ÔĽŅ What fresh hell is this?

“Don’t worry Mama. Santa will bring it….”

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Robots in disguise…

So I thought I would be a clever and show the boys the Transformer movie from 1986 (thanks to Scott who had a copy just laying around ūüôā ) since they are still a little young for the live action Transformer movie. I had forgotten how many big names were involved in the production of the cartoon movie: Orson Welles, Leonard Nimoy, that guy from Unsolved Mysteries (sorry had to Bing) Robert Stack, and everyone’s fav brat packer Judd Nelson! They all got sucked in somehow.

The unanticipated consequence of my cleverness was that Greyson has become obssesed with Galvatron and decided that he would be wanting a Galvatron toy for Christmas. Of course the fact that Galvatron toys have not been made for some time was not lost on me. Thus began my crusade to get him used to the idea of disappointment…

“Oh Greyson, look at this Lego set. Maybe Santa will bring you it for Christmas.”

“We can build it Mama and Galvatron can blow it up!”

Sigh…

“Greyson, what about Optimus Prime? He is one of the good guys!! He turns into a truck!”

“He is boring. Galvatron has cooler guns.”

Double Sigh…

” Greyson what if Santa runs out of Galvatrons? He may have to bring you something else.”

“That’s okay. The elves can make more. Don’t worry Mama. Santa will bring it.”

You can see what I am up against.

So I decided I better foray into Ebay world and see what I could find. And Santa has been victorious!! I do feel a bit guilty that the packaged toy that someone has kept in their “smoke-free, dust-free, light-free display case” will be ripped open and played with by my 3 yr old. Oh well.

As a side note:

I do remember asking Santa for Optimus Prime for 3 or 4 years in a row. Santa did not bring him. My mom’s current defense is to claim ignorance.

“I probably didn’t even know what that was.”

Although, the Snoopy Sno-cone Machine that I asked for as a kid finally showed up a few years ago so maybe there is still hope. Santa must just be backordered a few decades….


Beautiful day for hiking!

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The boys have been badgering us to go on a hike.

“Dad, can we go on a hike tomorrow?”

“Ben, you have school tomorrow.”

“We can go after school!”

“I have to work tomorrow Ben.”

“Don’t worry Dad. We will tell you how fun it was.”

Since the rain finally decided to let up for a day, we threw the kids in the car and headed up to the mountains. With the Mountain Loop Road being so close, we are really fortunate to have a ton of hikes within a 30 minute drive.¬† We decided to hike a couple of miles in to Heather Lake. The great variable was Greyson. Being a bit too big for the backpack-carrier we used last year and also being stubbornly independent “I DO IT” we weren’t sure how things would go.

The hike went pretty well. The biggest problem we had was when we had to carry Greyson due to terrain issues. He did not like that and everyone in the Northern Cascades heard about his displeasure. Ben and Seb did awesome and were highly motivated by all the waterfalls we got to see and hike through.

Heather Lake nestled in the shadow of Mt. Pilchuck.

We hiked a little over 4 miles in four hours so not too bad. A nice way to spend part of our beautiful, sunny day.

More photos from our hike can be seen here

No worries…I will just crawl over here and die.

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So way back when in Februaury, I told myself I would be better about updating the webpage. Then came March. BUAHAHAHAHA. Ben and I had to deal with our crazy allergies. Then we all caught chest colds. Ben’s asthma just went haywire and so we got to deal with that. Chest colds led to ear infections for all three boys and eventually, pneumonia for Ben. The first round of antibiotics didn’t work so we got kicked up to the stronger stuff. This puts us about spring break which came with a nice heaping helping of stomach flu for the family. Props to my parents who came over to help us remodel our bathrooms and ended up nursing a bunch of sickies. Finally, the kids are on the mend and so I went to the doctor and to get pills for my bronchitis and plugged up sinuses. Such good times. So now that I have sanitized the entire house about four times and we have installed the biohazard decontamination unit at the front door we should be all good. Come by for a visit! No worries…I have extra haz mat suits.

Amish Friendship Bread for those who want to keep their friends…

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Once upon a time, my neighbor brought over a gallon bag filled with goo. “Here, it’s a starter,” she says cheerfully. “It’s friendship bread.” I had never heard of it. It came with a list of directions. Pretty straight forward. Babysit for¬†six days¬†add some ingredients, baby sit another four days,¬†add more ingredients and bake. Oh, and by the way, you will end up with four other bags of goo which you can then try to pawn off on various people. Shutters quickly draw closed when I approach, door bells go unanswered, dogs are unleashed…

I called my mom on the phone and mentioned it to her. “Oh, that,” she replied. “The edible chain letter.” She told me about friends of hers whose kitchens had been take over by a plethora of goo containers in various states of goo-ness.

Undaunted, I faithfully followed the directions and ended up with two loaves of uber-tasty bread. Seriously, this stuff is delicious. Well worth the ten day wait. However, I was not prepared to make, and eat, another two loaves in ten days time. So there in lies the crux of the problem. Unless you keep the cycle going, grab another batch of starter from a friend, or make a completely new batch of starter every time you are out of luck. Well, not entirely.

The starter contains yeast and yeastie beasties are pretty hardy indeed. If you treat them nicely, you can get away with freezing them and become your own Amish bread friend. The best thing to do is to keep your goo in a gallon ziploc freezer bag. Put it in your fridge overnight to slow the yeasts down and then throw it in the freezer the next day. I made some in December from stuff I had frozen in July so they hold on pretty well. When you want to make a batch, pull the starter from the freezer and let it thaw slowly overnight in the fridge. The next day put it on your counter and use that as Day 1.  There will be some die off so your goo may just sit there until you add ingredients on Day 6. After that it tends to pick up pretty quick.

