Thursday, June 30, 2011

worst.blogger.ever

Seriously, worst.blogger.ever.

I would say that I am super busy and don't have time to blog....or maybe that there is just nothing interesting going on...but really they are both true and then not true at all.

So, until I find the time to take a few pictures that are NOT on my iPhone and collect my thoughts into something witty and entertaining, I am sending my faithful blog readers elsewhere.

-I didn't have a Slow Cooker Sunday this week because we attended the wedding of one of my co-workers, Meg.

-Visit my friend, Mary's, blog. She is giving away things from Korea everyday this week. I mean, how can I compete with that???

-Dustin's Greenhouse was in Peru. Pretty amazing trip for these youth.

-And Russell turned two, Sophie lost a tooth, Ryan got a haircut, and Norah is smiling.

Thanks for keeping me entertained this week, blogger friends! I'll return the favor one day soon!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Way Back When-esday!

If you want to see some farther Way Back When-esdays, click here. :-)

Otherwise, here is my family July 4th weekend last year.


Wow, I am happy to report I am 42 pounds lighter this year.


And here are my sweetnesses in their patriotic attire.

What a difference a year makes with these little ones!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Way Back When-esday: Kindergarten Edition

In honor of Brooklyn finishing up her first year of Elementary School, today's Way Back When-esday celebrates Brooklyn's first day of Kindergarten in August.



And then for fun, I had Brooklyn wear the same dress on her LAST day of school 2 weeks ago.







Tuesday, June 21, 2011

...And to live by the Girl Scout Law.

I can't believe it's been over 6 months since this post.

This week, Brooklyn and her Daisy troop wrapped up their first year as Girl Scouts. They held an investiture for a newer member and all received their Daisy Petals that they earned this year. It was a great year, and they are so excited to get back together in the fall.









Thanks to Nanny and Gramma (aka Mrs Bader and Mrs Johnson) for being the BEST and most well-trained (haha!) leaders ever!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Happy 10th Birthday, Allie!

Today our sweet God-daughter, Allie, turns 10. I seriously cannot believe she is 10 years old. She has grown up from a precious dark haired baby who quickly learned to say "Whatcha talkin about Willis?" to a beautiful rising 5th grade "big sister" to my two munchkins.



Allie- we love you so much and hope you have a GREAT week celebrating at Girl Scout camp! :-)













Sunday, June 19, 2011

Slow Cooker Sunday: Round Steak with Mushrooms & Onions

Another keeper! This was a great dish served over white rice. (I did the Minute Rice in the microwave for 10 minutes, and it was perfect.)

Round Steak

Ingredients:
1 boneless beef round steak (1 1/2 pounds), cut into 4 pieces
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbs vegetable oil
1 can cream of mushroom soup
3/4 cup of water
1 medium onion, quartered
1 can (4 ounces) mushrooms, drained
1/4 cup milk
1 package dry onion soup mix
1 bay leaf
Seasonings, to taste: salt, pepper, ground sage, dried thyme

Directions:
1. Place steak in a large resealable plastic bag. Close bag and pound meat with mallet to tenderize the steak. Combine flour, 1 teaspoon pepper, and 1/2 teaspoon of salt in a small bowl. Add to bag with steaks. Shake to coat meat evenly.
2. Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Remove steak from bag and shake off extra flour. Add steak to skillet and brown both sides. Transfer steak and pan juices to the crock pot.
3. Add canned soup, water, onion, mushrooms, milk, dry soup mix, bay leaf, and seasonings to crock pot. Mix well. Cover and cook on low 5-6 hours or until steak is tender.

Happy Father's Day, Honey!

Just wanted to take a quick moment to wish my husband a very happy Father's Day! Chad, you are my partner, my rock, my comforter, my listening ear, my love, and these days even my executive assistant. :-)

Thank you for supporting me in everything I do! You are a wonderful husband and an even better father. I wouldn't want to navigate through this life with anyone but you.

Especially since one day you will be a real life rock star. Ha ha!

Happy Father's Day, Chad! I love you! Best friends forever and always.
~Me

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Summer Goals

By the end of the summer, I would like to see this cutie move from the alligator pool to a big pool...

And I would like to see this cutie swimming by herself in the big pool...


Brooklyn starts swim lessons on Monday. Thanks to Nanny for committing to take her for 8 afternoons this month. Brooklyn has been doing awesome in the big pool with no floaties and voluntarily going under water. We just have to get those hands and feet moving in the right direction.


Jake has decided that the big pool is scary stuff, so I am just hoping we can get him to stop crying in its presence by the time we hit the beach in August.


So, what are your summer goals?

