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Sunday, May 29, 2011

Lego Creations

 Mark's creation...he wanted a record of this

Melissa's Lego Bed

The boys especially love legos. Some day we won't be vacuuming up legos, but that is a long way away!  I think Matthew wants to do something with Legos when he is "grown up!"

Friday, May 27, 2011

End of the year Soccer Party!


Katie's soccer team got together one last time and the coach presented each girl with a memory medal.  He spent about 5 minutes encouraging each player individually....He told Katie that he wished all the players put as much focus into practice and the games as she did.  One of the moms even echoed that...it made me smile and made my day.  Katie didn't give up this season...she got to kick the ball several times during the games and that was exciting for her.  This was her first season to play and she really enjoyed being part of the Phoenix team.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Japanese Food Night and Blackberry Bliss

We decided about 2 months ago to pick a country to cook their kind of food and pray for them at dinner...our first pick was Japan, because of the recent Tsunami.  So, we made sushi balls...stuffed with grilled fish.  They were super yummy!  

The recipe that I had said to use seaweed, which Katie and Melissa used, but I thought I could use spinach...didn't work...but it was a yummy salad for me on the side.
No seaweed and no spinach--happy Matthew!
The girls were making their rice balls.



We found some blackberry bushes on John's parents' land--thanks to our neighbor, Renea.  So, we all went pickin' and I made us some cobbler---so yummy!  We went again a few weeks later, and I made jam with that batch---talk about goodness!!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Mark---his first baseball season



We had practices 2 times a week, then the games (2 x's a week) started with a practice maybe once a week at that point.  John took Mark to most of the practices with an occasional step in from our sister in law Jackie or brother, Brent.  Then, the family would all make it out for the games!  Mark's cousin and good buddy, Grant, was the catcher and did great!  Mark played in the outfield.  It was an adventure.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Found Dog, Turtle, Cat,Tadpoles, and Frog...



These are the friendly critters that my kid's have adopted over time. The tadpoles are not pictured, but they are growing right along in the garage! Enrique, the neighborhood cat, is not pictured either, but I will soon add him. He's not ours, but many of us neighbors, especially our street pet-lover, Mr. Jason, takes good care of this very sweet cat.

Shelly is the turtle, and today the frog, Stickers,was let go--we told them that if we move, the frog and tadpoles stay here...so that helped the decision. The dog will either go to his owner--if they are ever found---or the pound on Monday.

Matthew's knee slam!!








video

We have been working with Matthew on his coordination, balance, jumping and more. Matthew has been in gymnastics too this spring and one of the things he was never able to do was a "knee slam", as his cousin calls it. We were so excited that he has been improving in his jumping!!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Camping--A Tie that Binds and a Recipe!






 Apple Cake---Recipe to follow!!  YUM!!  Thanks Sheri B!!
 The boys found the antler in the "woods"


 I grew up going camping with my family and some friends and their families!  It was quite memorable!  I 've been in a thunderstorm in a tin shack, I've been hit on the head by a tent pole as I lay in my sleeping bag, and I've had french toast for breakfast--all while camping!  That was part of my history...but now, I am married to a man that believes that camping builds character, family bonds, and much more! 
We decided to camp out on the "bottom" land---that we have named ours...simply because it was the only family land not claimed---aka---no one wanted the swamp land.  Here again, I am married to a dreamer, one who is an engineer and can see past those type of issues!  So, it's not really ours "officially," but we call it that.  Just like I call my brother in law's smoker(the one that he doesn't know where it is) MINE!  hehe!  It's not, but, boy, did it ever make the best turkey I've ever had---and if he ever finds it, maybe he would let me cook a turkey in it!! 

So, here are the pictures from our "camping " trip about 1 mile away from "home."  I made a yummy Apple cake and John and the kids did all the real work!  Thankfully, we didn't know about the mountain lion on our property because this MAMA BEAR would have kept all the cubs and Papa home!!


Nana's Apple Cake

1. Beat until foamy: 2 Eggs
1/2 Cup  oil
2 tsp. vanilla

2. Sift together: 2 Cups White Sugar--I used more like 1.5 c...and natural brown sugar.
2 Cups Flour
1 tsp. Cinnamon
1 tsp. Baking Soda
1/4 tsp. Salt
1 Cup. broken pecan pieces

3. Add 4 lg. cooking apples (chopped) into flour mixture.

4. Pour liquids into dry ingredients and mix well by hand.

5. Smooth w/hands in 14 x 10 1/2 pan.

6. Bake at 350 degree for 45 minutes.


Cream Cheese Icing ~ Beat until smooth:

Two 8oz. cream cheese, softened
4 Tb. softened margarine
4 Tb. Vanilla
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar

A Few Random Things...

 My mom sent some flowers home for the kids to take care of.  Melissa is our "waterer."
 Do you remember the Decent Food Store I wrote about before...here is the renovation...still no name though!  The original store is below.
 Hemp Milk????  Found in our local Drug Emporium!! Gotta love the Natural Folks!
 We found these two dogs on one the front lots of the subdivision...so we got to take care of the fellows for a few hours.  The kids loved it, but the owner came and claimed them!  We at least made some new doggie friends!

Matthew Time







Matthew is my only non-computer home schooler this year...so I wanted a record of his time.  All the kids have weekly chores and one or two times I have given Kitchen sweeping to Matthew...can't say the kitchen gets all done, but it's something!  Mainly, his chore has been putting up the utensils from the dishwasher and cleaning the table from time to time.  This year, I've been working with Matthew on kindergarten level things, but we intend to put him in kindergarten this fall for reasons of fine motor and gross motor development reasons.  Matthew doesn't like to sit very still while doing school...so it has been adventure!!

A funny Matthewism:

Me:  What does a K say?
Matthew:  It's hard to explain.
always laughing at his logical answers!