Thursday, October 28, 2010

Pumpkin Pie Dip

A few weeks ago it was my turn to provide snacks for the kids at preschool. I really wanted to make these cuties but I had to bring enough food to feed 50 kids. Um-yeah Not. Gonna. Happen. So I settled for this recipe and let me tell you it was delicious. I was a bit worried that the kids wouldn't like it they just requested I make more of it. Yay! If you want a copy you many download a pdf of this card for your stash.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Bree's song of the week

This is a song the kids are learning and they love to sing it often. It convicts my heart and hope it does the same for you.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

There Must Be Something In The Water

click to enlarge

Weighing in at 4 pounds this zucchini was discovered hiding among the lower leaves of a tomato plant in my garden. I swear I think our rain water has steroids in it. One day the cute little zuchs are almost ripe the next day they attempting a complete take-over of my garden! We shredded this sucker up and made 1 zucchini bunt cake, 2 dozen zucchini muffins, 2 loaves of zucchini bread, and put 6 cups shredded zucchini in the freezer for later.
Anybody want any zucchini?

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Why Daddys Should Never Grow Up

Matt is on vacation this week so the girls are having the time of their life. I remember the days of my own childhood doing the same thing with my brother and daddy too.
Except we didn't have grass...
Or cicadas making it sound like we lived in a pressure cooker...
Or a video recorder...
Oh never mind!
I think Daddy just might be their favorite person.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Mr. Salamander Goes To School

Journaling Reads:

One weekend, towards the end of August, Matt was pulling weeds from the flower bed in front of our house. I remember noticing how cold it was that morning and feeling a relief that autumn is just around the corner. I had put the girls in the bathtub and was doing the usual swish and swipe of their bathroom when Matt came traipsing in with a huge grin on his face. “You’ll never guess what I just found!” he said to the girls as he opened his hands to reveal his newest treasure. Matt had found a salamander. in our garden. in the land of “I’ve not seen a salamander since I was 8 years old”. NEATO! The cute little bugger was enjoying being passed around from warm hand to warm hand. Matt totally scored some cool dad points for finding THAT creature! He made sure he tucked Mr. Salamander back in the flower garden under the lily plant.

Fast forward to last week. The girls both had the honor of brining something to preschool for show and tell. Many of my facebook friends saw the comment I made about Abby taking a toad for show and tell. Let me just say he was the hit of the class and Abby declared she had the best day of preschool ever. Never mind she’s only been in school all of five weeks. It was still the best day ever.

Matt and I were wondering how we were going to live up to the coolness of bringing a toad to show and tell when it was Bree’s turn. She had captured a few cicadas and even a weird looking beetle but nothing was really fitting the bill. On Wednesday night she had tearfully settled for a Praying Mantis from the garden. All was not right in Bree’s world. Thursday morning rolled around, much too early in my opinion, and as I was sending Matt off to work and wrangling two grumpy girls to get their hair combed when the light bulb went off in my head. Matt headed out to the flower garden with high hopes of finding Mr. Salamander hangin’ out in the flowers. YES, Daddy scores again!

By this time daddy is running late for work and puts me in charge of finding proper accommodations for Mr. Salamander to travel to preschool for his turn in the hands of every. single. preschooler.

Oh yes Mr. Salamander…the places you’ve been.

You are a world traveler in this Chinobilly’s eyes.

Hopefully he didn’t tell all of his salamander buddies to head for the hills. We may need their assistance again someday.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Spittle Bug Spittle Bug Go Away

Oh no! My grapes, my grapes! See the nasty white blob of foam in the pictures? That icky froth is the spittle bug’s way of invading my grape vines and getting all snugly-cozy like and well I’m not going to take it. No I’m not!

After doing a little bit of online research I found a recipe for organic bug killer to rid these pests of my grape vines once and for all.

I think.

So here is my plan of attack.

Fresh habaƱero peppers are not a kitchen staple in the Chinobilly house. We use the canned stuff; don't judge me it’s just how we roll. Oh and cheesecloth was another item I had to purchase at exorbitant prices here at our local grocery store.
The author at recommended I “spray each of my plants with the spittle bug spray. Squirt some on the ground around the plant, too. Then spread a band of the spray around the outer boundaries of my garden, creating a spittle bug barrier. It will repel other garden pests, as well.”

