Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Peaches, Peaches, Peaches

I think it is safe to say we have a very productive little peach tree in our yard. The fruit might be a bit small but each little fuzzy beauty is packed with peachy goodness!


Here is our tree looking half-naked and forlorn.
But earlier in the summer Matt had to prop up several of the fruit laden branches with support beams so our tree wouldn't collapse under the weight of so much fruit! Every evening our little family goes out to pick some fresh peaches for dessert. Uumm good! The summer heat has definitely ripened our crop so Matt and I picked our beautiful little peaches filling up 7 bags of the yummy fruit. We have also given away several bags to family and friends.
I can’t really explain why but I have been avoiding canning oh since I was 10! I remember summers where that is ALL my mom did in order to keep up with the bounty of food our family garden and orchard produced. She would even shooo my brother and I out of the kitchen for fear the pressure cooker might explode! However, I really enjoyed the yummy food mom “put up” for us, especially her applesauce. I just cringe at all the work that must go into the process. It’s another skill I don’t have on my domestic resume along with sewing, interior d├ęcor, and gardening. Canning is downright intimidating!

So here I sit with 7 bags of fruit knowing it will go to waste faster than my munchkins will be able to eat it. And I’m considering (mom I hope you are sitting down) all of the possibilities; sliced peaches, peach jelly, peach pie filling, peach sorbet. Oh the possibilities, oh the clean up, oh the work… The plus side would be that I know exactly what is going into the mouths of my family, it’s probably cheaper in the long run, I could take pride in doing something good for my family, no more wasted food, and I could add this wholesome skill set to my domestic resume…

Let me hear from you. Should I do the can-can too? Will I be so happy if I can-can? Can-can you share your favorite tried and true recipes with me? Maybe you can-can recommend some good websites or canning books. Sorry folks I don’t know what came over me. My fingers just took over and did the can-can on my keyboard! It won’t happen again. I promise.


So please comment here if you can-can. Shoot I did it again. Stop it already, just stop, move away from the keyboard.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

My poor girl and Clams

I wanted to post this yesterday but my day sort of spun out of control and I never got around to it. I guess it's Aubrey's turn to have Pink Eye and my poor girl looked miserable. Today she is looking and feeling much better thanks to God's gift of pharmaceutical wonders. Bree definitely takes sickness of any kind differently than Abby. All I will say is that she is a bit more dramatic than Abby but she's a trooper non the less. I believe we picked up this nasty stuff from the local pool. I'm told it spreads quickly and a pool is a perfect environment for such nasty bacteria. *grr

Just look at her poor little chinobilly face. It's darling even with pink eye.

Our girls have really been enjoying our own version of preschool. Yesterday we didn't get to do our preschool until the afternoon but the kids did better than I thought they would. This week we are learning about ocean animals. Abby's favorite ocean animal is the shark and Bree likes the "pishies" (fishies). We did a little art project and made clams out of paper plates. I let the girls paint the plates, then we glued wiggly eyes on and I drew on a mouth. They were so proud of their creation that Bree said "Momma, pitches" and pointed to my camera. So I indulged my future scrapper and took some pictures of them.

It would appear that Abby wasn't very happy but truthfully I've been trying to teach her to look at the camera without doing the cheesy smile that you are all used to seeing. As you can tell we have a lot of work to do. And Bree, well she's just downright shy with the camera, but we are working on that too.

All right then, I'm off to drum up some fish nets so we can catch some fish-tub-toys this afternoons learning time.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

I love my magic bullet!

This morning I had a real eye opener (ha! pardon the pun) as I was reading an article in the August issue of Parents Magazine called “How Well Do Your Kids Really Eat?” where a very brave mother of 3 let a registered dietician observe her family for a day.
The title of the article caught my eye because my kids have entered the "I don't like anything but cake" phase of their life. “Lord please let this phase pass quickly, I like pie much better”. *ha! I immediately related to the first line. "Getting kids to eat healthy foods every day can be a challenge worthy of its own reality show." Amen sister! You all know how much I love reality shows. Anyway, I digress. Did you know that every four grams of sugar equals one teaspoon? Holy teaspoons Batman! I guess it’s time to start reading nutrition labels more often. Now this chinobilly mom doesn’t let her kids get hopped up on Kool-Aid all day long but I know there is a lot of room for improvement especially when it comes to snacks.
So I decided to set a good example for my little ones and off I marched to the kitchen to make Blueberry Yogurt Smoothies. I pull out my big blender that basically collects dust 364 days out of the year. I load all the ingredients into the blender and let Bree press the button. The dang thing barely blended the ingredients before I got impatient. “Man this is wimpy”, I grumble to my little helper. Now I’m just mad because I’ll have to do double the dishes. I knew I should have just started with the Magic Bullet from the get go. I pull out my handy dandy Magic Bullet and transfer the ingredients. Yep, that little silver bullet got the job done in about 15 seconds.
We were sipping Blueberry Yogurt Smoothies in no time. So in case you’ve been holding off on buying one of these beauties let this be a lesson. Go ahead buy one you won’t regret it!
I'm off to pull out all of my smoothies recipes again. Sure wish we had a Zuka Juice in our back yard!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Switchin' things up

