright colors with the oh, so sexy, off the shoulder cut.  The big brass pendant hanging from her next is mine.  It was on a nice, big, clunky necklace that has since broken over the years....OK, I admit it, it was a prize possession of mine!  Elizabeth managed to make it work by hanging it on another necklace. Lots of makeup and crazy hair.....she looks like pictures of me and my friends from my yearbook!

On a more elegant note ~ Sara's decade was the 60's......Since I was a babe in those years, we have no fun hand-me-downs so she went for the Audrey Hepburn look!  My Mardi Gras ball white gloves paired with my cute black dress and her gorgeous hair came together nicely and I think she pulled it off!

College Road Trip coming soon.....I promise.  Unless something from 
Homecoming week trumps it!

Friday, October 22, 2010

A yummy treat!

Where have I been??????

We have been traversing the country on a week long road trip!  Elizabeth, Sara and myself covered about 2500 miles and hit seven colleges in five days!  I have LOTS of pics and LOTS of stories and  LOTS of incredible college facts to tell but that will have to wait.  After our five day "workcation" (that word needs to be submitted to the Webster dictionary) I have LOTS of catching up to do!  So, I am going to submit the post that I have been wanting to write, and won't take quite as much time as the "great college road trip post"!  Wait until you see my pictures of fall foliage.......up until now, I live fall vicariously through other people's blogs, always jealous of their beautiful leaf photos....but now ~ prepare to be jealous of mine!  Stay tuned.........

Back to this post ~  Ellen and I made the most awesome muffins and I want to share the recipe.  They are Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins and they are some of the best muffins I have ever put in my mouth.  

Start with: 
One egg
One large ripe banana
3 tbsp butter
1/2 cup buttermilk ~ (see my tip for making butter on sidebar and you can use your homemade buttermilk if you make butter!)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Place these ingredients in blender (or Mr. Blendtec) and blend until pureed and consistency is smooth. 
Preheat over to 350 degrees. 

Then ~ add 
1/2 cup of sugar
1 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt

Blend until batter is smooth (or press the "batter" button on Blendtec)

Pour into muffin tins - our goal was to pour the batter and not "spill on the sides" as cleaning muffin tins is not fun.  

Ellen came up with the idea of using a spoon to catch the drips while pouring as she moved from muffin to muffin.  It worked!

Add chocolate chips!  We used a mixture of chocolate and white chocolate chips.

Cook until golden brown.  Double the batch as they go quickly.
I am off to make a batch right now as soon as I press the publish button!

Teaser for next post!!!!!!

 Have a great weekend!