Friday, November 30, 2012

Raking Leaves

Chris started to rake the leaves today.
This is something we never did in California.

Tomorrow hopefully we will have a big pile for the kids to jump into!
The kids were jumping on the neighbor's trampoline and were having a blast.
Yes, this is Dylan.  Silly boy!

Christmas Traditions

Christmas is my all time FAVORITE holiday.
With people all over the world celebrating the birth of our Savior.
It's a time when worship songs are played in every business, store, mall, home and car.
(Talk about the gospel getting out there.)
People are singing worship songs, and most don't even know it!

That is why I want to be intentional with my kids.  
I want them to KNOW why we are celebrating - not just that we are.  
And that it is not just about Santa and wish lists.

Today I stumbled upon another great way to do that.  
The Jesus Storybook Bible Advent Reading Plan by Home with the Boys.
I have thoroughly enjoyed reading the Jesus Storybook Bible with the kids.
And can't wait to start this reading schedule tomorrow.
How great to see how history was preparing for the birth of Christ!

What are some Christmas traditions that you do to focus on the true meaning of Christmas?

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Note From the Teacher

Getting this note home from Payton's teacher put a smile on my face today.


And THANK YOU to all who were/are praying for Rylan.
We had a MUCH better night last night.
He only woke up 2 times (although I was up more often checking on him).
Today he has gone up and down.  Smiling and happy, then miserable and sick.
At least the croup cough seems to be gone.

Aaaaannnndddd he just threw up again.  So keep praying please!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Croup Part II

Rylan went to bed seemingly healthy last night.
Then he woke up at 1:30am SO sick.
Coughing, throwing up, hacking, choking, screaming.
He was miserable.  I felt helpless.
I wanted to help him feel better, but there was nothing I could do - but pray.
Needless to say, he, Chris or I got barely any sleep the rest of the night.

We took him to the doctors in the morning and he has croup . . . again.
For the second time.  And he is only 7 months old.
Poor baby!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012


Today our women's group had a service day.
Our church sponsored 20 local kids with Christmas gifts this year (you know, like an Angel Tree).
When you get 5 women and 5 kids together,
a wish list, a credit card (+ a budget) to go shopping,
you KNOW you will have fun.
Here we are back at church sorting which stuff went with which kid.

It was a bit confusing at times shopping for that many kids, but fun none the less.
See Rylan and his friend Claire at the bottom?  She is a couple of months older than him.
It's fun now that he can interact with her a little bit more!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Joy to the World

Remember when I told you that our pastor also leads worship at our church?
Yeah, he is very talented like that.
Well today Francesca Battistelli and her husband, Matt joined him in leading worship.
{Matt is her drummer who also happens to be Pastor Will's brother . . .}
Anyway, when we found out she was singing, we brought Payton into the service with us so she could hear her.  Chris took her up to the front row so she could have a better view.  =)
Payton L.O.V.E.S. "Francheco Batiskelly".

We also got to hear her sing "Joy to the World" which is on her new Christmas album!

It was the kick off to a new series called "Carrols".  This week was "Joy to the World" and each following week will be another Christmas carrol.  He taught out of Nehemiah (chapter 8) that when the people HEARD and UNDERSTOOD the Word of the Lord they were to rejoice because the "joy of the Lord is your strength".  When we understand what God has done for us, we should be overwhelmed with joy that we have no choice BUT to worship him!
When we are out and about this Christmas season, and hear a worship song (Christmas carrol), we need to worship him!
Read (or hear the song), Understand, Worship.

My all time favorite Christmas song is "Oh Holy Night".
Have you ever sat down and just listened to the lyrics?
Such a powerful song.
And to think, some people just sing along and miss the whole message.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

What I Ate...

I think I am done with Thanksgiving dinner until next year.  Soon you will see why.