Well what do y'all think about the new blog layout? Yes, of course it matters what you think of it; I'm a people pleaser remember? So go ahead state your opinion in a comment or make it easy on yourself and vote over here on the right.
Happy Bloggin'

PS. A big shout out to my scrappy friend Kris Mazy for helping me fix the header of my blog! Also thanks to Kim for showing me where to get the groovy signature. You can go here to get your own.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Melancholies, A Lesson and Mr. Potato Head

Today has been a melancholy sort of day. For the past two days and for some unexplainable reason I have been missing our deceased dog, Bryce. He has been gone for over a year now and I still feel the emptiness of not having him around. I miss his toothy smiles that he always had for us when we arrived home, I miss him chasing the 508 lizards (really, I've counted, and counted and counted) we have in our yard, I miss seeing him, from my kitchen window resting on the cool grass of our lawn. I just miss everything about him. He was such a special part of our family (yes, pets are family members too).

Maybe that is why I had been grumpy with the kids this morning. I promised to take them to Story Time at the local library. All morning we talked about being quiet in the library, and how we are to respect others and share at story time and craft time. I was nervous about taking them, worrying that they might misbehave or run off in two different directions but the girls were so excited. It was one of those mornings of leaky diapers, wardrobe malfunctions, telemarketers, and general housekeeping nightmares. As I finally wrangled the girls out of the house and was buckling them in their car seats Abby started acting up. I yelled at her and basically made fool of myself. It was uncalled for and unnecessary but I let my temper and nerves get the best of me. Abby was quick to reply with a very stern "SHHH momma yibwary" (library). Boy howdy did she put me in my place and rightly so. How often are they catching me in my lowest moments not practicing what I preach? Thank you Lord for giving me the reminder I needed from an almost-two-year-old and for the opportunity to teach her humility in asking for her forgiveness. This mommy makes LOTS of mistakes and has to apologize for her bad behavior A LOT!
On a lighter note~ Abby & Bree have been loving Mr. Potato Head lately. They have had the toy since Easter but never showed much interest in him until recently. Here is a sample of their creations. Oh and I promise to snap out of the melancholies....tomorrow :)

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Toads

Toads

Here are a few pictures of some toads loitering on our property. We counted as many as 26 toads in one evening! Matt even had to relocate 3 of the toads this year due to them raising a ruckus at 2 AM (bunch of party animals)!
**These pictures were taken especially for Jeannie. We hope you enjoy them!**

Friday, July 18, 2008

Welcome Baby Korell

Here is Doug's email:
"Another boy joined the Korell family today at 12:32pm. At the moment, his name is Jeremy Seth (subject to change depending on who is sleeping when Medical Records arrives). He is 20 1/2" long and weighs 7 lbs 8 oz. He and mom are both healthy and doing great. Luke, Alyssa and Levi have been in to see him and Luke and Alyssa held him and gave kisses."

Congratulations Doug & Debby! You have a gorgeous family!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Gettin' Digi


It's nap time and I'm playing with a digital kit that I found in my stash. (I've been organizing and tagging all of my digital stuff and I'm finding kits that I didn't even know I had!) I've resolved to fine tune my skills in Photoshop Elements. I'm having a lot of fun and am amazed at all the neat things the program offers. It took me less than 15 minutes to do two layouts. For my scrappy friends ~ y'all know I don't do ANYTHING in 15 minutes besides run my mouth. Pretty cool ha? I still love paper scrapping the best but it sure it tempting to go digital just to get caught up. If I hadn't already started the girls first year albums already they would definately be in digital format and book bound. Oh well, live and learn.
PS To view each image in a larger format all you have to do is click on the image...I think...

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

It's SMORE fun with twins

I have loved eating SMORES since I was a kid at summer camp. I used to think there was nothing better than a nice hot golden brown marshmallow sandwiched between some chocolate and graham cracker. Uumm good! But now I know there is something better; teaching our kids about roasting marshmallows and enjoying SMORES last Sunday.

Oh yeah and these awesome poker thingies I picked up at Target and this awesome fire pit that my awesome husband built are really awesome too. Pheeww glad I got that word out of my system.

Abby did real well getting her marshmallow warm (that's about all the patience she could muster).

And while we are talking about the lack of patience in my daughter. Move your nose close to the screen, no don't smell it, but look at my girls mouth. Yes that is the whole entire marshmallow in her mouth. Mercy she could probably stick her fist in there too but we chinobillies are civilized folk and would never encourage our daughters to do such a thing.