First, I sprayed down all of the white frothy stuff before I sprayed like crazy in hopes to really get the bugs not just their happy little love nests. Hopefully that will send a message to all their buddies and we won’t have further infestations issues.

I used the entire spray bottle in one visit so maybe my barrier is more like Fort Knox.

Here's hopin' anyhow...

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Cream Cheese Pound Cake

I made this cake for a family picnic over the Labor Day weekend. It is one of Matt's favorite cakes and we like to top our slice with fresh fruit like strawberries or blueberries and of course whipped cream.
click to enlarge
If you would like this recipe card, I'd be glad to email it to you in a pdf version.
Well, that's all I've got for today...back to canning tomatoes.

Friday, September 3, 2010


Wow! In the last two days I have picked over 10 pounds of tomatoes from our little garden. It's very exciting to see our little garden do so well yet quite intimidating to think I have to can all this goodness. I've been skimming through a few canning manuals that my mom gave me. For now I think I'm going to stick with the basics of canned tomatoes then work my way into the sauces and pastes. I think I might have bitten off more than I can chew...ha!

 click to enlarge
Journal reads:
I planted 17 tomato plants in our garden this year in hopes that three would survive. All 17 plants are thriving…much to my dismay. The plants are yielding about 5 pounds a day so I guess I better get this canning thing figured out again. I know it will be so nice this winter to make salsa with tomatoes grown in our very own garden.  

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Tap, tap, tap...Is This Thing On?

Yeah, um…. so, you know how when you haven’t talked to a special someone in a really long time, you think about calling her up, but you know that you will have so much to say, and right now you really need to round up the kids and get to swim lessons, so maybe you’ll call after, but then you have cranky kids begging you to make dinner so maybe you’ll call after that, but then there’s dishes and bath time and “mamma when is daddy comin’ home?…will you cuddle “wif” me till he gets here?” and then it’s just too late, so maybe tomorrow, but then tomorrow comes and you wake up with a migraine so you’re behind all day and then…you realize it’s been weeks and weeks and then you don’t call because you know you’ll never have time to properly catch up and so you kind of drift apart but you think about her lots ‘n lots and wonder how she is and so finally you just email at 11:45 at night just to say, “Hey, I just wanted to tell you I was thinking of you,” but you wish it was more, because she’s your friend and you love her and you’d like to tell her all your stories and you’d like to hear all of her stories, but right now you’re doing your very best to just keep your head above water, so you just think, “some day soon I’ll call” and you hope she’s not mad, but you know she’s probably not because she’s a real friend, a good friend, and she knows how it is. She knows how YOU are.

You know?

It’s been like that.

I’ve missed you.

I’ve thought about you.

I’m trying to slow down…to just have a moment…here and there…where I can let my thoughts wander…draw close to my Lord…wander down memory lane cuz my cuties are growing up too fast…to just regroup.

I’ve just spent the afternoon with my friend Jen² scrolling through the photos taken at the girl’s birthday party. After she left I sat down and looked at all the photo’s I’ve taken and not yet posted here.

Since May 18, 2010!!!!

Um yeah, that was the last time I visited this ol’ blog porch. Wow, I’m gonna need to be a bloggin’/scrappin’ ninja to plow through this list!
click to enlarge photo
Here’s the Chinobilly Notes version, so that we can move on, and act like this long and awkward absence never happened:

1. We planted a garden; it’s going really well but the zucchini are on a mission to take over the garden and my freezer.

2. We’ve spent special time with sweet friends, at the zoo, at the mall, parades, fireworks, camping, playing in sprinklers, and just visiting; you know doing the summer thing.

3. Vacation Bible school was the highlight of May for the twins.

4. But their daddy still rocks their world

5. Matt and I (read Matt totally did all the work) finished the tile job and Abby became Cinderella…I have pictures to prove it.

6. Olivia ate the wall in our laundry room…seriously…she ATE the wall!

7. The wall was only the BEGINNING of the laundry room saga. (You won’t want to miss reading abut THAT adventure…)

8. We took a trip to Colorado, camped out with some of the family, it was wonderful.

9. The girls took 4 weeks of swimming lessons at the YMCA.

10. Abby & Bree turned 4 and they had a “Carni-cus” birthday party shared with friends, fun and food…more on that later…

11. We have preschoolers now…what a rollercoaster of emotions and doubts…for mamma anyway!

12. Summer was just too dog-gone short.

Anyhow, I promise, I’ll tell you the rest of these stories and share pictures soon.