Monday - Romaine with Apples, Pecans & Blue Cheese Salad
Reduced Fat Ritz Crackers & Sharp Cheddar Cheese

Tuesday - Breakfast Burrito
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffin

Wednesday - Green & White Salad
Crystal Light

Thursday - Thanksgiving Leftovers Part II
(We ate our official Thanksgiving Dinner at 1pm.  So this was my late dinner.)

Friday - Thanksgiving Leftovers Part III

Saturday - Thanksgiving Leftovers Part IV

See what I mean?  =)

Friday, November 23, 2012

Apple Slices {recipe}

Have you ever made apple slices?  They are super easy, super tasty, and super healthy (unless you add some other things to it - see the notes below).
Dylan and I made them two nights ago.  He loves them.  So do I.
Ready for the recipe?

Well, it's not really a recipe since a recipe is defined as:
"A set of instructions for preparing a particular dish, including a list of the ingredients required."
this is more of a "here's how to do it".
Apple Slices
Wash your apples.  I used Roma and Galla but you can use any kind you like.
Use a mandolin to slice them thin.
Lay them in a single layer on a baking sheet.
Bake at 200 degrees for 2 hours.
Turn off the oven and leave them in there overnight.  
(Anywhere from 2-18 hours is fine.)
Then enjoy!
You can core the apples first.  I just don't mind eating the center.  But I do pick out the stem and seeds.
I sliced my super thin.  You can make them thicker if you want to.
Try sprinkling cinnamon and sugar on the apples before baking.
I also saw on Pinterest that you can sprinkle Jell-O gelatin on them as well.  {Sounds delish!}
Store in a air-tight container.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Seven Months

Today Rylan turned 7 months and also celebrated his 1st Thanksgiving!

This past month he:
Went from crawling to sitting and visa versa (he was 6.5 months old).
Learned to drink from a straw & a sippy cup.
Pulls himself up to standing.
Claps patty-cake.
Actually enjoyed bath time without crying (thanks to Chris).
Has enough hair for bed head (cute!).
Learned how to do raspberries.
Learned to "regular" crawl.
Still isn't sleeping through the night (oh well!).
Decided he does NOT like baby food.
But he likes black beans, bananas, avocado, and yogurt.
Is quickly outgrowing 6 month clothes and fitting into 6-9 month clothes.
And was overall just a REALLY good baby.

So thankful (since it IS Thanksgiving) that God decided to bless our family with you little man!
{big heart}

Thanksgiving 2012

All excited to eat Thanksgiving dinner!

Yup, just like 99% of America today we ate . . .

yummy (and way too much) food!
It was such a beautiful day, we ate outside.


Sorry Rylan, next year you can enjoy the food with us.
Although he DID have mashed potatoes and liked them!

Daddy kissing his baby boy up!

Dylan spent an hour + this morning creating this.
It's a Thanksgiving Turkey . . .

He asked all of us to write down what we are thankful for (this morning).
Then he put all those slips inside the turkey.
After dinner he went around and had each one of us draw a paper, read it out loud and then we all guessed who wrote it.

 It was such a fun, great & sweet thing for him to do.
And did I mention it was ALL ON HIS OWN???
{Hear the pitter patter of my heart?}

Then it was dessert time.
Drumroll please . . .

CHEESECAKE from Tamara!
Yes, I got half pumpkin and half caramel apple and it was wonderful.
If you didn't get to eat one of her cheesecakes, you missed out. =)
Right after eating we went out front to throw the football around.
Ry Guy sat on the sidelines.

Did I mention it was a BEAUTIFUL day today?

Me and my sweet girl!

She asked if I would go and "pick" leaves with her.
How can I say no to this face?

I decided to pick some pretty ones from a tree.

More pics of the kids.
My handsome hubby and me!

Psalm 107:1
Oh give THANKS to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

My Kids

My little "fashioneaster" (fashionista) as Payton calls it.

Got them together for a photo.
{I need to do this more often.}

Every once in awhile it will hit me that I have THREE kids.
This is one of those moments.
Seriously, how did that happen?
Wait, don't answer that.  =)

Me and Rylan.  He's going to be 7 months old tomorrow!

