Wednesday, April 30, 2014

What's Cooking?

We had a traditional Passover dinner during Holy Week, so I made apple walnut charoset, unleavened bread, and lamb chops (though I didn't bookmark that recipe).  I  use prepared horseradish, simple salt water, a hard boiled egg, and fresh vegetables for the rest of the meal.

I've also made a delicious broccoli salad.  So very good!

With a busy practice schedule, I made Apple Breakfast Bars to have on the go for the kiddos. I thought these were wonderful, and they disappeared quickly, though I made a double batch!

I think that might actually be all that was new in my kitchen this month.  We've been gone in the afternoons quite a bit, and I've cut back on my baking.

Friday, April 25, 2014

7 Months

Ellie-Bellie is 7 months old!  In the last month she exchanged her gummy grin for two tiny teeth.

 She learned to push herself to sitting the same day she got a tooth, and the next day she took off in a move that some might call crawling.

She has since started to actually crawl, instead of inch worm.  She has made blowing bubbles an art form.

She got her first baby doll for Easter.

 She discovered books

 and grass.

It's been a big month.  We love the sweet, active, curious, little gal.  She's keeping us on our toes these days.  I haven't quite decided if it is easier having all the big siblings at this stage.  They are helpful to keep her entertained and alert me when she's getting into things, but they also are good at leaving out things for her to get into.

Regardless of which is easier, they all adore her and she loves them too.  It is so fun to watch her look for them and give them smiles and kisses.

Here's her trade mark look these days.  She's learned it always gets a smile from people and usually a laugh too:

Friday Funny

We are in the throes of practice for the girls' Beauty and the Beast production, so the songs have become the soundtrack of our days.

Nate hears, "No one's as burly and brawny!" as, "No one else is  as froggy!"

The girls keep trying to correct him, but he's not in the show and I find it hilarious, so we leave it alone for now.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Dance Recital


The big girls had their achievement night for their tutorial.

Part of the night was the girls' dance recital.  They had the chance to see many of the older girls present their dances, and there were also several children who shared talents.  There were cloggers, singers, and instrument players.

 There were four little girls in their class.  We were far back and I didn't get a good picture because the tripod for the video was set up right next to me, but I did catch them all!

 Kate recited a poem...twice.  She did Robert Louis Stevenson's "Bed in Summer."  The first time she did it without the microphone, so it couldn't be heard, so she was asked to do it again.  She was nervous, but she did it!

Sunday, April 20, 2014


Easter at our house begins quite early.  The night before the girls pick out spices and perfume to anoint the figure we use to represent Jesus.  (We build a tomb--this year it was all Lego--wrap Jesus in cloth, and place him there on Friday afternoon.)  I go to the girls at dawn or before and we head down to the tomb, to find the tomb open, guards fainted, and Jesus missing.  Then we wake the men, who come to see for themselves.

Justin reads the Easter account and then we do Easter baskets and breakfast.  This year the bigger kids all got a little candy.  Kate, Gabby, and Ellie got new shoes.  Nate had just gotten a pair of shoes two weeks ago, so he got sunglasses.

Since everyone has fall birthdays in our house, except Justin, we give them one gift at Easter.  Sometimes it is a Bible if they are ready for a new version, but this year we got the big girls pearl earrings.  Nate, who loves sports, got a 'real' (peewee league) football.  Little Elliana received a baby doll.  She had been loving on Gabby's dolls from time to time, but we knew she needed her own.  We got her a baby Belle doll, since the big girls are preforming in Beauty and the Beast this spring (and Gabby didn't own this doll!).

Friday, April 18, 2014

Gabby's Half Birthday

1. What is your favorite color? pink
2. What is your favorite toy? ninjas
3. What is your favorite fruit? grapes
4. What is your favorite tv show? Ninjago
5. What is your favorite movie? Anne of Green Gables
6. What is your favorite thing to wear? white maxi dress
7. What is your favorite animal? seal
8. What is your favorite song? heavy metal
9. What is your favorite book? 5 Little Monkeys
10. Who is your best friend? Ava
11. What is your favorite snack? banana
12. What is your favorite drink? lemon-aid
13. What is your favorite breakfast? Rice Krispies
14. What is your favorite lunch? peanut butter & jelly sandwiches
15. What is your favorite dinner? ham, macaroni, & green beans
16. What is your favorite game? checkers
17. What is your favorite thing to play outside? tag
18. What is your favorite holiday?  Easter
19. What do you sleep with at night? big bear & panda
20. What do you want to be when you grow up? mama

Friday, April 11, 2014


Ellie has responded to another person's smile with a bigger one for months.  Now she's starting to mimic other behaviors too.  If her siblings jump in front of her while she's in the jumper, she jumps bigger.  My mom waved to her the other day, and she waved back.  If someone laughs, she'll often giggle as well.  I was up pacing the floors with her this morning, she was wide awake at 4:30 (!) for some reason.  I was patting her on the back and she reached over my shoulder and started to pat me too.

 Hopefully she won't pick up on any of our bad habits.  Surely not.  Right?  Ha!  Hopefully this is a sign of compassion and empathy already showing itself.


Tuesday, April 8, 2014

All Together Again

For the very first time Justin took some of the children and left the house for an overnight trip.  He took Kate and Gabby to camp in a nearby state park.

Ellie, Nate, and I stayed busy playing, having dinner, and they took a bath together.  Then I got everyone off to bed.  That was when it got very, very quiet.

I've never lived alone.  Ever.  I lived at home until I got a dorm room at 19.  In the dorm there were many people around all the time.  I lived on the same floor as several girls I knew from the Wesley Foundation, and I had a room mate.  I moved back home for a month after my sophomore year of dorm life and then I moved into an apartment with Justin after returning from our honeymoon.  He rarely travels for work, so I am almost never home without him.

It was so odd to know half of our family wasn't under the roof.  I tackled the girls' room to give me something to do.  I made their beds up freshly, pulled out ill fitting clothes from the drawers as I carefully folded and placed the clothes in nice neat stacks.  I matched mix-matched socks.  I pulled odds and ends out from under the dresser and their beds.  I placed these items on their beds to be put away when they arrived home the next afternoon.  Next I tackled the kids bathroom.  I scrubbed the walls, the vanity, and wiped it all down.  Finally, I climbed into bed with a book.  I knew it would be hard to sleep, but since it was nearly 11:00, I thought I might be able to fall asleep soon.

Suddenly the phone rings.  At that hour, it is either a wrong number or something is wrong.  Something was wrong, but thankfully not a big deal.  Justin called saying they were not able to sleep because it was too cold, so they were heading home.  I went to clear off the girls' beds and turn on a few lights for them.  Once they got camp broken, they called to let me know they were on the way.  I was able to tuck in the girls and kiss them good night.

It made for an awfully short night, but I was glad to have them home safe and sound.  And I'm sure I slept more soundly with Justin home than I would have.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Friday Funnies

Because this little gal's faces are so cute and funny...

A contagious grin (and giggle)

 Her new favorite trick

I will eat your brain!

Eat or be eaten?

 That tongue again!

 If those didn't make you laugh, then maybe a jumping, giggling baby with hiccups will help!

Happy Friday!