Friday, August 28, 2015

Piper is 4!

As per tradition, we bring you: Piper's birthday interview.

Favorite food: Fried Okra

Favorite animal: "Pumas, cheetahs, snow leopards, regular leopards, tigers, lions..."

Favorite book: "I don't want to tell you.  I like all the books I read."

Favorite work at school: Cylinder blocks

Favorite play at home: building with Duplos, playing with pampered palace pets

Favorite TV show: "Dinosaur Train...and Octonauts, Daniel Tiger...and My Little Pony!"  So basically, any show you've watched in the last month.  Got it.  

Oh, this kid.  She's a nut.  She's so giggly and sweet.  And sometimes very stubborn.  She is curious and has a lot of interesting ideas.  I'm so excited to go through this 4th year with her. 4 is a great age, and Piper is going to do it so well.  

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Sunday, August 02, 2015

what we're loving now {July 2015}

So, I'm still writing this blog after all these years because I like going back and seeing bits of our life I've documented. Here's what we're loving this July:

San Francisco - Matt and I went to SF for 6 days.  We ate a lot of great food, and walked around a lot looking at architecture and the water.

Octonauts - Cadence and Piper are loving watching this Disney Jr. show together on Netflix.

The Annie 2014 film and soundtrack - The girls and I saw this at the free kids film festival our local theater does every summer.  I like the original Annie, but I like this one better - Ms. Hannigan has a change of heart at the end of the movie that I appreciated, and the music is really fun.  C was asking for the soundtrack for her upcoming birthday, but then we discovered it was available on Amazon Prime music.  The girls go around singing "Tomorrow" and "Hard Knock Life" with slightly erroneous lyrics.

uSwim - Cadence has been at the not-gonna-drown swimming level for the past two summers, and we really wanted to solidify her skills this summer.  Unfortunately, the swimming lesson options around here are limited, expensive, and inconvenient.  So, I did some research and found uSwim, free online video lessons from Australia.  Matt and Cadence review the video, print out the lesson checklist and then go practice at the lake.  She has improved by leaps and bounds.

First 5 app - I love my YouVersion Bible app and have used it heavily for the last few years.  However, when I heard about First5, I decided to try it out for my morning scripture.  The app provides a Bible passage and short reading each day, but what I really like is the alarm feature so that my morning alarm is set in this app. When I silence the alarm, it goes directly to the devotional.  I am automatically waking up to scripture, reflection, and prayer instead of noticing the emails that arrived overnight or checking my calendar.

Baked Cream Cheese Chicken Taquitos recipe - I've made this twice in the last two weeks.  It's REALLY GOOD.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Zucchini! (and what to do with it)


I have the totally cliche gardening problem of too much zucchini, and giant ones at that. So, we have been experimenting with a number of zucchini recipes.  Translation: everyday we are eating something with zucchini in it.  Some of these were better than others - here's a roundup of what we've tried so far.

Zucchini Tots from The Curious Country Cook - I was the only one who liked these.  She claims they taste like tater tots, but I didn't think so.  More like little zucchini quiches.

Zucchini Fritters from Damn Delicious - Draining the zucchini really made these come out crisp, not soggy.  I liked them, but no one else did.  Pfft.

Blueberry Zucchini Cake from I am Baker - I made this with my friend Stephanie, who is vegan, so we subbed flax seed for the eggs.  Oh, and a banana and applesauce for some of the oil.  We baked it in little loaf pans.  It was very good and very sweet and very popular with Matt and the girls.  We didn't mess around with the frosting.

Chicken and Zucchini Poppers from One Lovely Life - These were tasty, healthy little meatballs.  I used italian seasoning and basil instead of cumin and cilantro so they weren't really Mexican/popper-y as the recipe intended.  Still good.

Best Zucchini Bread Ever from Simple Bites- Well, no.  It wasn't.  It was good, I guess.  I can't pinpoint what I didn't really like.  The texture, maybe?  I didn't use freshly ground spices like she said to?  I cut the sugar a little because we used sweetened vanilla yogurt?  Anyway, I'm still looking for a go-to zucchini bread recipe.

Blueberry Zucchini Muffins from In Erika's Kitchen - Very yummy.  Definitely a treat, as they were pretty sweet.  I subbed applesauce for about a 1/3 of the oil and stevia for 1/2 cup of the sugar.

Zucchini Casserole from Our Ohio - I took this to our church life group potluck.  Honestly, I thought it was weird.  I wished it was more cornbread-y.  But, a couple folks complimented it and I was asked for the recipe, so...

Parmesan Zucchini Wedges from My Blessed Life - I ate a bunch of these, but Matt tried one bite and gave up and I didn't even attempt to give it to the girls.  I left out the rosemary and just used cooking spray.  I'd make them again to take to a potluck - somewhere with more adventurous eaters.

Healthy Zucchini Muffins from Gimme Some Oven
Healthy Zucchini Muffins from Gimme Some Oven - These were a hit! Moist, healthy, not at all too sweet.  Cadence said, "Mmm...these were sooo good!  I want another one."

Easy Zucchini Bake Casserole from Canuck Cuisine - This is another one I didn't bother feeding my family.  I took it to a party.  I liked it.  Simple.  I used two eggs instead of one egg and one egg white (ain't nobody got time for separating eggs around here) and used garlic salt to season the zucchini.

Baked Turkey Zucchini Meatballs from Baker by Nature - Delicious.  I halved the recipe and had just the right amount for our family for dinner.  I used frozen chopped yellow onion (I hate chopping onion!) instead of red onion.  I didn't use her marinara sauce but it sounds good.  I think making it again as a full batch and freezing half would be a great idea.

And now, off to make some zucchini bread!

Monday, June 22, 2015

A trip to Virginia in phone pics

I didn't mean to take such a long break from blogging.  I like coming back here and seeing what we were doing. It is a sort of journal or scrapbook for me.  So, here's a few glimpses of our road trip to Virginia.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Happy Mother's Day!

A little Mothers Day realism:

In addition to being served coffee and breakfast, and being given a lovely bracelet, and getting to take a nap, some other motherly stuff happened.

Like, cleaning up vomit at 1:00 AM.  Braiding hair.  Accompanying kids to the bathroom. Washing dishes.  Making pb&js.  Sending a sick husband to bed.  Bathing kids and yelling at them to clean their rooms.  Putting blankets on sleeping girls.