Saturday, March 27, 2010

Steven's Back and Peanut Butter Fudge

Hello blogworld! It's a beautiful, but a bit windy Saturday afternoon and I am sipping the last of my Sonic Diet Cherry coke. Andrew is sound asleep and Ellie and Luke are in their beds. I can hear Ellie "reading". Although we are working on her reading, like for real, without quotation marks around the word. We're not that close, but I do think she is ready, so we've been really working on making sure she knows every sound for every letter. Anyway, didn't really mean to get into that, just thought I would check in.

Steven is home and I meant to blog several days ago, but then one day would pass and then the next and I wouldn't/couldn't get around to it. I'm sure you know how that goes. Ellie and Luke were thrilled to see him, of course, as was I. Luke immediately asked for his "guprise". It was a red t-shirt with some camels across the front. He gave a half-hearted thanks. I don't know that camels is really his thing right now. Ellie was more excited than Luke since she got a lot of jewelry. Real stuff that is all hers.

To welcome Steven home, I made him some peanut butter fudge. It is from my good friend, Esther. She first made it for us after Andrew was born and we were hooked. Even more so, when I found out how easy it was to make. So Esther shared this peanut butter love with me and now I am sharing it with you.

Makes about 64 pieces

You will need:
-1 1/4 c. (2 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
-1 1/4 c. smooth PB (natural works best for flavor)
-1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
-4 1/2 c. powdered sugar
-pinch of salt *last time I only had salted butter, so I just omited this*

Cook butter and peanut butter over medium heat until mix comes to a boil. Remove from heat and add salt and vanilla.

Then stir in all that powdered sugar and mix it well. (It is a thick consistency) Pour into buttered pan and cover directly with a piece of plastic wrap. Chill until firm.

I can hear Ellie singing at the top of her lungs and that does not count for resting quietly in your bed. So I better run. Enjoy the rest of the weekend!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

We're Home

And it was good to get here. Although, it was a nice break/treat to be with only one of my children and I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of holding that angel baby, John. I very much enjoyed the trip and felt it was productive as well as enjoyable. We made a trip to the outlet malls not too far from Laura Beth's house. Productive, except for the fact that I still cannot find children's crocs anywhere. I have searched high and low for some new crocs, but they are nowhere to be found. Can anyone tell me where they might be hiding? BTW-I'm not referring to the real crocs, would actually prefer a cheaper version.

Ellie and Luke were happy to be reunited. It took about two seconds for them to get busy in their pretend world. And about three seconds before there was a fight to be dissolved.

I think Andrew and Luke were also glad to see each other.

After we all said hello and gave lots and lots of hugs and Andrew went down for a nap, I took mom's camera and had a little fun. Come on, spring, come on...

While Luke and I were gone to LB's, mom and dad took Ellie and Andrew to the Huntsville Botanical Gardens. There is a treehouse exhibit going on right now, and I assume it will be there for awhile. Luke heard this being discussed before we left and was not so thrilled with the idea of being left out of that. We promised to take him when we got back. So, what better day than today? Apparently, about ten thousand other moms had the same idea.

Nevertheless, overall it was a very pleasant experience. Not to mention very humorous and pretty entertaining to watch the other parent/child interactions. It was a good reminder that I am certainly not the only one dealing with the occasional, or not so occasional public meltdown. Nor am I the only one trying to catch the perfect shot of my child sliding down a slide or climbing a ladder. Cameras were out today in full force.

The Wizard of Oz treehouse was the unanimous favorite.

My personal favorite was the children's garden, which isn't a part of the treehouse exhibit. It is a year round attraction. Say hello to goldilocks, mama bear, and baby bear.

My absolute favorite--a fairy gate!

We even made a new friend, who was quite taken with Andrew. Andrew wasn't quite as sure.

I highly recommend a visit to the Botanical Gardens if you live nearby. At one point, Luke commented, "This is such a so fun place, isn't it?" Just wait a little while longer, when the flowers are in full bloom, I'm pretty sure it will be absolutely breathtaking.

If you go on a day when children are out of school, you will most likely encounter quite a few sobs, screams, and exhausted children and moms and dads, doing the best they can to keep the meltdown under control. On our way out, I heard one mom say, "please don't have a meltdown the last five minutes, you've made it this far". It wasn't doing much to motivate the little boy. I thought we were going to make it, but ours happened on the way to the car. And surprisingly it was from Luke. I think only because Ellie had managed to beg her way into the stroller. Both were complaining that their legs were just so tired and they couldn't walk anymore.

Needless to say, they are both sound asleep right now. And tomorrow is supposed to be beautiful again. Just a few more days until Steven comes home. Although we have had lots of help and the days have gone by faster and more smoothly than I had expected, we're ready!