The wonder woman wannabe

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Where oh where have I been?

Do you hear that?
I'm pretty sure you can actually hear crickets on my blog porch right now.
In case you were wondering, the answer is no.
My computer didn't crash.
I didn't close up shop.
I didn't spend time in the looney bin.
I was, however, juggling those busy summer days with our girls.
We had a crazy hectic schedule
which required amazing mamma “skilz”,
and quite often feats of strength with a bit of sheer faith to get through the days...
and maybe just a little bit of lazy summerdayitis.
People blame seasons for allergies so why not blame them for absences?
Although this ol' blog porch has gathered quite a few cobwebs,
I have been right there for my sweety and our two precious girls - who aren’t staying little for long.
So, while I know I should feel horribly guilty
(and sometimes I do)
I am not going to say I'm sorry.
I just won't do it.
Okay, but seriously...look at this face:
"Sorry, baby girl, but mamma can't play princess with you
because she has to post on her blog,
share with Facebook what I ate for breakfast and what I may or may not eat for lunch and dinner
and answer 823 emails."


Wrong answer.

See what I mean? You say no to that face! :)
In all seriousness though,
I have had fantastic time with my family this summer
and thank you for stopping by for a visit...
I plan on chillin’ with ya’ll on my blog porch more often.

One Lazy Chinobilly Mamma

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


Monday, May 17, 2010


I was browsing through my posts and found this scrapbook page that was saved as a draft but never posted. I guess this is better late than never. Easter was only a month ago, could be worse.
Maybe I should start my Christmas Cards now so I may have a shot at getting them out on time...

Sunday, May 16, 2010

A journey of a thousand tiles: Part 4 (yes this could take a while)

Step 4: Let the tiling begin!
Here is a sneaky peaky...It matches Chino dirt beautifully. (Is that an oxymoron?)
To be continued, when I'm old and grey.

"A journey of a thousand tiles begins with 19,387,489,1347,917 trips to Home Depot. "

Jenn, The Chinobilly Mamma
Chinobilly philosopher (not to be confused with Lao-tzu~Chinese philosopher)

Saturday, May 15, 2010

A journey of a thousand tiles: Part 3

Step 3: Remove A LOT of glue
This was the most time consuming step. Partly due to the beating Matt took in ripping up the wood with that crazy hammer gizmo. (His hands were numb for days)

My hands were numb from using a teeny tiny razor blade to scrape up all the glue. If you squint and look really hard at the lower right corner of the picture above you may see said teeny tiny razor. Ouch! I cringe looking at it! 

Then Matt brought this beauty home. (Yes, it takes us a few "go-rounds" before we figure things out)
This scraper and some magical chemicals made everything right with the world again.

Thank goodness that leg of the journey is behind us!

"A journey of a thousand tiles begins with a thousand and one nerve endings in your fingers dying a slow.painful.death."

Jenn, The Chinobilly Mamma
Chinobilly philosopher (not to be confused with Lao-tzu~Chinese philosopher)

Friday, May 14, 2010

A journey of a thousand tiles: Part 2

Step 2: Wood floor demolition
We thought these tools would be all we'd need.
It became quite obvious we were mistaken!
This photo was taken a few hours into our...a-hem.... adventure
My job was to remove all the pieces as Matt wore "his self plum out"
We borrowed my dad's was a bit easier.
The next weekend Matt borrowed this thing-a-magig from our brother-in-law, thanks Mark
That worked a little better.

Are we
done yet?

"A journey of a thousand tiles begins with a lot of demolition. "
Jenn, The Chinobilly Mamma
Chinobilly philosopher (not to be confused with Lao-tzu~Chinese philosopher)

Thursday, May 13, 2010

A journey of a thousand tiles: Part 1

Step one: Remove awful carpet.
Our carpet was toast.
It was embarrassing.
It's gone! Out-a-here!
Let's do a happy dance!
They had no idea...