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Happy Endings

Brooklyn's last day of school was about a week and a half ago. Before I forget, I wanted to share a few pictures from that special day.

Is anyone surprised that Brooklyn received the "The Mother Hen" Award, for always helping her classmates open drinks, find a seat, get a pencil, etc.?

Brooklyn's teacher was Mrs. Hamilton. Mrs. Hamilton was a fabulous teacher. She was so instrumental in working with Brooklyn on her confidence and her social skills. We were very lucky to have such a caring, sweet, patient teacher.


Lots of hugs goodbye that afternoon, but Brooklyn and Avery will see each other this summer at church and around town for playdates!


I was so lucky (since my camera battery had died the week before) that the kids decided to reprise their "Fifty Nifty" song at the end of the year party.



video

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Slow Cooker Sunday: A Double Edition

To make up for my last of posting (and my pretty slack previous posts), I have TWO slow cooker recipes for you tonight! Tonight's dinner was doubly slow-cooker delicious thanks to these two recipes.

The Main Course (courtesy of my dear friend, Chris):
BBQ Pork Tenderloin

Ingredients:
2 pound pork tenderloin
1 vidalia onion, sliced
1 green pepper, sliced (but you all know me well enough by now to know we had to omit this for the hubby)
1 20 oz. can pineapple chunks, drained
2/3 bottle of Sweet Baby Ray's Hickory and Brown Sugar BBQ sauce

Directions:
1. Line the bottom of the slow cooker with 1/2 of the peppers and onions.
2. Place pork in cooker and season with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
3. Top with remaining peppers, onions, and all of the pineapple.
4. Pour Sweet Baby Ray's over everything.
5. Cover and cook on low for 5 hours.

The Side Dish (compliments of a last minute "google" of "Slow Cooker Sides")
Chedder Potato Slices

Ingredients:
1 can of cream of chicken -or- cream of mushroom soup
1/2 teaspoon of ground paprika
1/2 teaspoon of ground pepper
4 medium (or 2 large) baking potatoes, sliced 1/4 inch thick
4 ounces of shredded chedder cheese

Directions:
1. Combine soup, pepper, and parika.
2. In greased slow cooker, arrange potatoes in overlapping rows.
3. Sprinkle with the cheese.
4. Spoon soup mixture over the cheese.
5. Cover and cook on high for 3-4 hours.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Slow Cooker Sunday: Will someone please make this and let me know how it tastes?

Due to unforeseen circumstances and poor planning, we ate Subway instead of the recipe that Brooklyn chose for tonight. We plan on making this Thursday, but if anyone wants to give it a go before then, you can just let me know how it turns out. :-) I've made a crock pot mac and cheese before, but that one included eggs, so it was more like a casserole. I'm anxious to see how this one turns out.

Crock Pot Macaroni and Cheese

Ingredients:
1 box (16 oz) elbow macaroni noodles
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
4 cups shredded sharp chedder cheese
1 can (13 oz) evaporated milk
1 1/2 cups of milk
1/2 cup of butter, melted
1 teaspoon of salt

Directions:
1. Cook macaroni in boiling salted water, following package directions. Drain well.
2. Grease bottoms and sides of crock pot well.
3. Toss in hot macaroni and vegetable oil and then add all other remaining ingredients.
4. Stir gently to combine; Cover and cook on low 3-4 hours.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Backing up a bit....Trip to the Dairy Farm

Two weeks ago, I went on Brooklyn's class field trip to the Dairy Farm in Julian, NC. It actually was a lot of fun..and super interesting.

And kinda smelly in some places...

We saw pregnant cows...

And went on a hayride...



And stuck our heads in holes...


And practiced milking a cow...


And gave a baby calf a bottle...


And spent time with friends...


And saw tons of new things!


It was a great morning at Homeland Creamery!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Brooklyn's Stage Debut

If you know Brooklyn at all you know this was a HUGE deal. After 3 failed pre-school Christmas shows and getting a big fat negative from her on the church kids choir, my daughter finally decided to show the world (well, her school) what she could do.


A lot of build up for a short video where she is by no means the star of the show, but the mere fact that she is standing up there and shed not one tear is huge.


And my battery decides to die right at the end of the song. I apologize for the shaky camera work but when I saw that light flashing I tried to search for new batteries while continuing to film.



video


And no, I didn't have spare batteries so this was the only proof I collected that morning.


But it's ingrained in my memory forever. :-)

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Way Back When-esday

Around here, we are having days in the mid to upper 90's. So, for today's Way Back When-esday, I decided to look back at some pictures of warm summer June days in years past...

2005:
2006:

2007:

2008:

2009:

2010:

(Poor Jake...Brooklyn just loves him soooooooo much!)

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