Monday, March 15, 2010

All Over the Place

Literally. Physically. Luke and I are visiting LB and the rest of the Moore crew for a few days over spring break. Mom kind of got the raw end of the deal and kept my two more, um...challenging children at her house. And Steven, well, he is in Israel for two weeks and you can read about his trip here. I have been urging him to join the blog world for awhile, so go on over and tell him welcome! Also, ask him about his fanny pack. Steven, don't kill me, I had to do it. I was flipping through some pictures one day and saw a picture of one of his trips he was on (after he was a grown man) and he definitely had a fanny pack around his waist. I could not stop laughing. He claims it is not a fanny pack, because the one he has now is flat and it goes under his shirt. Sorry, babe, it is a fanny pack. Steven has some "issues" with losing stuff, specifically his wallet, keys, etc. So I guess a fanny pack is better than losing your wallet in a foreign country. Steven, we miss you! Hurry back with your fanny pack :) Haha-I guess we're both dorks.

So, why do I just have Luke? Well, as mom explained to someone, we are trying to divide and conquer. Luke and Ada play really well together. And Laura Beth still isn't getting tons of sleep, so I'm hoping to be of some help to her. And it is easier to do that when I am not breaking up fights every two seconds. Also, trying to kill a few days while Steven is gone. Two weeks is a long time! The first week is doable. But the second one can get pretty tough. He was gone last year to Greece for 10 days, so I'm speaking from experience.

I have so enjoyed just having Luke today. It is so rare to be with any of my children by themselves for any length of time. His personality is a little different without his big sister around. We had some cute conversations in the car. After awhile he turned off his DVD player. I said, did you want to put in another movie? He said, "no, I just want to talk to you." Sometimes he makes my heart melt. So, then we had a conversation that went something like this.

Luke: "I have a frog in my tummy."
Me: "A frog? How did it get in there?"
Luke: "I think I ate it."
Me: "Really? Well, what is he doing now?"
Luke: [grinning] "He is jumping around."
Me: "How is he going to get out?"
Luke: "I don't know, maybe he'll jump out."

He must have liked the conversation, because a little while later he told me there was a turtle in there and then after that a turtle and a frog. He has also told me a few times today that I am his best friend. Too, too much.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Baby Boys

This is what I see a lot of on a daily basis...

It makes it a bit of a challenge to keep a clean house when you are holding a 20 lb. baby on one hip.

Therefore anyone who comes into my house on any given day will more than likely see something like this...

But that is okay. Because I am going to blink and I won't be looking down at my little baby boy anymore. Instead, (if the Lord allows him to live a long, healthy, life) I will be looking up at a grown man. And he won't be tugging at my leg wanting me to pick him up. And even if he was, I wouldn't be able to. So I will let my house go for now and hold my baby instead. Because as hard as it is to believe on the days when I am up to my ears in laundry and dirty dishes and crying babies with dirty diapers, these days are fleeting.

Luke hasn't seemed to need his mama as much lately and it has kind of made me sad. He seems to be using his "deep voice" and talking about monsters and spiderman a little more and wanting me to hold him a little less. So a few nights ago when he was having trouble going to sleep and crying "I want my mama", as tired as I was, I didn't hesitate to make my way up stairs for one last hug and kiss goodnight.

Well, since no one needs holding right now, I better make my way to the dirty kitchen...

Monday, March 8, 2010

It's the Little Things

The other night when Steven and I went to Huntsville I introduced Steven to Anthropologie and he bought me this...

I couldn't decide. I stood there forever holding them and even pretending to drink (Steven definitely made fun of that), but he finally said, "how about this one?" So this is what I picked. I absolutely love it! It makes me even a little bit more excited to drink my coffee in the morning. And it makes me happy just to look at it.

It also makes me happy to look at this...
Especially the one on the left. Not that I don't love seeing the Cars underwear on my sweet Luke. But what is it about a baby's bottom? Ellie feels the same way. She just can't keep her hands off.

Today made me VERY happy. The weather was unbelievable. We were all very thankful for it...

I was one of the very eager people at Home Depot just looking for something to plant. Ellie was very eager as well. Her pot is the small black one on the left. She was pretty sad that I wouldn't let her take it to her room to keep. I promised her I would look for an African violet tomorrow that she could keep in her room.

One last thing that I certainly don't want to leave out...

I'm sure you've probably made them or eaten some that someone else has made. If not, you really should make them or talk someone into making them for you. I think the official name is oatmeal scotchies. I just call them oatmeal cookies with butterscotch chips. Next time you are at the store, go to the baking aisle and pick up a package of Nestle Butterscotch morsels. The recipe is on the back. You probably have most everything on hand. Steven and I seriously
can. not. stop. eating them.

Thank you, Lord, for all the little blessings you have given me just today.

Friday, March 5, 2010


I threw my crew in the car and drove to get Ada so she could help us enjoy the long-awaited, gorgeous weather.

I left this inside...
And this...
For a little of this...

And a lot of this...

And then after an art break...
Some of this...
I am starting to get spoiled. Steven arranged for Sarah to keep all three again and we had a night out in Huntsville. This is three times in two months. A huge thank you, Sarah!! Andrew wasn't so nice about going to bed. --He has just cut two molars, and one of the pointy teeth(what are they called-incisors, maybe?) He is working on the other two molars and the other pointy one and the front top two. (8 total in case you lost count)-- I was kind of mad with him until I saw the pictures Sarah took while I was gone.

"What?? Was there a problem?"