Then there's Aubrey. She is taking small bites and exhibiting a bit of restraint. Hallelujah there is hope for one of my kids. As long as I have her, I know a piece of me will carry on. Bubba Lou go ahead make momma proud.

Oh no you dii nt! No get that back in your mouth. You were my hope remember!

Aaaww, now that's what I'm talkin' about. Cleanliness!

And cleanliness gone too far. Stop, Stop you're gonna break her neck! You're freakin' me out!

Here you go momma take a deep breath and have another SMORE.

Uumm good!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Coming up for air

Whoa! It's been a long time since we last visited together. I hope you haven't forgotten us! This will be a long one so fix yourself a glass of ice-tea, get comfy and enjoy reading about our recent adventures.
Somehow life got a bit crazier since our last camping trip and everything has been somewhat of a blur. Let’s see…I think we went to a family reunion…I somewhat remember my niece staying with us for two weeks…Someone mentioned swimming lessons with the kids…It’s possible there was a strange pedicure incident during a trip to the mall…I have a feeling 48 people we like to call family swarmed our homed on the 4th of July and ate all of our hamburgers...There might have been a parade we attended…But I know for a fact I slid out of bed on Monday morning wondering how to start putting all the pieces back together. Getting things back in order hasn’t been all that bad though. I just finished shampooing the last section of carpet so I’m rewarding myself with a little blog time. The girls are back to their routine and we have been thoroughly enjoying one another. We’ve colored, we’ve played with play dough, we’ve jumped in puddles after the rain, we’ve done a bit of preschool each day this week (took 2 weeks off while my niece was here) and we’ve taken a walk each evening after supper. Here's the recap:
Family Reunion

The family reunion was nice. We specifically went to see Matt’s 97-year-old grandma. Isn't she beautiful?



We got to visit with some relatives too but mostly spent our time keeping the girls out of mischief. Lucky for us this family doesn’t go anywhere without a roping dummy.

Luke and Colten showing us how it's done

Dusty (my brother-in-law) on the right...yeah he's such a talker...:)


Bree, making friends with Leah, a cousin.

SKY
Spending two weeks with Sky was so great. The girls have bonded with her and miss her terribly. I enjoyed visiting with Sky and I truly appreciate her help with swim lessons. I think Abby & Bree especially loved the swim lessons. They ask to go to the pool almost every day.








The Pedicure

I endured; I mean enjoyed, no really I did, my very first pedicure while Sky was here too.What a blast! My dear friend Debby is about to be a mommy to 4 and instead of a baby shower we had a girls day out. We went to one of those places in the mall that have the funky massager chairs they make you sit in while they pick at, I mean massage, your feet. The chairs were supposed to help us relax but I think I got beat up instead so I just turned the blasted thing off and watched Deb drift off fully enjoying her massager chair. Then I ended up with Mr. Hansen because Sky thinks a guy touching her legs is freaky (after this experience I would have to concur). But he was so dang funny. Mr. Hansen is of course oriental, Korean to be exact. The gal next to me doing Deb’s pedicure asked us if we thought he looked like a handsome Korean movie star. So Mr. Hansen pipes up and says just call me “Mr. Handsome”. Sure Ok, if it means you won’t use any power tools on my toenails I’ll call you whatever you want “Mr. Handsome”. It just went down hill from there. He kept saying things like “are you sure you’ve never had a pedicure before?” and “For only fi dalla mo I can remove those calluses for you”. In my nervousness I announced that I was indeed a virgin and to keep those power tools to himself (a pedicure virgin - good grief people this is a family blog). Well it came out all wrong and “Mr. Handsome” was speechless and I was dying. My poor niece was probably embarrassed to be in my company and Debby’s water was about to break due to inconsolable laughter. Well after we got the virginity issue cleared up “Mr. Handsome” promised to never ever take a razor blade to my nasty calluses but I did get a punch card filled with 4 punches. You know those "suffer through 12 more of these babies and get the 13th free" cards? Yeah, I just might have to. Thanks for a great day Deb!

It's not a trophy "Mr Handsome"...
My poor embarrassed niece...
Debby, bustin' a gut, holding baby boy in and her niece Hailey in the background.
The 4th & The Parade
Matt and I hosted our final family BBQ for the year. While we were saying grace mom counted 48 people (all family). Family BBQ’s are awesome when you get to keep them all outside. It rained and rained and rained so one by one everyone came inside our little house. I think it was still fun. I’m not sure, as it was all a blur to me. Again, I spent my time either making sure all the food was out or keeping track of Abby and Bree. A few family members stuck it out for the fireworks but most, thank you Lord, went to watch the fireworks in town. Sorry, no pictures were taken of this event.
Matt and I took the girls to their very first 4th of July parade. We had a good time watching all the entries and visiting with Tanis. Nothing remarkable happened on this day either, sorry folks.
Well this post is getting really long so I’m going to sign off and go scrounge up some grub for the kids. Visit again soon!