Ry has been doing a lot of new things lately.
He gives kisses.

And learned how to crawl (instead of army crawl) though he does a mix of both.
And play patty-cake.

Monday, November 19, 2012


Dylan got his hair cut today.
He wanted it long, not spikey, short, like a fauxhawk, not a fauxhawk, just like Daddy did it last time.
Are you confused?  Yeah, so were we.

Here is what he ended up with.
{Like his "Zoolander" look?}

Ah, here's his sweet smile!

I love my handsome boy!

Meal Planning for Thanksgiving Week

So does your pantry look something like this?

Filled with all the goods for Thanksgiving dinner?
We just finished our shopping and are good to go for Thursday with the exception of picking up our yummy goodness from Tamara.
Oh yes,  pumpkin cheesecake and caramel apple cheesecake . . . maybe we can just forget the dinner and jump right to dessert.

Any-who.  My problem is meal planning for this week.
I don't really want anything heavy or rich since I am anticipating a huge, indulgent Thanksgiving dinner.  So what do I end up planning?  Nothing.  See the problem?  I almost need to have a set meal plan that I use every year.  What are you eating this week?

P.S.  Just a forewarning . . . my "What I Ate" post probably isn't going to be very good this week!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

What I Ate...

Sunday - {Community Group} Turkey Sandwich
Spinach Salad
Macaroni and Cheese
(And yes, I guess I was hungry.  It was really good though!)

Monday - Stuffed Shells
Salad with Caesar Vinaigrette
Garlic Bread
(I've made the shells twice now, and am looking for a better recipe.  Have any you can recommend?)

Tuesday -  Baked Potato with Steamed Broccoli (and sour cream and shredded cheese)

Thursday - Gooch
Crystal Light

Friday - Enchilasagna
Tortilla Chips
Carrots with Light Caesar Dressing

Saturday - Peanut Butter and Honey Sandwich
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffin
(Yes, a gourmet dinner.  Watch out Pioneer Woman!)

I realize that Wednesday is missing.  I don't even remember what I ate.  
Isn't that bad? ;)


. . . we're in trouble . . .

He went from army crawling, to pulling up and standing!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Less Than A Week Away

Did you know Thanksgiving is less than a week away?
{Yikes! This year has gone by so fast.}

With Thanksgiving on my mind, I was trying to remember the words to a silly Thanksgiving poem/song that Dylan learned in Kindergarten.
After a few days of thinking, asking him, remembering a few of the lines, I finally gave up remembered to Google it and see if I could find it and I did!
I should have Googled it in the first place!
The only difference is Dylan learned "Pumpkin Pie" in place of "Pudding Pie".
He was so cute saying this poem/song with the motions.  
Hummm maybe I have a video of it somewhere.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Indian Princess

Payton's class had a Thanksgiving Feast today.  She got to dress up as an indian girl.
Her headdress says "I'm thankful for . . ." and the feathers say:
My swimming pool.
My mom & dad that made me.
My toys.
My princess bed my dad made me.

It was another good moment to talk to her about her indian heritage.
She's Potawatomi Indian from Chris side.  Registered with the Citizen Potawatomi Nation.
I think it's one of the coolest things.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Yellow & Belly Laughs

I had to stop on my way home to take a picture of this tree.

Beautiful right?

The leaves were solid yellow.  Almost florescent.

But of course I couldn't capture the true color with my camera.
This is more accurate of what the color actually was.

It was breathtaking!

Then this evening, I caught Rylan belly laughing at Payton.  It was adorable.

I love these sweet moments!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Community Group Night

Rylan got to try out the drums at church today.

He was mesmerized by them!

We had our Community Group tonight.  Here are a few of the people that are in our group:
Pastor Will and Jaime

Evelyn & Luis

Chris and Me!

I love whipping out the camera and giving people less than 1 second to prepare for the picture.
I know, I am mean.  =)