"A journey of a thousand tiles begins with a single cut. "
Jenn, The Chinobilly Mamma
Chinobilly philosopher (not to be confused with Lao-tzu~Chinese philosopher)

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


I've been spending quite a bit of time in the garden lately. The garden wannabe bug has bitten me again but more on that later. I just wanted to show you what can happen when you allow two little girls to water your garden for you. All of this occurred in less than ten minutes even! They claim the earthworms "need'n a dwink"...mamma thinks they just wanted to make sure they got another bath!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Sweet Prayers

When I walked into the kitchen with a load of laundry in my arms this is what I found. Abby and Bree had every.single.little people toy they own gathered in a circle. They were teaching them to "pway".
They were taking turns saying "wepeat after me...dear Jesus...fank you for this day..."
Today I am reminded of His goodness and mercy to me.
Psalm 66: Shout with joy to God, all the earth! Sing the glory of his name; make his praise glorious! Say to God, "How awesome are your deeds!  So great is your power that your enemies cringe before you. All the earth bows down to you; they sing to you, they sing praise to your name."

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Tasty Tuesday: Blackberry Cobbler

I made this for dessert last weekend. Oooohhh it was really good. I've included the PDF version to download too so you can print it out for your recipe box. Just click here.  Enjoy.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Happines is...

Easter hats...

our newest project...



spring blossoms...

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

My birthday present and some rambling

Matt bought a Mino HD camcorder for me on my birthday. Wow is it easy to use! Here is the first video I took with it. These girls of ours are so cute!

I've been finding it harder and harder to visit the ol' blog porch lately. Blame it on spring fever maybe. Here's what we've been up to though:
We've been working in my garden and flower beds...
And a little demolition in the living room...
A little baking for the family...

And a few family projects...

I'll get back into the swing of things soon.
The chinobilly procrastinator

Monday, March 29, 2010

Ahh, now that I've got THAT off my chest...

Dear Flylady,

We need to talk. Yes, we do. For more than three years I relied on you, but, well, things just aren’t working for me anymore, dear. This may come as a total shock but I must inform you that I am on to you like a fly stuck on a sticky strip. You are not what you seem. Don't get me wrong we once had a thing; I even thought I was in love with you. All those 27-fling boogie sessions, hot spot fire drills, and zone missions we did together you might ask? Fake, sweetie. All. Fake.

Really, let's be honest. I couldn’t possibly read all the emails you cram in my inbox instructing me of what you want me to do for the day. Every stinkin’ day you ask if I “feel overwhelmed, overextended, and overdrawn?” Yeah I feel overwhelmed! Overwhelmed with you sweetie! Oh and don’t eeeeven get me started on the “think of those emails as sticky notes.” I’d be better off thinking of them as sticky strips cause I aint going anywhere for a long while if I try to read all those sticky strips. I’m tired of you gettin’ in my face telling me all the things that I have to do today, even with your little “you’re not behind–you’re just getting started!” ditty at the end of all your reminders, I feel like you just always wanted more. I’d rather find a bottle of rum than take 15 minutes to start attacking that list of yours.

Don’t get me wrong–you have a lot going for you girl, and you brought a lot to the table. I have enjoyed some parts of our relationship. Your shiny sink 101 was inspiring, I’ve identified those hot spots and I  realize it doesn’t take all day to clean if I do it in small chunks. But really, it’s time to say goodbye. No, I haven’t found someone else. Mr. Clean and I well, we’re just friends…acquaintances, really…actually he hasn’t spent much time around here lately.

I wish you the best of luck. Don’t cry, FlyLady. There are plenty of fly babies with empty inboxes who are in desperate need of your wisdom...And your rubba scrubba. You may think it’s just stinkin’ thinkin’, and that I need to really Finally Love Myself a little more, but really, the bottom line is this. You’re smothering me, babe, and I need a little space. AND my inbox! It's over between us.

A fly washed chinobilly

PS. I get showered and dressed every morning and what's wrong with Fannie in the pink sweats? I get a lot of work done in my sweats and I aint wearing shoes in my house no matter what that dirty ole fly says.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Happiness Is.

Catching snowflakes.
Cletus the chinobilly snowman.
Proud chinobillies.
Apricot blossoms.
Eager daffodils.
Promise of spring.
This sweet guy.
Blessed with Bree.
Blessed with Abby.