Bread is a bit of a misnomer too as this is more like a cake than like a traditional, rising bread.  So good with a cup of coffee for breakfast.

Catching up with 2009 – December

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Seb was enjoying his tumbling class so much that, when I found out they had an under age two tumbling class, I signed up Greyson. It is more like a “Mommy and Me” class¬†and I love getting to have some time with just Grey, even if it is 9:00 am Saturday morning.

Greyson chasing bubbles

 

....hole in one...

Ben lost his first tooth December 10th and it was quickly followed by a second tooth.

 

I have to admit, my stomach did a little flip-flop when Ben told me his tooth was loose. He is growing up so fast, as all kids do, and we are starting to hit all those ‘big kid’ milestones.

Christmas preparations continued with the outside lights going up on the house. I have tried to get Marty to put lights up on our roof but he wouldn’t do it. His reasoning is that since we can’t put them on the highest part of our three story roof (neither of us is crazy enough to do that) it would look silly to just put them over the garage. I decided I didn’t care this year and put some up anyway. The look on Ben’s face when he came home from school and said “Mom, we have a cool house now!” was awesome.

The boys helped me make christmas cookies.

Caught red handed!

One of my projects for December, was to make Ben a pair of pants he could wear to “Pajama Day” at school.¬† Actually letting him wear his pjs would be cold and just seems yucky to me. I have a hard time watching people walking around outside in grocery stores and parking lots in their flannel bottoms and slippers. What kind of nasties are they dragging back into their house? But that is my hang-up. Anyway, we went to the fabric store and the boys picked out some fabrics:

Ben and his sports pants

Seb and his paw prints

My favorite. I made all three matching stripey pants. I so wish I could get away with wearing a pair of these ūüôā

Christmas was so nice and low-key. We had a great time with my side of the family for our traditional Christmas Eve get together. Great food, drink and catching-up with everyone. We had a relaxing Christmas morning at our house and then off to Monroe for a fun time and yummy eats with the Stainbrook clan.

Our winter has been so mild and a bit weird. I can’t say I missed the snow all that much though. It was so nice to be able to drive everywhere and not have to worry about the roads.

Catching up with 2009 — November

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Ben and I started November by going to a birthday party for one of his friends at our local roller rink. They do still exist ūüôā Ben’s first time on wheels and he did pretty good. I think it was like 17 years ago when I last skated. I didn’t embarass myself too badly and could pass off my wobbly, hesistant shuffle since I was ‘teaching’ my son how to skate.

The rest of our month was pretty normal and then came the onslaught of Thanksgiving weekend.
We kicked off the holiday with Papa Dan and Uncle Jay joining us for a Silvertips Hockey Game. Go Tips!

Ben has trouble with the loud music, buzzers, cheering, etc.

Everett Silvertips beat the Spokane Chiefs. I still feel bad when the Chiefs lose but not as much.

The next day, we had a Thanksgiving feast with Marty’s family at the Monroe homestead. Turkey is so good.

That weekend, we treated the boys to an excursion on the Santa Train. We caught the train in North Bend and rode it about 20 minutes to Snoqualmie.

Waiting for the train

Waiting for the train

In Snoqualmie, we met Santa, got some cookies and hot cocoa and checked out the various trains they have around the depot.

We actually got them to sit on his lap! They usually stand WAY back and wave.

We stopped off and checked out the Falls on the way home. Stellar!

After holding the boys off since Halloween, “Can we put the tree up now?!?”, we finished off the weekend by putting up our tree and various Christmas paraphenalia.

Not to be caught lollygagging, my house project for the month was to recover our nasty dining room chairs. I found some durable, easy to clean vinyl and I think they turned out pretty good…

The beautiful after (l) and the nasty before (r)

Quack, quack.

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We were putting Greyson in his carseat and he kept saying quack, quack, quack. I couldn’t figure out what he was talking about…and then Marty did…

The rain drop, in the shape of a duck, on the sunroof.

Catching up with 2009 — October

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We had great fun at the Monroe Fire Station Community Day. We got a tour of the fire house, checked out ambulances, helicoptors, saw a jaws-of-life demonstration and¬†to top it off…we got to ride in¬†the fire truck. Seb and I even got to run the sirens and the horn! So fun.

October was a busy month in the kitchen. We had a lot of produce from our garden and then our wonderful friends let us pick their apple tree. It was so great to get all the fresh foods but then we had to use them!

Tomatoes for sauce!

Apples for caramel apples, apple sauce, yummy apple butter, apple bake and just plain eating!

This year we grew some sugar pumpkins and made our own puree.

 

We made some awesome pies and pumpkin muffins.

October also brought some home improvement projects. We borrowed Papa and his hammer and we helped him put together our new garden shed.

It turned out great and it is so nice to have a place to put stuff now. We just need  to add some doors, finish up the trim and a little paint.

So I broke it…

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Ok. I finally get motivated to update our page and such and it’s broken. I can’t import pictures and so I have to throw myself upon the mercy of my genius husband to help me fix it. Until then, I can go old school and include the links to some picture albums I have posted on Facebook.

Pictures from October 2009
Pictures from November 2009
Pictures from December 2009

Kids’ Pages

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So I will try and be better about updating the boys’ pages. I let Ben and Seb know that they have a page so now they ask me if I can put stuff on it. Hopefully, that will keep me on my toes or, just give the kids one more thing to badger me about ūüôā

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